Shopping at the Dayton store


This piece of glass was purchased at the Dayton store about 1880. It was made by the La Belle Glass Company of Bridgeport, Ohio. The company was founded in 1872 and its Queen Anne pattern, of which this piece is an example, was first being advertised in the trade journals in the fall of 1879. It would have been one piece of a fairly extensive set. This piece is a spooner, used on the table to hold dessert spoons. They often resemble short-stemmed goblets or vases. Some have handles, as this one does, but some do not. Other pieces in the set might have been a butter dish, cream and sugar, salt cellar, celery vase, and of course, plates and goblets. Harry Green, the proprietor of the Dayton store at that time, obviously made an effort to have the most up-to-date stock. In the Ottawa newspaper’s account of the wedding of David Green’s daughter, Ada, in 1881, among the gifts received was a set of glassware from her cousin, Harry Green. There’s no way of knowing if it was a set of this pattern, but it might have been, as it was a new and popular pattern then.

Miss Emma Clementine Fraine


Miss Fraine bookmark     1952 Class list - Dayton school     Miss Fraine

In 1952, Miss Emma Fraine retired after fifty years of teaching, most of them at the Dayton school, where she taught grades one through four. The class lists shown above include only those students whom Miss Fraine had taught, so not all of the members of the upper grades are included. Her classroom was a single large room, on the first floor of the school. Each grade had its turn at recitation, with time to prepare for the next lesson while other classes were reciting. If you listened to the recitations of the classes ahead of yours, you could get a head start on the next year’s work. She was a firm believer in teaching reading by means of phonics and when phonics fell out of favor, she asked the school board to allow her to continue her existing ways, which they were glad to approve.

Her parents were Charles and Clemence Fraine, who were married 11 May 1878 in Ranrupt, France. They immigrated to the US and came to Dayton by 1882, where they raised their family: daughters Addie, who married Richard Thompson, 31 Dec 1901; Jennie, who also taught school in Dayton and surrounding towns; and Emma, and son, Jules.

The Great Dayton Bridge Affair

iron bridge at Dayton 1886

The new iron bridge at Dayton, opened in 1887

In 1885 a new bridge was needed at Dayton. It was estimated to cost $10,000 and the county would pay half the cost. As the bridge connected Dayton and Rutland townships, the share for each was $2500. Rutland balked at paying this, so Dayton agreed to pay $3500, but even this offer met with resistance, as shown in the newspaper extracts below. The bridge was built eventually and it was noted that one of the first to make use of the new bridge was one who had most vehemently opposed spending the money for it.

Dayton Bridge. –
The people of the town of Rutland vote next Monday, Aug. 31st, on the question of taxing themselves $1,500 towards building a good bridge at Dayton. The bridge is to cost $10,000, Dayton agreeing to pay $3,500 towards it, the county paying the other half. Considering that the bridge will be really a convenience to a larger proportion of the people of Rutland than of the town of Dayton, the offer of Dayton to bear so large a share of the expense is a very liberal one and ought to be met by Rutland in a spirit of like liberality. There is no point on the Fox River in this county where a bridge is so pressingly needed as at Dayton. The ford there is so precarious and unavailable most of the time that not only are Rutland people cut off from the advantages of the mills at Dayton, but to many of them the distance to Ottawa, Wallace, Utica, &c., is increased from two to half a dozen of miles. It does look as if Rutland could not afford to let this chance go by of getting a permanent bridge at Dayton at so small a cost.1

Dayton, Sept. Sept. 16. – At last it is settled that we are to have the bridge! The Board of Supervisors yesterday by a vote of twenty-seven to nine granted county aid to the amount of $5,000, and appointed Supervisors Anderson and Bubeck to look after the county’s interest. The bids will be opened next Monday and the contract let so that work may commence at once. The citizens are greatly rejoiced at the result and hope nothing serious may interfere with the completion of the work.2

Dayton, Sept. 23. – Our town was full of bridge men last Monday, and every bridge company in the west and a few eastern companies were represented. Nineteen bids were handed in. The board of commissioners, consisting of Messrs. Nichols and Grove, of Rutland, and Messrs. Dunavan, Brown and Green, of Dayton and the county represented by Supervisor Anderson, of Adams, met in the afternoon at the office of A. F. Dunavan & Son, and examined the numerous bids, but were unable to reach any conclusion by evening, so adjourned. The contract for the stone work was then let to John Joslyn, of Batavia, for $7.20 per cubic yard, and the superstructure to the Chicago Bridge and Iron Co. for $5,490. The superstructure will consist of three spans of 121 feet each, and the whole bridge when completed will cost about $10,000. The time for the completion of the work is Dec. 21st.
Bridge Notes
The Batavia man who has secured the contract for the stone work says he has plenty of stone on hand and will commence work on the piers immediately.
There was quite a lively competition between the Joliet and Batavia stone men, but the latter took the “persimmons” this time.
Landlord Timmons says he furnished forty-seven meals for bridge men Monday.
The river is low now and in good shape for laying the foundations for the piers.
The Bridge Co. says we will have the prettiest and most substantial iron bridge on the river.3

Dayton, Nov. 11. – The piers of the new bridge are progressing slowly, one being about one-third up and the other about two-thirds. The weather has been fine for putting up stonework and it is to be regretted that the work could not be done more rapidly.4

Dayton, Feb 3. – Our bridge is having rather bad luck. One span was swung just in time to avoid all danger from the thaw of Jan. 22d, but the trestle work of two spans was carried out by the ice and two iron floor beams were dropped into the river. The water has been so high and do much slush ice floating that work on the bridge has been practically stopped. It is hoped that the present cold weather will continue, so that work may be resumed and the bridge completed.5

Dayton, Ill, April 1st, 1887. – Our bridge is finished at last and open for public travel. It is a very fine three span iron bridge, the neatest one on the river, and is a fine addition to our village. Of course every one will use it now that it is constructed, and it was noticed that about one of the first to use it was one who had fought the hardest.6

1. The Ottawa [Illinois] Free Trader, August 29, 1885, p. 4, col. 4
2. Free Trader, September 18, 1886, p. 5, col. 3
3. Free Trader, September 25, 1886, p. 8, col. 3
4. Free Trader, November 13, 1886, p. 8, col. 1
5. Free Trader, February 5, 1887, p. 8, col. 2
6. Free Trader, April 2, 1887, p. 4, col. 6

Floods – Tornadoes – There’s Nothing New Under the Sun


Dayton, June 19, 1879. – Our town and the surrounding country was visited last Saturday by a terrible strong wind and rain storm, almost a tornado. Old residents say it was the hardest storm that has visited our place for many years. Trees by the score were blown down, fences demolished, and a general confusion ensued, The new residence of Mr. Wilkie, almost completed, was moved six or eight feet off the foundation. Mr. W. happened to be on top of the building at the beginning of the storm, and judging his position to be too perilous, got inside when without a word of warning his building commenced sailing off. It is needless to state that our teutonic friend was somewhat frightened. About one half of our centennial flag pole was broken off and blown down into the street. Three or four large cherry trees and as many apple trees, on the Stadden property, were broken down. But the most destructive feat of the storm was the almost entire destruction of a crab apple grove on Mr. Jos. Barnes’ place southwest of town on the lane leading to Ottawa. Here large trees were broken and hurled with great force across the pasture, over the fence to the other side of the road. Mr. Barnes had a great deal of fence blown down and eight or ten nice large trees on his place broken off. Mr. Eisenhuth’s barn south of town was completely demolished, not a stick left standing. Nearly all of the roof of Mr. Stadden’s barn east of town was blown off. In fact from all accounts our place seems to have been in the centre of the tornado.1

1. The [Ottawa, Illinois] Free Trader, June 21, 1879, p. 8, cols. 1-2

The Temperance Movement in Dayton in 1842

temperance pledge

Temperance Meeting at Dayton1


We, whose names are hereunto subscribed, being thoroughly convinced that the use of intoxicating liquors is pernicious to health and good morals, therefore pledge to each other, in the presence of God, and our country, our most sacred honor to abstain, in all time to come, from the use of all intoxicating liquors, except as a medicine; and that we will use our influence, on all proper occasions, to cause our friends to unite with us in this pledge.

Wm Stadden                                                  Lars Harrison
C G Miller                                                       Isaac Miller
W L Dunavan                                                 Morris Laupher
Joshua Fairchild                                             James Thompson
Z H Baxter                                                      Lars Larson
Jesse Green                                                    Isaac Hayes
Jacob Leavens                                                Stephen Donohoe
David Green                                                   Elizabeth Miller
Peley Frink                                                      L W Abbot
A T Marr                                                          Mrs Elvira Laupher
John Lewis                                                       Jefferson Weatherford
E G Janes                                                         Mrs Mary Weatherford
Z A Kelly                                                          Francis Weatherford
Z Preston                                                        Rachael Weatherford
Uriah Miller                                                    Rebecca Green
Joseph Green                                                  Elizabeth Jacobs
John A Quick                                                   Isaac Green
Jonathan Stadden                                          Mrs. Mary Ann Fairchild
Albert Dunavan                                              Mrs Eliza Dunavan
Hardin Weatherford                                      Emma Dunavan
H Fairchild                                                      Mrs E Baxter
J M Laurence                                                  Mrs Eliza Miller
John Miller                                                      Mrs Tobitha Bockorn
John Combs                                                    Chilson McKurley

1. The Illinois Free Trader, February 25, 1842, p. 2, col. 6