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Glenhaven began with the vision of local businessmen, clergy and doctors

By LeAnn Ralph

GLENWOOD CITY  —  In honor of Glenhaven’s 55th anniversary celebration, here is a timeline of news items from the Glenwood City Tribune from the first concept of a “home for older people” until the first two residents moved in.

Thursday, May 16, 1957
Plan To Construct Home For Older People Here

A group of local businessmen, clergy and doctors have formed a voluntary committee to build a home for older people in Glenwood City. The necessary first steps are now being taken. First the committee has chosen as a name for the new non-profit corporation “Glenhaven Inc.” Now various possible sites are under consideration and architects are being interviewed so that tentative drawings for fund raising purposes may be prepared.

The home will have to be built largely with funds contributed by people from the wide area surrounding Glenwood City. The local committee is having the help of Myron S. Burton as consultant. He is well known in Wisconsin for the work he has done in consulting both on the building of numerous hospitals and for his help in directing campaigns. He heads the firm of Burton and Associates and has worked in Amery, St. Croix Falls, and Barron.

The committee is thinking tentatively of a home for 40 residents. The plan is to take guests who have reached the age when running their own home is too much of a chore. Though the committee is not contemplating admitting invalids into the home there will be an infirmary for those who may be sick while there as guests. The committee is thinking of a home that will have the conveniences and comforts that any of us would want if we were to enter such a home. Guests are to be paying guests but costs are to be reasonable and in keeping with the community needs.

September 5, 1957
Glenhaven, Inc. Drive Starts This Week

Russell Peterson, representing Burton and Associates of Northfield, Minn., started work this week with the Board of Directors of Glenhaven, Inc. During the next few weeks Mr. Peterson will be compiling information and data necessary to conduct a campaign for funds. He will also be meeting with various civic and church organizations to explain the proposed project.

Glenhaven has been organized to provide a home for the senior citizens in this area.

Myron S. Burton of Burton and Associates has worked with the loyal Glenhaven committee during the past several weeks to help develop plans. Mr. Burton is a consultant specializing in the planning and financing of hospitals and homes building programs in smaller cities and towns.

Campaign headquarters have been set up this week in the Jewelry building, next to the bank.

The incorporation of Glenhaven Inc. began what shall undoubtedly be thought of in years to come as the most far sighted and beneficial project ever introduced in this community. There is dire need throughout the country for facilities such as this to accommodate our senior citizens. This community is to be commended in taking this forward step to help meet this fast growing need.

September 12, 1957

This edition of the Glenwood City Tribune included the floor plan for the proposed Glenhaven facility.

Much Interest is Being Shown in Glenhaven

Contacts made during the past week in this community indicated that there is good interest in Glenhaven Inc. the proposed home for senior citizens of this area. The general response is that we are all growing older, and that we may need it for ourselves someday.

Various women of this community headed by Mrs. William Hill are busy compiling necessary information and records for the campaign in their homes. More voluntary help is needed. Anyone willing to help with the office work of the campaign for Glenhaven Inc. should either contact Mrs. Hill or call the Campaign Headquarters, telephone 70, for details and information.

Mrs. Marjorie Koberstein is making arrangements with the various organizations and clubs in the community, whereby the proposed project can be explained at their regular meetings. Arrangements have been made to explain Glenhaven Inc. at the Eastern Star meeting Tuesday evening, at the Immanuel Lutheran Church Ladies Aid at Forest Wednesday afternoon, Sept. 11, and at the Grace Lutheran Church Ladies Aid in Connorsville on Thursday afternoon, Sept. 12. Myron S. Burton, Consultant for the home, will speak to the Community Club members at their next regular meeting to be held at 6:30 p.m. September 19.

September 19,1957
Location is Acquired For Glenhaven Inc.

A beautiful site located north from the swimming pool, in the east end of town, has been acquired and donated to Glenhaven Inc., by Mr. and Mrs. George Penke. Senior citizens who are more or less inactive will enjoy the activity provided in this area as well as the beautiful scenery. [Mr. Penke at one time owned the Downing feed mill and the Glenwood City Lumberyard.]

September 26, 1957

The September 26 edition of the newspaper began publishing questions asked by community members and the answers to those questions. The Q&A articles continued for several issues, but this is the first set of questions.

• What type of material will the building be built?

Plans call for the building to be built of a fire resistant material throughout. The exterior will be of brick.

• How many floors will be in this building?

There will be 2 floors. The first floor will provide the main entrance and waiting room, boiler room, laundry, storage room and room facilities for 18 guests. The second floor will provide a modern kitchen, a spacious lounge area and sun room, a dining room and facilities for 37 guests. Both floors will have ground level exits and entrances to insure safety to its guests.

• What is the estimated cost of the project?

Architects estimate that the cost will be about $150,000 to $160,000.

• How will the project be financed?

It is to be financed by voluntary contributions.

• Who will own the home?

It will be owned by members of the non-profit corporation.

• How does one become a member of the corporation?

Persons donating $100 or more, may if they wish, become members.

• Must donations be in cash?

Arrangements have been made so that all gifts may be paid over a 3 year period. It is hoped however, that donors will wherever possible, pay all or part of their gift in cash so that funds will be available for construction to begin this fall.

October 3, 1957
Surveying Completed At Site of Glenhaven

Another step toward the reality of Glenhaven Inc. was taken Monday, September 30th. Engineers from the firm of Robert G. Cooper of Rice Lake spent the day surveying on the site of Glenhaven. Stakes marking the exact location of the building have been established.

It is hoped that grading of the area can begin within the next two or three weeks. Present plans are to put in the footings for the building this fall, to insure an early start of the building next spring.

October 10, 1957

Officers of the (Glenhaven) corporation are George H. Penke, chairman; Rev. Herbert Enser, secretary; and H.R. Lexvold. Treasurer. Other volunteer committee members are as follows: Oscar Peterson; Dr. P.W. Limberg; Dr. A.W. Limberg; Chester DeCamp; Myron O. Lee; Mrs. Robert Hinman; Chris Leibke; Henry Bartz; George Steffen; Richard Rivard; Oliver Winberg; Harold Ashcroft; Marvin Teigen; Everett Peterson; Emil Beyrer; Charlie Diller; James Van Dien; Mrs. George Russell; Mrs. Ellen Goodwin; Art Fillback; Rev. Richard Hofstad; Rev. Carl Fox; Rev. Kenneth Wittenberg; Rev. W.H. Ave Lallenant; Rev. Chris Everson; and Walter Holldorf.

Voluntary members will serve until the first annual meeting of the corporation. This will be held after the campaign for funds is over.

October 17, 1957

The hot lunch room of the Glenwood City High School was packed to capacity Monday evening, October 14, while 185 persons enthusiastically listened to local citizens express themselves concerning Glenhaven Incorporated.

A groundbreaking ceremony will be held at the site for Glenhaven on Sunday afternoon, October 20, at 2:30 p.m. The public is invited.

October 24, 1957

About 75 people attended the groundbreaking ceremony for Glenhaven. Heavy equipment from the St. Croix County highway department leveled the ground last week in preparation for construction.

Total contributions and pledges to Glenhaven Inc. now total $21,700. Sponsors of the project give $1,000 or more over a three-year period. The following people are sponsors of Glenhaven: Mrs. and Mrs. George H. Penke; Mr. and Mrs. Myron Lee; Mr. and Mrs. Chester DeCamp; Mrs. and Mrs. H.R. Lexvold; Mr. and Mrs. Marvin Teigen; Mr. and Mrs. Oscar Peterson; Dr. and Mrs. C.H. Kreblein; Dr. and Mrs. A.W. Limberg; Dr. and Mrs. P.W. Limberg; Mr. and Mrs. Ross DeWitt.

October 31, 1957

Contributions total $29,610, and a general campaign for funds for Glenhaven will begin next week.

November 14, 1957

Glenhaven pledges now total $33,000.

November 21, 1957

Glenhaven pledges now total $40,051.

November 28, 1957

Glenhaven pledges now total $44,516.

December 5, 1957

By-laws are drawn up for Glenhaven Inc.

February 6, 1958

Glenhaven contributions reach $53,000.

February 18, 1958

The first meeting of the Glenhaven Auxiliary will be March 1 at 2 p.m. at the Glenwood City High School lunch room.

March 6, 1958

Mrs. Ross DeWitt was nominated as chairman of the Women’s Auxiliary for Glenhaven; Mrs. Roy Thompson is vice-president; Mrs. Dorothy Krostue is secretary; Mrs. Harrie Sarinske is treasurer. [Subsequent issues of the Glenwood City Tribune included various reports of card parties and other activities held by the Women’s Auxiliary for Glenhaven and other women’s groups, such as church groups and homemakers’ organizations, to raise money the cause. What was considered to be a successful event may have raised $20 or $40 or $50 for the nursing home. The Glenwood City Tribune also began including memorials for Glenhaven: this person died, and this person gave $2 or $5 as a memorial. And Mrs. DeWitt began a campaign of a “Mile of Pennies for Glenhaven.” People were asked to search their purses and pockets and bring their pennies to the Glenwood City Tribune office. Clubs, such as the Brownies, conducted penny drives. Carlton DeWitt says he remembers the jar of pennies in the Tribune office.]

March 13, 1958

Pledges for Glenhaven reach $59,000.

June 19, 1958

The plans for Glenhaven have been revised from 65 or 70 beds [on two floors] to 35 or 40 beds [on one floor]. It is hoped that such a building can be constructed for an amount not to exceed $110,000. With the revised plans, it is hoped that construction can be started no later than Aug. 1.

August 14, 1958

Plans are being made to start building Glenhaven by the middle of September.

August 28, 1958

The first annual meeting of Glenhaven was held August 21. About 40 people attended the meeting.

September 4, 1958

The Glenhaven Board of Directors met August 28. The following officers were elected: George Penke, president; Edward Gavic, vice-president; Rev. H. Enser, secretary; Mrs. M. Koberstein, financial secretary; H.R. Lexvold, treasurer. Richard Rivard, legal advisor. Trustees are Dr. A.W. Limberg; Dr. P.W. Limberg (3 years); Oscar Peterson (2 years); Victor Palewicz (1 year).

November 6, 1958

Work got underway last week on the construction of Glenhaven, Inc., the home for our senior citizens being built here. A bulldozer from the St. Croix County highway department started last week on excavating the basement.

January 22, 1959

The Glenhaven building committee reported that in three weeks, the dox-blox for the floors in the two wings will be ready at an approximate cost of $12,000. The work on the foundation is completed and bills are paid to date.

February 12, 1959

The Dox-Blocks for the Glenhaven floor arrived Monday, and by Tuesday afternoon, the east and west wings were completed. The center will arrive any day to complete the floor of the building.

July 16, 1959

At least $125,000 will be needed to complete construction and begin operation of Glenhaven. Of that total, $89,369 has been raised to date. By July 1, water and sewer were connected and electrical wiring was complete as far as Glenhaven had progressed. When it is finished, Glenhaven will have 22 double rooms.

August 6, 1959

It is expected that Glenhaven will be ready for occupancy late this fall.

September 17, 1959

The roof was laid on the center section September 10.

November 19, 1959

Mr. and Mrs. James Vance, Elk Mound, were hired last Wednesday by the Glenhaven board to serve as co-administrators of Glenhaven Inc.

December 17, 1959

The east wing of Glenhaven is completed except for a few finishing touches, and the west wing is well underway. Because of the interest in the progress of Glenhaven and the many visitors stopping on Sundays, a member of the board will be there every Sunday afternoon to have it open and show visitors around.

December 31, 1959

The Glenhaven Board of Directors is still troubled with the lack of funds, and those in arrears on their pledge payments are asked to bring them up to date. It is believed the new building will be finished by February 1.

January 28, 1960

The new Glenhaven Home will be ready for occupancy next week. Clean up day will be Thursday, January 28. All women interested in Glenhaven are asked to come out Thursday, January 28, from 1 to 4 p.m. to clean and wash windows and hang drapes. Please bring some clean rags along for washing floors and windows and a pail or basin.

February 11, 1960

The very first applicant made for residency was that of Mrs. Hazel Fouks who came on Thursday to make her home at Glenhaven.

Mrs. Mary Hoff, whose home was formerly at Colfax, arrived last Friday afternoon to be the second guest to make her home at Glenhaven.