Looking Back

Looking Back for Nov. 14, 2018

Welcome Home sign at the corner of First Street and Lincoln Highway, 1945, at the end of the war. Thanks to the Joiner History Room for the photo.
Welcome Home sign at the corner of First Street and Lincoln Highway, 1945, at the end of the war. Thanks to the Joiner History Room for the photo.

1918 – 100 YEARS AGO

The following rates will prevail for Taxi Service. 35 cents to all points in the city, except south of Bush street, and points on Haish, Leonard, Ellwood and Glidden avenues south of South street, west of Normal road on Lincoln Highway, north and west of Normal school, north of Clark street, and east of tracks on Lincoln Highway, where fifty cents for one passenger will be the rate, or 35 cents each for more than one. Night calls, from midnight to 6:00 a.m. 50 cents a person. Funerals and weddings $5.00 per car, in DeKalb.

Saturday afternoon the Star theatre gave a special matinee for the kids of the city and as an admission charged the youngsters were asked to bring all the nut shells, pits, etc. they could find. A large barrel was placed in the lobby of the theatre and it was necessary to shake the barrel several times to make it hold the pits and shells the kids brought. The barrel was filled before the afternoon show began and the manager of the local theatre feels very well repaid for his efforts, as he has a barrel of material for carbon for gas masks to turn over to the government.

Many DeKalb people witnessed a most perfect aeroplane flight this forenoon just before 11 o’clock, when a big machine sailed over as graceful as any bird. The machine was not flying high or fast and the continual purr of the motor was easily heard by pedestrians on the street. The machine came from the northeast and was flying in a southwesterly direction. Another airplane was also seen here shortly before one o’clock in the afternoon.

To help meet the needs of the government, Wrigley’s will discontinue the use of tinfoil as a wrapping of Juicy Fruit chewing gum, in order to release this valuable material to Uncle Sam. Hundreds of thousands of pounds per week of tinfoil will thus be made available to the government, it is said. Juicy Fruit will hereafter appear in the hermetically sealed pink wrapper same as Spearmint. Doublemint will also be wrapped in waxed pink paper, instead of green.

Joe Keast, one of the employees of City Engineer Russell’s office, had his share of troubles this morning in trying to get rid of the large quantity of leaves along the Lincoln Highway. Joe, who always takes matters very lightly, started in at Fourth street and worked west on the high way, burning the leaves as he swept them into the gutter, but before he could get them all burned, many had again blown all over the sidewalks. The task was a tedious one but the city man kept at it until he had gained his objective. The work was done in an effort to help eliminate the dangers of an influenza epidemic.

1943 – 75 YEARS AGO

Members of the Sycamore Public Library board were informed that the new stoker has been installed at the building at Main and State Streets and is ready for use at any time. The heating unit now in use there is an oil burner, and while there is a small quantity of fuel oil remaining, this will be used up before the coal burning equipment is put into use. Now that the new heating unit has been installed, it is probable the next big problem confronting the board members will be to find suitable storage room for several tons of coal that will be required.

Marcia Bannister, DeKalb, and Hugh McCleery, Leland, placed first and third respectively in the Rural Youth District Talkfest sponsored by the Illinois Agricultural Association and held at the Farm Bureau office. Whiteside and McHenry counties also participated.

With the man power situation prevailing at the present time the residents of this city are asked to cooperate with the rubbish and ash pickup crews and not place all their rubbish and garbage out and expect the crews to haul it away. The crews are shorthanded at present and find it difficult to keep up with the ordinary collections but in a number of cases large piles of weeds, cabbage plants, tomato vines and other garden debris have been set out for this city crews to haul.

Work of laying new sidewalks on the east side of North First Street, between the highway and Locust Street, has been complete and when the long strip is opened for use a much-needed improvement will have been accomplished. Ordinances were passed for the construction of new sidewalks along these lots. The owners cooperated to the fullest extent and it was possible to complete this project before the advent of cold weather. The strips of sidewalk had been in very poor condition for some time and all will benefit from the improvement.

1968 – 50 Years Ago

Bids for the proposed renovation of the DeKalb Water Department’s main station on Pearl Street have been rejected. All the bids are way over the consulting architect’s estimates. The proposed renovation project, which would be the first for the station in 35 years, includes construction of an addition which would house a meter repair and meter testing area.

More than 3,000 DeKalb County residents attended an “open house” program at the new Kishwaukee Junior College west of Malta. Special “open house” events included an hour presentation by the Kishwaukee Junior college music department, a display of the manufacturing process by the vocational-technical division, and a slide presentation, which described the establishment of the new college and the college’s present and future programs.

Monty Hall, emcee of a popular TV show, presented a couple with the One Millionth Wurlitzer Piano which was won on his show.

Traffic was piled up on Sycamore Road as house movers transported a small one-story house from Lucinda Avenue to a site east of Sycamore on Route 64.

Ground work is underway at the site of the Annie Glidden underpass. Good weather has allowed the work to proceed on or near schedule.

1993 – 25 Years Ago

The DeKalb County Board approved an annexation and intergovernmental agreement that calls for the 138-acre county farm to be annexed into the city of DeKalb, and that both parties will split the sales tax revenue generated by the anticipated commercial land business developments. The property is located on Sycamore Road near Barber Greene Road.

The DeKalb Airport Advisory Board will receive state money to offset the cost of improvements at the DeKalb Taylor Municipal Airport. Ralph Tompkins, city engineer, said a recent trip to Springfield was extremely successful in helping to get the money for the fiscal year 1994 improvement projects at the airport, which total nearly $3 million.

Future generations will be able to enjoy many of the landmarks in DeKalb as a result of the city’s recent certification by the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency. The agency, headquartered in Springfield, certified local governments who have initiated local historic preservation programs through ordinances and enforcement of state and local preservation laws. DeKalb enacted its first historic preservation ordinance in 1978, which established a 12-member commission to designate local landmarks. To date, DeKalb has nine local landmarks.

• Compiled by the Joiner History Room, DeKalb County Archives.

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