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Wednesday, Sept. 25, 1957: Gov. Vernon Thompson, left, was introduced by master of ceremonies Ed Phelan, right, with Harold Plummer, state highway chairman, center, at the groundbreaking ceremony for the new Interstate Highway No. 94. About 1,500 people followed a parade to the ceremony at which Thompson stated “this is the start of the largest public works program in the world.”

135 Years

Saturday, Sept. 22,1883

Four years ago we visited a meadow on Lamb Creek, Tainter township. It was covered with willows, with here and there open spaces, on which hay-makers were busy carrying hay together on poles. A few days since we visited the same place, and could not recognize one feature of the meadow as it was. It had been cleared up, was dotted with hay sheds and stacks, with house and barn, and nine or ten men busily engaged in securing the ample harvest. ...

This farm, is the property of Capt. Wilson, who has expended a large amount in bringing it under cultivation. He has put up a large crop of hay this season, which he intends to press, bale and ship. His enterprise shows what may be done with swampy land, and demonstrates the fact that lands which have long been rejected and suffered to lie idle, as of little or no value, are among the most profitable for cultivation.

125 Years

Friday, Sept. 22, 1893

C.N. Relph brought to the News office a sample of a new weed that is likely to make trouble for farmers. He found it near Downsville and pronounces it Russian cactus. It is supposed to have been brought to the region by Russian Mennonites. The weed is easily recognized.

From a single tap-root are thrown out innumerable sprawling branches thickly covered with short, strong thorns, sharp as needles that make handling next to impossible. The spreading branches of these weeds reach a diameter of nine feet. The sharp thorns lacerate whatever they come in contact with, and in plowing where it has grown, farmers find it necessary to protect the legs of their horses with leathern boots.

100 Years

Thursday, Sept. 19, 1918

After searching for four days for the Krueger brothers, draft slackers of Withee, all members of the Wisconsin state guard on duty in the neighborhood of the farm home of the fugitives left for their homes Wednesday morning, when Maj. George Huntzickle, commanding the guardsmen, had received instructions form Washington.

The resistance of the Kruegers to the registration requirements form the most sensational chapter of the war in Northwestern Wisconsin. Frank, Louis, Leslie and Ennis Krueger evaded registration. Saturday afternoon a pitched battle occurred at their home south of Withee, when a deputy United States Marshal, secret service men and a posse of citizens attempted their capture. In the fight Harry Jensen was killed. Frank Krueger was shot in the right leg and is now in a Chippewa Falls hospital. ... Louis, Leslie and Ennis eluded the cordon that surrounded the house and escaped.

75 Years

Wednesday, Sept. 22, 1943

Employees of the Dunn County Electric Cooperative have scored a 100 percent no-accident record for the year in the safety award contest sponsored by Employers Mutual. The local cooperative is one of three such in the state to make the clean-slate showing in no accidents, and those associated with it are proud of the record they have established. Employees of the Dunn County Electric Cooperative put in 21,466 man hours during the period, with no lost-time accidents, which gave them an accident frequency rate of zero, or no accidents per million man hours.

50 Years

Wednesday, Sept. 18, 1968

Two former salesmen with Northside Motors, Byrl Gullick and Larry Hinzman have purchased Menomonie Chrysler Plymouth, Inc., 1102 N. Broadway. They have renamed the business Menomin Motors, Inc. ... They report that a grand opening will be held in a couple of weeks. ... Hintzman said the five-car shop area is being refinished and re-equipped, and Gullick reports that a new office has been installed. The showroom has been redecorated and features walnut paneling. Customers will also note a revamped parts department, and the entire structure has been repainted and repaired.

25 Years

Wednesday, Sept. 22, 1993

Within the next five years, a very large amount of money will be spent on highway”improvements” in and around the city of Menomonie. The question is whether that large investment will benefit average Menomonie residents and visitors, or whether it will make the growing problem of traffic congestion worse.

Business owners in downtown Menomonie met with the state Department of Transportation two years ago to ask if large trucks could be removed from Main Street ... a two lane street, with parking on both sides, lots of pedestrian crossings and bicycles used by people who are commuting. Anyone who has stood at Main and Broadway watching a semi trying to negotiate the turn without flattening a row of cars or hitting traffic signals knows that Main should not be a truck route. Now the state is proposing an upgrade of US Highway 12/state Highway 29 coming into town from the east from a two- to a divided four-lane road, from 21st Street to county Highway B.

State figures show a doubling of traffic on that stretch of road over the next 25 years, from 10,000 vehicles a day to 20,000. Construction for the $5.7 million project is set for 1998.

15 Years

Wednesday Sept. 17, 2003

Nonprofit coalition eyes Leever’s building: To convert a manufacturing building into a mixed use facility has proven to be too expensive and complicated a proposition for the Oaklawn Harmony Centre. The group had hoped to house 10 different nonprofit groups and a pair of Stout business incubator projects in a spec building located in the Stout Technology Park.

Renee Surdick came before the Menomonie City Council on Monday night to explain that in the process of securing loans for the project, a commercial appraisal disclosed that too many changes would need to be made to the building, thus diminishing its worth.

We’re exploring another site,” she told the Council, referring to the building at 503 South Broadway that until recently housed Leever’s supermarket. The move would mean zoning changes to allow the incubator and other related uses on the site.

10 Years

Wednesday, Sept. 17, 2008

Sheriff’s department donates confiscated lights. New light will be shed on good public works thanks to a donation made by the Dunn County Sheriff’s Department. Thirty commercial grade grow lights seized in a recent drug raid were donated by the department to Ventures Unlimited of Shell Lake, a nonprofit organization that provides mentoring, therapy and training for the developmentally disabled.

Dunn County Sheriff Dennis Smith estimates the lights alone are valued at around $200 each, not including other components such as power transformers that cost another $180 apiece.

“The lights came from a raid on marijuana grow site In a shed just north of Elk Mound,” Smith said. “When the site was raided, they found the grow lights and residue, and anything at the crime scene could be seized. The lights, a vehicle and miscellaneous items were confiscated.”

As a settlement condition of the court case, the seized material was forfeited, but the problem became what to do with the lights. ... Ventures Unlimited has decided to explore growing herbs and spices and selling them to local restaurants in the area.

5 Years

Sunday, Sept. 22, 2013

Hundreds flock to “meet” The Neighbors: In just a couple of weeks, the residents of the old Dunn County Health Care Center will be moving into their new digs next door at The Neighbors of Dunn County. During an open house on Wednesday afternoon, nearly a thousand people inspected the largest of the three buildings that make up the newly constructed nursing and rehabilitative care facility. ... County Manager Gene Smith remarked that the new facility represents a significant milestone in the county’s history. And he reminded the gathering, “As important a milestone this is , after a brief respite, we will be beginning the next leg of our journey with the remodeling of the old health care center into a health and human services center for our community.”

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Sofi Doane is the Collections Manager for the Dunn County Historical Society. She can be reached at 715-232-8685 or


Dunn County News editor

Barbara Lyon is the editor of The Dunn County News in Menomonie, WI.

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