Fridley page 21

[St. Charles Banner-News, no date]

Retiring Sheriff Mentioned As Most Likely Man To Head Special Patrolmen.
Fears Influx Of Large Numbers Of Families Will Create Health Problem.

            Preliminary construction work for the $20,000,000 government-owned TNT plant began today, according to R. Newton McDowell, who is obtaining the land for the government.
            About 100 families living within the construction zone have been advised to vacate within 10 days, as contractors are organized to increase the tempo of the building program daily. The laying of the switch tracks will necessitate closing Highway 94, making it difficult for some residents to get their effects out if they delay, McDowell said. The whole lay-out will be built around Toonerville (known as the Y) which will be the center of activity.
            Families living in the safety zone area of the 20,000 acres will not be required to move before March 1, it was. pointed out. Residents of the construction area, who cannot find shelter at once, will be given permission to leave livestock and farm implements in the safety zone until March. Twelve agents of the Department of Agriculture are helping farmers relocate.
            All but three tracts in the safety zone are now under option, McDowell said. All of the property needed for the construction property is ready. The three owners, two wealthy individuals and an alien, are demanding what was termed as unreasonable prices and McDowell said the government will take possession through condemnation. [one or more lines missing?]
            An attempt is being made to arrange temporary loans for owners of property needing funds until the purchase money is paid by the government, McDowell said.
            American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars posts here are making concentrated efforts to find jobs for ex-service men as guards in the TNT plant area, the Banner-News was told today. These men, it was pointed out, are familiar with the use of sidearms and rifles and have already been thoroughly disciplined in patrol work.
            Sheriff Joe Borgmeyer, who leaves office December 31, has been prominently mentioned as the likely captain of the patrol. Nothing definite has been done but numerous ex-service men have already filed applications for work.
Health Problem
            Dr. Harry F. Parker, state health commissioner, and two assistants appeared before the County Court today for an informative discussion relative to the potential health problem which may result from the sudden influx of large numbers of people to the TNT plant area.
            Dr. Parker recommended a full-time health unit for the county comprising a public health physician, sanitary engineer, a public health nurse and a clerk. Expense of such a unit would be shared equally by the state and the county, he pointed out.
            Attending the conference with Dr. Parker were W. Scott Johnson, chief engineer for the state health department, and Dr. John W. Williams, director local health units.
            It was pointed out at the meeting that when large numbers of people move into a small area, living under various conditions, epidemics invariably are experienced unless extreme precautions are taken. He mentioned a project in Florida where hundreds of men came down with fever because no precautions had been taken.
            Under normal circumstances, Presiding Judge Henry Ohlms said, the county provides medical attention for no one unless they have been residents here a year or more. However, the court took the matter under advisement for a time.

[no source, November 24, 1940]

100 Families Get 2 Weeks’ Notice
Ordered to Evacuate Area Where TNT Plant Will Go Up
[handwritten: Nov. 24, 1940]

            The 100 farm families living on the government's $11,000,000 TNT plant site near Weldon Springs, St Charles County, were ordered yesterday to evacuate the area within the next two weeks as actual construction of the plant will get under way between Christmas and New Year's Day.
            Announcement of the evacuation order was made by Capt. C. R. Dutton of the Army Ordnance Department, who is in charge of the war defense plant project, as the government last night closed all roads running through the district and placed guards at roads leading into and out of the area.
            Capt. Dutton directed members of his staff to serve the preholiday moving order on the residents personally, he said, in view of "surprisingly few" of the persons obeying previous notices to vacate.
            Work on building a railroad spur from the Missouri - Kansas - Texas Railroad tracks along the Missouri River to the center of the area and construction of a temporary office on the grounds of the Howell High School are under way. Capt. Dutton explained the summary order was necessary to leave roads open within the area in preparation for construction activity, as late evacuation would block necessary arteries.
            A survey also is under way to locate the plant under natural camouflage of dense woods in the area and residents and persons requiring passage through the site must obtain passes to get in and out of the area.
            Among the roads closed were State Highway 94 between the intersection with U. S. Highway 61 and a point three miles south of Hamburg, and 30 miles of county roads.
            Capt. Dutton announced in view of the high school grounds being used for temporary offices, the school would be permitted to finish its term, ending in May, when residents in the safety zone around the site must leave.