Recollections of Columbia, Wisconsin
by Mabel Schlender Jonkel
Contributed by Sarah Poertner
transcribed by Crystal Wendt & Michelle Harder.
Dr. John Barnes was a veterinary living about three miles east of Columbia.
In the early 1890ís George Heynderickx had the first post office in his store. In the early 1900ís Charles Graves bought the store and his daughter, Bessie, became the postmaster. When they moved to Colorado in 1905, August Schlender became postmaster. While he was in office a rural route was established with Fred Bohnhoff as the mail carrier.
Leo Schwedland drove the mail express.
In 1915 Mabel Schlender was postmaster continuing for the next six years. During this time the post office was very active as a dam was being built about four miles south. Between two and three hundred men were employed. Most of them received their mail at the Columbia post office. Also the men constructing the railroad spur to the new gravel pit received mail. There were two mail trains a day.
During World War I in 1918 the carrier, Fred Bohnhoff passed on. Because of the drafting of the boys we had to work with four substitutes. In the spring of 1919 examinations were held and Ole Aspen became the new carrier serving until 1920 when the post office was discontinued due to Mabelís moving to Baraboo where her parents had moved six months before. Ole was transferred to Neillsville and had the route through Columbia.
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