DAYS OF YORE: Week of February 1, 2024

10 years ago—

Do you remember when you noticed that the City Parks in Fossil and Mitchell had been beautified, and landscaping spruced up? What about the weekend when the Pioneer Museum in Spray was teeming with volunteers giving it a fresh coat of paint? Well, those beautification projects were the results of a group of 25 volunteers participating in the 2011 Ford Institute Community Building Program.

25 years ago—

From Spray Facts and Fallacies written by Virginia Humphreys, a retired Mitchell teacher: Sally Bourgeois gave a watercolor class at The Rock in Spray. Attending the class were Peg Humphrey of Fossil, Jonna McKay of Condon, Cheryl Jennison, Linda Brewer, Candy Humphreys, Barbi Snell, Cindy Frazier and Virginia Humphreys. The class was very relaxed and fun. Sally had raw material to work with as far as I was concerned since my art work has been confined to a red pencil on students’ papers.

Students in kindergarten through sixth grade at Condon Grade School were treated to a visit by the owner of a pet store in The Dalles. Mary’s Canaries brought birds, a hedgehog, a baby boa constrictor, a rabbit and an iguana to show the students a fascinating presentation.

The Fossil ladies’ pinochle club got together for a fun time at Eloise Mortimore’s home. Virginia Sitton and Marilyn Mabe had pinochles, Sharlene Hubbell won high. Janet Nelson won second. Karen Cossiitt won low. Rollene Allen and Nancy Misener just warmed their seats!

50 years ago—

Raymond Gates, Wheeler County Commissioner from Spray for thirteen years, resigned his post January 2, 1974. Being County Commissioner does not work with Ray’s plans of being retired and living the quiet life. David Sitton, 1964 WHS graduate, and owner-operator of the Sitton Motor Company in Fossil, has accepted the Court’s appointment to fill out Ray’s term.

(Another problem in Mikkalo…) Postmaster H. Madsen spoke up at a recent council meeting and stated that unless a leash law for dogs was passed in the city, no mail would be delivered to any house because of numerous vicious dogs roaming the streets and threatening local postmen. Irate citizen Harriett Madsen interrupted the proceedings by loudly stating she possessed a dog for her own personal protection and did not intend to tie him up. She was ruled out of order by Mayor G. Madsen and forcibly ejected from the council chambers by Patrolman Madsen.

75 years ago—

Cecil Cronin, who has been driving the Igo school bus for the past three years, and has over 30,000 miles without mishap to his credit, reports his record was broken last Monday when he had to turn his charges over to someone else’s care. It seems that Cronin traded busses with Ira Britt, driver of the Mayville bus, and the gas line on Britt’s bus, chose that morning to freeze almost shut. It worked fine until it got to the Blaine Maley ranch but from there to the Luren Maley place it sputtered and bucked. Luren took the youngsters and Cronin to town and by the afternoon Ira’s bus was back in town and exchanged for the “old reliable” once more. Donna Smith remarked to Mr. Cronin on the way to town that morning, “Isn’t it too bad we don’t have our old Ford, Mr. Cronin?”

Asher Montague and Earl Cramer were snowed in last week when they went to the Tom Cimmiyotti ranch to help him tag his sheep. They managed to tag half of the band before the chinook wind blew the road shut and filled the creek to such an extent that crossing was impossible. However, relief came in the form of the county road crew just as the chewing tobacco was about to give out.

100 years ago—

Jake Larch denies all ownership of the slick and slippery hill that cussing motorists insist on calling “Larch’s Hill”. He says all that he owns in that disreputable piece of road is the fence posts that motorists have taken from his roadside fence to throw into the muddy ruts. Yes, Jake has no hill.

A glance at the displays in the main street store windows leave one in doubt whether to buy Christmas goods or Valentines. Dave Cottmire has Christmas fruit cakes and John Jackson and Glenn Graves have Cupids appealing to the public from their windows. I think it’s the little love god for me.

An election will soon be held in the Fossil school district to vote upon issuing bonds amounting to $25,000 to build a new school building. A Portland architect has drawn plans providing for an eight-room building of one and a half stories, of brick or stone. If the bond carries, it is planned to have the new school ready for use by September 1, 1924.

From the Condon Times Dec. 1908—Jan. 1909

The hens are showing a disposition to call off the boycott and appear to be getting busy again. Biddy has no aversion for work during severe weather.

E.A. Stinchfield has been nursing a very disagreeable toothache this week. Dr. Coryell came over and removed the disturber.

James R. Jones was in town on Tuesday having his pension papers attended to. No laborer is more worthy of his hire than the old soldier who fought bravely for the Union. Nevertheless we have the same respect for those who wore the Grey; they too fought for what they thought was right.


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