Selected letters and phone-in opinions from ``Letters to the Editor: Two Hundred Years in the Life of an American Town'' (Touchstone, $14), edited by Gerard Stropnicky, Tom Byrn, James Goode and Jerry Matheny:

Some of my opponents are circulating a base falsehood accusing me of voting for (President James A.) Garfield in 1880. Such a foolish idea. I never voted for Garfield or any Republican in my life.

_Alex Kanouse, The Columbian & Democrat, Aug. 10, 1888

Dear Editor:

I am submitting three questions that have puzzled me.

First: How do worms get into chestnuts?

Second: How do squirrels, after cutting off green burrs from the trees and they drop to the ground, open them?

Third: How do squirrels know whether a chestnut is good or not without opening it?

_W.L. Garrison, The Morning Press, Oct. 2, 1941

According to the scriptures, man was placed on earth prior to women. While no time period is mentioned, I would estimate it to be about a million years. This, of course, means that men are one million years further advanced on the evolutionary scale.

...So I urge you women to be patient in your efforts. Yes, patient for about a million years. As soon as we are convinced that you can handle our tasks, we will gladly assign them to you so that we may go on to even greater and as yet unknown horizons.

_Bill Spahr, The Morning Press, Dec. 11, 1979

May I ask you, Mr. Spahr, are you on a personal basis with God, or were you there in the beginning?

_One of the less unfortunates, Bloomsburg, The Morning Press, Dec. 12, 1979