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Friday, May 6, 2016

Times Gone By

Friday, July 20, 2012

100 years ago

It is with regret that the Times is called upon to record a shocking and disastrous accident that occurred near the Caswell Foundry Tuesday afternoon when Mr. Harty, a citizen of Cherokee, and his grandson, Neil Doherty, aged about eleven years, were thrown from Mr. Harty's auto. As near as we can learn the facts are as follows:

Clear view - The railroad trestle that spans the Little Sioux River near Spring Lake park is featured prominently in this photograph. You can also see the town of Cherokee in the background. One thing that stands out in this photo is the lack of trees in Cherokee. The date of the picture is unknown, but you can make out the Mental Health Institute, which opened in 1902, in the background.
As Mr. Harty and Neil were returning to town along the river road about 3:00 o'clock in the afternoon Mr. Harty was letting Neil run the car and when approaching a bridge near Caswell's foundry Harty being afraid that the boy could not guide the car took hold of the steering wheel and by accident turned it the wrong way causing the machine to run off the side of the bridge. The car turned a complete somersault pinning Mr. Harty and the boy under it. Andrew Caswell and laborers at the foundry hurried to the rescue and succeeded in getting the victims out from under the machine. It was found that the front bow of the car had struck Mr. Harty breaking his neck he living only about eight minutes after the accident while the boy escaped with only a few scratches and bruises.

John Harty was born in Darlington, Wis., in 1851, and spent the early part of his life there. In 1878 he came to Cherokee county, residing for eight years in Pilot township. Mr. Harty was first married to Ellen Sullivan and to this union four children were born one of whom, Mrs. Mary Doherty, is living and resides in Cherokee. He was married the second time to Catherine Christopher. Besides his daughter, Mr. Harty leaves to mourn his death his wife, three half brothers and one half sister, Jennie Whalen, of Huron, S.D., Allie, frank and Ed Whalen, of Darlington, Wis.

The funeral will be held tomorrow at 9 o'clock from the Immaculate Conception church.

75 years ago

Thomas Will, 18, son of Mr. and Mrs. A. C. Will of near Aurelia was killed late Wednesday morning when he apparently fell from a tractor he was operating and was pierced by a sharp plowshare after striking the ground.

Will was alone at the time of the accident. He was plowing a field of half mile south of the farm of Herbert Will, an uncle. A threshing crew working nearby noticed the tractor suddenly stopped about 11:30 o'clock and a group of men left their work to investigate, thinking that Will possibly was experiencing some mechanical difficulty with the machine.

They found him prone on the newly plowed ground beneath a plow the tractor had been drawing. In some manner the machine had stopped after the youth had fallen off.

The injured man was taken at once to the Aurelia hospital. Later he was brought to the Sioux Valley hospital in Cherokee. He was dead upon arrival.

The body was taken back to Aurelia by County Coroner C. W. Kroll. It will remain at the Kroll funeral home pending arrangements.

Will graduated from Aurelia high school this spring. He was an officer in his class and a prominent athlete during his high school career. He was a member of the Aurelia Methodist church and active in the Epworth League organization.

Besides his parents, he is survived by a small sister.

A neighbor of the Will family said he believed the boy fell from the tractor and was dragged a short distance before the machine in some unknown manner, stalled. He said the boy's side had been pierced by a plowshare and that he was gravely injured internally when discovered. Marks for several feet in the field indicated where the boy's body had been dragged.

Heavy rain, accompanied by a severe electrical storm Saturday afternoon and early Monday morning proved the salvation of the corn crop in this county but in many places was responsible for considerable damage. Over four inches of rain fell from Saturday afternoon until Monday morning. The government weather station here reported 3.36 inches Saturday and .70 inches Monday. According to Weather Observer J. E. Wirth, it was the heaviest precipitation here this year.

Corn fields southwest of Cherokee were reported washed and grain down many places. Gravel road shoulders were also washed and dirt roads were said to be almost impassable. The Little Sioux River rose several inches, according to the maintenance department of the State Highway commission, but rapidly receded. The highway officials said no serious damage was done to roads under their supervision.

The earth drained of its moisture content by the protracted dry spell, was able to soak in most of the water and was a factor in keeping the level of streams down and preventing a flood, it was pointed out. Farmers said the rain "saved" the corn crop which was in a critical condition from a long lack of rain.

Home of Councilman W. R. Johnson was struck by lightning shortly after one o'clock Monday morning and wiring burned out. The small fire was extinguished before damage resulted.

The Rufus Pelton home was reported struck by lightning Saturday, and a small hole burned in the roof of the house. No one was injured and no fire resulted. A radio was burned out and wiring damaged.

The Illinois Central railroad office here said the company's lines had suffered no damage by the storm and no washouts had been reported. Trains were operating on regular schedule.

At the state hospital here Dr. C. F. Obermann said damage was slight. He said corn fields on the institution's farm had been washed badly and some of the grain knocked down by wind and rain.

Law Johnson, district manager of the Iowa Public Service company said the company's lines suffered considerable from the electrical portion of the storm but none was down. He said the lighting frequently "blew out" transformer fuses and struck wires.

The Crowley United Carnival Shows, exhibiting at Wescott park Saturday night in their final appearance of the week, was handicapped by a "lake" of water that formed in the depression where the tents and rides were pitched. Only a small group gathered for the last show. Trucks were not able to load the equipment and move before Monday morning.

Damage was caused to the interior of Lincoln Junior high school and a large number of books and school equipment was soaked Saturday afternoon and Monday morning. The new roof on the building not yet completed could not hold off the heavy downpour. According to J. C. Hoglan, school superintendent, prompt work of Custodian Lyman Simpson and his crew was responsible for preventing further damage. Much water had to be bailed out of the second story and workmen began finishing touches on the roof Monday morning.

At Quimby, corn was down in a number of fields and acres of farm land under cultivation were washed, it was reported. Some hail was reported Saturday, but no damage was caused by it. Several homes were endangered as torrents of water poured off hillsides into cellars. Home of Miss Julia Drake was completely surrounded by water and the basement flooded. The water reached up to the kitchen door but did not enter the first floor. The home of Mrs. Clara Hubbard, also was surrounded by water and the basement flooded. Gardens throughout the area were reported ruined in a number of places. The south part of town was described as "a lake" and wind knocked down a number of tree branches. Other citizens who reported damage to gardens and had yards full of water were: I.N. Leonard, A. L. Smith, W. A. Simmons, Mrs. Elizabeth Van Sickle, Mrs. Fanny Lickiss and F. M. Lynch.

Temperatures fell rapidly at Washta Saturday as the storm descended. From a high of 99, the mercury plummeted to 65. High wind lashed sheets of rain over the town and many yards were reported flooded. Streets ran curb full. The Ed Conklin farm reported one large field of corn had been swept down and the earth washed. Little other crop damage in the sector, however, was reported.

Lightning struck a large tree in front of the Victor Warren resident in Larrabee, skinning off the bark. To the west of this town the rain was heavier and the wind blew down an unestimated number of trees and telephone poles. Some corn was reported down but the damage to the crop was not thought to be large. The storm did not strike at Larrabee and only a rain described as "nice and steady" fell to a depth of two inches.

The telephone office and the residence of Humphrey Means at Meriden were hit by lightning and electrical equipment was damaged. Telephone lines were down in many areas and corn three miles south of town was bent over by the force of the wind and rain. Fields were washed.

Marcus and Aurelia did not report any serious damage, although heavy rains washed corn fields and grain was knocked down in places.

Hail was reported at Paullina where it damaged corn badly to the east. On the west side of the town the wind twisted the tall stalks.

Streams in the county which rose suddenly, overflowed at low points inundating some fields, but in general the water receded rapidly and little damage from floods was thought to have resulted.

50 years ago

A rowdy thunderstorm--boasting heavy rain squalls and sharp lightning bolts--rapped Cherokee with more than 2 inches of rain this morning.

Some street intersections were momentarily flooded and one bolt struck a residential home at 9:30 a.m.

Fire and lightning teamed up for a "double" at the home of Mrs. Leonard Schell at 401 South Eighth.

A disastrous blaze had struck the house where Mrs. Schell and her family lived last winter. They were routed from that building on West Cherry. The structure later was razed.

This morning, a low-flying lightning bolt pierced two sides of the upstairs home occupied by Mrs. Schell and her family.

Cold Bolt

Fire Chief Dale R. Goldie said "this was a cold bolt and there was not fire."

The lightning hit at least one spot in the attic area and battered off a section of plaster.

Mrs. Schell said the bolt "scared" her.

Cherokee firemen rushed to the scene and returned about 30 minutes later.

Meanwhile another bolt apparently had triggered a malfunction in the stop light mechanism at the intersection of main and Second.

For more than 20 minutes Police Chief Wally Erickson waved traffic through the busy intersection manually.

Sweep Water

Some business owners were forced to sweep or mop water from inside the front doors of their downtown establishments.

The downfall brought a rise in Railroad Creek, but it would not be significant unless heavy rains occur just north of Cherokee.

Both Meriden and Larrabee reported steady rain after breakfast time, but nothing nearly as heavy as here.

Cherokee has now received a total of more than 17 inches of moisture on the year.

It was still thundering and raining steadily at 10 a.m. with the total downpour creeping higher.

The low during the night was 68 degrees after a warmer 83 on Wednesday. The 7 a.m. reading was 70.

25 years ago

Cherokee Washington High School has gone to the dogs.

At least that is what people might think if they are to go by the high school's football field next Monday or Tuesday.

About 20 dogs representing 16 police and county sheriff departments will be competing in the 1987 Region 21 Police K-9 Competition, said Bob Leach, organizer of the event.

Money is not the incentive for the dog and the handler to do well. Instead the dog and handler must achieve at least a 70 percent scoring, or 490 points of a possible 700 points to receive certification, said Leach, Cherokee Police Department patrolman.

Three types of certification will be offered at next week's competition. There is the PDI, or Police Dog I certification which is the basic certification. Two upper level certifications are the Police Dog II in Narcotic Detection and Police Dog II in Tracking, Leach said.

"More and more there is a move to make it mandatory for police dogs to be certified," he said.

Some departments have made it mandatory for the dogs on their force to be certified and, if not, the handler will suffer the consequences.

"In some departments if the dog does not receive their certification, the handler will be replaced on the canine force," he said.

Leach looks for all departments to require mandatory certification in the near future. This move would be made to ensure the safety of the public when the police dog is among them, he said.

The dogs will not be the only ones judged during the competition, as the handler will also be judged on how he is able to command the dog.

"If the dog fails, the handler fails; and if the handler fails, the dog fails and the dog never fails," Leach said.

Both dog and handler will have gone through extensive training in preparation for a competition such as this one.

"My current dog became PDI I certified just a couple of weeks ago, and I have been working with that dog since last fall," he said. "You can't start the week before a competition and expect to do well."

During the competition here there is actually a team of three involved. There is the dog, the handler and the agitator, or the one who is "attacked" during the competition.

Judges will determine how the handler will command the dog whether it will be by hand or voice. So both the dog and the handler must be accustomed to the use of both signals, Leach said.

Dogs will be put through a variety of tests to judge agility, ability to find hidden articles and obedience. Obedience is the most important, Leach said.

"Obedience is the very first thing tested for and if the team does not score at least a 70 percent, they will be told 'Nice try, but try again some other time,'" he said.

Obedience will be judged through every phase of the competition, he said.

Portions of the competition will be open to the public and those will be the obedience and agility tests which are the first two tests on Monday starting at 7:30 a.m. and the criminal apprehension test which will be at 9 a.m. Tuesday.

There will be public demonstration given at 7 p.m. Monday evening which will include all of the phases of the competition.

Some portions of the competition are closed to the public to eliminate distractions from them Leach said.

Cherokee police will have entered in the competition and the others from the region made up of Iowa, Nebraska and Minnesota.

Leach expects strong competitions from the teams which will be in the event.

"There will be three dogs from national contenders here, and Dave Hempsen will have the dog here that placed, I believe best overall in last year's national competition," he said.

To be able to compete in the overall competition to be held at Tampa, Fla., in October the team must score 560 points of the total 700, Leach said.

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