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Columns

  • The Way We Were

    20 Years Ago

    1993 – U.S. Route 51 through Ramsey was closed for about five hours early Sunday morning when the driver of a tractor-trailer lost control of the vehicle on the curve just north of town and wrecked. The accident caused the spill of about 4,200 gallons of crude oil.
    Plans were being finalized for Old Capital Settlers Day in Vandalia. Activities included a chili cook-off, crafts and flea market, and husband- and wife-calling contests.

  • Early settlers blazed the trail in Loudon Township

    In 1908, the editor of The Vandalia Union asked readers to submit their Fayette County memories from an earlier time. Several old-timers responded to the request, among them, Miles R. Beck, who wrote of the early days in Loudon.
    Miles was born in Fayette County in 1846, a son of Joseph and Lydia Bankson Beck. Joseph Beck was born in Washington Township, in Wayne (later Holmes County) Ohio, in 1820, and was a widower with four children when he came to Fayette County with the Ohio migration. He was also a school teacher and taught at the first school in the township.

  • Banks of the Okaw

    This week’s Mystery Banks Photo: This brother and sister were photographed about 75 years ago.

  • Neighborhood groceries once dotted city

    One of my favorite childhood memories is from the years when we lived on East Madison Street in Vandalia. My brother, Don, and I would search the streets and alleyways of our neighborhood for soda bottles to redeem at McCormick’s Grocery.

  • The Way We Were

    15 Years Ago

    1998 – A crew from 20/20, an ABC news magazine, visited with Larry LeFevre, as it was doing a story on violence against divorce attorneys.
    Fayette County Hospital President Dan Gantz was given regional administrative duties by the BJC Health System.
    Bob Thompson was elected chairman of the new Vandalia Tourism Commission.
    Ed Taylor Jr. opened Noise Music and Sound in the 300 block of West Main Street in Vandalia.
    Elizabeth Zeman of Vandalia received the highest award in Girl Scouts – the Gold Award.

  • Banks of the Okaw

    This week’s Mystery Banks Photo: The woman in this picture, shown with her two nieces, will be 90 years old this Sunday.

  • Tombstone found in fill dirt, returned to plot

    I was going about my Saturday morning routine when the telephone rang. Andy Craig was on the other end to tell me that a tombstone had been found in fill dirt brought in to level the lot on which the new Habitat for Humanity house has been built on North Second Street.

  • Banks of the Okaw

    This week’s Mystery Banks Photo: These two cousins were in a wedding that took place 50 years ago.

  • History book to include Morton family

    Recently, I had the pleasure of making the acquaintance of Ralph Morton of St. Peter.

  • The Way We Were

    15 Years Ago

    1998 – With support from the Vandalia Main Street Program, Katherine Brown and Riitta Maunula-Craycroft began making plans for a Farmers’ Market on Saturdays in downtown Vandalia.
    A Vandalia School District study of the district’s space issues was to come up with specifications on a new school building.
    Robin Orr and Andrew Crothers were crowned queen and king at the Brownstown High School prom.
    Fayette County Hospital was planning an open house for its new surgical area.