1910: No drinking, swearing for football players

This week in history in Douglas County.

1910, 110 years ago: Superintendent Yeagar demanded that all football players sign this pledge: “There will be no smoking, drinking, swearing, and vulgar language during any football game. At out-of-town games, students will not enter saloons, gambling houses or any questionable place and all players must maintain a grade of 75% in at least three courses of study.”

1970, 50 years ago: Same store – new face. Peterson Drug Store has been in Alexandria for 65 years, and up until recently, it has been in the same location: Sixth and Broadway. The new Peterson Drug is still on the same intersection but across the street in a completely remodeled and expanded facility. The new store – comprised of the old Trumm Drug corner and the adjoining Singer Sewing Center – has some 5,000 square feet of floor space. An expanded cosmetic department is part of the new store.

If there is enough interest, Alexandria Adult Education will start an archery class prior to the start of the bow and arrow season. The class will run for six weeks at the Runestone Archery Lanes on Sixth and Nokomis, the fee is $4 and instructors will be Jim Perdue and Dan Zinda.

1995, 25 years ago: It’s official. The City of Parkers Prairie will definitely get $600,000 through the Small Cities Development Program grant to help build a new fire hall and water tower. Governor Arne Carlson shared the good news with Parkers Prairie Mayor Gary Anderson. The city will still have to raise between $150,000 and $200,000 because of a shortfall in funds to complete both the fire hall and a city hall.

Big Ole, Alexandria’s tallest Viking and the city’s Nordic Guardian, is not happy. Recently, some bold upstart stole his sword. It’s just the latest in a series of humiliations and outrages endured by the 8,000-pound fiberglass wonder since his birth in 1965.


2010, 10 years ago: The Andy and Emily Siira family was named a 2010 University of Minnesota Farm Family of the Year. A family from each of the 73 participating counties was officially recognized at a ceremony at the annual Farm Fest near Redwood Falls. Andy’s great-grandfather established the farm in 1916 when he purchased the land in Urness Township near Brandon. Andy is the fourth generation to be involved with the farm. Andy and Emily live on an acreage that one of Andy’s great-great grandfathers had settled in the 1870s.

Just for fun 1979 – 50 years ago: C.O. Peterson started his drug store business back in 1905. Sons Gordon and Clifford took over in 1941. After Gordon left in ’52, Clifford Jr. joined the operation later to be joined by his brother, Richard in 1958. Peterson Drug affiliated with Walgreen in 1938.

1995 – 25 years ago: Thirty years ago in 1965, Big Ole was made by Gorden Displays of Minneapolis. He was shipped to the 1965 New York World’s Fair to be exhibited next to Douglas County’s world-famous Kensington Runestone. During the fair, over 250,000 people from all over the world viewed Big Ole and The Stone, which some claim is proof that Vikings visited this area back in the 1300s, and that, therefore, Alexandria is “The Birthplace of America.”

Just for fun 1970 – 50 years ago: Lenny Johnson, former Card and All-Conference at St. Cloud State,was released by the Minnesota Vikings and has been signed to the New York Giants. Word has it that he was scouted two weeks before his release from the Vikings by the Giants. He has now reported to the Giants camp.

Three area gridders will figure prominently in the University of Minnesota, Morris attack this fall. They are tight end Mike Bah (Evansville), running back Robbie Olson (Barrett), and former Alex Clipper pitcher Tom Bergner at quarterback. Ron Larson (Kensington) is being counted on to aid the defensive unit from his free safety position.

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

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