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Glen Carbon, Illinois, Newspaper Clippings

Madison County ILGenWeb Coordinator - Beverly Bauser




Source: Edwardsville Intelligencer, April 16, 1895
The St. Louis Press Brick Company plant was entirely destroyed by fire. The fire originated in a kiln near the center of the plant. It was discovered in the afternoon about half past one by workmen of the yards. The men began work earnestly to subdue the flames, but despite their efforts, they spread, and soon three kilns were on fire. The alarm was given to residents of the neighborhood, and these hurried to lend assistance. Shortly afterwards, the whistle at No. 2 mine of the Madison Coal Company gave the alarm to the village, and men and boys, young and old, hastened to the scene. The wind was blowing strong in the direction of the Glen Carbon hotel, owned by the Brick Company, and it together with the office, blacksmith shop, and other buildings, were threatened. The hotel furniture and other articles were removed to a place of safety across the street. Within a half hour after the fire was discovered, the entire plant was ablaze. Fortunately, the wind changed, and nearly all the buildings, save the plant proper, were saved. Several streams were playing on the fire constantly, and everything possible with the means at hand was done. The damage is estimated at about $200,000. It was insured for half that amount.

The plant was the leading industry of the live little city on the south line of Edwardsville township. It, together with the Madison Coal Company's mines, furnished employment to the residents. The plant was built by the company, which is controlled by the Messrs. Niedringhaus, in 1891, and has been in operation almost constantly since. It gave employment to as high as 300 men. Recently, about 100 men have been working 13 hours a day. The product of the concern was equal to the Galesburg brick. Fifteen flatcars on a switch of the St. Louis & Eastern Railroad were also burned. It is reported that the plant will be rebuilt at once.

The St. Louis Press Brick Company, located on the north side of Glen Carbon on Glen Crossing Road, was one of the largest brick plants in Madison County, producing ornamental as well as paving brick. Articles of incorporation for the company were filed September 1, 1891.

The bricks from the Glen Carbon plant were used in constructing the grounds and buildings of the 1904 World’s Fair in St. Louis. At one time, the company had twelve baking kilns in operation, with steam-powered equipment to operate fans, presses, and other machinery. Water for the boilers and mixing of clay was brought from a pond northeast of the plant, across Glen Crossing Road.

The brick company erected houses for their workers to rent. A row of six two-story saltbox style houses were built just below the intersection of Main Street and Glen Crossing Road. This stretch of houses was called “Brick Yard Row.”

A hotel was constructed at the crest of North Main Street, to accommodate visiting company officials from St. Louis. It was destroyed by a fire in the 1990s.

A fire at the brick plant occurred in 1895, however, the company rebuilt. The plant ceased operations after the great fire of 1906. Underground remains of the brickyard were found in November of 1994, when the property was being excavated for the construction of a home.


Source: Buffalo, New York Morning Express, April 16, 1902
Wilkes-Barre, Pa.. April 15- - In order to raise money to defend Joseph Machutis, charged with murder, the people of Glen Carbon, Ill., will hold a fair. Machutis was brought here last night by Chief Jones, who arrested him there on Saturday. He is charged with the murder of Stanley Molensky two months ago in this city. He fled and was traced through the coal regions until he was located at Glen Carbon. He had been there two months when caught on Saturday and he had made many friends. They believe he is innocent and as he has no money, they are preparing to hold a fair to raise money for his defense and to send his wife on here to engage lawyers and do her best to get him freed. The fair will be held next week. The trial will occur in a short time.


Source: Syracuse, New York Telegram, June 15, 1905
Glen Carbon, Ill., June 15. - With one side of his face mutilated with a charge of buckshot, Gustave Mergel, who murdered Mrs. Josephine Keller and fatally wounded her husband at their home near here on Tuesday, was captured by a posse yesterday afternoon in a school house two miles south of this town. He was brought here in a dying condition. The shooting of Mergel was done by a member of the posse. Mergel had been pursued and tracked to the empty school house. With all doors and windows barricaded he held his pursuers at bay for several hours, firing upon them whenever they approached.


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