25 Years Ago: January 31 – February 6, 1991
• Covington – A Covington High School graduate has been appointed Deputy Attorney General of Alaska. Douglas Blankenship, a 1971 graduate of the local high school, was recently named as the second in command in Alaska’s legal office. Following graduation, Blankenship pursued his bachelors and masters degrees at Ohio State and Miami Universities. He received his Juris Doctorate from Gonzaga. He has practiced private law in Colorado and Fairbanks, Alaska. Mr. Blankenship and his family will move to Juneau in the near future. Mr. Blankenship is the son of Lorna Blankenship of Greenville and the late Forrest Blankenship, a longtime Miami County attorney.
• Troy – Troy’s longtime juvenile probation officer will become Troy’s first Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE) officer. Officer Doug Swallow will work full-time with city schools concerning drug-related issues. Officer Swallow has been juvenile probation officer for 15 years and has built a rapport and relationship with numerous young people in the community. “We felt the rapport Doug has established already with the children and with his knowledge of schools that he is the logical choice for this,” said Police Chief Bill Frank.
50 Years Ago: January 31 – February 6, 1966
• Miami County – Up to this point, winter has ignored this area of the country … but no longer. A strong winter storm hit the Miami Valley yesterday and within few hours there were two inches of snow on streets and roadways of Miami County. With predicted accumulations as high as ten inches for Troy and Miami County, it seems the area escaped relatively unscathed with only seven inches in most areas. County Engineer Arthur Haddad stated that the road crews were been busy putting salt down and clearing the roads of snow buildup. The crews worked through most of the night and kept most travel routes open. There is the possibility of more additional snow during the weekend.
• West Milton – Like dominoes waiting to tapped, the merchants of the village are waiting on the village council; council is waiting for the telephone company and the telephone officials are waiting for the weather. The downtown merchants are preparing to complete an off-the-street parking lot for downtown shoppers, but they need the village to upgrade and surface the adjacent alley. The village cannot complete the alley until they hear from the telephone company as to where cables are located and, finally, the telephone people cannot proceed until the weather breaks, and that might be a while. Sometimes you just have to wait.
75 Years Ago: January 31 – February 6, 1941
• Troy – The Hobart Brothers Company recently purchased two lots on West Main Street for their expansion project. The purchase of the C.J. Marr home and the Charles Rehmert home now gives the company the complete frontage on West Main between Adams and Monroe Streets. They also purchased the Warren Coleman home on this block from the Coleman estate for future expansion of the thriving concern. (Columnist’s Note: In January 1942, construction began on the Hobart Brothers’ Office-Laboratory building, just east of the factory. The large factory and the office building, with the walkway over Adams Street between the two buildings, became a mainstay and familiar site to longtime Trojans. The office building was purchased by Miami County for county offices in 1997 and the factory was recently razed.)
• Troy – A rash of dogs infected with rabies have been killed recently in an effort to keep the disease from spreading. All dogs have been ordered to be kept in and quarantined. Unfortunately, for the mascot of the Montross lumber yard it was too late. It was found that the dog was infected with the disease and died about two weeks ago. After Mr. Montross, who came in contact with the canine, was given a serum to combat any possible infection, he became ill. But the physician has stated it happens in some cases and is not cause for alarm.
100 years Ago: January 31 – February 6, 1916
• Piqua – The Piqua Baptist Church will dedicate their new building on March 19 with a whole week of events, including a formal dedication. The new edifice is not quite completed, but is rapidly moving to that end. Many prominent men among Ohio Baptists should be in attendance. (Columnist’s Note: The Piqua Baptist Church, which was organized in 1811, celebrates 205 years this year. The congregation remained in the 1916 building at 500 Broadway for 60 years, when they dedicated and removed to the current building.)
• Fletcher – It seems that a few residents of Fletcher claim that Ruth Roland, rising moving picture actress, is a former resident of their fair town. She is now with Pathe Balboa pictures and when a show was recently shown in the theatre several patrons commented they recognized her as a former resident. (Columnist’s Note: This is a mystery. It could be a case of mistaken identity. Ruth Roland was indeed a silent film star who was rising in fame at the time and was with Pathe Balboa pictures, but I have not yet found anything to certify that she lived in Fletcher at any time. Does anyone in Fletcher have information?)
Patrick D. Kennedy is archivist at the Troy-Miami County Public Library’s Local History Library, 100 W. Main St., Troy. He may be contacted by calling (937) 335-4082 or sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org