100 years ago — 1921

On the farms the recent cold days have offered excellent opportunities for the killing of the winter supply of pork, or the long-yearling beef, or possibly a fat wether, but out at the Pendleton Packing Company’s plant artificial conditions are maintained which make every day “butchering day.” The company’s business has been practically doubled since September. During December about 900 head of hogs have been killed, between 160 and 180 head of cattle and between 500 and 600 head of lambs and sheep. The products of the company are marketed under two brands. The Oregon Pride hams, bacon and lard are gaining friends in Oregon every day, and another line of hams, bacon and shortening is sold under the name of “Campfire.” One fact which is of more than ordinary interest is that the company is now shipping in every year more hogs for slaughter in the local plant than are owned in Umatilla county. Practically all of the hogs now being killed are corn-fed products of Nebraska.

50 years ago — 1971

Milton-Freewater officials are blushing, in yellow. It seems that although Milton-Freewater police officers have faithfully been handing out citations to motorists who park their vehicles in no parking areas marked by yellow curbs, the city has no law on the books forbidding such parking. The oversight was discovered by Milton-Freewater City Atty. James Walton, City Manager Henry Schneider told the city council Monday. An ordinance is being written to correct the matter. Can motorists who paid fines for violating the nonexistent Milton-Freewater law get their money back? Probably not, says an informed source. “They gave up their right to contest it when they forked over the money,” he said.

25 years ago — 1996

An antique fence sign has become the source of a mystery for Hermiston insurance agent Bill Elfering. When Elfering came to his State Farm Insurance office a few weeks ago, he found a flat yellow object resting against a glass wind break in front of his office door. “Pays the man who pays the premium,” says the painted metal plaque advertising the State Farm Mutual Auto Insurance Company. Listed on the bottom are the agent’s name and a phone number: James Phillips, Pendleton 134. “I don’t think it’ll work anymore,” Elfering said of the phone number. The mystery comes in who gave him the sign: Elfering said he has no idea. He contacted State Farm’s Company History Unit at their corporate headquarters in Bloomington, Ill., for clues. The fence sign dates to 1941, Elfering learned. At the time, an agent could buy 25 signs for $5. “I’d just like to know the story of it,” Elfering said nearly three weeks after the sign’s appearance in front of his office.

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