The Odessa Record -

This Week in Odessa History

Firefighters; missing issue; zip codes introduced


100 years ago

The Odessa Record

January 12, 1917

Fire boys hold annual meeting. The Odessa fire boys met for their annual meeting and election of officers at city hall Friday night. Secretary Scholer’s fire record showed that during the year 1916, had received seven calls, the largest number in the history of the department, to fires where it was necessary to turn on water. Only one of these, the livery barn fire got beyond control.

Bounty offered for coyotes. On the urgent recommendation of Game Warden W.G. Mathews, the commissioners of Grant County have ordered an appropriation for a bounty of $2.40 on all coyotes killed in the county and presented to the county auditor within the next 30 days. Reports of rabies in the southern part of the county and the loss of a number of valuable beef cattle, owing to infection from coyotes were responsible for the emergency measure.

Council proceedings. Council met in special session Monday, January 8, at the Town Hall at eight p.m. by written notice duly served upon such members thereof. The Odessa Volunteer Fire Department applied to the Council for the payment of the sum of $2.50 for each member of the department attending each fire in Odessa; payment to be made to each member attending as shown by the books of the secretary thereof, and to be made in the same manner as other claims against the town are made.

Another little one gone. Over another happy Odessa home the shadow of a little grave has fallen. Little eight-month-old Ervin Luiten, only son of Mr. and Mrs. John Luiten succumbed Saturday to that dread disease, pneumonia, which has been fatal to a number of small children the past month. Death took place Saturday at the St. Luke’s hospital at Spokane where he was taken last week to secure the attention of a specialist in children’s diseases but it was of no avail. It was destined that the death angel should come from unknown lands and claim this little one for his own. The remains were brought to Odessa and funeral services held at the English Congregational church Monday afternoon, Rev. W.S. Pritchard officiating, after which interment took place at the Odessa Cemetery.

75 years ago

The Odessa Record

January 15, 1942

Editor’s note: The January 8, 1942 issue of The Odessa Record is missing from our bound archival book of past issues. We will therefore split the January 15 news into two parts.

Local insurance company passes $3,000,000 mark. The local fire insurance company, the German American Mutual Farmers Fire Insurance Association, has insurance in force of over $3,000,000 it was announced at the Tuesday morning meeting of members.

The report of the secretary, H.H. Rieke, indicates that the assets of the company now total $84,039.67 of which $22,300 is in defense bonds. The directors plan to invest $20,000 more in defense bonds.

No assessment has been levied during the life of the company, since cash on hand has always been sufficient to pay all losses and expenses. Total assets are now the largest in the company’s existence. The state insurance department examiner reports the company in excellent financial condition, states the report.

Directors elected at the meeting included H.H. Rieke, W.C. Raugust and Hy W. Rieke, who will serve with the hold-over members including Fred Geissler, C.E. Weber, David Weber, Emil Wellsandt, Robert Hoefel and H.G. Heimbigner.

Sheriff’s force had many arrests. A resume of the records of the county sheriff’s office, as reported by the Davenport Times-Tribune, for the year 1941, shows that there were 78 persons registered at the jail during that time. These were classified as follows: 1 amnesia victim, 9 petit larceny, 1 insane person, 1 charged with challenging another to a duel, 7 held for other counties, 1 grand larceny, 5 vagrants, 2 no driver’s licenses, 1 escape from the state hospital at Medical Lake, 8 for investigation, 2 for interfering with a public officer, 1 for not having shotgun plugged while hunting, 1 for game violation, 2 for assault and battery and 1 hit and run driver.

Harrington sweeps grade school teams. The Harrington grade school basketball teams went through the Odessa grade school Saturday, winning all but one game, the Odessa seventh grade alone winning, with a score of 15 to 3. The sixth grade lost to Harrington, 12 to 8; eighth grade, 18 to 2, and freshmen, 29 to 10.

50 years ago

Odessa Food Center to reopen next month by new management. Plans were announced this week in Odessa to re-open the recently-closed Odessa Food Center. The announcement was made following the organization of a corporation, Odessa Food Center, Inc. on Monday. Stockholders in the venture are Max Totusek, Charles Carnes and Wayne Walter.

The three men were successful bidders for the merchandise turned over to Federal court in the bankruptcy filing of Merritt Lawson, former operator.

If possible, the new management hopes to have the store in operation by early February. Mr. Totusek reported to the Record Tuesday.

Totusek is the Darigold distributor in Odessa, Carnes owns Smith’s Cafe and Walter is a farmer and auctioneer.

School principal has article accepted for publication. C.P. Holm, principal of the Odessa grade and junior high school was recently informed by the editor of Instructor magazine of the acceptance of an article for publication in that magazine entitled, “Organizing Classrooms for Higher Interest.”

The article deals with dividing classes in groups with each child being captain of the group at different intervals and leading the discussion and questioning. Questions that cannot be answered by the smaller groups are put to the whole class. The teacher serves as a leader in directing the ensuing discussion.

Postal rates increase; start new zone system. New rates and a new ZIP code system for identifying zones will go into effect per legislation signed into law by President Johnson, reports Odessa postmaster Mel Schauerman. The rate increases will average about 10 cents a parcel. Under a new system for identifying parcel post zones, a simple chart will be used. The chart, available at all post offices, incorporates ZIP code. Use of ZIP code in the recipient’s address will enable the sender or a mail clerk to quickly determine the proper zone, and thus the rate for the package. The zones are based on the distance a parcel travels the tt2 sectional centers in the country, Schauerman said. The zone can be readily identified because the first three numbers of the ZIP code represent the sectional center. The new rates are expected to provide an additional $74 million a year for the Post Office department.


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