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Today's Opinions

  • 'Tis the season to shop locally

    With the Christmas season in Vandalia successfully kicked off by Vandalia Main Street's recent Olde Tyme Christmas celebration, it's now time to make the arrival of the season official. That will be accomplished when Santa Claus comes to town in this Saturday's Rotary Christmas Parade.

    The 10 a.m. event, sponsored by the Vandalia Rotary Club, begins near the Fayette County Courthouse and proceeds east on Gallatin Street to Fourth Street, where Santa will exit his sleigh and visit with children in the Lincoln Park gazebo.

  • Watson needs to take care of himself for now

    State government just won’t be the same in the future.

    But more important than losing state Sen. Frank Watson’s presence among the state’s leaders at the bargaining table is the future health of our long-time representative in Springfield.

    Watson made his first visit to Springfield last week after suffering a stroke. Yet his recovery is far from over, with many challenging days, weeks and months ahead.

  • Families of St. Paul settlers still in area

    My chemo buddy at the Fayette County Hospital outpatient clinic the past couple of weeks has been Carl Benning of St. Paul, down on the German Prairie in Wilberton Township.

    I have never lived in St. Paul, but part of my heart is there, because my mother’s people, the Sasse and Kruenegel families, settled there about 1865, migrating with the Dodge County, Wis., German Lutherans. These settlers founded the St. Paul Evangelical Lutheran Church.

  • Families of St. Paul settlers still in area

    My chemo buddy at the Fayette County Hospital outpatient clinic the past couple of weeks has been Carl Benning of St. Paul, down on the German Prairie in Wilberton Township.

    I have never lived in St. Paul, but part of my heart is there, because my mother’s people, the Sasse and Kruenegel families, settled there about 1865, migrating with the Dodge County, Wis., German Lutherans. These settlers founded the St. Paul Evangelical Lutheran Church.

  • Statehouse must not be closed

    Several months ago, when Gov. Rod Blagojevich announced his plans to save money by closing several state parks and historic sites, we felt certain that the move was a political ploy to gain leverage for other projects he wanted to advance.

  • John Wakefield an early force in county

    Early this fall I attended a garage sale at Rob and Doris Wehrle’s on U.S. Route 51. While Rob took my husband to the back shed to show him some records he had for sale, I looked everything over pretty well, and settled on a box of back-issue Country Living and Colonial Home magazines.

    Happy with my purchase, we trotted off home and I spent the next several days leafing through the mostly 1999 and 2002 issues.

  • St. Elmo project shows initiative

    It's no secret that our country is going through some difficult economic times. In the midst of that climate, many small, rural communities are doing whatever they can to preserve and attract jobs. In St. Elmo, city officials and residents are joining an Effingham man to take on a project that could greatly enhance their community.

  • Vandalia a stop on the Underground Railroad

    The busiest time of the Underground Railroad (UGRR) was between the years l840 and 1860. Untold thousands of slaves were ushered between “stations” on this most secret of roads.

    The main points of entry into Illinois were Chester, Alton and Quincy. It is believed that five separate lines started at Quincy, which had one of the largest organized cells of the Underground Railroad in the entire state.

    For Fayette County, proof of the Underground Railroad has been a little long in coming.