Fotos from the Past
Researched by Michael J. Caylor Jr
School Superintendent Roger Lowney has warned the school board of what he predicts will be a major problem in the coming years–too many students and not enough teachers or classrooms. The biggest problem appears to be in the grade schools where a forecasted 1,687 students for the 1971-1972 school year will cause a student teacher ratio of 27.2 students per teacher in grades one through six. Lowney told of the need for seven to eight additional teachers and classrooms unless the overflow of students can be redistributed among the schools. In some cases two students from the same family may find themselves in different elementary schools. Lowney told the board he anticipates asking for one additional social studies and a math and science teacher for next year along with a male and female physical education teacher – all at the Junior High. The high school does not intend on adding staff, but it is possible they will ask that the assistant principal position go full time. The district has approached St. Francis Church to ask Fr. Peter about possibly renting idle classroom space there.
Ambulances financed by Lincoln County and run by the cities of Merrill and Tomahawk have had a successful first year run since they were separated from the patrol division of the sheriff’s department last year. For years ambulances in the county were run by the funeral homes, however in 1969 the funeral homes discontinued the service instead handing over the service to the sheriff. Deputies staffed two station wagon ambulances, but that service was discontinued at the insistence of Chief Deputy Harvey Woodward who wanted the agency to focus on patrol activities. The City of Merrill hired three more men for the fire department while Tomahawk has three full time men on staff with two on call at all times. In the first year, the new service made 692 runs, 514 by Merrill and 178 by Tomahawk. The run total for Merrill was increased by transfers, 65 of which were taken out of town. The county has agreed to purchase a third ambulance. This will allow the county to retire the old station wagons that are being used as back up ambulances.
The Lincoln County Tavern League president has died. Arthur J. Schneider, age 60 of 1005 E Main St in Merrill, collapsed Monday evening while attending the league’s meeting at the Riverside Club. Schneider was a partner in Schneider’s Bar. A tavern operator since 1943, Schneider was a beer distributer from 1947 to 1967. His wife Martha, and three brothers, Clarence, Milton, and Joseph, survive him. Members of the Tavern League are asked to meet directly at Krueger Funeral Home Wednesday evening.
Blowing snow caused schools to be canceled yesterday and kept county plow trucks working all night long. In total five inches fell on the area, but blowing caused the county crews to plow snow off Hwy 51 three times before the road was passible. Schools in both Merrill and Tomahawk were closed by the storm; the day will be made up during a shortened Easter break.
Two retirements from the school board has brought a host of candidates vying for three open seats. A total of 12 people turned in papers to run for the spots; Mrs. Ole (Barbara) Hanson is the only incumbent on the ballot as Dr. Erling O. Ravn Jr and Atty. Dieter Nickel both declined to seek re-election. Besides Hanson, names on the ballot will include: Theodore Bacher, James M. Corroo, John Fitzke, Elmer Kahre, John Karaba, Kenneth Kuhn, Mrs. Edwin (Martha) Mantik, Maurice McBride, Mrs. Elmer (Arlene) Meyer, and James Wickman.
The halls at Merrill Junior High are empty these days as students at that and other MAPS schools recover from an unusually high rate of illness. Dr. Thomas Strick reports 140, or 17% of the students at the Junior High missed school this past week with another 15% missing from Lincoln and 13% from Pine River. Things started looking up by Monday, but Ken Gallenberg said about 9% of the students were still missing. Normally the district is missing 4% of its students daily due to illness or other needs.
Dorothy Gibson, administrative assistant at Holy Cross Hospital, has announced the restriction of visitors to that facility. Gibson said the unusually high flu rate has caused the hospital to close except for immediate family members. Anyone who is not feeling well is asked not to visit at all, but cards, flowers and letters will still be delivered.
A man who has never lived in Merrill may have left a sum of money to the library here, but he had one dying request, to keep an eye on his kin. Thomas B. Scott Jr, sent a letter to the library back in December asking that they take over the supervision of his family mausoleum at Merrill Memorial Park with instructions that if any need arises for the structure they reach out to his attorney. The board accepted the request and sent a letter to Scott informing him of their decision only to learn a few weeks later that Scott had died at his Scottsdale, AZ home. It was Scott’s grandfather who established the first library in Merrill by donating $10,000 in 1886, and when the present structure was built in 1911 it was named after him. Scott first learned of his grandfather’s achievements in Merrill during a visit in 1928 and last visited in 1972. Over the years T.B. Scott Jr (who was technically T. B. Scott III) gifted money, stocks, and bonds to the library with which totaled over $11,000 in value. T. B. Scott III was buried in Arlington National Cemetery, but his grandfather T. B., his wife Anna and their three children T.B. Jr, Walter, and Mrs. Cassie Cushing are all interred at the Merrill site.
How about these two detectives? Young sleuths Jennifer (9) and Katie (4) Hodgson have won the Quest for Cash contest. The contest, yet another promotion from the Merrill Chamber, is tied with the annual Winterfest. The girls used the clues circulated in local media to find the missing half dollar bill and win the grand prize; the note was tucked to the back of a one-way sign near North Mill and 2nd Street. The girls are daughters of Randy and Barb Hodgson.