This Month in History
The following material was compiled by Gerald Neath for the Oregon Area Historical Society from material published in the Oregon Observer.

100 years ago (1916)

The Ladies Aid Society of the Presbyterian Church held their annual election of officers at the home of Mrs. Sheldon Tusler. The officers elected were Mrs. Robert Keenan, president; Mrs. Mary Gray, vice-president; Mrs. Walter Dick, secretary; and Mrs. John Gilbert, treasurer. The president then appointed the following directresses, Mrs. Jas. Alvin, Mrs. W. H. Taylor, Mrs. J. T. Hayes, Mrs. Elsie Sprague, and Mrs. C. N. Shilton.

The First National Bank of Oregon advertised they were providing farm management books, on two weeks loan. Subjects included dairy farming, breeding farm animals, growing crops, rising hogs, etc. The bank also stated in an ad “When this bank was organized we decided to erect our own building which would be owned by the bank and serve for the present and the future. So we put $7,500 into a modern bank building which is a guarantee of our faith in this community and for our permanence here”. The bank’s building was located where Hagstrom’s Insurance was located, now occupied by Recreational Concepts, (The bank closed during the Great Depression of the 1930’s)

A return engagement of David W. Griffith’s movie, “Birth of a Nation” is scheduled to be shown at The Grand Theater in Madison.

Local merchants and farmers held a sale and auction on the Village Square. Auctioneer, L. E. Pennewell, was in charge of soliciting livestock, produce, and farm implements from area farms. Animals to be auctioned Included horses, mules, a pure bred registered Holstein bull calf, a Jersey heifer, and various types of chickens. Produce included 70 shocks of corn and 75 bushel of choice Carman No. 3 seed potatoes. Other items auctioned were a La Crosse gang plow, a truck wagon and good double harnesses. Many of the local merchants were offering bargain prices on much of their merchandise. Merchants participating included Prichard & Cusack Hardware, Sweeney’s Grocery, Cowdrey & Buche Clothing, T. H. Grady Grocery, Hughes & Wischhoff Jewelry, Old Reliable Meat Market, Oregon Drug Co., and E.G. Booth & Son Furniture.

The 6th Annual Town and Community Sociable was organized. It was held at the Woodman’s Hall. Among the topics discussed were the conditions of rural schools and the proposed trunk line road system replacing the present highway system. Organizers of the event were H. A. Stone, Phil O’Brien, and W. L. Ames.

The Story[town] Creamery had just finished filling its ice house with what they described as “the best and clearest ice they have ever put up.” The company had also made improvements in their factory including the installation of a new pasteurizer and new sanitary piping as we’ll as the laying of new concrete floors.

What happened to these bananas? The following is a quote from The Observer: “The ‘non-skid’ banana peel is the latest creation of Wizard Burbank, who announced the production of a banana with a coat like sand paper. . . its outer covering may be dropped upon the sidewalk with the danger to pedestrians attributed to the original member of the species.”

The eighth grade basketball team made their way to McFarland for a game, only to have it called off due a cold hall and dressing room. However, it was noted that the team enjoyed the sleigh ride over and back again.

C.A. Hanan,Village Clerk, noted in his minutes that a motion was made and carried that a special committee, consisting of Bently, Madsen, and Barry make arrangements to have the fire bell moved to the water tower.

A notice in the newspapers stated: “February 21 to 26 inclusive will be pay-up week all over this country, and every citizen is presumed to walk in to his creditors and square up his accounts.”

50 years ago (1966)

Chris Andersen became the first local bowler to roll a perfect 300 game at the Oregon Bowl. He was awarded a $300 cash prize and trophy from the Madison Area Bowling Proprietor’s Association and a diamond ring from the ABC plus a $400 savings bond from the Nat-Nast Shirt Co. In addition to this, he was presented with a $50.00 check by Earl Frye, proprietor of the Oregon Bowl.

Oregon fire fighters, along with units from Belleville, Verona, and Middleton fought a fire at the Paoli Grocery and Tavern. Both structures were destroyed.

The Earl H. Sholts and Bill Hagstrom Insurance Agencies merged. They will continue to service their clients under the name of Hagstrom Insurance. The agency was located at 113 North Main Street, the former site of The First National Bank of Oregon and the present site of Recreational Concepts.

Kenney’s Bowling Team set an Oregon Bowl single game record with a 1,056 game. Members of the team along with their individual scores were Ken Cox (158); Tom Arnold (200); Erv. Olson (263); Larry Beers (243); and Jim Flint (192).

The First Annual Sno-ball Dance was sponsored and organized by the Girls’ Athletic Association. Music was provided by “The Grapes of Wrath”. The Sno-ball court included Ron Kopke (king) and Sue McCarthy (queen); Kathy Hennessey and Steve Kellogg; Rosella Webb and George Mann; Connie Libby and Howie Clapp; and Fran Noyce and Denny Strander.

Ron Erfurth and Ginny O’Brien co-chaired the Annual PTA Fun Night. Over 800 persons attended the “ORE-VEAS” event.

The newly formed Oregon-Brooklyn Jaycees received their charter. Don Martinson was sworn in as president of the local chapter by Jaycee state president Ted Wedemeyer. The event, held at Halverson’s Supper Club, was emceed by local attorney, Lyall Beggs.

Atty. Jay Winters and his wife hosted the Odd-Lotters Investment Club. Those attending were Mr. and Mrs. Norman Champion, Mr. and Mrs. Robert Curless, Mr. and Mrs. Durlin Pawllisch, Mr. and Mrs. Dick Wechter, Jack Setatz and Hubert Schroeder.

The OHS Oregon Lettermen’s Club was officially organized. The officers were George Williams, president; Ron Kopke, vice-president; Rick Severson, secretary; Steve O’Brien, treasurer, along with Tom Olson and Mike Kehl as councilmen and their advisor, Erwin Kissing. Their mission was “to promote better associations between schools, the community and its athletes. . [and] .to promote better athletics, good sportsmanship and a better understanding of it members.”

OHS wrestlers win the championship of the two-day Madison Suburban High School Conference Wrestling Tournament. Those participating included George Mann, Mitch Spilde, Douig Srander, Tim Christensen, John Rowley, Greg Trosper, Rollie Glasgow, Terry Richmond, Ron Kopke, Dennis Strander, Dave Heller, Don Owens, and Ed Lemke. Their coach was Fred Lehrke

1991 (25 years ago)

Susie Utynek, Pat Molepske and Susie Byers of the Oregon elementary support staff, decorated the utility poles in the Village with yellow bows to show their support for our troops involved in the Desert Storm Operation.

The local VFW Post was obtaining the names of area servicemen and women serving in the Persian Gulf. Their project, “Operation Home Town” had a goal of sending gifts and letters to as many as possible that were serving their country in the Middle East conflict Maynard Stoehr was the Post Commander.

The Village Board approved $12,000 for a new band shelter. Jeff Groenier, a member of the Village Board and architect with Architectural Designs, will design the shelter with the advice of local band directors and members of the community.

Tri-County Appliance and TV held their grand opening. Prize winners at the event were Marge Zimmerlee (Frigidaire dish washer); Wayne Van Lannen (Maytag microwave), and Mike Zart (vintage GE radio).

D.J.’s Steakhouse opened for business, offering a Valentine special for 2, consisting of top sirloin, salad bar, soup, potatoes and a bread bar for $15,95. Ladies will receive a free carnation.

OHS head basketball coach, Roger Pribbenow, recorded his 300th career victory with a 72-58 win over DeForest. Pribbenow, whose record stands at 301-238, took over as varsity coach at Oregon in 1973 for then head coach Tom Mueller. Prior to his present position, he had been JV coach for seven years.

The OHS basketball ball team clinched the Badger Conference Title with victories over Fort Atkinson and Monona Grove giving them a conference record of 15-1.

Winners of the Oregon Junior National Geography Bee were Tony Byers (1st place), Shacka Smart (2nd), and Josh Johnson (3rd).

Three OHS wrestlers earned the right to compete in the state wrestling tourney: Miles Weaver, Sean Manix, and Brek Burgweger. Miles Weaver was Badger Conference, Regional and Sectional champion. He finished the season with a 35-1 record, ending his high school career with a record 122 wins and 16 losses.

Proceeds from the food concessions at the Midwest Choral Festival, amounting to $1,839.50, was donated to the Ronald McDonald House of Madison. Those at the presentation were Thomas Mielke, OHS music director; Pam Katz, festival volunteer; Scot Foss of Ward-Brodt Music Mall, (the festival’s sponsor); and Jim Reisdorfer, president of the Oregon Choral Boosters. McDonald restaurant owner, Wayne Harris, had provided at cost the food for the event.

2006 (10 years ago)

This past month, OHS marching band director, Nick Lane, kicked off the season for the summer marching band with the first weekend training camp. Approximately 82 students participated.

The Village of Oregon’s Planning Commission met with developer, Darrell Wild, concerning his proposal for a 60 room hotel/condominium in his Village of Foxboro development. Many residents expressed their opposition at the request to turn the golf course into a residential development.

LaRocca’s Pizza announces that they will be moving their business from Brooklyn to Williamson Street in Madison.

The Oregon School District continues their collective bargaining talks with the Oregon Education Association.

Oregon wrestlers, Brian Zimmerman and John Jones, both took individual gold medals at the Badger Conference Tournament.

OHS swimmer, Ott Olp, wins the Badger Conference crown in the 100-yard butterfly competition.

Anna Rose Tomaro wins the Oregon Optimist Club Essay Contest. The topic was “I’m unique because. . .”. Dr. Dennis Farrar presented her with the first place medallion.

The OHS hockey team earns its first-ever WIAA playoff victory, beating McFarland 2-1 in overtime at the regional semifinal . Instrumental in the victory were seniors David Staley and Logan Swinehart. The team was later to fall in the playoffs to top-seeded Madison Edgewood.

The Wisconsin Youth Symphony Orchestra’s 5th Annual Percussion Extravaganza was held in the Mills Concert Hall at the UW Humanities Building. Oregon members of the WYSO Percussion Ensemble were Tom Bjoraker, Carinne Antoinette and Greg Riss.

At the 4th Annual Oregon High School Basketball Alumni Tournament, the class of 1999/2000 beat the class of 1986, 85-73. Ryan Fiskey scored 26 points and Rob Bossingham 15 points for the winning team. John Stack led the scoring for the class of 1986 with 21 points. The 1999/2000 team included Ryan Fiskey, Doug Fischer, Rob Bossingham, Andy Dellemann, Jesse Breidenbach and Chris Fahey.

Planning for a joint Fitchburg-Oregon business park ended when the Fitchburg City Council rejected a proposal to proceed further with it.

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