Centennial Memory Project
Welcome to the Centennial Memory Project, created by the Kimberly-Little Chute Public Library in celebration of the Centennial of the Village of Kimberly in 2010. Even though the Centennial has passed, we are still adding materials as time allows. If you have memories or family stories about the people and places included here, please add them in the comments!
Jim, Adelle, and Paul Smits with their mother Laura. ca. 1931
"This picture shows wooden walk around to back of house."
Paul Francis (1st communion), James Vincent, and Adelle Mary Smits. ca. 1930s
"Kimberly's original Village Hall on N. Elm Street is the white building in the background."
Peter Smits with son Paul, in Model T on Elm Street, Kimberly, WI. ca. 1920s
Photos courtesy of Paul Smits.
Mr. Smits also wrote down some memories to share with us. Read his early memories of life in Kimberly.
"When I was 3 years (1947 or 1948) old my mom & dad, Ray & Ceil Verstegen bought the building on the corner of Main & Maes Ave. It was the original general store in the first yrs of Kimberly's origination. They had the first Red Owl Store put downstairs & we lived upstairs. Later it became The Toy Corner, the hottest corner in Kimberly. My brothers, Lyle, Randy & I spent many hours at the Kimberly pool just down the street and at the Clubhouse. In summer we spent alot of time in Sunset Park, which then was just a big woods with a few trails."
Memories of Lynn (Verstegen) Reschke
1930 Kimberly Baseball Team
Front row: J. Feldhausen, W. Ladrow, L. Dopry, Arn. Pocan, Charlie Schell
Center row: Butch Thien, Ed Lynch, Geo. C. Lemmers
Back row: Nig. Verbeten, Whitey Berhrent, Dago Lamers
Photo courtesy of Carl Lemmers
Additional information gathered by local historian, Mary Lamers:
- Geo C. Lemmers center row is Carl Lemmers/Sandy Huiting's father/grandfather - George C. Lemmers ran the bowling alley in Kimberly.
- Whitey Berhrent owned "Whitey's Bar" on Main Street across/down from the bowling alley. It's an apartment building now (2013).
- Charlie Schell center row, far right, owned the bowling alley in Kaukauna.
- Dago Lamers, back row right owned the Hardware store in Little Chute.
- Another interesting tidbit - [Mary] asked Carl the real names of Nig Verbeten, Whitey Berhrent and Dago Lamers. He didn't know - every one in town and their family called them by their nickname. The history behind this - So many Catholic families had big families and kept naming next generation after past generation. So, many times nicknames became the "real" name". [Mary] had a brother Tom, Tooty. He got his nickname because [Mary's] Uncle Tom also lived with them. Tom was 8, Tooty, a newborn when [Mary's] parents took in her mother's younger brothers and sister because both parents had died. Tom was "Tooty" until he went off to college.