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Columns

  • The Way We Were

    25 Years Ago

    1989 – The Fifth Saturday Celebration in Vandalia included a Civil War encampment, art show, craft show, Christian music festival, classic car cruise and a biathlon.
    Robert Burnside was honored for 50 years in the practice of law during the annual meeting of the Illinois State Bar Association.

    30 Years Ago

  • Old Hurricane Church among area's oldest

    A few months ago, Brent Hunter shared with me papers that his mother had copied from the original church records of the Hurricane Baptist Church, organized near VanBurensburg before Illinois' statehood.

  • Banks of the Okaw

    This week’s Mystery Banks Photo: This Vandalia couple (center) were married 62 years ago in June and still live here.

  • The Way We Were

    25 Years Ago

    1989 – The St. Peter Business Development Committee kicked off its efforts with a picnic in Community Park for representatives of agencies that  could assist the village in its business development efforts. Lawrence A. Rubin chaired the committee.
    Bob Jackson of Mulberry Grove signed a letter of intent to play baseball at Kaskaskia College.
    The Vandalia Community High School Class of 1929 held its 60-year class reunion.
    Kendra Sanders of rural Vandalia was crowned Miss Fayette County Fair.

  • Banks of the Okaw

    In last week’s Mystery Banks Photo were: Cindy (Sprayberry) Scoles, Becky (Elmore) Hourigan, Judy (Ray) Nalley, Vicky (Greer) Haas, Barbara (Wright) Ellis and Patty (Ellis) Morgan.
    Identifying them were: No one.
    This week’s Scrambler: rastt rehew ouy rae. sue thwa uyo veha. od hawt uoy nac.
    Can you unscramble it? If so, call The Leader-Union, 283-3374, by 5 p.m. next Monday.

  • The Way We Were

    25 Years Ago

    1989 – Vandalia Correctional Center received word that its road camp was scheduled to reopen in October, a little more than two years after it was closed. It meant an additional 25 jobs at VCC.
    Grace Kepner of the Wheatland HEA was named homemaker of the year at the annual meeting of the Fayette County Home Extension Association.
    The First Baptist Church youth choir was readying its musical “Live It to the Max,” for a multi-state tour.
    Ten girls were vying for Miss Fayette County Fair honors.

  • Metzger building has long, colorful history

    Several months ago I was contacted by the Tim Metzger family for information on the Metzger Hotel built by Tim’s great-grandfather, John Ulrich Metzger.

  • The Way We Were

    25 Years Ago

    1989 – Fayette County farmers were busy harvesting wheat. In some areas, there was no wheat to harvest as a May hailstorm wiped out the crop.
    The Fayette County Health Department and S.A.F.E. (Sexual Assault and Family Emergencies) sponsored self-protection seminars for female county employees and the general public.
    Ashley Crabtree was named Little Miss at the Ramsey Daze celebration.
    Vandalia Jaycees sponsored a Fourth of July celebration with fireworks at the Vandalia Lake.

    30 Years Ago

  • A look at Vandalia businesses in 1924

    In 1989, I fell into the position as editor of the quarterly publication of the Fayette County Genealogical & Historical Society.

  • Banks of the Okaw

    This week’s Mystery Banks Photo: These four siblings were born and reared in Vandalia.