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

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

A Hopkins neighborhood today, same as in photo from 1910

25 Years Ago — June 9, 1997

Three “Dorr Boyz” have been arrested in connection to damages incurred by vandalism at local township parks.

Wayland city officials are agreeing to terms of a local ordinance banning nudity, following the lead of Gaines and Leighton townships.

Dorr Township has begun Phase 3 of “Dorr Pathways,” a community sidewalk-building project, which was launched after the death of 11-year-old bicyclist Nicole Ringelson.

The Wayland softball and Martin baseball teams captured district championships.

Elane VanDenBergh has been named new deputy supervisor for Wayland Township, succeeding Clare Black, who resigned.

Terry Davis of Martin penned a letter to the editor expressing disappointment that a Martin teacher gave into pressure from parents to let an athlete compete in the state track meet despite not meeting grade requirements.

Chief Noonday Road, also known as M-179, is now officially designated as a State of Michigan Historic Road.

Dave and Dawn Laman of Gun Lake were credited with saving the lives of two couples and a dog whose boat had capsized.

Rose Marcott of Wayland Township made an impassioned plea to the Allegan County Road Commission to save a huge tree near the corner of 135th Avenue and 4th Street, which has been identified for being cut down for safety reasons.

The Wayland Township Board has ordered Gun Lake Community Center manager David Botwinski to post a sign indicating the building there is in violation of the local zoning ordinance.

The vocal quintet “Three Men and a Tenor” will perform Friday evening, June 20, at Wayland City Park.

Yankee Springs Township officials are helping with fund-raising efforts to build a Yankee Springs fire substation to house Thornapple Township Emergency Services personnel.

The Watson Township Board gave its blessing, with conditions, to straightening a road leading up to a gravel mining operation owned by John VanDyk.

The Wayland Area Ambulance Service is marking its 20th anniversary and is burning its mortgage. The cooperative service began on Jan. 1, 1976, with Bill Baweja as director. One of the volunteer employees that year was Joe Kramer, fresh out of high school.

Junior Jason Moore finished sixth in the state track meet in the 3200-meter run and the 1600-meter relay team was seventh with Robbie Brower, Walter Smith, Steve Smith and Mark Stauffer.

The Hopkins 1600 relay team of Bill Werkema, Justin ransom, Tim MacArthur and Todd Frazee broke the school record by more than two seconds while running at the state meet.

Wayland improved its season softball record to 31-5 by winning the district championship and will face face Comstock in the opening round of regionals.

50 Years Ago — June 7, 1972

Rep. James Farnsworth has announced his candidacy for the new State House 54th District. He has been a member of the House since 1962.

Harold Weaver, owner of Weaver Hardware for 35 years, died at St. Mary’s Hospital of a respiratory disease. He was 66. He and his wife, Dora, established the Weaver Trust, and he was a member of the Chamber of Commerce and was a registered pharmacist from Ferris State College.

Gordon Lawrence of Grand Valley State College spoke to members of the Wayland Chamber of Commerce about the new public television station, Channel 35.

Edgar Torkko was hired as principal at Steeby Elementary School and Jon Jensen was hired to teach social studies and coach cross country.

Voters approved, 850 to 768, a proposal for a swimming pool and auditorium to be added to the new high school. Francis Lindgren and John Grafford unseated incumbents on the school board. William Maher and Leo Smith were elected in Hopkins and James Boss and Mrs. Marvin DeYoung in Martin.

The United Church of Wayland and United Methodist Church will offer a combined summer Bible school, led by Mrs. David Smith and Mrs. Albert Kidney.

Mary K. Bastian, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Frank Bastian of Dorr, earned an associate degree in music and plans to get her bachelor’s degree at Northern Michigan University.

Eva Mae Briggs Fleser of Washington D.C., formerly of Shelbyville, died. Among her survivors was son Rear Admiral Harold M. Briggs of Washington.

Charlie Frost’s parting shot in his sports column, “For those who think the Tigers can win it all, please remember that two pitchers (Mickey Lolich and Joe Coleman) won 13 of the first 15 games that out boys won. Nobody, we repeat, nobody can win it all with but two first string pitchers.” He didn’t count on the arrival later that summer of Woody Fryman.

Steve Mallett, son of Mr. and Mrs. Ralph Mallet of Wayland, won first prize in the Pitch, Hit and Throw contest in Plainwell.

Sammy Davis Jr. moved into the top spot among the nation’s nation’s top tunes with “Candy Man.”

75 Years Ago — June 13, 1947

Editor-Publisher Rollo G. Mosher, in his weekly “Observations” column, suggested Wayland schools come up with some kind of plan for scholarships to help deserving young people to afford going to college in the wake of the successes of the GI Bill of Rights.

The Allegan County Council of the American Legion will meet in Wayland with a potluck at the high school cafeteria. The Auxiliary will meet the following Thursday at the home of President Mildred Gurney.

Rollin Smith, youngest son of Mrs. Lois Smith of Wayland, is CEO of the Smith Construction Co., has won the contract to build a stadium at the Memorial Recreation Park in Port Huron.

Trumpeter Clyde McCoy and his orchestra will come to the Dixie Pavilion south of town on Wednesday evening. McCoy’s “Sugar Blues” is regarded as one of the most imitated records in the business.

Emery Stora, 29, was killed in a freak accident while making his rounds in delivering milk Saturday. His vehicle started to coast down an incline and he ran to get into stop it, but was partially caught in the door when it crashed into a tree. Coroner Dr. C.A. Dickinson said he died of suffocation.

The third annual Fairview School District School No. 3 in Monterey Township was host for the third annual reunion, beckoning 48 attendees.

Hopkins Community Church and the United Methodist Church will combine its annual Bible School services June 16-27.

Rollo G. Mosher added to his column on a growing parking problem, “Wayland is more and more becoming the business center foe an expanding trade area, and we must see to it that when people come to transact business, they find a place to leave their cars and trucks.”

Now showing at the Wayland Theatre:

• Paul Kelly and Osa Massen in “Strange Journey.”

• Charles Starett and Smiley Burnett in “Landrush.”

 • Betty Hutton, Sonny Tufts and Michael Chekov in “Cross My Heart.”

• Bob Hope, Dorothy Lamour, Peter Lorre and Lon Chaney Jr. in “My Favorite Brunette.”

100 Years Ago — June 9, 1922

Wayland Schools Supt. Floyd Boughner was in Ypsilanti to make arrangements for rooms for his stay at Eastern Michigan College.

The student concerts held in the church yard have been greatly missed this spring.

Mrs. Clara Cogswell has secured a position for next year in the schools at a considerable increase in salary.

The Rev. G. W. Rowlison will deliver the baccalaureate address Sunday evening, June 11. Commencement will be Thursday evening June 15, at the Christian Church. The Rev. J. Bert Bouwman will deliver the address.

“Merry June” will be the pageant for the annual promotion exercises for grades 1-6.

The seventh and eighth grade picnic will held on the school grounds because, “if we went to the woods it would be a picnic for the mosquitoes.”

Members of the graduating class number only 10.

Russell Lewis, son of Mr. and Mrs. Wilbur Lewis, was the only student who had perfect attendance.

Now showing at the Regent Theatre:

• Marguerite Clark in “Scrambled Wives.”

• From Ralph Connor’s story, “The Foreigner,” “God’s Crucible.”

The local chapter of the Women’s Christian Temperance Union will observe a Flower Mission Day June 13.

Ezekial Smith and Paul Nelson will receive their degrees in engineering from MAC later this month.

Dr. Harold Hanlon will return from Chicago to help his father with his medical practice here. His father is ill and has been staying at a residence at Gun Lake.

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