Lynn Koenigs New Book is a Winner
Reviewed by Bill Collar
Historical society member captures
the spirit of the area
“I believe everyone has a story to tell and it is important to preserve our heritage for future generations. Area residents have written many of the stories in the book. I organized them and published them in book form.” That is how Lynn Koenigs describes her latest book, My Corner of the County. Lynn, a retired teacher, a leader in the Nichols Historical Society, and an active member of the Seymour Community Historical Society, has captured the essence of life in Northeastern Outagamie County during the twentieth century.
While quick to give credit to others, and emphasizing, “I’m not a professional writer,” Lynn’s book is a folksy history, relying on the recollections of area residents, and at times includes stories that have been passed down through several families and generations.
Liberally interwoven with pictures, the book includes something for everyone. The stories, news articles, and pictures are from the town of Cicero, the town of Maine, Black Creek, Seymour, Nichols, and a few other areas.
This former history teacher particularly enjoyed Tillie Stueflat’s recollections of the Great Depression, Kathy (Cumicek) Smits recalling the changes in the jewelry business during her lifetime, and Dolores (Banker) Pingel relating about growing up in the 1950’s. Clarence Gregorius provides insight on the 1930s and 40s, and paints a vivid picture of the changes in the meat market business into the 1970’s.
The book includes a number of laugh out loud moments. Marge Coonen’s “The Day I lost My Marbles” is poignant, but funny. John Koenigs’s “A Cabbage Secret” reminds us to take the time to do the job right. You have to read the book to discover the secrets about the water towers in Nichols and Seymour!
Lynn also succeeds in tying in national and state events with local happenings. This gives the reader historical perspective and realization that international events, such as WWII, have local implications.
Overall, it is a fun book and a valuable historical resource. The extensive use of appropriate photographs emphasizes the value of labeling all pictures and keeping your local historical society in mind when you decide to lighten your load. Always check for historical value before you toss any items or pictures.
My Corner of the County is available at the Muehl Public Library in Seymour, First Community Credit Union in Nichols, Black Creek Creations, or by calling Lynn Koenigs at 920 525-2727.