Clark County Press, Neillsville,

February 11, 2004, Page 16

Transcribed by Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon.

Index of "Oldies" Articles 



Compiled by Dee Zimmerman



Clark County News

February 1894


Tuesday morning, men began to take the shelving out of Jesse Lowe’s building, the old Crandall-Youmans-Saupe-Jaseph-McIntire building on Main Street, preparatory to pulling the structure down. Let the good work go on. The store front was taken out this morning and the old landmark will soon be a heap of rubbish.


A dispatch, of February 9th, states that the Spencer Tribune has been sold to Fullmer & Richardson, who will remove the type and machinery to Loyal, Clark County.  There, they will publish The Loyal Tribune.  Vandercook has offered to go to Milwaukee and Winfield, Kansas.


A report is that he meditates starting a paper under the patronage of the Columbia Boom Town Company, Unlimited, like the report that Shafer Bros. of the Colby Phonograph have the job of county printing for the year, seems unauthentic.


News from August Wesenberg and his wife, at Citronelle, Alabama, is that, although settled down, they are lonesome for a meal of good old-fashioned Irish potatoes.  They are tired of sweet potatoes and they’ll be back to Clark County when the robins nest again.


The coming year will wind up a great deal of the lumber business in the vicinity of Black River Falls.  At McKenna, a few miles east of Black River Falls, the firm of Williams & Salsisch will complete the work of cutting their timber in about August. They will then tear up camp and go to other fields.  This will leave the now stirring little village of McKenna with its 350 families without life or means of subsistence and will be deserted, as the extensive mill is all there is.  This company has cleared away and cut up logs from thousands of acres and for years has employed an army of men.  Zeda, another village about the size of McKenna, which was built so that the two could nearly touch each other, will no doubt also be deserted during the summer.  The village was built up by the George Warren Company and has only the mill in back of it. The George Warren Company is negotiating for a large tract of timber among the cypress swamps of the far South.  This company also owns a fine village 20 miles from Black River Falls, which will doubtless sink into a state of “innocuous desuetude.”


The greatest sale of horses, that those of Clark County, has ever seen, will be held at the Neillsville Stock Farm.  The sale will be Thursday and Friday, March 7 and 8. There will be some fierce competition among the visiting horsemen to get possession of some of these great horses owned by the company.  A large local attendance will be a feature of the sale.


Surprise parties are taking a boom. Twenty young people gathered at the home of Mamie Hutchings, in the Town of Levis, on Monday evening, to do honors to her birthday.  The kitchen stove was moved sideways in the house.  Then, S. F. Hutchings mounted the stove, playing the violin to lead all in a promenade.  With games and refreshments, the evening was prolonged until past midnight and with the familiar American way, the company dispersed, wishing the honored Mamie many more happy birthdays.


The Lloyd’s Mill School is being taught by Miss West of Pleasant Ridge. Her friends of the home community are glad to see her back in the area.


The Woodsman’s dance, held at Granton, was a success in every sense of the word.  They realized $40 and everyone danced until 5:30 in the morning.


The folks, in the Town of York, are in hopes that some one will take an idea into their head to put a stock of goods in the store that is to be vacated by E. M. Rowe soon.  This is a good business chance for some one as we need the store’s goods badly.


Many of the farmers around here are cutting and hauling ice, for their own use next summer. They are intending to put in a larger supply than usual.


Saturday morning, farmers along Pleasant Ridge, with their produce-laden sleighs, were journeying to Neillsville when they were surprised to see a runaway team.  The horses were going eastward at a rate that would have surprised Minnie H in her younger days.  The team was nothing, more or less, than Jess Lowe’s pet broncos, who had tipped the two Lowe boys out of the sleigh, then concluded to run their own course.  We are thinking Jess must not feed those broncos enough oats.


February 1944


The pinch for buying tires is really here. The local rationing board went into February with some 70 unfilled certifications and the demands keep coming in. But in February, the quota allowed to the entire Clark County was reduced about 10 per cent from January, but the allotment is now only about 25 per cent of what it was when the quotas were first made.


On passenger tires, the shortage is even greater, with the February allotment reduced about 23 per cent from January and with the present total only about half of what was allotted a year ago.


This shortage of tires, now becoming seriously critical, threatens to tie up some trucks and cars in the county. The situation will become proportionately more serious if and when the stormy winter weather is encountered.


The 53 members of the Neillsville High School Glee Club, and their parents, are planning Valentine parties in their homes for the week of February 14.  The purpose of these parties, given by the girls, or their parents, is to help raise money for new robes.  Some are having two tables of Bridge, some three or four tables of Bunco and some are planning several tables of “500.”


There are many families in town who have children who will be members of the Glee Club or Chorus, when they enter high school.  Many such parents have already volunteered to give parties and turn in the receipts.  Miss Lynda Goeres, telephone number 80, would be pleased to know those who will do parties.


J. F. Schuster, of Neillsville, has a wartime wheelbarrow, which he has made himself.  For the wheelbarrow, he required no priorities.  The metal came from an old wheelbarrow, which he had made 30 years ago and which had disintegrated with time.  Prior to use in that old wheelbarrow, those metal parts had some humble origin, perhaps a junk pile.  They consisted of a metal wheel, of the fitting of that wheel, and of the legs and supports.  Thus, the wheel and the metal fixtures have served in two wheelbarrows for Mr. Schuster and had presumably served another owner at least once before, a long and honorable life for fixtures that is quiet (quite) evident.


This wheelbarrow is one of the products of Mr. Schuster’s workshop, in the basement of his home.  In odd times, he works there with his tools. This is his hobby.  There, he makes articles of furniture.  The most recent is a coffee table, which was made from the wood of an old grand piano.  The piano was bought long ago.  The metal from it went to the Boy Scouts for wartime scrap collection and the mahogany and rose wood is appearing in the coffee table and other items of furniture.


Herman August Gehrt passed away at his home in the Town of Pine Valley on February 4.  Funeral services were held at the Jaster Funeral Home and at the Zion Evangelical and Reformed Church on February 8.  Rev. N. J. Dechant, pastor of Zion Church was the officiating clergyman.  Burial took place in the Neillsville Cemetery.


Mr. Gehrt was born in Koslin, Germany, August 30, 1855 and was 88 years of age.  He had been a farmer most of the years of his life and had been active until about two months ago, when his health began to fail.


He was married to Miss Emelia Kruger, in Germany, in 1889.  They came to America soon after, settling in Neillsville, where his brother, Henry, had come a few years earlier.  Fifty-two years ago, he purchased a farm in the Town of Pine Valley where he has resided ever since.  He was a resident of Clark County for 55 years.


Mr. Gehrt was a member of the Reformed Church for many years.  He was one of the organizers of the Zion Evangelical and Reformed Church, which was originally located in Pine Valley, near his home and later moved to Neillsville.  He was an active worker in the church, as long as his health permitted.  (The Zion Church building was located 1 (1/4) mile from the Gehrt farm.  The congregation later moved to a worship site in Neillsville, on West 5th Street.  The country church building was razed after several years of standing on its South Pine Valley Site. D. Z.)  (The church was the Prince of Peace Church and its location was at the corner of W. Sand Rd and Sidney Avenue. DMK)


The deceased was preceded in death by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Fred Gehrt, by three brothers and one sister.  His wife passed away in 1934.  One sister, Mrs. Hulda Martens lives in Germany.  He is also survived by six children, seven grand-children and four great-grandchildren.  The children are Otto Gehrt and William Gehrt, Town of Pine Valley, William residing on the home farm; Mrs. Christ (Mary) Mohr, also of Pine Valley; Martha Gehrt, who lives on the home farm; Mrs. Arthur (Elsie) Berger, Neillsville; and Mrs. Charles (Emma) Marden, Town of Hewett.


Vance Williams of Malta, Ill., spent several days here recently visiting his mother, Mrs. H. E. Williams, who is spending the winter in Neillsville, with a sister-in-law, Mrs. Ben Beeckler and her family.  While here, Mr. Williams closed a deal whereby the ownership of the H. E. Williams farm, located one mile east of Trimberger’s corner on Highway 10, has been passed on from the Williams family.  The Williams family had owned this land since 1856 and now has passed into the ownership of Edward Sternitzky and sons.


Although the Williamses have given up title to this land, it becomes the property of another pioneer family.  The Sternitzkys had followed the Williamses to Clark County just a few months later and had been neighbors of the Williams families all of these years.


Mr. and Mrs. Otto Hollenbach, who have lived on the farm for several years, are planning to move to a smaller place.


The founder of the Windfall Memorial Library, Mrs. Augusta Lee Samson, was honored at a dinner held at the Union Church parlors on February 11, the second anniversary of the opening of the library.


Mrs. F. W. Winn, chairman of the library board, told of Mrs. Augusta Lee Samson’s interest in the Granton community and how over a period of years, she had made plans to give some worthwhile memorial to a community, which held so many pleasant memories for her.  It was her vision, her generosity and her genuine love for all mankind that made possible the establishment of a library in the village.


Mrs. Samson, who resides in Minneapolis, Minn., is now 92 years old, but age has not lessened her desire to be of service.  Unable to attend the dinner, she has presented the Library Association with a $100 bond, thus providing for the future of the library.  Mrs. Winn acknowledged the debt of gratitude this community owes to Mrs. Samson and expressed the thanks and appreciation of all who now enjoy this collection of good reading material.



The Boy Scouts of America are celebrating the 34th year of the founding of their organization in Boy Scout Week, February 8-14.  All over the country, Scouts will observe the anniversary with rallies, reunions and Scout Sunday observances.  The local troop, No. 43, has planned to attend church services at the Zion Evangelical and Reformed Church on February 13.


Scouts have performed many services vital to the war effort, since the beginning of the Defense Program.  For example, they have distributed 150 million pieces of government informational material.  They have collected scrap of all kinds; including nearly a half billion pounds of waste paper.  Scouts have made model planes and ships and have produced great quantities of food.  They have served as Civilian Defense messengers, airplane spotters and firewatchers.  They have aided rationing and selective service boards, foreign relief and in countless other ways.


To date, the Scouts have carried out 47 projects requested by the U. S. Government and all resulting in real war power contributed by organized Boy Power.


The local Troop, No. 43, of which E. H. Ruedy is Scoutmaster, has 18 members.  They meet regularly once each week at the Neillsville High School.  One meeting each month is held jointly with the troop from the Indian School.  This is Troop No. 64 of which Rev. N. J. Dechant is Scoutmaster and Heron Van Gorden is Assistant Scoutmaster.  It has 14 members and meets regularly once each week.  Rev. Dechant has been in scout work for 18 years.  Heron Van Gorden is a Life Scout and with the passing of one more test, will become an Eagle Scout.  Two other troops in the Neillsville district are at Loyal and Greenwood.  Another troop is being organized at Humbird.  Rev. Dechant is the commissioner for the Neillsville district.


Troop 43 is divided into two patrols, the Flying Eagle, of which John Kearns is the leader, and the Bob White Patrol, led by Donald Mattson.  Troop No. 64 is also divided into two patrols: Harry Blackhawk is the leader of the Flying Eagle patrol and Arnold Garvin of the Buffalo Patrol.  Both troops plan to help in the tin can drive this spring and with the proceeds of their various scarp collections, will finance camping trips at Lake Arbutus the coming season.


Certainly our boys and our country need the valuable training of the Scout program.  In his greetings to the Boy Scouts on Monday evening, President Roosevelt said, “The World War II might have been avoided, had the world been guided by the Scout principles.”  Much credit for the success of the organization should be given to the men all over the country who are giving of their time and effort in this great work.


Jeff Schuster generously donated acreage on Neillsville’s southeast side to the city, designating that the land be developed into a public park for the enjoyment of the children living in the area.  Through the years, children and adults alike have been able to relax under the shade trees, using the facilities for cookouts as they picnic in the shelters and the children exercise on the playground equipment.  The above photo was taken of the park entrance, about 1930.  (Photo courtesy of Bill Roberts’ collection)



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