25 Years Ago
1989 – Bill Payne and Kendall Ray were named valedictorian and salutatorian, respectively, of the Patoka Class of 1989.
Voters in the LaGrove and Kinmundy-Alma school districts approved the consolidation of their districts by a 3-1 margin.
Ed Hightower, a collegiate referee and school administrator from East Alton, was speaker at the VCHS athletic banquet.
Area prom queens and kings were: Judy Kramer and Kevin Courson, LaGrove; Kimberly Maxey and Bud Carson, St. Elmo; Shad Etchason and Julie Benhoff, Ramsey; Theresa Zimmer and Aaron Miller, Brownstown; and Beth Blankenship and Shane Henson, Mulberry Grove.
30 Years Ago
1984 – A fire of an undetermined origin Friday evening caused damage in the building that housed Jan’s Cinderella Shoppe.
Scott Leininger of WPMB-WKRV and Steve Jerden of The Leader-Union participated in the first round of the elephant races held shortly before the performances by Ford Brothers Circus. In the second race, Nan Tyrolt of WPMB-WKRV outraced Rich Bauer of The Leader-Union. The circus performances were sponsored by the Vandalia Jaycees.
Eight students of Brownstown High School were named Outstanding Seniors. They were Tracy Harre, Kandi Reynolds, Todd Senior, Tammy Haynes, Kim Sefton, Juanita Garrett, Lori Satterthwaite and Lisa Cortelloni.
Plans were finalized for the annual Grande Levée to be held June 15-17 at the Vandalia Statehouse.
Farmers were unable to get into their fields because of the wet weather the area was experiencing.
Larry Graham, head basketball coach at Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville and former head basketball coach at St. Elmo High School, returned to St. Elmo to speak at the sports banquet.
40 Years Ago
1974 – Charles W. Johnston was named animal control chief by the Fayette County Board at the Tuesday night meeting.
Vandalia High School tennis team took first place at the district contest Saturday and was to have advanced to the state contest on May 23-24. On the team were Mike Cearlock, Bruce Blythe, Gary Goodin, Steve Rademacher, Cloyce Martin, Rich Rames and Kevin Straub.
Diane Tarter was chosen queen of the Vandalia Community High School Junior-Senior Prom on Friday evening. Eddie Taylor was selected king. Members of their court were Melissa Tessman, John Hagy, Brad Etcheson, Donna Johnson, Chip Berger and Debbie Lawler.
Fayette County Board rejected, by a vote of 10-2, taking over maintenance of the road serving the residential area at Vandalia Lake.
Paul Evans was promoted to head meat cutter at Vandalia Kroger Store. He had been with the company for the past 20 years.
Brownstown Teachers Association hosted a dinner on Thursday, March 9, honoring Nina Voeste, who was retiring following 47 years of teaching. Also honored were Tom Johnson, who was leaving the teaching profession after 10 years, and Phyllis Oberlink, who was leaving the school system to get married.
Steve Wasser and Anna Sarver were named king and queen of the Brownstown High School Prom on Friday night.
50 Years Ago
1964 – Vandalia Jaycees attended a meeting of the Fayette County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday and asked them to establish a county childcare home. There were 17 children in the county on which the county was at that time paying $60 per child for care.
It was reported that Herbie Smith, son of Mr. and Mrs. Voris Smith, was improving satisfactorily following open-heart surgery on Tuesday at Barnes Hospital, St. Louis.
Cecil Grandfield, Fayette County Service officer, was one of nine officers presented with certificated by Otto Kerner on Tuesday, honoring 20 years of service.
By the way of films and slides, Charles Low took members of the Vandalia Lions Club on a tour of duty in that country.
Mrs. Morris Ray was installed as president of Jefferson PTA on Tuesday evening by Mrs. John Caldwell.
More than 150 attended the mother-daughter banquet on Monday night at First Methodist Church.
On Wednesday, May 8, Fayette County Forty and Eight honored state officers at a dinner in the Hospitality Room of the Farmers & Merchants Bank.
60 Years Ago
1954 – Dean Hartwick was selected valedictorian and Ralph Denning salutatorian of the 1954 Vandalia Community High School senior class.
Bishop Charles Wesley Brashear was to have presided at the 103rd annual session of Southern Illinois Conference of the Methodist Church in Vandalia on May 19-23.
St. Peter Lutheran Church marked its third anniversary with three services on Sunday.
Following Mass on Sunday morning, Catholic Daughters held its annual May breakfast at Hotel Evans.
Vandalia Grade School band won the county meet, setting four new marks.
Mary Holloway, Shreveport, La., was to lecture at the Christian Science Church on the subject “Christian Science and the Torch of Spiritual Understanding,” on Sunday, May 16.
Mrs. Don Jones, incoming Cameo president, attended the 59th annual Illinois Federation meeting in Chicago on May 5-6.
70 Years Ago
1944 – The growers were pessimistic about frost damage to fruit. A report from Springfield said that the fruit crop would be spotty.
Ballot boxes were placed at each of Vandalia’s four drug stores and at Gerkin’s Ice Cream parlor for voting in Fayette County’s Red Cross Pin-up contest. Seventeen young ladies were in the race.
Lt. Comm. George Stanberry was reported to have received citation for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in the Pacific area.
At a free show, the physical education classes at the Vandalia High School, taught by Mrs. William Wells and Vernon Drenchpohl, gave a demonstration of their numerous dances, tumbling, rope climbing and various other callisthenic drills and stunts.
Senior Woman’s Club held its final meeting of the year at a luncheon at the home of Mrs. Don Fahenstock.
St. Elmo FFA boys – Phillip Rhodes, Freddie Mills, Orville Hinton, Ivan Lovett, Frank Hinton, Ralph Sapp, Charles Lovett, Gene Hout, Stanley Stine, Roy Hinton, Troy Swarm, Roy Dunbar, Elvin Mills, Kent Bail, Richard Kennedy, Bobbie Kilser, Glen Eagleston, Robert Werner, Rothell Buzzard and Kenneth Haslett – won honors for scrapbook activity. Ag teacher was George Walker.
Brownstown FFA hosted the annual father-son banquet. School board members in attendance were Bob Barnick, Lynn Luster, Ronald Reed, Ober Allen Smith, Elmer Feezel, William Morton, Ernest Yakel, John Hoffmire and Melvin Jones.