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Living History

5 years ago

Excerpts from the July 22, 2004 Pioneer Journal

• Jaycees disband

The Wadena Jaycees decided to disband after 60 years of service. The group's official membership fell to 19 when a member turned 40. Jaycees must be between 21 and 39 years old. The membership number was one short of the state's required membership, said Allen Schmitz, president of the Wadena club. The Jaycees scheduled the lineup and helped with the parade during June Jubilee, held a Christmas light contest and did numerous community service projects.

• WDC raises lunch prices

The Wadena-Deer Creek School board approved a 10-cent increase for elementary and high school lunches due to increased milk and fuel costs. Free and reduced meals were excluded from the increase. Lunch at the high school will cost $1.45 and breakfast 95 cents. Elementary lunches will cost $1.40 and breakfast 85 cents. Adult meals will cost $2.60 for lunch and $1.60 for breakfast. Students will pay 25 cents for a carton of milk, a five-cent increase over last year.

• North Pine Car Wash opens

North Pine Car Wash opened in north Wadena and planned to offer free car washes on July 31 for it its grand opening.

10 years ago

Excerpts from the July 22, 1999 Pioneer Journal

• Dobson pleads guilty to conspiracy charge

Terry Lynn Dobson, of Staples, pleaded guilty in Wadena County District Court to a conspiracy to commit murder charge. The 41-year-old Dobson was seeking a one-year jail sentence with Sentence to Service privileges with 20 years probation. She would not be given any credit for the 10 months she already served in jail. Her husband and potential victim had the act been carried out was in the courtroom offering her support during the proceeding. According to testimony, in June 1998 Dobson allegedly arranged a meeting at the Staples airport with a hit man named Mr. Todd. Dobson said she realized how foolish the plan was during a discussion about killing her husband. Todd turned out to be an officer with the Criminal Bureau of Apprehension. The entire discussion was on tape. Sentencing was scheduled for Sept. 20.

• Storm disrupts fair

A heavy thunderstorm July 15 toppled trees, caused short-term power outages and disrupted the Wadena County Fair.

• Cell phone causes accident

A 25-year-old Illinois driver reaching for her cell phone led to a two-vehicle collision on County Road 23. Four people sustained injuries with the driver and cell phone user suffering serious head injuries.

• Two new pastors in Wadena

Immanuel Lutheran Church welcomed Pastor Jonathon Larson and the Evangelical Church of North American welcomed Assistant Pastor Phil Schrauben that summer.

25 years ago

Excerpts from the July 26, 1984 Pioneer Journal

• Fire damages Phil's Radio and TV

Wadena firefighters battled flames and smoke at Phil's Radio and TV on U.S. Highway 71 Tuesday evening. Apparently, the business owner was welding a chair when sparks flew and caused the fire. The garage that served as the shop and office received extensive damage but Phil Hertels' home was not damaged.

• Fire destroys Hillstrom mill

A fire that reportedly started in the power unit destroyed the building and office at Bob Hillstrom's planer mill in rural Menahga Tuesday morning. Replacement costs were estimated to be $300,000, Mrs. Hillstrom said. The Hillstroms said they would continue their sawmill and retail lumber operation.

• School lunches increase 15 cents

The Wadena School Board voted to increase school lunch prices 15 cents per meal to 90 cents daily for grades kindergarten through eighth, 95 cents daily for grades 9-12 and $1.70 daily for adults. The increase does not include reduced lunch prices.

40 years ago

Excerpts from the July 24, 1969 Pioneer Journal

• Wesley hires new administrator

The Wesley Hospital Governing Board hired Earl Schillo of Breckenridge as its new administrator. He will assume his duties Aug. 25. He succeeded Arnold Lind who accepted an anesthetist position in Los Alamos, N.M.

• PJ awed by July 20, 1969 moon landing

The Pioneer Journal published an editorial that said: "We stand in awe of the horde of scientists who labored long to create the massive delicate machine that was to carry the astronauts to a landing on the moon, to the astonishment of the world, and return with countless samples of the moon's composition." The PJ said former editor A.G. Swindlehurst said it best when he declared "I have lived in the finest century of all history" in 1913. The moon landing was undeniable proof of Swindlehurst's assertion, the PJ said.

• Sidney Sanford dies

Sidney Sanford, who wrote a book about the Wheat Trail that brought wheat harvested in Hubbard County down to Verndale, died of a heart attack on July 15. The PJ reprinted an article about the Wheat Trail in that week's paper.

60 years ago

Excerpts from the July 21, 1949 Pioneer Journal

• General promises armory for Wadena

Major General Ellard A. Walsh, commanding officer of the Minnesota National Guard, spoke before the Wadena Rotary and said that Wadena is assured an armory and national guard company. The armory the national guard had in mind would be similar to the ones in Brainerd and Camp Ripley and would cost $216,000, he said.

• Mayor issues 'Robin Hood' hat proclamation

Wadena Mayor Frank E. Breher stated on the front page of the paper: "I hereby proclaim the "Robin Hood" hat the official head gear for the Little Round Hill celebration. Failure to comply with the proclamation will necessitate a fine of fifty cents."