Bygone Days: A look at the history of NE Allegan County

(From the archives at the Then & Now Historical Library in downtown Dorr)

25 Years Ago — Nov. 4, 1992

The Wayland Township Board granted an excavation permit to enable the Michigan Department of Natural Resources to commence the cleanup of the contaminated site on 132nd Avenue. Neighboring residents are expressing concerns about undesirable elements being released from the operation onto their properties.

Allegan County Promotional Alliance Vice Chairman John Hinkle told the Allegan County Board of Commissioners the agency needs $12,000 to continue operations and the future is bleak because the Engler Administration promises a 100% cut in funding for 1993.

A Traverse City woman visiting Wayland wrote a letter complaining about the volume of trucks and resultant noise through main roads in the community.

Dawn Buist of Hopkins wrote a letter to the editor maintaining that new board member Christine Schwartz not only continues to oppose all efforts for the school bond project, she also consistently votes against the board paying its monthly bills.

Diane Spencer, the Wayland mother convicted of killing her infant son, Aaron, is facing trial in Pennsylvania for two similar incidents there several years ago. Pennsylvania has the death penalty, Michigan does not.

Republican Larry Dolegowski unseated Democratic Trustee Norman Fifelski on the Dorr Township Board. Republican Randy Marklevitz won a Wayland Township trustee’s seat and Democrat Nick Krulac barely edged Republican Rex Pomranka by one vote.

Allegan County Probate Judge George Greig ruled against allowing a feeding tube to removed from Mike Martin of Moline, whom his wife, Mary, has insisted has been in a vegetative state since a fatal car-train accident in 1987. Mike cannot speak, walk or swallow food.

Running back Sean Talsma of Martin gained 139 yards as the Clippers shut out neighborhood rival Martin 29-0 in a season ending game that left both teams with 5-4 records. The Vikings were plagued by too many turnovers.

Though it seemed that star guard Ann Iciek was being targeted by opponents, she scored 21 points in a win over Kenowa Hills and the Wildcats climbed back over the .500 mark at 9-8 overall.

Jody Goodrich, Tracey Smith and Michelle Mazei sparked the Martin girls’ basketball team to two more victories that clinched at least a share of the SAC crown.

Pat Kruizenga passed for 292 yards and two TDs to favorite receiver Robert Moore as Wayland finished at 5-4 again with a 42-36 win over Middleville Thornapple Kellogg.

Jason Young and Kristin Wilcox both qualified for the Class B state cross-country meet at the Grand Rapids Golf Course.

Ken Burgett has taken over the barber shop from Duane Scheib on East Superior Street and renamed it Ken’s Place.

50 Years Ago — Nov. 1, 1967

Kessler Undies & Woolies employees voted 97-94 to join the Amalgamated Clothing Workers union (AFL-CIO). The Globe reporter, who was not named, said, “With the new union, employees will pay $4 a month dues, which will result in approximately $10,000 a year leaving the community and going to Chicago.”

Mr. and Mrs. Elkichi Hirako of Japan stopped at the home of the J.F. Cook family in Wayland for a weekend visit. They had been the host family for 1967 Wayland High graduate John Cook the previous summer.

Former Wayland Globe employee Mark Arbuthnot has been promoted to personnel manager and production supervisor for Bryce Publications, Montpelier, Ohio.

The Allegan County Board of Commissioners approved a budget that called for raise for elected officials — clerk, $9,000; drain commissioner, $5,500; Friend of the Court. $7,000; prosecutor, $9,000, and $8,000 apiece for sheriff, register of deeds and treasurer.

A freak fall storm with heavy snow caused power outages and school closings in the area. It arrived with leaves still on the trees. Pictured clearing debris from city streets were Wayland Lions Club members Ken Bird, Dick Worfel, Richard Overmire, Wade Greenawalt and Rev. Bernard Randolph.

A retirement recognition banquet in Detroit honored Wayland High School graduate Russell Hilbert for his 43 years of service in education.

Moline Christian was observing its 50th anniversary with a special ceremony. The school claims to have 225 students in grades K-8.

Wayland shut out Byron Center 19-0 on the gridiron to bring its overall season record to 3-4. QB Lee Pankratz hit Rady Rairigh with a pass a yard away from the end zone and sneaked the ball over the goal line on the next play for the first TD. Jerry LaValley caught a TD pass for the second score and Ray Spencer scampered 50 yards for the final six points.

Cub reporters Dave Lowman and Roger Selvig wrote about Hopkins’ 14-0 “upset” loss to Lawton.

The first-ever Young Farmers Committee has been formed, with Jack Sipple of Shelbyville being named chairman.

The Wayland Wranglers 4-H Club will meet at the Wayland home of Mary Brevitz.

Oscar Douglas will present tips on stretching your dollars to the Wayland Grange. Four members recently attended the state convention and the local group’s lecturer was attending the national convention.

Hal Brocker of Wayland is home on leave after serving an extensive tour of duty in Vietnam.

Lulu remained atop the nation’s top 40 tunes with “To Sir with Love.”

75 Years Ago — Nov. 6, 1942

A classic full page advertisement had appeared just before the election claiming, “The Republican Party has always been the average man’s party — So get your family and friends to go out and vote Republican.”

Perhaps it wasn’t really necessary, as the Globe reported 369 voters went straight ticket GOP in the village, while only 91 voted straight Democratic.

Village officials hope to prevail on the Allegan County Rationing Board to set up shop in Wayland so local citizens don’t have to drive distances with rationed gas to fill out applications.

Editor-Publisher Rollo G. Mosher claimed in his column that there were two pieces of good news this week: “Uncle Sam’s fighting men licked the Japs at Midway Island and the Republicans trimmed the New Dealers back in a landslide that rolled from coast to coast.”

Mrs. Lovina Gurney, 73, died at the Wayland home of Ann Cozzens after nine years of battling heart disease. She was the widow of Charles Gurney.

Local Boy Scouts were preparing to travel to Allegan for a Court of Honor that would include welcoming the newest Eagle Scout and remarks from new executive Joe Arnold.

Lloyd Fales sent a letter to the Globe from England, where he is serving in the U.S. military.

Five-year-old Norma Jean Russell, died of complications from leukemia and pneumonia.

Gas rationing registrations will take place from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday at Wayland School.

The Wayland High School Senior Play will be Nov. 19 and 20. The stars are Richard Jager, Doris Calkins, Ethelyn Mauchmar, Fern Jordan, Blanche Kaminski, Jean Merren, Violet Arbanas, Beatrice Rairigh, Carol Ellinger and Ken Pratt. Director is Horace Bennett.

Now showing at the Wayland Theatre:

  • Virginia Gilmore and Dana Andrews in “Berlin Correspondent.”
  • Tim Holt in “Dude Cowboy.”
  • Sonja Henie and John Payne in “Iceland.”
  • Virginia Bruce and James Ellison in “Careful, Soft Shoulders.”
  • Lupe Velez and Leon Errol in “Mexican Spitfire’s Elephant.”

100 Years Ago — Nov. 2, 1917

Wayland had been in darkness for several weeks because its contract with an electricity provider had expired, but local businessmen and Frank Chamberlain crafted an agreement with a new provider after negotiations with the State Railway Commission. So Frank’s Opera House was back in business.

Martin forfeited its football Saturday in Wayland. The local team will finish its season at home this Saturday, Nov. 3.

Excavation and cement work have begun at Wayland School to construct a septic tank and permit use of indoor toilets.

Mr. Robinson, superintendent of Allegan Schools, and Mr. Goodrich, county superintendent, spoke to Wayland students about the importance of Liberty Bonds and Liberty Loans in the war effort.

The Congregational Church planned to celebrate international “Go to Sunday School Day” Nov. 4.

The drama “High Speed,” starring Jack Mullhill and Frtizi Ridgway, was to be shown Friday and Saturday nights at Frank’s Opera House. “The two-cent Government War Tax, which all goes to help whip Kaiser Bill, will be collected.”

Wayland has easily exceeded its quota for Liberty Loans.

Henry Germoud of Wayland and Gladys and Gertrude Hazen were injured as passengers on an interurban car that crashed head on with another just north of Kalamazoo. All three were hospitalized.

School will begin next week at District No. 19 in Leighton Township after a two-week vacation to allow for potato digging.

The Progressive Farmers Club met with 30 people present at the local home of Arnold Frank.

Albert Clark lost a valuable cow from eating corn left in the field while he was filling his silo.

Since the opening of the library on Sept. 27, 1916, nearly 4,300 applications for books has been granted.

Allen and Noble have leased the building that formerly housed the Wayland State Bank. They plan to bring their shoemaking business to that site.

Agnes Robinson, stenographer at the Wayland Globe, as agreed to take a post at the Wayland State Bank at its new location at the corner of Superior and Main.









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