Worthington 150: Worthington receives World Brotherhood award for Crailsheim partnership

“Building international relations on a community-to-community basis … represents a new approach to democracy.”

Crailsheim bombed in final days of World War II
Much of Crailsheim was destroyed by bombings shortly before the end of World War II.
Nobles County Historical Society
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WORTHINGTON — The simple act of three Worthington youngsters in 1947 not only gave way to the Worthington-Crailsheim partnership, but also won Worthington the first ever World Brotherhood award.

It was a noisy, hilarious and potentially dangerous scene. But the merchants of 1934 declared it a huge success.
One night he ran smack-dab into a group of evangelists while staggering out of a saloon. He was converted on the spot. Since then he traveled all across the country preaching the gospel and convincing sinners to “get right with God.”
The city’s Army National Guard unit, Co. F of the 215th Coast Artillery, was ordered to active duty in 1940, a full year before the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor.

Given June 3, 1958, in New York, the award recognized the city’s humanitarian efforts through Worthington-Crailsheim International Inc. (WCII). It was given to Worthington, the winner for cities with a population less than 10,000, by World Brotherhood, an international humanitarian organization.

Reports of the award winners were broadcast over national radio and television networks on April 30, 1958. A group of Worthington dignitaries, including Mayor John Fenstermaker and Theodora Cashel, founder of WCII, made the trip to New York to receive the award at the World Affairs Center of the Carnegie Endowment Building.

Also present at the ceremony was Mrs. Edwin Kerwin, the Crailsheim representative appointed by Wilhelm Gerbhardt, Bürgermeister of Crailsheim.

Philippine ambassador Carlos Romulo, World Brotherhood co-chairman, presented the award to Worthington.


“Building international relations on a community-to-community basis … represents a new approach to democracy.” said Romulo, who was quoted in the June 3, 1958 Worthington Daily Globe. “We call it a ‘citizen diplomacy’ and I feel that as it develops and multiplies around the world, our opportunities for building a lasting peace will also increase.”

A timeline that celebrates big moments in our town's history.
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Rear admiral H.B. Miller, Pan-America World Airways, presented Worthington with a community friendship award grant for the exchange of community leaders in the world. Worthington later gave the grant to Cashel, who could take a trip wherever she wanted.

Walt Kelly, creator of Pongo comic strip, took it upon himself to attend the ceremonies and present the cities with a citation scroll adorned and signed by his characters, Albert the Alligator and Beaurigard the Dog. Kelly, who had just returned from a trip around the world, was convinced of the need for greater international understanding.

Worthington later reprised the ceremony at Memorial Auditorium. Dr. Everett Clinchy, administrative president of World Brotherhood, and Perry Lust, Minneapolis regional director of the National Conference of Christians and Jews, attended the celebration.

A timeline that celebrates big moments in our town's history.
The Indian culture along the shores of Lake Okabena remained undisturbed until the mid-19th century, when white settlers first moved into the area.
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The first public school consisted of 49 students and two teachers who met in various rented rooms throughout the village.
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First festival focused on playing soccer.
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Ludlow a figure in Worthington's early history.
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Last local casualties were from Vietnam war.
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E. O. Olson was a prominent figure in Worthington's history
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Worthington’s economic base began to broaden from the narrow pedestal of farming to the much broader one of agriculture.
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Worthington soared to a new population of 3,481 persons by the 1920s.
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