Mr. and Mrs. Hilding Allen will celebrate their 70th wedding anniversary on July 30.
Joann Marie Kitterman and Hilding Enoch Allen were married July 30, 1950, at the First Christian Church in Princeton. Attending were parents of the bride, Mable and Clyde Kitterman, and the groom’s parents, Gertie and George Allen. Attendants were Helen (Kitterman) Thomas and Ike (Elmer) Pierson.
They met at a Rural Youth organization bowling party. After their honeymoon to Yellowstone National Park, Joann left her job at Citizens Bank. She became a homemaker and helped with the many farm tasks. She was the bookkeeper for their farm finances before and after computers. Hilding began farming on the farm where he was born, raising cattle, hogs, corn, wheat and soybeans. In the late 1960s, their farm became one of the first farms to have hogs raised on slats. In spite of being one the largest producers of pork in Bureau County, Hilding once said the thing he was proudest of was raising their children and their grandchildren.
The couple have three children, Vicki (Kent) Ackerman of East Moline, Larry (Kathy) Allen of Princeton and Cathie (Allen, deceased) Losey of Princeton. They also have six grandchildren, Julie Allen, Jennifer (Colton) Teske, Nathan Losey and Katie (John) Donofrio, all of Princeton, and Molly (Brandon) Alred of Wilmington, N.C., and Kelly (Ben) Keith of Davenport, Iowa; and three great-grandsons, Ian Donofrio, Kaden Keith and Carter Keith, and a fourth great-grand baby due in July.
Hilding and Joann were active in the First Christian Church for many years, and recently attended the Bureau Township Community Church. They also served on many local agricultural organizations and committees, including Bureau County Farm Bureau, Bureau County Extension Council, 4-H leader, Bureau County Pork Producers and the Illinois Pork Council. Hilding was on the Bureau County Pork Producers Board for the first Homestead Festival in 1971, grilling the now famous boneless butterfly pork chops. Joann was on the women’s Illinois Porkette Board when they combined with the men’s Illinois Pork Producers and became one organization, the Illinois Pork Council. This group was one of the first commodity groups to have a combined men’s and women’s board. Hilding was awarded the Prairie Farmer Master Farmer award in 1986.
When the couple retired in the 1980s, they spent many winters in Estero, Fla. Both joined shuffleboard leagues and were on community circle committees. Joann earned a reputation for her baking, including coffee cakes, cinnamon rolls and pies. She was often asked to make the gravy for the community meals, because many of their Snowbird neighbors were not used to cooking from scratch!
The couple had hoped to have a big party, but have opted for a card shower. Family and friends are encouraged to send cards to them at Liberty Village, 140 N. Sixth St., Princeton, IL 61356.