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Today's News

  • Nearly one-third of Illinois corn harvested

    Temperatures remained below normal for yet another week, averaging 56.6 degrees statewide. The average for the time period is 61.9 degrees. Light frost was seen in some areas at the end of the week.
    Most areas of the state received above-average rainfall, with isolated areas receiving as much as four inches. In other areas, rains were below normal. The average for the state was 1.23 inches, 0.59 inches above normal. Days suitable for fieldwork were 5.4. Topsoil moisture was 15 percent very short, 34 percent short, 48 percent adequate and 3 percent surplus.

  • Taiwan signs pact to buy $3 billion worth of Illinois corn

    Illinois farmers sealed a two-year deal last week with a team of Taiwanese grain buyers to source corn from Illinois.
    Formalizing the agreement, Illinois Corn Marketing Board (ICMB) Chairman Bill Christ signed a letter of intent with the Taiwan Feed Industry Association in a ceremony at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum.
    Representatives from the U.S. Department of Agriculture hosted the 22-member trade delegation as part of a goodwill mission designed to further a long-standing trade relationship.

  • September grain stocks are reported

    The Illinois Field Office of NASS this week released the USDA’s September Grain Stocks Report. State and national highlights of the report include:
    ILLINOIS

  • Head blight threatens Illinois' wheat plants

    Research results from the 2011 Fusarium head blight evaluations are now available on the University of Illinois Variety Testing website for growers to consider when choosing wheat varieties this fall.

  • Harvest In High Gear

    Aaron Draege, in the combine, and Allen Handigan, in the tractor pulling grain cart, harvest corn Monday in a field southwest of Vandalia.

    Area fields are yielding up to 180 bushels per acre, with some spots producing considerably less due to the difficult weather conditions this growing season.

  • Banks of the Okaw-Oct. 6

    This week’s Mystery Banks Photo: This young man, pictured 73 years ago, grew up in the Mulberry Grove area.

  • The Way We Were Oct. 6

    15 Years Ago

    1996 – The Vandalia City Council rejected proposed pay increases for the mayor, city clerk and city treasurer, but approved an ordinance setting all alderman salaries at $4,000. Before, half of the aldermen were making $4,000 and half were making $3,600.
    The Vandalia Vandals football team earned a spot in the postseason playoffs by trouncing Shelbyville, 48-0.

  • First murder in Ramsey never solved

    The first murder of Ramsey Township took place early in the evening of Nov. 22, 1872.  It was a cowardly act, and the perpetrator was never found and charged.
    Thomas Francis "Frank" Little was sitting in the front room of his home with his sisters, Laura, Sarah Deborah and 12-year-old Emily. A lamp was lit, and Frank and the girls were seated around the room, spending the evening in song.

  • Information on suicide given at school program

    Suicide. Few other topics leave us with more questions and fewer answers.
    It’s a problem that isn’t discussed enough to allow us to understand the causes, let alone give us tools to help prevent those around us from seeing it as a way out when the going gets tough.
    Dr. Elizabeth Laden-Gross hopes to change all that.
    A volunteer with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, Laden-Gross will be addressing students, teachers and community residents in Farina and Vandalia next week.

  • Shriner Newspaper Day

    Mayor Rick Gottman signed a proclamation declaring this Saturday as Shriners' Hospitals Newspaper Days Roadblock Day in Vandalia. With Gottman is Tim McMillan, president of the Old National Trail Shrine Club. This Saturday, local Shriners will be handing out newspapers telling the story of Shriners' Hospitals for Children and accepting donations.