Looking Back

Looking Back: April 10, 2013

Photo provided
The lobby of the DeKalb Post Office, circa 1940. Thanks to the Joiner History Room for the photo.
Photo provided The lobby of the DeKalb Post Office, circa 1940. Thanks to the Joiner History Room for the photo.


April 11, 1888

John Mayburry in Herbert has invested in a pool and billiard table and expects to run this in connection with his other business. At present he has these tables in the freight room at the depot until he can build a place to put them, as he now has only room for two barrels of cider and a dry goods box around which his customers gather to play cards.

Did you ever attend a log rolling? There is more fun rolling around at one of them than in sawing wood. Old young people and young old people are cordially invited to attend one at the new Woodmen Hall.

A peculiar strike occurred last week among the workmen on the Illinois Central railroad. The workmen had been sleeping on blankets on the car floor for some time and had grown tired and sore, so they asked for straw beds. The boss refused the request and the men, being not in a disposition to arbitrate, jumped on the boss, pummelled his face, went to work, and that night received their straw beds. This ended the strike; no further trouble is anticipated.

At the November election, the people of Illinois, for the first time, will elect the trustees for the state university at Champaign. Heretofore, the trustees were appointed by the governor.

A movement is afoot at New York to send a statue of George Washington to France as a mark of appreciation for France’s presentation to this country of the Statue of Liberty Enlightening the World.

Twenty years ago women could not vote anywhere. Today they have full suffrage in Washington and Wyoming territories; municipal suffrage in Kansas; municipal suffrage (single women and widows) in England, Scotland, Ontario and Nova Scotia, and school suffrage in 14 states.


April 9, 1913

There was a fire in Mrs. Mary Hermanson’s Sycamore flat Monday morning. In June, 1910, the department was called to the same home to put out the same sort of fire in the same closet. Today a small son of the woman admitted he had been playing with matches in the closet. Mrs. Hermanson burned her hands quite badly, and all the garments in the closet were destroyed.

Sycamore intends to go after the drivers of automobiles and other motor vehicles, and not wait until somebody is maimed or killed before enforcing the law. The speed limit is fixed by state law, is well known by all drivers and will be strictly enforced.

According to a recently issued bulletin from the census bureau, the population of DeKalb County in 1910 was 33,457, of whom 17,490 were males and 15,967 were females. There were 46.7 percent of native parentage. Of the foreign-born population, the largest number were born in Sweden, second, Germany, third, England, fourth, Norway and fifth, Russia.

The Cafe Special at Ludwig, Nelson & Irish is not all coffee, but it is a nice blend and makes a real good drink that tastes like coffee and is both healthful and economical.

Spring has been postponed on account of the weather.

An 18-year-old blonde is offered in marriage as a prize to the young man whose chickens take the greatest number of medals at a poultry show in Indiana.


April 13, 1938

There are approximately 1,700 motor vehicles in Sycamore, and to date but 500 have purchased a city vehicle license. Delinquents will be given until May 1 to obtain their license tags or be subject to arrest.

Two-hour parking restrictions in downtown Sycamore are effective immediately. The city council has not voted on a ban of double parking, the method of parking cars two and three deep on State Street.

Rev. H.E. Tessman of St. John’s Church in Sycamore reports there has been considerable damage done by mischievous citizens, young or old, on the new edifice in the 300 block of South Main Street.

The Lutheran church in Kirkland will reopen on Easter Sunday after having been replastered and redecorated.

Tear gas effectively discouraged a burglar or burglars from robbing the vault room of the Farmers Grain & Lumber Co. Sunday night, the robbers hastily leaving their tools and about $50 in money strewn about the floor. Tear gas had been so placed in the vault that it was released when the vault was entered.


April 10, 1963

A vault was moved out of the Bergeson building in Sycamore this week. Future use of the building requires more space. No one could recall when the vault was first built; it was perhaps 1900 or before. The contractor found it well-built – limestone slabs a foot thick, plus concrete, steel doors and a combination lock, made it very secure.

A new appellate court will be necessary to serve an area that includes DuPage, Kane, Lake and Winnebago counties, and there is discussion of building the courthouse in DeKalb. If it comes, DeKalb would have a court building comparable to size and scope of the court building in Sycamore but would be, of course, more modern.

Fire Chief Henry Binder said if a Friday field fire had not been contained and had reached Charter Grove Woods, nothing could have saved the wooded area and the town of Charter Grove itself would have been in great danger.

–Sycamore True Republican


April 13, 1988

The public information office at Northern Illinois University used April Fool’s Day to inject some levity into the serious business of the budget crisis. The office release a list of “proposed budget cuts” April 1; the Chicago Tribune carried the story on the front page of its DuPage County section. Among the April Fool’s recommendations were to send faculty to academic conferences but provide no return tickets; lease ROTC cadets to friendly armies; offer law students course credit for watching “Divorce Court”; close the counseling center and refer students to Dear Abby; replace intercollegiate football with intramural cribbage; limit journalism majors to stories based on facts; and replace campus computers with battery-run abacuses.

– The MidWeek

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