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Today's Opinions

  • LaBille earns Congressional Medal for bravery

    In 1972, a new stone was set at the grave of Joseph S. LaBille in the Catholic Cemetery. The reason? The veterans marker set at his grave in 1911 did not reflect the fact that he had been awarded the Congressional Medal Of Honor, and his name was misspelled as LaVille.

    LaBilles Medal Of Honor was awarded for his actions on May 22, 1863, when the 26-year-old was laying within four feet of Confederate troops at Stockade Redan near Vicksburg, Miss.

  • IHSA, IPA settle suit over photos

    After months of acrimonious banter and legal maneuvering, the Illinois High School Association has agreed to abandon its efforts to control the states newspapers access to IHSA state championships and the use of photographs taken at those events.

    In a court-sanctioned binding settlement announced Tuesday, IHSA and the Illinois Press Association agreed to four key points:

    Newspapers are allowed unrestricted use and sale of images taken at IHSA events.

  • Relationship with paper spans 65 years

    It has been a lengthy relationship.

    We met when I was in my innocent teens. She had long been accorded stature and respect. I found her exciting, I found her challenging and I always found her, even though I strayed from home.

    She is unique in our small town. She cares about all who make up the community, leaving the larger arena to be protected and guided by others. She is here. And you can count on her to be here.

  • Arthur Wilson a blacksmith, inventor

    I pulled my copy of the 1910 History of Fayette County from the shelf and paged through it. As usual, I was looking at the pictures, and one of Arthur H. Wilson, looking straight into the cameras lens, made me pause.

    He looked like an interesting fellow. And when I turned to the biography section of the book, I found that, yes, indeed, Arthur H. Wilson was a very interesting fellow.

  • KC growth shows need for second facility

    In the first semester in its new building in Vandalia, Kaskaskia Colleges enrollment already has surpassed anticipated levels and the facility is fully utilized.

    It has exceeded our expectations, said KC Board Chairman Jim Beasley. Were already to the point that we wish we would have built a bigger building.

    Beasley, along with Kaskaskia College President Dr. James Underwood, addressed participants at a breakfast meeting in Vandalia last Wednesday. Both expressed excitement with the growth at the Vandalia campus.

  • Immigrants came here by many routes

    Some of our ancestors scrimped and saved enough money to pay their passage across the Atlantic to America. Others were dragged kicking and screaming.

    Such is the story of John Christian Forbes of Braunschweig, Germany. His great-grandson, Stan Forbes, shared the tale of how his family came to live in America.

  • State must not cut school funds

    At last weeks monthly meeting of the Vandalia Board of Education, Superintendent Rich Well told the board that hes hearing through the state education hierarchy that there may be a plan afoot to cut state expenses by not fulfilling the last two state aid payments at the end of the current fiscal year.

    Though there is no proof at this point that the state does indeed plan to eliminate those payments (which amount to $300,000 each for Vandalia), the prospects of such reductions have the states school districts very concerned.

    And with good reason.

  • Former teacher, preacher impacted many

    Last week I mentioned in this column that F. M. Bolt, former editor of the Ramsey News-Journal, contributed stories to his hometown newspaper on a regular basis.

    Over the years, I have looked at many back issues of the News-Journal on microfilm, and when I came across a Bolt article, I would print a copy and add it to my file.

    It was this file I was looking through for my column about voting in the early days. The name Peter W. Blair kept popping up in F. M.s articles. I knew I had seen that name before.