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Columns

  • Was Abraham Lincoln really a Scrooge?

    The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum Blog “From out of the Top Hat” has an entry this week about the Lincolns and Christmas, titled “Scrooge Lincoln?” It talks about how Christmas was just like any other day in the Lincoln White House, and the president, like Scrooge, saw no reason for the family and staff to act differently on that day. The blog is at www.alplm.org/blog. It is updated every Monday, and additional topic suggestions are always welcome.
    The text of the blog is presented below.

  • Christmas memories center on families

    The Christmases of my childhood revolved around family.
    We would always visit Grandma Gum, my mother’s mom, on Christmas Day. On Thanksgiving Day, cousins would draw names for a gift exchange to be held at Christmas, and her house would be filled with aunts, uncles and cousins.  
    On Christmas Eve day, we were allowed to open one gift before we left for church.  Generally, it was a package that contained an outfit to wear to the Christmas program that evening. Most times, the outfit was made by mom.

  • The Way We Were-dec. 16, 2010

    15 Years Ago

    1995 – The attorney for Stuart Heaton, a Bluff City man convicted of murder in 1992, was asking the court for the permission to obtain fingerprints for two local men who he believed committed the murder.
    Vandalia’s wrestlers took first place at the Mascoutah Invitational. Mike Mabry, Nathan Graumenz and David Graumenz won their weight classes.
    Fayette County Caring & Sharing distributed Christmas baskets to 523 people in the county.

  • Banks of the Okaw-Dec. 16, 2010

    This week’s Mystery Banks Photo: This young man, pictured as a Christmas gift 24 years ago, went to school in Vandalia. He is now married and lives in Brownstown. He loves to hunt and fish.
    Do you know him? If so, call The Leader-Union, 283-3374.
    In last week’s Mystery Banks Photo were: No picture last week.
    This week’s Scrambler: i veern idd tagnyhin horwt gindo yb tidnecac, ron idd nya fo ym stinovnine moec yb nidtacec; hyte meca yb rowk.

  • Field key in construction of Statehouse

    This past Saturday evening, the Old State Capitol historic site was ablaze with candles and decorated with greenery in celebration of the annual holiday open house.
    It is one of three main annual events in which the stately building is featured, the other two being Abraham Lincoln’s birthday celebration and the Grande Leveé. The annual open house brings history to life.  

  • Banks of the Okaw-Dec. 9, 2010

    This week’s Mystery Banks Photo: No photo this week.
    In last week’s Mystery Banks Photo were: Cheryl Koehler Carpenter and Janet Cothern Eckhardt.
    Identifying them were: Danny and Patty Donaldson, Linda Schulte and the Betty Ruth Club.
    This week’s Scrambler:  eht den fo modswi si ot mader gihh gunhoe ot sole het merda ni teh giesnek fo ti.
    Can you unscramble it? If so, call The Leader-Union, 283-3374, by 5 p.m. next Monday.

  • The Way We Were

    15 Years Ago

    1995 – The Fayette County Board approved a five-year contract with Dr. Joe Ertel of Ramsey for animal control services for the county.
    Michelle Lach of Vandalia was a member of the Lake Land College girls basketball team.
    Local Girl Scouts Elizabeth Zeman, Tiffany Roberts, Jamie Davison and Aaron Williams were selected to represent the Shagbark Girl Scout Council at the Girl Scout World Center in Mexico.

    20 Years Ago

  • Tour of downtown businesses continues

    In my last column, we followed a tour of the south side of Gallatin Street provided by the late Esther Mabry Hausmann Buckley.  
    Written at the request of Charles Mills for The Leader-Union newspaper, Mrs. Buckley was pleasantly surprised that editor Mills found her writings interesting and published them in the pages of the newspaper.
    This week, our tour again starts near the Kaskaskia River, but this time it follows the north side of Gallatin Street westward to Sixth Street.
    •     •     •

  • Account takes trip down Gallatin Street

    In the late 1980s, the late Charles Mills contacted 83-year-old Esther Buckley, saying that he heard that she wrote stories.

    The daughter of Harry Mabry and Ida Fogler, Esther was at the right place to be an observer of Vandalia’s progress. When she was about 7 years old, her father moved the family from a farm to the big city. Esther referred to Vandalia as her “magic town.”

  • Banks of the Okaw-Nov. 25, 2010

    This week’s Mystery Banks Photo: This young man, pictured in 1966, was born in Pana and now lives in Ramsey. He works at a Vandalia factory, has one sister and has never been married.
    Do you know him? If so, call The Leader-Union, 283-3374.
    In last week’s Mystery Banks Photo were: Bill (Beeb) Staff, Jim Staff, Dale Hamby and Charles (Skip) Carroll.