The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.

The 1925 Graphic

Compiled and Edited by Virginia Ross

Stronghurst Graphic: September 10, 1925

KILLED IN THE EVENING: John King, who has of late years made his home in this vicinity; was instantly killed last Sunday night about 7:30 o’clock when the Ford touring car in which he and Homer Weddington and Ross Harvey, also of this place, were returning from a trip to LaHarpe, Fountain Green and other localities in Hancock and McDonough Counties. They ran off the side of a bridge spanning a ravine on the road 5 ½ miles southwest of Blandinsville and dropped a distance of 10 feet, turning over in its descent and pinning all of the occupants beneath the wreck. King, who was alone in the rear seat of the car was killed by his head coming in contact with a pile of concrete in the creek bottom, his skull being crushed. Weddington, who was driving the car at the time of the accident occurred, escaped with a cut across the chin and some minor bruises. Harvey received a bad wound on one leg and was also considerably bruised about the head. The crash of the falling car and the cries of the survivors of the accident was heard by Mrs. Lee Fife who lived nearby, and she quickly alarmed the neighbors who rushed to the assistance of the imprisoned men. Mr. Will Lightner of LaHarpe was one of the first to reach the scene of the accident and succeeded in lifting the car sufficiently to allow Weddington and Harvey to release themselves. King was found with his head crushed between the side of the car and a slab of concrete. The remains of the unfortunate victim of the wreck were taken to Blandinsville where an inquest was held and a verdict of accidental death rendered.

King, who was about 47 years of age, was reared in the vicinity of Tennessee, Ill. where he engaged after his marriage in the occupation of farming. His wife died several years ago and since that time he had made his home at various places following the occupation of horse trainer and farm laborer. During the past season he was employed by Dan Shook on his farm north of town. The funeral services over his remains were held at the Oak Grove Church near Carthage with interment in the cemetery at that point beside the remains of his wife and child. A sister is living at Louisiana, Mo.

The car in which the party were riding when the accident occurred was lifted from the creek bed on Monday and found to be undamaged to any extent aside from the smashing of the top and windshield. It was driven to Stronghurst that evening under its own power. Weddington stated that he was driving at a moderate rate of speed when the accident occurred and that the bridge from which the car took the plunge to the creek bed, was situated right at a turn in the road and without banisters. He also said that neighbors told him that the road officials had been warned of the danger of just such an accident occurring some time as actually took place.

SLICK SALESMAN HITS TOWN: Last Saturday afternoon a stranger, dressed in tourist garb and bearing strapped on his back a knapsack on which were the words, “Around the Word,” appeared on the streets of Stronghurst. His unusual appearance soon attracted a knot of people about him and he proceeded to unfold to them a tale of 23 years of wandering afoot over the face of the earth; of visiting during that time practically every country in the world; of having during the period mentioned collected data, statistics and scientific facts forming the basis of 400 lectures sold to the Sirod Lyceum Educational Bureau of Washington, D.C. for use by their speakers; of having written 13 books of his own on various scientific and religious subjects; of having 36,563 bank accounts of 13 cents each in that many banks throughout the world, and which, if he should attempt to collect them, would leave him $29 in the hole because of postage cost and exchange charges; of being a Hebrew, Greek and Latin scholar able to read the various books of the Bible in their original language and therefore able to give a true interpretation of all of the difficult passages contained therein; and of the possession of diverse other intellectual attainments gained through years of research work along many lines.

The knot of curious listeners soon grew into a crowd which blocked traffic on the street in front of the post office where he held forth. Having obtained what he evidently considered a sufficient audience, he removed his knapsack, backed off the curb into the street and proceeded to deliver a lecture of nearly one hour duration which some of his hearers declared beat lectures which the had paid as high as $1.50 for the privilege of listening to and in which he discussed subjects ranging from the geological structure of the earth to the modern “flapper.”

While his audience was recovering from the spell cast over them by his magic oratory, he opened up his knapsack and taking therefrom a package of pamphlets hearing the title, “The Mystery of Creation,” and which he claimed contained answers to all the questions concerning the origin of man and similar mysteries with which the world has been grappling for centuries. He proceeded to hand them out at 50 cents per at a rate rapid enough to justify the conclusion that along with the secrets which he had wrested from nature and other sources, he had not neglected giving attention to the very important one of “How to Get the Money.”

This traveling compendium of general knowledge gave his name as J.L. Belland but admitted that he was best known as “Railroad Jack.” The Mystery of Creation is published by the Belland Publishing Co. of Newton, Miss. and it is noted that the reader is warned not to use the story as a lecture, drama, stereopticon, motion picture or in any form whatso ever, which is assumed includes its use for illustrating the effects produced by a brainstorm in the human mind.

MARRIED IN CHICAGO: At five o’clock Sunday afternoon Sept. 6 in the newly furnished apartment prepared for their future home at 7035 Jeffery Ave., Hyde Park, Chicago, (this house sold for $47,000 in 1987 and would be worth $114,434 on today’s market) occurred the marriage of Miss Erma Kaiser, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. C. R.Kaiser of this place and Mr. Ernest Smelter, son of Mrs. Mary Smelter, 1425 E. 69th St., Chicago.  The single ring service was used in the ceremony, which was performed by Rev. Body of Hyde Park in the presence of members of the immediate families of the couple.   Mrs. Kaiser, mother of the bride, was one of the guests and Mr. and Mrs. A .F. Kaiser were attendants of the bridal couple.  Miss Mary and Mr. Edward Smelter of Chicago also acted as attendants.  The bride’s dress was of orchid georgette trimmed in silver with hat and shoes to match.  She carried a shower bouquet of bridal roses. (These things would be noted by local women as this was the banker’s daughter.)  Following the ceremony, the bridal party went to the Versailles Hotel where a three-course wedding dinner was served.  The many graces of character and accomplishments possessed by the bride are too well known to the Graphic’s readers to require any mention here.  For the past year and a half, she has very efficiently filled the position of bookkeeper in the Hyde Park State Bank of Chicago where Mr. Smelter is also employed as assistant cashier.  During the war Mr. Smelter served 18 months overseas with the 149th Field Artillery of the Rainbow Division.

On Sunday, Aug. 23, two weeks before her marriage, Miss Kaiser was the guest of honor at a Tea and Shower given by a number of her Chicago friends in the Rose Room of the Cooper-Carlton Hotel at which time she received many lovely and useful gifts.  Mr. and Mrs. Smelter will be at home at the above address on Oct.1st.

LOCAL AND AREA NEWS:  Rev. W.H. Cross arrived home from his vacation trip to his native country, England.  The return trip across the Atlantic was made in the steamer Adriatic, which docked at New York.  He announced that he will be prepared to fill his regular preaching appointments at Media on Sunday.  Max Barnett, Pharmacist Mate of the 3rd class in the U.S. Navy and who has been stationed at Coca, Solo in the Panama Canal Zone has been transferred to the Naval Academy at Annapolis.  He said that being in the tropics is O.K. for a year or so, but after that they are pretty monotonous.  He was at the Naval Station at Hampton Roads, Va. for two weeks waiting further orders and then sent to Annapolis. Miss Ruth McMillan returned to Canton, Ill. to resume her work as a teacher in the high school.

 The 320-acre farm in the old Bedford neighborhood owned by Mrs. O. F. Schee of Des Moines and occupied at present by Press Walker, was sold recently to A. G. Cox for a consideration of $80,000 of $250 an acre ($3,925 in today’s value, an indication that farm land in this section of Illinois is still considered a good investment.)

Miss Edith Hartquist was brought home from the Burlington Hospital well on the road to recovery from an operation for appendicitis.  On Sept. 1st at a Master in Chancery sale at Oquawka the 235 acres composing the Vaughn farm west of Stronghurst was sold to the First National Bank of this place on their bid of $18,126.75. Jack Hatton has resigned his position as railway mail clerk and has purchased a truck transfer business in Macomb, Ill.  He and Mrs. Hatton are preparing to move to their new home in a few days.  The Wilson Grocery Co. of Peoria, a concern which once did a big mail order business in groceries and which had branch stores in many Illinois towns, filed a voluntary petition in bankruptcy showing liabilities of $450,000 and assets of $305,000. Doris Dixson and Frank Wilcox are among the new students enrolled at Monmouth College.  Mr. Bert Lant, formerly of this vicinity, whose home is now at Marshalltown, Iowa is here with his wife visiting relatives and old friends.  They have been guests at the C.E. Lant home.  Mr. and Mrs. Glen Schenck are parents of daughter born at their home southeast of town on Sept. 5th.

SUPPORT HENDERSON COUNTY:  The Illinois Products Exposition is to be held in Chicago on Oct.8 to 17th.  The object is to “SELL” Illinois, its products and its opportunities to itself and the nation.  The cost is too great for one individual or firm to enter an exhibit.  Why not sell Henderson County to the world by advertising Henderson County towns and farms?  Why not exhibit what can be grown in Henderson County? The largest watermelons I ever saw were grown in this county and also the sweetest musk melon is as good it not better than the famous Rocky Ford melon of Colorado…We can grow all kinds of vegetables, many kinds of the best fruits, excellent corn, wheat, oats, barley, clovers, alfalfa, etc. and produce as fine livestock as can be found in the world.  We also have fishing industries along the Mississippi and bathing beaches for hot summer months. 

Perhaps, our county is short on manufacturing, but we have at least one canning factory, one broom factory and one button factory.  Henderson County is an ideal location for economical transportation of farm and manufactured products…If you are interested much or little, please let me hear from you; time is short.  As a county we can put on a real exhibit—E.G. Lewis, Media, IL.

MEDIA MEANDERINGS: Little Wilma Cross has been suffering severely with a carbuncle (a cluster of boils caused by bacteria); it was necessary for her to be taken to Monmouth for treatment. A large crowd of Media’s young people gave Mr. and Mrs. Dale Moon a hearty chivari last Friday evening.  Mrs. George Wax arrived home after two weeks visit with relatives in Rockport, Mo.  Her brother, Mac Warren, accompanied her.  Mr. Jap Mink and his family are moving recently purchased home in Stronghurst. Mr. Emory Cavins has brought the property formerly owned by Mr. Fred Palmer and he and his family expect to occupy the place soon.

OLENA OBSERVATIONS: Mr. Clas Carson, Mrs. Anna Johnson and Mrs. John Lant , stewards of the Olena Church, attended the last quarterly conference in Gladstone.  The Olena wagon bridge just west of the village is being removed preparatory to the erection of a more modern and up-to-date bridge for which the contract has been let with work to begin in the very near future.  A temporary bridge is taking the place of the one removed.  Mr. Oz Reynolds has purchased the Olena property of Mrs. Robert McCartney and moved into the village on Sept. 7th.  Mr. and Mrs. Charles Hicks and family who had been occupying this home moved to Hopper home vacated by Mr. Reynolds.  Mr. John McCartney and family, Mr. and Mrs. Ira Peterson and family are now riding in spick and span-new Chevrolet cars.  Will Hicks is sporting a new Fordson Tractor which looks mighty good to him.  He also has a “fliver (slang for the Ford Model T).”  Mr. and Mrs. Moon, newlyweds, were given the old-fashioned charivari at the bride’s home a recent evening.  The couple reciprocated with a generous supply of candy and cigars. On Labor Day the Burrell reunion was held at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Bert Burrell, who reside east of Olena on the Clarence Richey land.  About 60 were present and a fine dinner served at noon and a jolly good time reported. (Another article in this paper lists attendees.)  Mr. and Mrs. Bert Lant motored from Marshalltown, Iowa to visit at the John Lant home.  Mr. Roy Hicks returned to Fort Madison to finished his course in the Business College.  Miss Bernice Charter has also matriculated for a full course there too.  Miss Mildred Lant is expecting to take a course in the Gem City College at Quincy.  Mr. Clas Carlson shelled and delivered corn to Mr. Frank Pearson east of the village.  Mr. Stratton and helpers have arrived and work has begun on the Olena wagon bridge. 

BIGGSVILLE BRIEFS: A fish fry was held Wednesday evening at the beach.  A card from Dr. and Mrs. Shum, who are touring the West, reports they are resting for a few days at Livingston, Mont.  Mr. and Mrs. Will Sanderson and Mrs. Jerry Carter were called to Good Hope by the death and funeral of a brother-in-law, William Murphy.  Wm. Cochran is driving a new Buick car.  Miss Alice Ericson has gone to Galesburg to attend Brown’s Business College.  Miss Helen Whiteman, a former Biggsville girl, was married at the home of her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Oliver Whiteman in Burlington Ia. to Willis Swarty of that city. The couple left in the evening for Sterling, Kansas, where he is a member of Sterling College.  Rev. C. A. Liftfield has tendered his resignation as pastor of the Presbyterian Church here.