Clark County Press, Neillsville,

May 25, 2005, Page 13

Transcribed by Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon.

Index of "Oldies" Articles 



Compiled by Dee Zimmerman



Clark County News

May 1885


At about 10 a.m. last Monday, a fire was discovered on the roof of L. W. Larson’s residence, in Greenwood.  It was learned afterwards, the fire resulted from a defective chimney.  The blaze spread very rapidly to all parts of the house. There was a very strong wind blowing at the time, soon spreading the fire to other houses in the vicinity.  In less than half an hour, three residences were completely destroyed and several other buildings were burning furiously.  By half-past two, the flames were brought under control, but not before ten buildings had been destroyed with nearly all their contents.


Following are a list of the residences and stores destroyed:


L. W. Larson’s residence; L. Johnson’s residence; Frank Brown’s residence; Pfeifer’s Meat Market & Grocery; Elias Peterson’s Shoe Shop and Grocery; Christ Vates’ Saloon, hall & barn; S. M. Andrews’ barn, & Thompson-Root’s barn.


A new and excellent stump-pulling machine has been recently shipped from Sheboygan County to Neillsville.  It is now at work in J. H. Thayer’s one-acre lot north of his house.  Anyone interested in seeing the machine, can go there.  The machine is a giant and can pull out stump, root and the entire Western Hemisphere, if necessary to get the stump out of the ground.


Ladies, who wish to donate flowers for use on Decoration Day, will please leave them with Mrs. Weeks at the furniture store on Friday afternoon, May 29.  All who can possibly do so are appealed to assist the committee.


The Town of Washburn has risen to the dignity of two justices of the peace.  They are J. M. Winters and William Wessenberg. William says he will marry the first couple for nothing, so hasten to be first.


The city can as well afford to pay $200 for a public library as for a fire alarm bell.  It is certainly as bad to rust out intellectually as to burn up physically.


The land, across the street from Gates’ Main Street row of tenements, has been sold to someone who, we are informed, will put in some sort of machine works.


Last Friday, Mrs. Emery Bruley died suddenly at her home, here in Neillsville, at the age of 39 years, 11 months, and 9 days.  Her death came so suddenly that when, at the first sign of danger, Mr. Bruley was notified, he being only but a block away and making haste, found her dead when he reached her side.  She was a native of Ottawa, Canada, born May 15, 1845.  The Bruley’s were married at that city on September 17, 1863. They came to Wisconsin in 1865.  She was a Catholic and the funeral services took place at the Catholic Church, Monday forenoon. Father Volz officiated, preaching a most eloquent sermon.


Balch & Son bought the grocery business of Berg & Johnson, on the corner of Main and Second Streets and soon will be established in the new locality.  Mr. Peter Johnson retains the furniture stock and will continue that business, having bought of Ring & Youmans, the building now occupied by Geo. A. Ludington.  To make room for Johnson’s furniture, Ludington will soon move to the building just north of the O’Neill House formerly occupied by Reitz & Haugen.  Mr. Berg owns the corner building.


May 1955


Progress is being made to enlarge and rearrange Willard’s baseball diamond.  The Willard baseball team has joined a league, this year.  Quite a sum of money has been spent for baseball uniforms and equipment.  The first games of the seasons will be played starting May 15; Willard vs. Thorp, at Thorp; Stratford vs. Loyal at Loyal; Lynn vs. Greenwood at Greenwood.


The Neillsville Nursing Home, the name now given to what has been referred to as the old Neillsville hospital, will be opened to patients next Sunday, May 15.


The George Beecklers, who will be in charge, have been attending a meeting in Green Bay, held especially for the managers of such institutions.


The Home was visited by upwards of 150 persons at the Open House held last Sunday.  Approaching the building, they noted no exterior change, but inside, they hardly recognized the structure, with all the changes.


The Open House of Memorial hospital had upwards of 300 visitors.  There, the Hospital Auxiliary women were in charge as guides and hostesses. They served coffee to all at the end of the trip.


The new convent of St. Mary’s Church will be dedicated Sunday, May 15th, 4 p.m.  Officiating will be the Most Rev. John P. Treacy, D.D., bishop of the La Crosse diocese.


The Bishop will lead a solemn procession from the rectory at 4 p.m. and will go through the convent, blessing it.  The procession will then go into the church, where the remaining exercises will take place.


The convent is now complete and will be in immediate use.  The only remaining work in connection with it is the completion of the grading and landscaping.


The new convent, representing a substantial expenditure, is a considerable addition to the parish property and the community.  In recognition of this, the pastor, the Rev. Fr. Leketas, extends an invitation to the community, regardless of religious faith, to attend the dedication.


The old Ehlert cheese factory was completely destroyed by fire last Friday evening.  The building, located eight miles southeast of Thorp, had been a tavern in recent years and was occupied as living quarters by Allen Klimeck, the tavern operator and his family.  Mr. Klimeck, a student at Eau Claire State college, was absent at the time.  His wife, smelling burning rubber, took her two children with her to the first floor.  Soon thereafter, the stairway was in flames.


Direct from New York City, the number one band in the land, Count Basie and his internationally famous orchestra, made up of 16 musicians, will be at the Silver Dome Ballroom on May 30th.  If you don’t dance, come for the show!  Wedding dances will be held as follows: May 7 – David Pietenpol, Granton, and Mary Pflughoeft, Neillsville.  Elmo Johnson Band will play: May 14 – Daniel Wallace, Neillsville and Pauline Zimmerman, Humbird.  Music will be Wayne Seefeldt & his orchestra; May 25 – Mercedes Sharratt, Neillsville and Dick Duell, Chippewa Falls.  Howie Sturtz and his orchestra will provide the music.


The Ladies’ Bowling Association of Loyal held its annual banquet in the dining hall at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church Wednesday evening.  Sixty-two members, representing the 12 teams of the association were present.


Officers elected for next year were Mrs. Sam Bruckert, president; Mrs. Harry Schlinsog, vice-president; Mrs. Hugo Stutte, secretary and Miss Beatrice Ellison, treasurer.


The clearing of Vets’ Village is beginning.  With three units empty, the council arranged Tuesday evening for the disposal of three of them.


One of the large units was given to the Boy Scouts, of Neillsville, for use at Camp Higichari.  Two others and possibly a third will be sold on bids.


Two important conditions attached to the sale are that the units shall be removed outside the city limits, and that they shall be removed within 60 days.


A schedule of five home games and a league total of 12, will be played by the Neillsville entries in the Wisconsin Valley Softball league, was announced here.


Games will be played Sunday nights.  Included in the league are teams from Wausau, Merrill, Marshfield, Mosinee, Stevens Point and Neillsville.


Among those playing with the Neillsville aggregation are: Bud Bremer, manager; Pat McIntyre, Richard Buchholz, Charles Wasserburger, Frank Wasserburger, Jim Horswill, Dan Patey, Bud Hantke, Darwin Graves, Ed Prusa and Bob Kunze.


John Kozic escaped serious injury Tuesday morning, when a sewer he was helping to dig, started to cave in.  He was buried to his armpits but was pulled to safety by members of the city crew working across the street, who heard his shouts.  The men were working across from the Northside store.


Mr. Kozic was rushed to the Memorial hospital, where it was found that no bones were broken.  He is receiving treatment for shock.


The earth caved in with such force that it broke a shovel handle in two places.


Neillsville High School will have one athlete competing in the state track meet, at Madison, this Saturday.


He is Jon Swenson, sophomore, who earned the right to compete by placing second in the 440 at the Eau Claire sectional meet, last Saturday.  He will be accompanied to Madison by Hank Lukes, coach of the track team and will compete in Class B.


The only other member of the local track squad to place in the Eau Claire sectional meet was Bennie Urlaub, who ran fourth in the 120-yard high hurdles.  Only first and second-place winners in the sectionals are eligible to compete in the state meet.


Mark Russell, popular game warden, drowned last Saturday in Pike Lake, near Cadott.  Death came while he was checking fishing licenses in the company of James Boruski, a warden whose home is at Stanley.  The two were using a narrow aluminum boat, equipped with an outboard motor of five horsepower.  The two wardens had finished checking the men in one boat and were starting for another.  Their motor was dead.  Both men were standing up, according to information available here.  Mr. Russell was standing in the bow of the boat; Mr. Boruski in the stern, by the motor.  The rudder was set at an angle and not straight out to the rear.


Mr. Boruski gave the motor a start.  It caught quickly and the rudder, set against the water, gave the boat a quick lurch and started off on a curve.  The sudden lurch and the start at an angle threw both wardens off balance. Both went into the water.


All of this happened close to the boat where the wardens had been checking licenses.  The fishermen in it went at once to the rescue.  They were able to pull Mr. Boruski from the water.  But Mr. Russell struggling little quickly disappeared into the depths, the water being 18 feet deep.


The body was brought to the Bergemann funeral home.  An examination was made in an effort to find an explanation for the seeming lack of effort of Mr. Russell, to save himself.  It was known that he could not swim, but he did not even make a hard struggle.  It was found that his right arm was dislocated, pulled out at the shoulder joint.  A surmise was that he had hit the water in such a way as to throw the shoulder out of joint and it is possible that he may have hit so hard as to stun himself.


The death of Mark Russell brought gloom to sportsmen and friends, for Mark was a friendly man, who had a way about him even in such of his activities as do not commonly generate popularity.  He made arrests with the manner of a friend and left a pleasant memory even with those who he took into court.


Mark was born Nov. 15, 1924 to Mark and Eva (Richardson) Russell at Humbird, Wis. When he was a small boy, the family moved to a farm near Chippewa Falls.  He was graduated from the Chippewa Falls High School in 1942, and was married May 12, 1946 to Doris Doty.  He worked for his father on the farm until 1950 and then became a warden for the conservation department of the state.  His first assignment took him to Black River Falls for a brief residence.  Later in 1950, they moved to Neillsville and have made their home here since.  As a state officer, he worked both in the county and in the surrounding part of the state.  He was under civil service.   He was a member of the Zion Evangelical and Reformed Church, Neillsville.


Russell is survived by his wife; his mother, Mrs. Mark Russell, Sr., Chippewa Falls; and one sister, Mrs. Joseph (Frances) Matschee of Cadott.


Funeral services were held at the Zion Evangelical and Reformed Church, Neillsville.


Burial was in the Forest Hill cemetery of Chippewa Falls.


(Russell Park, at Hatfield, was named in memory of Mark Russell.  D. Z.)


Pee-Wee league baseball, in Neillsville, will be the winner when the Old-Timers brush against the Neillsville High School baseball nine in a benefit game at the Neillsville Athletic field Memorial Day, starting 2:30 p.m.


The Old-Timers will field a lineup of glittering local diamond names of yesteryear.  Among them will be: Ed Zank, Eugene Christie, Allen Decorah and Hank Lukes, all pitchers; Swede Moberg, Walter Zank, Harold Milbreit and Dick Tibbett, catchers.


Other members of the Old-Timers are expected to include: Leo Wasserburger, Free Carlton, Gilbert Yorkston, Dave Gorman, B. H. Crissinger, Gorden Vine, Earl Magnuson, Norman Drescher, Albert Zank, Frankie Zank, Joe Urban, Ernie Christie, Bud Bremer, Dick and Arnie Buchholz and Bob Urban, with perhaps a few others to fill in.


The high school team will include: Howard Krause, as catcher, Bob Gutenberger, first base; Fred Gutenberger, second base; Jon Swenson, shortstop; Merlin Gerber, third base; Maynard Prock, left field; Don Shaw, center field; Art Stiemke, right field; Devere Krecji, Gary Mills and Jim Krause will be the pitchers.  Dick Quast, Chuck Thompson and Dick Christie will be outfielders.


Fifty Years ago – I’m afraid the Volkswagen car, now sold here in the USA, is going to open the door to a whole lot of foreign business.”




The National Guards marched in a patriotic parade along Hewett Street through the 5th street intersection with the Hemp’s Grocery Store in the background.  (Photo courtesy of Bill Roberts’ Collection)



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