235 deer registered in Pelican in 1972

Pelican’s Evenson, Rothsay’s Meidt named to WCCO radio grid team of week in 1972

100 years ago, November 16, 1922

• Unusually Mild Weather

It is unusual to have what might be termed a “rainy season” at this time of the year in Minnesota, but for the past week or ten days, there has been a regular equanoxial storm. All thought that if it ever started to rain this fall that it would turn to snow and cold weather, but such has not been the case. The temperature has been very mild, and the rains have been quite heavy. The streets and roads are in a very bad condition, and some farmers reported the roads in as bad a condition as they ever saw them. However, rain is what everyone has been hoping for the past three months, and all are mighty glad that the rain has come if it is somewhat late in the season.

75 years ago, November 13, 1947

• Armistice Day Banquet Enjoyed By Many

The American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars jointly observed Armistice Day with an elaborate banquet Tuesday evening in the high school auditorium. A large number of servicemen, members of the Auxiliaries, and a few invited guests partook of a very fine chicken dinner served by the Ladies Aid of the Congregational church.

Dr. Henry Korda was the master of ceremonies. The first number of the program was a tenor solo by Everett Johnson, with Miss Deloris Olson as accompanist. The chairman then called upon a few men in the audience to make some remarks before the dinner was served. Among those who spoke briefly were Carl Kantrud, commander of the V.F.W., M. J. Hanson, who spoke for Dr. F. W. Hansen, commander of the American Legion Post, who was unable to be present, and E. L. Peterson. Willard Boushley, who went through the Battle of Bataan and spent years in a Japanese prison camp, suffering all the tortures and privations imaginable, was introduced by the chairman and given a big hand.

The program closed with the audience singing America.

50 years ago, November 16, 1972

Evenson Named to Grid Team of the Week

Paul Evenson, who carried the ball for a total of 854 yards during the season, was named to WCCO Radio’s all-state football team of the week on November 9.

Also honored on the show was Gerhard Meidt, coach of the state championship 9-man team from Rothsay high school, as coach of the week. Coach Meidt and Evenson will both receive certificates from WCCO.

Nominations for the team of the week are made by a statewide panel of sports editors and sportscasters.

Over 200 Deer Registered Here

A total of 235 deer have been registered by hunters here at two local registration stations: Cy’s Sport Shop and West Side Gulf.

Most of the deer were taken in this vicinity during the one-day season on Saturday, although some were taken north of here, where the season is still open. Of the first 100 registered at Cy’s, 63 were bucks.

Game Warden Ray Jenson said while the “take” was good in the area, hunting pressure was not heavy compared to other years. The three days of hunting allowed each hunter within a 30-day season has made it more of a sport this year, Jensen said, with fewer hunters in the woods on any given day.

25 years ago, November 19, 1997

Members Quizzed on Volunteers Fire Department’s 98-year History 

Volunteer firemen, both active and retired, found themselves taking a “test” during their recent annual banquet.

Among the questions asked were: When was the department chartered? How many have served as fire chiefs? When was the department’s steam pumper acquired? And so on.

Fire Chief Richard Peterson said he devised the quiz as a “fun” test, and that’s what it turned out to be. At the same time, however, it gave firemen a chance to look back at some of the history and traditions of the organization.

Jim Hovland, a 21-year veteran, was the only one present to answer correctly the question of when the department was founded.

The fire department was organized in 1899, replacing the previous system of everyone available pitching in when a fire was reported.

Harry Barron was elected the first chief but served for only a year before the department was reorganized, and O. N. Anderson took over the helm.

That same year, the 20 hp Waterous Steam engine and 200 feet of hose were purchased to supplement the hand-powered chemical engine and two hand-drawn hose carts.

The only water supply in town was the Pelican River until the city’s water system was installed in 1923. By that time, the city had purchased a 1921 Reo Chemical Truck and replaced the old fire bell with an electric siren.

Most of the firemen were aware that the department was housed in the city hall until the old Park Theater was purchased and remodeled in 1963.

Over the years, numerous fire trucks have come and gone, but the Ford hose and ladder truck purchased in 1936 is still around. The department uses it as a parade unit these days. 

Many of the city’s major fires of the past couple of decades were recalled: the Johnson Furniture warehouse, Dynamic Homes, Miller’s Cafe, the Pizza Place (which burned along with Hanson’s Department Store), Zierke Studio, Ace Hardware, and Cer’s Cafe.

A few could recall some of the men who served as fire chief during the department’s long history, including Stem Hanson, Oscar Knutson, Dave Halbakken, and Merle Frazee.

The one who held the post longer than anyone else was the late Rex Crews, who served for 25 years before retiring in 1979. He was followed by Richard Rollie, who served three years; Bob Resset, who also held the post for three years; and the present chief, Richard Peterson, who took office ten years ago. He is the 14th chief in the department’s nearly 100-year history.

“Who will be the next chief?” was the last question on the test. Any number of possibilities appeared as answers, but the one by Jerry Stokka got the biggest laugh.

Stokka, the only Native American on the department’s roster, answered simply: “some white guy.”