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100 years ago, July 14, 1918

Sunday. No paper.

50 years ago, 1968

Sunday. No paper.

25 years ago, 1993

CHARLESTON -- Construction is scheduled to begin Monday on the expansion of the Coles County jail. The first part of the work apparently won’t be of the obvious sort, however. At yesterday’s meeting of the Coles County Board, member Dave Shick announced the first stage of the project will involve work on the underground tunnel that connects the jail to the courthouse. Eventually, the $1.6 million expansion will add about 50 beds to the jail’s northwest side, increasing its capacity by two-thirds… MATTOON -- Chet Turner of Lake Mattoon took home his third national championship after the American Y-Flyer Nationals competition last month near Atlanta, Ga. Turner also won the national title in 1988 and 1989. Fifty competitors from the Midwest and Southwest competed in the event. His wife, Lela Summers, was the top women skipper at the championships and received the Helen Handley trophy for the sixth consecutive year… URBANA -- Amy Jo Pierce, a graduate of Charleston High School and 1993 graduate of the University of Illinois with a Bachelor of Arts degree in speech communications, has earned the following awards for excellence: Bronze Tablet, Summa Cum Laude, Phi Beta Kappa and the King Broderick-Allen award as graduating senior with the highest overall senior in the department’s pre-law curriculum. She had a 4.975 grade point average on a 5.0 scale. Her parents are Ron and Linda Pierce.

100 years ago, July 15, 1918

MATTOON -- The fifth annual session of the Mattoon Chautauqua opened at Peterson Park on Sunday, and those in charge began at once to boost the pledging of tickets for another session in 1919. There was a large crowd on hand to hear two excellent addresses and two musical entertainments. The program was patriotic in nature... SHELBYVILLE -- The name of Army Cpl. Raymond Powell appeared recently in a story relative to the capture of Germans in No Man's Land near Hamel, France. Powell is a cousin of Joseph Powell, Mattoon baggage master for the Illinois Central. Young Powell, according to the news, was one of the volunteers chosen to go after the Americans who had been captured by the Germans. Powell led a squad of men who rescued the missing Americans. He enlisted at Shelbyville... PARIS -- The Germans attacked the American position in the region of Vaux and the French position in the region of Champagne. The attacks followed violent artillery preparations in both areas. The American artillery responded with a barrage and at the hour of cabling this dispatch the situation is well in hand. French positions have been penetrated at some points but the French are sustaining their positions on a front of about 80 kilometers.

50 years ago, 1968

MATTOON -- Capt. August Emil Czerwonka, who would have been 33 years old today, was killed Saturday in Vietnam. A telegram received today by his mother, Mrs. Louisa Czerwonka, and his sister, Mrs. Edith Creek, both of Mattoon, said Capt. Czerwonka died when struck by fragments from a hostile mine when on a combat operation. Capt. Czerwonka, a 13-year Army veteran, had been in Vietnam one month. He was a member of the Mechanized First Infantry Division. He also had served in Korea. Capt. Czerwonka's wife, Elizabeth, and three children live in Vallejo, Calif... WINDSOR -- The main line of the Penn Central Railroad through the center of Windsor is open today after crews worked more than 24 hours to clear the wreckage of the second major derailment here in about six months. A railroad spokesman said estiamtes of damage to railroad equipment, track and cargo may reach $750,000 after 36 cars of the westbound freight derailed at 9:05 a.m. Sunday. The Neal-Cooper Grain Elevator sustained an estimated $25,000 damage. Richard Kiger, claim agent of the Penn Central in Mattoon, said a brake rigging failure on the 37th car from the front of the train has been named as the cause of the derailment... MATTOON -- Plans for a new gasoline and car wash facility in the 600 block of Charleston Avenue were announced today by Willaredt Oil Co., local distributor for Mobil Oil products. The new business will be located at 600-604 Charleston. The new gasoline stop will be different from the typical service station because no other services or products other than washing or gasing will be offered, a company spokesman said. The facility, to be known as Red Carpet Car Wash, will open Oct. 14.

25 years ago, 1993

SPRINGFIELD -- The state budget the Illinois General Assembly approved this week means there will be no tuition increase at Eastern Illinois University and the other Board of Governors universities. Tuition will remain at $1,848 per year for undergraduates and $1,944 per year for graduate students, the BGU said in a news release. Gov. Jim Edgar signed the budget bill into law yesterday, two weeks after the end of the last fiscal year… SPRINGFIELD -- Donations collected at Illinois’ historic sites will still be funneled to the state agency that oversees the sites. That’s despite an increase of $2.6 million in the budget for the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency that was part of the General Assembly’s final budget package. That also means that the volunteer organization at Lincoln Log Cabin State Historic site in Coles County will still have to rely on another way to raise money. Donations at Lincoln Log Cabin previously went to the site’s volunteer group for use in training, period clothing purchases and other expenses. The volunteer group now will rely on the $2 parking fee that will continue to be imposed during the site’s popular Harvest Frolic in October.

100 years ago, July 16, 1918

MATTOON -- Feature numbers make up the program for the chautauqua today. The entertainers include the Alhambra Players of California, and Mme. Swanson Ver-Haar, a Swedish prima donna. The theatrical organization presented a dramatic sketch of the Civil War, with a representation of Abraham Lincoln. Tonight it will present a pageant, "The Book of Job," which has been heralded as "out of the ordinary." Mattoon Chautauqua attendance is good. The Stockholm Concert Company comes tomorrow to present two programs. There will be lectures on "The YWCA and the World War" and "The Red Cross and the World War." ... CHARLESTON -- The people of Coles County are to be given an opportunity in November to say whether they are in favor of a tuberculosis sanitarium to be established in Coles County, the object being to suppress this dread disease wherever possible. At a meeting at the Coles County Courthouse yesterday, a temporary organization was effected. Dr. N.C. Iknayan of Charleston was chosen president, G.H. Cokendolpher of Mattoon and John L. Whisnand of Charleston vice presidents, Mrs. Margaret Vanatta of Lerna secretary and Dr. R.J. Coultas of Mattoon treasurer... MATTOON -- A record was broken in the local Big Four Railroad yards on Sunday. During 24 hours, a total of 2,400 rail cars were handled, the number being almost four times the capacity of the yards. During the 12 daylight hours, 17 trains entered the local yards and 15 trains sent out. There were several special trains eastward through here on Saturday for the movement of soldiers. These troops came from a southwestern camp.

50 years ago, 1968

MATTOON -- Residents of Coles County take the name for granted. After all, it has been Coles County for 138 years. But on Christmas Day, 1830, when the governor signed the bill creating the county, it was a name of great significance and controversy. Thirty years before Abraham Lincoln emerged as the champion of freedom, Edward Coles, second governor of Illinois, led the forces that kept Illinois on the roster of free states. Born in Virginia, Coles was a slave owner. He had served as ;personal secretary to President james madison and as special envoy to Russia. But since his college days he had doubted the right of slavery. In 1819 he moved from Virginia to Illinois, freeing his slaves upon arrival. In 1822 he was elected governor on an antislavery ticket. Immediately after, the Legislature introduced an amendment to the state constitution to legalize slavery. It was defeated by a narrow margin after a vigorous "No holds barred" campaign led by Coles. Eight years later, the new county created in east-Central Illinois took the name of the governor who preserved for them the heritage of freedom... CHARLESTON -- Marilyn Faris of the Charleston Skippers 4-H Club, won the Coles County 4-H Food Demonstration Contest yesterday. She will represent the county at the Illinois State Fair Aug. 13. She won with "Great Granddaughter's Version of Peach Dumplings." Others qualifying for the State fair were Jean Marie Grant, Morgan merry Mixers; Rita Hill, Paradise Skippers; and Nancy Miller, Oakland Oak Leaves.

25 years ago, 1993

KINDERHOOK -- Mattoon’s A Company of the Illinois National Guard views its battle to hold back the Mighty Mississippi as “very personal.” “So far, Mother Nature hasn’t been able to beat us,” said Sgt. Chris Byford of Mattoon. It’s become very personal to the guys here. We’re not going to let Mother Nature kick our asses.” All along the Mississippi River, Mother Nature has flexed her muscles, breaking levees and unleashing her fury upon fields, houses and even dams on the river itself. Since arriving at Kinderhook last week, the National Guard, including members of Mattoon’s A Company, Champaign-Urbana and Danville, have been holding the river back by sandbagging the levee in shifts in excess of 14 hours… MATTOON -- The recently approved state budget appears to include an additional $500,000 this year for Lake Land College. Goble Jessup, vice president of Finance at Lake Land, estimates the state’s input to the college at $4.4 million, up from $3.7 million a year ago. Lake Land’s budget, including all programs, is more than $23 million next year, up from about $21.6 million a year ago.

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