On Sunday night, Aug. 19, 1934, Henry Thomas Rainey, Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, died suddenly of a heart attack at DePaul Hospital in St. Louis.
A native of Carrollton, Ill., he had represented the Illinois 20th district as a Democrat since 1903, except for one term in 1921-23. He succeeded John Nance Garner as speaker when Garner took office as Franklin D. Roosevelt’s vice president in 1933.
His death was a shock and officials far and wide came to his simple and brief funeral in Carrollton, including the president himself. And that’s where O’Fallon comes in. Being on the main line of the B&O Railroad, our town has had some interesting visitors pass through from time to time. And so it was that at 1:15 p.m. on Aug. 22, 1934, the westbound special train of President Roosevelt passed through O’Fallon on the way to the funeral and passed through again the next day on the way back.
75 years ago Sept. 10, 1942
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Less than two dozen O’Fallonites have taken the trouble to go to Belleville to register under the new permanent registration law for voters so far, which fact is causing panic among candidates. It is thought that many persons here will wait for the two-day registration of voters in the precinct on Sept. 19 and Oct. 6. The voting situation may become serious at the fall election if more interest is not shown in becoming eligible.
50 years ago Sept. 7, 1967
Postal Services Day will be marked Sept. 22 when every household in the area will receive a special kit designed to help obtain zip code numbers of their correspondents. The mail carriers will deliver to each house eight cards requiring no postage. Mail patrons are asked to write the addresses on the cards for which zip codes will be furnished by the post office and mail them. They will be returned to the sender with the zip number added.