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

A program from a WHS football game vs. Marne Kenowa Hills in October 1962.

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

25 Years Ago — May 26, 1997

Leighton, Dorr and Salem townships have agreed to an arrangement for police protection by deputies from the Allegan County Sheriff’s Department.

A group of local youngsters, Adam Davis, Chris Blanco and Joe Schumaker, and has asked Wayland City Council and the city manager for permission to have a skateboard park.

Jerry Fouch has announced his resignation as athletic director for Wayland Union schools, the second to step down in the past two years. He had succeeded Dave Chesney the year before. Chesney left for Northview and Fouch left for East Grand Rapids.

The Hopkins Public School district held a groundbreaking ceremony for the new Sycamore Elementary addition.

The Wayland City budget for 1997-98 promises to be aggressive in savings and conservative in spending.

Editor Nila Aamoth wrote in her “Soapbox” column that one of the few negative aspects of country living is dusty gravel roads and motorists who kick up the nasty substance with excessive speeds.

The Hopkins track team, led by sprinter Todd Frazee, finished fourth in the Class regional meet.

Gary Marsh penned a letter to the editor defending the integrity of Wayland Board of Education member Steve Alflen.

Rose Marcott wrote a letter in defense of trees in her neighborhood on 4th Street.

Barbara Chachulski wrote a letter complaining about taxes for telephones, including the new surcharge for 911.

City of Wayland officials seem to be planning for the industrial park to be west of South Main Street and south of Superior, including west on Sycamore Street to Commerce and south of the new mobile home park.

Police Chief Dan Miller said his department is awaiting results of a study of traffic in downtown Wayland done by a counter.

The Wildcat softball team won its first O-K Gold Conference championship since 1983 with back-to-back no-hitters pitched by freshman Kara Potter and Amanda Dzierzyc against Forest Hills Northern. It was the first of many league titles for coach Cheri Ritz.

The Martin softball team led Bloomingdale 16-8 in the seventh inning with two outs, but eventually lost in extra innings.

50 Years Ago — May 24, 1972

The first Globe edition to transition from the old format of hot type to cold type was published on this date. The size of the newspaper changed considerably.

The first adult education class in Wayland history was graduated, with 14 receiving diplomas. About 150 attended the ceremony at the Wayland High School girls’ gym.

Wayland Board of Education incumbents Joe LaValley and Vern Lettinga will be challenged by John Grafford and Francis Lindgren in the annual election in June.

Jack Smith is the only incumbent for the Hopkins school election, with challengers including Mrs. Albert Green, Darwin Henry, William Maher, Leo Smith and Richard Thompson Jr. Mrs. Elwood Schwartz chose not to seek re-election.

Six newcomers are running for school board seats in Martin, including Jams Boss, Mrs. Marvin DeYoung, Donald Fontaine, Donald Sebright, Thomas Shook and Simon VanderPloeg.

Patrick Miller, 17, son of Mr. and Mrs. Earl Miller, was injured in a car accident north of Wayland when he swerved his vehicle to avoid hitting an animal and left the roadway.

A guitar mass with Rick Dutkiewicz and Phil Shangraw will be held at St. Stanislus Church, Dorr. Bernadette Iciek will be narrator.

Tammy Parfait, Joy Multer, Nancy Wisniewski and Doris Gonzalez unloaded homers in softball victories over Gobles.

Elwyn Powers was named Wayland High School senior athlete of the year after setting school records in the mile, 880 and two-mile runs.

Dorr Elementary School celebrated a “Mrs. (Joseph) Rybiski Week” in honor of her teaching retirement after 33 years.

Twins Robert and Ronald Dykhouse of Moline graduated May 19 from United Electronics Institute in Grand Rapids.

Joanne Grzeszak, a Wayland High School graduate, was elected as a respresentative on the Grand Valley State College Student Senate.

Jim Gratz handed over the gavel as president of the Hopkins FFA to Ted Howard at the organization’s annual banquet.

“Oh, Girl” by the Chi-Lites finally ended the six-week No. 1 streak by Roberta Flack’s “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” as the No. 1 song in the land.

75 Years Ago — May 30, 1947

Editor-Publisher Rollo G. Mosher wrote in his “Observations” column, “To our way of thinking, it would be just as well for Congress to strike those “nuisance taxes” from the books. If anything irls the average person is to have to pay a tax on such things as telephone calls, telegraph messages, cosmetics, handbags and so-called luxury items. They do not bring in much revenue.”

Howard Clack has resigned his position as Standard Oil agent and will be succeeded by Ford Brower on June 1.

The Rev. Ralph Dean will present the address and music will be provided by the Wayland band for the Memorial Day program.

Kenneth Smith, 11, is in Crispe Hospital in Plainwell after suffering a knee injury after his bicycle was struck by a hit-and-run driver on North Main Street near Herb’s Garage.

Mosher also wrote in “Observations” this week, “It is just about time that a local campaign for safe and sane driving was due here in Wayland, as a new crop of reckless drivers seem to crop up every so often.”
Mrs. Hazel Overmire and Mrs. Virginia Parrish will have their music students present a recital Thursday at the Congregational Church.

An ammonia line in the cold storage room at the Pet Milk plant exploded, but no one was injured.

J. Clark Sproat, prominent Dorr native and publisher of the Grand Rapids Morning Democrat, died in Little Rock, Ark. He was 85. Sproat also lighted street light gas lamps in Grand Rapids to pay for his education at Grand Rapids Business College.

Rev. Fr. Adelbert Radowski, pastor of the St. Therese Parish in Wayland, has been named diocesan director of the Society for the Propagation of the Faith. It won’t be necessary for him to move from Wayland.

Floyd Washburn of Shelbyville speared a monster gar pike that weighed 14 lbs. that could destroy hundreds of game and panfish. The Rod and Gun Club has launched a program of spearing noxious fish at Gun Lake.

The Hopkins Merchants baseball team is preparing to compete in the Twilight League. Manager is Leland Buck.

The Wayland String Trio, with Miss Lenora Sykes on violin, Mrs. Richard Overmire, cello, and Mrs. Horace Parish performed for the Ladies Library Club.Guest speaker was Birdena Donaldson, history professor and dean of women at Kalamazoo College.

Harold Lohrberg was scheduled to present the president’s address to the Wayland High School Class of 1947 at graduation exercises May 28.

Now showing at the Wayland Theatre:

• John Wayne, Gail Russell and Harry Carey in “Angel and the Badman.”

• Barry Fitzgerald, Diana Lynn and Sonny Tufts in “Easy Come, Easy Go.

• Jimmy Stewart, Donna Reed and Lionel Barrymore in “It’s a Wonderful Life.”

100 Years Ago — May 26, 1922

Henry Dooley of Bradley, freight agent at Monteith Junction for the Michigan Railway Co., was electrocuted when his foot touched the third rail, which carries a current of 1500 volts. He was helping with repairs to the southbound limited car. Efforts to revive him were futile.

Wayland was the winner of the girls’ basketball cup at the Field Days in Otsego and Raymond Fox won in track and field events. Enough praise cannot be given Miss Emery, who coached the basketball team… She has taken inexperienced players with few exceptions and made a winning team.” Miss Emery herself played two years at Western Normal College and will leave Wayland at the end of this school year.

Faye Auble, a sixth-grader, is very ill while recovering from an auto accident that killed her mother.

Dr. W. F. Kendrick, superintendent of the Grand Rapids district of United Methodist churches, will be guest speaker Saturday night at the churches in Corning and Sunday night in Wayland.

“The Kid,” written and directed by Charlie Chaplin and starring Jackie Coogan, will be shown Monday and Tuesday at the Regent Theatre downtown. Also showing will be Charles Ray in “Peaceful Valley” and the classic “Jane Eyre.”

Edward Lauth has recovered from his recent illness and is back on his milk route.

A Grand Haven baseball team will be in town Saturday afternoon to take on Wayland.

A.B. Case of New York State, is visiting Wayland this week for the first time in 50 years.

The Allegan Dramatic Club will present the play “Nothing But the Truth” at the Regent Theatre June 1, with proceeds going to the Child Welfare Fund.

The Chautauqua series will get under way this year on Aug. 23, according to Faye C. Wing.

Memorial Day services will be held Tuesday, May 30, at Elmwood Cemetery. Veterans of the Civil War and/or their widows especially are invited.

There was a special meeting in Bradley on voting for a bond proposal to build a new school house.

A Ford car was crowded into a ditch at Gun Swamp Sunday, but no one was reported injured.

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