First Week of April 1871-2001
140 Years Ago (1871): Mr. J. M. Owen has purchased the old “Norton” mill site and water power, near
Evansville, of Mr. Greatsinger, and will proceed to erect a custom flouring mill thereon this season. The site
and location is a good one, and it is said to exceed in capacity, the water power at this place. (The mill was
located along Allen’s Creek in the Town of Magnolia, south of Evansville.)
130 Years Ago (1881): The following is the ticket elected in the town of Porter: Supervisors, Jasen Miller,
Chairman, Chas. Miller, Jas. Stewart; Town Clerk, Chas. Woodbury; Assessor, Jos. Gibbs; Treasurer, Tracy
Montgomery; Justices, B. S. Hoxie, Daniel Jones, Ed Pound; constables, Geo. Rumrill, Daniel Rogers, E. T.
120 Years Ago (1891): Cupid’s dart: In Evansville, on Saturday evening, April 2, Miss Ella Carson and Mr.
Robert Peach, were united in matrimony. The bride is one of Porter’s fairest daughters and a lady whom to
know is to love, while the groom is an exemplary young farmer, and a true gentleman in every respect. Mr.
and Mrs. Peach will go to housekeeping at once on the Raymond farm.
110 Years Ago (1901): Town of Union election: Supervisors: Ira Jones, Chairman, Leo Campbell, George
Higday; Clerk: Virgil Hopkins; Assessor: Isaac Brink; Treasurer, V. C. Holmes; Justice of the Peace,
Sumner Frost; Constable, Charles Fryer.
100 Years Ago (1911): The election in the town of Magnolia resulted as follows: supervisors, C. E. Moore,
F. P. Bennett, R. H. Harvey; clerk, R. E. Acheson; assessor, Robert Frazer; treasurer, A. F. Townsend;
justices of the peace, Thomas Meeley, W. S. Walcott; constables, S. E. Wells, George Fenn.
90 Years Ago (1921): The Baker Manufacturing company of this city after working for several months with
an eight hour day last Monday went back to the nine hours basis, taking the whole of Saturday off instead of
Saturday afternoon, as formerly.
80 Years Ago (1931): A co-operative oil company was organized in Evansville under the supervision of B.
T. McGuine of the state department of agriculture and markets at a special meeting of the Waucoma
Grange held here Tuesday night in the Woodman Hall. A committee of Grange members will be chosen in
the near future to solicit stock which will be sold to both farmers and residents of the city. Cooperative oil
companies already organized throughout the state have proven very successful and are paying high
dividends. A company is now being organized in Edgerton and Milton.
70 Years Ago (1941): The arrival of spring and warm weather, which makes outdoor work a pleasure, has
prompted Dr. S. S. Sorkin, city health officer, to appeal to Evansville residents to clean up their lawns and
remove the accumulated rubbish heaps and other sources of filth. To stimulate interest in the project, a
public spirited club or group could lend its assistance and materially aid the movement by sponsoring some
type of scenic beauty contest in the city in which every Evansville homemaker could participate. Were
Evansville’s proposed garden club organized, such a project would be a most commendable sponsorship.
60 Years Ago (1951): R. J. Antes, alderman here 22 years, was defeated as 1st ward councilman
Tuesday. His successor, Wilson L. Brown, polled a nine vote margin to defeat Antes, 117 – 108.
50 Years Ago (1961): James Ganoung and Karen Hermanson are 1961 prom king and queen of Evansville
High School. The junior prom will be held in the school gymnasium Friday night, May 5. Their parents are
Mr. and Mrs. Fred Ganoung and Mr. and Mrs. Harlan Hermanson.
40 Years Ago (1971): The store building on the southwest corner of Main and Madison streets, which has
been vacant for several months is being remodeled for a cheese and sausage store and butcher shop
which will be owned and operated by Harold Hull. No definite date has been set for the opening but it will be
in the near future.
30 Years Ago (1981): Recently Evansville Lions Club members appropriated $500 to create a park in
Evansville. They felt the area just south of the South Meadows Apartments would be an ideal site and
suggested this to the Park Board Committee, which, after much discussion decided not to create a park in
this area, as the city needs the land to dump snow in the wintertime. The Lions will now plant trees on the
south border along Old 92 between First and Second Streets and a hedge along the north side of the
property, as approved by the Park Board Committee.
20 Years Ago (1991): The Wednesday tornado moved in a diagonal path across northwestern Rock
County, snapping huge trees, demolishing buildings, and toppling power lines. Paul Elmer, Jr. on Elmer
Road had the front door of their home pushed in and half the roof destroyed. At 1:40 p.m. a tornado ripped
through the Brad and Jane Folstad farm on the Green-Rock county line. Three houses owned by Paul
Maas, with the Folstad house in the middle, were damaged. The Arnold Hatlen home on Holt Road lost half
of its roof and ripped an attached two-car garage off the west end. The twister struck the Paul George farm
on Hw. 14, just four miles north of Evansville shortly after 1:40 p.m. No one was hurt, but three cattle were
killed and two pigs injured. The barn was demolished and the house badly damaged. The wind felled six
WP&L poles in the Cooksville area. The Ray Trumpy home, located on the Union-Dane road north of
Evansville, received damage all around. At the Norval Lund farm, the silo roof blew away. The Terry Lund
home, located on the Union-Dane Road, was damaged, as was the home of Mike and Deb Schuetz on North
10 years ago (2001): Last Saturday’s Chili Cook-Off brought more than just good chili. It raised more than
$3,000 for the Evansville Community Partnership. There were eleven contestants entered and just as many
versions of chili. The Grand Prize Winner was Carrie Anderson’s Black Bean Chili.
Second Week of April 1871-2001
140 Years Ago (1871): The Lodi Journal says the pile driving between that place and Madison, on the
Chicago & Northwestern road is completed and it is expected the cars will be running to Lodi by the first of
June. The track across the Lake, this side of Madison is completed, but trains will not run over it at present,
or until the depot turn tables &c., are completed on the other side.
130 Years Ago (1881): Mrs. W. P. Bowen, a niece of Geo. D. Potter, arrived here the first of last week on a
visit to his family. She lives at De Smet, Dakota, and had to take the overland route by team some hundred
miles to reach the cars, having had no trains at that place since the middle of January. She speaks of much
suffering by the people that has never been in print and is almost incredible. In riding along, they observed
smoke issuing from high banks of snow, and found the houses completely covered, with a deep tunnel
leading to the entrance. She passed through snow banks that by actual measurement were forty feet
deep. People generally had abandoned their homes on the prairies and gone to live in the villages, uniting
their stores and eking out life as best they could. [De Smet, South Dakota was also the home of Laura
Ingalls Wilder and her family in the winter of 1880-81 and is the setting for her novel “The Long Winter.”]
120 Years Ago (1891): Died. Monday morning, April 13, 1891, at her home in this village after a brief
illness, Miss Mary Lent Day, relict of Barnabus Griffith, aged 60 years. The deceased was married to Mr.
Griffith Feb. 1, 1855, at Janesville, and settled in the town of Porter, in which place and Evansville she has
since resided. She was the mother of eight children, four boys and four girls, three of whom survive her.
Fred D. Griffith, an attorney of Knoxville, Tenn.; Ned Griffith of Chicago, and Mrs. Edith Harrison, of this
village. She was also the stepmother of Ezra, Orlando, and Frank Griffith, of the town of Porter. Mrs.
Griffith was born in Sophiasburg, Prince Edward’s district Upper Canada, Nov. 29, 1826, and came to
Janesville with her parents when quite a young lady. She has always been a consistent Methodist. The
funeral was held from the M. E. Church this Tuesday afternoon, Rev. W. W. Stevens officiating. The
interment being in the Porter cemetery, all of her children being present.
110 Years Ago (1901): Mr. Charles Miller, of Appleton and Miss Minnie Apfel, of this city were married at
the home of the bride’s mother on E. Main St., on last Saturday evening, They left Wednesday for Appleton
where the groom has a position as engineer. Miss Apfel was well thought of in this city and her friends will
miss her presence from their midst.
100 Years Ago (1911): Ernest C. Miller has his new combination barn and automobile house about
completed and he will soon begin the construction of a frame dwelling for his own use on the lot situated on
the southwest corner of Church and Second streets on which the new barn stands.
90 Years Ago (1921): Eleven ball games will be played by the local high school team, five at home. The
games which are played at Evansville will be played at the Fair Grounds, which though now under lease to
Mr. Ware for a pasture up to June 15, has been generously offered by him to be used by the teams with the
understanding that no autos shall be allowed on the inside of the race track, on account of cutting up the
grounds, but there will be ample room for parking in both driveways for all the cars which are in attendance.
80 Years Ago (1931): Miss Alice George and Gillies Spooner will play the leading roles in the Evansville 4-H
club tournament play, “Mother Pulls the Strings” Richard Jorgensen, Mae Jorgensen, Robert Brunsell and
Wilva Woodworth are the other players. Miss Lina Blanchard, teacher in the public schools is the director.
Practically all of the county 4-H clubs have chosen casts for the play tournament and several groups are
exchanging programs. The Evansville Club has recently chosen William Bone as the handicraft leader.
70 Years Ago (1941): Evansville’s representation in Uncle Sam’s army will be increased by five recruits next
Monday when Horace “Red” Reynolds, Alfred Hollibush, Hjalmar Hanson, Lloyd Gleason, and Alvin Babler
depart for Milwaukee where they will submit to final physical examinations preparatory to induction.
60 Years Ago (1951): An organization meeting of the Evansville Writers was held at Library Hall Monday
night. Mrs. George Schrader was elected president; Mrs. Leo Kuenzli, secretary and treasurer; Mrs. H. C.
Smith, editor; and Mrs. A. H. Devine, publicity.
50 Years Ago (1961): Evansville’s new city garage is nearing completion and plans will soon be underway
for the dedication. The building will be known as the Braden E. Wolff memorial city garage and a plaque
bearing that information will be given by the city and placed on the garage. The garage will be used for city
equipment and machinery.
40 Years Ago (1971): Mrs. Delbert Zwickey, who owned and operated the popcorn stand on the corner of
Main and South Madison Streets, sold the building to an Orfordville resident, but still has the machine which
she plans to sell soon. The stand will be missed by old and young alike as it has stood there for
approximately 25 years. Mrs. Fred Kleinsmith owned and operated it for many years until she sold it one
year ago to Mrs. Zwickey.
30 Years Ago (1981): Singers from the J. C. McKenna Middle School who are going to state music contest
are Cindy Arnold, Joline Johnson, Kelly Chapin, Kathy Chapin, Kim Jeske, Jane Schwartz, Sally Franklin,
Barbara Meredith and Heidi Krueger. Brenda Berg is the director.
20 Years Ago (1991): The Park Board approved the hiring of the 1991 pool staff that includes Mark
Schwartz, Lisa Hrdlicka, Susan Schwartz, Mike Walker, Angie Howard, Marty Loftus, Laura Benson, Carrie
Loftus, Melissa Whitmore, Sheyenne Brown (reserve) Bethany Krake (reserve) and Rick Hamacher,
10 years ago (2001): The Gildners who publish the Evansville Review are celebrating their 40th year in
Evansville. The current staff of The Review: Vivian and Frank Gildner, Stan Gildner, Kelly Gildner and Dee
Losey. They took over the publication from Will Sumner in February of 1961.
Third Week of April 1871-2001
140 Years Ago (1871): Quite a number of our citizens are going into the tobacco raising, this year. Some
persons in neighboring towns, cleared as high as $100 and $125 per acre, last season.
130 Years Ago (1881): On the last day of March, Mrs. Phoebe Smith, living about seven miles west from
here, started from her home to go to a neighbor’s and as she was in the habit of going to neighbors and
remaining sometime she was not missed, those at her home thinking she was at the neighbors. On Sunday
morning last, however, it was found she had not reached her destination and a search was immediately
started to discover her whereabouts. In a short time her body was found lying face down in the snow, to
one side of an unfrequented road. It is supposed she died of heart disease as her money and some notes
were found on her untouched.
120 Years Ago (1891): A special meeting of citizens was held at the opera house last evening to discuss
the project of a new school house on the east side. The meeting was well attended, the fair sex
predominating and was organized by electing M. V. Pratt chairman and A. S. Baker, clerk. The first
proposition submitted was in the form of a resolution to establish a school house on the land situated 14
rods north of Main Street and on the west side of the road running past the cemetery. The proposition was
110 Years Ago (1901): Mr. Roy McKinney was struck by the train due here at 6:47 p.m. Thursday, near Mr.
Giblin’s where he works and was thrown into the field some distance away, which was certainly a miraculous
escape from instant death, but he was carried into Mr. Giblin’s and Dr. Evans called, who found no broken
bones and thinks he will undoubtedly recover although badly bruised and torn. [Note: William Giblin’s
property was in section 21, Union township, north of the Evansville city limits.]
100 Years Ago (1911): Ex-President Roosevelt passed through Evansville Saturday afternoon at 2 o’clock
in his special on the way to Chicago from Madison and the northwest. A crowd of a hundred or more were
at the station to catch a glimpse of the famous American and world traveler, but as his train did not design
to stop, the merest glimpse of the only living ex-president, sitting by a window, with paper in hand, was the
only satisfaction afforded the spectators as the train passed.
90 Years Ago (1921): Mr. and Mrs. W. W. Blunt and daughter, Miss Gladys, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Barnum,
Lauren Knapp, Ben Green, Calvert Cain, Brooks Gabriel, and Mr. and Mrs. Lloyd Hubbard motored to
Brodhead Friday evening to attend the military ball. Those who tried to return home after the ball got
stranded in the snow storm, where about 35 spent the remainder of the night in a farm home. The others
returned Sunday noon by train, leaving their cars in Brodhead.
80 Years Ago (1931): Herbert G. Hungerford, this city, completed 30 years of service as United States rural
mail carrier Tuesday, when he returned from his regular daily route, R.F.D. No. 2, which covers a distance
of 30 miles leading south of Evansville through Magnolia and Center townships. Mr. Hungerford is the
oldest carrier in the county. When driving horses, Mr. Hungerford covered a distance of 28 miles which trip
he made in six hours. This route passed through Magnolia and Porter townships. It was nothing unusual
for Bert to start out on his route with one team and return with another for he was one of the best known
horse traders in the community.
70 Years Ago (1941): Kenneth Hatlevig, Fort Knox, Kentucky, arrived here the latter part of last week for a
few days visit with his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Sever Hatlevig. Robert Hubbard, son of Mr. and Mrs. Ray
Hubbard, spent the week-end here with his parents. Mr. Hubbard is a member of the National Guards, is
stationed at Fort Knox, Kentucky. Robert Allen, son of Mr. and Mrs. William Allen, this city who is stationed
with the National Guards at Fort Knox, Kentucky , spent a few days the first part of this week with his
parents. Mr. Allen left Wednesday for Chicago to spend a few days with his wife before returning to the post
at Fort Knox.
60 Years Ago (1951): The sophomore agricultural class of the Evansville High School has been judging
cattle during the past week. The class members judged Holstein dairy cattle at the H. F. Brunsell farm
operated by Victor Paulson, and at the Wilbur Ehredt farm. They judged Guernseys at the Clifford Fellows
farm and Brown Swiss at Morris Gilbertson’s. Those in the group are Bruce Julseth, Don Bollerud, Harley
Reese, William Moreth, James Butcher, Dean Johnson, Smith Patterson, Keith Schulz, James Lindberg,
Gene Martin and Dick VanAlstine. C. W. Grundahl is the agriculture instructor.
50 Years Ago (1961): Why is there such emphasis upon education of our children nowadays? There is no
question but that it has always been important, but today the importance has taken on a new dimension.
The reason advanced by most of our education and thought leaders revolves around the growing
complexity of our business society. In our atomic age science is particularly important and Evansville High
School is right on top with good teachers and scientific testing equipment. Gene Schulz, chemistry and
mathematics instructor, works in the laboratory with Kenneth Holtz and Mary Baker, juniors who are science
majors, demonstrating radiation detection.
40 Years Ago (1971): The Prom Court for this year’s prom are King Bill Shelby and Queen Gayle Gransee,
Diane Heimerl, Sue Howard, Nancy Petersen, Kate Conners, John Schoenenberger, Dick Anderson, Greg
Gibbs, and Gary Brunsell.
30 Years Ago (1981): Evansville School Board member B. Ruth Petersen, who is retiring from the school
board after 18 years of service, was given a rousing standing ovation by the other school board members.
Mrs. Petersen served 17 years as clerk during her 18 years.
20 Years Ago (1991): Gary and Sue Deininger have returned from a trip to Aiea, Hawaii, where they visited
their son and family, Jeff, Heidi and Jesse Deininger. Also making the trip were Mark, Jane and Daniel
Rowley of Milton. Aiea is about 20 miles from Honolulu and about five minutes from the Pearl Harbor area.
10 years ago (2001): Groundbreaking for the New High School, Elementary and Middle School renovations
and additions will take place this coming Friday, April 20 at the new high school site, off of 5th Street. J. P.
Cullen & Sons got the bid of $16,302,263, almost a million less than the anticipated $17.1 million estimate to
complete the construction of the projects.
Fourth Week of April 1871-2001
140 Years Ago (1871): Mr. Potter informs us that a timely discovery of fire in the wood pile at the depot
Monday, saved a fearful conflagration. Matches were found about the wood.
130 Years Ago (1881): A train of some eight coaches passed northward Thursday afternoon, loaded with
emigrants bound for Manitoba.
120 Years Ago (1891): Mr. Clarence Bullock, 18 years of age, youngest son of Mr. and Mrs. Elijah Bullock,
of Jug Prairie, met with the misfortune of getting a leg and arm broke yesterday by a runaway horse. For
some unknown reason the horse started to run near J. S. McMillan’s place a short distance inside of Union
Village and Clarence being unable to hold him, jumped from the buggy and struck in such a manner as to
break his leg above the knee also his wrist. Frank Hartley and Mr. Coacher being nearby took the injured
boy home and Dr. T. F. Stair of this city was called, who reduced the fractures and made him as comfortable
as possible, but it will be an all summer’s job and a painful one too for Clarence, who has the sympathy of
his many friends in his suffering.
110 Years Ago (1901): The remains of Roy Wilson who died of fever, while serving his country in the
Philippines, arrived in this city Thursday. The funeral was held Friday afternoon from the Baptist church.
100 Years Ago (1911): The work of installing the city sewers is going nicely. The ditch is opened as far as
Liberty on Madison street, from Water street, and the sewer is in to within half a block of the above point. It
is suggested that those contemplating connection with the sewer confer with Mr. Nelson who will run the
connecting line from the sewer to the curb while the digging is in progress.
90 Years Ago (1921): The contract for the erection of the new grade school building was last week let to J.
P. Cullen, of Janesville and work commenced Thursday. The building will be of brick, built T shape and will
be in size 137 x 90. It is expected to have it completed by the first of January, 1922. Besides the eight
additional rooms it will give the grades it will also contain the long needed gym that the young people of this
city have longed for, for several years. [Note: This school is located on South First Street and is part of the
J. C. McKenna Middle School.]
80 Years Ago (1931): Kenneth Golz, son of Mr. and Mrs. John F. Golz, has earned the distinction of being
valedictorian at the Evansville high school. Dorothy Earleywine has been named salutatorian. Evelyn
Ballard, Vaughn Peterson, Harry Roderick and Genevieve Murphy are the next four students, highest in
70 Years Ago (1941): William B. Antes, Review editor, will leave next Sunday for Rolla, Missouri, where he
has accepted the position as press agent for Russell Bros. Circus. Mrs. Antes will assist in the office. In
1936, Mr. and Mrs. Antes trouped with the same show, covering the Midwestern states. The following year,
they traveled through the west coast and southern states also with Russell Bros. Circus.
60 Years Ago (1951): Here is a once-in-a-lifetime chance for an active go-getter with a sound background
in gas station and garage work. We (Bob and Don Turner and Buzz Schwartzlow) have decided to
concentrate our efforts on sales and maintenance of motor vehicles. To this end, we have purchased the
Ben Babcock building on South Madison street, where our business will be located. Because our lease with
Green Brothers’ Evansville Oil Company does not expire for some time, we are interested in subletting,
subject to the approval of Green Brothers. The lease so offered is for the 24-hour continuous operation of
the Gulf Service Station and garage facilities on Union street.
50 Years Ago (1961): Track competition was started in Evansville in 1960 after a lapse of many years and
the team finished fifth with 11 teams in the league. Glenn Lepley is the coach. The members of the 1961
track team are Jim Pea, Paul Milbrant, Rod Courtier, Teddy Mani, Dave Erpenbach, John Jones, Joe
Bradley, John Elliott, Rod Roberts, Ed Krueger, Dick Erpenbach, Bob Gibbs, Bill Bewick, Kenton Bennett,
Ken Holz, Kim Gill, Gordon Chapman, Bob Schuh, Bob Kimberley, Jerry Muchow and Ron Butchen.
40 Years Ago (1971): The newspaper recycling drive on Saturday, April 24, brought in only 5 tons of
paper. According to the group in charge, it is a good start but not enough to warrant sending a 20-ton semi
truck over to Evansville. Lomar Iron and Metal Co. at Ft. Atkinson is willing to try once more so another
drive has been scheduled for Saturday, June 26. The Ecology Committee of the Methodist Church
appreciates the help provided by the Girl Scouts and the Junior High ATTACK group. Randall Thompson,
drove a truck donated by the city, and Ronald Pierce, drove a truck donated by Varco-Pruden.
30 Years Ago (1981): Margaret Westby, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Ole Westby, 23 S. Third St., is
Valedictorian for the class of 1981. The Salutatorian for the class of 1981 is Neva Crocker, daughter of Mr.
and Mrs. Ralph Crocker, 21 S. Fifth St. Other high honor graduates, with a grade point average of 3.60
and above, are Jill Allen and Brian Swenson. Honor graduates with a grade point average of between 3.2
and 3.59 are Scott Gransee, Barbara Martin, Deborah Conners, Kevin Jones, Michael Larson, Susan
Babcock, Neil Rabideau, Barbara Parish, David Jeans, Tina McDonough, Mark Paulson, Daniel Miller, Lynn
Disch, Connie Grimes, DeWayne Baumberger and Dena Knapp.
20 Years Ago (1991): Dan Runaas, Matt Kraus and Mike Maves were given special awards to honor new
school records in boys basketball. Runaas had the most career rebounds (704) and blocked shots (114).
He became a member of the 500-point club. Maves was honored for leading scorer (320 points) and his
triple-double (11 assists, 12 rebounds, 12 points) and as the team’s MVP. Krause was honored for a new
single season free-throw mark of 89% and career 3-point mark of 100. He is also a 500 club member with
10 years ago (2001): The Evansville City Council now has two new members seated as well as those who
were re-elected. The re-elected members who were given the oath of office were Tom Cothard, Diane
Roberts and John Sornson. New members present and sworn in were Angela Tesch and Bill Hammann.