Looking Back

Looking Back for July 17, 2019

Houses that were razed for DeKalb Post Office 2 at Fourth and Grove streets looking southwest, November 1958. Thanks to the Joiner History Room for the photo.
Houses that were razed for DeKalb Post Office 2 at Fourth and Grove streets looking southwest, November 1958. Thanks to the Joiner History Room for the photo.

1919 – 100 YEARS AGO

Chief of Police Riddell stated today that no automobiles will be allowed on Third street between Oak and Lincoln Highway, and extra men would be placed to see that his order was enforced. The reason for this order is the erection of the vaudeville stand at Third and Locust street, and people will want the opportunity to get as close as possible to the stand. 

Two Ellwood school boys, John Johnson and Eugene Rolfe, have an unusual attendance record. They were neither absent nor tardy during the last school year. This is a remarkable record, for there was much sickness and difficulty in getting to school many days. Both are eighth grade boys.

One of the pleasant features about the Welcome-Home exercises for the boys, which has not yet been mentioned, was the kindly hospitality of the Knight of Columbus, which organization will ever be remembered by soldier boys of all creeds, as long as they live, for its ministrations during the war. Not only did the knights give their hall for the dancing, but during the day the soldiers were furnished cigarettes and chocolate bars by the knights. 

Through an oversight mention of the American Steel & Wire company fife and drum corps was omitted in the general story of DeKalb township’s big celebration. The fellows, dressed in their natty uniforms, made a big hit with the many strangers in town, and they always are appreciated by the home folks.

The new motor fire truck for Sycamore is to be housed at Butzow’s garage, according to the latest announcement, and will be ready at all times with four men for service in the daytime, with two at night. The garage men are to keep the car in good running order at all times, and the firm will receive a recompense of $125 monthly for service rendered.

The DeKalb-Sycamore & Interurban traction company is now undergoing a series of repairs that when completed, will put the line in first class condition. Sunday a new bridge was installed just this side of Electric Park, recently washed away during the heavy rains, and for several days past men have been at work on West Lincoln Highway, putting in new bonds and leveling up the roadbed.

Avis Rowe has moved her restaurant furniture and fixtures from the little place on Lincoln Highway to the corner of Sixth and Locust, in the old McDermott building. The owner of the building has given it a general overhauling and it is now in first class shape for a business of this nature.

1944 – 75 YEARS AGO

Sgt. Preston T. Askeland of Esmond is a member of one of the ordnance crew who loaded bombs that were dropped by B-24’s in support of the first landing operations in France on June 6, “D-Day”.

Increased war requirements will cause a drastic reduction of that portion of the commercial pack of canned whole tomatoes and tomato juice available to civilians for the 1944 crop. The impending reduction is estimated at about five-eighths of the civilian allocation from the previous crop. Since tomatoes are an excellent source of Vitamin C, this may mean a serious deficiency in the average civilian diet.

To rid the pea vines which are ready for the vineries in this section of the county, of insects, a plane powder duster has been at work in the vicinity of Sycamore, Genoa and other places of late. The pilot’s ability to handle his plane is the talk of those who have observed him spraying pea fields with a fine powder. The pilot, it is understood, is a returned overseas flyer, and has a specially constructed plane for this work, with which he is able to do most anything. He will swoop down onto the fields and slow down and appear to be barely moving and then open the powder gun. As he nears the end of the field, he gives it the “gun” and rises suddenly, escaping fence wires, trees, or other obstacles which may be in his path.

An auto driven by someone crashed into the house on the northwest corner of Maplewood and Grove Streets early Sunday morning.  The house was damaged considerably and the auto was also smashed badly. The car had first struck a parked car and then went over the curb and crashed into the northeast corner of the house. The driver was arrested and charged with driving a car while intoxicated. He was taken to the county jail at Sycamore and will be given a hearing at Sycamore.

Many in this community are finding the swimming pool at Hopkins Park a most enjoyable spot in which to escape the hot humid weather and indications are that the pool will be well filled. Although there have been a number of cool days of late the pool has been kept busy on all of the warm days. On Sunday there were 822 in the pool during the day and on Saturday there were 403.

1969 – 50 YEARS AGO

The comprehensive fire station plan was presented to the DeKalb City Council and it included a recommendation to replace the existing Station No. 1 on Fourth and Lincoln with a new one in the East Hillcrest Street area.

The water flow over the American Falls at Niagara Falls, N.Y., was halted so geologists can study the face of the falls and learn what can be done to prevent further damaging rockslides.

At the Kishwaukee School Board meeting Dr. Lemar Fly was given the go-ahead for a sixth temporary building which will add the additional room needed and also anticipate future needs after the permanent building is constructed.

Ground was broken for a new Armoloy of Illinois plant on Simmons Ave. with a shovel treated with the company’s product. The company is a firm that electro-plates tools to make them last ten times longer than without the electro-plating.

1994 – 25 YEARS AGO

Developers of a large residential development designed to provide affordable housing in the DeKalb area have cleared several hurdles in turning the development from paper into brick and mortar. Eden’s Gardens is located along Twombly Road, west of Annie Glidden Road on 26 acres.

According to Sycamore Mayor Bernard McMillan, if the Sycamore City council fails to finalize its $450,000 agreement with Brian Bemis, the city can expect to lose between $300,000 and $400,000 in income and residents will face higher tax bills.

The Genoa-Kingston Board of Education approved policies on school parking lots and lockers that would give administrators the right to search student cars and lockers for illegal materials.

Hiawatha High School will destroy the temporary records of student who graduated in 1989. Permanent records, which consist of basic identifying information, academic transcripts, college entrance test scores and health records, will be kept.

As the new Farm and Fleet building is being constructed at the corner of Route 23 and Peace Road, some homeowners in the Foxpoint subdivision, immediately east of the site, say they feel frustrated and betrayed by the developers and the city. What’s the point of building $200,000 homes and placing them at the center of an industrial park asks one resident? Homeowners were told that the commercial developments would be separated from the residential neighborhood by a berm. 

• Compiled by the Joiner History Room, DeKalb County Archives.

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