Twenty years ago — 1998

If you could travel back in time about 30 years and take a drive up Route 60 and down Vineyard Drive, you would notice a remarkably different landscape. The area that has now become a hotbed of commercial and retail development was once a rural area marked by farms, grape vineyards and brush-covered land. Development of the area has been fast and furious in the last decade, in particular. An aerial photograph from the early 1980s shows an open field in the area that now houses Kmart, Bob Evans, Fleet Bank and the Comfort Inn. Looking farther to the south, a farm and grape vineyard stand on the site that is now Walmart. With an estimated 3,500 vehicles a day exiting the New York State Thruway at the adjoining intersection, Route 60 and Vineyard Drive continue to draw national, regional and local business.

Thirty years ago — 1988

Much to the relief of Dunkirk’s police officers, the department will be putting three new patrol cars on the road over the weekend. The 1988 Ford Crown Victorias will replace the three 1985 Dodges now designated as cars 2, 4 and 5. Dunkirk Police Chief Andrew Balzer ordered the new cars last summer, but due to a backlog of orders for the specially-equipped police cruisers at the Ford plant, the order could not be filled until the company re-tooled for its 1988 line. The delay resulted in the city getting 1988 cars for 1987 prices.

Forty years ago — 1978

Statements made to reporters today by Mayor Gilbert Snyder affirm speculation that he will not keep Roger Reese as the top man in the Dunkirk Department of Development. Emphasizing he needs someone he can trust, Mayor Snyder accused Mr. Reese of holding “secret meetings” with the Democratic councilmen to discuss urban renewal.

Fifty years ago — 1968

The Fredonia Board of Education gave its unanimous backing to a proposed Chautauqua County sales tax, provided that part of the proceeds will be earmarked for education. The board suggested that a one percent sales levy be returned to the local school district.