Clark County Press, Neillsville,

January 5, 2005, Page 13

Transcribed by Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon.

Index of "Oldies" Articles 



Compiled by Dee Zimmerman



Clark County News

January 1890


Richard Owens will sell his 8 lots between Oak and Forest Streets, separately or together, at a very reasonable price.


Happy is the man who eats only for hunger and drinks only for thirst; who stands on his two legs and lives according to reason, not according to fashion; who provides whatever is necessary and useful, expending nothing for ostentation and pomp.  He who lives according to reason will never be poor and he who governs his life by opinion will never be rich.


Wonderful sliding has been the order of the day.  The frozen rains have coated the earth with smooth ice, which has given coasters a splendid opportunity for sport.  Fifth Street, with a hill at each end, has been the favorite resort. The bob sleds shoot along for half-a-mile, or so, with the speed of a locomotive, to the foot of the opposite hill and then back again.  The small boys have been skating all over town, on sidewalks, up hill and down, in the roads, across the lawns, almost everywhere.  For the horses it hasn’t been quite so fine, as there has been danger of falling. Teamsters and draymen have had to have their little cussin’ sessions.  However, the horseshoers must have had a harvest.  Thus, our varying climate affords sport and support to a varied population.


Peter Marks has bought the Markey block, at Seventh, West streets and Grand Avenue.  It is a good property, having one side abutting on the railroad.  Peter will enlarge his house, build a barn and run a hotel.


The Neillsville Manufacturing Co. is working hard at buying timber with which to stock the furniture factory.  Ash and other woods, birch, oak, maple and such will henceforth not be cut down and set afire in log heaps to get them out of the way as has been the custom for the past ten years.


Many loads of fine oak logs are being rolled into position at the Allen & Pennock hub and spoke factory, being hauled by the farmers’ bob-sleds.  Also, the great saw mill of Emery Bruley, which has just been completed, is now taking logs.  In many instances, a large, single log, we noticed, formed a big load for a heavy team of horses.  It is a surprise to many, to see such monster logs coming out of the neighboring woods.  There seems to be no end to them.


In writing up the Farmers’ Institute, last week, the Sentinel reporter speaks of “preparations now well matured by an English syndicate to establish an extensive Shire horse breeding establishment in Neillsville.  This will be the first of its king in the United States and will probably be well established during the present year.”


A farm known as the Staffordville place, adjoining the city of Neillsville will be sold reasonably.  It contains 132 acres, with about 100 acres cleared, having a dwelling house, barns and wells.  Also the property in the city of Neillsville, known as the Reddan House will be sold cheap or exchanged for improved farm property in Clark County.  For further information, write or call on H. H. Reddan or R. F. Kountz, Neillsville, Wis.


If you want whitefish, mackerel and trout, extra good, by the pound; if you want flour, feed, graham, cornmeal, rye flour, buckwheat; if you want prunes, apples, currants, dates, figs, grapes, blackberries, raisins and in fact anything that belongs in a first class grocery store, go to G. J. Hart’s on Third Street, opposite the Reddan House.


Chas. Breed has bought the saw mill in Fremont, known as the Hartman Bros. mill.  He will overhaul and remodel it, adding some new machinery, converting it into a mill for the manufacture of broom-handles.  He got the mill at a figure which makes the investment a good one.  We shall be glad to see our energetic citizen do well in the new venture.  Our only regret in this connection is that the factory is not to be in Neillsville.


Clark County is likely to be grid-ironed with railroads if half of the rumored railroads are built. But of these possible roads, that of the Neillsville and Northeastern Railroad Co. seems to be the most promising.  In fact, it is a probability and a lively probability at that.  The Neillsville and Northeastern Railroad Company has made the proposition that it will build from the end of the Omaha track, here in the city of Neillsville, to Marshfield during the present year.  That is, if the right-of-way is promptly donated from this city to the town line of Grant.  If this is all the aid asked, a mere bagatelle, the road is a certainty.  The railroad is needed to connect the city of Neillsville with the large tracts of timber northeast of us, to connect the county seat more closely with the upper and eastern towns, as well as for many other reasons.


The Hiles railroad will be pushed on northward from Lynn, at an early day.  There really is a fight on between the Northeastern and the St. Paul railroads for the occupation of this section of the country.  So give the right-of-way being asked for by all means.


January 1935


The new high-speed Northwestern “400” passenger train, which went into service Wednesday afternoon between Chicago and the Twin Cities, hits a terrific pace, according to reports of several who saw the train near Eau Claire on its initial trip Wednesday night. The train, which stops only at Adams and Eau Claire, covers the Chicago-Twin Cities distance of 400 miles in 400 minutes.  This train is hauled by a special steam locomotive.  The Northwestern line is holding to the idea that steam-power still is superior to any other form of railroad power.  Other railroads have gone in for the streamlined diesel engines.  The Northwestern’s experiment in high speed steam operated trains is being watched with great interest by railroad officials throughout the country.


New Year’s Eve celebrations, which have been of a subdued nature during the past few years of the Depression, appeared to have swung over into their old stride Tuesday night as thousands in this vicinity joined in whooping it up as the old year was kicked out and 1935 welcomed in.


Public dances and house parties made up the evening’s entertainment program.  The Moose Lodge staged a colorful dancing party at its hall, which was well attended.  Carnival noisemaking devices, paper hats and novelties were “turned loose” just before midnight and a terrific din greeted the New Year.


A similar program was enacted at the Masonic Temple where a large crowd enjoyed a dance, lunch and a carnival of fun at midnight.


Nearly 500 couples celebrated the occasion at the Silver Dome ballroom where dancing continued all night.


The sudden drop in temperature resulted in many cars being stalled. Garages were kept busy all night dragging cars out of snowdrifts, or giving them a push to start the chilled motors.


The Model Laundry was purchased by Harry Wasserberger, last week from Nick Scherer, the new owner taking possession Monday.  Associated with Mr. Wasserberger, in the new deal is Herbert Nielsen of La Crosse, who for the past several years has been employed in the La Crosse Laundry.  Mr. Nielsen has many friends in Neillsville, having graduated from the Neillsville High School and having been in the hardware business with his father.


Mr. Wasserberger plans to maintain a first class laundry and dry cleaning service in Neillsville and no doubt will enjoy a large patronage.  He will, however, not be active in the business, but will retain his present position as bookkeeper in the Neillsville Bank.  Mr. Nielsen will be in charge of the laundry business.


Mr. Scherer, who has been in the laundry business in this city for many years, has made no plans for the future and his family will spend several weeks visiting relatives in the northern part of the state.


The following 20 Clark County young men were accepted for CCC camps:


To the Coon Valley camp; Melvin L. Bjornstad, Owen; Joseph F. Fojt, Dewhurst; Fred C. Handke, Jr., Lynn; Henry F. Ignatz, Levis; Robert L. Lavine, Lynn; Archie L. Kluve, Curtiss; Joe Kryzanski, Town of Withee; Wilbur W. Turner, York.


To the Fairchild camp; Cyril A. Shaw, Neillsville; Joe J. Bichler, Loyal; Edward M. Janetski, Town of Thorp; Joseph M. Kaczor, Washburn; John Kozic, Levis; Lester P. May, Pine Valley; Harold L. Parker, Owen; Sylvester J. Plechacek, Reseburg; Albert M. Resong, Pine Valley; Harvey A. Seaman, Thorp; Mike Skrowonski, Town of Withee and Louis S. Szczech, Town of Withee.


Capt. C. V. Cole and Lt. J. Fox, Camp McCoy, were in charge of the examinations of the enlisted youths.


The village of Merrillan has made a PWA application for a new and larger power dam to supply the village with electricity.  Merrillan’s plant is publicly owned and consists of waterpower with a diesel engine as an auxiliary.


(PWA was the abbreviation for the Public Works Administration, a federally funded organization that assisted various projects. D. Z.)


Alfred Bartz, who lives near Romadka, was badly frozen Sunday night. He is now in critical condition, under the care of Dr. Rath at Granton.  Mr. Bartz went to Granton Sunday to have some teeth extracted, then later started to walk home, a distance of four miles, through the storm and drifted roads.  In his weakened condition, he became bewildered and fell in the snow.  Later, when found, he was badly frozen.


Milk haulers are having considerable difficulty these days, owing to snow-clogged side roads.  A number of them are employing teamsters with teams of horses to haul the milk to the main roads.  One hauler reports he has three teams hired, which covers 37 miles a day, in order to cover his route.


Free instructions on boxing are to be given at the Silver Dome gymnasium, in Johnson’s poolroom basement.  Instructions will be given by Henry Rahn, Clark County Deputy Clerk, who formerly was a member of the University of Wisconsin boxing team. Classes commencing at 8 p.m. will be held Tuesday and Thursday nights.  Those interested in taking the training should come equipped with tennis shoes and boxing trunks.


There are 800 Clark County farmers now working out feed relief loans, according to W. E. Roberts, director.  Those who contracted loans prior to July 27, 1934, are paid at the rate of 45 cents an hour for human labor and 36 cents an hour for a team of horses.  Those whose loans were contracted after that date are paid at the rate of 30 cents an hour for either human labor or teams.


If you are interested in buying out the best laid-out city in Clark County, see Clark County Clerk Calvin Mills.


The county now has tax deed title to 234 lots in Columbia, which may be acquired for much less than the $595.41 the county has invested in them.  There are some 700 lots in the entire “city” and the county probably will have tax titles to more of them soon.


Columbia, which along in 1893 was conceived in the mind of James Gates, looked for a time as though it would be one of the leading cities in the Middle West.  Land, which at the outset was sold at $100 a forty, boomed to $15 an acre and lots went to as high as $100 a piece.


Business places sprung up, including a large store, millinery shop, saw mill, blacksmith shop and other little shops.  A large school was built and the outlook was exceptionally rosy.  Home talent plays were given in the big hall and Neillsville folks often traveled down to the new city to spend the evening.


Much of the Columbia sales promotion work was handled in Chicago, during the World’s Fair in 1893, where an office force pointed out the merits of the community as a farming and industrial center.


However, the promises of the promoters failed to materialize and the city of Columbia gradually dwindled.  A large number of families who had been attracted to the community, moved away and today the community hears little evidence of its former glory.


Clark County Treasurer James Fradette is authority for the statement that Columbia is the finest laid-out city in the county.


Otto Steinberg’s general store dominates the business section of Columbia, while a little farther east on Main Street is the business establishment run by William Sollberger.


The community is pleasantly situated at the junction of Wedges Creek and Five Mile Creek. Those who still make their homes there enjoy its quiet, rustic setting where they are undisturbed by the rush and worries of city life.


The Tibbetts Ice and Fuel Company finished its annual ice harvest of 1,500 tons Sunday night. They report the crop this year as being the finest ice that has been put up in the past six years.


Old Man Winter was in perfect form last Sunday morning.  Our Congregational Church Pastor reported 40 below zero at his home thermometer.  But the cold didn’t keep the young folks home from church.  One of our boys, Gail Hetzel, walked into town, two miles from his home, just as he has done for several years.  Let us try and make it worthwhile, for the boys and girls of today will be the men and women of tomorrow.


The Saturday night’s special at Brunzell’s Palm Gardens will be Chow Mein, Mulligan Oysters and Chicken.  Next week’s Saturday special will be Boneless Perch and a salad for 15c.  They will also serve oysters in any style that you would like.


Chapman’s Grill’s Saturday night special is Roast Goose and Chicken. Chow Mein is also on the menu.




Hauling logs the old way, circa 1900.  A lady teamster drove an unusual team, that of an ox and a horse, that pulled a heavy load of logs to town to be sold at one of the saw mills.  At that time, as area farmers cleared their land of timber in readiness to till the soil such a sight as that above was seen often, several times each day.  It was the days of harvesting top-quality virgin timber.  (Photo courtesy of Tom & Betty Barr from their family collection)



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