From Our Early Files Feb. 9, 2022





February 13, 1997

The Whitehall city council approved borrowing money for the city’s share of a project that could cost upwards of $1 million. The resolution approved calls for the city to borrow $386,800 from John O. Melby and Co. Bank. That amount is the city’s share of the estimated cost of building a new water reservoir on the west side and expanding water mains and streets in that area. 

Members of the Whitehall city council got an idea of what this community’s proposed new swimming pool will look like at a meeting held last week. The full council, meeting as a special pool committee, met with a representative of the firm hired to design the new facility. They apparently liked what they saw: a recreational complex that will cover a larger area and offer more things to do than the existing pool. 

Members of a couple Trempealeau County committees seem likely to get an earful next week when they hold a public hearing on a proposed metallic mineral mining ordinance. The zoning and land records and land conservation committees will host a hearing at the Whitehall High School auditorium. The hearing is set to be held in two sessions to accommodate what is expected to be a large turnout. 

The heavy snow that fell last week was the primary reason why a woman from Independence lost her life in an early morning crash near Elk Creek on Feb. 5. A two-vehicle collision claimed the life of Barbara Brandenburg, 35, while another individual was injured in the crash. A report from the Trempealeau County Sheriff’s Department said Brandenburg was killed after the vehicle she was operating in the northbound lane slid across the centerline, striking a vehicle driven by William Kopperud, 41, of Eleva, who was traveling southbound on Highway 93. 

Ashley Furniture Industries president and chief operating officer Bob George left the company after 27 years. Todd Wanek was named the new president and COO of the company. 

Ivan Pronschinske and Dale Howard were elected to the Arcadia Credit Union board. 

In 1925, when Carlyle Cory played for the Gale High school basketball team he won a letter for his efforts. He has been a fan of varsity sports at the high school ever since. In appreciation for his loyal support over more than seven decades, he was given an athletic department sweater and a standing ovation during halftime of a recent Redmen game. 

State and federal emphasis on technical education suggest that outside funding might be available for the new Gale-Ettrick-Trempealeau High School if it develops a field of technical studies. That’s the view of school board member Norm Schein. He asked other board members at their Feb. 6 meeting to look into outside funding for what he said could be the first outstate technical high school in Wisconsin. 


February 17, 1972

Area youth are now enjoying a new, modern warming house adjacent to the skating rink, prepared by the city of Whitehall. The warming house is project of the Whitehall Lions Club, with the Chamber of Commerce also donating.

A car owned by Mr. and Mrs. Lyle Olson, left parked and running on Main Street by their son, Lauren, slipped into gear and backed into the window of the Farmers Store Saturday afternoon.

The Norsemen, led by 22 points from Fred Thompson, defeated Independence 72-57 Friday. Reserve Dave Pientok was named player of the week by the coaching staff.

A representative group of Arcadia School District residents met with the Arcadia board of education Monday night to discuss qualifications and criteria for hiring a superintendent of schools. Chairman Gerhard Nilsestuen called the executive session to give the board insight into the feeling of the district on the selection of a successor to W.B. Gautsch, administrator in Arcadia for the past 40 years. 

The seventh in a series of Wisconsin Indian Head Country Sunshine Snowmobile Trail Rides will be held this weekend in Arcadia. Both rides are co-sponsored by the Arcadia Sno-Riders Snowmobile Club and Wisconsin Indian Head Country. 

The Arcadia High Quiz team tied with St. Charles, Minn. Sunday evening on WKBT-TV to win a return engagement. Team members include coach Mrs. Leone Fernholz, Scott Koetting, Brian English, Steve Kaldunski, George Rippley and James Rippley. The team won a $300 scholarship to Viterbo College in La Crosse. 

Dr. L.J. Larson, owner of the Larson Veterinary Clinic, has announced a partnership with Dr. Frank Douglas of Galesville. 

Galesville High Quiz Bowl team members are Cathie Eichman, Kathy Butman, Ken Kriesel and Mark Severson. Laurie Sacia is the alternate and Robert Christianson is the coach. 


February 13, 1947

By a vote of the county board of supervisors, the name of the Trempealeau County Asylum has been officially changed to the Trempealeau County Hospital. By a resolution adopted by the board, the names of persons taken to the Mendota State Hospital will be henceforth stricken from the county board records, and their file numbers in the county court substituted for their names.

John Sygulla of the town of Lincoln, who has served his township as a member of the board for 22 years, the past 14 years as chairman, has informed The Times that he has withdrawn his nomination for reelection as chairman. John had announced at last month’s caucus that he was not a candidate, but he received sufficient votes to place his name on the ballot. Henrik Herness will have no opposition for election as chairman.

James Garson and Gavin Strand, who are pals, and nature lovers, have built a hideout beyond the second dam across the Trempealeau River. After school on Thursday, the boys were making improvements to their structure when they saw a carp floundering in a pool former by the rocks, which they estimated was as long as their two hatchets laid end-to-end, and as big around as Gavin’s head. When the boys came to The Times office to tell their story, they still were excited about their experience.

August Knudtson has purchased Burr Tarrant’s old law office, and has been granted permission by the city council to move it onto a foundation he has erected in the Oak Park addition.

Mrs. Laura Johnson Rindahl arrived at the town of Pigeon home of her parents, Mr. and Mrs. John F. Johnson, Thursday evening from Mapumolo, South Africa, where she and her husband, the Rev. W.O. Rindahl, have been assigned for the past eight years.

Clarence Konkel of Dodge was in St. Joseph’s hospital with a broken leg as the result of an accident which occurred at Pine Creek. According to traffic officer H.F. Theurer, who investigated the accident. Three cars were returning from Winona at about 2 a.m. before stopping at Pine Creek to unload some of the passengers. One car stalled and Konkel was attempting to start it when another car hit the bumper with such force that it broke off and hit Konkel in the leg with such force that it broke his leg. 

Four Minnesotans who have been connected with nearly 40 burglaries in Minnesota and area broke into the Farmers Co-op and Sheriff Erickson made the arrest. Most of the loot has been recovered. 

James Solberg and Edward Gardner have opened a repair shop in Galesville. 


February 16, 1922

We understand that a petition is in circulation, and has been quite numerously signed by residents of this village, asking that Sunday baseball games be prohibited during the coming season. It would be commendable on the part of the baseball associations if this could be accomplished in every village. Not only from a moral standpoint, but as an aid to trade, businessmen should cooperate in this movement. Those who now attend Sunday games would come on Saturday, and add to those the hundreds — enthusiastic baseball fans all — who will not desecrate the Sabbath in that fashion. We believe the businessmen everywhere should, and would, close set aside two hours Saturday afternoon when their establishments would be closed, and all would join in rooting for their respective teams.

At the regular term of Trempealeau County circuit court on Monday, five persons pleaded guilty to violations of the liquor laws of the state of Wisconsin. Peter Pelowski, John Sabotta and George Thompson each were fined between $100 and $125 and costs, John Kloss was sentenced to 30 days in jail, and Harry Meyers, to 60 days.

Geo. Reitzel, Martin Skorstad and Charlie Fredrickson of Preston were in town yesterday with samples of their tobacco, getting prices on their 1921 crop. George also placed an ad in these columns offering Scotch collies. Better place an order now.

R.J. Wieland was elected president at the annual meeting of the Arcadia Farmers Shipping Association. Also elected were E.B. McWeeny, vice president, F.B. McWeeny, secretary/treasurer and Fred Wifflet, Adam Zeller, Robert Ashton and Ole Olson, directors. 

L.J. Rosenow was elected president of the board of Garden Valley Creamery Company. George Stiehl was elected vice president.

Thomas Hunter, pioneer, passed away at 86 years. He was father of Hunters Bridge and a leader in public affairs, one of the first settlers on Decora Prairie. The Hunters came to Wisconsin with other Scotch families in 1853. The bridge stands as a monument to his memory and bears his name, it was built in 1895. 

The Ettrick and Northern railroad is unfortunate this winter. Disabled engines interrupted the freight service, mail is being received part time by rail, auto or teams of horses. 


February 11, 1897

The telephone company are putting in the private wire for the courthouse officials.

Artist Rogan is doing an extensive mail-order business in the way of copying and enlarging photographs.

Adams and Taylor have purchased the property known as the Getts store building. The property has a 90-foot front on Main Street, and is a very desirable location. The consideration was $1,200.

The death of Chairman Taylor will necessitate a special session of the county board to elect his successor. A petition of a majority of the board is required, when the county clerk will issue a call for the session.

Ed Nelson of the town of Albion left home on Monday, Feb. 1, ostensibly for the purpose of going to a neighboring farm to measure hay. It was subsequently learned that he passed the place without stopping, and since that time has not put in an appearance at his home or been seen in the vicinity. He has acted strangely for some time, and is supposed to have been in a demented condition when he left. His wife, Mrs. Emma Nelson, who is not left in the best of financial circumstances, would appreciate any information regarding him.

The Modern Woodmen dance and ball at the Opera Hall tomorrow night promises to be one of the great events of the season.

W.S. Kidder has purchased a lot on the south side of Main Street in the south part of the village, and is hauling stone for the foundation of a residence, to be erected in the spring.

Miss Kittie Melby departed for Chicago Saturday, where she will pursue her studies at the Soper school of oratory.

The chicken pie social at the Baptist church last evening was well patronized. The receipts were upwards of $13.

Independence — The cable of the elevator broke again last week Wednesday, and Mr. Sprecher now talks of running his elevator by some other power.

Blair — Ole Nelson secured an ugly specimen of tarantula from a bunch of bananas yesterday. J.H. Vold has it on display at the drug store, preserved in alcohol.

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