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Observations from the archives, 1963: Three Havens’ village petition denied

By Rachel Barduson

Echo Press Columnist

1913, 100 years ago: Oppel and Company have this week installed in their repair shop a large machine for polishing the shoes repaired. The polishing machine is attached to the sewing machine. It is run by electric motor. The firm has also installed electric lights in the basement where a large part of their stock is kept.

1963, 50 years ago: The Alexandria public school system has the lowest teacher turnover rate of any major public school in the state of Minnesota, the Minnesota Education Association’s report revealed this week. Only 1.4 percent of the faculty of the local school system left the profession during the past year, as compared with a 13 percent average for the state. In other news, the Minnesota Municipalities Commission denied a petition asking for an election on incorporation of the community of Three Havens as a village. By this action the commission stopped a proposed third vote on the matter. In two previous elections, residents of that area (north of Alexandria on Old Highway 29 and between lakes Carlos and L’Homme Dieu ) have turned down the village incorporation proposal, the last time by a two to one margin. Milton Josephs, a resident of the Three Havens area, represented the petitioners in testifying before the commission, contending that the petitioners believed that the community could do more with local generated tax revenue, plus some $1,100 in anticipated cigarette and liquor tax apportionment money, than Alexandria and Carlos townships, which now collect the taxes for the area.

1988, 25 years ago: The Douglas County Courthouse and Jail will become smoke-free buildings as of January 1, 1989. The county commissioners voted 3-2 to make the courthouse smoke-free. Commissioner Art Engelbrecht made the motion. The idea had been in the works for some time, ever since the Douglas County Hospital was designated smoke-free last July. County Auditor William “Rock” Anderson noted that the no-smoking resolution also includes prisoners held in the jail. One area of the courthouse that the resolution does not cover is the courtroom area rooms and hallways. Designating that area as smoke-free would be up to Judge Paul Ballard, the resident district court judge.

2003, 10 years ago: Alexandria’s Major General Larry Shellito will take command of Minnesota’s 12,000 National Guard citizen soldiers, a quarter of them on active duty overseas. The 58-year-old general starts his new job as commander of Army and Air Force troops after 31 years at Alexandria Technical College. Shellito moved to Alexandria in 1972 and worked his way up to college president by 1995.

Just for fun – 1988, 25 years ago: For the third year in a row, the local chapter of the March of Dimes has scheduled its “Bid for Bachelors and Bachelorettes” fundraiser, an event where eligible singles plan a date and members of the opposite sex bid for the right to go with them. This year there are 17 bachelors and bachelorettes up for bids, but because one of the date packages is a real doozy, things could get interesting. Whoever bids the highest to go on a date with KXRA’s Dennis Anhalt will have to take a week off work to get in all the festivities he has planned. The package includes gifts, roses, dinner, a “makeover,” exercises and tanning sessions. Your “dream date” will also include first class seating en route to a seven-day vacation on the beaches of Mexico and Mazatlan, courtesy of Alex Travel. • • •

Rachel Barduson of Alexandria is a regular contributing columnist to the Echo Press Opinion page.