Clark County Press, Neillsville, WI

June 27, 2001, Page 24

Transcribed by Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon.

Index of "Oldies" Articles 


The Good Old Days


Compiled by Dee Zimmerman


Clark County News


June 1911


Manager of the area telephone company, W. L. Smith, has a large crew of men at work making some extensive improvements on the local telephone lines.  Last week, new wire was strung on the line out to the Clark County Butter Co. factory.  This week, new wire is being run eastward, along the Pleasant Ridge line.


There have been a great number of prospective customers moving into the town of York. That will make it necessary to set up a new telephone line in that area, scheduled to be the next project for the phone installation crew.  A new line will be extended east, from Way’s corner to Granton.


Neillsville’s automobile squad is being augmented almost every week and there are now 27 cars in our city.  Several more people are getting the “car bug,” so the count will be steadily rising.  The new owners of cars and the makes of cars are as follows:


L. H. Howard, a Flanders and a Ford; Ed Schoengarth, Buick; Chas. Cornelius, Cadillac; Dr. Brooks, Buick; F. D. Calway, Cadillac; C. R. Sturdevant, Reo; J. A. Phillips, a Reo and a Cartercar; G. E. Grow, E.M.F.; F. W. Schultz, Ford; A. B. Marsh, Buick; Gilbert Johnson, Buick; Mrs. MacMillian, not known; W. L. Smith, E.M.F.; W. J. Rush, Ford; C. Krumrey, Buick; S. M. Marsh, E.M.F.; Chas. Decker, International; R. W. Balch, Maxwell; Dr. Leason, Reo; C. Rabenstein, not known; E. M. Holden, not known; Herman North, Buick; P. N. Nelson, Buick; E. Bruley, Franklin; R. F. Kountz, a Stanley and an Oldsmobile.


Herman North’s new car is about as red as red can be, close to the shade of red that the “old Town” is painted in on occasion.


A story is being told about town, of North giving Bob Hemphill a ride in the country-side the other day.  Hemphill was wishing the car wasn’t such a blazing red as they drove along on the Pleasant Ridge, east of town.  They came upon a bull grazing in the ditch and Hemphill feared for their lives when the bull started pawing dirt when he saw that red car, like seeing a red cape in a bull ring.  Hemphill advised North to burn up some gasoline quickly before the bull decided to charge at the car.  However, Hemphill has the bug to buy a new car, but he says that the color black will suit him fine.


The annual Kinderfest of the German Lutheran Church, in Neillsville, will be held Sunday, June 18, in H. Bartell’s grove.  Worship services will be held in the morning and dinner served at 12 noon.  The afternoon will be devoted to singing, music, games and amusements of all kinds for everybody.  Ice cream and other refreshments will be served throughout the afternoon.  In case of rain, the event will be held Monday, June 19.


These are busy times for the strawberry growers around Merrillan and Alma Center.   Two or three car loads of berries are being shipped out of that area daily.  Some of the growers are realizing over $300 an acre on their strawberries.


The 4th of July will be celebrated at the Riverside Park in the Town of Levis.  The all-day picnic, races and games will be held in the afternoon. There will be dancing in the bowery during the afternoon and evening.  All are cordially invited to attend.


There is going to be a 4th of July barn dance at the old Robinson farm.  It is in the Town of Washburn, three miles south and two miles east of Neillsville.  A 28’ x 36’ hardwood matched lumber dancing floor and good music will provide a good time for all.


For sale: a store building, two houses, city lots, nine forties of land, billiard table and automobile.  See Emery Bruley in Neillsville.


There is a new law prescribing the size of fish which it is lawful to take from the streams of this state in Sec. 4560 of the laws of 1911.  It shall be unlawful and is hereby prohibited in this state for any person, persons, firm, company or corporation to take, catch or ill or have in his possession pike or pickerel of any variety of less than twelve inches in length, any catfish less than one and one-half pounds, undressed; or any black bass, yellow bass, green bass or Oswego bass of a length less that (than) ten inches; white bass or crappie less than seven inches long.  From now on be sure to measure your fish.


June 1951


The city of Neillsville will proceed with re-numbering the streets this summer. This was the decision made by the city council on Tuesday evening.  The green light was given when the Badger State Telephone Company informed the council that a new directory will be issued in November. They plan to have street numbers inserted in it, if they are then available.


This notice gave occasion to revive the numbering project, which has been lying dormant.  The project involves the re-numbering of all dwelling and business places in the city.


An increase of five cents per hour was recommended Tuesday evening for the city crew.  The recommendation was made by a council committee and was turned over to Ray Noll, spokesman for the employees.  The proposed rate would be 95 cents for labor; $1.00 for truck drivers; $1.05 for patrol drivers. The men had asked for an increase of 10 cents per hour.


Richard Hemp, president of the Wisconsin Conservation Congress spoke before the Men’s Club in regard to deer hunting.


“As long as the land and environment remain, the deer population will come back, no matter how great the gun hunting pressure becomes.”


“Deer are not wiped out from gun pressure as much as land use,” he said.  “If we want to provide more species, we must provide the environment.  Nature provides a terrifically high birth rate to take care of the hazards of living, so the answer to the problem of more species of wild life is not restocking as much as providing the proper environment.”


Hemp also justified the any-deer season by saying that type of season is simpler to enforce and there is no waste.


The new regulations for the deer hunting season were explained during the question-and-answer period following his speech. Clark County will be open to rifles only north of Highway 10.  Jackson and Monroe counties will be closed to everything but shotgun.  The season will be a seven-day season this year and more counties will be opened to hunting this year, such as Outagamie, Green Lake and Dodge.


Hemp said the reason for closing the southern half of Clark County to rifles and also closing Jackson and Monroe counties to rifle hunting lies in the desire to get hunting pressure more up north and less on the central counties.


Hemp is a former resident of Neillsville.  He was recently elected to serve his fourth term as president of the Conservation Congress.  Last year, he was selected as the outstanding Wisconsin conservationist.


An immense owl flew into Gail Strebing Tuesday morning and then flew into the beyond hunting ground.  The Owl leaned too late that it just does not pay to start anything with the Strebing children.


The battle with the owl took place in the open area south of Division Street, back of the Robert Gault home.  The Strebing children went there to play and the big owl flopped out of the bushes.  It flew right into Gail Strebing, who is two and a-half-years old, knocking her over.  Then it flew into Leonard, who is eleven, and tried to perch on his arm.


But the owl failed to calculate on Roy Strebing, age 8, who grabbed a club and hit the owl over the head almost as soon as he began to perch on Leonard.


The owl, evidently of the great horned variety, was an object of interest for a day or so at the Strebing store on Division Street.  Its destination is probably the shop of a taxidermist.  Its wingspread is 50 inches.


It is believed that the owl could not see well in the bright light of Tuesday morning and that his seeming onslaught upon the Strebing children was all a blundering mistake.  However, the children did not realize that, they were frightened by the big owl’s actions.


The battle with the owl, Gene Strebing, age 5, participated as an onlooker.


There will be a dance at the Silver Dome Ballroom on Saturday night, July 14.  Music will be provided by the Jerry Opelt Orchestra, formerly known as the Bob Lipka Band. The Silver Dome Ballroom is available free for wedding dances.


About 20 Boy Scouts from Neillsville have signed up to attend Camp Phillips, July 22 – 28.  The boys will be under the direction of Jim Haas, who has been released for that purpose by Frank Svetlik, his employer.  Haas was in charge of the boys that spend a week at Camp Higichari on Lake Arbutus several weeks ago.  Camp Phillips is located near Haugen, about seven miles north of Rice Lake.  Any other boys who want to go should see Dr. Overman and sign up.


Charles Barr, of the local Northern States Power Company office, caught a 46-inch, 30-pound muskie in Moose Lake, near Hayward.  He caught the fish while on a vacation fishing trip.  He used surface bait to catch the big fish.  His son, Tommy, age 12, accompanied him on the trip.


June 1967


When tourists come to Wisconsin, the one thing they invariably look forward to is eating “good Wisconsin cheese.”  They are never disappointed when their path takes them to Steinie’s Club 10, four miles east of Neillsville on Highway 10.


For the last seven years the owners have carried out a program of serving cheese with meals.  According to Mrs. Lucy Steinhilber, the owner, it always brings a favorable response from out-of-state tourists – as well as appreciative words from those close by.


Each year Steinie’s has purchased a whole big wheel of Swiss cheese about June 1 in support of the June Dairy Month promotion. Throughout this time, they have had the assistance of Gordon Vine, a field man for the American Dairy Association of Wisconsin and a native of this area. Each year, Vine has seen to it that Steinie’s got a wheel of top grade, aged Swiss.  His search, incidentally, has taken him far and wide, for the big wheels of Swiss cheese are now made in only about five factories in Wisconsin.  To get top grade, aged Swiss wheels, for the month of June, has become something of a problem.


This year, Vine found a 176-pound wheel at Borden’s in Monroe and carted it back to Neillsville to carry out the annual promotional kickoff at Steinie’s.


Years ago the search would not have been as difficult for several factories in Clark County made Swiss wheels. One of these was the old factory at Kurth’s Corner, adjacent to Club 10.  It is because this link with the cheese making industry, plus the spectacular size of the big Swiss wheels and popularity of their good, nutlike flavor, that the Swiss was settled upon seven years ago. That was when Vine and Mrs. Steinhilber’s late husband, Lester, decided upon the cheese serving program.


The wheel of Swiss purchased annually at this time (of) year does not by any means represent the extent of the Club 10 participation in the cheese promotion program.  With Mrs. Steinhilber, as it was with her late husband, the serving of cheese is important the year around.  They annually serve approximately 250 pounds of sharp, aged cheddar and brick cheese, as well as tasty cheese spreads, as “sides” with their dinner orders throughout the year.  It is rare when a plate does not come back completely emptied.


“We started serving cheese for several reasons,” Mrs. Steinhilber commented to the Clark County Press.  “One reason is that every member of our family likes it and they always want cheese on our table.  Another is that tourists, when they are in Wisconsin, want most of all to taste some of the cheese for which this state is famous.  They are disappointed when they stop at a restaurant and are not served cheese, particularly the kind of natural cheese that they find most difficult to get in their own communities. 


“It has seemed to us that it is just good business for us in Wisconsin to do everything we can to promote cheese, an excellent food, right here and continually.  Cheese is the product about which those from far-away states have heard the most about when they hear of Wisconsin.”


Of course, other types of cheese are found in the food that is served at Steinie’s.  Cottage cheese is a staple side dish; salad dressings also feature good bleu cheese made right here in Clark County and mixed according to Mrs. Steinhilber’s own secret recipe.


“Steinie’s is doing the kind of promotional job for the dairy industry that could be very effective,” commented Vine.  “Not only are they helping to build the dairy industry by serving good cheese; but they could find it a business-builder and way of satisfying tourists.  Many tourists pass through the state without ever being exposed the good taste of quality, aged Wisconsin cheese for which we are truly noted.”


Swimming in O’Neill Creek, above the dam and beneath the Hewett Street Bridge, was a favorite past time on hot summer days for the Neillsville youth, circa 1910.  When adults weren’t watching, some boys would dive from the bridge railing into the water below, a daring fete.  (Photo courtesy of Bill Roberts, from his family collection)



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