Hillsboro Illinois Hail Storm of 1910

Hail damaged buildings downtown Hillsboro Illinois 1910
Hail damaged buildings downtown Hillsboro Illinois 1910

Do you recognize these Main Street business buildings?

Do you recognize these two Hillsboro business buildings pictured as they looked following a severe hailstorm in April 1910?

New fronts have been installed since the hailstones, big as baseballs, knocked out scores of windows and punctured roofs 70 years ago on April 15, 1910.

Different businesses have been operated in the two buildings since billiards and pool were played in the store at the left and Henry Brungger baked bread and other bakery products in the building to the right.

John W. King and Franklin A. Morris operated the billiard pool hall in which members of the Ginos family later opened Liberty Restaurant. For years, different cafe operators rented the building, which is still owned by the Ginos family.

After the building was badly damaged by fire it was completely remodeled and is now occupied by Chatteau of Flowers.

The former bakery building, which was purchased from the Evans sisters several years ago by the Ginos family, is now occupied by John Rambo’s wallpaper and paint store. For years Henry Brungger, and later other bakers, operated bakeries under various names in the building.

Those not old enough to remember how the buildings looked following the hailstorm may remember the smells of freshly baked bread coming out of the bakery and of “blue plate” specials coming from the Liberty and the succeeding cafes.

To the left of the picture is a portion of the narrow building where Jesse O. Bailey sold cigars and tobacco 70 years ago. Roy VanHyning later operated the Serv-U-Well news stand in the building before it became Art Moore’s barber shop.

The narrow building and the larger one to the north in which a tavern, barber shop, news agency and other businesses had been located became a part of the past when the Edward McDavid remodeled them to late house the Montgomery County Loan Company, now Heights Finance Corp.

by: Tom Bliss

Published: The Montgomery News

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Jeff Dunn

Vice President

Historical Society of

Montgomery County

Advisory Board

Illinois State

Historical Society