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Emails for November 2002

Liked Earth Station's photo

Dave, thank you for sharing the link to the Earth Station's photo. This type of imagery has a very practical use. Since the 70's this photo process has been available. However it wasn't until recently that the technology has been advanced to account for lunar relfections, and clouds. Once perfected, the government began to use it track population growth and energy consumption to supplement census data worldwide. However there are several things that must be accounted for when determing population. For instance, while some third-world countries may have huge populations, they do not use "power" as in more advanced nations. This would "skew" the analysis of using light detection only, as a means of establishing population. A look, for instance, at Asia's coast, would illustrate how carefully this data should be used. Compared with its more industrialized southern neighbor, North Korea looks nearly unpopulated, though its people number near 22 million. The Korea Straight, between South Korea and Japan has only a few island residents but is one of the brightest spots on the globe, thanks to Japan's mammoth fishing fleets. Nevertheless, its great fun to look at this type of imagery. Thanks again,

Joe Limbaugh

Editor's note: It seems to me that the photo imagery of the earth reflects civilized areas of the world. Camp fires won't show up in these photos.

Memories of Warwick and Yates


So glad to hear about Chuck and Betty. I was one of the several babysitters who looked after the two Warwick boys while Chuck made his nightly visits to see Betty. He was also my English teach (sophomore year, first semester only as I transferred at the semester.) In retrospect, I realize what a courageous man he was. As luck would have it, I spent my senior year on campus in Champaign. My roommate in a rather strange rooming assignment in the basement of a doctor's office, was an Oklahoma U. grad. She and I frequently ate at a small diner near our rooms. Guess who showed up the second week of the semester - Chuck, then a doctoral student at the great U of I. Needless to say, between my having known him in Minonk and Marilyn's (the roommate) being a graduate of Oklahoma, we had a firm Wednesday night dinner date the rest of the semester.

Re: RL, remember how the students called him "Creep) because he wore hush puppy type shoes and would creep up on a student unawares? Chuck's recollection of how one had to ask repeatedly for some change also rang a bell. I remember wanting to start a senior elective course in modern novels. I went through the same procedure described by Chuck. RL told me later that he believed if a person really wanted something and if a project were really worth something, a second and third request would follow. After my third request, he granted me permission to have the modern lit class for seniors and it was a big success. I credit him with that success because by having to ask more than once or twice, I was forced into evaluating what I wanted to do and why and thus, I fell presented, a better class.---Unfortunately, after he fell ill and left, the class was dropped a few years later.

Martha Cunningham

Announcing candidancy for alderman

I sending you this email to state, that I am running for Alderman in Ward 3 in April's election. I would appreciate the vote from my fellow citizens in my ward. At a later date I will be sending around flyers and more about myself.

Thank You

Jason Buchanan

More on R. L. Yates

I too enjoyed the article on Mr. Yates and his style in running MDR high school. Everyone knew who was in charge in those days. He was always carful to wear soft, rubber soled shoes. The man could glide around those hard, polished stone hallways and be absolutely silent. He had a way of just "appearing" out of nowhere, and asking "what are you gentlemen up to?" The crowd would vanish within seconds, as he glided silently on down the hall. He was also capable of immediate, violent action. I recall standing by in shock one morning when my locker partner used some rough language in the hallway outside of R.L.'s office. The superintendent rushed out, grabbed the offender by the shirt collar, bounced him off the sheet metal locker two or three times, informed him that such language was not tolerated, and returned to his office. The elapsed time was perhaps 15 seconds.

There was this about Mr. Yates also--he was a really good teacher. In the fall of 1964, for some reason, there was no one available to teach the economics class that had already been scheduled. R.L. decided to teach it himself, and it was very thought provoking and well done. There were absolutely no discipline problems, but there were a lot of heart felt, wide ranging discussions. That fall was the Johnson/Goldwater presidential campaign, which Mr. Yates used as a vehicle to discuss as much economic history as he did economic theory. It was the best high school class that I ever attended. His stories of the great depression and WWII were very vivid and insightful.

Keep up the good work on the Minonk web site.

Joe Vallow
Grafton, VA

Lesson learned from R. L. Yates

Hi Dave, Thank Mr. Warwick for his article bringing back memories of R.L. Yates. My first, and only, trip to his office followed a "shouting match" with a coach in the locker room. Mr. Yates explained the Rule to me, "He would talk, I would listen". So Mr Warwick's title for his article was well chosen. I learned a good life lesson from that interview. There is a time and a place for presenting your opinions. Locker rooms and his office were not the place. Thanks again Mr Warwick for renewing memories of a fine man who helped me.

Bob Schmitz

City should wait on new antenna

The city should wait until March before putting a new antenna up. FEMA every March allows Fire and Rescue to apply for grants. The ambulance squad at this time can apply for a FEMA grant, which probably will provide them enough money to purchase a new antenna, and a new radio system. Last I heard FEMA is planning on giving out 200 million in grants.

Chris McKay

Recovering from surgery

Hello, Dave... Just dropping a line to let you know that I am back home after surgery. It's good to read and catch up on Minonk Talk again. I was in bad shape for awhile, but nothing life threatening. It would be great to hear from my old friends back there. If they have time to write. Hope all is well with you.

Best wishes,

Art Kettelhut

City and nursing home can hire EMT together

Do you know if the city has ever looked in or contact the Nursing home in town about hiring a person together. This person would work for the nursing home, then when the ambulance has a call he/she can leave to the call. In return the city and the nursing home splits the salary of this person. This could be a win win situation for both. The city would receive a full time Medical person for half the cost. The nursing home also would get another medical person for half price. If Minonk's nursing home is anything like the rest of the medical field they probably are under manned now.


Chris McKay

Glad to see "Coalmine Riot" story told

Dave: We checked the MinonkTalk site and were delighted to see you had posted, "A Terrible Tragedy." Also, your photograph turned out good, and we are pleased to be included on the site. We still find your efforts to be extraordinarily beneficial to the citizens of Minonk and those of us who are thousands of miles from home. If one lives in California and logs on, it is not unusual to be there for hours.

When we visited Minonk for Rita's 50th Class Reunion, we were also searching for family tree data. We knew our paternal grandmother, Josephine Martha (Schminski), was married to John Wetoski, Jr. on 4 Feb 1896. A man allegedly named Morgan, in an episode at the coalmine in 1897 had fired a shot, the bullet ricocheted off a railroad track, striking John Wetoski in the neck and killing him. We believed that the miners then rioted and Morgan was killed. Grandma Josie was then a widow, and she had a months-old daughter to raise. We knew she had survived the ordeal and gone on with her life, marrying Adam Frank Buchness on 10 Jun 1899. We also note that the Morgan family returned to Maysville, Kentucky in a state of shock and disbelief, and we regret their loss. It is said that, if Grandma Josie ever spoke of this tragedy in later years, it was still to say, "My God, how did this happen?" Indeed, it does appear that the whole affair was a mistake.

We specifically visited the Filger Library to search old newspapers to try to find a history of what occurred on that day. Richard uses microfiche files at work, so he was the most adept at operating the machine. Although he had experience with the procedure, he had to stop a couple of times, because it brings on motion sickness! When he located the article, we had difficulty reading the copies. We found it best to print two copies-one large print, one small print. When we arrived home, Rita typed her copy from the small print and I typed mine from the large print. At times, one can read the small print, but not the large, and vice-versa. After typing, we proofread by reading our typed copies to each other, making corrections as we went.

We had a great trip to Illinois. Chicago was an impressive city, sparkling clean, well organized, and with many gracious residents. Minonk and the surrounding acres were the highlight of our trip. It was with regret that we noted some of our favorite things were missing, but we appreciate the will of the citizens to preserve and protect as they move forward in time.

Barbara (Buchness) Hutchison

Editor's note: We appreciate the efforts of Barbara, Rita, and Richard in retrieving one of the major stories in Minonk history from the archives for future generations to read.

Remembers Westside Park with contribution

When I read about the West Park Pavilion Fund Drive it stirred some memories.

I remember walking to the park in my swimsuit to enjoy a swim in the "pool". (For those who don't remember, there was a round pool that couldn't have been more than two feet deep, but for some of us young kids it could have been a lake.)

I remember watching magic shows on the bandstand during special holiday celebrations and trying to figure out how they got all that milk out of that "empty" pitcher.

I remember the community musicians getting together on the bandstand to entertain us -- just because it was a lovely spring or summer evening.

I remember just walking through the park and enjoying the shade on those hot summer days.

I remember sharing rides on the "merry-go-round". The one you had to push and then jump on and ride until it stopped.

I remember swinging on the "trapeeze" and imagining that I was an acrobat in the circus.

I remember sharing a swing with my first girl friend.

I remember playing in the park and on the bandstand with Donald Mohar, Buddy Jacobs, Erma Marshall, Judy Parks and Carol Timmerman.

I remember all of the Uphoff and von Behren reunions where we all ate and played softball and had such wonderful times that we couldn't wait until the next one.

I remembered all these things and just had to help be a part of the new one. If the new kids have just half of the wonderful memories I have, then it will be worth every penny spent.

Jim Uphoff
Lorton VA

Editor's note: Jim is making a donation of $500 for the Westside Park Pavilion. We certainly appreciate his generousity. I remember playing with Jim in the park over 50 years ago and have not seem him since. If everyone who had similiar feelings as Jim and had made similiar contributions, we would have no problem raising money for the pavilion. Thanks very much, Jim.

Looking for thief at local store


It's no wonder why small businesses do not make it in Minonk. Recently I had a Playstation 2 Game System and six games stolen from my store. This is about a $600 loss. The person responsible for this came in on October 30th and 31st posing as the grandson of Alvin Vissering and rented under his name and never returned the merchandise. Most small businesses cannot take this kind of loss without changing store policies that affect all customers. Keep in mind that small business owners are not trying to get rich they are just trying to provide a service to the community. Don't steal from them! If anyone has information on this please contact Visions Video at (309)432-2057 or e-mail me at tcremer@maxiis.com.

Todd Cremer
Visions Video

Wants to know value of 1932 Cubs picture?

I found this picture of the 1932 Cubs and wondered if anyone knows its value. Click here to see picture.

Todd Cremer

Editor's note: I don't know the value but I bet there are some hopeless Cub fans out there who would love to buy it.

Letter to Mr. Warwick on his article

Thanks, Mr. Warwick for your article on R.L. Yates.

It really stirred up fond memories of my high school experience and particularly memories of crossing paths with R.L. I received a few "scoldings" from him and deserved them all. Your description was right on target as I remember him. I agree that parents today would never tolerate a strict disciplinarian such as he was, but looking back and comparing those days with the way that discipline is administered these days in our schools, I think R.L. did parents and students a huge favor by leaving no doubt in anyone's mind what was, and more importantly, what was not acceptable behavior during school hours and enforcing it. When R.L. was applying his brand of discipline, everyone in the building heard him and without benefit of a public address system. (Kind of like when Art Oldenburg was trying to get his 8th grade class's attention). Certainly, R.L. hurt my feelings and pride a few times, but I never disliked him for it. I knew he was right and I respected him. Oh, and by the way, most of us did whatever it took to not get sent to your office, either.

Arlen Ruestman
Class of 1960 - MDR
Toluca, IL

Saved old Minonk pop bottle

Hi Dave-I saw the recent email about the Minonk Bottling Co. Funnily enough, one of the bits and pieces I had shipped back to Seattle after closing my Grandparent's house in NC is an old Minonk pop bottle. It looks to be a 12 oz. size, is clear, very thick glass, with an aqua/light green tinge. It has a circular raised stamp which reads: Minonk Bottling Works-Minonk ILL". Who knows why my grandfather, Eugene Hodgson Jr. (son of Doc Hodgson) felt the need to save this bottle in a box in his attic in Charlotte NC--I'm sure there's a story behind it, but we'll never know! I wonder how many little keepsakes from Minonk are scattered around the U.S.?

Deborah Huffman

More information on pop bottle factory

I thought perhaps the Minonk Bottling Works manufactured or was a distributor for for Schlitz Brewing Company bottles? Especially since Nick found the bottles burried across the street from where the Schlitz Brewing Company was located? The bottling works is mentioned in the History section of this website in the article "Minonk Businesses of the Past". But after looking at the ad in the 1903 Minonk City Directory, reprinted in Tales From the Trees, I think you are right, Dave. The Bottling Works Motto, " Soft Drinks of all flavors. Purity of quality and cleanliness our motto." The listing in the 1903 city directory reads, on page 13, "Davison & Welch, 3 pop factory South 1st bet Chestnut and Walnut". Any ideas on this location?

Ruth Ann Meierhofer

Editor's note: The pop bottle factory advertised in the 1903 directory was located in the alley immediately north of the Third Base Tap. In 1903 Fifth Street was called South First Street and Sixth Street was North First Street. Below is a picture of the 1903 ad for the pop factory sent to us by Ruth Ann.

Found old bottles

When we were digging holes for my new building on 645 n chestnut,we found a lot of bottles with MINONK BOTTLING WORKS. Do you have any history about it or any pictures of it.

Nick Peiffer
Minonk ,Il

Editor's reply: I believe that there use to be a pop factory behind the Third Base Tap in the alley between Chestnut and Walnut. I do not have any pictures of the building but I do remember it being a little one story brick building. If anyone has any more information on the pop factory, contact MinonkTalk.

What is status of the community center?

Just wondering if there is anything progressing with the new community center so that our children have somewhere to go and have fun. I would not want my children to be out in the country somewhere where I can not keep a eye on them. I think it is a good idea closing the parks at 11 pm. I am sorry we have to do this but the older kids and drunks hang out there and there is never any good with that. Also, I think the trash at the park next to Casey's should be emptied more often. Not now that it is getting colder but during the spring and summer. Thank you.

Billie McCormick

Editor's reply: It is my opinion that the community center is probably a few years away. To be able to maintain the proposed building will require supportive income after it is built. It is not yet known where that money will come from. An immediate solution proposed by this website is to buy the old bakery building downtown and fix it up for a community center.

Response to community center letter

That is too bad that the community center will take so long. The kids really need something now. I think the old bakery building would be a great place for something for the kids. They could gut it out and put in a rollerskating rink, video games, music and food. That would be great for kids all around in other small towns. I think that would bring a lot of people to our town and help our community. Thanks for getting back with me so fast.

Thank you

Billie McCormick