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June 27: Years Ago…
Years Ago

‘Years Ago’ is a compilation of newsy tidbits as published in the Crawford County Independent & Kickapoo Scout on this week ten, twenty, thirty, forty, fifty or sixty years ago.


JUNE 25, 2009 – North Crawford Schools have hired a new gym teacher, Maria Vredeveld, from Reedsburg. She replaces longtime phy ed teacher Marsha Chestelson, who resigned earlier. Eighty individuals applied for the position and seven were interviewed…The Vernon County Health Department last week confirmed its first case of the H1N1 ‘swine flu’ virus in a city of Viroqua resident. Of the 1,883 confirmed cases in Wisconsin, two people have died… The Soldiers Grove Dairy Days softball tournament winners were Burrstad’s-Miller, Richland Center in first place, Campbell’s One stop, Soldiers Grove took second place and Dayton Hills took third place.


JUNE 24, 1999 – The new River Bank building in Ferryville held a grand opening celebration Friday afternoon where bank President Roger Heath introduced guests and staff members and gave a short history of the bank. The bank was initially chartered in 1911 as Ferryville State Bank and stayed open during the difficult times of the early 1930s. The bank continued to grow and prosper and in 1956, a new structure was built that has been recently remodeled to become the new post office. In 1991 the bank merged with the DeSoto State Bank and Bank of Stoddard to become River Bank.


JUNE 29, 1989 – Kickapoo Exchange Co-op members held a groundbreaking ceremony in Gays Mills for their new building, which will replace the one lost in a fire in December 1988. Todd Osman and Barry Jensen will coordinate the group of volunteers, who will build the new Kickapoo Exchange Co-op on the site of the one destroyed by fire. Pictured are Dave Sprosty, Todd Osman, Barry Jensen, Gabriel Aaril, treasurer; Cindi Wiar, co-manager of the co-op; Jake Mandel, Robert Mandel and Larry Neckar… Jeffrey Hough, 18, was killed when he was struck by lightning during a boat outing. He was boating with his parents, Gary and Marlene Hough and his brother Scott on the Mississippi River near Harpers Ferry, when heavy rain started to fall. They were able to reach the shore where all four were hit by lightning. They were taken to the Prairie du Chien Memorial Hospital. Jeffrey was pronounced dead on arrival… Donna Duerst began her 4-H duties June 26 as Crawford County 4-H and Youth Agent. She has degrees from UW-River Falls and UW-Platteville in animal science and agricultural business.


JUNE 28, 1979 – Members of the Older Dramatics Class of the Summer Recreation Program went on a field trip to Spring Green to see the American Players Theater and ‘What Should Such Fellows as I Do?’, a collection of scenes from different plays… Clifford Mellem, Gene Swadley, Ed Dolan, Luther Swiggum and Bret Munford were working just north of Soldiers Grove this week as part of the Kickapoo Valley Association River Project. They started in Viola and headed downriver, often working from boats along side of jams as they cut through the jams to clear the river. The crew expected to work their way to Gays Mills in two or three weeks.


JUNE 26, 1969– Crawford County is celebrating its 150-year anniversary. Established in 1819 Crawford County was the biggest thing in the Old Wisconsin Territory. It started near Beloit, cut north by the present cities of Madison, Portage, Stevens Point and Wausau, stretched as far as Eagle River, then turned a sharp left and reached over to encompass St. Paul, four current counties of Minnesota, and 33 others in Wisconsin.


JUNE 25, 1959 – The site of Crawford County’s first field days will be 13 hilltop farms in the lush country around Seneca. The soil conservation service, county extension office, agricultural stabilization and conservation staff, the county agricultural committee, machinery, feed, seed, fertilizer and chemical dealers are all cooperating in the project. Virgil Butteris, Crawford County Ag Agent, is in general charge. Local chairmen are Larry Bates, Seneca, and Frank Halloran, Gays Mills.  Among the more than 68 items of interest visitors will see on their tours of the pleasingly patterned, strip-cropped, terraced and contoured, rolling hills will be all forms of conservation practices, fertilizer, grain and corn variety plots, farm ponds, fish management, tree planting demonstrations, pasture renovation, wheel track planting, self feeding sheds for cattle and the newest in farm implements.