There was a terrific thunder storm last night and vivid lightning followed by a heavy downpour of rain. Lightning struck the barn of E. R. Charlton and set it afire, the upper part filled with hay was burned and the lower part so badly damaged that the building is practically ruined. The bolt struck near the peak of the roof and descended directly in front of the family driving home, shocking it badly and so dazing it that it was removed with difficulty by Ernest Charlton and Morely McNeal. Dr. P.B. Cleaves chanced to be driving past returning from a professional call and rendered valuable assistance in removing vehicles and other property from the barn, so the loss is confined principally to the building and hay. The building was insured in the State Mutual, Grant Seeley agent, so the loss will be practically covered. The fire company made a quick run and did good service in extinguishing the fire.
At the New State Telephone Central a big electric bolt entered the operator's room near the switchboard operated by Miss Bertha Spinharney and she was shocked into unconscious and with the assistance of Dr. Watson was not revived for over half an hour. The excitement and nervous shock was too great for Misses Staver, Farm and Keister, and these fainted, so that the entire force was knocked out and was sent home in hacks by Manager Geiger. In about two hours Mr. Geiger had obtained other help and business was running along as usual. This explanation is made that patrons may know why calls were not responded to in the early part of the evening. Service was resumed in a remarkable short time considering conditions.
It may not be out of place here to warn our readers against using the phone during storms accompanied by lightning, it is dangerous to those attempting to use it and far more so to the operator who attempts to answer the call. Unless to turn in an alarm of fire or an urgency call for a physician leave the telephone alone during a storm, you may thereby save yourself a shock and avoid injury to the Central operator or a friend at the other end.
Another thing in case of a fire don't expect to get an immediate answer to your call. In this city there are between 700 and 800 phones and usually in a few minutes after an alarm practically all the drop buttons are down, and the operators can only answer one at a time, going down the line, all are answered in turn.
A remarkable feature of last night was that the bolt which proved destructive was not accompanied by thunder, though there was lots of it before and after. The electric fluid just came down in a big ball and did its work without fuss or feathers.
Ruben Warburton, living south of town, had a stack of hay containing about four tons, struck and burned. A Frank Wertman living west of him suffered a sever loss.
Two cows were struck and killed at State Hospital.
Railroad men report the burning of a building near Cleghorn.
Careless thieves are believed to have caused a fire which late Monday night destroyed a car, garage and various farm equipment at the A.B. Lindsay farm, seven and one-half miles southwest of here, it was learned Thursday.
Owner of the destroyed property, Mr. Lindsay, said a car drove into the yard and that a person is known to have entered the garage, supposedly to siphon gas.
Mrs. Lindsay heard the car but thought it was their hired man returning, she said. Members of the Clifford Dubes family, who live nearby, said they saw the car stop and a man enter the garage and leave a moment before flames became visible, Lindsay reported.
Neighbors and the Aurelia fire department fought the fire, but dry condition of the building and presence of gas caused it to burn before anything could be saved. The residence close by, however, was protected.
Lindsay said the care was worth about $100 and the building about $200. Tools, a gas engine and cream separator were also destroyed. Insurance was carried only on the latter group, Lindsay said.
The W. K. Herrick summer home on Hayward's Bay, west Okoboji, was entered by a prowler one night recently, but he succeeded in getting away with only $3.50 in cash. Screams of a mad frightened the marauder.
Last week's Spirit Lake Beacon said that Mr. Herrick is offering a $50 reward for the arrest and conviction of the thief.
The maid was awakened, it was said, as the burglar attempted to cut her pajamas off with scissors. He had succeeded in slitting the upper part of the garment before the girl awoke. Before beginning this operation he had removed $3.50 from her pocketbook. The prowler was frightened away by her screams and left no clues, the report said. He escaped through a window at the cottage.
It was thought a possible clue had been found on Sunday morning when a cottage dweller at Arnolds Park gave a window peeper a severe beating and then let him escape.
The robbery which occurred at the Wyndcroft cottage on Hayward's bay happened about midnight.
There were 131 children from eight Northwest Iowa counties registered for the Crippled Children's Clinic Thursday in Washington High School by the State Services for Crippled Children.
Twenty-four Cherokee women served as volunteer aides to the staff of specialists from the State University of Iowa, directed by Dr. John C. MacQueen, professor of pediatrics at SUI and director of the SSCC.
In addition two members of the Cherokee County Social Welfare Department, Virginia Robinson and Sandra Wilson, and Mrs. L. Wilson assisted Mildred Surface of the SSCC staff with registration.
Food donations were made by the following: Mrs. A. I. McClintock, Mrs. Dan Rice; Mrs. Otto Schneider, Mrs. Gerhart Baumann, Mrs. Lee Miller, Mrs. Lyle Poulson, Mrs. G. J. Fleig, Mrs. G. D. Gerdes, Mrs. Ed Mallory.
Volunteers serving under Mrs. Tom Boothby, Mr. and Mrs. Roger Millikan, general chairmen, were as follows: Mrs. James Ziegenbusch, Mrs. Bill Grawburg, Mrs. George Hoyt, Miss Cheryl Thomas, Miss Judy Bowen, Mrs. Arthur Nelson, Mrs. Charles Jarratt, Mrs. Loren Anderson, Mrs. Joseph Tallman, Mrs. James Johnson, Mrs. Frank Greenwood.
Also Mrs. R. H. Ehrich, Mrs. Lyle Maxwell, Mrs. Charles Buma, Miss Deanna Poulson, Mrs. C. A. Diehl, Mrs. Robert Schultze, Mrs. Nate Phipps, Mrs. A. I. McClintock, Mrs. R. J. Vining, Mrs. Barney Bowen.
Cherokee Boy Scouts who helped park cars were Don Turner, Jack Reed, DeVere Anderson, Gilbert Webb, Jr., and Phil Rowen.
Several Cherokee area artists as well as some from Paullina and other Timesland towns have indicated they plan to hang their works in a special exhibit at the Cherokee County Fair August 4-6.
For the first time, there will be a special class devoted to original oil paintings and watercolors. The display will be located in the Family Craft tent at the Fair.
Paintings submitted should be suitable framed and watercolors matted or framed for protection and ease in handling.
Paintings-by-number will not be eligible for this showing but may be entered under Class 19-B as handicraft.
Each exhibitor may submit a total of five oils and/or watercolors. All work must be original and completed within the past five years.
Ribbons will be awarded at the judge's discretion. If a painting is offered for sale, the exhibitor should indicate the price on a card attached to the frame. Mrs. J. C. Chesnutt, Cherokee artist, is assisting with arrangements for the special exhibit.
A settlement on a proposed property condemnation was approved Monday after a lengthy discussion between Cherokee County Supervisors and a Meriden resident Monday.
After about an hour long discussion, the Board of Supervisors approved payment of $6,164 to Nis Laursen Jr., Meriden. The payment is to cover the cost of damage to a section of land and a 52- by 24-foot wood frame building owned by Laursen which is partially located on right-of-way property that the county acquired in March 1954.
The county is planning to grade a 4 1/2 Ůmile section of road north of Meriden from Iowa Highway 3 to County Road C-16. About 800 feet of the road goes through the area where Laursen's building is, said County Engineer Bill Bennett.
Most of the discussion on the issue centered around the amount of money the county should pay to Laursen. Because of the scheduled work on the road, Laursen will have to remove a section of the wood building.
Several amounts were mentioned including $5,592, suggested by County appraiser Bob Stephenson, and $8,623, the amount suggested by Laursen's attorney, Wally Miller.
The Board approved the $6,164 payment, which was the appraisal made by the county condemnation appraisers. The condemnation appraisers are called in whenever there are condemnation proceedings. The appraisal group consists of three people: A representative of the Board of Supervisors; a representative of the property owner; and a third person chosen by the two representatives. Frank Escue, Cherokee, represented the Board, and Lloyd Robinson, Meriden, represented Laursen. Escue and Robinson chose Brad Carlson, Cleghorn, to round out the group.
In other business the board approved recommended allocations of Mental Health Mental retardation funds. The recommendations were made by the county Mental Health Mental Retardation Advisory Board, and concern funds for several area organization, including Plains Area Mental Health Center, Homemaker Homes Health Aid Service, Cherokee County Minibus, Cherokee County Work Activity Center and West Cherry Street House.
The allocations come to $21,724. However, at the public hearing on the 1985-76 budget, the MH MR approved budget of $21,000.
County Auditor Beverly Anderson said she would adjust the approved allocations to fit the approved budget. If more money is received for the MH MR fund, the budget will be adjusted later in the fiscal year.