Main Street- by Roger Allen publisher – July 9, 2009

Roger Allen, publisher.

Roger Allen, publisher.

25 Years Ago…

It was a trip down memory lane. The class of ’84 opened their time capsule a few days ago. Inside, among other memories, were 10 issues of The Rockford Squire. They dated from the first weeks of publication under that name after I bought the original local paper, the Rockford Register.

The papers were full of names I knew well. Jack Schwab was mayor, Dave Bass led the band. There were dozens of others, some of whom are no longer around. Many were friends of mine and I miss them.

A lot of local businesses took out ads in the first few issues. Some are still here and surviving the current downturn. Neil Blakeslee, attorney at law, was there, and The Sewing Room. Sears-Coon’s ad was there, although the business is gone now. Floyd Havemeier’s business was called The Melting Pot, but that successful company has absorbed about four others to become Herman’s Boy in a larger location. J.T. Stitchery was a first customer, and the Old Mill was there. Byrne Electric supported our efforts to start a new paper, and so did Wynalda Litho. Rockford Flower Shop is at its same address and so is Young Insurance. The Squire changed its address, but we’ve hung in here through thick and thin (which is why you can read this).

rhs-class-63In a front-page article of issue No. 1, I explained how I named the Squire. In case you missed it, here’s a reprint: “To choose a name for something like a newspaper gives one pause. The name will certainly be before the public often and will, we hope, last for a long, long time. If unsuitable it is not easily changed.

“One cannot think of Rockford these days without some association with Squires Street Square. However, there is a great deal more to Rockford than a part, although a unique part, of its commercial district. Rockford is also the home of many sophisticated people who prefer a smaller city and its quieter pace. Most of us in this area own our own homes, many with some acreage.

“Recalling the English definition of a ‘Squire’ as a ‘landed proprietor or country gentleman,’ there was really little question that the name of the paper should be ‘The Rockford Squire.’ Some variations were considered but ‘The Rockford Squire’ seemed to be the inevitable choice. And so it is named and so it shall be.”

Joke

Judi was startled to see the nonchalant way Jon was taking the fact that his ladylove was seen with another man. “You said you love her and yet you saw her with another man and you didn’t knock the guy down?” “I’m waiting,” Jon said. “Waiting for what?” asked Judi. “Waiting to catch her with a smaller guy.”

Diet time?

You are diagnosed with the flesh-eating virus and the doctor gives you 22 more years to live.

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