Tuesday, March 31, 2015
In 1959 the PW Miller Company was located in the Grand Hotel Block on West Central Avenue – This is the parking lot across the street to the north of Tom’s Coin Shop. Prior to this location PW Miller was located on the west side of Main Street north of Central Avenue. After the Grand Hotel Fire in 1960, PW Miller Co. relocated to a new location on 1st Avenue SE, next to the Clarence Parker Hotel . In 1959 the ad for PW Miller stated “Our Inventory is up and our bank account is down”. They were advertising – boy’s suits - $6.00 … Men’s work shoes - $2.99 ….. Full size blankets - $1.00 …. Men’s Sweatshirts - $1.00 ….. Used British Parkas - $8.88 …. Marine Corps insulated boots - $6.66 pr …. PW Miller called themselves “The jacket headquarters of the Northwest” . They also sold used items and military surplus.
PW Miller - next to CP Hotel
Monday, March 30, 2015
On Tuesday, January 13, 1959 the Minot chamber of Commerce officially celebrated the open house of their “brand new” building at 2nd Avenue and 2nd Street SW. (the corner of 2nd Ave & Broadway). Contractors involved in the construction were Harry R Cook & Sons – Plumbing – Mackley Construction – Montana Dakota Utilities (even the water heater is natural gas) – Northern States Power – Holmes Electric – M&S Roofing & Sheet Metal and Fargo Glass & Paint and Johnson Concrete Products. The building was built at a cost of $60,000.00. The location is now the home to Papa John’s Pizza.
Friday, March 27, 2015
In early January, 1975 a severe blizzard pounded Minot and the surrounding area. Temperatures were in the 30 below range and winds were howling at 50 mph. The Minot Radar based had sustained winds of 40 mph and an estimated wind chill of 85 below zero. Eight people in the state and hundreds head of cattle perished in the storm. Many people were stranded in their vehicles for as long as 24 to 36 hours before being rescued. One man survived by burning scraps of paper and cardboard in a thermos to survive. In the pictures of Highway 83 between Minot and the Air Force Base, the road was littered with stranded vehicles… reminiscent of many storms and poor road conditions in future years.
Thursday, March 26, 2015
The Auto Dine on North Broadway was, at the time, an odd shaped almost round building that was home to The Big Otto Burger. I really don’t remember much about it other than in my high school and college days I would eat there quite often, so the food must have been good, at least in my estimation. In 1967 the Manager of Auto Dine presented the Minot State Home Coming Queen and Auto Dine Gold Card…. (perhaps she could eat free???? – not sure). The homecoming special for all alumni was a free Big Drink with the purchase of every Big Otto Sandwich for 42 cents.
Auto Dine catering ad
Wednesday, March 25, 2015
Cut Rate Food Markets …. Nor sure of location …. Specials – 12 pints of strawberries for $3.90. an 8 pound bag of onions for 59 cents and Taste Rite bread 1 ½ pound loaf for 16 cents ….. Red & White Grocery Stores – 6 locations in Minot – Parkway Grocery – 823 4th Ave SE – Garden Valley Grocery – in Garden Valley (4th Ave NW ) . – B&L Food Market – 17 1st Ave SW – Shirley’s Grocery – 17 West Central Avenue – Hi-Way Food Market – 223 2nd St SW (South Broadway) – South Hill Grocery -- 212 8th Ave SE – all featuring a 28 0z. bottle of Canada Dry soda for 20 cents plus deposit …
Tuesday, March 24, 2015
Oppen’s Super Markets – Oppen’s had two stores in 1947. One on Valley Street one on Central Avenue. Specials included Folgers Coffee – 45 cents for a one pound can, Jello and Jello puddings for 7 cents, home baked pies for 50 cents and vine ripened cantaloupe – 17 cents each…. Bergman’s Super Value – one block north of the Third St. Viaduct …. Specials included a 14 pound case of plums for $1.25 and a 14 pound lug of apricots for $1.33 …. Red Owl Super Market – on Main Street … Cracker Jacks for 4 cents a box and 20 pounds of Bartlett pears for $1.98 ….
Red Owl - late 1950's - Main Street
Monday, March 23, 2015
Ellisons – The Fair Department Store – The first Fair Store was opened in Minot in 1902 on Main Street, in a location next to and south of what is now Western paint. It was like most stores of the time with a 25 foot frontage. In 1910 the Ellisons moved the store a block south into a new building known as The Fair Block, just south of the intersection of Main Street and 2nd Avenue. In 1929 a newer building was added at the corner and adjacent to The Fair Block. The new building, a large 2 story building with a basement, eventually incorporated The Fair Block in 1955 giving Ellisons a 100 foot store front on Main Street. During the Diamond Jubilee in 1961, Ellisons ran a contest to see who could bring in the oldest sales slip showing merchandise purchased at the store. The winner received a wool blanket…. Unfortunately I do not know who won or how old the receipt was.
Ellison's on Main Street - early 1900's
Friday, March 20, 2015
In 1961 NSP placed an advertisement in the newspaper predicting some of the things that would come to be in the future….. some of these were Instant checkout in stores – Electronic devices will scan purchases and add the bills to give you your total due ….. Automatic Cleaner – A machine that will vacuum, wash, rinse, dry and wax floors by itself then scoot back to the its niche in the baseboard , empty any waste and wait for the next job…… Automatic Wall Painter – Walls will be built with panels that incorporate a chemical that will change color when electricity is applied….. change your wall colors to match your mood……. Cooling Blanket – A blanket that will heat and/or cool at your discretion ….. Make Disposable Tableware - with a touch of the dial and throw them away afterwards – or If using your finest china, you will be able to clean and sterilize in 3 minutes with ultrasonic waves.
Thursday, March 19, 2015
it came to Minot in August of 1970…. Tommy Scott’s Country Caravan and Wild West Show featuring Col. Tim MCCoy. The shows were held at the Minot Municipal Auditorium. The caravan claimed to have 10 carloads of radio, TV and recording stars direct form Hollywood and Nashville. Some included The Hollywood Hillbillies, Dave DeLock, the world’s fastest six gun , sharpshooting and rope spinning act. There was also real cowboys and Indians, circus acts and funny clowns. The Masked Rider from TV fame was also appearing. Tickets were $2.00 and the show was sponsored by the Minot Sertoma Club
Wednesday, March 18, 2015
The year is 1903…. A full train loaded with hardware for the Martin Jacobson Hardware store came rolling into Minot. The Hardware store was located on Main Street and Central Avenue, now the Taube Art Museum. Hardware and machinery of all kinds were needed. The storage area for the hardware was the basement of the store. Martin Jacobson Hardware had a large room for tach and harness goods…. Reportedly the largest selection west of St. Paul. The store also carried Jewel and Universal Stoves, Resort Heaters and Cole Heaters. In 1903, Jacobson’s sold 374,000 pounds of nails. Jacobson Hardware had machinery warehouse with in a city block and also sold Old Hickory Wagons, Thomas Hay Rakes, Milwaukee binders and mowers, Minneapolis Threshers and Canton Plows.
Tuesday, March 17, 2015
As I peruse newspapers and magazines from the past in an effort to find interesting tidbits for Minot Memories I have come to this conclusion. Advertising was less complicated and more generic. Clothing ads are a good case in point. Men’s shirts would be advertised at any given store and the picture in the ad was a fairly generic “line” drawing of a man wearing the shirt. If the brand name was not mentioned it would be impossible to tell if the actual shirt you were seeking in the store was actually the one in the ad. To a degree furniture ads were about the same. The picture of the piece of furniture was pretty generic. All merchants advertising purchased many pages of ads, inserts had not come into existence. Now it is the opposite …. Inserts are prevalent and print ads not so much.
Monday, March 16, 2015
the Minot Radar Base had a few different names. It was referred to as the South Base, the South Prairie Country Club and the Bubble Top Gang. On Friday, June 22, 1979, the Air Force held a formal retreat ceremony to close the base. The Airmen stationed at the South Base were transferred to bases all over the world. The Radar Base, at times in its near 30 year history, would serve as a refuge for stranded motorists during North Dakota winters or blizzard parties as they were called. The Radar Base was not part of the Strategic Air Command like MAFB but was under the command of the 24th Air Division of the North American Air Defense Command in Great Falls, Montana.
Friday, March 13, 2015
In the spring of 1979 the last building on Minot’s High Third was greeted by a wrecking ball and demolished. The Grill, 316 3rd St SW, was the second lot in from 4th Ave on the south end of Minot’s High Third, which was famous for all types of illicit activities for decades until it was shut down in the early 1960’s. The last owner of The Grill was Deedee Govan who purchased the building and business from “Ma” Butler, who was a legend on Third Street. After High Third was closed down Deedee used The Grill as the base for his Hot Tamale enterprise. I witnessed the production of the Hot Tamales when I would call on Deedee as a Coca-Cola driver. The Grill was one of my monthly stops to see if he needed any soft drinks. A couple times Deedee approached me about selling his Hot Tamales as his sales rep. I never did but in hindsight it might have been one of the more interesting chapters in my life had I done so. A note of interest ... The building that was home to the Parrot Inn on High Third is still standing outside of Minot.
The Parrot Inn
Thursday, March 12, 2015
In the late 70’s and early 80’s, the Magic City Sun was a free newspaper, published weekly, consisting of classified ads of all types. It had both business and personal ads. The paper was free as the advertisers paid for the publication. It boasted that its controlled circulation represented over 6,000 more homes than any other publication in the Minot Trade Area. Besides being delivered to homes The Magic City Sun was available at many businesses in the Minot area. Besides the classifieds it featured a Dining Guide, TV section, and a column by Wayne Lubenow
Wednesday, March 11, 2015
Located at 1929 North Broadway. When the Village Inn opened the décor was gay nineties and old time movies were shown while you were dining. In June of 1979 The Village Inn replaced the Gay Nineties décor with hanging plants and pictures of Minot. They decided to offer an “All you can eat Buffet” seven days a week. The buffet featured pizza, spaghetti, lasagna, soup and salad bar. The “All You Can Eat Buffet” was available over the noon hour ad from 6 pm to 9 pm nightly. Steak sandwiches and hamburgers were also added to the menu.
Village Inn Pizza - 1979
Tuesday, March 10, 2015
located at 719 North Broadway the grand opening was held in May of 1971. Harold’s was completely new and the largest of its kind in a three state area. It was built at a cost of $185,000.00. Harold’s sold Gulf gasoline, had 12 pump islands, 10 vacuum cleaner drops and featured a hot wax application. They also claimed they could wash 120 cars per hour, (a feat that would be difficult to match today)… During the grand opening they gave away 2 portable TV sets, 8 oz. glasses with each purchase along with a family size bottle of coke, and 10 people won 50 gallons of gasoline. This would have been in the area of the Westlie Auto Center on North Broadway
Monday, March 9, 2015
Ward’s Wheel Alignment opened in June, 1974. They were located at 202 East Central Avenue. This location was the former home to Vance’s Standard. When Ward’s opened he featured the new Bear Wheel alignment system, the newest and most modern wheel alignment equipment in Minot. Customers could register to win a men’s or women’s Timex watch. The Power Horse, a 1967 Mustang Drag Car was on display with the racing team to answer any questions about the sport of drag racing.
Friday, March 6, 2015
Dakota Surplus was located on the Highway 2 & 52 Bypass. The location is now the home of Schock’s Safe and Lock on 6th St SE. They were well known for their ads …. Surplusman Sez:….. Dakota Surplus sold just about everything from hardware to kitchen supplies to sporting goods. Dakota Surplus also had a carried a supply of military surplus items, new and used. At one time they carried a complete line of BMX bicycles and accessories
Thursday, March 5, 2015
with the popularity of the disco music scene the YMCA decided to have a disco dance class. The dance class was so popular they had to add a second class. The classes were on Monday evenings at 7:30 and 9:00. Even with the second class being added there were still 76 people on the waiting list to join the classes. The instructor was lived on the Minot Air Force Base and had attended the Fred Astaire Dance Studio in Chicago. She would be teaching disco dances including the Latin Hustle, Freak and Swing. The participants joined for a variety of reasons but most were just curious about Disco.
Wednesday, March 4, 2015
In May of 1927 the Ford Motor Company stopped production of the Model T Truck to retool their plants for the new Model A. The conversion was going to be a 2 year process. During that time, Westlie Motors set up an assembly line on the top floor of its business here in Minot. The parts were ordered directly from Ford Motor Company. Westlie Motors was the only dealer in the country to do this. In the fall of 1927, 38 trucks rolled off the assembly line. In 1928, 50 trucks were assembled. When the Model A trucks came out in late 1928, the demand for the Model T ceased as did Minot’s first and only automobile assembly line .
Westlie Motors after expansion.
Tuesday, March 3, 2015
Another Glimpse at early Minot as stated in a early 1970's Article...... In 1911 the horse and dog watering fountain was placed on Main Street at the corner of Second Avenue. Ice boxes were popular before electric refrigerators and harvest and storing ice from the river was a big industry in Minot. Minot had few paved streets in the 1920’s but parking was a problem on the weekends and all the vehicles owned by the booze runners waited for darkness to head to Canada for their supply to distribute throughout the country. Early streets in Downtown Minot were paved with wooden blocks to help eliminate dust. After heavy rainstorms the blocks had a tendency to float ways and then had to be replaced by city workers
Monday, March 2, 2015
In the very early years the Governor of North Dakota was one R.A/ Nestos of Minot. Minot city leaders seemed to be on a roughrider kick as Riverside Park was renamed to Roosevelt Park and the new grade school was named Roosevelt School. Before 1920 the first Minot Chamber president, Carl E Danielson predicted that someday there would be a gravel road all the way from Minot to Bismarck. Because the roads were so bad or almost non-existent it was not unusual for a trip to Bismarck to consist of taking a train from Minot to Drake, then from Drake to Max and a third train from Max to Bismarck. In early Minot the silent movies were enhanced by music from an orchestra pit. The violinist was most often provided by Minot resident Arturo Petricci.
Early road construction on Highway 83 South