The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.

The 1917 Graphic

Compiled and Edited by Virginia Ross
Registrar for Daniel McMillan Chapter, N.S.D.A.R.1917

Stronghurst Graphic, Nov.15, 1917 

BURNED UP: Stronghurst's electric light plant owned by Mr. M.F.T.Schierbaum was discovered to be on fire about 1:15 Saturday morning. The blaze was first noticed by Miss Ruth Foote, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Jay Foote, who chanced to notice the light thrown on her bedroom window. She ran to the home of J.E.Amerman and gave the alarm and Mrs. Foote hastened to the home of Mr. and Mrs. Allie Bruce, who live in the first house west of the light plant and thus gave them a chance to get their household goods removed to a place of safety.

The fire was so far advanced that it was impossible to save the building, which was a frame structure. The firemen were on hand promptly after the alarm was given and two streams of water were turned on, but the flames did their work so promptly that it was impossible to do little more than to protect surrounding property. A quantity of coal stored in the plant was also saved for future use. (As coal supply was extremely short, this was fortunate.)

A large crowd of people assembled but could do little more than to be spectators of the rapid destruction of property.Mr. Schierbaum bought the plant about six years ago and during his ownership remodeled the building and added considerable new machinery and had put the plant on a paying basis. The insurance carried amounted to only $1400 and this represented not to exceed 20 per cent of the value. It will thus be seen that the burden falls heavily on the owner, the loss amounting to several thousand dollars. J.E.Hemmick, adjuster for the Retail Merchants' Fire Insurance Co. of Springfield was here to adjust the loss. After taking the salvage into account, the amount received by Mr. Schierbaum probably would not exceed $1,000, owing to the terms of the policy, a special rate having been granted on the condition that the owner should carry a total insurance of 80 per cent of the value of the property.

The cause of the fire is unknown. John Francen, the man who was in charge during the evening left the plant at 11:30 and so far as he knows every thing was properly cared for and in good condition at that time. As a result of the fire, the town has been plunged into darkness and probably will be without street lights for some time. There has been a good sale of lamps and the dealers have been doing a thriving business.

LOCAL AND AREA HAPPENINGS: Mr. M.J.Wright, leader in farm advisor work for the district, is here in the interest of organizing the farmers in the movement for better farming through the employment of an expert along agricultural lines. The Epworth League of the M.E. church will hold a Husking Bee on Nov. 29th at the church. The village board voted to place a concrete crossing and approaches in sidewalk north of Santa Fe tracks on Broadway for the convenience of patrons of the Stronghurst Grain & Mdse. Company's coal sheds. The cemetery association decided not to hold the annual dinner or solicit funds by subscription. They thought they had enough on hand to lay a cement walk from North St. to the entrance.

The crew of the engine involved in last week's accident say that a red lantern was at the rear end of the tender and that the bell was ringing. The autoists say that there was no danger signal and that no bell was ringing.

LOCAL TALENT PRODUCE FINE EVENT: So nearly has the film drama monopolized the stage that it is now a real novelty to witness a play where the voices and actual presence of the actors are in evidence. The presentation of "The Noble Outcast" at the Lyric was especially interesting for this reason and also for the additional consideration that it was by home talent and given for a local benefit. Del Dixson appeared in the title role and gave an interpretation of the part that was little less than real art. Those who could hardly realize how a man could be an outcast and do noble things could balance it up against the fact that many a man who stands high in the world is often capable of doing some mighty mean things and settle the score on a 50/50 basis. Del's noble bum, lieutenant and co-adjutor was Clarence Hartquist, who came in for a good share of the laurels. James Amerman was the antithesis of everything good and naturally felt elated when his friends and neighbors wanted to hang him. As "James Barclay" he was all that could be desired from the standpoint of a consummate villain and all that could be deplored from the opposite angle. Hollis Link as "Phillip Warburton" and Miss Ethel Hartquist as "Lena" appeared to excellent advantage in a love match that had many vicissitudes before the happy termination.

Miss Ruby Hicks was very clever as "Sally" and with Clarence Hartquist as "Wayside" traveled a tortuous road to final felicity. Mrs. Blanche McElhinney was the ever present spinster and was the acid test for all the good nature of the audience and actors. It was certainly not a lovable role but was given in such a way as to cause much merriment. C.E.Fort was the man whose heart was almost too large for him to be a real good prison warden, but if the choice had been left to an election, he would have won the job hands down. B.G.Widney was a wise judge and a good banker but came within a red hair of losing everything because of his failure to make a good guess on James Barclay. Mrs. Widney was very attractive as the foster mother of Lena and took the part with excellent effect. Elzie Gilliland as the inevitable colored gentleman was especially good. The play was given under the direction of W.C.Ivins. A pleasing feature was the music by the Stronghurst orchestra.Friday's night crowd was lacking but on Saturday something like 150 were unable to gain admittance. Total receipts for the two evenings were about $215 and will go to the cemetery gate fund.

1892 GRAPHIC: G.K. & C.E. Peasley were advertising a saddle horse sale.

The property known as the opera house block was purchased from Joseph Dixson by R.E.Miller and R.L.Taylor. A big ratification meeting held in the village to celebrate the election of Grover Cleveland as president wound up in a big free-for-all fight participated in by visiting celebrators from Terre Haute, Decorra and Raritan.

A fire set by children in some dry grass in the east part of the village almost burned down the Dunsworth houses. Lew Drew, who recently was promoted to the 0 position of conductor on a railroad in Minnesota, fell and broke his arm while running ahead of his train to open a switch. Funeral services over the remains of William White were conducted at the Olena and on the following day services for Ora Fort were conducted at the M.E. church in the same village.

LIGHT THE WAY FOR PERFORMANCE: When Manager Beardsley of the Lyric Theatre found that the usual supply of juice for the electric lights would be unavailable for the home talent play last Saturday night on account of the disastrous fire, he was somewhat puzzled to know how the play could be given.

Mr. Beardsley is, however, a man of resource; he soon got in touch with the Monmouth Plow Factory at Monmouth and made arrangements to light the theatre with Delco lights. The plow factory had both of their demonstrating cars on the job early in the evening and furnished ample light for the whole performance. The lighting outfits were in charge of J.W.Fair and W.H.Beard.

END THE DARKNESS: NEED NEW LIGHTS: Stronghursts needs for the future of electrical service was the subject of considerable discussion and more or less heated controversy in a meeting held at the Lyric Theatre last Monday evening. Citizens had wanted longer hours of lighting service and more power and with the destruction of the light plant last Saturday, some believed this was the time to take action. With W.C.Ivins presiding, all had full opportunity to express their opinions. Mr. Schierbaum, who has been furnishing electric service for the village was called upon to state what plans he had regarding the re-establishment of service.

He responded by producing and reading a contract made by the village with the Steele Bros. in 1911 under which they agreed to furnish street lighting for a period of 10 years, giving service only during the earlier hours of the night. This contract Mr. Schierbaum claimed to have assumed and he stated that it was his intention to fulfill his part of the same in so far as he was able during the four years remaining. In regards to furnishing continuous service or longer hours, he seemed unwilling to make any definite promise.

The question of longer hours was then discussed by those present with most agreeing as to the need. There was a considerable difference of opinion as to the feasability of the plan in view of increased expense to the consumer. After the flow of oratory had subsided, Mr. Peck, a representative of the State Public Utilities Commission who had been invited to attend, was called upon for suggestions as to the solution of the problem. He responded by stating that he was willing to answer any questions regarding the functions of the Utilities Commission and its relation to the general public and to individuals or corporations furnishing service. He seemed unwilling, however, to express himself regarding the matter of the demand for longer hours until he was more fully informed as to local conditions.

After some more interchange of opinion in which considerable acrimony developed, a resolution was offered by Mr. G.Q.Fort that a committee be appointed to investigate the matter of the probable cost of securing electric service from outside sources. This resolution was adopted without any dissenting votes. It was moved and seconded that the president of the village board was to appoint the committee. Considerable opposition arose and the motion was declared lost. Dr. Harter then moved that the chair appoint a committee of three to investigate the cost of electric service in other cities and villages in this section and to secure such other data as might be of use in arriving at some plan concerning the problem and that this committee report at a future meeting called by the chairman. An amendment to the effect that the cost of this investigation be assumed by the village was offered by Mr. B.G.Widney and the motion for the amendment was adopted unanimously.

The chair then named a committee consisting of C.H.Davis, G.C.Rehling and Chas. Wax. At this point the proceeding became somewhat balled-up by a controversy over the question as to whether there were two separate committees to be named. The chair ruled that there was but one to be named and it was the one named. The resolution offered by Dr. Harter and adopted by the meeting was thus allowed to suffer an untimely death. By this time all were tired and wanted to go home so meeting adjourned. The question as to whether the village are to have better electric service is still unanswered.

CARMAN CONCERNS: Violet Pendry has returned home after a visit with her sister, Mrs. Earl Bennington at Fort Madison, Iowa. Mrs. John White of Council Bluffs is visiting her sister, Mrs. Walter Howell. Mrs. Robert Gillis, Jr. left for Springfield as a delegate for the Rebekah lodge from here. Abe Babcook, the thirteen year old son of Mr. A.C.Babcook and wife, is carrying his arm in a sling having the misfortune to have two bones broken while cranking the automobile. Mr. George Dunham left for Florida; his wife and little son will remain here with her mother, Mrs. Eliza Brown. Louis Weigand is having a furnace installed in his home. Mr. Dave Pendry and family moved to his mothers, Mrs. John Pendry, farm east of town.

OQUAWKA OCCURRENCES: Miss Cora Miller of Alexis came to teach at the township high school during Miss Christie Armstrongs illness. Harold Essex is quite ill with tonsilitis. Howard McOlgan also has the malady. J.Fred Wilson of Norfolk, Neb. is visiting his parents, Mr. and Mrs. W.S.Wilson, and also doing some hunting. A number of Modern Woodmen attended a big meeting in Burlington. Mrs. Walter Ditto is quite ill and soon will be taken to the hospital at Burlington for an operation. William B. Frew, pioneer and distinguished citizen of Aledo, Ill., died at a sanitarium in Moline on Nov.7th.

HIGH SCHOOL PARTY: Last Friday evening at the school the Freshmen class gave a party in honor of the Sophomores. The first game suggested was a Chinese spelling contest. This was won by the Sophomores. The games Brush and Spin the Pan were then given their turn. After this everyone was called to join in the grand march by which partners for supper were obtained.

After light refreshments consisting of sandwiches, pickles, fruit salad, wafers and punch were served, the evenings amusement commenced again. Miller Boy was started and enjoyed by all. A game of Skip-to-Lu closed the evenings entertainment and when the light blinked, the party was over with all reporting a fine time.


Heres to the height of heaven

Heres to the depths of sea

Heres to the S.H.S.lads

Who hereafter will see victory.

NEWS OF THE NEIGHBORS: Burlington officials dumped six barrels of whiskey, valued at $2,000 into the sewer recently. The booze was captured from Bud Anderson, who attempted to take it across the river from the Henderson County side. ($2,000 in 1917 equals $31,761.85 as of 2002 prices) The will of the late Eli Dixson of Roseville was probated in Warren County. The instrument disposes of 1,100 acres of land valued at $265,000( 2002 value would be $4,208,444.97) and personal property in the amount of $19,000(2002 value would be $381,737.56.) Mrs. Myrtle Dixson, the widow, is named as the chief beneficiary although other relatives are generously remembered with bequests. Guy Huston of the Huston Banking Co. of Blandinsville has accepted the presidency of the First Joint Stock Loan Bank of Chicago, one of the first banks organized under the Federal Farm Loan Act. Two hundred sheep have been distributed amongst boys and girls of Mercer County by D.E.Farr and the First Trust and Savings Bank of Aledo. The sheep will be cared for by the children and a Liberty bond given as the first prize for the best lamb raised from the sheep and exhibited at the Mercer County Fair next year.

LOCAL AND AREA HAPPENINGS: Postmaster C.E.Fort returned from Chicago with two cars of stock. Two or three carloads of coal have been received by local dealers thus slightly ending the famine situation. Henry Walters has been obliged to give up work on the Santa Fe bridge carpenter crew on account of injuries received at Stronghurst several days ago. The ladies of the Raritan Reformed church will hold their annual chicken pie supper and bazaar in the Raritan opera house on Saturday evening, Nov. 17th. Grady Fort was elected president of the Y.M.C.A. of Northwestern University in a contest which the Daily Northwestern says has in the matter of number of votes cast no precedent in the history of the University. Stronghurst friends congratulate him over this evidence of his popularity in University circles.

An auto being driven by Mrs. Iva Gibb of Raritan country was overturned in the road just south of that village when an attempt was made to pass a horse driven rig. The auto rolled over a couple of times scattering blazing gasoline over Mrs. Gibb, who emerged from the wreck with her coat in flames. She succeeded in getting free of the garment before suffering any severe burns and was not injured otherwise. The car was badly wrecked and partially consumed by flames from the burning gasoline.

While Nick Gardner, who works for H.B.Fort on the farm west of the village, was coming to town for a load of brick his team took fright and ran away. The wagon box was thrown off near the Foote place in the north part of the village and Gardner caught beneath it. Some ladies of the neighborhood came to his assistance and lifted the wagon box so that he could free himself. He was brought into the village and given medical attention. Although no bones were broken, the severe bruises he received have prevented him for getting about after the accident.

Mrs. Perry Stamp underwent an operation for appendicitis at her home last Sundaythe operation was performed by Dr. Findley of Galesburg and was successful with the patient doing nicely. Mr. and Mrs. Andrew Davis are the parents of a fine daughter born Tuesday.

The Sinclair Oil Co. are doing construction work on their line north of Lomax. Mr. and Mrs. John Cooks little daughter died from scarlet fever Monday at their home west of Gladstone; one of the boys is very ill with the same disease.

WRITES OF ARMY LIFE-ERNEST FOOTE: Letter was received by Mr. Ira Foote from his son Ernest, a member of the Rainbow division encamped at Hempstead, L.I.: Your letter was the first I have received since returning to camp here...It is very cold here. I was on guard duty the other night.I will try to tell you about my trip and camp life. The day we left we received orders to roll packs. In them we put two blankets, one shelter half, one rain coat, one bed sack, tent peg and one tent pole. We boarded a train and went to Long Island City. There we took a ferry on the Hudson River to our ship, the President Grant. The beds we had were three tiers high.

That night we left the harbor and the next morning we could see nothing but water and the seven other ships that were with us, one being a battle ship. For four days there was nothing else to see and on the fourth day we turned back and then nothing but water in sight. We traveled slow and six nights latter were back again in the docks. I sure was glad to step on land again. We came back to camp and it was raining; we all got wet. Our tents were wet, but we got them fixed up the next day.

DIES ON THE BRIDGE: Robbed of his senses through a stroke of paralysis, Louis D. Haigh, aged 80 years and for the greater part of his life identified with the life of Fort Madison and Niota lay unconscious in the seat of his automobile while the car repeatedly crashed into the railing along the driveway of the Santa Fe River Bridge until the machine stopped of its own accord this morning. He passed away a few minutes after being stricken while being brought to this city in another automobile.

The aged man had left his home at Niota to come to this city on business. His car had just started on the approach of the Illinois side of the bridge when he was stricken. The machine, which swerved into the railing, bumped along the bridge for 100 feet before the engine died.

He was found by Theodore Neighbors, manager of the Metropolitan Hotel in this city and two men of the Sinclair Oil Co., Messrs. Allen and Cole, who had spent part of the morning in a business visit to Niota.

Louis D. Haigh was one of the best known residents of Appanoose Township where he had resided in East Fort Madison for nearly twenty years, retiring from farming at that time. He was a veteran of the Cvil War and a member of the Fort Madison post of the G.A.R. He was probably better known in Fort Madison than in Appanoose Township.(Obviously, the editor was covering all basesknown in both places.) He is survived by his wife and one brother, George Haigh. There were no children Fort Madison Democrat

FROM THE MEDIA RECORD: Mr. Homer Woods and Earnest South went to Cameron to bring down a load of Mr. Souths furniture; the family is moving to the McCartney house owned by Miss Bessie Pendarvis. Coal does not seem to be as scarce as it was a short time ago as there has been three carloads come into Media this week. The seed company had another load of cotton seed meal on the track this week. A factory inspector and an assistant fire inspector were looking over the seed house. The fire marshal found the building all right, but the factory inspector noted a few necessary changes to be made. The entertainment given at the public school Tuesday night was well attended considering the inclement weather. The net proceeds were $6.20 which will go toward paying for an organ for the primary room that was purchased at the beginning of school. Several men are busy hauling red clover from the David Mink home in Dutch Row neighborhood to the seed company.

A few farmers of the surrounding neighborhoods who commenced picking corn a week or so ago are now selling some at 25 cents a bushel and some of them are sorting the corn and throwing the rest away. The Red Cross Society met at the Academy with members taking their dinner and working all day.