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From the Files: A look back in Menomonie

From the Files: A look back in Menomonie

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North Broadway complete

Wednesday, September 15, 1982: North Broadway motorists noticed something different last week -- the highway was open and the detour became a thing of the past. The project included elimination of the bridge over the railroad track and the driveway off Broadway into school district offices. These offices must now be approached from Wolske Bay Road. In addition, there is a new driveway to the trailer court and the Wolske Bay Road and Meadow Hill Drive intersections are directly across from each other. Overall, it appears the improvement was worth the inconvenience.

135 Years

Sunday, Sept. 12, 1885

Messrs. John Hays, of Tiffany, and Jesse Ring, an Idaho miner of considerable experience, while prospecting this week in the town of New Haven, claim to have discovered a silver mine with millions in it. In a gulch in the western part of town near the St. Croix line, they came upon what they believe to be a pre-historic mine, as evidences were visible of previous workings, such as quite extensive excavations, rude smelting, a stone ax, etc. What is thought to be rich silver-bearing ore was also found, and the gentlemen claim to believe that they have struck a bonanza indeed. Mr. Hays exhibited specimens of the rock in this city Thursday, and says he proposes to take immediate steps to ascertain the exact length, breadth and general scope of his find.

John A. Kreiser has raised a mammoth winter squash which is over two feet long and measures 4 feet and 9 inches in circumference. That is the boss squash in Dunn county as far as heard from.

125 Years

Friday, September 13, 1895

The case of Michael T. Frazl against J.C. Dammon and others came on for trial in the circuit court last Wednesday and is not finished as we go to press. The action is brought for an assault upon plaintiff, who lives in the town of Wilson, in the northern part of Dunn County, on the night of April 6, 1894. It appears that the plaintiff was taken from his house and ridden on a rail and tarred and feathered by a large number of men residing in the neighborhood. The plaintiff brings this action for the sum of $20,000 damages. W. H. Place appears for the plaintiff and Messrs. J.R. Mathews and Hunt & Freeman for the defendants. The alleged cause for the assault is that the plaintiff had treated his wife and children in a cruel and inhumane manner, and this seems to be one of the main points on which the defense relies and on which much evidence has been given by residents of the towns of Wilson in this and Dallas in Barron county.

100 Years

Thursday, September 9, 1920

Car Crashes Into Hotel Royal Porch: At about midnight Saturday, guests of the Hotel Royal were awakened by a resounding crash in front of the building, which was so startling to some of those occupying rooms in the northwest corner of the hotel that they hurried downstairs. The disturbance was created by a Buick car driven by George Miller, a farmer living southeast of the city, striking the end pillar supporting the porch that runs along the front of the house, his car being partially wrecked by the impact. The post was sprung several feet from its position, while one wheel of the car was shattered and other damages inflicted which sent it to the Fuller Auto company’s garage.

Mr. Miller’s windshield being badly misted by the rain that was falling was unable to see clearly and hit a car parked on the west side of the street. Turning southeast he kept on, stepping on the accelerator. He ran upon the sidewalk at the alley and ended the dash in a collapse of the car when the post was struck and the wheel shattered.

75 Years

Wednesday, September 12, 1945

Football coming back to Stout; first since 1941: Football on a limited basis will resume at the Stout Institute this week with Athletic Director Ray C. Johnson issuing a call for candidates to report at the gymnasium Wednesday evening for the purpose of receiving equipment. Stout has not had a football team since 1941. Coach Johnson had piloted his teams into the top division of the Wisconsin Teachers conference the two last seasons before the war broke out, and when the conflict started, and the male enrollment at the school dropped to near zero, as far as athletics were concerned, football was abandoned.

Fans shouldn’t set their sights for too high a brand of football at Stout this fall. For Coach Johnson it will mean starting from scratch in the organizing of a starting 11. None of the stars of 1941 have yet returned to school. And the worth of new material remains to be tested. The brand of ball that will be played on the Stout grid this fall probably won’t prove too encouraging. However, the steps of reorganization will lead to something more satisfactory in 1946 and the years to follow.

50 Years

Wednesday, September 9, 1970

Investigating is still being continued in the bomb scare that emptied the Colfax schools last Thursday, reported Colfax Police Chief Herb Ziebell.

Chief Ziebell said Tuesday afternoon that a number of persons had been questioned about the incident, and it’s still being investigated.

The scare came over the telephone at 12:30 p.m. Thursday when a male voice said to the secretary in the high school principal’s office “I’m not kidding, there’s a bomb set to got off at 1:30 in the high school.”

Authorities cleared the building and Colfax volunteer firefighters searched the premises twice.

Two non-students were reported in the school at noon, but they were questioned and cleared by Chief Ziebell.

The grade school behind the high school also was cleared as a precautionary measure. Students were allowed to go back into the building at 3 p.m. to get their belongings and then were sent home.

Assisting Chief Ziebell were Dunn County Undersheriff Roger Amdahl and county traffic officers Stan Mickelson and Al Shervey.

25 Years

Sunday, September 10, 1995

Menomonie has received Certified Local Government Status from the State Historical Society of Wisconsin and the U.S. Department of the Interior. Menomonie is the 21st local government so recognized in the state. This new designation, along with the federal approval for the downtown historic district, provides an opportunity for state grants, according to members of the city Historic Preservation Commission.

Guidelines for historic preservation and designation of additional properties are the responsibility of this commission. The city established its initial landmarks ordinance in 1982, and revised it in 1994. A survey to identify and evaluate historic properties was conducted and published in 1985-1987.

Members of the Commission are: Jerry Talen, chair, Wes Sommers, Carolyn Ohnstad, Sandy Ott, Dwight Agnew, Gary Gust and Liz Lammer. Currently the Commission is working on a video historic marker which will highlight significant historic events and also include the sesquicentennial program for next year.

Also, historic markers are being considered for the Second Street Historic Corridor and the Wilson Place.

15 Years

Sunday, September 11, 2005

The former Thunderbird Mall on North Broadway — now identified as Shops on Broadway — totals some 125,000 square feet. More than one-fourth that area, or approximately 35,000 square feet, will be utilized by businesses operated by the new owners of the facility — Carter Smith of Madison and Mike Longsdorf of Eau Claire. The remainder of the mall is occupied by shops that provide a variety of services.

Already in operation is the Broadway Bowl, a 20-lane facility that opened in November 2004 that was installed by the former owners. Still to come is the Stout Ale House, a sports bar that will feature full-service dining for 350 patrons and three private sport boxes, and a banquet facility that can accommodate approximately 500 people. While the new owners have developed plans for their own operations, they also envision projects that will make the mall “the cornerstone of the city.” Longsdorf said they are negotiating with a firm that would become the anchor store at the north end of the mall. Presently, the mall houses about a dozen shops and has six vacant areas.

10 Years

Sunday, September 12, 2010

The press box at UW-Stout’s Don and Nona Williams Stadium was dedicated to the memory of Max Sparger, a former UW-Stout athletic director and coach on Sunday.

Max Sparger served Stout State University in many different capacities.

Coming to Stout in 1959 as an assistant football and basketball coach, Sparger was the head wrestling coach from 1961-1962, the head football coach from 1963-1969, and coached the track and golf teams during his tenure. Sparger served as UW-Stout’s athletic director from 1969-71.

In 1963, Sparger received an Outstanding Teacher award from the university. Sparger’s 1965 football team won the conference championship, and he was named the NAIA District 14 coach of the year.

Sparger left UW-Stout in 1971 to become the commissioner of the Wisconsin State University Conference. Sparger held that post until July 15, 1993. Sparger passed away Sept. 12, 1993.

Sparger was enshrined into the UW-Stout Athletic Hall of Fame in 1980 and the NAIA District 14 Hall of Fame in 1985. Sparger received the NAIA Hall of Fame for Meritorious Service award, the NAIA’s highest honor, in 1993.

5 Years

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Downtown Menomonie will get an updated look this holiday season.

On Monday, the Menomonie City Council approved spending $45,000 on 120 new decorations shaped like snowflakes to replace the wreaths that adorned the old style light poles for quite a few years. A prototype has been on display for the past several weeks at the corner of Main and Fourth streets.

Public Works Director Randy Eide noted that right now the poles support quite a few items—brackets for flower baskets, flag, banners and speakers on some.

“We tried to pick one that had the least amount of impact on the poles, “ Eide said. “We’re trying to do something a little bit different.”

Manufactured by Temple Display, Ltd. of Oswego, Ill., the simple snowflake design features LED lights. The cost of the decorations comes out of the city’s capital improvement budget. In a memo from Main Street of Menomonie’s executive director, Darrek Orwig told the council that the board supports the new decoration: “The snowflake design has received a tremendous amount of positive feedback.”


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