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100 Years Ago

Life in Viroqua from the Vernon County Censor:


JUNE 28, 1922

It is hardly possible to praise too highly the local Masonic Lodge for the great work which has been accomplished. There is not a city in the United States of under 10,000 inhabitants that can boast of possessing such a Temple and Theatre.

Just how large a task has been the financing of the proposition can best be imagined when we realize that the building proper cost more than $130,000. The completed building, with its theatre, store and lodge furniture, paraphernalia and stock, represent a value of about $225,000.

Messrs. Nelson and Parr, proprietors of the Optimo, have put the fine soda fountain in Andrew Johnson’s drug store in running order and are now operating two business places. That fountain was a popular resort in the past but has not been used for several years.

The Temple Theatre is equipped with the Johnson System of Temperature Regulation. This act alone places it in the better class of theatre buildings. The temperature in the auditorium of this theatre is automatically controlled by instruments known as thermostats.

Lots of country people are busy buying season tickets for Viroqua’s Chautauqua. It will be a week of joy for them because every night they can run into town and see the best of the big city show at a small price.

VIOLA NEWSLETTER – Landlord R.C. Henderson of the Home Hotel is improving his property this week with the addition of a coat of paint to the exterior... C.F. Mathews & Son have improved the appearance of their drug store building with an application of paint during the past week.


JUNE 25, 1922

A post-office inspector has just recently been making an investigation of some of the rural routes in the western section of this county and if some of the roads on these rural routes that are in bad condition are not repaired soon and placed in good condition as they should be, there is a possibility of some rural mail patrons losing their mail service, he reports.

The ball season is on in full blast. Make the kiddies happy. Towner handles all kinds of baseball and tennis and other sporting goods.

On Sunday, June 25th, the new church of Our Saviors congregation at Westby will be dedicated...

The party who took the lady’s and men’s coats out of a Nash car at the dance at Otto Tryggestad’s Saturday night is known and if not returned to the Censor office at once will receive severe punishment.

Ancient Landmark Disappears

The Blue Front is no more. Hardwareman Sauer is having the building adorned with a coat of cream colored paint, and so the building which has gone by that name so many years will have to be rechristened.

VIOLA NEWSLETTER – T.G. Dobson and Perlie Snyder each received a car load of cattle at this station last week which will be pastured this summer and put on the fall market. Guy received his cattle from St. Paul and Perlie got his at Sparta.

Hill’s Garage at Retreat has added a gas welding outfit to its equipment, and is now prepared to nicely handle all classes of breakage in heavy machinery in addition to the regular run of repair work.

That peppy Bud ball team pulled down two victories the past week and still maintain its 100 per cent record for the season.


JUNE 14, 1922

Spontaneous ignited a pile of debres [sic] in the storeroom of the rear of Mullen’s grocery store. The blaze generated with a suddenness that was astonishing and it threatened to develop into a fire that could easily have swept off the surrounding wooden buildings, but our fire department’s usual snappy response to the alarm nipped it in the bud and damage was inconsequential.

The Lampert Construction Company has commenced the pouring of concrete on West Broadway, and if nothing unforeseen happens, the western entrance to the city will be open for travel by the Fourth of July.

The matter of incorporation of the Village of Chaseburg was heard before the court today, and a court order signed legalizing the move providing that the action is ratified by the vote of the people of the village. No one appeared in opposition.

Henry Running, that old veteran caterer whom every one in these parts knows and likes, is busily engaged in fitting up his building just north of the Masonic Temple, and expects that he will be open for business in his restaurant by Saturday afternoon or evening.

The American Legion Fourth of July celebration in Viroqua is going to cost more than $2000, and it is hoped that the business men will respond liberally in order that the committee will not be embarrassed for lack of funds...

J.P. Melvin of Bloomingdale community...informed us that his barn was struck by lightning last Saturday morning, killing one horse and crippling two others. The barn was damaged considerably, going through what hay they have without setting fire to the contents.


JUNE 7, 1922

Monday morning, Merchant H.E. Rogers opened up his store in his fine new quarters in the south room of the masonic temple building.

I offer for sale my desirable corner lot and residence on Decker street. The location, within one block of Main street and one block from the Southeastern depot is ideal for a hotel, rooming house or other business. Come and look it over. THOS. ELLEFSON.

Tobacco planting is in full swing, some growers of the weed having their fields nearly completed. Plants generally are in the pink of condition, and the planting is quite early this year.

While driving from Readstown to Soldiers Grove in his new Ford roadster Sunday evening, Even Jones’ car caught fire and was totally consumed.

The weather has cleared up and now is the time to paint outside before the flies and bugs are too bad and remember, O.E Davis has the best paint made.

Workmen are engaged in giving some of the Vernon county fair buildings a much needed going over. Some of the supports of the grand stand are badly rotted. T.B. Snell is engaged in replacing these and trueing up the whole structure, and an addition will be built to the west end providing funds hold out. The Shetland pony barn is being converted into a poultry house. Some of the buildings will be repainted.

One of the really big events of the year was enacted at the Vernon county fair grounds last Saturday when fully 2500 friends of the rural schools of the community gathered to witness the Community Graduation exercises... Every town except Bergen and Kickapoo was represented by graduates. Out of a class of 238, 218 were present...


May, 1922