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Column - 1984: Harold G. Johnson is 'Fairman of the Year'

The following is a collection of stories and other items that were included in Alexandria newspapers over the years.


January 1909

Attorneys for O.F. Olson, the candidate who trailed the election by 12 votes, have gone over all the evidence and are satisfied that E.E. Lobeck has won the Minnesota legislative seat. Although a strict interpretation of the law might give them a few more votes, they are satisfied that Lobeck had the clear majority... Artist Koehler of Minneapolis has been commissioned to paint a portrait of F.B. Van Hoesen to be hung in the Carnegie Library... The new city charter will put a check on public expenditures. The city will be allowed a floating indebtedness of $14,000, the mayor and aldermen will receive no salaries, and all public improvements more than $100 shall be by public contract.


January 1959

There were 504 births, 134 marriages and 249 deaths in Douglas County in1958, the same as in 1956. Clerk of Court Ed Ormseth also reported the most marriages in any one year was at the end of the war in 1946, when 246 couples married... Gordon Diekman announced the purchase of Gronberg and Son Jewelry Store... Super Fair, Alexandria's newest home-owned grocery store across the street from City Hall, is celebrating its grand opening with three weeks of "fun and food values"... Barbara Stanwyck and Joel McCrea co-star at the State Theater in Union Pacific, the dramatic story of the transcontinental railway that joined the Atlantic and the Pacific Oceans with an iron band... 1958, the driest winter in years, recorded a total of only .32 inches of snow for November and December. The heaviest snowfall all season, 1.1 inches, fell on January 1.


January 1984

Innovative German language classes are being taught to students in grades 4 through 6 at St. Mary's School... A heated discussion over the ban on playing hockey at Noonan's Park ended when the city council authorized the park department to reinstall the boards. The dispute had begun about a month ago after complaints from parents that a puck had hit a child. It was never clear who had authorized the ban in the first place... Harold G. Johnson, who served as secretary of the Douglas County Fair Board for 33 years, was named Minnesota Fairman of the Year by the state Fairboard Federation... Wally Bloom received the Sertoma Club Distinguished Service Award for his service to the community.


January 1999

Michelle Verant, age 14, was recently published in Sportsman's News Magazine. She wrote about the dream hunt in which she shot her first deer - a 12-point, 180-pound buck. She has been a hunter since she was 9... The average income in Douglas County tops $20,100, a 7 percent rise over the last two years... Dr. Bill Kraker is the operator of the new Alexandria Animal Doctor. The establishment provides care for small animals, horses and exotic pets... Jeff Dewanz of Parkers Prairie had excellent luck ice fishing this week as he snagged an 11-pound, 8-ounce walleye... In a tribute to volunteer firefighters, students at Evansville High School put the finishing touches on three murals to be displayed above the front door of the fire hall.

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Marge Van Gorp of Alexandria is a regular contributing columnist to the Echo Press Opinion page.