Looking Back: 1/5

Russ Elliott shoveled the night’s accumulation of snow from his walks on Dewey Street in Jasper 25 years ago. The area received about an inch of new snow overnight. Herald file photo by Tim Myers. Published Jan. 4, 1994.

Compiled by Bob Alles

65 Years Ago
January 4, 1954

Mrs. Margaret Yokem and son, Billy, and daughter, Dixie, look forward to a happy 1954 as the result of the generosity of a lot of neighbors and friends. Things looked pretty grim around the latter part of November when they came home one evening from Washington to find that their home in Portersville had been destroyed by fire, along with the contents. But the very next day their neighbors in the little community started making plans to build another house for the family. As many as 18 men were working without pay at the same time on the dwelling, with the result that two days before the start of the new year the family was able to move in. The Yokems think the people are wonderful. They didn’t have to buy any furnishings for the new residence. Two Jasper stores donated a lot of good used furniture, and a Jasper implement and appliance firm gave the family a used electric  stove. Friends donated beds, chairs and clothing.   

January 5

Huntingburg High School has been assigned its first IHSAA regional basketball tourney. The regional has been switched by the IHSAA from the Vincennes coliseum to the new Huntingburg gym, which Principal E. H. Loehr said today will have a seating capacity of 6,260 for tournament use. Last year, Huntingburg’s capacity was 5,760 and that of the coliseum 5,763. Since then, an additional 500 seats have been added to the big Hunter goal house. 

January 6

Nip Wuchner’s Jasper Wildcats defeated Vincennes at Jasper High’s gym last night to make their Southern Indiana Athletic Conference record 4-1 and break their third-place tie with idle Princeton in the standings. It was their second straight this season over the Alices, whom they beat 63-50, a week ago in the Washington holiday tourney. Jasper’s Donnie Bates was the game’s high point man with 23. Charley Kreilein added 13. Frank Kehl led Vincennnes with 10.   

January 7

One of the Holsteins in the Alvin C. Ruxer herd produced 13,5411⁄2 quarts of milk during 1953 — or enough to supply every man, woman and child in Dubois County with a pint of nature’s most perfect food. The cow which set this amazing record is the prize animal in the Ruxer herd. Her full name is Tulane de Kol Posch, but this is too fancy for her owners and the caretakers, who refer to her simply as “Ma”. At 91⁄2 years, she is the oldest cow in the herd. After the end of 1953, County Agent C. A. Nicholson and Sam Gregory, Purdue University Extension dairyman, went over the Ruxer records for the past year. They were amazed to find that “Ma” had produced around five times as much milk as is the average production for Indiana cows.   

January 8

Lawrence Prusz’s Stendal Purple Aces staged a tremendous rally in the fourth quarter at the Stendal gym last night to outscore the Holland Dutchmen 22-8 and obtain a 52-51 victory over the Dubois Countians. A free toss by Paul Hagemeyer with 13 seconds to go broke a 51-51 tie. Stendal’s Larry Sakel led all scorers with 21 points. Rodger Katter and Bob Weitkamp each got 10. For Holland, Eugene Tormohlen with 12, Billy Siebe with 11 and Glen Fenneman with 10 were the principal point-getters. 

January 9

Huntingburg lost a fourth quarter lead and a 47-46 SIAC ball game last night to the Panthers at Bloomington. Buddy Blemker had 16 to lead the Hunters. Wayne Singer added 14. Bob Crandall paced the Panthers with 16. Meanwhile, Bill Johnson’s Jeffersonville Red Devils were too much for the Jasper Wildcats to handle as they took a 59-46 victory last night in a game played at the JHS gym. Donnie Bates scored 23 to pace the Jasper scoring while Gerry Sermershein added 13. Bobby Potter scored 23 to lead the Red Devil attack.   

50 Years Ago
January 6, 1969

The North Daviess Cougars and the Huntingburg Happy Hunters won the opening games of the Huntingburg Holiday Tourney Saturday with victories over Jasper and Wood Memorial. North Daviess, 9-1 for the season following their victory, took advantage of 16 Jasper errors in the opener to post a 59-56 triumph while Huntingburg outscrapped Wood to win 67-65, on a two-pointer by Sherrel Helmerich with just two seconds showing on the clock. Jasper salvaged consolation honors with a 68-63 victory over Wood. North Daviess went on to win the championship with a 59-49 victory over the Hunters. Sherrel Helmerich was a pleasant surprise for Hunter coach Jack Davis. The senior reserve tossed in 23 points in the two games. 

January 7

David “Jody” Giesler, a 1957 graduate of Jasper High School, has been named head football coach at Everman (Texas) High School. Giesler, who starred in basketball, football and baseball at JHS, played four years of varsity basketball at Texas Wesleyan College. Giesler, who received his master’s degree from North Texas State in 1966, has an overall record of 41-27 in football and 91-31 in basketball. According to Giesler, who is married and the father of twin boys, Everman High School has an enrollment of 850 students. Giesler, 29, was a member of the 1957 Jasper basketball team that advanced to the final game of the Evansville Semi-State. It was Giesler who sank two free throws in the afternoon session of that tourney to defeat Evansville Lincoln in double-overtime. 

January 8

Herbert “Murph” Pfau, 71, who operated the Pfau Poultry House in Jasper, died unexpectedly at 8:45 p.m. Tuesday at his home at 310 East Ninth Street. Mr. Pfau operated the poultry business established by his father, the late Henry Pfau, who was one of Jasper’s most prominent business men at the time of his death on Sept. 14, 1927. In his earlier years “Murph” Pfau was well known in Southern Indiana baseball circles through his work as a pitcher for the Jasper Reds. He also was an ardent bowler.

January 9

The new Indiana governor’s chair will be made in Jasper. A. Wayne Place and Glenn Gramelspacher have announced that Governor-elect Edgar Whitcomb will be presented with a high-back, walnut- based chair, upholstered in blue leather (the state color). The chair, a gift from the directors of the Jasper Seating Company, where it was manufactured, will be presented by Glenn Gramelspacher Monday, immediately following the new governor’s inauguration. With Gramelspacher and Place will be Dubois County Republican Chairman Jerry Seger, Jasper Mayor Jack Newton and State Senator Emil Schmutzler.

January 10 

The new Buehler’s Highlander Center, a self-service laundry facility at Huntingburg, is now open to the public it was announced this morning by Buehler Foodliners, Inc., the firm that built the self-service laundry and will operate it. The new facility is located on 13th Street, immediately in back of the IGA Foodliner. The laundry is housed in a building with 2,200 square feet of floor space. It features 32 Maytag automatic washers, 12 Moisturematic dryers and two commercial-size dryers, the most modern water heating and water softening equipment and coin and currency changing machines. The new self-service laundry will be open 24 hours a day, and an attendant will be on duty most of the time.   

January 11

John Frank and Bob Parker teamed up for 43 points and Dave Luegers and Wayne Bailey combined for 39 rebounds as the Jasper Wildcats breezed past the Central Bears, 81-68, Friday night at the ancient Central gym in Evansville for their seventh victory of the season in 11 outings. Meanwhile, coach Woody Neel’s Holland Dutchmen were the only other area team to win last night as they shocked the South Spencer Rebels, 75-56, at Rockport. Gary Dougan scored 21 points to pace the HHS attack. Larry Kahle tossed in 19 and Phil Meyer and Lynn Kahle accounted for 15 and 12 points respectively to round out the Dutch attack. Last night was the eighth win for the Dutchmen, who have been defeated three times.   

25 Years Ago
January 3, 1993 

All they do is win. The Forest Park Rangers got 24 points and 13 rebounds from Curt Begle, running their record to 8-0 with a shocking 60-57 win over Rockford (Ill.) Lutheran in Saturday’s HI 99 New Year’s Ball. It’s not that the win was a shock. No doubt, the Rangers are as good, if not better, than their No. 17 AP poll ranking. But what was a jolt Saturday is that Forest Park never trailed and led by as many as 18 points against a strong, talent-laden Rockford Lutheran (10-2) team. Lutheran’s 6-8 center, Eric Clark, who has signed to play at Rutgers next year, finished with a game-high 25 points and grabbed 11 boards.    

January 4

The Dubois County Council lived up to its word Monday and voted to rescind the county’s Economic Development Income Tax now that the final payment on the jail has been made. The council voted unanimously in favor of a proposed ordinance ending EDIT effective July 1. However, the council’s vote alone isn’t enough to drop the tax. That requires a majority vote of the county tax board, and the council makes up only 48.83 percent of that board. It will take the vote of at least one of the other tax board members--the five incorporated cities and towns comprise 51.17 percent of the board — to drop the tax. The cities and towns have 30 days to vote for the proposal ending the tax or vote against it and keep EDIT. If they don’t vote at all, it will be recorded as a vote for keeping EDIT. 

January 5

Pictured on the front page of this issue is Clara Byrne, 85, of Jasper. She was the sheriff of Dubois County in the late 1950’s and is the only female sheriff the county has ever had. She cooked the meals and kept the books for her first husband, Louis Kreilein, who was chief of police in Jasper in the 1940s and Dubois County sheriff in the 1950s. One March morning in 1954, a construction worker threw a board from the roof of the old county jail, which was located between Newton and Main Streets where the Knights of Columbus parking lot is now. Louis was in the wrong place at the wrong time. The board hit him, and he died before noon that day. And Clara Kreilein, 46--always a policeman’s wife — suddenly found herself sheriff of Dubois County. “It was decided by the clerk that I could finish his term. He had seven or eight months left,” she says. “Then I put my name on the ticket and ran on my own.” She was elected by 17 votes over her opponent, Emil Staub of Haysville. 

January 6

The Ferdinand town council hired Ted Bieker, Jr. as a full-time police officer at a special meeting Wednesday to replace Jerry Durlauf, who retired at the end of last year. Bieker, a Ferdinand resident, began working as a part-time officer in February, 1989. Durlauf will work part-time through April. The council also re-elected Charles Schuler as council president.

January 7

A mom-and-pop grocery in Haysville that was once squashed by a water tower and barnstormed by Sen. Bobby Kennedy is changing ownership. Edgar Nigg, 67, and his wife, Lovella, 64, have owned and operated Niggs Supermarket just off U.S. 231 for the last 33 years. They began leasing the store to Circle A of Jasper this year. The Haysville supermarket is now the largest of eight in the Circle A chain, which includes food marts in Celestine, Birdseye and Jasper. The store was renowned for its broasted chicken.

January 8

Forest Park improved to 9-0 witha 49-46 win over the Barr-Reeve Vikings in a game played at Montgomery. The Rangers now have the state’s longest regular-season win streak at 22 games. Forest Park’s Curt Begle scored a game-high 24 points. Brad Fleck also scored in double figures as he scored 10 points. Jon-Jon Knepp led Barr-Reeve with 18 points. Larry Wagler finished with 12. “It was a great game in which two teams really flat out laid it on the line,” Ranger coach Denny Doutaz said. “It’s one of those games where one team really doesn’t deserve to lose. Had we lost by a point or two, I’d still be proud of our team.” In another area game, Pike Central defeated Northeast Dubois, at Petersburg, by a score of 77-65. The Jeeps were led in scoring by Derick Stenftenagel who had 16. Brad Weisman was the top gun for the Chargers, as he fired in 19 points.   

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