A Look Back at Laurel History

Roy E. Bequette claims Edgar land in 1917

Doc Richardson had a medical practice in Laurel 50 years ago. Today, the 80-year-old spends his leisure time skiing, performing community service as a Rotarian and entertaining friends playing the piano.

Seventy-five years ago every member of the family did their part, including mother who prepared breakfast for dad while the rest of the family dined on dinner.

Compiled by
KATHLEEN GILLULY
Outlook managing editor

Notice for Publication, Department of the Interior, U.S. Land Office at Billings, Montana, Feb. 6, 1917. NOTICE is hereby given that Roy E. Bequette, of Edgar, Montana, who on August 18, 1915, made Hd. Entry 013441, has filed noted of intention to make three-year Proof to establish claim to the land above described, before Register and Receiver US. land Office at Billings, Mont., on the 19th day of March 1917. Claimant names as witnesses: Charley Bequette, James Jaffrey, Mike Bolsnske, of Edgar; Warren Willey of Silesia, Mont. Non-coal land. Proof to be made under Act of June, 1912.

25 years ago
Feb. 19, 1992
A Laurel woman led Montana Highway Patrol Officers on a chase from Laurel to Ballantine and back before being arrested in her own driveway. Tammy Snelson, also known as Tammy Lee Waite, 32, of Laurel, was arrested in the driveway of her 13th Ave. residence after leading officers on an approximately 75-mile chase. Throughout the chase Snelson drove erratically and refused to pull over. She was cited for DUI, second offense, driving with a revoked driver’s license and no insurance.
Births were announced for Kathryn Elizabeth Calvert, Ethan Conn Malnaa, Joshua Michael Carlson and Haley Shanae Kuntz.
The Valentine holiday was not a peaceful one for the Laurel Police Department, which made one arrest for assault and has charges pending for property destruction which occurred over the weekend. On Feb. 14, a 14-year-old female was arrested for assault. Police reports indicate the girl repeatedly struck another female juvenile. On Feb. 15, officers responded to a disturbance. The disturbance was a result of an earlier altercation at a downtown parking lot where some windows were broken out of a vehicle.

50 years ago
Feb. 22, 1967
The first session of a shelter manager’s school was conducted Monday evening by Yellowstone County Civil Defense director, Earl Morrow and Gene Frates, instructor, Three more sessions will be conducted in council chambers. City civil defense committee members are Roy Edwards, Walter Parker and Richard Black. Mayor John Beslanwitch expressed “regrets that so few turned out for the school and some of manager positions had to be filled by persons attending the school from Billings. Assignments were made by Morrow and Frates with Beslanwitch being named shelter manager;Jon Galusha, information and training; Walter Parker, medical and sanitation; Mrs. Ellen Ready, recreation; Gay Easton, fire and safety; Henry Michaelis, communications; Joe Nicholas, radiology; and Richard Metzger, maintenance. Friday’s session will begin at 6 p.m., when class members will be living under fall-out shelter conditions and will actually ”work” a shelter plan prepared by the group in the preceding sessions.
It was one of those nights when the Locomotives could do no wrong and the Hardin Bulldogs should have cancelled the 65 mile trip to the Laurel gym. The Trainmen never trailed as they rolled to a “win as you please” 83-38 Big 32 win over Hardin.
Twenty-two scouts and dads of Boy Scout Troop 414 participated in a two-day winter camp project at Camp Byrne south of Laurel. Various requirements were accomplished in the correct usage of compass the ax and knife; and instruction was given in campfire cooking and first aid. As a physical fitness activity scouts set up and ran an obstacle course. Participating were Steven Barrett, Steve Blohm, Brad Briant, Charles Bullis, Jim Gratwohl, Allen Henry, Dale Henry, Russell Hall, Dean Hodges, Steven Klimple, Jack Mahan, Doug Rupp, Gary Saxbury, Mike Saxbury, Todd Yeager and Gary Pederson.
Ten couples in Bob Mace’s square dance class attended the annual Grapevine dance at Roy’s Barn. Mace was among local callers at the dance that was attended by approximately 120 persons. Dancers from Laurel were Mr. and Mrs. Larry Tisor, Mrs. and Mrs. Roman Wuertz, Mr and Mrs. Bill Ripley, Mr. and Mrs. Ray Harris, Mr. and Mrs. Roy Blohm, Mr. and Mrs. Dick Lohof, Mr. and Mrs. John Ostwalt, Mrs. and Mrs. Barney Faught, Mr. and Mrs. Cliff Amundson and Mrs. and Mrs. Mace.

75 years ago
Feb. 18, 1942
A draft registration board operated here Monday in conjunction with similar boards throughout the nation registered 249 men between the ages of 20 and 45. The work was performed at the Commercial club building on Main St. over a 14 hour period. It was the third draft registration and covered age extensions not embraced by the first two. The original—America’s first for a peace time, which was before Pearl Harbor—was for men 21 to 35. The greatest rush was late in the forenoon, when the room was packed with men waiting their turn at the registrars’ desks. Of the 249, two had registered for the first World war. They were Leo Kamp and W.L. King. One man, Newton Mellenbrook, walked 16 miles from the Schulze ranch north of Laurel. He left the ranch at 6 a.m. and arrived shortly after noon. The last to register was a transient who said he had no home, wrote no letters and received none. After he had registered he asked where he could find “the law,” as he wanted a place to sleep and was financially embarrassed. The registration was conducted by volunteers from the VFW and the American Legion. R.B.. Packard was chief registrar. Other registrars assisting were Fred W. Graff, O.R. Burdett, S.S. Bliss, George Olmstead, Joe Hogenson, B.E. Nutting, Albert Warfield, John Beslanwitch, George Paisley, Roy Edwards, Craig Rothwell and J.D. Fellows.
Miss Irma Marie Shay, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Loren R. Shay, became the bride of Lawrence V. Branstetter at a ceremony Feb. 10. Rev. Rorrest W Werts, pastor of the First Methodist church of Billings, read the service at 3:30 in the afternoon. Attending the couple were Mr. and Mrs. Buck Branstetter. The bride is employed at the Ben Franklin store. The bridegroom, the son of Mr. and Mrs. John Branstetter, expects to be called into army service shortly. They are residing in the Fahy apartments.

100 years ago
Feb. 14, 1917
Sergt. W.B. George, Jr., of this city, who was with Troop A, Montana cavalry, in a statement made here yesterday says that ammunition is shipped into Mexico at will. There are hundreds of miles of unguarded border, says Sergeant George. Villa and Carranza troops ride back and forth after guns and ammunition whenever they choose to do so.
One-hundred and twenty persons were killed and 1,125 were injured in railroad accidents in Montana last year, according to the ninth annual report of the state railroad and public service commission. The report, a thick book substantially bound in cloth has been received in Laurel. Of the persones killed, one was a passenger, 37 were employees, 70 were trespasser and 12 were non-trespassers. Of those injured, 141 were passengers, 27 were passengers traveling under contract, 848 were employes, 60 were trespassers and 49 were non-trespassers.

Three babies were born to Park City residents Monday, as follows: A son to Mr. and Mrs. William Kinnick, a daughter to Mr. and Mrs. Tsutsumi and a son to Mr. and Mrs. John Wagner.
The play, “How the Vote was Won,” was presented in a very able manner by the Park City seventh and eighth grade boys and girls to a large and appreciative audience last Friday at Stoltz hall. Before the opening of the play the high school orchestra gave a 45-minute concert, which was much enjoyed by all. The proceeds amounted to nearly $50, which will be used to finish paying for the new Victrola recently purchased by the school.
Mrs. H.A. Carlisle entertained at her home Tuesday afternoon in honor of Mrs. Heinz. A very pleasant time was spent in playing 500 after which a most delicious luncheon was served by the hostess. Among the guests were Mrs. F.A. Weatherhead of Billings, Mesdames Wold, Moody, Laird, Whiteman, Slick, Lines, Kassner, Nutting, McNeil, Heinz, Anstrom, Graff, Miller, Shadle, Stevens and Calder. The house was beautifully decorated with hearts.
Bryant Nutting returned from a trip to Chicago Friday evening. He said he found the weather very disagreeable, but the cattle market good.
H. Swan, editor of the Joilet Independent, was a visitor in Laurel Friday. He accompanied the basketball teams from that city.

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