50 years ago — 1969
• Monday night, the Stoughton School Board moved to ask the city and the surrounding townships to enter in with it on a petition requesting the Public Service Commission to install railroad crossing signals at North Page Street and County Trunk B. The necessity for the signals was brought up at last month’s board meeting after school bus drivers complained that they couldn’t see if a train was coming at the North Page Street crossing when they approached it from the north.
• When Clifford Kreideman began working for the Stoughton Police Department as a patrolman, it was with the understanding that the job would only be temporary. That was 25 years ago this Saturday, and he’s still working there — except now he’s the chief of police.
Kreideman holds the distinction of having served Stoughton longer than any other employee still working. He also holds the longest tenure of any police officer in the history of this community.
• The Stoughton wrestling team will open the 1969-70 season this Friday and the prospects for another successful year are good.
Coach Vern Pieper’s grapplers are anchored by last year’s 165 lb. state champion, Jerry Alme, and two other state title contenders — Jon Nelson at 123 lbs. And Bob Chritton at heavyweight.
• Stoughton’s tax rate for next year will increase only one mill, according to the proposed budget summary presented to a special council meeting Monday at 5:30 p.m. Increases made the 1970 budget some $66,604.48 more than the current one which called for a 52 mill rate.
If the budget is adopted at the regular council meeting Dec. 9, following the usual public hearing, the 1970 tax rate for Stoughton will be 53 mills.
• The education committee of the Stoughton School Board took up the question of how the remedial reading and speech services could be improved in the local schools Monday night, but came away without a recommendation.
10 Years ago — 2009
• The City of Stoughton will draw down Paradise Pond this fall and anticipates having permanent pumps and Department of Natural Resources permits in place next spring to maintain lower water levels and prevent the near-floods that have threatened neighborhood residential properties in the past.
Heavy rainfalls in recent years have swelled the drainage pond’s levels, along with the concerns of those who live southeast of the former quarry off Jackson Street.
• After nearly getting hit by the infamous Stoughton tornado of Aug. 18, 2005, residents of the Bayview Heights Mobile Home Park can take comfort knowing they now have a place to take refuge in the event of a major storm.
Friday, Nov. 13 at 11 a.m., the town of Dunn will host a ribbon-cutting ceremony to present the newly constructed Bay View Heights tornado shelter.
• State Rep. (D-46th District) Gary Hebl marked the upcoming 146th anniversary of the historic Gettysburg Address by welcoming Stoughton resident Carl Sampson to the State Capitol to recite the famous speech.
Many area residents are familiar with Sampson from Stoughton’s annual Memorial Day celebration, where Sampson has recited the Gettysburg Address for the last 65 years, a truly remarkable achievement.
• For more than three years, a dedicated group of volunteers has spearheaded the conversion of an old tobacco warehouse along the railroad tracks into a new youth center. Using donated funds and labor — except for specialized jobs where contracted work has been called for — the group has painstakingly been transforming an aged testament to the city’s past into a future home for the community’s youth.
Although previously anticipating a winter 2009 opening, “rep tape” and miscommunication surrounding the installation of an elevator are delaying the opening of the Stoughton Area Youth Center until summer 2010.
• The Stoughton Common Council last week unanimously adopted a tax levy that will increase property taxes in 2010 by $60 on a home assessed at $200,000, the approximate average value of a residence in the city of Stoughton.
The council increased the property tax rate 4.32 percent from $6.97 per $1,000 of assessed evaluation last year to $7.28 per $1,000.