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Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Stearn's Apartments

 There were three apartments on the top floor of Stearns Motors. Lou Stearns lived in the largest one with his girlfriend Florence Brown. Lou and Florence had a turbulent relationship. At one time they were going to be married in Minneapolis, but by the time they arrived on the train, they had a terrible disagreement and fight. Both returned to Minot, but on separate trains. There is a story that whenever Florence would go Minneapolis, Lou would load a car on a flatbed rail car and send it to her destination so she would have something to drive

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Business in Stearns Motors

Beer & Wine Wholesale Business  -- Bill Langer was instrumental in helping Lou Stearns in getting his license to start his wholesale business, Minot Beverage Company. According to one of his past office managers, part of the deal was that Langor received a payment of 5 cents for every bottle of beer or wine distributed. However the checks were always sent to a judge in New York rather than to Bill Langer. One would suppose that the money eventually reached him.

The Soft Drink Business – The soft drink business started in the Stearns Motors building as part of Minot Beverage Company. My understanding is that at one time there was a bottling operation in the basement of Stearns Motors. This was eventually moved to South Broadway and became Northern Bottling Company, which is still in business today

 Bottling equipment
Minot Beverage delivery truck

Monday, September 28, 2015

North Hill Bowl – Re-Grand Opening –

February 15, 1963 …. North Hill Bowl Completed its remodeling project and was celebrating its new facility. 8 more lanes were added bring the total to 32 …. A meeting / banquet room and a nursery were also added and a Billiard Room ( as I recall it was on the south end of the building)…. During the re-grand opening celebration, free bowling instructions was provided by AMF experts…. Door prizes  were given away every hour …. Owners / proprietors were Morris and Betty Anderson.

North Hill Bowl & Drive-In - 1950's

Friday, September 25, 2015

Stearn’s Auto Repair Business –

Jack Foley was the Service Manager of  the automobile repair shop affiliated with Stearn’s Motors. At one time there was a gas station out in front of the building. The gas station was on the southwest corner of the intersection of 2nd Street and Central Avenue.  In those days there was a ramp that went west from Central Avenue down to the Great Northern Depot. One day a minister pulled up and was having his car filled with gas. He jokingly told Jack to charge the gas to the Lord. Jack replied without batting an eye, “Send him down to sign for it and I will.”

Corner of Central Ave & Broadway

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Strauss Jewelers –

 In October of 1929  Strauss Jewelers started in a small room on the third floor of the First Avenue Building. Even in such a small and out of the way location they did well enough to move to a larger location at 16 West Central Avenue in 1931. Even though it was during the Depression, Stauss did well enough to move again in 1937 to a corner location in the Leland Parker Hotel building on the corner of Main Street and Central Avenue. In 1950 Strauss moved to their final location on Main Street.

Interior - Strauss Jewelers

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Past Businesess – …..

Geo. E Valker Floral – 216 South main St…. Now the parking lot for Wells Fargo bank ….. Northland Archery – 10-A 1st St SW – Above Harry’s Tire Service (When Harry’s was Downtown) – Indoor archery range and product sales ….. Spinning Wheel – Yarn and sewing shop located in the basement of Northwest Music on main Street in Minot ….. The Al-Ma Shop – fabrics and accessories – 108 4th Ave SE – (new Burdick Expressway ….. Jupiter Discount Store grand opening was in February 1963Main Street in Minot – Formerly SS Kresge and the forerunner of Kmart – (Downtown Books is in this building now)

Valker Floral on the left side of Main St

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

1962 - Grocery prices

Grocery Prices Piggly Wiggly 1962 – at all locations – 20 pounds of potatoes – 59 cents … 1 pound of butter – 49 cents …. 8 inch baked apple pie – 59 cents ….. A german chocolate cake – 99 cents ….. Red grapes – 19 cents pound ….. Bathroom tissue – 12 rolls for $1.00 ….. 5 loaves of fresh baked bread for $1.00 …… Super Fair Grocery Stores – (North Broadway and 4th Avenue NW) ….. 10 pounds of sugar for 85 cents ….. Ground beef – 45 cents pound ….. Chuck roast – 49 cents pound ….. 10 pound bag potatoes – 25 cents …… Oreo cookies – 49 cents….. 2 ½ pound bag of brown sugar – 39 cents

 Town & Country Piggly Wiggly

Monday, September 21, 2015

News and Cleaners

News Arcade II – In the Wednesday, January 30, 1963 newspaper there was an ad announcing the Grand Opening of the News Arcade II. It was located at 214 South Main St. They were open until 10:30 pm nightly. The News Arcade II claimed to have Minot’s most complete supply of paperback books. They also sold newspapers, magazines, greeting cards, and North Dakota Souvenirs…. And they did some photo finishing. … News arcade was also a drop off point for ABC Cleaners. Clothes in by 9 am would be ready by 5 pm.

Friday, September 18, 2015

The Store

The Store – In 1976 The Store was advertised as a gift shop with unique merchandise at reasonable prices. It was located on the corner of Central Avenue and 1st Street SW, across the street to the west of the Downtown Plaza Parking Lot. The Store’s unique items featured candles, pottery, jewelry, posters, imported goods and Fun Things. This location is now the home of Tom’s Coin Shop on Central Avenue.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Trestle Valley Ski Resort –

 October 17, 1974, plans were unveiled for the Trestle Valley Ski Resort. The ski area was to have seven downhill or alpine ski trails and about 10 miles of cross country trails, Nine individuals organized Trestle Valley Recreational Area, Inc. they leased about 30 acres of land just west of the Burlington Northern Trestle. They broke ground on a two-story lodge which was to be located at the base of the downhill ski lifts. Two ski lifts were to be built. One was a high speed T-bar lift. The lifts had the capacity of 407 skiers on the slopes at one time. The group planned to have three snow making machines to be used on the alpine and cross country trails. The opening was scheduled for the winter of 1974.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

White Drug – Downtown Minot – Remodeled

 – In April of 1965 the Downtown White Drug Store was completely remodeled. It was billed as Minot’s newest, most modern, air conditioned super drug store. Specials included a 99 cent full shrimp dinner with salad and beverage in the cafeteria. Many prizes were given out. The store featured Minot’s largest selection of pipes, tobaccos, cigars and smoker accessories. Other specials – 2 gold fish with bowl, pebbles and food for 19 cents and Kodak 120 cameras for $3.88. This location is now the Hair School on Main Street.

White Drug on Main - 1964 

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Piggly Wiggly in Minot – The first Piggly Wiggly in Minot was located on Main Street in the 1940’s. In the fall of 1957 the new Piggly Wiggly was opened in east Minot. It cost $320,000 to build and at the time was one of the largest and most modern grocery stores in the state. In October of 1961 a second location was opened in the Oak Park Shopping Center as the Downtown Store closed in 1960. Shortly thereafter a third location was opened at the Town & County Shopping Center. In 1982 the Oak Park location closed and reopened in the Arrowhead Shopping Center. At that time the three Piggly Wiggly stores employed 270 people.

 Town & Country Piggly Wiggly
 Piggly Wiggly East
Oak Park Piggly Wiggly

Monday, September 14, 2015

Nash Finch –

 the Nash Finch Co. started in 1885 as a small confectionary store in Devils Lake by Fred Nash. Fred urged his brothers, Willis and Edgar to join him. This began the Nash Brothers Wholesale Fruit House in 1889. Soon they hired Harry B. Finch and the Nash Finch co. was established. In 1904, Nash Finch purchased Minot Grocery Co. and expanded into Minot as a wholesale house on Central Avenue and First Street NE. In 1953, Nash Finch consolidated with Ward Mercantile and moved to a location on US Highway 2 & 52. Nash Finch is now located on West Burdick Expressway. 

 Minot Grocery
Nash Finch Delivery Fleet - 1940's

Friday, September 11, 2015

Parker Auditorium - Skateland

Skateland Fire – Skateland was located in the auditorium portion of the old Parker Motor building located at 113 1st Avenue SE. Early in the morning of Sunday, Sept 23, 1962, the upper portion of the building was destroyed by fire. About two years previously the building had been purchased from the Parker Corporation by Dr. Ringo. The building also house the California firm of Ets-Hokin-Galvin Inc. They were involved in laying cable for the Minute Man missile project in the area. By the time the firefighters arrived there was to chance to save the roof and upper story. Damage to the rest of the building was limited as the auditorium had a double layered wooden floor. There had been a dance in Skateland the evening before which may have contributed to the cause of the fire. The building is still there and is used as a parking garage.

 The Parker Auditorium - stage and floor
Parker Motors - Auditorium on top floor

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Jundt’s Westland Gas Station –

An article in the newspaper on Thursday, September 27, 1962 proclaimed the opening of a new Westland gas station on the magic Mile in Minot, (the Magic Mile being South Broadway). The proprietor of the new station was Leo Jundt. Prior to operating this location, Jundt operated a Westland Station on East Central Avenue. The new station on South Broadway was built at a cost of $85,000.00. It featured a 25 foot canopy in the front that extended over the gas pumps. The station also housed two service bays, each with a single post hoist. The “Selectane” gas pumps were new in design and could dispense nine different grades of gasoline to match the gas to the octane requirements of the vehicle.

Westland on Third St. NE - replaced by Earls Westland 

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Tempo – Queen’s Day

on September 25, 1965, the Tempo in store in Minot held “Queen’s Day”. And interesting concept. The wives of the store and department managers took over for their husbands at the Tempo Store. The husbands stayed home that day and took care of the tasks normally handled by their wives such as housework and taking care of the children. Many departments featured sale and marked down items. Special items for customers who made a furniture or appliance purchase. The Tempo Store was on the north end of the Arrowhead Shopping Center, now the home of Marketplace Foods.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Earl’s Westland –

October 7, 1965 marked the Grand Opening of the new Earl’s Westland Gas Station at 5th Avenue and Third Street NE. This was the only drive-through service station convenient to all of Minot’s industrial and commercial area. Earl Jordahl was the proprietor and had been with Westland Oil for 18 years. The station featured a two post 20,000 pound truck lift and a 20X50 foot truck service area. Earl’s Westland also feature both gasoline and diesel pumps. During the grand opening free gifts were given out including orchids for the ladies and balloons for the kids. Also free coffee and donuts for all. A 46 oz. can of HI-C drink for 15 cents with 8 gallons of gas. This location is now the home to Taxi 9000 on the north side of the Third Street Overpass

Friday, September 4, 2015

1965 – Westlie Used Car Sale –

 As I was going through old newspapers this ad from Westlie Motors caught my eye. They were featuring a Used Car clearance sale with drastic price cuts. The two that stuck out were a 1957 Studebaker Champion and a 1958 Buick Special. Both were priced at $295.00 on sale for $95.00. Purchase either one with a $1.90 down payment and payments of $34 a month for 3 months. Or step up to a 1962 Mercury Comet Station Wagon with an automatic transmission and an AM radio for $1295.00 with a down payment of $17.50 and monthly payment of $50.00.
Pictured below - Westlie Motors in the late 1950's

Thursday, September 3, 2015

King Leo’s opens in Minot …..

The ad in the newspaper on January 22, 1963 proclaimed that King Leo’s was open for business. They billed themselves as the “Aristocrat of Hamburgers)…. King Leo’s was open Sunday through Thursday from 11 am to Midnight and Friday and Saturday from 11 am to 1 am… The opening menu featured Hamburgers - 15 cents …..  Cheeseburgers – 19 cents ….. French fries – 12 cents …. Soft drinks 10 and 15 cents ….. hot chocolate – 12 cents and triple thick milk shakes – 20 cents …. All burgers were made with 100% US Gov’t. inspected ground beef…. King Leo’s was located on the Magic Mile (south Broadway – where Arby’s is now).

 (not the Minot King Leo's)

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Metzger’s Electronic Sales –

In late October, 1960, Maury Metzger opened his business at 119 West Central Avenue, (the location was formerly occupied by Westlie Motor Co.). The grand opening was spread over three days in November with prizes given away daily. Free coffee, doughnuts and coca cola were also available. Grand opening special finance terms were only 10% down and no payments until March. One of the specials was a GE portable dishwasher for $228.00. You could try it for two weeks in your home without obligation.

1965 Metzger's Ad

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

1890 Main Street

Main Street 1890 – Looking North -- In the picture of Main Street in 1890 the teams of wagons belong to local Indians and are filled with buffalo bones which were traded to merchants for groceries and other merchandise. The bones were taken to a railroad spur and eventually shipped to St Louis to be used in refining sugar. The bones were worth ten to fifteen dollars a ton. The small building on the left is the Post Office. Next to that was the office of J.B. Rourke, Justice of the Peace. The taller building was a drug store owned by W. E. Mansfield. This is the intersection of Main Street and 1st Avenue. The two story brick building was a large general store owned by the Strain Brothers. North of Strain Brothers was John and Peter Eher’s meat market. The original Jacobson Hardware was a few doors down the street and at the end of the street is the Great Northern passenger depot.