Turlock City News

Turlock City News

Turlock’s Yesteryears by Scott Atherton

Turlock Historian Scott Atherton reminds us of what was going on in 1918 and 1928 around this date.

Turlock Journal, 3 Dec 1918


            Residents of this city were grieved Monday morning when it became known that Miss Ray Weaver, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. J. E. Weaver, had received a letter stating that her brother, William I. Weaver, who was in France with Base Hospital No. 30, had died from the effects of an attack of influenza, which developed into pneumonia.  The letter, which was written under date of November 10 by Capt. Arthur L. Fisher, does not give the exact date of death, but it is supposed to have been between November 8 and November 10.  The letter received by Miss Weaver is as follows:

Dear Miss Weaver:

            It is with the greatest regret that I write to you to tell you of the untimely end of your brother.  He had been ill for a long while with influenza and made a brave fight against it, but was overcome by a most severe infection.

            It may be some small comfort to you to know that he was held in the highest esteem by the men and officers in this unit.  Every one liked and respected him.

            He had just received his commission as second lieutenant in the Sanitary Corps and had he been spared to enjoy that commission he would have been one of our most efficient and popular officers.

            I want to extend to you and your family the sincerest sympathy of myself and all the officers of this command in your bereavement.


                        Capt. ARTHUR L. FISHER

                        Royat, France, Nov. 10, 1918

            William I. Weaver enlisted December 13, 1917, with Base Hospital No. 30, and left San Francisco March 3, 1918, for France, where he served as a chemist with Base Hospital No. 30, being located at Royat.  Within a few months after his enlistment he was promoted to the rank of Sergeant, and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the Sanitary Corps September 15, 1918. 

He was popular in fraternal circles, being a prominent member of the Turlock Lodge No. 395, F. & A. M., of Turlock Lodge No. 98, Knights of Pythias, a member of the Order of Eastern Star, and also a member of the Royal Arch Masons of Modesto.  He was also prominent in religious work, being a member of the Turlock Methodist Episcopal church.  Before his enlistment he was assistant cashier of the Peoples State Bank.

            William I. Weaver was born at Kearney, Nebraska, November 27, 1891, and if he had lived would have been 27 years of age on November 27, 1918.  He attended the high school at Colorado Springs, Colorado, and graduated with high honors in chemistry at Stanford University, California, in 1914.  He also lived for 13 years at Canon City, Colorado, where he made a host of friends.  At college he was a member of the Phi Lambda Upsilon fraternity, and of Sigma XI, the scientific honor society.  He was a man with a bright future, and of a generous, kindly disposition.  Believing that it was his duty to personally assist his country in its struggle for international freedom, he enlisted and did his duty bravely, patiently and conscientiously to the last.  The world has lost a good man who died for his flag, and that the great principles which it represents might live.

            He is survived by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. J. E. Weaver, a brother, Roy, and a sister, Miss Ray, all of this city. 


Turlock Tribune, 30 Nov 1928


            Sunday, December 2, will commemorate the first gathering in the Beulah Tabernacle built by the Swedish Mission Church congregation at a cost of about $50,000.  Hundreds of friends and members of the California churches will be here to attend the all day services, which will be presided over by the Rev. C. V. Bowman, of Chicago, president of the Mission Covenant of the United States.

            The order of the service will begin with the morning service at ten o’clock, conducted by the Rev. A. G. Samuelson who will speak in Swedish, and the Rev. Herman Carlson speaking Swedish; 11:00, Rev. Carl Anderson, Swedish, Rev. C. F. Santstrom, Swedish; 3 o’clock dedication, Rev. Bowman; 7:30 Cantata by the choir; Rev. G. A. Anderson, English; Rev. P. B. Wellander, English.

            “Beulah:  For the Lord Delighted on Thee, and they land shall be married.”  Isa.  64:4

            The Beulah Tabernacle is a steel and concrete structure.  It is 134 feet long and 72 feet wide and is built in tabernacle style.  About fifteen hundred could be seated in the auditorium, if all the space was utilized.  The actual number of seats being placed at present is ten hundred and forty-three.  There is a full basement.  Over a thousand can be seated there.  The basement contains a large and well equipped kitchen and a smaller dining room as well as a large banquet hall.  The first floor contains a large choir room, pastor’s study, church office, mothers’ room gallery, choir loft, space for pipe organ, platform, and main floor auditorium.  The windows are of beautiful art glass.  The Ullberg Memorial window is a picture of Christ with outstretched arms and underneath are the words:  “Come Unto Me.”  The lights placed behind this window will make the picture of Christ stand out as a living figure.  The ceiling is made of celetex and is colored sky blue.  The color effect aside from the ceiling is silver gray and walnut.  The outside walls are white stucco and the roof of red tile.  Aside from the front entrance there are several entrances, one of which is reached by a concrete incline, whereby old people can get into the church without climbing any stairs.

            G. N. Hilburn has been the architect.  C. A. Hillberg has been the superintendent of construction.  Niel and Wirtner are the contractors.  Ed. Wolfe had the contract for heating, Carl B. Hedman for plumbing, Hunt & Foster the electrical work and Andrew Larson the side walks, Lloyd Terrell the cement work, Axel Nelson the plastering, Nielson Bros., the painting, and Hamstad Hardware Co., the hardware. The Modesto Lumber company supplied the lumber.  The opera chairs were secured from the Arlington Seating company, the electric fixtures from the Seattle Light & Fixture Co., the windows from the Western Art Glass Studio, and the carpets from W. & Z. Sloan Co.


‘The Welcome Mat Is Out’ At Turlock’s Brand New Library

            Turlock’s new library opened for business this morning after a Sunday afternoon preview by more than 800 persons who toured the gold-carpeted, walnut-veneered interior.

            As the doors opened at 10 a.m., more than a dozen people were waiting to enter.  They were acting on invitation of library board president Paul Gibson, who told a dedication crowd of 500 yesterday, “The welcome mat is out.

            “This building of itself is nothing without people,” he told the crowd standing under sunny skies and brisk breezes.  “We want you to make full use of it.”

            The blue and gold uniforms of the Turlock High School Band added to color of the dedication ceremony at the Minaret Avenue site.  Librarian Paul Thompson told members that 52 years ago the high school band had also marched to help open the old library on Broadway, in its day a center of local pride.

            Dedication speakers pointed to the new $330,000 library designed by architect Gilbert Goulart as proof of the community’s determination to provide its citizens with the opportunity to continuously educate themselves.

            Mayor Enoch Christoffersen called reading the essence of education and added, “Men and women cannot understand the present nor anticipate the future with any degree of effectiveness without the knowledge derived from books.”

            Expressing the opinion of the rest of the City Council, he said, “I think the new library is the most beautiful building in the community.  And I think you do, too.”

            Former country librarian Carl Hamilton, now city librarian at Alameda, returned to give the main address.  He reminded his audience that a library is a “testimonial to our purpose” as a civilization and community of men.

            No longer is the library a quiet place where the librarian is expected to keep the books well dusted and in order on the shelves to be admired, he said.  Today the library is apt to be the center of activity for people involved in community affairs, and the idea is to get as many books off the shelves and into use as possible.

            Hamilton said McCarthyism after World War II was a good example of a nation “losing faith in itself”  He pointed to the role of libraries, which believe “free men and women can do their reading for themselves” as a factor in bringing about the end of the Communist-scare era. 

            He elicited a laugh from the older audience as he reminded them 47 per cent of the United States population is under 25 years old.

            “That’s an awful lot of kids,” ne noted, “and they’re bigger then we are, too.”

            He said progress is made by elastic tension as the older generation tries to preserve tradition and the young tries to create new solutions.  It is both pulls, not the triumph of either, he said, which is needed.   


Today’s articles and pictures are provided by Scott Atherton, general manager of Turlock Memorial Park & Funeral Home.  If you have memories or pictures you’d like to share, he can be reached at 632-9111 or by e-mail at satherton@turlockmemorialpark.com.


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