Looking Back

Looking Back: May 1, 2013

Gentry Brothers Famous Shows and Circus on Haish Avenue in DeKalb, west of Glidden School, in 1905. The back of Glidden School can be seen in the background. Thanks to the Joiner History Room for the photo.
Gentry Brothers Famous Shows and Circus on Haish Avenue in DeKalb, west of Glidden School, in 1905. The back of Glidden School can be seen in the background. Thanks to the Joiner History Room for the photo.


May 2, 1888

Old Mr. Calhoun of Cortland celebrated his 95th birthday the other day. Mr. Calhoun works a large garden every year, and is very indignant if anyone else presumes to pretend to cultivate it. He votes the straight Republican ticket every four years. At the casting of each ballot, the old gentleman said that was his last vote, but he has been providentially spared and will no doubt cast a vote this year for the Republican nominee.

A company of children, mostly boys, ages 7 to 15, from the New York Juvenile Asylum, will arrive at the Glidden House in DeKalb May 10. Homes are wanted for them with families where they will receive kind treatment and fair advantage. They may be taken on trial for three weeks, and afterwards, if all parties are suited, they will be indentured until they are of age.

Tramps are becoming numerous and are begging meals about town. Our good-hearted people should not encourage the rascals by feeding them.

The sea-serpent is on hand early this year, having made his appearance on the Atlantic coast.

Official report of the awful destruction caused by the Chinese earthquakes: 4,000 persons killed and injured.

W.D. Walrod now delivers milk to his city patrons in airtight bottles. It is said this milk has a much better flavor and will keep sweet longer than that delivered in the old way, from an open can.

Last year was the most active in railroad construction in the history of the United States. Nearly 11,000 miles of road were built.


April 30, 1913

There are no desirable dwellings in Sycamore for rent. The few houses remaining for rent are out of repair or lacking in water, gas, baths or some of those things almost every family these days thinks they cannot do without.

Nature performed a freak Tuesday afternoon, when out of a cloudless sky a lightning bolt killed a horse and knocked another to the ground while they were being driven before a plow.

Jacob Haish motioned to Ernest Carter, who was driving a new car leisurely in front of the bank. Carter came to the sidewalk and Mr. Haish stepped into the car. They took a ride out over the Sycamore road and Mr. Haish asked the price of the car. The information was given him, and he said, “Come and get a check and take the car up to my stable.”

The liveliest place in Sycamore is South Clark Street. There is more excitement there in a minute than in the remainder of town in a week.

The popcorn stand established last week by Walter Lovell on the corner of State and Somonauk streets in Sycamore is resplendent in red enamel and nickel. A steam engine runs the corn popper and peanut roaster.

It really looks like spring has come. This makes her 14th visit in the last seven weeks, and we are not quite as enthusiastic as when she first made goo-goo eyes at us.


May 4, 1938

A 17-year-old boy paroled from the St. Charles Home for Boys is back in that institution after the theft of a truck from  his employer, C.M. Christensen of Hinckley, a wild flight and an effort to cash checks.

On May 19, a plane will land at Sycamore Community Park to pick up air mail letters from the local post office.

A carnival atmosphere will surround the sale of real estate owned by First National Bank of Sycamore. The auctioneer has advertised “a gift to each grown person” at the sale of the bank building on State and Somonauk streets and the house at the corner of West Elm and California streets.

Discovery that John Hayward, winner of the recent marble tournament, is four months over the age limit has caused him to forfeit the boy’s championship.

Standard Oil dealers have been famous for clean rest rooms since the early days of motoring.

Many friends and neighbors from Clare were present at the funeral rites for Thurman Quinn Sunday afternoon. On Monday, neighbors and friends assembled at the home of his parents and in a few hours plowed and cultivated with their tractors his farm lands.


May 1, 1963

Memories of many nights of romance, big name bands and happy hours of dancing will be stirred and perhaps saddened by news that old Rainbow Gardens is to be torn down. It was at one time a large and popular dance hall located three miles east of Belvidere along Route 20.

The Illinois Department of Conservation rates DeKalb County as one of the 10 counties most abundant in pheasant population.

The General Assembly laid the groundwork Thursday to enable Northern Illinois University to develop professional schools of law, medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, engineering or agriculture in the future.

The Illinois State Tollway Commission has collided with the Lincoln Freeway Association – made up of businesses and farmers along routes 72, 64, 30 and alternate 30 – in what appears to be a battle brewing over the controversial proposed New Lincoln Tollway between Aurora and Fulton.

– Sycamore True Republican


May 4, 1988

The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency will seek penalties against a local farm for the hog waste spill into the Kishwaukee River that killed thousands of fish.

DeKalb’s 7th Ward Alderman Mark Powell, while making charges of alleged financial mismanagement at city hall, has declared his intention to run for mayor.

Car telephones are not just for the “Big Shots” anymore. $31.13 per month at Burke Computer Maintenance.

– The MidWeek

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