While browsing through the Courier-Journal’s archives, I’ve learned that the best stuff is deep in the inside pages.
For example, this story from Oct. 3, 1899:
Apparently, the kitten was sad and sickly, hanging outside the Treasury Department in Washington, D.C., when Admiral George Dewey. Dewey had recently led the navy in the Battle of Manila Bay in 1898 in the Spanish-American War.
He returned to the U.S. in 1899 to a two-day parade in Boston and had just been promoted to rear admiral in 1899 and full admiral the following year.
So, the reporting on the kitten incident would have been about a month after he returned home. Makes sense, considering it happened a while before, then suddenly he was in the news being heralded as a hero. And everyone loves to read about a big, bad hero having a tender side toward kitties.
Turns out, the kitty took some of its benefactor’s traits and became a vicious killer and hero to its neighbors.
I guess Devil Dan, the cat, was defending the Treasury against all invaders, be they human, feline or rodent.
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