Benton Co. History: The Ghost Town of Jakeville
FOLEY -- Over 100 years ago a little country store popped up in rural Benton County and the humble beginnings of the town of "Jakeville" began.
Benton County Historical Society Executive Director Mary Ostby says Jake and Rose Ziwicki bought two acres of land in Alberta Township in 1916 and opened their store.
They positioned themselves as a convenient place to stop for people traveling both by horse and by car.
They lived next to a creek that had a horse and buggy stop so horses could get a drink, but they also had one gas pump in front of their building so they could facilitate both worlds at once.
Ziwicki also operated a gas delivery business out of the store, which was pretty much the entire town, although they lived in a separate house that was also on the property.
When prohibition was repealed in 1933 the Ziwickis built an addition on the south side of the store and that became a bar.
They sold the business to Bill and Ceil Tadych in 1938 who continued to run it until the early 1980s.
Jake moved on to Foley for bigger and better prospects and then Bill and Ceil Tadych took over. Having said that, Bill and Ceil did a lot with the store over time and a lot of people will remember stopping there and dealing with them. They were a very friendly couple that took care of their community.
Ostby says the store evolved over the years adding bottle gas, a creamery drop-off, and a dance hall.
The Deppa family eventually bought the property.
The Jakeville store no longer exists, but the house the owners lived in is still there.
Ostby says back 100 years ago it was much easier for people to open a business on their own property with fewer land regulations. She says when you see a town with "Ville" in its name that likely means that it was never incorporated as an actual town.
Once a month Ostby is on the News @ Noon Show talking about the forgotten history of Benton County.