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Published Feb 15, May 15, Aug 15, Nov 15

A look back at interesting history from the pages of The Normalite

25 Years Ago
July 18, 1991
• Miller Park Zoo will soon host its ground breaking celebration for the newly built education center. The new facility will allow expansion of several educational programs.
• John Croft, Normal, public relations manager for Growmark, Inc., was presented the Outstanding Service Citation from Region IV of National Vocational Agricultural teacher’s Association. The citation was presented for his significant contributions to agricultural education in the six states of the NVATA Region IV.
He is a member of the Young farmer Program Committee for the American Institute of Cooperation and is the president of the Heartland FFA alumni chapter.
• Solomon Calvin McMurray, 95, died July 14, 1991 at McLean County Nursing Home in Normal.
He was born Feb. 27, 1896, in Neubert Springs, Tenn., a son of William and Mary E. McCammon McMurray. He married Edith L. Witt Sept. 9, 1922, in bloomington. She died July 13, 1985.
Survivors include three sons, Lee, Lexington; Archie, Heyworth; and Dean of Bloomington; five daughters, Elizabeth Kessinger and Lois Hall, Bloomington; Jean Thoennes and Ella Franks, Normal; and Edith Sparrow, El Paso.
Mr. McMurray was a retired employee of the Illinois Central Gulf Railroad and the Chicago and Alton Railroad. He served in the U.S. Navy in World War I.

50 Years Ago
July 29, 1966
• Sidewalk superintendents are having a heyday in Normal. New buildings and remodeling jobs are in progress all over but the concentration on North and Beaufort Streets is quite a challenge to any man, woman or child who just can’t resist the hobby of watching another fellow work.
The Citizens Savings and Loan  offices are reaching final stages but the foundation was just going in the first of the week for The Caboose. Randall’s has a sparkling store front while Hildebrandt’s has chosen a changed interior.
The Post Office is the site of hammers and saws and lots of activity and very soon the Town’s street equipment will be moving from Ash Street to new quarters. The Normal Improvement Corporation has bought the property on the north side of Phoenix from the Illinois Central to near Linden. The old Dillon Barn, which more recently has had many occupants, will be the new home for the street department. The remaining ground will be used for parking.
•  Mr. and Mrs. Garfield Baker will celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary Sunday afternoon in the lounge of the University Christian Church.
With the exception of a few years spent in farming in Vernon County Mo., they have lived in DeWitt and McLean Counties. When they retired from farming they moved to Normal in 1928. Mrs. Baker taught school for 22 years. Mr. Baker’s last active work was with the old American Foundry and Furnace Co.
They are the parents of Herbert Baker of Springfield and Mrs. Medora Barker of Centralia.
• Marine Cpl. Steven G. Struck, son of Mr. and Mrs. Eugene C. Struck, was promoted to his present rank while serving with Marine Aircraft Support Squadron 2 in Da Nang, Vietnam. His promotion was based on time in service and rank, military appearance, and his knowledge of selected military subjects.
• Mr. and Mrs. Charles A. Weaver, Normal, announce the engagement of their daughter, Betsy, to Harry Aldrich Harwood, son of Mr. and Mrs. Harry B. Harwood, Bloomington. They plan a late August wedding.
• Funeral rites for Miss Ethel Mae Dillon, 81, were held at 2 p.m. Thursday at the Stubblefield Memorial Home. Burial was in Evergreen Cemetery.
Miss Dillon died Monday at the Nel Dor Arms Nursing Home. Born a cripple, Miss Dillon had given much of her life to service to others. She had served as a foster mother for some 75 girls and did missionary work from her home for the Baptist Church.
She was born Dec. 7, 1884 in Mackinaw, the daughter of A.A. and Mary Dodge Dillon.
• The Normal Parks and Recreation Department will hold their first organized bicycle ride Sunday. All interested in riding on the 8 mile Bike Way are to meet at Ash Park at 1:30 p.m. The ride will take approximately two hours and will be directed by Larry Heintzman.
• Mr. and Mrs. John L. Turpin and two sons have moved here from Monticello.

75 Years Ago
July 11, 1941
• W.F. Hannie has opened a modern retail bakery at 110 East Beaufort Street. Mr. Hannie, who came to Normal from Forrest, has been associated with two local bakery firms before opening his own business.
• Mr. and Mrs. Claude Armstrong entertained forty guests at a picnic dinner Sunday in honor of their son, Corp. C.K. Armstrong, who was home for the weekend from Camp Forrest. Out of town guests were from Stonington, Blue Mound, Lake City, Teensleep, Wyo., and St. Louis, Mo.
• Mr. and Mrs. Kenneth Phillips entertained Dr. and Mrs. F.M. Leever and son, Woodriver; Mr. and  Mrs. Gerald Allen, St. Louis; Mr. and mrs. George Metzger, St. Louis, last weekend. Mrs. Leever and Mrs. Allen are Mrs. Phillip’s sisters.
• Funeral services for John M. Armstrong, Normal, who drowned near Billings, Mont., Friday were held at the Stubblefield Memorial Home on Tuesday. Burial was in the Blooming Grove Cemetery.
Mr. Armstrong was born near Downs, May 19, 1861. He was married to Miss Maria Isabelle Baylor on December 24, 1882. She died in 1933.
• Bob Keefe, Wayne, Mich., spent the holiday week end with his mother, Mrs. Edna Keefe. Mr. Keefe is employed at the aviation plant in Wayne. He graduated from the American Aircraft Institute, Chicago, last February.
• John F. Smith was injured last week when he fell from a ladder while trimming vines at his home. Mr. Smith suffered a hip fracture and is a patient at Brokaw Hospital. He is eighty-four years old. His condition is improving.
• Mrs. R.U. Gooding is spending the week with friends in Milwaulkee, Wis.
• Mr. and Mrs. A.G. Bridgewater and sons, robert and David, spent the holiday weekend on a fishing trip at Bailey Falls.
• Ralph Fairchild, who is stationed at Camp Robbins, Little Rock, Ark., spent last weekend with his parents, Dr. and Mrs. R.W. Fairchild,


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