The following column is reprinted from volume 3 of the 1953-54 publication, The Dayton News Reel, produced by the students of the Dayton School.
The seventh and eighth grades are studying county, city and state government in civics, and in connection with that visited the Court House in Ottawa on January 14.
They visited the Sheriff’s office, the office of County Recorder and there saw the photostat machine at work and the addressograph machine being worked.
We learned of the work of the County Recorder and how the records of the county real estate, deeds, mortgages, etc are kept.
We were given a photostat copy of a chattel mortgage and watched a plate made for the addressograph machine and were given a copy of the work done by this machine.
We went to the County Clerk’s Office and learned how the records of births, marriages and deaths are kept, and were given a demonstration of how a delayed birth certificate may be secured from these records. Connie Krug’s record was looked up and we saw the information available when needed.
We also saw the jury box and the names in it which may be drawn for jury duty as needed. The County Clerk has the only key to this box.
We saw the files where the permanent registrations are kept for voting privileges, the books which are sent to the precincts on voting days, and the files for those who have not voted for four years and where the registrations of deceased persons are kept.
We saw where the Board of County Supervisors hold their meetings, where the Board of Review meets.
We witnessed a class of twenty-seven persons from LaSalle County, Grundy County and Bureau County receive the oath of allegiance to the United States. They had fulfilled all the legal requirements for naturalization previous to this final step. Following the oath of allegiance short speeches were made by representatives of the following organizations:
The American Legion
Veterans of Foreign Wars
Daughters of the American Revolution
La Salle County Bar Association
Dept of Naturalization and Immigration
Judge Zearing of the District Court
Following the oath of allegiance the pledge to the flag was repeated, the new citizens were given their naturalization papers, other patriotic material including flags, and were taken to the office of County Clerk where they registered as voters for their respective counties.