News From This Week’s Past: First Xmas Tree in History

All items are from the Door County Library’s newspaper archives, and they appear in the same form as they were first published, including misspellings and grammatical errors.


The Expositor

December 19, 1873

THE FISHING INTEREST. We are informed that the fishermen at Fish Creek will use about 1000 gill nets, as soon as the ice forms sufficiently strong. About twenty of these nets make a mile, so that Fish Creek alone, will have in use fifty miles of them. Several hundred more will be used by fishermen here, and it may not be an exaggeration to estimate that all the nets used on both shores of Green Bay this winter would, if placed in line, reach from here to Chicago.


Weekly Expositor Independent

December 18, 1885


On the 29th inst. the people of this county are to vote upon the proposition of the Wisconsin Railway and Navigation Company to bond the county for $38,000, to aid in building a railroad to Sturgeon Bay. Upon that vote hangs the destiny of the county for, it may be, many years to come. It is to determine whether the county is to remain in its present backward, unprogressive and even retrograde condition, or whether it will aid, to a small degree, an enterprise calculated to increase speedily the population, the business and the wealth of the county. Every voter, therefore, and especially every property owning voter, should carefully consider the proposition in its relation to his individual interest and to the interest of the county at large….

A railroad to this county will bring settlers to make new farms; it will bring business men to build new factories, open new stores and engage in many new industries. Thus will gather a more numerous population, whose manufactured products will bring returns from outside markets, and who in their turn will be the consumers of the farm products of the county….


Door County Democrat

December 20, 1894

Humane Society Organized.

A meeting was held at the city hall Monday evening for the purpose of organizing a Humane society….The membership fee was fixed at 50 cents, but it was provided that this should not be construed to prevent our more liberal minded citizens from contributing as liberally as they feel disposed….

The object of this society is to secure the better enforcement of the laws relating to cruelty to animals and other inhuman practices….It is hoped that all citizens who have a kindly feeling for our dumb animals will join the society. Ladies are particularly invited to become members, as their finer sensibilities will have a wholesome influence on the society. As will be seen from the minutes of the meeting Monday night, the “quill pushers” of this city will be largely responsible for the success of this undertaking.


Door County Democrat

December 22, 1906

Completes His Typewriter.

After four years of almost constant work John Molle, of this city, has completed a typewriter which is pronounced by experts to be superior to the best known machines that are now on the market. Mr. Molle has patents on different parts of his machine and has already a number of flattering offers for it. However he has not yet thoroughly decided as to the future course he will take.


Door County News

December 19, 1918


A couple of former Sturgeon Bay residents were placed in the limelight during the trial of Victor Berger, the Milwaukee congressman-elect and leading Socialist, who is charged with espionage and whose case is being heard before Judge Landis of Chicago.

One of these was J. Edward Harris, who at the time was the editor and proprietor of the Door County Expositor. He was the “star” witness for the State, his testimony showing the attitude of the defendant, while Mr. Harris was editor of the Leader, which was controlled by Berger and other Socialists.

Another former resident is Henry F. Cochems, who is one of the attorneys for the defendant.

The trial of Berger is attracting nation-wide interest, owing to his prominence.


Door County News

December 22, 1927

Many Attend Opening Of Radio Parlors

A large number were in attendance at the grand opening of Door county’s only exclusive radio parlors at Harry Lau’s on Thursday of last week while still many more paid the institution a visit on Friday and Saturday.

The parlors are far more beautiful than anticipated and it can safely be said that there is not another exclusive radio showroom in the state of Wisconsin that will compare with Mr. Lau’s.

Various models are displayed about the room which it is also furnished with a large davenport, chairs and tables. Anyone interested in seeing the latest models are cordially invited to pay a visit to the store.


Door County News

December 22, 1938


WASHINGTON ISLAND – The first community Christmas tree ever to be erected in this history of the island will be put up this year as the result of efforts of local business men and service clubs and a special caroling program will dedicate the tree.

Site of the tree will be near Nelson’s hall, nd provisions have been made to decorate the tree gayly with various colored lights. On Tuesday night, Dec. 27, residents of the island will gather around to celebrate the event, and in the true Christmas spirit, caroling will take place. Candy will be given to the children as a climax to the program.

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