Clark County Press, Neillsville, WI

July 9, 2003, Page 22

Transcribed by Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon.

Index of "Oldies" Articles 



Compiled by Dee Zimmerman



Clark County News

 July 1908


Last month, there was the marriage of Mr. Louis Buddenhagen and Miss Emerence Walters, which occurred at Minneapolis on June 17.  They have commenced housekeeping on the old McTaggart farm in the Town of Pine Valley, northeast of Neillsville.


Mr. Buddenhagen is a son of Mr. and Mrs. Wm. Buddenhagen.  He is one of the most progressive and enterprising young farmers in Clark County.  His bride is one of the best-known young ladies in this county.  She is the daughter of Mrs. C. Walters.  For many years she has been prominently identified with the educational interests of Clark County.  She is a graduate of the Neillsville High School. For two terms, she served as County Superintendent of Schools, which position she filled in a careful and conscientious manner.  Since that time, she has taught the grammar department of the public school.  With their more than average intelligence, these two young people promise to make their married life happy and prosperous.


Friday night, after the dance, Max Lange will serve lunch at the counter or in the dining room, located above his bakery. Any thing in the way of a lunch can be secured.  The bill of fare features sandwiches, such as: hot frankfurters, hamburgers, ham and eggs with plenty of hot coffee.  Also, we will have Milton’s ice cream, served with kisses, lady-fingers or macaroons.


The W.R.C. and G.A.R. will conduct a dedication service for the new Soldiers Monument at the Neillsville Cemetery on July 10th.  The military band and local Neillsville band will be in attendance.  The new monument has been placed there by the continued efforts of the W.R.C. and G.A.R. in memory of our heroic dead during the Civil War.


Due to the rain on the Fourth, not a very large crowd came for a good time at Columbia.  Dinner was served in the Columbia schoolhouse. The Humbird and Sidney baseball teams did not appear, but in the afternoon the Columbia boys played ball anyway.  Fireworks were set up for the evening, but a spark from the first skyrocket set the rest of the fireworks off all at once.  No one was injured but Irene Graham’s dress was badly burned.  The dance, in the evening, was well attended.


The pickle salting station, in Columbia, has opened up for the season.  Mr. Ehlert brought in two bushels of cucumbers on Saturday and Mr. Achenbach came with some on Monday.  Bob Moser is in charge of the station this year.


On Sunday evening, July 18, at 2 p.m., a grove meeting will be held in Bruley’s grove, north of the Neillsville Cemetery.  There will be short addresses given by local ministers.  Charles Hudson and some others will also speak.  Everybody should attend this meeting.  The theme for the meeting will be, “The Moral Awakening of the American People.”  Special arrangements are being made for an overflowing crowd, so everyone is invited to attend.


H. M. Root and E. Bruley were at Hatfield on Sunday.  Three weeks ago, they were there and one of the pleasant events of the day was the bountiful supper with which they were served.  At that time, they advised the landlady that 25 cents was not enough for such a fine meal and it seems as though she took their advice.  On Sunday, they each paid 50 cents for a piece of cold meat and a cup of coffee.  But the reason for this is that Lake Arbutus is now a summer resort and the Mecca of the Sunday excursionists.  Last Sunday, about 400 visitors were there from Winona.


Hart’s launch, named the “Summer Girl,” is ready to carry passengers on Lake Arbutus.  The boat’s landing place is just below the Dells Dam Bridge.  On the bank nearby, there is a good place to hitch and feed the horses while you are boating.


Mrs. Allen, who resides behind the North Side fire station, desires work of any kind.  She supports six children and will work out of her home, or do jobs that can be done in her home.


It has been repeatedly suggested that as a matter of public enterprise, a substantial dam should be built across the O’Neill Creek at the Hewett street Bridge.  The city maintains a brush dam there to protect the city water mains.  If a substantial dam were to be built in its place, the water would back up a considerable distance in the creek.  Boating and bathing would then be possible, providing a most healthful amusement for many, in the summer.


August 1953


The following is a list of the members of Company I 14th Wisconsin Vol. Inf who resided in Clark County at the time of their enlistment:


Gustavus Ayers, Louis Lynch, Charles Bacon, Edward H. Markey, Charles F. Bone, Andrew J. Manley, Chauncey Blakeslee, William Neverman, Wilson S. Covill, John O’Neill, Hy G. Chamberlain, Nelson Osgood, Benjamin Darling, Robert F. Sturdevant, Jas. W. Ferguson, John R. Sturdevant, Benjamin Folsom, Washington Short, Alexander Green, Edward Houghton, Cyrus O. Sturgeon, Joseph Ives, Thomas Vine, John F. King, Ferdinand C. Wage, George R. King, Thomas Whitmore and more.


Charles G. Bacon was wounded at the battle of Shiloh and died as a result of his wounds.  He was a son of Orson Bacon, one of the early settlers in the Town of Pine Valley. The entire farm of the elder Bacon is now comprised within the boundaries of the city of Neillsville.  At this time, the land is quite extensively built up with handsome residences.


The Grand Army Post, at Neillsville, is named in honor of and in memory of young Bacon, Charles Bacon.


The following is a list of the Clark County members of Company I who were killed, died of wounds, or lost their lives by a disease during their line of duty in the South:


Charles G. Bacon, John O’Neill, Henry Ross, Washington Short, Thomas Whitmore, Louis Lynch and Gustavus Ayers


Louis Lynch was a son of James Lynch who was located in Neillsville and lived upon the block where the Congregational Church is now located.


John O’Neill was the son of James O’Neill, the founder of Neillsville.


Washington Short’s wife is still living. She re-married and her name is Mrs. George Haner.  She is well known to all of the older residents of Clark County.


Henry Ross was a brother of Robert Ross, the lumberman, who for years resided at what is now known as Ross’ Eddy, about a mile south of Neillsville.


(The above men are all buried near Shiloh, the area where they fought during the Civil War. D.Z.)


Since the close of the Civil War, many of the veterans have died and at present time only ten veterans remain living.


Those still living are: James Ferguson who resides in the state of Washington and is engaged in the hardware business at Menatchee (Wenatchee).


George R. King, whose home is in Humbird, is a son of George W. King, who was a prominent man in the county’s early days.  The elder King served as a member of the Assembly, Clark County District Attorney, Clark County Sheriff and Clerk of the Board of Supervisors.


Thomas R. Vine, one of the survivors, makes his home in the Town of Warner and his postal address is Greenwood.


Joseph Ives is presently living at the Soldier’s Home in the state of Oregon, near the city of Portland.


John R Sturdevant is living in the city of Neillsville.  He is known more familiarly as Rufe Sturdevant.  Since the war, he has been Clark County Judge for two years.  At present, he is a Clark County Circuit Court Commissioner.


Edward Houghton is now a resident of Tacoma, Wash.  He was at one time Clark County Treasurer for two years.  In the war times, his home was at Houghtonburg, located in the southwestern part of the county, in the Town of Mentor.  The hamlet of Houghton took the name from the family of which Edward was a member.


Robert F. Sturdevant, whose home is at Olympia, Washington; After the Civil War, he served as Clark County Register of Deeds and later as the Clark County District Attorney.


After becoming a resident of Washington, he held in that state, the offices of state’s attorney and also served a term as district judge, a court corresponding to our circuit court in Wisconsin.


Both of the Sturdevants, Robert F. and J. R. are sons of James W. Sturdevant, one of the old county settlers, who was a resident here at the time of the organization of Clark County.


Wilson S. Covill is engaged in the hotel business at Olympia, Wash.  He married Isabella J. O’Neill, in Neillsville, the eldest daughter of James O’Neill, our first settler.  She was the first white child born in Clark County. Covill held the office of Clark County Sheriff during the years of 1869 and 1870.


The 17th township in Clark County, known at the present time as Sherwood, was created by an order of the county board on the 8th day of January 1874.  It consisted of township 23, range 1 east and is the southeastern town in Clark County.  It was originally called the Town of Perkins, taking its name from Hugh Perkins, one of the prominent settlers residing there.  The first town meeting was held at the house of Perkins on the first Tuesday of April 1874.


It was known as the Town of Perkins for a little over two years.  Then, the county board of supervisors changed its name from Perkins to Sherwood Forest, under which name it existed for nearly 20 years.


In 1884, Hugh Perkins became involved in an altercation with Isaac Meddaugh, a resident of the township, at the saw mill belonging to Perkins.  The quarrel resulted in the death of Meddaugh.  Perkins was arrested and charged with murder.  In November 1884, while confined in the Clark County jail, he broke jail and made his escape.


Nearly four years later, in October 1888, he was recaptured at Windsor, Ontario, opposite Detroit, Michigan.  Perkins was tried in June 1889 and was convicted of manslaughter in the first degree.  This verdict was set aside by Judge Newman and Perkins was again tried in December 1889, the jury fining him guilty of manslaughter in the second degree.  On appeal to the Supreme Court, the last conviction was reversed and a new trial was ordered, but nothing further was done with the case.


The name, Sherwood Forest, was suggested by Gov. C. C. Washburn, who had lands and logging interests in the town.  It was an appropriate name, purely sentimental, but like its ancient namesake in Nottinghamshire, England, was suggestive of the traditions of Robin Hood, Little John, Friar Tuck and Maid Marian.  On the 12th of January 1900, the county board, on the application of the chairman of the township, changed its name from Sherwood Forest to Sherwood.


At the session of the state legislature, in 1868, an act was passed that proved of very great service in making the initial start in building good roads and highways in Clark County.  In 1868, there were no good roads in the county, any where.  Attempts had been made from time to time by the few towns to make turnpike roads, here and there, mostly by the residents working out their highway taxes.


The result was that after a good rainfall, the so-called turnpike, or improved road, was worse than the original virgin soil.  James O’Neill, who was a member of the Assembly for Clark and Jackson district in 1868, although at first opposed it, introduced a bill in the legislature of that year entitled “a bill to authorize the supervisors of Clark County to levy a tax, for the purpose, therein named.”  It became a law and is Chapter 483 of the Private and Local laws of that year.


On the 25th of May, 1868, the county board authorized a levy of $7,000 for that year.  Benjamin F. French, James Hewett and Hones Tompkins were appointed commissioners in accordance with the provisions of the act.


At once, the commissioners began the performance of their duties and contracts were let from time to time to do the work.  In the year of 1868 and the two succeeding years, the entire amount authorized, was expended.  Leonard R. Stafford had a number of sections of the road to make, as did Hewett & Woods and others.


A few years later, an act of the same character, but for the expenditure of a much smaller amount, was passed to aid in the construction of the road from Neillsville to Humbird.


The law referred to was passed in 1871.  It was at the session of the legislature when Hon. Geo. W. King was a member of the legislature from Clark County.  King then lived at Humbird and was interested in having a good road between his home and Neillsville.  At that time, he had a saw mill on the highway from Humbird to Neillsville, a little over five miles east of Humbird, known around the area as, “King’s Mills.”


This law of 1871 only authorized the expenditure of $5,000.  The other provisions of the act were of similar character, as to appointing commissioners, public letting, as was contained in the law regarding the main Black River Road.


A large amount of the money appropriated for the Humbird Road was expended in building a “corduroy” road, the character of the land between Hewettville and Humbird necessitating that character of a highway.


The wisdom of the enactment of the act of the legislature of 1868, authorizing the count to improve the main Black River Road, at the expense of the county, has been demonstrated by the existence today of the splendid highway along the Black River, from the bridge at Richard Lynch’s, in the Town of Levis, north through the county to the Town of Hixon and beyond.


(The above articles were taken from the Clark County Centennial edition of 1953, which reviewed some of the county’s early history.  This month, July 2003, marks Clark County’s 150th Anniversary. D. Z.)



This old brush dam was located about one mile north of Greenwood, on the Black River, near the present Greenwood Park.  A dam, at that site, was difficult to keep in place.  The brush dam was built shortly after 1900 and went out in 1914 with the same flood that wiped out Hemlock Dam, two or three miles upstream.  O’Neill Creek had a similar brush dam under the Hewett Street Bridge in 1900-1910.



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