Clark County Press, Neillsville, WI

December 17, 2003, Page 16

Transcribed by Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon.

Index of "Oldies" Articles 



Compiled by Dee Zimmerman



Clark County News

December 1913


The annual Congregational Church Bazaar will be held December 11, starting at 2 p.m.  There will be fancy articles, a great variety of aprons, handkerchief and candy booths.  Also they will have a doll booth with all sorts of character dolls.  A 6 p.m. Christmas Supper will be served with a fine musical program at 7:30 p.m.


The menu for the supper will be baked ham, brown gravy, mashed potatoes, squash, hot slaw, baked beans, applesauce, bread, English plum pudding and coffee.


Two couples, both living all of their lives in Columbia, were united in matrimony last week.  Chris Moore (Mohr), owner of the Charlie Stocky farm, took Mary Gehrt, the bustling German neighbor girl as his wife.  Bert Winter, owner of the Joe and Bert Winter farm, took Jennie Winter (Winton) as his wife.  The neighborhood neither lost nor gained citizens; but we trust the future may show a gain.  Here’s good luck to them.  (Transcriber note: Chris and Mary were my grandparents.)


Henry and Theodore Bornholdt, John Larson, Albert Sollberger and Chas. Malck have returned home from Menomonie Falls where they have worked in the beet sugar factory.


The amount of $650 will buy a $1,200 valued residence, located here in Neillsville, if you act promptly.  The owner has gone out west and must have the money.  For that reason, he makes this sacrifice offer.  The house rents steadily for $7 per month.  If interested, inquire of S. M. Marsh.


George Knox, Superintendent of the Peshtigo Lumber Co., found full grown strawberries on the vines in his garden.  Dandelions are in blossom here and spring flowers are budding out.  Picnic parties, in the woods there, were held today and yesterday, Dec. 10 and 11.  Fall plowing is in progress, but the woodcutting operations are being delayed as there has been neither snow nor ice.


Conditions have been the same all over Wisconsin for several weeks. Dandelions have been in bloom around Neillsville, the grass is green, cattle are feeding in the fields and everything has had the appearance of spring.


There is a movement a foot, among a number of the church people, to secure the closing of theaters in Neillsville, on Sunday nights.  They believe this may be brought about by mutual agreement among the proprietors and thus avoid any hard feelings, or necessity for appealing to the law.  In expecting compliance with the law, they state that there could seem to be no possible hardship, as there are still six nights in the week.  As is well known, the law applies to those who attend Sunday shows as well as those who run them.


Capt. J. W. Tolford, who has been failing in health and strength for several months, died at his home in Neillsville on Dec. 20, 1913.  Joshua Woodbury Tolford was born in New Brunswick, Oct. 31, 1831.  At the age of 17, he went to Portland, Maine, where he learned the trade of carriage painter.  In 1852, he came to Madison, Wis., and worked at his trade.  He enlisted as First Lieut. Co. D. 22nd Wis. Infantry, in 1862.  Afterwards he was made Captain of Co. G. in the same regiment and remained such until the close of the war, being mustered out July 4, 1865.  He was engaged in business in Madison and was also Chief of Police in that city, for some time.


In July 1852, he came to Neillsville and went into the livery and stage business, operating a four-horse coach between here and Humbird, the firm name being Lynn and Tolford.  He took a leading part in building a telegraph line from here to Hatfield, which connected Neillsville with the outside world affairs.  He served Clark County as sheriff, making a fine officer.  Later he was the assistant Clerk of the Circuit Court.  He was one of the oldest Free Masons in Wisconsin, joining the order in Madison about 60 years ago.  For many years, he remained a member of the Madison lodge but attended and worked with the Neillsville lodge, after coming here, where he later became a member of the Neillsville lodge.  He was the first commander of the first G. A. R. Post ever organized and always took an active part in that organization.  He also organized the Sherman Guards, the first militia company in Neillsville and was their first captain.


Capt. Tolford was married on Sept. 29, 1858, to Julia E. Jewett.  To them were born six children: Arthur, died in 1864, Frank in 1866, Minnie in 1888 and a baby in 1874.  Two sons are living, Ralph H. of Thorp and Joshua W. Jr. of Jerome, Ariz.


Funeral services were held at the Unitarian Church under the direction of the Masons.  The remains were taken to Madison for burial in Forest Hill Cemetery.


December 1953


Mr. and Mrs. W. L. Smith returned Wednesday to their home after spending several days in Washington, D. C.  Mr. Smith went there as an invited guest to help celebrate the installation of the 50,000,000th telephone, which was presented by Pres. Eisenhower.  A banquet was held November 18 at the Statler Hotel in Washington, D. C. in honor of the occasion.


Walter Klann and James Vincent, Neillsville men who went off to the Orient together, came back together.  But they did not see one another during the 10 months there were stationed there.  Now, they are spending 30-day furloughs among the familiar haunts with their friends.


Vincent and Walter’s brother, Marvin, enlisted together in the air corps at Milwaukee.  They were high school pals, having played football together and they wanted to be together in the service.  But at Milwaukee, they were split up, Marvin eventually to be sent to the European theater.


A year later, as Vincent learned he was headed for the Orient, he found that Marvin’s younger brother also was headed there.  They left together from Camp Stoneman, Calif., and landed in Japan on New Year’s Eve, 1952.  There they parted, Vincent eventually went with his air force police squadron to a base about five miles above Pusan; Klann to Taegu, where he would move about a little.


Ten months later, their service in Korea completed, the two Neillsville boys found themselves together once again on a boat headed for the United States and furloughs at home.  They arrived here together.


For $29,444, George Posda and his family, Town of Thorp, were hinging upon the skill of 26 smart women in the Treasury Department of the United States at Washington, D. C.  These women had before them two bundles, weighting a total of 52 pounds, the remains of coins and paper money which went through the fire at the Posda home on May 20.


These packages contained most of the liquid assets of Mr. Posda, Mrs. Posda and several of their children.  The remains of he money, molten masses and black ashes, were carried to Washington by a messenger of the First Wisconsin Bank, of Milwaukee.  He traveled by air.  The personal messenger was used because of the hazard of entrusting the remains to mail or express.


The handling of this remnant was expensive.  First step of the Posdas was to make a thorough search of the house basement, into which all the debris of the fire had fallen.  The money had been kept in cans.  The cans had dropped from the first and second floors to the basement.  They finally located what they believed to be all of the remains of the money.


The Posda family has received a total of $1,202 dollars from the United States Treasury.  This is the amount allowed them for the currency and silver, which was destroyed in the fire of the early summer of 1953.


The total of the money lost was placed by the Posda family at $29,444.  Their reimbursement is small, compared with their loss.  But the skilled persons in the U. S. Treasury, whose business it is to examine and appraise the remnants of damaged money, could make no more of it than $1,190 for the currency and $12 for the silver.  The remainder of the money was so completely ruined as to defy their skill.  Accordingly, the Posdas were offered a total of $1,202 in settlement.  They accepted it.  The fact is, they had no alternative.


The building once housing a sizable school in Columbia was purchased by Eugene Ehlers and has been wrecked by him.  He is using the lumber to construct a barn.  This is the last non-residential building in the old Columbia community.  The only remaining building there is the residence of the William Sollbergers.


Columbia stripped this year of its last public building, in the great Ghost Town of Clark County.  It was touted as the coming Great City, but it was never more than a hamlet.  The nature of its boom is illustrated by a story told by Mrs. Jonkel, who names the first child born in Columbia, to whom a promoter promised two lots in Columbia.  What the gal got, Mrs. Jonkel said, was 12 yards of cheap dress material.


A veritable mountain of candy, peanuts and apples melted as snow before the blast of a blowtorch on Saturday as hundreds of children greeted Santa Claus on his annual visit to Neillsville.


More than one-third of a ton of goodies were handed out in 1,200 sacks, by Santa and his helpers, as children milled close to the trailer.  St. Nick used a trailer to haul his tremendous quantity of sweets.


There were 476 pounds of candy, 300 pounds of peanuts, six and one-half bushels of apples and 48 candy bars.


And still a few of the children were turned away without a gift.


Sad, but true, is the fact that several youngsters passed through the lineup to get three and four bags of candy while others went without.  This happened, in spite of a determined effort on the part of Santa’s helpers to prevent it.


Santa said he was determined to devise a way, another year, so that the gifts would be limited to one for each child.


The big job of sacking the candy, peanuts and apples was carried out by the Neillsville High School, along with John R. Bergemann, Mrs. Art Gress and Mrs. William Erpenbach.  Santa’s assistants in passing out the goodies were Mr. Bergemann and Donald Schiesel.


Grand opening of the Roadside Café, under the management of Mr. and Mrs. Charles P. Gaier, will be held Friday, December 18.


The new managers have been in the café since Monday, when they took over the reigns from Mr. and Mrs. Eddie Burckhardt.  Both are well known in the area.  Mrs. Gaier, who will be in charge of the dining room and kitchen, has had considerable experience in this line.  She gained something of a reputation as a cook while at Club 10, worked in the Colonial Inn at Marshfield and recently managed the dining room of the Chatterbox Inn at Wausau.


Planned as a specialty are the plate dinners.  There will be a large selection from which to choose, including: steak, sandwiches, chicken, scallops, lobster tail, shrimp, ham, and hamburger steak.  Included with the plate dinners will be a salad, French fried potatoes and toast.


Mrs. Gaier said the Roadside Café will also cater to customers with sandwich specials such as: hamburgers, Denver sandwiches, cube steaks, cheeseburgers and single clubhouse.  Hamburgers, of course, will be served on a bun and the other sandwiches will be served on toast, with sides of French fries and a salad.


A Friday night special every week will be the Fish fries, served with a special salad, French fried potatoes and toast.  While this will be a Friday special, fish and fries will also be available at any other time during the week. Recalling the popularity of her fish fries in Wausau, Mrs. Gaier asserted her belief that those who like fish fries will find hers most delicious.


The Gaier’s invite you to stop in Friday for their Grand Opening and try their dining room specials. They are sure you’ll find their food most delicious.


The Roadside Café will be equipped with television for the pleasure of patrons.  Mrs. Gaier announces that the café will be available for private parties.


(The Roadside Café was later re-named The White Horse Inn. D. Z.)


Fifteen years of experience in the dairy industry, plus a boyhood spent on a farm in the Town of Lynn, have been put to good used (use) by Hubert H. Quicker in the operation of Quicker’s Dairy Bar. 


Through this experience Mr. Quicker has leaned the “touchiness” of milk products and the necessity of handling them properly in order to bring out the best in them.


That is one reason why Quicker’s Dairy Bar has achieved popularity among local folks and travelers during their three and one-half years of operation.  Ice cream used in the sundaes, sodas and other fountain specialties are made in the Neillsville Dairy plant, which is a part of the Quicker Enterprise.  Most of the equipment there is stainless steel which, while expensive, is easier to keep clean.  In the dairy business, cleanliness is of utmost importance.


The dairy bar is a favorite place for those who want a light snack or fountain treat.  In addition to the fountain service, there are available soups, sandwiches and a variety of beverages.  Service is fast and this has helped to make Quicker’s a popular spot for those who feel the need to eat and run.


Four years ago, in January Mr. Quicker purchased the Neillsville Dairy.  It was about five months later that he established the dairy bar in the front of the dairy company building, at the corner of Highway 10 (W. 5th Street) and West Street.


The dairy bar was equipped at that time with the most modern stainless steel fountain and grill. Since then improvements in equipment have been many, including the installation of a new dry cooling system to keep milk at a uniform temperature the year round; installation of an automatic rotary-type milk bottling machine; the addition of a new 40-quart batch-type ice cream freezer; a 50-gallon stainless steel pasteurizer for making chocolate milk and the addition of a new stainless steel milk cooler.


Reviving an old custom, the Loyal Public Library board has again placed a decorated Christmas tree in the library rooms and extends an invitation to the public to visit there.  The visitors can the get acquainted with the library and librarian, leave a donation in a “thank you” box, which is under the Christmas tree.  The money will be used for the purchase of new books.


Tragsdorf Theater, circa 1920, with owner Bill Tragsdorf standing near the ticket office, was located in the 600 block of Hewett Street.  The newly designed building at that time was a showplace of theaters with the latest in modern technology.  (Photo courtesy of Bill Roberts’ collection)




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