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1918: State Bank of Morton County.

25 Years Ago-1993

Mother Nature worked overtime this past week, heeding the wishes of Huff Hills Ski Area operator Jim Beck, who asked for some snow and cold for the opening of its first full skiing season after a highly successful 1992-93. More than 25 inches of the white stuff blanketed the area in time for opening day. Beck and his staff are expecting more people than last year to come to Huff Hills’ 18 runs, with estimates from 25,000 to 30,000 new skiers this winter.

Everett Hinnenkamp, manager of the Mandan Eagles Club, has presented a Zamboni ice conditioning machine, on behalf of the club, to LeRoy Mossett of the Mandan Hockey Club. The machine represents a $19,000 donation that Mossett said was just the latest of several significant hockey club projects involving the Eagles.

Funerals this week:

Elsie (Evenson) Stoddard, 97, Flasher; raised, educated at Flasher. Married Curt Stoddard in 1915; he died in 1947. Was a member of American Legion Auxiliary and Flasher 55 Club. Survivors include one son, two daughters-in-law and their families.

Nick Mosbrucker 72, Mandan; raised, educated at Center. Graduated from New Salem High School. Married Clara Yantzer in 1943. Worked as loan officer at Production Credit Association until 1974. Purchased Mandan Western Shop in 1965 and operated it until retiring in 1987. Then worked at Logan Hill Real Estate. Member of Mandan Elks, Eagles, Moose and Knights of Columbus. Was president of the Mandan Chamber of Commerce. A charter member of Toastmasters, Mandan. Member of 7th Cavalry at Fort Lincoln for nine years. Lector at St. Joseph Church for 20 years. Survivors include his wife, one son, one daughter and their families, two brothers, three sisters.

Louis Dvoracek, 72, Mandan; raised, educated south of Mandan. Served in U.S. Army during World War II, received a Purple Heart. Married Barbara Kuntz in 1947. Worked at Northern Great Plains Research Center, Mandan, 1957-82. Survivors include two daughters and their families.

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Temperatures recorded Tuesday, Dec. 14: a high of 38 degrees; 20 degrees for the low.

50 Years Ago-1968

The Mandan Jaycees “Be A Good Neighbor” program is moving into full gear and, according to Henry Beckler, general chairman of the Christmas charity, collection baskets have now been placed in Mandan grocery stores. He urges all shoppers to help by dropping items in the baskets each time they shop.

Mrs. Joe Kautzman, of New Salem, has been elected president of the Morton County 4-H Council, succeeding Duane Olson, who was elected secretary. Elected the new vice president was Mrs. Frank Jochim, of Flasher. New director Walter Hermes, of Glen Ullin, joins carryover director Lyle Dawson Jr., of Fort Rice.

John “Jack” Stewart of Mohall, currently the Renville County Extension agent, has been named Morton County’s new county extension agent. He succeeds James Stine, who has resigned to become district extension supervisor in northwestern North Dakota. Stewart’s assistant agent will be James Sailer.

George Toman, a consulting engineer from Mandan, has received the Chandler Award at a banquet during the 28th annual meeting of the North Dakota Society of Professional Engineers. The award is presented annually to the engineer providing the most outstanding service to the society.

Superintendent of Schools August Spiss approached the Mandan School Board this week with ideas to expand school facilities within the next few years. Mandan Public Schools saw an increase of 243 new students this year, with 100 coming from the closure of the seventh and eighth grades at St. Joseph Grade School. Spiss warned that any significant enrollment increase next year would cramp the existing facilities, necessitating renting expenses. However, School Board President William Russell and the board took no action and indicated it would not in the near future.

75 Years Ago-1943

Once again, bringing its message of peace to a troubled world, hundreds of area residents packed Trinity Lutheran Church in Bismarck at both the afternoon and evening performances of Handel’s “Messiah” that included a chorus of more than 60 voices, along with five soloists and accompanied by the string section of the Bismarck Little Symphony orchestra, all under the direction of Clarion Larson. Solos were sung by Henry Olson, tenor, of Mandan; Bernard Weinrich, bass, New Salem; and from Bismarck, Mrs. F. Bavendick, contralto, and sopranos, Mrs. Willis Van Heuvelen and Mrs. Paul Wachter Jr.

Col. A.B. Welch has been elected chief of the Mandan Indian Shriners for the 15th consecutive year and E.B. Wilkinson was returned to the post of secretary-treasurer after completing 14 years in that office. Welch is also a past potentate of El Zagel Temple.

Armed Forces news:

“P.W. Buckley, seaman 2/c, and William Brunelle, seaman, 2/c, are both stationed somewhere in the South Pacific. The former writes the Pioneer, ‘Bill and I have been receiving the Pioneer newspaper for quite a while. I don’t believe there is anything better than to lay around in the hut and read the home-town paper and catch up on all the sports and local “gossip.’” We decided to drop you a line and tell you how much your paper is appreciated.'

“Lt. Raymond H. Friesz (JG), U.S. Dental Corps, has arrived safely overseas, according to a message received here by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Ralph V. Friesz. He has been assigned to the Marine Air Wing Dental Corps and is somewhere in the South Pacific. Mr. and Mrs. Friesz also have two other sons in the service, Capt. Arthur Friesz, U.S. Army Air Corps, stationed at Rome, N.Y., as a test pilot, and Robert Friesz, who is attending Officers Candidate School at Fort Benning, Ga.”

100 Years Ago-1918

“In a letter received by Charlie Zachmeier from his brother, John, who is employed as ‘watchman’ on the snagboat Mandan, now bound for winter quarters at Gasconade, Mo., he says that while there is quite a little slush ice, the river is still navigable. The Missouri is still open here and did not freeze over until Dec. 7 last year.

“With the war now ended, 10 Morton County boys returned on the afternoon train from Fargo, where they had reported for selective service training during the first week of November. Arriving at the Mandan depot were Wm. McQuillan, Uzell M. Harper, Frank W. Hobbs, Oscar A. Feland, John Bollinger, George P. Damsky, Claude A. Henderson, Oswald Oss, Harry Hagerott and Carl Borg.

“County Commissioner John Ellison has received a letter, dated Nov. 9, from his son, Lt. Wm. P. Ellison, who is in a hospital at Bordeaux, France. He wrote: ‘I’m in an American Red Cross hospital after being gassed during the early hours of Oct. 6 while fighting on the front lines. A big gas shell hit just a few feet from me and filled my eyes immediately. Although I quickly put on a gas mask, I was totally blind within five minutes. My eyes were bandaged shut for three weeks before I was able to see again. I was also burned on the forehead, behind my ears and on the legs, but everything is healing nicely. I should be able to return to my company within two weeks.’

“The mustering out of 60,000 troops at Camp Lewis, Tacoma, Wash., is well under way. It is thought the camp will be entirely abandoned on Jan. 1, 1919, as the movement of the men to their homes is progressing rapidly.

"New York, Dec. 9: The U.S. Steamship Sierra, with 35 officers and 1,531 privates and noncommissioned officers aboard, arrived here today from Europe. The troop ship was welcomed by the shrieking of whistles of the harbor craft as she passed the Statue of Liberty on the way to her pier in Hoboken.”

125 Years Ago-1893

“On Thursday, Dec. 14, at 2:30 p.m., the thermometer recorded 8 degrees above zero.

“The principal’s report of the Mandan public schools for the month ending Dec. 8, shows that the average monthly enrollment was 268; average daily attendance, 227; cases of tardiness, 172.

“It is said that there is one prominent young man in this town who is so very polite to the ladies that he takes off his hat when putting on their ice skates.

“Mayor McDougal has appointed J.C. Clark to watch the interests of the citizens of this town during the night and early morning hours. Night prowlers and mischief makers will get no quarter shown to them by Mr. Clark.

“An ex-Dakotan, now living at Anaconda Mont., who has been a constant reader of the Pioneer for some time, recently received from this office a notification that his subscription was about to expire. He writes the Pioneer to ‘please keep on sending your paper and be a little lenient with us’ because of the Depression in that area. Certainly, the Pioneer will continue mailing the paper now that his intentions are known. The people we shut down are those who keep on taking and never notify us, even with a postal card, of when they’ll mail their $1 for another year.”

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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. She can be reached at