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Columns

  • Benjamine Halford killed man in self-defense

    Hurricane Township in the northwestern corner of Fayette County was a hotbed of Southern sympathy during the Civil War.
    There was a great deal of unrest throughout the county because a group of outlaws, numbering in the hundreds, roamed throughout a five-county area including Bond, Montgomery and Fayette, terrorizing the people, murdering, thieving and burning bridges.
    The following story was shared with me by Audrey Probst and Jean Vail, and took place in the home of Elias Richmond on Richmond Hill at the eastern end of the village of Fillmore.

  • Banks of the Okaw

    This week’s Mystery Banks Photo: This young man, shown about 60 years ago, grew up in Vandalia.

  • The Way We Were

    25 Years Ago

    1989 – Dr. Hans Rollinger was honored for 30 years as a practicing physician.
    Ramsey’s eighth grade girls volleyball team took third in the state, finishing the season with a 21-1 record.
    Cindy Harrison, Brian Kern and Michelle Osborne were named to Mid-State all-conference basketball teams.

    30 Years Ago

  • St. Paul Lutheran Church celebrates 150th

    In the mid-1850s, the Illinois Central Railroad had been granted 28 square miles in Fayette County for construction of its north-south line from Cairo to Chicago. Once construction was complete, they were to return any land to the state not needed to build the rail line. Instead, they put it up for sale.

  • Banks of the Okaw

    This week’s Mystery Banks Photo: This picture shows a Vandalia couple as they were 60 years ago. They have two children.

  • The Way We Were

    25 Years Ago

    1989 – A late-winter storm dumped freezing rain, sleet and eight inches of snow in Fayette County. Ninety vehicles transporting 274 members of the Missouri National Guard were forced to spend two nights in the Vandalia High School gym because of the road conditions.
    Beth Blankenship and John Cline were named DAR and SAR winners at Mulberry Grove High School.
    Jim Staff announced plans to retire after 38 years as regional superintendent.

    30 Years Ago

  • The Way We Were

    25 Years Ago

    1989 – The Wooden Nickel in downtown Vandalia was gutted by fire.
    Patoka celebrated its first regional tournament championship in 15 years, beating Mulberry Grove 72-62 at St. Elmo.
    Fayette County Girl Scouts sold 15,396 boxes of cookies.
    After 50 years of service, Vandalia Laundry and Dry cleaning announced plans to close its doors.

  • Banks of the Okaw

    This week’s Mystery Banks Photo: These three brothers, who grew up in rural Vandalia, are pictured 53 years ago. The older two work with wood, and the younger one works with kids.

  • Andy Buchanan shared memories of his life

    The following story about Andrew Jackson Buchanan was written by Fred E. Martin and published in The Vandalia Union newspaper on March 13, 1924. At that time, the subject of the article, Mr. Buchanan, was living in Mulberry Grove and surely shared his remembrances with the writer.
    He was born on Jan. 6, 1846, on his father’s homestead in Seminary Township, about 2.5 miles east of Mulberry Grove. It was here that Andy grew to manhood, and after his marriage, raised his family.

  • Banks of the Okaw

    This week’s Mystery Banks Photo: This grandfather is shown with six of his grandsons about 25 years ago.