35 Years Ago (1983)
Winter weather hit hard from Christmas to New Year’s Day. To start, 8 inches of snow fell. Heavy winds caused six to eight foot high drifts and blizzard conditions. Roads were closed and church services were canceled. A couple days later, .76 inches of rain fell on top of the snow. On the next day, a mix and rain and snow continued. Finally, 2 more inches of unannounced snow came down the following day. The motels were full and around 40 people had to stay the night in the school auditorium.
The 1982 Wallace County moisture total was 26.15 inches. That number was about 9 inches higher than the annual average. The highest month was June with 6.1 inches and the lowest month was November with 0.15 inches. The figures were released by Hennick Lumber and Supply, the local U.S. Weather Reporting Station.
During the prior week, 700-800 acres of grassland at the John Cogswell ranch was destroyed by fire. The ranch was located 13 miles north of Wallace. The Sharon Springs night marshal, Ron Weehunt, first noticed the glow. Units from Sharon Springs, Wallace, Goodland, Brewster, and Winona responded. The fire was under control by 6am. As of newspaper publication time, the Sheriff’s Office suspected arson.
The Kansas Department of Transportation announced approved bids for highway construction projects across the state. One bid was the replacement of the Smoky Hill River Bridge located 2.4 miles north of Sharon Springs. The successful bidder was W. F. Anderson Co and Affiliated Company with $568,263.96. The bridge had been a thorn for traffic lately due to one way traffic controlled by electric stop signs.
65 Years Ago (1953)
Icy roads caused four wrecks on that Sunday. A 1952 Cadillac with four occupants skidded on the ice six miles west of Sharon Springs, hit the concrete bridge and fell about thirty feet off an embankment. Two women were injured, one was thrown out of the vehicle, but both were already relased from the hospital by publication day. Shortly after, a De Soto with two occupants skidded and overturned, pinning the driving for some time. He was also released from the hospital in the following days. The other two accidents were less serious, with no other details mentioned.
Wallace County received its share of the Liquor Enforcement Tax revenue for the quarter ending in December. The total amount was $421.12. Totals for the surrounding counties were: Sherman Co. $946.65, Logan Co. $661.29 and Greeley Co. $411.35. The largest amount received was by Sedgwick Co. at $26,201.91. The shares were sent from the State Treasury.
The Holy Ghost Catholic Church completed the pews during the previous week. They had been on order for months and were recently completed by Hallack and Howard Company of Denver, Colorado. They were made of Phillipine mahogany and were bleached to match the rest of the interior. Some 20 men arrived to help assemble. This brought the building to near completion, with only a few minor installations remaining.
The annual first baby contest was underway. The family having the first baby would win an all nylon Pram robe from Sanders’, a free portrait from Giffin’s Studio and a year’s subscription to The Western Times. On January 8, 1953, John and Nettie Lock welcomed the first baby, Loedisa Jo Lock.
110 Years Ago (1908)
James F. Hornung, a farmer who lived 12 miles from Tribune, shot and killed his neighbor, John T. Eckhart. The two men had been feuding over a line fence between them and also about the cattle from each running over the land of the other. Hornung found Eckhart at the residence of another farmer that day and words were said. The two came together and Hornung shot Eckhart with a heavy Winchester. Hornung left the scene and went home and then straight to the Sheriff to turn himself in. The Sheriff had to employ extra deputies as many people came to town with threats of violence towards Hornung. The trial would later be moved to another county for his right to a fair trial. He was convicted of a lesser charge and sentenced to 5 years.
Jesse Beem, a 14 year old boy who lived with his widowed mother six miles from Sharon Springs was hurt by an unknown male. Beem was on his way to town riding horseback when a man came up behind him driving a team to a spring wagon. The man kept whipping his team and yelled that he would run the boy over. After chasing the boy in and out of the road for 1/2 mile, he ran into the horse and boy. Beem was badly brusied and the horse broke a leg, and would later be put down. The Sheriff issued an arrest warrant for this John Doe. The Beem family was in poor circumstances as the loss of a horse was severe.
There was a large prairie fire at the home of Ira Coles, six miles southeast of Sharon Springs. A threshing engine had left a pile of hot cinders and heavy winds came and fanned them into flames. Her neighbor, Charles Barton, sustained the worst damage, losing nearly everything. Other neighbors hosted a benefit and the community generously donated cash.
30 Years Ago (1988) 150 people attended Witzel & Rhea Implement for the showing of the new 1988 Magnum tractor. Pond Creek Supply Station presented a Computer Class that week at the High School. A professional troupe called “The Company” visited many venues... [More]
20 Years Ago (1998) The Military Service Roll of Honor was completed and hung in the main entrance hallway of the Courthouse. The Jerome Dechant VFW Post #6844 and many other people helped over the years to finish this project. The First Annual Wallace County Health Fair... [More]
15 Years Ago (2002) The public was treated to four nights of opera during the prior week with “Amahl and the Night Visitors.” The main performers were Cody and Taylor Pearce, Richard and Steven Baum, Cecil Pearce and Jayne Humphrey Pearce. Many other residents harmonized... [More]
30 Years Ago (1987) Rod Pratt beat 14 other contestants and captured the National Roping Championship in the finals held at Lazy E Arena in Guthrie, Oklahoma. The Strand Theatre was showing “The Principal” starring James Belushi and Louis Gossett Jr. CableVision... [More]
20 Years Ago (1997) Construction on Penny’s Diner began on December 5th. The start date had been delayed due to bad weather. It was scheduled to be open for business on December 20th. Valmont Irrigations honored Western Sprinkler, Inc of Colby, Sharon Springs... [More]
25 Years Ago (1992) The 2nd Pinochle Tournament of November was played at the Senior Center with 20 players. Ruby White was the hostess and top 7 winners were 1st – Ray Clark, 2nd – Lloyd Camp, 3rd – Ferne Smyth, 4th – Nema See,... [More]
Callahan Grund has had an amazing season as a member of the Kansas State University Livestock Judging Team. This fall the team attended the Flint Hills Mid-America Classic in Hutchison, where the team brought home the Reserve Champion... [More]
Kansas is experiencing increased influenza cases in most regions of the state. Influenza surveillance conducted by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment indicates that flu infections are rising in Kansas. Specimens tested have been positive for both Influenza... [More]
Live from Branson, Missouri, join the stars of Forever Young as they bring you on a journey through the best eras of modern music. Featuring a talented troupe of singers and performers, this show is sure to dazzle and impress. Bringing back a nostalgic feel reminiscent of garage... [More]
Children have incredible imaginations and what better way to foster that imagination, than for them to write their own stories. We would like to invite you to join Smoky Hills Public Television as we encourage children in central and western... [More]
Smoky Hills Public Television’s Family Fun Day will return to Hays next month. This free event will be held at Big Creek Crossing February 10 from 10am to 1pm. During the event, children will be able to take a picture with Clifford. Parents are encouraged to bring a camera.... [More]
Thanks to all of the donors -- individuals, civic and other nonprofit groups, businesses, and nonresidents with ties to Wallace County -- the Wallace County Foundation will be able to capture the Dane G. Hansen Foundation $50,000 in matching funds for the endowment.... [More]
Pioneer Communications will provide over $14,000 in local scholarships to high school students in southwest Kansas communities. Six Earl B. Williams and Joseph B. Chilen Memorial Scholarships worth $1,500 each will be awarded to area seniors within Pioneer Communications’... [More]
The Fort Wallace Memorial Association is excited to launch a new venture for 2018! Our organization is starting a new “Fundraising Arm” of the original private non-profit called “The Guardians of the Fort Wallace Museum.” This new annual membership... [More]
The Fort Wallace Memorial Association was honored this past December 16 at the Light Up Wallace County event with a Community Vision Award from the Wallace County Foundation. We really appreciate this recognition of the efforts put in this past year on the new Milford Becker... [More]
Are you ready to ring in the Christmas Season? Come join us in Wallace this Sunday at 5 pm MST for a special Candlelight Christmas service at the 1888 Bethany Lutheran Church! The traditional service with Swedish influence will be joined with the sounds of the men’s ac... [More]
One ongoing project undertaken this fall by the Fort Wallace Memorial Association is planning for a new home for the Rhea Pump Organ Collection. These 55-plus pump and reed organs were donated to the Fort Wallace Museum, but are currently in storage until a permanent home can... [More]
Even though the peak travel season is behind us, we are still having several visitors a day into the Museum! And there are several events planned for this winter! Make plans to join us at the Museum for a very special Christmas observance and party on Sunday, December 10 at... [More]
We here at the Fort Wallace Museum enjoyed a weekend of learning more about antique weaponry, as well as some delicious food and fellowship! Although noted expert Greg Higginbotham was unable to make the drive from Independence, Missouri, due to serious illness, the “show... [More]
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