The Odessa Record -

This Week in Odessa History

Bootleggers fined, troops fight in France, meat market robbed


August 30, 2018

100 years ago

The Odessa Record

August 23, 1918

Fined for bootlegging. Ben Miller and Joe Whitehall were arrested Saturday night by Marshal Jenks and brought before Justice Schoonover charged with bootlegging. The men were caught in the old tailor shop, the Drumheller building, with two full pints and others partly full of whiskey and at the trial, Whitehall disclaimed ownership of the liquor and said that he had merely gone there to get a drink and the judge accepted his story as plausible and let him off with a fine of $20 and costs. Miller at first pleaded not guilty and was placed under a bond of $250 to appear before the superior court. Monday, however, he decided to change his plea to guilty and was given the limit fine of the justice court, $100 which he paid and was discharged.

An early morning fire. the fire alarm was sounded about seven o’clock Tuesday morning and the fire laddies as well as numerous town people turned out in a hurry to answer the summons. The run was a long one, the blaze being at the O. Finstad residence in the extreme west end of town, so that the firemen were obliged to double up and only one line of hose could be laid from the hydrant in that vicinity. This took time, but fortunately the fire was one of those stubborn ones which originate from a defective flue and was confined so the air had no chance to fan the flames and it was soon under control. The fire originated in the kitchen, an addition built on the main building which was not damaged. In the kitchen it was different for there everything except the stove that was not ruined by fire was damaged by water. Mr. Finstad estimates his loss at $250 all of which is covered by insurance.

American troops capture railway. With the American armies in France. The American troops advanced their line a third of a mile on a front of a mile and a quarter immediately east of Fismes, driving the Germans from the railroad and capturing what has been an advantageous position.

The boche [Editor’s note: German soldiers] had dug in along the railroad skirting the south bank of the Vesie and had established numerous machine gun nests. The Americans were in a dip south of the main Soissons-Rheims highway. They had to advance across open country toward the railway.

A stiff barrage was put down on the railway at 5 a.m., the infantry starting their advance simultaneously. Quickly they topped the highway and charged across the open space in the face of a terrific machine gun fire. The attack was so impetuous it sent the boche running. A heavy enemy barrage was put down on the railway, but the Americans held on.

75 years ago

The Odessa Record

September 2, 1943

Chinese black market. If you think the U.S. Black Market is profitable, take a look at operations in China. A fountain pen costs $10,000 in Chinese currency in Chungking. Even with the Chinese dollar worth only five cents this is $500 in U.S. dollars and a lot of dough to pay for a fountain pen.

You can also understand why U.S. fliers load up with lipstick before going to China. A lipstick brings $5,000 in Chinese dollars in Chungking. This is about $250 in U.S. currency.

This is also why lend-lease has sent a certain amount of silk stockings, champagne, perfume and other luxuries to Chinese war lords. They are sent to counteract similar imports by the Japanese which have a very undermining influence on the war lord worried over maintenance of his love-nest.

Henry Wellsandt legion commander. Henry Wellsandt, former Standard Oil company employee here, was elected state commander of the American Legion at its recent Wenatchee convention. Emil Wellsandt, Ritzville, his brother, was elected delegate to the national convention in Omaha, Neb. next month. Henry Wellsandt is now located at Dayton. Capt. Richard B. Ott, Ritzville, was one of the former state commanders, his term expiring a little more than a year ago.

Heimbigner car stolen Tuesday: While H.G. Heimbigner attended the school board meeting on Tuesday night, thieves made away with his car. The act was seen, but it was supposed members of the family had taken the car.

On the Wednesday it was learned that two transients had been given a ride to town from the Marlin area, and had arrived here at approximately the time of the theft. They were seen trying to get a ride further.

The sheriff’s office was notified. Julius Winter lost the milk from his porch the same evening, but it is not established if the thefts were connected.

Farm squabble ends in court action: A temporary restraining order prohibiting Mr. and Mrs. Harold Lesser from selling a refrigerator, cook stove and oil heater they purchased recently with borrowed money was issued by the Adams county superior court last week, following the filing of a lawsuit by Mr. and Mrs. Conrad Lesser, his parents, states the Ritzvillle Journal-Times.

The parents allege that their son and daughter-in-law agreed to farm a 1,120 acre ranch eight miles northwest of Ritzville one year for a salary of $1000, and that they advanced them $350 to buy the refrigerator and stoves, and $204.70 to buy an automobile, bottled gas and other items they needed.

The complaint further states that the couple had not paid back any of the money and that they said they were going to leave the farm August 23, nine days before the year was up, and that they had sold the stoves and refrigerator.

The complaint states that the couple threatened to destroy the stoves and other equipment if prevented from selling it. The older Lessers seek a judgment of $204.70 and a permanent order forbidding the defendants from selling articles.

Burkhart acquitted by Fairbanks jury: Stewart Burkhart, Spokane, who was picked up by the F.B.I. and returned to Alaska last spring, with George E. Hearing of Davenport making the trip as assistant to the United States Marshal, was acquitted on a charge of first degree murder for the alleged slaying of Wm. James White, a Fairbanks, Alaska, taxi driver. A jury disagreed in June and he had to await the August term.

50 years ago

The Odessa Record

August 29, 1968

Water and talent shows to be Friday night features here: A water show at the city pool and a talent show at the high school auditorium are to be featured in Odessa Friday evening to which the public is invited.

The water show has been set for 6:00 P.M. at the city pool Friday evening. A 45 minute show has been put together by the life guards and local swimmers who have been using the facility throughout the summer. Although the pool closed for the season Sunday, practice sessions for the water-show have continued this week. No admission will be charged for the water show.

The public is also invited to attend the annual talent show Friday night. A new site for the program has been selected, Mrs. Ruth Suchland, talent chairman states, and that is the high school auditorium. The participants will find it easier to perform this year and the public will be able to hear and see the talent presentations in better perspective.

The talent program will begin at 7:30 p.m. at the high school. An admission charge of $1 for adults and 50 cents for high school students will be charged, according to Don Evavold, sponsoring organization representative. Grade school children will be admitted without charge.

More talent numbers can be accepted, Mrs. Suchland states, right up until program time Friday evening.

A feature of Friday nite’s program will be the presentation of the $1,000 award check to the Town and Country Junior Women’s club by the Sears-Roebuck Foundation and the General Federation of Women’s clubs. Representatives of the two organizations are expected to be here to make the presentation. The award in the national community improvement contest was announced in early June in Boston, Mass. The funds must be used for further community improvement.

Burglars hit Fode’s market: Burglars hit Fode’s Market Tuesday night between 11:30 and 12:00. Entrance was gained by breaking the lock off the back door, according to Mr. Fode.

Apparently after money, the only thing which appeared to be missing from the premises was $2.00, funds which had been collected in the Odessa chamber fall festival ticket sale. The proprietor stated that all his drawers had been gone through. Fingerprints were obtained.

Time of the break-in was pinpointed by the fact that Henry Weber noticed Fode’s new lock on the back door when he closed the Pastime at 11 p.m.. He even checked to see that it was locked. The night marshal, Gary Roberts, noticed activity in the alley as he went on duty just before midnight, but was unable to apprehend two suspects at that time.

Governor Evans to stop here tonight: Governor Dan Evans will be making a flying visit to Odessa on Thursday, August 29. He will be welcomed by Odessa young people, and will visit with them for around 15 minutes before going to the Veterans of Foreign Wars reception room for an informal get-together with friends and other interested people. Any young person wishing to meet the Governor should contact Linda Diefe for further plans.

Refreshments will be served at the VFW club, and the Governor will give a short talk during the hour that he will spend with the people of Odessa and the surrounding community. Everyone is welcome to attend the event and visit the Governor, according to Al Fink, chairman.

25 years ago

The Odessa Record

August 26, 1993

Mall opens September 9. Record Square, Odessa’s new mini-mall which will provide 2,000 square feet of retail space, will be open for the first time on September 9.

The occasion will be the international rugby match slated for Odessa that day. It is expected to draw hundreds of spectators from all over the state.

Grand opening will be the following Thursday, September 16, the first day of the 23rd annual Deutschesfest.

Several retailers have already taken space in Record Square. This includes a gift shop, wood-craft shop, wood arts display, a shop featuring Odessa-made chocolates and a book store. It is expected that arrangements will be completed for the opening of a wine and cheese shop. An espresso bar will be another feature.

Also expected to be a part of the new mall will be a video outlet and an antique dealership.

For Deutschesfest, space in the building expected to be leased later will be available on a temporary basis for exhibitors of quality merchandise during Deutschesfest. Three exhibitors already have reserved space.

Record Square occupies the west half of Odessa’s oldest brick business building, built in 1901 as the First National Bank Building. The space was occupied for many years by the Odessa Trading Company’s retail hardware store. Most recently, it was the location of The Odessa Record office on the First Avenue side and of Ruth’s Cafe, facing Division Street.

German visitors enjoy tranquility here: Odessa is quiet and peaceful, which is quite a change in pace for Eugene and Erma Heimsch, who are here from Germany to visit her aunt and uncle, Lydia and Jacob Knoell.

The Heimsches hail from Mohringen, a suburb of Stuttgart, and they are used to the hustle and bustle of that big city.

Eugene, a native of Germany, spent 46 years as a machinist for the Zeiss Ikon camera works. Erma was born in Dennewitz, Bessarabia, of German parents whose forebears had migrated there, where they lived for 123 years. Given the choice in 1940 of remaining in the Russian-controlled area or returning to their homeland, Erma’s family opted to go back to Germany. Looking back, they believe that was a wise choice, as many Germans who stayed were deported to Siberia.

Eugene and Erma met and married after World War II. While Eugene pursued his career with Zeiss, Erma remained at home until their two children were grown, after which she worked for 10 years as a bookbinder. Their daughter is employed for an airline and flies to the United States occasionally. Their son is an instructor at the junior college level.

The price of gasoline and the size of American cars, even thought they have been down-sized in recent years, impresses the German visitors. In Germany, gasoline, which is sold by the liter, costs the equivalent of $3.60 per U.S. gallon. American cars would be difficult to maneuver in the parking spaces available on streets of German cities. They believe. Volkswagens, Opals and German-made Fords, as well as Stuttgart-built Mercedes are prevalent there.

Odessa’s tranquility appeals to Eugene and Erma, but they miss the swift, efficient German rail passenger service which makes it possible for anyone to board a train in a busy city and be out in the quiet of the countryside in a few minutes.

USDA proposes ban on adding water to grain: The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Federal Grain Inspection Service has proposed prohibiting the application of water to grain except for processing purposes, according to a FGIS announcement.

The prohibition would apply to all grain handlers, not just those receiving official inspection and weighing services under the United State Grain Standards Act.

The FGIS said water, which is sometimes applied to suppress dust, can be too easily misused to increase the weight of grain. Externally applied water also can degrade the quality of the grain.


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