Echoes of the Past: Businessmen gather in support of “the wonderful alfalfa plant”

By Roz Weis,


ONE HUNDRED YEARS AGO: Fred Carlson with 20 men and plenty of teams is making good progress in preparing to pave Broadway. He expects to have the grading finished by June 1, and the concrete all laid by Sept. 1.
…FOR SALE: A Minnesota Dairy Farm of 190 acres with good soil, good roads, good neighbors, near a school. There is a small house and barn. Plenty of timber for fuel and many acres in field and meadow. $30 an acre.
…A bunch of Conover boys autoed over to Spillville last Sunday night to attend the movies.
…Chester Bjenerud from over at Conover was taken sick last Sunday afternoon; and Dr. Hennessy of Calmar was called on the spot.
…The resignation of Otto Rasmussen as clerk of the Calmar City Council has been received. His salary is $12.57 per month and that included “extras”. His final salary payment for March was paid April 4, 1921.
…A big fire destroyed the home of Ed Gilbertson and occupied by John White at Waukon the other Saturday. It is thought the fire started in the rear of the home. Estimated value of the home was about $6,000. A delay was made in turning in the alarm, and the blaze had gained considerable headway when the fire department reached the scene. Mr. White had recently suffered a stroke and it was only through the efforts of his wife that his life was saved.
…There were 26 births recorded in the area over the past two weeks, including a girl April 3 to Mr. and Mrs. Russel Gilbert of Military Township; a boy to Mr. and Mrs. Frank Goltz of Decorah on April 2; and a girl to Mr. and Mrs. Alfred Gilbertson on April 8 in Madison Township.
NINETY YEARS AGO: B.B. Morss is making his preparations now to open that new plant in Decorah where he will manufacture a confection known as Karmelkorn. This is a well-known delicacy, made from a special kind of popcorn and coated with caramel. The factory is to be located in the building recently vacated by Ole Kraby.
…April 14th heralded the opening of the dance season at the Lakeside, also known as The Ballroom Deluxe. Wayne King and his Orchestra presented dance music. William B. Kann is the capable manager of the Lakeside. 
…A syndicate of Decorah men have purchased the trotting horse Chestnut Frisco, regarded by experts as the handsomest living harness horse!
…The pupils of the McKay School, located on the Decorah-Frankville Road, are giving a 3-act play next week. The show is called “All on Account of Polly.” Admission is 30 cents with a free lunch. Dorothy Ericson is the teacher.
 …O.A. Bergan is the dealer of the Nash motor cars here. Purchased the Nash Eight-77 sedan for $955, fully equipped. This includes spare tire, tire lock, tire cover, bumpers and it’s ready to drive! It is one of the best-dressed and distinguished cars on the road.
The annual report of the Decorah Public Library was filed last week. There are now more than 6,000 books in the library. There were more than 2,000 city borrowers and 208 rural barrowers using the library last year. The efficient librarian is Miss Katherine Jewell and her assistant is Miss Elizabeth Linnevold.
…Shirley Griebel, the 13-year-old daughter of Editor and Mrs. John Griebel of Waukon, and granddaughter of Mr. and Mrs. Bert Daniels and Mr. and Mrs. Mike Griebel of Decorah, is the newly-crowned Allamakee County champion speller.
…The Fred Carlson Company was awarded the contract to pave a little more than 11 miles of primary highway No. 59 in Howard County from Highway 9 north to the Minnesota line. Basis price is $1.99 per square yard.
…The new board of directors of the Freeport Cheese Factory met last week and found conditions in fine shape, with a bright future in store for the factory. Officers are Edwin Gross, Fred Biermann, Edward Hruska and Cecil Keepers. (the cheese and butter maker).
…Bernard Gossman of Canoe Township, who was struck by a car and seriously injured in January near the Emil Rosenthal home, has finally left the hospital on Easter Sunday morning.
…Grand opening of the roller rink under a tent in south Decorah on Highway 55 is April 22. It is indeed a high-class Skater’s Paradise!
…The Decorah High School baseball team opened up the 1931 baseball season this week playing the Elma Tigers on the new baseball field at the high school grounds. There are eight returning lettermen. Stars for the home team were Gulbro, Isenberger, Reed and Inman.
Girls’ wash dresses have arrived. Priced at $1 at the Connor-Knight Store. Confirmation dresses are on the racks too – priced at $4.95.


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