Looking Back

This building was constructed in Jasper in 1861 south of what today is the St. Joseph Parish Center. Part of it was used as a home for the Sisters of Providence sisters who were teaching in town and part of it housed classrooms for girls. This building was removed in 1927. The brick walk in the foreground was placed there by Father Joseph Kundek and his first parishioners. (Photograph from “Pictures from the Past... Jasper, Indiana,” by Arthur C. Nordhoff)

Ӣ 65 Years Ago
Jan. 10, 1949
Luther Mehne, a Boone Township farmer, and some of his neighbors are in a huddle right now trying to figure out how to rescue about 60 of Mr. Mehne’s hogs from a small island on his farm that has been created by the surrounding backwaters from the White River. State police are attempting to locate some flat-bottom boats capable of transporting the pork on the hoof to high ground. Early this morning the White River was reported to be falling at Shoals but may start rising again because of rain that fell this morning and threatens to give more of the same later in the day.

Halloween pranksters with a destructive bent will face fines and jail sentences if a bill introduced today in the 85th Indiana General Assembly becomes law. Sens. Bruce Lane, R-Bainbridge, and Leo Stemle, D-Jasper, introduced a measure in the Senate today that would provide for sentences up to 60 days and fines ranging from $5 to $500 for Halloween fun-makers who celebrate at the cost of someone else’s property. The bill would outlaw malicious damages.

Jan. 11
State and national officers will be present at the dinner meeting and installation of officers of the Navy Club Dubois County Ship No. 90 tonight at the Rustic Tavern. Commandant of the state organization and outgoing head of the Dubois County ship, Arlo Breidenbaugh, will preside at the meeting and officiate at the installation of the new officers.

Jan. 12
Andrew W. Berger, who supervised the construction of the original St. Joseph School building, has agreed to supervise its rebuilding, it has been announced by Msgr. Leonard Wernsing. The steel for the roof has been ordered from an Evansville firm and is scheduled to arrive in Jasper on Monday. Bricks also have been ordered, and as soon as the materials arrive, work will being on construction of the roof.

At the regular meeting of Jasper Mayor Herbert Thyen and the city council Tuesday evening, the mayor instructed Chief of Police Rex Critchlow to eliminate triple and quadruple parking on the public Square. He pointed out that double parking still will be permitted, so long as a driver remains in the car that is double parked, but in the future those who triple park will get a ticket.

Harold Bettag, one of the few Marine veterans in the nation ever elected to head a Navy Club, was installed Tuesday night as commandant of Navy Club Dubois County Ship No. 90 at a dinner meeting of that organization at the Rustic Tavern.

Jan. 13
A meeting will be held in the city office in Jasper this evening to discuss plans for giving the rural areas of Bainbridge Township fire protection with Jasper’s volunteer firemen and equipment. It is expected that a contract will be drawn up whereby the city guarantees to send its men and equipment into rural areas of Bainbridge Township in return for a certain specified amount of money that the township will pay into the city treasury for the purchase and upkeep of equipment and the pay of the firemen.

Alex Gordeuk, new poultry specialist at Purdue University, will meet with Dubois County poultry raisers in the Huntingburg Public Library building at 1 p.m. Tuesday. Mr. Gordeuk worked with poultry producers in Massachusetts for several years and is well qualified to discuss the problems of the poultry grower. Among the subjects of interest to poultry growers that will be discussed Tuesday are New Castle’s disease and blue comb, both of which are reported to be prevalent in Dubois County.

Jan. 14
At a meeting held in the city office in Jasper Thursday night plans were discussed for giving the rural area of Bainbridge Township fire protection with Jasper’s volunteer fire department and equipment. Attending the meeting were Mayor Herbert Thyen, Fire Chief Roman Fuhs and all but one of the members of the volunteer fire department; Elmer Eckert, Bainbridge Township trustee; and Arthur C. Nordhoff, city attorney. Following the meeting Mayor Thyen instructed the city attorney to draw up a contract that will be submitted to the City of Jasper and the Bainbridge Township trustee and advisory board for acceptance. If the township accepts the service, the township, through a tax levy, will help maintain the fire department and equipment. The farthest distance that would be traveled by the firetruck in reaching the most remote corner of Bainbridge Township is about five miles.

Marjorie Rauscher of R. 1, Huntingburg, has been adjudged winner of the countywide Good Citizenship contest conducted by the Daughters of the American Revolution. She represented Huntingburg High School.

The Little Theatre of Jasper has selected as its first production “George Washington Slept Here,” a comedy in three acts by George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart. The young organization was faced with its first major problem when the disastrous St. Joseph School fire left it with a play but no place to stage it. However, arrangements have been made to produce the play in the Tivoli Theatre on Wednesday and Thursday nights, Feb. 16 and 17.

Jan. 15
At the annual meeting of the stockholders of the Ferdinand Railroad Co. these officers were elected for the coming year: Charles F. Olinger, president; Hubert Beckman, vice president; Werner A. Wollenmann, secretary and treasurer; and Sylvester A. Schreiner and John Knust, directors.

Ӣ 50 Years Ago
Jan. 13, 1964
Dubois Countians were busy digging out today after snowfall over the weekend left more than 6 inches accumulated in the area. All schools in the county system except the Ferdinand grade school were closed today. The city schools in Jasper and Huntingburg, however, were open.

Robert Parker of Jasper, the civil defense director for Dubois County, announced this morning that the whistle at Jasper Desk Co. has been chosen as the warning device to be used to warn residents of the Jasper community of a nuclear attack or other emergency. The whistle, which has a distinctive sound, will be blown for one minute uninterruptedly beginning at 12:30 p.m. Tuesday. The whistle, which formerly signaled the start and end of the work sessions, has not been used for that purpose since a buzzer system was installed through the plant.

John H. Steinkamp of Huntingburg, a former Dubois County sheriff, died Saturday. He was 90 years old.

Jan. 14
Authorities of Stork Memorial Hospital in Huntingburg recently announced that they are interested in blood-typing more groups of citizens who are willing to serve as blood donors. Accordingly, some of the hospital technicians will be present when the regular meeting of the Huntingburg Conservation Club is held Thursday night to determine the blood type of the members present. The hospital plans to build up a blood bank so a constant supply of blood of various types will be available when needed.

Jan. 15
For the second consecutive year, Huntingburg will be host to the district instrumental solo and ensemble contest. It will be held Saturday, Jan. 25, with judging beginning at 8:30 a.m. Participants in the contest will be from Dale, Dubois, Ferdinand academy, Francisco, Holland, Huntingburg Public Schools, Ireland, Jasper, Mount Olympus, Oakland City, Otwell, Petersburg, St. Ferdinand, St. Mary of Huntingburg, St. Meinrad and Tell City.

Six hundred wild rabbits shipped into Dubois County over the past weekend probably have become accustomed by now to their new surroundings. The 50 dozen Kansas cottontails arrived, by design, on the day after the rabbit hunting season closed. The rabbits were purchased by the seven Dubois County conservation clubs at $28 a dozen.

Jan. 16
Stray dogs are once more a problem in the Jasper community, it was reported this morning by Police Chief Bob Parker. On Saturday, a local boy was bitten by a stray dog and this morning two more strays were picked up on the grounds of the Claude A. Gramelspacher Elementary School on West Fifth Street after they were reportedly barking at the pupils on the school grounds and chasing them.

Jan. 17
Two Pike County high schools have been granted a one-year reprieve on a decommission order issued late last year by the Indiana General Education Commission. Spurgeon and Stendal high schools, with 63 and 54 students, respectively, will continue to operate through June 1965, according to Clarence Buechele, Pike County superintendent of schools.

Approximately 50 people attended the first meeting this week of Dubois County Campers. The purpose of the meeting was to form a campers association in this area made up of those interested in tent, trailer or pine tree camping. Art Nordhoff was the only pine tree camper present.

The new Huntingburg committee on industrial development held its first meeting Wednesday night. John Struckman was elected chairman. Other officers are Lee Ray Olinger, vice chairman; Robert Rosenblatt, secretary; and Charles Mundy, treasurer.

Jan. 18
The Jasper Jaycees will give the 15th annual Distinguished Service Award at a 6:30 p.m. banquet at the Jasper American Legion on Monday. Prior recipients are Jack Rumbach, Dale Phares, Robert Gramelspacher, Leo Betz, Glen Gramelspacher, Robert Siebert, Thomas Berger, Herbert Pittman Jr., Leonard Newman, Jack Newton, Bob Steffe, Richard Henderson, Richard Eckerle and, last year, Bill and Bob Hedinger.

Ӣ 25 Years Ago
Jan. 9, 1989
Junior varsity basketball teams from Jasper and Vincennes Lincoln were huddling on the sidelines at the end of the first quarter when the lights went out Saturday night. They never returned to the floor. A tornado touched down near St. Thomas, an unincorporated Knox County village about three to four miles south of Vincennes on Saturday evening, and knocked out power to Lincoln High School and the surrounding area about 6:40 p.m. While team members retreated to the locker rooms, the 500 to 600 people in attendance were moved to interior walls either inside the gym or in other parts of the school. There was no damage, and no injuries, at the school.

Jan. 10
In girls basketball, Southridge maintained its undefeated string Monday night, and its No. 8 ranking, after stopping Princeton, 75-55.

Walleyball leagues will start soon at Racquet Plus Fitness Club in Jasper.

Jan. 11
Some of Urban Tretter’s hats are arranged neatly on shelves in the basement of his Huntingburg home. Most of his collection is hung from the basement’s ceiling, in place of tiles. In just the last five years, he’s accumulated 776 caps, most at no charge. His goal is to have 1,000 hats by the end of 1989.

Jan. 12
Gross receipts for all groups that participated in the 1988 Strassenfest totaled $172,287, according to Rick Stradtner, chairman of the fest. The groups retained $62,136, approximately 36 percent, as profit.

The Older Americans group in Jasper is planning a trip to Dale to eat at Windell’s Café and then visit the Dale Antique Mall.

Jan. 13
Three routes that would pass through Dubois County are in the running among 10 possible routes for a proposed road between Indianapolis and southern Indiana. One Jasper-corridor route, one Tell City-corridor route and one Evansville-corridor route will be announced as the three finalists next week.

Jan. 14
Patoka Partners has proposed turning 1,779 acres of Indiana woodland at the Tillery Hill site on Patoka Reservoir into a $70 million tourist attraction. Opposition has come from a small but vocal group of residents and environmentalists. An animal park is part of the plans: Visitors would ride in cages pulled by a slow-moving, silent tram. Animals would run free in settings designed to resemble Africa, South America and North America.

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