SUBMITTED PHOTO Don and Jean Van Gilder of Jefferson taking shape as E.B. and Minnie Wilson.

Historical society sets two programs

Special to the Jefferson Herald

There will be a “Happy Haunting” on Sunday, Oct. 29, at the Greene County Museum, 219 E. Lincolnway,

The free 2 p.m. program will feature the “ghosts” of long-ago prominent persons with Greene County connections.

Nicole Friess Schilling of Jefferson will appear as Eva Leonard, a Grand Junction girl who sang and danced her way to Broadway stardom in the 1920s and ‘30s.  Born in Dana in 1898, she died mysteriously in New York City in 1947. She is buried in Junction’s Mount Calvary Cemetery.

Roger Aegerter of Jefferson will take shape as Gen. Nathanael Greene, a Revolutionary War hero who was George Washington’s trusted friend and right-hand man. Greene County was named for him in 1851.

Jean and Don Van Gilder of Jefferson will materialize as distinguished Jeffersonians E.B. and Minnie Wilson. The couple donated the Abraham Lincoln statue on the east side of the Greene County Court House Square in 1918. They were educators and school administrators. E.B. eventually became a lawyer, and Minnie was a popular Jefferson High School principal. Jefferson’s Wilson Avenue is named for the couple.

And there will be music and poetry. Rick Morain, a Jefferson pianist, will provide hauntingly appropriate tunes. Gina Harrington, also of Jefferson, will read “Sleepin’ at the Foot O’ the Bed,” a humorous verse written by  Luther Patrick, an Alabaman who served in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Dan Sayre of Jefferson, a a Greene County Conservation employee, will talk about the county’s wildlife at a program at the Scranton’s United Methodist Church, 1000 Lincoln St., on Friday, Nov. 3.

Wildlife abounds in the county’s 1,865 acres of conservation areas, which include 50-acre Spring Lake and 60-acre Squirrel Hollow, Iowa’s second-oldest county park.

And Greene County’s towns have plenty of wildlife, too…song birds, vultures, squirrels, even raccoons, foxes, coyotes, possums and foxes, and the occasional deer.

The afternoon begins with lunch at noon, followed by the free program at 12:45 p.m. Lunch reservations are requested. To assure a seat at the table, call 515-386-4404.

Historical Society members may call their community contact

Contact Us

Jefferson Bee & Herald
Address: 200 N. Wilson St.
Jefferson, IA 50129

Phone:(515) 386-4161