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>From the Merrill Centenniel Newspaper/Book of 1948
FIRST PREDECESSOR OF HOTEL MERRILL ERECTED IN 1863
The first predecessor of the Lincoln Hotel which was destroyed by fire in
November, 1944, was erected in 1863 by Jules Posey, Sr. It burned in 1872
and he built the first Lincoln House. This also burned and was replaced by
the Lincoln which burned three years ago. The Merrill Hotel, now on this
site, was opened November 1, 1946.
When the old structure known as the "Lincoln House" fell a victim to the
flames, the loss was keenly felt, because many memories of the past were
associated with its history for those who were interested in its development.
The blackened ruins served as an impetus to those financially interested, as
well as those whose interest was municipally inclined, because the need of a
public hostelry was a matter of much importance to the present and future
welfare of the city.
Among those who were sufficiently insistent in the matter and willing to
"back up" their interest in the project mentioned, were Jule Thielman, Wm. F.
Peterman, Sig. Heineman, J. N. Cotter, L. N. Anson, and E. F. Hanf , with the
result that a new building was erected, furnished in the modes of the day, in
the years 1900-1901, and the Lincoln Hotel Company organized.
Some short excerpts from the Merrill Centenniel Newspaper/Book of 1948
GLORIOUS FOURTH IN SIXTH WARD
Fourth of July celebrations in the Sixth Ward when sawmills were the
mainstaqy in the life of Merrill, are well remembered by the men and women
who were teenagers 50 or more years ago.
On the mornings of every Independence Day, the boys from the Sixth Ward
"borrowed" the horses and wagons from several mills--Gilkey & Anson, Merrill
Lumber Co., Big Mill, etc,--transplanted a barber shop, men's store, and
other types of "replicas" on the wagosn and then had the fun of "showing off"
to the people on many Merrill streets.
In the afternoon the people gathered in back of the Emerich & (S)aats store,
where they had fun. There was the greased pole which many people tried to
climb for prizes, the greased pig, and numerous other "honest-to-goodness"
stunts, all of which pleased the thousands.
Dancing was enjoyed in the "bowery" in the afternoon and evening.
About the first money we ever made was carrying wood upstairs over Peterman's
store to the offices of Phinney and Kubasta Insurance agents and Flett and
Porter, attorneys. We'd earn as high as twenty-five cents for carrying a
load of Anson-Hixon's kindling wood. It would take a good many trips
upstairs with a bushel basket.
More from the Merrill Daily Herald Centenniel Edition 1847-1947
JENNY VILLAGE OF LESS THAN 1,000 PERSONS IN 1874
By Charles McCord
In the fall of 1874 I accompanied my father, Myron W. McCord, to Jenny, now
Merrill. Father's mission was to establish a weekly newspaper, which, when
born, was known as the Lincoln County Advocate, and now known as the Merrill
The first edition of the Advocate was published February 6, 1875 under the
able management of Gus Gorham, who constituted the whole reportorial force.
If I remember rightly there was no active editorial department, that being an
unnecessary adjunct at that time and place.
Upon our arrival at Jenny we stopped at the Eagle House, situated on the
Northwest corner of Main and Court streets, and operated by Z. Space and his
Jenny at that time contained less than one thousand inhabitants, probably
seven or eight hundred permanent residents.
WELL SUPPLIED WITH POSTOFFICES
Back in 1903 the county was well supplied with postoffices besides the two
rural deliveries from the city of Merrill. The following postoffices were in
existence that year: Bay Mill, Bloomville, Chat, Clifford, Dudley, Doering,
Finn, Gleason, Gouda, Heafford, Heineman, Heller, Irma, Jeffries, Kickbusch,
Merrill, Somo, Spirit Falls and Tomahawk. Heafford, Merrill and Tomahawk
were money order offices.
They Were Busy
In the early days of merchandising in Merrill, clerks in retail stores had to
talk German and Norwegian to customers, because many of the latter were
unable to talk English. Many of the residents of Lincoln county were
immigrants who were so busy making farms out of the wilderness that they had
not had time to study the language of their adopted country.
More from Merrill Daily Herald Centenniel Edition
Small Pox Scourge Strikes Jenny; Many Stricken
The small pox visited Jenny during the winter and spring of 1872, not
entirely disappearing until into the summer. If left an awful trail of death
and desolation in its wake; its ravages were so widespread that at one time
there were scarcely enough well people in the village to look after the sick
and attend the burying of the dead.
A pest house was established at the Truax homestead on the Champagne hill,
and those who could be moved were taken there, that being considered
sufficiently remote to insure complete isolation of the victims.
The pest house was in (the) charge of William Averill. It was not long,
however, until almost every house was a hospital, for only a few families
escaped the disease.
There was no doctor in Jenny then, but during the winter Dr. D.B. Wylie of
Wausau came up and vaccinated everyone who would permit it, even working far
out into the lumber camps.
Description below two photographs of Stange Park
Beautiful Stange Public Park was once a swampy area filled with mill debris.
The land was given to the City of Merrill by A.H. Stange on condition that
the city build a park. This was done in 1908. The land across the street,
now known as the Kitchenette, was given to the city by Mr. Stange in 1920.
Shaded walks, lagoons, a swimming beach, athletic park and bandstand combine
to make the Stange Public Part a beauty spon and recreational center.
Adjacent to the park are the American Legion Hall, Library and High School.
[As a child and teenager growing up in Merrill, I spent many hours at Stange
Park, walking along the peaceful lagoons, enjoying the beauty and solitude it
provided. I used to go to the library for books, then cross the beautiful
bridge that arched (arches) over the Prairie River, and settle down on a
grassy bank to read my books. I never miss visiting the Park on my visits to
Merrill. My family used the kitchenette for many family get-togethers.]
========================================================================= Names of Graduates of Merrill High School, 1902
1902 Merrill High School Graduates
Colors: White and Gold
Motto: Keep the Torch Burning
Principal Anna E. Anderson
Band Prof. G.D. Ramge
Harry Franklin Brownell
Henry Herman Patzer
Robert Inman Byington
Thomas Henry Dennis
Albert Adam Elsen
Edward Francis Christian
Willam Richard Kamke
William Frank Rehfeld
Mary Elsie O'Connor
Elizabeth Helen Fries
Emma Regina Evjue
Olga Erstina Leidiger
Lucie May Carr
Jessie Alice Mathews
Hattie Sophia Kuhl
Maud Lenora Hughes
Marie Rosalie Poirier
Catherine Nellie Barden
High School Orchestra
High School Girl Chorus
Elsie O' Connor