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

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

25 Years Ago — Dec. 28, 1992

Two families at the Windsor Woods mobile home park have asked the Wayland City Council for permission to keep Vietnamese pot-bellied pigs as pets. Jeff and Nikki Slatkoski and Tim and Ginny Van Polen brought petitions with 119 signatures supporting their request. They insist that “Arnold” and “Pork Chop” are very well-behaved and tame animals.

This was the last issue of the Globe and Orbit for 1992, so the edition included a lot of feature storoes written ahead of time with the theme of “Today’s Families.” Linda Hutchings wrote about Wayland’s “Brady Bunch” blended family of David and Jeanne VanEerden. Paul Jackson’s story of several months ago was about Jerry Pigeon’s Native American family. Scott Sulliva’sn’s entry was about residents of the Sandy Creek Nursing Center. including 99-year-old Helen Kamyszek, who said all she wanted for Christmas were “a tree, a good dinner and a little present.” Another story was about Phil and Jan Kuhtic of Wayland Township, who adopted four children to join their biological son, Micah.

Pat Staley wrote a feature story about longtime residents Agnes Patterson and Byron Fenner and their memories of Martin in bygone days of long ago.

Gary Marsh of Wayland Township wrote a letter to the editor praising the Downtown Development Authority for its Streetscape project to beautify the City of Wayland.

Wayland EMT Deborah Straub penned a letter praising area fire departments for adopting policies to show up immediately at all traffic crashes, insisting the reward would saving lives.

An advertisement for Dean Foods told the story of its origins as the Helvetia Milk Condensing Co. in 1915, becoming Pet Milk and then giving way in December 1982 to Dean Foods., which now had 30 employees manufacturing instant powdered products.

In a special feature about important stories for the year, WHS graduate Mary Lee Hayes’ close call with death was retold in her whitewater accident in Alaska.

Wayland scored its third victory in five starts in basketball by defeating Bellevue 60-38. Lee Olger netted 12 points, six rebounds and four blocked shots, Robert Moore and Mike Lapekes both had nine points and Owen Reigler nine rebounds.

50 Years — Dec. 27, 1967

Former editor and publisher Rollo G. Mosher waxed eloquent about the value of a good white shirt.

State Masonic officers helped install Wayne Goodwin of Wayland, Lavern Gudith of Hopkins and Robert teed of Dorr as local lodge leaders.

Bessie Iliff, formerly of Wayland and Hopkins, was scheduled to appear on Channel 10, WILX-TV, Jackson and Lansing, in a program in which the 92-year-old was to engage in “quiet, retrospective conversation.”

The Wayland Lions Club was to welcome the Sightmobile for vision screening services Jan. 5 and 6.

The Wayland High School wrestling team planned to put on a informational demonstration of the sport for the public. The first-year team, coached by Eugene Knobloch, already has had scrimmages against West Catholic, Kelloggsville, Allegan and Plainwell.

The Wayland varsity basketball team, under first-year coach Jon Walcott, lost 72-60 to Otsego, coached by former Wildcat mentor Jack Warner.

Robert May of Shebyville was reported to be serving in the U.S. Navy aboard a ship in the Gulf of Tonkin.

Lawrence Dietz of Dorr was serving in the U.S. Marines in Da Nang, Vietnam.

Now showing at the Wayland Theatre: “Barefoot in the Park,” starring Jane Fonda and Robert Redford.

About 30 people attended a special holiday dinner for the Allegan County Health Department at the home of the Ford Browers. Special guests were Drs. Gerald VanderVoord and C.A. Dickinson.

Mrs. Alfred Snook, well known as a presenter at Ladies’ Library Club gatherings, was feted in a dinner before she leaves for Spain to spend her winter.

Tom Latondress pumped in 14 points Jim Ritsema added 12 and Roger Freeman 10, but the junior varsity Wildcats lost 75-55 to Gull Lake, evening their season record at 2-2.

“Daydream Believer” spent its last of five consecutive weeks atop the nation’s music charts. It also was the Monkees’ last big hit ever.

75 Years Ago — Jan. 1, 1943

Alfred T. Selkirk, 55, died at Fort Custer in Battle Creek after an illness. He served in France during World War I and had been a barber and farmer in the area for many years.

Claude Smith of Wayland, serving overseas in the military, reported he has received 99 Christmas cards.

Longtime Leighton Township farmer John Kaechele, a native of Germany, died at age 77.

Wayland High School and Western Normal College graduate Myrtle Chamberlain, a longtime teacher, died of a heart attack at the home of her sister, Mrs. E.E. Notestine, in Grand Rapids.

The next Wayland High School basketball game won’t be until Jan. 8 at home against Caledonia.

Harold Hawkins wrote a letter to the Globe indicating he is preparing to go overseas to serve as a chef. Rodney Cole is using his eight years of experience with his father, E. H. Cole of Wayland Bakery, to be a baker in the service.

Mrs. Carl Blue is recovering at home after suffering a serious bout of pneumonia. She arrived in Wayland via Archer Ambulance.

Carl Ryno was home on a 10-day furlough from the military and was reported to have lost 37 pounds.

Former Wayland physician Dr. Thomas Forwerda continues to earn promotions as a surgeon in the military, now a lieutenant commander in the U.S. Navy.

Now showing at the Wayland Theatre:

  • Richard Carlson and Renee Haal in “Highways by Night.”
  • Joe E. Brown in “The Daring Young Man.”
  • Bette Davis and Paul Henreid in “Now Voyager.”
  • George Sanders and Tom Conway in “The Falcon’s Brother.”
  • Tim Holt and Ray Whitley in “Land of the Open Range.”

100 years Ago — Dec. 28, 1917

Wayland State Bank, which opened at its new location a couple of months ago at the corner of Main and Superior Streets, was reporting total resources of $400,000 and offering a 4% interest rate for savings accounts. Dr. E.O. Hanlon was president of the Board of Directors.

Outstanding Wayland High School students were listed as Margaret Beall, Genevieve Shoger, Dorothy Stanton, Faith Bostwick, Leila Tooker, Thodore Wintz, Mabel Newkirk, Dorothy Wilde, Alto Dell and Wayne Thomas.

Wayland High School students collected $225 for the American Red Cross in their holiday drive for the war effort.

Mrs. AM. Pollitt entertained members of the Willing Helpers Club in honor of the birthday of Doris Hogeboom.

The Yeakey Auto Co. of Wayland has announced to its customers that shortages of coal and steel have severely curtailed production of automobiles and may shut down the process entirely if the war overseas is not concluded soon.

Harold Hanlon and Russell Hanlon are home for the holidays at the residence of Dr. E.O. Hanlon, from Albion College and the University of Michigan, respectively.

Harold Calkins is training for the U.S. Navy to become a wireless operator overseas in the war.

Maude Marie Allen was wed to Sgt. Howard Tanner at the Bradley home of Mr. and Mrs. Edgar Allen.

Local farmers have been very busy of late hauling wood to residences in the village because of the shortage of coal.

Construction of the new concrete power plant in the village is nearing completion.

Agent G.W. Colby placed an advertisement for the “Wonderful New Coal Oil Light” that burns vapor and saves oil. He was willing to demonstrate the product free of charge in homes.

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