125 YEARS AGO: OCT. 10 and 17, 1896
Fraudulent Spuds: It is reported that unscrupulous grocers and commission men of Vancouver had been selling potatoes not of good grade and not grown within 100 miles of here as Ashcroft potatoes. It is a trick that can not be too severely condemned. Probably no country in the world grows as good potatoes as the section immediately surrounding Ashcroft, and its reputation should not be damaged by such palpable frauds.
Fine Weather …: The weather along the Thompson river, at this time of the year, is simply perfect.
…But Too Much Wind: It gets pretty warm sometimes in Ashcroft and a breeze is invigorating, but there are times when we have all we want of the gentle zephyrs.
Over-Ambitious Hunter: The boys at North Bend say that when Jack Webb was out on his annual duck hunt he got ambitious and shot at ducks so far off (as he explained it) that he strained his gun and finally burst it. The North Bend fellows are good company but on their fishing and hunting trips really ought to have some one along to look after their guns and clothes.
100 YEARS AGO: OCT. 7 and 14, 1921
Work Begins On New Ashcroft School: Work began on Monday on the new $16,000 provincial government public school building for Ashcroft. The new school will be a modern structure in every respect. It will include three class rooms, and recreation rooms in basement for boys and girls. The building is to be equipped with every modern convenience including furnace heating and electric lighting. The site chosen and purchased by the Ashcroft School Board is an ideal one at the extreme south of the town [now Villa Fronterra], and the building when completed will face Railway Avenue, the main street, as well as the right-of-way of the Canadian Pacific Railway.
A Church For Clinton: Preparations are being made for the erection of a church in Clinton. The citizens have contributed $800. The Presbyterian Mission will donate $500 and lend $2,000 toward the building of the church.
Clinton Races: The annual Race Meeting at Clinton was held on the 22, 23 and 24th of September in good weather, and proved a great success… A large public hall, which is to commemorate those from the district who fell and served in the Great War, has recently been erected in Clinton, and an enjoyable dance was held there each night. The new hall was built by public subscription, and by the proceeds of dances and other entertainments in the past year. The dances during the races resulted in about $500 being added to the fund for the completing of the hall. When it is known that the people of Clinton have also the building of a church on their hands, the enterprise is more than the ordinary.
Airplane Overhead: About 4:30 last Friday afternoon Major McLaurin passed over Ashcroft enroute to Kamloops on a forest patrol seaplane. The major left Jericho Beach, Vancouver at 2:15 and reached Kamloops a little after 5 o’clock.
75 YEARS AGO: OCT. 5 and 12, 1946
Ashcroft Museum: Not many small towns in B.C. have a museum of historic things of interest to the community. Of course Ashcroft is situated in the heart of the most historic district in the province and has many things that can be preserved and saved to tell of the past. In the Ashcroft museum may be seen relics of bygone Cariboo and Lillooet district days together with a number of curios gathered for this vicinity. Ashcroft is fortunate in having the premises for housing and showing these interesting things. Open hours, Tuesdays and Fridays 3 to 5 p.m.
One Licence Plate Next Year: Due to metal shortage only one plate will be issued to motorists when new licences are taken out at the end of 1946. This was started as a war measure. The 1947 auto plates will be of cream background and green lettering. They are made in a shop located at Oakalla prison farm where short-time prisoners operate the machinery.
50 YEARS AGO: OCT. 7 and 14, 1971
Spences Bridge Steelhead Derby Has Started: The Spences Bridge & District Chamber of Commerce Steelhead Derby has started. It will run to February 29, 1972. There is a trophy for the largest Steelhead being weighed in and several hidden prizes. Weigh in stations are at Acacia Grove Motel, Green Lantern General Store, Ellingsen’s store, and Shaw Springs. There have been a few Steelhead weighed in already.
Trucks Using Jacob Brakes Down Arterial Highway 509R From Kamloops: Corporal Hill suggested that the Village [of Cache Creek] arrange with the Dept. of Highways to erect signs: “Is Your Jacob Brake Off?” He felt that such signs would be effective in reducing the noise from these brakes as truckers enter Cache Creek from Kamloops.
Plane Crashes In N. Ashcroft: George Wise, pilot of Fairbanks, Alaska, made a crash landing at a hay field at Circle 7 Ranch, Ashcroft at 6:20, Oct. 10. The plane was an Interstate L6 2 seater, single engine. The pilot received slight injuries and the plane was extensively damaged. He was enroute from Bremerton, Wash., flying to Alaska. It was getting too dark to fly further, so he tried to find the Ashcroft airfield (which we understand is marked closer to Ashcroft than it actually is). He could not find the landing strip [near Ashcroft Manor at Highway 1] and made a pass at the soap box hill [Government Street by Hillside Apartments, near the old rodeo ground on Circle 7 property], circled town a few times, then crash landed in the field. The landing was good, but he hit a low mound and nosed down into the earth. Children were playing in a field near to where he landed.
School Tenders Being Called: The Board of School Trustees, School District No. 30 (South Cariboo) have received approval from the Department of Education to call tenders on the first phase of the new Ashcroft Secondary School [now Desert Sands Community School on Ranch Road]. The estimate for this first phase is $260,000 [and] the contractor should be on the site starting construction in the latter part of November. There have been numerous delays in getting this school started. It had originally been hoped that the first phase would have been completed for September, 1971, however, it will now not be ready until September, 1972 ,which places it a year behind schedule. The enrolment of the Ashcroft Secondary School [at the south end of Railway; see 1921 above] is up thirty-three per cent over last year.