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 — Dec. 30, 1996

The Globe published a special holiday edition between Christmas and New Year’s in which it lauded and focused “ordinary people” who are heroes in the community.

The Then & Now Historical Society of eastern Allegan County is asking the City of Wayland to accept the old Pennsylvania Railroad Wayland depot, move it to a new location and then have it restored. Joe Miller and Rick Slagter gifted the society with the building with an eye toward using the property for their new auto repair business.Paul Jackson glad-handed the Leighton Township Board for having the courage to make decisions that are not popular and owning up to mistakes that have been made.

The O & A Electrical Cooperative has agreed to merge with Oceana Electrical Cooperative to create the Great Lakes Electrical Cooperative.

The fifth grade band at Martin, under the direction of Fred Bogdan, had its first-ever concert in the school cafeteria.

Gene VanPutten was lauded for his life-saving actions for Jennie Genther when she was involved in an auto crash.

Ronda Funk of Dorr was mentioned for teaching 90-year-old friend Beatrice Shields how to fish for bluegill.

Gun Lake Community Church earned praise for its Adopt-A-Family Christmas project.

Ida DeKraker is retired after being a Dorr Township Library employee for 17 years, but still spends a lot of time on the job as a volunteer.

The Wayland varsity basketball team is 3-1 going into the holiday break after defeating previously unbeaten Allegan.

Hopkins, led by Tim Kisner’s 22 points, turned on the jets in the fourth quarter to run past Saugatuck 67-49. Kurt Glupker had 13 points, Chris Johnson 11 and Mike Kisner 10.

Angie Farmer and Sabrina Scully led the Lady Wildcats to a runner-up finish in the USA Volleyball tournament in Grand Rapids.

Members of the Wayland High School choir circled the auditorium to sing their holiday concert finale “Let There Be Peace on Earth.”

Pat Staley wrote a feature story about State Trooper Scott Tenglin, who served for six months in Bosnia and a member of the Army Reserves.

Betty Slovinski, 52, was lauded for her work with high-risk children at Martin primary school.

50 Years Ago — Dec. 29, 1971

New owners of Moline Drain Tile are Mr. and Mrs. Henry Tuinstra, who have purchased the business from Mr. and Mrs. Ed Sipkema.

The Wayland State Bank will get a facelift in downtown Wayland at the start of 1972, with the building being remodeled and enlarged. Plans include absorbing the old A & P grocery building.

Stuart Henry of Hopkins, a deacon at the United Church of Wayland for the past five years, died Dec. 20 at his home. He was 66.

Mary Frances Hooker, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. William Hooker, placed third in the Otsego Elks Youth Leadership contest.

James Pietrzak, 26, of Dorr, suffered serious injuries in a house fire that gutted the interior of his home. He was taken to the burn center in Ann Arbor and his wide and 3-year-old daughter were transported to St. Mary’s Hospital in Grand Rapids. Dorr firefighters Norm Fifelski and Terry Blank were credited with rescuing the victims.

Mrs. Norman Seger, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Jospeh Panyrek, graduated as a licensed practical nurse from Grand Rapids Junior College. She will begin work at Pennock Hospital in Hastings.

Allegan Health Center President Leland Buck of Hopkins has announced he will not seek re-election. He had succeeded Earl DeLano as president in 1965.

Kessler Inc. General Manager Gene Weber presented service pins to employees of the children’s underwear manufacturer, which came to Wayland in 1949 and has grown from 10 to 228 employees.

Senior guard Jim Hendrixson is averaging 14.8 points per game and junior Bob Lehocky 13.2 for the Wayland varsity basketball team, which is off to an 0-6 start on the season. Coach Dave VanEerden has acknowledged his inexperienced group is going through a rebuilding process. Interestingly, the third and fourth leading scorers on the team are sophomores Paul Heckert and Pat Wilde.

Don Cadman scored 17 points and grabbed 14 rebounds as Hopkins defeated Covenant Christian 70-59.

The Ladies Library Club’s next meeting will focus on “Our Indian Culture.” Response to roll call will be an Indian name.

The Moline Barber Shop is sponsoring a beard contest for the Moline Centennial celebration later next year.

The annual Wayland High School Christmas band concert featured LeRoy Anderson’s “Sleigh Ride,” including a locally constructed sleigh.

Melanie Safka was on top of the top tunes list in the land with “Brand New Key.”

75 Years Ago — Jan. 3, 1947

New Year’s Eve in Wayland and environs was one of the coldest ever, reported Editor-Publisher Rollo G. Mosher, as the temperatures dropped to between 10 and 15 degrees below zero.

The tenant house on the Will Schad place in Leighton Township was destroyed by fire. Mr. and Mrs. John Dewey, occupants, were away at the time of the blaze. The house and its contents were considered a total loss.

Clarence Calkins has resigned as manager of Wayland Lumber & Coal Co. because of ill health and he is being succeeded by Charles Towne.

Ira B. Gillispie, 79, was fatally injured in a house fire that took place while he attempted to repair his furnace. Authorities reported burns covered 100 percent of his body. It was suspected his clothing had caught fire when he tried to throw kerosene at the fire in the furnace.

Hopkins and Wayland basketball teams, tied for first place in the Barkenall League, will meet for a showdown Friday night at the Wildcats’ gym. The Vikings bring an undefeated record.

William Graczyk has purchased part of the Shattuck building that houses the Kroger grocery store for investment purposes.

The Voice of Christian Youth group from Detroit will be in Wayland at the Calvary Church Jan. 5 for a musical performance. The group also will perform in the evening at the Odd Fellows Hall.

Three-month-old James Alton, son of Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Sooy, died at Crispe Hospital in Plainwell after being ill for just four days.

Mrs. Maude Sigler has been confined to her bed at home after suffering from exposure and a head injury in fall.

Chuck Pease, a fireman on the local Pennsylvania Railroad run between Kalamazoo and Grand Rapids, is awaiting word on a promotion to engineer.

Mrs. Lester Herb of Wayland was chosen toastmaster for the banquet of the Chevrolet Accounting School.

William H. Bartlett, lecturer for the Temperance Union Educational Council, was to be guest speaker at the Church of Christ Friday, Jan. 3, talking about “abstinence from all things harmful.”

Lorraine DeWeerd, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Marion DeWeerd is recovering after a serious bout with bronchial pneumonia.

Now showing the Wayland Theatre:

• Anna Lee, James Ellison, William Henry in “War Brides.”

• Willd Bill Elliott as Red Ryder in “Wagon Wheels Westward.”

• Donna Reed, Edward Everett Horton and Tom Drake in “Faithful in My Fashion.”

• Paul Muni, Anne Baxter and Claude Rains in “Angel on My Shoulder.”

100 Years Ago — Dec. 30, 1921

Mrs. Alice Carpenter, wife of Miner Carpenter of this village, committed suicide by severing a large artery in her neck with a razor at home. “Mrs. Carpenter had not been in the best of health for some time past, and at times her mental faculties were affected.” She was 52.

Alanson Tanner celebrated his 90th birthday and the Globe published a story that it printed in 1886 about his 30th wedding anniversary.

Samuel W. Parker, 76, died at his home in Wayland. He had been a farmer in Allegan County since 1874. “He was a kind and indulgent husband and father when he had his right mind and wanted to be busy unto the end.”

Allie Frue gave a party in the hall in Ohio Corners and the crowd afterward marched to the home of V.E. Davidson and gave them a reminder with tin cans and cow bells that they had been married 44 years.

Lawrence Wise though a good way to way to obtain Christmas money was to clean up the rats about the place. So he got busy and did that very thing.

G.W. Colby was elected president of the Northeast Hopkins Community Club for the next year.

Effective Jan. 1, 1922, the war tax on parcel post will be discontinued.

Paul Wing was appointed by Legion Post Commander Pierson to get a price on a pocket billiards table.

Wayland High School graduate John Damoth was given a $200 added stipend by Allegan businessmen in appreciation for his football coaching there.

Thieves broke into the McKinnon implement store in Hopkins and removed lights and windows from three Ford vehicles.

COVER PHOTO: The annual “Parade of the Horribles” more than a century ago in Burnips.

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