From our archives: Hot, hot time in Dixon for the Fourth
What we thought: 50 years ago
Note to readers – Sauk Valley Media reprints editorials from the past as a regular Monday feature. The following editorials appeared in the Telegraph on July 1, 1963.
Too hot to write
It’s too hot to write about the weather, and so hot we can’t think of anything else to write about.
It seems to us we wrote the same sentence one day last winter when the mercury had slumped to about -22 degrees – only then it was too cold.
All we can say is what you will know by the time you read this: The temperature looks like it will top 100 degrees today.
We don’t know that this sustained heat wave benefits anyone or anything, but neither do we know anything to do about it, except wait until it gets a little cooler.
Which raises the question, “Will it ever?”
One thing which does not seem adversely affected by the extreme temperatures are the petunias. We believe we have never seen them look more beautiful. If you haven’t noticed, drive along North or South Galena Avenue this evening.
The city this evening starts on a 4-day Fourth of July celebration. Added to our commemoration of the holiday this year will be the visit of some 35 students of other lands.
They will arrive Tuesday evening. They are students who have spent the past year attending American high schools under the sponsorship of the American [Field] Service.
The organization’s main purpose is to promote the exchange students, both from the country and from foreign countries.
This will be an unusual opportunity for us to show just what the Fourth of July means to Americans.
Hazarding an oversimplification, we venture to assert: If we had no Independence Day to celebrate, we would have no other American holidays to commemorate. It is our beginning, and beginnings are a necessity for an existence.
Our city and community lost a very fine man last Friday. William V. Slothower, better known as Bill to his countess friends, had a long and honorable political career in Dixon.
He was elected to the city council in 1919. Later, he served four terms as mayor of Dixon. He also served 3 years as commissioner of streets, 1 year as commissioner of public health and safety, and 4 years as commissioner of finance.
In all these years of public service, we are sure he never performed a dishonest act. Bill was truly a man of the people, and he served them well.
He was frugal and was always on the alert when it came to spending the taxpayers’ money.
Bill had been ill for a long time since he left public office and was confined to his home. We think that no greater honor may be paid to any man than to say that he was a good and kind and honest man. No man may leave a better memory in posterity and to his family and friends.
Recipe for trouble
Take a large bowl of potato salad, a dozen ham salad sandwiches, one cream pie, and odds and ends of munchables found in the ice box.
Place in a hamper. Place hamper in truck of the car. Park car in hot sun at your destination. Let lunch simmer while you play for several hours.
That’s all – but that’s enough to ruin your weekend.
If staphylococci bacteria are present in any of the foods, you’ve set the table for a dandy case of food poisoning.
The better bet, say medical authorities: Carry all perishables, CHILLED in advance, in refrigerated containers. Mix salad ingredients on the spot, using previously unopened salad dressing. Make sandwiches on the spot from meat taken from original containers, or cook meat on the spot.
No one wants to spoil the good eating that is so much a part of summer’s fun. But it is necessary to add one vital ingredient to picnic plans:
Mix with common sense.