Clark County Press, Neillsville, WI

July 23, 2003, Page 20

Transcribed by Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon.

Index of "Oldies" Articles 



Compiled by Dee Zimmerman



Clark County News


July 1928


Earl Bruhn and Max Feuerstein, of Marshfield, have opened a machine and repair shop in what was formerly the Randall blacksmith shop on East Sixth Street, next door to Gassen’s welding shop.  Bruhn and Feuerstein were formerly with the Lang and Scharman machine shops in Marshfield, for six years. They have wide and varied experiences in machine work, cabinet work, metal repair which includes metal grinding and such. They have put in excellent equipment and are known to be thorough in their work. They invite all who need any service in these lines to come into their shop for guaranteed satisfaction.


On July 4, Mr. and Mrs. Guy Schultz of the Town of Levis, whose farm home is located at Dells Dam, celebrated their golden wedding. A great many relatives and friends gathered at their home, in honor of the event.


Mr. and Mrs. Schultz have lived all 50 years of their married life, in the Town of Levis.  The first five years, they lived on the Goosbeck farm, located near by.  They then moved to their present home where they have lived ever since.  Mr. Schultz had charge of the old Dells Dam that was used for log-driving purposes.  He helped build it and then superintended the flooding operations as long as the logging business lasted.  He knew all of the earliest settlers in the town and saw all the changes that came as the timber resources gave way to farming.  His strength and skill as a river man, gave him great prestige among the lumbermen of that day.  The cordial hospitality of Mr. Schultz and his wife made Dells Dam a favorite place along the Black River.  Since the passing of the lumbering days, Mr. and Mrs. Schultz have lived quietly on their farm; for some time past, their son Guy and his wife have helped in carrying on in his parents’ place.  They also assisted his parents in entertaining the guests of the day.  A fine dinner was served at the noon hour and also in the evening.


A disastrous fire broke out in the Werner Hardware Store in Pittsville last Tuesday evening.  Before it could be checked, it had done damage to the extent of $100,000.  The Pittsville fire fighting equipment was not sufficient to make much impression on the fire and it gained headway rapidly.  The Wisconsin Rapids and Marshfield fire companies were called upon for help.  The Wisconsin Rapids fire department was on the scene within half an hour, and the Marshfield department a short time later. But even with all the fire fighting help, the fire could not be stopped until it had swept out practically the entire block.  The water supply had to be secured from the Yellow River with the fire truck having to be taken down a steep bank to be able to reach the water, which caused a delay.


The principal losses were:


Werner Hardware, building and stock, $25,000; McLaughlin General Store, merchandise and buildings, $13,000; F. S. Woodworth building, containing his law office, the post office and a barber shop $5,000; Baun General Store, building and stock, $28,000, and W. M. Ziehr, garage damaged, $500.  Most of the losses are fairly well covered by insurance.


It is not known how the fire originated but it is conjectured that it came from spontaneous combustion of oil or paint on the second floor of the Werner Hardware Store.


The new hydroelectric plant of the Northern States Power Co., at Chippewa Falls was given a test run last week. The first water wheel, in the power house, was put into operation.  There are six of these water wheels, each of which develops up to 5,000 horsepower.   The capacity of the new plant is 30,000 units of horsepower when in full operation from its reservoir impounded by the new dam.  The reservoir is three miles long, backing water up to the Wissota dam and is from 800 to 1,000 feet wide with a 30-foot head at the dam.  The powerhouse is 318 feet long, 57 feet wide and is equipped with the latest hydroelectric generating machinery.  The six big water wheels are controlled by interlocking machinery, which is in turn controlled by a central switchboard.


Last week, Clarence Hell bought the Joe Hanus property at Hatfield, and took possession at once. The property includes the store at Hatfield, the big dance pavilion, the Hanus home and considerable land upon which the various buildings stand.  Hanus has been in business at Hatfield for many years and his genial and courteous treatment of others has been instrumental in his building up a nice business.  He and his wife will take a vacation before deciding future activities.  Hell takes over the new business with renewed vigor and great plans for the future, expecting to make the Hatfield part of Lake Arbutus a popular summer resort.  He is planning on building bathhouses along with other improvements on the grounds.


July 1958


Between 200 and 250 pounds of dynamite were used, last week, to break a stalemate of man against granite, on Neillsville’s north side.


The dynamite was placed in 63 holes, bored 12 feet deep, in a sewer trench on 21st street.  Up to two pounds went into each hole and they set off four holes at a time.  The blast made the earth, rock and matting jump as much as three feet.


Whether the present stalemate has been surpassed; will be determined this week by Earl Zille and the Neillsville city crew.  They started the sewer main project, between Prospect Street and Black River Road, last August 14.  But this has been the most stubborn project of its kind, in many years, for the city crew to handle.


The first 338 feet, from Prospect east, went well enough.  There was little granite outcropping and what there was responded to normal treatment by equipment available to the city crew.  But, less than half way through, the crew ran smack into a sharp-rising ledge of hard, gray granite.  New drill bits were dulled before they made their way through three inches of the rock.


Springs, which abound in the area, added to the difficulties and finally the project was closed down for the winter.  The project was then delayed and resumed this year.  A blasting expert had tried his skill and found that the granite nearly reached the street’s surface.


From the project’s beginning, until the present, residents along 21st Street have lived with a yawning, open hole where the road once was in front of their houses.  Now, if the blasting has been successful, Zille foresees rapid completion of the project.


Fifteen counties of North and Central Wisconsin are the first in the area to use state funds for improving or developing county-forest land.  During the past 30 days, six men from Clark and Jackson counties have been using bulldozers, power shovels and dump trucks to build dikes and spillways at Dams No. 14 and 15 in the Town of Foster.  They will also construct 4.5 miles of road in the Town of Butler.


The project is a long-range development program with wildlife management and forest development as a goal.


The 1958 project called for repairing Dams 14 and 15 on Iron Creek, building dikes and emergency spillways which will create Iron Flowage, a lake covering from 15 to 20 acres and Spruce Lake which will back up over 20 to 30 acres.  This small flowage development program, if carried out from year to year, will create suitable habitat for ducks and geese.  Also, in some instances, it will be favorable habitat for the muskrat and beaver.


The project also included repairs to the roads, to the two dams and the improvement or building of 4.5 miles of road in the most densely wooded area of the Town of Butler.  In building the new road and in improving some of the old fire lanes, which were constructed in the early’30s by WPA or CCC labor, the crew has been using steel culverts salvaged from county reconstruction work.  The roads are built so they will not have to be closed in wet weather and will make timber cutting in this area of the county forest accessible to trucks.  They will also provide roads for hunters to enter a large and previously unreachable area of more than four miles square.


Mr. and Mrs. Henry Anderegg celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary Friday with a supper for relatives and an open house for friends and relatives.


Henry Anderegg and the former Cecelia Evans were married in Neillsville, by Rev. David Grether, July 18, 1918.  They farmed in the Town of York for 25 years and in 1943, moved into Loyal.  In 1949, Anderegg and his sons-in-law purchased the North Side Elevator from August Witt and son.  About a year ago, Anderegg sold his share of the business and retired.


They have three daughters, Lucille Brussow, Gladys Rayhorn and Marie Cox.


Mr. and Mrs. J. Otto Warren, who were married July 30, 1908, at Trevor, Kenosha County, will celebrate their golden wedding anniversary with a dinner for the immediate family, Saturday evening, at the home of their son and daughter-in-law, Mr. and Mrs. Neil Warren.  They will have an open house in the dining hall of the Neillsville Congregational Church on Sunday, from 2 to 5 p.m.


Their wedding was performed by Rev. McNamara in the home of the bride’s parents, Mr. and Mrs. Emery Newell, at Trevor.  The groom had been employed as a truck gardener and later as a maintenance man for Knickerbocker Ice Company at 25 cents per hour.  He remembers the going wage, at that time, was $1.25 per day.


In 1910, Mr. and Mrs. Warren moved to Neillsville with her parents, Mr. and Mrs. E. L. Warner.  The women came by train via Eland and Marshfield while the men came by freight car, via Merrillan.  With the men, in the freight car, were two driving horses, Lady and Dot; two cows; a dog by the name of “Squeak’: “Blossom,” the family cat and their household goods.


“At Merrillan,” said Mr. Warren, “We opened the freight car door and as we traveled toward Neillsville, the nearer we came, the less civilization we saw.  Then, we drew up at the station to see only the ruins of the Neillsville Furniture factory.  On that particular day, if we had had enough money to pay the return freight, we would never have unloaded.  But we didn’t and now haven’t regretted locating in Clark County.”


They spent their first night at the O’Neill House, Neillsville’s finest hotel of the day.


The year of 1910 was one of severe drought.  The Warrens and Warners farming 80 acres just east of the present golf course; sold butterfat for 21 cents per pound, but had to pay $20 per ton for hay.  The following year, 1911, was the year of the Black River flood, when nearly everything washed away, including the dam on the Popple River, Dells Dam, Hatfield Dam and the downtown area of Black River Falls.


“In the spring of 1911 and again in 1912,” continued Mr. Warren, “I planted corn on land now occupied by the Nelson Muffler factory.  The first year, the neighbor’s cows got into the field one night, in the early summer, and ate off most of the stalks.  But, it came up again and we harvested a fair crop.  We also had lots of tomatoes in the garden that wet year; but we lost our grain in the shocks.  The oats sprouted and grew, in the shocks, six to eight inches tall as we waited for it to get dry enough to thresh.”


In the fall of 1911, Mr. Warren sold 14 hogs, dressed out, at the John Wolff meat market, then located in the building now occupied by Kearns drug store, for five and one-half cents per pound.  He says he made money on them.  He purchased buttermilk for feed from Vint Lee, who then operated the Pleasant Ridge Cheese and Butter factory and was ale to raise enough rye to bring the hogs to maturity.


As they reminisced this week, Mrs. Warren recalled that as they made their first trip to the farm, they stopped their wagon on Division Street, near the spot where the Charles C. Hansen home recently burned, to enjoy the scenery to the north and especially the view of the mound.  Mr. Warren remembers getting stuck with six sacks of grain loaded on his high-wheeled wagon, in front of the armory.  The late Herman Yankee, a drayman and father of Arnold Yankee, pulled him out with a big team of horses.  Mr. Yankee did not charge him a cent for that favor. 


The only meat they had in the house the first winter was raccoon meat, trapped by Mrs. Warren’s father.  There was no work available and if men took a job cutting wood, they were paid in wood that brought 50 cents per cord.  Mr. Warren assisted his brother-in-law Ed Warner, in cutting some basswood that they sold at Kemmeter’s heading mill at Granton, therefore being able to bring home some needed groceries.  At that time, if one had money, he could take his pick of cows to buy for $20 to $25 each.  They sold 200 gallons of maple syrup at $1.10 per gallon, in 1911.


“When people ask my recipe for successful living, I tell them, ‘A sense of humor,’” said Zayda Warren.


In 1912, Mr. and Mrs. Warren rented the 80 acre John Wildish farm, now occupied by the Robert Poler family, south of the fairgrounds.  In 1917, they purchased an 80-acre farm in the Town of York from the late William Radtke.  In 1918, they added 80 acres to the west, which they purchased from the late William Imig.  In 1946, they purchased 80 acres across the road, in the Town of Grant, from Mrs. Ben Brown.  In 1948, their son and daughter-in-law, Mr. and Mrs. Neil Warren and son Neil, Jr. returned to Wisconsin from Alaska and lived with them on the farm until 1951.  The elder Warrens then moved into Neillsville, locating on West 5th Street, where they have continued to live.


Besides their son, Neil, they have a daughter, Mrs. Rex (Ruth) Beach of Stillwater, Minnesota, who has four children, John, Judith, Diana and Mary.


While a resident of the Town of York, Mr. Warren served several years as chairman of his township and as vice-chairman of the Clark County Board of Supervisors.  He has been employed for several years as a custodian at the Neillsville High School.



The O’Neill House, located on the corner of Hewett and Sixth Street, was destroyed by fire in the early 1900s.  An elite hotel, in the late 1800s, it attracted guests from great distances who came for weekends of dining, dancing and socializing.  (Photo courtesy of Bill Roberts’ collection)



© Every submission is protected by the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998.


Show your appreciation of this freely provided information by not copying it to any other site without our permission.


Become a Clark County History Buff


Report Broken Links

A site created and maintained by the Clark County History Buffs
and supported by your generous donations.


Webmasters: Leon Konieczny, Tanya Paschke,

Janet & Stan Schwarze, James W. Sternitzky,

Crystal Wendt & Al Wessel