Mandan Historical News – Past Events and Updates

2023-12-01 07:00:00


25 Years Ago – 1998

Mandan’s girls swimming and diving team, coached by Ralph Manley, clinched second place with 313.5 points at the State Tournament held in Minot. Minot repeated as state champions posting 441 points; Jamestown was a distant third with 260. Six Mandan athletes were named to All-State Honors. Making the First Team were senior Lauren Little, eighth grader Jenny Bachmeier and sophomore Nicole Saur. On the second team were juniors Randi Keller, Lindsay Keller and Amy Richter.

Lewis Shaw, a 26-year member of the Mandan Lions Club, has joined a distinguished group of his peers in being inducted into the North Dakota Lions Hall of Fame. Shaw has held all offices of the club. He was a district governor, a cabinet secretary, a zone chairman and has held several cabinet posts on the Lions Foundation Board. Shaw and his wife, Elsie, who is active in the Dacotah Lioness Club, have attended three international conventions and numerous state conventions since 1972.

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Thrifty White Drug was presented with a plaque of “Thanks” from Jim Coats, president of the Mandan Golden Age Club, for the store’s four years of volunteer services with Meals on Wheels. Each Wednesday, a Thrifty White employee donated one hour of time to deliver meals to local senior or disabled residents. According to store manager, Keith Larson, Shirley Geiger was responsible for 90 percent of the meals that the store volunteers are credited with delivering.

Temps recorded Tuesday, Dec. 1: a high of 60 degrees; 25 for the low.

50 Years Ago – 1973

In a 14-minute televised national speech on Nov. 25 from the White House, President Nixon addressed the nation in response to a nationwide fuel shortage triggered by an Arab oil embargo in retaliation for the United States’ recent support of Israel during the Yom Kippur War. The move, coming at the beginning of winter, has quadrupled oil prices from $2.90 to $11.65 per barrel, resulting in fuel shortages throughout the United States. To deal with scarcities, the President called on Congress to enact a series of measures for energy conservation, including a 25 percent reduction in jet fuel for passenger flights; heating oil deliveries cut by 15 percent to homes, by 25 percent to stores and other commercial customers and by 10 percent to industrial users. Federal and state lawmakers were asked to impose lower speed limits on all vehicles. Finally, Nixon asked listeners to curtail ornamental outdoor lights for homes and nearly all commercial lighting outside of business hours, including Christmas lights, beginning with the national Christmas tree at the White House.

In North Dakota, Governor Link has ordered all the state’s gas stations to close Sundays, from 9 pm Saturday night until opening at regular hours on Monday morning. Speed limits will also be lowered to 60 mph on the Interstates, 55 mph on other roads. He also suggested everyone, including schools and businesses, must lower their thermostats to save fuel, down to 60 degrees at night, 68 during the day, and business owners should strictly enforce the shutting down of all office machines when not in use.

Although the country faced a 17 percent gap between supply and demand, America was still far better off than Europe, where a three-day work week had been decreed, with seven nations also banning Sunday driving.

Temps recorded Saturday, Dec. 1: a high of 38 degrees; 18 for the low.

75 Years Ago – 1948

A 20-foot Christmas tree is to be erected this week in the Northern Pacific Park by the Retail Merchants Association. When Main Street was widened last summer, the “old” light posts were removed and were to be replaced by new posts which still have not arrived. As a result, the colored Christmas lights, usually strung along and over Main Street, will not make an appearance this year.

The body of First Lt. John M. Broderick, son of District Judge and Mrs. L.C. Broderick, Mandan, has been returned to the United States from Italy aboard the U.S. Army Transport, Lawrence Victory. Funeral services were held at St. Joseph Catholic Church; burial was at Union Cemetery. Lt. Broderick, age 26, was killed in action on Jan. 10, 1945, while serving as a fighter pilot with the Army Air Force. He was a 1938 graduate of Mandan High School and a 1943 graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, NY. Pallbearers were Richard Gallagher, Dr. Walter Craychee, Robert Kasper, Don Mushik, Roy Geiger and Richard Baron.

Miss Helena Geiger, daughter of Mrs. Katherine M. Geiger, and Garcon A. McFerran, son of Mr. and Mrs. Graner C. McFerran, all of Mandan, were married at St. Joseph Catholic Church with Rev. Charles Backes performing the 10 a.m. ceremony. The bride was given in marriage by her godfather, Matt M. Geiger. Her bridesmaids were Miss Bertha Geiger, sister of the bride, and friend, Miss Monica Berger. Attending the groom were Florian Kuntz and Mike Ressler. Dinner was later held at the Lewis & Clark Hotel dining room for 30 guests, followed by an evening dance at the Legion Hall for all guests.

Births this week: Daughters, born to Mr. and Mrs. William Tellman, New Salem; to Mr. and Mrs. Ed Sorge, Judson; to Mr. and Mrs. Jack Helbling, Mr. and Mrs. John Schaff, Mr. and Mrs. Clarence Diede, all of Mandan.

Sons, born to Mr. and Mrs. Edward Novotny, Judson; to Mr. and Mrs. Michael Schaaf, Hebron; to Mr. and Mrs. Justin Mousel, Mr. and Mrs. Vernon Jones, Mr. and Mrs. Paul Valder, Mr. and Mrs. John Conlin, and Mr. and Mrs. Clemens Dilger, all of Mandan.

Temps recorded Wednesday, Dec. 1: a high of 46 degrees; 20 for the low.

100 Years Ago – 1923

“Fire, at noon, in the Aughnay Livery barn on Collins Avenue has caused a total loss to that building which was one of the largest frame structures in Mandan. The blaze began when auto mechanics were working on a Ford chassis in front of the building. It’s believed a spark from a nearby blow torch flew into a pan of gasoline as J. J. Strain and another man were hammering a gear on a Ford rear axle. Although the men tried to extinguish the blaze themselves, the city fire department were called. However, the whole building was a mass of embers within 20 minutes, producing intense heat and flying sparks. Unable to save the building, the firemen turned their attention to saving nearby buildings. Frank Aughnay, owner of the livery structure, estimates the loss at $3,000. The contents of the building included three automobiles.

“C.G. Conyne of Mandan has been elected president of the North Dakota Retail Jewelers Association. He succeeds Walter W. Peterson of Fargo.

Mr. and Mrs. Steven Tokach, Sr., along with newly-weds, Stephen Tokach, Jr., and his wife, the former Helen Collis, of Huff, left by automobile Sunday morning for Kenmare to attend special services at the convent of the Ursuline Sisters where Miss Annie Tokach, 20, the only daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Steve Tokach, Sr., of the St. Anthony district, will take the veil and pledge her life in the Sisterhood. She has been studying and serving as a novice at the Kenmare convent for the past three years.

“Miss Elsie L. Menke and Gust Huber, residents north of the city, were married this week at the courthouse by County Judge Shaw.

“Gasoline prices dropped 3.9 cents per gallon in Mandan this week, a reduction in price from 21.8 cents per gallon to 17.9 cents. The price was cut first at the Standard Oil stations, and, within a few days, at the Red Trail Oil company and other independent stations. Local operators believe the Standard Oil Company of Indiana is trying to wipe out the growing number of independent jobbers, whose profit margin is now squeezed down to less than two cents a gallon to pay expenses of salaries, servicing cars and leakage.

Temps recorded Saturday, Dec. 1: a high of 30 degrees; 9 above for the low.

125 Years Ago – 1898

“On Thursday, Dec. 1, the mercury climbed to a high of 27 degrees; 7 degrees was the day’s low.

“The first snowstorm of the season visited this section today in a mild form.

“The Missouri River is closed to steamboats and is now available for crossing by teams of horses and their owners. John White drove across from Bismarck on Monday, and the ice is now strong enough for anything.

“Remember the band concert tonight at the opera house.

“Al Lanterman has purchased an elegant Steinway piano.

“The ladies of the Episcopal Guild will give a supper Thursday evening, Dec. 8, at the opera house. Supper will be served at 6 o’clock. Only 25 cents per person.

“The election canvassing board for this district met on Monday, and certificates were issued to J.A. McDougal as state senator and to Don Stevenson and William Engelter for members of the state house.

“It’s a good thing that the names of Mr. Herbrannson and Mr. Thordarson are not placed next to each in the roll call of the next State House proceedings, or the clerk would have to get such a twist on his tongue that lockjaw might follow.

“The mules, wagons and other equipment of Company D, 1st Cavalry, commanded by Captain Thutherly, arrived here this week and were taken to Fort Yates. They played a heroic part in ending the war in Cuba.”

Diane Boit can be reached at

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