The Way We Were

15 Years Ago

1997 – It was the one-year anniversary of the work camp at Vandalia Correctional Center. Inmate hours at the work camp were totaling as many as 30,000 per month.
Brownstown officials were celebrating the startup of a sewer line replacement project. A $350,000 state grant was being used in conjunction with a $150,000 loan.
Mr. and Mrs. Maurice Hoffmire were celebrating their 30th wedding anniversary.
Sophia Martin was celebrating her 100th birthday at Fayette County Hospital & Long Term Care.
Russ Davis was the new manager of Harmon Foods IGA in Vandalia.
Karen Herrington, a teacher at Vandalia Middle School, was named the 1997 Walmart Teacher of the Year.
Walter and Betty Thompson celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary.

20 Years Ago

1992 – Jeanne Gustafson, Vandalia’s director of economic development, reported to the city council that Vandalia’s unemployment was 5.2 percent, 1.4 percent below the state average.
Illinois Gov. Jim Edgar announced that FAYCO Enterprises received a $41,000 grant, through which the sheltered workshop for the handicapped would assemble ballpoint pens for the state.
The Vandalia Vandals were preparing for a first-round playoff game after Coach John Stout’s squad defeated Breese Central, 22-0. Mahomet-Seymour ended the Vandals’ season with a 14-6 win in the first round.
Democrat Rod Irvin defeated Republican incumbent Don Sheafor to become Fayette County’s state’s attorney. Democrat incumbent Gary Blurton beat Republican Mark Miller in the coroner’s race, and Democrat incumbent Marsha Wodtke ran unopposed in the race for circuit clerk.
There continued to be a 7-7 party split on the Fayette County Board after the general election.
Brownstown residents voted 167-124 to reject a tax increase that would provide for police protection.
Vandalia School District residents voted 3,157-1,422 to approve a referendum that would allow the district to issue bonds for additions to the junior high and Okaw Area Vocational Center.
Alpha Mu Sorority took first place in the float competition in the Vandalia Lions Club’s Halloween Parade.

25 Years Ago

1987 – Vandalia’s first “Fifth Saturday” celebration was held at the old train depot. The team of Chuck Ruot, Ardin Brandt and Ray Schutz won first place in the city’s first chili cook-off.
Ramsey’s Tim Meyer advanced to the IHSA State Golf Tournament after shooting a 79 at the regional tournament.
The Brownstown Bombers, coached by Sue Barrow, won their second straight regional title.
Wendy Peyton of Vandalia was the freshman attendant at Greenville College’s homecoming.
Incumbents Bob Dugan, Merrill Thull and Bob Marquardt retained their seats on the Vandalia Board of Education.
Cain’s Drug Store celebrated its 50th anniversary.
The Brockway Plastics plant was among the first of such plants in the country to have a new type of high-production machine.

35 Years Ago

1977 – Area churches collected $684 for the UNICEF drive.
Thieves took $2,500 from a Farina restaurant, causing $500 in damages in the process.
Bob DePaolo Jr., chairman of the Vandalia Jaycees’ haunted house project, reported that 1,000 people went through the haunted house, located in the old Woolsey building on Sixth Street.

45 Years Ago

1967 – A capacity crowd attended a union service at St. James Lutheran Church on the anniversary of the Reformation.
Fourteen 400-watt mercury vapor lights on the U.S. Route 51 interchange with Interstate 70 were turned on for the first time.
Sandra Graves was crowned homecoming queen at St. Elmo High School, and Nancy Ballard was named queen of the Ramsey Carnival.
Trees for a beautification project in Vandalia arrived over the weekend.

55 Years Ago

1957 – Pat Garrison was crowned homecoming queen at St. Elmo High School.
Barbara Paul was the first-place winner in the Vandalia High School homecoming parade.
Dan Burtschi was the only bidder at the sale of the Eakin Hotel on Gallatin Street.
Connie Hays was the homecoming queen at Vandalia Community High School.
Mr. and Mrs. George Fisher celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary.

65 Years Ago

1947 –  Ann Tedrick was crowned queen at the Washington School PTA school carnival.
Jess Crickman, a 78-year-old farmer, was crowned Corn King during Vandalia’s Corn Days.
The Illinois State Convention of Victory Mothers was held at the American Legion Home in Vandalia.
Carter Oil Co. officials toured the Loudon Township oil fields on the 10th anniversary of the pool. The 1,900 wells had produced 134 million barrels of oil.

75 Years Ago

1937 – Bluff City School was destroyed by fire.

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