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Columns

  • Banks of the Okaw-Feb. 10, 2011

    This week’s Mystery Banks Photo: This sailor was 20 years old when this picture was taken 56 years ago. He was born and reared in Bond and Fayette counties. He worked as a barber in Vandalia, but now lives in Northern Illinois.
    Do you know him? If so, call The Leader-Union, 283-3374.

  • The Way We Were-Feb. 3, 2011

    15 Years Ago

    1996 – Kevin Kaegy, president of the Bond County Historical Society, was the guest speaker for the Lincoln’s Birthday program at the Vandalia Statehouse.
    Five members of the Vandalia Community High School wrestling team earned the right to compete in the state wrestling tournament. Advancing were Todd Hale, David Graumenz, Nathan Graumenz, Mike Mabry and Jeremy Durbin.
    Former Vandalia residents Ray and Beatrice Davis were celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary.

  • Banks of the Okaw-Feb. 3, 2011

    In last week’s Mystery Banks Photo were: Rick Wells and Greg Baumann.
    Identifying them were: Lester Swofford, Linda Moreland, Neil Henna and Peggy Hunt.
    This week’s Scrambler: ew nelar morf cripeenexe ahtt emn verne laner romf reepixceen.
    Can you unscramble it? If so, call The Leader-Union, 283-3374, by 5 p.m. next Monday.
    Last week’s Scrambler: Being Rich is having money; being wealthy is having time.

  • Many county men, women in Civil War

    In my past two columns, I have written about local events surrounding the upcoming 150th anniversary observance of the start of the Civil War on Feb. 11 and 12.

  • Banks of the Okaw-Jan. 27, 2011

    This week’s Mystery Banks Photo: These two boys, pictured several years ago in Indian outfits, grew up in Vandalia. The one on the left now works at the Vandalia Correctional Center, while the one on the left now lives in Edwardsville.
    Do you know them? If so, call The Leader-Union, 283-3374.
    In last week’s Mystery Banks Photo were: No picture last week.
    This week’s Scrambler:  ginbe hirc si ginvah nymoe; nebig hytlewa si vignah meit.

  • The Way We Were-Jan. 27, 2011

    15 Years Ago

    1996 – The Vandalia City Council accepted the resignation of Jeanne Gustafson, who had headed up the city’s economic development efforts for the previous 6 1/2 years. Gustafson accepted a similar job in Mt. Vernon.
    Vandalia Correctional Center Warden Mike Baker reported that the construction of a new work camp at VCC was “moving right along.” The work camp was to house 400 minimum-security beds and employ 155 staff members.
    Albert and Rena Torbeck were planning to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary.

  • Lincoln Victory Ball planned for Feb. 11

      On Feb. 11, 1861, president-elect Abraham Lincoln left Springfield for Washington, D.C., for the inauguration. On the same day,  Jefferson Davis left his home in Vicksburg, Miss., for Montgomery, Ala., to accept the presidency of the Confederate states.
    For this reason, Feb. 11 has been chosen as the start of the sesquicentennial celebration of the Civil War. Many states have formed official commissions, and Illinois, for its part, is making an attempt to get into the  Guinness Book of World Records.  

  • Banks of the Okaw-Jan. 20, 2011

    This week’s Scrambler:  fi oyu nurt eth nogamiainti seloo keil a gintnuh ogd, ti liwl tonfe nurter twih eht ribd ni sti tomuh.
    Can you unscramble it? If so, call The Leader-Union, 283-3374, by 5 p.m. next Monday.
    Last week’s Scrambler: The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who can not read them. (Mark Twain)

  • The Way We Were-Jan. 20, 2011

    15 Years Ago

    1996 – At its annual banquet, the Vandalia Chamber of Commerce presented Abe Awards to Paul Zeman and “Beeb” and Billye Staff.
    Raymond and Betty Reiss of St. Peter celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary.

    20 Years Ago

    1991 – Hundreds of people attended a patriotic rally Saturday night in the South Central High School gym in Farina in support of local servicemen in the Middle East.
    If approved, Vandalia was to receive $75,000 in federal funds for work on Coles Street.

  • Area will take part in record attempt

    Do you want to be part of some history making?
    Your chance, my friend, is coming up in less than a month. On Friday, Feb. 11, 2011, at 11 a.m., a momentous occasion will take place in the Old State Capitol in Vandalia, as an attempt will be made to break the Guinness Book of World Records for the “Most People Reading Aloud Simultaneously.”  
    The text chosen is Lincoln’s Farewell Address, delivered 150 years ago at 11 a.m. on Feb. 11, 1861, before Lincoln left Springfield on his inaugural journey as president-elect to Washington, D.C.