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September 3: Years Ago…
Years Ago Column

‘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.


SEPTEMBER 3, 2010 – The Crawford County Sheriff’s Department Chief Deputy, Jerry Matousek, will retire September 15. Matousek joined the department on July 1, 1979. He has worked as a jailer, dispatcher and traffic officer and was promoted to become the department’s first chief deputy on June 6, 2006. The chief deputy position was created when the undersheriff position was eliminated… The Bell Center Backers are having a Grand Parade on September 11 to kick-off this year’s Seventh Annual Friendship Festival at the village park. Red, White and Blue is the theme, as September 11 is also Patriot Day… In a letter to the editor, John Gibbs suggests Gays Mills keeps a flock of sheep to help with the upkeep of green space. The idea is a good, natural alternative to mowing, and an old, scenic tradition, which would be great for tourism. It would create a village shepherd position for the season and the sheep could be sold off for profits at the end of the grazing season… Crawford County’s Fairest of the Fair is Hillary Bark, the daughter of Maryann and Alan Bark, and a graduate of Seneca High School. She is a former FFA and 4-H Happy Hi-Liters member. Hillary is currently a sophomore at UW-Platteville, where she studies agricultural science in a pre-veterinarian program.


AUGUST 31, 2000 – The Kathy Allan towboat of the Altar Line based in Bettendorf, Iowa, pushed 14 barges north of the Lynxville dam Sunday afternoon. Ten of the barges were loaded with coal or bulk commodities and four were empty. According to personnel at Lynxville Lock and Dam No. 9 one barge can hold as much as 15 jumbo hopper train cars or 58 highway semi trucks. If we do our math correctly, it would take 870 fully loaded semi trucks to haul the same amount of freight as a tow with 15 loaded barges… Ted Parker, a Gays Mills wood carver, is donating the proceeds from the sale of his hand-crafted wooden black bear to the Gays Mills Fire Department. The friendly three-foot bruin is carved of maple from one of the trees that slipped from Riverside Park into the Kickapoo River following the June and July floods. 


SEPTEMBER 6, 1990 – Digger Don of Soldiers Grove drove a 1925 Ford Model ‘T’ in the Readstown Labor Day Parade. The car is a 25thwedding anniversary gift to Don from his wife, Lana… Father Frank Brickl, Sauk City, is pictured with ‘Brickbats and Bouquets,’ his 310-page book detailing his 56 years as a priest in the La Crosse Diocese. Father Brickl is a former pastor of St. Mary’s, Gays Mills, St. Philip’s, Soldiers Grove, St. Wenceslaus, Eastman, and Sacred Heart, Wauzeka… Crawford County Dairy Queen Deanna Roth rides in a convertible through the Readstown Labor Day Parade… In Mt. Sterling, Orpha Zajicek writes about when her little three-year old brother took a nap under the cabbage leafs in the garden. They had been looking frantically for the toddler when they heard him crying from the garden as he woke from his nap… The Calcutta golf event was held August 6 at the Viroqua Country Club with 15 participating teams. The winning team was Bud Everson, Steve Fossum, Joel McGarry and John Doan. The second place team was Scott Burckhardt, ‘Doc’ Davidson, Dave Peterson and Carol Clemment. The third place team was Kerry Hall, Bill Hoffland, Judy Neuerburg and Jim ‘Chimp’ Hanson… Tonya and Traci Foley, twin daughters of Rick and Ginny Foley, Seneca, took first and second place respectively with their junior heifer calves in the open class show at the Crawford County Fair. The calves are owned by their grandparents, Clif and Margaret Kroning of ‘Mar-Clif Ridge Farms,’ Soldiers Grove.       


SEPTEMBER 4, 1980 – The Hidden Valley Music Festival, the first venture into popular music fests by Soldiers Grove, was pronounced a success by the village Lions Club and the co-sponsor John Drake. The fest featured musical acts from all over the Midwest including: Wet Behind the Ears, Robert ‘One Man Band’ Johnson, Bullit, Marty Cina, Sniper, Bill Miller, Prisoner, Mark Heller, and Night Train.


SEPTEMBER 2, 1970 – C. F. LaPointe, administrator of the Wauzeka public schools, has been elected president of the Kickapoo Valley League which consists of Barneveld, Hollandale, Ithaca, Seneca and Wauzeka. This will be the last year of existence for the Kickapoo Valley League due to realignment of conference by the WIAA. Barneveld and Hollandale will be members of the State Line League, while the other three schools do not as yet have a league affiliation for next school year… Two years ago, the Southwest Wisconsin Vocational Technical School faculty and administrative staff totaled 21 persons. The 1970-71 staff of 55 people will serve over 400 full-time and approximately 6,000 part-time students.   


SEPTEMBER 1, 1960 – The Milwaukee Road last Tuesday was authorized to remove its depot building at Wauzeka. The Public Service Commission authorized the Road to eliminate Wauzeka as a station from all except prepaid carload freight tariffs. The PSC denied an application of the Railway Express Agency, Inc. to discontinue agency service at Wauzeka…  A new small-boat harbor at Prairie du Chien has been added to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ list of recreational projects on the Upper Mississippi River. It is the first of its kind on the Wisconsin side of the river. The investment consists of a harbor basin 400 feet by 800 feet just upstream from the Washington Street crossing of the Marais de St. Feriole. An access channel 50 feet wide and about a mile long has been provided around the north end of St. Feriole Island.  This harbor is the second built at Prairie du Chien. A commercial harbor was completed in 1958 and a revision to it was finished in 1959.