The River Press (Fort Benton, Mont.) 1880-current, December 29, 1976, Image 1

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THE RIVER PRESS $6 00 a year. $7 50 outside Montana Single Copy 15e Bicentennial Top Chouteau County News Story in 1976 Wheat and weather, or weath- er and wheat, normally top any year's news in Chouteau coun- ty, but in 1976, at least in the writer's opinion, the nation's Bicentennial was the major local story of 1976. In varied phases, it beat out the normal duo, the Montana Power pipe- line and gas field, construction of a $1.3 million retirement home in Fort Benton, and designation of the Missouri river in the nation's wild and scenic system Chief facet of the Bicentennial year locally was the financing. construction and dedication of the official Montana Lewis and Clark Memorial at Fort Benton on June 13, but Chouteau county towns, Big Sandy, Geraldine and Highwood, and smaller communities joined with zest and effort toward marking America's 200th birthday. Ger- aldine produced a big communi- ty history, and sold out all 1500 copies quickly. The Fort Benton celebration drew about 12,000 people to a giant parade June 12, and thousands more for the next day dedication. Furthermore, it re- ceived high state recognition, a r•production of the statuary = 141. 7 d a maps, the Montana on about a million Chamber of Commerce award- ed the project top place as the state's best Bicentennial effort. Many Montana communities. the Libby high school Bicenten- nial band, a number of city floats, helped the project along, and sent various groups to the big parade. Canadian participa- tion, in recognition of ancient ties with Fort Benton, made it an international affair. Fort Macleod sent its Mounted Patrol and mayor, Alberta its trade commissioner and coun- sel, to participate. Five thous- and museum visitors in two days emphasized the visita- tions Best of all. at year end the committee which had worked on the project from 1972 could report that not only had the nearly $160.000 cost of the statuary been raised by sale of bronzes. plus $27,000 for the celebration, but there was left over, a profit of more than $80,000. Any surplus had been designated from inception for historical preservation purpos es Agriculture and weather dropped behind the Bicentenni- al only because of the varied efforts around our county to- ward the nation's birthyear observance Effects of a less than promising moisture total were partially offset during 1976 by the previous year's record breaking moisture marks. At year end, with a lengthy drouth beginning in mid -August. the coming year's prospects had worsened During the year, in March wheat prices temporari- ly perked up. flirted with a 14 a bushel level and went to blazes thereafter, year end figures being around half Perhaps emphasizing what had been, the River Press could report during the early months of 1976, that 1974 farm sales in Chouteau county had been almost $60 million, and that the 1975 crop total was in the neighborhood of 21,600,003 bushels, the highest ever The 1976 crop was not near that mark, more likely in the neighborhood of the 17 , 7 million bushels in 1974--a good crop, but no record A melancholy note on the agricultural picture the local Melroe plan announced 20 layoffs sta, 'mg January 1 Two news stories indicated that Chouteau county may be moving from total dependence on agriculture Montana Pow- er, which had been building a pipeline to tap the natural gas from the area south of the Bear Paws, put its Bear Paw gas on the line in October, and next month dedicated the South Bear Paw gas field Meanwhile, during the summer the utility had moved ahead with a big drilling program. with good fortune in its natural gas successes Beating an adjourn- ment deadline, congress passed and the president signed, Lee Metcalf's bill which designated the Missouri river below here an addition to the nation's wild and scenic river system. With that comes much more publici- ty for the area, and an anticipated growth in the num- ber of tourists, in this case by boat. With Fort Benton designa- ted for the information center, this city should gain a growing share in tourism Interestingly, a number of group Bicentennial projects involved retracing the trail of Lewis and Clark Among sever- al noted, the \Great American Flatboat expedition\ in June, a group of Explorer Scouts from Nebraska in late July, two Louisville. Kentucky, boys in May doing the same thing, and a Three Forks group heading down river in June. And the 20th annual, and Bicentennial, Mis- souri cruise from here to Fort Peck drew about 80 boats, nearly four times the usual number. Several businesses changes were noted, there were close out sales for the Benton Equipment. Loma Mercantile and at year end for Marion's Floral But K's Auto Parts was a newcomer, also Certified Auto Repair, Voyageur Art Gallery and Banque Club And the postoffice moved from its quarters of twenty years to a new location. There were many stories of good news, too many of bad, with numerous families mourn- ing the loss of members during the year There was tragedy, which might have been far more fearful, for our neighbor city of Belt in November On the sports scene, Fort Benton girl gymnastics were second in the state after winning the year before, High - wood high won its district conference in basketball and was second in its tourney, Big Sandy gridders got to the semi-finals in state playoffs after winning the northern B title --and owned an impressive 6-0 hoop record at the break, Fort Benton football team lost a classic five overtime game to Cut Bank. and local youngsters set five state records and tied one in a state AAU meet in June A check of our 1975 files, a hurried one, provides the fol- lowing, month by month January Dennis Boggs of Geraldine buys Forsyth Chevro- let -Olds franchise Moisture marks broken in 1975. Fort Benton 25 65 inches, Geraldine 19 65, Genou 23 37, Shonkin 44 60 Applicants and officials struggle through lengthy delays in vehicle licensing due to changes to \anniversary\ month expirations Jaycees give bosses' night awards to Warren Burch, Ken Curtiss. Louise Edwards, Harold Brown, Jim Willits, John Diek hans. Floyd Dawson February: March start ex pected on Sunrise Bluff rents- ment home Federal reg,s held it up ) Girl gymnasts second in state, class A Taxpayer meet• ings held to organize for court action on reappraisal program Carter plans sewer and water systems, loan of 1357.300. grand of $125,000 approved Grand Union Hotel is national historic site Chouteau County District Hospital at Fort Benton receiv ed $3,500 from Montana Elks for equipment Tentative approval of 1350,000 for Highwood creek water control Banque Club opened by Lyle and Junne Johnsrud. March - Promotion starts on Fort Benton's Bicentennial Wheat prices erratic in $4 range. March arrives with four inch snow Most vehicle owners finally beat license deadlines Judith Landing in national historic place register National Lewis & Clark Trail group's publication features memorial here Chouteau county wheat crop estimate for 1975 was 21,569,800 bushels Highwood planning June 5 Bicentennial program Chouteau County Pro- perty Owners Association incor- porated, Kenneth Morrow. pres- ident ( Continued on page four WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 29, 1976 Vanished landmark: \Pretti- ed up\ at the suggestion of and example of Charles Hovey, this was to hay e been a Fort Benton museum. World War II inter- vened. Mr. Bovey gaYe up and went off to a great job at Virginia City. It was considered as a site for a Chouteau County Veterans Memorial building, then traded and the Benton Funeral Home erected on the side in 1956-57. like most older Fort Benton buildings. it had a connection with steamboats. Kleinschmidt & Bro.. big Helena firm, after the failure of the Carroll Trail from the Musselshell to Helena, in 1877 conceded Benton steam - boating had a future, establish- ed a branch here. In July they broke ground for a concrete warehouse and store 35x165, first construction of this nature here. The branch store hit the boom on the river on the nose. Theirs was small operation, with Murphy. Neel & Co.. T. C. Power & Bro. and I. G. Baker & Co. they were the \big four\ amont the mercantile commo- dores of the world's innermost port. Their forwardings to Helena rivaled any business out of here. they helped keep the Coulson and Kountr boats busy, and rousters unloaded thous- ands of tons right at the rear of the Kleinschmidt Chouteau County District Hospital At Fort Benton The staff at the Chouteau County District Hospital at Fort Benton provides the following news of admissions, etc ADMISSIONS Floyd Osborn, city; Matthew Kapus, city, December 18 Molly Schlog. city, December 19 Angela Stone, Geraldine, 0 S Johnson. city, Clarence Pugh, city. December 20 Janet Anderson, Geraldine, December 21 Edna Drube, city, December 23 George Denny, Rocky Boy, Mrs Vern Hodgson, city, Dec- ember 24 Roy Williamson, city, Decem- ber 25 Dave Maughan, Norfolk, Ne- braska, December 27 Mary Klay, city. December za DISMISSALS Jennifer Koazewski, city, De- cember 18 Matthew Kapus, city. NeJ Bronson, city, December 19 Clarence Pugh, city, Decem- ber 20 Patricia Clarke. city. Angela Stone, Geraldine. December 22 Janet Anderson, Geraldine, 0 S Johnson, city, December 23 Mrs Vern Hodgson and daughter. city. Roy William son, city, George Denny, Rocky' Boy, December 27 Walter DeWitt, Loma, Dec ember 28 BIRTHS A daughter to Mrs Vern Hodgson. city, December 24 DEATHS Arnold Tacke, city, Decem- ber 24 When the railroad came to Helena in 1883. the operation here stopped. In later years it was a livery stable, then an unoccupied shell for years, before Mr. lioYey's suggestions fixed it up for the final time. Scrap was stored here during the tsar years Jaycees Holiday Tournament Underway At School's Gym The annual Jaycee holiday tournament got underway at the high school gym Tuesday eve ning As the River Press is made up Tuesday afternoon, it was impossible to print scores of games in this issue First round pairups were Fort Benton Collegians vs Highwood, Ger- aldine Independents vs. Belt, Big Sandy vs Palace, Fort Benton Independents vs Geral- dine Collegians Loser out games are schedul- ed at 5 and 6 - 30, semi-finals at 8 and 9:30 this (Wednesday) evening Thursday afternoon loser out games are at 1 and 2:30, and consolation and cham- pionship games at 7 - 30 and 9 p m Admissions are $1 for over 12, 50c under 12 for all sessions except Thursday night, when the admission will be $1.50 and $1 Special Jerseys will be presented members of the championship team by the sponsoring Jaycees The Palace team is defending its 1975 and 1974 titles, winning last year 102-99 over Highwood Fort Benton Independents won third over Geraldine Indepen- dents 77-76. both games being decided in the closing seconds W. Hampton $500 Winner Wayne Hampton was winner of the $500 award in the Christmas shopping promotion sponsored by Fort Benton Commercial Club The award, of twenty $25 gift certificates, was announced last Thursday eveninr In three previous weeks, awards were made of a $50 certificate, two of $25 and eight of 110. weekly That made the total more than $1,000. Recipients should have these redeemed immediately; they are goad at any of the participating stores. Meeting On Sunflower A telephone call from the L R Ranch of Jordan advises there will be an informational meet- ing next Wednesday. January 5th, on sunflower as an alterna- tive to wheat It will be at the Vets Hall in Geraldine, starting at 1 p.m The meeting has also been advertised in a display ad this issue A number of crops have shown some promise in replace- ment of a portion of the wheat crop, a few weeks ago similar informational sessions were held on safflower with some emphasis on saline seep control. olunor \I \II \umber ill John Applegate Died Dec. 22 John Applegate, 94, resident of the Square Butte area for 66 years. died Wednesday morn- ing, December 22, 1976, in a Great Falls hospital Funeral services will be this Thursday at 2 p m in the Community United Methodist Church in Geraldine with Rev Dwight Harshman officiating Burial will be in Geraldine Cemetery Mr Applegate was born in Cedar county, Missouri, in 1882. He came to the Stanford area in 1909 with a group of farm people from Vernon county, Missouri, and spent the winter in Stan- ford February 2. 1910, Mr Applegate and Leota Withrow, one of the group, were married in Utica That spring they moved out to homesteads on the Square Butte bench He later recalled that he spent 54 days that first year hauling lumber and supplies by wagon, general- ly a three day round trip to and from Fort Benton He did considerable plowing with hors es for neighbors in the early years The Applegates lived the remainder of their lives on the farm Mrs Applegate died in 1966. Survivors are a son, Royce, Geraldine. daughter, Mrs George (Lois) Flathers, Kansas City. Missouri, and one grand- child ALL ovER THE. WORLD: iiRRARyr MONTANA HISTORICAL SOCIETY HeieN Mqpiana 59601 . .4 - . • --*1 Memorial Cost $349,839.90 With Profit About $81,000 Wise Oil Gets Gasser Last week's Oil Journal reported that Wise Oil had a shut in gas well on federal land in 8-25-17. Sherard field in Chouteau county The well went to 1986 feet and flowed 889,000 cubic feet per day, a better than average rate, before being temporarily capped Also re- ported was a Probe Oil location on Nepil land in 12-26-13, spudded in and headed for the 1600 foot Eagle sand The Journal also reported there were 38 drilling rigs on location in Montana last week, with two more coming from North Dakota. to make the total about the same as late Decem- ber of 1975, when 41 rigs were making hole Arnold Tacke Passes Friday Arnold J. Tacke, 59, resident of this county all his life, died Friday, December 24, 1976, in the Chouteau County District Hospital following a lengthy illness. Services were Tuesday morn- ing at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church with Requiem Mass by Fr. Carl Erickson. Joe Moorse was lector. with songs by Mike and Diane O'Hara, Kathleen Ayers accompanying on the organ Ushers were Mark Albers and David Roddy. Inter- ment was in Riverside cemete- ry!. Pallbearers were Howard Meeks Jr , Francis O'Hara, George Frieling, Bill Kelly, John Kelly and Lloyd Stubsten. Honorary pallbearers were Richard Heydon, James Grimes, George Vielleux, Har- old Lippert, Bill Meeks and Charles Conn Arnold was born November 27, 1917, in the Egly section where his parents, Joseph and Rose Toennis Tacke, home- steaded in the fall of 1913 He graduated from Fort Benton high school in 1935 He served in the army national guard from 1935 to 1938. and farmed until he enlisted in the navy in Septem- ber 1942. He served in the South Pacific until 1945, being dm:- charded as machinist mate first class Arnold was a member of Knights of Columbus, VFW and Montana Grain Growers Associ- ation Arnold and Virginia Longtin were married in Denver May 30, 1942 Following his service in the navy, they farmed in the Goosebill area north of here Survivors include his wife, Virginia, a daughter, Kathleen Brooke. son, Tom Tacke, and a brother, George Tacke, all of Fort Benton, a sister, Florence Higgins of Great Falls, and two grandsons, as well as other relatives He was preceded in death by three sons and two daughters Down To Last Woman Zane Grey once wrote a popular \To The Last Man\ When the Sullivan family got down to the \last woman:' Verna carried on for several years distributing the Great Falls papers. but retired Sun- day Husband Jim is ready to retire from the city water department and insisted Per haps it would set a had examp;e Anyway, the Tribune had an interesting story about the Sullivan family's 21 years on their routes Ron started in September of 1955 He now lives in Great Falls and his son, Todd. is a substitute carrier Five of the seven Sullivan youngsters had Tri- bune routes in all The others, Kathy, now Mrs Arvid Galba- vy. Missoula; JoAnn, Mrs. Harley Doyle of Vaughn, Julie, Mrs Dwight Cook of Fort Benton. and Mark, in the navy aboard the USS Holland After Mark went off to sea, Verna Sullivan tool( over the last family route She had the experience, subbing for the kids when all else failed Allen Kindzerski has taken over her route Total cost of the Lewis and Clark Memorial project was $349,839.90, leaving a net profit of $81,013 46, according to Jack Lepley, chairman of the com- mittee which worked on the project from its inception in 1972 until 1976 There are a few items of expense to wind up the final sales of bronze replicas which will make the profit slightly less than the total given The surplus was ear- marked at the inception of the project for historical preser- vation projects. The figures mean that total income was $430,855.36 This includes sales of bronze repli- cas, bronze plaques and small ingots of the large statuary, income from special shows at the dedication (about $7,000, if the editor's recollection is correct), sales of pamphlets and other items at the sales center, and contributions from the Montana Bicentennial Ad- ministration of $7900 toward the statue site preparation and celebration. Mr. Lepley's figures: Advertising bronze sale and art show expenses $4.521.52 Committee expense 13.847.34 Celebration advertis'g $3,521 82 Cost of celebration $23,496 28 Cost of bronze replicas and freight charges $147,272.67 Cost of bronze plaques, dedica bon pieces and ingots $8.285.12 Large statue and site develop- ment $84.P7864 Artist teas, expenses and en- larging fee 174,814.51 Total cost $349,839 90 Total net profit $81,013 76 (less a few unpaid expenses to finish up last sales delivery.) The Lewis and Clark commit- tee worked under the Fort Benton Community Improve- ment Association in contracting with the artist, Bob Scriver. Members of the Lewis and Clark committee were Jack Lepley, Jon West, Joan Stewart, Steve Kohler, Phil Scriver, Gail Stensland and Joel F Overhol- ser in the last period Jon West replaced Bill Johnson on the group after the latter v. - as transferred to Minneapolis During the final stages, the dedication was an all out committee effort, with the help of hundreds of people, here and in other towns. In the latter stages, too. Loren Perry and Marion Smith were de facto members, and it would now be impos;ible to name the dozens who 'attended most or all celebration committee meet- ings Much of the work in the first two and a half years involved attending art shows, correspon- dence with prospective purch- asers, and in working with the casting foundries, one for the small size, another for the large size, as well as constant contacts with the artist. In all, 15 fourth size group replicas were sold at $5,500, 35 sixth size groups at $3,000, 45 fourth size individual pieces at $2,000, and 105 sixth size individuals at $1,250 In addi- tion, 200 bronze plaques pictur- ing the memorial in relief were sold at $35 each just prior to the dedication gone before the dedication), and several hun dred small ingots of the statues at $3 50 A history, \Which Way West\ was prepared, printed and sold at SI k Remainders from the ingots and histories were given the museum, which has been and will benefit from the sales This was Fort Benton's Bicen- tennial project, providing the long ago designated Montana memorial to Lewis and Clark at Fort Benton. and the committee is very grateful for all the assistance given, and especially pleased that a substantial profit can be reported, which will be used for purposes helpful to this city Mr and Mrs Barry Morrison of Madras, Oregon, visited for a few days in Great Falls and also in Fort Benton with his grand- parents. Mr and Mrs Roy Morrison, and returned to Oregon Tuesday

The River Press (Fort Benton, Mont.), 29 Dec. 1976, located at <>, image provided by MONTANA NEWSPAPERS, Montana Historical Society, Helena, Montana.