Clark County Press, Neillsville, WI

January 6, 1999, Page 24

Transcribed by Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon.

Index of "Oldies" Articles 

               Compiled by Dee Zimmerman


Clark County News


January 1879


The thermometer hit 30° below zero on January 1st here in Neillsville.  The gentle zephyrs were rushing around every corner.  Fred Lee forgot to mask his ears that evening and Jack Frost did it for him.


There will be no trouble about the ice supply next summer if the area residents are prudent enough to take action about it this winter.  We have noticed some ice recently taken from the creek pond which is in blocks about 15 inches thick, solid and clear as crystal.


Take notice, it will be seen that Mose Baird, of Greenwood, has taken himself a wife.  Baird is one of the “salt of the earth” and deserves the good fortune in his union with Miss Durham. Both are to be congratulated.


The use of water sprinklers for covering logging roads with ice has become, almost universal.  For a week or two, it has been impossible to get any kind of mechanical work done.  Every mechanic has been employed in making sprinklers.  The sprinklers are built on one general plan, a huge tank of pine plank, the length and width of a pair of logging sleds and about four feet high.  Different kinds of pumps are being used with the most effective style being the old fashioned barge pump.  A good sprinkler, exclusive of the sleds, costs $40.  A recently added improvement is a sheet-iron stove for thawing the ice that accumulates on the inside of the tank.


The demand for wood sawyers appears to be greater than the supply, in this village.  The number and size of wood piles reveals the owners must depend on their own labor for necessary warmth.  When obliged to do so, the easiest way to saw your own wood is to borrow a saw-buck and set some other fellow to work with those instruments.  We tried it last Monday with our ex-county surveyor as the motor, and it worked to perfection.


Henry Klopf has left the employ of his father, Fred Klopf.  Now, he has opened up a repair of watches, clocks and jewelry business at Henry Myers’ drug store.  Soon, he also will have an entirely new stock of jewelry available to sell.


Herman Schuster is doing well as a teacher of the German language.  Teaching the youth of our village and his services being gratuitous, entitle him to much credit.


Last Friday morning, a wail went up from within almost every house in the village.  For those who kept house plants, frost had done its work.  Withered leaves and drooping stems were all that was left of many a fragile flower.


The merchants of Greenwood will haul their salable goods to Unity after January 1st.  They can ship the goods out on the Wisconsin Central Railroad.  The freight fees are cheaper and far more convenient than stage or dray lines.  The road to Unity is a turnpike with the exception of about two and a half miles.  The county has appropriated money to finish the road next summer.


Why doesn’t someone start a barber shop in Greenwood?  The people there have said it might save their good morals a little.


Charles Sniteman, of Fort Atkinson, will take Frank Slocum’s place in Myer’s drug store.  He comes with recommendations as a druggist and a gentleman.  From a brief acquaintance with him, we think he will make a worthy successor to Slocum.


The best logging done in the past week that we heard of was done by Thompson & Root, on a two-trip road.  They have hauled and landed on the river a little over 240,000 feet of logs.  The average was about 3,400 feet to the load.  It was hauled by six sleds, pulled by two yoke of oxen on each load.  How’s that for using iced roads?


Levi Withee informs us that after July 1st, he intends putting on a line of stages between Greenwood and Colby.  There will also probably be a mail route established from Longwood to Colby.  Then, a mail route will extend through most of the center of the county.


Advertising does some good, even to scalawags.  G. Sterns recently advertised a lost animal which had come to his place and he took it in his care.  A few days after the notice appeared, the animal was stolen from his premises, presumably by the owner, to save legal fees.


When you are hungry, stop at Mrs. Tibbitt’s Restaurant on Main Street in Neillsville.  Meals are served at all hours.  Rooms, newly furnished and fitted, are available for the accommodations of the transients.  A good sample room is furnished for the convenience of the commercial travelers.  (Salesmen who came with merchandise samples to show to prospective customers could set up their displays in the sample rooms which were provided by hotels or other businesses. D. Z.)


January – 1909


The military ball held on Friday night was the most brilliant and pleasant affair ever given by Co. A.  The ladies excelled themselves in the beauty of their gowns.  The music provided by the Eau Claire State Band was especially fine and the dance floor was invitingly great.  The grand march held at 9:30 p.m., led by Major and Mrs. Hommel; opened the dancing which lasted until 3 a.m.


Fred Bullard has left the Neillsville Electric Light plant, going to Rib Lake where he will superintend the electric plant there.  He is a fine mechanic and an expert electrician.  Rib Lake was fortunate to secure his services.  W. C. Bullard will take over the local plant’s operation.


Wm. Mundt went back to Hatfield to take up his post graduate course in mule handling.  He reports that the Hatfield work crew and machinery is being moved to Dells Dam.  Work on a dam there will commence soon.


According to the Eau Claire Leader, there is to be a bill introduced at Madison, to create the Nineteenth Judicial Circuit.  The new circuit would include the four counties of Eau Claire, Chippewa, Rusk and Sawyer.  Trempealeau County would be added to Jackson and Clark counties, making the circuit presided over by Judge James O’Neill.


Saturday night, a meeting of the Shortville Dairy Co. elected directors, as follows: A. Short, P. Kuhn, P. S. Bruski, Theo. Kissling and T. M. Winters.  By a vote of the stock holders, it was decided that patrons haul their own cream to the factory.


Ice is being cut, and hauled to the North Grant Creamery.  Gotlieb Pischer’s pond is the source of the ice supply.


John Apfel, of Evansville, has been here visiting his brother, Adam.  He is looking to purchase a farm in this area.


The Northwestern cutters are easy-riding, durable and the prices are reasonable.  Check them out at Howard & Seif’s shop.


The Wisconsin Game Warden said that 6,208 deer were shipped during the recent open season in the state.  About 11,000 in all were killed by licensed hunters.


Sheriff H. P. Lanning of Black River Falls was out buying stone-hammers and a “Weary Willie” will be made a regular thing at the county jail, hereafter.  Prisoners will be applying to the pleasurable task of reducing large chunks of granite to sizes more suitable for road making.  In other words, when a tramp is sent to jail, he will either break rock for his board or undergo close confinement which will take away his appetite.  It is a safe guess that once the news is distributed throughout the state, the tramps will make it a point to stay away from Jackson County Jail.  The sentences of 60 to 90 days will not be received with so much pleasure by a group of people who live everywhere, work nowhere and believe that the world owes them a living.


The German Sewing Club “Gemueltlickeit” will meet at the home of Mrs. Fred Wolff on the north side, Jan. 13, at the usual hour.


Tragsdorf & Zimmerman’s store will start a big money-saving clearance sale on Jan. 15.  No. 1 rock salt for curing meat will be only one cent per pound.  Lump rock salt for cattle is 75 cents for 100 pounds.  The highest grade of blue oak and second growth hickory ax handles, which are tough as whalebone, are 25 cents each; Coach foot warmers, $1.50; charcoal, 10 cents a brick; and large soap stones, 35 cents each.


A social gathering held at E. Schraeder’s home, in East Washburn, last Saturday, was a great success.  Sufficient money was thrown in a hat to secure new song books for the church.


There will be an apron sale at Wheeler’s Hall, in Christie, on Saturday evening, Supper served, will be 25 cents a person.  Everybody is invited to come.


Claude Mills has been hired as the teacher for district number two school in York Township.  They are looking for a successful term of school as Mills is well-liked and a good teacher.


January – 1939


Judge O. W. Schoengarth waked into the Clark County courthouse, Tuesday morning, to start his 33rd consecutive year in the office of County Judge.


The score of duties as County Judge has been broadened tremendously since he first waked into the position in 1906.


The Kiwanis Club installed Archie Van Gorden as president and Herbert Brown as vice president on Tuesday evening for the new year.  Victory Nehs, of Neillsville, has been installed as one of twelve Kiwanis Club Lieutenant Governors-elect of Wisconsin and Upper Michigan.


The J. B. Lowe furniture store building in downtown Neillsville was destroyed by fire on Monday evening.  Mrs. J. B. Lowe, 77, died of suffocation as she tried to make her way out of the burning building, from a second floor apartment.


There was some water damage to adjoining businesses.  The A&P food store, adjoining the north side of the ruined building, had about $200 damage.  Estimated damage to Eva’s Fashion Shoppe, on the south side, has not been yet determined.  Otto Catlin’s barber shop, in the basement of the A&P food store, also received some water damage.


Approximately 243,200 trees were planted in Clark County’s forest areas last year, according to County Forester Allen C. Covell.  The plantings were mostly pine and spruce.


The majority of trees were produced by Wisconsin state nurseries, which sent plantings to every county in the state.  The plantings were made with the help of the WPA in Clark County, as well as in other counties, and in some instances, the CCC.


The oldest portable saw mill in Clark County, and one of the oldest mills of its kind in the United States, was placed in well-earned retirement on January 9, by Tom Wren.  Wren, of Sidney, said that after 57 years of service, the engine’s flues gave out.


The saw mill, a 20 horsepower affair, was brought to Clark County on December 1, 1881, by Wren’s father, Sereno Wren.  It was unloaded at the Ed Hubbard farm, where the railroad station was located at the time.


Since its arrival here, the saw mill has operated yearly, going full speed for many seasons.  Wren was unable to estimate the number of feet of lumber which was sawed by the portable machine. 


The last big job by the saw mill was the sawing of 4,000 feet of lumber for W. P. Warlum.  That job was just recently finished.  A great deal of lumber used in farm buildings around the county was sawed by the potable mill.


“I’ll just retire the mill now,” said Wren.  “Maybe the makers of the engine will want the engine back.”


“Blondie,” a popular comic strip, steps out of the funnies and onto the movie screen for its Neillsville debut at the Adler Theater on Tuesday, January 31.


The full-length feature attraction brings to the screen: Penny Singleton, Arthur Lake, Larry Simms and Gene Lockhart.  The picture will be shown in conjunction with the showing of Robert Benchley’s “How to Watch Football.”


Thirty years ago, this month, the Kleckner family came to Neillsville.  It was 28° below zero, and the snow was four feet deep.  The family consisted of Mr. and Mrs. J. L. Kleckner, son Alfred, and dog, Rover.


The Kleckners had been living in Chicago and had traded for a farm south of Neillsville.  The horses, that took them to the farm, floundered belly deep in the snow. 


Kleckner, who had been ill, was advised to get a change in location.  The conclusion, in view of the snow and temperature, was that he and his family had, indeed, experienced a change.


All members of the Kleckner family have remained in Neillsville, except Rover, who passed away in 1914.


Everett Kleckner did not come with the family at first, but joined the others the following August.


Even way back then…little kids enjoyed sledding as a winter activity.  This early 1900’s scene shows two siblings having fun in the snow.  (Photo courtesy of the Schultz Family’s collection)



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