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 — Aug. 4, 1997

The Globe published a front page photo of Dorr firefighters carrying wounded warrior Bill Fifelski Jr. after he fell through the floor at a burning house and was rendered unconscious. His uncle, Norm Fifelski, and Bill Schumaker rescued him and he survived. Not so the house at 1687 Sherwood.

Allegan County now has the Family Match program to support families of children who have been abused and neglected.

The Michigan State Boundary Commission has approved a plan by the City of Wayland to expand its borders by annexing 140 acres of land currently in Wayland Township, despite local opposition.

A group of Irish young people will come to the Kalamazoo area to play some exhibition soccer. Some of the lads are staying with Wayland residents.

Allegan and Barry counties have agreed to split the costs 50-50 for repairs to the Cuddy Drain. The actual price tag is not yet known, though testing now is being done to determine the source of E. coli bacteria in its water, which flows into Gun Lake.

Andrew Davis of Martin and Jason Weber of Wayland received a Distinguished Citizen award from the Michigan State Police for their heroic actions on behalf of victims of a truck crash.

The Hopkins Area Merchants won the state Class B championship. Some team members, like Heather Staley, were from Wayland.

50 Years Ago — Aug. 1, 1972

Allegan County voters will be asked to approve a one-mill levy for constructing an addition to the County Medical Care Facility in the Aug. 8 primary election. Director Robert Hileski wrote a letter to the editor indicating approval would mean 60 additional beds.

New signs indicating Route A-45 have started to appear on old U.S.-131, or 10th Street.

Allegan County Democrats will have their annual picnic in Dorr Sunday, Aug. 6.

Michigan Bell is delivering its phone books in Wayland and Hopkins with the campaign theme of “Please look in the book first.”

Emery A. Link, a former pharmacist and Wayland residents, died of a heart attack in Park Ridge, Ill. He was 84.

The Rev. Jim Kolk, head chaplain at Pine Rest Christian Hospital, will be guest speaker Sunday at the United Church of Wayland.

Ten Hopkins High School agriculture students represented the school’s FFA at the Holstein Distroct Show in Centreville. Dan Weick showed a 2-year-old cow and Jim Gratz a senior heifer calf.

The Globe published an action photo of this year’s local Little League World Series championship three-game set. Joe LaValley coached the winners, LaValley Insurance, and David Young coached runner-up Harding’s Market.

Gilbert O’Sullivan continued his string of weeks with the No. 1 song in the land with “Alone Again, Naturally.”

75 Years Ago — Aug. 8, 1947

Very hot weather gave local residents a good excuse to go to the Sts. Cyril & Methodius chicken dinner at Gun Lake and “take a dip in the cool waters of Gun Lake, where there is no danger of pollution.”

Editor-Publisher Rollo G. Mosher said roads in the Gun Lake area have been taking a beating from motorists coming from Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo and Battle Creek, causing them to be dry and dusty over the summer. Local businessman Julius Andringa has suggested the local Chamber of Commerce pool its resources to purchase some calcium chloride.

Darl Anderson paid a $25 fine for reckless driving and damaging shrubbery at the southeast corner of the park.

The local fire department was summoned to handle two rural fires, one at the farm of Walter Tolhurst east of town and another at the C.H. Walker farm, Selkirk Lake.

Russell Brower, 21, was drowned in Green Lake after falling off a float. He has taken the day off from a factory in Grand Rapids to beat the heat, which rose above the 100-degree mark.

Mr. and Mrs. Fred Davey have purchased the Pines Lunch from S. Puccio, who had the eatery only for a short time.

The Wayland Grange had a 20-minute panel discussion on the causes of juvenile delinquency.

Johnny Dickinson, son of Dr. and Mrs. C.A. Dickinson was bitten about the face by an Irish Setter believed to have become ill tempered by the hot weather.

The local Veterans of Foreign Wars will be host to a donkey ball competition Aug. 16. Admission is 50 cents, children 25 cents.

Fred Plogsted, a native of Germany who came to America at age 8, died July 31 at his Hopkins Township home.

The Dorr Merchants outlasted Hopkins 6-5 in an independent league baseball game, withstanding a late four-run rally.

Now showing at the Wayland Theatre:

• Lawrence Tierney and Anne Jeffreys in “Step by Step.”

• Preston Foster and Gail Patrick in “King of the Wild Horses.”

• Shirley Temple, Franchot Tone and Guy Madison in “Honeymoon.”

• “Butch” Jenkins, Peter Lawford and Beverly Tyler in “My Brother Talks to Horses.”

100 Years Ago — Aug. 4, 1922

(There is no available Aug. 4, 1922, issue at the Then & Now Historical Library)

Herr Editor has decided, therefore, to include a few items frm the first week of August 1885)

Two of the Hopkins Sabbeth Schools united to give scholars a picnic at Selkirk Lake.

“Threshing has begun and the steam whistle calls the boys in the “wee” hours of the morning.

The Wayland Association has 14 members who have free use of grounds at Gun Lake resorts. “The lake abounds in its production of fine fish, which are caught in large quantities by the cunning angler…”

E.W. Pickett is village president, John Chappie is clerk and John Graham treasurer.

R.M. Congdon is Wayland Township Supervisor.

Three young ladies enjoyed jolly picnic at Green Lake, but three young ladies returned with blistered hands because they rowed against the wind.

The Globe published a portrait of Miss Rose Cleveland, sister of President Grover Cleveland.

Nicholas M. Dean comes frequently with his medicine box, looking after the ills of his former neighbors.

John Sommer caught his hand in the cogs while oiling machinery at the D.B. Merrill & Co. mill, crushing his first finger so that it had to be amputated.

G.H. Henika was selling chamber, dining and kitchen furniture, caskets and coffins at his business downtown.

Mike Holleran and Mike Riley were sobered off in the cooler and fined $5 and costs.

The ladies of this village will present a box social at Smith’s Hall, with proceeds going to buy a flag for the GAR.

The Ideal Comedy Club will appear at the Wayland Roller Rink for an engagement every night next week.

John Stockdale of Allegan and Willie DePew of Bradley were arrested for passing counterfeit money. “The parents of both are highly respected in this community, and it is regretted very much that the boys turned out to be so bad.”

Publisher George Mosher noted an editorial penned by J.S. Fisher, who condemns the sale of liquor in Wayland as the cause of bad behavior by two young boys. He blamed the common council and the saloon.

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