Mandan News

Diane Boit: MHS seniors win Elks scholarships, 1962

25 Years Ago – 1987

MHS senior John Mindt has won the State Diving Title at the North Dakota Swimming and Diving Championship meet at Minot. Hoping for an eighth place finish in diving, Mandan’s Keith Huff surpassed his personal goal, taking fourth place honors. The Fargo North team took first overall; Mandan finished in seventh place.

John Mindt, from 1987.

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The Mandan Athletic and Recreation Club has announced their selections for their Athletes of the Month of February- Joanne Jensen in girls’ volleyball and Brent Ekstrom and Neil Anderson in wrestling.

At the end of this year’s season, Joanne led her team in aces (46), kills (88), blocks (23) and saves (12). She was also named by the WDA coaches to the All-West Region Volleyball team and by her own teammates as their “most valuable player.” Joanne is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John (Marilyn) Jensen, Mandan.

Brent Ekstrom and Neil Anderson were both undefeated during February and were WDA and State wrestling champions. Brent is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Dale Ekstrom; Neil is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Michael Anderson, all of Mandan.


50 Years Ago – 1962

MHS seniors Patricia Gronowski, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Ray Gronowski, and Donald Fix, son of Mr. and Mrs. Joe Fix, are the First Place winners of the Elks Scholarship Contest with each receiving a $50 Savings Bond. According to Charles Jordan, the Exalted Ruler of the Mandan lodge, the applications submitted from 18 area schools were judged on academic and extra-curricular activities. Judges were: Duncan Warren, Thomas Crouse and Walton Russel.

Don Fix, from 1962.

Patricia Gronowski, 1962.

Kenneth M. Dodge, switchman for the Northwestern Bell Telephone Company’s Mandan office, has observed his 40th year with the company. He was presented a diamond tie clasp encircled by eight stars, each representing five years of service. A native of Inkster, N.D., Ken began work as a lineman for the NW Bell Company in Grand Forks in 1921, coming to Mandan in 1923 as a combination man, the title he held until the “cutover” to dial operation in 1948.

Norman Christensen of Mandan has won the N.D. Junior Chamber of Commerce Distinguished Service Award during the State Convention held in Grand Forks. Christensen is Vice President and Cashier of the First National Bank in Mandan, is a director of the Lions Club, a member of the American Legion, the Elks and Masons, is the First Vice President of the Chamber of Commerce, and has still managed to find time to serve as co-coach of a Little League team in Mandan. A 16-car caravan of fellow JC members and their wives drove east of Bismarck to greet him and his wife and then escorted the couple to their Mandan home.

The N. D. High School Activities Ass’n has announced this year’s State Basketball Scoring Champ as 6’5″ junior center Paul Presthus of Rugby; he scored 516 points in 18 games (averaging 28.7 per game). Runner-up was Mandan’s Dan Hilligoss with 384 points made during 17 games.


75 Years Ago – 1937

More than six inches of welcome snow fell upon Mandan and Morton County residents this week, resulting in snow drifts across city streets and county roads. According to city officials, it appears that the drought of the past four years has finally been broken.

More than 140 Girls Scouts from Mandan’s three troops, along with their mothers and members of the local Girls Scout Council, celebrated the Silver Anniversary of the Scouts’ founding with a banquet and program in the basement of the First Lutheran Church of Mandan. Tables were decorated in green and white with tall silver candles in crystal holders. Centered at the head table was a white birthday cake decorated with green icing, green candles, along with the silver foil dates, 1912-1937. Marguerite Tobin, member of the Wahca Tinta troop, was the evening’s toastmistress. She was assisted by Beverly Nelson of the Sakakawea troop and Betty Koetke of the Minnehaha troop.

Five Mandan men are among the 181 drivers of the Consolidated Freight Lines who have been awarded medals and certificates for having had no accidents during the past year. The awards, issued by the National Safety Council, were given to more than 450 drivers in eight states. Receiving awards from Mandan are: O.P. Rinehart, R.J. Porter, M.J. Cullen, C.R. Schwoob and Frank Young.


100 Years Ago – 1912

“The city election on Tuesday resulted in a victory for former commissioner John Foran as the new president of the commission, beating out W. A. Lanterman by just nine votes, 255 to 246. Others elected to the commission are William McDonald and Michael Lang.

“Although Morton County voted overwhelmingly in favor of Theodore Roosevelt for his return to office in the first presidential primary (involving 14 of the 48 states) to be held in the United States, North Dakota gave its support to Wisconsin Senator Robert M. LaFollette of the Progressive Movement as a candidate in the fall’s general election to run against the incumbent President, William Howard Taft. Much of LaFollette’s success was due to his whirlwind tour of the state speaking to crowds in every major city. His only major city loss was Bismarck.”


125 Years Ago – 1887

The village of Mandan was organized in the spring of 1881; by 1887 the population was already nearing the 2,500 mark.

March 23, 1887: “On Thursday at 3:30 p.m. the thermometer stood at 55 degrees above zero.

“P. M. Granberry is down at Sibley Island in charge of the dynamite crew. The crew was engaged all day in blowing out the ice around the island to make a clear channel before the gorges above at Washburn and Square Butte break and reach that point.

“The few fortunate and wise men who built their houses on the hill, threw open their domiciles and took care of many residents who came for shelter.

“The upper stories of the Pioneer building and the InterOcean Hotel are now home to many ladies and children who sought shelter from the rising water on the east end of Main Street.

“George Peoples has opened the bar at the InterOcean and is running a lively high water trade there.

“When the Missouri begins to recede, the Bismarck Tribune will soon be able to stop flinging its slurs at its competitor in Mandan.”


(To contact Diane, email