A look back in time

by Diane Rockall

Ninety years ago this month, 1928, the village of Stockbridge and its surrounding communities were bustling with renewed enthusiasm. Newspapers included columns from Plainfield, South Iosco, Munith, Gregory, Unadilla, White Oak and Millville. Ten years after the Great War to end all wars (World War 1) the economy was doing well nationwide, and we were at peace.

Early in February of that year Stockbridge announced an open (to the public) school day. Morning classes were held as usual with spectators looking on. The junior class served lunch, and then in the afternoon spectators were treated to a collection of featured exhibits in the Stockbridge Township Hall. Students from Stockbridge and other surrounding schools staged the event. Exhibits featured chemistry, music, physics, antique collections and “Fancy Work,” to name a few. The Munith report indicated that students from their high school had participated as well.

Glenn and Lantis opened as a direct factory representative for Chevrolet Motors, becoming a forerunner for today’s automobile dealerships. At the time The Coach sold from $585. Prices for the variety of new vehicles ran from $375 to $715.

Carl Hannewald, born in 1853 in Waterloo, died in late January of 1928 in Stockbridge.

Also in ’28, Ford Sales of Webberville suffered a $30,000 fire destroying its sales and service garage.

Thirty years earlier in 1898, G.W. Nichols was selling salt pork for 7 cents a pound. That year the ice harvest at Nichols Lake was 12 inches. Gilliam Mill in White Oak blew up, seriously injuring two. Farmer Frances Jesse bought wood for construction of a new house.

There are no filmed copies of area newspapers in 1958, although children were born, students graduated, businesses went on and people died. An interesting website called Onthisdate.com lists events that occurred in years gone by. In February 1958, the first Explorer 1 was launched and Egypt merged with Syria to become the United Arab Republic. Two days later Gamal Nasser became the first UAR president . Later in the month Ted Williams signed with the Cincinnati Red Sox for $135,000. making him the highest paid major league ball player. In the same month the Dodgers officially became the Los Angeles Dodgers, Inc. and the comic strip BC first appeared. G. Mennen Williams served as governor of Michigan and Dwight David Eisenhower as president of the United States.

In 1988 the weekly Town Crier was filled with articles about the potential construction of a Supercollider in the Stockbridge area. There were meetings in the township hall as well as in the high school. Every paper during the month had some aspect related to the Supercollider as its lead article. Secondary articles discussed general public support, relocation information, and environmental testing. The discussion went on for some time and to this date the Supercollider has yet to be built although one was begun in Texas.

During that time period Robs Pizza, Farmers State Bank, Bob’s Ford, and Dancers were major advertisers, along with many others. Metalform Fitness opened in Munith in the Metalform machine shop owned by Chris Salow.

Diane Rockall

Diane Rockall, a member of the board of directors of the Stockbridge Community News, currently writes “A Look Back in Time” and posts the Police Blotter. She also publishes death notices and obituaries on the website when information is made known to SCN. 

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