Clark County Press, Neillsville, WI

September 22, 1999, Page 32

Transcribed by Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon.

Index of "Oldies" Articles 


Compiled by Dee Zimmerman

In The Good Old Days



Clark County News


September 1899


Black Hawk, the most noted chief of the Wisconsin Winnebago Indians, age 90, died in the town of Brockway, a few miles from Black River Falls.  The chief has been well known in the western part of Wisconsin. For the last 50 years, he was always a friend of the whites and on several occasions prevented the Winnebagos from taking the warpath to settle differences with the whites.


Tuesday morning, the Catholic Church in Hewitt was the scene of a wedding when Miss Catherine Braun, daughter of Andrew Braun, of Loyal, was married to Peter Ruplinger.  Rev. Daniels performed the marriage ceremony before a large number of relatives and friends of the bride and groom.


The bridesmaids were Misses Lizzie Braun and Anna Christman of Loyal, and Phillip Ruplinger, acted as Groomsman.  The elaborate event was the occasion of a gala day in Hewitt, where the groom is one of the favorites of the town.


The bride is one of Loyal’s most popular young ladies. The groom, who is the son of M. Ruplinger, the Hewitt lumber magnate, is well known and generally liked through out the community. 


Ground has been broken and excavating is well under way for one of the greatest commercial enterprises ever attempted in Neillsville and by the first of January the business portion of Neillsville will be ornamented by a substantial brick structure.  The new building will have a frontage of 100 feet on Hewett Street.  Balch and Tragsdorf, the enterprising merchants, are at the head of the venture.  They have found that they must move their business to meet the demands of their largely increased sales.


They hve purchased the C. A. Youmans’ and Thomas Kerns’ lots at the corner of Hewett and Fourth Streets on which the new 100 x 100 foot department store will be built.  For the present time, only one story will be erected but plans contemplate a second story when business desires.  The interior of the building will be patterned after the large city department stores with one large room, the ceiling of which is to be supported by pillars, enabling easier access to and better display of their goods.


S. B. Calway will superintend the construction of the wood and frame work for the new department store. Thos. Morris has been issued the contract in erecting the structure.


Rev. G. W. Longenecker will preach in Hewettville on Sunday, at 3 p.m. and will conduct services at Lloyd’s Mills on Tuesday evening, Sept. 19.


Leonard Schultz, of Pine Valley, underwent an operation for tuberculosis of the knee joint last Saturday.  Schultz is improving rapidly under the care of Dr. Conroy.


F. T. Conroy, F. T. Tucker and Marshall Frank have fitted up bachelor apartments in the rooms over Ludington’s harness shop.  Their cozy little rooms will provide the comforts of home.


The progressive little town of Loyal is soon to be lighted by electricity. A. A. Graves has secured a franchise for putting in a light plant.  A crew of men has commenced the work of setting poles.  They hope to have the system in operation by Thanksgiving time.


Sal Jaseph has traded his north side residence property for the Stein Laubheimer store building on Hewett Street.  He will be moving his entire stationery stock to the new store site soon.


The Neillsville Cash Milling Company wants to buy 10,000 bushels of oats and will pay 20 cents per bushel.  They offer the highest market price to purchase rye, so plan to see them if you want to sell rye.


On the morning of the last day of the Clark County Fair, the Gun Club offered an attraction by holding a live pigeon shoot.  The following day a sumptuous dinner was enjoyed at the Merchants Hotel.  W. J. Eilert and Joseph Marsh tied in the shooting competition, each scoring 11.  There were four other contestants in the shoot.


On the invitation of Landlord Brooks, the members of the club, together with numerous guests, sat down to a pigeon and champagne dinner at the hotel, making it an evening of a merry time.


Our Chili news reporter wrote that she hasn’t been able to call in that area’s news of the last week due to their telephone line being out of whack.


Rice Davis sold his farm in the Town of York to a gentleman of Sheboygan County.  They agreed upon the price of $1,900 for the property.


September 1954


There will be a cornerstone laying of Our Savior’s Lutheran Church on Sunday, Sept. 5 at Greenwood.  The 9 a.m. opening service will be held in the present church, after which the congregation will march in procession to the new church for he cornerstone laying.  Rev. G. S. Thompson, senior pastor of First Lutheran Church in Eau Claire, will perform the ceremony.


The new high school building of the Neillsville-Pine Valley district will be opened for use on Sept. 8. Its initiation will take place concurrently with the beginning the 1954-55 school year.  The cost of the present structure, which you can see, was $447,000, plus certain additions, which will be detailed later.  From this figure, just a little short of half a million dollars, people will gather the idea of immensity in accordance with the way they see the dollar.  To most of the oldsters, a dollar is still a considerable sum of money.  Some of them can remember when they worked a whole day for a dollar.  To them, half a million dollars is an astronomical sum.


The present site of the new Neillsville High School building, according to the records, was entered originally Aug. 4, 1953, by James O’Neill, founder of Neillsville.  He received a patent from the United States on Nov. 15, 1854.


James O’Neill and his wife, Jane, deeded the property to Mary A. Dickey.  She died in 1912, leaving the property to her four children.


The property held the old homestead of the Dickey family, and the title was under the control of Miss Blanche Dickey.  Blanche taught in the grade school practically all of her active life.  She retired here in Neillsville and later went to live with relatives in the Northwest.  She died there, but before she passed away, she sold the home sit property to the Neillsville School District for $1,500.  The sale was made by the negotiations of a local committee, with members of which Miss Dickey warmly and generously cooperated.  The site was worth more at that time, and today would be worth several times more than the amount which was paid for it.  But, Miss Dickey, remembering with affection the local children whom she had taught, now men and women of the community, said that she would sell only to the school district.  (It seems very appropriate that the present school building site was designated as such by a teacher who was very devoted to her profession and the children whom she had taught through the years.  Her gift is a memorial to live on in Neillsville’s education system.  D. Z.) 


The next time you take your wife out of the kitchen for a special treat; stop at Prust’s Triangle Tavern, at the Junction of Highway 10 and County Trunk K, south of Granton.  There you’ll find a hamburger that has found great favor among those who regularly stop at Prust’s.  Mrs. Charles Prust is looked upon as an excellent cook, to be proved when you order one of the headliners on their menu – the large hamburger. You will have no trouble finding the meat when ordering a hamburger and you can get it served either on bread or on a bun, whichever you prefer.


For those who are interested, the Triangle Tavern offers television viewing, and both reception and selection are good.  Fight nights, Wednesday and Friday, attract good crowds of fans who watch the fights and second-guess the matches afterward, enjoying a good snack during their discussions.


While the menu is full of snack suggestions, Prust’s cater to dinners and private parties.  The food is prepared in a spotless kitchen, over which Mrs. Prust, long recognized as an excellent cook, presides.  Included on the average menu are the kinds of foods that most diners’ desire: sea food, chicken, steaks and fish. 


A favorite, on the menu, is “chicken-in-the-basket”, which Mrs. Prust considers a specialty.  It is available every night at the cost of $1.00 per basket.


Another favorite among those who go to the Triangle Tavern is their walleyed pike fillets. Each diner gets a generous portion, when ordering the pike, for only $1.00 per plate.  The steaks are aged just right and are given careful care by Charley Prust in the cutting.  He cuts each steak thick enough to retain the succulent juices and flavor when they are prepared.


The Prust’s frequently are called upon to serve private parties for bowling teams and businesses.  Special menus are also available, including the choice of turkey, capon, duck and ham. 


The Loyal Gamble store has been purchased by Lloyd Hansen of Cherokee, where he had been in business until June of this year.  M. L. Schwantes, former owner, plans to remain in Loyal.


Miss Ruby Mohr, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Fred Mohr, Neillsville, and Harry Ambelang, son of Mr. and Mrs. Wm. Ambelang, Neillsville, repeated their marriage vows, Saturday, Sept. 4, at 2:30 p.m. at St. John’s Lutheran Church. Rev. Alfred Schewe performed the double ring ceremony.


Bridal attendants were Beatrice Mohr, Dorothy Mohr, and Estelle Wytonich (Wojtowicz).  The groom was attended by Harold Mohr, Ernest Mohr, and William Erpenbach, all of Neillsville.


After a wedding trip to northern Minnesota, the young couple will be at home on route 2, Neillsville.


Mr. and Mrs. Arnold Hoppa celebrated their silver wedding anniversary on Sept. 4, beginning with an open house at 3 p.m. at their home.  Lunch was served to over 400 friends and relatives from around Clark County, Gary, Ind., and Chicago, Ill.  Lunch hostesses were Mrs. Ray Reineck, Mrs. Gordon Sharratt, Mrs. William Kurasz and Mrs. Carl Eslinger.


There are 15 entrants for the 1954 Dairy Festival Queen to be chosen on the opening day of a three-day Dairy Festival in Neillsville.  The beautiful candidates are as follows: Betty Oldham, Margaret Ewing, Jennie Lee Opelt, Nancy Holt, Annette Norman, Geraldine Harwich, Pat Wren, Donna Lee Langraf, Lorraine Meihack, Sylvia Johr (Jahr), Opal Woodford, Winnie Bruhn and Gladys Dux.  The newly chosen queen will be crowned by Governor Walter Kohler who is scheduled to be in Neillsville for the event.


In its 50th Anniversary year, the Union Church building at Granton has passed into the hands of the Methodist denomination.  The deed has been given by the surviving organization of the old Union church to the trustees of the present Methodist congregation.  The transfer will receive suitable observance at a special service in the church building next Sunday evening.


The Methodist people have been using the Union building upon a denomination basis since 1933, but the title to the property has remained in the hands of the Granton Union Church until now.  In its early years the building was a community project, with preachers conducting services upon a non-denominational basis.  But, as the years passed Methodist preachers (were) more easily available and they came to be depended upon to use the building.


When the church was completed in 1904, men were active in its construction and organization.  It was not many years later, however, before the women’s organization took over the labors and he men gradually dropped out.  With the passing of the years, the women’s circle dwindled until now the maintenance of the structure and the responsibilities connected with it area beyond the present local memberships.  For that reason, more than any other the title of the property has been passed to the trustees of the Granton Methodist congregation.


Main Street, Granton, as it appeared circa 1915: The hardware and implement store was owned by W. J. Thayer, who advertised some items with a sidewalk display.  Hart’s General Merchant’s Store, next door had “tin Lizzie” car parked near the front door entrance.  (Photo courtesy of the Webster Family Collection)



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