A look back at Laurel History

Compiled by Sunny Cobb
Outlook staff writer

25 years ago

Nov. 20, 1991

Four Cenex employees were praised Tuesday by Cenex Refinery Manager Lou Day for quickly putting out a fire in the Number One Crude Unit early Friday morning, Nov. 15. Shift Foreman Doug Schwindt and operators, Jesse Chavez, Bob Ulschak, and Bill Burgan, were working in the crude unit when a seal failure on a diesel pump caused a small fire to break out. The four men were able to extinguish the fire within about five minutes, said Day. He said the fire was out by the time the Cenex Fire Team was on the scene. “All these men did a tremendous job in putting out the fire this quickly,” praised Day. Day said minimal damage was done by the fire, but added that the fire would have been larger, and more damage would have been done, if the men on shift had not been able to put out the small blaze so quickly. The four Cenex employees, three from Laurel and one from Billings, were taken to a Billings hospital where they were treated for smoke inhalation and released.

Two local students, Jennifer Reese of Laurel and Pete Siegel of Park City, will sing with the Eastern Montana College Choir and Madrigal singers at the annual Christmas concert. The “Echoes of Christmas ‘91” concert will be held at the first United Congregational Church of Christ. This is the second consecutive year that director Kenyard E. Smith has chosen to move the annual concert from the campus to this site. “Aesthetic beauty of the church sanctuary, along with the acoustic properties which allow for choral freedom, and the additional seating capacity prompt this change,” explained Smith.


50 years ago

Nov. 23, 1966

The First Proclamation of Thanksgiving by George Washington was read by Mrs. Herman Schessler as part of the Thanksgiving program she presented at the annual Thanksgiving potluck dinner of Laurel Federated Women’s club.

A very interesting and unusual dance, a Computer Hop, will be sponsored at Laurel High School soon by the members of the 1966-67 Lettermen’s club. Each person planning to attend the dance will receive a card for the price of $1. Each card will contain a selection of 50 questions which will be answered by the student, then analyzed by a computer. Students will be matched (with a date) from the information given. “The identity of the dates will not be revealed until the night of the dance,” Dick Hollad, Letterman club president, said.

Four Laurel civic leaders, have been nominated for listing in the 1966 edition of Outstanding Civic Leaders of America, Mayor John Beslanwitch announced. Named by Mayor Beslanwitch for the nomination were Peter D. Thompson, Mrs. P.A. Johnston, Loyd Shay, and Richard Black. In announcing his selection, Mayor Beslanwitch said, “We have so many outstanding leaders in our community, I am sorry I could only chose four.” “Outstanding Civic Leaders is an annual biographical compilation designed to recognize and honor civic and community leaders. The 10,000 civic leaders included in the 1966 edition will all be selected by local civic clubs, groups and organizations based on local civic contributions. This is a distinct national honor for nominees, who will be included if they meet the minimum standards set by the Editorial Board,” A. M. Haney, Editor of the Biographical Editorial Section, said in a letter to Beslanwich. “These civic leaders surely don’t perform their civic duties for recognition. But recognition properly given can serve to inspire others to give their time to additional civic responsibilities,” Haney concluded.


75 years ago

Nov. 19, 1941

Three Laurel girls, all students at Montana State College, have been appointed members of the staff for the Exponent, college newspaper, according to Charles Harrington of Butte, editor of the Exponent. Ruth Heebner has been appointed managing editor and Kay Heebner and Ellen Mae Coombs have both been selected as reporters.

Mrs. Beulah Hartley, listening to a coffee program on the radio, was surprised Wednesday morning when the telephone rang and she was part of the program. The radio station asked her to identify the music then being played. She made a record reply, one second, and said the piece was “It Had to Be You.” Up to that point she had been surprised. She was overwhelmed when she learned she had won $34.

Describing the 1941 Christmas Seal of the State Tuberculosis association, Mrs. H. A. Carlisle, Laurel chairman, said this week, “The design on this year’s seal is a lighthouse, radiating the light of knowledge, cheer and hope to those in need. It is also an inspiration to many club women to be a lighthouse keeper to guide weary travelers into a haven of rest and protection from the disease tuberculosis, and to go the ‘second mile’ in purchasing Christmas seals that provide the means to carry on the splendid work of the State Tuberculosis association.

Mrs. Ralph Johnson, editor of “Trucking Truths,” a monthly publication of the Billings-Laurel unit of Women’s Auxiliary Montana Motor Transport Association, is the author of a story appearing in the December issue of “Outdoor Life.” The story, the title of which is “Montana’s Ocean Fish,” deals with the sport of shad fishing in the Yellowstone river, principally in the Laurel territory.


100 years ago

Nov. 22, 1916

W. J. Sergel, manager of the Casino theatre is giving the people of Laurel the best to be obtained in moving pictures. On Sunday and Monday evening he had a big five-reel film featuring Big Jim Garrity which drew a packed house. The weekly program issued each week by the manager, enables the people to pick the show they desire to see.

Hank Wright of Billings, came here last week and after getting drunk and creating a disturbance in town was arrested. In Judge Unger’s court he entered a plea of guilty and was assessed a fine of $75 and given 90 days in the county jail. The jolt shattered his nerves so that he flew in a rage at the court. He was taken to Billings that evening by Deputy Sheriff F. M. Quinn and lodged in the county jail. This was not his first offense according to the officers, but it was the first time he had been hailed before the court.

The Rogers concrete force have abandoned work for the winter and Laurel residents will suffer from the lack of good walks in districts where they have heretofore had good board walks. Several places in the district the board walk was torn out and part of the excavation was done. During the past week those who use the walks on Third Ave. had to take the gumbo path.

Geo. Michael has moved his family to Laurel for the winter. He has been working beets near Billings.

Col. C. N. Moore, the auctioneer of Billings, is a firm believer of advertising in the Outlook columns. As proof he says the sales which were advertised in this paper drew big crowds and the people were eager to buy.



Upcoming Events

Tuesday, June 25, 2019
Tuesdays, Noon, Beartooth Grill, 305 1st Ave. S.
Tuesday, June 25, 2019
Fourth Tuesdays, 7 p.m., Eagles Hall, 313 W. Main, 628-4503
Wednesday, June 26, 2019
10 a.m., Laurel Public Library, 720 West Third Street, Laurel, 628-4961
Wednesday, June 26, 2019
Every Wednesday at 5:30 p.m., check www.laurelexchangeclub.org for more info. Find them on Facebook www.facebook.com/laurelexchangeclub . Email them to find out meeting time and to join: clubinfo@laurelexchangeclub.org The club will have a meeting or volunteer activity. Meeting location is Sid's East Side Bar & Grill on first and third Wednesdays of each month. Members and guests eat free.  Volunteer activity on the second Wednesday of each month. Check their facebook page for updates.  Every fourth Wednesday is for a club social activity. 
Tuesday, July 2, 2019
Tuesdays, Noon, Beartooth Grill, 305 1st Ave. S.
Wednesday, July 3, 2019
10 a.m., Laurel Public Library, 720 West Third Street, Laurel, 628-4961


Are you going to buy any firefighter’s raffle tickets to support the 4th of July fireworks show?

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