Looking Back: 1/6January 5, 2018
Compiled by Bob Alles
• 65 Years Ago
Jan. 5, 1953
The interior of St. Joseph’s Church in Jasper is to be renovated during the coming year, it was announced by the pastor, Rev. August B. Fichter. Full details about the work to be done, including the type of treatment to be given the walls and ceilings, will be announced as soon as the plans are completed by the architect, Virgil Miller of Evansville.
Coach Ralph Seger’s Dubois Jeeps became the first county team to pick up its thread of scheduled action in the new year Saturday night, walloping the Plainville Midgets, 71-33 in a game played at the Odon gym. Edgar Gehlhausen hit twelve times from the field, added a free toss for scoring honors with 25 points. Bobby Thacker followed for the Jeeps with 13 markers while Allen of Plainville got eleven for the losers.
Plans have been completed for the activation of a Military Police Company at Jasper. To be known as the 341st Military Police Company, it will be a branch of the regular Army Reserve. An organizational meeting will be held in the Community Room of the Dubois County State Bank on Thursday evening of this week, January 8, beginning at 7:30. Tom Affleck, a salesman for the Jasper Lacquer Company, will be the commanding officer and Robert Campbell, a radio man at the Jasper post of the Indiana State Police, will serve as the executive officer. The local company will aim at a full strength of 37 men.
The Jasper Wildcats drove back from a 13-point first quarter deficit to a 58-56 victory over the Vincennes Alices last night in the Coliseum in a thrilling- though ragged — contest. A surprisingly large crowd braved the winter weather and slippery streets to witness the contest which found Coach Nip Wuchner’s scrappy squad finally overtaking the host Alices with less than three minutes of the game remaining. Donnie Bates, Gary Phillips and Bips Reckelhoff were the only Cats who scored buckets.
Announcement has been made by Very Rev. Charles Pensa, superior general of the Sons of Divine Providence, from his office in Rome, to the effect that the Reverend Phillip Otavi of Boston, Mass., has been appointed superior of the Providence Home at Jasper. This is a home for the aged and serves as a novitiate for delayed vocations. The building was formerly occupied by Jasper College, and later Jasper Academy before the school transferred to Aurora, Ill., and became known as Marmion Military Academy. The new superior succeeds the Rev. Alexander Chwilowicz the founder of the Providence Home in Jasper. Father Phillip Otavi spent twelve years at the Providence Home here before being transferred to Boston, where he was head of the Don Orione rest home for the aged.
Billed in advance as an amusing, unassuming speaker, Bill Veeck was just that last night as he spoke to a group of Jasper baseball fans at the Kiwanis-Lions-Jaycee “Good Fellowship” banquet in the Legion club. Displaying a light, offhand brand of humor which was aimed principally at his own baseball club, Veeck made a big hit with the crowd as he joked his way through a half-hour speech and then answered questions from the floor. He absolved the manager and the players from any blame for the Browns poor season. “It was my job to provide the talent and it was my fault that I wasn’t able to do that last year.”
The rampaging Huntingburg Hunters met overwhelming height for the first time this season last night and promptly chopped it down to size with a rubber-glove zone defense that boosted them to a 53-42 victory over the Bloomington Panthers. A crowd of well over 3,000 fans watched the Hunters crown their 1952-53 Basketball Queen, Miss Charlene Goodwin, and then go on to chalk up their thirteenth consecutive victory without a defeat. Bob Heidorn, who looms more evident every game as the key to the well-oiled Hunter machine, matched an unusual defensive game with an offensive spurt which netted him a share of scoring honors with with Bud Bische with 12 points.
• 50 Years Ago
Jan. 8, 1968
Mrs. Ruth Hart, a psychologist and former teacher at Evansville, is presently engaged in psychological testing of students in Dubois County schools. The schools at which she is now working are Ireland Grade School, the South Side Grade School at Dubois, St. Ferdinand High School and the Ferdinand Grade School. Mrs. Hart has a bachelor’s degree in psychology from St. Louis University and was a social case worker for five years. In addition, she has been employed at the State Hospital and the Rehabilitation Center in Evansville and in the special education department at Evansville College. The services of Mrs. Hart were made possible to the county schools through funds appropriated by Public Law 89-10, Title I, according to the county superintendent of schools, Earl F. Buechler.
A total of 37 freight cars —17 of them loaded and 20 empty — were derailed in a massive pileup early today along the Southern Railway tracks on the outskirts of Duff, five miles northwest of Huntingburg. The engine of the train, which was bound for St. Louis, stopped in front of the Gilbert Whitsitt home in Duff and remained there for about four hours. The derailment occurred around 3 a.m. The Olinger Construction Company of Huntingburg was called on to furnish lowboys and earth-moving equipment to augment cranes and other equipment of the railroad to clear away the jumbled wreckage. Three of the derailed cars were loaded with boxes of men’s work gloves. One of the cars was cut in half, with one side of the car lying on one side of the track, and the other half resting on the opposite side. Boxes of gloves were scattered over the surrounding area, and some spectators were reportedly carrying away boxes of gloves until stopped by railroad officials.
The Division of School House Planning of the State Department of Public Instruction approved the site for the Huntingburg Elementary School at Second and Jackson Streets back in 1954. The site was not as large as the standard at the time, however, they took into consideration the proximity of the city park and the facilities available there. It was suggested at the time that if possible the school board should acquire the vacant lot a half block south of the school between First Street and First Avenue. The School Board has now purchased this approximate 2 1/2 acres from Mrs. Matilda H. Limp. This will permit expansion of playground facilities and possible parking facilities.
Mrs. Marvella Bayh, wife of Indiana Senator Birch E. Bayh, Jr., will be the guest of honor Thursday, Feb. 1, when the Psi Iota Xi Soroity of Jasper entertains a tea for the Beta Sigma Phi and Tri Kappa Sororities. The sisters of Memorial Hospital and Precious Blood, St. Joseph and Holy Family convents have also been invited. Mrs. Bayh is a native of Oklahoma where she attended high school. She met Birch Bayh at a National Farm Bureau’s extemporaneous speech contest where she took top honors. On August 24, 1952, they were married. They lived on a farm just north of West Terre Haute for five years and she continued her education at Indiana State University. Their only child, Birch Evans Bayh III was born in 1955.
Dick Wade, sports director for Radio Station WITZ since March of 1965, has resigned, effective Jan. 31, to accept the position of sports director of WTVW, Channel 7, in Evansville. At Channel 7, Wade replaces Jerry Birge, who resigned the position Dec. 1 to become sports editor of the DAILY HERALD and to operate the Dubois County television station that is presently in the planning stages. Wade, a 30-year-old bachelor, will be responsible for the 6 and 10 o’clock sports programs on Channel 7 and will also televise the University of Evansville and area basketball games. Since coming to Jasper, Wade has hosted the popular Fast Breaks program with “Cabby” O’Neill for the past two and a half seasons. He will assume his new duties at Channel 7 on Feb. 5.
The hot-shooting Evansville Central Bears opened up in the second half and pulled away to a 79-61 victory over the Huntingburg Happy Hunters last night at Huntingburg. The Bears were paced by towering center Chaundice Pullom, who had 29 points. Jim Lauderdale paced the Hunters with 20 points. Howard Renner and Joe Smith hit for 12 points apiece. Meanwhile Alan Dick led the Jasper scoring attack with 16 points as the Wildcats edged the Washington Hatchets by a score of 50-47. Gabe Mehringer turned in another solid reserve performance as he hit 4 of 8 from the field for eight points. Mehringer’s four field goals were high for Jasper.
• 25 Years Ago
Jan. 4, 1993
St. Joseph’s Hospital welcomed its first baby of the new year after 1993 was three days old. Asley Nicole Weidenbenner, daughter of Dennis and Clare Weidenbenner of Ireland, arrived at 6:47 a.m. Sunday. She weighs 7 pounds, 5 ounces and is 20 1/2 inches long, according to her mother. Ashley and her mother were scheduled to go home today. Two sisters, Dawn, 13, and Dana, 11, were waiting at home. Ashley and her family will receive a number of gifts by virtue of being St. Joseph’s first 1993 baby.
It’s a new year and two new members, James Kemper and Eugene Hopf have joined Mary Lou Schnell on the Dubois County Board of Commissioners, however, old business took up much of the first commissioners’ meeting of the year on Monday. The commissioners opened bids on the renovation of the old Dubois County Bank building into a courthouse annex last month but were only able to award two bids amounting to just over a half million dollars because only $507,000 was appropriated for the project in the 1992 budget. The remaining bids, about $220,000, could not be awarded until the county had the money in hand and made the necessary appropriations. The commissioners yesterday declared $700,000 in excess funds raised through the County Option Income Tax (COIT) as surplus. The money collected through COIT was used to pay the bonds for the new jail but more money came in than anticipated when the tax was imposed. The jail will be completely paid for in January 1994. The commissioners appropriated $430,000 for the annex project, $50,000 for a loan to the Dubois County Solid Waste District and $163,000 for the county highway department.
The industrial bypass road between Third and 23rd streets on the west side of Ferdinand will be built by Crider & Crider, a contractor from Bloomington. The town council chose the firm, which was low bidder on the project, at a special meeting Tuesday night. Richard Farmer of Donan Engineering, which designed the project, recommended the council accept the firm’s bid of $675,504.59 for building the road and paving with asphalt. The engineeer’s estimate for paving with asphalt was $1,077.699.90. Bids for a concrete pavement alternative were also accepted but the low bid was almost $100,000 higher than the asphalt alternative.
Elvis is in Stendal. And Jasper. And Huntingburg. And Ferdinand. He goes on sale at noon Friday when the U.S. Postal Service puts history’s most talked-about stamp on sale. The stamp is expected to be the most popular commemorative ever issued. About 300 million have already been printed, twice the normal run. Friday would be Presley’s 58th birthday. Presley was 42 when he died on Aug. 16th, 1977. His last concert was in Market Square Arena in Indianapolis.
At Jasper, what the wrestling Wildcats wanted and needed, they got — a win over Evansville Memorial by a score of 39-23. “I’m very happy with the win,” Jasper coach Rick Stenftenagel said. “Brian Wigand started the ball rolling for us and Matt Truesdale looked really sharp against a good opponent. Geoff Mauck, Carey Schmitt and Clint Schue are really coming on. My young wrestlers still need to stay concentrated and to get in shape.”
The Forest Park Rangers handed the visiting Vikings from Barr-Reeve a 72-56 Blue Chip conference loss Friday night. T. J. Montgomery and Curt Begle had 20 points each to lead the Ranger attack. Brian Partenheimer added 15. Bryant Knepp lead Barr-Reeve with 16 points. Shad Truelove contributed 15 for the Vikings. The two clubs now have identical 8-2 records.
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