THAT REMINDS ME: Shoppers flocked downtown in 1957
All of the Christmas shopping was downtown in Grand Forks 50 years ago. Shoppers were flocking to places such as Davis and Willey's Jewelers, Mahowalds Ace Store, Norbys, Griffiths, Brays and Herbergers. They were buying shoes at Morks and furs a...
All of the Christmas shopping was downtown in Grand Forks 50 years ago. Shoppers were flocking to places such as Davis and Willey's Jewelers, Mahowalds Ace Store, Norbys, Griffiths, Brays and Herbergers. They were buying shoes at Morks and furs at Mandels. There were three dime stores on Third Street.
Some of the other stores running ads in the Herald were Byers Furniture, Benners, McDonalds, Buttreys, Kinneys, Valley Piano, Jack's Liquor Store, KILO 1440 Radio and Lofts.
And the city had just installed one-way traffic on Third and Fourth streets.
C.P. O'Neill, an alderman who later became mayor, was disappointed in the sanitary conditions and felt action should be taken against the Lane Hotel and the Old Hickory Inn restaurant in the building at 525 DeMers Ave. Later, a cleanup was ordered by the state.
The Lane Hotel had been built in 1880 and originally was known at the Griggs House. It was owned by Capt. Alex Griggs, founder of Grand Forks. For a number of years after the arrival of the railroad, it was one of the showplaces of Grand Forks. It had a circular staircase leading off from the lobby.
Then as now, UND hockey was a big attraction in Grand Forks. A crowd of 3,200 watched the Sioux battle the Winnipeg Maroons to a 2-2 tie ice thriller in the Winter Sports Building.
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Northern Pacific 14 was the train bringing Santa Claus to Grand Forks in mid-December. Santa was met at the depot and escorted to Central High School for a public reception with children.
Santa made three trips into Grand Forks before Christmas, when the Herald promised he would arrive with a fully loaded sleigh.
Santa Claus Girls at the Herald set their 1957 goal at $1,750 to help bring cheer to the hearts of 600 children who otherwise would be missed. The group started working in September, and it was the 40th consecutive year of continuous support of the Herald.
North Dakota had a $641 million year in 1957 from agriculture, oil and gas, lignite coal and tourist trade, according to Greater North Dakota Association. An even greater business year was anticipated for 1958 in oil, according to Wilson M. Laird, state geologist.
Permits were issued for 315 new homes in Grand Forks in the first 11 months of 1957. More than 200 had been built in 1956. The construction was spurred by the building of Grand Forks Air Base west of the city.
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Names in the news 50 years ago:
-- Paul B. Griffith, president of R.B. Griffith Co., and a community leader, died at the age of 70 in Winter Park, Fla., following a heart attack. He was the son of the prominent pioneer merchant who founded the R.B. Griffith department store here in 1887.
He was a 1908 graduate of UND.
-- Kenneth "Pinky" Mullen was elected president of the YMCA board of directors. Other officers were W.E. Davenport, Louis Bogan and Harry Rice.
-- Robert Stewart became municipal judge in East Grand Forks, succeeding Harry Gregg.