Looking Back

Looking Back for March 1, 2017

The new A&P Food Store in DeKalb, December 1960.  Store opened in January 1961, founded in 1859. Thanks to the Joiner History Room for the photo.
The new A&P Food Store in DeKalb, December 1960. Store opened in January 1961, founded in 1859. Thanks to the Joiner History Room for the photo.

1917 – 100 YEARS AGO

There was but four lonely knights of the ties who applied at the police station last night for a place to sleep, and were more than glad to get in out of the cold. When the authorities found out how cold it was this morning the fellows were held over today and will not be turned loose until the weather gets a little warmer. A couple of the wanderers were dressed very thinly, and had they ventured out today would probably have been found later, frozen to death.

The Melville Clark Piano Company is busy moving its printing department into new quarters in the annex recently completed there, and the boys are learning the joys of moving a print shop.

Robert Worden has sold his interest in the Fairdale hotel to his partner, Homer Witter and will work his mother’s arm south of Kirkland this coming year.

The weekend dance at the DeKalb Armory was called off in a hurry Saturday evening when it was discovered that the building was on fire. George Wahlgren was among the first to smell smoke and the odor of burnt wood and started down stairs to investigate. We went to the boiler room and opened the door and the smoke puffed out in great quantities.

The First National Bank has every hope of occupying the rooms now owned by it, but used by Tom Olsen as pool and billiard parlors as additional office rooms. At this time there is nothing decided upon as to when the move will be made, but officials have hopes of using the rooms, and doing some remodeling, provided the pool room proprietor can find suitable quarters.

People at the station today received the fright of their lives, when two men waiting for the Sterling train, heard a train coming and hiked out the door ahead of all the other passengers and started to cross the tracks. The train coming in at that time was the fast mail train, running several hours behind schedule and endeavoring to make up a little lost time. Passengers at the depot waiting for the Sterling train turned their heads, and some even covered their eyes and ears, so close did the fellows come to being struck by the fast train.

1942 – 75 YEARS AGO

Now that the two upper stories of the old Ward building, now known as the Fargo Annex, have been removed, the next phase has been started. Workmen are building front and side railing roof walls. Some exterior decorating will be necessary when the laying of the brick is completed.

Fire completely destroyed a brooder house and more than 1,000 chicks at the Roy Thompson farm. The farm is located about two and a half miles northwest of the Suydam Church. The building was at one time used as the tenant house but when it was not needed for that purpose was converted into a brooder house. At the time of the fire it contained about 1,250 chicks, three months old, and only about 200 of the chicks could be saved.

Announcement was made by the office of the DeKalb Chapter of the American Red Cross this morning that it has received a new supply of khaki colored yarn. This yarn is to be used in knitting the V-neck, sleeveless type of sweaters being work by soldiers. The yarn will be available at the sewing center, located on the second floor of The Chronicle building, and will be given out to those who will come to the center for the material.

Housewives were today warned not to make any purchases of toilet articles from persons who announce they represent the Red Cross and intimate that profits from the sale of the article will go to the Red Cross. There have been two impostors working in DeKalb.

Students of the DeKalb Township High School will start immediate production on model airplanes for the use of the army and navy. The production on the model planes, at least a hundred of them, will be rushed in conforming to the needs of the nation’s armed forces. These planes are to be exact models of the planes used by the United States, Germany, Japan, and Italy, and will be used by the US Navy Bureau of Aeronautics in training air and ground personnel.

Another “Victory” store window display is receiving attention these days in Sycamore. The Ben Franklin store has an eyeful of red, white and blue for all passerby. The entire window is ablaze with the national colors. Flags and a display of candy comprise the exhibit. It is impressive with patriotism rather than commercial appeal. It is part of the Sycamore retail effort in selling war bonds and stamps.

1967 – 50 YEARS AGO

Pvt. Bernard R. Stefani, son of Mr. and Mrs. Rino C. Stefani of DeKalb, has completed his individual combat training at Camp Pendleton, California. He will now receive specialist training before being assigned to his first permanent unit.

Members of the DeKalb Public Hospital Board at their meeting approved a $3 across-the-board increase in daily room rates for the hospital. The new rates will make private rooms range from $25.50 to $33; semi-private rooms, $22-25.50; wards, $22; nursery, $8 boarders, $9.50; incubator, $9-$10.50; emergency room, $5 and recovery room $5.

Bids for construction of Phase II of Stevenson Towers residence hall at Northern Illinois University will be submitted to the Board of Governors. Total proposed budget for the 1,020 bed residence hall is $5,662,147 for construction cost and architect’s fee.

DeKalb firemen fought a fire in a temporary structure at Northern Illinois University. It was estimated that damage was $3,000. The building was used by the psychology department as a research center and small animal laboratory. One room of the structure was burned out, animals housed in the west wing were reported unharmed.

1992 – 25 YEARS AGO

A handmade wall hanging on the wall of Lovett’s Towing and Recovery in DeKalb, where Bonnie McCaslin works, may describe her daughter Becky Parker. “The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack of will.” – Vince Lombardi.

The 13-year-old Malta youth is certainly not lacking willpower as she battles a rate form of cancer that has already taken a part of her.

Gov. Jim Edgar visited Northern Illinois University to announce release of $20.4 million in state funds for a new chemistry and physics building.

DeKalb city officials have been busy getting rid of houses as they recently accepted one bid to demolish four structures in the DeKalb/Pond/Fisk area and another bid to move a house from airport property. The four buildings to come down in the DeKalb/Pond/Fisk area are the last to be razed in a project that had originally earmarked the structures for redevelopment and resale at affordable prices.

– Compiled by the Joiner History Room,
DeKalb County Archives

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