Looking Back for Aug. 11, 2021

1921 – 100 YEARS AGO

According to Engineer Lamb of the highway commission of the state of Illinois, there is a possibility that the highway work north and south of DeKalb and also east to the cement may be begun this year. It is stated that the contracts are to be awarded Aug. 23, and as the season is early, the state official believes that there will be nothing to hinder the beginning of the work at once, and completion of a great part of it before snow flies or cold weather compels a letup. The road consists of the building of the road between the cement on South Fourth Street leading to the Waterman road and also on the Sycamore road to the C. M. & G. tracks, which connects with the hard road leading into Sycamore.

Fire of undetermined origin, first discovered about 10 o’clock, destroyed the Ollman elevator at Malta last night entailing an estimated loss of about $20,000 or more partially covered by insurance. The fire, according to DeKalb people who were among the first to see it, started in the office and if a couple of pails of water could have been obtained, the fire would have amounted to nothing at all. The railroad tower was also damaged.

Motorists, especially among the younger fellows of the city whose dads happen to own a big car, have acquired the habit of running races even as far as Grove Street and on South Fourth Street. This is a dangerous proposition for both the racer and the populace as well.

If present plans do not go wrong, Night Merchant Police A. H. Bruggerman will carry a night watchman’s clock in the very near future and he will be compelled to check in at 16 different stations placed at various intervals along the route. J. Rendell has already received the clock, which is a Waltham, and the 16 stations along with keys. The plan has not been decided upon for certain by the city authorities but an effort will be made to get the businessmen along the street to pay their share of the cost of the clock, which is said to be about $89 to Mr. Rendell. He stated this morning that he would sell the clock for what it cost him.

1946 – 75 YEARS AGO

While the recent dry weather has not damaged the prospective sweet corn crop, the drought has delayed the start of the pack, it was announced by thee officials of the California Packing Corporation. At the present time, the corporation is conducting an intensive labor recruitment campaign in the community in an effort to secure the necessary labor for the pack. At the present time, there is a serious shortage of workers, particularly female workers.

Heavy lightning which accompanied the rain storm early this morning struck a home on Sycamore Road, but no calls were received by the fire department. Lightning hit the chimney at the Jake Gordon home at 522 Sycamore Road. There was no one home and fortunately the bolt did not start a blaze. That lightning had hit the home was noted this morning with bricks being scattered about the yard and the chimney being split wide open

Sycamore Park will have a horseshoe contest Sunday afternoon on the new horseshoe courts. This will be the first contest to be played in many years. Just recently the horseshoe courts were finished and have had some hard use in preparation for this contest with Elgin.

Ed Lanan of Clare had to have seven stitches in the index finger of his left hand when he caught it in an electric rip saw at his home. He was working on a trailer house his brother has been constructing. A tetanus treatment was added to the medical care.

According to a sheriff’s report this morning a “putt-putt” motor had been stolen off a cement mixer sometime during the night at the Vesta School, located 3 miles west of Malta. Repairs were being made at the school and the cement mixer was left in the schoolyard during the night. When the workmen arrived this morning they found that the gasoline engine was missing. With the scooter rage now going on it will probably turn up on one of those.

Mr. and Mrs. Willard Thompson, formerly of Leland, have recently purchased a restaurant in Hinckley and as soon as a home can be secured they will move to Hinckley.

Extension of the long dry spell has continued the danger of grass fires and yesterday afternoon the DeKalb Fire Department was called out to halt the spread of a grass fire on Oak Street. The blaze on Oak Street was between Ninth and Tenth streets and the fire had crept into the railroad ties of the switch track and some trouble was encountered in extinguishing the fire. The booster pump had to be used before the fire was put out and the danger of its spread halted.

1971 – 50 YEARS AGO

Northern Illinois University President Richard Nelson received a message he’ll never forget by special trunk delivery this morning. Upon arriving at his reserved parking space at Lowden Hall, Nelson found it well filled by a 15-foot high, plastic elephant with a note from former NIU President Rhoten Smith in its trunk. As a former president of the Young Democrats, Nelson found the GOP symbol quite amusing.

Move over Bach, Beethoven, Chopin, Glenn Miller, Guy Lombardo, Lawrence Welk and the rest. Make room for Chicago, Blood, Sweat and Tears, James Taylor, George Harrison and Jesus Christ Superstar. The DeKalb Public Library, located at 309 Oak St., has been the target of a student revolution. Mary Gosnell and Ann Koski, student help at the library, were told they could order records for the record collection that the younger people would like.

Agricultural editors, writers, broadcasters, and advertising people converged here for the 31st annual DeKalb AgResearch Inc. and Lennen & Newell Midwest Advertising open house golf party yesterday. Approximately 45 news media people involved were given a tour of the cornfields near Waterman.

1996 – 25 YEARS AGO

Downtown DeKalb is losing a business, but that appears to be fine with city officials. The American Exchange tavern has closed its doors, and Monday night, the DeKalb City Council will look to ensure it will not be replaced by another bar downtown.

The DeKalb Park District and the Ellwood House Association have finalized an agreement for the construction of a visitor center at the Ellwood House Museum, but clearly hard feelings still remain. The agreement ends more than a year of dispute over the construction of the $550,000 expansion project which will provide display space for the museum’s collection and climate control for the addition.

Cold air funnels swept through Sandwich Friday afternoon, causing some concern among town officials and residents. At about 4 p.m. emergency sirens were set off in the town to alert residents to take cover. The funnels were spotted by members of the Sandwich Police Department.

– Compiled by Sue Breese