25 Years Ago-1993

“Packed to the Max” was the scene at the long-awaited opening weekend of Huff Hills Ski Area, 16 miles south of Mandan, on the former site of the defunct Twilight Hills of the late 1960s. More than 2,000 people practically broke down the gate, overwhelmed the rental shop and made for long lines at the shop, ski lifts and slopes. After a lot of hard work and some construction delays, the development partners were smiling after their first weekend.

Funerals this week:

Margaret (Hatzenbuehler) Zueger, 74, Bismarck; raised, educated at Odense. Married John Zueger, 1940. Farmed in Odense area, moving to Bismarck 1978. Member of Women of Ascension Parish, Catholic Daughters of America. Survivors include two sons, four daughters and their families and six brothers.

Ralph Dietrich, 81, Mandan; raised in Mercer County. Graduated from Mandan High School, 1929; from North Dakota State University, 1936. Married Eleanor McQueen, 1939; she died 1952. Married Marvis Wachsman, 1960. Retired after 30 years with Soil Conservation Service. Member of Masonic Lodge, Elks. A volunteer at For Lincoln State Park Museum. Survivors include wife; one son, one daughter, two stepchildren and their families, three brothers.

John Risch Jr.,70, Mandan; raised, educated in Oliver and Burleigh counties. Worked in mines, then for the Northern Pacific Railroad in Montana, moving to Bismarck, 1956. Married Lucille Sayler,1957. Owned Risch Truck Lines, 1960s. Was independent trucker for North Dakota Concrete, retiring 1986. Survivors include wife; one son, two daughters and their families, one brother, one sister.

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Temperatures recorded Tuesday, Jan. 12: a high of 16 degrees; 8 degrees for the low, and 8 inches of snow on the ground.

50 Years Ago-1968

To mark Otto Dahn’s 50th year as a musician, a party was held over the holidays at Mandan’s Buckhorn Bar, where patrons heard a band play a lively rendition of “The Village Tavern Polka,” accompanied by the bright-eyed 70-year-old Dahn, who played the fiddle while tapping his foot.

Otto was born in Wisconsin and came to North Dakota in 1906 with his parents, settling on a farm near Steele. When he was 12, he earned money for his first fiddle by selling gopher tails. In 1937 he came to Mandan and organized a band, naming it the Syncopators, which became a regular feature over old radio station KGCU.

Hosts for the celebration were Jack Berger, Buckhorn Bar owner, and the Ralph Kary orchestra.

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Jerome "Jerry" Schaff of Mandan has become a partner with Donald M. Braun and Raymond J. Martin in the firm of Braun and Martin Inc., 200 Collins Ave., Mandan. The firm primarily performs bookkeeping services and provides counseling for service stations. The business was initiated in 1965 by Braun, who operated from his home. Within six months, the operation moved to Collins Avenue, and in January 1967 it was expanded and incorporated with Martin joining as partner.

75 Years Ago-1943

A month after nationwide gas rationing and a “Victory” speed limit of 35 mp. went into effect on Dec. 1, many residents are slowly adjusting to the new rules. The reason for the rationing is not due to a fuel shortage, but for the shortage of rubber. Both the Army and Navy are in desperate need of rubber for the war effort. And driving slower and using less gas would result in less wear on the tires.

In Morton County, drivers must go to their nearest town to sign up for a gas ration book and stamps, which must be presented to the filling station on every trip. A sticker designating their gasoline rationing status must also be placed on the windshield of each car or truck. To be out of ration stamps was to be out of luck.

The following are the five classifications for the gas rationing books:

• Class A drivers were allowed only three gallons of gasoline per week for essential shopping, seeing the doctor and going to church.

• Class B drivers (factory workers, traveling salesmen) received 8 gallons per week.

• Class C drivers included essential war workers, police, doctors and letter carriers.

• Class T included all truck drivers.

• Class X was reserved for politicians and other "important people."

The last three classifications were not subject to the restrictions.

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Families of men in the service who desire to make word-letter recordings to be forwarded to the soldiers, may do so tonight at the headquarters in the Memorial Building. Each record will cost 15 cents for the mailing of the record, which can be played on any standard make of phonograph.

All stores in the city selling ladies hosiery have been designated as depots for the collection of old silk and nylon stockings and underwear, according to Mrs. G.A. Steinbrueck, women’s Civilian Defense chairman. Deposits may be made at Sullivan’s Department Store, The Fashion Shop, The Cummins Co., Hulett’s Five & Dime store, The Arcade, Dahner’s, J.C. Penney Co. and The Hat & Novelty Shop.

Funds derived from a benefit dance given recently at Huff have been turned over to the Morton County Red Cross chapter for the U.S.O. The amount netted was $30. Arrangements for the benefit were made under the direction of Rev. Father Lautner, Mrs. John Klein and Mrs. Frank Lanz.

100 Years Ago-1918

“The thermometer last night shot down to a few degrees below the record of the night before. The Northern Great Plains Field Station reports that at midnight, the station thermometer showed 24 degrees below zero.

“LOST, Saturday, at the Mandan Depot station: Ladies handbag containing lavalier, wedding ring, silver drinking cup, etc. Return to 622 Eighth Street or call up 457X, Bismarck, for reward.

“The Mandan Red Cross solicitors have gone over the top in the getting of new members for the Red Cross. The final figures will show that the city has totaled 1,000 new members, bringing the total membership to 1,559. And yet there are Red Cross slackers who refuse to donate their dollar to help the cause of relieving the necessities of our soldiers who have gone to fight in the Great War for us.

“A little son of August Vogel, of Sweet Briar, was badly bitten by a coyote, one gash of three inches in the leg, besides numerous other wounds. The coyote was a pet animal that had been captured when small. A doctor was called to cauterize the wounds.

“The old Hudson building that has occupied a portion of Second Ave. N.W. is this week being moved to the lot adjoining the Delmonico restaurant.

“The Rev. J. Fontana, the New Salem preacher who is under bonds of $5,000 to appear before the U. S. District Court on charge of seditious talk, is very anxious to organize a second Red Cross branch at New Salem as he’s peeved at the organization already at the city. Yesterday, the Reverend and his wife called on the Court Commissioner for permission to organize a separate branch and was denied the request. It is clear, until Mr. Fontana is cleared of seditious charges, he will be permitted only a very minor part in any Red Cross activities.”

125 Years Ago-1893

“On Thurs., Jan. 12, at 2:30 p.m., the thermometer recorded zero degrees."

The Legislature: “In the Senate this week, Mr. Miller’s joint resolution requesting the United States government to donate land and buildings on the Fort Lincoln reservation, was favorable reported on by the committee on Federal relations. It was passed by the Senate, it being the first senate bill to pass that body."

“A light fall of snow on Tuesday afternoon and evening was followed by a high wind which blew all day Wednesday. The near zero-degree temperature, along with the wind, made people hug their furs and overcoats.

“Albert, the 11-month old son of Mr. and Mrs. Voss died early on Tuesday after a sickness of only two or three days. The funeral occurred on Wednesday. The many friends of Mr. and Mrs. Voss express sincere sympathy in their somewhat sudden bereavement.

“Last night Charley White again demonstrated the fact that he is bullet proof. He escaped from jail, and Sheriff Bingenheimer chased after him, firing two shots. White fell to the ground, but, on investigation, it was found that the cause of the fall was the slipperiness of the ground and not the deadly bullets. It is now safe to predict that White won’t see much of the outside of the jail before court meets.”

Diane Boit was raised and educated in the Red River Valley before coming to Mandan with her family in 1970. She has been involved with the Bismarck-Mandan newspapers for more than 30 years. Boit can be reached at dboit46@gmail.com.