Clark County Press, Neillsville, WI

May 23, 2001, Page 23

Transcribed by Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon.

Index of "Oldies" Articles 

IN THE Good Old Days


Compiled by Dee Zimmerman


Clark County News


May 1901


The Neillsville City Council and public’s consent is all for purchasing a rock crusher and street roller.  The complete equipment will not cost over $1,200.  The money now spent for it, will in the long run, be a cheap expense for the mud puddle repair work needed on our city streets.


Harrison Lowery was in town Tuesday, looking for the fellows who ran into his buggy nearly ruining it down by the Black River on Sunday.  Whoever it was will be about ruined when Lowery discovers their identity.


Repairs on the old Schoengarth & Tragsdorf building east of the Lloyd block have been under way this week, plus they have had a new sidewalk laid.


A very swell porch has been added on to the S. M. Marsh residence and the carpentry workmanship testifies to the ability of J. W. Lynch.  It greatly improves the appearance of the house.


Well, the Portland stone sidewalks, which were laid last summer, have passed through one winter and the test of its endurance very well.  The walks were placed right as they did not crack or heave one bit.


A large flat boat, 24 feet long, by 6 feet wide, build (built) by Magnus Johnson for Company A, was launched on Black River, Sunday.  This new boat is to be used in conveying the company’s men, their guns and ammunition to their practice range located across, on the other side of the river.


George Sontag has had the lot east of his residence plowed, dragged, scraped level and seeded.  The entire lot is being converted into a lawn park, running through to Grand Avenue.  That is a novel idea and we compliment the Sontags for this scheme.  They may put a fountain on the lawn and plant some trees.  He who thus helps to beautify his town does a worthy service to his fellow citizens.


The following advice offered by an experienced agriculturist could be heeded by those who are farming.  The hog is the mortgage lifter, the sheep is the farm fertilizer, the cow is the barn builder and the hen is the grocery bill payer.  This quartet along with a man and a woman who are not afraid of caring for them will insure prosperity on the farm.  If the sheep and hen were more common in this country, the farmers could pile up larger bank accounts.


Last Monday, Rev. Archibold Kerr absentmindedly led Marshall Hommel’s horse home, thinking it was his own.  He was greatly taken back upon entering the barn and finding his own horse in the stall as usual.


The forests surrounding Neillsville are angelically beautiful at this time of the year.  This “picturesque city-on-the-hills” is like a gem set in nature’s superb filigree of foliage.  Neillsville is a city of many ups and downs altitude-wise so speaking but when we wear out hills into our hollows and pave all, the geographical humps and dimples will be less apparent.


Bernhard Tragsdorf cut his face and lost two teeth one day last week.  He was pushing a buggy into the barn when his foot slipped.  Falling over a tricycle, he struck his face on a lawn mower.


A crew of men is at work moving the old Tourigny store building south about six feet.  The old building will be joined with the North store; both buildings now are the property of Tourigny. A connecting door will be cut into a side wall of each structure.


A pearl measuring an inch in diameter was found in a clam bed of the Yellow River.  Mrs. John Peterson made the discovery in the river bed two miles south of Dexterville on Tuesday.  Its value is estimated at $300.


An accident occurred in Trogner’s saw mill on Thursday.  A huge log was accidentally thrown from the carrier onto the saw.  With nothing to hold it, the log hurled with a great force, knocked out the end of the building and tore up the floor in places where it struck.


A note of advice to everybody in Neillsville; on Decoration Day, which is tomorrow: Lay aside your business and cares tomorrow.  Join in the gentle spirit of thanksgiving and praise to the heroes who saved the Union.  Those men made the present grand nation and our national prosperity possible.


May 1946


St. John’s Lutheran School with 60 years of service will be commemorated in special services on Sunday, May 23, by the congregation and its friends.


It was on January 18, 1886, that the parish school first was organized under the guidance of H. H. Ebert.  At that time, the school was conducted in a building in the business district, for the school was founded even before the congregation had been organized.


It is the anniversary of this event that will be observed Sunday.  The ceremonies will include German services a (at) 8 a.m., followed at 9:30 a.m. by an English service and Children’s day service, with the Rev. Lloyd Koenig of Wausau as the speaker.


The latter service will include graduation ceremonies of this year’s eighth grade class.  They include: Donald Bartell, Ellen Borde, Ardys Cardarelle, Marjorie DeMert, Shirley Diercks, Erland Greeler, Lowell Gress, Edward Henchen, Raymond Henchen, Marvin Klann, Florence Knoop, Donald Lewerenz, Elaine Lueck, Donald Meihak, Arlene Mills, Sheldon Moeller, Doris Ott and Barbara Horhrborn (Roehrborn).


A picnic dinner will be held at noon under the supervision of a committee composed of Mesdames Gustave Kaddatz, Arthur Gress, Otto Schlimme, Carl Diercks and Verna Payne.  Children of St. John’s School will present a program of entertainment during the afternoon.


This year as in other recent years, the graduating class numbers approximately the same as the total enrollment of the school on the day of its founding, January 18, 1886, by H. H. Ebert.


Ebert came here as a student from the theological seminary at Milwaukee to conduct services and to establish the school.  At that time the curriculum of the public schools of Neillsville was adopted by the school and the teaching of German and religion were added.


During the first term of school, the enrollment increased to about 30.  That spring Ebert departed and was succeeded by F. Eppling, who came to conduct services as well as school classes.  It was under Eppling that the school was conducted on the second floor of the present North Side Grade School. Also, at that time a school board was elected, composed of August Ketel and Simon Reinicke.


After five years without a home, the first school structure was erected.  It was a frame building, which cost $300 and now forms a part of the present school building.  This structure was erected under the direction of a committee composed of C. Walk, C. Schultz, H. Blum, H. North, and A. F. Radke.  It was located on land just north of the church.


During this early period the pastor took care of the work incident to his congregation and also served as the instructor in the school.  But when the enrollment had grown to 50, in 1897, the first teacher was hired.  He was Louis Serrahn, who later became president of the general teachers’ conference of the Western District of the Wisconsin Synod.


C. Kelpe followed Serrahn as the teacher.  To provide for the enrollment of about 80 pupils, a second building became necessary.  This building was erected on the present site and the original school building was moved so as to be combined with the new addition.  Men called upon to steer the $1,800 financial end of the new structure were Rev. Brandt, F. Pagenkopf and H. Warner.  In charge of the construction was a committee composed of L. Duge, H. Bartell, E. Wiedenhoeft, John Rindfleisch, H. Bieneck and H. North.


The new building was erected during the summer of 1906 and Kelpe continued to serve as the instructor until 1909.  Otto Hellermann came from Sleepy Eye, Minn., to succeed Kelpe and remained until 1912.


As the enrollment grew, helpers were called in to aid the one teacher.  Schultz served as teacher from 1912 to 1915, then A. Ehlke in 1917 to 1920.


A recent survey of the Neillsville High School shows results of a policy carried on in encouraging students to work.


Every student in the Neillsville High School has had some sort of job, either at home or away from home, in the past school year.  This fact has been brought out by a survey of the out-of-school activities of local students.  The survey was made a few weeks before the end of the school year and the results have been announced by Donald E. Peters, the superintendent.


When the survey was made, 233 students were present.  Of these 104 were from the city and 129 from the country.  But whether they were city children or country children, the answer was the same that all of them had some outside work to do.


Of the 104 pupils from the city, 43 worked at home, but those 43 found that father and mother were good at thinking up things to do.  Sixty-one worked away from home.


Of the 104 city pupils, 64 worked after school; five at the noon hours; 61 in the evening; 79 on Saturdays; 39 on Sundays.  It will be noted that there are duplications in these figures, for some of the workers are in action in several of the periods listed.


The city children have all sorts of jobs; including house work and office work for the girls; whereas the boys work in stores and caring for lawns. But the one outstanding job for the girls is babysitting.  The high school girls are the grand reliance of weary mothers, who are tied tight to home.  Occasionally some girl from high school sits with the baby and frees the mother for a short break from the home.  Also, there are times when these girls are asked to sit with some elderly person, who needs attention in the absence of younger members of the family.  Whether baby sitters or the elderly sitters, these high school girls have found occupation for themselves and fill an important niche in the work of the community.  Nor would the record be complete if it were not recorded here that they have also, in many instances won the high regard and warm affection of those whom they have served.


Of the 129 pupils from the country, 100 work only at home, but there is a lot for them to do at home.  The girls help their mother in the home and the boys help their fathers with the field work and farm chores.  In these days of Home-ec courses and Ag courses, the boys and girls are learning things at school which call for practical application at home.  The survey shows that these children are putting to practical use what they learn at school.  What they do also comes to the attention of father and mother, who learned the hard way and who do their part in fitting the school ideas into the tough groove of the farm.


Of the 129 country children, 29 work elsewhere than at home; 98 works after school; 74 before school; 67 in the evening; 112 on Saturday; 93 on Sunday.


The outside work of high school pupils has received encouragement from the school administration.  D. E. Peters, the superintendent, believes that the school makes an important contribution in encouraging the pupils to work and in thus educating them in the practical values and necessities of life.  For this reason they have taken on the duties, in effect, of an employment agency.


From the standpoint of education and character building, it is the belief of the school administration that this service is important.  It gives the school administration added influence with the pupils. Those wanting work know that they are helped by the school executives.  It helps discipline on the job, because the young people know that employers are in contact with the school executives.  Thus poor work will ultimately come to the school executives’ attention.


Three pupils of the Neillsville High School left for Madison Tuesday morning with the expectation of giving a short private concert for Governor Goodland.  They were James Haas, Eileen Dahnert and Carole Wang, members of the flute trio.  They had an appointment to play for the Governor in his office at 3:30 p.m.


This arrangement was made by the Governor with Walter Keohane, the instructor in band instruments of the Neillsville High School.


The trio will be part of Neillsville representation at the state music contest, held at Madison on May 22.  Other participants from the Neillsville High School are: Jerry Opelt, clarinet; Eileen Dahnert, flute solo; Gloria Milton, French horn solo; Lorraine Hagedorn, trombone solo and James Van Tatenhove, trombone solo.


The congregation of St. John’s Lutheran Church first built a place of worship on the corner of Fifth and Oak Street.  The church’s parsonage was located west of the church and their first parochial school building was on the north side, built in 1891.  (Photo courtesy of the Loomis-Seffern Family Collection)



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