Clark County Press, Neillsville, WI

 May 4, 1994, Page 32

Transcribed by Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon.

Index of "Good Old Days" Articles 



Good Old Days   


By Dee Zimmerman


This weekend, Mother’s Day, many families will come home for a get-together, or those who can’t, will send messages by phone calls or letters/cards, to their mothers.  Those, whose mothers aren’t living, will recall their memories of the days gone by, the days of growing up in the family home.  The things their Mothers did for them.


The honor of the origination of Mother’s Day belongs to Miss Anna Jarvis of Philadelphia.  Her mother died in 1906.  On Sunday, May 9, 1907, she told a friend whom she had invited to remember with her the anniversary of the death of her mother, her desire to dedicate a day to all mothers.  Before the next anniversary came she had interested many individuals and organizations in the observance of the second Sunday in May as Mother’s Day.  As a result of her efforts, Philadelphia observed the day, May 10, 1908.  Miss Jarvis then became the missionary of the idea.  She wrote thousands of letters to influential men in all walks of life.  She interviewed many public men and pleaded for the observance of the day.  Starting in 1912, the governor of Texas observed the day by pardoning a number of prisoners on that day.  State after state adopted its observance.  In May 1913 Pennsylvania made it a state holiday.


On May 10, 1913, a resolution passed the Senate and the House of Representatives to make the second Sunday in May a national holiday, “dedicated to the memory of the best mother in the world, your mother.”  By 1911 the observance of Mother’s Day had spread to Latin America and the Orient.  It was then customary for sons and daughters to wear a pink carnation if their mothers were living and white if their mothers weren’t living.  Through the years, customs change, however, the custom to celebrate Mother’s Day hasn’t – only in how it may be celebrated.  Now, rather than the sons and daughters wearing the carnations, the mothers wear the carnations or corsages made up of various flowers or receive bouquets of fresh cut flowers given to them by their children.


In Neillsville, as in many other communities, most mothers are treated to a Sunday Buffet at one or another of our local restaurants/supper clubs, who go all out in serving a delicious array of foods to compliment the day of celebration.


Father’s Day, the third weekend in June, will also bring families together to honor the dads on their day.


The emphasis on these gatherings is “family” a very important relationship to be encouraged in every generation – a basic so needed in all lives, where each person is treated as someone “special.”


As each mother will vouch as true, “Once you are a mother (or a parent), you are a mother the rest of your life, from the day that child is born… you continue to have a special love and concern for each one… forever wanting them to have a good life, hurting, when they hurt and always including them in your prayers.”


So, Mother’s Day, is not only for mothers… it is also for the fathers, sons, daughters, grandchildren… it is a “family day.”  May many families join to be together on this Mother’s Day, keeping with their family ties.




Lemon Meringue Pie like Mom made

Fresh Lemon Meringue Pie

1 ½ cups sugar

¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons cornstarch

½ teaspoon salt

½ cup cold water

½ cup fresh squeezed lemon juice

3 egg yolks, well beaten

2 tablespoons butter or margarine

1 ½ cups boiling water

Grated peel of ½ Sunkist lemon

1 (9 inch) baked pie crust

And Three-egg Meringue (recipe below)


In a sauce pan, thoroughly combine sugar, cornstarch and salt.  Gradually blend in cold water and lemon juice.  Stir in egg yolks.  Add butter and boiling water.  Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly.  Reduce heat to medium and boil for 1 minute.  Remove from heat and stir in lemon peel and food coloring.  Pour into baked pie crust.  Top with Three-Egg Meringue, sealing well at edges.  Bake at 350°F for 12 to 15 minutes.  Cool for 2 hours before serving.  Makes 6 servings


Three-Egg Meringue

3 egg whites

¼ teaspoon cream of tartar

6 tablespoons sugar


In a bowl, with an electric mixer, beat egg whites with cream of tartar until foamy.  Gradually add sugar and beat until stiff peaks form.



Three sisters and families had a picture taken at one of their gatherings.  Ben and Elizabeth (Kipp) Langreck and family, Joe and Katie (Kipp) Nauertz, and Charlie and Hannah (Kipp) Finnigan and family


The Austin Slocomb family traveled to Neillsville in the Fall of 1905 to have their family picture taken at the studio.  At the time, they lived on Pleasant Ridge just south of Kurth Corners, east side of the road.  The group photo was taken and when prints were made, they mailed on to President Theodore Roosevelt.  To have twelve healthy, living children during that era was considered newsworthy.  To see proof that Clark County, Wisconsin, was that of abundance in what made prosperity and happiness in raising a family.  The children’s names and ages were: Hazel 20, Asa 18, Charley 17, Daisy 14, Lydia 12, Letta 10, Ernie 8, Caddie 7, Elga 5, Austin 3, Gergie 1 1/2, and Orlin 2 ½ months.


A 1922 photo of the Christ Moen family and John Moen family, Neillsville


Front row, left to right: Raymond Moen, Mrs. John (Bertha) Moen, Christ Moen, Mrs. Christ (Ronnag) Moen, and Mrs. Carl (Tillie) Moen.  Middle row (seated, behind Raymond), Ruth Moen, Back row: Herman Moen, John Moen, George Moen, Cornel Moen, Hilda Moen and Carl Moen.  Christ with is wife, Ronnag, and eldest son, John, came from Norway and settled in southern Minnesota.  Later they moved to the Neillsville area and homesteaded a farm off North Grand Avenue.  They cleared the land of trees, breaking the ground into tillable farmland.  That land was later owned and farmed by Henry Schaub.  Moen’s son, Carl, served in the Army during World War I.  When he returned, safely, from Europe, his mother’s wish was to have a family photo.  Photos were taken at the studios, as cameras weren’t as accessible then, as now.  The expression on Ronnag’s face, displays her happiness in having her wish granted the family photo.  Cornel is remembered for his carpentry skills and expertise in building the uniquely designed Silver Dome Ballroom, in 1932-33.  Herman is the sole survivor of the John Moen family.  Carl’s wife Tillie, survives, and at age 98 lives in Moorehead, Minnesota.



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