Mecosta County
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March 11, 1864

ACCIDENT - Comfort Gleason, a young man from the State of New York, in the employ of A. L. Clark, Esq., was quite seriusly injured yesterday afternoon, while engaged in working on a roll-way near town, by a log striking him in the side and hip. It is expected he will recover, unless greater internal injuries exist than are as yet apparent.

October 29, 1870

MARRIED - On Sunday October 23, by Rev. U.S. Linebocker, at his residence in the township of Big Rapids, Augustus C. Foster and Miss Mabel Harrison.

MARRIED - Also on Monday, Oct. 24, 1870 by the same and at the same place, Fred D.J. Voss and Miss Anna L. Greenbower, all of this city.

DIED - On Sunday Oct. 28, 1870, at the residence of his father, in the townshipo of Hinton, Nelson Decker, aged 28 years, only son of Jas. N.Decker.

ACCIDENT - John P. Schort, of the town of Mecosta, while out on hunting on Tuesday last, had his thumb on the left hand blown to kingdom come, or some other foreign country, by the accidental discharge of his gun, the bullet so near his face as to make a hole through the rim of his hat. Mr. S. and his two compradees , old acquaintances from Pontiac stood around the carcass of a deer that they had killed, Mr. S. with the butt of his gun resting on the ground, and grasping the muzzle with his left hand, the thumb being diretly over it, when one of the other men seized hold of the deer and rolled it over, and the legs sweeping over ith considerable force , came in contact with the hammer of Mr. Schort's gun-lock, causing it to go off with the result above stated. It was a very narrow escape for Mr. Schort, for the bullet must have passed within one inch of his head. Drs. Whitfield & Phelps amputated the stump and dressed the wound.

BURGLARY - On Monday night last, John Albert's jewelry store was robbed of 24 watches, which carelessly been left hanging on a wire near the front window. A pane of glass was smashed, which enabled the thief to reach in and remove them. They all belonged to customers and had been left for repairs. Nothing else was taken. This was the first time that the watches had ben left exposed, but it proved to be once to many. Mr. A. was absent that evening, and did not get around till Messrs. Brazen and Ringle occupants of the store had closed up and gone home, them carrying the only keys to the door. so he could not take care of them. Seven of the watches are described as follows:

One French gold open case No. 14,583, private mark 207; One English Lever. silver hunter case, No. 30,976. private mark 210; One Detached Lever. German silver hunter case, No. 104,538, private mark 233; One silver hunter case, No. 73,354 and 882, private mark 200; One silver hunter case, English Lever, No. 42727, private mark 237.

Mr. Albert offers to pay $25.00 reward for the return of any one of the watches, and Sheriff Escott offers $100 reward for the arrest and conviction of the thief, or $50 for any information that will lead to his arrest and conviction.

January 28, 1871

DIED - In this city, on the 20th inst., of diptheria, George Trubert, only son of Alvan and Annie Evans, aged three years and ten months.

July 31, 1873

Accidents - Hiram Burleson, a young man employed in Munro's new shingle mill cut his foot with an adze last Monday. Dr. Bigelow "sewed him up."

A man named Brady, had two of the fingers of his right hand smashed while loading rails on the M. & B. R. R. on Friday last, a few miles west of the city. Dr. Wood amputated the stumps, and he is doing as well as could be expected.

28 Jun 1877
J. Mancheter has recently had his bakery and restaurant repainted and cleaned throughout. It has greatly improved the looks of the building as well as to materially benefit it.

12 July 1877
Morley - Quite a little excitement was raised here this afternoon by a man who came and represented to be deaf and dumb. He put up at the Commercial Hotel and when he left took a watch and chain valued at $55, a gold locket worth eighteen dollars and a few other things of less value. He informed the clerk that he had to jump Big Rapids and had made a raise of $200 there and had to leave.

September 27, 1882 - Big Rapids Current Newspaper

CHAVE-WHITAKER - At the residence of M.M. Coleman of this city on Tuesday September 26, 1882, by Rev. E.S. Mechesney, Mr. William Chave of Ionia and Miss Emma M. Whitaker of Edmore, Mich.

SMITH-Schermerhorn - At the residence of the bride, September 20, 1882, by Rev. E.S. Mechesney, Mr. Charles Smith of Morley, and Mrs. Rust F. Schermerhorn of Big Rapids.

FERGUSON-HOUGHTALING - At the residence of the bride's parents, September 24, 1882, by T.C. Hunt, Justice of the Peace, Mr. Joseph L. Ferguson and Miss Mary Houghtaling, all of Big Rapids.

C.B. Lovejoy and J.Herrik had a grocery store in the building. H. Wilensky bought thrm out. In 1879 the building was occupied as a hotel by some Frenchmen who called their tavern the "Canada House."
3 May 1887
The old Fifth ward school building which John Fenning purchased and moved to a lot at the corner of East Maple St. and Second Ave., is being enlarged and made suitable for a store-building.

Feb. 25, 1885
Circuit Court adjourned sine die yesterday

Mrs. William Batson went to Ionia today to visit relatives.

Services in St. Andrews church tomorrow at 4 o'clock p.m.

Judge Fuller took the train for Lansing this morning on a flying visit.

E. P. Shankwiler road to Grand Rapids this forenoon on a G.R. & I. train.

Aylsworth announces an auction of his stock of clothing in to-day's Pioneer.

St. Andrew's Aid Society will meet tomorrow afternoon with Mrs. N.H. Beebe.

J.R. Campbell, the boot and shoe man, is not enjoying the best of health just now.

Attention is called to Miss Amy Markham's announcement in special notice column.

Western Hotel is what the new sign reads across the front of the old "Central" pn Michigan Avenue.

Sheriff Frederick journeyed to Howard City this morning to attend to business of an official nature.

Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Hood, of Jackson, who have been visiting friends in this city, returned home this morning.

A little daughter put in an appearance at the residence of Mr. and Mrs. Washington Miller, of the third ward, last Monday evening.

The casket enclosing the body of the late Miss Young is a magnificent one.

October 14, 1885

J.C. Thurston of Mecosta township was in this city last Monday and made an agreeable call to this office.

C. Harding, of the firm of Harding, Clark & Co.. left last Monday for a few days' hunt at or near Roscommon.

E.H. Kendrick, formerly a prominent druggist and republican of Millbrook, now of Hillsdale, was in the city last Saturday.

Dr. W.S. Whitney, formerly of this city, now of Avon, New York, has been calling on his old friends here for a few days past.

Prof. Baker, the new superintendent of schools, has moved into the house owned by L.G. Palmer, next south of Mr. Palmer's residence.

A.S. Hobart returned last Saturday evening from his sojourn in the East. He reports having purchased a very fine stock of new goods.

Thos. W. Fish, general superintendent, and W.A. Carpenter, general passenger agent of the D.L. & N.R.R., were in the city last Thursday evening.

C.J. Wood, formerly manager of the Gardner & Spry Lumber Co., in this city, but now located at Chicago, was calling on Big Rapids friends last week.

Wm. H. Smith now occupies W.D. Moody's handsome residence on Maple street, Mr. Smith's family having moved in this city from Detroit last week.

C.B. Fuqua, the gentlemany prescription clerk at the City Drug Store, went to Detroit last Monday to attend a meeting of the State Pharmacuetical Association.

Mrs. S. T. Leggate left yesterday morning for Ft. Wayne, Ind., having been called to the bedside of her father, Mr. Henry Chamberlin, who was stricken with paralysis a few days since.

Grant Putnam, the gentlemanly clerk at Reeder's, reached his majority last Monday, which event was pleasantly marked by the receipt of a $200 draft from his father.

Mr. H. Walker of Ravenna, Mich., was in the city last Wednesday and Thursday, visiting his nephew, W.H. Walker of the Palace furniture store. Although 83 years of age he is traveling alone, and will visit relatives in the northern part of the State before returning home.

Ed E. Smith, for two years past the pencil pusher of the Howard City Record, has sold that paper to J.B. Loweryof Charlotte. Smith was on the local staff of the Big Rapids Pioneer about four years since, and afterwards ran a grocery store on the north side, winding up to the to the music of 20 cents on the dollar.

Daniel Horton, lade head clerk and bookkeeper for M.P. Reynolds & Sons of Remus, has accepted the position of bookkeeper for J.P. Clark of this city, and commenced work last Monday. Mr. Horton is an efficient and accurate accountant, as well as a genial gentleman, and we are pleased at having him locate here.

Mr. and Mrs. J.M. Crocker left last Monday for a visit with friends in Missouri. They will be gone five or six weeks. The trip has been undertaken to give Mr. Crocker an opportunity to much needed rest. The close and constant attention which he has given to the building operations of Crocker & Hudnett during the prersent season have well-nigh worn hium out, and a few weeks' recreation seemed imperative.

The grist and feed department of Darrah Bros. City Mills will be ready for operation in about twenty days hence.

G.W. Crawford's extensive woodworking factory keeps a large force of men employed. Everything from as new moon to the heaviest builder's material is made here.

C.G. Hudnutt's foundary has been in operation both and night a portion of the time lately. One of their recent heavy jobs was the overhauling of the driving wheels of Sweet's locomotives.

Darrah Bros. new flouring mills have been running for more than two months, and theiur orders have kept well up to their capacity to supply. They now have less than a hundred barrels on hand, which is certainly a good showing for a nwew institution.

A pocket knife, picked up in this city by our new county commissioner of schools, has been keft at this office.

The ladies aid society of the Presbyterian church will meet at the home of Mrs. Vandenburg tomorrow afternoon at 2:30.

Mrs. P.J. Gingrich has gone toi Kalamazoo expecting to stop awhile at Battle Creek after completing her visit at the celery city.

An announcement in another column says that tickets for the alumni banquet must be procured at Hobart's before Friday evening.

Miss Grace Darrah returned home yesterday from Lakeview, where she has just finished teaching. She expects to return to Lakeview next year.

Dr. Tilney lectures again tonight in front of the Northern commencing at 8 o'clock. A big crowd turned out last night.

Hi Henry's Military band entertained our people today noon in excellent shape, and good judges pronounce the band the best that has been in Big Rapids for many a day.

The Young Woman's Foreign Missionary Socity of the M.E. Church will meet tomorrow evening at the home of Mrs. Mae Murray. The report of the Muskegon Convention will be given by Mrs. Cox. Ice cream and cake will be served.

According to the advertisement which can be found in another place in this paper, the coupon sale at Morris & Crane's on Friday of this week is to be on ladies house dresses, and by taking advantage of the sale, ladies can save from 25 to 50 cents. See what is said about waist pins, fancy belt buckles, hat pins, bicycle gloves, wash dress goods fancy plaid hose for women and children, ladies' shirt waists and silk capes. And the gentlemen should see how cheaply they can buy a suit of clothes.

Mrs. C.J. Hart left for her home in Prarieville, Barry county this afternoon after a six weeks visit with her sons, /george and Jasper.

Prof. Stone continues about the same - is not materially better. His daughter Mabel came home from Belding this morning for a few days visit.

A New Testament - probably belonging to Miss Alzora Schryer - has been left at this office, having been oicked up onMarion avenue by Master Bert Carpenter.

Miss Luella Skelton who has been teaching at Wausau, Wis., arrived in Big Rapids last week on her home home to Coldwater, and will probably remain here until next Saturday, the guest of Mr. & Mrs. Geo. H. Burns.

William Cassidy, residing about five mailes west of town in Newaygo county, died last night, after an illness of two or three days, aged 60 years. The funeral will take place from the Catholic church in this city tomorrow morning at 9:30.

Mrs. Charlie Hangstaffer, whose health has been poor for some time, was driven to the depot this morning to take the early train for Kalamazoo, where her people reside and where she expected to remain until improved in health, but was taken woirse and did not go.

January 23, 1886
Somebody's Boy.
About 5 o'clock last evening, while fishing in the river at a point about three quarters of a mile below Maple street bridge, Charles E. Stevens, a resident of the fourth ward, discovered the body of a boy floating in the river a few rods distant, but was unable to secure the body, although a vigorous attempt was made to do so. A distance of about two miles was traveled by Mr. Stevens through the briars, logs and bushes, when he was obliged to abandon the search on account of the darkness and the extreme difficulty encountered in his efforts to keep near the shore, owing to the innumerable obstructions. About twenty feet was as near as he was able to approach the body, which he describes as being that of a boy about twelve years of age, with black hair, and wearing a light colored coat, dark pants and vest and a pair of shoes. As no boy appears to be missing in this section, the question naturally arises, who is it? But no one appears to be able to shed any light on the matter. This forenoon Marshal Hunt, in company with Geo. Jones and Ed. Merritt, started down the river for the purpose of finding the body, but as it has undoubtedly floated several miles from where first seen, it is not probable that it will be secured very soon if at all. It has been suggested that the body may be that of the boy Rallyhan, who was drowned at the upper dam in this city about a year ago; but it is not probable that the body of the Rallyhan boy is now in shape to be identified; and we have been told that a portion of the Rallyhan body was found by a log-runner several months ago, although this information did not reach us until today.

15 May 1887 - James B. Lee is the name of the man who succeeds Clark & Locy in management of the Brackett House. Mr. Lee is from Muskegon, where he was engaged in real estate business for some time. The press of that city speaks of him in most complimentary terms.

6 January 1888 - J.H. Ryan, who was operating the Russell House at the time of the fire several weeks ago, would like to have his friends know that he is again in shape to provide for all who may desire hotel accomodations. The Russell house has not only been thoroughly reconstructed, but has been generally overhauled, refitted, etc. The house was reopened on Christmas Eve.

12 January 1888 - J.B. Lee, who came to Big Rapids from Muskegon about eight months ago and took possession of the Brackett House, retires from the management of this hotel tonight. George Brackett, the owner and former proprietor of the house, resumes business at the old stand. Mr. Lee has rented the Toan dwelling on Locust Street, but his business for the most part, will now be outside the city. The hotel has been operated in good shape.

14 January 1888 - Col. Allen, late of the Allen House, has about made up his mind to engage in the hotel business at Lowell, Michigan

1 February 1888 - This date will be remembered as the day on which three runaways occurred on North Michigan Ave. One team running from Darrah's Mill fell over themselves to a stop in front of the Telfer shoe store; the next did the most lively work in front of the Russell House, spilling out a lady, who was then nearly run over by another vehicle; and the last runaway resulting quite seriously to Abe Hampster and Harry Clark who were thrown from the cutter near Grand-Girard's drug store.

Saturday, January 4, 1890



Big Rapids, January 3 - Thursday forenoon Sheriff Merritt released from jail three men. One of them, aged perhaps 28 years, had served a sentence of three months in jail for larceny. His name was John Bailey, and all that is known of him is that he told a fellow prisoner he used to live in Philadelphia. He had been out of jail but a few hours when a couple of burglaries were committed - boarding houses entered and nearly $100 worth of goods taken. Suspicion pointed to the released prisoner, and soon it was found that Bailey, wearing a $50 overcoat, had left town. The telegraph was freely used and chase given. Bailey had gotten away on the afternoon train, had stopped off at Borland, a timber settlement sixteen miles from Big Rapids. From here he walked to Morley, and as the night train south pulled out climbed ontoi the car platform. On the train were Sheriff Merritt and Constable John Shaw. They got a tip from Conductor Lott, and, waiting till the train was well under way, went out and grabbed the man, who sure enough was Bailey. A struggle followed, and will a bound Bailey left the train, rolling down the embankment and striking a fence with great force. When picked up a few moments later life was extinct. His body was brought to Big Rapids in the next train, a jury impaneled this forenoon and a verdict rendered that he came to his death by jumping from a moving train while escaping from officers, and exonerating the officers. The sudden death of the man, who was without doubt a desperado, naturally caused a big sensation in town. By noon it was reported that a bullet hole had been found in the man's head and that there was evidence that the man had been shot. This created a bigger sensation and at this writing steps are taking to impanel a new jury. Your correspondent saw for a moment the Sheriff and from him learned no heard a pistol shot on the train during the encounter, but supposed it came from the escaping prisoner. Your correspondent has also seen Constable John Shaw and from him got an admission that he pulled his gun on Bailey. but was too near to maim him.

30 Dec 1890
WE may not have any sleighing this winter but the prospects are favorable for a good ice crop.  Ice is now being harvcested by shaw and Webster, the local ice men, who say the article is 12 inches thick.

Sheriff Breakey, accompanied by Judge Brown and H. F. Burtch visited Mecosta this forenoon.

July 18,1892
The Exchange Hotel is having a good run, and the new proprietors are pleasing their patrons.

July 29, 1892
Sheriff Breakey got out of town today as far as Mecosta.

May 28, 1892

An Alligator!!!

The alligator which was seen in the river a day or two ago by a man who claimed to be sober, turns out to be a muskellunge. The fish has been seen the past two days, and Charlie Sowers says he viewed the fellow this morning for a period of about ten minutes, during which time he had opportunity to take a good inventory of him. He describes him as corresponding exactly to what is known as a muskellunge or American pike, and says he must be at least four feet and a half in length, with fins on him as big as his hand.

Aug 21, 1892
The party that Sheriff Breakey expected to arrest in Hinton Township yesterday was not findable when everything was in readiness to capture him.

September 18, 1892

Here is a chance for some one to earn five dollars. Dr. Eldredge authorized the Pioneer to say that he will give five dollars for information that will enable him to know who the boys are who stole his melons last night.

Ed Hooper's premises were raided last night by thieves who relieved his trees of about three bushels of plums.

October 11, 1892

The Special Premiums

Names of People who Captured the Specials at our Late Fair.

Secretary Tucker furnishes the following information relative to the successful competitors for the speial premiums at our late fair, together with the names of the people offering the premiums and a list of articles constituting the premiums:

Darrah Brothers - Best loaf of white bread, Mrs. Thomas HUghes first, $2.50; Mrs. Hrbert Ladner, second, $1.25; best loaf salt-rising bread, Mrs. Herbert Ladner, $1.25.

C B Lovejoy - Best bushel of apples, M T Merrill, $1 in trade.

C D Carpenter - Best placed bed quilt by girl fifteen years old, Daughter of Arnold Ely, one silk umbrella.

F N Lindsley - Three large Hubbard squashes, C F Demond, one pound fifty cent tea; three largest cabbage heads, C F Demond, two pounds twenty-five cent coffee.

A Markson & son - Best bushel potatoes and best bushel of wheat, Arnold Ely, $5 hat.

A S Hobart - Best Jersey cow, Dr. Griswold, stand lamp.

F W Joslin - Best Durham calf, Arnold Ely, $3 hat.

J H Megargle - Best two gallons crock butter, Mrs. Herbert Ladner, five pounds fifty-cent tea.

A V Young - Best Northern Spy apples raised in Mecosta county, Arnold Ely, one pair women's kid shoes.

John Hanson - Best draft colt, six months old, A R Morehouse, one pair $3 shoes.

N H Beebe - Best three-gallon crock butter, Mrs. C F Blakley, five pounds fifty-cent tea.

Business Men's Special - Best display of poultry in coops, Ionia Poultry Club first, $20; second, C J Oldfield, cedar Springs, $10.

W E Haney - Best two dozen stalks celery, David BUrns, 100 pounds White Lily flour.

Joseph Smith - Best map of Michigan drawn by boy or girl under fourteen years of age, child of A R Morehouse, pair of silver laced Wyandottes.

H Goldstein - Best Jersey heifer calf, Dr. Griswold, $1 in trae. U G Manen - Best bushel Rhode Island Greenings raised in Mecosta county, H C Evarts, fie pounds handmade bon bons.

Mrs. E. R. Turk - Best variety canned fruit, Miss Flora Ladner $2 in trade.

Joseph Barton - Best sucking colt sired by his horse Prince, A R Morehouse, $2.50.

Morris & Crane - Best display of canned fruit of Mecosta county fruit grown outside of Big Rapids, W C Phillee, $5.

Harroun Portrait and Picture Frame Company - Making most words out of the letters composing name of firm, Mrs. C F Demond, $20 portrait.

W P Nesbett - Best bushel corn in ear, Arnold Ely, Big Rapids Herold for one year, best collection of grapes, Isaac Midgely, BIg Rapids Herald, one year.

Gay & Barrows - Best coop or pair of Plymouth Rocks, E F Blakely, weekly Pioneer for one year, best five pounds of roll butter, Mrs. Herbert Ladner, weekly Pioneer one year, best loaf of Hop-rising Bread, Mrs. Thomas Hughes, weekly Pioneer one year.

C.H. Olds took a ride this forenoon on the fruit belt line.

Jan. 10, 1893
D.C. Leggett left this morning for a short ride on the Fruit Belt Line

23 May 1893
Miss Etta Furster, who was born and brought up in Big Rapids and has many friends here, was married at her step-sister's, Mrs. Herbert Whitney in Centerville last Wednesday to Fred Zalsman, a prosperous grocer of Holland, this state, and will make her home in that city.

January 11, 1893 - 8:15 a.m.
Mr. and Mrs. Mack Herrick were in Big Rapids this morning in time to board the 8:15 train for Muskegon. where they went for a few day's visit.

February 23, 1893
C. H. Thrall boarded the train that went out on the Musgegon road this morning, his intention being to jump off at White Cloud.

4 Feb 1894
H. Goldstein, clothier, hatter and furnisher, 310 Michigan Ave., advertises men's suits reduced from $4.50 to $2.50; overcoats from $5.00 to $3.00 and other goods at 25 per cent reduction.

28 Apr 1894
William C. Hangstafer, proprietor of the Model Meat Market, advertises salt pork at 6 to 8 cents lb.; kettle rendered lard at a shilling or in quantities of five pounds or more at 10 cents.

May 4, 1894
Doctors Griswold, Dodge, Burkart and Terrill are all in Lansing attending the meeting of the State Medical Society

17 Dec - A Pioneer carrier boy, Cloyd Cooper, fell while he was playing on a railroad bridge which spanned Mitchell Creek near State Street and according to the report "disabled one of his legs to that extent that he will probably not attend school for a week or two", and, we suppose, deliver his papers.

A similar fate struck the seven year old son of Mr. and Mrs. Milo Van Tassel.  After breaking one arm two weeks previously, the lad busted his other arm the weekend before the paper appeared.

And a false fire alarm was also sounded in Big Rapids that weekend, by "some unknown cause" according to the Pioneer.  There was no fire "although the firemen and a good many other people tried very hard to find one. Apparently to no avail.

23 November 1894 - Peter Ensch advertises that he has opened an intelligence bureau on East Maple Street in the old Eagle Hotel, and holds himself in readiness to procure situations for those who desire employment.

19 January 1895 - C. Hangstafer advertises the following prices on meats; Hams 10 cents; bacon 8 cents lb.; beef stews 4 dents lb.; pork steak 8 cents lb.; pork shoulder 7 cents lb.; bologna, sausage 9 cents lb.; and home rendered lard 8 cents lb.

1898 - The steamer Olivette is said to have arrived at Ft. Monroe yesterday afternoon from Santiago with 200 sick soldiers. Among the names of those who came over on the boat appears the name of Thomas J. Ward of Co. A., 34th Michigan, the only Big Rapids boy mentioned.

1899 - October 12

Remember the Fauntelroy recember at the hall Saturday afternoon from 3 to 4.

C.M. Wiseman and wife left for Grand Rapids this afternoon to be gone until Saturday.

Joel Perry went to Grand Rapids this afternoon for a two or three days visit with his father.

A lady's aid glove has been left at this office by Miss Mary Shier, who probably found it about where the owner lost it.

J.D. Michael says that a ladies kid glove, which was picked up in front of his place of business, can be found at his feed store.

The ladies of the Club of "95 are requested to meet with the president, Mrs. James M. Darrah, on Saturday evening at 7 o'clock.

Mrs. D. Hamilton, of Ionia, who has been the guest of her cousin, Mrs. W.C. Phillieo, the past two days, left for home this afternoon.

The Twentieth Century Club will give a pianola recital on Friday evening, Oct. 13., at the home of Mrs. E.J. Marsh, beginning at 8 o'clock.

The Hobart Mercantile Company comes before our readers today with a fresh advertisement relative to the china and grovery departments of their store.

Charles Vincent, of Wellsville, N.Y., a cousin of Dan Vincent, of this city, left for home this afternoon, in company with a daughter, after a short visit in Big Rapids.

David Westfall was at the depot this afternoon to meet with his step-mother, who reached here from Harbor Springs by way of the 3:05 train. The ladies home is in Indiana, and Mr. Westfall had for time supposed she was dead, not having heard anything from her for about twelve years.

M.M. Brackney returned home last night from his Chicago trip.

Ten cent supper tomorrow night at Woodman Hall under the auspicies of Blossom Camp. R.N. of A.

Miss Estella Gleason, sister of Mrs. H.H. Barrows, left this morning for Ravenswood, West Virginia, to fill a position of some kind.

M.A. Wells & Co. have decided to more their branch store, which is now located in the Fairman block, to Elk Rapids, and next week will probably see the corner store of the Fairman block vacant.

Jan 29, 1902
When Engineer Sutherland went to the Pere Marquette deopt this morning to take his train to Muskegon, he found his engine missing, and upon inquiry he learned that some time during night a crew had been sent here to do some work with his engine, while he was not using it, and that a mishap had occurred, necessitating the importation of an engine to take the plae of the borrowed locomotive, which had been disabled. Jack's engine was to be used to take some cars to White Cloud, and the intention was to make three trips, but upon returning from the trip a drive wheel broke, and no more cars were taken out. An engine was not got here so Sutherland's train went out about 30 minutes late, and hsortly before noon the disabled engine was taken away for service.

The Daughters of the American Revolution in this city have presented the Phelps Free Library with a neatly framed copy of the original Declaration of Independence.  It is of special value as no more copies of the original will ever be taken.  The library has also received Hazlitts Life of Napoleon from Crawford, Russell and Donald Morill.

January 13, 1904
Harry Stearns, who has been putting in a few days at home in this city, returned to Muskegon this afternoon to resume his run on the Pere Marquette.

J. F. Schelp is the new baggageman of Pere Marquette Nos. 24 and 25. relieving Henry Schaufle, who is going south for the winter with his family.

Mr. Shafer, the father of the late Mrs. Montonye, passed away Saturday afternoon at his home in Conklin.  He was over 80 years of age.

April 23, 1904
W. E. Hart of the Pere Marquette freight office has gone to Lakeview for a brief visit.

7 March 1904 - "Hotel Life in Big Rapids" is the title of a book, which a well-known resident of this city is said to be compiling and it is said the book will contain full page pictures of the leading hotel men of this city -- Decker Jenkins and Joe Beef. The author is said to be none other than David Burns, old Grand Army man and janitor at the court house.

4 June 1904 - Joseph Shier left for Muskegon this afternoon expecting to visit Chicago before returniong home.

Mrs. Haywood, a mother of C.F. Haywood, passed away this morning at her home on North Third Avenue.

Miss Jessie Geedey is the new "Hello" girl at the Citizen's central, in place of Miss Belle York, who resigned.

Mrs. M.E. Markham leaves for the "Soo" Monday to spend a week with her son, Percy and his family.

O.D. Marks of Markham and Marks went to Mecosta today on business.

Martin Holland of Woodville the new proprietor of the Pressburg block, was in the city today.

11 Feb 1904 - Mrs. Fred Wright and son returned to Grand Rapids this forenoon, after a visit with relatives in this city.

February 13, 1904
John Cameron, who recently enlisted and is now at Jefferson Barracks, MO., says in a letter to his Mother, "Tell Ed Miles I always thought I could drill a little, but I found out I didn't know a thing about it." He adds "There are about 900 men here, all toll. We won't get any horses until we get to our troop.

April 22, 1904
Mrs. Mary J. Hammond, who has been out of state for some time, returned home this morning.

1904 - Miss Florence Chapman of Woodville, has just left home after a misunderstanding with her mother. Her family and friends are trying to find her. She is carrying two telescopes and is 18 years old.

1904 - Miss Rebekah Hangstafer, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. J. C. Hangstafer, went to Grand Rapids today.

1908 - Frank E. Markham went to Grand Rapids this forenoon as congressman to the New Era congress, now in session.

Miss Cora Stout, once an employee of this office, left this morning for Cadillacto enter Mercy hospital as a nurse. 13 March.
Brevities Column of January 13, 1909

Peter Currie treated the young ladies of the Bell Telephone central and their gentlemen friends to a sleigh ride in his "Snow King," last night. They were driven to Asa Smith's at Clear Lake, where Mr. Smith furnished a fine supper and made himself a genial host.

Mrs. Frank Markhan has received word to the effect that Mrs. Summer Barstow died December 30, at her home in San Francisco, Cal. She was a well known former resident of this city.

The patronesses of the "J" hop are: Mrs. Hudson, Mrs. Hood, Mrs. Darrah, Mrs. Bennett, Mrs. Lange, Mrs. Carpenter, Mrs. Dodge, Mrs. Sutherland.

Rhea Reed of Stanwood, visited her Grandmother, Mrs. James Judkins, last Saturday. (Paris)

Mrs. Alta I. Gould of Boyne City, sister of Mrs. A. R. Streeter, died at her home Sunday. She was a former resident of Deerfield Township and was well known as the author of a book of poems of considerable merit, based on incidents of the Civil War. Her maiden name was Chipman.

Rev. H. D. Borley, who has been doing a little investigating reports that there are two families with at least ten children ranging from a little baby to 13 years old, who are in most pitiable circumstances as to immediate wants. A box for their benefit has been place just inside the door of the Presbyterian Church, so that those who wish may contribute until thursday afternoon.

Mr. Abrahamsen has been papering the Grant Center School house, which adds much to it's appearance. (South Grant)

Lena Belle Reed was born in Grant Township, July 28, 1869, died January 8, 1909. In the death of Lena reed this neighborhood loses one of its most highly esteemed young ladies and her young life so suddenly taken from our midst has cast a gloom of sorrow over all. Born in Grant Township, nearly all of her life was spent there. She was a graduate from the Home School, class of 1905, and was an active worker with the young people in all church work. In September 1908 together with her aunt, Miss Maguire she opened a millinery establishment at Paris at which place she was taken ill and brought home on Christmas day.

Mrs. George Brown of the fifth ward, died this morning at her home from tuberculosis. She leaves seven children, besides her husband.

Maude Lantz entertained a number of friends with a party Thursday evening. A good time was reported by al l present.

1910 - John P. Martiny this morning slipped from a ladder near the top of F.H. Lange's new brick block , which he is building, and sustained painful, but fortunately not serious injury.

Deputy Sheriff Small took a railroad ride today but did not know where he would get off.

1910 - Mrs. C.D. Harwood went south this morning on the early train.

Mrs. Norris Cochran of Chicago arrived in the city last evening for a few days' visit with her mother, Mrs. J.W. Doud, and aunt, Mrs. E.B. Westcott.

1910 - In honor of their 21st wedding anniversary Mr. and Mrs. Martin Holland entertained several friends Saturday.

1910 - Mr. and Mrs. Oscar Myer and Miss Amy Holsworth returned to Muskegon this morning after an extended visit in the city with relatives.

Miss Mabel Morton spent a few days with home folks returning to her school in Newaygo this morning.

13 September 1910

Mecosta, Sept. 13 - Three gold watches and something like $125 in cash is the net result of a bold burglary committed at Mecosta last night, by one or more robbers. Among the houses entered is that of B. S. Henry, the banker, Ray Camen, the hardware merchant, and Joseph Wendling, supervisor of Morton Township.

At Mr. Henry's home the robber got a ladies gold watch and chain belonging to Mrs. Henry, a gentlemen's watch and chain, belonging to Mr. Henry, and about $12 in money. The burglar cut the screen on the door and then unhoked it. He first entered a bedroom occupied by Mrs. Russell, Mrs. Henry's sister. Mrs. Russell was awakened by the noise and saw a man rummaging through the dresser. He hd an electric search light and was taking his time searching for valuables. He thought she was asleep and so did not molest her, but went about his work and she got a full look at his face. After getting through in her room he went into the room occupied by Mr. and Mrs. Henry, helped himself to Mr. Henry's trousers, took them on the porch and carefully emptied them of all valuables, including the watch and $12 in money.

At Mr. Carman's home a loss of $104 in money and checks. among them a pension check for $30. Mr. Wendling reports the loss of a watch and some money, amount not stated.

Sheriff Henderson was here, but unable to obtain a clue. He heard of a stranger with a several days' growth of whiskers coming to the barber shop and sitting down for a few minutes, afterwards getting out without having any work done. This fellow came to town last night and is mising today.

1911 - Miss Marvel Blair has gone to Borland Corners to spend a few days with relatives.

1912 - 2 Jan 1912 - Engineer Arthur Hines of Muskegon, a former resident of this city, was injured Monday in a freight wreck near Muskegon, and his condition is regarded as critical.

April 18, 1912 - Personal Society & General News of Big Rapids

L. C. LaClaire was a Rodney business visitor.

A. C. Fuller is at Cadillac on business.

Lester Thayer had business at White Cloud.

Ed Snyder of Mecosta has business in the city.

William Carter was at White Cloud on business.

H. H. Cowan made a business trip to McBride.

D. A. J. Farrar was in the city from Mecosta.

E. F. Ketchum of Rodney was in the city.

Forrest Buskirk was a Stanwood visitor.

Mrs. J. F. Clark has gone to Barryton for a visit.

Thomas Freeland has gone to White Cloud on business.

Mrs. W. N. Ferris is spending a few days at Grand Rapids.

Mrs. M. Leachman spent Sunday with relatives at Cadillac.

Mrs. Frank Moffitt has returned from a visit at Reed City.

Mrs. Grant Pemberton has gone to Howard City for a visit.

Carl Carson was at Reed City yesterday, the guest of relatives.

George Travis returned to Ann Arbor after a visit with relatives.

Miss Katherine Beals has returned from a visit at Grand Rapids.

Miss Anna Fitzgerald is home from Detroit for a visit with relatives.

Albert Engelman, of Howard City was the guest of relatives over Sunday.

Joseph Gale was home from Peacock to spend Sunday with his family.

Mrs. Norman Mathewson, who was operated upon Friday, is recovering nicely.

Henry Miller was home from Alma to spend a few days with his family.

Mrs. Ed Miller is spending a few days with her parents at Saginaw.

Mr. and Mrs. Frank H. Lange spent Sunday with their daughter at Grand Rapids.

Mrs. J. C. Brooks is spending a few weeks visiting at Belding and Grand Rapids.

Charles Jones and Erving Potter have returned home from a few days visit at Milan.

The funeral of Mrs. Frances Corrier was held this morning from the Catholic Church.

Invitations are out to the wedding of Miss Helena M. Mehl and Edward J. Schroeder, which will take place Tuesday evening, April, at 7:30 o'clock in the German Church. The bride to be is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Chris Mehl of the Third Ward.

Mrs. Weltha Field was agreeably surprised at the home of L. D. Williams, the occasion being her 72nd birthday anniversay. Her four children and 17 grandchildren were present and Mrs. Field was the recipient of many useful presents. Her son Fred Field and wife of Sparta returned to their home this morning.

Mrs. Emily L. wife of JOhn Truman, died at noon today, at her home in Colfax Township, opposite the Ely school house. She was ill about five years with consumption. She was a resident of the township for upwards of 20 years and was 68 years old. She leaves a husband and one son. The funeral will be Wednesday afternoon at 2 o'clock.

April 18, 1912 - The Old Red Mill

In 1856 Chauncey P. Ives came here from Troy, N.Y., and erected the first frame building. This was a saw mill and was known later as the "old red mill." It was erected at the foot of what is now Michigan Avenue, on Mitchell Creek. All of the lumber for this mill was hauled from Newaygo. As soon as the mill was running the first lumber cut was used for the erection of a mill office and large boarding house, while Ives and his family occupied the first log house built by French, which together with 40 acres, were purchased by Ives and his partner, George B. Warren. The mill was torn down about 1873.

By this time Dr. F.B. Leonard, after whom the township and the village were named, got possession of the land on which the present business section of the city is built. He sold out to Mr. Warren, who with Ives platted the village of Big Rapids in 1859. It comprised 100 acres of land on the west side of the Muskegon. The next year French's Glen Elm was added.

April 18, 1912 - Jesse Shaw First Postmaster

After Mr. Ives completed his mill there was enough people here to demand a post office, and one was established in November 1857, with Jesse C. Shaw, as the first postmaster. He received his appointment from President Buchanan. The mail was received and dispatched once a week, by way of Greenville. It was carried on horseback. Mr. Shaw was postmaster only for a short time, resigning in favor of Charles Shafer, father of Mrs. E.G. Hopkins.

Mr. Shafer came to the village in September 1857. His family followed him the next year. As he tells it the village then had from 15 to 20 inhabitants: Chauncey P. Ives, Jessie C. Shaw, Samuel Bailey and brother and the French brothers, among them. Mr. Ives had bhilt a rude dam across Mitchell Creek and was operating a saw mill. Its equipment consisted of one upright saw, which cut its first lumber on the Fourth of July, 1857. Michigan Avenue ws a narrow roadway formed by the cutting down of the trees. It was fenced with brush on the east so that the cows might be safely corraled between the avenue and the river. The price of lots was $50, corner lots selling for $100. Mr. Shafer bought two lots, on which now stands the Bertrau block. The third lot was given to him because he was a mechanic. He first built himself a residence on the north lot, and afterwards a store building on the corner. This is known as the third store in the village, Edson Fuller having the honor of opening the first store. This was located across the street, on the corner where Van Auken's grocery now stands. The second store was opened by G.F. Stearns.

April 18, 1912 - The First Hotel

During the summer of 1858 Augustine N. Williams opened a small hotel, known by his name. This was located to the south of where the Fairman block now stands. The second hotel was built three or four years later, also by Mr. Mason, his first having burned down, on the site of the Fairman block. This later was added to and became the well known Mason house.

The Stearns house was the third hotel built, on the corner across the street, on which now syands the Nisbett block. This was erected by D.F. Stearns and Dr. Woolley.

Money was exceedingly scarse in those early days as the following story told by Charles Shafer himself, will illustrate: It was the fall of 1858. Shafer was running short of flour for family use. Nelson Ganong was going to Grand Rapids with his team, and offered to bring the flour. The price at Grand Rapids was $5 per barrel. But Shafer only had two dollars. Ganong offered to wait until Mr. Shafer could raise the money. They both walked over to the Williams house and Shafer told the proprietor his plight. Williams said it would not do to get caught without a supply of flour for the winter and offered to help with all the money he had. This was $1.50. His man of all work contribued 25 cents. They were still $1.25 short whereupon Williams said that if the trip to Grand Rapids was delayed for a few days he would get the balance from some lumbermen, whom he expected in a day or two from Chicago, which was done.

8 Aug 1912


Mrs. W. T. Loucks returned home Friday after being a week at Belding where her daughter Edith was operated upon for appemdicitis. She left her daughter doing nicely.

Mrs. Florence Handyside is staying with her sister, Mrs. Thompson for a few days.

A large crowd watched the ball game played on the diamond on James Montague's farm Sunday.

Every one is wishing for dry weather to begin harvest.

Charlie Smith and wife are staying at his father's for a few days. Charlie's health is in serious condition and he is here to consult with Big Rapids physicians.

15 March 1913 - Mrs. D.C. Fuller has sold the old Millbrook House to Harvey Clark, reports the correspondent, the buyer to reopen the place as a hotel at once. It is a good location.

Ralph Tenney, East Lansing, MI. - has retired, sold his property at Okemos and moved to a retirement home in East Lansing. He spent an enjoyable afternoon recently when he visited the high school and reminisced over some early pictures of BRHS classes.

1914 - Class of 1914 - Josephine Whelan Holland, Detroit, MI.

July 12, 1914
Dr. L.S. Griswold is having his cottage at Chippewa Lake remodeled. New windows have been added and a firestone fireplace built.

13 December 1914 - The building on N. Michigan Avenue known as the National hotel which was purchased some months ago by William L. White has been transformed into a very attractive suite of office rooms on the ground floor, while the second floor has been fitted up for living rooms.

Alice L. Westfall Wichterman, General Education, 1922 of 8900 Jefferson River House, Apt. 931, died Sept. 6.

March 15, 1926 - School census taker for this year is Miss Ella Ramsdell.  The work, you will note, which had previously been done in May, will be done this month, as there has been a new law.  This year, there are many more questions on the list making a much more complicated record.

November 10, 1926
Drs. Franklin and McDonald entertained the Mecosta County Medical Society with a banquet at the Roop hotel Friday evening, Nov. 5. A very instructive program was given by Drs. Richard R. Smith, Henry J. J. Vandenburg abd J. B. Whinnery of Grand Rapids and Dr. B.H. Shepard of Lowell.

Jan 28, 1927
Prosecutor Everett and Sheriff Kanehl had a bob-sleigh ride on a mile and a half stretch. They were out near Barryton when the car stopped and did not want to go further for snow. A farmer undertook to drive them on. The auto waited and brought them home.

March 27, 1927
A local girl, Helena Campbel, a student of Lindenwood College, recently took a leading part in the Athletic Association play given by the members of the organization.

May 19, 1927
A delightful party was given at the Country Club Saturday evening by Dr. and Mrs. J.B. Campbell. About 50 of the younger set had a most enjoyable time. Dancing as the pastime. Thee were also several other functions given in honor of Enign Neil Campbell and Miss Helena during their visit home.

June 12, 1927
Mr. and Mrs. Kirk Armstrong are a newly wedded couple now keeping house in Grand Rapids. The bride was formerly Miss LaVern Hilderly, a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. William Hilderly.

1928 - 15 May - Miss Roberta Cluchy returned from Muskegon and has taken a position in the test room of the Big Rapids Dairy Company.

21 May 1928
Mr. and Mrs. Charles Hangstafer and Miss Gertrude Hangstafer drove to Lakeview to visit with family of H. Frye, who were formerly residents of this place.

Feb. 11, 1929
Mrs. Harold Allison and baby, Baldwin, spent the latter part of the week with her parents, Mr. and Mrs. C.S. Olin.

February 14, 1929
Dr. J. B. Campbell and Joe Fitzpatrick have purchased from the Wessel estate the Wessel property on Woodward Avenus.

1929 - Mr. & Mrs. Ira Mitchell and Mr. and Mrs. L.H. Turk attended the Old Settler gathering at Croton, Sunday.

Mr. and Mrs. Clifton Hilerly and little son, Clifton Jr., of zMidland, and Mrs. Z. DeVinney and baby daughter, Catherine of Caledonia are visiting Mr. O. D. Hilderly and Mrs. M.C. Taylor. They are the son and daughter of Mr. Hilderly.

Miss Ruth DeVinney, daughter of Mr and Mrs. J.C. DeVinney, si coming from Grand Rapids, where she was employed as a teacher, to spend the weekend with her parents before leaving for Kalamazoo, where hse will attend the Kalamazoo Norman summer school.

17 January 1946
Active Chief of Police Chester Hangstafer stated Wednesday that in the first half of the month of January 10 accidents involving automobiles occurred in the city. 113 were recorded in 1945. Mr. Hangstafer estimated 65 percent of the accidents were avaoidable and urged motorists to observe rules of safety and caution.

Sgt. Harvey Steinke, who has served over-seas for the past three years, is expected home this week, for a 30-day furlough with his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Alfred Steinke.

15 May 1953
Mrs. Chester Hangstafer has returned from Schoolcraft where she went to visit her mother, Mrs. Ella Dooley over Mother's Day. She was joined there by her brother Kenneth Davis and her sister Mrs. Hazel Roosa.

July 23, 1953
Sgt. Edward J. Martiny who has spent a 30 day furlough with his parents Mr. and Mrs. Robert Martiny, left this morning for Camp Pendleton, CA from where he will sail for Korea and the Far East.

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