Quick highlights from the journalist history of Franklin County over the past 100 years. Taken from the newspaper archives of the Franklin County Citizen and Preston Citizen.
25 Years Ago, July 17, 1996
The Hometown Reunion will again be held at Benson Park this year and feature the Hart Brothers (Reed and Brett) and their band, said Quint Hart, this year’s organizer. Reed (92) will play the banjo, an instrument he has played for 75 years. “He’ll be there, but he said check the obituaries first,” chuckled Quint.
Since the Cache Valley Theatre Guild started donating costumes for productions in the Worm Creek Opera House, costume mistress, Glenda Swainston has seen a need for space to hold them. “We ran out of space in the theatre,” she said. Presently the costumes are stored in several different places and they look forward to placing them in the addition being added to the Opera House.
Patrons of Main Street Grill were treated to a grand opening celebrating its third anniversary and the purchase of the building by owners Scott and Susan Northridge. The restaurant has new carpet, new table cloths and a new logo. New items will be added to the menu featuring: a lobster/scallop/shrimp scampi dish; barbecue chicken/rib combo; a new chicken dish and fresh salmon daily.
It is now official. The speed limit between Preston and Utah state line is now set at 60 MPH. We asked readers how they felt about this. Responses: I’d rather have it stay at 55. Any increase will result in more accidents and injuries.; People were pretty much going 60 MPH anyway, now it’s legal.; I think it will get traffic going a little quicker.
50 Years Ago, July 22, 1971
The garage at the Don Gailey home south of Preston was destroyed by fire, but volunteer firemen saved the home from damage. Gailey was burning some material in a trash burner when sparks landed in a large pile of old wood behind the garage.
Lee Berquist, chairman of the Franklin County Fair Board, announced this week that the board voted unanimously to include horse pulling as a special event held in the Rodeo Arena. The event will be open to all pulling teams regardless of origin. Chosen to supervise the event as chairman was Claude Howell of Clifton.
Horses and jeeps took to the hills last week for the annual Oneida Stake Fathers and Sons outing. The horseback ride started at 9 a.m. at Strawberry Springs and stopped at noon at Copenhagen Basin where the Jeep ride started. The horsemen had games in the basin and the jeeps took off for Dry Basin and Paris Meadows. On the way, the jeeps stopped at the Ice Caves near the Meadows for a snowball fight.
Edward B. Shaw, M.D. announces with pleasure that Clair R. Cutler, M.D. of Preston joins him in the practice of orthopedic surgery in Pocatello.
75 Years Ago, July 25, 1946
From a field of nineteen contestants, Shirley Whitehead of Franklin was selected by judges to reign as queen of Preston’s 1946 Famous Night Rodeo. Selected as her attendants were Beverly Bell of Preston and Ellen Taylor of Winder. Three thousand spectators witnessed the contest.
The California Packing Corporation will close down the run for the season after nearly four-weeks’ operation. Ivan Geary, superintendent, reports an excellent yield from the 1300 acres of peas which were grown in the county this year. To celebrate the completion of the run the annual Pea Ball will be held at Franklin in the Hobbs barn.
After we published an article asserting that the slot machine racket drains Idaho of as much as $9 million a year, we sat back on our haunches and waited for a reaction. Our story charged that the state, cities and counties were extremely lax in enforcing gambling laws; that racketeers were reaping a golden harvest. We must have been right for no one challenged a single word in the story. Whether this racket continues to be tolerated depends upon the people of Idaho. They can end it now by exerting sufficient pressure on law enforcement officers to force a cleanup.
100 Years Ago, July 20, 1921
The Weston ward father and sons outing will long be remembered here. The outing took place up the big canyon along near the reservoir. Two days were spent in good outdoor recreation, but the tide of pleasure turned when they started to come out Saturday evening. As they were hitching up to come home a terrific storm broke over the happy throng, as they were near the “lone” rock. Glaciers of mud and rock swept down the hillside almost burying the wagons of the pleasure seekers, and they all found shelter the best they could. The old settlers present said that in fifty years they had never seen a storm like it. They all walked down to the mouth of the canyon and there borrowed conveyances to continue their journey homeward, everyone being drenched through with mud and water.
The home of John Winward was struck by lightning during the thunder storm over the weekend. The bolt of lightning struck the wire and came through the ceiling on one of the bedrooms, then freakishly skipped over to another wire and passed out through the ceiling, tearing a large hole in the roof.
The Preston baseball team crossed bats with Soda Springs and lost the game on errors by the score of 7 to 4. Van Ness Hansen pitched for Preston and Lind, an old timer, pitched for Soda Springs.
Recently William G. Nelson of this place celebrated his 90th birthday. His descendants, numbering 65, were present on the occasion to celebrate. He will be honored as one of the six original families who first moved on to the Franklin bench, April 14, 1860. He is honored this July 24 in our celebrations.