Clark County Press, Neillsville, Wisconsin

November 12, 2008, Page 16

Contributed by "The Clark Co. Press"

Transcribed by Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon.

Index of "Oldies" Articles 


Compiled and contributed by Dee Zimmerman


Clark County News


November 1928


Herbert Jensen of City Point was a visitor in the city Monday morning and reports a good year for moss.  Besides his regular shipments to all parts of the United States, he has been shipping a good deal of sphagnum moss to Canada where special tagging is required.  The City Point moss is given credit for being the very best on the market and finds ready sale everywhere.


Recent action was taken by the La Crosse Presbytery to make some disposal of the Presbyterian Church at Shortville, being but a small membership there.  Autos and surfaced roads are making it possible for residents of that locality to attend church in Neillsville.  An offer to buy was made by a man who owns a farm near the church, but a large group of people in the neighborhood preferred to have the church remain intact, so that it could be used as a community church or hall.


Rev. Geiselbrecht and Rev. Davidson, representing the Presbytery were here Monday and met the people of the Shortville community, with some 32 of who had signed as willing to help in the purchase.  Three offers were submitted to them, one of which was to have ownership remain in the Presbytery with free use by the community, except that the building was to be kept in repair.  All present however were in favor of purchasing and this was decided upon.  The community group will be legally incorporated and will take over the property.  Plans are laid to use the material in the sheds to build a kitchen in the rear of the building.  It will be used by all denominations and for community gatherings. 


The Presbyterian Rutgers Chapel in the Town of Eaton may also be disposed of in like manner.  Some disposition, later, may also be made of Prince of Peace chapel in Pine Valley.


For the first time in many years, a regular logging camp is established in the Town of Pine Valley, and cutting and skidding are going merrily on.  Herman Schoengarth of Granton has the contract for cutting, skidding and hauling the timber for the Dells Lumber Co. of Eau Claire, on 80 acres in Section 33 Town of Pine Valley.  Mr. Schoengarth has a crew of about a dozen men now at work.  He has built his camp on the O’Brien farm at a spring near the Black River, and is pushing work rapidly.  There is considerable good-sized timber on both tracts, but everything will be cut down to 5 inches in diameter.  This will even include the poplar.


The logs will be landed in Sydney and hauling will probably not begin until snow comes.  Other tracts will be cut in other localities and landed at Neillsville and some possibly at Granton and Chili.


Two new lumber camps have been built to carry on the winter’s logging operations for the Dell’s Lumber Co.  One camp is located north of the Pine Valley Mound and will be run by George Tibbett, son of Mr. Tibbett who has done most of the cruising for Dell’s Lumber Co. in this locality.  Another camp is located about a mile and a half from Globe and will be run by John Everson of Eau Claire.  It is possible that one or two more camps will be built.


Other operations will be carried on by farmers who sold the timber or by local contractors.  E. R. Moffatt of the Town of Hewett has one job and will employ several men and it is rumored that there will be several others.


A number of people from Neillsville and vicinity drove to Lindsey Sunday to attend the dedication of their new Methodist Church.  A fine program was presented.  It is a beautiful modern building and is a real credit to Lindsey.  At the dedication over $1,000 was contributed to aid in paying for the new church.


The First National Bank of Neillsville is distributing lithographed Certificates which are the same size as the new paper currency, which we will all be carrying sometime after July 1, 1929.


The present size of the paper currency is 7 1/16 by 3 1/8 inches.  According to the latest information available the size of the new currency will be 6 5/16 by 2 1/16, which is approximately the size of the currency that had been in circulation as was in 1861.  It is quite an undertaking for the government to alter the size of the currency or the designs and for that reason changes are made seldom.  The Treasury Department considered the matter for several years before deciding to make the change.


Mr. Albert Sollberger and Miss Frances Poertner were married at Winona, Minnesota, Monday Nov. 5.


The groom is the son of Mr. and Mrs. John Sollberger of Columbia.  For three years he worked for the railway mail service, with headquarters in Chicago.  Meanwhile he took training in electrical work and eight years ago took a position with the Northern States Power Co., by whom he is still employed.  He is considered an expert in his work and is also a young man of high character who is deservedly popular among his associates and with patrons in his territory, which includes Clark, Taylor, Marathon and Chippewa counties.


The bride is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Poertner, who live near Columbia. She came here with her parents from St. Louis, Missouri, when she was 11 years of age, and has lived at home most of her life.  She is refined and lady-like in manner, her pleasing personality making her much liked by all who know her.


The young couple will go to housekeeping at once in the new house on South Grand Avenue, recently built by John Carter.


Stop in at the Neillsville Garage where you can see and purchase a new Whippet-Six automobile.  The touring style is priced at $615; Roadster, $635; Coach, $695; Coupe, $695; Cabriolet Coupe (with collapsible top,) $755.  All Willys-Overland auto prices are f.o.b. Toledo, Ohio.


November 1958


The 100th anniversary of Methodism in Neillsville will be marked in special centennial services here Sunday, Nov. 9.


Assisting in the program will be Bishop H. Clifford Northcott of Madison, and Dist. Supt. Raymond J. Fleming.  Bishop Northcott will deliver the centennial sermon during the 11 a.m. service.  His subject will be, “A Day for the Church.”


In the afternoon a concert and homecoming service will be conducted at 2 p.m. by Layman A. L. Devos, who will present the welcome.  The service will include an address by the Rev. Mr. Fleming on “Grace for the New Day,” a reading of the church history and greetings from former pastors.


In their historical publication compiled for the 100th anniversary celebration, the Methodist claim to have been the first to hold religious services in Clark County.  An occasional Methodist clergyman held services at intervals prior to 1850.  However, before the Civil War these services were being held with greater frequency, averaging about one a month and the followers in the city were served by the old-time circuit riders.


These services were held in the building now occupied by the Kleckner elevator, which was a grist mill.  The circuit riders that visited Neillsville, conducted services gave comfort and solace of religion to the members.  In return they were provided with the hospitality of the homes of members.


As it was generally in Wisconsin, so it was in Clark County that the Methodists were not only the first to hold services in the county, but they also erected the first church building in the county at Neillsville in 1869, on a lot give by Mrs. James O’Neill.  The present church building stands on this lot.


For many years this building served not only as a church, but also as a public meeting place for concerts, political speeches and holiday celebrations. When the present church was built in 1895, the original building was moved to a lot just north and is still in use for public meetings.  It is known as the Veterans of Foreign Wars hall, and is the meeting place of the Assembly of God Church.  (The first church building was later removed. D.Z.)


The Rev. R. R. Ward, a Methodist minister from Black River Falls, preached the first sermon in Neillsville in 1847.  He was a guest at the James O’Neill home and conducted the services there.  In 1858 Neillsville was made a regular stopping point for the circuit rider, and at that time the Rev. James Cady visited here once every three weeks.  Rev. John Holt, who stayed only a short time, succeeded him in April 1859.  In the fall of 1861 the Rev. William H. Brooksome came to remain three years.  Following this it became a custom to assign ministers for longer periods.


In 1868, the records show, the first efforts were made to raise money, other than regular offerings.  The congregation accepted flour, groceries and various other articles, as well as coin.  Like many other churches and institutions in the community, the early 1930s found the church in financial struggle.  By 1940, members realized the need for improvements and began raising a fund for them. The Ladies Aid Society, always a moneymaking organization, saw to it that the kitchen was improved with new stoves.


The men of the church, with Burton Wells in particular, built accommodations in the church for the ever-growing choir.  “A Key at a Time” method was used to finance the new organ during the 1940s.


It became evident in the 1940s and early 1950s that extensive improvements were in need.  The Rev. Virgil Nulton was pastor.  The kitchen was completely modernized and the main sanctuary was remodeled.


During the last year a new plan was voted upon for further improvement and expansion of the church school education system and for better parsonage faculties.  A new church entry was completed in 1958 and more space in the sanctuary has been incorporated by the elimination of folding doors.


The first church parsonage that any of the members recall was the house just west of the Neillsville Armory, now occupied by the Donald Schiesel family.  After that the parsonage for many years was at 214 Grand Avenue, now owned by Walter Borde.  In 1933 the property east of the church, and now the present parsonage, was a gift from Hays Lambert.


The present organizations of the church are:


The Women’s Society of Christian Service.  This organization took the place of the Ladies Aid and has been engaged in many activities.  The group has a membership of 72.  It meets once a month and carries out the outlined program on the conference level.  The group also has expanded into four active circles, the Bethany, Lydia, Naomi and Priscilla.  At present another circle is in the formative stage.  The society carries out a missionary program, of Prayer, World Community Day, Week of Prayer and Self Denial, and sends representatives to each district and sub-district meeting.


The Methodist Men’s Club, organized in 1956, meets once a month and promotes general church interest.  Officers are August Janke, B. H. Peterson and A. L. Devos.


The Methodist Youth Fellowship is an active society, which meets once a week with a devotional program.  Officers are: Bill Perrine, Katherine Manz, Mary Manz, Darlene Williams, and Mrs. Warren Huddleston as adult counselor.


The Sunday school department has an enrollment of 125.  Mrs. Donald Schwantes is primary superintendent, and Mrs. Charles Diers, Jr., is senior department superintendent.  Other officers are Mrs. William Perrine and Mrs. Warren Hemp.



The United Methodist Church as it appeared in its early years on the northeast corner of East Fourth and Court Street in Neillsville.  The entrance was changed in the 1950s.


The Thorp School District has adopted the city superintendent of schools system, according to notification given to the county board of supervisors at their meeting here Monday.


The Thorp district thus became the third in the county to divorce itself from the jurisdiction of the county superintendent of schools office.  The other two, which have operated independently for several years, are Owen and Neillsville.


The action removed about $6 million in the equalized value from the school districts under the county superintendence.  Their value now for school purposes according to a resolution adopted by the board Monday; amounts to $65,988,730.


The Neillsville Sportsmen’s club will meet tonight at 8 o’clock in the V.F.W. hall for the annual venison feed.  The meeting is being scheduled on the second Thursday, instead of the third Thursday, of the month, so as not to interfere with deer hunting.  The club through Game Warden Arthur Schroeder purchased the venison.  Movies will be shown and there will be a social hour following the business meeting.


Eighteen pearl-headed hatpins fell out of the partition torn down by Mr. and Mrs. William Sollberger at Columbia, as they opened up an outside wall onto which they are adding a 20 by 20 foot addition.  They also found three town orders, dated 1914, behind the plaster in the inner wall.


“The hatpins must be at least 60 years old,” said Mrs. Sollberger, “and probably came from the millinery store that stood 200 feet to the west, erected during the boom days in the early history of Columbia.”


Mr. and Mrs. Twombly lived in the house in the early days, and Mrs. Twombly must have purchased the 1 ˝ dozen hatpins during the close-out of the millinery business next door.  No one knows why she placed them in the wall, but may have concealed them in a wall opening that was later plastered shut.  Pearl-headed hatpins were a luxury in the last century, and may have antique value today.  An opening in the wall was probably the safest place they could be hidden.


Mr. and Mrs. Sollberger plan to move into the addition, which will be a kitchen and dining room, by today.  They also have added a basement under their home.





© 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