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Columns

  • On the Side| Brad Hicks

    Red Oak, Montgomery County, and southwest Iowa in general are at a critical crossroads in history.

    The economic base that fueled this area for decades is rapidly changing, and has spawned what has the potential to be a vicious circle of declining population and decreasing opportunities.

  • The Time Capsule | Roy Marshall

    In a barber shop years ago, I heard two old men talk about hunting mushrooms. One said he’d found a nice bunch of ramps. I had no idea what a ramp was, and asked. “You wouldn’t like ‘em,” he said, and went back to mushrooms.

  • Miner Queries | Cherie Miner

    I’ve been having flashbacks again – to the 70s when my father and grandfather argued about the deeds of President Nixon. No matter what new information was unearthed, Grandpa refused to admit Nixon broke the law and abused the powers of his office. No wonder dad saved his copy of the Des Moines Register with the headline, “Nixon resigns.”

  • On the Side| Brad Hicks

    For those of you attending the Red Oak High School graduation Sunday afternoon, I’ll be the guy intruding on all facets of the ceremony, shooting photos of speakers, graduates receiving diplomas, people crying, people cheering, people marching, singers singing, and band members playing. Plunging waist deep into a graduation photo spread has become old hat for a newspaper guy, but sort of strange, too, in that I almost missed my entire high school graduation.

  • The Time Capsule | Roy Marshall

    A chicken hatching a duck is not important news, but it had not happened in my presence and never to this particular chicken or this duck which, according to what I’ve read, may look like a duck and walk like a duck but isn’t actually a duck. The experience has been a learning curve for us all, especially the chicken.

  • Montgomery County History Center | Dave McFarland

    It was late morning as the old man walked slowly out the front door of Artz Drug and started west across the street when he suddenly stopped. Directly in front of him lay the park, Fountain Square Park. Strange, he thought, what a compelling place Red Oak had been. He had not been born here, and he had even left once for the greener pastures of Des Moines. But when his old Guard unit had been called up, he had returned. Now he knew he would stay here forever.

  • On the Side| Brad Hicks

    Red Oak residents ready to light the fuse under the state’s new fireworks law could be about to experience a dud.

    At the city council meeting last week, some Red Oak leaders stated their concerns for safety and appeared to be headed toward asking for approval of a regulation to forbid the use of fireworks in the city limits. (See story in this edition.)

  • The Time Capsule | Roy Marshall

    “A mystery airship exploded in Kalamazoo, Michigan, ran aground in Carlinville, Illinois, and made its debut in Washington, DC.” Villisca Review, April 29, 1897.

    Lila Leacock, then 12 years of age and living with her parents on a farm in Washington Township in this county, clipped the above article and put in a scrapbook. Her granddaughter still has the scrapbook and thought I’d be interested, in part because family folklore has it that Lila may have seen a strange flying object herself.

  • Miner Queries | Cherie Miner

    “Something is broken.”

    Ya think?

    As I was listening to NPR’s Morning Edition last week, I caught a story about the House Transportation Committee grilling airlines over recent service nightmares, including the infamous United episode in which a passenger was dragged from the plane.

    What caught my attention was a statement by Committee Chair Bill Shuster (R-PA) who said: “something is broken” with U.S. airlines and “the obvious divide between passengers and the airlines needs to be addressed.”

  • The Time Capsule | Roy Marshall

    The moment was one none of us expect to happen, hope it won’t, but prepare for just in case.