April 25, 2014

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National Infertility Awareness Week April 20-26

I am writing in response to the article titled, “A-C Central teacher blasts ‘bully tactics,’”published April 3, 2014.
Thank you to A-C Central teacher Carrie Jo Donnan for speaking out against the A-C First mass mailer which read, “Promises are like babies – easy to make but hard to deliver.”

Franklin building named a ten most endangered historic place

By Susan Young
Virginia Happenings
The former Ben Franklin building has been recognized as one of Landmarks Illinois 2014 Ten Most Endangered Historic Places.  Each year Landmarks Illinois recognizes ten properties across Illinois in hopes of bolstering local advocacy efforts and build support toward each properties eventual preservation. Efforts are continuing to raise the matching $100,000 and the last BBQ fundraiser brought in over $10,000 but there is a long way to go. The remainder of this year will bring many more fundraisers in hopes of reaching that $100,000 goal along with several grant applications. Grants to receive funds for brick and mortar projects are few and far between so that makes donations made by individuals so important. That was one of the things that impressed the staff at Landmarks Illinois, the total community support thus far. 100% support from friends of Virginia and its citizens is very impressive. Thanks to everyone to their past and continued support to help the old Ben Franklin rise into a new community center.  Donations may be sent to Petefish, Skiles & Co. Bank, PO Box 18, Virginia, IL  62691.

Reavis and Lippincott leave their marks on Hickory
Written by Leigh Morris   

By Leigh Morris
Our Place in History
Despite the privations of pioneer life, education was a priority among the early settlers of the Sangamon Bottom.
Since the concept of “free” schools was still in the future, Hickory Precinct education began with a subscription school established in 1834. It was housed in an unused log cabin situated on land owned by pioneer settler David Carr. The teacher was an individual by the name of B.F. Nelson. He has been described as a man of “prepossessing appearance, a scholar and a gentleman” – until, at least, the folks in Hickory got to know him a little bit better.

Dinosaur tracks spotted by American geologist in North Chile Mountains

Trivia Too
By Roy Roberts
“One fine day in 1956, I was riding a mule down the Canyon Chacarilla in Northern Chili. I was very tired, hungry and thirsty. We had been on a one-day trip up the canyon to get a first hand idea of the geologic structure and strata of the area that we would be mapping”.
That is what Bob Dingman wrote in his diary when he was an American Government Geologist who had been sent as an aide to Chile to work with the Chile Geologist. Bob Dingman and his wife, Genna are residents here at the Blair House Retirement Home, and he had given me a paper telling about his work.
He goes on telling that they were so interested in making notes of rock types, that it became too late to make it back to their base camp before dark and they had no desire to be riding their mules down those mountain trails in the dark of night. It was a difficult decision because they were not equipped to make a camp 13,000 feet above sea level. They had no tent, sleeping bags, and very little water for them and the mules. All they had to eat was some horse meat jerky, a few potatoes and some rock-hard bread. At 13,000 feet the potatoes never really got cooked, because water boils at 180 degrees at that altitude. It was not a good meal and with only their jacket and saddle blankets it was not a good night.

Pitfalls of using antibiotics in meat
Written by Kay Brown   

By Kay Brown
Kate’s Garden Gate
After all the drastic winter weather, what a beautiful Easter Sunday we had. Two of the children and mates got to come for dinner. My daughter and her husband aren’t coming until July, when their first grandchild is expected here in Illinois, and my oldest son from Missouri is also coming in July to look over a spot here for after retirement. Those two siblings haven’t seen each other for a couple of years so it will be a reunion of sorts for the family.
We were talking about the price of meat and wishing we could manage to raise some of our own. I read a report in Prevention Magazine about the use of antibiotics in our meat–shocking!

Kindness the world over

By Freida Marie Crump
The Coonridge Digest
Greetings from the Ridge.
If you don’t have indigestion when you wake up in the morning, one good dose of the world news will be enough to make your gut start to cramp. Missing jetliners, Russian land-grabbers, school shootings, meth labs, and global climate change are enough to ruin anyone’s morning toast and coffee. Last week I watched a wonderful actress perform in a play and when I went to congratulate her after the show she said, “It’s wonderful. For two hours a night I don’t have to worry about what’s happening the world.”

Henry Ossawa Tanner, ‘the painter of hope’

By Kay Brown
Kate’s Garden Gate
The painter called the painter of hope is Henry Ossawa Tanner.
He was born in Pittsburgh in 1859, and spent most of his adult career in France. He exhibited year after year at the Paris salon where he won prizes and international fame.
When he first arrived in Paris in 1891, he did some black-genre paintings, but most of his work is drawn from the Bible. Tanner is that rare modern artist, both religious and spiritual, a mystic and realist.

Don’t vote for me. I have an ax to grind

Dear Editor:
Don't vote for me, I have an ax to grind. When talks begin about a Virginia and A-C school consolidation, (and they will), I want to serve on the Committee of 10 or be on the school board. However, don't vote for me because I have an ax to grind.
You see, in 2010, the A-C school board agreed to enter into a two-year agreement with Virginia High School to co-op sports.

New immigration reform needed

Dear Editor:
Our country was built, with a solid immigration policy in place, by hard working immigrants. Now with an estimated 11 million illegal immigrants in our country, new immigration reforms should be put in place to allow healthy law abiding illegal immigrants to become legal citizens. But in doing so, we must protect the health, welfare and safety of our current citizens, while paying close attention to the pocketbooks of our taxpayers.
Reasonable people working close to and in our community estimate that we have 1,000 to 3,000 "illegal" immigrants living in Beardstown, Cass County, Illinois. (Pop. 13,600). Many illegals work, and but for violating immigration laws, abide by our laws. What seem like a significant number of the illegal population do not work and do not abide by our laws. During the course of a year, we process hundreds of illegals through our criminal court system for felonies, misdemeanors, and traffic cases. Illegal juvenile offenders are also processed, and human services through DCFS are made available to illegals in parental abuse and neglect cases. These additional costs in our justice system cost our county and state taxpayers for police (city, county and state), probation officers, interpreters, county jail expenses, and DCFS workers; also, we pay for parenting classes, anger-management training, alcohol treatment, substance abuse treatment, and mental health evaluations and treatment. Many of our illegals try to avoid prosecution. Cass County has 282 arrest warrants for illegals that have been issued and remain outstanding, but not served, because the illegals have left our area, are in hiding, or are now going by a new fictitious name. These warrants were issued primarily because after receiving notice to appear in court for some violation, they simply refuse to appear.

In fear of the Sangamon Bottom

By Leigh Morris
Our Place in History
It was the Illinois, Sangamon and smaller rivers that attracted settlers to this land, but those rivers also filled many with fear – and with good reason.
Cass County’s old Hickory Precinct (originally called Bowen and then Husted) is a case in point. Don’t bother looking for it on a map, unless you happen to have one from the late 1800s or the early 20th century. Hickory Precinct was abolished in early 1924.