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Yesterday in La Crosse

The 3rd of June has been a day to remember

Brad Williams



Bobbie Gentry’s song “Ode to Billie Joe,” set on the 3rd of June, was a hit in the 1960’s. On June 3rd of 1960, plans were moving ahead for a combined city-county building in La Crosse, expected to cost at least $3 million. A new courthouse was built in 1965, and a new City Hall came along five years later. The proposed shared building never came to pass.

The pope died on June 3rd of 1963. John the 23rd had led the Catholic church for only five years.

An American astronaut walked in space for the first time, on the 3rd of June in 1965. Ed White went outside the Gemini 4 spacecraft for a few minutes that day. The four-day space mission was mentioned in the hit song “Eve of Destruction.”

Republican New York Gov. Nelson Rockefeller came to Wisconsin on June 3rd, 1968, to campaign for president, even though Richard Nixon had already won the state’s primary in April. Rockefeller predicted that he would win the party nomination and the election. And Eugene McCarthy and Bobby Kennedy were campaigning in California on the 3rd, the day before that state’s Democratic primary. Kennedy won the California vote, only to be shot minutes after making his victory speech. History on the 3rd of June, yesterday in La Crosse.

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