Opera House funds and nickel Cokes

A look back at news items through the years

By Tim Colliver - [email protected]

Editor’s note — We’re continuing our tradition of taking a look back each Saturday at some of the important, interesting or even odd events as they were reported during the same week throughout the years, along with interesting advertising features from back in the day.

This week in 1895, the Hillsborough Gazette reported on the Democrat entries for the November election, saying that “an enthusiastic convention put a ticket in the field” and that “the issue is between the people of Highland County and the gang whose methods have impoverished the country.”

J.C. Spargur announced the grand opening sale of millinery goods at his Hillsboro store, featuring new ideas, new goods and new styles for the fall of 1895.

There was an important notice in the personals advising that the last payment of donations to the Opera House Fund was due and payable at the Farmers & Traders Bank on or before Oct. 1, and that it was important that the payments be made promptly so the committee constructing a new opera house in Hillsboro could cancel its obligations to Mr. Bell.

The blacksmith shop of the late Thomas North, situated on West Main Street, one block east of Schermer’s livery stable, was for sale, described as having 20 feet of road frontage and 70 feet deep with a brick building on the property. In order to settle North’s estate, the paper said the property would be sold cheap.

In news from Harrisburg, it was reported that C.D. Harris was very poorly, and that Mrs. Miller met with a serious accident the previous week. While out in the yard, the 89-year old woman fell and broke both her hip and left leg, but “owing to her advanced age, her recovery was doubtful.”

This week in 1941, the Hillsboro Press-Gazette reported that there had been a big rush in the issuance of marriage licenses in Highland County for late September, due to a new law requiring a medical examination that was going into effect the following week.

An ad for the Colony Theatre proclaimed “those funatics are here again” as Bud Abbott and Lou Costello were starring in “Hold That Ghost,” which also featured The Andrews Sisters and Ted Lewis and his Entertainers.

Caldwell’s in Hillsboro had new fall hats on sale from $1.19 to $1.95, and big savings on Scotch plaids for dresses and skirts for just 29 cents a yard.

Highland County had been soaked by two days of rain, which the paper reported as dropping over an inch of rain in 36 hours, but with no noticeable drop in temperatures due to the high humidity.

At the A & P food store on South High Street, a three-pound bag of Eight O’ Clock coffee, ground fresh in the store, was 49 cents; Wildmere butter in the one pound roll was 36 cents; and Marvel enriched bread in the one and half-pound loaf, was three for a quarter.

For busy housewives, the Coca-Cola Bottling Works in Hillsboro said there was always time to put down the broom and dust mop and enjoy “the pause that refreshes,” with an ice-cold eight ounce bottle for a nickel.

Uncle Sam was calling, even though Pearl Harbor was a little over two months away, and admonished people to collect every pound of scrap material that they could to aid in the defense program. Iron, copper, aluminum, old tin, newspapers, magazines, cardboard, old tires and just about anything that would go to the dump was wanted by Hillsboro Junk & Auto Parts.

Folks thinking about taking an end of summer vacation were told that they would be glad they waited if they rode Greyhound, since a round trip ticket to Washington, D.C. was $14.05, a trip to New York City only, out and back to St. Louis was $11.65, and round trip to Cincinnati was $2.

This week in 1984, the Hillsboro Press-Gazette reported that showing at the Colony Theatre, with all seats $2 Saturday and Sunday until 6 p.m., was “The Karate Kid.”

Down U.S. Route 50 in Allensburg, the Roselawn Drive-In Theatre was featuring for seven big nights of Bill Murray and Dan Aykroyd in “Ghostbusters” with admission just $1 per person.

A recession was over and Merchants National Bank said they had your key to a new car with three- and four-year loans on 1985 models. Those interested could get a 36-month loan at a “great new low rate” of 13.5 percent and a 48-month loan for an interest rate of 14 percent.

A photo on page six showed nine of the surviving members of the 1922 Hillsboro High School graduating class, gathering for their 62nd annual class reunion.

Footballs were flying and at Rax restaurant. The Hillsboro High School cheerleaders urged patrons to “cheer the Indians on to victory” by clipping the coupon and enjoying two big Rax roast beef sandwiches for $2.69.

Defense paid off for Greenfield in Friday night football, as the paper reported that in the 1985 “battle for Highland County” the Tigers outplayed the Indians and handed the Tribe its first loss of the year by a score of 6-0.

This week in 2007, The Times-Gazette reported that a drought was forcing farmers to resort to baling their cornfields since many barely had one cutting of hay that summer.

The interim director of Highland County Children Services told commissioners that it was already $100,000 over budget, and asked for additional funding to get it through the remainder of the year. Wendy Jacobs told commissioners the agency would need up to $85,000 to compensate staff and foster parents through years’ end.

Money concerns were top of the mind at Southern State Community College as administrators and faculty were at the bargaining table, since instructors had been working without a contract and the deadline of Oct. 31 was looming.

Professional skateboarder Doug Brown was returning to Hillsboro for what the paper called an “encore performance,” with the sports professional saying skateboarding “promotes character and personal development, and besides that, it’s just plain fun.”

The boys in the purple and gold were ready to celebrate homecoming in Greenfield as the Tigers were hosting Washington Court House in Friday night football. Nichole Eubanks was crowned homecoming queen before the game unfolded on McClain Field.

In Hillsboro, the 1-4 Indians were preparing to mix it up with the 3-2 Blanchester Wildcats in what was being described as a “physical contest” as Hillsboro hit the road for a two-game road trip.

Reach Tim Colliver at 937-402-2571.

A look back at news items through the years

By Tim Colliver

[email protected]