.....Advertisement.....
.....Advertisement.....

Today's Opinions

  • Motown finally admits the obvious

    Though it didn’t come as a surprise to anyone, the CEO of Motown Technology and Sports Facility Inc. this week made it official. He’s not bringing a $300 million sports and entertainment facility to Vandalia.

    After months of giving our community the silent treatment, Motown’s leading man, Kenneth Bardwell, stated the obvious. It’s over.

    We’ve been jilted – jettisoned, we presume, for a newer, more-attractive model.

  • Union Cemetery tied to Decoration Day

    One of my more recent projects has been to research the history of Union Cemetery in Sharon Township. 

    This beautiful burying ground sits atop a hill with a lovely vista overlooking the prairie land to the west.  In the far distance, the smoke stack from the Coffeen power plant is visible.

    Shortly before his death, the Rev. Glenn L. Sharp, wrote a brief history of the Union congregation, telling that the first church, built of logs, was erected about 1835 by the Protestant Methodist congregation.

  • Land speculator's wife writes of her life

    The first column I wrote for this newspaper was published in January 1997. It was written about the life of Christiana Holmes Tillson of Montgomery County.

    Christiana’s husband, John Tillson, came to Illinois in June 1818, as an agent for Eastern land speculators. Christiana wrote of their early life in Illinois in the book, “A Woman’s Story of Pioneer Illinois.”

  • Remember to thank a veteran

    This  weekend, we have the opportunity to pay tribute to those special men and women who have sacrificed for the rest of us by serving in the military.

    As we observe Memorial Day on Monday, we will be reminded of the ways those courageous individuals have placed our well-being above their own comfort and safety. In some cases, they actually laid down their life as a sacrifice to keep our nation free.

    It's a monumental debt that we owe. But it's one that all too often we forget.

  • Aunt Dorothy transformed broken dolls

    In 1987, Dorothy Ridlen became a member of our family.

    Aunt Dorothy had been widowed for a number of years when she met great-uncle Wilbur Meyer at a Primitive Baptist Association meeting.

    Wilbur was 78 at the time, and also widowed. The two hit it off, and a year later they were married.

    Before her retirement, Aunt Dorothy worked as a licensed practical nurse in Granite City. While living there, she became interested in dolls and doll repair. Many china head dolls became display items once again after Aunt Dorothy rebuilt their bodies and sewed new clothes.

  • Congrats to the class of 2010!

    As area high school seniors prepare to close out their high school days, we offer our congratulations – and we urge them on to even greater accomplishments.

    Graduating from high school is a great thing, a milestone to be celebrated. Along the way, many area students have distinguished themselves in the classroom, as well as by excelling in extracurricular activities and in the athletic arena. Those activities produce learning opportunities that can’t be duplicated in the classroom.

  • Input needed on U.S. 51 bypass route options

    The fourth in a series of public meetings about the possible bypass routes of U.S. Route 51 was held last Wednesday in Vandalia.

     Like the previous hearings hosted by the Illinois Department of Transportation, it was only modestly attended, and few questions were asked. We’d like to see more involvement by local residents.

    The potential impact of the bypass on our community is significant, depending on where the final route goes.

  • Accused murderer hanged in error?

    Nathan Burgess was hanged at half past 1 o’clock on Friday, June 18, 1875.

    The gallows was erected on the front portico of the Effingham County Courthouse for carrying out the sentence because the trial had been moved to Effingham County on a change of venue. 

    Found guilty of the murder of Joseph Robbins, Burgess mounted the 13 steps leading to the gallows platform, accompanied by three clergymen of his choice.