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Tuesday, July 31, 2012

American Café

The American Café opened in September of 1922 in the Scofield Block on Main Street by a Chinese-American named Louis Lolling.  The  menu featured Special Chow Mein at 25 cents a plate and Lobster Egg Foo Yung at 55 cents a plate. Mr Lolling, while looking for an employee at the Dakotah Hotel, 60 South Main, was arrested in an opium raid. After convincing authorities that he was just looking for an employee, charges were dropped. However, Lolling became discouraged with Minot, sold his new café and left Minot in 1924.
The American Cafe remained open for many years.

Monday, July 30, 2012

JB Reed Transfer & Storage

JB Reed Transfer and Storage was one of the oldest operator of moving trucks in Minot. They got their first truck, a Winton, in 1911. The crank on this vehicle was on the side. After the driver cranked it and got it started, he would most likely have to run after and catch up to the moving truck. Eventually Reed Transfer went to using GMC and International trucks. Before that, some of the trucks they had were a Republic, an Overland and a Maxwell. In 1933 , Reed Transfer became the agents for Aero-Mayflower Moving out of Indianapolis. Cliff Reed was also a lover of fine cars. In 1934 when President Roosevelt was in Devils Lake, he was chauffeured by Cliff Reed in his Sport Model Buick. He was and his car also chauffeured the Mexican ambassador to the United States in 1935 when he was visiting Minot.  Pictured below is a Dakota Transfer truck from the 50’s .  A side note on the Winton Automotive Co..... They were the first to run an ad in Scientific American in 1898 inviting people to "Dispense with Horses and drive a Winton". A Winton was also the first automobile to make the cross country trip from Los Angeles to New York in the early 1900's. The trip took over 63 days as there were about 250 miles of paved roads at that time.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Boston Store

Herman Gordon arrived in Minot in 1905 and opened a small tailor shop in town. His first shop was on First Street South West. Later he moved to Main Street and opened the Boston Store. Eventually, The Boston Store moved to First Street Southwest, just south of what is now the Federal Building. Herman was ten years old and still living in Russia when he “ went on the bench”. The term used at that time applied to learning the tailor’s trade. He learned from his father. After coming to America in 1902, he worked for three years as a tailor in Petrosky, Michigan before moving to Minot. Herman and his wife, Helen, lived at 613 East Central Avenue, or in what is now know as Eastwood Park.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Squirrels in Minot

There are not too many places in the Souris Valley in Minot that one does not see a number of squirrels. At times there seems to be a number of black squirrels in the mixture. I often wondered if these were a different breed of squirrel. Back in 1939, the same question was on people’s minds. It seems that in the early 1900’s, the Minot Park Board imported squirrels from Iowa and Wisconsin. One story had it that the squirrels were brought in to provide wildlife for Riverside, (now Roosevelt), Park. The idea was the squirrels, once released in the park would stay on the east side of the river, confined to the park. Obviously the early Park Board did not realize the ingenuity of the squirrels. George Valker, a long member of the Park Board, recalled that the black and foxtail squirrels were introduced to the Park in 1916. In 1939, Perna Stine, a biologist at Minot State Teachers College said the black squirrels are a variation of the grey squirrel family. Although the black squirrels are not as prevalent as the grey squirrels, there are still some in the city today

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

KCJB - Radio & TV

New Minot Radio KCJB 910 AM and KCJB-TV  - KCJB arrived on the scene with several new personalities and shows. Two of these were Dean Thurrow, and Cis Hadley. Cis went out to neighboring towns grocery stores for remote broadcasts. One of these was from the HiLo Groceries at Van Hook. Of course the show was called "Hello from HiLo" .  Many remember being at the remote shows and  also listening to the shows to see if your neighbors might be interviewed on the radio.
Another Minot Memory would be when KCJB TV went “On Air”. The first year they were at the state fair they did closed circuit from several locations on the fair grounds. The broadcasts were not very  clear, having a lot of “snow” on the scene. This led to the famous statement of one fair attendee watching the dairy cattle judging in a different building. His statement to his wife was “let’s go over to the dairy barn,  its hot here but looks like it’s snowing over there"  “Live”  TV at its best

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

KLPM 1390 Radio

Old Minot Radio -  KLPM 1390 AM. KLPM was referred to as “Old Minot’ Radio. One of the on air personalities was Les Maupin. One of his radio shows was called Tello-Test. This was a program where random people were called to answer a question to win a prize. When dialing the phone number, over the radio it was 8 – 3 – 8 – 1 – 4 – 5 - ??? the listeners would not know the complete number until the last digit was dialed.
Saturday morning the station had a program called Birthday Train for kids. Parents would send in information on the child’s age and birthday for an announcement on the radio. The radio station would wish the children Happy Birthday and give them clues as to where their presents were hidden at home.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Scandinavian Hotel & Windsor Hotel – The Windsor Hotel was on the corner of 1st St and 1st Ave. SE. This is where the old YMCA was located. The Scandinavian Hotel was on the east side of the block on1st Avenue, just east of the Blue Rider Bar. The original Soo Line Depot was across the street, on Third Street SE. When the early settlers arrived at the Soo Line Depot, they would see they Scandinavian Hotel. Most if not all of the Scandinavian languages were spoken here. Many of the early pioneers in the northwestern part of the state arrived at the Soo Line depot and may have stayed at the Scandinavian Hotel. Eventually the Scandinavian Hotel was demolished to make room for an expansion on the Windsor Hotel. Pictured below - The Scandinavian Hotel (early 20's) and The Windsor Hotel (Late 40's)

Friday, July 20, 2012

Notable Events in the 1940's

Headlines from the 40’s –
1940 – Sawyer ran a a band of Gypsies out of town ---
1940  - Unemployment checks averaged $9.68
1943 – The Waverly Hotel burned down ---
1943 -  North Dakota Speed limit lowered to 35 mph
1945 – Construction began on the Empire Theater
1945 -  Thomas Funeral Home moved to its Present location
1946 – Minot City Council approved parking meters ---
1946 -  Propane gas came to Minot
1947 – More than 1400 rats killed at Minot Dump in one day --- 
1947 -  Westland Oil Fire
1948 – New Clarence Parker Hotel opened
1949 – Parking meters abolished in Minot

Thursday, July 19, 2012

1933 Entrepreneur

Potato Chips – In 1933, a Minot native who lived in the northwest part of town figured out how to beat the depression. T.J. McIlhargey worked for the Great Northern Railroad for eighteen years. Since he was unemployed, he and his wife started making potato chips in the basement of their home. He sold the potato chips under the “Green Hill” label to over 40 retail establishments in Minot. In time he not only sold the potato chips, but he expanded into selling donuts also. They would process 2 to 3 bushels of potatoes a day, yielding up to 13 pounds of chips. The plan was to expand into other area communities with the chip and donut business

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Barber Shop - Opera House

 Edward Henjum, a barber in Minot, owned the Leland Barbershop. During its busy days, the Leland Barbershop employed as many as five barbers and grossed over $15,000 annually. This was big money back in the 1920’s. Before starting out on his own, Edward Henjum worked at the Opera. The Opera was a barbershop located in the basement of the Jacobson Opera House. The Opera was a big barbershop. It boasted nine barber chairs. A Turkish bath parlor was run in conjunction with the barber shop. Besides the nine barbers, The Opera employed a cashier and two porters. The Jacobson Opera House is now the Taube Museum.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Traffic Signal - A Bit of History

 The traffic signals destroyed by the flood last year are being repaired. I thought a bit of history about them was in order. A suspended stop and go signal was ordered for the City of Minot in August of 1939.  Some years before a post type signal was tried in Minot. It was located at the intersection of Main Street and Central Avenue. The use of this signal was discontinued as most drivers ignored it and a number of drivers ran into it. The installation of the signal light was an experiment at the intersection of 2nd Street and 4th Avenue Northwest, (now known as Broadway and 4th Avenue), at the north end of the overpass. The signal weighed about 115 pounds and was equipped with red, yellow and green lights. It was timed with 30 second intervals on the north-south lanes and 20 second intervals on the east-west lanes. The signal went into operation on September 16, 1939. Motorists were given time to get used to the signal. Violators were not arrested on the first day. The signal was in operation 7 days a week, (yes, Sundays included), from 7 am to 1 am. The experiment proved to be successful as signals were also ordered for: Central Avenue and Second Street West, Central Avenue and Main Street, Central Avenue and Third Street East, Main Street and First Avenue and Main Street and Fourth Avenue, (Burdick Expressway.) By the end of 1939, these additional signals were installed and operating.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Businesses - 1945

Squtts Clothing – Men’s Clothing Store ….. J&E Supply – 20 West Central Avenue …. Industrial and farm supplies – power plants ….. Beacon Electric – 1541 2nd St SW – also sold small portable grain conveyor belts …. Greenberg’s Men’s and Boy’s Clothing store on Main Street …. John’s Texaco Service – 920 4th Avenue SE …… Waterman Implement Co. – tractors, combines and farm implements ….. George E Valker Flowers & Gifts – 218 South Main St . ….. Russell Miller Milling Company …… Black Drug Co. ….. Western Auto Parts …..

Friday, July 13, 2012

Theaters - 1945

August 18, 1945 --   State Theater – Movie ending was “Without Love” starring Spencer Tracy…… the next show was “Between Two Women” – Starring Van Johnson with Lionel Barrymore, Gloria DeHaven and Keenan Wynn ….. Strand Theater – “When the Lights Go on Again” starring Jimmy Lydon and Barbara Belden ….. Orpheum Theater – “The Impatient Years” – Starring Jean Arthur and Lee Bowman …..

Thursday, July 12, 2012

1970's NightClubs

The Blue Moon Nite Club – on East Burdick Expressway – now the home of Ron Lohman Motors – Featured Dancers and entertainment ….. Club 52 – on Highway 2 & 52 – West of Minot about 2-3 miles (just past the Oil Tanks west of town) ….. Covered Wagon – Downtown Minot on Main Street – Featured jam sessions every Saturday night……. Riverside Lodge – Highway 2 East (where the Holiday Inn is now) ….. CP Lounge – inside the Parker Motor Hotel …  The Dutch Mill - Later this bar was known as Fridays and today ot is the Rockin' Horse ...... Pictured below: two views of the inside the Covered Wagon and a post card from The Dutch Mill

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

1970's - Businesses

Alhood Motors – Highway 83 South – At one time they were the Mercedes Benz Dealer in Minot….. Red River TV & Appliance – 2121 North Broadway – across from the International Airport ….. Ben Franklin Store – located in the Arrowhead Shopping Center …. Payless Family Shoe Stores -  at one time located at 1601 South Broadway …..  Big Bear Surplus – Originally located at 14 North Main Street – Carried some clothing, sporting goods, guns, ammo, archery and hunting supplies …..

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

1970's Grocery Stores

Red Owl stores – Three locations at one time – Downtown Minot – across the street west of the Midwest Federal Building, managed at one time by Don Steffan  – Arrowhead Shopping Center (where White Drug is now located) managed by Leonard Kretchmar  and South Broadway in the Tractor Supply location- managed by Don Jessen ….. Piggly Wiggly Stores – Three locations – Town and Country Shopping Center (on the north end where the Trinity Cancer Center is – Highway 2 East – Across from the ND State Fair Grounds – Oak Park Shopping Center…… Super Valu - There were two Super Valu Stores as I at 627 North Broadway - South of the Subway Restaurant and the other on South Broadway - where the Good Will Store is at 14th Ave and South Broadway.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Miracle Mart

In 1971 there were two Miracle Mart Discount Food Center Grocery Stores in Minot. One was in the Kmart Shopping Center at the intersection of Highway 83 and The Highway 2 & 52 Bypass, (they were in the east end of the Kmart Building). The other location was in Garden Valley in northwest Minot at 16th Street and 4th Avenue.  In 1971, Miracle Mart advertised, “Item for item our prices are lower than any other store”. Price comparisons between Miracle mart and other “Chain” grocery stores were usually featured in the Miracle Mart ads. Example” bisquick, 40 oz box was 53 cents at Miracle mart . the next cheapest price was 63 cents.

Friday, July 6, 2012

1971 - More Businesses

Thunderbird Home Center  - 623 North Broadway ….. Jay’s Men’s Shop – 106 South Main – featuring a $10.00 suit sale …… Minot Eagles Club on 1st St SE (now the home of the Chicago Club) …… Merk’s Twist Inn – 800 North Broadway (now home to Originals – The O Bar)….. Erna’s Restaurant – 1542 South Broadway (Blind Duck location)…. Viking Table Smorgasbord (now the Marketplace Dollar store)  – Sunday dinner - $1.89 included fried chicken, meatballs, halibut and BBQ ribs and a Complete Thanksgiving Dinner for 10 people for $13.99…. The Auto-Dine – 8th Avenue and North Broadway…..

Thursday, July 5, 2012

1971 - Past Businesses

Ted Schweigert Volkswagon – 1430 South Broadway … Auran Chevrolet (now Ryan Chevrolet) on South Broadway….. Don Moe Inc. – two locations – 3615 South Broadway and on 3rd Street NE ….. Blesener Olds-Datsun – 1310 4th Ave SE (across from Roosevelt park ….. King Leo’s Drive-In – featuring hotdogs for 16 cents on Tuesday and Fishburgers for 20 cents on Fridays….. Tony’s Tavern on South Broadway  ….. Bonanza Sirloin Pit (now Paradiso) – rib eye steak dinner for $1.69 ……. Village Inn Pizza Parlor on North Broadway…. Fireside Lounge on West Burdick Exp – in the Sandman Motel….

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Parking District #4

Harold Gordon owned a number of properties in the area designated as Parking District #4. This is the parking lot across the street from Bremer Bank. It lies between Central Avenue on the north and 1st Avenue on the south. The west side is 1st Street SW and the east side is the alley between Main street and 1st Avenue SW. Gordon’s properties included the following businesses: The 13 Club, Northwest Sporting goods and Central Office Supply. The offer for his property was $215,000.00. Had he not accepted the property was to be acquired under eminent domain. The parking lot is now there.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Winter Festival - 1971

The Minot Downtown Merchants held a Winter Festival in mid February back in the early 70’s. The Festival was a three day event covering Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Most of the Downtown Merchants featured advertised special during the event. Some of the other activities included a Torch Light Parade on Main Street, Beard Judging Contest, Snowmobile races at the Fair Grounds, Carnival Night at the Auditorium, Kids Mini toboggan Races at Jim Hill (prior to the new High School being built), Trap Shooting at the gun club and a basketball game between the Minot Sate football team and the Minnesota Vikings.