News writing has changed over the years

Series: Hinsdale 150 | Story 6

Imagining what life was like when the village was founded in 1873 is almost impossible, given the changes that have taken place in just the last quarter century. .

But a look back at early issues of The Doings, which started covering Hinsdale in 1895, offers not only a flavor of village life, but a sense of how local reporting has changed over time.

Consider these news briefs from the 1930s, 1960s and 1980s.

Hinsdale club’s opening stag to be held tonight

Nov. 3, 1928 — All traffic rules will be thrust aside — lives of the “weaker sex” pedestrians will even be endangered, perhaps, in the mad, male scramble to get seats for the Opening Stag tonight at the Hinsdale Club. Of course, all the men are going — members, guests and Juniors. They always do, and a perusal of this evening’s program leaves the impression that this year will be no exception to the rule, but rather that tonight’s attendance will surpass that of any previous year.

As has just been suggested, the program for the evening looks mighty fine. It lists such well-know vaudeville stars as Dave O’Malley and Harry Maxfield, the inimitable Fred Lewis and Axel Christiansen himself — that famous monologist and character delineator. In addition to these, there will be other comedy features, together with a three-piece orchestra and the traditionally good eats, that are always characteristic of the opening “stags” at the Hinsdale Club.

Were it not for an equally interesting schedule of attractions to follow at intervals throughout the coming season, it is quite likely that the ladies of our village might consider it nothing short of a calamity to miss this evening’s celebration. However, they probably have in mind and are looking forward to the general opening event next Friday night, November 9. This, it is said, is to be a dinner dance “with all the frills”; the frills, possibly, being the singing and dancing entertainers and radio stars who will be present upon this occasion. Little further information about next Friday night need be given — excepting that reservations must be made by Wednesday, November 7, for the good times at previous parties have left lasting impressions.

Slaby’s noodles aid astronauts

Aug. 26, 1965 — With his “noodles out of this world,” on Gemini 5, Jerry Slaby, 347 Ravine Road, Hinsdale, is a proud man as are his daughters, Laurie Beth and Pamela.

Officials in charge of feeding the astronauts in space have specified that “angel” hair or extra fine products of Mrs. Slaby’s Noodle Co., Berwyn, be used.

In food testing experiments for the space program, Pillsbury Foods Inc. found Slaby’s noodles would cook with a meat base, freeze dry, and could be re-hydrated and packed in tubes without falling apart.

The family business started during the Depression, probably because Jerry Slaby’s mother was such a good cook. Noodles are still made the old-fashioned way at the plant, with the dough worked and allowed to rest to let the chemical action blend and intervolve the ingredients.

Slaby understands that military forces are planning on more Slaby noodles when the Apollo manned flight to the moon takes place.

Furry little guests

Feb. 12, 1981 — Some unexpected visitors attended Monday’s Hinsdale Elementary District 181 curriculum meeting at Madison School

A couple of mice were seen scurrying across the floor at several points in the meeting.

“They don’t eat much,” Principal Robert Michalak said jokingly.

He said the recent renovation of the Madison heating system upset the nesting of the mice, causing them to become more visible. Some children wanted to name the uninvited guests, but there were so many it was hard to tell Fred from Albert, he added.

The exterminator was scheduled for Tuesday.