1924, Marion Has a Beautiful Park

Marion Has a Beautiful Park

Large Sixteen Acre Plot at Garfield and DeYoung May be Developed

Marion, the city of Opportunity now has a park of sixteen acres expanse, set with scores of beautiful shade trees and located in one of the most beautiful and accessible parts of the city. That may sound startling but it’s nothing new. For twelve years, sixteen acres of ground donated to the city for a city park, has lain idle. With the arrival of summer, many public spirited citizens have become aware of the fact that the city park which people have been desiring has been here all the time, and an attempt is being made to arouse enough interest in the venture to develop the park. Continue reading

Early Marion Baseball Teams

Little is recorded about the early Marion baseball clubs so I wanted to get this out there in hopes that someone may still have some knowledge of the early clubs. According to Bob Jackson, a huge baseball fan and Williamson County Historical Society president, the later teams were called “hard road clubs” and the competitions fell among city teams spread from Murphysboro to Harrisburg. Unfortunately, the first real hard road (old route 13) didn’t become a hard road (concrete) until 1922 and was only completed at the beginning of the Herrin Massacre times so I’m not sure if the term applies to these early teams or not. Continue reading

1916, Marion Carnegie Library Dedication Speech

The following was delivered by Ed. M. Stotlar on February 29, 1916 at the dedication exercise held at the library building during the evening:

The first organized effort for the starting of a Public Library in Marion, Illinois occurred in January, 1906 when Prof. J.W. Asbury, then Supt. of the City schools made a public call for a mass meeting of all citizens interested in procuring a public library for Marion. The meeting was held in the City Hall and liberally attended by citizens interested in the movement. At this meeting Prof. J.W. Asbury was chosen chairman of a committee to confer with the aldermen and mayor and city attorney and ask that a library ordinance for the City of Marion be drawn and passed at once. As a result of the efforts of this committee, the first library ordinance was passed on March 12, 1906, known as Ordinance No. 60. Mr. C.H. Denison was Mayor and the board of aldermen consisted of B.H. Jeter, A.M. Townsend, Sandy Miller, E.H. Moulton, J.H. Moss, W.O. Potter, John S. Strike and A.B. McLaren, with George Campbell, Secretary and Hosea V. Ferrell, attorney. Continue reading

1969, Joan Crawford at Marion Pepsi-Cola Plant Opening

Joan Crawford Visits Southern Illinois

New Marion Soft Drink Plant Opens

“There she is” … “oh, I see her” tumbled from the crowd as Joan Crawford radiant in the morning sun stepped upon the platform.

Miss Crawford, dressed in a subdued gray suit with matching hat, moved gracefully across the stage, waving, smiling at the more than 400 people who had come to the dedication ceremony of the new Pepsi-Cola plant west of Marion.

Harry Crisp, Sr. president of Marion Pepsi Cola Bottling Co., Harry Crisp Jr., vice president and general manager, James B. Sommerall, president and chief executive officer of Pepsi-Cola Co., Paul Powell, Illinois Secretary of State and other Pepsi Cola officials attended the ceremonies at the plant on Old Rt. 13 at 10:30 a.m. Saturday morning. Continue reading

1875, Bloody Vendetta in the News

The following post is a compilation of newspaper accounts from 1875 recounting the individuals and events that constituted the event commonly referred to historically as “the bloody vendetta.” It includes some firsthand interviews of those involved and having knowledge of the events at the time. Continue reading