THAT REMINDS ME: Christmas forecast in 1913: Sunny and warm
All of the Christmas packages and regular mail was to be delivered on time to residents of Grand Forks. That was the plan 100 years ago, and the assistant postmaster issuing the order was J.J. Dunlap.
A large International automobile was put into service delivering packages. Two teams with men also were put into action.
Several letters to Santa were received and sorted out in the post office. The letters seeking help for children in need were referred to Associated Charities and other "good fellow" organizations existing in Grand Forks in 1913.
The Grand Forks Daily Herald on Dec. 24, 1913, extended wishes for a Merry Christmas to all readers. The message came from the whole staff including the punchers, copy runner, proof reader and reporters.
Dolls, erectors, jig saw sets, blocks and doll dishes were among the toys. These were shown in the toy shop in the basement of the R.B. Griffith Store. There also was toy furniture, electric trains, balls, drums and horns. And, then as now, there were books.
The weather 100 years ago was pleasant. It was so warm that the law school at UND challenged the rest of the institution to do battle on the football field.
People from nearby towns helped set a new shopping record in Grand Forks on Dec. 13, 1913. The newspaper reported baseball games and other summer sports were in order. And ice cream parlors had a busy day.
"Owing to warm weather," the Herald reported early in December, "Plowing is still in progress in North Dakota. Thousands of farmers are in the fields, and fall plowing is breaking all records."
The fact that some farmers had no time for shopping was a concern of some merchants. And E.J. Weisser, president of the First National Bank in Fargo, said he was not aware of anything like such mild weather in the past.
On Dec. 13, the thermometer was the highest in the past two days since it had been in 1900, the Herald reported. It was 52 degrees on Dec. 12, making it the second warmest December day on record.
Weather in all parts of the Northwest was called "remarkable."
It had been more pleasant here than in some places on the Pacific Coast where some North Dakotans had gone to escape winter, according to the newspaper.
The first real snow fell at the end of December. Christmas Day in 1913 was quiet with wonderful weather in Grand Forks. More than 125 Scandinavians gathered around the Sons of Norway Christmas tree at the Knights of Pythias Hall.
And more than 100 baskets of food for Christmas dinners were distributed by the Associated Charities and Salvation Army.