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Diane Boit: WWI Commander visits Bismarck-Mandan, 1921

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25 Years Ago – 1996

Another eight inches of snow fell in the Mandan area this past weekend, bringing the month’s total to nearly 21 inches. Numerous accidents, involving snowplows, have occurred when impatient drivers tried passing plows through a snowfog. To date, 11 accidents recorded, compared with 30 wrecks in the record-setting winter of 1993.

More than 250 people were served at Mandan’s First Lutheran church at the annual Aid Inc. Thanksgiving dinner. The scene was repeated at Bismarck’s First Presbyterian Church where 75 volunteers cooked and served dinner to 300 people in the first Thanksgiving dinner offered there by Aid Inc. Food for both sites were furnished by Dan’s Super Market, courtesy of CEO Terry Rockstad.

Mandan’s Jaye Amundson has been named North Dakota’s Miss Basketball by the North Dakota Associated Press Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association. The Mandan High School senior is the first player from Mandan-Bismarck to win the top basketball honor. The other finalists were Sarah Jacobson, Fargo Shanley, and Jayne Boeddeker, Minot.

Tom Stebner, the Braves football coach for the past six seasons, has announced his retirement. The Braves were 21-31 under Stebner but were 20-16 in the last four years.

Roger Klemisch, coach of the New Salem girls basketball team, has also announced his retirement. He was the team’s coach for the past 22 years, 17 of those as head coach. He leaves with an impressive record: 237 wins, 122 losses; a dozen regional tournament trips and a second-place trophy at state, 1993.

Excitement spread at New York’s Wall Street this week when the Dow surged past the 6,500 mark to close at 6,547.79 on Nov. 25. Economists say the upswing is due to inflation being held in the 3 percent range since 1991.

Temps recorded Tuesday, Nov. 26: a high of 9 degrees; 11 below zero for the low.

50 Years Ago – 1971

The Revelers dinner-dance club recently held a German Beerfest at the Mandan Country Club where committee members, wearing German outfits and headed by Mr. and Mrs. Don Hertz, greeted the arriving guests. Following dinner, members danced to the music by Leonard Brilz and the Little Dutch Band.

Mrs. Henry Schwab, unit treasurer of the Mandan American Legion Auxiliary, has been recognized as the “outstanding unit treasurer” of the state during a meeting of the state’s department officers in Fargo. The Mandan unit’s membership stands at 323. Refreshments hostess was Mrs. Dolores Pierce, Mandan unit president.

Births announced this week: Boys to Mr. and Mrs. Delmar Alan, to Mr. and Mrs. Donald Friesz, to Mr. and Mrs. Raymond Schwarz, all of Mandan; and to Mr. and Mrs. Marvin Bethke, New Salem. Girls to Mr. and Mrs. Robert Nix, to Mr. and Mrs. Peter Boehm, and to Mr. and Mrs. Larry Graf, all of Mandan.

People in Service: Pvt. Ron O. Otto, son of Mr. and Mrs. Roy Otto of Mandan, has completed an 11-week radio teletype operator course at the U.S. Southeastern Signal School, Ft. Gordon, Georgia. Pvt. Gary R. Fleischer, son of Mr. and Mrs. Wilfred Fleischer, also completed a 10-week medical corpsman course at the U.S. Army medical training center at Fort Sam Houston, Texas.

75 Years Ago – 1946

Funeral services were held this past week for Joseph G. Barron, 38, who died of a heart attack at his home. Barron, the son of the late Mr. and Mrs. Gabe Barron of Mandan, was a salesman for the Mandan Beverage Company. Survivors include his widow and four children, ranging in age from 2 months to 10 years. Also surviving are two sisters, Mrs. George Hecker, Mandan, and Rose Barron, Tacoma, Washington, along with four brothers- Frank and Peter of Mandan, Louis of Tacoma and John, Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Mandan’s Fortnightly Club observed its 38th anniversary of its first meeting and honored three charter members of the club, which was organized on Nov. 4, 1908. Receiving memento gifts were Mrs. Margaret Bingenheimer, Mrs. L.N. Cary and Mrs. W.H. Stutsman. The afternoon’s program on Scotland was presented by Mrs. C.G. Hughes, followed by a dessert lunch, featuring a cake lit with 38 candles.

There’ll be no Thanksgiving turkey for six Mandan youngsters this year. Three little brothers, Gaylord, Robert and Richard Klein, and three little girls, sisters Shirley Ann and Arlene Kary, along with Gwendolyn Keller, all had their tonsils removed at the Mandan hospital on the day before Thanksgiving.

Births announced this week: Boys to Mr. and Mrs. William Russel, to Mr. and Mrs. Tony Heck, to Mr. and Mrs. George Paul, all of Mandan; to Mr. and Mrs. Nick Bullinger, Huff, and to Mr. and Mrs. Emmet Bienstman, New Salem. Girls to Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Miller, to Mr. and Mrs. Herman Larson, to Mr. and Mrs. Alvin Kerscher, all of Mandan, and to Mr. and Mrs. Frank Berger, St. Anthony.

100 Years Ago – 1921

“Bismarck-Mandan, the twin cities of North Dakota, and people from all corners of the state, yesterday joined in giving to Marshal Ferdinand Foch, commander in chief of the Allied armies during the recent war, and his French party, along with guests and officers of the American Legion, a most tumultuous greeting and welcome. Thousands of people thronged the streets of Bismarck, gaily decorated with flags of the two countries, and the French general was cheered wildly by the crowd waiting at the depot for flag-draped train.

“Upon arrival, Marshal Foch and his delegation, were escorted to a packed Bismarck auditorium for a program of speeches and music. Upwards of 100 Sioux Indians from the Standing Rock reservation, including veterans of the recent war, were also in attendance, dressed in full Indian regalia. The Sioux, once powerful, have no Indian chief now, but look to Major A.B. Welch of Mandan as their chieftain.

“The event concluded with the smoking of a peace pipe between Foch and Red Tomahawk, who is credited with the killing of Sitting Bull in 1890. Through double interpretation, from Sioux to English, then English to French, Tomahawk, now over 80 years old, expressed tribute to the French war leader and, on behalf of the Sioux tribe, accepted him as a brother under the name ‘Charging Thunder’ (Waklyn Watakpe). The ceremony began with Tomahawk silently puffing on a red sandstone pipe, which was handed to Foch who also puffed, then handed to Major Welch, who smoked it as the symbolic ‘chief’ of the Sioux. The pipe was then presented to Foch as a gift of the Sioux people. In response, Foch clasped hands warmly with Red Tomahawk, saying 'My friend.'

“When notified of the adjournment, the Mandan Electric company’s whistle blew loudly to alert residents that the Foch train was about to leave Bismarck, giving everyone an opportunity to be at the N.P. depot. Upon arrival in Mandan, Marshal Foch stepped out to greet the cheering crowd and shook hands with many nearby people.

“Before leaving for a stop at Billings, Montana, Marshal Koch expressed his appreciation to the Mandan crowd of the wonders of America. 'I am very pleased with my visit through North Dakota,' said Foch. 'The prairie is different than anything I have seen so far in your wonderful country. Thank you for the happy welcome.'"

125 Years Ago – 1896

“At 2:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 26, Thanksgiving Day, the thermometer recorded one degree below zero.

“In Mandan, the storm began to show its teeth about 10’clock last night.

“A common saying today was “this is the worst I ever saw.”

“Traffic on Main Street is absolutely impossible today; few business places are open.

“Everyone knew, last night and today, whether windows and doors fitted properly or not.

“The Mandan rail yards from one end to the other, are packed full of snow.

“From the corner at Taylor’s drug store to the Inter-Ocean hotel is almost one unbroken series of huge snowbanks, eight to 12 feet high. Snowdrifts block all the intersections of the avenues along Main street.

“Several storm-bound traveling men highly appreciated the warm and comfortable quarters provided at the Inter-Ocean hotel. However, the windmill at the hotel succumbed to the storm and is a bad wreck.

“So furious was today’s storm that the McDonald-Carey Thanksgiving wedding had to be cancelled. An effort was made to get Father Collins to the bride’s home. After being tumbled out of the sleigh and into snowdrifts three or four times, Sheriff McDonald, brother of the groom, who was driving the sleigh, gave up the job. The wedding is now scheduled for Saturday at St. Joseph church.”

Diane Boit can be reached at dboit46@gmail.com.

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