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Scrapbook reveals history from 1930s



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October 14, 2009
What fun on a rainy day to mosey through Bess Reed's scrapbook of the early '30s. If you didn't call her on Sunday evening, she would call and ask if you had anything to contribute to her Almont News column for the Lapeer County Press.

Living in and around Almont back in those good ol' days was like one big family reunion. There were very few strangers. Neighborhood farmers exchanged help at harvest time. The wives helped each other prepare the meals, that is, until the daughters like Helena and Elizabeth Messer and I got big enough to help our mothers.

You didn't have to go out of town for entertainment, Almont's close knit citizen provided their own. For instance there was the Makio Bridge Club, Webster 500 Club, Civic Club, I.D.K. Club, Economy Bridge Club, Two Bit Club, Almont Chapter Order Eastern Star No. 333, Tuesday Bridge Club, Women's Christian Temperance Union, Home Study Club, Current Events Club, Entre Nous Club, Webster Community Club, Almont Grange No. 478, Odd Fellow and Rebekah Lodge, Wednesday Bridge Club, Tau Beta Club, Monday Bridge Club.

Bess kept us informed as to school events and personal happenings. "The third annual community fair was held at the school building last week Friday and Saturday. The cooperation of the farmers and produce exhibited indicate that they realize the value of intelligent selection of seeds.

"There were 229 agricultural and 163 home economics exhibits.

"The fair was under the supervision of Wm. Treadgold, chairman; J.L. Hamilton, secretary; Mr. Schickler, advisor, and Joseph Loeffler, publicity.''

On October 16 of 1931 the High School Band had its fifth birthday party.

There were 301 students enrolled in Kindergarten through 12th grade.

"The members of the Almont Public School teaching staff and school board with their wives and husbands enjoyed a cooperative supper and informal evening at Forest Hall.

"A former Almonter, Arthur Fishburn, died from the effects of eating poisonous toadstools mistaken for mushrooms.

"The Almont Dancing Club will give a Thanksgiving party in the town hall on Thursday evening, Nov. 26, Finzels orchestra will furnish the music, with Okie directing.''

"Mrs. Wm. Hamilton entertained Wednesday evening in her home on North Main Street, the ladies of her neighborhood in honor of her aunt, Mrs. Rawley of Detroit, who has been her house guest for several weeks, the occasion being Mrs. Rawley's birthday. A potluck supper was served and the evening spent in visiting.''

"Dinner and cards afforded the usual popular diversion to those attending the Entre Nous club as guests of Mrs. R.W. Wescott. Four tables of bridge were in play. Card honors were won by Mrs. Don Killam and Mrs. H.D. Bowman.'' (For your interest, Mrs. Killam was Paul Bowman's Great Grandmother and Mrs. Bowman his Grandmother.) If I am wrong, I'm sure I will hear about it (I hope) and let you know.

That is a taste of Almont in the good ol' days.

— Country Cousin

Gertie Brooks, of Almont, has been a columnist for the Tri-City Times for over three decades now. Gertie's style of reliving days long past in her writing make her one of the Times' most popular columnists.
Castle Creek
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