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Bygone Days: A look at the past in NE Allegan County

(Taken from the archives at the Then & Now historical library in downtown Dorr)

25 Years Ago — Oct. 21, 1996

The Village of Hopkins considered buying the abandoned livestock auction, but eventually decided against it.

Michigan State Police from the Wayland post are trying to solve a rash of break-ins and vandalism in Tankee Springs Township.

Hopkins Township is preparing to buy a new fire truck in one installment.

Two citizens’ groups are advocating paving two roads in Hopkins Township, but local officials say they can’t afford it.

A letter to the editor noted that newspapers such as the Herald-Palladium, Kalamazoo Gazette and South Bend Tribune are no longer printing death notices, only paid obituaries, which will hurt the historical efforts of genealogy buffs.

Editor Nila Aamoth took on the electric sign issue at Wayland High School, saying, “It will be interesting to see if the new sign survives as long as its predecessor — until the next bond issue.”

Wayland City Councilman Robert Golm wrote a letter defending the work of the Allegan County Economic Development Alliance.

Caledonia captured the Cowbell with a 34-7 victory over Wayland. Hopkins whipped Allendale 49-0, as QB Tim Kisner tossed three TD passes in the first quarter alone.

Zeke Fletcher was the only Wildcat golfer to earn all-conference accolades.

The Martin girls’ basketball team, led by Bethany Hunderman, Danielle Sturman and Stacey Hildebrand, now is 12-0, but a big week with formidable opponents is ahead.

The Wayland girls’ seven-game win streak in basketball was ended by Kenowa Hills. Angie Farmer and Casey Scully led the ‘Cats in a losing effort.

Wayland Mayor Dave Miller and Wayland Union Schools Supt. Robert Brenner honored State Rep. Paul Hillegonds, who is retiring after 18 years of service.

Phillip Englerth, a retired electrician and activist with the Antique Tractor Association, died at Thornapple Manor in Hastings. He was 71.

50 Years Ago — Oct. 20, 1971

Congressman Ed Hutchinson of Fennville has been mentioned by President Richard Nixon as a possibility to fill one open seat on the U.S. Supreme Court.

The Allegan County Health Department has ordered the City of Wayland to shut down the dump on the south edge of town because methods of operation are not suitable for a community with Wayland’s population. The city will study options in the wake of the decision.

The Wayland Township Zoning Board of Appeals has approved a rezoning request, from the Onyx Corp. of Southfield, to change agricultural land to commercial for 12 acres west of the expressway on 135th Avenue.

The old Kessler building on South Main Street was razed after standing tall since 1912 and as the site for the children’s clothing manufacturer since 1949. The company had about 200 employees before it moved into its new factory.

Mrs. Fred Dunbar, wife of the former local pastor, died at Port Charlotte, Fla. She was 66.

Mrs. J.H. LaValley will be guest speaker at the Allegan County Federation of Women’s Clubs meeting Oct. 27. She will talk about and present slides of the around the world trip she and her husband took recently.

Wayland’s football team lost 13-6 to Kelloggsville for its homecoming. A.J. Predum and Cindy Gaulke were chosen king and queen.

Merle Peffley scored a hole-in-one on the par three hole No. 3 at Orchard Hills, with Chet Brevitz as witness.

Rick Martin and Jan Karsten were selected king and queen for Hopkins in a 6-6 homecoming tie between the Vikings and Martin. Pat Tolsma and Steve McGuire scored the touchdowns.

Elwyn Powers finished the league season undefeated individually in cross country.

The Hopkins cross-country team lost 30-35 to Caledonia. Mike Krcatovich was individual runner-up.

75 Years Ago — Oct. 25, 1946

Editor-Publisher Rollo G. Mosher penned his regrets in column about the demise in importance of horses in society, lost to the advent of the automobile.

Sts. Cyril & Methodius Church has purchased the Wingate farm property, with plans to establish a parish residence and for church expansion.

Clarence Forbes, 45, a Bradley farmer, lost his left hand in an accident shredding corn on a farm in Otsego.

The Wayland Rotary Club will sponsor a Halloween Party on West Superior Street, including games, prizes and amateur entertainment.

Cecil Averill was chosen worthy matron by the Wayland chapter of the Order of Eastern Star.

Frank Bastian, John Bruinsma, Charles Fisher, Charles Simmons and Florence Nuesdorfer have been selected by the Wayland Community Fair Committee to attend the International Livestock Show in Chicago.

Mrs. Harold Weaver was in charge of the Ladies Library Club’s meeting with the theme “Art in Everyday Life.”

The Holy Name Society of St. Stanislaus will sponsor a masquerade party in Hilliards. Admission is 50 cents.

Sts. Cyril & Methodius, Gun Lake, will have a chicken pie supper with games and music furnished by Charles Kuhtic Jr.

Now showing at the Wayland Theatre:

  • Roddy McDowall, Preston Foster and Rita Johnson in “My Friend Flika.”
  • Dennis Morgan, Jack Carson and Joan Leslie in “Two Guys from Milwaukee.”
  • Betty Field, Zachary Scott and J. Carol Naish in “The Southerner.”

100 Years Ago — Oct. 21, 1921

Dr. I.L. Slater, village health officer, has received word of a favorable report on the quality of the water supply for Wayland.

A.D. Hughes will lead a discussion at the Methodist Church about “How can we apply the Golden Rule today.”

The Glee Club at the high school reports a membership of 31 students.

Jessie Roberts penned an essay in which she opined to young women: “A girl can specialize in bank work, in technical work, secretarial work or for big business… Don’t be content with the average job.”

The American Legion had its first meeting in its new headquarters in the Yeakey building. “It is going to be a first-class place for any crowd.”

Hilda and LeRoy Ring gave a senior class party at the Gun Lake cottage of Mr. and Mrs. Franch Cooch.

Ella Brog gave a presentation to Wayland Grange on “What do growing children need in the way of food, shelter and clothing?”

The F.D. Travis Co. was advertising a big sale at their seven stores of farm machinery, including hog and sheep feeders, wagons, spreaders, drills and milking machines.

Mrs. George Candee, wife of a former local Congregational pastor, died in Toledo at age 89.

The body if Charles Cooch, son of Mr. and Mrs. Frank Cooch of Wayland, arrived in Tuscola, Ill., from France where he was killed in action three years ago.

Charles A. Welch of Wayland died of a heart attack after trying unsuccessfully to start his car to go pick up grandchildren from school.

Ella Blackney, 67, died at her home in Wayland after a lingering illness. She had spent a pleasant day reminiscing with friends just before her passing.

The total amount of fines and fees for dog licenses in Allegan County was $9,512.

NOTICE: The cider mill at Hopkinsburg is being made Monday, Wednesday and Friday each week. The mill will close on Nov. 4.

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