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Emails for April

Wants more info on family history

Your website on Minonk and its history is wonderful...so much information in such good order. I really enjoyed reading all about your town and its people.

I checked it out because of a family connection. My daughter's Great-Great-Grandparents were Joseph and Mary Elizabeth (BRUNT) HILL who once lived in Minonk. We do not know much about them and are hoping to add to our information. They were born shortly before the Civil War. They had a formal portrait made in Minonk in 1888. There is a picture of a large brick (farm?) home that may be related to them in some way. Family tradition says that he "ran" the Brick Kiln (but that may be a bit strong.)

Joseph and Mary Elizabeth had two daughters. Sarah Margaret "Mae" HILL, 1886-1960, married in DeKalb to John Francis "Jack" TWOMBLY. They raised two boys and a girl as they farmed near DeKalb.

The second daughter, Florence, married William "Will" HUGGINS. She may have lived in Dixon at one time, and by 1942 they were in Elmhurst. They had a daughter and a son, as far as I know.

If anyone recognizes this difficult to locate family, I would certainly be pleased to be contacted about them.

Kristy Lawrie Gravlin
Banks OR 97106-0755

Why so much litter?

Hi, Dave,

For such a small town with so many nice houses we sure have a lot of drinking containers floating around town. Everyday I can go out in front of my house and pick up a milk shake container or a pop can or bottle. The only thing I can think is that it is school kids throwing this stuff out of there cars or dropping it on the way home. The back road ditches running in and out of town are covered in garbage. I can at least understand seeing beer can and bottles but why do people throw out pop containers? Maybe we should talk to the schools and have them put a note in the school papers or bulletins.

John Hawk

Wants to learn more about ancestors

Very much enjoyed the website. I am a ggg grandson of James Parker, Sr., (1771-1861) who was an early settler. He and his wife Frances Settle Parker are buried in the Minonk City Cemetery. Their son, James Parker Jr. married Achsah Bruce, stepdaughter of Jonathon Macey, whom I understand from the History page, is credited with being the first family in Minonk. James Jr. and Achsah farmed in Dana until they moved on to Washington State in 1876. Another son, Jackson Parker farmed on the north end of town and was active in civic affairs in the mid to late 1800s. Would appreciate learning any more about these early settlers that anyone might forward to me.

Thanks very much,

Doug Parker Anchorage, Alaska

Found home again

Just a note to say, I found home again. Thanks for the great "web site." Someone just passed this on to me and it was fun "running the streets" again. Even though, I only live 60 miles away and I drive by, on 39, it is good to have an anchor like this site.

I look forward to coming home on a regular basis. See you on the street.

Warm Regards,

Bill Barr
Resident 4/12/51 - 9/30/74

Volunteers for landscaping

I would like to volunteer to help on planting and preparing grounds for landscaping at the Carolyn Development. I have a friend who has offered me all kinds of tulips that I may go and dig up. I would gladly in fall go dig these and plant them at the Carolyn Development this fall. Come next spring they would be a pretty sight.

Also SMF has alot of ground out there that has no trees or such, maybe they would plant some to help shade the building plus certain trees make great wind blocks.I know the employees wouldn't mind having a nice shade tree to sit and eat lunch under in the summer since the building it's self gets rather warm.

Sheila Crosby

Enjoys memories from web site

Congratulations on having created a top quality web site. I stumbled across it while "surfing" the net a bit. My wife (Karen Ford Vallow) and I are a couple of Minonk Exiles, having lived in Virginia for the past 32 years. We attended the old MDR high school (class of 1965) and the University of Illinois (class of 1969).

We enjoy looking over your site and reading some of the articles. Some of the history articles and pictures bring back good memories, so maybe I am getting old! My Dad was Joe Vallow, the local photographer for 30-some years; and I expect many of the pictures were taken by him. Karen's Dad ran Ford's electric shop for many years. When we get back to visit, it looks like the business district is a bit picked-over, so I hope some of the rennovation efforts under consideration are successful.

Again, thanks for the neat web site.

Joe A. Vallow
Grafton, VA

Litter not helping Minonk's name

The litter and looks of the Shell/Feeney truck stop is not helping Minonk's name for sure. I feel if the law for litter and junk in town are enforced, the same should go for the truck stop..more so even actually...what a name it will get will spread fast among the truck drivers. I know as I was married to one. I also know the truck stop in El Paso does look better, not landscaping but the litter isn't as bad there.

Maybe Minonk could hire a gardner/cleanup person and charge Feeney. Would that work? Could they legally do this? I would think so if he doesn't comply at a reasonable amount of time. I know in town if one doesn't mow their yards, the city will mow it and add it to your water bill...so what's the difference? Maybe Feeney could afford it a lot easier than the average person.

Wanda Patterson

Omission on bakery article

Just a question. Why was my Dad (Nick Butera) not mentioned concerning the bakery closing? He was.. the Minonk Bakery, Basically it was his legacy. As you know, he passed away last August 22, also, he was a past Mayor of Minonk. I would like to see something mentioned about him if possible.

Dan Valentino

Editor's note: We originally put out a brief history of the bakery and failed to include the managers. We apologize and realize that Mr. Butera was The Minonk Bakery and added him to the article. A more detailed article is forthcoming.

High School Trophies update

On August 1, 1996, the following headline appeared in the Minonk News-Dispatch. "Trophies closer to finding a home.". According to the article the Minonk Businessmen Association and the Minonk City Council stated that a placement of the trophies will be answered before the end of the year.

At a July council meeting the MBA approached the council and proposed building a trophy case in which to house the trophies and placed in the city hall. The council approved the MBA request if no space was available at the library. Also, according to Craig Meyer, a member of MBA, Kevin Glowacki had volunteeered to build a trophy case.

A quote by superintendent John Capasso stated that the trophies would be displayed in a short term. It seems Mr. Capasso does not know what a short term means. Now, 5 years later, no solution has been found. Another quote by Mr. Capasso stated the major reason why the trophies are not displayed is because the trophies are of the past and this is the present. I wonder if the trophies earned in 1993-94-95, etc. will be boxed up and hauled out to the bus barn for storage as these trophies are from past years and not the present. Also, why did they continue to display the Minonk High School trophies when Rutland and Dana merged into the school district if forgetting the past is such a big deal?

It is a shame we have a superintendent who has such an attitude toward a school history.

Also, why has the MBA and the city council dropped the ball on this subject? I as well as many other people believe that trophies should be displayed where the trophies were earned and not boxed up and stored in a bus barn. I know there is room for displaying the past as well as the present in our gym. Would it not be a shame if everyone had this attitude that forgets the past and focuses only on the present?

Bob Cufaude