From the Echo Press archives, 1972: Jim Kaat and Fred Cox speak in Alexandria at FCA event

This week in history in Douglas County.

This Week in 1972 – 50 years ago: Parking meters may be a nickel-dime operation, but those dimes, nickels and fines added up to over $40,000 in the city of Alexandria last year. The meters raised $34,824.06 to be exact, and those who didn’t pay the toll and got caught added another $8,105.30 to the parking fund. The city had about 665 meters, 272 of which are on designated city parking lots. The remaining 393 guard curbs in, and near, the central business district. The whole system is to provide space for citizens and visitors to park while visiting local businesses.

1897 — 125 years ago: The county commissioners declined to petition the district court to restore the salary of the county jailer to $50 per month.

1972, 50 years ago: A.A. “Cap” Paciotti was re-elected chairman of the board of the Alexandria State Bank at its annual stockholders meeting. Paciotti is director of Adult Education of the Alexandria School System. Others elected to the board include Ercel L. Aga of the Alexandria Broadcasting Corporation, Oliver E. Olson, owner of Olson Supermarket, Dr. Wm E. Heegaard of the Alexandria Clinic, Martin Haar, president of the bank, and Herman Felt, Executive Vice-President.

Jim Kaat and Fred Cox will headline the Fellowship of Christian Athletes “Weekend of Champions” in Alexandria this week. Kaat is a left-handed starting pitcher for the Minnesota Twins and Cox is one of the best place kickers in the National Football League for the Minnesota Vikings.

1997, 25 years ago: Braun’s Bakery at 430 Broadway has the historic distinction of being the oldest commercial building continuously in use in Alexandria. “It was built as a bakery back in 1886 and it’s been used as a bakery ever since,” noted owner Rory Roers. To celebrate the 110th anniversary of the opening of the first bakery at the location, Roers has collected several newspaper articles, photographs and maps of the rich history of the bakery. It will all be encased in a Plexiglas display for customers to browse through and enjoy. In addition, the bakery is observing two other milestones this year – 25 years as “Braun’s Bakery” and two years since it was purchased by Roers and his wife, June. Back in 1887, it opened as “Hamp Bakery” named after its owner, Carl Hamp. Roers himself worked at the Braun’s Bakery for 18 years before he became owner, and June has worked there for four years.


2012, 10 years ago: The Alexandria Fire Department is part of a statewide effort to build a memorial for firefighters killed in the line of duty. The Minnesota Fire Service Foundation is coordinating the memorial project to be built on the grounds of the state Capitol. The group has exceeded its fundraising goal, with more than $600,000 in donations and pledges – all from firefighters. Alexandria Fire Department donated $1,500 from its relief association. Shane Schmidt, Alexandria’s former chief, is president of the Minnesota State Fire Department Association – the organization represents the state’s 20,000 firefighters and offers training, education, benefits and more. Alexandria’s current fire chief is Jeff Karrow.

Just For Fun, 1922 – 100 years ago: “Modish spring hats” will be seen at our store. Complete assortment of the best millinery of the new season, expressing beauty and luxury without excessive cost. Come in and learn what is new and fashionable. You are always welcome at Knapton Sisters in Alexandria.

Sports Trivia, 1997 – 25 years ago: The Alexandria Cardinalettes Danceline defeated Willmar in what is believed to be the first ever dual competition for an Alexandria danceline. The two teams competed during halftime of the Alexandria and Willmar girls’ basketball game which Alexandria also won.

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

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