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100 Years Ago

Life in Viroqua from the Vernon County Censor:


OCT. 22, 1919

Turn your time piece back one hour next Sunday morning.

Bank up the house, put on the storm doors and windows, and bring every possible thing for winter use under cover.

A news dispatch sent cut from the metropolis of the state to the affect that the death knell to saloonkeepers... in Wisconsin is being sounded in a letter... to approximately 3,750 saloonkeepers [from] internal revenue collector.

The communication is intended to be the final warning from the department before wartime prohibition become effective through passing and final approval of the enabling stature.

The letter in part follows... ”We will wipe out every blind pig and open saloon in our district and put an end to the manufacture and sale of every variety of liquor which contains more than one-half of 1 percent alcohol.”

Sam Gross, North Main street, is buying all kinds of hides, also junk, paying highest prices for everything. Some one will always be at home to receive and pay cash for all purchases.

A Montana man will bring two car loads of ewes, 600 heard, ranging from one to eight years old, to Viroqua. They will arrive the latter part of October or first of November. Leave your orders with O.L. Buchanan at the Dray Barn, Phone 56.

Blaine Wheeler is seeking to recover $100 from the express company, the price of a breeding hog shipped to a western point at which point of delivery the crate in which the animal was shipped fell from the truck, breaking a leg of his hogship.

Bud has not been heard from for some time, but it is still booming...


OCT. 15, 1919

Fisher & Griffin will unload another car of potatoes this week on the LaCrosse and Southeastern track. Call or leave your order at the Egg Market, $1.60 per bushel at car.

Tomorrow the Moore Brothers give possession of their extensive hardware merchandise and business block, having sold the same and good will, to Clarence Webb, who actively enters upon a business career.

After two years of soil tilling Mr. Chris Nedland is to re-establish himself in the Purdy store, which he conducted for some time. He has purchased from Martin B. Davidson the stock and will continue the business.

First nipping frost of the season came on the morning of October 11, six weeks later than old Gentleman Jack usually makes his appearance here. And it will not be forgotten that we experienced a snow fall of twelve inches and good sleighing in October last year.

FRANKLIN – MASON CITY, October 13 – Corn is about all cut and shocked, silos filled, seed clover cut, and buckwheat harvest has begun... Apples are plentiful, but seem to be falling early. Sugar cane turned out good, about 14 gallons of sorghum to the load of cane. Threshing in this vicinity is nearly completed. Henry Anderson Skaar doing the work for most of his neighbors, threshing 400 bushels in one day.

The shortage of sugar will not be felt by the wise farmers of Retreat and vicinity who were far-sighted enough to plant sorghum this year... J.L. Davis, who has been operating a sorghum mill, reports having extracted 2200 gallons of the finest syrup... from the DeSoto Argus.


OCT. 8 1919

No visitor or resident here but was humiliated by the wretched lighting services given during fair week. Every night more than half the white way lights were not burning, and the few that were alive were so dead that they almost smelled. Is it not just a little strange that the electric plant management and local authorities should permit such a humiliating condition when the town is full of strangers. Of all times of the year we should have had our best possible “bib and tucker” on during the evenings of fair week.

Harmony town, by a substantial majority, at a special election recently held, voted $3,000 as the town’s portion for a county bridge to be constructed over the stream near the residence of Joseph Haugh.

Anyone wishing a nice young chicken for Sunday dinner may call Mrs. Ed Schmidt, phone No. 5542. Dressed and delivered at 25 cents a pound.

During the rain and wind blow of Friday night, portion of a brick wall on the east side of Mrs. Lindemann’s tenement business place fell in, leaving a gap of twenty feet or more. The building is occupied by Hall & Burkhart’s carpenter shop and Levi Lake’s concrete works.

This community has been having a sugar famine, and we are not unlike the rest of the country in this respect. At many stores not more than a pound or two of sweetness could be secured.

Superintendent Sanford tells the Censor that every school in the county is now provided with a teacher except at Folsom, where provision for boarding place of an instructor has not been found, hence no school at present.


OCT. 1, 1919


Very much like fall.


The weather man has not smiled on us for this week. His beaming countenance is expected every hour, so don’t be discouraged. Fair management has deemed it wise to extend the county fair through Saturday, hoping for good conditions each day for the balance of the week.

The State Service Recognition Board ask soldiers who are to receive the $10 per month bonus to write them at Madison for blank application.

A vote bonding the Valley school district for an amount sufficient to build a free high school was taken and carried last week, by a substantial majority. It takes in territory of five districts. All of Valley, parts of Morning Star, Marshall, Eastman, Salem and Rockton.

The farmers’ exchange at Westby, after twelve year’s existence, has closed business, Mr. Lee, manager, retiring some time ago.

LaFarge Enterprise tells that excavation for the basement of the new Advent church, which will be built on the lot west of the Bert Rittenhouse residence has commenced.

The first move ever made for permanency in our city internal affairs regarding sewage disposal and enlarged water service was accomplished Friday night by the city council... a sewage 8 and 10 inches in size from the old Viroqua hotel corner on the south to Col. Butt’s residence north to be of vitrified tile, to be laid in the center of the street.

The water main is to extend from the same southern point to the fair grounds. This is to be constructed of 4, 6 and 8 inch iron pipes... laid on the west side of the street.


September, 1919