From Our Early Files Jan. 25, 2023





January 29, 1998

Area residents will be able to learn about the proposed sale of the Tri-County Lutheran Nursing Home in Pigeon Falls at a public meeting to be held next week. Trempealeau County Health Care Center officials have arranged for the informational meeting at the Pigeon Falls Community Center. TCHCC has offered to purchase the 18-year-old nursing home from Tri-County Memorial Hospital for $850,000. 

The Whitehall School District Board of Education apparently will leave it up to district electors whether part of the school forest property is sold or not. The board Monday night discussed a proposal from the town of Northfield to purchase that portion of the forest located south of Hwy. 121. The 64-acre forest property, which is located in the Jackson County township, was inherited by the Whitehall school system when parts of the former Hixton district were consolidated into it more than 35 years ago. 

Christmas 1997 came a couple days early for Norm and Lu Herman of Whitehall, owners of RECSS Promotions. This fall, Norm Herman, a lifelong Green Bay Packers fan, wrote a song entitled ‘The Toast of Title Town,” and entered it in an international song-writing contest sponsored by Charlie Ray’s “Around the World Promotions in Nashville, Tenn. On Dec. 23, the Hermans were made aware that they had won second place – out of 1,200 entries – in the contest. 

The Arcadia Police Department and the United States Secret Service are currently investigating a case involving counterfeit money being distributed in Arcadia. A banking institution reported to Arcadia Police Chief Pat Grzadzielewski that they had received a counterfeit $100 bill on Jan. 24. 

Kevin Whalen, Arcadia, was one of four finalists in the National Farm Bureau Federation’s Young Farmer Discussion Meet competition held at the organization’s annual meeting in Charlotte, N.C. Whalen operates a beef farm near Arcadia and is the ag instructor at Arcadia High School. 

A Galesville teen died Monday morning as the result of injuries she received in a three-vehicle accident near Hunter’s Bridge. Gabrielle Trim, 16, was traveling north on Highway 53 when her vehicle was struck from behind by a vehicle driven by Michael Dunn, 48, of La Crosse. The impact forced Trim’s vehicle into the southbound lane where it was struck again, this time by Steven Heimdahl, 36, of Taylor. According to the police report, icy road conditions caused Dunn’s vehicle to hit Trim’s. Trim suffered extensive internal injuries and head injuries and was pronounced dead at the hospital. Heimdahl had head, wrist and leg injuries and Dunn was uninjured. 

Checks stolen from Skogen’s grocery store in Galesville during a robbery on Sept. 22, 1996 were found by a Galesville man while deer hunting. Mark Cisewski of Galesville found the 224 stolen checks on the Blair hill near Highway 53, north of Ettrick. Store owner Dave Skogen said the checks can’t be cashed without permission from the check writers. He said the banks are calling the individuals who wrote the checks and asking them for permission to cash them. 


February 1, 1973

Representatives of the Whitehall Packing Co., city officials and local business and development groups will meet tonight to discuss problems with the city’s overloaded sewage plant. Whitehall Packing Co. President Daniel Meilman told a public meeting Thursday that his firm would like to continue operations in Whitehall, but that would depend on whether WPC can stay in compliance with state Department of Natural Resources regulations.

George Spiker of Black River Falls was convicted Tuesday in Madison federal court of the Nov. 1 robbery of the Pigeon Falls State Bank, during which $4,000 in cash was taken.

The Arcadia High School gym was the scene for a play night between the Arcadia High School’s Girls Athletic Association. Approximately 90 students took part in the evening activities, followed by a barbecue sandwich lunch. 

Jean Meistad, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Gordon Meistad, Arcadia, was named Arcadia High School’s 1973 Betty Crocker Homemaker of Tomorrow Selected by a score in written knowledge and attitude examination taken by senior students. Meistad received the highest marks. 

There will be three candidates for the school board of the Gale-Ettrick-Trempealeau district at the spring election. The three who have filed declarations of candidacy are Charlotte Elkins, Joyce Sacia and Frank Douglas. They will be vying for two positions on the board. 

Jesper Bitsch, 16, from Aabenraa, Denmark, is spending several weeks at the Alex Nelsestuen farm in French Creek. 

Kazuki Hoshaka, Japanese youth from Hagagun Tochigiken, a village 40 miles north of Tokyo, is a guest at the Robert Hanson farm on South Beaver Creek. 


January 29, 1948

The trend in America today is toward military dominance, declared Kenneth Hones of Chippewa Falls, president of the Wisconsin Farmers Union, as he spoke at the organizational meeting of the Trempealeau County Farmers Union held in Whitehall Thursday. Congress will soon vote for compulsory military training, Hones said, “and the all we have to do is elect some five-star general as president and the jog is up. Hones said America is not far removed from the conditions in Germany or Russia today.

An afternoon of free entertainment will be given at the City Hall next Thursday, through the courtesy of P.M. Paulson, local International Harvester dealer.

Coral City has something that Whitehall does not, a public square, said Peter Simenson, who owns a farm on the outskirts of that village, the other day while in town. Going back to the early days, when Coral City was a thriving little village, Pete related that those who platted the village provided for a public square. While the plot is still shown in some older county atlases, it is said to be situated between the present Eddie Nelson residence and the Sveum garage. But the relocation of Hwy. 53 will terminate all hope of those pioneers who undoubtedly foresaw throngs of settlers enjoying themselves at public gatherings on the plot of land set apart especially for their use.

Ralph Andrews, who owned and operated the Century Theatre at Blair the past year, has sold his business to Frank Lesmeister of Martin, N.D.

The Whitehall Fire Department perhaps established a record in answering a roof fire call at the Willis Briggs residence Thursday. Willis gave the alarm after noticing burning embers from his chimney landing on the roof, and the fire truck was there in two minutes flat.

Joseph Jumbeck, 65, a resident of Dodge for his entire life was found dead Tuesday morning, lying in a marshy area across the river from Dodge. He had apparently frozen to death some time during the night or early morning. 

Judge Harry Perry, 68, county judge of Jackson County for 13 years resigned from his office and his resignation was accepted by Governor Oscar Rennebohm. This action represented a victory for a Jackson County citizen movement in which a recall petition was circulated and sufficient signers were obtained to ask for the removal of Judge Perry from office. Citizens charged Judge Perry with mishandled funds and he almost made the county bankrupt. 


February 1, 1923

The ski season opened last Sunday at Stuve’s Hill. The sport was not very spirited this time, but next Sunday the old-time enthusiasm will be aroused, and we look for some record jumps. This time, Reuben Rasmussen made the only leap worthy of mention, a 68-foot standing jump. Reuben does not permit his recent physical injuries to detract from his sporting spirit.

Tomorrow, the ground hog will come out of his hole and look around. If he sees his shadow, he is supposed to go back for six weeks, for in his wisdom there will be that much more winter.

Among the county patrolmen recently selected for the state trunk highways, are Chas. Briggs, Frank Giemza, Paul Reichoff, Theron Scott and Gottlieb Klebig of Whitehall, and Robert Burt, Frank Roskos, Theodore Severson, John Jaszewski, A.D. Marsolek and Jens Evenson of Independence.

Those who came out to see a good game of basketball were not disappointed when the Whitehall Legion team met the Taylor team Thursday night, beating them by a score of 38 to 25. The local must be given credit for fast team work and the manner in which they broke up the passes of their heavy opponents. As a curtain-raiser to the game, the senior-junior girls’ team from Whitehall High defeated the sophomore-freshmen girls’ team, 23 to 17. Leif Solsrud acted as the judge.

The Mabbett Leaf Tobacco Co. made a shipment of leaf tobacco to Antwerp, Belgium, last week. Mr. Sorenson of the company says that the tobacco was of the 1921 crop, and was the first direct shipment to a foreign port.

Professor W.B. Senty was elected post commander of Martin A. Tickfer Post of the American Legion. Others elected: Millard Barlow, vice commander; Henry Theurer; adjutant; agnes Bill, historian and Omer Fugina, chaplain. 

L.K. Strand was elected president and Ole Olson, vice president, of the Tamarack Telephone Company at an annual meeting. 

Lars Hanson, a pioneer of the town of Arcadia, died at his home in Newcomb Valley.


January 27, 1898

Judge Odell attended the Burns festival at Arcadia.

The interior of the Lutheran church in Whitehall is being ceiled entire, Richard Mattson doing the work.

Wictor Kablusky, Sam Cerchres and Frank Chechesek were brought here from Trempealeau  Friday to serve a 30-day sentence in the county jail for illegal fishing. They hail from the vicinity of Winona, and were nabbed and run in by Sheriff Jensen and Undersheriff Merwin.

Sam and John Wagstad came out of the woods yesterday. John was injured while working up there, by having a falling tree strike him on the head, which rendered him unconscious for a spell and was a close call upon his life.

Twenty Whitehall ladies chartered two double rigs Saturday and enjoyed a fine sleigh ride. The only male portion of the company were the drivers of the turnouts. They drove to Independence, where an oyster supper was partaken of at the International. It was late in the evening when the gay party returned home.

The regular Whitehall Polo Club played a game with what was termed the Invincibles, a picked-up nine from the village, last Sunday. The Invincibles (what’s in a name?) were laid out by the Regulars, 5 to 1. Now the members of the regulars are whetting their appetites for the oyster supper stipulated to be dished up to the victors by the manager of the Invincibles.

Attorney Cowie took John Spesla before Judge Odell yesterday and secured his release on habeas corpus proceedings. Justice SLy of Blair sent John up from his court for 90 days in the county jail for obtaining money under false pretenses, but it does not come under the jurisdiction of justices of the peace to impose sentence for such offense. They should instead bind over to the circuit court, hence, Spesla’s release for such court’s error.

Elk Creek -- Ole Pederson has erected the frame of an ice house on the edge of the mill pond, and if completed as he intends, it will be the pride of the village. He commenced filling it Monday, sliding the ice from the pond into the house on a long shoot.

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