Q: There is a gray building at the railroad tracks on West Front Street, Findlay, with a barred door and windows. It’s a block north of the old train depot. Was it an early jail? — Beverly Atkins, Findlay.
A: No. It was a railroad freight depot for the old Ohio Oil Co. The bars helped keep thieves out.
The city owns it and four adjacent buildings. — Mark Donaldson, Hancock Historical Museum, Findlay; Hancock County Auditor’s Office.
Q: I recently saw the movie “Jersey Boys.” Whatever happened to Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons?
A: Valli, born Francesco Stephen Castelluccio, still sings and has acted in recent years, notably in “The Sopranos.” He is 80 and lives in Englewood, New Jersey.
Bob Gaudio, singer and keyboardist, was a prolific composer and record producer for his group and others, including Frank Sinatra. In the movie, his character says he lives in Nashville. He is 71.
Tommy DeVito left, or was forced out of, the Four Seasons in 1970, and was a casino dealer, singer, actor, and record producer in Las Vegas. He is 86.
Nick Massi, born Nicholas Macioci, was a bass and bass guitarist who left in 1965 because he disliked touring. He died of cancer at home in West Orange, New Jersey, on Dec. 24, 2000, at 73. — Various sources.
Q: Were they always called World War I and World War II?
A: During the first war, who knew there would be a second?
In the United States, World War I was “The European War,” until the U.S. got involved in 1917, when it became the “World War.”
In 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt used the term “Second World War,” but, in 1942, he asked people to propose other names.
The War Department received about 15,000 suggestions, including the “War for Civilization” and “War Against Enslavement.”
Roosevelt liked “The Survival War,” but World War II stuck, and the 1914-1918 conflict became World War I. — history.com.
Q: Why did they name it cole slaw?
A: “Cole” comes from kool, the Dutch word for cabbage. “Slaw” is a shortened form of salade. — dictionary.com.
Q: Who was Rubik of “Rubik’s Cube”?
A: Erno Rubik was a professor of interior architecture and design, and 30 years old, when he invented his “Magic Cube” in Budapest, Hungary, in 1974.
It became the world’s best-selling toy, but Rubik saw it as an art object. He used the first model to explain spatial relationships to students.
The first cubes were twice as big as the popular version.
“The beauty of the Rubik’s Cube is that, when you look at a scrambled one, you know exactly what you need to do without instruction. Yet, without instruction, it is almost impossible to solve,” says rubiks.com.
Rubik, who turned 70 last week, still lives in Budapest. — Martha Esbin, “Librarian’s Muse” blog, Toledo.
Q: Someone said I can see many newspapers’ front pages daily.
A: Yes. The Newseum in Washington sponsors http://www.newseum.org/todaysfrontpages/main.asp.
Many newspapers contribute, including The Courier.
Q: What did Mark Twain (1835-1910) say?
A: “France has neither winter nor summer nor morals. Apart from these drawbacks, it is a fine country.”
There are no drawbacks to asking Just Ask, The Courier, P.O. Box 609, Findlay, OH 45839, or Send an E-mail to justask.