Archive for April, 2012

1947 Valley City

1947

A second taxicab company opened in Valley City, with Charles Hill and Sam Thompson as owners.  Three cabs were on 24 hour call.

John Beck purchased the George Karshner Insurance Agency in the Middlewest building.

Thirty four new homes were built in the city as compared to only three such permits in 1945.

John Brandt, president of Land O’ Lakes, said the company was planning a $1,750,000 building program, included an all purpose plant in Valley City.

The city was allotted $40,000 in federal funds, to be match with $20,000 locally, to build an airport administration building.

Three hundred fifty new telephones have been installed in the city area, said I. H. Anderson, NW manager.

The Times Record did not publish January 4 because of the severe blizzard.

W. Atkinson, Devils Lake, representing Travelers’ insurance Company, moved to Valley City.

Carl Katz took over management of City Drug.

Pat Morgan sold his interests in Dakota Press to C. C. Morgan and F. R, Crowe.

The Kindred Hotel was being redecorated, with 48 rooms to be refinished.

C. V. Money resigned as STC athletic director.

Woodrow Gagnon, Fargo, purchased the Royal Café from J. O. Botten and Charlie Howard.

Lloyd Triebold took over management of the California Fruit Store, buying the business from Jake Chulse.

Clayton Thayer sold Spike’s Liquor Place to Wendlin Mattern and Joe Haman, Grand Forks, for a reported $26,000.

Rail and bus transportation came to a standstill in a blinding February 9 storm.

A vocational agriculture department was established at VCHS.

Charles Challey, LaMoure, was to head the department.

For the first time, the Arena and two other buildings were used for the Winter Show, although construction was not complete.

The Co-op Coffee Shop was opened by manager Harvey Aman at West Front.

Nearly 100 city businessmen were guests of GNDA when colored movies of the Garrison project were shown by bill Sebens.

Valley city purchased a new Seagraves fire engine for over $12,000.

Harlow Stillings was feted on the 25th anniversary of service as a rural mail carrier.

The Country Club received free trees from E. C. Hilborn’s nursery for planting along the fairways and tees.

NW Telephone company employees were on picket lines to show strike unity.

The AP called Valley City’s newspaper situation a journalistic crisis as friends of the editor-publisher called him liberal and enemies labeled him as radical.

Dr. Max Moore was nominated as governor of Rotary’s 117th district.

Appointment of Willis Osmon and C. H. Bliss to the STC athletic department was announced.

Andy Risem sold his photography studio to R. Kenneth McFarland.

Don Matchan turned down an offer to sell the Times Record to a group of businessmen.

Everything is “set to go” for baldhill Dam construction, said Mayor Curtis Olson.

The Red Owl Super Market was modernized.  Wayne Drugan was manager.

The Snow White laundry was opened by Monroe Pottorff.

O. S. (Hub) Peterson was elected N. D. funeral Directors’ president.

U. S. engineers called for bids on stage one construction of Baldhill Dam.

Walter A. Jensen was elected president of the N. D. Frozen Locker Association.

Ulman Equipment Company was sold to Farmotors, Inc.

The Times Record was sold by don Matchan to Jerome Bjerke, Milton and James Wick and Owen Scott.

Violet Lutz opened the Gift Shoppe.

The first Lutheran congregation voted to build a new church on the present site.

Halloween pranksters tipped over the eight foot high fountain in City Park.

Valley City’s American Legion post purchased a 42 passenger school bus for use by the public.

An eight foot granite monument was dedicated on Armistice Day observance on city auditorium grounds.  Inscribed were the name of the 80 Barnes County men who died in WW II.

Alden Anderson, owner of Dakota Auto Supply Company, purchased the Peterson Oil Company building on Second Street NW and Second Avenue. The company wholesaled to automotive dealers in the area.

John Halverson, oldest living former postmaster of Valley City, marked his 93rd birthday anniversary.

Dr. Lloyd C, Carlson opened practice of optometry in Middlewest Bank building.

A $250,000 bond issue to remodel the public school building was approved by voters by a 90 percent yes vote.

With installation of electric conveyors, the Bignall Lumber Company was ready to serve customers with a complete line of coal.

Spillway excavation and embankment work was near completion at Baldhill Dam.

Edward McGee, the city’s oldest resident, marked his 99th birthday anniversary.

The new library in the senior high school was dedicated as a memorial to Miss Thelma Torkelson.

At age 24, Walt Jensen was the youngest man to be elected president of the N. D. Frozen food Locker Association.

The council signed a contract with Olaf Wick to construct a 60 x 150 foot swimming pool for about $65,000.

Nearly 5,000 attended the Farmers Merchants Picnic sponsored here by city merchants.

Bernard C. Lyons opened a law office in the Middlewest Bank building.

C. L. Fennel, Minneapolis, purchased Frank’s Café from Frank Oulton.

Ground breaking ceremonies were held at the Baldhill Dam Site August 4.  Machines that would carry up to 20 tons of earth each trip were brought to Baldhill as the $1,600,000 construction project got underway.

Billy Krause won the city croquet championship by defeating Karen Lydell.  Krause also won the juvenile golf title.  Bob King was second.

Mrs. Ruth Hamilton, Fargo, was named manager of Miller’s Ready To Wear store.

Memorial half-dollars, honoring Booker T. Washington, were on sale at the Times Record.

Helen Lorns, Valley City, became director of state examinations in the N. D. Department of Public Instruction.

The State Air Fair and Circus was held in the city August 27 and 5,000 visitors attended.

The Sheyenne Hospital Association dedicated the ground secured from Mr. and Mrs. R. A. Maier.

Frank Oulton purchased Percy Polyhar’s Dry Cleaning establishment.

Mrs. Clara Bechtle was elected president of N. D. County Auditors.

World War II veterans began cashing terminal leave bonds.

Snow White Laundry was sold to Oliver Esby and Edwin Johnson by Monroe Portorffs.

The reconditioned Valley Hotel Bowling Alleys opened.

“We are working hard to translate an ideal into a reality,” said Dr. H. L. Lokken, STC president, in dedicating the site where the proposed $300,000 Sheyenne Hospital is to be constructed.

Oliver Peterson purchased full interest in the Holberg-Peterson Funeral Home, renaming it Oliver’s Chapel.

 

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1931 Valley City

1931

Rev. Ployhar took over as county attorney; J. B. Shearer, register of deeds, Arthur Sunde, sheriff: and Ted Hedstrum, deputy sheriff.

Harold Gulbrandson, Kenmare joined The Fair Store, as assistant manager.

Dr. E. B. Crosby and Dr. S. Z. Zimmerman purchased the Valley City clinic building across from the Rudolf.

Howard Wilson of Leal was named chairman of the Barnes County Commissioner.

Attorney H. A. Olsberg was named county judge to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Judge Irgens.

W. W. Fritch and Carl bonde bough the Right Price Store and were to remodel the premises vacant after a disastrous fire.

Clarence Carlson was elected commander of the American Legion.

Cream was received at the new Barnes county cooperative Creamery.

William Posthumas was manager.

Astrid Fjelde, Valley City, was appearing as a member of the Tollefson Trio, singing Scandinavian songs.

The Cobb Company purchased the potato warehouse property on Front Street and established a creamery, poultry, and egg packing plant there. C. M. Hetland was district manager.

John W. Blume was appointed an alderman.

Anthony Fiola closed his fruit and vegetable store on Sixth Avenue to become manager of the Cities Service Station on Sixth Avenue and Front Street.

The world’s first reaper, invented by Cyrus McCormick in 1831 was on exhibit at the Valley City International Company.

John O. Hanchett and L. T. Sprout became partners in a law office.

M. P. Korgh and Paul Sherman opened a clothing store on Main Street.

Ron Holm was transferred from the Montgomery Ward store her to Watertown.

Dr. Glenn Hullet was elected president of the Chautauqua Association.

Irl Carr sold half his interests in the billiard hall to Mike McCarthy, Tower City.

J. H. Sampson opened his new café in the Barnes County Implement Company building.

William Craswell was elected fire chief for the 21st time.

Ben Northridge, Frank Bailey, Clarence Carlson, were elected aldermen.

Edward Norgaard opened Ed’s Fixit Shop under the Middlewest Bank Building.

 

 

 

Judge Alphonso Barnes

Judge Alphonso (Alanson) Barnes-“The Record”, page 2, Vol.1, No. l May 1895
Born Lewis County, N.Y.1817. Red law at office of David Bennett and admitted to bar at 23 Practiced in N.Y. until 1854 when he moved to Delevan, Wis. Appointed “Draft Commissioner” by Lincoln and filled levees for Civil War. Appointed associate Chief Justice of Dakota Territory by President Grant April 1873 with headquarters in Yankton, 2nd Judicial District. After and as a result of a dispute over the railroad and bond situation maneuvering by Gov. Burbank, he was re-assigned to the 3rd. Judicial District with headquarters in Pembina by Whitney, Territorial Secretary in the absence of Burbank. His letters and personal appearance in Washington against the administration of Burbank caused Burbank’s resignation. He was reappointed Associate Justice by President Hayes in 1877 and was succeeded by Judge Hudson in l88l. Was a delegate to the Fargo convention for Division in 1882. After the Burbank episode, the Territorial Legislature re-named Burbank County on July 14, 1874 to Barnes County In his honor Burbank had named the county after his name when created on January 4, 1873.

Barnes County “The Record” page 29, Vol.1, No. l May 1895
County Named after Judge Alphonso (Alanson) Barnes, Associate Justice of Dakota Territory by Territorial Legislature on July 14, 1874
County first named Burbank after the then Governor of Dakota Territory, John A. Burbank, a political appointee of President Grant. Burbank, maneuvering to make a fortune thru railroad promotion and the sale of land and bonds, threatened Judge Barnes with banishment to Pembina if he did not rule on the legality of his actions. Barnes refused and sent information to Washington regarding Burbank’s schemes. The Territorial surveyor corroborated his reports and Burbank was forced to resign. Barnes in the mean time had been banished to the 3rd. Judicial District at Pembina by Burbank’s henchman, the Territorial Secretary, Whitney, while Burbank was in Washington to plead his case. Territorial Legislature then re-named Burbank County to Barnes County in his honor, after Burbank had resigned.

History of the Sheyenne Valley

History of Sheyenne Valley

From time immemorial, the human race has been moving about.  An intuitive trait in the human make up seems to urge it out of the old habitations to see new places where homes could be built and where new enterprises could be engaged in.  This restive trait is without any doubt one of the great causes for the fact that the human race has found its way to all livable places on the globe.  A thinning out as it were of the over- crowded places to fill in those which were more sparsely populated.

It is rather sad indeed, to tear loose from the old native country the old home, from kindred and acquaintances and go to a country which is unknown, a country with strange people, different customs and different language, but necessity made it imperative.  Go, struggle, and win — or stay, struggle and get nowhere.  Facing these two alternatives, the thousands of struggling European people, followed the beck and call of the new world and came to the land of the free, not always as fortune hunters but rather, to find a place where they were enabled to build a home of their own, a thing that was impossible in their native country, owing to circumstances over which they had no control.

Thus America was settled by the so called useless surplus of the old world.  But which has proved to be the right and only kind of people that could be used, in the building of the greatest republic under the sun.

As it was with America in a large measure, so it has evidently been with her states in a smaller scale.  “Go West, young man, go West!” was the bugle call sounded in the East, and west they came, by the thousands.  A cordial invitation was accorded them from the limitless prairies, with a virgin soil unparallel in fertility.  Thus North Dakota was settled by immigrants from the older settlements in the east and people coming directly from Northern Europe.

We stated that a cordial welcome was accorded the pioneers and it is true to the fullest extent of the term, but it was a welcome not to a life of leisure and idleness but a welcome to hard strenuous labor, all kinds of sacrifices, and privations—and not the least among them, the lonely feelings so excellently expressed by Bojer in his book “Vor Egen Stamme”, “It was the prairie, the sun and Him”  That was all, “But there were Giants in the Earth in those days” tall men, sun crowned men, men with an indomitable will behind a steely arm.  Men that had a vision, men with faith in the unseen.  They visualized the prairies yielding bountiful crops, even before a kernel was sown.  They were to it and realized their dream.

Before we proceed with the history of the old pioneers we bed permission to devote a few lines of this historical sketch to a very important incident in the history of our state.  An event immediately preceding the early settlement of this community.  An even lending tint, as it were, of a very important and interesting character to this particular part of our state.

In the month of June, in 1863, General Sibley, began his march through the Minnesota Valley against the Indians who were encamped at Devils Lake.  He came from Abercrombie up to Big Bend on the Sheyenne River by what  now is Lisbon, or close to that place.  In his army was a captain by the very significant name of Ole Paulson.  Later this man became a pastor in the Lutheran Free Church.  A few years before his death he wrote his autobiography and in this he gives a very graphic description of the march across what later became Fort Ransom.  Over yonder on Mr. E. Storhoff’s place there has been found an unmistakable evidence of a camping place, dating to Sibley’s March in 1863.  Therefore the Historical society of the state placed a maker at said place some time ago.  The army continued marching north to what then was called Fort Atchinson, fifteen miles northwest  of what is now called Cooperstown, then west to the Missouri river where they were suppose to meet General Sully coming up the river from Yankton, South Dakota as per previous agreement.  He failed to come however, owing to the fact that the water in the river was too low for navigation.  In 1864, Sibley began his return March over the same route, crossing fort Ransom, Lisbon, Big Bend, and Abercrombie.    From Abercrombie Captain Paulson was ordered to cross the flat over to Pelican Lake in Minnesota, and in the early part of November, 1864, this company voted unaminously for Abraham Lincoln.  This election took place on the shore of Pelican Lake.

History of the Sheyenne Valley

History of Sheyenne Valley

From time immemorial, the human race has been moving about.  An intuitive trait in the human make up seems to urge it out of the old habitations to see new places where homes could be built and where new enterprises could be engaged in.  This restive trait is without any doubt one of the great causes for the fact that the human race has found its way to all livable places on the globe.  A thinning out as it were of the over- crowded places to fill in those which were more sparsely populated.

It is rather sad indeed, to tear loose from the old native country the old home, from kindred and acquaintances and go to a country which is unknown, a country with strange people, different customs and different language, but necessity made it imperative.  Go, struggle, and win — or stay, struggle and get nowhere.  Facing these two alternatives, the thousands of struggling European people, followed the beck and call of the new world and came to the land of the free, not always as fortune hunters but rather, to find a place where they were enabled to build a home of their own, a thing that was impossible in their native country, owing to circumstances over which they had no control.

Thus America was settled by the so called useless surplus of the old world.  But which has proved to be the right and only kind of people that could be used, in the building of the greatest republic under the sun.

As it was with America in a large measure, so it has evidently been with her states in a smaller scale.  “Go West, young man, go West!” was the bugle call sounded in the East, and west they came, by the thousands.  A cordial invitation was accorded them from the limitless prairies, with a virgin soil unparallel in fertility.  Thus North Dakota was settled by immigrants from the older settlements in the east and people coming directly from Northern Europe.

We stated that a cordial welcome was accorded the pioneers and it is true to the fullest extent of the term, but it was a welcome not to a life of leisure and idleness but a welcome to hard strenuous labor, all kinds of sacrifices, and privations—and not the least among them, the lonely feelings so excellently expressed by Bojer in his book “Vor Egen Stamme”, “It was the prairie, the sun and Him”  That was all, “But there were Giants in the Earth in those days” tall men, sun crowned men, men with an indomitable will behind a steely arm.  Men that had a vision, men with faith in the unseen.  They visualized the prairies yielding bountiful crops, even before a kernel was sown.  They were to it and realized their dream.

Before we proceed with the history of the old pioneers we bed permission to devote a few lines of this historical sketch to a very important incident in the history of our state.  An event immediately preceding the early settlement of this community.  An even lending tint, as it were, of a very important and interesting character to this particular part of our state.

In the month of June, in 1863, General Sibley, began his march through the Minnesota Valley against the Indians who were encamped at Devils Lake.  He came from Abercrombie up to Big Bend on the Sheyenne River by what  now is Lisbon, or close to that place.  In his army was a captain by the very significant name of Ole Paulson.  Later this man became a pastor in the Lutheran Free Church.  A few years before his death he wrote his autobiography and in this he gives a very graphic description of the march across what later became Fort Ransom.  Over yonder on Mr. E. Storhoff’s place there has been found an unmistakable evidence of a camping place, dating to Sibley’s March in 1863.  Therefore the Historical society of the state placed a maker at said place some time ago.  The army continued marching north to what then was called Fort Atchinson, fifteen miles northwest  of what is now called Cooperstown, then west to the Missouri river where they were suppose to meet General Sully coming up the river from Yankton, South Dakota as per previous agreement.  He failed to come however, owing to the fact that the water in the river was too low for navigation.  In 1864, Sibley began his return March over the same route, crossing fort Ransom, Lisbon, Big Bend, and Abercrombie.    From Abercrombie Captain Paulson was ordered to cross the flat over to Pelican Lake in Minnesota, and in the early part of November, 1864, this company voted unaminously for Abraham Lincoln.  This election took place on the shore of Pelican Lake.

History of Kathryn, North Dakota

History of Kathryn
By C. Norman Saugstad
Eighteen miles south of Valley City in the beautiful Sheyenne Valley lays the village of Kathryn.
The first settlers came to the valley in 1876. They settled along the river. The soil was fertile and there were trees so they had fuel and built log huts.
New Year’s Day, 1901, the Northern Pacific Railroad came from Fargo and went as far as Marion, North Dakota. A railroad man named the place Kathryn after his daughter.
Two brothers from Casselton came out on a box car load of lumber and started the first store. It was a general store with everything from crackers to shoes. These two brothers also started the first implement business and organized a telephone company.
The land was farm land and some of it was owned by a man who had homesteaded here. The railroad also owned land and sold lots. (The government had deeded land to the railroads.) As the railroad came and the store opened for business people started buying lots. One of the first men to buy a lot and build a house was a blacksmith. He also built a blacksmith shop.
Other businesses started and the town grew quickly at first. The town, at its height, had 3 grain elevators, 2 blacksmith shops, a lumber yard, 2 grocery stores, 2 hotels, a drug store, a jewelry store (The jeweler was an exceptionally fine goldsmith), a millinery shop, a barber shop, a town hall known as the opera house, a creamery, a meat market, a section house, a post office, a depot, a livery stable and a weekly paper known as the “Kathryn Recorder.” They also had a doctor. Once a month a traveling dentist and an optometrist came to town.
The people were mostly of Scandinavian descent. Some of the people came directly from Norway. They left Norway for economic reasons. You young men left Norway to avoid compulsory military training. Many people came from Wisconsin, Chicago, and Minnesota. Some came for adventure and others had relatives here.
In 1904, an old school building was brought into town and used as a school house It was brought in from a mile and half out of town and had been used as they Community Center in the country. In 1905 a school house was built on a hill. In 1913, two rooms were added to this building.
In 1903, citizens assembled together for the purpose of organizing a Norwegian Lutheran Church. They decided to hold meeting in a hall until they could build a church. The hall where they had their church meetings also served as a community center. They also held weddings, dances, basket socials, funerals and Sunday school in this building. The Church building was built in 1914.
The train brought the mail every other day and there was a post office. The post office was located in the general store. At first the train went west one day and came back went east the next day. Later on the train started running every day. Two rural mail carriers carried the mail out to the country.
Life wasn’t too hard. There were many community “doings” which people took part in. They had several doctors at different times; but doctors didn’t stay because there wasn’t enough business. There was some sickness; a diphtheria epidemic took place in the early 1900’s witch was not too severe. As a whole people were honest, thrifty and hard working.
Early blizzards were severe and common. In the winter of 1907 the train didn’t come from New Year’s Day until March. People ran out of supplies and had to go to Valley City to get the necessary provisions. The road wasn’t open so they had to go with horses. The road was 20 miles at that time. E. G. Strom went to Valley City with bobsled and got 9 sacks for coal. He went one day and came back the next. During this time the town appealed to Washington for aid in getting the roads open as supplies were running low. The railroads were slow in opening their roads; people claimed they didn’t especially care to get this line open as they opened their main lines first. Practically everyone in town had cows and chickens so people were quite self-sufficient along the line of food.
Another bad year for blizzards was the winter of 1917. The train didn’t run for three months, but once in a while someone would go over to Fingal and get the mail. A big moment of for everyone and especially the children was when the train came after such a long time of being blocked out. First the rotary plow came, and then the train. Children usually got out of school for this event. The minute someone heard the train whistle everyone grabbed his coat and that was the end of school or that day.
One cyclone and a flood hit the little village too. On a hot, sultry August afternoon in 1910 a cyclone hit and did considerable damage; it uprooted trees and barns were demolished, freight cars were blown off the track and scattered all over. No one was injured, but a few animals were hurt and had to be destroyed. Half of the town was flooded by a cloud burst in 1918 when Dog Creek ran wild. Small buildings, wagon boxes, chickens and pigs were seen floating down the creek. Wagon boxes from the implement store were found as far away as Lisbon. It frightened many people but no one was injured. People living in the little houses along the creek had to be helped out and taken to higher location.
In 1916 the town suffered its first big fire. The Farmers’ Elevator burned in March and in October four business buildings burned: the drug store, general merchandise store and the bank. The only fire protection was the bucket brigade. Tin pails were thrown out of the hardware store, filled with water and passed up the line to the fire (an artisan well had been dug in the summer of 1916). These building were replaced with brick buildings. After these fires people became concerned about fire protection and organized a fire department.
In 1917 Kathryn became an incorporated village. It had a town council which was elected by the people. A city constable was elected to keep order. The village at this time numbered about 400 inhabitants.
The two men who had come from Casselton and started the first store brought the first car to town. It looked like a high wheeled buggy with a straight handle .for a steering wheel and a rubber horn on the side. The car was topless and the center of attraction I the village. It was about a 1906 model.
The town had an athletic club in the early days. They had a baseball team and a wrestling team. Quite a number of young people took part. There were also two basketball teams, one for the girls and one for the boys. They played neighboring towns. The club held meeting once a week in the city Hall.
A town band was organized by an instructor form valley city Teacher’s college. It played for graduation exercises, 4th of July celebrations and put on concerts for the public.
The 4th of July celebration was held either in the village or in a grove of trees on half mile from town along the Sheyenne River. It was a community picnic with plenty to eat. Races were held and games played. It was a time for people to get together, enjoy themselves and visit. In the evening there was always a bowery dance which young and old enjoyed.
There was a Yeoman’s Lodge, Sons of Norway Lodge and later an American Legion Post located in Kathryn.
The hills in the winter time were a source of enjoyment. When the snow was on the hills children, young adults and sometimes old adults would get their skis, which included everything from real skis from the store to homemade barrel staves. They sometimes slid on cardboard boxes, shovels, pieces of tin or anything that could be used for sliding down the hills. Ski Tournaments were held on the hills south of town. It was considered to be one of the best ski slides in the state. The scaffold was on a high hill. People came from all over the state. Christmas eve, 1935, the scaffold blew down during a blizzard.
Dog Creek would overflow its banks in the spring, if there was much snow during the winter. Children would vault the creek. The creek was also used in the winter time for skating –bonfires would be built if there wasn’t moonlight. Sloughs were also used for skating.
During the summer berry picking was a source of enjoyment for young and old. Chokecherries, gooseberries, plums and June berries were plentiful.
There was an “old swimming hole” by the old Walker Dam. Many children learned to swim there by hanging on a log and floating across the river. They had medicines shows selling patent medicines at the town hall as well as “Big Ole” shows with a dance afterwards.
In 1917 the town received electric lights and they started showing silent movies at the City Hall on Saturday nights. School programs and amateur programs were put on by the people in the community. Card parties were held. Lyceum programs were held in the winter time. It was high class entertainment. Chautauqua programs were held in a large tent. They consisted of musical programs and good speakers.
In 1938 spring water was piped into town from the hills south of Kathryn. The town had lost many of its business places during the depression. By 1941, it had one grocery store, one general merchandise store and one meat market. In March of 1941 the general merchandise store burned which was a loss for the town as it never was rebuilt.
During the Second World War many people left to work in war industries and plants. The population of the village became smaller and smaller.
Kathryn
By Flora Walker Strand
According to history prepared by Flora Walker Strand, the land on which Kathryn now stands (about 18 miles south of Valley City) was originally the homestead of Jenson. Title in some way had passed out of his hands and the purchase of the town site was made from Frank Lynch of Casselton”
Extension of the Northern Pacific’s branch line to Marion gave Kathryn its impetus. The line as surveyed in 1899 and 1900, with construction beginning April 18, 1900. First train service began January 1, 1901, although a group of railway officials made an earlier trip on a special train.
On September 15, 1900, a civil engineer and John Runck surveyed the town site and laid out the plot, but this plot was not filed with the Register of Deeds until June 1, 1901, according to the history.
On October 20, John Runck came here with a carload of lumber on a construction train. The next day he unloaded the lumber and his carpenter crew followed shortly to erect the first mercantile building, Runck Brothers Store, and the Northern Pacific depot. With improved railway facilities, the little town mushroomed. By early 1901 the infant town was preparing for social life with baseball games, picnics and the first Fourth of July celebration at which Lee combs was speaker of the day.
The man who built the first home in Kathryn was Ole Venaas who came to America in 1890. He became the first blacksmith in Kathryn.

1924 in Valley City

1924

State basketball tournament was awarded to Valley City to be held in the new college gym.

H. C. Bjerke came here from Bismarck as manager of the Russell-Miller Milling Plant

Margaret Engemoen, Valley City. Won sixth prize in the state essay contest, “How to Keep Boys and Girls on the Farm.”

Clifford C. McDonald became the sole owner of the dry cleaning establishment of McDonald and Murdock.

The college basketball squad, coached by L. G. Hurst, won all but one of their contests and was named conference champions.

W. H. Pray was elected mayor of Valley City.

Plans for the new Piller theatre were in the hands of John Piller with construction expected during the summer.

Mrs. Marie Spiker was elected Most Excellent Chief of the Pythian sisters as that group held its first meeting.

Charley Hokanson was named chief of police replacing Mr. Swanson.

The Bank of valley city, following reorganization, opened for business with K. A Bonhus, president, and Frank Cook, vice-president.

A permanent organization for the Greater North Dakota Association was formed with Herman Stern, president, Dr. S. N. Thams, Fargo, had purchased the dental business of Dr. W. N. Palmer, who was leaving for California.

Father John Baker was elevated to Right Reverend Monsignor by Pope Pius XI.

Barnes County Courthouse was gutted by fire so officials would conduct business from City Hall.  The courthouse was built in 1882 and the fire came on the 5oth birthday of Barnes County.

Robertson’s Women’s Wear had leased space on top of the vault of the Bank of Valley City to be occupied by Molly Olson’s millinery shop.  Olson’s space was utilized for a beauty parlor.  John Gavin resigned as division engineer of the highway commission.

Two gas masks, two fire extinguishers and a life net were added to the fire department equipment.

The Northern Pacific announced it had completed automatic block systems on the railroad from St. Paul to the west coast.

Henry Kniprath and Victor Vaupel bought J. H. Sampson’s lunchroom.