Looking Back - 1962: "Giant blizzard' hits WorthingtonA weekly look back at regional history
By: Jane Turpin Moore, Worthington Daily Globe
One year ago
A blaze in Ocheyedan, Iowa, killed more than 300 sows Wednesday morning, with four area fire departments working for hours to contain the flames. The fire occurred at the Bruce and Beth Lorch farm in the 2100 block of White Avenue.
Katie Clarke was hired as District 518’s new coordinator of curriculum and instruction.
Julie Luke, a Worthington Middle School sixth-grader, captured the school’s spelling bee championship. She was to compete, along with the four other top finishers (Mary Abella, Noriden Mussa, Alison Pospisil and Liz Hayenga) at the Southwest Minnesota Spelling Bee on April 9.
Icy roads contributed to almost a dozen car crashes Monday in Rock County. Further to the east, Minnesota 30 was shut down for about four hours after a two-vehicle head-on crash just east of Storden resulted in a fatality.
Dennis Opdahl of Slayton was honored with the state’s 2011 Outstanding Lifetime Volunteer award during the Minnesota 4-H Adult Volunteer Association annual forum in Willmar.
Five years ago
Worthington High School seniors Quentin Dudley and Hannah Haas were selected the school’s Minnesota State High School League Triple A Award recipients for their achievements in arts, academics and athletics.
Tournament coordinator Cindy DeGroot said 220 bowlers participated in the King Turkey Day bowling tournament at Oxford Bowl, Worthington.
Judy Alm was named the 2006 Employee of the Year at Worthington Regional Hospital.
Panaderia Mi Tierra Bakery, owned by Juan and Kerry Cuate, opened this week on Worthington’s 10th Street.
Sanford Health honored Lynn Dierks, a nursing supervisor at Sanford Clinic Worthington, with the Sound Off award for excellence in core areas of service.
10 years ago
Floyd Petersen, owner of Petersen Service, Rushmore, won $10,000 to remodel his business as part of the “Supersize Your Shop” sweepstakes sponsored by Federal Mogul of Southfield, Mich.
The court-appointed trustee handling the bankruptcy case of Worthington poultry processor Awra Doro Inc. said he had received no offers to buy the plant.
A crowd estimated at 400 to 500 assembled in the Worthington High School gymnasium to share their thoughts with the school board and administrators on proposed ISD 518 budget cuts.
Wilmont residents had raised about three-fourths of the money needed to build a new $125,000 community center.
An effort was under way to build a hospice cottage to service the Worthington/Windom/Jackson area, with a groundbreaking goal of March 2003.
25 years ago
Reading-area residents gathered at the Reading Community Center Monday evening to burn the mortgage of the center building and to honor persons who donated money to get the center on its feet.
University of Wisconsin-Platteville professor Ray Short brought his well-practiced message about sex, love and infatuation to junior and senior high school students at Heron Lake-Okabena High School this week.
Playing this week at Worthington’s Northland Cinema were “Some Kind of Wonderful,” “Platoon,” “Crimes of the Heart” and “Outrageous Fortune.”
Peter Jansky, 29, was hired as the new Lakefield police chief. He was replacing Peter Eggiman, who was elected Jackson County sheriff in November.
50 years ago
Earlier in February, R. W. Bergstrom, manager of the Worthington Campbell Soup Company plant, was named “Boss of the Year” and Raymond Crippen, city editor of the Daily Globe, was chosen “Outstanding Young Man of the Year” at the annual Jaycee DSA banquet. Minnesota Attorney General Walter Mondale was the featured speaker at the event; he was given a frozen turkey by the Jaycees.
Schafer’s store in Worthington advertised this week 30 Sunkist navel oranges for 89 cents, two heads of lettuce for 29 cents, a “large can” of Hershey’s chocolate syrup for 22 cents, a 10-ounce bag of radishes for 7 cents, two pounds of “first cuts” pork chops for 89 cents, and a pound of Oak Grove oleo for 21 cents.
A 21-inch snowfall closed all area highways to traffic and stranded at least 100 travelers in the city. The “giant blizzard” was expected to be record-setting for Worthington. Winds of up to 20 miles per hour piled the snow into car-high drifts and created near blizzard conditions across the region. It was the heaviest one-time snow to hit Worthington since 1908, and Worthington’s schools closed their doors for the first time in 15 years.
One-third of all of the houses in Nobles County failed to earn a rating by the U.S. Bureau of Census as being “in sound condition with all plumbing.” It was learned that 18 percent of the houses in the county had no flush toilet, 19 percent had no washing machines and 21 percent had no bathtub or shower. The median value of the county’s 6,913 housing units was $9,800, 36 percent of which were rented.
75 years ago
Nobles County’s annual snow fight, since the close of the holiday season, had cost the taxpayers of this bailiwick more than $14,000, including labor, operating costs and depreciation, said Henry R. Bray, highway engineer. According to Bray’s records, 70 men were employed either full- or part-time during January, and thus far in February 67 men had been required.
Work of thawing out frozen sewers and manholes was embarked upon by a city crew under the direction of Street Commissioner Harry Bloom, who wheeled out the steam boiler and went to work on various assignments in different parts of the city.
S.H. Nelson, 73, resident for the past 24 years of Dundee, died at his home on Sunday due to a heart ailment. A pioneer Minnesotan, Nelson was born in Sweden July 24, 1863, and while a smile child sailed to the U.S. with his parents, Hans and Bertha Nelson. They settled first near Red Wing in 1866 before moving to Heron Lake in 1883.