Mr. Jerry Godin, formerly of Stevens Point, came to Laona in 1913. He worked for $1 a day, for ten hours, in the basement of the hotel. He then worked for Connor's where he continued to work for forty-eight years. His starting pay was $1.30 a day.
Because of his long asociation with the town, Mr. Godin was able to tell us quite a few interesting facts about Laona:
- There were eight to ten houses located near the water tower. - Twelve to fifteen houses were in a section of town (west) near the mill called Piggsville. - Near the Lutheran Church were two rows of two-room houses called the Chicken Coop. - Alderton's Bar was located where the Cafe is now. Farther down was Roseman's Restuarant & W.D. Connor's house. - A hospital was situated where Doctor Castaldo's house is now. After it burned down, the hospital was put in its present location. - Connor's train would run through to the junction two times a week. The cost of the ride was 25 cents. - The Edith Evans Library was built in 1917. Mr. Godin was the first person to check a book out of the library. - Almost everyone in town useda stove - with wood as the fuel - to heat their homes. The only person (as far as Mr. Godin knew) with a furnace was Mr. Joe Denee. - Today the bank employs quite a few people, years ago, the bank had only one employee. - At Connor's Company Farm, the building where the store is located is supposedly the town's oldest building. Though it's been renovated, many years ago it held first a meat market and then was the printing office for the newspaper. - The old Community Building (replaced by the new bank) was once a CCC Camp building. It was moved here for the town's use. - A home called the Tin House sat behind Connor's Store. The building was torn down during the 1930's.
~ End of Story ~
Interview with Jerry Godin
from the 1980 research project "Memories of Forest County".