Looking Back

Looking Back for Jan.1, 2020

Golden Harvest Motel at Route 23 and Bethany Road, Sycamore, 1961. Thanks to the Joiner History Room for the photo.
Golden Harvest Motel at Route 23 and Bethany Road, Sycamore, 1961. Thanks to the Joiner History Room for the photo.

1920 – 100 YEARS AGO

J. J. Murphy, enterprising proprietor of the “Five to Fifty” store who has developed a most thriving business since he arrived in DeKalb several months ago, is not “going to the wall,” he is going through it. He has acquired the lease of the other store room in the building he occupies at the corner of Second Street and Lincoln Highway and is making preparations for the occupation of the two big rooms with a greatly amplified and elaborated stock of goods.

The Chronicle has a gift for its farmer patrons, which they can secure by calling at this office. It is in the shape of an Easy Record permanent calendar and will be given to mail subscribers of the Chronicle who desire them for use in keeping records of their crops, sales and purchases.

David Gallarno of Fairdale sold two of his billiard tables to Mr. Pollard of Esmond, delivering them on Monday.

Martin Garvin has continued on his aimless way. He left this morning and said he was going to see Iowa. Before he left, Martin said this was the first Christmas he had passed through without getting intoxicated, since he can remember, and that he feels much better than he ever did.

The following item from the Chicago News indicates that Mrs. Perry Fisk must indeed be a wonderful golfer to have one of the eastern sporting experts give her credit for being among the ten best in the country. Generally, their lists never have anybody from west of Philadelphia. The item indicates that The New York Times lists Mrs. Fisk (DeKalb, Ill.) as ninth on the list of the top ten leading women golfers in the country.

A communication has been received by the police concerning the whereabouts of Eugene Gray, who is alleged to have disappeared from his home in Indianapolis 11 years ago and has not been heard from since. Some years ago, it was reported to his relatives that he was living in DeKalb.

1945 – 75 YEARS AGO

New Year’s Eve in DeKalb is expected to be the quietest in a number of years and 1945 will probably be greeted without the usual gusto. With the nation in a critical stage of the war, the usual gaiety will be lacking as hundreds will be saying prayers for the boys over there.

Announcement was made yesterday the Mott Brothers, who purchased the Butzow garage and converted it into a manufacturing and repair establishment, which will prove a decided asset to the city, have planned an opening day, Jan. 8. For many weeks, the owners of the new enterprise have been working diligently at the former Sycamore fire station garage and now are able to have the people of the community visit the plant.

At the Northern Illinois Corporation manufacturing plant in DeKalb, which today received the Army and Navy “E” award, carload quantities of tubing arrive and are unloaded by a crew of “Jeeps,” the term applied to the part-time high school workers. The pipe is inspected, marked and then started through the routine of processing in making tank links. The boys’ counterpart in the feminine category of workers is the “Jiggs” crew, composed of girls of high school age. These girls work schedules similar to that of the boys of their own age and have proved production schedule savers time after time.

Come early and select a smart Winter Hat at half price. Allen’s Boot & Bonnet Shop.

Sheriff A. Deisz is among the latest victims to be reported ill with the flu, or a heavy cold, as the sheriff puts it. The sheriff was taken ill the fore part of the week, and when the cold continued to hang on, he decided the proper thing to do was go to bed for a few days and follow the doctor’s orders. Sheriff Deisz is expected to be back at his duties around the jail and at the courthouse within the next few days.

A possible plot to assassinate Prime Minister Winston Churchill was thwarted with the discovery of nearly a ton of dynamite under the Great Britain Hotel, British and Greek government headquarters. The dynamite was found in a sewer under the hotel a few hours before a planned convocation of the British and Greek factional leaders, and the fused cache was removed.

1970 – 50 YEARS AGO

A large group of youngsters took advantage of the new ice-skating rink on Alma Street near West School on a mild winter afternoon. The rink was complete in time for the beginning of school vacation and has become a favorite recreational area for Sycamore area youngsters.

Basketball backboards weren’t the only things battered this past weekend at the DeKalb High School. Figuring that gate receipts from the DeKalb High School Holiday Basketball Tournament would amount to big money, burglars early Sunday battered open the school safe and took $750 in cash and checks.

On Sunday, members and guests of the Kishwaukee Audubon Society participated in the annual dawn to dusk national Christmas Bird Count sponsored by the National Audubon Society. Jim Smalley of Shabbona was the 1969 DeKalb County leader. Four groups covered assigned territories within a 15-mile radius from the Aldrich and Glidden Roads. During the eight-hour period, over 290 miles of snow-covered roads were driven and walked.

One of the two buildings at the St. Albans Green apartment complex in Sycamore caught fire yesterday morning, reportedly caused by the electrical wiring in the ceiling of the first floor. “The Fire Chief remarked to me that the building was very well fire protected, and that if the walls had not been insulated as well as they were the fire would have spread much further,” said part owner Sidney Katz.

1995 – 25 YEARS AGO

As of Jan. 2, dialing one or zero will no longer let you make a long-distance telephone call in the 815 area code. GTE is implementing a new telephone dialing system that requires customers to dial the area code for any long-distance calls they make. Those who do not dial the area code will be asked to redial.

Dan Latta of Sycamore just keeps on running. For the second year now, the Sycamore High School junior has competed in the national Junior Olympics cross country races sponsored by USA track and field. This year’s contest took place in Reno, Nevada. Latta placed 50th out of 250 in his race.

Work continues on the structure that will be the new addition to the Campus Recreation Center at Northern Illinois University. The new space will include a weight room; a two-court, multi-purpose gymnasium; a meeting room; and offices. The project is expected to be complete by August of 1995.

Dance Lessons. Tuesdays, DeKalb – Matthew Boone’s Restaurant, 7-9 p.m. Country western, beginners and advanced.

Police responded to a report at Seven-11, 930 Annie Glidden Rd., that a customer had driven away with a gas hose nozzle left in the car. The car and driver were found in a ditch on Baseline Rd., with the nozzle near the car in the ditch.

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

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