O'Fallon Progress

1927: Special train carrying Native American chiefs chugs through O’Fallon

Brian Keller is the O’Fallon Historical Society president.
Brian Keller is the O’Fallon Historical Society president. rkirsch@bnd.com

On Nov. 3, 1927, O’Fallonites were treated to an interesting sight from another era.

Chugging down the railroad tracks at 10 mph, through the center of town, was a westbound train coming from the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad centennial exhibition in Baltimore, Md.

But it wasn’t just any train. The locomotive, built in 1850, was Engine No. 1 of the St. Paul & Pacific Railroad, a “pintsize affair with a 50-gallon funnel for a smokestack” with smoke billowing out of it that could be seen for miles. Behind it were passenger cars dating to 1865 that carried Chief Two Guns White Calf and 35 others of the Blackfeet Nation who were returning to Wyoming after participating in the centennial. They would visit St. Louis the next day before going on their way.

75 years ago Nov. 12, 1942

Children of the community will be happy to learn that the Auxiliary of Progressive Mine Workers of America has decided to sponsor the children’s Christmas party. In past years, this party was sponsored by the American Legion Auxiliary, but due to a tremendous service in war work, decided to dispense with the affair this season. The ladies of the PMWA announced yesterday that they would arrange for a party to be given shortly before Christmas to bring cheer and happiness to the hearts of the kiddies.

50 years ago Nov. 9, 1967

Burglars broke into the Oberbeck Feed Co., 320 West State St., and took $300 cash from the safe. The burglary was discovered at noon Sunday by an employee, Maynard Burns. The thieves broke a glass in a front door, reached in and unlocked it. They punched through the combination and pried off the door. Four hubcaps valued at $100 were stolen from Ken Johnson’s car parked at O’Fallon Township High School Saturday. A soap dispenser was wrenched from the wall and stolen at the Plaza Laundry at Southview Plaza.