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VANDALIA,(768 alt., 2,672 pop.), primarily an agricultural community, was laid out about 1871 by Aaron McPike, Judge Caldwell, Amos Ladd, and Colonel Haden, and incorporated in 1874. Small brick business buildings surround STONE STREET PARK, an open square in the center of town. The park’s diagonal concrete walks are inlaid with advertisements of local merchants and industries, and compliments to leading citizens. In the northwest corner of the park is a memorial to World War veterans, Vandalia’s LIBERTY BELL, which cracked open while being rung in celebration of the Armistice, November 11, 1918. Vandalia manufactures, among other things, wash dresses and clay products.
On the wide prairie, the WALSH REFRACTORIES (L), 34.7 m, consist of a large group of corrugated steel and red-tile buildings, kilns, and derricks. The clay, scooped from great open pits, is transported to the crushers by derricks and there rendered fine and powdery. It is then molded into bricks, tiles, furnace linings, and other fire-clay products, and “burned” at intense heat in the kilns. The products have a national market.