July 5, 2023, Page 9

 Contributed by "The Clark Co. Press"


Extracted by Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon. Index of "Oldies" Articles

Clark County News

July 7, 1938


County prepared to start fighting grasshoppers


County agent to direct mixing of poison but grant made is small


Grasshopper infestation in Clark County is beginning to start with hatching weather prevailing, according to County Agent W.J. Landry. Preparations are now being made to mix poison bait in Neillsville and around the county under the provisions of a $150 grant made by the county board at the spring session. Apparently, the funds will be insufficient to complete the fight, according to the county agent, so it may be found necessary to have the towns undertake mixing of materials furnished by the county. The 43 drums of poison received will cover about 43,000 acres, it is said. In some neighboring counties the hopper infestation has been very serious.


Under the Wisconsin statutes, when an emergency because of pests exists the town can appropriate $100 from the treasury after the director of agriculture has been notified. The bait that the county will use consists of sodium arsenide, mixed with sawdust, which will most likely be done with a concrete mixer as in other sections of the country. When money is appropriated by the towns, the director of agriculture cooperates with the town in its campaign, and renders technical assistance and direction or the funds.


Grasshoppers lay their eggs in strips of land 50 to 100 feet wide near grains, alfalfa, legumes and corn especially, usually in areas where there is a deep sod. Plowing five to six inches prevents the young hoppers from escaping from eggs, but the only satisfactory method of control is by poison bait, according to college of agriculture authorities. Rain may reduce the effectiveness of the bait.




Arrest escaped convict at Loyal


Lee Hodge, 35, made his getaway from a Carolina prison


Lee Hodge, 35, who escaped from the North Carolina state prison May 30, after serving eight years of a nine year sentence, was captured at a farm north of Loyal Thursday and placed under arrest by Sheriff Mats Madsen.


Hodge refused to waive extradition, and is being held at the Clark County jail until the North Carolina officers secure the necessary papers from Gov. LaFollette to take him back. Hodge admitted to Sheriff Madsen that a great deal of his adult life had been spent behind prison bars on charges of burglary and larceny, and recently pictures of the prisoner and his fingerprints were sent around the country. He has a relative in Clark County, and a tip along this line produced results. Hodge escaped from the state prison at Raleigh, N.C., May 30 and was at large just 30 days when captured again.




 Orphans band concert


A concert by the Orphans Home band of Fort Wayne, Ind., will be given Sunday July 10, at 2:30 p.m. at the Evangelical Reformed Church, Rev. W.M. Bixler states. There are about 30 in the band. Everyone is welcome to attend.




 Board members barred


No member of a county board is permitted, under law, to be assigned to or work on a county WPA project, according to the attorney general.



 Bull snake bites carrier


Harry A. Larson, a rural mail carrier at Menomonie, was bitten by a four-foot bull snake which had crawled into a mail box to rob a bird’s nest, when the carrier reached his hand into the box.




Win bridge tournament


Editor and Mrs. W. H. Gharrity of Chippewa Falls won the U.S.A. Championship among north-south players in the world bridge Olympic staged recently.




Sniteman store improved


David Parry and Carl Wagner did an expert job of cleaning the ceiling and side walls in the Sniteman drug store, which brought out again the brilliant colors of gold, brown and white used years ago, and also rosettes and other decorations. By the way, the Sniteman drug store was the first building in the city wired for electricity, using carbon lamps until filament bulbs came onto the market.




July 15, 1948



Kurt Marg suffers leg fracture in accident


Kurt Marg is in the Neillsville hospital with a broken leg as the result of a haying accident which occurred on his farm Monday afternoon.


Mr. Marg had picked a team of untried horses to pull the hay loader. As they seemed frisky, he let them have their heads for a time, and then, believing they had calmed down, he prepared to get to work.


But the horses thought otherwise and galloped away toward the corral. They ended up against a fence, after demolishing the play house of Keith Marg, Kurt’s six year old son. Kurt jumped free, but in falling broke his leg in two places.


He was taken to the hospital and is taking a forced rest, with his leg in a cast. He will be in the hospital for several days, after which he hopes to be allowed to get around with crutches.




Sister and brother meet here after twenty years


Sister and brother met one another here for the first time in 20 years during the July 4th holidays. They were Mrs. Walter Bernards of Waunakee, and Martin Ripp. Their meeting took place at the Floyd Bush home. The occasion was a family gathering. Those present also included Mr. Bernards and their son, Robert, and another sister of Mr. Ripp and her husband and family of Tomah. Mr. Ripp is a brother of Mrs. Bush.




Tom Stork, 77, had cardboard bed, crepe paper pillows when found


Missing from old folks’ home eight days, he is found beneath 800


Tom Stork, 77, missing for eight days and seven nights from the county old folks’ home here, was found last Wednesday night almost within reaching distance of 800 people.


Old Tom was discovered under the grandstand at the Athletic park. There, while a crowd sitting in the stands above watched a ball game, two youngsters discovered the old gentleman.


He was on a bed of cardboard, made from display signs which had decorated fair time booths. For his head he had fashioned a pillow from old crepe paper, which once had gaily decorated the booth during the fair.


As youngsters will do, Forrest Larsen, son of Mrs. Gerelda Larsen, and Kenny and Dick Christie, sons of Mr. and Mrs. Eugene Christie, were exploring the vastness under the grandstand. They came upon old Tom, disturbing his privacy.


Coming upon him unexpectedly in the dark, the youngsters were good and scared. They ran and told Traffic Officer Harry Frantz: “There’s a man under there.”


Tom was taken to the Neillsville hospital, where he was given a thorough going-over by a local physician. His condition was pronounced satisfactory, although he was weakened from the lack of food.


He was kept in the hospital for a couple of days to build up his strength before being taken back to the old folk’s home.


Tom either would not, or could not tell officers where he had spent the eight days he had been missing.


“In the woods,” was one of his answers; and the officers were inclined to believe it.


They searched the fairgrounds and its buildings thoroughly on at least two occasion; but had found no trace of him. They expressed belief that the chill of Wednesday evening had driven him to seek shelter under the grandstand.


Yet, on Monday, Irvin Thoma went to the fairground and saw an elderly man sitting alone in the grandstand. It apparently was Mr. Stork. But Mr. Thoma was not aware that a statewide search was under way for him.


About the only explanation officers could get for his disappearance, Undersheriff Frank Dobes said, was that he believed himself to be suffering a communicable disease. Thus he did not want to be around people to spread his imagined disease.


To the inquire of how long it has been since he had eaten; old Tom responded: “Four or five days.”




July 4, 1968


“We were lucky,” says engineer as Merrillan Bridge collapses


Nine freight cars are dumped into 30foot chasm


 “I’m going to get right down on my knees and thank the Lord when I get home tonight.”


That was the comment, with appropriated vocal punctuation, of Engineer Rudolph Pflanzer. His Green Bay and Western freight engine had just dropped nine loaded freight cars in Halls Creek at Merrillan. They were cars immediately following the three engine train numbering 111 cars, bound from Winona, Minn., to Wisconsin Rapids.


The mishap occurred when a 60-foot railroad bridge over Halls Creek, on the northeast edge of Merrillan, collapsed. Nine cars dropped approximately 30 feet into the creek in a pile like jackstraws.


But Pflanzer and three others in the lead engine had escaped unhurt.


“Just plain lucky”


Pflanzer described the action like this:


The front engine “jumped up off the track” and twisted and then came back down. It was a “terrible jolt,” he told bystanders after the accident. The lead engine was derailed. The second engine, also apparently jarred considerably as the bridge gave way, was derailed, but stood upright on the track bed. Acid from its batteries had poured out of it, indicating a considerable jar.


The third engine was whipped off the track and was resting askew on the deep south bank from which wrecking crews were attempting to removed it earlier in the week.


Commented Engineer Pflanzer: “We were just plain lucky!”


The accident took place just a few seconds after 12:35 p.m. last Thursday. Clint Burghardt, Merrillan depot agent for the Chicago & Northwestern Railroad, which junctions with the GBW at the Merrillan depot, said the 111-car freight started passing the depot at 12:35 p.m. Cars of the freight were still passing the junction when the bridge, a quarter mile or more to the east, gave ‘way.


“I heard the airline snap. There was a loud “swish!” When that happened,” Burghardt said; “but I couldn’t hear much else because of the cars rattling over the tracks nearby.”





Fittingly, the new Strawberry Queen at Alma Center is a Strawberry Blonde. She is a fiery redhead, Sara Sobota, 16 year-old daughter of Coach and Mrs. Ralph Sobota of Lincoln High School at Alma Center. Sara is the eldest of four daughters in the family and is a junior at Lincoln high. (Press photo July 4, 1968)




July 3, 1975


Annual “Blow Out” at Neillsville Friday


Neillsville will have its annual big blowout in celebration of the 4th of July. The skies will be lit with rockets, aerial bombs and all sorts of fireworks Friday night at the fairgrounds, in an attraction that annually attracts thousands of people to the grounds and to vantage points all around.


The Independence Day display again will be under the sponsorship of the Marguerite Listeman Foundation, which has turned $1,000 over to the city to finance that nation’s birthday celebration.


Firing will start at dusk and will continue until the grand finale display.


Again this year the Neillsville Lions Club will be in charge of arrangements and parking.


There is no charge; grandstand seats and infield room will be available free for all who attend.




Strike ends; trucks start rolling Monday


Neillsville Coop Transport trucks are expected to start rolling next Monday morning; and mechanics were scheduled to go back to work Wednesday of this week as a strike by the Teamsters Union local was ended.


The local members voted to accept new contract terms at a meeting Tuesday night in the American Legion Hall here. No public announcement was made as to the terms of the new contract.


Employees were out 10 days during which the cooperative’s headquarters here was picketed 24 hours a day.




A dog’s life isn’t really so bad, especially if the dog is Taffy, and his good friend Jackie Schoenherr, longtime Press newspaper carrier. When Jackie fills her paper bag, she taps the top of the pile and Taffy jumps on for a ride, suspended with the bag and papers from Jackie’s willing shoulders. (Press photo July 3, 1975)





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