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Maquoketa Band Director Kent Crawford and his student musicians practice for their spring concert in this photo from 1981. Members of the symphony band, wind ensemble, and jazz ensemble were scheduled to perform in the high school gym that evening. 

10 YEARS AGO – 2011

“Keep Your Heart Healthy” with Life’s Simple 7. #1 Get active. #2 Eat healthier foods. #3 Lose weight. #4 Stop smoking. #5 Control cholesterol. #6 Manage blood pressure. #7 Reduce blood sugar.

Search continues for a surgeon. “One of the reasons we’re looking at that is because the vast majority of surgical work we do is outpatient surgery,” hospital CEO Curt Coleman said.

20 YEARS AGO – 2001

Ann Heinrich, Maquoketa FFA president, is a fitting model for the school and organization. Her refreshing personality and enthusiasm no doubt carry over to the more than 120 members at MHS.

A fire believed to have started from spontaneous combustion damaged a wood-finishing area of the Woodform, Inc. plant in Maquoketa’s industrial park.

30 YEARS AGO – 1991

Maquoketa High School will receive $55,000 from Clinton Community College for a computer lab at the school next year. Principal Dick Wold said the funds will supply about 18 computers to the lab room.

Bob Stratton can get messages to and from people in the Persian Gulf via the ham radio grapevine. He said hams handle the messages as a service to the moms and dads, spouses, and sweethearts. With letters taking sometimes weeks, the radio link can be faster.

More than $35,000 was cut from proposed police and fire budgets by Maquoketa city councilmen as they began work on the 1991-92 budget. Also, $2,500 shaved from the total designated for the library.

40 YEARS AGO – 1981

Four men gathered after the 1971 Maquoketa Athletic Banquet. They were Francis Johnston, who was athletic director and track coach; Bill Fleming, who just completed his fourth season at MCHS as head basketball coach; Dick Wold, athletic director and head baseball coach at MCHS; and Jack Marlowe, who has been involved in the sports department of Maquoketa Newspapers since spring 1961.

West Platt Street assessments were deemed unfair. The city’s share of state and federal highway funds and general obligation bonds should be used for the vast amount of the construction cost. Property owner assessments should be minimal.

Ad: Eleanor’s Rose Garden Restaurant open for noon lunches 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. and evenings 5 p.m. – 10 p.m.  Serving complete dinners, salad bar included.

50 YEARS AGO – 1971

Miss Melicia Cabel’s fourth-grade room at the youth center has taken on a yearlong project to remember people in nursing homes who have no relatives. On Feb. 11, the group delivered goodies to eleven residents of three nursing homes in honor of St. Valentine’s Day. The children and their teacher are to be commended for this fine personal service.

Scott Larry, son of Mr. and Mrs. Larry Berner, was born on Jan. 15 at the Jackson County Public Hospital. On Jan. 29 he visited the dentist. Not many two-week-old babies are born with two teeth!

Jim Dubert, Lynn Tonderum and Steve Roe were members of the livestock judging team which ranked Gold Emblem at the State Fair.

60 YEARS AGO – 1961

One of the most attractive farm homes between Maquoketa and Bellevue on Iowa 62 (the Andrew Road) is the residence of Mr. and Mrs. Clarence A. Irwin, Sr., just south of Andrew.

Fire Thursday destroyed a large barn on the J. J. Marousis farm 2½ miles north of Maquoketa on Highway 61 – but it was a deliberate attempt on the part of Mr. Marousis and Jack Shady, the tenant on the 160 acre farm. The building, which Marousis estimates to have been “between 75 and 100 years old,” was removed from the premises because it was about ready to collapse.

The Rev. George L. Hanusa of Alta Vista accepted a call to be pastor of the Salem Lutheran Church in Andrew.

70 YEARS AGO – 1951

“The Dripolators” – even “drippier,” zanier, and more comical than ever – will culminate three years of performing all over Iowa, in parts of Illinois and Wisconsin.  Admission is 50 cents for adults and 25 cents for children. Members of the “Dripolators” – all local talent are Bill Alden, Gordon Smith, Ralph Lange, Jr., and C. V. Cody Phillips. (Ralph Lange Jr. passed away at age 91 in November 2020.)

John Henderson, a native of Coggon, is the new Jackson County extension director. Mr. Henderson, who assumed his duties Feb. 1, was employed as youth assistant in Buchanan County for 17 months prior to his coming here to succeed Lester Davis, who resigned the first of the year.

Tait Cummins, sports director for radio station WMT in Cedar Rapids, will deliver the commencement address here on May 26 at rural eighth-grade graduation exercises.

80 YEARS AGO – 1941

Few Jackson County citizens are aware that during the past 3½ years, 33½ miles of paving have been placed in this county, and perhaps even fewer are aware of the fact that no other Iowa county nears this total mileage during that period. The lion’s share of the credit for this huge program lies with A.A. Hurst, member of the state highway commission who has during the past 3½ years built for himself a remarkable record on the state commission.

Miss Theora Siegal of Andrew, a graduate of Wartburg College, will begin her new duties as assistant secretary in the city clerk’s office Feb. 15.

Winter mortality of chinch bugs has been good in Jackson County. However, it would be a wise precaution now for farmers to plan fields so that small grain and corn can be kept as far apart as possible, County Agent Krause reported. “The job of constructing creosote barriers this summer to keep bugs from leaving adjoining cornfields can be greatly reduced simply by keeping such borders to a minimum,” he said.

90 YEARS AGO – 1931

Preston: Our neighboring town of Preston was visited by a destructive fire shortly after midnight Thursday morning, the Fred King department store being entirely consumed. A call was sent to our local department and met with ready response. The King store was the largest in Preston and for many years had been a credit to the city and community. Immediately over the King store was the Masonic Hall which with a barber shop on the first floor of the building, was of course consumed. The building on this same site was destroyed by fire in 1903.

Des Moines, Feb. 14: The house of representatives today remembered Valentine’s Day by presenting a bouquet of carnations to Mrs. Caroline Pendray, representative from Jackson County. Rep. Anthony Tepaske of Sioux County made the presentation speech, saying that the gift was in memory of all the womanhood of Iowa, “both those who are living and those who have gone down the long trail.”

Lost is found, Petersville: Clement Spain, 26-year-old son of Mrs. Cornelius Spain of Petersville, disappeared from his place of abode in. His disappearance was broadcast from WOC at Davenport a number of times. He had not been in good health for some time and was making his home with his aunt while taking chiropractic treatments. He was found days later in north Clinton.

100 YEARS AGO – 1921

The railway passenger fare was raised Feb. 1 to 3.6 cents per mile to conform with the rates that have been in effect in other states for some time, so the Iowa people can prepare to dig for this extra 6 cents per mile, or ride in an auto, which most everybody does if the weather is good.

A committee representing the Federated Women’s Club and citizens, met with Mr. Morehead and secured an option on the 16-acre tract of land which circumscribes and includes the famous Morehead or Burt’s Caves, and the uncertainty which has attended the purchase of this beauty spot by the State has faded away and full assurance of its permanent acquisition is a source of pleasure to all of our progressive citizens. The price set apart for this tract was, we understand, $7,500.

An old pioneer gone to his eternal reward. William Elsner was born in Schleswig Holstein, Germany, Feb. 18, 1839, and passed away at the hospital in Maquoketa Feb 10, 1921, at the mature age of 87 years, 11 months and 24 days. He came to America with his parents at the age of 16 years and located at Bridgeport, later moving to Maquoketa, where he followed the cooper trade for a number of years. He then went into the mercantile business in Maquoketa, when the cooper trade was no longer profitable, until about 16 years ago, when he moved to Nashville, Iowa, and continued in the mercantile business.