Clark County Press, Neillsville, Wisconsin

January 30, 2008, Page 17

Contributed by "The Clark Co. Press"

Presentation by Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon.

Index of "Oldies" Articles 


Compiled & Contributed by Dee Zimmerman


Clark County News

January 1928


C.C. Hoehne and J.H. Fradette, of Greenwood, went to Chicago last Thursday taking with them 18 fox pelts, which were sold for an average of $193 each. The pelts were all from spring animals.

The local fox ranch is doing nicely and has a fine bunch of animals. They have a number of foxes on the ranch whose pelts are valued at $500 each.

The female fox have a litter of young once a year, the litter average is four, so it can be easily seen that raising fox is a very good industry.


Last week, the town of Pine Valley officials took steps to open up all the town roads, hiring the services of the Clark County road plow on some of them. Other roads were opened up with common road graders. The county and state trunk roads were opened by the county plows.


The mask ball, which was held at Levis Community Hall Saturday evening, proved a source of enjoyment for all present. There were many laughs at the antics of some of the masked dancers. Mrs. Chas. Shramek who acted as a gypsy fortune-teller and Mrs. Frank Dobes as a doll-faced blond won first and second prizes for the women. Mrs. J. Struensee took the prize also as a typical farmer and kept the crowd guessing as to her identity. Mr. Zemba, in his impersonation of a goat was the hit of the evening and needless to say, won a prize.  Mrs. Zemba, as a dude, caused a great deal of excitement and undoubtedly would have walked off with first prize had she not unmasked earlier in the evening. There were also clowns and others who added to the fun. The music was furnished by Frank and Louis Matousek.


William Beyer, one of the oldest settlers in this part of the county, passed away at his home in this city at 7:10 o’clock Thursday morning, aged 81 years. He was born at Colberg, Pommern, Germany May 31, 1846. With his parents, he came to America in 1868; they settled first in Sheboygan County where they lived two years, then moving to Clark County. His father bought a tract of land north of Neillsville, which was then only a small village. The land was heavily timbered
and only a trail through the woods connected the new home in the wilderness with the outside world. Here, the father and son worked to open up a farm and develop a home. At times when the deceased was a young man, he went away to work, going to Black River Falls and Augusta to work on the railroad. The industry of the family however, soon overcame the difficulties of pioneer life. In 1875, William Beyer was married to Miss Gustline Puttkammer and they settled on the home farm. To the original place, they added other lands until Mr. Beyer had in all, 440 acres.


In 1908, Mr. and Mrs. Beyer with eight of their children went to Portland, Oregon, four of their children remaining here. About four years ago, Mr. Beyer’s health began to fail and he and his wife returned to make their home here.


Mr. Beyer was a man of sterling honesty and uprightness. During his long life here no word was ever heard against his character. He did faithfully and well all the duties of life, as a husband, father, neighbor and citizen. He did more than the ordinary duties in developing his community. He took an interest in building a church, donated the site for the building and helped actively in its construction and maintenance. This church, the Pine Valley Lutheran, was long known and is still known as the Beyer Church. Mr. Beyer was very fond of music and was himself a musician. He gave his sons 
preliminary training in music and assisted them in further musical education, until they developed a fine band in the family, an organization which became quite famous in Portland, when they lived there. He was on the whole a man of fine qualities, far beyond the ordinary.


To Mr. and Mrs. Beyer were born twelve children, eleven of whom with his wife survive him. The children are: Mrs. W.J. Wagner, Neillsville; Mrs. Ben Wagner, Neillsville; Oscar Beyer, Wausau; Wm. F. Beyer on the home farm in Pine Valley; Mrs. Theodore Beyer, Weston; Herman Beyer, Greenwood;  Elmer Beyer, Neillsville; August Beyer, Globe; Alma Beyer, deceased; Carl Beyer, Portland; Albert Beyer, Portland; and Mrs. Hilda Cutter, Portland. He leaves 27 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren; also one sister, Mrs. Ferdinand Knoop of Pine Valley.


The funeral was held in the Beyer Church in Pine Valley, burial took place there also. Rev. J.G. Buth preached the funeral sermon, six sons acted as pall-bearers and three granddaughters were flower girls. All surviving children were present.


January 1958


The Romadka School District in the town of York, with $402,000 equalized valuation, will become a part of the Granton School District next July 1st.

This consolidation move was voted unanimously by the Clark County school committee last Friday evening, following a public hearing.

The addition will give the Granton District nearly 50 percent more valuation, increasing the total to slightly more than $1-1/2 million.

Comprising seven sections of land, a larger area than that of the original Granton School District, the Romadka District becomes the first full district added to Granton. Other consolidations with that district have involved only portions of other districts.


Members of the Loyal City Council were meeting Wednesday afternoon with Melvin Zettler to resolve questions and formalize his hiring as city police chief.

Zettler, a substitute rural mail carrier working out of the Loyal post office, was the unanimous choice of the council when it met to select a new chief, Tuesday night. His name was at the top of a list of four recommended by the police commission out of 12 applicants.

On the applications, according to City Clerk Lawrence Davel, the question of expected salary was raised. Most of the applications listed a salary of around $300 per month,” Mr. Davel said, “Zettler’s application listed that figure.”

In addition to the salary, a car expense of $40 per month also will be provided. The chief is expected to provide a car for his own use.

Zettler will succeed Orrel Paulson, who resigned in December. The position has been filled in the interim of Elmer Newman, long-time police chief who had retired.


The dairy business is forging ahead in Clark County as one of the leaders in producing cheese. However it has seen a steady decrease in the number of cheese factories, but a steady growth in the size of factories, the cost, efficiency and sanitation of their equipment, and the volume and quality of their product.

Twenty years ago there were 90 dairy plants in Clark County, nearly all of them producing cheese. Today there are 53 dairy plants, of which 44 are producing cheese. In addition to cheese making, there is a large processing and assembling business in the county.  Prominent in this operation are the Foremost Blue Moon, Inc., with headquarters in Thorp and the Central Cheese Company of Marshfield, together with its associate company, Mid-State Cheese Corporation, which has a warehouse at Greenwood.

Below are listed other dairy plants in Clark County:

American Stores Dairy Company, Neillsville. It is a subsidiary of the American Stores Company, a large food chain in the eastern states. Morris Blodgett is the manager.


Catlin Corner Cheese Factory, Loyal route; owned and operated by G.A. Randt. A quality cheddar cheese operation.


Chili Milk Pool Coop, located at Chili, is owned and patronized by a large group of farmers. It produces cheddar and is managed by Howard Geldernick.

Clark County Central Cheese Factory, Greenwood route, owned and operated by Clarence Liebzeit, producing quality cheddar.


Cloverdale Cheese Factory, Colby route, owned and operated by Walter Rindfleisch, long standing neighborhood operation, produces cheddar.


Clover Hill Coop Cheese Factory, Curtiss route, is a large cheddar operation owned by 150 farmers and managed by Edward H. Mildebrand.


Cloverleaf Cheese Factory, Stanley route is managed by Walter Murphy. Quality cheddar is produced at this substantial neighborhood operation.

Curtiss Cheese Factory, Curtiss, owned and operated by the Laabs Cheese Co., Harold Laabs, manager; produces cheddar and Colby and packages its own product, conducted by a family. The Laabs family’s involvement in dairying goes back to the pioneering days in Clark County.


Dill Creek Cheese Factory, Colby Rt.1, owned and operated by Lawrence Hoernke.  It is an improved neighborhood operation that makes cheddar.


Dorchester Cheese Factory, Dorchester, owned and operated by Fred and Jerome Reynolds and Clifford Wetterman, producing Colby cheese in a modern country plant.

East Pleasant Ridge Dairy, Neillsville route, owned and operated by C.L. Asplin, producing quality raw-milk cheddar.


Elmdale Cheese Factory, Greenwood route, owned and operated by Walter Rasmussen. It is a neighborhood long-standing operation.


Four Corners Cheese Factory, Curtiss route, long-time conducted by G.H. Riedel and taken over by Hilarion Spaeth, October 1, 1957.  Produces good cheddar.


Greenwood Milk Products Coop, Greenwood owned by nearly 100 farmers, producing cheddar; managed by I.J. Koschak.


Hediger’s Dairy, located at Christie, is owned and operated by the Herman Hediger family, with modern building and equipment, having been added the past year, to produce powdered milk in large volume.


Hemlock Cheese Factory, Greenwood route, owned and operated by Richard Ashbeck, makes quality cheddar, recently installed plate regenerative system of stainless steel.


(List of dairy plants to be continued in following weeks D.Z.)


The Willard Club of Chicago will have a dance and social at Tomazin’s hall, 1904 West 22nd St., Chicago, on January 25 at 8 p.m.  Music will be provided by a local orchestra. Donations of baked goods for the refreshment table will be welcomed.


This newly-organized club, a strictly-for-fun organization, has Frank Hribar, 6620 S. Wood St., Chicago, as its president; Michael Cohara, 6001 N. Mason, Chicago, vice president; Mrs. Joe Jeras, 4004 Leland, Lyons, treasurer; Mrs. Frank Cerne, 1943 W. Wellington, Chicago, recording secretary; and Mrs. John Scharenbrock, 3343 N. Clifton Ave., corresponding secretary.


Special committee for the dances include: Mrs. Margaret Stefanic, 2417 S. 61st St., Cicero and Mrs. Emily Knepper, 2246 S. Leavitt St., Chicago, on foods; and Mrs. Anton Fortuna, 301 N. Wolf Rd., North Lake, on decorations.


About 300 attended the first gathering of former Willard residents.


Sonny James, recording star whose “Young Love” record swept the rock ‘n roll world, will appear at a special teen-age dance at the Silver Dome Ballroom, Sunday afternoon, January 26.


James, who has appeared in the Ed Sullivan television show, rivals Elvis Presley, but disdains some of the slithery gimmicks employed by Presley. Called the Southern Gentleman, he neither drinks nor smokes. His “Young Love” recording has reached nearly two million in sales.

The dance will be a truly teenage affair and for it Fred Munkholm, Silver Dome proprietor said that the bar in the ballroom will be closed. Only soft drinks will be available.


Accompanying James will be the “Five Strings,” a modern rock ‘n roll string quintet, which forms the background for James.


The Humbird cheese factory, operated by Mr. and Mrs. Vincent Ruzic for the past several years, will be closing on February 1, it was reported this week.


The Ruzics will continue their cheese store business, which they established shortly after re-opening the Humbird factory, and which has enjoyed considerable success.


Commenting on the closing, Mr. Ruzic told The Clark County Press that “We don’t want to make the investment that would be required to put the factory and equipment in good shape because we do not feel that the investment would be returned.”


At present the Humbird factory is taking in about 22,000 pounds of milk daily from 57 patrons. The peak intake is approximately 29,000 pounds.


The milk probably will be split among five or six factories of the area, including the Neillsville plants and those in Pigeon Falls, Fairchild, South Alma and others. Most of these plants already have established routes in the area. Mr. Ruzic said he plans to dispose of his milk hauling equipment.


Weekend Specials at the Neillsville IGA Foodliner are: Fresh, Whole, Picnic-style Pork Shoulder Roast, 29c lb.; Nice size Head Lettuce 10c each; Washington Apples, 4 lbs. 59c: Red Grapes, 2 lbs. 39c: Brach’s Chocolate Stars, 7-1/2 oz. 39c: U.S. No. 1, Fine for Baking, Idaho Potatoes 10 lbs. 69c.


Special Offer from Your Coca-Cola Bottler: Exclusive Tony Bennett Autographed Edition of Hits. Hear Tony sing these six favorites of yours: Rags to Riches; Because of You, Cold, Cold Heart; In the Middle of the Island; Come Next Spring; Can You Find it in Your Heart. Columbia 45 rpm Extended Play Records, Only 25c ($1.29 value)



The American Store Dairy was a thriving business as a milk condensary in the early 1900s, providing employment for many during that time.  (Contributed photo)




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