Clark County Press, Neillsville, WI

October 13, 1999, Page 24

Transcribed by Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon.

Index of "Oldies" Articles 


Compiled by Dee Zimmerman








Clark County News


October 11, 1894


Path master Redmond has had a crew of men working on a road in district ten, Town of York.  They are fixing it up in fine shape.  Only one corduroy road remains in that township and is located near the corner of Hoesly’s farm.  We suggest the corduroy be taken out and a good turnpike be built in its place.  (The Hoesly farm, referred to, is on the southeast corner of Hwy. 73 and Cty. Hwy. C. Corduroy roads received the name because logs were laid across the dirt surface giving a rough appearance such as corduroy cloth.  D. Z.) 


A large group of young folks met at the home of Walter and Ernest Rowe, Friday evening.  Music was furnished by the string band.  The party broke up at 1:00 a.m. but several boys didn’t get home until 3:30 a.m. 


A grand building raising was held at Lou Huckstead’s farm on Pleasant Ridge last Thursday.  One of the characteristics of the day was the entire absence of rotten barley juice.  Lemonade was served instead.


There will be a social gathering at the new school house at Columbia, which is nearly completed, on October 26.  Dancing will be the principal entertainment of the evening with good music in attendance. 


French’s feed mill is ready to supply the farmers of the Levis area with all their feed needs.


J. W. Short has been hauling rock from his farm the past few days for a well at his mother’s home in Neillsville.


The news of West Weston Township – the creamery is nearly completed, soon ready for business.  The Hemp boys have just finished their threshing and are now busy sawing wood.  Another drove of cattle and sheep from about the neighborhood went to market in Neillsville on Saturday.


The cornet band of Neillsville is reorganizing and has rented a room in the Gates block for rehearsals.  Frank Darling will be the leader of the group.


Frank Darling, an early resident and merchant of Neillsville was also a very talented musician, playing cornet with local musical groups and other bands in Central Wisconsin during the late 1800’s



Ruddock’s new barn is going up on his lot in the Blakeslee forty acre tract of land.


Tom Lowe does business at the elegant new meat market starting today, Nov. 1st.  It is a model shop, one of the best in the state.  The people of Neillsville are as proud as Lowe is of the metropolitan look the shop has.  A fine new marble counter has been put into the shop.


The Esch-Taylor building front is taking on fine curves.  The arches rest upon iron pillars with stone caps.


The Columbia cycle makers have announced a drop in the price of their best set of wheels, from $150 to $100.  This $50 price reduction ought to give us medium-priced wheels at a very low figure in cost.


October 1944


The Van Gorden’s have reached the 55th Anniversary of their business experience as a family in central Wisconsin.  It was Oct. 1, 1889 that the late S. H. Van Gorden established the mercantile business at Hixton which has continuously proceeded under the name of S. H. Van Gorden & Sons.


When the sons grew up, a branch store was started at Taylor, with B. L. Van Gorden in charge, and then his brother, H. H., was designated manager of another branch in Alma Center.  Clyde Van Gorden located in Osseo to manage a store there.  Still later, Bruce was established at Black River Falls and Archie “Red” at Neillsville. The latter two are grandsons of S. H., the Hixton founder.


The original store at Hixton is new (now) operated by Mr. and Mrs. C. O. Pratt and Mrs. Emma Northup, both women being daughters of Mr. and Mrs. S. H. Van Gorden.


W. C. Wells, re-visiting Neillsville after many years, started in the dairy business here more than 50 years ago.  His first job was to drive a team of mules and gather up cream for the S. A. Walker creamery.  The Walker plant was a frame structure which was located east of the present site of the Indian school on Neillsville’s west side. 


Wells worked hauling cream three days a week, and worked inside the plant the rest of the week.


The Walker plant was without competition in Neillsville and miles around.  This gives a picture of the dairy industry at the time, a small volume of milk. The plant’s churn had a capacity of about 600 pounds.  They usually churned for butter about three times a week.  The peak of the season resulted in as much as 25,000 pounds of milk in one week.


The growth of the dairy business locally may be appreciated when it is stated that the two principle plants in Neillsville alone receive about 20 times that amount of milk in a single day.  In addition, there is now the milk received by neighboring cheese factories and other dairy plants, none of which were in existence 50 years ago.


Wells stopped here on the return to his home in Hamilton, Montana, where he has operated a dairy plant and retail business in food and ice cream.  He had attended a convention at Toronto of the sovereign grand lodge, I.O.O.F., to which he was a delegate of the State of Montana.


Fred Maeder, Joe Dvorak and their band will play for the wedding dance of Margaret Gearing and Russell Schroeder on Saturday, Oct. 7 at the Inwood Ballroom.


Beginning October 1, the paper used for the production of the Clark County Press is rationed.  This means that this news-paper is proceeding under a limitation by government order, being allotted a prescribed maximum in accordance with the government regulations.


The job of rationing in Clark County is indicated by figures just made by Leo Foster, chief clerk of the local rationing board.


In September, “A” gasoline books were issued to the number of 7,019.  Each book contained 30 coupons and the first coupons to be used were good for four gallons of gasoline.  That quantity is intended to last for a year.  In addition, the board put out “B” books also for special mileage category, “E” coupons for non-highway use, such as tractor gasoline approved by AAA, truck gasoline as apportioned at another amount.


The total gasoline for all purposes is set at 1,300,000 gallons.  This must last for varying periods of time, depending upon the nature of the coupons and the use to be made of the gasoline.  It is conservative to estimate that the usage in Clark County alone will be about 2,400,000 gallons per year, all of which must go through the rationing board.  (Those of us who lived during those rationing days can remember the thought that went into each trip before it was made.  A list of needed items was made up ahead of time to be purchased on that specific trip. The year’s gas allotment was divided up by month, knowing the exact amount the car would need to travel to designated places for business needs.  The way most of us travel now, a month’s allotment sure wouldn’t get us far.  It shows us how we take the availability of gasoline so much for granted at our present time. D.Z.)


Clark County will proceed with the purchase of the MacMillan house and property on South Hewett Street, and will use it as a home for pensioners.


This decision was made by the Welfare Committee of the Clark County Board, after a hearing and after extended inquiry and perplexity.


An anniversary party was given for Rev. Ben Stucki who has completed 25 years of service as head of the Winnebago Indian School and Mission in Neillsville.  During those 25 years, he has supervised the building of the school structure on the banks of Black River.  He has conducted the mission operations here and at Black River Falls.  He has become a figure well known in the Evangelical and Reformed Church over a large part of the United States.


A recruiting team of the war manpower commission will visit Neillsville on Saturday, Oct. 28.  The purpose is to secure workers for critical war jobs, and especially for the manufacture of rocket powder at the Badger Ordnance Works near Baraboo.


About 2,000 workers are needed immediately to man the rocket powder line now idle, and to bring the other production up to quota.


An extension of the Neillsville City Cemetery to the east was decided upon by the City Council this past week.  The council voted to purchase three acres from Leroy Allen for $600, to which Allen has agreed upon.  The land lies along the road directly east of the present holdings of the city.


Saving of the barn on the Charles Schaeffner farm points to a plan of procedure in a farm fire: “Go to the nearest cheese factory,” says Fire Chief J. T. Christenson of Loyal.  “Fill with water all milk cans available and hurry them to the fire.  The fire can then be more readily put out.  Many farm buildings could be saved if water were available.”


The blaze on the Schaeffner farm, south of Spokeville, was controlled by the use of 6,000 gallons, most of which was transported from the Fisher cheese factory in two milk trucks.  It took nearly four hours to stop the stubborn blaze.  The Loyal Fire Department responded to the call with five firemen in attendance.


Miss Ruth Leola DeCremer, of Neillsville, became the bride of Forrest W. Selves, Town of Grant on Sunday evening, Oct. 22 during a candellight (candlelight) ceremony at St. John’s Lutheran Church.


Miss Ruby Selves, sister of the groom, was maid of honor.  The bridesmaids were Miss Ericka Tresmer, Miss Janice Dwyer, and Miss Ruth Selves.


The groom was attended by Heron Van Gorden, Armin Moh, Harris Dux and Milton Tock, the latter is a cousin of the bride.  Paul Bartell, Jr., and Herbert Jaster were ushers.


A reception for 170 guest was held at Wagner’s party room, the bride ahs been doing office work.  The groom has been in the army for four years, serving two years in the Southwest Pacific.  Since his discharge from the army, he has been farming on his parents’ farm in the Town of Grant.


A late 1800’s view of South Hewett Street, 600 and 700 blocks: The Dennis Tourigny hardware store, a tin shop, restaurant, tavern, general store and Merchants Hotel are on the left side of the street.  The Neillsville flour mill can be seen at the end of the street with a railroad crossing sign in front of it.  (Photo Webster family)



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