Clark County Press, Neillsville,

April 20, 2005, Page 14

Transcribed by Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon.

Index of "Oldies" Articles 



Compiled by Dee Zimmerman



Clark County News

April 1895


A store and house, combined, are being built on Coal Kiln Avenue in West Pine Valley.  There is talk about the building of a church near the store.  Now we need to hustle to get good roads past there.


The first of a series of regular services at the Unitarian Church will take place Friday evening, Apr. 19th at 8 o’clock.  Mr. Davis, the eloquent minister of Winona, will be speaking.  A social and supper will be held from 6 to 8, before the services, in the church parlors.


The village of Dorchester had a large fire yesterday.  It started in M. Kleffman’s butcher shop. There was a south wind.  Other businesses and buildings also burned were; Peter Schafer’s buildings, occupied by John Schafer as a general store, C. D. Hubbard’s saloon and hotel, the post office, a barber shop, F. Gutmann’s hardware store, M. Oberbilig’s saloon, John Berger’s hotel and saloon, E. F. Swarthout’s dwelling, as well as five barns and several sheds.  The loss, of about $28,000, is partly covered by insurance.


There will be some new building in Neillsville during 1895.  The buildings already certain to go up are a formidable list, with other building possibilities for the year, popping up weekly.  Among the new structures to be built are: the new Methodist Church; a new Norwegian Lutheran Church on a lot just north of the First Ward school house; an office building, sheds and storage building of N. C. Foster Lumber Co. on a block of land recently purchased near the Neillsville depot, where the new lumber yard is going to be; extensive alterations of the Cross residence; completion of the post office building; enlarging of the Esch-Rabenstein business tenement; Alex Holverson’s new business building on Seventh Street.


The old Methodist Church building has been purchased by the Grand Army Post and Auxiliary Women’s Relief Corps, in Neillsville.  The building will be moved a few feet north of its old site, where they have purchased a lot for it.  It will serve them as a hall and a home.


Benjamin Crockett has moved a house near the Canfield farm, in the Levis community.  He will take charge of the Carlisle post office and in a short time will be prepared to engage in the mercantile business.


The Wisconsin Central railroad depot, in Thorp, was struck by lightening the night of Apr. 27.  The entire building was destroyed by fire, with all the railroad records, tickets and other contents.


Arbor Day will be recognized with tree planting at both the North Side and South Side schools, in Neillsville.  The city’s citizens are urged to be present.  There will be about 20 trees planted.


Henry Billings has purchased 40 acres of cleared land, opposite the Ross Eddy land, from J. G. Taylor.  He will at once commence the construction of a house thereon and make it his home.  There is a barn on the land and it has good water.  The plan is in line, with the best thought of the day, that this small farm could be scientifically and thoroughly worked, into being most profitable.


S. D. Baldwin, Neillsville manager for the N. C. Foster Lumber Co., has been here for a week or so.  He is preparing for the new lumberyard, having been with the Foster Company for years at Mondovi and is an expert in this line of business.  His family, now living in Mondovi, will be brought here in the near future.


Last Saturday, Mrs. B. F. French exchanged her 20-acre homestead, southeast of the city, to Ed Bruley for the Chandler farm, located two miles north of town.  Both are fine properties.


Tobe Johnson moved his jewelry store across the rock ribbed, bumpty-bump section of Hewett Street.  The store is now located in the north, front section of Harry Enckhausen’s drug store.


The Neillsville Creamery will open next week, as soon as the engine is repaired.  The creamery will be in the charge of a recent graduate from the State Dairy School at Madison.  A big and prosperous business is the prospect for the coming summer season.


April 1945


Aside from the published notices, there were two ways to know that Tuesday was Election Day.  One was to watch the snowfall, and the other was to see Oluf Olson take down the storm-house in front of the main entrance to the court- house.


Oluf has been around the courthouse some 30 years, and his recollection is that he has taken down the storm-house on election-day at least 25 times out of the 30.  To him, it made no difference that on this Election Day the snow was falling.  He worked right along in the snow confident that the return to winter would be of short duration. To him, it was election-day and time to take the storm-house down.


Glen Haven is sure now that he was born.  He can prove it by an affidavit, made by an old friend who lives in Illinois.  Mr. Haven made a trip last week to the home of his boyhood, and hunted up this old friend, who was 17 when Glen was born.  This friend is now 88, and Mr. Haven figured that, if he was ever intending to establish the fact of his birth, otherwise unattested, he had better get at it.  So he came back home Monday with the fact duly established upon oath.


Mr. Haven also attended church Easter Sunday at the Presbyterian Church in Marengo, the first church service he can remember and one of the first recollections of his childhood.  He saw, too, his old Sunday school teacher, whom he had not seen for 30 or 40 years, and she knew him right away.


Roy E. Schmedel died suddenly April 11, of heart failure.


Mr. Schmedel came to Neillsville with his family in 1927.  He was the superintendent of the Condensery of the American Stores Dairy Co. and found in that activity an outlet for his skill as a chemical engineer.  During the 18 years of his service, the Condensery has been almost completely rebuilt and re-equipped.  The work of reconstruction had been carried on without interruption of the factory routine.  The development of the plan and business was Mr. Schmedels professional accomplishment and his major contribution to the community.


As a member of the community, he had other interests also, in which he was constructively active.  He was long president of the Neillsville Country Club and had much to do with development and maintenance of the golf course.  He was a dependable factor in the Kiwanis club.  Mr. Schmedel had a great interest in the Masonry, being active with it in Watertown.  After moving to Neillsville, he became commander of the local Commandery and a Thirty-

Second degree Mason.  He was also a noble of the Mystic Shrine.


Roy E. Schmedel was born in Indianapolis January 13, 1893, the son of Mr. and Mrs. Edward Schmedel.  He went to public schools in Indianapolis and attended Purdue University, where he specialized in chemical engineering, taking both Bachelor and Master degrees.  Following graduation in 1914, he went to Chicago and worked for a short time for the Bell Telephone Co.  Then, he went to Watertown, Wis., and was for 13 years a chemist for the Van Camp organization.  He came to Neillsville from that connection.


At Watertown, Mr. Schmedel married Lorraine Otto, in 1918.  There are two children, Betty and William. Betty is Mrs. R. W. Christensen of Madison and is the mother of a little boy. William, 20, is a specialist gunner in the Navy.  His last known address was Charleston, S. C.


The Ray Strebings have bought the property on East Division Street where they reside and conduct their grocery business.  They had been renting and have now purchased the property from H. H. Van Gorden of Merrillan.


Apprentice Seaman Betty Jane Dahnert returned Saturday from Minneapolis, where she was sworn in as an enlisted WAVE member of the Women’s Navy Reserve.  She will take her basic training at Hunter College, New York, beginning in May.


Stanley Zuber, 60, was the victim, Saturday, of an accident on the railroad crossing in the business district of Thorp.  A pickup truck, in which Zuber and his son were riding, was hit by an engine, which was going west and which was unattached to a train.


The Zuber family resides at Lublin. The family consists of the widow, Anna, four sons and two daughters.  Of the sons, three are in the armed services, one being a prisoner of war.


News from “Our Boys with the Colors:”


Corp. Edward J. Frei, of Neillsville Rt. 1, recently had a part in an exploit, which has been made a matter of record by the army publicity men.  He was a member of a repair crew, which put back in commission, two tanks bogged down in “No Man’s Land.”  These tanks had been in action in the forward area in the European theater, having been put out of commission. The job of putting them back into commission and of getting them back into action was given to a 13-man crew, of which Corp. Frei was a member.  The crew went out under the covering fire of other tanks and small arms.  For 24 hours, they braved the extreme cold and heavy fire of getting the two tanks in condition to run.  Then, they drove the tanks across exposed areas to the American lines.


An Air Medal has been won by Sgt. Gordon E. Vine, 21-year old son of Mr. and Mrs. Ernest Vine of Granton, Rt. 3.  The award was made to him for his work as an aerial gunner on the Liberator.  The outfit, of which he is a member, has flown more than 200 long-range bombing missions to spike German oil production and transport facilities.  Gordon Vine, recently promoted to sergeant, graduated from Neillsville High School in 1941.  He was a student at River Falls Teacher’s college when he entered the Air Corps in 1942.


Pfc. Elmer W. Lindahl, of Withee, has been awarded the Bronze Star for heroic achievement.  He is 32 years of age, and a member of the 91st “Power Ricer” division.  The official statement of his exploit follows:  “Lindahl’s machine gun section was established in a house when a violent enemy counter-attack was launched.  Manning one of the guns, Lindahl picked the weapon off the tripod and rushing aggressively from window to window, continually poured bursts of fire at the oncoming enemy infantrymen.”


“By the time the next and stronger enemy attack was at its peak, a reserve company had moved into position to strike their flank. While the reserve company was inflicting severe casualties on the enemy, Lindahl was inspiring the men in the house by his unceasing activity in running to different positions and firing accurate bursts at the enemy.”


“Before entering the army in August 1943, Lindahl was a dairy farm hand.  His father, Ernest Lindahl, lives at Withee.”


Corp. Allen L. Luber of Loyal Rt. 1, son of Mr. and Mrs. August Luber is a member of an (a) unit in Europe, which has been commended by Lieut. Gen. James H. Doolittle.  This unit is the only repair depot maintained on the continent by the Eighth Air Force.  In that unit, Corp. Luber is an operator of automotive equipment in the transportation division.


Mrs. Alfred Dux, of Neillsville, has received a letter from Lieut. Gen. Kenney, in command of the Allied Air Forces in the Southwest Pacific area, in which he tells her of the decoration with the Air Medal of her son, Sgt. Kenneth W. Dux.


Word comes from Washington DC that the fat-salvage problem has got to be licked in the small cities, the towns and on the farms.


Women have to save enough used fats in their kitchens to help make munitions, medicines, fabric, soap for military and civilian use and many other essentials.


The job, to date, has been done largely by city people, because arrangements for collecting the fats were made in the cities first.  These city folks are turning in more than twelve million pounds of fat a month.


Now women on the farms and in the small towns are being called upon to help out.


Save all used fats in a tin can. Scrape roasting pans, skim soups and gravies and keep solid pieces of fat, such as meat trimmings and table scraps, in a bowl.  Once a week, melt down the scraps and add the liquid fat to the salvage can.


Take the can of fat to your butcher as soon as it’s full.  He will give you two red meat points and up to four cents for every point.


If you have any difficulty, call your County Agent or Home Demonstration Agent.  This message is approved by WFA and OPA, and paid for by the Industry.


Grow beans for canning and help the war effort.  For information and contract see a representative from the Loyal Canning Co.: Joe Parrish, Neillsville; J. W. Arends, Greenwood; L. H. Cutts, Christie; Farmers Co-op, Marathon City; Elmer Severson, Willard; Adam Matyske, Athens; Harry Baumann, Merrill; Edward Salefske, Jr., Hamburg.


Back in the past:


Do you remember “fender skirts” and “curb feelers?”  The “fender skirts,” made of the same weight of metal as the rest of the car body and usually of the same paint color, snapped on over the wheel-well of a car. The purpose was to dress the car up.


The “curb feeler” was a small, thin six or so inch strip of spring-steel wire, attached to the bottom back-edge of the right front fender and one on the right back fender.  Their purpose was to make a noise as you came too close to the curb while parallel parking.  After all, you didn’t want to scrape and mar those beautiful white-sidewall tires, when the sidewall stripe was at least three inches wide. D. Z.




As the photographer stood in front of the Neillsville High School, in 1917, he captured this view of the north side of the 200-block of East Fourth Street.  The Methodist Church is at the far left.  The dome of the Clark County courthouse, with Lady Justice at the top, can be seen in the background.  (Photo courtesy of Bill Roberts)



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