A look back at Laurel history

Runaway buggy controlled by level-headed girl in 1917
By: 
KATHLEEN GILLULY
Outlook managing editor
The new year’s baby shown on the front page of the final paper for 1942, depicts war in the year ahead.

 

25 years ago
Dec. 23, 1992
Laurel officials are waiting on autopsy results for William “Bill” Heiser, 64, who was found dead at his pegboard and plywood shack near I-90 Friday. Heiser, who had become a familiar sight on the Laurel streets, was found dead by two Billings men who had stopped at his shack to give him some food, said Chief Mike Atkinson. “The people had driven by on their way to go skiing. They were aware that he (Heiser) lived there and were going to drop some food off for him,” Atkinson explained. The chief said it was apparent that Heiser had been dead for some time when his body was discovered. Exactly when Heiser died  and what the official cause of death was, will have to be determined by an autopsy. Workers a local fast food restaurant where Heiser stopped daily said it was at least a week since he had been there.
Dr. Richard Morrison, who has long brought local fame to Laurel with his outstanding Christmas displays, has brought national notoriety to our quiet corner of the world as well. This local dentist was contacted last week by a reporter and a photographer from the newspaper, “USA Today.” His Christmas display will be featured in the Christmas Eve edition of this publication. Dr. Morrison has lived in Laurel for the past 12 years. During that time, residents have been treated to a number of unique Christmas light displays at his Beartooth Dr. residence.
The birth of Erin Elizabeth Kelly was announced.

50 years ago
Jan. 3, 1968
Miss Nikki Nelson, daughter of the Rev. and Mrs. Vincent B. Nelson, was crowned Laurel’s Miss Junior Miss at the annual Jaycee-sponsored pageant was held in the high school auditorium. After interviews and talent shows, a physical fitness routine, presented by the entire group, was directed by Mrs. Georgia Wilson. Miss Nelson received $100 for merchandise contributed by Laurel merchants and will receive an expense-paid trip to the state pageant in Kalispell next month.
Due to mechanical failure, we are unable to get all of our news set in type this week.

75 years ago
Dec. 30, 1942
Montana has collected 268 pounds of scrap iron and steel for every man, woman and child in the state between July 1 and Nov. 30, according to a report made to Gov. Sam C. Ford by Wm. E. Rae, chairman of the state salvage committee. That is above the estimate previously given. Chairman Rae told the governor the state should go “over the top.”
A Mrs. Wagner of Billings, a writer, presented the woman’s view of the war and its aftermath at an evening meeting of the Laurel Rotary Club Tuesday. Wives of club members were guests and visitors were present from Billings and Park City. Mrs. Wagner read a paper she had specially prepared for the occasion, in which an important point was that women of the world are experiencing a greater emancipation and as a result will have a greater voice in conduct of affairs—including correction of social and economic maladjustments and the causes of war.
Mr. and Mrs. Guy Bray were hosts at a family dinner at their home on Christmas day when those present were Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Bray of Kelso, Wash., Vinton Bray, who arrived several weeks ago from South America! Mrs. Harlan Doom, who is home from the east coast where Mr. Doom is serving with the Atlantic fleet; Emmett Bray of Trona, Calif., Miss Gertrude Gilles, who is teaching at Ryegate; Miss Marjorie Shay, student nurse at the Deaconess hospital in Great Falls; Mr. and Mrs. Roscoe Shay, Mrs. Kenneth Shay, Mr. and Mrs. Clyde Bray and son, Dickie, Mrs. Lois Wheeler, Elroy Gilles, Bonnie, Leonard and David Marsh and Mr. and Mrs. Bray. In the evening Mrs. Joe Nicholas showed colored movie pictures of reunions of the Bray families on three  separate occasions in the last two years.
The following from Chester Herbert to his father, Henry Herbert is dated Nov. 17 from Casablanca, Morocco, North Africa: Nearly a month ago I left the States and this is the first good chance I’ve had to write or get into clean clothes. I suppose you know we had a bit of excitement here and that everything is well in hand and all land and sea engagements have been finished in favor of the Allies. I got to see two good naval battles and surely have respect for our navy. The Axis has plenty of dread and respect for the U.S. boys in blue. Our outfit was in the thick of things and saw lots of action, but there was not one casualty. Personally, I have no love for bombing—it is just something you can’t fight back against—and I hope the people in the States never have to go through it. Words won’t describe it. All in all, the American soldier is liked and respected by one and all in Morocco. Our money is exceptionally high and we are better paid than most anyone here. Their soldiers draw about 200 francs a month, while I drew 4,830 francs—quite a difference. Our money is 75 francs for $1. These people have been under the thumb of the Germans so long they have absolutely no sweets, sugar or other luxuries. We have access to candy, gum and some coffee and it’s quite a treat to be able to hand them to these people. Cigarettes are hard to get, and rich, poor, young and old all fight and beg to get a package. I must stop for this time. I am well and things are swell.

100 years ago
Dec. 26, 1917
A cement floor was made last week in the basement of the new addition of the school house.
A dance was given Christmas night in the town hall. The proceeds were donated to the Red Cross.
William Loffer gave the Red Cross a horse last week, which sold for about $125.
Mr. and Mrs. Crismas of Rockvale came over Monday to spend Christmas with their daughter, Mrs. B.M. Harris and family
The Park City basketball team defeated the Bridger team 86 to 6 last Saturday evening. The game was played in the gymnasium.
F. C. Sauerwein, who has been engaged in dairying, has disposed of milch cows and alfalfa and suspended his route in Laurel. The few cows he kept will be milked and the product sold to the Laurel Creamery. The creamery will sell milk to all those who will go after it, but no delivery will be made from the creamery.
Miss Maud Mitchell, eldest daughter of Mr. and Mrs. George Mitchell, distinguished herself Friday when she remained in the buggy and stopped a runaway team after they had gotten a good start. It was a perilous ride, but she was master of the situation. She was driving two horses to a buggy and was driving into the Laurel mill, when a colt that was in the team shied and broke the tongue out of the rig. From there the team started and ran north across the northern Pacific railway tracks and were halted on when they reached the C.B. Sande residence on First Avenue. Without a tongue the rig swerved to and fro during the entire distance and at times it looked as though the buggy would turn over. Miss Mitchell planted herself squarely in the middle of the seat and finally brought them to a halt. A pedestrian on the street at the time ran to her assistance when they stopped and helped unhitch the frightened horses.

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Upcoming Events

Saturday, July 20, 2019
Third Saturdays, 1 p.m., The Crossings, 600 Roundhouse Dr.
Tuesday, July 23, 2019
Tuesdays, Noon, Beartooth Grill, 305 1st Ave. S.
Tuesday, July 23, 2019
Fourth Tuesdays, 7 p.m., Eagles Hall, 313 W. Main, 628-4503
Wednesday, July 24, 2019
10 a.m., Laurel Public Library, 720 West Third Street, Laurel, 628-4961
Wednesday, July 24, 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 30, 2019
Tuesdays, Noon, Beartooth Grill, 305 1st Ave. S.

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