Column published May 24, 2013 in The Mexico Ledger
100 Years Ago
"Over five hundred farmers crowded the Farm Bureau meeting in a large tent on the Hisey lot Saturday and heard with close attention the arguments in favor of Farmer Rusk's work. As Dean Mumford, of the College of Agriculture said, the demand for Farm Advisers in Missouri is greater than the supply and growing larger all the time. The state has now refused to give a County such a man unless the County Court will aid in his support. The meeting opened at 10 a.m. with a short talk by chairman F.L. Crosby who stated the object of the meeting and introduced D.H. Doane who was followed by Dean F.B. Mumford of the College of Agriculture. Immediately after dinner Judge C.C. Bledsoe and J.J. Wakefield were chosen as tellers and J.T. Johnson as caller to raise money for the support of the Farm Advisor. He receives $2500 a year, one fourth is paid by the State and one-fourth by the Federal government. The remainder and office expenses will be borne by the Farm Bureau."
50 Years Ago
"A flashing light above a 'Stop Ahead' sign on Route 54, east of the Baysinger Corner intersection, is being installed as added warning to the traveling public of the 'Stop' sign at Routes 19 and J, according to information Rep. Charles H. Dickey received this week from the state highway department. In addition, the red lens facing Routes 54 and J at the junction with Highway 19 are being changed from 8-inch to 12-inch to increase the 'target value' of the flashing light at the intersection, state traffic engineer Frank L. Stuckey says. 'We trust this revision of the marking will prevent any further accidents at this intersection,' Mr. Stuckey said in his report to Mr. Dickey. The intersection has been the scene of numerous accidents, including two on May 11. Three persons died in one of those crashes."
25 Years Ago
"It was almost impossible to find any complaints during a check this morning with area farmers regarding the weekend rainfall. There was one exception – from a man who lives at Center, where only .2 of an inch of rain had fallen since Saturday. While rainfall amounts varied somewhat throughout the county all described the much needed moisture as 'welcome.' Robert Schlemmer, who operates Schlemmer Farm Services and lives north of Laddonia, said the 1.15 inches of rain there 'was a real lifesaver.' He said many Laddonia farmers had been waiting for the moisture before completing their planting. 'They'll get their soybeans in and start planting milo now,' Mr. Schlemmer was the one talking to the man from Center who received only .2 of an inch of rain. Joe Offutt, who lives on Route 1, Thompson, reported 2.4 inches of rain from Saturday through Monday. That was apparently the area receiving the most moisture locally. Mrs. John Miller said .8 of an inch of rain fell at the Miller farm, located 4 1/2 miles north of Mexico on Old Molino Road. She said they have most of their corn planted but were waiting for rainfall to plant soybeans. 'We'll be ready to plant soybeans as soon as the sun shines.' said Mrs. Herbert Knipfel, who lives south of Laddonia. The Knipfels received 1.5 inches of weekend rain at the farm. The drought situation for area farmers was becoming critical and all should be able to get back to their planting now regardless of the varied amounts. Another critical factor has been the lack of pasture, and rainfall should restore them for a while."
10 Years Ago
"There is an old saying – 'The couple that prays together, stays together,' In the case of Kirby and Mary Allen the saying may go like this – 'The couple that volunteers together, stays together. The Allens have been married nearly 60 years, and have been volunteering in the community for many, many years – either together or individually. For their commitment to Mexico they have been chosen as Volunteers of the Year by the Community Betterment Council. Each year, the council chooses a person – or in this case a couple – who has devoted his or her time to make Mexico a better place to live. This is the first time a couple has received the honor. Kirby Allen isn't as active in the community as he used to be, but is still involved in his church, AARP and the Mexico Senior Center. Many longtime residents and Bulldog fans may remember him as 'The Voice of the Bulldogs.' He announced the play-by-play for both MHS football and basketball games for 27 years – something he says he enjoyed very much. 'It was a lot of fun,' he said. Also for the past 25-plus years and still today he is the voice behind the dial-a-devotion. He prepares and recites a devotion each day. This is through the First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), where the Allens are members. Mary Allen had no idea she was being chosen for the honor with her husband. 'I knew he was receiving it, but had no idea I was,' But her husband says she very much deserves it. If fact, husband and wife gave praise to each other through the interview. Mary Allen committed herself to helping the community nearly 40 years ago when she began helping out at the hospital. She recently received a pin for 4,100 hours of volunteering at the hospital and saw how the then 'pink ladies' would help out. She is also involved with King's Daughters organization and has held several offices with the City Union and her circle, The Whatsoever Circle. She is a member of PEO and is a charter member of the IO Chapter where she has held every office available. During the years and years of volunteering, the Allens also found time to raise four sons."
Compiled by Brenda Fike
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