The Odessa Record -

This week in Odessa history


Ten tied for first prize in 1920 census contest

The Odessa Record announced there were 10 winners in a contest sponsored by the Farmers & Merchants Bank to guess Odessa’s population as counted in the official U.S. census of that year.

Ninety-three years ago, Odessa was about the same size it is today, with about 1,000 people. The bank announced the contest at the beginning of the year and there were many entries.

The winning number was 1,050 and 10 citizens had submitted that figure.

Official returns of the 1920 census received Saturday, credits Odessa with a population of 1,050 people, an increase of 165 over the census of 1910 or 18.6 percent. While not quite as large as many had expected, it is generally acknowledged to be a good, healthy growth. Odessa was one of the first towns its size to get an official report on its population, probably because secretary H.W. Rieke of the Odessa Commercial Club has requested as early a date as possible so that winners in the census might be awarded their prizes.

Ten contestants tied for first place, naming the exact population of the town.

Tying for first place were Anna Frank, Mary Frank, Harold Hinzman, Flobelle Lenhart, J.C. Michaelsen, Albert Ramm, Tolbert Schimke, C.C. Schirber, Pearl Seefried and Marial Stillwell.

100 Years Ago

From The Odessa Record

July 18, 1913

With an attendance of more than three hundred people at the several services last Sunday, Odessa’s new German Lutheran church was dedicated and used for the first time. The dedication proper was performed by the pastor, Rev. Wm. Rhode, and those who assisted him were Rev. H. Wittrock, of Ritzville, Rev. H. Rieke, of Marcellus and Professor A. Meyer of the Pacific Lutheran seminary of Olympia.

The banner wheat crop of the Odessa country is now being harvested and the headers and big combines can be seen on every hand getting in probably the largest crop of grain ever raised in this country.

75 Years Ago

From The Odessa Record

July 21,1938

Wheat fires have threatened several wheat fields in the area. The first fire of any consequence was at one of the John Hemmerling ranches, destroying 30 acres of wheat.

At the C.H. Graedel ranch fire started in stubble and was stopped with the aid of a disc plow before it could reach the wheat.

Finney Field, the proposed new athletic ground for Odessa, is almost a certainty, according to an enthusiastic report made at the Wednesday commercial club meeting.

The field, approximately 40 acres, is owned by G.W. Finney, who holds it at $500.

50 Years Ago

From The Odessa Record

July 18,1963

When Odessa councilman Carl Ryan voted with the rest of the council at a recent meeting to allow town clerk Sharon Hester a sum of money to re-do the garden area in front of the Community Center, he and the rest of the council approved her plan. He was less certain the idea was a good one as he and Jack Hester volunteered to make the plan a reality.

Angles and distinct outlines are evident throughout the construction area at the new high school, with vertical planes rising to established rooflines, and connections made between new building and older ones. Work is estimated to be a week or more ahead of schedule toward completion, now foreseen prior to Thanksgiving.

10 Years Ago

From The Odessa Record

July 17, 2003


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