The Vernon County Censor

June 11, 1919

100 years ago

After quite a little difficulty in getting passports and passage arranged for, because of these times when space on ocean going vessels is at a premium, L.L. Stromland and Ole Thompson are on their way to pay a visit to the fatherland, Norway. Mr. Stromland said that his passage coming over cost him $34. He will have to pay $150 to get back, but he is considerably more able to pay the larger amount now than the smaller sum then.

The last published official statement of Vernon County’s fifteen banking institutions... exhibits a financial standing for our county that is truly gratifying…Every bank in the county showed a substantial gain, some of them in a remarkable degree.

Beginning Friday, June 13, and commencing for ten days, we will sell ten pounds best cane sugar for one dollar. Good patent flour at $3.29 per sack. Surenson & Dahl.

Certain people in Retreat-West Prairie community are much interested just now in a proposition involving the re-location of the highway as part of the county trunk line between West Prairie and the old Chase grave yard. The trunk line as designated and established turns southward at West Prairie and with many twists and turns penetrates the village of Retreat, thence passing on by the Albert Broadhead residence to the Chase corner.

Advocates….want….a direct straight drive from the West Prairie store to the old Chase cemetery... it is a much shorter route, at least two and a half miles. DeSoto Argus.

The violet club is giving a party at Dyson’s Mapledale cottage today in honor of Mrs. Arthur Hubbard and Mrs. Edith Lindemann.

The Vernon County Censor

June 15, 1944

75 years ago

The Viroqua City Band, aided and abetted by several musicians from the school band, will present their first concert of the season this Friday evening at Eckhart Park. This is the first of a series of concerts to be presented throughout the summer. Director Clarence Peterson, who just recently returned to Viroqua after playing in the pit orchestra at the Riverside Theater in Milwaukee this past winter will raise the baton at 8:00.

Number One item on movie menus at Viroqua Theatres for the next few weeks will be the latest and most complete action pictures of the invasion as fast as they are made available, the management announced today. For the programs opening Sunday at both the Temple and Vernon, a complete and thrilling document, “Eve of Battle,” will show the bombing of the invasion coast and the sendoff of fighting forces first to invade the French coastal objectives.

If ever the ingenuity of Vernon County farmers has been taxed to get their spring work done, it has been this year. Between showers, quite a few fields of tobacco have been set, and corn fields look remarkably well and free from weeds on the whole. The tractor has been the salvation of Vernon farmers this spring. On a recent night at around ten o’clock the Censor editor in driving to his cottage on Seas Branch saw four tractors carrying on their tireless duties by artificial light. Mechanized equipment is surely the answer to the farmer’s production problems.

The Vernon County


June 12, 1969

50 years ago

Wildfire, a fungal disease found in tobacco seedbeds, was reported to be in some Vernon County places. This news was reported to University Extension County Agricultural Agent, Vernon Hendrickson, by George Nettum, Manager of the Northern Wisconsin Tobacco Pool.

Deaths: John B. Berg, Sr., 71; Agnes Martha (Hansen) Bach, 78; Morris N. Bagstad, 78; Loren B. Hall, 72; Ernest Davidson, 72; Daniel Hutchison, Sr., 48; Anna Ethel (McLin) Norris, 79.

Legislation requiring suitable sites be found for solid waste disposal has come from the state, Chet Erlandson, County Board Chairman, stated this week. He urged residents to back their local town boards since selection of waste sites is a difficult task. If a decision cannot be made locally, the state will step in and make the decision. Local governing bodies did not initiate the idea of buying or leasing land for waste disposal. Erlandson noted that some requirements of the statute would be too stringent to fit some of this county’s rural areas.

The Ontario fifth graders enjoyed their hike through the tunnel above Norwalk and then went on to picnic in Wildcat Mountain State Park. Mrs. Gertrude Johnson is their teacher.

The Vernon County


June 16, 1994

25 years ago

The suspended Readstown Police Chief, Ken Goodwin, faced a trial for sexual assault charges. A judge ruled that the confession Goodman made will be admissible at his trial. Goodman’s attorney had argued that the confession was made before he had been read his Miranda rights. The judge found that was not the case.

The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (DOT) asked three government bodies to agree that Viroqua, Westby and Vernon County should underwrite 25% of the total cost of an 18 month study to determine if Highway 14 should be expanded to four lanes and whether there should be a bypass of both communities. The overall cost of the study was estimated at $175,000. After the study was completed, both communities would decide whether the accept the recommendations or call for other solutions.

Planning for the new elementary school had begun. The good news was that because of changes in the interest rates, the first two years of borrowing was less than originally estimated. Instead of $2.32 per $1,000 equalized value, the new cost was estimated to be $1.79 per $1,000 of equalized value. A board meeting was scheduled to formalize all the remaining issues such as the location of the new building and how the roads to the building will be situated.

Over a thousand students in the Kickapoo Valley finished a semester of learning about Wisconsin Fast Plants. Fast plants are rapidly cycling brassicas from the cabbage and mustard family of plants. Each group of students grew some Fast Plants which had a life cycle of 35 to 40 days. The program was funded by a grant from the Nuzum Foundation.

An early morning fire destroyed the home of Stoddard resident Dale Kromke. The fire had started in the garage area. Kromke and his girlfriend and her son who were in the house at the time of the fire did not sustain and serious injuries.

The Vernon County


June 18, 2009

10 years ago

A 43-year-old Readstown man, Andrew G. Wallace was recovered from the Kickapoo River on Sunday night. According to Vernon County Sheriff Gene Cary, it appears to be “nothing but a drowning.”

A specialized curriculum for students interested in focusing on music at Viroqua Middle School will be launched this coming school year. The school board approved the creation of a School of the Arts, which is geared toward providing a more in-depth musical education for up to 20 students in grades six-eight.

Viroqua Mayor Larry Fanta, Viroqua Assistant Police Chief Daron Jefson, Officer Emilee Nottestad, Attorney J.B. Van Hollen, Viroqua Chief Mark Rahr and State Rep. Lee Nerison (R.-Westby) gathered at the State Capitol in Madison on May 21 for Missing Children and Adults Awareness Day. The Viroqua Police Department received an Internet Crimes Against Children Law Enforcement Award.

English Lutheran School in Viroqua held its graduation/closing service on May 29. Eighth-graders who graduated were Kathryn Swenson of Viroqua and Zeth Nettesheim of Ferryville.

The 24-inch rainbow trout that Austin Underwood caught during the first day of the Viroqua School District’s Summer School Program fishing class was the biggest trout in the 15-year history of the program.

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Vernon County Historical Society — by Bonnie Sterling, Donna Halverson, Peg O’Rourke, Irving Leif and Carol Krogan


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