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

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

George Jackson and son.

25 Years Ago — April 4, 1997

Residents of the Winsor Woods Estates mobile home park have expressed their displeasure with a proposal to meter water usage in the residential park on West Superior.

Students will be given new options with the new Allegan County School of Choice plans, but local officials do not expect many to take advantage.

Clark Street, just off West Superior, will be widened by construction on behalf of truckers, particularly for Dean Foods.

The public will be asked for funding to support for expanding the Henika Public Library district.

The Allegan County Board of Commissioners has agreed to pay Clerk-Register of Deeds Joyce Watts $27,000 after her suit over excluding her from taking minutes at a meeting.

Lorraine Buchanan penned a letter insisting teen pregnancies have increased after implementation of sex education programs in the schools.

Ron Koedam wrote a letter about the wide turn problems of trucks on narrow roads, concluding, “If we want the stuff trucks deliver, sometimes we have to accommodate them on our roadways.”

Wayland City Maintenance Supervisor Dale Long reminds residents should not leave loose leaves, twigs, trash, vines, nails, building materials and dirt stumps with their brush the city will pick up.

Motivational speaker Milton Creagh will speak to WHAM (Wayland, Hopkins, Allegan and Martin citizens against substance abuse) in “Take off the mask” presentations at Martin and Hopkins high schools.Robert Michael Weaver, 19, of Allegan, confessed to making a bomb threat at Wayland High School and selling marijuana and uttering and publishing.

Jon Carroll and Perry Slagter are opposing incumbent Steve Alflen for one open seat on the Wayland Board of Education. Anita Kerber will challenge 16-year incumbent Evonna Beard at Hopkins and incumbents Darwin Evers and Joanne Knight will be opposed by Larry Martin and Lynne Fahrne.

The Wayland City Council is purchasing a house at 204 W. Superior St. for use by the fire department for smoke drills and later for expansion of city space. The price was $49,000.

Ground was broken for East Martin Christian High School, which has 12 students in its first year.

First Lt. Gary Newell has been named commander of the Michigan State Police post in Hastings, succeeding Lt. Ron Neil.

Freshman Kara Potter registered her first pitching victory in a 10-7 softball decision over Otsego. Wildcat southpaw Brian Ingle also picked up a mound win against the Bulldogs.

Bill Griffey, Todd Frazee, Chris Johnston and Joe Hanley were double winners as Hopkins doubled up Martin in a dual track meet.

Ruth Reno, a longtime member of the United Church of Wayland, an avid reader and member of the Elenbaas Guild, died. The sister of the late Mayor Phil Reno, she was 81.

50 Years Ago — April 5, 1972

Globe sports writer David T. Young wrote a feature story about spring sports at Wayland High School, highlighting the baseball team that made it all the way to the Class B state semifinals the year before. He also spoke with members of the track and tennis teams. It was noted that the Wildcat tennis team will include its first-ever female participant, Kathy Worfel.

Lifetime Hopkins area farmer Charles H. Wamhoff died at age 85.

Troopers Gerald Kerns and Gary Wellman have been assigned to the Wayland post of the Michigan State Police.

Bernadette Nicolai penned a feature story about Wayland High School graduate Art Hooker’s three-year tour around the world sponsored by the Kellogg Farmer Study program.

The Wayland Board of Education voted to pay $1,297, two thirds from a federal grant, to implement a new kindergarten program designed to benefit selected pupils.

Wayland chiropractor Dr. Emil Morlock is moving from his Wayland office to a site on 36th Street in Wyoming.

Expecting enrollment in the school band program to double in the coming years, Director Steve Working announced the purchase of new uniforms.

Sports columnist Charlie Frost did a question and answer forum in his latest entry, explaining why he uses “we” instead of “I” and insisting he doesn’t dislike Detroit sports teams. The week before he forecasted the Tigers to finish fourth in their division and boasted of a 72% correct average in predictions.

Al and Joanne Schmidt and daughter Dianne will open the Dairy Ranch in Dorr April 15 as new owners.

Rachel Ward, Lenn Sutterfield, Ray Duflo, Dick Novosel, Bonnie Miller, Mary Ellen Mynatt and Paige Raatz were picture making plans for the Wayland High School Class of 1957 reunion.

Mrs. Paul Browand has been writing and directing the annual “Barrel of Fun” Variety Show, which scheduled for April 13-15 in the girls’ gym, featuring the talent of 115 local people.

The Hopkins FFA basketball team was champion in a special league formed by chapters in Hamilton and Fennville. Coach was Stan Hilaski.

The Wayland High School tennis team defeated Delton and Calvin Christian, but lost 4-3 to Otsego.

The Wildcats’ baseball dropped its first two games, to Calvin Christian and Allegan.

Mrs. Albert Haveman was photographed in period attire as one of the contestants for Moline Centennial Queen. She is the former Vera Nevins.

75 Years Ago — April 18, 1947

Editor-Publisher Rollo G. Mosher reported that the current telephone operator’ strike has had minimal impact, “no serious inconveniences,” on Wayland because of its automatic dial-up service.

Kenneth Hendrixson, new president of the Run & Gun Club, is promising a very active year for the group, starting with putting out brush and establishing fish shleters at Gun Lake.

The local Henika Library is getting a state grant for $105 for use with salaries, books, furniture, supplies or additional hours of opening.

The Vocational Agriculture Department at Wayland High School has announced it has purchased a 50-gallon sprayer for use of DDT on flies at dairy barns or in small orchards. “Because DDT is more effective when applied under pressure, the agriculture department has obtained the equipment.”

The Rev. R.M. Dean presented a travelogue on Iceland to members of the Martin, Allegan, Dorr, Hopkins, Otsego, Plainwell, Saugatuck, Shelbyville and Wayland library clubs.

Barney Nicolai is making alterations to the Delp Building at Pine and South Main streets to make it ready for a sales and show room for a Hudson dealership, where he is dealer.

The Moline Recreation Association has been organized and local businessmen have raised about $1,000 for flood lights at the softball fields. This summer, a league will include eight teams. Gerald Terpstra is president of the group.

Ed and Vern’s Coffee Shop has been sold by the Doors to Mr. and Mrs. Edward Levering of Grand Rapids.

Aaron Aspinwall, 86, born in 1860 near Bradley and a member of the Wauyland Grange, died. He moved to Wayland after being a Hopkins Township farmer for many years.

The Wayland High School choir will present the cantata “In the Woodland” for its annual spring concert.

Charlotte Preap gave a presentation on her trip to California to members of the Ladies Library Club, which elected Mrs. Mildred Smith as president.

Many prominent Martin men will take part in the presentation of a “Womanless Wedding” April 24 and 25 and the high school gymnasium.

Now showing at the Wayland Theatre:

• Jo Anne Marlowe, Eve Whitney and Irene Ryan in “Little Iodine.”

• William Boyd as Hopalong Cassidy and Andy Clyde in “The Devil’s Playground.”

• Claudette Colbert, June Allyson and Walter Pigeon in “The Secret Heart.”

• Cary Grant, Claude Rains and Ingrid Bergman in “Notorious.”

100 Years Ago — April 14, 1922

Several members of the Ladies Library Club traveled to Plainwell to attend a meeting of the Current Events Club which received a presentation from the Twentist Century Club of Kalamazoo. Library Director Fanny Hoyt was a leader for Tuesday night’s program, “A Trip to Central America.”

Warren W. Colsten presented the last of a series of 11 impersonation programs at the high school.

The high school baseball team has a practice game with Middleville Friday.

Roy Smith led a spirited discussion of Grange members on the topic of how much the village should tax farmers for local improvements.

Samuel Wolcott, Shelbyville area and former owner of a meat market, died at his home. He was 85.

Phyllis Haver and Ben Turpin were starring in Mack Sennett’s comedy “A Small Town Idol” at the Regent Theatre. Also showing was Ethel Clayton in “Ladder of Lies.”

The Women’s Christian Temperance Union will meet at the home of L.P. Reno April 18.

Miss Elba Morse, state supervisor for nursing services, will present “How Committee Members Can Assist in the Public Health Program” at the Christian Church April 20.

A sleet storm in the Wayland area cut telephone service and Michigan State Telephone Co. service workers were pushed into the storm zone by train, by truck and on foot to effect repairs and restore service.

About 20 members of the Rebekahs and Odd Fellows met Saturday afternoon and made repairs to the Moline home of Mrs. Rose Cook to cheer her up while she has been in poor health.

It was announced that Allegan County has more farms than any other county in the United States and its corn crops brought in $800,000, third highest amount in Michigan. Only two counties in Michigan, Oakland and Berrien, outrank the county in number of apple trees.

1 Comment

  • Really like the history. Thanks for doing the research to keep us informed. I wanted to add a “like” but it subtracted a “like”.

Leave a Comment