Mission, Membership & History


St. Clair Beekeepers Association
♦  Since 1917  ♦

2021 Membership List

The purpose and function of the St. Clair Beekeepers Association is the promotion of interest in bees and beekeeping by such means as encouraging…

  1. Good beekeeping practices
  2. The utilization of bees for pollination of agricultural crops
  3. The dissemination of information about bees and beekeeping


The following history of the St. Clair Beekeepers Association was prepared by Pat Wagner of Edwardsville, who compiled the information from newspaper articles and association minutes.  Mrs. Wagner notes that there are many association minutes missing and would welcome additional information for this history.  If you have old clippings, minutes or photos about the St. Clair Beekeepers Association, please contact the SCBA Secretary, listed on the SCBA Officers page of this website.
The St. Clair Beekeepers Association Constitution states in Article 1, Section 1:  ” The purpose and function of the association is the promotion of interest in bees and beekeeping by such means as:  (a) encouraging good beekeeping management; (b) encourage the utilization of bees for pollination of agricultural crops; (c) encourage dissemination of information about bees and beekeeping.”
 An article in the Belleville Daily Advocate dated July 16, 1917, states:

Beekeepers Have Formed Organization

  A number of beekeepers of Belleville and vicinity met yesterday at the home of R. V. Dew and formally organized an association to be known as “The St. Clair County Beekeepers Association,” the object of which will be to promote the general interests of the pursuit of bee-culture in the county.  The following officers were elected:

     President – Charles Hertel, Belleville

     Vice-president – Wm. Hubert, Belleville

     Secretary-Treasurer – R. V. Dew, 910 Sycamore Street, Belleville           

  One of the features of the meeting was a demonstration in the apiary, where a practical manipulation of the hives and bees took place, to show the advantages of up-to-date methods of beekeeping.  The entire assemblage was right in among the bees and no one was stung, except Mr. Hertel, who purposely received a sting as an antidote for rheumatism. Interested parties can secure information concerning “The St. Clair County Beekeepers Association” by corresponding with the secretary.


An article published in the Belleville Daily Advocate dated February 2, 1933, states:

Beekeepers Form Own Association

  Beekeepers of this vicinity have formed an organization to be known as St. Clair Beekeepers Association, with a membership of 29 men. O. G. Rawson, of East St. Louis, is the president; W. E. Frierdich, of Belleville, vice president; G.L. Hankammer of Belleville, secretary, and Fred W. Peters of Belleville, treasurer.  The association will meet each last Friday of the month in the county highway building.  The purpose of the association include: promote better beekeeping; improve marketing of honey; promote the use of honey, and control of foulbrood, which is destroying hundreds of hives.


  The first minutes found were from a meeting on April 6, 1949, which was a reorganization meeting. Officers elected were: President – A. H. Zipfel, Vice President – Geo. L. Hankammer, Secretary – Edw. Meyling, Trustees – Edw. Meyling, Henry L. Kaiser, Clifford Wilder.  Mr. Hankammer was appointed chairman of the publicity committee. Meetings were set for the first Wednesday of each month from 8:00-10:00 p.m.  A “Basket” picnic was planned to which the St.Louis Association was invited. Prizes donated for the picnic included some queens, smoker, foundation, spools of wire and frames.  The secretary was authorized to buy 250 letterheads and 250 envelopes from the American Bee Journal for a total of $6.50.  It was also voted that members pay the full amount for bee magazines with the association keeping the savings.  A map of St. Clair County was secured to mark the locations of beekeepers yards “so as not to crowd on each others locations.” It was decided to get maps of Madison and Monroe Counties as well. Dues were $1.50 with $0.50 going to the state. 

  Programs for the year included E. R. Spencer, botanist, speaking on the relationship of plants to nectar and Mr. Glover, St. Clair County Farm Advisor, discussing honey producing legumes.

  Discussions during the year: to stop robbing, move the robbing hive; to clean excluders of propolis boil in lye water; keep good comb in the brood chamber to avoid abundance of drones; calcium chloride recommended as a preventative for weeds in front of hives; latest advisable date to get package bees – July 1; honey prices, size and style of honey containers (fancy glass was suggested). Anheuser- Busch planning new honey/corn syrup product to compete for honey trade.

  There were 20 members in the association and the treasury showed $9.20 at the end of the year.


  A motion was made to enter the St. Clair County Fair. Dues were raised to $2.00 with $1.00 going to the Illinois State Association. The motion of June 1949 to pay full magazine subscriptions was rescinded. A membership committee was formed to get new members. It was decided to donate 10 minutes of each meeting to plan for the fair.  Judges at fair should have set of rules or standards. The observation hive at the fair was a big hit.  The association sent $5.00 to the American Beekeeping Federation for dues for the association.  The KSD TV home economist would be contacted about using honey in her recipes. 

  Programs:  Mr. M. J. Deyell, editor of Gleanings, spoke to the members about bees starving in spring and about swarm control by the “Demaree” method.  He said the new swarm should be placed on the old stand.

  Carl Killion, chief state bee inspector, stated American foulbrood was down approximately 3% in Illinois. He also “condemned the unsanitary condition of some honey houses and the appearance of some honey packs on grocers shelves.”

  Mr. Glover spoke on how planting clover will benefit beekeepers. 

  Hoyt Taylor, secretary of the ISBA, spoke about advertising honey and support of the American Honey Institute. 

  Discussions: two queen system, benefits of Federal Association for Beekeepers, protection of bees from orchard spraying, feeding of sulfa in spring and fall, the red bud tree as a honey and pollen producer, requeening, staffing a tent and selling honey at the next St. Clair County Fair and getting literature from bee supply houses to hand out at the fair). 

  There were 19 members in the association and a balance of $7.86 in treasury at the end of the year.

The association took part in a quiz program on bees at the Clayton courthouse with the St. Louis County Beekeepers. Mr. Zipfel suggested that the state association give a serial number to all beekeepers to be carried on all equipment and honey labels.
The St. Clair County Fair Board furnished a tent for displaying honey and would rent the association another tent for the sale of honey.
A committee was appointed to set up rules for judging honey at the fair. Programs: Carl Killion reported Illinois had 332,000 colonies of bees the previous year with the average per beekeeper of 10 colonies.
65,000 colonies had been lost due to severe winter conditions and poor honey prices.
Henry Fonke spoke on selling of honey. Roy Grout spoke on wax production and raising of bees for pollination. Discussions: feeding soy bean meal (add anise oil to get bees to start working it), do bees work alfalfa? (only when it is hot and dry), picking a location for an apiary site, a suggestion to prevent the bottom board from rotting by putting four chair buttons on the bottom rail to keep it off the hive stand.
There were 25 members in the association and a total of $6.80 in the treasury at the end of the year.


  It was reported there were 1,400 colonies in the three counties of Madison, Monroe and St. Clair.  The March minutes note the meeting was held in the Highway Building in Belleville and there were 18 beekeepers in attendance.  The basket picnic would be held in August at which “only soft drinks will be permitted.”  The meeting night was changed to the first Monday of the month.  A report of honey flow by members showed the average per colony to be about 40 lbs. A display would be set up in the window of Illinois Power for National Honey Week.  Programs:  Chas. Stookey of KXOK talked to the group.  He would feature use of honey in a future program. Celeste Sullivan, Home Services Director of the Southern Division of Illinois Power demonstrated and prepared dishes containing honey.  The association toured the candle factory at the Clifford Wilder farm.  Carl Killion showed slides on comb honey. 

  Discussion: how to overcome foulbrood in the spring by feeding bees sugar mixed with sulfa, winter feeding, how to sell honey, price support, ISBA dues and benefits, National Honey Week.

  The association has 21 members and $22.88 in the treasury.


  A suggestion was made to send some honey to Arthur Godfrey and ask for a mention on his TV and radio shows.  A committee was appointed to investigate a course in beekeeping.  A summer meeting was planned with the Eastern Missouri Beekeepers at Grand Marais Park in East St. Louis.  

  Programs: Carl Killion gave a slide presentation on comb honey production. 

  Discussions: feeding sulfa, honey plants, requeening, two queen colonies, fall care of apiaries.

  The association has 22 members and $10.15 in the treasury.


Few minutes available.  Others illegible because of bleeding through.  Programs:  the films “Bees for Hire” and “Pollination of Alfalfa” were shown.  Discussions:  spring management, non rot bottom boards, placement of hives, queenless colonies.  23 members – $20.82 in treasury




A National Honey Display would be set up at the state fair in Springfield.  Programs:  Professor Spencer spoke on increasing the number of honey producing plants and trees, Mrs. Rawson showed a movie on Southern Illinois points of interest.   Discussions:  non-rot bottom boards, queenless colonies, general experiences and problems.    23 members – $40.29 in treasury



A bee project was to be started at the Marquette Boys Home in Grafton.  Southern Illinois Beekeepers held a potluck meeting in September at New Athens with about 41 guests in attendance.  Prizes were donated by Walter P. Kelly and Dadant.  Programs:  The St. Clair Farm Advisor talked on the Land Bank program.  Discussion included setting a fixed price for honey and promoting the use of honey.  12 members – $30.81 in treasury


The May minutes showed the following:

Hankammer                65 colonies                Retired – hardware store business

Tisch                              3                               Tombstone maker (owner)

Kraft                           24                               Boiler maker

Zepfel                            3                               Barber

Wilder                         135                              Candlestick maker

Collier                           12                              Life insurance

Fonke                            30                              Salesman

Huelskamp                      5                              Cook (SAFB)

Leiper                           10                              Electric utility worker

Questionnaires would be sent to members not in attendance to get the same information.  It was decided to move the meeting date to Wednesday due to a conflict in getting the Highway building.  In June there was a joint meeting with the Eastern Missouri Beekeepers.  Nine new members were received.  Three beekeepers planned to enter the National Honey Show in Florida.  Members would be entering the St. Clair County Fair as individuals.  The association would look into giving mothers of new babies at Memorial Hospital samples of honey as a form of advertising.  A plan was being formulated to give new mothers an 8 oz. jar of honey along with a formula for infant feeding.  It was suggested meetings not be held in January and February of 1958 but have a big meeting in March.  The annual picnic was held at Timberlake Park near Waterloo.  Attendance prizes were donated by Walter P. Kelley, Dadant, and Carl Killion.

Programs:  Henry Fonke talked on honey as a cure of heart trouble using himself as an example.  Clarence Clark, St. Clair County Farm Advisor, spoke on the Soil Bank.  H. E. Dale, president of the ISBA, spoke on nectar bearing legumes.  Discussions:  catching swarms, county and state fairs, queenless colonies, advertising.  30 members – $35.64 in treasury






Plans were made to have two joint meetings with the Eastern Missouri Beekeepers.  The association hosted the Summer ISBA meeting in July at the Turkey Hill Grange Hall.  Banquet meal tickets were set at $2.50 with $0.50 going to defray expenses.  No registration fee would be charged.  Mr. Meyling reported harvesting 1,300# of honey from sorghum.  Mr. Leiper was elected president of the state association.  Programs:  Mr. Meyling brought a hive tool with the sides sharpened to remove burr comb and queen cells.  It was decided to be a very useful “gadget.”  Discussions: bee stings and introducing queens, transferring bees from box hives to standard hives, methods of introducing queens, different kinds of honey.  $33.16 in treasury.



Pres. Hankammer spoke on using ammonia nitrate of soda as a tranquilizer for working with bees.  There were no minutes for June to October.  There were only 8-10 members in attendance for most of the meetings.  Programs:  Arthur C. Nagel, owner of a health food center, gave a talk on honey for health.  Discussions:  ways to get new members to join the state association, swarm control.  $24.66 in treasury.


Attendance only was shown.



Mr. Leiper was appointed as membership committee.  Farm Bureau in Belleville listed as meeting place for May meeting.  “Dues paying night” was set for November.  Bees for sale were advertised in the paper.  Asking price was $15.00 per hive.  Attendance prizes for the July meeting were 10 frames and a bee veil donated by A. I. Root.  Mr. Leiper furnished honey ice cream for the August basket picnic  Honey ice cream would be sold at the state fair (about 15,000 cups were sold).  Members were urged to attend the state convention in Springfield to prevent the northern associations from moving the location further north (emphasized in three meetings).  L. M. Leiper was presented a gavel at the mid-summer meeting in honor of his many years of service as president of the ISBA. Programs:  L. M. Leiper talked about honey plants, Norman Neff spoke about swarming.  Henry Kaiser talked about manipulation of bees.  Joe Marxer demonstrated extracting.  Discussions:  honey flow, state fair classes and judging, review of the year.  Average attendance for the year – 13 members plus wives and children.  $35.54 in treasury



Charles Leitner joined the association in March.  In May he hosted the outdoor meeting at his home in Edwardsville.  The July meeting included all the Executive Officers of the ISBA present:  H. E. Dale – President, L. M. Leiper – Vice President, Hoyt Taylor – Secretary and Udell Meyer – Treasurer.  There were 16 amateur entries at the state fair with three St. Clair members winning prizes.  One member reported getting 800# of honey from 6 hives.  Another member had 850#.  Plans were in place to host the Illinois State Convention in 1966.  Average attendance – 14 members plus wives and children.  Programs:  H. E. Dale, president of the ISBA spoke about his experiences as a beekeeper and how he got started in beekeeping.  Hoyt Taylor, secretary of the ISBA spoke about the spraying of insecticides.  Carl Killion spoke about beekeeping and conventions he had attended.  L. M. Leiper showed slides from the state fair.  Discussions:  winter losses, bee swarming, solar wax melters, African bees.  $28.68 in treasury



The ISBA mid-summer meeting was held at the Turkey Hill Grange Hall in July.  It was deemed most successful.  L. M. Leiper was on WSL radio and also on Romper Room on TV.  In April several swarms had already been caught, and several beekeepers had already supered their colonies.  Several members were planning entries for the state fair, and Mr. Leiper volunteered to take the entries to Springfield.  Walter Hassebrock won first place for his amber honey.  Charles Leitner and Lawrence Leiper were elected vice-presidents and Udell Meyer was elected treasurer of the ISBA.  Programs:  Carl Duewer talked about his experiences in getting started in beekeeping.  H. E. Dale spoke on his observations of bees.  L. M. Leiper showed slides on various apiaries.  Discussions:  winter losses; state fair; honey prices, the color to paint inside of solar melter.  $84.68 in treasury, average attendance was 13 members plus their families.



Volunteers were needed to help 4-H members with projects related to honey production.  The association considered pooling an order for 300 dozen 1# jars for a price of about 7 1/2 cents each but decided such an order would be too large to handle.  The association had a honey exhibit at the St. Clair County Fair.  Honey samples and copies of “City of the Bees” were handed out.  Dues were raised to $2.00 for 1968.  Members brought jars of honey to be given to Farm Bureau employees for use of the building.  Programs:  The film “Secret in the Hive.”   Slides on beekeeping.  The film, “Honey – Nature’s Golden Treasure.”  Removing bees from a building or tree.  Mr. Killion spoke at the November meeting and listed the three major problems for beekeepers:  lack of satisfactory honey plants, low honey prices and insecticides.  He noted that the 5# jar he sold for $1.50 in 1917 now sells for $1.29.  Hoyt Taylor talked about future marketing of pollen.  L. M. Leiper showed slides on beekeeping.  Discussions:  condition of bees, honey flow, swarming, exhibits at the fairs.  $28.86 in treasury, average attendance was 12 members plus their families.


Not may losses reported.  Spring buildup was good and a number of swarms had been seen.  Members were urged to enter as many classes as possible at the Fairs in order to provide an attractive display.  Free samples of honey were passed out at the St. Clair County Fair.  Mr. Leiper again offered to take member entries to the state fair.  It was decided to have a February meeting in 1969.  Mr. Leiper reported spraying in Danville area endangered apiaries in 240 square mile area.  He suggested bees be movable in case of similar situations here.  Programs:  Udell Meyer displayed a four frame observation hive he had built.  Mr. Leiper marked a queen.  Mr. Dale gave a talk on “bees.”  Mr. Killion showed slides of various beekeeping events and of the state fair.  Hand rolling of candles from foundation.  Discussions:  swarms, spraying, honey crop. $29.33 in treasury, average attendance was 9 members plus their families.



About 1,500 bread and honey samples were given out at the Madison County Fair.  2,300 samples of honey lemonade were passed out at the St. Clair County Fair.  Hoyt Taylor was named beekeeper of the year.  Average attendance for year -10 members.  Programs:  Hoyt Taylor talked about the new American Honey Producers Association.  Mr. Leiper spoke about the flower show he attended in Chicago.  A recording from the State Convention on bee stings.  Carl Killion had a slide presentation.  Discussion during year:  hive inspection, bee pollen, insuring bees, package bees versus swarms, county and state fairs, spray program, bees and alcohol don’t mix, beekeeper of the year.  $52.59 in treasury


The April meeting was held at the Farm Bureau in Edwardsville.  A July meeting would not be held because of the fairs.  Carl Killion was planning to retire after 32 years as chief apiary inspector.  Programs:  Hoyt Taylor talked about his experiences as a beekeeper.  Ed Hume, horticulturist at SIU, gave a slide presentation on plants.  Mr. Dale spoke on the best ways to get a honey crop.  Mr. Leiper showed movies on meetings from the past years.  Discussions:  state and county fairs, sulfa drugs, pollination, diseases, registration, advertising of honey.  Balance in treasury – $33.98


Hoyt Taylor was named an honorary member of the association.  Fairs showed a poor display of honey – honey crops seemed to be short for the whole state.  It was suggested taking the observation hive to more schools.  Wholesale honey was selling for 25-30 cents per pound.  Programs:  Chris Doll showed slides on pollination.  Hoyt Taylor spoke at several meetings on diseases, sprays, pollination and honey displays at the state fair. Gene Killion spoke on registration, bee losses and spraying.  Mr. Ghere spoke about packages.  Discussion during year:  very little winter losses, bee diseases, swarming and queens, county fairs, bee registrations, amount of honey needed to over-winter.



March meeting showed winter losses light.  Free samples of honey will be given out at the fairs.  Hoyt Taylor suggested the association enter a display at the state fair since Illinois had the largest honey premiums in the country.  Programs:  Dr. Jaycox gave a slide presentation on pollinating insects.  Laverne Kruse talked on sunflower honey and pollination. A film on nature was shown.  Gene Killion showed slides on sunflowers, fair entries and raising queens.  Mr. W. Ghere showed a movie on his beekeeping experiences.  Mr. Leiper talked about the flower show he attended in Chicago.  Warren Bundy, Farm Advisor, spoke about his bee experiences.  Discussions: requeening, fairs, swarming, pesticide loss, how to register your bees, difference between light and dark honey, sac brood.  Balance in treasury – $52.58



Mr. Ghere was paid $10.00 per hive for pesticide damage by the A.S.C. office.  Members reported very little honey in the supers.  The ISBA summer meeting was held at the Turkey Grange.  It was well attended and deemed a success.  The county fairs were attended.  The association won the sweepstakes at the state fair with 13 blue and 4 red ribbons for a total of $492.  Joe Heinzel and Charles Leitner were each given $50 to cover their fair expenses.  Honey prices were going up all over the country.  It was decided to have meetings year round.  It was suggested that each month should have a theme.  Discussions:  hive conditions, skunk damage, swarming, honey labels, requeening, spraying, honey prices, registration, feeding bees.  Balance in treasury – $438.73


Dues were $2.00 local and $5.00 state.  Price for 2# package bees was $23.00, individual queens in lots of 10 – $5.00.  The association won the sweepstakes at the state fair and premiums of $539 with eleven 1st and ten 2nd place awards.  It was approved to reimburse Charles Leitner and Joe Heinzel each $100 and Udell Meyer and R. M. Leiper each $50 for their work with the state exhibit.  $1,100 worth of honey was sold at the state fair.  It was decided to not have a December meeting because of the busyness of the holidays.  Programs:  Gene Killion, Illinois superintendent of apiary inspection, showed slides on different diseases of the honey bee.  Jean Rozier of Illinois Power spoke on the conservation of energy.  Steve Miller showed slides of beekeeping in Norway.  Discussions:  two queen hives, gluing or nailing frames, methods of feeding, blended honey,  requeening, raising queens, plastic hive parts, winter care of the hive,  plastic honey jars.  Balance in treasury – $501.34



A first newsletter by Dr. Jaycox was deemed to be very informative.  The Leipers were surprised with a 50th anniversary party in April with about 72 present.  A letter was read from Gene Killion about 70 colonies in Northern Illinois being stolen.  The association won the sweepstakes and $516 in premiums at the state fair with nine 1st and eight 2nd place awards.  Programs:  Delores Leitner showed slides from the state fair.  Hoyt Taylor talked on feeding bees.  Gene Killion spoke at the Thanksgiving meeting on “What Happened in 1975” and showed slides on beekeeping.  Discussions:  swarming, feeding bees, location of hive.  Balance in treasury – $832.56


In April Bill Ghere hived a 12# swarm, and Moon Mullens of Granite City reported he started with 6 hives on April 2 and had 18 colonies and three more swarms waiting for equipment on the 17th.  It was also reported in the April newsletter that there were 82 paid members in the association.  A storage tank and capping melter were presented to Charles Leitner for his work at the 1975 state fair.  An extractor also was presented to Joe Heinzel for his work.  Pat Obertino was elected treasurer since the secretary/treasurer job was becoming too much for one person to handle.  The association again won the sweepstakes at the state fair and $524 in premiums.  Programs:  The February theme was “Installing and Care of Package Bees.”  A slide presentation on this subject was given.  The slide presentation in March was on “Spring Management.”  During the April meeting slides were shown on “Honey Plants.”





No minutes found.  According to financial reports the association bought 6,000 letterheads and envelopes.  Chuck Leitner was given $125 and Joe Heinzel $100 for their work at the 1976 state fair.


Pen Cap M was discovered in honey on a store shelf in Missouri.  Very few swarms were reported.  The association again exhibited at the state fair and won $468 in premiums with five 1st place and six 2nd place awards.  Beekeepers were asked to make displays for Honey Week.  Each member was asked to bring a jar each of light and dark honey to the November meeting to be judged by Mr. Killion in order to show them how honey should be packed.  The annual meeting was held at West View Baptist Church.  Programs:  Mr. Leiper showed a film on African bees.  Udell Meyer and Craig Pollard spoke about their experiences in beekeeping.  Joe Heinzel demonstrated how to light and use a smoker.  Dr. Jacox talked on wintering bees.  Gene Killion demonstrated how to assemble a super for section honey and showed some slides.  Discussions:  wintering bees, adulterated honey, methods of feeding, bait hives, honey prices.



It was noted information on bees and honey were appearing in magazines and papers unrelated to the bee industry.  State fair winnings were discussed and ribbons passed out to those who donated their honey.  The association won $545 in premiums and eight 1st and nine 2nd place awards.  Kurt Gross was given $75 for hauling the honey exhibit to and from Springfield.  A smoker contest was held at the September meeting.  Pen Cap M spraying was proving to be a problem for bees.  Several hives of bees were stolen near Alton.  1,000 envelopes with embossed bee stamp were to be purchased along with 5,000 letterhead.  Programs:  Putting frames and hive bodies together.  Lighting a smoker.  Putting foundation and wires in frames.  Installing package bees.  Discussions:  painting hives, boiling in lye water, feeding of bees, queenless hives, state fair, swarming, African bees.  Balance in treasury – $764.30



A news report showed adulterated honey in 22 stores.  A letter from Gene Killion thanked the association for participating in the state fair.  He also noted observation hives no longer would be entered for safety reasons.  The association won the sweepstakes trophy at the state fair and $540 in premiums with nine 1st and seven 2nd place ribbons.  Kurt Gross was given $100 for carrying the honey display to and from Springfield.  The association would be hosting the ISBA Summer Meeting.  Members could get forms from the EPA for pesticide kills.  The association was incorporated on September 10.  In November the association gave an award to L. M. Leiper for his “many years of dedicated service to local beekeepers.”  Programs:  Slides entitled “A Bee or not a Bee.”  Udell Meyer demonstrated the installation of packaged bees.   Slides entitled “Plants Important to Honeybees.”  Slides entitled “Diseases of the Honeybee.”  Hoyt Taylor spoke on making splits.  Marking drones, requeening.  Henry Kaiser spoke on queen rearing.  Movie entitled “Bees and Honey.”  Discussions:  types of feeders, skunk problems, flight patterns, queen introduction, spring management, nectar sources, swarm prevention, state fair, Certan.  Balance in treasury – $650.29


A suggestion box was implemented for what members would like at meetings.  Bee samples taken in Illinois for mites revealed none present.  It was decided not to attend the Belleville Fair.  In March a booth was manned at Ag Day.  A photo contest was held at the June meeting.  1983 dues would be raised to $3.00.  Two new classes were added to the state fair, amber comb honey in round sections and a color photograph.  The association won the best booth trophy at the fair.  Joe Heinzel and Alfred Trost were each given $50 for carrying the honey to and from the fair.  Hoyt Taylor was remembered by a moment of silence.  Cyrus Holcomb and Jim Hendrickson were appointed as a nominating committee.  The first meeting of the initial Board of Directors was held on August 22.  Members of the first Board were:  Alfred Trost – President; Kurt Gross – Secretary/Treasurer; Lawrence Leiper, Cyrus Holcomb and Lee Shook – Directors.  The association voted to become a chapter of ISBA.  The Board of Directors terminated membership for 9 people for failure to pay dues.  Melvin McCann was appointed as assistant secretary.  Programs:  Al Trost demonstrated making candy feeding boards. A film entitled “Bee Management.”  Slides from Dadant on “Supering Package Bees” and “Diseases of Honeybees.”  Al Trost demonstrated honey extraction.  Discussions:  winter losses, making splits, treating bee stings, queens and swarm prevention, fall management, processing honey.  $881.92 in treasury


A spray can of honey labeled “Sweet & Simple” was displayed at the February meeting.  In March 41 members of the association took a bus to Walter Kelly’s in Kentucky.  A suggestion was made to have an extension meeting in Edwardsville so that meetings could be held monthly in Belleville.  The Directors decided not split the association by having separate meetings.  Approximately 170 hives were killed in Illinois by aerial spraying of Penncap-M.  The association won $502 at the state fair with nine 1st and five 2nd place ribbons.  $150 was paid for hauling the honey to the fair.  The revised Constitution and By-Laws were passed.  A report to the Board of Directors in October showed the following membership statistics:  1980 – 106 members, 1981 – 125, 1982 – 140, 1983 – 154.  Despite the numbers, there was a lack of attendance for the meetings.  Programs:  Slides from Gene Killion on colony management. Walter Bohn talked and showed slides on pollination.  Slides from Dadant on honey plants.  A demonstration on embedding wire and waxing cabanas.  Jim Hendrickson showed how to make a nuc.  Henry Kaiser demonstrated making a split.  Discussions:  ways to advertise and promote the association, hive conditions and swarm prevention, state fair, wax moths, types of honey.  $664.73 in treasury


The association participated in the Belleville Block Party.  Packaged honey was bought wholesale from members and sold retail with the profit going into the treasury.  Angela Heinzel was given a letter of commendation from the ISBA for her entry for the Southern region Historical Society at Greenville College which was based on the ISBA.  She won honorable mention for her entry.  The association won $553 in premiums at the state fair with nine 1st and five 2nd place ribbons.  Programs:  Jenny Mills spoke on apple pollination.  John Schneider showed “mighty tight” strapping and hive carriers.  August Schekovske showed a hive scale.  Jim Hendrickson demonstrated embedding wire. Kenneth Peck of Hummond Seed Company in St. Louis gave a talk and showed slides on flowers and plants in the area.  Discussions:  marking colonies to prevent theft, general management, catching of swarms, fermentation of honey, comb storing, soybeans as honey producers.  $1,164.42 in treasury


Meeting time was changed to 7:30 p.m.  Pollination charges for Southern Illinois were reported at $20.00 for double hives and $12.00 for single.  The association participated in the Ag Day and handed out 150 recipe folders.  The association also participated in the Belleville Arts and Crafts Fair.  206 baskets of Illinois products including a jar of honey and a folder on bees and pollination were given out at the Legislative breakfast in Springfield.  400 hives were reported stolen in Nebraska.   Premiums from the state fair were $498 with seven 1st and five 2nd place ribbons.  It was voted to give Paul Lewis $50 for transporting the honey and Barb Day $50 for setting up the booth the last four years.  John Schneider reported Hubbard Apiaries was buying imported honey for 38 cents per pound.  Missouri would be adopting the honeybee as their state insect. Programs:  Herbert Diercks played the dulcimer.  Dalton Ammons discussed feeding bees with honey candy.  Slides entitled “The Last Apple” were shown.  Gene Killion gave a slide presentation on mites and also on some old honey pots.  Slides on Diseases of the Honeybee were shown.  Al Trost did testing of honey for moisture and granulation.  A film on Management of Bees was shown.  Discussions:  state fair, Tracheal mites, colony conditions, pooling honey to sell to Sioux Bee, honey crops.



The Board of Directors voted to donate $50.00 to the ISBA to help pay for liability insurance.  They also voted to open a savings account in the amount of $1,000.00.  Dues for St. Clair/ISBA were $4.00 and Gleanings were $8.40.  Josephine Christ was appointed historian of the association.  The association participated in the Belleville Arts & Crafts Show.  $509 was won at the state fair.  A letter from Gene Killion stated that the mite quarantine was being lifted.  Programs:  Udell Meyer discussed separating wax and propolis.   Udell showed slides on bee management.  Gene Killion showed slides on his trip to Venezuela where he studied Africanized bees.  Slides from Dadant on honey plants were shown.  Discussions:  mouse guards, skunks and raccoons, high moisture honey, moving permits, bee sweet diet plan, vacuum packing.


A motion was made to give Udell Meyer $100 for transporting honey to the State Fair in 1986.  Orders were taken for queens to be ordered from Norman Apiary.  A smoker contest was held at the June meeting.  It was voted to host the ISBA mid-summer meeting in 1988.  A honey show was held in September which was judged by Al Trost.  The annual meeting was held at Augustines Restaurant in Belleville with Jack Cook being the speaker for the evening.  Programs:  Robert Holloway talked about his collection of honey pots.  A film called “Secrets of the Bee World” was shown.  Slides on feeding bees and slides on bee diseases and pests were shown.   A VCR tape on queen rearing by Dr. Tew was shown.  Kurt Gross gave tips on using a smoker.  Al Trost discussed requeening. A film on honey packing was shown.  Discussions:  swarm prevention, honey flow, Varroa mites, wintering colonies.




1,800 honey sticks were given away at the St. Clair Ag Day in March. A group picture was taken at the May meeting.  The Mid-Summer Meeting was held at the Collinsville Holiday Inn in June.  Ladies attending were planning to car pool to Union Station.  The association again attended the state fair.  The annual honey show was held in September.  The annual meeting was at the Elk’s Club in Belleville.  The Executive Board changed the starting time of meetings from 8:00 to 7:30 p.m.  Programs:  Slides on bee disease and feeding, a video on pesticides and bees, and a video on mites were shown.  Discussions:  winter management and feeding, swarm prevention, condition of colonies, packing honey.


The association participated in Ag Day in Belleville where honey sticks were handed out.  Honey for the sticks was donated by Jim Hendrickson.  The state fair was back in the Illinois Building.  Quantity of display for fair has been cut in half, i.e. three 1# jars instead of six.  Mr.& Mrs. Lawrence Leiper were made honorary members.  Varroa mites were found north of Springfield.  The association finished third at the state fair and earned $481 in premiums.  John Schneider won first for his 2 1/2# chunk honey.  It was auctioned for $350.  Most beekeepers reported poor honey crop, however John Schneider harvested five tons.  The annual meeting was held at Waltons in Edwardsville.  Programs:  John Dittman had a question and answer session in March.  John Schneider did a program on foul brood.  Tim Lindley talked about raising your own queens and also demonstrated extracting honey.  John Schneider did a program on “What Did You Learn This Year.”  Harvey Seering talked about the life of the hummingbird and the wolf.  Discussions:  winter survival, feeding of bees, where to buy jars, mouse guards.




No minutes found.  According to financial papers the association won $470 at the state fair with three 1st and six 2nd place ribbons.  The annual meeting was held at Sandy’s Country Cabin Restaurant in O’Fallon.  Eugene Killion spoke on bee management.



It was voted to have attendance prizes at all meetings at a maximum cost of $10.00.  A $1,000 CD was purchased for the association.  A register was established of members willing to catch swarms.  Members were asked to write letters to our senator to remove Scott Beam as State Inspector.    The association won fourth place and $394 at the state fair.  It was decided to go back to a potluck for the holiday meeting.  Programs:  Al Trost spoke on feeding bees.  Slides from Dadant on Spring Management were shown.  Al Trost demonstrated how to make creamed honey.   A tape by Dorothy Herman on flower arrangement was shown at the annual meeting.  Discussions:  state fair, Canola honey, swarms, mites.


It was decided to sponsor a junior membership for Heather Straub.  The association will pay her dues and give her the book, “Beekeeping in the Midwest.”  Herbert Diercks, treasurer of the association from 1984-1990, died in July.  The association won $398 at the state fair.  Programs:  A video on requeening and colony division was shown.  Al Trost showed how to check for Varroa mites with ether. Kurt Gross demonstrated smokers and types of fuel.  Mr. Ball showed a cone shaped swarm box.  Slides were shown on Spring Management.  Gene Killion gave a slide presentation on “stinging” insects at our holiday meeting.   Discussions:  sparking interest in beekeeping, state fair, feeding bees, African bees, skunks and possums, wintering problems.



The association participated in the Fun Fair Ag Show in Belleville.  Honey candy and pamphlets were handed out. A class on beekeeping at BAC was considered.  Five videos were purchased for the association library.  The association won $314 at the state fair but only had 15 entries.  Programs:  A film on Over Wintering Hives.   A video on beekeeping in Australia was shown.   Harvey Seering talked about his trip to Australia.  Discussions:  spreading of mites, mite control.



The January meeting was held at the home of Joe and Sharon Heinzel because the Farm Bureau building had been sold.  Beginning in March, the meetings would alternate between Edwardsville and Magna Bank in Mascoutah.  The association participated in the Fun Fair in Belleville in March.  $373.00 was won at the state fair. The association hosted the ISBA Summer Meeting in June.   Programs:  Udell Meyer demonstrated assembling of section boxes.  Udell Meyer demonstrated the assembling of frames and installation of foundation.  The video “The Honey Harvest” by Bill Woods was shown.   Jim Kipp gave a talk on overwintering bees.  Chuck Leitner presented a talk on beekeeping.   A slide presentation on Russia was shown at the annual meeting.  Discussions:  mites, pollination, bee sting therapy, swarms, Yugoslavian bees, homemade wax melters, menthol packets, where to buy queens (not Blue Ridge Apiaries).




The January meeting was held at Magna Bank in Mascoutah.  Three hives had been stolen in the O’Fallon area sometime in November or December.  The March meeting was the first to be held at the new Farm Bureau building in Belleville.  Bee information was handed out to over 1,000 students at the Fun Fair at BAC.  The association purchased the video, “Controlling Honey Bee Emergencies” to be shown to various fire departments.  Bill Ghere and Gene Killion were named honorary life time members of the association.  The association won “Best Display Booth” at the state fair and $397 in premiums.  The association had a display at the St. Clair County Fair.  Al Trost was stepping down as editor after nine years.  Summer meetings were hosted by Lee Shook, Chuck & Dolores Leitner and Ray & Cookie Chapman.  Programs:  Al Trost talked about inspection of bee hives.   Al Trost talked about how to install package bees.  A video called “Country’s Reminisce Hitch” was shown at the annual meeting.  Discussions:  winter losses, mite resistant bees, hornets’ nests, propolis, pollen, marking of queens, drone and queen cells, shipping of queens, swarms, honey prices.



Tony Erwin became the new editor for the association.  Prices for cut comb and round sections ranged from $2.50-$3.00.  City of Bees brochures were handed out to over 1,100 students at the Belleville Fun Fair.  The new Illinois Apiary Act requires the Illinois registration number to be placed on each hive.  The association won $396 in premiums at the state fair.  It was moved to reimburse the chairman of the state fair committee $100 for mileage and incidental expenses.  Summer meetings were hosted by Marlin & Pat Wagner, Lee Shook, Chuck & Dolores Leitner and Ray & Cookie Chapman.  It was moved to spend up to $300 for attendance prizes for the December holiday meeting.  Anthony Bratsch from the Extension Service was guest speaker for the evening.  He spoke on pollination and insecticides.  The membership list for 1996 showed 71 beekeepers.  Discussions:  starvation, feeding dry sugar, re-liquefying honey, price of honey, essential oils.


In March, Alfred Trost and Jim Hendrickson manned a booth at the Farm Fair in Belleville handing out information to students.  The by-laws were changed allowing the membership to spend $150 without approval of the Executive Board.  This was a change from $50.  A display on bees and honey would be set up at the Fairview Heights library in June.  Members were receiving $14.00-$18.50 per gallon of honey.  The association hosted the ISBA Mid-Summer Meeting in June with 85 people in attendance.  Charles Mraz spoke on apitherapy.  A display was set up in the Bank of Edwardsville.  Members went to various schools to give talks.  Meetings were being publicized in newspapers.  Dues were raised to $6.00 (state dues are $2.00).  Summer meetings were hosted by Lee Shook, Tony & Geralyn Erwin, Ray & Cookie Chapman and Chuck & Dolores Leitner.  Programs:  Charles Leitner gave a demonstration on queen rearing.  Noel Troxclair spoke on control of Varroa and Trachea mites.  John Schneider gave a talk on growing nuts.  Discussions:  conditions of hives, swarming, hornets, fermentation, straining honey.



Copies of “City of the Bees” were handed out at the Farm Fair in Belleville.  Brian Huelskamp would be printing the newsletter.  Association did not show at the state fair due to lack of entries.  A membership list was sent to the American Bee Journal at their request.  Programs:  A VCR tape on activity in a bee hive was shown.  Tony Bratch, Extension Horticulturist, talked on insecticides and their toxicity to bees.  Elmer Beutler, Master Gardner, talked on growing trees and showed a video on grafting.  Discussions:  when to feed bees, Apistan strips, getting honey for state fair.,


Pfizer Company donated a bucket of Terramycin packages which will be given as attendance prizes.  The association participated in the Farm Fair again and also in Earth Day at Our Lady of the Snows.  An observation hive and various bee equipment were displayed.  Several members commented on problems they had with health inspectors.  The association won third place at the state fair and earned $385.00 in premiums.  A honey exhibit was set up in September at Eckert Orchard.  Marlin Wagner and Ray Chapman were to be reimbursed for mileage to Springfield for state fair exhibit.  Al Dillman died in December.  Programs:  Charles Leitner demonstrated splitting hives.  Bob Elling demonstrated a hive lifter he built.  Marlin Wagner gave a demonstration of wax preparation for the state fair.  Chuck Leitner showed how to package comb and creamed honey.  Discussions:  state fair, swarms, giving talks at schools.


Harvey gave talks at the Fairview Heights Rotary Club and Optimist Club.  Udell spoke at the visitors center at Carlyle Lake and the Nature Camp at Godfrey.  A case of angel honey containers was donated to the association by Heavens Honey Company.  They will be used for attendance prizes during the year.  Harvey was publishing meeting times in various newspapers.  The association again participated in Earth Day.  Bob Holloway requested donations of bee equipment for beekeepers in Africa.  It was decided to have a Beekeeper of the Year Award.  The association won $538 at the state fair.  Marlin Wagner was given $96 for mileage and Ray Chapman was given $45.  It was decided to have the holiday meeting on the Friday after Thanksgiving.  Programs:  Harvey Seering showed how to test for mites with powdered sugar.  Chuck Leitner showed how to pack cut comb honey for the fair.  Ed Weilbacher spoke on “Urban Sprawl.”  Discussions:  packaging honey, price of beeswax ($5.00 decided to be fair price), talks at schools, swarms, state fair.



Josephine Christ was named Beekeeper of the Year for 2000.  She started helping her father with bees when she was nine years old.  At age 93 she no longer keeps bees but is still very much interested and attends many of our meetings.  It was voted to place a $20.00 deposit on VCR tapes.  The association participated in Earth Days again.  Harvey and Udell have been doing demonstrations at various schools.  Brian would man a booth at St. Clair County Fair.  The small hive beetle has been found in northeastern Illinois.  The association finished second in sweepstakes at the state fair and won $567.00 in premiums.  Marlin Wagner was given $121.74 for mileage and meal expenses for the state fair, Ray Chapman received $46.24 for mileage.  Harvey did a 15 minute interview with WSMI in Litchfield on beekeeping.  Brian Huelskamp was featured in the Belleville Journal about his entry in the St. Clair Fair.  Programs:  Ray Chapman demonstrated introducing a queen into colony with a queen cage.  Linda Werzyn, from the St. Clair Health Dept., spoke about leaf burning.  For our holiday meeting, Bernece Johnson showed slides on her trip to Bhutan.  Discussions:  winter losses, honey sales.


Harvey has spoken to various groups about beekeeping.  A Beginning Beekeepers Workshop was held in February with 14 people registered.  It was deemed a great success.  On April 5 Harvey Seering died.  At the July meeting in Medora we toured an old octagonal honey house.  We won the sweepstakes and a total of $602 in premiums at the state fair.  Alfred Trost was named 2001 Beekeeper of the Year.  Programs:  Chuck Leitner brought several items to show and explain. Chuck demonstrated nailing wedges in frames.  Discussions:  state fair, swarms, managing colonies to keep gentle bees.



The association gave thirty-four 8 oz. jars of honey to St. Clair and Madison County Farm Bureaus for use of their auditoriums for our meetings.  The 2002 Beekeeper of the Year was presented to Harvey Seering posthumously.  The Missouri State Beekeepers were celebrating their 100th year at their spring meeting.  Udell Meyer was recognized for serving 30 years as a bee inspector.  St. Clair Beekeepers hosted the ISBA summer meeting in June.  We were fortunate to have Gene Killion make his last presentation to a beekeeping association at our meeting.  The association won the sweepstakes at the state fair again.  We won eight first places and seven seconds.   Programs:  Chuck Leitner presented his system of hive management.  Chuck demonstrated making splits.  Ray Chapman gave a demonstration on producing comb honey.  Discussions:  state fair, beekeeping short course, swarming.



No minutes available.  Udell Meyer was named 2003 Beekeeper of the Year.



44 registered for the Short Course at SWIC on February 19.  Chuck Leitner was named Beekeeper of the Year for 2004.  Tony Erwin was ordering packaged bees for several members of the organization.  Motion passed to continue the association’s website with Ken Kloepper in charge.  About 20 members attended the Heartland Apiary Society Conference at SIU-E on July 7-9.  Africanized bees were now in Arkansas.  The association took third place at the State Fair and received $352.00.  Pat Wagner was appointed historian.   Presentations were made at the Master’s Gardner Conference on September 24 and at Mills Apple Orchard on October 8.  Those hosting summer meetings were Dave Kuester, Lonnie Langley, Ray Chapman and Chuck Leitner.   Programs:  Mike Sabo talked about mead making, Jim Robins spoke on commercial beekeeping, Ray Chapman showed how to install packaged bees and how to get ready for the spring honey flow, “oddities in beekeeping” – various equipment and procedures were shared by several members, Discussions:  State Fair, volunteers were needed to run for offices, cost of shipping bees, honey flow, queen rearing.


Ray Chapman was named Beekeeper of the Year for 2005.
Beekeeper of the Year


2000 – Josephine Christ

2001 – Alfred Trost

2002 – Harvey Seering (posthumously)

2003 – Udell Meyer

2004 – Chuck Leitner

2005 – Ray Chapman