The Odessa Record -

This Week in Odessa History


Last updated 7/16/2017 at 10:41pm

100 Years Ago

The Odessa Record

July 13, 1917

Military draft next Saturday. It will only be a few days until the public will know exactly who has been chosen from each community to make up the army of 687,000 men that will be called on to follow the colors to France or other places where they are most needed.

The drawing will be held Saturday and in all probability the state of Washington’s quota by draft for this army will be less than 4000 men. The present population of the United States is estimated to be a little over 103,000,000 and that of the state of Washington, under revised estimates, is hundredths per cent of the whole. Washington therefore would be asked a gross call of 7763, but from this figure must be deducted the 1600 enlisted men the state has furnished in the period allowed the national army and also the strength of the national guard in and out of federal service. On June 30th the bureau of militia affairs reported a total of 2227 national guards in Washington not in federal service and when the number in federal service is added the total will probably run over 3000. Adding to this number of enlisted men one can see that gross figure of the draft leaving approximately 3173 necessary to fill the state’s quota. About twice that number of names will be drawn as the number of exemptions to be allowed is estimated at 50 percent.

The drawing will be done at Washington, where every man who registered in accordance with the selective draft regulations has been assigned one of the numbers that is in a celluloid capsule that is sealed in a big glass jar at the capital. There are 30,000 registration districts in the country and each capsule draws drafts 30,000 men. For instance should number five be drawn from the jar every man in every district having number 5 would be elected to go. This method means that very little drawing will have to be done to draft an army.

Plan to organize Home Guard. A meeting of about fifteen representative citizens was held at the city hall Tuesday evening to discuss the advisability of organizing a home guard at Odessa. It required but few minutes discussion to satisfy all present that such a force would be a benefit to any community while the country was at war and there is a probability that the militia will be called to leave the state for foreign service. Attorney W. M. Nevins, a Spanish was officer, consented to act as commanding officer and drill the squad if organized every week and he is now in correspondence with the state and county authorities as to the mode of procedures for organization and there will be another meeting next Tuesday night at the city hall when Mr. Nevins will report the results of his investigation.

75 Years Ago

The Odessa Record

July 13, 1942

Joe Jantz, extensive wheat grower of the ruff country, reported this week that his first cutting, three rounds with a 20 foot cut around a half section, brought 573 bushels. He is harvesting Black Hull wheat, the new winter variety introduced from Kansas and proven successful in the Waterville area.

The first load of 1942 wheat brought to Odessa was delivered to the Odessa Union Warehouse Co. by Sam Homburg, with a test of 62.

E. C. Weber, chairman of Odessa’s successful rubber drive that was completed on July 10, reports that the Odessa community has turned in 60,714 pounds of waste rubber, approximately 30 tons.

Farmers who board seasonal labor are allowed extra sugar allotments at the rate of half a pound a week per person. The OPA warned, however, that the farmer, when making application, must state that the hired men have surrendered their ration books to him or that they do not have ration nooks. These allowances will be for the period of farm employment only.

A shower was held on Friday in honor of Mrs. Arthur Deife, at the Deife home, with Mrs. Ted Schuh and Miss Lorraine Deife as hostesses. There were 15 guest and many beautiful gifts were given. Refreshments were served.

The county draft board reports more than 200 Lincoln county men eligible for the draft, have been deferred because they are engaged inn farm labor. Their names will come up after harvest.

The picnic held Sunday at Irby, by the Odessa Grange, drew a large crowd, estimated at over 200, in addition to the 25 soldiers invited from Ephrata airport. A program of sports and entertainment was presented.

Called for their preliminary examinations on Friday are Harold R. Lesser, Edwin C. Delzer, Joseph Schafer, J. Gordon Minard, T.C. Anderson and Ernest Zimbelman.

Lawrence “Bud” Giese, with the U.S. Coast Guard at Arlight, Calif., is pending a furlough here. He left California Sunday morning and arrived here Tuesday afternoon, stating that he had enjoyed about 600 rides on his trip home.

50 Years Ago

The Odessa Record

July 13, 1967

Harvest is starting here.Sixty-two loads of wheat hauled into Ruff station of the Odessa Trading Co. Tuesday as the 1967 harvest entered its first week.

The first load of wheat to arrive in Odessa was brought in by Wayne Braun from the Mrs. William Schorzman and Son farm north of town. It was a load of Burt with a 10 percent moisture content and 60.2 test weight, according to Winston Weber, manager of the Odessa Union Warehouse.

Bob Deife brought in the first sample to Odessa Monday and the second load of wheat. His was also from a field of Burt with a 62 lb. test weight and 10 percent moisture content.

First wheat to be received by the OTC came last Friday to the Ruff station. Bill Huddle of Marlin brought in a load of Burt with a 9 percent moisture content and 61 lb. test weight, R.E. Suchland, OTC manager states.

Bur, Omar and Itana are being received by the OTC with the stations at Ruff, Moody and Batum in operation. First week may arrive at Nemo before the end of the week, it is stated.

Those harvesting earlier this week in the Ruff area were Ed Schmauder, Bill Huddle, Clint Claassen, Ed Jasman, Bischoff Bros. and Herb Spies. An average of 35 bushels per acre was being reported.

“Preliminary checking indicates that the grain may be low in test weight this year,” Weber states. “Kernels appear pinched from the excessive heat.” (Temperatures registered 100 and better on the 2nd and 3rd of July-and were headed that direction again Wednesday.)

With a hot wind blowing yesterday, some concern is being expressed by the warehouse men for the spring wheat. Going into the hot weather in a green stage, ripening has been so rapid that the dry sections of the field are showing up. Wheat kernels, unless there is more moisture, won’t fill as well as had earlier been expected.

Most irrigators have pulled their sprinklers from the winter wheat fields. Continued excessive heat now could retard development of that grain, too, from a maximum yield.

Generally the winter wheat crops in this area looks excellent, as compared to recent years.

Grange to build. A new 60x144-foot building will soon be under construction for the Grange Supply of Odessa, Al Wacker, manager, reports this week. The building will be erected on the present site.

Directors of the Grange Supply have awarded a contract to Cook’s Masonry for the building project. The structure will be of brick, block and steel, 60 feet wide, extending all the way to the alley.

Room will be provided for office space, retail displays of merchandise and ample storage.

The contractor expects shipment from the factory of the steel components within two weeks. Construction will start at the back of the lot and move forward, allowing continuation of operation of the business during the construction period.

Odessa wins doubleheader at Ephrata Sunday. Odessa softball players traveled to Ephrata Sunday, returning with two victories, winning the first game 9-7and the second game 7-5. Don Schuh pitched both games for Odessa while Ephrata used Lawrence and Young.

Odessa’s batting power really unleashed in these two games getting seven home runs , three doubles and nine singles.

Tom Wolsborn went 4-for-4 in the first game with two singles and two home runs. Wolsborn and Schuh each collected five hits in eight trips to lead the team.

Corky Kiehn hit two home runs with Marvin Greenwalt, J.P. Luiten and Gayle Martin each getting one home run. Martin’s big blast came in the second game after Luiten tied the game at 5-5 with his homer in the last inning. With a man on base, Martin put it over the left center fence giving Odessa the win.

Greenwalt slammed his in the fourth inning of the first game with two men on to put Odessa ahead to stay.

Odessa’s season record now stands at 17 wins and 3 loses.

25 Years Ago

The Odessa Record

July 9, 1992

Rain delays harvest start.

The sun was out and the sky was blue over Odessa early yesterday morning, but not for long.

It started to cloud up again, and showers began by 10 a.m. Continued cool weather which had persisted for nearly a week again yesterday delayed what a week ago had been expected to be one of the earliest harvest starts on record.

Hot, dry weather throughout most of June had hastened ripening and some wheat growers had begun harvesting their crops as early as June 29.

Grain began trickling into Odessa elevators and outlying stations until last Thursday, when nearly an inch of rain fell throughout the region, halting all cutting until this past Tuesday, when a few combines ventured into the fields.

Temperatures hovered in the low-to-mid-70s throughout most of the week, with last Sunday’s high reaching only 64 degrees. This and intermittent showers have not allowed the ripened wheat to dry out.

Meanwhile, most of the irrigated crops are at least two weeks away from being ready to harvest. In fact, some growers still had the water on this week.

There is a wide disparity in yields this year. Warehouse operators say not enough grain has been received to issue an accurate reading on averages of dryland wheat. It is know, however, that yields are only average. Late May frosts seriously damaged wheat heads and June’s dry spell shriveled kernels.

On the other hand, most irrigated wheat was less affected by the frosts and the heat and normal yields are generally in prospect.

Alzheimer’s not an ethnic disease. There is not a particularly high frequency or incidence of Alzheimer’s disease among Volga Germans and the brain disorder is not restricted to any particular ethnic group, a neurologist who is an expert in the field said last week.

Dr. Thomas D. Bird, of the Neurology Medical Center, who has been studying the occurrence of Alzheimer’s among descendants of Volga German immigrants in the united States, said last week that the disease is not confined to any one ethnic group and that he doubts that is of particularly high frequency among Germans from Russia.

Bird spoke at the national convention of the American Historical Society of Germans from Russia held in Seattle. Several Odessa and Big Bend area members of the society attended the meeting.

Bird has conducted research among families of Volga German origin, including the descendent’s of the George Kissler family of Odessa. George Kissler came to Odessa in 1907. He was a native of Frank, a Volga German community, which along with Walter, a neighboring village, is where about 45 percent of Odessa’s German Russian immigrants originated.

Another researcher, Igor Pleve, a present-day Volga German who since the end of the

Communist regime in Russia has begun extensive studies of Volga German family histories, is collaborating with Bird in researching a possible link between the high incidence of Alzheimer’s disease among some Volga German descendants in the United States today and their ancestor in Russia 150 years ago.

The Kissler family is a subject of that research. George Kissler is believed to have suffered from this disorder, and two of his sons and daughters also were victims. Three cousins were also stricken by the disease.

Pleve has been delving into recently opened archives to find that there were particularly high rates of dementia among the inhabitants of Frank and Walter 150 years ago. Alzheimer’s was not known at the time. It was in 1907 that Dr. Alois Alzheimer in Germany defined the disease.

It is the link between the Volga Germans in Frank and Walter more than a century ago and those in this country today afflicted with Alzheimer’s that interest bid and Pleve, Bird says Alzheimer’s is a familial disease. He says it is not restricted to any one ethnic group. In fact, he doubts that it is a disease that is of particularly high frequency among Germans from Russia.

“I don’t think your group as a whole has an increased frequency of Alzheimer’s disease,” he wrote last year in an article appearing in the Journal of the American Historical Society of Germans from Russia. Bird has spoken to last year’s convention of the society held in Sacramento, just as he did this year in Seattle.

“What we suspect is that there is one gene for familial Alzheimer’s disease which has existed in some ancestor way back,” he stated, “probably many hundred years ago and that this has been passed on from generation to generation.”

Bird said he believes that probably all of the Volga German families with a high incidence of Alzheimer’s are related. They may all be distant cousins and have a common early ancestor, he said.

“Perhaps back in Germany hundreds of years ago it was a single person who had the gene for Alzheimer’s disease and this has reoccurred and been passed down through generations,” Bird stated.

This is the focus of his and Pleve’s research. Their studies could lead to the isolation of the mutant gene from a common ancestor, and this could be the key leading to a cure for the disease’s genetic form.


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