Silverhill 1896-1952 Woodenbook Text

       Following is the complete text version of the history that is written in the Wooden Book.

       The links on the left will take you back to the photo version of the book.

Page 1
Origin of Silverhill Colony

       In the spring of 1896 when a depression struck in Chicago, and employment was hard to find, it occurred to some, that a change of location, work and climate might help better the situation.

       For this reason, Oscar Johnson, J. Linden, C. Swanson, C.O. Carlson and J.O. Vallentin decide to go south to investigate the possibilities and if they were sufficiently promising the thought was to establish a Swedish Colony.

       Inquiry was made at the Illinois Central Railroad Station regarding free tickets to the south to look over the situation and to fins out what the chances were of purchasing land should such be desired. Free tickets were obtained as far as Nashville, Tennessee. Here tickets were purchased to Mobile, Alabama. Stopping over in Montgomery, the group became acquainted with a real estate man named Scott. He supplied them with maps and literature on land that had agricultural value.

       They then continued their journey to Mobile, Theodore and St. Elmo. After being delayed in Theodore, they came to Mobile where they decided to take a boat to Battles Wharf, Baldwin County. Here they became acquainted with a Mr. Smith who had come all the way from Ohio with a horse and wagon.

       Smith took the men eastward fifteen miles, into the vicinity of Fish River where a man, Aaron Hartford, had a large tract of land to sell. The land was satisfactory but there were other things to be considered such as the few roads which were practically impassable. No land was purchased at this time and the group returned to Theodore. After spending some time investigating, the men returned to Mobile, stopping at the Windsor Hotel. While there, it was decided to return to Baldwin County.

       This time there was only Oscar Johnson and J.O. Vallentin, accompanied by a man named Scott thought to be from Montgomery. They went by train to Bay Minette and from…

Page 2
...there by horse and wagon about twenty-five miles south to look over again the Aaron Hartford land and to inquire about the climate if it would be suitable for people from the north.

       Land was purchased and they returned to Chicago to report to other parties interested and to make preparations for colonizing this new land.

The First Colonists

       In June 1896, the deeds and abstracts were completed and recorded and Mr. Oscar Johnson returned to the south. This time he stayed three months in Thorsby, Alabama also a Swedish Colony, after which he continued on to Baldwin County.

       In the spring of 1897, Mr. Johnson began clearing the forest for the building of a house (the first house in Silverhill which is the Armstrong home), when in the summer he was joined by J. Linden who helped him build the house. It was in that year that the terrible epidemic of yellow fever broke out in the south placing quarantine on Mobile, Pensacola and all neighboring territory. Oscar Johnson and Mr. Linden had to return to Chicago in order to escape this quarantine.

       With the yellow fever over and the quarantine lifted, Mr. Johnson returned to Alabama in 1898. He was at this time accompanied by Mr. and Mrs. Axel Theodore Westerlund, (the late Mrs. Theodore Johnson), and their little girl Ester Lovisa, (the now Mrs. Louise J. Lundberg) and Clauson Slosson who, with their parents, the Hartfords, had been here previously and from whom the Silverhill land had been purchased and who later built the place now owned by Luke Swoboda. Oscar Johnson’s house had almost been completed before his departure except for windows and doors and so boards were nailed up over the openings in order to hold the cold winds out, and since no furniture had arrived, boards nailed together served as beds, tables and benches; mattresses were made from pine straw and dry grass covered with quilts and blankets. Now came a real trial, how to cook without a stove or a chimney, but, (writes Mr. Norman), a woman is seldom without resource, and Mrs. Westerlund,...

Page 3
…seeing a big stump on fire in the clearing immediately grabbed up a kettle, and setting it alongside the coffee pot, and soon there was a meal of oatmeal porridge and coffee. This was the first meal cooked in Silverhill. An outdoor furnace was bricked up as soon as possible and since all cooking and baking was done out-doors, Mrs. Westerlund had to be on the look-out for uninvited guests, namely, razor back hogs with long snouts and the like, which roamed the woods relatively unmolested, and on one occasion did away with an entire meal of pancakes fried for the family and land seekers.

       By Christmas Eve 1898, Oscar Johnson had gotten, and put up, the windows and doors and the chimney had also been built. This in itself brought more Christmas Joy than words could ever tell. Even though there were only five people in the colony, Christmas had to be celebrated as Swedish as possible with “Lute fish” and rice porridge, and New Year’s Eve was celebrated with coffee and Swedish “Dop” Promptly at Twelve midnight.

       In order to get the necessities for life, it was to ride the horse and wagon along winding roads through the woods down to Marlow at Baldwin’s or up to Daphne where then all that could be gotten was coffee, sugar, salt pork, corn and cornmeal.

       With the first of January 1899, came Mrs. Oscar Johnson and their two daughters Vera, (now Mrs. Armstrong) and Agnes, (now Mrs. Utter). This addition to the little group of five brought much joy especially to Mrs. Westerlund, (Mrs. Theo. Johnson) who had been the only lady in the colony and to little Ester, (the now Mrs. Louise J. Lundberg) who had been the only child.

       The first real excursion down to the southland was in February of 1899, when there arrived Mr. and Mrs. Otto Solberg, (not to be confused with the tailor) Charley Johanson, Ernest Ahlberg (who later clerked at Peoples Supply Co.) Ahlberg also lived with the owners Theo. Johnsons, who were also the builders of the store. Mr. and Mrs. Lind were also among the arrivals. Mr. Lind very kindly made a chair for little Ester for her first birthday in Alabama. (She was two years of age at that time.) Also arriving were Mr. and Mrs. Colander and Ankarberg (a burly Swede from Burlington, Iowa). Among some experiences, (which were many and…

Page 4
…hard in those early days), was one that stands out with unusual vividness in the memory of the early colonists. There was no cow and no milk in the colony and not any to be gotten around about, therefore Mr. Solberg decided that he would set out in search of one to purchase at the best possible price. He and a Mr. Dahlberg set out by path to the north not knowing how far or how long a time it would take to eventually find a cow to buy at the price they wanted to pay. They left early on a Thursday morning expecting surely to be back before dark on Friday. When Friday night came but no Solberg, then Mrs. Solberg filled with anxiety, lighted her lantern and went into the dark woods, to meet them. Not going too far for fear of getting lost, she found a half fallen down tree, climbed up it, and sat there with her lantern until mid-night. Solberg, Dahlberg and the cow came home Saturday night. It took three days to find a cow to buy.

       In the next five or six years there was a good influx of land seekers and settlers, houses were built, land cleared and some ground had begun being cultivated. People came south mostly during the fall and winter months. Those who decided to stay and build their homes here in Silverhill meant that they would have to pitch in with desire, determination and all their strength because it meant a lot of hard work to turn a wilderness of forests into cultivated fields of crops and grain.

       Here in Silverhill as in other places throughout this great land of ours have the people from “The Northland”, (Scandinavia) lived honestly, worked hard and won for themselves a good name. In among the pines here and there were houses built, and farms cultivated round about them, which have, after years of hard labor, become more and larger and have given the farmer returns for his labor.

       Solberg, a descendant of the guard of King Charles XV was the first man to set the plow to the ground in Silverhill.


       In these two years nothing was raised for shipping away, only for the families own needs in vegetables, potatoes (sweet and Irish), corn and rice. Time was spent in building living houses and farm buildings and in clearing and plowing the ground.

Page 5

       During these two years the farmers planted for selling: potatoes, (sweet and Irish), string beans and some strawberries. These had to be hauled with horse and wagon to Daphne, then across the bay by boat to Mobile to be sold. Oftentimes the price was so low that the farmer received practically nothing in return. At this time, Mobile was a very poor place for marketing produce.


       On Dec. 5, 1903, the people were called together to discuss the planting of peaches. It was decided to start raising peaches. In the spring of 1904 peach orchards were planted on the different farms until in February 1905, 11,550 peach trees had been planted throughout the colony. The farmers looked forward to a good income from these trees but instead insects and disease attacked the trees, the trees dried up and died away, and after two years, not many trees remained in the orchards. This was a costly and sad experience to the colonists. In 1904, cotton was planted, although the price was not high, it was something in the savings.


       By this time the colony had grown into quite a little town with more homes, hotels, churches, stores, post office and school, with better boat service from Fairhope to Mobile, with freight hauled from Mobile down the bay and up Fish River to Silverhill Landing, (where White Oak Farm is, down below Woodhaven Dairy, where Floyd White’s live.), and hauled by wagon to Silverhill. The L. and N. Railroad were being built and towns were springing up in Loxley, Robertsdale, Summerdale, Foley, Elberta and Magnolia Spring. This branch line had desired passage direct from Bay Minette straight through to Fort Morgan, it then would have passed through Silverhill but due to controversy, the right of way passed to the east, and still farther east to terminate where now Foley stands. In this year, in September, the gulf coast was struck by a very severe storm which is still called the “Storm of 1906”. There was much property damage and severe damage to the timber but no lives were lost in Silverhill. Several…

Page 6
…families became disheartened and discouraged and moved back from whence they came.


       In the spring of 1907, came a man, Mr. Stall, a representative of Newhall and Son of Chicago to interest the farmers in raising cucumbers. He said that there was a demand and that prices would be high. His firm would supply the fertilizer and baskets, if the farmers would do the work. Then the income would be divided between farmer and firm. At a call meeting of all farmers, it was decided to plant cucumbers. And the farmers planted with a competitive spirit as to who would raise the best and the most, and all looked forward to good financial returns. When the crop was harvested and time came for the returns to come in, it was found that instead of getting paid for their cucumbers they were in debt to Newhall and Son firm instead. This was certainly a time of sorrow and regret and complaint after so much hard labor, time and trouble had been given to the crop. But living up to the reputation and determination of the Norse Man it was to spit in the hands and make a new start. The following year, the farmers sold to a firm, A.F. Jound and Co. of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania and under their contract they planted cucumbers and Irish potatoes. The outcome was not what they had hoped for and expected, but at least, they were not in debt.


       During all these years, more people continued to come to Silverhill, some as tourists, (Hotel Norden had become noted among the Swedes in the north as a home for winter tourists, most of them coming back each year so it was necessary for an annex to be built.) Daughter Anna, (Mrs. Anna Rogers) and daughter-in-law Anna, (Mrs. Harry Norden), were the push and go, in both kitchen, dining room and socially; and were not only much loved by the tourists but the entire community. Many of the tourists became land seekers and bought land, built homes, became farmers and helped the community to grow and expand. Crops of Irish and sweet potatoes, cucumbers, strawberries and quite much cotton were planted. It was found necessary to improve the stock of cattle, and with this came the planting of corn and hay, beginning crops to improve both soil and fodder. Sugar cane was a new crop, and rice was planted on a broader scale.

Page 7

       During these years farming took on a new upswing! More and more families moved in, more land was cultivated, better homes, better equipment, better horses, mules, cattle, better hogs and better poultry. More and better prices brought on a better livelihood in not only farming but in other lines of occupation and professions. Since 1913, was Mr. B. Lindberg buyer for Warley Produce Co. in Mobile, Alabama in Irish and sweet potatoes and cucumbers. During these same years was the organization of The Silverhill Farmers Association, (which is still going strong in 1952), sold on the consignment plan, the products for the farmers of the section.


       These years were as a rule, prosperous year for the farmers. Prices, not always too good, were such to prove a steady income for the farmer. The price on cattle was on a steady upward swing. In 1928, 1929 and 1930 the price of dairy products and dairy cattle began to fall off and the animals were sold for slaughtering, and not much was brought in then.

This was originally written in Swedish by Mr. Charles Norman, Sr. Now (1952), it was translated by Mrs. G. Lundberg (the former Ester Lovisa Westerlund Johnson) to be used in a Teachers Extension Course on the History of Baldwin Count and Alabama, with a group of teachers in Baldwin Co. by Troy State Teachers College. Other teachers from Silverhill, Mrs. I. Carlson and Mrs. F. Engstrom, who also helped in the making of this book.

Page 8

The Fairhope Courier

Fairhope, Alabama, Thursday, November 20, 1952

Silverhill Town Officials Take Office Oath

       The above is a picture of the Silverhill Town Officials taking the Oath of Office at a recent election: Notary Public, W. F. Weyler, Councilmen C. L. Chandler, George Lundberg, Axel Rundquist, Mayor Emery Johnson, Town Clerk, Fred From, Councilmen Edward Havel and Elmer Lindell.

       Mayor Emery Johnson, who came to Silverhill with his parents in 1899 has held public office since 1928, having served as councilman until 1937, when he became mayor on the resignation of C. L. Chandler. He has been mayor of Silverhill since that year. Mr. Johnson is proprietor of the Robertsdale Grist and Feed Mills, having been in the business of miller, and dealer in feeds, seeds and insecticides for the past thirty-five years.

       C. L. Chandler, Commissioner of street lighting and traffic signals, came to Silverhill with his family in 1928 as manager of Peoples Supply Co., a merchandise and grocery business begun in 1902 by the late Mr. T. A. Johnson, but now owned by George Merinos of Loxley. Upon his resignation as mayor 1936-37, he has served on the town council continuously since 1937.

       George Lundberg, commissioner of health and sanitation, has served on the town council for ten years. Coming to Silverhill with his parents in 1911, he has taught music throughout Baldwin County, since the early 1920s and has directed the Baldwin County Student orchestra since that date.

       Axel Rundquist, commissioner of parks and town shrubbery, was born and reared here in Silverhill. He, most especially, has the entire community at heart, and serves it well. He is cashier at the Robertsdale Bank, and also deals in Insurance. He has served on the town council for ten years.

       Ed Havel came to Silverhill with his family in 1921, and is one of Silverhill’s very successful farmers. Being commissioner of streets he has served on the town council for eight years.

       Elmer Lindell, commissioner of streets and town fire chief, was a nephew of the late Mr. Oscar Johnson, the founder of Silverhill. Coming to Silverhill with his mother as a small infant he is now one of Silverhill’s Successful business men and is proprietor of the Lindell Garage. He has served on the town council for sixteen years.

       Mr. Fred From came to Silverhill with his wife in 1929. He has served as town clerk and treasurer since 1930, and is most efficient. Mr. From works a garden spot and raises chickens.

       Silverhill was founded in 1896 by the late Mr. Oscar Johnson. It was incorporated in 1926. Previous Mayors have been Mr. O. Johnson, Mr. Charles Norman, and Mr. Paul Anderson.

Page 9

       By a Fourth Grade Student, Barbara Konicky. Her mother was Gertrude Sopr, of an early Czech family.

       When my mother was a little girl, her father and mother had to do work much harder than fathers and mother do today. They had to do most of their work by hand. All their farm work was done by mules. The work was very slow and hard.

       When they moved here there were large trees, such as you do not see today. They were fortunate that they had a sawmill to take their logs to have their lumber made. They made all their shingles for the roofs by hand. My father and mother still have one of those roofs.

       They did not farm as much as we do now. They planted corn, and a few planted cukes.

       They worked hard but they were happy. They did not have the food and clothes that they have today.

                   Barbara Ann Konicky

Page 10 Whole View

Page 10 Insert 1

History of Silverhill continued, 1930 to 1952.

       Places opened to the landseekers and tourists during these years were 1st the Oscar Johnson home which now is the home of a daughter, Mrs. Phil Armstrong and family. 2nd The Olander Hotel, and 3rd later Hotel Norden. All served their purpose for many years, but tourist now seek the bay and gulf resorts, and so Silverhill now has no hotels. Olander’s has been wrecked to be rebuilt into a church and parsonage. Hotel Norden was completely destroyed by fire in about 1942. Private homes are now often opened to people wishing to stop in Silverhill for a while.

       Among businesses existing in Silverhill were the Frisk Creamery built in 1909 – It was a financial help to the farmer. Destroyed by fire in about 1921, the Berglin Creamery in Fairhope has sought the patronage of Silverhill farmers ever since. The new establishments “Woodhaven Dairy” with its fine cattle and modern equipment reaches farmers far around, and ships milk to cities within a wide area.

       The Olander Hotel also housed a grocery business and the first post office (1902).

       In 1902, the John Isakson Black smith shop was built.

       In 1902 Theodore Johnson built Peoples Supply Co. which has existed throughout these years, and in 1952 is managed by Leslie Chandler. Mr. Johnson retired in 1928, and died in 1938. Mr. Johnson was much loved by all the early settlers as well as the natives from far distances. People today reminisce, and often speak of when they would trade in those early days and would always find a bag of candy at the bottom of the groceries as a treat to the children.

       In 1902 the Oscar Johnson Saw Mill was built – destroyed by fire in 1903, it was rebuilt in 1904, and served the people round about in a very important way.

       In 1903 Otto Solberg built a cane syrup Press, later owned by O. Forland, and then by the Silverhill Cooperative Association.

       In 1904 Oscar Johnson began a brick kiln.

       In 1905 the Norman brothers (Charles and Patrick)

Page 10 Whole View

Page 10 Insert 2
built the Cotton Gin and Grist Mill later bought by Mr. Emery Johnson, and rebuilt in Robertsdale. Both owners (Charles Norman and Emery Johnson) lost their right hands in this gin.

       In 1905 Hotel Norden added a grocery, and also became Post Master in same building in 1910.

       In 1906 B. Lindberg began a grocery business in Olander’s building.

       1910 The Hotel Norden became very popular among people in Chicago, who came south for the winter. This necessitated an annex to be built, which helped bring more and more people to Silverhill.

       In 1916 Dr. O.F.E. Winberg, Oscar Johnson, Breaden and Hookanson, planted 1000 acres in oranges (satsumas) and pecans selling to interested people in Chicago.

       In 1913 Mr. Charles Hoff built a modern blacksmith shop, bringing in business from far and wide.

       In 1914 Oscar Gustafson opened a photography studio which proved popular to towns far around. Oscar left for California, and the studio went also.

       In 1919 Paul Anderson built the first garage in Silverhill.

       In 1912 The Silverhill Farmers Association was organized as a cooperative organization – it has been a big help to the farmers within the corporation. It continues a strong organization even to this day (1952). Located in Robertsdale it serves people throughout the county.


       Silverhill, as well as all Baldwin County, has suffered several quite severe storms. 1906 wind, lightning, and rain destroyed much of the thick forests, crops, and many houses. 1916, 1917, 1926 – and later storms, twisters, and even a snow storm in 1942, when ice and snow lasted on the ground in shaded places over a week. The children built snowmen, which proved a most unusual experience.

       In 1922 Mr. Hlobil opened the first barbershop. For many years “Sid (Bakel) the Barber” has been in business.

       In 1924 Mrs. Esther Forsman Anderson began a Lunch Room, which proved very nice for Silverhill. Since that year it has been owned by Mrs. A. Nitteberg, Mr. and Mrs. Lilden, Mr. and Mrs. Rikman,

Page 10 Whole View

Page 10 Insert 3
Mr. and Mrs. F. Kucera, Sr., and Mrs. M. Norman. It is now an ice-cream parlor, newsstand, and magazine stand, grocery and gift shop. Mrs. Myrtle Brewton and brother Forsythe have a small restaurant, and tourist cabins in town along pavement 104.

       In 1923 - Peter Forsman began the first shipping platform, feed store, and egg and poultry business. At present (1952), this kind of business is conducted by Messrs. Jerry Rezek and Albert Vitous.

       In 1924. The Bank of Silverhill opened in the Olander Hotel building. A new brick building was erected as a Bank Building with Mr. Phil Armstrong as Cashier, Mrs. Armstrong and Mr. Pelecky as assistant cashiers. The bank closed its doors during the depression days in the early 1930s.

       The post office, being in the rear of the Wilkes Home for several years, with Mr. Henry Wilkes as Post Master, was later moved to the Bank Building with Peter Forsman Post Master. Now for many years the post office has its own building, with Mr. Albert Phillips as Post Master.

       In 1924-26 Mr. Heni and son Harry had a blacksmith shop in the Anderson Garage after Paul had bought the Clarence Anderson garage on the main street. Mesdames S. Heni and E. Lindell each held gift shops for several years which were both fine for the community. Axel Rundquist sold groceries for some years.

       In 1928 - Mr. Theo. Johnson sold out his place of business, Peoples Supply Co., to Geo. Merinos in Loxley, with Mr. Leslie Chandler as manager. It has continued so until 1952.

       In 1927 – Shipping of produce, potatoes, cucumbers, corn, sweet potatoes, pecans, tung oil nuts, soy beans, melons, cotton, poultry, eggs, dairy cattle and products, hogs, beef cattle have been the income for the farmer, and very much so up to now 1952. – also timber.

Page 10 Whole View

Page 10 Insert 4

       Mr. Gust Correll was long known in earlier days as the “Cucumber King” – raising the earliest, best, and most cucumbers.

Churches and Religious Influences.

       The Swedish people are much inclined toward Christian faith and religion. Among the first people in Silverhill were the Westerlund family, the first family to come to these parts. Coming down from Chicago for his health Mr. Westerlund was not a strong man, but with a strong desire of winning souls for the Lord, he began Christian services on the first Christmas 1898 and New Year with services fitting for the occasion, even though there were only five people in the colony. As more people came to the colony a Sunday School was organized. When ill health broke his delicate body and death came in 1900, Mr. J. A. Edfeldt continued the S.S., and services, after which the Baptist Congregation was organized in 1900 with eight Charter Members.

       The Mission Church was organized in 1902 with ten charter members, erecting the building right soon after. Monson, E. Anderson, J. Isakson, and Charles Gustafson were instrumental in all this.

       The Lutheran Church, Augustana Synod, was organized in 1906 with sixteen charter members. Under the pastorate with Thorsby, Ala. Luth. Church until later the much beloved Rev. John Benson and wife became the pastor.

       Faith Mission Chapel was founded in 1932 by the Mesdames Joel Nordlund (Alida Johnson) and O. E. Osterberg (Ruth Wallendorf). They will organize a church early in 1953.

       Under the leadership of Rev. F. Lambert the Catholic Church was organized and built in about 1948.

Page 10 Whole View

Page 10 Insert 5

       The following are serving the churches in 1952:
Baptist – Rev. D. Ekerholm.
Mission Covenant – Rev. G. H. Nelson and Rev. Carlson.
Lutheran – Rev. Walter Brown.
Faith Mission – Mr. and Mrs. G. Lundberg.
Catholic – Rev. F. Lambert.

       The public school has been conducted in a new barn (1) in the building now housing the N. P. C. Library (2) The Baptist Church, (3) the building now known as Mrs. Edhegard’s home, and (4) the present brick building with six class rooms, office, auditorium, kitchen and bath rooms. Teachers remembered by the early pioneers were Sarah Carlson, Millie Anderson, Mary Feminear (Killebrew), Pearl Campbell (Noonan), Evelyn Wilkes (Vaill), Miss Hall, Miss Bryars, Agnes Johnson (Utter), Louise Johnson (Lundberg). The teachers in 1952-53 are Mr. G. Robinson, and the Mesdames L. Vick, F. Engstrom, D. Petty and C. Anderson, I. Carlson and G. Lundberg.

       The School Improvement Association, later called the P.T.A., was organized in 1909 with Mrs. T. A. Johnson, Chairman, and Mesdames Oscar Johnson, O.P. Forsman, as co- officers. This was while “Miss Pearl and Miss Mary” were teachers. Among other good things, the P.T.A. contributes financially to the school library. During Mrs. W. Wingard’s principalship and Mrs. A. Chandler’s chairmanship the P.T.A. “Founders Day” has been held in a most beautiful, attractive, and delicious manner, with the hostesses representing the months of the years, and dinner served like a banquet, eaten from beautifully decorated tables.

       The Non Pariel Library Club was organized in 1907 sponsoring the Town Library. This club has continued throughout all these years, and have done a beautiful work both literally, socially, and financially. First the library was held in the tower room of the 2nd school building, but now they have purchased the building which housed the first land company, the first church and Sunday School, and the first public school. Books number up in the many thousands. Among the Charter Members are Vera Johnson (Armstrong), Agnes Johnson (Utter), Anna Linder (Anderson), Anna Norden (Rogers). The club meets regularly once a month with a business session, and a social hour, with the members entertaining by rotation. There are about forty-five members.

Page 10 Whole View

Page 10 Insert 6

       The Silverhill Cemetery lies to the northwest of the town. Twenty acres were given over as a cemetery in the early days.

       In 1913 – The Cemetery Association was organized. It has cared for the cemetery in a wonderful way. Graves are cared for, lawn planted and cared for, trees and flowers planted. Decoration Day is observed each year when huge groups attend the programs rendered, bring flowers to all the graves, and the cemetery looks like a huge flower garden.

       The Swedish Mid-Summer picnic is observed in the month of June Thursday closest to June 24, the Festival Day in the home country. Sponsored 1st by the community, later by the Chamber of Commerce, then by the School P.T.A., and now by the Pioneer Club, it is an occasion looked forward to, always enjoyed, and long remembered, as things for all ages are planned. Then the “History of Silverhill” is read, either in Swedish or English, and the older folk sit around and reminisce. Picnic Dinners are spread together, Swedish singing, devotionals, and prayers are said, a program of interest given in the afternoon is enjoyed, after which the traditional afternoon coffee with Swedish delicacies. Games are played.

       A community choir, for years in Swedish, but later in English, has rendered concerts, cantatas, sung at churches, school, and community Christmas Trees. They have for many years given a large contribution to the Crippled Children’s Fund.

       The Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts have been sponsored at various times by different interested organizations, and have done much fine work. Miss Evelyn Wilkes (Vaill), Mrs. G. Lundberg, and Mr. Axel Rundquist have held leadership of longest periods.

       In 1921 – The Silverhill Community and Fair Association sponsored an annual Fair, until later the Chamber of Commerce took over the organization. Community Fairs and County Fairs were held here at Silverhill. This has now been given over to the Robertsdale Fair at their Cattle Coliseum. Mr. Charles Lyrene, Mr. N. Mohe, Mr. Peter Forsman, and Mrs. G. Lundberg did much work.

       In 1926 Silverhill became incorporated with Mr. Oscar Johnson as mayor – since his passing away there have been the following mayors: Charles Norman, Leslie Chandler, Paul Anderson, and at present Emery Johnson who has served since 1937 until the present date as shown on preceding picture.

       Time changes all things, and so Silverhill has gone through many changes. In 1952, we find it a community representing many nationalities. It has been a melting pot that has simmered all it citizens down to Americans in heart, hand, and mind. The Pioneer Club continues to knit the old timers together calling, for membership those of thirty-five years residence, as times goes on all are members to keep up the old traditions.

Click here to return to Introduction Page

Click here to return to History Page.