FILES FROM THE CHATSWORTH PALINDEALER
Stories of interest from our hometown paper over the years.
Small Tidbits over the years
Hotel and Restaurant
April 1, 1887
Mrs. S. A. Hughes, successor to Mr. M.H. McCarty, is prepared to accommodate the traveling public with good meals and clean beds. A limited number of regular boarder, with or without rooms, can be accommodated. A full line of choice confections and fresh fruits constantly on hand, also the best brands of cigars.
Mrs. S.A. Hughes
JUNE 8, 1887
Tuesday, noon, May 31, 1887, at the residence of W.W. Sears, Esq., Issac Traub, better known as "Ike".
His death was very sudden, as he had just finished a hearty dinner, and his master, Mr. Max Traub, was much shocked to hear of his demise. The clothing establishment of Messrs. McCabe and Traub was closed for a short time the day of his death and mourning was displayed on the door. One of the particular characteristics of deceased was his extreme fondness for money, he having eaten in his brief life-time about twenty dollars. His remains were interred in the Sears private cemetery Wednesday, and the wish of the entire community is that a dog may sometime in the near future be found to supply the vacancy left in the Traub and Sears households.
PATRONS OF THE CHATSWORTH HERALD
AUGUST 5, 1887
Having purchased the entire interest of the above paper I have arranged with Plaindealer proprietor to fill the subscription list. The subscription book is in the hands of Esq. Thos. s. Curran, where all those in arrears are invited to call and settle.
Colonel N.C. Kenyon Murdered
June 29, 1888
The extracts made below from today's Chicago Hearald and today's Peoria Transcript refer to Col. N.C. Kenyon, a former resident and postmaster of this place and a gentleman well known and highly esteemed by all old citizens. We await further information with anxiety, as the Colonel was a gentleman whom we highly esteemed as a friend and fellow citizen. All old acquaintances will deeply deplore the loss of so good a man at the hands of a lawless assassin, and while sympathizing with the bereaved relatives, will hope with us that the lawless murderers may receive their just dues, and that speedily, which is nothing short of the hangman's active services.
Geuda Springs, Kan. July 5 -- Mayor Kenyon and Justice of the Peace Furey attempted yesterday to suppress a whisky stand which Jim Cherry, Ike David, and one Simmons, negroes, from Arkansas City, had established in a cornfield here. Cherry shot the Mayor through the breast, inflicting a fatal wound, and Furey through the leg. Two of the negroes swam the Arkansas River. A posse has been organized and is now searching for them in Indian Territory.-- Chicago Hearld
Arkansas City, Kan. July 5 -- Geuda Springs, the summer resort of Southern Kansas, eight miles west of here, was celebrating the Fourth. Several parties from here went over, taking with them beer and whisky for sale. The marshal, mayor and deputies went to the building where they were selling and attempted to arrest the violators, but were met with revolvers. N.C. Kenyon, mayor, was shot dead and C.J. Furry, justice of the peace, was badly wounded. The violators and murderers made their escape, but word was telegraphed here and an armed posse went out in hot pursuit. It is not generally known who did the shooting, but it is generally believed on Sill (sic) Lincoln, a cowboy, killed Kenyon. The pursuing party came in today with Jim Cherry, Ike David and two colored men. David and Cherry are whisky men from this place, and Geuda telephones they are the two who did the shooting. They are under heavy guard, but the streets are a solid mass of people, who express themselves as being determined to rid this town and Geuda of these lawless "joint" men. All are expecting an armed posse from Geuda Springs before morning, and should they arrive, the general belief is that the prisoners will stretch hemp. -- Peoria Transcript.
On August 10, this letter appeared in the Chatsworth Plaindealer from Mrs. Kenyon.
Geuda Springs, Kan., Aug.7,'88
Mr. Smith -- Dear Sir, -- The friends of Mr. Kenyon will doubtless be pleased to learn that he is recovering from his terrible wound. Our physician tells us he is virtually out of danger, and we think within a few weeks he will be able to get out into the fresh air and sunshine. Judge Furry died from the effects of his wound Aug.4. Thanking you again for your kindly interest.
Rev. William M. Murtaugh
August 17, 1888
On Monday, August 6, Rev. Wm. M. Murtaugh was ordained a priest by Rt. Rev. Bishop Spalding at Peoria. About fifteen persons attended the ceremony from here. On Sunday last Rev. Murtaugh celebrated his first mass at St. Patrick's church, this city. The pastor, Rev. Wm. v.d. Hagen, acted as assistant priest and deacon of the mass, with Rev. C. O'Brien officiating as sub-deacon. Father v.d. Hagen also delivered an eloquent sermon on the dignity and office of the priestly state, which was highly appreciated by those present, the majority of whom were friends of the celebrant.
The Rev. William M. Murtaugh was a native of this parish and the first to advance to priesthood from this neighborhood. He is a son of Mr. Owen Murtaugh, of one of the first families in this section, and highly esteemed by a very large circle of friends. After the mass a large number of the friends assembled at the residence of Mr. P. Lawless, southeast of this city, where a very pleasant afternoon was passed.
The young priest has been assigned to the Pontiac mission, where this week he will enter upon the active duties of the ministry with the best wishes of a host of friends here and in this vicinity.
Note:The Bishop Spalding became famous along with Bishop Sheen from this area.
August 9, 1895
The teachers' institute at Pontiac has attracted many accomplished and would-be accomplished "wielders of the rod" from this vicinity this week. If all parts of the county sent a delegation proportionately as large as the one from this section the attendance is certainly large. Those attending from this vicinity are; Misses Julia Corbett, Ida Cline, Susie Dann, Eliza Dorsey, Lollie Furr, Mary Joyce, Stacia Joyce, Nora Wilson, Mary Carson, Enola Carson, Stella Haskell, Dora Brickley, Ollie Cooper, Anstie Coughlin, Sadie Dann, Clara Finnegan, Amy Ferrias, Maud Furr, Hattie Finnegan, Edith Grotevant, Rose Koehler, Katie Lahey, Ella Carney, and Messrs. Fred Garrity, Hugh Corbett, Clyde Compton.
ANDERSON THEATER CO.
August 9, 1895
Chatsworth's favorite artists, Ed Anderson and Kate Watson, supported by a strong company, will begin a week's engagement at Spiecher's hall on Monday, Aug. 12. All new plays will be presented. On Monday night the great play, "Pawn Ticket 210" will be produced. Kate Watson will present one of her best dances and Ed will sing his latest comic songs. This is by far the greatest company Ed has ever placed on the road, and his Chatsworth friends can expect a great show next week. Seats now on sale at Bangs' drug store. Don't fail to see "Pawn Ticket 210".
August 23, 1895
About 12:45 Monday noon the fire alarm sounded. The fire was in the second room on the second floor of the M.H. Hall building. Miss Mary Benn occupied the front and second room and the fire was caused by an oil stove which she used for preparing her meals. Miss Benn, it seems, had lit the oil stove and gone over to her sister's Mrs. Henry Megquier's. What occurred after her leaving is surmise, but a short time elapsed before smoke was discovered coming out of the upper rooms. Prompt action on the part of the fire company soon controlled the flames and, though some difficulty was experienced in getting through the two roofs, it was but a short time after cutting through before the flames were extinguished. The loss is greatest to Miss Benn, as absolutely everything in her apartment was ruined, including a number of fine dresses which she was making for her patrons. The damage to the building is from $300 to $500, which is covered by insurance. The loss of Messrs. Mauritzen & Heald, who occupied the first floor with their fine meat market, was principally by the water injuring the woodwork.
GIVES BAIL AND DISAPPEARS
A.J. White, who a few weeks ago stole a team, buggy, harness, etc., from Fred Trunk, living two miles east of town, and was arrested at Lafayette and taken to jail at Pontiac, did not appear for trial on Tuesday. His bail had been fixed by the court at $500.00 and last week he secured the money, purportng (sic) to get it from his daughter, and took his departure. It was certainly a very cheap way of buying his freedom and it is very unfortunate for the people of this community whose efforts and money succeeded in capturing this man, and for the country at large, that he should be allowed to escape without a trial, as he is undoubtedly a professional "crook". The following from the Kentland Enterprise, where White was raised, gives something of his history.
"The dispatches state that a man named A.J. White from Kentland was arrested in Lafayette last week while trying to sell a team of horses that he had stolen from a farmer at Piper City, Ill. White was raised in this vicinity and came of excellent stock, but early developed wild ways and 25 years ago was known as a "bad man" in this locality and it is said left this county for his country's good. During his 20 years absence, it is said that the most of the time he has spent inside prison walls and the chances are good for him to break into the penitentiary again. White was in the town and vicinity some two or three weeks ago and when he left gave out the intention of going to Chicago.
RYAN - LAWLESS
JANUARY 17, 1896
The wedding of Miss Ella Ryan and Patrick J. Lawless, took place at SS. Peter and Paul's church on Wednesday morning, Jan. 15, at half-past seven o'clock, Rev. Father J.J. Quinn, pastor of the church officiating. Quite a number of relatives and friends gathered at the pretty church to witness the ceremony. The bride was attired in a beautiful white gown, handsomely garnitured (sic), while the groom wore the conventional black. The maid of honor, Miss Emma Ryan, sister of the bride, wore lemon color. Hugh E. Corbett acted as best man. After the ceremony the wedding party returned to the home of the bride's parents, where a sumptuous wedding breakfast was partaken of.
The young couple are both residents of this vicinity and are quite well known to many of our people. The bride is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Thomas C. Ryan, whose residence is at the corner of Ash and Sixth streets, the property being known for years as the Fosdick place. She is a lady of attainments and admired by her many friends, and during the few years the family have resided here she has, by her pleasant and affable manner, gathered about her a large number who are now here well wishers. The groom is the youngest son of Mr. and Mrs. P. Lawless, who reside in their beautiful home at the east end of Walnut and just off Seventh Street. He has for several years resided on the homestead farm, two and a half miles east of town, where he has been successfully engaged in farming. He is a young man of sterling qualities and well prepared to provide for the lady of his choice. The many friends of both the happy pair unite with the Plaindealer in extending congratulations and best wishes.
DARK COLORED SNOW--WHAT CAUSED IT LAST WEDNESDAY MORNING?
FEBRUARY 21, 1896
Everyone noticed the dark color of the snow on Wednesday morning, although but a few could offer any explanation for its peculiar appearance. The same condition of affairs that was noticed here was common over the greater part of the northern portion of Illinois. In Chicago on Tuesday night, for a few hours before midnight, the air seemed filled with fine particles of dust during a high wind and quite a severe snow storm, and a similar condition was noticed here. On examination scientists have found that the color, which was so very marked, was not in the snow flakes, but was entirely distinct from them. Various theories have been advanced in explanation of the pneumonia, but the one given credence by those most competent to form an opinion is that the dust storm was not local in character. Advises from the northwest state that very severe wind storms prevailed on Tuesday in Dakota, Minnesota and Nebraska, over immense areas, where there was no snow, and large quantities of dust was taken up by the wind and carried long distances. The finer particles of this dust were carried into the upper currents of air and precipitated in the snow storm which raged in northern Illinois on Tuesday night. Scientific examinations have proven the dust to be different from Illinois soil, and in no case was it found to resemble soot or smoke.
FIRST MEETING OF THE UNIVERSTIY ASSOCIATION -- OFFICERS ELECTED
MARCH 13, 1896
On last Saturday evening the local members of the university association met at the parlors of the Cottage House hotel with Mr. Penticost, the representative of the association, and went through the preliminaries necessary for a permanent organization. There are at present twelve members, and others have expressed their intentions of joining. Meetings will be held weekly, on Saturday evenings. The following officers were elected. Leaders, R.F. Brown, Miss Edith Palmer; president, Clarence H. Smith; secretary and treasurer, Miss Gertie Turner; assistant secretary and treasurer, J.A. Corbett.
THE TIMBER DISAPPEARING
MARCH 20, 1896
The timber on the land purchased by Miles Desire, formerly constituting a large part of Oliver's Grove, is rapidly disappearing. During the past week thirty men have been at work removing wood, and with a steam saw, rapid progress is being made.
HALL -- OAKES
OCTOBER 30, 1896
On Tuesday evening, October 27, occurred the happy event uniting two who, in early life, had exchanged vows of affection, but whom circumstances had separated for many years.
At eight o'clock a pretty, quiet home wedding was solemnized at the residence of the bride in this city. Rev. H.F. Tibbitts performed the ceremony making man and wife, Mr. Kimbal Oakes, of Oak Park, and Mrs. Dora K. Hall, of this city. The marriage was witnessed by the immediate relatives only, those present being; Mrs. O.A. Hall and Miss Carrie, of this city; Mr. and Mrs. Orval Woodward, Streator; Mr. and Mrs. C.E. Knapp, Tonica; Mr. and Mrs. L.L. Hall, Saunemin; Miss Hattie Perry, Chicago, and Miss Sadie Hall, this city.
Mrs. Hall has for a number of years been recognized as one of Chatsworth's business women, being proprietress of the Hall art gallery, and is held in high esteem by all. Mr. Oakes is engaged in business in Oak Park, a suburb to Chicago, being proprietor of a drug store there. He has two children, a son and daughter, by a previous marriage, both of whom have reached maturity. Mr. and Mrs. Oakes expect to depart tomorrow (Saturday) for Chicago and will make their home at Oak Park. May joy and happiness be theirs, is the wish of the innumerable friends in this community.
JANUARY 8, 1897
The home of Mr. and Mrs. W.S. Stanford, northeast of town, was the scene of a joyous gathering on New Years day, when forty relatives and a very few intimate friends assembled, on invitation, and enjoyed a most pleasant family reunion. the day, January first, is the anniversary of the marriages of the three brothers -- Messrs. W.S. and D.J. Stanford, of this vicinity, and Luther Stanford, of Forrest -- all of whom, with their wives and families, were present, and it is needless for us to state here that the occasion was one long to be remembered. Relatives from Tonica, Forrest and Saunemin made the event more enjoyable by their presence. The sumptuous dinner which Mrs. Stanford had prepared battles description and was fully appreciated by all. May they all live to enjoy many more such happy occasions, is the wish of the Plaindealer.
SHAFFER -- SHEUTZ
APRIL 30, 1897
On Tuesday morning, April 27, at SS. Peter and Paul's church in this city, Rev. Father J.J. Quinn performed the ceremony uniting in the lifelong bonds of wedlock Mr. Amiel Shaffer and Miss Catherine Sheutz. The contracting parties wee assisted during the ceremony by Mr. Jno. Westerhausen and Miss Josie Myers. Quite a number of friends were present in the pretty place of worship to witness the ceremony, and many were the good wishes extended. The bride was attired in an exquisite gown of lappett silk stripped albatross, trimmed in duchess lace and ribbon, and with the groom in the conventional black, was a picture of rare beauty.
Both the contracting parties have a large circle of acquaintances in this community, where they have made their home. The bride is the daughter of Mr. Henry Sheutz, who resides near Piper City, and is a young lady of unusual beauty and admirable characteristics. The groom has resided south of here for a number of years, is a thrifty young farmer with excellent prospects and hosts of friends.
Mr. and Mr. Shaffer will make their home on a farm southeast of this city, where the best wishes of the many friends of both, including the Plaindealer, will be with them.
A BIRTHDAY PARTY
AUGUST 13, 1897
The home of Mr. and Mrs. John Meister was the scene of a joyous gathering of twenty six little folks on Tuesday afternoon and evening, the occasion being a birthday party in celebration of the tenth birthday of their oldest son, Willie. A jolly time was spent by all present, games of various kinds and other amusements being indulged in. The delicious supper prepared for the occasion by Mrs. Meister was given its share of attention and was much appreciated, as is generally the case when little folks have their usually keen appetites whetted by play and a good time. On taking their departure all were unanimous in wishing that their little host, might have many more birthday celebrations. It is a queer coincident that the young host of this happy gathering was born on the day of the Chatsworth wreck, August 10, 1887.
MARRIED THIRTEEN YEARS
DECEMBER 31, 1897
Mr. and Mrs. William T. Gardner celebrated the thirteenth anniversary of their marriage on Christmas night, quite a large number of friends spending the evening with them at the City Hotel, of which Mr. Gardner is proprietor. Everything which could in any way add to the pleasures and comfort of those present had been prepared, and a most enjoyable time is reported. A sumptuous supper was served during the evening, to which all did ample justice. Before departing the guests presented Mr. and Mrs. Gardner with a remembrance which will serve to keep fresh in their memories the happy event. May the genial host of the City Hotel and his estimable wife enjoy many more happy anniversaries of the day.
BURGLARS IN GERMANVILLE LAST NIGHT
March 13, 1908
The home of John Kolb, who resides on the Henry Dassow farm, in Germanville township, was entered by burglars last night and Mr. Kolb was robbed of $66.00. As near as the members of the household can determine the burglary occurred about midnight.
Mr. Kolb sold his hogs to P. McGreal and delivered them yesterday morning, getting a check on the Commercial National Bank of Chatsworth in payment. He had occasion to come to town in the afternoon and deposited the check and , not having his bank book with him, he took a duplicate deposit slip, which he had in his pocketbook with $66.40 in currency and change. The pocketbook was in his trousers beside his bed. The thief evidently entered the bedroom, secured the pocketbook and made his escape. This morning the pocketbook was found about four rods from the house with the $66.00 gone, but the deposit slip and 40 cents in change still in it.
Mrs. O.E. Braddock, of Watseka, has been nursing Mrs. Kolb since the arrival of a baby on the 4th of the month, and Miss Sophia Storr has been doing the housework. The former had been up with the child several times during the night, while Miss Storr, who had been at a party, returned shortly before midnight.
Everything indicates that the theft was committed by someone who was not only familiar with Mr. Kolb's business, but who was also acquainted with his dog, which is a large and alert animal.
'TWAS A BIG DAY IN CHATSWORTH
Friday, July 10, 1908
The crowd in Chatsworth on July Fourth was one of the largest which has been here in years, and it may be said, with all truthfulness, that, considering the proportions of the gathering, it was a good-natured and well-behaved crowd, bent upon having a good time. There were no disturbances of any consequence, no fights are reported by the police and no arrests.
Early in the day it was evident that here would be a large crowd before night, and there was. By the time the morning exercises in Armstong's park took place the streets were comfortably filled and there was a good sized audience in the park. The Chatsworth Cornet Band discoursed music during the day and evening, and the program at the park opened with a band selection. G. W. McCabe, as president of the day, made a short address of welcome and introduced the speaker of the day, Hon. George B. Foster, of Peoria. Mr. Foster discoursed in a very pleasing manner and was eagerly listened to. His speech was somewhat marred by the noise of firecrackers, the enthusiasm of the boys being incorrigible, and the noise of teams upon the pavement also made some of his words scarcely audible to those not close to the rostrum. By those in a position to hear, his address is commended in high terms.
Then there was the parade of ragamuffins, which brought out some clever, as well as many grotesque, costumes, and was the source of no end of amusement and fun.
After dinner the street sports, contests and horse exhibition took place upon the main street and furnished amusement, as well as arousing considerable interest and competition. Liberal cash prizes were given in each contest. The baseball game played between the local team and the Peoria Rivals at the First street ball park was one of the best games witnessed in this part of the state this season and is reported in full under the heading, "Base Ball News" in another column.
In the evening, as soon as darkness had settled over the city, the display of fireworks was made from the corner of Armstrong's park, where all could see.
There was dancing, afternoon and evening, a merry-go-round furnished amusement for many, and there were games of various kinds, drinks and refreshments in the numerous stands and booths erected along the streets.
Taken as a whole, there was a big time and a big crowd in Chatsworth on July Fourth, 1908.
CHATSWORTH PUBLIC LIBRARY
July 10, 1908
Knowing that there is a spirit of inquiry regarding the library, the ladies who have been working so long and earnestly to bring about the purchase of books and preparation of a reading room, are glad to announce that the books are on the shelves and ready to loan. They number about 400 and are of quite a nice selection. The cards which will entitle the holder to borrow books for one year are also ready and my be obtained at the library rooms. Please come to the rooms for them and after paying for and signing one, select a book and begin reading without delay. The rooms are upstairs in the Walter building, room No. 2, on the left of the hall, and will be open afternoons from 2 to 5:30 and evenings from 7 to 9 o'clock on Tuesdays and Saturdays.
Will those who promised to take cards please be prompt to come with the dollar for a card, and thus save another canvass among the homes to collect? The year began July 7, 1908 and will close July 7, 1909.
We always remember with gratitude the gifts of money, books, furniture and labor that have made even this small beginning possible.
HABERKORN'S BAND REORGANIZED
MAY 13, 1910
Haberkorn's Cornet band, which for years held an enviable reputation throughout this section of the state, being one of the best bands which ever originated in a small town, has been reorganized under the directorship of L.J. Haberkorn. Henry Game was elected president and manager; Frank Wise, secretary, and Thomas Burns, treasurer. Fourteen members start the reorganization off and there will undoubtedly be others join in the near future. The first practice will take place on Monday evening next and the band is open for engagements, as most of the members are experienced musicians.
The people of Chatsworth and vicinity will be more than pleased to know that Chatsworth is again to have a band, and there is no reason to believe that it will be anything but a good one.
Departed for New York
February 16, 1912
Mr. and Mrs. William Traub and little daughter, Wilhelmine, departed on Wednesday afternoon for Chicago and from there they will go to New York City, where they expect to make their home. Their many friends regret their departure, and wish them success and happiness.
Mr. Traub has made his home in Chatsworth since coming to the United States about twenty-five years ago, having been engaged in the clothing business all of that time. He has now associated himself with his brother-in-law, Mr. Selig, and they will open a gentlemen's outfitting establishment in New York City about the first of March, and Mr. Traub will be actively associated with the business as manager. He will continue his Chatsworth business under the management of Joe Miller, who has been associated with him in the business here for some time past.
Celebrated 40th Wedding Anniversary
March 1, 1912
On Wednesday, February 28, Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Fields in a quiet but enjoyable way celebrated their fortieth wedding anniversary, their children alone being present. Many good wishes and congratulations of the day were extended to them by friends. A gift from Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Pepperdine of beautiful flowers, lilies, freesias, violets and carnations of various colors brightened and cheered the home. John Broadhead with his phonograph have a variety of fine selections. It was a glad good day, a day of days, which will not be forgotten but cherished through life as long as memory lasts.
Mr. and Mrs. fields were married on February 28, 1872 and commenced housekeeping the beginning of March on the Henry Norris farm six miles southwest of Chatsworth living in that community for nine years, near the village of Wing, fifteen years and in their present home eleven years. Mrs. Fields arrived in Chatsworth from England Feb. 21, 1872. Mr. Fields arrived at Galva, Ill., from England April 19, 1870, coming to Livingston county Feb. 21, 1870. He united with the M.E. church in Forrest in 1871. He has been associated with the Methodist church and Sunday school in the old country and the new from the time he was three years of age, covering a period of more than 3 score years. For many years his fellow townsmen have been pleased to give to him various township offices unsought for.
Will Rebuild Telephone System
W.P. McHenry, manager of the Chatsworth Telephone Exchange, states that the exchange will soon be rebuild, and full metallic service given the subscribers, which will greatly improve the service. Some of the necessary materials are already here and the greater part of the necessary and expensive equipment has been ordered. Over 2,500 feet of cable has been ordered, which will take the place of numerous wires which now constitute the main leads, and when the work is completed, Mr. McHenry says the Chatsworth exchange will be second to none of its size in the state.
THIS IS MY BIRTHDAY
NOVEMBER 15, 1912
Today, Friday, November 15, is Milo M. Miller's 82nd birthday and our venerable townsman is celebrating the event in a quiet and pleasant manner at the home of his son-in-law and daughter, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Roberts. The members of the local Masonic lodge, of which he is a member, will call upon him, as well as other friends, and the day will be made memorable in other ways. The Plaindealer extends hearty congratulation to Mr. Miller on attaining the advanced age of 82 years and retiring all of his faculties as acute as ever, and hopes he may be spared to mingle with his host of friends for many more years.
HAS EXCITING EXPERIENCES
DECEMBER 13, 1912
J. Lester Haberkorn, Chatsworth's well known baritone soloist, who is traveling with the Hollowell Concert Co. through the west and northwest writes his father and sends papers telling of two experiences which he had last week, which he will probably never forget. At Hobson, Mont., the stage was lighted by two large Rochester kerosene lamps, and during the opening overture one of the lamps fell upon the stage, but fortunately did not strike anyone, although it set the stage on fire and came near consuming the building. Lester was also upon one of the two transcontinental trains on the Burlington Great Northern railroad when they met in a head-on collision near Belt, Mont., but the Hollowell company was again fortunate, none of the members being injured. The person who received the worst injuries was an Illinois lady, Mrs. Mary McKelvie, of Carthage, Ill., who had her face and head badly cut and bruised and her nose broken. She was enroute to Spokane. Lester reports excellent business.
HALLAM FAMILY REUNION
DECEMBER 27, 1912
The William Hallam home in this city was the scene of one of the most enjoyable Christmas reunions of which the editor has learned, all of the children, but one, George, of Moscow, Idaho, being present, as well as many other relative. Twenty-nine persons partook of the festivities, among them being the following: Mrs. E.E. Hallam, Gilman; Willam Hallam, Jr., son of William III, daughter Lillie, Chicago; Castello Hallam, Aurora; Harry Hallam, Humboldt, Kan.; Pearl Hallam and family, Forrest; Frank Hallam and family, Saunemin; Charles Lown, Wesley, Iowa; Edward Weirhmiller, George Metz, Forrest; Harvey Hallam, Cullom; Irwin Law, Piper City; Mr. and Mrs. Ray Frantz, Saunemin; Roy Hallam, Charlotte; and Mrs. L. W. Wienand.
ELECTED STATE SENATOR
DECEMBER 27, 1912
William Peckham, of Oneida county, N.Y., who was born in Chatsworth and whose parents are both buried in the Chatsworth cemetery, was elected state senator on the democratic ticket from his district at the November election. Mr. Peckham was an orphan since infancy, both his parents having died here when he was a babe, and he was taken and reared by an aunt, now residing in California. The father was in the employ of J.T. Bullard, in the lumber business in Chatsworth about forty years ago.
I believe this to be his memorial.
50 Years Ago
May 24, 1917
Yesterday Judge G.W. Patton issued an order of ouster against both the Sullivan and Chatsworth High school districts. This virtually dissolves these districts, although in the case of the Chatsworth district the defendants asked for an appeal to the supreme court and the appeal was granted upon the defendants filing a bond within 30 days.
Owing to the high cost of everything we have to buy we are compelled to increase the price of ice to private houses to 50 cents per hundred pounds. J.E. Marr - T.G. Harris
COMMUNITY SALE ATTRACTS NICE CROWD SATURDAY
APRIL 25, 1940
The second community auction sale to be held in Chatsworth this spring drew a very nice crowd on Saturday afternoon and totaled $1,091.03.
The sale was held on vacant lots east of the LaRochelle store. There were three horses, 14 cattle and calves, several hogs and miscellaneous articles sold.
The men who are promoting the sales express satisfaction in the result and plan to continue the sales every Saturday afternoon. For this week they have quite a number of cattle listed, together with other stock and a big lot of household furniture.
J.F. Donovan is the auctioneer; Harold Hoppler the manager and Phil Kohler, treasurer. They charge a very modest fee for selling but hope to receive sufficient patronage to make the sales a permanent weekly event.
BROSNAHAN IS TRANSFERRED TO PALESTINE, ILLINOIS
APRIL 4, 1940
T.J. Brosnahan, road supervisor between Effingham and Tolono of the Illinois Central with headquarters at Mattoon for the past 23 years, has been transferred to Palestine, the change taking effect April 1st.
In Palestine Mr. Brosnahan will have charge of the road from Effingham to Switz City, Indiana, a distance of about 88 miles. Before going to Mattoon Mr. Brosnahan had been stationed in Chatsworth about 12 years and in Minonk about four years. His total service with the company amounts to 39 years.
Mrs. Brosnahan will go to Palestine later.
BUYS LAND ON WHICH MARL PIT IS LOCATED
MAY 2, 1940
According to a warrantee deed filed for record in Pontiac Lee Forney and wife have purchased from William P. Leitch and wife, as joint tenants, the east half of the southeast quarter and the southwest quarter of the southeast quarter of section 32, Chatsworth township.
This is the 120-acre farm formerly owned by W.O. Myers and on which the marl pit is located. Mr. Forney has operated the marl sales on lease for the past year or more. The price paid for the land is given as $8,300.
TRUNK FAMILY HOLDS REUNION AT FRANK TRUNK HOME
JUNE 6, 1940
The Trunk family reunion was held at the Frank Trunk home on Tuesday. A cafeteria lunch was served. Those present from a distance were Mr. and Mrs. Fred Trunk and daughters, Ella and Beth of Worthington, Minn.; Ferdinand and Ed Trunk, of Chicago; Miss Mary Frances Trunk, of Bloomington. Fred Trunk, of Worthington and Ed Trunk of Chatsworth are twin brothers and they are in their 75th year, which is quite unusual for twins to be together at that age.
JUNIOR MATTHIAS WINS SIX DAY 2,000 MILE TRIP
JUNE 27, 1940
Junior (William) Matthias is enjoying a six-day 2,000 mile sight seeing vacation trip in the East as a guest of the Chicago Daily News. He is one of 85 carriers from suburban and country towns who were awarded the trip for procuring the most new subscriptions in a recent circulation contest.
The journey includes a visit to Niagara Falls, New York City, the World's Fair, a trip up the Hudson river past Sing Sing and President Roosevelt's Hyde Park estate, a visit to Washington, D. C., including the White House, congress and other historic places and a trip to West Point.
The party of carriers departed from Chicago at 10 o'clock Sunday night in a special chair car, accompanied by a corps of men, one for each eight boys. They were also accompanied by a physician and were assured good meals, attention to their safety and welfare in every respect. They will return to Chicago Saturday afternoon.
Prior to their departure from Chicago the carriers were banqueted at the Congress hotel, provided with special identifying hats, photographed and instructed. Parents and friends who accompanied the carriers to Chicago were included as banquet guests. The Chatsworth party included Mrs. Ann Matthias, Mr. and Mrs. Joe Chantry, Janice Daniels and Jerome Monahan.
DISPLAYS SAME FLAG EVERY FOURTH FOR 45 YEARS
JULY 11, 1940
On the morning of July 4th, Dennis J. Kerrins displayed a large United States flag in front of his home in Chatsworth for the 45th consecutive year.
This flag is about four by six feet in size and made of cotton cloth. It has the regulation thirteen stripes but only 45 stars as there were but 45 states in the union when the flag was made. It is in a very good state of preservation and Mr. Kerrins is justly proud of the record. He told a Plaindealer man that he procured the flag while the late James A. Smith was mayor of Chatsworth and had carefully preserved it all these years and had personally displayed it every fourth of July since 1895.
THURNER FAMILY HOLDS REUNION NEAR CLIFTON
AUGUST 15, 1940
The Thurner reunion was held Sunday at the Ben Dassow farm near Clifton with fifty relatives present. The officers elected were: President, Cecil Thurner, of Hebron, Ind.; Vice President, Clarence Frobish, Chatsworth; Secretary-Treasurer, Mrs. Ralph Dassow, Chatsworth; Historian, Mrs. Ben Dassow, Clifton. Those attending from Chatsworth were: Mr. and Mrs. Clarence Frobish, Mrs. and Mrs. Albert King, Mr. and Mrs. Ralph Dassow, Mr. and Mrs. Elmer Dassow and sons; Mr. and Mrs. Frank Gaisford, Mr. and Mrs. Elmer Grosenbach, Mr. and Mrs. Frank Knoll and Mr. and Mrs. Lloyd King. The reunion will be held at the same place next year.
CHATSWORTH SOLDIER HELPS RIG UP RADIO THAT WORKS
SEPTEMBER 28, 1944
With the 37th Infantry Division Somewhere in the Southwest Pacific Area -- Special--
Radios for Infantrymen occupying front line battle positions are a luxury, but a resident of Calumet, Michigan and Chatsworth, Illinois, have solved the problem.
Pfc. Andrew A. Karvola, 35, Calumet, read instructions in YANK magazine how a soldier in Europe rigged up a receiving set made of razor blades and other scrap items. With the help of Pfc. Roscoe G. Runyon, 35, Chatsworth, he went to work experimenting and now they get news broadcasts and other programs from their Pacific Island American Expeditionary Force radio station.
Basically the radio consists of a coil made of 200 winds of salvaged automobile generator wire, a 100-foot aerial of the same type wire and a ground made of a metal rod. The crystal is formed from a razor blade while a safety pin provides a contact wire. It is all hooked up to a sound power telephone that forms the loudspeaker.
Starting their third year overseas the two men have also served in Fiji, New Hebrides and Guadalcanal. Both automatic riflemen in an Infantry regiment that defeated hundred of Japanese assaulting Hill 129, Bougainville Island, they have been awarded the Soldiers' Good Conduct Medal and Combat Infantryman Badge.
Karola is a brother of Mrs. Leonard Koski, 3133 Tunnel St., Calumet. Runyon's parents, Mrs. and Mrs. Alfred Runyon, and his wife, the former Irene Lear, reside in Chatsworth.
CANNING SUGAR: SPARE STAMP NO.9 IS VALID NOW
MARCH 14, 1946
The sugar stamp (spare stamp No.9) validated Monday by the OPA, is definitely not a bonus or gift from the government. It is good for five pounds of sugar to be used for home canning.
Because canning season in the South begins early the stamp was validated at this time. This method also eliminates the registration of last year.
Homemakers are warned to plan to use this sugar carefully, since no increase in the regular ration is contemplated, and no more canning sugar can be guaranteed at this time.
LOCKER PLANT AND MEAT MARKET HAS NEW OWNERS
OCTOBER 3, 1946
Tuesday morning James Mauritzen and Don Askew turned over the Chatsworth Locker Plant and their meat market to Cletus Freehill, a farmer residing ten miles south of Chatsworth.
Mr. Freehill informs us that he plans to operate the locker and market with the assistance of his two sons, James A. and Jerome. Don Askew will remain with the new owner for the present and assist in getting them going. The Freehill family has long been substantial and respected citizens of this community, and will have the good wishes of many friends in their new business.
GREW UP IN THE MARKET
Mr. Mauritzen and Mr. Askew are both life long residents of Chatsworth with the exception of short periods. Mr. Mauritzen began work for his father, the late John Mauritzen, when he was 14 years old. Most of the time since, he has been in the meat business, except two years spent in World War I and five years he was a clothing salesman for Garrity & Baldwin. He conducted a meat market in Forrest for eight years but returned to Chatsworth about 1938 and purchased an interest in a meat market then owned by Mr. Askew who had purchased the George Strobel market in 1935. February 1, 1939, they bought out Walter Fielding in the present location of the market and locker plant and consolidated the two markets and at once started the erection of the locker equipment and in March opened the locker. While Mr. Askew's meat experience does not date back as far as his erstwhile partner, Mr. Mauritzen, he has had plenty of experience in the retail meat business. They have gone through the trying war shortages and restrictions successfully and have tried as best they could to supply the retail trade as well as serving the locker customers. They retire now mainly because Mr. Maurtizen's health has not been up to par and his physician advised a change.
MRS. RALPH DASSOW INSTALLED AS HEAD OF LEGION AUXILIARY
OCTOBER 17, 1946
The American Legion Auxiliary met Monday evening, Oct. 14, in the Legion hall.
After the regular business meeting officers for the coming year were installed as follows: President, Mrs. Ralph Dassow; Vice President, Mrs. James Mauritzen; Secretary, Mrs. S.H. Herr; Treasurer, Mrs. C.L. Ortman; Historian, Mrs. Velma O'Brien; Chaplain, Mrs. Emmett Cavanaugh, and Sergeant at Arms, Mrs. Willis Pearson. The retiring president was Mrs. Mabel Haase.
Menu covers for Navy Day at the Veterans' hospital at Dwight were made. Mrs. Willis Pearson was chosen delegate and Mrs. S.H. Herr, alternate to the fall convention to be held soon in Bloomington. Two new members were added to the roll. After the meeting refreshments were served by the committee.
Mayor Dietz has sold his property to Frank Kuntz.
RICK NELSON TO MARRY KRISTIN HARMON
JANUARY 3, 1963
Singer Rick Nelson and Kristin Harmon, daughter of Tom Harmon, plan to marry in the spring.
Harmon and his wife, the former film actress Elyse Knox, announced the engagement last week.
Nelson, 22, grew up in the public eye, appearing on his family's radio and television series, "The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet." He and the 18 year old Miss Harmon started dating about 18 months ago.
Tom Harmon, who is the nephew of the late Will Quinn of Chatsworth, has visited his uncle here.
THE CENTENNIAL CORNER
JANUARY 19, 1967
CHATSWORTH IN 1898
In 1898 a Livingston County Business Directory was put out that sold for two dollars. Towns were mentioned that today are unheard of, are ghost towns or have ceased to exist, except in the memories of old times.
How many have ever heard of Budd, Cayuga, Lodemia, Reading, Missal, Rowe, Rugby, Scovel, Smithdale, Swygert, Wilson, Rosalthe? These were all spots on the map of that era. Some had populations of 340, 160, 75, 60, 100, 50, with a church, post office and sometimes stores. Rugby had a population of 6.
Chatsworth of that day had 1200 inhabitants. John Kerrins was President of the Board of Trustees. The members were James Snyder, Charles Burns, John Beckman, John Ross, H.P. Turner and Thomas Entwistle. John Taggart was village clerk and Clarence Bangs was a police magistrate.
The village had a well organized fire department, two nice shady parks and sidewalks. The old wooden structures had been replaced by brick sidewalks, until over four miles of brick walk had been laid.
The electric light plant was a private enterprise owned by D.J. Stanford and operated by his son C.F. Stanford. this furnished power for twenty-four 2,000 candle power lamps and 350 incandescent lamps. The streets were well lighted by thirteen arc lights. Twenty residences and all of the business houses were illuminated by electric lights.
A picture showed the Chatsworth Public School as the large two story frame building that was torn down in 1960. Prof. F. L. Mills had charge of the school, which consisted of five departments, including a high school course of four years.
MARCH 16, 1967
Michael P. and Mary Fitzmaurice, Sr. were among the early pioneers of Chatsworth, arriving there in 1857.
Michael Fitzmaurice was born in the County of Roscommon in Ireland on July 4, 1823. His wife, the former Mary Donnelly, was born in the town of Waterford in Roscommon County, Ireland, June 15, 1838. They, together with their respective families, were passengers on the same large sailing ship which left Ireland en route to the United States in 1851. The trip, which lasted thirty-nine days, was a very rough one and some twenty-five of the seventy-two passengers died en route and were buried at sea. the Fitzmaurice and Donnelly families first settled at Providence, Rhode Island in 1851.
Michael Fitzmaurice and Mary Donnelly were married in Providence in 1856. He joined the crew that built the TP&W railroad from Peoria, Illinois to Effner, Indiana. During the year of 1857 they settled on a farm near Charlotte, Illinois. Ownership of this farm was later acquired by a son-in-law, Dr. T.C. Seright. After several years of farming the Fitzmaurices moved to town and opened a grocery store and saloon in a building located several doors east of the Baldwin Grocery store building. When the disastrous Chatsworth train wreck occurred in 1887 many of the injured were placed on the floor of the Fitzmaurice building and the family rendered every possible aid to them until medical attention could be given. The Fitzmaurices also witnessed the Great Fire in Chatsworth in 1888, which destroyed a major part of the business section, however, their building escaped destruction.
Michael and Mary Fitzmaurice were charter members of the Saints Peter and Paul Catholic church in Chatsworth. A stained glass memorial window donated by them is still a part of the church building and their names appear on this window. They had nine children two of whom died at birth. the other seen were James, Katherine, Mary, Nellie, Josephine, John and Michael,Jr.
Their daughter Mary became the wife of Dr. T.C. Seright, who practiced medicine in Chatsworth from 1890 until his death in 1941. They were the parents of T.C. Seright, Jr., Chicago and Mrs. Mary Schroeder of Winnetka, Illinois.
The son, James, was a pitcher for the Chatsworth baseball team. He later moved to Peoria and pitched for several semi-professional teams in that city.
Another son, John, was born in 1874. He recalled talking on the first telephone installed in Chatsworth on its first day of operation. He talked from the phone in Bangs' Drug Store to someone in Pontiac. At the age of fourteen he became a telegraph operator in Peoria. He followed the railroad business until his retirement on January 31, 1941, at which time he was vice-president of the Illinois Northern railroad, a subsidiary of the International Harvester Company in Chicago. Throughout his life he was a frequent visitor in Chatsworth and at the time of his death in 1963, he was residing with his nephew, John F. Boyle in Fort Worth, Texas. John F. Boyle was a grandson of the Fitzmaurices, is married to the former Margaret Lawless, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. P.J. Lawless, both deceased, who lived their entire lives in Chatsworth. John Boyle's mother was Katherine Fitzmaurice Boyle.
A granddaughter, Mrs. Jack Gould, resides in Indianapolis, Indiana. She was a columnist for the Indianapolis News for twenty-one years and has recently retired. Her father was Frank Manley, principal of the Chatsworth grade school. Her mother was Nellie Fitzmaurice Manley.
Another granddaughter, Mary, is a sister of John F. Boyle. She is now sister Mary Emilis, a nun at the Sacred Heart Rehabilitation Hospital in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Sr. Emilis will celebrate her Golden Anniversary in the sisterhood in 1968.
Michael P. Fitzmaurice, Sr. died in Chatsworth on January 11, 1890. His wife, Mary, died in Chicago on February 19, 1920. Both are buried in the Catholic cemetery in Chatsworth.
This letter to the editor was also in that issue:
Fort Worth, Texas
February 18, 1967
Re: Chatsworth Pioneers. A brief sketch of the history of the Michael and Mary Fitzmaurice family is enclosed. they were among the early pioneers of Chatsworth.
Am not sure if you plan to put any of these in the paper or not but am sending copy, just in case.
My wife, the former Margaret Lawless, daughter of Mrs. and Mrs. P.J. Lawless, graduated from Chatsworth high school in 1929.
I graduated from the old St. Patrick's high school in 1917.
While in Chatsworth last October, we became stockholders in the Chatsworth Centennial Ass'n.
We think very fondly of Chatsworth as our home town and plan to return for Centennial week.
Mr. and Mrs. John F. Boyle, Sr.
Fort Worth, Texas 76107
THE CENTENNIAL CORNER
MARCH 23, 1967
John Monahan, a native of Meath County, Ireland, left his homeland at age 17. With his brother Patrick, he came to Charlotte Township in June 1858. He married Mary Glinnen. They built a two story frame home in 1864, only to have it destroyed by a cyclone in March 1865. Not to be discouraged however, Mr. Monahan rebuilt his home. The original purchase was 160 acres of wild prairie land. He added to this until he had 480 acres. Mr. Monahan raised fine Norman horses and Holstein cattle.
Their children were Julia Ann, Maria Jane, Thomas, Francis, Matthew Paul, Helena Bruno, John Dennis, Edward Alphonso and Katie Agnes.
Mr. Monahan held the offices of township supervisor, assessor and school director. He helped in organizing the township of Charlotte.
If there are any people who have a right to celebrate the Centennial it is the Bennetts, for just 100 years ago, P.J. Bennett purchased 80 acres of wild prairie land in Charlotte township.
The family came out from New York in the fall of 1858 and rented a farm in Peoria county. P.J. started working for himself shortly after he was 18. In the summer of 1888 he broke the sod.
It was in 1869 he married Margaret Ridgeway. Mr. Bennett added to his original land purchase and built a new home in 1873. According to Brydon's diary the Bennett home burned in 1893.
Mr. Bennett's animals were Durham and Holstein cattle, Morgan and Clyde horses, Poland China swine.
He helped in the organization of school districts and served as director. Their children were George, Francis, Nellie Maude, Roy Ernest and Stella Fern.
Roy and his sister Stella live in Piper City, as does Fern Schrock, a granddaughter; grandsons Willis Bennett and Clarence Bennett live in or near Chatsworth.
THE CENTENNIAL CORNER
MARCH 30, 1967
James Brydon was born in Liverpool in 1836, but was raised in Scotland by an aunt, after his parents died. With his aunt and a sister he came to this county in 1853 at the age of 15 and went to Kankakee. With the outbreak of the Civil War he enlisted at Chicago in Company K, 43rd Illinois Infantry. Part of the time he drove an ambulance with horses, Jim and Charley, transporting the sick and wounded to the base hospital.
He kept a diary of his experiences in the war and a list of the battles. He was engaged in the raid through East Tennessee to Knoxville. The battle that seemed to impress him the most was the Battle of Chickamauga, as he referred to it later in the diary as "five years since the battle" or "the anniversary of Chickamauga". He re-enlisted in 1864 and joined the army of Sherman on his march upon Atlanta and was present at the siege and capture of the city.
In his diary he referred to the capture of Richmond, Va. , the southern capital, then he wrote that Lee's army was being "worsted" in their retreat from Richmond. Next came the welcome news Lee's army had surrendered. The soldiers were celebrating the victory, but their joy was short lived because on April 15 came the news of the assassination of President Lincoln, which dampened their spirits "for he was not only the soldier's friend, but everybody's friend".
After being mustered out of the army, Mr. Brydon came to Chatsworth and purchased 80 acres of wild prairie land in Charlotte township. He worked for others until he could earn money for tools, then he broke the sod and put in a crop. Every activity he carefully recorded in his diary.
He built his first "shanty" himself because he lacked money to pay someone to do it. He brought his bride to his new home. Mr. Brydon was always a naturalist, even with serving in the army, he went to a mountain in Alabama to gather some "interesting ecological specimens" to send home. He started a nursery on his farm. The diary reports how he planted walnuts, or acorns or set out 300 Larch trees. As these grew he sold the trees and from the profit bought more land. This grove of trees which he set out was called Brydon's Grove. The Glenn Smiths lived there for many years. Omer Lindquist lives there now. Originally there were more than 100 kinds of native trees growing in the grove.
To this grove came a large flock of unusual birds, the black crowned night herons. They made this woods their rookery, and built nests, laid eggs, reared their young. They lived on fish they caught in the Vermilion river a few miles away. This rookery is the only one known in Central Illinois, which is another feature of Brydon's Grove.
THE CENTENNIAL CORNER
APRIL 6, 1967
Stephen s. Hitch, an early farmer in Livingston county, held a record of gallant service during the Civil War. Hitch was born at Wisbeach Cambridgeshire, England, April 8, 1838. His parents, Robert and Mary hitch, came to the U.S. in 1863 and went to El Paso. Stephen was 15 years old when he arrived in this country. He located at Washington, Ill., where he first worked as a farm hand then moved to El Paso.
In 1862 on August 27 he enlisted in the Fourth Regiment Illinois Volunteer Cavalry, fighting under General Grierson and other noted cavalry leaders. He was with that famous officer in his memorable raid through Mississippi. He was mustered out at Memphis, Tenn., June 15, 1865. He joined the Eben G. Trask Post No. 388 Grand Army of the Republic.
On returning from the war, he devoted his attention to farming. In 1865 he bought 80 acres in Chatsworth township and in 1890 40 acres in Charlotte township.
On June 17, 1864, Hitch was married to Henrietta who was born in England. Their son Dick Hitch, continues to operate the home farm. He married Miss Sadie Dann in 1898. They were the parents of three children, Alfred, Irene and Florence.
Hitch served seven years as chairman of the Oliver and Corn Grove Drainage Board, as Township assessor, president of Board of Highway Commissioners and member of the Board of Education.
He attended religious services at the Baptist church and his fraternal affiliation was with the A.F. and A.M. Chatsworth Lodge No. 539.
The farm is now in the hands of the fourth generation of Hitch men, having been farmed by Stephen, Dick, Alfred and at present by Stephen, the son of Alfred.
THE CENTENNIAL CORNER
APRIL 27, 1967
On of the most fascinating accounts in the History of Livingston County concerned James Bergan, born in Ireland in 1842 and coming to the U.S. with his parents at the age of eight years. As soon as he was old enough he began to work out as a farm hand and did so until 1862. With the beginning of the Civil War, he left his rented farm in the midst of harvest to enlist in the army with the 77th Regiment Illinois Volunteer Infantry. He served under Grant and Logan, taking part in the siege of Vicksburg and at Johnston's evacuation of Jackson, Miss. He hauled down the Confederate flag even as the enemy covered him with a gun. He was promoted for his "gallant conduct" and this flag is still reserved as a trophy in Peoria.
In July 1864 he was captured at Fort Gaines, Ala., and was one of eight prisoners taken to Mobile. Some of the enemy officers wanted to shoot them but the privates interceded in their behalf and their lives were spared. Women in the streets spat in their faces.
He was later taken to the infamous Andersonville Prison, his uniform taken away and filthy garb substituted. He was one of 37,000 prisoners confined in that miserable stockade of 17 acres where the death rate was 137 per 1,000. They were starved by the commander, who would repeatedly cut rations two days at a time because two thirds of the men had voted for Lincoln.
Mr. Bergan was confined at Andersonville over 10 months. His weight dropped from 165 to 110 pounds. Only three of the men captured with him came out alive.
In 1868 he located in Livingston county and married Mary Boyle, a native of Ireland. He eventually owned two farms totaling 300 acres. He was the largest stock feeder in Livingston county, feeding as many as 300 head of cattle.
He was school director, road commissioner and township supervisor at various times. He was instrumental in enlarging the county farm and in rebuilding county buildings.
He was on the committee in charge of construction of the monument in honor of soldiers of the Civil War in this county, which was erected on the northeast corner of the square in Pontiac. He represented Charlotte township and served as chairman of the committee. The monument was erected for $12,153.50.
OLD CHATSWORTH MAPS
MAY 18, 1967
Noble Pearson has a couple of ancient maps, loaned to him by Clemet Steichen of Dwight. The maps were made about 1870, as they have the 1870 census, but have the proposed Decatur State line (later the Illinois Central) railroad before it was built and do not show the First Baptist church built in 1871, but do show the Catholic church built in 1869.
The township population was 1713. Truman Brockway was supervisor, W.W. Sears was clerk, J.T. Bullard, president of Board of Trustees, J.J. Rayhill, police constable, Robert Rumbold, assessor.
The largest parcels of land were owned by Franklin Oliver, John Stillwell, W.H. Osborne, W.W. Crumpton, Germania Sugar company, some small-time farmers had over 40 acres.
The village directory showed Kenyon and Brockway had a hardware store, John Stillwell and Co. were bankers, M. Roberts operated a restaurant and ice cream saloon (whatever that might be).
Fosdick and Wallace were attorneys at law. W.W. Sears handled real estate, J.T. Bullard ran a lumber yard. Esty and Brother were bankers and real estate agents. M.H. Hall and A.M. Crane operated Hall and Crane grocery and hardware store. E.A. Bangs ran a drug store. George Taylor, Brother and Company sold dry goods. F. Struckmeyer ran a harness and saddle shop selling horse collars, bridle, whips and halters.
W.S. Hall sold furniture, picture frames and musical instruments. F. Felker sold agricultural implements, lumber and hardware. N.C. Kenyon was postmaster and sold books, stationary and notions at the post office.
J.H. Rayhill advertised as a painter of signs, houses and carriages. J.A. Schenk operated a saloon and billard hall and
D. W. Hunt was a physician and surgeon.
Only three churches were indicated, the Catholic located on N.E. corner of Fifth and Spruce; the Methodist at its present location and the Presbyterian east of the hotel. Jones Hall was on corner of Maple and Sixth, a hotel was on sixth and Walnut, another at Fourth and Walnut and a livery at Third and Walnut.
The T.P.& W. depot blocked Fourth street. A school was indicated at Fourth and Elm (old grade school) and the first school in the middle of block north side of street on Ash between Fourth and Fifth.
The post office was on Locust and Fifth, south side, where Baldauf's store is today. The maps were very neatly done and clearly drawn. They were also well preserved to be almost 100 years old.
THE CENTENNIAL CORNER
JUNE 1, 1967
Mrs. Emma Wienand, daughter of the William Hallams, was born January 27, 1872, making her 95 years old, only five years younger than Chatsworth, and also one of Chatsworth's oldest citizens.
There were 10 children in the family, seven boys and three girls. she recalled her life on the farm as she was growing up. She helped with almost everything, sometimes in the fields, but because of her numerous brothers, that wasn't too often her lot. They raised corn and oats, cattle, pigs and chickens, producing much of their own food. She remembered her mother baked bread for the family and made all their clothes, everything.
The family had kerosene lamps for light and the home was heated with stoves. Mrs. Wienand with her brothers and sisters attended country school, No. 9. She walked 1 1/2 miles to school, and in the winter, it was over the tops of snow banks.
Their teachers were usually women. She couldn't recall any picnics or school programs. At recess all the children, perhaps 88 played together. She remembered playing ball. They took their lunch in a dinner bucket, or lunch pail.
When asked if she traveled on the train, her eyes twinkled and she said, "YES, as far as Piper City". She remembered the 4th of July celebrations. To her this was mainly a big picnic with friends and relatives getting together, but she remembered there were also speeches. She spoke of church being held in the school house.
She recalled the Chatsworth wreck. She was about 15 at the time. Her father and brother were on the wrecked train. They were scratched up, but not seriously hurt. She drove a team to the site of the wreck and she said the awful sight she would never forget.
Mrs. Wienand has a nephew Jerome Hallam living south of Forrest.
THE CENTENNIAL CORNER
JUNE 8, 1967
Tom Pierce is another of Chatsworth's senior citizens, who is in his nineties. He was born in 1874. His grandfather, David Pierce, a native of Wales, came out from Pennsylvania before the Civil War. He was a type of lay preacher who was interested in starting Sunday Schools, and started one at Melvin. He built a house on a hill on the same land recently vacated by the Pierce family.
Tom Pierce and Joe Rumbold were born the same year, neighbors, who grew up together. They attended Center school, one mile north and 1 1/2 miles west of their home. They walked to school, as did all children of that day.
The school house was the center of amusements. They organized a literary society and held programs and debates. People came out from Chatsworth to attend. Most of their fun was at school. They hung May baskets at homes of friends.
The school house was the place for Sunday school. Visiting ministers sometimes came out from town.
The Pierces had an uncle who spent four years in the Civil War, in the cavalry. He accidently shot himself and carried the bullet in his leg the rest of his life.
Mr. Pierce recalled peddlers who went through the country selling their wares. Some walked and carried a pack. The more prosperous ones drove a horse and rig. They sold needles, pins, hooks and eyes, suspenders, ties, dress goods and notions.
Mr. Pierce went with his father to the scene of the Chatsworth wreck. He remembered the piles of cars. The bodies were being brought to town.
The Pierce's grandfather took grain to Paxton to sell it. Starting early one morning, he saw wolves slinking away into the woods. Their mother recalled seeing a wolf and dog fighting under a wagon. The family went to Fairbury for coal and to Chatsworth to the mill.
Their mother made shirts for the four boys and dresses for the two girls in the family.
The 4th of July was important then. Buggies and wagons began going by their house at 4 or 5 o'clock in the morning, carrying neighbors on their way to Chatsworth to spend the day. He remembered the good speakers, the parades and the band. He recalled torchlight political parades too. On one occasion, William Jennings Bryan was here.
Mrs. Pierce worked for a neighbor, Adam Shafer. Only German was spoken in the household. Much of the food was produced at home. Many of the fruits were dried.
Miss Fannie Pierce, who was present at the interview. recalled her first school teaching days. The boys generously offered to go get a bucket of water. She allowed them to go, but they were so long in returning she wondered what had kept them. She found they had stopped to chase a rabbit. They caught it too, then they had to go back to get some twine to tie it up. Eventually they returned with the bucket of water and "hog-tied" rabbit.
Among business houses Mr. Pierce remembered was Hansen's bakery, where they made good bread, the shoemaker's Wrede, who made as well as sold shoes, Jackson's hardware in the middle of the East block, and Bangs grocery, drug store and bank where Citizen's Bank is today.
Mr. Pierce attend the first World's Fair in Chicago. After he was grown he went to North Dakota to work for Mr. Parsons, a former Chatsworth man. He remained in North Dakota until recently when he moved back to Chatsworth to be with his sister and brother.
FATHER KERRINS MARKS 40TH YEAR IN PRIESTHOOD
JUNE 15, 1967
A solemn mass of thanksgiving was celebrated Sunday June 11, at St. Mary's Catholic church, El Paso, in observance of the 40th anniversary of the ordination of Rev. James J. Kerrins.
Rev. Kerrins was celebrant, assisted by Rev. George Howard of Leonore, Rev. Jerome Morrissey, Chatsworth as deacon and sub-deacon, respectively and Rev. Carl Mayes of Oglesby gave the sermon.
A reception following the mass was held honoring Rev. Kerrins, who has been pastor of St. Mary's parish since Oct. 12, 1950. Following the reception an evening dinner was served for Rev. Kerrins and his relatives in the rectory.
James J. Kerrins is the eldest of seven children of Martin P. and Sara E. Sullivan Kerrins, and was born at Chatsworth, July 7, 1903. He received his early education at St. Patrick's grade and high school in Chatsworth except for two years in Wesley, Iowa. Training at St. Bede's College, Peru, was followed by six years at St. Paul's Seminary, St. Paul, Minn. He was ordained by Bishop E.M. Dunne at St. Mary's Catherdral, Peoria, June 11, 1927, and celebrated his first Solemn Mass in St. Peter and Paul's church, Chatsworth, June 12, 1927.
His first appointment was assistant to Rev. J.J. Burke, St. Mark's church in Peoria, where he served five years. Next year at Visitation Church, Kewanee, where he was assistant to Rev. W.P. Burke. On July 29, 1933, he was appointed pastor of the Assumption church at Ashkum and the St. John the Baptist church, L'Erable, was made an out-mission in January 1934, and remains today one of the largest and most beautiful frame churches in the state.
He was transferred to the pastorate of the Sacred Heart church, Annawan, Feb. 3, 1944, where he remained until Oct. 12, 1950, when he was appointed to the El Paso parish. The Catholic school at Annawan grew under his leadership and the church was redecorated.
Extensive repairs and improvements to both church and rectory have been major concerns at El Paso. The church societies have been reactivated and religious vacation school has been added to regular religious instruction for both grade and high school children.
In June, 1952, the parish participated in observance of Father Kerrins' silver jubilee.
There was a large turnout for the observance and many of his former parishoners (sic) from Annawan, Ashkum and Kewanee were present along with all of Rev. Kerrins' brothers and sisters. Those attending from Chatsworth were Mr. and Mrs. John Kerrins, Mrs. Veronica Ford and Mrs. Francis Culkin.
The parish presented Rev. Kerrins with a Pontiac automobile and a large purse.
Edward Langs' to Observe 50th Anniversary
Mr. and Mrs. Edward C. Lang of Chatsworth will observe their 50th wedding anniversary Sunday, Nov. 5, with an open house from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Chatsworth High school cafeteria.
The former Miss Bertha Elliott and Mr. Lang were married Nov. 8, 1917, at Corydon, Ind. by Pastor John W. Harbough.
Mr. and Mrs. Lang came to Illinois in 1922 where he farmed for a number of years, after which he was employed at Sears Roebuck & Co. for 21 years. The couple retired in 1963.
Their children are Mrs. Alfred Fuoss, Piper City; Mrs. Neal Ortlepp, Cullom; Mrs. Bob Hill, Carbondale; Donald, Forrest; Jean Weaver, Kankakee; Mrs. Jesse Burch, Monee; Carl, Calvin, Merle, Mrs. James Edwards and Mrs. Kenneth Runyon, all of Chatsworth. A son Howard was killed in World War II and a daughter Marilyn died in infancy. They have 36 grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.
Both are members of the Calvary Baptist Church.
A family dinner will be held Sunday, Nov. 12, at the Cullom Community Hall.
Runyon Sleep Walks into River
Don Runyon of Chatsworth nearly drowned in the Illinois river near Peoria Sunday morning. At approximately 5:15 a.m., Runyon, who does not know how to swim, walked off the edge of the river bank into the deep part of the river, while sleep walking.
Luckily, several other persons with whom he was camping, heard him and rushed to his aid. Larry Stemke of Chatsworth pulled him from the river.
Mrs. Runyon said this is the first time her husband has ever sleep walked in his entire life. He suffered an injury to his legs, but the extent was unknown at press time.
Those in the camping party were Mr. and Mrs. Larry Stemke, Mr. and Mrs. Francis Dohman Jr. and Mr. and Mrs. Don Hobart, all of Chatswoth; and Mr. and Mrs. Bruce Gerhart of Piper City.
Ann Kibler and Pretz make new home in Carbondale
June 10, 1976
Chatsworth waved goodbye to one of their most colorful and energetic citizens a few weeks ago when Ann Kibler, with dachshund Pretz, in tow, packed the last of their belongings in her car and left for a new home in Carbondale where she will be near her son and family.
Ann moved to Chatsworth in 1931. she has spent most of her life working as a caterer for bridge parties and weddings. She managed the hotel for years and served banquets and cooked for thrashers. During certain three week periods, she served as many as 100 a day.
About the time gas and tires became rationed items, Ann decided to give up the hotel business. She bought Francis Wallrich's home where she lived ten years, serving dinner to local teachers each day until the school put in a cafeteria. Then she worked in the cafeteria for several years while keeping roomers and still serving bridge parties.
Later, Ann purchased the John Hein's house where she rented room and apartments, and boarded as well as roomed teachers. In her spare time she laundered all the basketball and football uniforms for Chatsworth and Piper City High schools.
For the last eight years, Ann has been employed as a nurse's aid in the Fairbury Hospital annex building which she says she has enjoyed very much.
During her residence in Chatsworth, Ann was a member of the Methodist church, Worthy Matron of Eastern Star, President of the Women's club, a member of auxiliary, member of Past Presidents of Woman's club, and belong to the same bridge club for 25 years.
During those busy years, she managed to send her son Bill through college. Both he and his wife are now professors at the college in Carbondale. They are the parents of two children, Dirk, who is seven, and Megan, aged four. Ann plans to spend a lot of time with her grandchildren, she says, caring for them and fishing with them. Fishing is one of Ann's hobbies.
By note to the Plaindealer, Ann asks that all her friends visit and write her. She says she and Pretz will certainly miss all their Chatsworth friends. "I have enjoyed my life in Chatsworth. It has been a very happy life." she writes. "Now I will close a book of happy memories and try to open another happy book in Carbondale."
She will. Ann has a way of doing things right. If you are in her area and happen to drop in on her, will will undoubtedly find her knitting an afghan, or putting up jelly, or dressing a fish, or making candy, or a million and one things, dressed beautifully in lovely pastel slacks with matching blouse, looking just as though she stepped out of Vogue, with Pretz watching her every move. And her kitchen will smell of a multitude of goodies, just like it did in good old Chatsworth.
The Plaindealer staff joins the many friends of Ann Kibler in wishing her the best of everything in her new Carbondale home.