Looking Back: Mondale was in Worthington 50 years ago todayA weekly look back at regional history
By: Jane Turpin Moore, Worthington Daily Globe
One year ago
The post office in Bigelow was one of 110 post offices across Minnesota and western Wisconsin identified for closure. Nationwide, the United States Postal Service was proposing to close 3,600 post offices in an effort to reduce operating expenses.
The Worthington City Council approved a request of $76,000 from the Worthington Economic Development Corporation.
After a six-month hiatus, the New Beginnings drug treatment program resumed operation at the Nobles County Jail, with several important changes.
The Worthington Regional Extension Center settled into its new offices as the first tenant in the Biotechnology Advancement Center on Prairie Drive in Worthington’s bioscience park.
Jerry Fiola, District 518’s community education director, was presented with the Community Educator Award from the Minnesota Community Education Association.
Five years ago
Poet Frederick Foote gave a public reading at the Historic Dayton House. He also did a reading for the Minnesota West Community and Technical College community on the school’s campus.
Slayton passed a “dangerous dog” ordinance, regulating dangerous and potentially dangerous dogs. The ordinance included having a bond or liability insurance policy on such animals.
Some area farmers had harvested about 95 percent of the year’s corn crop, although wetter ground near Bigelow limited the harvest to only 35-40 percent of the crop at this point. In the Jackson area, corn yields were averaging 170-175 bushels per acre, with the soybean yield at about 50 bushels per acre. In Bigelow, yields ranged from 150 to 180 bushels per acre.
Carolina Rodriguez, patient services assistant at Avera Worthington Specialty Clinics, was Avera McKennan’s October Employee of the Month.
10 years ago
Mary Jean Pigman, a volunteer for the Southwest Minnesota Chapter of the American Red Cross, was named the state Red Cross Volunteer of the Year. Pigman had volunteered as a CPR and first aid teacher for 12 years.
Minnesota Senator Paul Wellstone, who died last weekend in a plane crash along with his wife and daughter, was mourned as part of the Nobles County Community Action Committee’s Dia de Los Muertos event.
Worthington’s Video Lupita store was held up by an armed robber. A reward of up to $12,000 was offered for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the crime’s perpetrator.
25 years ago
Construction of a nursing home to cost $2.4 million was scheduled to be built in Sheldon, Iowa, next spring, with a goal of being opened by early spring of 1989.
Neighbors gathered at the Clifford Post farm near Okabena for fall plowing. More than a dozen tractors were used to turn the ground. The plowing bee, sponsored by the Aid Association for Lutherans Rost Branch 2475, took place due to the death of Wayne Post last summer.
Clifford Crowell, who lives south of Windom, was preparing ground for a 76 x 528-foot chicken house. The chicken house would hold 40,000 birds that would go to Campbell Soup in Worthington. Crowell planned to lease the building from Cargill Leasing Company.
New equipment at Chase Packaging in Sibley, Iowa, meant the production of microwave popcorn bags would double and the work force would increase. Don Hall, plant manager, said three million microwave popcorn bags were manufactured at the plant each week. That figure would soon grow to six million bags a week.
Pete Roby, who sold produce at Worthington’s Humiston-Oxford intersection, was selling many pumpkins this week and was known as “the Pumpkin Man.”
50 years ago
Dr. Dale Schultz of St. Paul joined the staff of the Worthington Dental Center. Schultz was a 1962 graduate of the University of Minnesota. He was married and had six children.
A 12-year-old Bigelow girl became Nobles County’s sixth traffic victim of the year when she was accidentally run over with a tractor driven by her father. Since the mishap occurred on a public road, it was recorded as a traffic death.
Mrs. Helen Greig was honored as a 50-year member of the Royal Neighbors of America. Greig, married in 1902 at Oregon, Wis., came to Lismore with her husband, James A. Greig, following their marriage.
Walter F. Mondale, “Minnesota’s Vigorous and Capable Attorney General,” the notice read, appeared in Worthington on Oct. 31 at noon at the Gobbler Cafe. He was slated to discuss consumer laws and protection.
Dwayne V. Moon of Amiret, Minn., was hired as the new office manager for the Nobles County Agricultural Stabilization Committee. He replaced Harry Vis, who resigned earlier in the year due to ill health.
75 years ago
A town the size of Worthington should have no fewer than five Scout troops, asserted Gale Frost, area executive of the Sioux Council, Boy Scouts of America.
Approach of winter found no apparent slackening in the outbreak of house construction, which had characterized 1937 in Worthington. John Engelkes had purchased a lot on Winifred Street, facing west, where stakes were driven for a new dwelling, and bringing the new construction around that locality in the past two years to seven.
Playing this week at Worthington’s State Theatre was “Ali Baba Goes to Town,” with Eddie Cantor, and at the Grand Theater, “Double Wedding” with William Powell and Myrna Loy was showing.
Bobby Oberman, 10, of Worthington’s Cherry Point neighborhood, was the top pumpkin sculptor in the Daily Times’ Pumpkin Carving Contest. He was awarded the $1 prize. His entry was a very cleverly executed caricature of President Roosevelt. A close second was the entry of Paul Kennedy, 11, Worthington, who chose a Chinese character for his theme.