Tuesday, November 22, 2011

limited edition of "The Ford in the River"

The Holdingford Area Historical Society is reprinting a limited edition of  "The Ford in the River"  , the history of Holdingford written and published  by Father V. Yeserman in 1985

This would make a wonderful  Christmas gift, the book outlines the history  of accomplishments in the Holdingford area and would be a great  gift to pass onto our friends and relatives.

 $25 per copy

Reserve a copy at  Headley Hardware Hank , Holdingford, MN  or

e-mail your name and phone number to JMC2619 at gmail.com

Check or Cash no credit card.

Delivery date coming soon.

Support your local Historical Society ! 

This fall we were able to renovate the roof of our  future Museum  and are now raising funds to reinovate the interior.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Road Trip To Paynesville

The Holdingford Area Historical Society took a road trip to the Paynesville Area Historical Society's Museum.  We were very impressed with the work they have done on creating their museum.
It would be well worth your time to visit them.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Holdingford Historical Society finds a home

By Mike Kosik- Albany Enterprise

What started as a newly elected Holdingford city councilor's desire to get a record of past mayors and council members has bloomed into a full-fledged historical society.

"I started digging through the files for old minutes" of the city council, historical society member Mike Odden said.

As a result, one of the oldest buildings in Holdingford is being restored and will preserve the history of the area thanks to the efforts of the Holdingford Area Historical Society.

The building that most recently was used as the city's maintenance shop but has been turned over to the Holdingford Historical Society.

For a group that was formed about five years ago, they have taken on a big project. The first order of business is repairing the roof.

Bids were taken and the $16,000 project is scheduled for this fall.

Pretty soon a group of people interested in preserving the history of the Holdingford area met at the Corner Pizza and became the Holdingford Area Historical Society.

The society first looked at an old school house that was owned by Margaret Huls, a former teacher.

Huls, a society member, received the old school house with the stipulation that it would be preserved. Plans were to move the building, but issues regarding asbestos, the cost of moving the building and its condition squelched the idea.

At the time, Huls was a member of the Holding Township Historical Society.

What did pan out was the old Welna Produce building, located on the corner of Main Street and County Road 17.

The 80 by 40 foot building had also been used by the Holdingford School District for shop and agriculture classes before the city took it over, Odden said.

The building is still in good shape, but the roof leaks. Through various fundraisers, the society raised the money for the new roof.

After that plans are to section the building off for various displays.

One of those displays will be a one-room classroom, so the historical society will be able to use some of the old fixtures and items in the old school building that had been turned over to Huls.

The Welna building sits on an old railroad lease site. The railroad track is now the Lake Wobegon Trail, which is owned by the county.

"If the building is razed, nothing can go back there," historical society member Mark Koehn said.

Much of the exterior of the building will remain as is, but the interior displays will be a work in progress, said Sue Marstein, a city councilor and society member.

"It's going to be a 15-year project," historical society president Herman Ebnet said.

While fundraising will be an on-going activity, the historical society hopes to secure grants.

To that end, it needs to affiliate with the Stearns County History Museum and the Minnesota Historical Society. While neither organization provides funding or other assistance, it is a necessary step to get grant money.

But the historical society has initiated several fundraisers, and has done fairly well.

One of them is Minnesota 13 t-shirts. Minnesota 13 was the name given to the moonshine produced in Stearns County during Prohibition.

The Holdingford area was one of the hotbeds of moonshining and Minnesota 13 had the reputation of being a high quality, albeit elicit liquor.

The historical society also sells bottled water and has set up collection jars throughout the community.

The sale of CDs containing news stories from the Holdingford Advertiser is another fundraiser. Stories from issues of the Advertiser going back to the 1900s are on the CDs.

The Advertiser was the precursor to the Holdingford Herald, which published until 1972.

"It's been doing very well for us," Marstein said about the CDs.

The historical society hopes to tie in their building with the covered bridge over the Lake Wobegon Trail and the trail itself. A gift shop is one possibility.

While the historical society has many artifacts now, they are continuing to look for more, particularly old photos.

"People with old photos can donate them to the historical society," said member Jan Klug, or they can just drop them off and get them returned.

"If people have old photos they can give them to Mike (Odden) who will make copies and give the photos back," Ebnet said.

The Holdingford Area Historical Society is a not for profit organization and donations are tax deductible. Those who wish to donate can send their donation to Holdingford Area Historical Society, c/o Sue Marstein, Box 69, Holdingford, MN. 56304, or drop it off at the Stearns Bank in Holdingford.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Tidbits From the Past

 Tom Long , had been looking at some old newspapers and was kind enough to share the information he gleaned with us.
Thanks Tom

July 21, 1910 - Sitting Bull Jr. and a small band of his braves, and one
medicine man came in off the reservation one night this week and treated the
citizens to a ghost dance.
March 2, 1911 - Henry Sandkamp has purchased the Merchants Hotel with
furniture. The price was $6100.
June 22, 1911 - "Real Estate Deal" - Henry Sandkamp bought the old drugstore
wing adjacent to the Merchants Hotel from Val Herman last Monday morning.
The price of the property has not been given out, but is understood to be
about $3500 to $4000. The property is a two story brick veneered building
with a full stone basement and also includes a piece of ground in the angle
between the hotel and the addition just transferred. Mr. Sandkamp has now a
handsome and valuable piece of property as there is in town.
May 15, 1913 - "New Telephone Service" - Holdingford has now the most
complete and prompt service that can be procured. The Northwestern Telephone
Company has begun a continuous day and night service with Miss Mary Abeln as
chief operator and Miss Lizzie Sandkamp as assistant. Holdingford has wanted
this service for many years and will now take pride in at last securing the
best there is to be had. Nothing slow about this town!
October 29, 1914 - "Attention" A meeting of the citizens of Holdingford will
be held in the Scenic Opera House, Saturday evening Oct. 31st, 1914, at 7:30
to consider the matter of electric lights. A representative from
Minneapolis, and others, will be on hand to give information on the subject.
Everyone is invited to attend. 
December 10, 1914 - "Lights Coming" - It takes a time keeper and a card
index to keep up with Holdingford. 
We are going to have electric lights after all. They are almost ready. The
building is up and the machinery will be installed at once. The poles have
been set and the wire strung and today we print the franchise and the
contract whereby the village gets street lights. About the middle of January
next, Holdingford will be shining like a jewel.
January 14, 1915 - The electric light plant was first started up last Friday
evening and light furnished in the corner saloon for a while. Saturday
evening the lights were turned on the streets. It certainly looked good. The
lights will not be turned on regularly for a few days yet.
June 10, 1915 - Val Herman has traded his lot back of the Merchants Hotel to
Henry Sandkamp for a lot opposite the depot near Mr. Stewart's residence.
This last lot he has sold to the Standard Oil Company which is now putting
in two storage tanks for kerosene and gasoline. Mr. Herman will now have
charge of the station here and will run a tank team to deliver oil to nearby
February 3, 1916 - Nemec Theatre, St. Cloud - One week starting February 6,
Sunday matinee - Elliot and Sherman present twice daily - "The Worlds
Mightiest Spectacle", D.W. Griffith's "The Birth of a Nation". Good Horses,
18,000 People, 5,000 Scenes, Cost $500,000, Symphony Orchestra of 30.
Daily Matinees, 25c, 50c, 75c, 1.00
Evening " 50c, 75c, 1.00, 1.50
November 29, 1917 - "Thanksgiving Midnight Supper" - A big Thanksgiving
mid-night supper will be served The Merchants Hotel beginning at 11:00 p.m.
Price 75c per couple. Everyone is cordially invited to come and enjoy a
good, square meal.  
December 27, 1917 - The Merchants Hotel has put on fire escape ladders on
the east and south side of the building to comply with the state
regulations. Winkler Brothers won the contract, and their valuable employ,
Stephen Gruidl made the iron fire escapes here, which is a creditable piece
of work.
February 28, 1918 - "Holdingford Lightless" - The mass meeting held here
last Monday evening by Mr. Fred Speechly, secretary of the Holdingford Light
Company. was not very well attended, and according to all probabilities,
Holdingford will not only have Wheatless, Meatless, Heatless, Snowless, days
but most of all "Lightless nights" and the people of this community are
wondering what the "whatnextless" will mean.
May 27, 1920 - "Aeroplane creates sensation in Holdingford on Monday" -
Cyril Stodolka, the Royalton aviator, accompanied by Alvin Orth, arrived on
the Frank Meier field at five-thirty Monday afternoon with 65-horse Curtis.
He came over in about 8 minutes against the wind. The news of his coming was
circulated around earlier in the day, and a large crowd of spectators were
awaiting his arrival.