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Observations from the archives, 1914: Saloon element unsuccessful in Evansville

By Rachel Barduson

1914, 100 years ago: There remains now but four towns in the county where liquor can be legally sold. All the western part of the county is dry except Millerville. Alexandria voted to remain wet by a majority of 60 votes. The saloon element worked hard in Evansville to restore that village to the licensed regime, but they were unsuccessful by a majority of 19 in favor of dry. Kensington is dry by 9, Garfield, which has been wet for years, went dry by 2 and Osakis is wet by 7. Carlos did not vote and remains wet. Brandon remains dry.

1964, 50 years ago: Driver Lloyd Johnson was pictured standing inside the new ZIP van truck delivered to the Alexandria post office. This is the new model truck being used by post offices throughout the country, Postmaster Dave Steinley reports. It is the first new truck for the local office since 1958 … Supt. Arthur O. Hafdal reported that the 141 teachers in the Alexandria public school system will get $200 raises for the 1964-65 school year. Under the current schedule, a beginning teacher with a bachelor’s degree is paid $4,600 a year … Russ Rolandson, veteran sports enthusiast, reports that Alexandria could wind up with an amateur baseball team of the caliber remembered from the old Class AA West Central league.

1989, 25 years ago: A surge in construction of both new and existing business and industry was reported. Among businesses moving into the new Midway Mall between Pete’s County Market and Pamida are the Special Events Store and Cost Cutters. The new a-little-bit-of-everything store, Colorful Seasons Nursery and Floral opened its doors. The Juettner Motors addition is complete, with 3,500 more square feet of area, including a new shop, five offices and expanded showroom space with 11 vehicles on display. The Alexson Apartments building in downtown Alexandria received a major facelift with new wooden decks, awnings and re-landscaping. After 20 years, Ron’s Warehouse is still a mecca for shoppers who need anything from toothpaste to microwaves. And, over the past year, Anderson Funeral Home has completely redecorated its interior.

2004, 10 years ago: The Alexandria City Council voted 5-0 to send a resolution to state legislators opposing a bill that would make it legal for grocery stores, gas stations and other retail outlets to sell wine. The council asked for bids to repaint the city water tower near the 3M plant. Cost of the project is in the $360,000 range. ALP Manager Al Crowser said the project will bring the tower into compliance with federal safety codes and will be sandblasted inside and out because some of the old paint is lead-based … Elsie Revering, District 206 cook manager for Garfield Elementary School (GES), received the Dakota Gourmet Pat Donley Award, given to an outstanding food service professional … The Downtown Diner in Alexandria has a new look and is now owned by Dawn Erickson and Larry Dailey.

Just for fun – 1964, 50 years ago: Natalie Johnson of KCMT-TV said, “Be sure to enter the Bright Idea Contest now going on at Iversen Shoes in Alexandria. Stop in and get an entry blank and enter your bright idea for making housework easier. The prize will be a free wardrobe of Air Step shoes, valued at $40.” Johnson heartily recommends Air Steps for a superb fit, variety of fashionable styles, and serviceability.

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