Clark County Press, Neillsville, WI

October 27, 1999, Page 32

Transcribed by Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon.

Index of "Oldies" Articles 

Good Old Days  

Compiled by Dee Zimmerman


Clark County News


October 1909


Monday evening two inmates of the Clark County Jail, one who is waiting trial for robbing a man at Abbotsford, the other serving three month’s sentence for stealing a suitcase at Owen, broke jail.  Sheriff Eunson and his wife were out during the evening and on returning, Eunson went through the jail to see how the prisoners were doing.  He found that the cage door was open and the two men gone.  They had reached out and pried off the padlock which held the cage door.  They then went to a corridor window, got a stick of wood from a pile of wood stacked high enough to be within reach of the window, and pried off a short bar which was put in to repair the grating filed off some years ago by jail breakers.  Tying strips of blankets together, they let themselves down to the ground.


The Sheriff at once sent telephone messages to all surrounding cities and towns, meanwhile searching around the city of Neillsville.  He took the midnight train to Marshfield to watch those who got on trains traveling eastward.  While at Marshfield, he got a telegram from Merrillan stating that the two escaped prisoners had gone north on the No. 9 train.  He returned on the early morning train and at Merrillan was given a message that the men were caught by Eau Claire police.  Sheriff Eunson went to Eau Claire and had the prisoners back in the Clark County Jail by Tuesday afternoon.


Last Friday night, Fred W. Dangers met with an accident, and as a result is laid up with both wrists broken.  Dangers was one of the fellows who were furnishing music for a dance at Wasserburger’s hall, playing first violin.  Shortly after two o’clock, during a short intermission, Dangers and Fred Rossman stepped out of the hall which is on the second floor, onto a back porch, that extends over apart of the lower floor.  Thinking the stairway led down from the roof on the east side, he didn’t see the steep ledge, so fell twelve feet to the sidewalk below.  Landing on his hands, both of Dangers wrists were broken and a blow to his head rendered him unconscious for a short time.


Dangers will be laid up for a couple months, but was fortunate the injuries were not greater.


There was a dance at Walter’s hall, in the Town of York on Friday evening.  It was the last dance of this season on account of the coming cold weather.


Select farm loans of $1,000 and over may be made at 5% interest with privilege of partial payments.  Call at the law office of George L. Jacques in Neillsville.


Last week Thos. Kelley bought a herd of 302 sheep from John Stanton at the Soo stock yards in Greenwood.  Later, Kelley wanted to back out of the deal, but as the bargain was claimed to be legitimate, Stanton refused to take them back.  Both parties refused ownership of the sheep and as a consequence the herd stood from six p.m. Sept. 21 to 8:30 a.m. on Sept. 23, without feed or care. A complaint was made to Mayor Bushman by G. S. Barlow, who authorized Marshal Hogue to place them in Mr. Shank’s pasture, where the poor hungry sheep were taken care of.  If no owner turns up to claim ownership, the sheep will be sold at the stock auction on Saturday.


Chicken thieves have been making a practice of visiting John Carlson’s Pine Valley poultry farm and helping themselves to taking some of his fat pullets.  Carlson gives warning that he is prepared for any future visits of such thieves, they will receive an unpleasant reception. 


October 1954


The next time you plan an evening out; treat yourselves to a real treat by eating at Steinie’s Club 10, four miles east of Neillsville.


You will find plenty of parking spaces, and will be just a few steps from the car to the inside of the nightclub.


At Steinie’s Club 10, where Les and Lucy will greet you, you’ll find a pleasant atmosphere for dining.  What’s more, you’ll find an excellence in the food that is served.


Sea foods are a specialty.  And it is there that you can get those larger, better-tasting native frog legs.  There is also a sea food plate that will give generous portions of frog legs, shrimp, scallops and a fillet of walleyed pike.


Of course, Steinie’s Club 10 has aged steaks and fillet mignon at all times for those who prefer meat.


There are full course dinners, ala carte, and sandwiches and salads; so you can go for about as much (or little) as your stomach desires and your pocketbook dictates. They serve food from 5 p.m. to 12 Midnite every evening.


Steinie also has television available for your added enjoyment.


An epidemic of construction has been proceeding in the past few weeks on the part of dairy farmers through out Clark County.  The farmers have been threatened with loss of market for their milk unless milk houses or milk rooms have been built on to their barns for handling milk to be marketed.


The result is that official reports thus far indicated relatively few farmers have had their milk refused by the plants.


Close to 5,000 milk houses or milk rooms have been constructed in Clark County, representing an investment of about two million dollars.


State highway discussions and planning have taken an abrupt turn. The state’s historic free roads policy will be continued after all.  The state toll road commission has found that prospective income from a suggested trans-Wisconsin toll road connecting the southern and northwestern state boundaries won’t be economically feasible, at least for the present.


The report was a blow to those many enthusiasts who had backed the idea of a super-highway financed through user-tolls, according to the models developed in many other sections of the country and notable in the heavier populated East.


The conclusive report means that the state is required to plan a state program of highway improvements out of general highway taxes.  As in the past Highway 12, intended to be supplanted by a toll road, is one of the most important, one of the longest and one of the most expansive in the state.


Milk haulers of Neillsville will stage a “Milk Haulers Hop” in the American Legion Memorial Hall this evening.


The “hop” dance will be free to all persons. The expense of the shindig will be shouldered by the milk haulers, who have engaged Freddie Maeder and Der Schweitzer’s band to provide music for the dance.


A formal acknowledgment of the gift of the Union church building previously owned by the Ladies Circle to the Methodist congregation was presented last Sunday evening.


It was the Ladies Circle organization which 50 years ago, was responsible largely for the momentum behind the construction of the Union Church building.


Mrs. F. E. Winn was a representative of the Union church who summarized the aims, activities and accomplishments of the organization over the past 50 years.


The original Circle started with seven members: Mrs. A. J. Knorr, Mrs. C. E. Beeckler, Mrs. John Wright, Mrs. T. D. Wage, Mrs. J. Pietenpol and Mrs. Louise McIntyre.


Mrs. Winn went back into the history of the Granton area.


Try to visualize this area and its vicinity as a large tract of land, heavily wooded with stands of pine and hardwood.  Settlers had been coming from the East since 1850, but the clearing of the land was slow because of the lack of transportation of the logs and saw mills to convert the logs into lumber.


Prior to 1889 there was a little settlement of Mapleworks Corners, now known as Timmy’s Corners.  This settlement consisted of a post office, (mail brought by foot or stage coach), a general store, blacksmith, hardware store and a Lutheran Church.  At the north end of the mile, still known as Windfall Corners, was the district school, an Adventist Church, a blacksmith shop, and cemetery, and down on the banks of the O’Neill Creek was a small saw mill, turning out lumber for local needs.


In 1889-1890 when the railroad was extended from Neillsville to Marshfield and a station was established at Granton by railroad officials about one-half mile from the post office at Mapleworks, the entire community was changed.  More settlers came to buy up land as soon as they knew the timber could be sold at a profit.  The post office was moved down to the railroad station site; saw mills were built, families moved in to build homes, stores, livery barns, etc.  By 1900 Granton was a thriving saw mill town.


It was during the year of 1900 that a fraternal organization was organized, membership open to men and women, to promote sociability among the members and help defray the expenses of the Lodge. The women, membering seven, organized themselves into a group called the “Mystic Circle.”  Those women had a unique way of raising money for their members and their families either at a dinner or a supper, charging one cent for each serving of any food. Thus bread, butter, pickles and coffee would cost four cents.  But strange as it may seem, the ladies soon had plenty of money in their treasury and membership into this select Circle of seven was desired by others.  The population of the settlement was growing. Stores, a bank, public halls and such had been built but no special place for religious services had been provided. Sunday school and church services had been held in rooms over what is now known as Hack’s locker and grocery store, and at one time a room had been partitioned off in the basement of the big hall where church services were held.


The Mystic Circle Ladies were the only organized group and these ladies convinced their husbands that a church building was badly needed to give the young people a place to receive religious training and that they should provide leadership.


The leaders of the community, both men and women, were enthused with the idea and very soon the Union Church association was organized.  The church building was to provide a place of worship for all creeds and religions. The Mystic Circle severed its connection with the Lodge and opened up its membership to all women interested in the project.


Over the period of 50 years there were 110 women’s names on the membership files.


Enough money was donated to buy a site of land where the church was built.  Mrs. Winn’s father, T. D. Wage, was one of the committee selected to buy the land.  Many hours of labor were donated in the construction. When the church was nearly completed the association was disbanded so the balance of the building debt, control and upkeep was placed entirely upon the Circle Ladies. They had a board of trustees to oversee the needs of the church building.


After the building was built, the Circle had to raise money for the upkeep which was done mostly by serving suppers.  The suppers were held every two weeks, at homes 10¢; public dinners from 25 to 75 cents.  Some women owned portable oil stoves which they shared the use of for dinners held at the Village hall.  If the dinners were prepared in the home, the kitchen ranges fueled by hardwood were used and preferred in cooking.


Dishes for the suppers were borrowed from local store, counted out to the committee, carried to the hall, washed and dried; water was brought in my milk cans and an ample supple had to be planned for.


Linens and silverware were loaned by the members.


Sale of aprons all year long and made by the members was a source of income.  Quilts were made, sold or given to needy people.  Sale of rag rugs, birthday barrels, and ice cream socials was other sources of income.


For several years a lecture course was sponsored by the Circle.  The profit from those entertainments netted $50 or more profit.


By the time World War I started, the church debt was paid, chairs had been purchased, an organ and other furniture, was installed, fuel and janitorial work was provided and a Sunday School sponsored.


After several years the Circle Ladies decided the church needed a basement so they could serve their public dinners in an easier and more efficient manner.  One of the members persuaded her husband to lend money to the Ladies Circle at a low rate of interest and soon the basement became a reality. On Dec. 1, 1931, the ladies met to celebrate the final payment of a debt of $1,500, the cost of the building’s basement.  They pinned the note to a tiny silken U. S. Flag, signifying victory, and had Mrs. E. A. Beeckler, the only one of the original seven members left, burn the note.


The ladies paused, bowed their heads in memory of the member who had made the basement project possible.


So after 50 years, the combined efforts of over 100 women who gave their time and talents in service to the needs of a church building and furnished inspiration for a place of worship came to a transfer of title to the Methodist congregation.”


(As some of us drive past the Granton United Methodist Church building, we can look at it and think of the work and dedication which went into its construction, made possible by a group of women who were driven by faith and commitment to their community’s needs.  D. Z.)


Main Street Granton at it appeared circa 1925 (Photo courtesy of the Webster Family Photo Collection)



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