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Former county sheriff turns 90

John Pence Former Sheriff

  by Rick Nichols More than 55 years removed from his brush with death during what soon became known as the Meriden Tornado, former Jefferson County Sheriff John Pence reached a milestone only the blessed, the lucky or some combination of the two ever arrive at when he turned 90 years old a week ago […]

March 30th, 2016 | Posted in Featured,The Independent | Read More »

Josh Ney

    Oskaloosa attorney and Jefferson County resident Josh Ney announced this week his intention to file for Jefferson County Attorney this spring. He currently serves dual roles as the Jefferson County Counselor and the Kansas Securities Commissioner. Ney’s filing will create a Republican primary election race with current County Attorney Jason Belveal, who is […]

March 30th, 2016 | Posted in Featured,The Independent,The Vindicator | Read More »

It was a day devoted entirely to reading

Jason Belveal-Read a thon

  by Rick Nichols Oskaloosa USD 341 and other school districts throughout the United States observed Dr. Seuss’s birthday March 2 by participating in Read Across America. Through three morning reading sessions, an afternoon Read-A-Thon and the presence of “hands-on library stations,” another afternoon activity, the value of reading as both a leisurely diversion and […]

March 24th, 2016 | Posted in County News,Featured,The Independent | Read More »

Master Farmer, Master Homemaker named

Craig and Tamara Gigstad-Master Farmers

  by Mary Lou Peter K-State Research & Extension A Jefferson County couple is among six statewide who have been named 2015 Kansas Master Farmers and Master Farm Homemakers in recognition of their leadership in agriculture, environmental stewardship and service to their communities. Craig and Tamara Gigstad, Valley Falls, will will be among those honored […]

March 24th, 2016 | Posted in County News,Featured,The Independent,The Vindicator | Read More »

Assistant added to EDC staff

Michele Carter

  by Rick Nichols A rural Topeka woman with more than 25 years of experience in affordable housing and economic development has been hired to fill what is a new position, that of Economic Development Assistant for Jefferson County. Michele Carter assumed the duties associated with the position on Feb. 1 and will be working […]

March 10th, 2016 | Posted in Featured,The Independent,The Vindicator | Read More »

County treasurer to bow out early

Mary Underwood

  by Clarke Davis Jefferson County Treasurer Mary Underwood does not know what it’s like not to go to work everyday, but she will soon have the chance to find out. The treasurer has resigned her office and her last day will be March 25 — Good Friday. She plans to catch up on things […]

March 9th, 2016 | Posted in The Independent,The Vindicator | Read More »

An era ends at Bank of McLouth

Kathy and Ron Scott

    by Rick Nichols Now that they’re officially “Off the Clock” like the colorful decoration next to their colorful retirement cake said, Ron and Kathy Scott of McLouth have more time to hop in their Corvette and head off to see some of their grandchildren. For the Scotts, retirement began Friday afternoon when they […]

February 10th, 2016 | Posted in The Independent | Read More »

City Hall coffee brings Jenkins to Meriden


    by Rick Nichols Possible reductions in their pensions were uppermost on the minds of at least some of the individuals who showed up at Meriden City Hall last Thursday afternoon in spite of the weather to make U.S. Rep. Lynn Jenkins (R-Kansas) well aware of their worries. Dubbed “Coffee with Your Congresswoman,” the […]

February 9th, 2016 | Posted in The Independent,The Vindicator | Read More »

Stopping soil erosion a tradition on Amerine farm

Mike Amerine--Soil Conservation

    by Clarke Davis Part of Mike Amerine’s farm is flat and begins in the Kaw bottom and then rises upward above flood level to prairie pasture and timberland to the north and northeast. Aptly named Hillcrest Farms, it’s been a challenge to preserve the soil with the amount of water that pours off […]

February 9th, 2016 | Posted in The Independent,The Vindicator | Read More »

Joe Ward keeps spelling title in Perry

Joe Ward--Spelling Bee

  by Clarke Davis Joe Ward, a Perry-Lecompton seventh-grader, captured first place in the Jefferson County Spelling Bee Jan. 26. The runner-up, who will join Ward at the Regional Spelling Bee, is Trace Kesinger, an Oskaloosa sixth-grader. Ward and Kesinger were the last two standing entering round four of the bee that lasted about 15 […]

February 9th, 2016 | Posted in The Independent,The Vindicator | Read More »

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