Clark County Press, Neillsville, WI

February 25, 1998, Page 32

Transcribed by Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon.

Index of "Oldies" Articles 

Good Old Days


Compiled by Dee Zimmerman


Clark County News


February 1893


D. J. Spaulding has sold his Clark County lands and mills to John S. Owens of Eau Claire.  A large crew of men will arrive there, in a few days, to begin logging.


Invitations are issued for the grand opening ball at the new opera house and Armory, Wednesday, Feb. 22, Washington’s Birthday.  The number of invitations issued indicate that Co. A proposes to make it a memorable occasion; Whitcomb’s band will provide the music.  The finishing touches are being put on the building.  The stage scenery will be put up; new chairs and furniture are to be here before the grand opening.


The dedication of the new People’s Church was held on Thursday and Friday in the midst of a most furious blizzard and cold snap.


Nevertheless the attendance at each meeting was large, with people from the city and abroad.  The citizens generally turned out to hear the talented speakers and to view the beautiful interior of the completed church.  Rev. Forbush occupied the pulpit Thursday evening and other ministers assisted in the service.  At 2 p.m., Friday, a platform meeting was held with the minister and Messrs. O’Neill, Youmans and Doolittle making speeches also.  Friday evening secretary Hosmer delivered a sermon, the services being followed by a banquet served to those in attendance.  The auditorium, parlor and basement are lighted by electricity.  The cook stove in the basement did its share in cooking the meal.  A sum of $200 was raised for church purposes, without any special appeal.  Music was furnished and worthy of praise.


Mrs. J. W. Sturdevant died at her home south of the city on Sunday, Feb. 5th at the age of 75 years.


MaryAnn French was born in Vermont on Aug. 19, 1817.  Married to J. W. Sturdevant, they moved to Clark County in 1854, being one of the first nine families to settle in the county.  They had six children with three living; Robert of Washington state, James and Rufus who live in Neillsville.


Neillsville grows, the year 1893 is sure to be a noted one in its growth.


Lute Marsh is studying plans for that elegant new house on Clay Street just north of his brother, Willy’s house (218 Clay St.)


B. E. Luethe has an immense lot of fine building stone just south of L. M. Sturdevants.  He plans to put up a house fully to the high water mark of Milwaukee, with neatness on its completion.


R. W. Balch had rock delivered and ready for the masons to begin building on his north Hewett Street lot.  As soon as the frost is out of the ground, grading and excavating can be started.


The big Esch building is going up in the heart of the city.  It is sure to be an important addition.


Matt Kapellan’s brick building on the corner of Sixth and Hewett Streets will loom up with iron and plate glass front early in the summer as the contract has been let.  Kapellan will also build a new residence on Neillsville’s north side.


Fred Balch will build a new house near the North Side School, in a convenient location.


Charley Servaty will build a new home near his store.


C. S. Stockwell has purchased 116 acres of land from Mrs. E. R. French.  The land lies just south of Ross Eddy, across the Black River.  It is covered with maple and other hardwoods, being very valuable for the timber.


Harness maker Wasserburger is selling out goods in his shop at 50 per cent discount.


Let Jim Hewett, Jones Tompkins, Tom Chadwick and Harry Mead along with some of the settler-ladies do a dance set at the ball here on Feb. 22.  They will show you a hoe-down quadrille in the good old way it should be done, with their pant cuffs tucked in their boots and clips in their hair.


What a dance we will have in the new opera house and auditorium.  It is being rapidly finished – the floors being the most important matter at hand.  The people can’t keep away from it – they have to gaze at it everyday.  It is too nice to believe.


The handsome structure has cost $10,000 and that amount has been skillfully invested so the building is truly worth that amount of money.  The scenery and setting for the stage cost $900.  Electric lights gleam brightly from brass fittings about the gallery, upon the art steel ceiling, the foyer, offices, staircases, reception rooms, cloak room, etc.  Tons of iron girders, stays, etc, have been used to gain strength without bulkiness.  The building is heated throughout by two enormous furnaces and in every detail the equipment is perfect.


The militia company, Co. A 3rd Inf. W.N.G., have put into the enterprise their entire fund, both the allowance from the state and their per-diem earnings toward the armory building.  Some public spirited citizens have aided them by liberal subscriptions for stock.  The building will have brick veneer.  Capt. J. W. Hommel is entitled to more credit than works can express for his enthusiastic labors for it.


Other militia companies will be represented by their officers, and many privates.  A banquet will be furnished by Co. A that will set a record.


James Bryan, Greenwood, was in the city on Tuesday.  He stated that by the first of March he would have in three million feet of pine in the south fork of the Popple River.  That will clean up the Brooks & Joye (Joyce?) tract of pine which he has been logging out for several winters. 


C. S. Stockwell’s new map of Clark County will be in great demand as the old Charley Bussell map is very much outdated.


February 1933


The Mosinee Aces basketball team came to the Neillsville Armory to challenge Melvin Ure’s pickup squad on Friday night.  The Aces, under the leadership of Dick Hemp and Francis Schwienler, referee, tagged along as best they could in the early frames, getting a basket here and there.


Early in the fourth quarter, Mosinee led by 28 to 19.  Ure called in his reserves, the Wagner brothers, Johnny and Billy, with instructions to “cut loose.”  Trying to keep up with the Wagner boys was like chasing a cloud’s shadow through a rocky pasture.  Ure’s men tied the score in the last half minute of playing which raised the old Armory roof off its timbers with whoops made by the fans.


Five minute overtime was called.  The Wagner brothers took the lead, raining the basket with shots that found their way through the rim from perilous positions and startling angles.  Mosinee in its desperation began a barrage on its basket and succeeded in sinking two of them.


In the hectic five minutes Ure’s team won by 36 to 32.


Clark County’s funds are nearly exhausted after paying the bills.


As the month ended, the county treasurer reports there is only about $11,000 on hand, with the running expenses of between $5,000 and $6,000 needed for the county’s home at Owen, the mother’s pension of about $2,000 and blind people’s pension of approximately $1,000.  In addition, the current expenses of salaries of court house officials and other costs must be met.


According to Calvin Mills, clerk, “We will have little, if anything left, when the January bills are met.  The county will have to borrow, if possible, between $10,000 and $15,000 in February if the county is going to pay its bills.  The only income the county now has is from the redemption of delinquent taxes.”


Word was received here last week about Paul Walk’s death in Clarkston, Wash. on Jan. 27.


Walk was born Feb. 8, 1871 in Farmington, Jefferson County, Wis.  Attending school in Jefferson, at age of eleven years, he became a charter member of the Orion Cornet band.


At age 16, he came to Clark County with his parents locating on a farm in southeast Pine Valley. The following year; Walk started to clerk for B. Dangers store in Neillsville, continuing to work for Dangers and Frankenberg, later employed by B. E. Luethe.  In 1895, he and his brother Carl founded the firm of Walk Bros., a mercantile business.  After a few years the Walk Bros. built the brick building now occupied by Unger’s Shoe Store and a portion located adjoining, now site of Prochazka Bros. store.  Jan. 1, 1905 Walk Bros. dissolved partnership, Carl going to Abbotsford and three years later to Bay City, Mich., where Paul joined him in 1910 after selling his interest in the store to H. L. Albright.


Leaving Bay City, Walk and his family moved to Clarkston, Wash., where he had a fruit ranch and grocery store.  During his residence here he was trumpeter in the local band and for a time in the old Company A.   He is survived by his wife, Mary (Reindfleisch) two brothers, Rudolph of Lewiston, Ida, and John L. of Neillsville.


Lowe’s Ambulance Service has day, or night service; Marshfield Hospital $6.00 per trip, Eau Claire Hospital $12.00 and Madison Hospital $30.  Phone 226


January Birthdays: Gladys Riedel, Lydia Hillert, Eileen Stevens, Glenn Wachholz, Violet Wachholz, Loraine Hagedorn, February Birthdays: Arlene Roehrborn and Roy Keller, LaVern Metcalf, Jimmy Vincent, Dorothy Subke, Lucille Lueck, Bernita Lueck, Dolores Meier, Albin and Alvin Rob, twins.


Kurt Listeman demanded a fifty per cent cut in city employee’s salaries at the council meeting on last Tuesday evening.  He also stated, “If we are paying for 75 or 80 street lamps to be lit, we must light only 35 or 40 lights.”  Mayor Hewett stated that a ten year contract had been signed with Northern States Power Co. to pay $6,000 annually for street lighting.  Listeman asked, “Why was a 10 year contract signed?  I don’t believe such a contract is binding and the city council shouldn’t sign such contracts.”


A & P Food Store Specials are: Swift’s Bacon 2-1/2 lb pkgs 19¢; Campbell’s tomato soup 4 cans 25¢; Nabisco Premium Crackers 2 lbs-22¢; Lipton’s Tea ½ lb pkg. 39¢; Oranges, doz. 25¢; Apples 4 lbs 29¢; Grapefruit 5 for 25¢.


May & Ruchaber United Stores Specials: – 4 rolls Northern Tissue 25¢; Naphtha Soap, 10 bars 25¢; Dessert Jell, pkg. 5¢; Barr’s Boiled Dinner, 2 ½ size can 5¢.


Charles H. Gates one of Clark County’s first residents passed away on Feb. 13.


Born in New York, Apr. 7, 1855, he came with his family to Clark County in 1856, when they settled at Wedges Creek where they kept a wayside inn, then moved to Neillsville in 1861.


In the summer of 1897, soon after the discovery of gold in the Klondike, Gates joined the Neillsville party of men and left for the gold fields.  He returned to Neillsville in 1900 after many adventures in the quest for gold.


(The LaFlesh house on Neillsville’s southeast side may have been known as the “Lanam house” in later years.  If anyone has photos of it please call.  Also, one of the Moen-Glass dog sleds was donated to the Clark County Historical Jail Museum. D.Z.)


It is better to give than to lend – and it costs about the same!


A scene captured in the Ford Garage on East 5th Street, Neillsville, between Hewett and Court Street, circa 1925.  Not all men in the photo have been identified.  From left to right: Dewey Walker, unidentified, Bill Schwellenbach, unidentified, “Pike” Langraf and Art Russell.  (If you know who the two unidentified men are, please call us with the information.  Photo courtesy of Bernard Walker)



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