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Winnebago Republican (Newspaper) - August 14, 1908, Forest City, Iowa FJRST EVENTS IN WINNEBAGO A FEW HIGH LIGHTS OF PIONEER DAYS IN THIS COM By Ruth VesterborgBrooker Early history as told by one of the winners in the Steele gold medal essay contest in 1909 and published in the Republican of June that Half a century Winnebago coun ty had not been invaded toy the whit but was still the hunting ground of the Winnebago It was beautiful country of rolling prairies dotted here and there with groves of trees and minaiture lakes of pure sparkling During the year eighteen fifty to eighteen the State Legisla ture of Iowa defined the boundaries of WPWJ8BAOQ POIUgT IOWA Winnebago It was named after the Winnebago Indians who then habited this of Before Winnebago was made a separate county it had been a part of Boone and f Webster counties at different In tne year eighteen lender with several compan ions came to thisterritory to hunt and trap which was then very plenti From then the country was traversed by small bands of but no permanent settlement was made until the spring of eighteen Thomas Bearse was the first to bring his family into this county and settle In the spring of eighteen fifty he built a log cabin about three fourths of a mile east of the present site of Forest near Lime the largest and most important stream of flowing through the a tributary the Shell Rock In the course of the next year immi gration increased The county was becomingso well populated that it was thought best to organize so in eighteen fiftyseven an order was Where They Went to School in 1875 e was built in and stood Just south Of tlje present Quite a number of our present citizens attended school can reca11 when thgy climb to the A WINNEBAGO FOREST FIRE OCCURRED IN 1873 AND IS KE 3IEMBEREJD BY THE OLD TIMERS h grade school roof to play tag around the issued for the election of Ro bert Clark was elected superintendent of schools and other prominent men of the day filled the remaining The first fourth of July celebrationin Winnebago county was held at Forest City in tne year eighteen Though it was a cold and disagreeable day the people all gathered at the place to show their patriotism for our great The day was spent in athletac contests and the Charles Wright The Winnebago Press was the firs newspaper published in the I irst appeared on June fourteenth eigh een at Forest Wil KeJley was the first editor but th aper changed hands frequently unti t reached the hands of Halvorson now of Forest who edited it fo some length The Methodist Episcopal society wa the first religious society organized in the The meetings were held at Forest In those days they had no regular minister here but different who traversed large came at irregu lar intervals to Some of them had apparently been rather rough char acters before acyuiring The story goes on one one of these traveling ministers offended some of the highminded To wreak some mischievous boys contrived the idea of loosening the burrs on his Without discover ing what had been the minister started on his way to meet his next When he had gone a short a wheel suddenly rolled dumping him unceremoniously to the His anger thoroughly the Reverend gentleman re turned to find the guilty but the culprits had suddenly disappeared and the villagers had a hearty laugh at his The first rauple to plight their troth in Winnebago county were Sylvester Belcher and Caroline The a Hi JL AIC was officer of the day on this marriage was performed by Robert judge of the Grim Death claimed his first victim from the little colony here when Mrs Louis Nelson passed away in the Spring of the year eighteen The settlers soon realized the need of schools for their To fill this they built a schoolhouse in eigh teen Here in this first Miss Sarah Beadle ruled the country lads and lassies with a rod of Jones was the first resident phy sician in the In connection with his practice as Jones managed the first drug store in the In those early the principal mode of when going for any j Most of the houses were log cabins nPP 117 Q C in iiitt I By Julia FieldBrown Early history as told by one of the winners in the Steele gold medal essay contest in 1909 and published in the Republican of June that It is an old saying that time heals all wounds and if you are a close ob server you may have noticed many old trees east of Bear Creek and in the vicinity of Pilot Mound that bear old scars partly healed by the thirty odd years that have rolled one sy since the fire of Old set ters well remember and tell of those Forest City was a very small village There was a court house and a little brick situated in very nearly the same place where our graded building stands There were no the meeting Sunday School being held an the up stairs of the old Court but the people were enthusiastic and willing to There was no post the mail was kept in the back part of what is now Hewetts grocery There were no railroads or telegraph People had to drive to which was the nearest to take a train or mail Of the buildings standing on Main but four are FIRST F Our Present High School Erected in 1915 the f HBWeSt an laigest the two public sch001 in which the children of the present generation are gaining their Much of the land had not been clear The fields were few and small and enclosed with the old fashioned snake rail Grass was plentiful and the cows went wherever they distance was in prairie I Several times the story has been told Peonies A large variety to choose f rom originated by Eugene Choice Gladioli and Oriental Poppies many for sale by NINA SECOR The Shelter Gardens Secor Avenue Where Sick Folks Get Well Alder endured in the severe On sev eral men were frozen to death while making last efforts to get to a trading post to get food for their uffering In eighteen a post of ice was established at Forest with Robert who laid out the town md gave it its as revious to the settlers were oblig d to go to Mason City and even some imes as far as Cedar Falls for their The new route with Joseph Hew ibt as mail extended Clear Lake to Algona toy way of Forest settlers thought it a great onvenience to a post office near where they come and get fcbeir the is brotlght o his very doer At the time the establishment of thepeople were obliged to go to Cedar distance of one hundred for The nearest grain and pork markets were Dodge and Dubuque wheat selling at forty cents per bushel and dressed pork at two cents per it would cost more to transport the goods to market than they could be sold consequent ly there was not much farming done until the railroads came through in eighteen and so to the distance to market and made the cost of transportation cheap Prior to the coming of the when fanning began on a large the settlers expected to make their liv ing by holding some township or county or by hunting and trapping At the present time there are two rail roads through Forest the farmer can find a ready market for anything he can and com mands the highest market prices for his Time works great wonders as we will see if we contrast the Winnebago of eighteen fifty with the Winnebago of of It was an unusually warm day for being so in the Crowds had gathered in the the men to vote and the women to trade and There was not much party strife in those All good to have been anything else would have been an unpardonable In the crowd were many old soldiers they were not old at that They were men who squared their shoulders and held up their heads when they went to cast their and was with reverence they at the flag on the Liberty for was it any more than natural they should honor and love the flag they had for In the knew what it Soon big column of smoke arose and then they all knew it How it started n one seemed to know for a certaintj The grass grew very tall and rank Bear Creek and the big sloughs in Mt There had been little rain and the grass being dry the fire traveled at a fearful Several peofrle told of narrow escapes some in trying to get to their homes others in going to warn or help their almost surrounded by The fire spread very rapidly from one slough to the other and soon the brush and timber caught The trees were dry and the fire gained headway very Toward evening it had traveled miles and Hay and grain stacks were burned and a few families lost their homes and all they The evening was quiet and the light was so great a man could be seen a great distance You could see the flames darting and trying to capture their the The roar and rush could be heard for First the crackling of the twigs and then the whole tree would stand out against the red a living tree of then a crash and a roar and the tree would The flames went leaping from tree to tree like angry and the dull smoke curled upward in dark The two fires would meet like regiments of one side would come up and meet the other then leap then the enemy would advance with a crackle and a then advance again and sweep over down rank by by the darting flames of the terrible The sturdy old oaks fought very bravely but were In war many are while some escape with wounds and so in the many grim braves were killed while some escaped more or less the worse to Men went fro fight the fireby some attempts were some cases fire swept around Fine oak and walnut groves were burn ed to the leaving only charred stumps and The fire kept on all the next It was finally stopped near Pilot Mound by counter fires and the heroic work of the There were smouldering heaps of waste in the but the fire could gain no more headway and finally died Perhaps there are many who not heard of and do not know about t forest fires of our little Forest Cif but this fire left its marks and if will take time to visit some of places near Bear Creek and Pilot Mound you can see a few brave trees bearing wounds and scars which they received in the battle of Many young trees have taken the place of the older In spring the May violets and buttercups smile and Bear Creek glides along the same half sleepy and dreamy way it did of old and if you could underj stand its language it might tell much that I have left We will have some extra this Jubilee You can succeed faster ii avoid That Beaten Look If YOU look you en before you have self YOU others to have you havent a Dont look Spruce Having your suit pressed here will give you that look of Send a suit C C CLEANERS the other and rush up in a and standing grim andfstem were5 mowed Full Facilities for all types of SERVICE Chiropractic Health Service Forest City National Bank COMPLETE XRAY LABORATORY Many Blocks of Paved Streets In 1915 and 1916 a paving program vas begun in Forest which had jeen voted upon and although t met with considerable and oday the residents of our city would lot be without their fine paved Bonds in the sum of was le amount set forth for this part of le citys and were issued November 1915 and were retried April being paid by special as sessment levied against benefitted pro The paving in Forest north and the full length of Clark street to the which is about a block from the Hancock county line Fourth street from A street to the en trance of the north Sixth street from west C to M and Chapel streeteast and west I street from Fourth to Chapel street from the sta tion to the street from Sixth to Fourth street from Eighth to Secor avenue M from Sixth to Clark The greater part of the streets not are graded and well Our County Officials The officials in charge of county af fairs at this time county auditor clerk of disj trict court treasurer I recorder sheriff Clara superintendent of schools Gerald county en and the supervisors are Henry district one Olaf Christen son district two Logan district i I I A Good Stock of MODEL T GENUINE FORD PARTS GENUINE CHEVROLET PARTS We Carry a Full Line of TUBES AND ACCESSORIES Drive up to our pump and let us serve you with 100 per cent ef ficient lots of pep with a quick MOBILOILS GREASES REPAIRS CHEVROLET We have a modern repair that not only gives thor ough but makes quick delivery on every Youll be pleased at the reasonableness of our Emergency road service truck is raring to Just call 71 and if you are in trouble you wont have to wait Dont that if you are looking for a good USED CAR we can sell you at practically your own If you are inthe market for we invite you to talk with us about National tire with a years road hazard Yours for Service Always FOREST CITY AUTO
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