Looking Back

Looking Back: March 27, 2013

DeKalb High School class of 1889. Thanks to the Ellwood House Museum for the photo.
DeKalb High School class of 1889. Thanks to the Ellwood House Museum for the photo.


March 28, 1888

The representative of an electric light company was here the other day looking up the feasibility of establishing an electric light plant in Sycamore.

Charlie Anderson of Rockford was struck by the morning passenger train at the rate of 40 miles an hour last week as he lay in a drunken stupor on the track. The cow-catcher sent him through the air to the embankment at the side of the track. His only injury, save a few scratches, was a compound fracture about halfway between his left knee and ankle. His inebriation and five shirts he had on saved him.

The Sycamore City Band is improved in many respects from last season and is prepared, at reasonable terms, to furnish music on any occasion.

The divorce case of George M. Walrath vs. Lucinda Walrath developed an interesting and complicated state of affairs. Mr. Walrath applied for divorce on the grounds of desertion. His wife left him two years ago, as her first husband, whom she supposed dead, had put in an appearance.

Nettie M. Deatrich applied for a divorce from her husband, William Deatrich. The divorce was granted yesterday morning. Within 10 minutes, she was in the clerk’s office accompanied by a young man from Batavia, after a marriage license, which was granted and they were immediately joined in marriage.

It is said that at least six varieties of American birds have become totally extinct in the last 10 years. But the English sparrow is still here, and is likely to stay until it monopolizes the whole field.


March 29, 1913

Max Freudenberg suffered the complete loss of his photographic studio at DeKalb by fire at about 2 o’clock Wednesday morning. The small building, owned by Hiland Bros., was totally destroyed.

Floods and tornadoes: America is in the midst of her greatest national calamity, caused by the elements of nature. The suffering is more widespread and more intense than has ever been experienced in the history of our country.

The large barn on the Kane County poor farm was blown down in the tornado Monday morning, and the 41 cows it contained were killed.

Sycamore Mayor Beckler has instructed Chief of Police Ogden to enforce the ordinance against playing ball in the streets and roller skating on the sidewalks in the business district. Boys and girls disobeying the law in this regard will be taught a severe lesson.

Now, of all times of the year, is the time to drag the roads. Some Sycamore roads, on which large amounts of money have been expended the last three years for gravel, have developed ruts and must be dragged at once.

There is some complaint that the new nickels won’t fit into slot machines. However, they will be found to fit nicely into the savings bank.


March 30, 1938

Repassage of DeKalb County liquor laws, either as they are or amended, will be one of the major items to come before the county board of supervisors.

There is a possibility that several buses will be rerouted to go west from Sycamore on Route 64, instead of following the old Lincoln Highway into DeKalb. ...The residents of DeKalb do not seem to be perturbed by the loss of Lincoln Highway. They still have a route, as the old Lincoln Highway will be a state, if not a national, highway.

Joseph A. Entwhistle is seeking $1,000 damages from the Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Paul and Pacific railroad for wrecking his automobile at the Monroe Street crossing in Genoa. According to the (suit), a locomotive and string of cars were proceeding so carelessly that they struck the auto and demolished it.

Farmers in northern Illinois are complaining that it is impossible to hire help because men on WPA work relief do not choose private employment, or are afraid if they get off relief they will not be able to return.

Several golfers were on the links Sunday, although the season has not officially begun.

Gov. Horner refused to declare martial law following disorder in the strike at the National Sewing Machine plant at Belvidere. Efforts at a peaceful settlement are being made by the plant management and representatives of the American Federation of Labor.


March 27, 1963

Although a Marengo school bus carrying children was destroyed by fire Friday afternoon, no one was injured.

It required only 11 minutes to solve a theft and make the arrest in Sycamore Sunday morning.

One of the worst cases of reckless driving in some time ended Saturday evening with the arrest of Trenida Garcia, 22, of Cortland. ...According to police, Garcia admitted he was traveling 110 miles an hour in a 25 mile an hour zone and that his car was, for a time,  completely out of control.

Patrolman French of Sycamore ran into a new parking problem about 1:30 Wednesday morning: what to do when a wild raccoon suddenly parks on your tummy? ...French was awakened by noises first, and wondered if they were inside or out. About that time, 25 or 30 pounds of fur and impishness landed, kerthump, on the officer’s midsection.

Days after clothing and other belongings of a missing 49-year-old Chicago woman were found near Sycamore, her body was found in a culvert ditch. It is believed she was killed by a beating.

– Sycamore True Republican


March 30, 1988

DeKalb County’s homeless now have a sturdy brick house to call home until April 15, when the PADS program officially ends for the season. Public Action to Deliver Shelter is renting the parsonage at the First United Methodist Church of DeKalb.

Northern Illinois University’s chronic and increasingly critical parking shortage was addressed by the board of regents’ facilities committee March 23. The plan will create 810 of 1,200 needed parking spaces on campus.

– The MidWeek


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