Structures from Great Depression tell story of Rockford today, Part II

Barter became common during the Great Depression. Here an ad in the Rockford Register solicits "anything we can use" for subscription accounts. Note, back then the paper was not distributed free but only on a paid subscription basis.

by BETH ALTENA The Depression was marked by the “alphabet soup” of government-funded employment to keep people working. The CWA was just one—also keeping men at work was the Civilian Conservation Corp, the Works Project Administration (which was jokingly referred to as “Water, Piss and Air.” The projects were usually infrastructure ones to the benefit […]

EPA tannery investigation—‘There is no emergency here’

Representatives from the Environmental Protection Agency and Michigan Department of Environmental Quality answer questions posed by the public on Tuesday, April 24. The meeting was held to update the community on the progress of testing underway at the former Wolverine Worldwide tannery property in downtown Rockford.

Contaminants found in multiple test sites on Wolverine property by BETH ALTENA  About a hundred residents, including city officials and Wolverine Worldwide representatives, attended a public meeting held jointly by the federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) on Tuesday, April 24 at the Rockford Freshman Center. A presentation […]

Smooth sailing ahead for Rockford’s 10-Mile Road

Pictured looking east from Main St. is Division St./10-Mile Rd. A six-tenths of a mile stretch of this heavily trafficked 3-lane road, from Main St. east to Wolverine Blvd., will receive a much-needed milling and resurfacing early this summer.	Photo by CLIFF HILL

by CLIFF AND NANCY HILL  In the mid-70’s the City of Rockford requested that the Kent County Road Commission (KCRC) take over ownership of Rockford’s Division Street segment of 10-Mile Road. The KCRC accepted the offer under the conditions that the City would first bring the road up to County standards and enter into a […]

Rockford Area Historical Society News & Update

by TERRY KONKLE President, Rockford Area Historical Society  Sometimes when I ask trivia questions, I get a few answers and occasionally none at all. My last question was an exciting one, because I not only got a lot of correct replies, but with almost every one I learned how important Zell Gill was in the […]

Rockford models new money-saving safety structure

Firefighter Phil Vincent practices firefighting at the Towers, while newly trained firefighter Jamie Davies works the control panel on a Rockford fire truck.

All full-time DPW, police now qualified firefighters, medical responders by BETH ALTENA The writing was on the wall when Rockford was forced to lay off one of the city’s full-time firefighters two years ago. When police Lieutenant Scott Mazur retired a year ago, his position was not filled. With revenues to the city in a […]