Area history, Jan. 22, 2014

On Jan. 22: 

In 1914, McDonald Hall, who claims to be the father of 33 children, was in court yesterday to plead on behalf of his son, George, a lad of about 16. George Hall was arrested by Special Officer Gillespie in the north yards of the Illinois Central Railroad on a charge of stealing coal. McDonald Hall said he did not tell the youth to steal coal but to pick up any coal he found on the ground. The elder Hall said the family home at 1104 N. Fourth Ave. is cold and desolate and that the health of an 8-month-old baby was imperiled. After hearing the father's story, the judge reduced the charge to trespass. The youth was put in jail briefly until his father agreed to pay the fine.

In 1964, Champaign will have urban renewal, with its 25 percent share of the cost for land clearance and improvement paid for with a three-fourths percent increase in the city utility tax. Mayor Emmerson Dexter cast the deciding vote at Tuesday's city council meeting. City Manager Warren Browning said the city won't begin acquiring property until late 1965 or early 1966.

In 1999, the University of Illinois hopes to make many of its new online courses self-supporting, with expenses covered by tuition and fees, to avoid asking for more state funds. Sylvia Manning, the UI's vice president for academic affairs, said the university will experiment with different payment schemes for online courses.

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