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  • Kari Kamrath

Looking Back: 3-8-23

130 Years Ago

March 4, 1893

T. A. Beach this week purchased of the heirs of William Morrow Beach, of Madison County, Ohio, two hundred and eighty acres of land in Avoca Township. This joins Mr. Beach's land on the north and gives him the possession of a section in one body.

The band boys favored a number of the citizens with a serenade on Thursday evening.

William Tavener and family this week moved from their farm near Lodemia to this city and are now nicely domiciled in their new home, which they recently purchased from Alex McNab.

The M. E. Church at Forrest this week purchased, through I. L. Holt, a portable pipe organ costing $600.

120 Years Ago

March 6, 1903

Mrs. Charles Morton entertained nineteen of her lady friends at a rag sewing last Wednesday, a prize was given to the lady who sewed the most rags. Mrs. Joseph Kane received the prize, she having sewed four pounds.

Avoca — George Crumbaker accidentally shot himself Tuesday afternoon with a revolver. George and Theodore, his brother, have "pops" which are just alike. Theodore's gun was loaded but George's was empty. George picked up what he thought was his own gun and presently pulled the trigger. he immediately discovered his mistake. The ball entered his arm just below the elbow, struck one of the bones and followed it about two-thirds of the way to the wrist and stopped. George had it removed the next day.

Forrest — Burglars entered the offices of W. H. Opil, F. E. Wendel and R. J. Riley, also the drug store and Pat Diskins' saloon Thursday night. At Diskins' they secured $10 and at the drug store a few pennies.

110 Years Ago

March 7, 1913

Harry Bodley will farm the place recently owned by Frank Carson, near Lodemia, and moved out there the first of the week.

Mrs. Ella Bullard and Miss Bessie Renwick left for Chicago today to construct the wedding trousseau of Miss Jennie Dancey, of Woodlawn, who is soon to become a bride. Miss Dancey is a daughter of Mrs. Samuel Dancey, and a sister of Walter, Jesse and Lloyd Dancey, all residents at one time, of Fairbury. Miss Dancey's fiance is Mr. Edward Walker, a vocal instructor of the Chicago Musical Conservatory, under whom Miss Dancey studied music after leaving this city.

Miss Ruby Reynolds, who has been ill with scarlet fever, has also taken the mumps.

Nate Town loaded his car this week and shipped it to Prosser, Wash. Mr. and Mrs. Town and family left Tuesday for Washington.

100 Years Ago

March 2, 1923

Fifty of the members of the Fairbury Business Men's Association met at the Woods Restaurant on Tuesday evening, where they had a fine dinner and listened to a most interesting and instructive talk by Lloyd Lamkins, a former Fairbury boy, who is now secretary of the Chamber of Commerce of Urbana, and who is most successful in his work. Mr. Lamkins talked for almost an hour and he held the closest attention of his audience with one of the best, if not the best, talks given before the local association.

We have in our sale at Codlin's Sale Barn, March 10th, a nice lot of horses, cattle, milk cows, hogs, farm implements, furniture and lots of other property not mentioned; and we want a lot more. Bring it in the morning of the sale and we will turn it into money for you. —W. L. Baily, R. J. Codlin.

Sunday afternoon, at the home of the bride's parents, 305 W. Elm St., occurred the marriage of Miss Flora Sheppelman to Mr. Edward J. Winterland, of Colfax, Rev. C. L. Ramme, of Chenoa, officiating. The ceremony was witnessed by the immediate relatives. After the ceremony a sumptuous dinner was served. The young people are well and favorably known in this vicinity. They will reside on the Daniel Gregory farm southeast of town.

90 Years Ago

March 10, 1933

Miss Lola Wells, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Sam Wells, of near Wing, who was a student nurse at St. Joseph's Hospital, Bloomington, disappeared from that institution on last Monday, February 27, some time during the afternoon and no word or trace of her whereabouts since that time has yet been discovered, her disappearance being a complete mystery. She took none of her belongings or clothes from her room except what she wore, and when she did not return to the hospital for duty Monday night, or Tuesday, her parents at Wing were notified.

The Fairbury Auto Company has a new wrecker with which to bring in cars that have the spring fever or that are otherwise afflicted so that they cannot run. It is painted white, trimmed in red, gold lettered, with the Chevrolet emblem on each side, and looks like a million dollars.

At a joint meeting of the landlords and tenants of Forrest and Pleasant Ridge Townships held at Forrest last Friday, the matter of what the tenant should pay the landlord per acre cash rent was one of the things that received considerable attention. Following the discussion the price agreed upon was $3 per acre, with a sliding scale based on the price of grain, livestock and other farm commodities.

80 Years Ago

March 5, 1943

The community sale held at Cropsey yesterday totaled $3,700. Sixty head of hogs, 25 head of cattle and six horses comprised the livestock listed. There was the usual amount of household goods and some farm machinery.

Curtis Weeks is in the Fairbury Hospital with a badly mangled right hand as the result of getting it caught in a combine yesterday, shortly before the noon hour. Mr. Weeks was combining beans when his hand became caught in the machinery before he could get it stopped. Mr. Weeks could not get his hand out but managed to attract the attention of someone going along the road. He was brought to the Fairbury Hospital, where it was found that the hand was badly crushed, several bones being broken.

The corner windows of Wades' Drug Store and the Walton Department Store are attractive reminders of the Red Cross membership and war fund drive. Red Cross nurses in uniform are central figures in patriotic settings. The displays were placed under the direction of Mrs. J. C. Dawson, Miss Irma Waggoner and members of the Red Cross board. The amount collected on our quota of $3,050 up to yesterday noon, was $436.16.

70 Years Ago

March 5, 1953

Fairbury's second annual community sale got under way about noon yesterday. An excellent crowd was on hand to take advantage of the buying opportunities afforded by the sale and Dollar Day bargains in the stores. W. H. Bartlett, secretary of the Chamber of Commerce, the sponsoring organization, said not quite as many small items were being offered for sale as last year, but that farm implements and larger items were running about even with the previous year.

Pvt. Albert W. Tavener, Fairbury, who was inducted into the Army Jan. 14, is now undergoing basic training at Camp Roberts, Calif. He is the son of Mr. and Mrs. R. C. Tavener. Pvt. Tavener's wife is making her home with her parents, the Orville Umpenaurs, in Chenoa.

Gene Vaughn and Paul Hoffman, of the Fairbury Construction Co., Inc. are announcing this week a dealership and authorized service for Hallicrafters television. A full line of Hallicrafters sets will be stocked in their store at 212 E. Locust, they said. Art Walters is associated with the company as authorized serviceman.

60 Years Ago

March 7, 1963

A Bloomington engineering firm gave the green light to three Fairbury men who will develop a 26-acre tract of land in the northeast portion of the community. Harve Traub, J. C. Ebach and Carl Borngasser purchased the C. R. Voris property and will subdivide the site to include more than 80 homes. The area, when completed over the next 10 to 15 years, will add approximately $2 million in new homes to Fairbury. The new development has been named Northview Addition. The engineering firm of Farnsworth and Wylie was hired by the Fairbury trio to survey the area. Favorable reports considering drainage prompted the three men to go ahead with their project.

Despite a soaking rain, an estimated 2,000 persons jammed Fairbury's business district and paid $4,000 for an assortment of more than 1,800 items to make Tuesday's Community Sale one of the largest on record, despite the bad weather. Dan Schlipf reported the number of items set a record.

Fairbury's newest business opened its doors Monday at 212 E. Locust St., also known as the Parmele building. Jim Wharton, 32-year-old Fairburian, and Ben Metz, 26, of Forrest, are forming the business in sales and service of television, radio, stereo and major appliances such as refrigerators, washers and dryers. Both men are graduates of DeVry Technical Institute, Chicago. The pair purchased TV test equipment, TV parts, appliance parts, service equipment and a truck from Nate Steidinger.

50 Years Ago

March 8, 1973

A native of Forrest, Steve Metz, will be the newest addition to the Willard Bess Insurance Agency in Fairbury. According to Bess, Metz, 25, who was a 1956 graduate of FSW High School, will deal in all lines of insurance from his office in the Bess building. Metz, who attended ISU after serving four years with the Navy, will live with his wife, the former Rita Rieger, and their two-year-old daughter, Hollie, in rural Forrest. Metz was affiliated with National Life of Vermont for a year. Bess joined the Veatch Agency in 1957 and in 1960 bought the business from Charles Veatch.

The Fairbury-Cropsey School Board Monday night failed to renew the contract of high school principal Charles Lane. However, the board did extend contracts to four other administrators, including Supt. Lester Miller, Lane's assistant, Joe Mildred, grade school principal Tony Menke and vocational supervisor George Fyke. There had been rumors for the past month that one or more of the administrators would be dropped, but the versions varied as to "who?"

Fairbury's Betty Nussbaum, one of the three top-ranking women in the U. S. Diplomatic Corps and currently vice-consul in Toronto, is headed for a similar spot in the U. S. Embassy in London for a two-year hitch. Betty is the daughter of Mrs. Walter Nussbaum of Fairbury and the sister of Bob Nussbaum.

40 Years Ago

March 3, 1983

Following through on a commitment made prior to the defeated Feb. 22 school tax referendum, the Unit 3 Board of Education last Thursday night sliced an additional $141,000 from the district's budget. These cuts for the 1983-84 school year will be in addition to $79,000 in cost-saving moves adopted by the board members in mid-January. The district anticipates a $275,000 deficit in the education fund by July 1.

The lead trucks on the third power unit of a TP&W local freight were derailed Saturday about noon during a switching operation on the siding at the Third Street crossing in Fairbury. A broken rail was identified as the cause. Saturday evening, using the Kline truck, a heavy-duty salvage unit, a TP&W crew re-railed the locomotive and it was removed on Sunday.

Construction started with destruction Monday morning on the new $600,000 Stafford Community Center in Fairbury and it took Al Slagel, heavy equipment operator for Stoller & Maurer Construction of Fairbury, only 10 minutes to demolish the existing bath-house at the present swimming pool. The $600,000 project which may be completed in four months, will have a new "L" shaped pool, a wading pool, grass volleyball court and sun area within the fence, and a support building which ultimately will have four racquet-ball courts. Fairbury native Mrs. Floyd Stafford and the late Mr. Stafford are providing the funds through the Prairie Lands Foundation of Fairbury.

30 Years Ago

March 4, 1993

For the second time within six months, a 74-year-old Forrest man has been robbed of his wallet at knifepoint. Bob King says he was walking home from the Hawks Nest Restaurant last Friday evening around 8:14 when he was approached by a man in dark clothing wearing a gray ski mask. Not only is this the second time in six months that King has been robbed, but he believes it was the same man. "I recognized his voice and he was the same size," says King.

Frank Zaccaro, Fairbury, a freshman computer science major at Northwestern College, Orange City, Iowa, will be doing volunteer mission work during spring break. Nearly 100 students are involved in Spring Service Projects, an annual Northwestern tradition which allows students to put their faith into action. Zaccaro will travel to New Orleans, La., to assist in street evangelism, youth work and light maintenance with Challenge Circle.

"It was a great day, an excellent sale," Albert Wahls of rural Strawn reported on the closing out sale last Wednesday of farm machinery and trucks owned by Wahls and his wife Virginia. Though the house and outbuildings did not sell, Wahls, who has farmed in the Strawn area for 31 years, said the items that did sell went for a good price.

20 Years Ago

March 5, 2003

Huber's Necessities, Gifts & More in downtown Fairbury has added another department to their store. Blooming plants, bulb plants, silk arrangements, and large and small green plants are now available. Mary Ellen Nylander is manager of the new department, that will offer personalized plants and/or arrangements for any occasion, including funerals. The store will offer same-day delivery and free delivery within the city of Fairbury.

Tom and Amy Ifft of rural Chenoa, are parents of a baby boy, their third child, born at 8:03 p.m. on Feb. 12, 2003 at Gibson Area Hospital. Tyler George weighed 8 pounds 1 ounce, and was 20 inches long at birth. He was welcomed home by sisters, Caitlyn 5, and Megan 2½ years. Maternal grandparents are Ralph and Martha Fehr of Fairbury. Paternal grandparents are Roger and Janice Ifft, Fairbury.

The Ridgeview Mustangs had set a school record for wins in one season (24-5). They featured the top guard combination in the Mid-State Conference, and they were hosting the Regional Championship game. It was an uphill battle from the start, but the Prairie Central Hawks maintained their composure to win their fifth consecutive regional title and an astounding 11 of their last 12 games. The final score of Hawks 70, Mustangs 61, was a little deceiving as the Hawks found themselves trailing the Mustangs 32-17 early in the second quarter.

10 Years Ago

March 6, 2013

Another Prairie Central FFA Farm & Home Show is in the books. Saturday's show at the Prairie Central Upper Elementary School in Forrest featured numerous business showcasing their products and services. PC agriculture teacher and FFA advisor Kyle Miller called the event a success. The PC FFA restored a 1968 4020 diesel tractor that will be raffled off during the annual FFA meal and auction on March 21. Visitors to the Home Show were able to take a look at the tractor and purchase raffle tickets for a chance to win it. The senior ag mechanics class works on the tractor in an 18-week semester class, totally going through the engine and electrical components on it. Then local farmer, Ben Meister, helps with the painting and body work.

Florence Hensen, of Gibson City, will celebrate her 90th birthday on Sunday, March 17. Her daughters are hosting an open house at St. John's Lutheran Church, rural Anchor. She was born March 18, 1923 in Anchor. She has four daughters, Verneal Frank, Ginnie Teuscher, Ruth Vance and Mary Schultze. She also has 10 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren. Mrs. Hensen taught for five years in Anchor Grade school early in her marriage, and then later for 26 years in the Fairbury-Cropsey School District. She retired in 1988 and enjoyed tutoring for many years after that.

Prairie Central made just two field goals in the fourth quarter but connected on 14 of 18 free throws to secure a 59-55 Corn Belt Conference victory over Central Catholic on Senior Night at PCHS. Seniors recognized during the final home game of the season were Addison Bounds, son of Brian and Becky Bounds; Mitch Harrell, son of Tom and Shelly Harrell; Lane Maurer, son of Steve and Donna Maurer; Kyle Moody, son of Mike and Ann Moody; Viktor Hernandez, son of Andres Hernandez; Kyler Hoffman, son of Kurt and Tammy Hoffman; Peter Severson, son of Peter and Amber Severson; and Lincoln Slagel, son of Don and Susan Slagel.

"Looking Back" from Kari Kamrath is sponsored each week by Duffy-Pils Memorial Homes with locations in Fairbury, Chenoa and Colfax.

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