A look at Augusta's past
Correction: In last week’s column, Lt. John Wedding’s name was misspelled. I apologize for the error.
70 YEARS AGO
The Historical Society had asked the City to take over the historical cabin on S. State St.
The Red Cross was asking citizens to donate discarded costume jewelry, small mirrors and anything that sparkled or glistened. The items would be sent to service men in the South Pacific to give to the aborigines in payment to perform dangerous and arduous tasks for the military.
The Butler County Ration Board was waring residents that they would not ration vacation gasoline and no one would be allowed to save up gas for a summer trip. Anyone caught misusing their gas rations would face having their rations canceled.
60 YEARS AGO
A special appeal for funds, clothing and temporary housing for El Dorado flood victims were made by the Butler County Chapter of the American Red Cross. A second drowning victim had been found near the softball field in El Dorado.
There was considerable excitement on State St. one morning when someone’s parrot was loose and shouting something about “Polly” from downtown light poles.
The Kansas Division of Sanitation released a report stating that the Walnut River and several of its tributaries were being seriously polluted by oil field brines, oil refinery waste, and municipal sewage.
50 YEARS AGO
The City Council decided that there would no longer be a concession stand at the City Swimming Pool, but vending machines instead.
Officials at Spencer-Safford Loadcraft, Inc., truck-trailer manufacturer of Augusta, announced the acquisition of Brady Industries in Brady, Texas.
Rain and hail pelted Augusta one afternoon with a deluge that was whipped by high gusts of wind and filled curbs to overflowing. Traffic was brought to a standstill.
40 YEARS AGO
Major steps were being taken by the City Council toward annexation of the Lakeside Addition, Lakeside II, and the Charles Simpson property, just north of the original Lakeside Addition.
Dan Small, who had more than 10 years of experience in public safety and law enforcement, had joined the State Fire Marshall’s office.
A.V. Small, 90, local bee keeper, had died. He had built his house at 1125 Henry in 1936. For a number of years Mr. & Mrs. Small observed Epiphany by inviting the neighborhood children to bring their Christmas trees for a community burning.
30 YEARS AGO
Area law enforcement officers were searching for a 46-year-old Augusta businessman believed to have drowned while fishing near the Bodarc Bridge on the Little Walnut. Later the search was suspended, the business owner was accused of fraud in civil action filed in federal court. The man was believed to have been alive and in the area. He eventually contacted the Gazette and the FBI removed his name from the missing person list.
Galen Burow of Williamsburg, Iowa became the new pastor of Augusta’s Christ Lutheran Church.
With a work force that numbered over 300, the local congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses built a new Kingdom Hall 4 1/2 miles west of town on Highway 54.
20 YEARS AGO
A mini Indian pow wow was held as part of the annual White Eagle Festival.
Voter in the district east of Augusta, which encompasses most of SE Butler County, turned down a $4 million bond issued for a new Leon elementary school, a remodel/addition for Haverhill Elementary, Bluestem Middle School, and Bluestem High School. A few months prior, the voters turned down a $5 million facilities improvement proposal.
Augusta Dairy Queen was celebrating its 40th anniversary.
10 YEARS AGO
An open house was held for Augusta’s newest funeral home - Headley’s Funeral Chapel - located at the former St. James Catholic Church and Rectory on State St.
The City Council approved an agreement with the Kansas Department of Transportation for a multi-use path from Garvin Park to Shryock Park. The 10-foot-wide concrete path would connect the two park sites.