History Blog 

Century later: Recalling 1918’s deadly influenza outbreak

At left is the grave of James E. Durst, who died at the age of 24 during the Spanish Influenza epidemic in October 1918. At right is the grave of his parents, Carrie and Hugo Durst. In between the stones, in the distance, is the grave of James’ brother, Louis, and his wife Edith. They are buried at Greenmount Cemetery, near South Park in Quincy, Ill. MARY LOU MONTGOMERY MARY LOU MONTGOMERY October 1918 is remembered as among the deadliest months in U.S. History. The United States was in the throes of a World War, but the war itself wasn’t the culprit. At Fort Grant in Rockford, Ill., where some 31 Adams County, Ill., recruits had been summoned to service at the beginning of September, three

Small-town boy experienced his share of real-life drama

Kim Johnson contributed this 1980s photo of her grandfather, Roy Stonewall Johnson. Roy grew up near Fabius in rural Marion County, Mo. MARY LOU MONTGOMERY “Dear Mom …” The year was 1928. The shocking news of the sinking of the British passenger vessel “Vestris” off of Hampton Roads, Va., was still fresh in the minds of Americans, who had read about the tragedy in newspapers across this country as well as around the world. Some 125 lives were lost when the ship sank into the darkness, spilling its ill-prepared passengers into the cold Atlantic waters. A rescue boat – the United States battle ship Wyoming – was among the first vessels to respond to the emergency, and arrived on the scene befo

1928: Miss Feaster released as principal; Palmyra district wanted a man for the job

Miss Catherine Feaster, principal of Palmyra’s Washington elementary school and eighth-grade teacher, is pictured along with her class in the 1926 yearbook. Miss Feaster is seated in the middle of the front row. Others are: Top row, Gerald Riegel, Sinclare Moore, William Christman, Harold Teel, Walter Rigney and Wayne Banks. Second row, Floyd Meyers, Jack Metcalf, Leo Muffley, Archie Weller, Jack Johnson and Jesse Smith. Third row, Ella Louise Schnitzer, Eleanor Catron, Florence Haydon, Maurine Dunn, Jean Dodds and Edna Ward. Bottom row, Oneta Gardhouse, Francis Hurley, Berniece Clusky, Miss Feaster, Dorothy Hobbs, Ruth Fisher and Harold Young. Yearbook photo accessed via Ancestry.com MARY L

Corrine Armer’s brief residency in Hannibal paints a memorable picture of the fashion era

John Thomas Michael and his wife, Cora Irene Hey, are pictured circa 1891, around the time of their marriage. Cora, later known as Corrine Armer, operated a custom corset shop in Hannibal for a time in 1913. Photo shared by Eric Abel on Ancestry.com. Reprinted with permission. The building where Corrine Armer operated her custom corset shop at 607 Broadway in Hannibal in 1913, burned in August 2016. This is a photo of the building’s shell, the photo taken on May 27, 2018, after the building itself was demolished. MARY LOU MONTGOMERY MARY LOU MONTGOMERY Kansas native Corrine Armer, 37, came to Hannibal in 1913 and settled into business as the state manager and scientific fitter for the Americ

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