1880 -1881-1882-1883

 
 
FILES FROM THE CHATSWORTH PLAINDEALER
 
 
 
 
 
Stories of interest from our hometown paper over the years.
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1880 -1881-1882-1883
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1880
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A BOLD ROBBERY
JANUARY 10, 1880

On last Saturday night, the residence of Franklin Oliver, at Oliver's Grove, was entered by burglars and robbed of between seven and eight hundred dollars in cash and a revolver. The entrance was effected by breaking a pane of glass in one of the windows and removing a peg that had served as a fastening. The robbers immediately proceeded to the room of the old  man up stairs, he being the only person in the house at the time, and breaking the door down, rushed into the room, seized their victim, bucked and gagged him and ties his hands and feet, and then covered him with the bed clothes. In the tussle with the old man they chocked him until he was senseless. They found the money in an old trunk, and were evidently well acquainted with the surroundings. The old man says it was raining at the time and thinks it was about 11 o'clock. As the room was in total darkness of course the old man was unable to recognize the parties. so far as we are informed, no arrests have been made.   

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1881
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FIRE ! FIRE ! FIRE !
MARCH 5, 1881

IT HAS COME AT LAST !
A Portion of Our Little City Reduced to Ashes and Smoke as the Result of Its Unwelcome Visit  

On Sunday night, or rather Monday morning, as it was shortly after midnight, when all was quiet, and our people were resting, that they might be  the better prepared for the week's labor, the alarm of fire was suddenly sounded by the ringing of the fire bell, and still more dreadful cry of fire ! fire! rang out upon the midnight air.   
These two sounds were made to intermingle and follow each other in rapid succession, that our sleeping people might be the more quickly roused from their slumbers, and make haste to rescue that which, once the eye viewed, few had hopes to save, and none could see go, without expressing regret.    
From the best information obtained the first alarm, of what proved to be the most disastrous conflagration that ever occurred in Chatsworth, was sounded at fifteen minutes past twelve o'clock, when fire was discovered in the west side of the building used by Mr. E.A. Bangs to store flour, oils, wines, and liquors, and which was attached to and formed a part of his extensive business house. A very high wind was blowing from a little west of due north, which tended to force the flames into the building. As soon as a sufficient force could be obtained to move the engine it was placed in position at the center tank, and in a very short space of time two streams of water wee rapidly passing through the hose, thence into the fire, but short as had been the time required to accomplish this, it had been sufficient to enable the flames to take  possession of the rear of the Bangs building, and it became apparent the building and its contents were doomed to destruction and once the flames burst out, the violent wind caused them to lash both east and west, and in an incredibly short time, the rear end of Messrs. Roberts & Lantry's building, which joined the Bangs building on the west, was in flames. One more mad leap to the eastward and the north end of Mr. Young's building was also ablaze, which made it a question of time, only, when Mr. Seibold's building, which was next east of Mr. Young's, must go the way of the others. All this time the engine was doing noble work, two large streams of water were constantly pouring upon the flames, not with much hope of saving the buildings, but to fight back the heat, and give those engaged in removing the stock, all the time possible before the fiend should claim its own. When once under way, however, it was the work of but a few moments for the flames to convert into ashes and smoke that which has cost its owners a lifetime to accumulate, and the skilled mechanics days and months to construct.   
And before those who were laboring so diligently, would realize, the row of business houses from, and including, Mr. Seibold's building west to Mr. Delong's were consumed with most of their contents, and it was only by the most extraordinary exertions, upon the part of a large number of our people, that the flames were held in check and made to stop in their mad career, but by great efforts part of the old Robert's building, which had been occupied as a shoe shop by Mr. Meister, was torn out and one stream of water was used to fight back the fire from the west, and thus was saved the remainder of the block. 
The following is a description the property burned, an estimate of its value, insurance on same, and probable loss sustained by each:  
Mr. W. F. Seibold, story and a half building, 22 x 60 ft. with one story addition 14 x 18, first floor occupied as a grocery and confectionery store, upper rooms used as livings apartments, value of building $1500 insured in the Standard of New Jersey for $500, estimated loss of stock and households goods $350.
Mr. John Young's building was one story, 23 x 50 ft. with addition 12 x 18 ft., value of building $1000 upon which there was no insurance, value of stock of goods $11,000, estimated loss of goods $5000, insured for $4000 in the following companies: Springfield of Mass. $500, Imperial of London $500, North British and Mercantile $500, North American of Philadelphia $750, American Central of St. Louis $100, Hartford of Connecticut $750.   
Mr. E.A. Bangs' building was full two stories, and the best and most costly frame store in this city. It was 20 x 100 ft. including the additions, and is estimated as worth $4500, upon which there was in insurance of $1000 in the New Hampshire of Manchester. The stock and fixtures in the main building were entirely consumed; included in Mr. Bangs' loss, and to which he attached especial value, was a library, however small, but the books were valuable, and will be very difficult to replace; estimated loss on stock and fixtures $8000, upon which there was an insurance of $2000 in the following companies: $500 in the Fireman's of Baltimore, $1000 in the Peoples of New Jersey, $500 in the  Allemantila of Pittsburg.
Messrs. Roberts & Lantry's building was a one story, 27 x 80 ft. valued at $2000, and their stock was valued at $7000, which they saved eight or nine hundred dollars worth. These gentlemen we regret to state, had no insurance, and the loss falls heavy upon them.  
The building belonging to the heirs of Mary Roberts was a very old one and much out of repair. It was probably worth $350. 
Dr. W.C. Byington had office and sleeping rooms in the upper story of the Bangs' building, and lost everything, including his case of instruments, books, papers, bed and bedding, barely saving his ledger of accounts. In the doctor's library were books which are very difficult to replace. His loss amounts to about $350.   
Mr. Henry Walker used the front room over Mr. Bangs' store as a barber shop. His loss is about $40. 
Mr. A.H. Hall occupied the rear part of the second floor as a photograph gallery, and his loss is an irreparable one, as a large number of negatives that can never be replaced were destroyed. The value of which is difficult to estimate, but to him, taken in connection with his other losses, will make a total of $00 or $500.   
Mr. Arthur Whitmore, who had sleeping apartments on the second floor in the Bangs' building, lost his watch and all his personal effects except what his trunk contained, the contents of which were saved.
Mr. J.H. Wyman sustained a loss of about $100 by removal of his stock of goods. 
Mr. DeLong, moved nearly his entire effects and sustained the loss attendant upon the handling of such a stock, which was trifling, say $50.  
Mr. Meister, who occupied the Roberts building as a shoe shop, sustained a loss of, say $75.
Mr. J.E. Brown removed all of the portable fixtures in the bank of Messrs. C. A. Wilson & Co., only to have the pleasure of replacing them after all danger had subsided. The same may be said of Messrs. C. Riess, O.H. Brigham, H.M. Bangs, Mr. Fitzmaurice, and Wm. Wallrichs, all of whom removed their effects, and when immediate danger ceased, replaced them.   
Mr. H.M. Bangs' loses probably $250 and misses quite a lot of goods. His suspicions may result in a search warrant. Someone also helped themselves to Miss Rosa Riess's bonnet, which was in a box among the household effects of Mr. J.L. DeLong. With these exceptions, no damage worth speaking of was sustained. Miss A.D. Griswold "took time by the forelock," and prepared for the worst by packing everything in her building, preparatory to moving it on short notice.
And now, as to the prospects of rebuilding, it is, perhaps, useless to say that, up to present writing, nothing definite has been decided upon, nor will there be for some time, but, in the meantime, permit us to hope that, ere another winter is upon us we will see erected on the site of the present desolate and gloomy ash heaps a row of good and substantial brick or stone buildings; and that their occupants may be found in a prosperous condition, doing a thriving and lucrative  business is the wish of the Plaindealer.  


 
 
MONTHLY SCHOOL EXAMINATIONS
OCTOBER 8, 1881
 
Below will be found a list of the pupils, in the various departments, who have received a grade of 90, or over, in the examination for September. 
 
First Primary - Miss M.M. Brown - Teacher
 
"A" Class
Ira Huffman
Freddy Riess
Joe Crane
Louie Hall
Charlie Reeve
Archer Binger
Paul Fichternal
Gay Bangs 
Clara Orr
Mae Bangs
Edna True
Maggie Weinland 
Hanna Jones
 
Second Primary - Miss I.A. Morey - Teacher
 
"A" Class
Grace Watson
Anna Coughlin
Agnes True
Mary Binger
Etta Parker
Mamie Gregg
Dick Hitch
Charley Curtis
Bertie Reeve 
Henry Binger
 
"B" Class
Jessie Watson
Josie Fitzmaurice
Gisela Schuemperlin
Bessie Larned
Cody Chittum
Henry Williams
Bobbie Taggart
Freddie Fowler
Clarence Smith
Ira Carson
 
First Intermediate - Miss E.A. Farnham - Teacher
 
"A" Class
Bird Hall 
Sadie Hemperlay
Katie Fitzmaurice 
Alice Parker
Lizzie Taggart
Nellie Wheaton
Phebe Martin
Charlie Speer
 
"B" Class
Ina Huffman
Blake Williams
Linna Roberts
Addie Hickey
Lilly Struckmeyer
Maud True
Madie Bigham
Minnie Wheaton
Ulysses Fehr
Louis Chambers
Fred Leavitt
Willie Kenney
Rudy Molitor
 
 
 
 
NOTICE
TO THE PATRONS OF CHATSWORTH PUBLIC SCHOOLS
DECEMBER 17, 1881
 
Whereas, the board of health of the state of Illinois, in their official capacity, have authorized and directed that all children and others -- persons who have not been vaccinated, as a preventative of that loathsome disease, the small-pox, shall be  expelled from the public schools on and after the first day of January next. Therefore, we, the board of directors of school district No.1, town of Chatsworth, Ill., do hereby notify all parents and guardians of children, and other under 21 years of age, that this rule will be enforced as directed, on and after that date. And for the safety of the schools respectfully  request parents and others, not to delay. That terrible scourge is daily making gigantic strides over the land, and as we are in daily communication with cities and towns that are badly afflicted, the monster may be upon us at any moment. Remember the adage -- delay is dangerous.   
B.L. Yates
Jno Young
Jas. A. Smith
Directors
 
 
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1882
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1882
 
A HORRIBLE CASE OF SELF-MURDER
DEITRICH H. SMIDT THROWS HIMSELF IN FRONT OF A PASSING TRAIN AND HIS HEAD IS INSTANTANEOUSLY SEVERED FROM HIS BODY.
FULL DETAILS, WITH VERDICT OF CORONER'S JURY, ETC.
MARCH 25, 1882
 
At about 8:30 Monday morning and just before the engine of freight train No. 14, bound east on the W.St. L & P Ry., had  whistled for the wagon crossing one and one half miles east of this city, engineer Wm. White noticed a man standing on the embankment north of the track, and immediately thereafter the man came down and stood very close to the north rail of the track and when the engine had approached within about sixty feet of him, he lay his head over the rail, leaving his body on the north side and his head on the south side, his neck resting on the rail, and in an instant his head was completely  severed from his body. In the afternoon and during the holding of the inquest we visited the house of deceased on the west part of Mr. J. Howe's farm (section one) and the sight that met our eyes beggars description, such as one as we hope never to see again. Upon entering the house from the south, on the barren floor lay the body of Deitrich H. Smidt. It was comfortably clad in garments from his father-land. The head was lying about one foot distant from the body, the eyes and mouth open, with the tongue protruding. Frightful as was this to behold, a heartrending sight, and if not so horrible, more pitiful, awaited us on passing across the hall and entering the kitchen. There seated with one arm resting upon the stove and the other holding a child upon her lap, sat the wife of deceased and mother of five pretty little curly-headed children, who were hovering about her for protection, the eldest, a girl of nine years and the youngest but two years old. Not one of this sad group could speak a word of English, and there they were thousands of miles from, and the deep blue sea between them and their native land, which they had left but one year ago, with light hearts and bright visions of a prosperous future, now burdened with the deepest sorrow. He that had a heart so devoid of emotion as not to be effected by this pitiful sight is hardly worthy to be called human. Through an interpreter we obtained the following statement for Trientje Smidt, wife of deceased:  
 
Have been married about nine years, were married at Peaeson, Prussia, came to this country about one year ago, landed at Baltimore, thence came to Danforth, Ill., where we lived until about two weeks ago, when we moved to this place. The only reason I can give for his killing himself is that he was tired of this country and wished to go back. I was opposed to going, and he gave as a reason why he wished to go back that the weather was too warm in this country. The reason I did not want to go back was that he had a woman back there that I did not want him to see, and I thought this a better place for our children. He has said to me "If things don't go better I will kill myself".   
 
After the above facts were given us by a woman whose brazenness during the interview astonished us, and made it evident that she was not telling all, we obtained the following facts from E. H. de Vries, a brother-in-law of deceased by a former marriage:  
 
I came to the country with them, and intended farming with Deitrich this year. Deceased was about 45 years old. She constantly annoyed him, and was very jealous of him. The house was a very unpleasant place all day Sunday, owing to her constant scolding at him. She was a very hard woman to live with, and renewed the unpleasantness Monday morning, when I and Deitrich's son (by my sister, his first wife) went to see a neighbor and learn if there was no way to stop her by law, because I was afraid that he would do something desperate. When we were returning across the field I saw deceased throw himself in front of the engine. I blame her (the wife) for causing all this trouble.  
 
We give below the testimony taken before W.W. Sears, Esq., acting coroner, and the jury's verdict:  
 
TESTIMONY OF WILLIAM WHITE
Engineer of train No. 14, engine No. 444, (being duly sworn) states that on the morning of the 20th day of March A.D., 1882, while going east on said train and engine, aforesaid, noticed the deceased standing on the embankment alongside of the track about 400 yards distance from the train. The deceased then walked towards the track and stood alongside the rail, and when the engine was about 60 feet from him he suddenly threw himself down, his neck resting on the rail. After the engine passed over him I stopped the train as soon as possible. I had whistled for the crossing and when I saw him standing alongside of the track I whistled twice for him.   
 
TESTIMONY OF WILLIAM ARNUP
Fireman of train No. 14, engine No. 444 (being duly sworn) states that Mr. White called his attention to the fact that a man was standing alongside of track. He heard White whistle twice for him. He was putting in a fire when White called his attention.   
 
TESTIMONY OF E. H. DE VRIES
Being sworn states that I saw him this morning at the house. I next saw him along the side of the railroad and as the train approached him he suddenly threw himself in front of it. I went up where he was lying and found his body on the north side of the railroad. His head was severed from his body and lying in between the rails. I recognize the deceased as Deitrich H. Smidt. After I had placed the head by the body, I went to the house and notified his family. He was born at Great Seal, Prussia. He has been in this country about one year, lived first at Danforth Station, moved to this town about two weeks ago. I have never noticed any signs of insanity. He and his family did not live peaceably together. His first wife was my sister.  
 
TESTIMONY OF TRIENTJE SMIDT
(Wife of deceased) being duly sworn states: I have been married to the deceased Deitrich H. Smidt about nine years. Was married at Peaeson, Prussia. We have resided here about one year. When we came from the old country we landed at Baltimore state of Maryland. We first lived at Danforth Station, and moved to this place about two weeks ago. He was never shown any signs of insanity excepting last summer when he complained of the warm weather, and he stated that it was warmer here than in Germany, and he wanted to go back there and live. He told me this morning that things would have to go different or he would kill himself.  
 
VERDICT OF CORONER'S JURY
STATE OF ILLINOIS
LIVINGSTON COUNTY
An inquisition taken for the people of the state of Illinois at the house of Deitrich H. Smidt, in the town of Chatsworth in said county of Livingston, on the 20th day of March, A.D., 1882. Before W.W. Sears, justice of the peace in and foresaid county, upon the view of the body of Deitrich H. Smidt, then and there lying dead, upon the oaths of N.C. Kenyon, L. Mette, C. Walker, M. Fitzmaurice, A. Roberts, H.P. Turner, C.E. Davis,M.D., O. Sanford, M.H. Hall, A.J. Waugh, M. Lewis, and T.G. Worrell, good and lawful men of said county, who, being duly sworn, to inquire, on the part of the people of the state of Illinois, into all the circumstances attending the death of the said Deitrich H. Smidt, and by whom the same was produced, and in what manner and when and where the said  Deitrich H. Smidt came to his death, do say, upon their oaths as  aforesaid, that the said Deitrich H. Smidt did, on the 20th day of March, A.D., 1882, at the town of Chatsworth, in said county of Livingston, voluntarily and of his own malice aforethought inflict a mortal wound upon himself by laying his neck across one of the rails of the Wabash, St. Louis and Pacific railroad in front of a moving train, No. 14, engine No. 444, when said train was about sixty feet from him. Of which said mortal wounds, the said Deitrich H. Smidt, then and there instantly died, and so the jurors aforesaid, upon their oaths aforesaid, say that the said Deitrich H. Smidt did, then and there in manner aforesaid and at the place aforesaid, voluntarily and of his own malice aforethought kill and murder himself, the said Dietrich H. Smidt, against the peace of the people of this state and their dignity. 
And we, the jurors aforesaid, do exonerate all the employees of the said Wabash, St. Louis and Pacific railroad from blame as to the cause of his death. In witness whereof their hands on the day of the date of this inquisition as aforesaid.    
 
  
 
 
 
 
 
COMMENCEMENT EXERCISES
JUNE 17, 1882
 
On last  Wednesday occurred the second annual commencement exercises of our high school, and we are glad to say that they were a complete success. Difficult as it was to improve the exercises of last year, yet every one who was present Wednesday evening will bear us out in the assertion that the entertainment, if it did not excel that of last year, at least did not fall below it in merit.  
Last year we predicted that commencement exercises would have a good influence on our schools, and facts prove that we were correct. The next year's class will probably be larger than either of the preceding. The hall, under the skillful hands of the ladies, became a scene of beauty. The stage was most tastefully decorated -- flowers, evergreens, and pictures in profusion, yet all so tastefully arranged as to produce the best possible effect. The motto, "No Footsteps Backwards", was suspended over the middle of the stage; just back of it, and directly over the three young ladies who were the principal actors in the evening's entertainment, was suspended a large floral horseshoe of pansies. On each side of the stage were large urns with plants in full bloom. In short, the hall never looked more beautiful. The essays were interesting and instructive.  
 "So on our heels a fresh perfection treads", was the subject of Miss Helen Hall's essay. She spoke of the law of development, and compared the present with past. Her delivery was easy and her enunciation distinct. Miss Kate Bigham treated the subject, "The thoughts of men are widened by the process of the suns",  in a clear and forcible manner, and by reference to the history of the various arts and sciences proved the fact stated in her subject. Battles and Victories was the subject of Miss Kate Levering's essay. The production was well written, and would have proved very interesting had it been delivered with more force. Miss Levering also gave the Valedictory. It was a good effort, and would have been highly appreciated had it been spoken in a louder tone of voice. The literary exercises were interspersed with excellent music. The vocal solos by Mrs. Bangs and Miss Mary Mattoon were highly appreciated, and each received a hearty encore. Mr. Jones' piano solo was equally well received, and it goes for granted that the music by the band was excellent. One of the exercises not on the program was the address of Mr. Smith. On behalf of this board and patrons he thanked Prof. Swartz for his efficient labors for the past two years in our schools, and extended to him the best wishes of all for his success in his new and more extended field of labor. Prof. Swartz replied with much feeling, and thanked all for their kindness during his two years' sojourn with us. On the whole the exercises were a success and mark another pleasant period in the history of our schools.


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1883
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JANUARY 13. 1883
The entertainment given at the Town Hall on Saturday evening last by Miss Alice Sturges, of Piper City, assisted by home musical talent, was but poorly attended, the house not being over one third filled. Miss Sturges, far an amateur, is very good, and her manner of rendering some of the selections was most happy, and displayed both originality and genius. "The Polish Boy," was given with excellent effect, and elicited the proper encore. The "Creed of the Bells," was also well rendered and duly appreciated; in fact, the entertainment as a whole, was very pleasant, and the only regrets we have to offer is, that, so few were in attendance. We can not, however, pass this subject without noticing the excellent music by Mrs. H.M. Bangs and Miss Mary Mattoon, and the quartet, composed of the last two ladies, and Messrs. Bangs and Pumpelly; they certainly did themselves credit; while Miss Fosdick, presided at the organ, with an ease and grace most pleasing.


FEBRUARY 17, 1883

While train No. 20 on the Wabash road was doing some work on the side track on Monday night, a brakeman was thrown from the top of a car and severely bruised. He was conveyed to the Cottage House, where he received the best of care until the arrival of the passenger train on Tuesday morning, when he was taken to Peoria. 


FEBRUARY 24, 1883

The stone are being corded up for the foundation of Mr. Walter's new storeroom and as soon as the weather will permit active operations will commence and before the snow flies next fall, a magnificent store room, perfect in all its appointments, will occupy the barren, unsightly, vacant lot east of Young Bros. & Co. 


MARCH 10, 1883

Messrs. Walter and Jackson are about to erect a better and more substantial building, which will be about seventy five feet long, thirty feet wide and two stories high, will will afford them better facilities for the extensive manufacture of brick and tile. They will put in a twenty five horse power engine with a boiler of sufficient capacity to generate steam. All of which will be done at once and the brick made to erect Mr. John Walter's new store. Success, gentlemen, in your laudable enterprise. 



A GOOD SEND OFF
MARCH 17, 1883

An interesting gathering took place Thursday evening at the residence of Mr. P.F. Remsburg. The occasion was the departure of our fellow townsman, Mr. A.M. Roberts, for his western home in Dakota. A number of their many friends met and presented Mr. and Mrs. Roberts with appropriate tokens of their friendship and good will. Mr. Meek, in very happily selected and appropriate terms, expressed the appreciation of the sterling worth of the couple and the regrets felt at their departure. Other remarks were made by persons present, and Mr. Roberts and his lady replied briefly and with feeling, after which music and leave-taking was the order of the evening till the close of the pleasures of the occasion. All of our people join in extending the best of wishes for the success of Mr. Roberts and family.


MARCH 24, 1883

The Samuel Patton house has been taking a ride this week on wheels and hereafter will occupy the lots immediately east of Mr. Wm. Wallrich's residence.


ANNUAL SCHOOL EXAMINATIONS
APRIL 7, 1883

Covering a period of six months. the A grade embraced twenty question in the following branches, Orthography, writing, arithmetic, geography, grammar, history, algebra and physiology.
A GRADE
ALICE AARON 
HILA AARON
GERTIE CURYEA
LUCIE CURYEA
FLORENCE READ
LOLA PLESTER
MAGGIE GOEMBEL
MOLLIE GOEMBEL
JANIE ROBERTS
ELMER EBERSOL
JOHN FULK

B GRADE
Includes all of A Grade, except physiology, algebra and grammar
JOSEPH FULK
FRED FISHER
FRED RINGLER
AGNES MCCORMICK
TOM COLFER

C GRADE--FIVE STUDIES
BELLE CURYEA
AGNES CONROY LIZZIE RINGLER 
MINNIE KUESTER
EDDIE CONROY
ALBERT ROBERTS
FRANK KIPP
BURT EBERSOL

D GRADE--FIVE STUDIES
MARY EBERSOL
MAMIE NORRIS
LIZZIE MCCORMICK
RETTA POOLE
CHARLES EBERSOL
ORVILLE DEADE
FRANK MULLEN
MATTHEW MULLEN

PRIMARY DEPARTMENT
A GRADE--FOUR STUDIES
GENEVIEVE FISHER
KATIE KIPP
EMMA DAVIS
FLORA DAVIS 
MARY RINGLER
WARREN POOLE
JOHN CURYEA
EDIE HODGES
HANNAH MUNSON
FRED KUESTER
BENJ. MUNSON
JOHN CONROY

B GRADE--THREE STUDIES
OSEE FULK
PETER RYBURG

C GRADE--TWO STUDIES
EDDIE FISHER
HARRY ROBERTS 
WILLIE GOEMBEL
GEORGE RINGLER
DOLLIE POOLE
GEORGE CURYEA
LEWIS KUESTER
PETER MUNSON
JOHN MULLEN




APRIL 14, 1883

Miss Louisa Stevens will take charge of the Stoutemyer school on Monday next. Miss Nellie Will will commence the spring term in the Froebe district on the 23rd.
Chatsworth schools have furnished a number of efficient teachers for the country districts, among whom we call to mind the Misses Bigham, Dorsey, Brigham, Miss Fosdick, Miss Hamilton, Miss Wright, Miss Royal and Miss Levering. Let the good work go on.


APRIL 28, 1883

The Chatsworth Roller Skating Rink has opened, and has been crowed every night. The managers have laid a new hard wood floor and everything goes as if "on wheels." Everybody that can, should patronize this enterprise, as, there is no better, healthier, or more innocent amusement than skating. We understand that the rink will be open in the future each Monday and Saturday evenings, with matinees every Saturday afternoon. Admission, 10 cents, use of skates during the evening, 15 cents.


THE NEW CONVENT
MAY 12, 1883

The foundations for the convent and school are laid, foundations that excel anything in our town. They measure six feet by 20 inches of solid stone, upon which will be erected a building 50 by 40 feet, two and a half stories high. The schools is destined for the reception not only of our town children, without distinction of religion or condition, but also for the children of the country for miles around.
A sisterhood versed not only in the ordinary sciences in the English, German and French languages, but also in music and all kinds of needle and fancy work, will come among us. Just and reasonable, therefore, it is that we all should assist in erecting such a blessed institution in our town. We know that we will find in these good sisters ministering angels in time of common or extraordinary sickness. In fact an institution of this kind will not only be a blessing for our children, but for all ages.
The enterprising promoter of this really great work, our good Father Van Der Hagen, justly deserves the assistance not only of his own people, but likewise of our many Protestant friends.
Remember how anxious Catholics ever are to settle around a church and school, and it is evident that this project must be much of a financial success for our little town. Day by day the wonderful increase of St. Patrick's congregation is adding new members to our community. this good work comes home to all and let all the truly liberal in helping it on, and at the same time increasing the beauty of our town, and promoting the interest of our community.


BURGLARY
MAY 19, 1883

A most daring burglary was committed on Monday evening between the hours of 8:30 and 9:30 p.m.
An entrance was forced by breaking a pane of glass out of the window in the rear room to Messrs. Young Bros. & Co. store. the thief, or thieves, passed in to the main room, add by a frequent use of matches for light, proceeded to help themselves to a lot of cheap jewelry, between five and six dollars worth of change from the cash drawer, and a number of choice silk handkerchiefs. The total loss would approximate $75. To enter a building of this kind, at the early hour this was done, certainly  requires a man of nerve, for he must know that he was liable to be come in upon at any moment, as it is no uncommon thing for Messrs. Youngs or Mr. Doolittle to enter the store as late as ten o'clock, and on this evening Mr. P.S. Young and Mr. Doolittle were up at the hall to band practice, and returning at 10 o'clock, found the store had been burglarized during their absence. Mr. E. A. Jackson's store and Mr. C. Heppe's saloon were entered the same night, but nothing of importance has been missed by either of these gentlemen. The question is, "Who is committing these daring robberies?"


MAY 26, 1883

At a meeting of the school board, held on Wednesday evening, the following teachers were employed for the next school year: Principal, Prof. F.L. Calkins; Grammar room, Miss Mary Mattoon; Second Intermediate, Miss Matie Smith; First Intermediate, Mrs. M.L. Tuckerman; First Primary, Miss M.M. Brown.


JUNE 9, 1883

The people of Chatsworth are rejoicing over the fact that they at last have a First-class Barber Shop, where all parties wishing a No. 1 shave, or hair cut, can be accommodated by calling on I.L. Allum at his new shop, formerly W.W. Sear's office, near the town hall.


Also mentioned:
Mrs. Allum has moved to more commodious quarter, in the wing of the old Felker building, where she will do do dress making, cutting and fitting.


JUNE 9, 1883

On the 18th day of March, between the hours of three and four o'clock a.m., it being Sunday morning, Mr. Conrad Heppe's saloon was entered by some parties through a window, and from twenty five to thirty boxes of cigars and several bottles of wine and brandy were taken and carried away, and on examination of the window, a pane of glass had been removed so that the window fastening could be reached and the window opened, showing that that was the ingress and egress of the parties. Policeman J.M. Myers took the matter in hand as a detective, and on Monday of this week he got a pointer, and following it up he became satisfied that the property stolen was in the possession of Lewis J. Nine and a warrant was issued and placed in the hands of Constable Sanford, who, in company with Policeman Myers, started to find the said Nine, but were unable to find him on Monday, but found where his trunk was. Upon their return they procured a search warrant and went and examined Nine's trunk, and in it found fifteen boxes of cigars and an empty wine bottle, which were brought to the office of Squire Esty very early Tuesday morning. then they started for the swamps, some six or eight miles north of Piper City, and arrested Nine, brought him to town, and turned him over to Squire Esty, and Nine , having employed Mr. T.G. Worrell to defend him, the case was set for hearing at four o'clock p.m.  Sq. T. Fosdick appeared for the prosecution, and after hearing all the evidence on the part of the prosecution, and on the part of the defense, Squire ordered that he be place under $500 bonds for his appearance at the circuit court; and failing to give bonds, the said Nine was sent to the county jail. The officers deserve credit for their perseverance in this case, as they traveled some fifty miles to find the man and secure the stolen property.


FOURTH OF JULY FESTIVAL, 1883
JUNE 23, 1881

Note:This event was put on by the Catholic Church. Not real interesting, but contains lots of surnames of the time. I do notice that some spelling of last names are incorrect, but you get the idea.

No day of the year is dearer to the American heart, no political festival is celebrated with more enthusiasm, than the great and glorious day on which our heroic ancestors conquered hated tyranny and obtained blessed liberty. the prize of this sublime victory being the precious blood of our venerable forefathers, it is just and right that their children should value that precious treasure so dearly bought. Hence we see all over this happy land grateful hearts offering their sincerest thanks on this glorious day to the Great Giver of all good gifts for that blessed freedom and liberty, the natural longing and desire of every human heart. In order to fulfill our most agreeable duty on this great day we will celebrate a solemn high mass at 8 o'clock in the morning, to thank Almighty God for all the blessings we all may be useful citizens of our glorious country here, and happy inhabitants of our eternal country above. After High Mass the Town Hall well be prepared to receive you for a pleasant dance and refreshments. Dinner and supper will be served there and near the park.
The dinner and supper table will be under the direction of the members of the Altar Society.
In the Town Hall; Mrs. M. Reising, Pres.; Mrs. Chas. Gabe, Treas.; Mesdames J. Monahan, P. Lawless, P. Fay, Dorsey, A. Walsch, and J. Gormant.
At the Park: Mrs. E. Haberkorn, Pres.; Mrs. L. Mette, Treas.; Mesdames E. Liston,P. Fitzmaurice, T. Kerrins, T. Coughlin, J. Welsh, southeast, Todd and Gruber.
Lemonade and Ice cream in Town Hall; Miss Mary Madigan, Pres.; Miss Katie Lawless, Treas.; Misses S. McNamara, T. Walsch, Julia J. Monahan and Ellen Todd.
Lemonade and Ice cream at the Park: Miss A. Joyce, Pres.; Miss Ellen Kerrins, Treas.; Misses L. Lawless, L. Lemna, L. Powers, Mr. Welsh, and E. Baldwin.
the following gentlemen will please assist the young ladies in making ice cream and lemonade; Messrs. F. Bogan, C. Gabe, W. Madigan and J. Welsh.
Dancing Committee; Mr. A. Powers, Pres. Mrs. Wm. Lawless, Treas.; Messrs. Chas Kuffner, John Welsh, John Farrell, Jas. McNamara, P. Reising, Jr. and Thos. Duffy.
Entrance Committee: Mr. John Monahan, Pres.; Mr. John Moritzen, Treas.; from 8 till 10, Messrs. John Baldwin and John Dimick; from 10 to 12, Messrs. Jas. Day and Patrick Fay, Jr.; from 12 till 2, Messrs. Geo. Wittler and Thos. Burns; from 2 till 4, Messrs. Peter Cook and Thos. Carey; from 4 till 6, Messrs. Thos. Duffy, Jr. and L. Farrell; from 6 till 8, Messrs. O. Finnegan and John Fitzgerald.
Arrangement Committee: Messrs. M. Reising, John McCarty and Ed Brady, for hall; Messrs. I. Cook, Peter Kemmer, and Jas. Welsh, for the park. the three first gentlemen will please put up a table in the hall and stand below. The other three gentlemen will please put a table on the north side of the park and stand next to table.
Last, but not least, the celebrated Boston singing doll, humming "Home, Sweet Home: in a wonderful manner, will appear in the hall, and be the finest souvenir of our great festival, for the happiest lassie in the town or in the country.
We expect all the above named officers to be at their respective posts, and if for some unforeseen reason it should be impossible for one to attend we ask them to let us know, so that we can appoint another.
Wm. v. d. Hagen, Pastor


JUNE 30, 1883

The fire alarm, which was sounded about 10 o'clock p.m. on last Friday, was caused by the igniting of an oil lamp in the W., St.L. & P. Ry. office. But for the quick thought of Mr. Geo. Reiss, the night operator, who threw it out through the window onto the platform, where it caused quite a blaze for a few moments, the Wabash would be without a depot at Chatsworth.
Note: This may explain why sometimes the great wreck is said to have been on the Wabash Railroad. These initials must stand for Wabash, St. Louis & Peoria Ry., probably the original name of the railway.


JUNE 30, 1883

Five district schools picnicked at Oliver's Grove last Saturday. The schools of Misses Carrie Brigham, Emma Wallace, Sarah Dorsey, Alice Miller and Libbie Opie combined to make the woods ring with their merriment, and each vied with the other in the attempt to squeeze more fun and frolic liberally sandwiched with endless quantities of eatable.


SEPTEMBER 1, 1883

On Saturday, Sept. 8, the Right Rev. bishop, assisted by a number of clergymen, will lay the corner stone of the Sisters' convent and school to be built in our city. Wherever the learned Bishop Spalding goes, there he is followed by an immense concourse of people to hear and admire his enchanting oratory. Steps will be taken to obtain half-fare rates on the Central and Wabash.
The following communities are largely represented by liberal subscriptions to this laudable enterprise; Chatsworth, Fairbury, Strawn, Cullom, Pontiac, Odell and others.
The names of all the subscribers will be written on parchment, and a copy thereof, with other documents, placed with great solemnity into the corner stone, as a silent memorandum for centuries of this noble and useful institution. the list of subscriptions, which amounts already to $3,021, is headed by fourteen gentlemen with one hundred dollars after their respective names, and as a fit reward for their generosity each of those gentlemen will lay a monumental marble stone in front of the beautiful structure.
The Right Rev. Bishop will arrive on the 12:51 p.m. Wabash train Saturday. Not only the citizens of Chatsworth, but of all the surrounding country, are cordially invited to welcome his lordship at the depot. On Sunday, the 10th, the Bishop with his clergy will go to Cullom to dedicate the church there, and in the evening after Vespers, in the St. Patrick's church, his lordship will give the solemn benediction with the blessed sacrament.
Father v.d. Hagen, Pastor


OCTOBER 13, 1883

On last Saturday night Timothy (better known as "Ted") Ryan was run over by the cars near the tank in Piper City, and when his body was found it was very badly cut to pieces. What train killed him, or how, is a mystery which will probably never be solved. The funeral took place Monday, and the remains interred in the Catholic cemetery near this city. The funeral procession was one of the largest we have ever seen in Chatsworth.
Note: The following papers were checked for further details of this, but none were found.
See memorial here.