1992 – 30 years ago
At T minus two days until Thanksgiving, shoppers were out in full force this weekend buying their birds. "I go for the best-looking medium-size turkey I can find," said Christy McNail. "And I'm always looking for the best bargain." McNail and other Farmington shoppers won't have much difficulty finding bargains this holiday season. City grocers have slashed prices and are offering graduated discounts on turkeys. "I talked to our butcher this morning, and we're selling more turkeys this year than last. We're selling a whole lot of them," said David Herbst, assistant manager at Country Mart.
Referring to Farmington as “growing like a week” is, in this case, a derogatory analogy. Maybe the city — that annexes property at a regular rate — is situated in a heap of Hyponex; maybe the shifting winds are super-rich in oxygen, instilling in the citizens exceptional verve and vigor; maybe the water supply is loaded with pizzazz. Whatever the reason, things be a hoppin’. What recession? From January 1991 until September of this year — 21 months — the city surveyed the number of people arriving. There were 645 families. If one assumes there are 3.5 people per family, then Farmington grew by 2,257.5 residents in less than two years.
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Fifteen persons were killed in Missouri traffic crashes over the last Thanksgiving holiday. In 33% of the fatal accidents, one or more drivers were speeding. Drinking by drivers was a contributing circumstance in 40% of the fatal crashes. Inattention was a contributing factor in 53% of the accidents involving a death. To help reduce those figures, the Missouri State Highway Patrol will have additional troopers on duty over the entire Thanksgiving holiday period as part of Operation C.A.R.E. (Combined Accident Reduction Effort).
Senior citizens at the 835 Perrine St. center in Farmington on Nov. 5, enjoyed a day of fellowship with gospel singers from Fredericktown, Missouri. They call themselves the Senior Citizens Choir, accompanied on the piano by Marie Kemp. Another member of the choir, Jessie Matthews, sang a solo, accompanying herself on the piano. John Sitzes of Farmington is a member of the choir. Games were played before and after a delicious potluck dinner, the choir being a guest. Pearl Eaves read a poem she had written entitled “Ten Years with Senior Citizens.” Mr. Sitzes spoke a table prayer.
The St. Francois County office of the East Missouri Action Agency will be getting a chunk of a $120,000 federal grant to provide heating assistance to low-income families this winter. Nancy Williams, executive director of the money — is on the way. The money will be distributed in eight counties. “Usually, St. Francois, Washington and Cape Girardeau counties get the bulk of the money because their larger populations mean there are more low-income people there,” Williams said. She said East Missouri Action Agency doesn’t really assign amounts of money to counties “because it’s a crisis program.” The program — Emergency Utility Crisis Assistance (ECIP) — dispenses funds as a last resort for emergency cases.
1972 – 50 years ago
Sarah Barton Murphy Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution, met Nov. 9, 1972, at the home of Mrs. C.H. Cozean in Farmington. Co-hostesses were Mrs. Charles Elder, Miss Ruth Ashburn and Mrs. Jesse Flanery. The subject of the program was “The Circuit Rider in American History.” It was given in a very interesting manner by Miss Ruth Ashburn and Mrs. Jesse Flanery. The subject of the program was “The Circuit Rider in American History.” It was given in a very interesting manner by Miss Ruth Ashburn from a paper that she and her sister, Rebecca, had compiled.
At the organizational meeting of the Southeast Regional Council for the Aging Board of Directors in Perryville last Wednesday, Nov. 15, it was decided to locate the regional office in Farmington. The office is now located in the St. Francois County Courthouse, first door on the right from the south entrance. Starting Dec. 1, the office will be open Mondays through Fridays, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., except for noon hours and 15-minute rest periods 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. Applications for a secretary are now being taken.
Mr. and Mrs. Walter K. Giessing entertained the employees of The Farmington News and County Advertiser at a dinner Saturday night at Hotel Genevieve. The employees had their husbands and wives as guests. The occasion was a pre-Christmas celebration combined with a dinner honoring their son Charles who is leaving for Lackland Air Force Base n Texas on Tuesday, November 28. Present for the occasion besides Mr. and Mrs. Giessing were: Charles Giessing and Elaine Miller, Mr. and Mrs. Don Giessing, Mr. and Mrs. Clyde Noltkamper, Mr. and Mrs. Marvin Milburn, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Reed, Mr. and Mrs. Albert Karsch, Mr. and Mrs. Lynn Ballard, Kim Plummer, Mike Hopple, and Mrs. Raymond Johnson. Walter K. Giessing is owner and publisher of The Farmington News and County Advertiser.
The Mineral Area College Singers will entertain members of the Farmington Parent Teachers Association with a program of Christmas music at the next PTA meeting, Monday evening, December 11, at the Junior High School auditorium. The meeting will begin at 7:30, and in addition to the holiday music, a nominating committee for 1973 PTA officers will be appointed. An excellent response was received from the Parent Teacher Visitation (open house at each of the schools) that was sponsored last month by the PTA, and it is hoped that such parental concern continues throughout the school year.
1962 – 60 years ago
Farmington’s first Veterans Day Parade, sponsored by the Veterans of Foreign Wars post No. 5896, was held last Monday afternoon, November 12. The Farmington American Legion Post also actively cooperated in plans for the parade and took part in the parade itself. The parade formed at the Swimming Pool Park just off Columbia Street and traveled west on Columbia Street to A Street. There the parade turned right on North A Street for one block and thence east on Liberty Street. The parade disbanded where it formed — at the Swimming Pool Park.
Farmington’s Elks Club and Veterans of Foreign Wars have both joined with Kiwanis and Rotary to further the local Khoury League program for 1963, it was announced early this week. According to Cecil W. Roberts, of the Elks’ Board of Governors, the local club unanimously approved active and financial participation for the coming year as an integral part of their community development and welfare program. John G. “Gib” Cresswell, Post Commander of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, also stated that the Veterans organization was unanimous in voting active participation.
The annual 4-H Club Barnwarmin’ was held at the National Guard Armory in Farmington, November 17th. Approximately 300 4-H club members, parents and friends were present to witness the crowning of the incoming senior and junior kings and queens. Linda Basler was crowned Senior Queen and Richard Comte, Senior King. These 4-H’ers are from the Delassus Club, Junior Queen Mary Graham and Junior King David Swink are members of the Libertyville Club. Mrs. M.L. Thomas announced the winners and other participating 4-H club members.
Ground was broken Friday for a new business building in the Farmington business district to house the Francis Bakery. Mr. and Mrs. Francis Harter, owners, plan to erect a concrete block and brick building facing east on North Washington Street less than a block from the square. The new location is just two doors from their present shop on North Washington. Walter Brockmiller is the contractor.
1952 – 70 years ago
Tentative plans for the improvement of major highways in this area during the next three years were made public last week by Rex M. Whitton, chief engineer of the State Highway Department. The information was contained in a letter written by Mr. Whitton to Joe W. Stewart, editor of the Bonne Terre Register. The letter was in response to an editorial The Register published entitled “Road Improvement Need.”
A hilarious time planned for the nights of Dec. 3 and 4 is promised county residents attending the Kiwanis Club of Farmington’s “Gay Nineties Revue,” according to Kiwanians William Brewer and W.S. Rumburg, co-chairman of the club’s annual variety show. All members of the club have been appointed certain tasks — decorating the stage, planning costumes for the performers, overseeing rehearsals and checking every step minutely to assure perfect entertainment and a lot of fun to the capacity crowds, which always turn out for the two-night show.
A large crowd of men, numbering 126, attended the monthly dinner meeting of the Methodist Men’s organization of Memorial Methodist Church Monday night. The guest speaker was Mr. W.B. Cole, a former missionary in China who told of his experiences in that country when the Communists over-ran it a few years ago. Robert Williams was elected president of the Methodist Men’s group after Berl Miller resigned that office to devote his time to his new duties as chairman of the Official Board of the Church.
The traditional Thanksgiving dinner will again be held at noon Thanksgiving Day at the Presbyterian Home. This annual dinner was provided for many years through a hundred-dollar gift by Mr. and Mrs. P.G. Hunt. Since their death, this tradition has been carried on through a provision in his will, and the money has continued to come from a St. Louis trust firm. This year, the check has already arrived, the turkeys have been bought, and the children are looking forward to Thanksgiving with great anticipation.
1942 – 80 years ago
Postmaster Elmer W. Brown has been requested by the War Department to prepare a list of all rental property in Farmington which could be used for quarters for the families of officers and enlisted men of the United States Army who are to be stationed at the Weingarten Concentration Camp in the near future. Any person having a house or furnished or unfurnished rooms for rent is requested to hand a listing of their quarters to Postmaster Brown. It is expected that many officers and enlisted me will want to move their families to this community just as soon as they are transferred here, and a complete listing of all rental property will greatly aid them in finding living quarters.
A letter from Rev. William T. Magill, pastor of the Pilgrim Presbyterian Church in Trenton, New Jersey, was read to the congregation of the local Presbyterian Church on last Sunday morning, stating that he had accepted the call sent to him last week by the members of that church. Rev. Magill will fill the pulpit vacated by Rev. Roland Sims, who is now in Birmingham, Alabama. The new minister will be here for the morning service on November 22.
The promotion of Major K.D. Willoughby, formerly of Marshall, Missouri, son of Mrs. H.P. Willoughby of Farmington, to the grade of Lieut. Colonel has been announced by Brigadier General John W.N. Schulz, commander of the engineer unit training at Camp Clairborne, Louisiana. Col. Willoughby entered active service in September 1940 as captain in the Corps of Engineers. His initial assignment took him to Washington and the office of undersecretary of war, where he was assigned to the purchase and contract branch of which Gen. Schulz was director. For meritorious and untiring service as a member of Gen. Schulz’s staff, he was promoted to the rank of major.
After a downpour of 5 inches of rain the night before, it looked as if the Knights were going to meet the Ste. Genevieve Dragons on a field of mud and in a drizzling rain. But this was not so. Old Man Weather brought in a gentle wind, and at 3:15, the Knights were ready to start the game on a favorable field before one of the largest crowds gathered in Farmington for a football game in several years. One of our most enthusiastic supporters was Mr. P.G. Hunt, who watched the game to the end despite the fact that he has been confined to his home because of illness for much of the past year.
1932 – 90 years ago
T.B. Chandler, a prominent aged farmer near Farmington, ended his life shortly before noon last Monday morning by shooting himself with a shotgun. Death was almost instantaneous. Mr. Chandler had been despondent over ill health and failing eyesight for some time. Monday morning, while his wife and Donald Cheesebrough, who was living with the Chandlers, were out of the house, he secured the gun and fired a shot into his body. Theodore Buchanan Chandler was born August 20, 1856, at Ste. Genevieve. His parents were Jonathon and Elizabeth Harris Chandler. He was married to Laura A. Hawn on March 25, 1886. He brought his bride to their farm two miles southeast of Farmington, where they spent their entire married life. To this union were born five children.
Work was started Wednesday morning by McDaniel and Harris, local contractors, on the remodeling of the old post office building into an up-to-date office building. The building was recently purchased by L.B. Coghill, Dr. G.L. Wakins, Harry O. Smith and Taylor Smith. The first floor will be divided into three apartments. The corner location will be occupied by the Missouri Ozarks Savings and Loan Association. The location to the west will be occupied by attorneys Harry O. Smith and Taylor Smith, who will have three rooms. Dr. Watkins will occupy six rooms at the rear of the first floor.
The Farmington High School football team completed the 1932 season last Friday with a record that was marred only by a 0-0 tie with Webster Groves in their first start. They closed the most successful season in years with an excellent 31-0 victory over East Prairie High School. Their string of victories over the strongest teams in this section clearly entitles them to the championship of Southeast Missouri. In seven games, the team has rolled up 204 points to only 19 points for their opponents. Throwing out the first game when they failed to cross the goal line, they have averaged 34 points per game to 3 points for their opponents.
The committee in charge of giving the Benefit Musical Review at the Long Memorial Hall for the Presbyterian Orphanage has definitely set Friday, December 9, as the date the affair will be presented. There will be no ticket selling or admission accepted at the door, but instead, during a very brief intermission in the performance, a bevy of young girls under the direction of S.F. Isenman will pass through the audience and receive donations. Should anyone be missed or later feel disposed to give more, it may be handed to Mr. Isenman at the door after the performance.