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April 1: 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.


MARCH 31, 2011 – Soldiers Grove is getting its third new bridge. The Highway 61 bridge over Baker Creek is being replaced and New Well Road is once again a detour along with Pine Street… Jessica Brandt and Trent Mills are the proud new parents of Orion Micah, born at 7:15 p.m. on Monday, March 14, 2011 at Vernon Memorial Health Care… Crawford County Farm-to-School AmeriCorps Volunteer Kathleen Hein serves Seneca school children a helping of seasonal fruit and vegetables as part of the “Harvest of the Month” program.


MARCH 29, 2001 – The past came alive in the halls of Seneca High School March 22 as the sophomore U.S History class presented “How America Lived 1860 to 1910” to elementary students. The goal of the project was to create an entertaining and interactive history museum… Eagle Walkers, gathered at the house of Nancy Collins, Boscobel hostess, prepare to leave as they participate in the twentieth annual walk. They were pleased with the weather they encountered for the mid-March trek of 200 miles from Stevens Point to Glen Haven to support wildlife habitat preservation and promote environmental awareness.


APRIL 4, 1991 –BRAW, the Bluebird Recovery Association of Wisconsin, a non-profit group is holding a workshop at the Gays Mills Library to help the Eastern Bluebird regain its numbers. The workshop will include information on the best places and kinds of nestboxes, how to build nest boxes, building plans, sources of pre-built nest boxes, enemies of bluebirds, and how to encourage bluebirds in your yard… Tim Quamme designed and built five benches that he presented to Gays Mills Village president Kenneth Pettit for use around the skating rink. The project fulfilled Tim’s Leadership Service project requirement for becoming an Eagle Scout.


APRIL 2, 1981 – Thelma Swadley, Gays Mills, has been named Crawford County American Legion Auxiliary Member of the Year. Mrs. Swadley has been an auxiliary member for 26 years, first in the Daugherty-Larson Post 446 at Steuben and for the past 13 years in the McCormick- Rose Unit 308 in Gays Mills… Kindergarten is being held all day during the fourth nine-week period which means that the kindergarten students participate in the school lunch program. They are bused to the high school from Bell Center for lunch each day. Pictured is Judy Winsor, school cook.


APRIL 1, 1971 – Wilbert Bartelt of Soldiers Grove was driving on the Davig Ridge town road 6.4 miles west of Soldiers Grove on Sunday when he saw a jack in the road. He put his car in the park position and walked back to pick up the useful tool. After he walked away the car took off and plunged down a 400-foot embankment, landing in a ravine. Damage to Bartelt’s 1964 Buick was estimated at $400.


MARCH 29, 1961 – Warm rain Sunday night on high-moisture snow in North Crawford and Vernon counties and the upper reaches of the Kickapoo sent the river on a rampage through low-lying villages along its banks.  An alarm was sounded at 4 a.m. and though the predictions of flood stages “higher than 1951” were felt to be exaggerated, Gays Mills residents prepared for the possibility. From before daylight to after dark Monday a crew worked. Teenagers toiled beside teachers; banker, farmer, janitor, area residents living on higher ground and men from nearby villages, all lifting, carrying, hauling, filling, sandbagging. Openhanded generosity and helpfulness characterized the day. Most basements of homes in the low-lying parts of the village were filled with water but flood waters reached the first floors of only a small percentage of homes. Confused and exaggerated flood crest predications once again brought home to Kickapoogians the necessity for a single, reliable, local Kickapoo flood reporting service.