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Early history of Omro and vicinity (of 1876)

Early history of Omro and vicinity (of 1876),   pp. 169-223

Page 199

Wright history
    On the night of the 15th of May, about 12 o'clock, the foundry and
 machine shop of George Challoner was was burned. They had been casting during
   the day, and it was supposed that the fire must have originated from the
  furnace. The loss to Mr. Challoner was about $20,000, but nothing daunted,
he immediately commenced the work of rebuilding, and soon had the present
buildings up, and the machinery in running order.
    On the 14th of September, Omro had quite a little excitement over the
bones of a mastadon which some workmen found while digging near the resi-
dence of Mr. John Wilson. From an account, published in the "Omro Union",
we copy the following:--
    "The tusks were the first portions exhumed. They were mistaken for
petrified wood and the end of one which projected into the ditch was con-
sequently struck off with a spade; soon,.however, their true character was
discovered, and by a little farther digging two enormous molar teeth were
thrown out. Subsequently the two huge tusks were removed from the soil,
getting somewhat mutilated, however by rough handling.. They were of the
enormous length of ten inches each, and one eight inches in diameter. The
teeth, of which four in all have been found are of immense size and in a
perfect state of preservation, the enamel looking as hard and as bright as
if but yesterday they were taken from their sockets. They measure on the
crown nine inches in length and five in width, and nine inches from the
crown to the ends of the fangs. They weigh eight pounds each. The teeth
of this animal show that it belonged purely to the herbivorous species.
They have the peculiar mastoid or nipple-like elevations on their grinding
surface, from which the animal takes its name."
   The bones were placed in charge of C.W. Bushnell, and they were visited
by hundreds. They were afterward exhibited in different places throughout
the state, and were known as the Omro Mastadon.
From The Omro Herald issue of March 5, 1931.
   The Fall of 1871 as all will remember was exceedingly dry.  Fires were
all around us, and the very air was so filled with smoke that at times it
was difficult to breathe. Many began to fear that the "last day"
was at
hand, but fortunately the village escaped, and our people lived to respond
nobly to the calls for help from Pestigo, and other towns scourged by fire.
   In 1872 there was very little that is worthy of note in the way of im-
provements except in a general way. The village held its own in population,
and each one seemed to be doing a little to improve the appearance of the
town, but there were no important manufacturing enterprises started. The
Spiritualist Hall was commenced, which was the only public building put up
during the year.
   In the year following, there was a change for the better.  The cheese
factory was one of the important additions to the industries of the village
during the season. The school building was put up that Summer, and the
woolen mill building was built.   The latter was looked upon as a very im-
portant enterprise for Omro and so it was. Had not subsequent events worked
against it, it would have added very largely to the business of the place.
   The year 1874, was the most unfortunate one for Omro since its very first
settlement. Our people were already feeling the pinchings of the financial
crisis which had swept over the country, yet their courage was good, and
there was a mutual desire to still press on.   But the failure of A.H. Howard

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