1/30/2017 (2486)

Road trip with Dad 1983
Posted by Vickie Metcalfe (’70):  Bottineau, ND

Gary and Dunseith friends,

Road Trip Home 1983

One summer, while attending an orientation for the blind class with two other guys in Grand Forks Dad learned basic Braille. Thereafter he used a Braille wristwatch.  I relied on Dad and his Braille watch thoughout our trip to tell us the time.

The night before leaving his sister Jean’s, his nephew Ric gifted his Uncle Cliff with a ‘special box’.

My fondness for driving ‘Blue Highways’ found mid morning traveling to avoid traffic. At Everett, we turned onto US Highway #2 to take over the cool Cascades. Groves of  trees were ladened with multi fruit. Greens, reds, and yellows . Dad spoke of Sunday’s long ago when he drove his bride, mom as a newlywed over the Cascades to  the fruit groves.         At a  Wenatchee fruit packing plant boxes of applets, cotlets and cases of peaches were purchased and placed in the back seat.  Dad enjoyed treating and sharing with others.

Crossing the mighty Columbia, meandering  south to pick up interstate across WA  to Spokane sweet peach aroma filled the car.  I couldn’t avoid  the afternoon rush.  My nephew by then was into asking his grandfather about the navy. Grandpa had done basic Navy training at Farragut Idaho. Soon they were talking about what navy recruit guys on leave did when they saw pretty girls.  Navigating with teeth clenched, knuckles white and hair standing on end, lanes of traffic zipping through Spokane I was completely stressed.  The feat was accomplished with no help from the shotgun or middle seats where grandfather and grandson mimed how the Navy guys would  ‘freeze on the corner seeing girls! Urgh!

Cool easy Idaho and Western Montana driving, stopping to  walk and eat local meals.  With all the Navy talk, the next venture was to locate the ranch where Dad’s navy buddy was now living.  The Springdale exit, had a rickety, much used bridge with old bridge planks many nails pulling out which made the loose boards clunk and groan over the Yellowstone. The A.C. was relief from the oppressing heat stirring up  brown dust on a long winding ranch road through swarms of grasshoppers  which  hopped, pelted  and smashed stuck on the windshield obstructing  our view of the Crazy Mountains.

Dad and George were true, solid friends who had endured years of war together watching the others back from basic training, to watching the coast for the enemy, and  on the vast Pacific.  But their  visit was about ranching,good horses, dogs and hunting the Crazy Mountains. Applets, cotlets and fruit for a pie were left with George’s wife as  they said their last goodbye.

The final night of our journey found us staying at my Sidney home.  Once, I had been told native American Indians referenced that part of the valley to death valley  And it felt like it! One could never catch a breath of breeze from the summer heat to cool  down at night.

The cool Turtle Mountains and mom were waiting the next evening. We had built into our memories more moments to treasure and share.

The next day dad instructed me to take peach deliveries to his brother Bill, various friends, nieces  and nephews while he and his  eldest grandson drank peach shakes blended by mom .

He showed Mom how the,  ‘special box’ from his nephew worked. It was then placed in a familiar place where he could always locate it.

Thanks Gary, until Later,

Vickie Metcalfe


Posted by Vickie Metcalfe (’70): Bottineau, ND

Gary , Dunseith friends, and Betty Lamb,

After Dad lost his vision in his mid fifties he attended blind orientation at UND Grand Forks with two other fellows who had also lost their vision. He learned various things one was how to maneuver with a white cane. Another was playing whist using Braille cards.

Through that training he became a bit more self-assured and the senior citizen bus picked him up for lunch at Senor Citizens 3 days a week.  The driver at that time was Ole Olinger. Dad knew several passengers including Dan Peltier, Moise Azure and others.

He knew most of the folks at senior citizen center. They visited, ate and played cards. After the cards, Ole would take bus riders to their homes. But he took dad to Dales.

Of the most consistent at playing whist were, Florence Cushing, Henry  and Melvina Schneider.

After Mrs. Cushing passed away Leonard told Dad of a promise he made to his wife. She requested husband Leonard ‘to promise her if any thing happened to her. Leonard would take her in her place to be Cliff’s partner playing whist’ that he was now dad’s whist partner.

While on our 1983 journey, dad received a ‘special box’

One day he took it on the bus to dinner. He showed the people the silver square cube about four inches. He did not show them a small button.  He kept one finger over it.

The senior citizens were very curious about the special  box.  They asked what it was? He said, “It is an answer box. ” One who expressed the greatest curiosity was Mrs. Pete Schneider.

With a soft voice, She said, “What does it do?” He replied, “ It answers questions”. Sophie said,  “What kind of questions?”  He responded, “Oh, any thing. Would you like to ask it a question?

Sophie said, “Yes, But, What question shall I ask?”

He said, “ Ask it anything.’

Then,  “How about asking what time it is?”

Sophie bent down to the answer box.  Clearing her throat once, then twice.

Sophie ‘s gentle voice spoke at the box.  “Excuse me.”  “Excuse me, Please, tell me what time is it?

The box answered clearly montone, “IT IS NOW 11:25.a.m.”

The senior citizens started to giggle, and the room filled with laugher.  The question box was a talking clock with a push button.

Thanks Gary Until later.

Vickie Metcalfe



Blog (547) posted on September 11, 2009

Posted on September 12, 2009

John Norman Nelson

Obituary posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND.

John Norman Nelson, 87, Minot and formerly of Lansford died on Thursday, September 3, 2009 in a Minot healthcare center.John was born on October 2, 1921 on the family farm in Homan Township of Bottineau County near Dunseith, ND to John H. and Marie (Berg) Nelson. He was reared on the family farm, attended Beaver Dam Rural School and graduated from Dunseith High School in 1941. He excelled in football and basketball and participated in drama and music. As a young adult, he was employed by Boeing Aircraft Corporation in Seattle, WA prior to enlisting in the U.S. Coast Guard on September 11, 1942. Following his honorable discharge as a Carpenter’s Mate First Class on March 20, 1946 in St. Louis Missouri, he returned to North Dakota and resided in Rolette. While in the Coast Guard, he was trained in Chemical Warfare and was awarded a Good Conduct medal. He served in both the European and Pacific Theaters.

John married Della (Lunde) Cobler on July 3, 1955 in Rolette. They made their home in Rolette and New Rockford where he owned and operated Nelson Plumbing and Heating prior to moving to Lansford in 1961. While residing in Lansford, he was employed by Honeywell Corporation as a master plumber and pneumatic service specialist. He worked construction projects at the Minot Air Force Base, Garrison Dam and many projects throughout western North Dakota. He retired from Honeywell Corp in 1983 and was recently awarded a 50 year certificate as a member of the Plumbers and Pipefitters Union Local #300. John and Della moved to Minot in 2003. Della died on June 16, 2008.

John was a member of the Trinity Lutheran Church, American Legion Post 279 (60 year recognition), Senior Citizens, and Community Club all in Lansford. He was a member of the Masonic Lodge of Rolette, Elks Lodge and Eagles Aerie both in Minot and was a delegate to the ND Silver Hair Legislature. He especially enjoyed bowling and tournament play and was a member of teams in Lansford and Minot. In addition, he loved hunting trips in the Badlands, fishing in Canada in his younger years, local sporting events and Minnesota Twins baseball. He was an avid collector of stamps, coins and arrowheads and enjoyed metal detecting. As a carpenter, he spent countless hours during his retirement building furniture and various gifts for family and friends. He was especially known for his unique footstools.

Survivors include: children, Sherry (Tim) Coutts of Colorado Springs, CO, Jana Nelson and Jeff Nelson both of Minot and Robert Nelson of Craig, CO; stepchildren, Dennis (Kathleen) Cobler of Muskegon, MI and Don Cobler; grandchildren, Amy and Mike Cobler, Brian (Renee) Botton, Teresa (Pete) Gilbert, Carla (Brian) Safigan, Ilona (Ryan) Goltz, Tricia (Tom) Luebesmier, Charisse Cobler, Jake and Casey Coutts; and six great- grandchildren. Sisters, Eugenie Walker, Mildred Parrill and Marie Parrill all of Bottineau and several nieces and nephews.

John was preceded in death by his parents, wife, stepdaughter, Diane Botton; grandson, Erik Coutts; sisters, Jennie Metcalfe, Nellie Bloomquist and Olga Edinger and brothers, Carl and Erling Nelson.

Funeral Service: Saturday, September 19, 2009 at 11:00 a.m. at Trinity Lutheran Church – Lansford. A Fellowship Luncheon will follow at the Lansford City Hall.
Graveside Service: Saturday at 2:00 p.m. in the New Veterans Section of Rosehill Memorial Park – Minot.
Visitation: There will be no reviewal but friends may sign a register book on Friday from noon until 7:00 p.m. at Thomas Family Funeral Home – Minot.
Memorials will be forwarded by the family to various organizations in John’s memory.

Thank you, from Aggie Casavant (69): Fort Mill, SC

I would like to say thank you all for the kind words at the passing of our sister-in-law Janice. She was a very good wife to our brother Gerald, a great mother to her 3 sons,Bevin,Micheal,& Matthew,and such a nice sister-in-law. Our family is better for having her a part of our family as long as we did. She broke all our hearts when she left us. Thank you all once again. Sincerely, Ms. Aggie

Reply from Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND.

On today’s DUNSEITH BLOG there is a photo submitted by Dick
Johnson given to him by his maternal grandmother. CYNTHIA (STRITZEL)
JOHNSON. Dick also shared the THE BIG FOUR.
Carroll Carlson and Art Seim always told our family , “BIG THREE.”
The Seim children, Art, Alvin, Morris, and Bernice Seim, the Calrson
children,Carrol, Leonard,Clarissa, Urssulla and Melba,and the
Peterson children…Max. were neighboring children and schoolmates at
Oakes…(Seim ) school.

Whenever any of the Big Three borrowed from another, each had a
notebook and wrote the transaction down . In late fall, after falls
work, ie threshing, fall plowing, butchering etc, the THREE would
get together on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon. Each with his
notebook. After a fair amount of discussion and ciphering. They’ d
conclude, usually after a little lunch… over Norweigiann coffee and
maybe one of Mrs. Carlson’s Cardomom cookies, or Ingrid Seims lefse
or roulepolse or Lilly Peterson’s cookies. Once again,after talking,
borrowing, trading, sharing,ciphering and working things out,they’d
call it even on a handshake.
Good Neighbors.
They were literate, assertive negotiators, honest and hardworking
rural neighbors who lived on the same road. Each with many other
positive character attributes and sometimes after heated discussions
continued to respect the others opinions . Both Art and Carroll
told me in separate conversations about the decision to help out
William Metcalfe to the south of them when a house fire destroyed
the Metcalfe home. One of the group said, “Lets give him some
cash. another said, “No he will drink it up, lets start an account at
the store in Dunseith with conditions on what he can buy. John Seim
spoke up and said, ” William Metcalfe won’t accept a gift with any
conditions. If we’re going to give him something we should give him
the donation straight out.” ” Aye.” And that is what the Big Three
decided to do. William Metcalfe accepted the charitable donations
and built a tarpaper shack.

One one of his last summers, Art came back from California and stayed
at the Dunseith Nursing home I went and got him several times for
drives through the hills. We’d drive the back roads and he’d tell me
the name of every lake we went by and about who lived where on
places throughout the hills from Dunseith to the Canadian
border….Long ago….ie The Byres now the DeMar’s and Jack
Petersons to the Peace Garden,the original John Seim homestead.

Art was happy that the Seim meadow did stay in the family…..My
brother Shanon and Debbie as young newlyweds purchased it. I’d hear
about it time and again, he’d point to it we’d drive by and again
proudly tell me how Shan and Debbie paid for it. And say, ” Thats one
piece that stayed in the family.” He didn’t choose to go into the
Seim buildings or farmyard. He wished it to remain as pristine and
immaculate as in his memory. “A big white farmhouse built by
Norweigan craftsman from Iowa.” …..We’d go to my mothers and have
coffee and a little lunch.
Thanks Gary and thank-you Dick for photos of folks …. North on
Highway #3., turn east at Snuice Box Junction, gravel road over Seim
and Metcalfe meadow, over the Oak hills….HOME to the Carlson’s,
Seims, Petersons, Smiths, Johnsons. GENERATIONS OF GOOD NEIGHBORS.


Message from Margaret Seim Lawston (54): Citrus Heights, CA

I read a blog or two about our telephone system in the hills.
This may interest some of you. I have the phone from the farm and
asked my Dad for the history. The hill people sure knew how to work

The Mountain Home Telephone Co. was organized in the winter of
1916-17. The lines were built in the sumer of 1917 to 128
subscribers at the cost of $125.00 per share. The farmers doing all
the labor free.

Anton Julseth was one of the leading organizers and its first
President and Mrs. Julseth its first central operator. Other
operators were Mrs. Berg, Mrs.Hans Johnson, Mrs. John Seim, Mrs.
Brennan, Mrs.George Gregary, Mrs. Art Plaudson and the last Mrs.
Hazel Foss. It served its purpose well for 35 years!!

Margaret Seim Lawston

Reply from LeaRae Parrill Espe (67): Bottineau, ND.

Regarding the picture of the “Gang of Lazy JS” : I know that Frances Smith Espe (Terry’s mom) and Jennie Nelson Metcalfe (Mildred and Marie Parrill’s sister & my aunt) both worked at the Seim farm. I am thinking the one by Elmer might be Jennie. Maybe someone else could comment. Maybe the other guy is Art’s brother Alvin, but that is only a guess. We have very few pictures of Elmer at that age so it was a special treat to see . Thank you, Dick Johnson.

Posted yesterday by Dick Johnson:
‘Gang of the lazy J.S.’ (John Seim). The middle guy is
probably Art Seim and the short guy on the right, I think is Elmer
Espe who is Art’s cousin. Not too sure of the others. Thanks Gary!

Message/Pictures from Sharron Gottbreht Shen (59): Everett, WA.

Good morning Gary,

The date should not pass without sharing a few memories. Most if not all of your viewers will know Jeff Gottbreht, son of George and Patty. Jeff and two other firemen of Nebraska received advanced training as immediate responders following such disasters as we suffered September 11, 2001. They were paired with three firemen from the community of Dobbs Ferry, NY.Several such teams from all corners of USA were called up and served at the Twin Towers site shortly after this tragedy, Jeff and his Nebraska “brothers” among them. The Javits Center served as barracks for the visiting teams and in the course of Jeff’s stay the Dobbs Ferry fire engine in full splendor pulled up to the Hudson pier and called for “Big Jeff” to come out and receive a personal thanks and welcome. About 2006 Jeff was invited to attend ceremonies commemorating all those who had given their lives and service to NYC. George and I get rather tearful each time we recall these harrowing days when my son Ivan and his now wife Nora escaped and Jeff arrived to serve.

As ever any morning, I was up early playing Spider, having coffee. EJ called asking where Ivan worked and I responded the Twin Towers. “Turn on the TV now; terrible events are happening right now.” What can I say, it was all so unbelievable. I roused Victor barely able to speak, “Where does Ivan work, where does he work.” God love a duck and mamas who are so clueless. Ivan worked in the Financial Tower 3 located nearby and attached to the towers in question by a bridge. He was in a closed meeting that morning and went down to the Towers plaza with two others when they were interrupted by a secretary announcing the first plane “mishap”.A crowd soon arrived and the cries and sobs of the helpless group is what Ivan remembers today. When the second plane struck, everyone [hundreds, thousands] fled, were herded away. Ivan had run the mile and a half to his apartment and after the 6th try was able to route an email to his dad. After all, his palm pilot was at his desk! It was a long two hours wait. Victor might even have had time to put his sox on.

It took me a month to unpack our suitcases. We were schedule to meet Ivan in Kennedy September 13 for a five country cruise of the Mediterranean. Man proposes God disposes; how absurd our little plans can be. Victor and I were with Ivan for Thanksgiving. We met with Ivan and Nora and about 18 of his fast friends, the same crowd that sat down to an Italian feast with Jeff and a fellow Nebraskan two months earlier. Jeff thought it must be the best Italian in the city. No, Ivan said, it was the only place that would seat the crowd who wished to meet you Jeff and say thanks.

Ivan and Nora were married 24 Sep 2005. Jeff could not be there, he was in New Orleans responding to the aftermath of Katrina.


Jeff Gottbreht

Jeff with George and Patty 1988

Ivan and Nora Nov 2001

Posted byNeola Kofoid Garbe: neola@min.midco.net Minot & Bottineau, ND.

Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: neola@min.midco.net Minot & Bottineau, ND.

Folks, I am not sure of Emily Nelson’s family. I’ll bet some of you can tell us though.

Jim Kofoid is Neola’s Brother.

Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: neola@min.midco.net Minot & Bottineau, ND.

01/27/2017 (2485)

Good day folks,

I don’t have any postings for today so we will continue with the previous postings.

For you folks in ND and the upper Midwest, you have had your share of winter and snow this year. I has been cooler than normal the past few weeks here in Cebu, Philippines too. At noon it is now 83f. Normally it’s pushing 90f. We’ve had a lot of rain too.


This little 2 year old girl who lives next door came into my office to say “Good Morning” of which she said so well in perfect English. English is not her language, but she repeats English words very clear that are spoken to her. Her mother is a sister to Bernadette’s sister’s husband. Her mother speaks very little English, so this little girl didn’t pick up any of her English speaking skills from her mother. She has one younger and two older sisters too. The oldest is 6. They all look exactly alike too. This family of 6 lives on about $200.00 per month too. They can make it, but not to the American level of living though.
Save as Stokes




Blog (546) posted on September 10, 2009

Posted on September 11, 2009

Carringbridge update for Bev Morinville Azure: http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/bevazure

Posted by her daughter Shonda Azure Campbell (94): Minot, ND

Thursday, September 10, 2009 3:40 PM, CDT

Greetings family and friends,

Once again i bring you great news … The DR was in and her tests are already back and all is well …..NO CANCER !!!! And her x ray was better then the DR expected it to be …….Thank you all for your kind thoughts and your stead fast prayers …. We are all very thankful


Condolences to the Gerald Casavant Family

From Jean Nicholas Miller (66): GLENDALE, AZ

I want to extend my condolences to Gerald Casavant and his family. Gerald and Aime were both in my class (66). I haven’t seen them since high school. Gerald sat behind me in Mr. Hepper’s class.
Jean Nicholas Miller

Reply from Marie Iverson Staub (60): Seattle, WA.

Hi Gary,

Just wanted to let you know I loved the pictures of the Peace Garden’s. I also wanted you to know I enjoyed meeting you and Bernadette at the reunion in Seattle. It was more fun then I expected and also seeing people I did remember from Dunseith also glad to hear everyone had such a good time on the cruise. Thanks again

Marie Iverson(Staub)

Picture from Jim Kamphenkel (DHS Teacher): Greenwald, MN.

Yes. I was the coach.

Pictured Front row L to R: Gaillord Peltier, Allan Enno, Keith Berg, John Mongeon

Back Row L to R: Gordon Malaterre, Elmer Parisien, Robin Olson, Jeff Campbell, Everett Enno, Jim Kamphenkel

Not pictured: Clarence Enno, Marcellino Parisien

Fortunately, I wrote all of this info onto the back of the picture way back then…I certainly couldn’t remember who was NOT there!

These were a really nice group of young people to work with. I enjoyed working with them immensely.


Jim, Thank you so much for responding to our WEB site and for this picture. I have added you to our daily distribution. Please let me know if you’d rather not be getting these daily messages? Gary

Back: Gordon Malaterre, Elmer Parisien, Robin Olson, Jeff Campbell, Everett Enno, Jim Kamphenkel
Front: Gaillord Peltier, Allan Enno, Keith Berg, John Mongeon

Reply/Pictures from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND.


Gary and Friends,

Margaret Seim Lawston’s story of not getting enough of the water from
their well is true. I think I drank far more water from the old cream
can back then than I have since! I too remember how Mrs. Carlson
suffered from arthritis. Her hands were knotted and knobby but she made
some of the best cookies I ever tasted! She gave her recipe to my
Grandma and then Brenda got it from her so I still get to enjoy those
cookies from so long ago. I think they are from an old Norwegian recipe
because they are mostly butter and sugar—all the good stuff! She
stayed on the farm with Carroll for several years after her husband,
Pete, died in 1953. I think she moved to her daughter’s home in Minot
about 1960. I believe she passed away in 1962. I remember going to see
her in Minot once, where she lived in an upstairs apartment. One cute
story was when Carroll asked me if I could read Norwegian? I said that I
couldn’t read it but could generally get the meaning if I read through
it a couple times. He went in and got a letter from Norway that he kept
in a drawer. It appeared to me that they were sending condolences on the
loss of his mother and asking if he was still going to stay on the farm?
I asked him when he got the letter, so he handed me the envelope—1963!
He said, “I didn’t write to them, I didn’t know what the hell they were
saying—he he he!”

There was a threshing crew made up of John Seim, Pete Carlson, Lude or
Max Peterson, and I think one more neighbor. This was a partnership
called ‘The Big Four’ and they did a lot of custom threshing around the
area as well as their own. Carroll told me that some of the scrap iron I
hauled to Minot for him contained the remnants of some of the equipment
from the partnership. Maybe Margaret Seim Lawston or Don Aird can
correct me on who was in the partnership. It is a piece of local history
that I think we should preserve in proper form. It seems to me there was
a man named Albert Peterson, who was not related to Lude and Max, and
was also involved in this partnership.

My Grandma, Cynthia Johnson, had the pictures I’m attaching. They were
taken in the yard at John Seim’s place—later owned by his son Art
Seim, the father of Margaret Seim Lawston. The top photo is of the
confirmation class from Little Prairie Lutheran Church taken at Seim’s.
It includes the Carlson kids, Don Aird’s mom is one of the girls. She
is Clarissa, a sister to Carroll Carlson. The lower photo
says—‘Gang of the lazy J.S.’ (John Seim). The middle guy is
probably Art Seim and the short guy on the right, I think is Elmer
Espe who is Art’s cousin. Not too sure of the others. Thanks Gary!

Reply from Robin (Dan 75) Pladson: Dunseith, ND.


Just a short note……..with this email you sent a picture of the Herman Hiatt place across from the Achworth Cementary to the east, which is viewed through our dining room double deck doors (Daniel and Robin Pladson). Anyway, I was talking to Daniel last night and we believe the date on the picture is incorrect. Should have been “2008”. I did some investigating with the tags on the car, they were yellow in 2008. And supposely they rotate in colors every 5 years. What brought this on is the german shephard in the background, she is our dog and the joke is “she is visiting her grandparents for the summer” and comes home for supper on occassion. Her name is Josie, and Daniel didn’t get her till 2005. Josie keeps on eye on our place, cemetary and Grandpa and ma Marchus and loves to play throw with anyone she comes in contact with.

Enjoy reading the news and history of the Turtle Mountain area from your daily emails. I am originally from the Black Hills of South Dakota, a cattle ranch(now 5th generation) that was founded in 1868 by my great grandparents, Joesph Fugier (son of Emil and Emilie Fugier – born in France, “Fugier” is an anglicized version of “Fugere”). Emil had a couple brothers (Fugere) that came to St-Dominique, Quebec, Canada area and Emil went on to Iowa and had son Joe and siblings. From what I am finding out, is that I have distant cousins here in the Rolette/Bottineau Counties. Never would of thought by marrying Daniel I would have relatives in the area. The first time I met David Fugere he said “it was about time they get a french girl in them norwegian hills”.

Robin, I think you are right. This picture was not taken in 2004. I Think instead it was taken in 2007 when we were back for the Dunseith reunions. I remember your dog and my brother Bud telling me it was your dog. I have added several other pictures taken from the other direction that include your buildings. Larry and Mona Marchus have sure kept the place looking nice. Dad used to keep all that mowed too, after they moved to Bottineau. We had a beautiful place in the hills with a fantastic view to the east all the way to the Peace Garden and Little Prairie. Gary

Former Stokes Farm Yard now owned by Larry & Mona Marchus

Picture take from the Stokes yard:

Ackworth Cemetery with Dan & Robin Pladson’s house & farm buildings on the back side.

I remember those evergreens being planted when I was a kid. They stayed so small

for so long. Gary

Cropped picture of the Cemetery with the Pladson Buildings.

Robin & Dan, I’m thinking that is the old Holmen school on the right. It used to be on the Lake road (#43) several miles west of Salem church. LaVerne Rude, if this is the school I’m thinking of, this would be your old school. Salem used to use that school for their two weeks of Bible school that we all attended every summer. Gary

Looking North from the Ackworth Cemetery on the Willow Lake Road:

Stokes farm approach on the right and the Pladson approach/mailbox on the left.

The Former Johnny Hiatt farm, now the Fauske farm is one mile north and a half mile west.

The Canadian line is about 2 miles north.

01/23/2017 (2484)

Dunseith Anonymous Donor
Facebook posting from two years ago.


This posting popped up as “Memories, 2 years ago, on Facebook” so I thought I’d share it with you.

This Dunseith anonymous donor adopted this family about 7 years ago, a widowed mother and her 3 sons.. She has never missed sending them a monthly allowance. The three boys are pictured in the picture with Bernadette’s Nieces; Novie and Mirasol. This family is so grateful for her generosity. She is an angle sent from heaven in their lives.

As I was putting this posting together the boys came asking for an advance to this month’s allowance because they had a school payment they need to pay. I called my FPO mail and her check is there, so I gave the boys their allowance.

          Mirasol                           Novie
Stokes 2484


Mary Anne McLeod Trump
Posting from Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND



On the  second time I was in Scotland , over one  weekend  our group stayed in Stornaway, on Isle of Lewis.
It is most beautiful!
On Sunday, Three of us walked to church. There were many churches on Lewis,  mostly Church of Scotland or Presbyterian,
We wanted to go to the one that held services in Gaelic.
But that was not to be.

Before I sat down, I looked into  the eyes of  an elderly  lady and asked,  ‘Are seats  saved for other people usually attending?”
She replied emphatically,  ‘You are welcome to sit any where  in God’s house!”

In Scotland, the Isle of Lewis, has the most  conservative laws of any place in the whole of Scotland.
All  people  observe ‘Sunday’.
Why?  They have to because  there are,No taxis, stores  or eating places  open.

Lewis/Harris is well known for Harris Tweed.
In a  historical Black House’  on Lewis I watched our driver  sit at a loom and work on some tweed.
The Isle also has more ‘Standing stones’ .

This past summer, I asked  Angus  ( both of his parents immigrated from Lewis)

“Does your family on Lewis know any of Donald Trumps relatives?”
He shrugged “No”
I guessed it was no big deal to him.

He’d probably, fit in with Trump’s cousins.

La†er, v

Vickie, Is this Angus Campbell you referenced?

Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe:  Bottineau & Minot, ND

The other day, it “struck” me this is Ernest/Ernie and Ruth Pilloud.  I sent it to Susan Gardner/asked her to check with Louise’ daughter, Veda Clark, or Louise’ granddaughter, Jennifer Lauckner (I think all three work at St. Andrew’s.)  Veda verified it’s her grandparents. :)


Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: neolag@min.midco.net Bottineau & Minot, ND
Dunseith News


Blog (545) posted on September 9, 2009

Posted on September 10, 2009

Folks, A former Dunseith teacher, Jim Kamphenkel, discovered our WEB site and has sent me a picture of the 1976 Dunseith American Legion base ball team. I will be posting that picture tomorrow. Gary

Jim Kamphenkel’s reply:

I taught in Dunseith from 1975 to 1978. Lived in an apartment on the second story of Elmer Espe’s home

Condolences to the Boardman Family from Betty Watschke Cooley (45): Redmond, Wa

I was sorry to learn of the passing of Bob Boardman. My sympathies are extended to his family. He graduated from DHS a year ahead of me, but we ended up at NDSU in Fargo at the same time. And he had a car (rare in those days) so I accompanied him home to Dunseith at several vacation or holiday times and delighted in the long conversations along the time. Our paths haven’t crossed in years, but I’ll always remember his kindnesses at those times.

Betty Watschke Cooley

Condolences to the Casavant family from Lynn Halvorson Otto (75): Seoul, Korea

Hi, my condolences to the Cassavant family. I graduated with Carolee, 75. I also enjoyed the picture of the Willow Lake road looking south over the beautiful Turtle Mountains. It’s so green there this summer. My boys and I had a great visit there this past summer with my parents, Lester and Dorothy Halvorson.

Bev and Stephanie, you both are in our prayers. Keep up the fight and we pray you win the battle.

Lynn Halvorson Otto (75).

Condolences to the Casavant and Whetter Families from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND

Gary and Friends,

I was saddened to hear of the passing of Janice Casavant. Our
condolences to Gerald and the extended Casavant and Whetter families.


Reply from Margaret Seim Lawston (54): Citrus Heights, CA

Hi Gary and All, I look at the blog with great interest and have
a few comments. Dick your remarks about the Seim well was right on,
the underground tank, etc. When I came home nearly every summer from
Calif. I could not drink enough . It tasted so good! As a child my
heart always did a flip when I watched Dad climb to the top of
windmill to oil { or what ever he did}. Yes and we all drank out off
the same dipper from the pail!!!!! So much for
germs !!

Don Aird I was glad to see your name. I was a great friend of your
Grandma Christine. As soon as I got a drivers licence we were a team.
I”m sure I gave her a few scares. She suffered so much from
arthritis that when the mailman came I picked up the Carlson mail
and took it to her and she always had something delicious coming out
of the oven. She was a great lady. My Dad always spoke so
highly of Pete and said he was a great

I remember my mom talking about a student named Larry Liere.. Yes she
taught in a one room school near the farm before she taught in
Dunseith. She taught my brother Edwin, my sister Marion and myself.
Not fun and we got the lowest grades we every received from
her. She started her teaching in about 1929 at a school near the
Earl Myer farm. She lived at the Myer home. Some of her students
were the children of Jenny and Steve Cook {Kelvin Store} and
Arnold Zeiler. Sorry I can’t recall any more names.

My Dad would not tolerate any negative comments about N.D. but
shortly before his death at 96 years of age he finally said, yes the
winters were about 3 months too long!!!!!

Reply from Judy LaCroix McGuire (59): LITCHFIELD, MN

Thank you for the picture of the Willow Lake road from your ND home. We lived farther north where Fauske’s now live for 2 years and I remember walking home from summer school many times up that hill. I enjoy reading your blog and finding out all the ND news. Hello to everyone! Judy (LaCroix) McGuire MN class of 59 Can that really be 50 years ago~!!

Judy, I remember well when your family (Ernest &Lydia LaCroix) lived up on the Johnny Hiatt farm. You guys were very close friends of my folks. They were back and forth a lot in those days. We were your closest neighbors. You guys moved from there to your place on the prairie in about 1953. That is the year I started school. That was the last year of summer school at Ackworth too. I think Donna Went one year to Ackworth too. I remember well your dad having a turning knob on the steering wheel of his car. I think that knob may have been the cause of you guys having a roll over on the Willow Lake road when it got caught in clothes? I was only 5 years old at the time, but I remember all this stuff pretty well.

Ernest (deceased) & Lydia (Fauske) LaCroix family 3/8/08:
L to R: Joan, Judy, Lydia & Donna

Reply from Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND.

Hi Gary,

I enjoyed seeing (again) the pictures of your yard/south from your farm.


Thelma (Scotty) Thompson Passed away:

Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND.

Thelma Carlson Thompson passed away. Thelma was married to Clarence “Scotty” Thompson (page 624 in Centennial Book; Scotty and his first wife’s info is on the same page. Thelma’s parents are on page 114.) Thelma/Scotty performed great music for many years.

THELMA died Sunday in a Bottineau nursing home. Funeral Friday, 2 p.m., in Nero Funeral Home, Bottineau. Visitation Thursday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., in the funeral home.


Folks, Scotty & Thelma have been mentioned several times with these daily blogs along with Ole Bursinger and others for their music. I am so sorry to hear of Thelma’s passing. I last saw Thelma, in Bottineau in 2004, when my brother Bud (Darrel) and I were out for a walk and we walked past her house in the Skating rink area of Bottineau. She was outside and recognized us so we stopped and chatted.

Dwight Lang (61)

First Cousins Gary Metcalfe (57) & Randy Hiatt – July 2009

Peace Garden Pictures from Brenda Hoffman (68): Greenville, SC

Dear Gary,

My sister Cindy received these Peace Garden photos taken by Evon Lagerquist. I thought others would find them as beautiful as I do.

Brenda – class of 68

Connie Peterson Lagerquist (74) is the Head Gardener at the Peace Garden.

Connie, you sure have things looking really nice. These pictures are beautiful! Gary


01/18/2017 (2482)

Cebu Philippines: Tuesday Pool
Every Tuesday a group of us get together and play pool at the Eurohub from 9 to Noon. Yesterday there were only 4 of us, all from different countries

L to R:  Gary Stokes (USA), Michael Kenny(Ireland), Alex Todd (Philippines) and Peter Probst(Germany)
Stokes 2482


Blog (543) posted on September 7, 2009

Posted on September 7, 2009

Bob Boardman (44) passed away

Message from Beatty Boardman, Bob’s wife:

Bob passed away on Friday, September 4, 2009 in the Frazee Care Center. The funeral is Thursday, September 10 at 11;00 AM. at Bethlehem Lutheran Church,Frazee, Mn. Visitation, Wednesday 4:00- 8:00 PM. We will be celebrating his life at this time.

Beatty, Our condolence are with you and the whole Boardman family with the passing of Bob. Vickie Metcalfe said she saw Luella and Ralph today/yesterday in Bottineau. Vickie sent me Bob’s Obituary that I have posted below. Our thought’s and prayers are with you. Gary

Boardman Donald Bottineau, ND 5831860
Boardman Harold Born July 7, 1929Died March 1985 Deceased 46
Boardman Robert Frazee, MN 56544-8500 44
Boardman Bjornseth Luella Bottineau, ND 58318 49

Boardman Smith Joyce Chicago, IL 60638-4916 53

Posted by Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND

From the In-Forum

Robert Claire Boardman
Frazee, Minn. Died Friday, Sept. 4, 2009, at age 83 in Frazee Care Center under the care of Hospice of the Red River Valley.

Robert Claire Boardman
Frazee, Minn.
Died Friday, Sept. 4, 2009, at age 83 in Frazee Care Center under the care of Hospice of the Red River Valley.
Survivors: wife, Betty; two sons, David (Charleen) Boardman, Gary (Dawn) Boardman; daughter, Donna (Terry) Atherton; brother, Don (Irene) Boardman; and two sisters, Luella (Ralph) Bjornseth, Joyce (Jim) Smith.
Services: Visitation will be Wednesday from 4 to 8, with a prayer service at 6:30, in Furey Funeral Home, Frazee, and Thursday from 10 to 11, followed by the funeral at 11, in Bethlehem Lutheran Church, Frazee. Burial: Church cemetery.

Reply from Mona Dionne Johnson (48): Lake Metigoshe, ND

Gary: Our great country was indeed fortunate when Truman had to step
in on April 12, 1945 and assume the great responsibility of the
presidency and World War II. The sign on his desk “The Buck Stops Here”
was not just a sign to him, it was fact, and with the grave decisions he
had to make, he made them. He never disgraced the office and he led our
country forward. There should be more like him today.
Mona Johnson, ’48

Reply from Aggie Casavant (69): Fort Mill, SC

Hi Gary, First I want to say thank you for getting Yvonne all squared away,I know she’ll enjoy it. Next I want to say that I had no idea that you and Warren Anderson served in Vietnam… Wow! I guess I say that,cuz when Gary Metcalf mentioned the other day of guys that we think of as war heros that we know,all I could think of was my brothers,now I have two more I can add to my list… Gary and Warren. I guess for those who never expierenced saying goodbye to your brother or brothers not knowing if you’ll ever see them again,it’s something that never leaves you. When I saw the pictures of you and Warren in Vietnam it brought back a flood of memories
Thanks for sharing those pictures Gary,they really meant alot.

Next the pictures of Terry and Tim Martinson are so cute,they should be put on a Norman Rockwell Calendar…Totally Priceless!

And to Allen Richards,”Honor To A Politician” WOW!!! Do you have the e-mail to Capitol Hill? I am

so serious,cuz I’m so fed up with that bunch… And before I forget to ask,cuz I’ve been wondering for awhile… Why Midland Michigan,and where is it?

Aggie, I lost a lot of my pictures when I had computer problems a while back. I am going back through the old messages capturing some of those pictures and in the process I am reposting a few for folks to see that were not on our distribution when they were originally posted. There are a whole bunch of us from the 60’s classes that served in Viet Nam. For fear of missing a few, I will not start naming names, but I will be re-posting their pictures as I come to them.

Gary Wall was a Dentist in Viet Nam and I was a Dental Technician. Gary was from Bottineau and I of coarse from Dunseith. We met for the first time in Viet Nam and worked in the same small clinic for 6 months before Gary went back to the states having served his full year and I was transferred to a different Clinic in country. Gary is now retired, living in Bottineau. He is married to Loretta Neameyer, one of our own, from the class of 72. These old pictures are coming up in the same order as they were posted the first time, so Kenny Nerpel’s reply to our picture follows right in line with the previous postings. Gary

Previously posted with message 170 on July 24, 2008

Viet Nam Pictures & message from Kenny Nerpel (65):

Turtle Mountain Americans,

Regarding Gary’s Vietnam photo: Gary Wall and Gary Stokes

Wow, those are some strack troops (ideal in military dress, demeanor and
bearing). Notice the bloused boots and clean uniforms. I think I
remember using something called boot blousers when we were in basic and
AIT to get that clean professional look, but I never saw anything like
that in Vietnam. Where did you get them anyway? Where I was we got clean
uniforms in bulk every two to three weeks, whether we needed them or
not. Sometimes they came in by convoy; other times they just dropped
them out a chopper and then it was a mad scramble to try to find
something near the correct size.

The attached photos (Trang Bang, The Road and The Road2) are of members
of my platoon while on road security (it looks like blue ribbon was the
beverage of choice back then) and of Vietnamese soldiers (White Mice)
searching through the belongings of people wanting to use the road. All
photos except the the one taken from the air were taken the same day
along the dirt road Six Alpha, which connected the village of Trang Bang
with FSB (Fire Support Base) Pershing. The brown-uniformed guys are
South Vietnamese police called white mice; the nickname came from their
uniforms and I think that they sometimes wore white helmets and gloves.
The photo from the air is of a small fire base (Dees) taken from an
approaching helicopter. The smoke indicates where they want the chopper
to land.

It’s been about forty years now, so maybe it’s time for a Vietnam story:
The Road

Highway 1 was a paved highway out of Saigon (Ho Ci Minh City) running
through Cu Chi, Trang Bang and on towards Tay Ninh. It proceeded
northwest about 15 miles to the city of Cu Chi and then it was about 8
miles farther to Trang Bang. Near Trang Bang was a bridge and FSB
Stuart. The road where these pictures were taken was the dirt road Six
Alpha, a secondary road leading from Trang Bang north to FSB Pershing
then on to the Saigon River. The Vietnamese fellow (Wine Maker) visiting
with the troops lived along this road and made some of the worst rice
wine that has ever been made. He was always more than willing to share
some of it with us and we were willing to partake. We figured what are
they going to do to us anyway? Send us to Vietnam? This road was a
supply route and had to be patrolled to protect the convoys supplying
FSB Pershing about 4 to 5 miles up the road from FSB Stuart. Daily
convoys from Cu Chi took this route and required heavy security because
of constant mining of the road and harassment of the convoys by the VC.
Road security was welcome duty. It afforded the opportunity to mingle
with the locals and it was a break from the other duties of the
infantryman. Even though considered good duty it was not without danger.
On one of my first assignments to road security I remember saying, “this
isn’t so bad.” On that day we were providing security for the
minesweepers, which involved patrolling both sides of the road while the
engineers went down the middle sweeping for land mines. I happened to be
the closest to an engineer when a mine was discovered. I took a seat on
the shoulder of the road while the engineer proceeded to dig the mine
out. Suddenly there was a deafening explosion. The mine had been
triggered. I looked up and saw huge chunks of earth flying up and then
dropping back towards the ground. Another member of the platoon who had
been “in country” for awhile came over to me to see if I had been
injured and when I said I had not, he remarked, “I think you should help
look for the body parts. I always do because if this happens to one of
my friends, I think it would make it easier for me to help bag up the

Welcome to Vietnam!


Kenny Nerpel – Viet Nam
The Road2

Kenny Nerpel – Viet Nam
Trang Bang

The Road

White Mice

Wine Maker


Memorial given for Cliff Henry at our class of 65 reunion on July 12, 2007

Aggie, All of us in these 2 memorial pictures are Viet Nam Veterans.

Holding the flags are Henry Hackman & Kenny Nerpel with Pet Gillis & Warren Anderson

Bill Grimme in front reading Cliff Henry’s Eulogy.
In the back holding the flags Henry Hackman, Kenny Kerpel. I’m not sure who the person between them is?
Pete Gillis, Joe Casavant, Rene Casavant, Gary Stokes, John Bedard, Warren Anderson, ??, Ron Strong?

Cliff Henry (Deceased) from the class of 65

Kenny Nerpel (65):
Note Kenny and I went through 
Basis training together at Fort Lewis. Gary

 Robney Lagerquist (67)
Served in Viet Nam

Lyle Lagerquist (68)
Stationed in Germany

01/16/2017 (2481)

Millang Memories

Posting from Keith Pladson (’66): Roanoke Rapids, NC 

Thank you, Gary, for keeping this valuable information forum available to all of us. Having spent almost all of my adult life away from North Dakota (and more specifically the Dunseith, Bottineau and the Turtle Mountain communities) it was hard to keep abreast of events, happenings, changes, etc. that occurred in and/or effected where I came from.  Your efforts with this blog have really changed that. I’m sure I echo the feelings of many, who like me, have chosen to live their lives far removed from back there, in saying again, Thank you, Gary!

I am saddened to hear the news of Diane Millang Volk’s passing.  Though I don’t remember her much (I’m 11 years older) I considered her brother, Larry, my best friend during all of my High School years.  And in deed I had the opportunity to communicate with both her brother, Larry, and her sister, Joanne, just last year.

Keith Pladson (66)

Gary’s comment

Thanks Keith for the nice comments


A fond Memory
Posting form Vickie Metcalfe (’70):  Bottineau, ND

Gary and Dunseith Friends,

I am sharing a fond memory .

A 1983 Road Trip West

In the early eighties, Dad’s two brothers Emil and Jim within a fortnight of each other passed away unexpectedly.  Dad emotionally close to each of his siblings, was left deeply bereft.

He found comfort  with visiting his eldest brother, Bill, Close neighbors, Dunseith Senior Citizen’s and the last Stool at Dales.

Finally, I managed to talk him into a trip West to visit. He said, “Yes on one condition.  I had to give my word,  if any thing happened to him I would bring his body home to North Dakota.”

We made the decision to leave in mid July. The previous week I drove to S.E. Wyoming to bring  to the farm my 11 year old nephew who would accompany us on our journey.

My father lived with diabetes, needed restful nights.  We  chose to leave on a mid morning on a bright summer day.

The guys were quietly non-communicative on the drive South to interstate.  When with my father, I tried to be descriptive of our surroundings, “Smell the yellow clover Dad?” There is hay field to our right, a hay conditioner is moving pulled by a John Deere Green tractor.”

Initially, Dad with the seat reclined rode shotgun.  The 11 year old was in the back seat. The seating arrangement swiftly changed for the remainder of  our travels at the first rest area.

Getting out of the car, my nephew opened Grandpa’s door, unbuckled stepped back, gave his grandfather his right arm  to guide him to the restrooms.  Dad carried the white cane in his right hand.

When the two of them came back they were laughing . Dad said,   “Were there the cock roaches in the ladies restroom?” I said “No why?”  My nephew  replied  “We hit a couple in the Guys restroom.”It went down hill.  Laughter  and  story telling continued between the two  of them all the way toward  Miles City for the night.

The dry Montana July heat took  the breath away when stopping often at rest areas.  While in Montana, we ate breakfasts of steak and eggs, dinner ‘s salads and later supper specials.  The first night we ate at old Miles City Olive Hotel. ( If you watched Lonesome Dove and Gus, that place would be familiar?)  Lodging across MT was usually at a Super 8 with air  turned on High.  We never left until late mornings.

The next three days of our journey west was filled with Grandpa telling his grandson crazy stories of his Navy Days.

I didn’t get a lick of help from either on anything. They just entertained each other.  Oops, my nephew was good at packing and unpacking the Cougar.

I managed find my way through Seatle, avoiding rush hour traffic. I don’t think those people ever slow down!  I found the street where my aunt’s Leona and Jean lived.  Passing Aunt Leona’s  house,I drove down the block to Aunt Jean and Uncle Waino who had an early supper waiting.

Aunt Jean always knew what her big brother and little boys liked to eat.  And she loved spoiling everyone in her family.

My nephew now was quite comfortable bunking in the same room as his grandpa and guiding him around. Dad was quite familiar with the outlay of  his sisters  homes.  He had previously visited both of them over the 40 years they had lived in those same homes.

After supper, on the second night in N. Seattle the phone rang. My cousin Ron asked,  “Will you walk  your dad up to my mom’s to visit?”   My nephew was  well into a  wild card game called War stayed behind with his Great Aunt.

Dad wasn’t really keen on going any where  as he wanted to stay in familiar place.  Dad walked holding my arm, was rather stiff, ,bent, and  weary.  We quietly walked along, inhaling the cool, wonderful smells of evening air that  can only happen in the Pacific North West.

Slowly Dad  walked  holding my arm guide, up the street. Click…Click. Click, went the cane.   A sound…..What’s that? A drone? Yes, a drone!…faint at first… then clearly.   Bagpipes piping, “Hark. Hark, the Pipes are Calling” .   His demeanor changed immediately, Dad stopped brought himself up to stand straight, tall and listened.  Then, with purpose he walked toward the sound of the pipes.

Ron was playing for him.

Solid steps in unison up the street we walked!  Into view on the stoop stood our piper.  He played on,  a concert for his Uncle Cliff.

Inside the door, we were greeted by Ron’s parents. Leona and George and  bit of more visiting. Uncle George retreated, off to his bedroom. He was going into work early in the morning  at Boeings.

Dad continued to sit while Ron put the pipes away. Aunt Leona and I went to the kitchen sitting sat the metal dinette set, in the corner by the windows. It  was quite familiar A  home which hadn’t changed  at all over the years.

Dad and Ron went into a quiet discussion.  They spoke for an hour.  Then, another hour.  Then another.  Finally,  t’was 1:00 a.m. We  all bid  Leona goodnight. Ron drove dad and I down the street to Jean and Waino’s house.  Jean had left the light on and the door open.

Dad never did tell me what  he talked with Ron about. It was their time.

Years later, Ron told me, he never forgot the visit with my dad. Ron said,  “After talking to your dad that night, I decided if Uncle Cliff  could put his war away, I could put mine away too.”

Thank You Gary.

Until Later,



Blog (541) posted on September 5, 2009

Posted on September 6, 2009

Request from Aggie Casavant (69): Fort Mill, SC

Hi Gary, I just got off the phone with my sister Yvonne, I was telling her how interesting your daily e-mail to everyone is,she asked if you could put her on the list,her e-mail address is Thanks Gary – Hope You Have A Blest Day…Aggie

Yvonne, I have you listed in my records with this email address, however I had some else’s email address listed for you on the master distribution list. I also have you listed as living in Bismarck. I am so sorry for the mix up. I caught one other person with a wrong email address too. Gary

Previously posted with message 164 on July 17, 2008

Reply from Alan (42) & Phyllis Campbell:

Gary: In answer to your request for the names of those at the ribbon cutting at the Grand Opening of the new Bottineau Security State Bank they are as follows: left to right: Jeff Campbell (class of 76), Phyllis, Cathy (class of 73), Jeremy (Jeff’s son who is working this summer at the Botno bank and is a Junior at U. of Mary in Bismarck),Alan, Bottineau Mayor Doug Marsden, Donovan Bertsch (a bank director), Rich (class of 68 and also a bank director) and David (class of 71). A little correction on the story – William (Bill) Campbelll came to the bank in Dunseith i n 1933 from Omemee where he, Violet and Alan were living. Several Dunseith businessmen including W.E. Hosmer, Joe Lamoureaux and Wm. Gottbreht among others asked him to come to Dunseith to run the bank. I forgot to mention above that Alan was a graduate in the class of 1942. He went to Jamestown College where eventully he and Phyllis met! These parents are very proud of all their children and the good education they received in Dunseith and thank you and others for your nice comments!Incidentally all four kids are happily married and all living in North Dakota! Alan and Phyllis have ten grandchildren – all out of high school now – plus two great-grandchildren. We do enjoy reading the emails from near and far!

Picture L to R: Jeff, Phyllis, Cathy, Jeremy & Alan Campbell; Doug Marsen, Donovan Bertsch, Rich Campbell and David Campbell

KC & Esther Evenson

Tim & Terry Martinson

Warren Anderson – Viet Nam

Warren Anderson’s return trip to Viet Nam in 2006

From Allen Richard (65): Midland, MI

Gary — I think a lot of the bloggers would like this


Subject: Honor in a politician

Harry Truman

Harry Truman was a different kind of President. He probably made
many important decisions regarding our nation’s history as any of the
other 42 Presidents. However, a measure of his greatness may rest on
what he did after he left the White House.

The only asset he had when he died was the house he lived in, which
was in Independence Missouri.
His wife had inherited the house from her mother and other than their
years in the White House, they lived their entire lives there.

When he retired from office in 1952, his income was a U.S. Army
reported to have been $13,507.72 a year. Congress, noting that he was
paying for his stamps and personally licking them, granted him an
allowance’ and, later, a retroactive pension of $25,000 per year.

After President Eisenhower was inaugurated, Harry and Bess drove home

to Missouri by themselves.
There were no Secret Service following them. When offered corporate
positions at large salaries, he declined, stating, “You don’t want
You want the office of the President, and that doesn’t belong to me.
It belongs to the American people and it’s not for sale.”

Even later, on May 6, 1971, when Congress was preparing to award him
the Medal of Honor on his 87th birthday, he refused to accept it,
writing, “I don’t consider that I have done anything which should be
the reason for any award, Congressional or otherwise.”

As president he paid for all of his own travel expenses and food.

Modern politicians have found a new level of success in cashing in on
the Presidency, resulting in untold wealth. Today, many in Congress
also have found a way to become quite wealthy while enjoying the

fruit of their offices. Political offices are now for sale.

Good old Harry Truman was correct when he observed, “My choices in
life were either to be a piano player in a whore house or a
politician. And to tell the truth, there’s hardly any difference!
I say dig him up and clone him!!

01/13/2017 (2480)

Diane Millang Volk Condolences
From Maryls Hiatt (’71):  Dunseith, ND

I too was so saddened to hear that Diane Millang Volk passed away.   My condolences to all Diane’s family.  She was just “the best”.  I will always remember her beautiful smile and what a beautiful person she was.  Her family will be in my prayers at this time.

Marlys Hiatt


Diane Millang Volk’s (’77) Obituary
Brose Funeral Home – Mohall, ND

Diane Volk
March 21, 1959 – January 8, 2017
Millang Volk, Diane 2480
SHERWOOD – Diane Fay Volk, 57, Sherwood, died Sunday, January 8, 2017, at a Houston, TX, hospital.
She was born March 21, 1959, in Rolla, one of five children born to Clifford and Velma (Brennan) Millang. She was raised on a farm in the Turtle Mountains, north of Dunseith, amongst lots of family. She attended school and graduated from Dunseith High School in 1977. Her father, Clifford, died when she was a young girl and Diane worked with the family both on and off the farm through high school. One of her favorite jobs was at the International Peace Garden.
Diane graduated from the Dakota College at Bottineau with an associate degree. While in college, she worked for the Farmers Home Administration and met her future husband, Ron.
Diane and Ron were married in Dunseith on April 17, 1980. They started their careers in the Cavalier/Park River area, with Ron working for the SCS and Diane for the FmHA. The next stop was Minnewaukan for two years. In 1983, their first child, Meghan, was born and Diane and Ron moved to Sherwood to start farming. Their other children were born (Krista 1985, Jenna 1990, and Mitchell 1993) while they were farming.
Diane was very active on the farm, operating equipment, helping with cattle, many parts-runs, all while raising the kids, feeding Ron, etc. Diane had several off-farm jobs, most notably the Executive Director of Northwest Regional Housing Authority and managing Sherwood Homes. She looked forward to family trips to Florida, Black Hills, California, Washington D.C., Seattle, Arizona, Nevada, Hawaii and other North Dakota trips.
Diane enjoyed cooking and gardening. A large amount of her time was spent on horse events (rodeos, horse shows, jackpots, showdeos), school (basketball, football, T-ball), church events and spending time with her family, especially her grandchildren. One of Diane’s favorite places was the cabin at Lake Metigoshe. She loved being there whether snowmobiling, on the pontoon or just relaxing.
Diane attacked her cancer with her usual spunk. She ended up losing that battle. However, Diane is the big winner because she is in heaven now with Jesus without pain; so it doesn’t get any better than that. Diane will be missed by all who knew and loved her.
Family: husband of 36 years, Ronald Volk, Sherwood; daughters, Meghan (Jacob) Bratvold, Sherwood, Krista (Robert) Alexander, Tolley, Jenna (Jerrod) Braun, Tolley; son, Mitchell Volk, Sherwood; grandchildren, Alton, Caleb and Zane Bratvold, Luke and Hannah Alexander, and Leah Braun; mother, Velma Millang, Rolette; siblings, Larry Millang, Bottineau, Joanne (Mark) Bernstein, Souris, Mark (Deb) Millang, Rugby, Clayton Millang, Dunseith; father- and mother-in-law, Leo and Janice Volk, Sherwood; and several aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and cousins.
Diane was preceded in death by: her father, Clifford Millang; and grandparents, Arthur and Arla Millang, and Ray and Janette Brennan.
Funeral: 11:00 a.m., Tuesday, January 17, 2017, at St. James Catholic Church, Sherwood.
Recitation of the Rosary: 7:00 p.m., Monday, January 16, 2017, at the church.
Burial: Sherwood Union Cemetery, Sherwood, in the spring.
Visitation: 3:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Monday, at the church.
(Brose Funeral Home, Mohall)


Blog (541) posted on September 5, 2009


Posted on September 5, 2009

Reply from Aggie Casavant (69): Fort Mill, SC

To Bev Morinville Azure,

Although I look back at times and laugh at the crazy things we did as kids,I’m 100% behind you to anyone who smokes to do whatever it takes to quit.

I not only took up smoking,but also drinking shortly after moving back to N.Dakota from Denver Colorado after my youngest brother Jimmy got burned at his graduation party. Short of sounding like I’m making excuses for the life style that I “chose” at that time,I caution anyone who leaves N.Dakota for any amount of time to live in a larger city, with a variety of entertainment at your disposal,and moves back to beautiful N.Dakota….Beware of the pit falls of the small town bars…Where everybody knows your name…and their all so glad you came…It starts with getting off work and someone saying,”Everyones going down to the bar for happy hour…You wanna join us… and you get comfortable, cuz your with your old friends,cousins,neighbors people you grew up with…Days turn into months,turn into years, Then one morning…you wake up…feeling sick and tired,of being sick and tired…

I’ll be forever grateful to the two nurses Wanda and Laurel from Ryder N.Dak. who later told me, they felt they were called by God, to come and work at the Rolette Hospital to talk to people about the Bible…They talked I listened…On Sept.13,1977 I dedicated my life to doing Gods work,I’ve been alcohol and cigarette free ever since… So very often while living here in S.C. people ask me, “Aggie,what brought you all the way from N.Dak. to South Carolina? I just smile and say…GOD….

Thanks Gary…..Aggie

Pictures taken at the Dunseith Alumni Reunion in Seattle on July 24th.

Note: for some reason the flash was turned off with our camera when these

pictures were taken and we didn’t realize it. Gary

Lee (Leland) Stickland (64) with his friend Gloria.

L to R: Sharron Gottbreht Shen (59) & Shirley LaRocque Wendt (59)

L to R: Al-lyn (Bill / Willie) Longie, Oliver & Marlene Reing.
Note: Marlene is a sister to Debby (Darrel) Stokes)

L to R: Sandra Zeiler Vandal (62), Katrine (Bob) Hosmer & Nancy Hosmer Baldwin with her friend Keith

This is a terrible picture of me, but it’s the only picture I have of Bob and LaVerne so I decided to post it. Can’t sweat the small stuff.

 L to R: Bob (Connie Fauske 62) Monte, Gary Stokes & LaVerne (Carrole Fauske 66) Rude

Dunseith news posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND.



01/11/2017 (2479)

Reply from Larrett (’71) and Yola Peterson: 

Hi Gary and Bernadette,

We cannot  thank you enough for the wonderful time you spent with us. Larrett and I had a great moments with you and this would be a  treasured to us! Thank you so much for your time to us .

Hugs and kisses to Bernadette!

Gary’s Reply
Thank you guys so much for taking time out of your schedule to fly down to visit us in Cebu while visiting your family and friends in the Manila area. We most certainly appreciated your visit. You are welcome anytime.


Diane Millang Volk (’77): Passed away.
Face Book Posting

Mitchell Scott Volk    MD Anderson Cancer Center.

January 8 at 7:23pm · Houston, TX, United States

With a heavy heavy heart I regret to inform everyone that my beloved MOM(Diane Millang Volk) has passed away peacefully from complications of Cancer at the young age of 57! She was surrounded by all us kids ,my dad, and other family members. We are all heartbroken, but we’re able to say our goodbyes. She was a great mother, but even a better person! We thank everyone for their thoughts and prayers!

Gary’s comment
I am so saddened and was very surprised too, to hear this news of Diane’s passing. In my growing up days, with 4-H and other activities, our families were very close. Diane was 12 years younger than me, but I remember her well. Larry, her brother, and I are only a few days apart in age.

Our condolences are with all of Diane’s family with her passing. She was a wonderful person. Chip off of the block.


Blog (540) posted on September 4, 2009

Posted on September 4, 2009

John Nelson DHS Class of 41 passed away:

Posted by LeaRae Parrill Espe (67): Bottineau, ND.

Dear Gary,

We were saddened to learn of the death of my uncle John Nelson of Minot who passed away this morning at Manor Care. He had a massive stroke last week .

He is survived by three sisters Eugenie Walker, Marie Parrill, and Mildred Parrill. He was preceded in death by three sisters – Nellie Blomquist, Jennie Metcalfe, and Olga Edinger and two brothers Erling and Carl Nelson. His wife Della passed away June 2008. He is survived by four children, Jeff and Jana of Minot and Sherri Coutts, Colorado Springs, CO and Bob of Craig, CO. A memorial service has tentatively been set for September 19 in Lansford.

He worked in plumbing and sheet metal for R & O in Rolette, purchased his own plumbing shop in New Rockford and sometime in the 1960s went to work for Honeywell in NW North Dakota. For many years he traveled this area to check thermastats, etc in many buildings and schools including the Bottineau Public School where I worked.

I am sure the Minot Daily will carry the full obituary soon.

He was a member of the Dunseith HS Class of 1941.

Thanks for posting this. LeaRae Parrill Espe

LeaRae, Yes it is so sad to hear of the passing of your Uncle John. You also lost another Uncle, Thurman Parrill, this month too. Our condolence are with your whole family with the losses of both of your uncles. I will post the Minot daily Obituary when it comes out. Gary

Reply from Gary Metcalfe (57): Forsyth, MO

Hello All, Regarding the cruise it was everything that we had heard about it, and that is hard to believe. When you try to tell this generation about anything, their response is “been there, done that”. Thanks to the mobility of our world.

Aggie after the cigarette caper that we all have tried in one form or the other, Prince Albert, Velvet, Duke’s, Bull Durham in the rural setting. My dad didn’t smoke, so I only got an old pack of Camels and a cigar he had from Chris Berg in Seattle about 4 years old. So then we used a weed that looked like tobacco and yes, newspaper burns too fast!!

I have known people who take up smoking or chewing later in life. If you do, I’d like to offer some advise….don’t start with Copenhagen. Don’t be on a mission such as going to get the cows for milking. As I lay under the barb wire by the old split rail cornerpost, I started to measure the consequences of being home late with the cows, sooo up on my hands and knees, gradually getting to a standing position. Wouldn’t you know the cows were in the far end of the pasture!

Aggie, I was pretty sure, now I am very sure. You can laugh at yourself, a lot of us are not real good at that, if you know what I mean. You just need to share more of those many stories.

Sharron Shen you just exposed one of your heros. Everyone should have at least one, wouldn’t that make an interesting blog. Very interesting man, Ernest Boucher. I always wanted to know about him. Thanks for sharing.

Gary Metcalfe

Reply from Bev Morinville Azure (72): Dunseith, ND.

Aggie, I sure did enjoy your story of you kids smoking…….. I can close my eyes and just see Eddie with that hugh ciggy in his month. We all thought it was so cool to smoke.Little did we know just how bad it is for each of us. I smoked for 35 years and in the end I lost 50% of my tougne and now on this Tuesday the 8th of Sept I will undergo a Thoracoscopy to see if I have lung cancer. IF you smoke please STOP now. It is not worth all the worry and pain . God Bless you all and please keep me in your prayers. Have a great labor weekend.

Postings by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND.

Sister Sharon Houle is a sister to all of the Houle kids (Keith, Joanne, Gary, Allen, Ron, Pam, Doreen) that we all know from Dunseith. Their mother, Lillian, recently passed away.


From the Thurman Parrill Family

Don Boardman DHS class of 60

Jamie Pladson is the son of Dan (75) and the late Marge Johnson Pladson

Granddaughter of Lloyd (44) & Theresa Cote (48) Awalt

01/09/2017 (2478)

Larrett Peterson (’71) and his wife Yola’s Visit to Cebu

Folks, These are some more pictures of Larrett and Yola Peterson’s visit to see us here in Cebu. They are in the Philippines visiting Yola’s family in the Manila area. They took time out of their schedule to fly down and visit us here in Cebu 400 miles south of Manila. We really enjoyed their visit. Larrett and I thoroughly reminisced our common ties of the Dunseith and Turtle mountain communities too.

Larrett and Yola arrived Thursday about noon and left Saturday evening. They had reservations at the Waterfront Hotel. Thursday Evening we had dinner at the Buffet 101. Bernadette was not well enough to go with us, however she was feeling better on Friday and was able to join us for dinner at the Ching Palace Chinese Restaurant. Saturday Morning I joined Larrett and Yola for Breakfast buffet at their hotel. Following Breakfast we went to the SM Mall. On Friday they scheduled a City tour.

Thanks again Larrett and Yola for your visit.


                  Larrett Peterson and Gary Stokes
Peterson, Larrett 2478-1

Peterson, Larrett 2478-2

                        Larrett and Yola Peterson
Peterson, Larrett 2478-3



Blog (539) posted on September 3, 2009

Posted on September 3, 2009

From Aggie Casavant (69): Fort Mill, SC

 Hi Gary

Reading Dicks memories of his Grandpa Hans,and his rolled Prince Albert cigarettes brought to mind another episode with Maryann, Eddie, Bobby and I.

One day when our Mom and Dad went into town to get groceries,Maryann,Eddie,and Bobby and I saw that Dadddy had left his rolling papers on the kitchen counter right next to this big round can of Prince Albert. So we all agreed that we were going to have a contest who could make the biggest and the best cigarette,and we were gonna smoke them. We had talked about doing it other times but our Dad would always just have the little flat cans,and we knew he would notice someone used his tobbacco and we would get in trouble,But this time we felt we could pull it off because the can was so big that he wouldn’t miss a few cigarettes. So the contest began and we were all in our own corners making our own cigarette.At some point Bobby saw that he was going to loose the contest,so he comes into the room with a full page from the Minot Daily News in one hand and the big can of Prince Albert under his other arm.As he layed the paper on the floor and started pouring the tobbacco down the seam in the newspaper he said,”I’d like to see any of you make a bigger cigarette than this! By that time some of us were done making our cigarette and were puffing and choking.But we really started choking when we saw that Bobby was going to use that whole can of Prince Albert on that huge cigarette,and we were really going to get in trouble. We were yelling, No Bobby! you can’t do that. But by that time he already had rolled it up with both hands,and had it up to his mouth like he was playing the flute yelling,”Light it Eddie! Light it! Well by that time we were all laughing, and jumping around cheering him on. Well needless to say there was more newspaper than tobbacco,and the end of the cigarette started on fire. Well Bobby was puffing for all he was worth and all he got at his end was newspaper ashes,and fire.(If there ever was a time he could of been a Dunseith “Dragon” mascot it was then). All of a sudden we heard our older sister who had been down at the barn milking cows,come into the house.We threw the cigarette on the floor that was still in flames,and started stomping it out…She could smell something burning and hollered,”What are you kids doing? So we ran into the kitchen where she was and said,”We were playing with matches,and handed them over to her. When she went back outside,we ran back in the living room and started sweeping up the mess,trying hard to save as much tobbacco as we could to put back in the can, so our Dad wouldn’t notice…Well we salvaged alot of the tobbacco,but along with it was alot of newspaper ashes and whatever else was on the floor,but we didn’t care we were so sure that we would have our Dad fooled. When he got home and we saw him go for that can of tobbacco,and all of a sudden heard him say “Those 3 words in French,that he always said when he was,first baffled then mad….all of us scattered out of any door we could find.

Like Dick said,there was something about that sweet smell of Prince Albert that was special…As the years have gone by I’ve collected Prince Albert cans. Most all of them are the small flat ones,I have one full can of Velvet, but the most special one I found in a small antique shop in Nashville,Tennessee about 13 years ago was a big round Prince Albert can….chocked full of memories. Thanks Gary! Aggie

Dale Pritchard’s (63) reply to Sharron Gottbreht Shen (59): Leesville, LA

I remember the first time I ran across this program. I was driving into
town, going through the radio stations, and I came into the middle of one of
their ketchup skits. I kept thinking “What kind of commercial is this.” I
especially like their skits on Lake Woebegone and the Norwegian bachelors.
It comes on here in Southern Louisiana Saturday nights then reruns on Sunday
afternoons. Folks, this is a national PBS program that comes out of
Minneapolis. Pull up a search of “Prairie Home Companion” to get a schedule
for your area. I, and I guess Sharron also, recommend it for some good,
clean, radio listening.


Message/Pictures from Sharron Gottbreht Shen (59): Everett, WA.

Ernest Victor Boucher, son of Victor and Emma Boucher, is 99 today living in Fort Benton, MT. My words will not do justice to Ernie Boucher; he has been friend, mentor, father and fellow well met his many years to so many. I’ve heard and recorded several of the many stories related about the how when and where persons have met Ernest, all reflect the esteem which they hold for the man.

He first met Dale Gottbreht at Notre Dame Academy, 1922; “First time I saw a boy wearing high top laced shoes. Dale was ever mischievous, but never malicious.” Ernest was the only one of his brothers to graduate from High School. Many of you know the countless tasks of an older son growing up in a farm village; Ernie did them all. Horse and trap escort of the parish priest from Thorne to St. Antoine every other week; milk delivery before daylight throughout the village [The spookiest was when his uncle Art Perrin lay in the Boucher parlor – he was certain that his deceased uncle road with him that night!]; working at the SC Pidgeon General Store and always part of the labor force at surrounding farms every harvest season. He attended Business College in East Grand Forks and worked for a Beer distributor during and after college.

Ernest went from boot camp to England and from England to France after D Day. He downplays his roll in the war being part of the support team behind the battle front. I am sure he related to his brothers his experiences, many of them painful to witness. His cousins, Harvey Grenier and Ollard Boucher, and so many others did not return from WWII so I take his silence as a matter of respect.

My husband Victor first met Ernie at the 50th wedding anniversary of Hector and Celia Boucher in Wisconsin. Victor asked uncle to relate the secret of his financial success. Ernie said it was all quite by chance. His former boss in beer haulage was retiring and had no sons. He offered his two top men the market for Schlitz and Grain Belt. Ernie told his fellow heir to choose first, the gentleman chose Schlitz! Ernie settle for Grain Belt which later became Bud. The greater community of Grand Forks has done well by the generosity of their favored son, Ernest.

The third picture offered was taken after Ernie Gottbreht had taken Mom, Ivan, Blake and I fishing to Lake of the Prairie, SASK in 1984. I’ve never experienced Walleye fishing on that scale since! Ernie knew exactly what he was in for and invited Joe Boguslawski along to help bait hooks, etc. Both Ivan and I felt we needed arm splints! In the photo, we have just finished a lunch of mom’s Walleye Chowder and Uncles Ernie and Roland Mongeon, who turned the 97 page yesterday, then got busy moving Alma to her new apartment.

After retirement, Ernest lived for a time in Prince Albert, SASK, and now lives in Fort Benton, MT where he gardened for years, watched the seasonal progress of huge grain farms and delights in living day to day close to the Missouri with all the wild life and fowl it attracts. It is my hope to visit him in the next few weeks and get beat one more time during his 100th year by this very dear and cheerful Pinochle wizard.


Ernest Boucher July 4 1937

Ernest Boucher in England or Europe c 1944

Sharron & Ivan Shen, Alma & Ernie Gottbreht and Ernest Boucher summer 1984

Note: Obituary reposted with Thurman’s picture:
From Neola Kofoid Garbe:Minot & Bottineau, ND.

Thurman Parrill, age 91, of Bottineau, died Tuesday, August 4, 2009, at a Bottineau hospital.

His funeral will be held on Wednesday, August 12, at 2 p.m. at the Peace Lutheran Church in Dunseith. Visitation will be Tuesday, August 11, from 10 a.m. until 9 p.m. at the Nero Funeral Home in Bottineau. Burial will be at the Rendahl Cemetery near Dunseith.

Thurman Merton Parrill was born December 13, 1917, to Cecil Day and Laura Melhus Parrill near Thorne, N.D. His father passed away in the 1918 flu epidemic when Thurman was one year old. He grew up in the Bottineau area and attended area schools. The family later moved to Mountain, N.D., and he worked on the family farm until he joined the U.S. Navy on May 23, 1944. He served in the Pacific Theater on the SS Mormachawk and SS Orvetta during World War II. He was honorably discharged from the Navy on Feb. 15, 1946. After the war, he came to the Dunseith area and began farming in Rolette County.

On November 24, 1947, he married Marie J. Nelson at the Lutheran church in Dunseith. They moved to a farm in Bottineau County, where they raised their five children. In 1995, they sold the farm and moved to Bottineau, where they had since resided.

Thurman was a past member of Rendahl Lutheran Church and a current member of Peace Lutheran Church of Dunseith. He served as a Township Supervisor of Homan Township for many years. Thurman enjoyed playing cards and enjoyed spending as much time as possible with his grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

He is survived by: his wife of more than 61 years, Marie, of Bottineau; and his children, Janet (George) LeNoue of Lexington, Ky., Lynda (Curtis) Jordan of Yerrington, Nev., and Clayton (Linda), Rodney (Ann), and Myron (Kathy) Parrill, all of Bottineau. He has nine grandchildren: Christy LeNoue, Michelle (Carter) Newton, Troy (Meagan) Jordan, Stephanie Swartz, Katie (Tyrell) Lauckner, David, Brooke, Krystle and Shelby Parrill; and four great-grandchildren: Levi, Braxton and Declan Lauckner and Jordan Swartz. Also surviving are his half sister, Shirley (Oliver) Johnson of Grand Forks; half brothers, Don (Roberta) Cox of Cavalier, Joe (Gladys) Cox of Seattle, Wash., Ben Cox, Cavalier, and Paul Cox, Grand Forks; stepsister, Hazel Cox of Davenport, Iowa; brother-in-law, John N. Nelson, Minot; and sisters-in-law, Mildred Parrill and Eugenie Walker of Bottineau, Judy Cox, Cavalier, and Fern Cox, Union Mills, Ind.; and numerous nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents; brothers, Dean Parrill, Darrell Cox, Mytroen Cox and Howard Cox; sisters, Avis Vivatson, Deedee Anderson, Fern Grimm, Edith Baratach, Esther Leonard and infant sister Helen Cox; stepfather, J.R. Cox; and nephew, Clark Parrill.

Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe:Minot & Bottineau, ND.


Dick Johnson’s wife Brenda sent me and also Bill Grimme a copy of this beautiful CD album of theirs. They were unaware that they were being recorded, so Dick didn’t think it was of premium quality to be sending out. It’s a great album! Sometimes one can be too self critical. It’s 50 plus minutes of great music with Dick singing. Like I told Dick, I can sure pick up that good ole ND accent in the Album. I’m not sure if this album is for sale or not. For those of you interested in having a copy will have to ask Dick/Brenda that question.


01/06/2017 (2477)

Larrett Peterson (’71) and his wife Yola are visiting us here in Cebu, Philippines

Folks, We are so honored have Larrett and Yola Peterson visiting us here in Cebu. Larrett graduated with the Dunseith HS class of ’71. When I saw Larrett yesterday, there was no doubt in my mind that he was a Peterson. In my childhood days, I knew his Uncle Jack very well and also his dad Bill, and his uncle Duane. There was no doubt in my mind that he was related.

Larrett and Yola are Visting her family and friends in the Manila area. They made a special trip, 400 miles to the south, to visit us here in Cebu. There is lots of water between us and Manila too, so they flew. They arrived yesterday and are staying for two nights and three days. They are staying at the Waterfront hotel.

I met Larrett and Yola at their hotel room after they arrived yesterday and brought them back to our house to visit and see Bernadette before going out for dinner at the Buffet 101. Bernadette wasn’t well enough to go with us for dinner. Her condition is like a yoyo. Hopefully she will be able to join us tonight. We plan on getting together with Larrett and Yola this afternoon and for dinner again this evening following their City tour. For sure we will have more pictures to post with the next blog posting.

I pasted a picture below of the Philippines that will give you an idea where Cebu is located in relation to Manila and also where the Philippines is located in South East Asia. We are 10 time zones from North Dakota. That is nearly half way around the world. On Day light time we are the same time as New York with one being night and the other day.


Peterson, Larrett (2477) Philippines


Thank You
From Vickie Metcalfe (’70):  Bottineau, ND


Thank you for all you do from afar. I wish you Gary, Bernadette, and your extended families good health and continued Blessings in 2017.

Dunseith Friends,

It is so great hearing back from various people reading. I  appreciate feedback and each warm message I  receive.

Best wishes wherever you are and go in the coming year..

With fond thanks.

Vickie Metcalfe


Blog (538) posted on September 2, 2009

Posted on September 2, 2009

Reply from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND.

Gary and Friends,

Thanks to Larry and Don for the insight on the neighborhood. My
neighbor, Audrey Anderson Smith, was a sister to Arol (Bud) Anderson.
She told me many stories about Bud and Carroll Carlson.One time Bud’s
wife, Norma, got tired of Carroll and Bud arguing about politics and
went to bed at midnight. She got up in the morning and they were still
sitting at the table—arguing about politics! I think Carroll lived
alone too long and this was the main reason he was considered
introverted by most folks. He really liked to visit and talk but usually
didn’t if he had to start the conversation. Knowing this, I always would
break the ice and he would talk right along. If we asked him to come
over for a meal, he would usually say, “Ah, I got plenty to eat over
here, he he he, do you think I’m gettin’ skinny or what?” The next words
were usually, “What time, he he he?” He was VERY knowledgeable about
history and current events and expressed his opinion! I placed value in
his opinions because of his personal experiences over many years.
Several times we invited him up to our cabin on Lake Metigoshe. He just
loved to ride around the lake on my pontoon. I remember one day we took
a cruise around the north lake and then went back to the cabin to eat.
After we ate and sat around for a while, I said, “Anyone care to take a
ride around the south lake?” Carroll nearly tipped his chair over when
he jumped up and headed for the dock! It was fun for me to see someone
who still enjoyed the little things in life. He was a good friend and I
sure miss him.

Larry’s mention of roll-your-own smokes reminded me of my Grandpa Hans
Johnson and his flat can of Prince Albert. I really loved the smell of
his tobacco and the smoke was sweet, not rank like the cigarettes today.
Grandpa died in the fall of 1965. It was about 30 years later that I was
trucking hay and stopped in St. John for noon lunch at the little cafe.
There wasn’t a table left in the whole place so an old fellow I only
kind of knew said I could sit with him if I wanted. He was just
finishing his meal when I sat down. I was looking around the room and
all at once this smell from 30 years ago hit me. I looked at him and he
had just lit up a home-rolled P.A.! It was like instantly going back in
time! It’s amazing how the mind can store the memory of a certain smell
for all those years!

Seim’s well—good water for sure! We went to their well and got
drinking water in a cream can out of the covered underground tank below
the big windmill.I used to take the bottom cushion out of the old Model
A and set the cream can in the back. If we got water in the morning, the
sun shined through the small doorway and I remember seeing all the way
to the bottom of the deep tank. Clear and cold! My grandmother also used
the water can as a weather forecaster. It sat in the entry to the old
house at the farm and if it started to ‘sweat’ (condense on the outside
of the can) she would say, “You better finish putting up that hay today,
it’s going to rain.” It usually did! While I’m on the subject of old
predictors of weather, Grandpa always said to watch the seagulls. If
they are flying low over the lake it will more than likely rain. If they
fly high, no rain. If the foam from the waves on the lake lines up in
streaks–rain. If the oak leaves turn over and show their silver
underside–rain. The old ‘red sky at night–sailor’s delight, red sky in
the morning–sailors take warning’ still works most of the time too! I
still watch for these signs and they still hold true most of the time.
The old folks were much more in touch with nature than most people are
today. We have Doppler radar, the weather channel, and radio so the old
ways are not even considered anymore. Oh well, technology moves on but I
still use the old signs as well. Thanks to Don, Larry, and Gary!


Reply from Brenda Hoffman (68): Greenville, SC


Actually, Dr. Angel Cuadrado is actually a professor and pediatric cardiologist or oncologist (I keep forgetting which) at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta. One of his interns’ brother owns a unit in our condo in Greenville and she says he’s a great dr. instructor and person. Can’t ask for more than that! And Manual lives in Nebraska. Not sure what he does/did for a living.

Brenda – class of 68

Brenda, I just talked to Angel and he said he only went to grade school for several years in Dunseith. He remembers very few folks from those days, however he does remember you. His brother Manual (Manny) graduated with the class of 63 and yes, he is on our distribution list. Gary



2009 S 88th St

Omaha, NE 68124

(402) 680-1674



Reply from Sharron Gottbreht Shen (59): Everett, WA.

Gary, the picture of Dale and Adolphe should be dated 1955 or after – the 42 film Arla used in 1958 for several pictures may have been that used at the bar.
The blanching seen in the bar pictures was similar to that of early flash camera results. Sharron

Sharron Gottbreht Shen – 7-24-09

Seattle/Dunseith Reunion 7-24-09:

Front L to R: Evie Gottbreht Pilkington (65), Fred Dutra & Francie Gottbreht Dutra (63):
Back: Sue Metcalfe

Seattle/Dunseith Reunion 7-24-09:
L to R: Leah Metcalfe (Daughter), Sue & Gary Metcalfe (57)

01/04/2017 (2476)

Mom’s Gold bond Stamps
Story from Vickie Metcalfe (’70):  Bottineau, ND

Gary and Dunseith friends,

It is storming here again in North Dakota. The snow is swirling around. A dark and cold night as I recall  the  winter  of ’54 or ‘55 . That was also a winter of a lot of snow. Back in  the time gravel township roads were maintained infrequently by the blade>.

Dad worked out that winter plastering in Belcourt.  A car was left at ‘Snoose box ’Junction.  Dad would feed the cattle  with a hayrack and the team in the wee hours of the morning. Then, he’d pick up the lunch box packed by mom and ride Barney to the Highway.  He’d meet up with Uncle Bill who came from the other direction.

Uncle’s Bill and Jim Metcalfe often worked in Belcourt too. So they’d meet and ride together. In the evening, Dad would be left at the highway and he’d walk the ridge left by the blade>>>>>back home  the 1and 1/2 miles. He’d get home, chore,go pitch hay for the next day then eat supper ,.

It was the winter I had a had  the runny nose problem.

Yup. That winter I was a snotterer!

One Sunday, Dad said to  mom. “Vickie stinks.”  Mom checked me all over, changed my clothes at first didn’t find where the stink came from.

Finally they decided the awful smell was coming from my nose. Dad said something like “I think her eye is looking funny too.

My worried Mom got on the ringer telephone. She called Uncle Jim and Aunt Ella’s.  I don’t remember how she had to ring them up.  Did she have to ring up Central first to get through?  (Central switchboard was located in a little house on the South side of Kelvin.)

Anyway, the next morning, after  the chores of milking and feeding the cattle.  Dad brought the hay rack and team to the house. Warmly dressed we crawled onto the hayrack.  Dad drove the team through the snow to ‘Snoosebox’ Junction.

There was Uncle Jim Metcalfe!  He had driven his car down  the highway #3 from the North where he and his family  lived by the border.  Mom and I crawled out of the warm hay leaving Dad and my sister behind.  Off the team went for home.

We were seated in Uncle Jims car going South through Dunseith and turned West on Highway #5.  It was a long ride.

Finally there was the town of Bottineau.  Uncle Jim drove to Dr. Nelson’s office.

This was a place I really didn’t like!  I remembered Dr. Nelson. Because in the past I had gone round and round his examining table once when he attempted to give me a shot.  I managed to escape out to the reception area. Just as I was about to get out the door the lady grabbed me. And soon,  it was all over but the crying

Mom and I got out of the car and Uncle Jim drove away. Once in the office I was put up on the examination table. Dr. Nelson had that big round metallic thing  with a shinging light on his head. He looked up my nose.  Soon he had a long instrument up my right nostril.  It seemed he put  the whole length of in Then He pulled and out came a big paper wad.  A kleenix tissue!   He said to mom, “She may have an infection, if she hadn’t come she might have developed eye problems” . Whoa a shot.

Finally, I was glad to be getting  out of there!  I put on my coat, mom grabbed my hand and we walked out the door.  She carried  her purse in the other hand as we walked up the street to a kind of store place.

When we were inside, she talked to the sales clerk. Then, reaching in to  her purse pulled out Gold bond stamp books.  Books that my sister and I had fun so much fun licking stamps with mom.  Mom traded her books for a pan she wanted.  That was the day Mom got her double boiler.

Uncle Jim found and gathered us up. Off we went in his car East. I slept all the way back to ‘Snoose box ‘ Junction where dad  and the team met us.

Mom used the  double boiler frequently through the years.  Our favorite things she used it was in the making of divinity and sweet sauce for  Suet Pudding!

Until later.

Vickie Metcalfe


A Montanans  WWII Story
From Vickie Metcalfe (’70):  Bottineau, ND

Here  is one Montanan’s  story from todays online Billings Gazette.

My Dad Cliff, served in the US navy and also trained at Farragut, Idaho.

He was stationed for a while at Seaside Oregon.

But  deeply  patriotic he wanted to do his duty and volunteered to go out.

Dad  served as a Boat swan Mate.

He piloted boats with soldiers onto islands.

He  shared  about the kamikaze .

He was ship side to bury sailors at sea.

He also said  the sailors often listened  to Tokyo  Rose.

Dad said  she had a beautiful voice and used it.

She seemed to have  information about the various ships, and it felt like she was talking to the guys.



“We were only 100 to 200 yards from a mountainous beach. That evening from a bullhorn the beach we heard, “Hello boys on the LMS 96 being repaired by LSD. You all would like to go home to your loved ones but this will not happen. An imperial Japanese kamikaze will blow you all to bits at daylight. This is Tokyo Rose. Sleep well. Bye.”



Blog (537) posted on September 1, 2009

Posted on September 1, 2009

Reply from Dale Pritchard (63): Leesville, LA


Sharron Gottbreht Shen’s revised quote, “Dunseith, where the women are
strong, the men all handsome and the children above average,” from the
PBS radio program “Prairie Home Companion” caught my attention. One can
turn that quote around when they are proud of where they came from. I
found, and got hooked on, the program maybe 5 years ago and listen to it
when I can. Thank you, Sharron!

Dale Pritchard

Sharron’s (59) reply: Everett, WA.

Yeh! I was waiting for a kindred spirit to recognize Garrison K. Another line from Prairie Home Companion that I love is “beebop a rhubop rhubarb pie – it takes the taste of disatifaction out of your mouth”! Mr Keillor brightens my every Sunday. Thanks Dale. Sharron

Reply from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND.

Gary and Friends,

The prom pictures with Conrado Duran reminded me of some of the other
Cuban students who came to San Haven and attended school in Dunseith.
One in particular was Roberto Lopez. He was sandy haired and very nice
looking. He was very good at softball and baseball. When we played
softball on the west side of the old white school and he came up to bat,
the outfielders took off to the south on the run. He could hit the ball
all the way to the street or over the street into Boguslawski’s yard,
over 200 feet away. In Cuba they played ball all the time and he was
good! I think most of the Cuban kids were sent to stay with relatives in
the US to escape the revolution when Fidel Castro took power. I remember
they feared for the safety of their families still in Cuba. Another
family was the Cuadrado family. Angel (an-yel) Cuadrado was in our grade
and Manuel was about two or three years older. I remember how they had a
bit of trouble with English at first. Some of their sentence structure
was humorous to us, as we never had been around Spanish speaking people.
One morning as I got to school, Manuel came up to me and very seriously
said, “Do you heard what happen?” I said, “No, what happened.” Manuel
said, “Father Wolf, from the Catholic Church, he woke up dead.” He
apparently had died in his sleep. Although it was a sad deal, I couldn’t
help chuckling that day whenever I thought about Manuel’s excited
statement. They were all excellent students and very courteous, as I
recall. As the doctors from the San transferred to other places, so did
the kids who stayed with them. Angel Cuadrado left in about his
sophomore year. Lola Metcalfe Vanorny told me she heard he is now a
pediatrician in Atlanta, GA. Thanks Gary!


Converversation between Larry Hackman (66):Bismarck, ND.

& Don Aird: St. Louis, MO.

From Larry to Don:

I think this was a interesting conversation we had. Would you mind if Gary Puts it out on the blog? If you do please let him know as I’m sending this to both of you. Don, I also must have deleted the latest emails. If this is OK with you and if you want to include them please send them onto Gary

Don to Larry:

Carroll Carlson was my favorite Uncle I visited him as often as I could the last time was in December the year before he died. I knew Alvin and Art Siem we used to get our drinking water from the Siem’s farm. Eva Siem always had cookies and hot chocolate for me when we stayed at the farm during Christmas.


Larry to Don:


I have been trying to place you and where you lived?

So far I have nothing. I know several people use to haul water from their neighbors wells in the hills. Some of the water was real good and some not so good. I think a lot of it depended on the depth of the well. Did you know the Walters’, the Birklands’, The Dietrichs’, and the Hackman brothers that lived along 43. There are a lot of Hackmann/ Hackman relatives that live in and around St.Louis. Do you know any? My family originated from between Gerald and New Haven, Mo. near a church called Port Hudson. Mo.


Don to Larry:

Not many folks in Dunseith know me. I was born in Bottineau in 1943. My Mother Clarissa Carlson Aird worked and lived in the Shelver Drug Store until Dad returned from Europe (WW II) then we moved to Wahpeton. My Mother died in 1952. I was raised in Wahpeton, went to college in Dickinson, went to Vietnam in 1970, came back to NDSU where I got my masters on the GI Bill. We always came back to the Carlson farm across the road from Siems but I never got to know anyone either in the hills or town. Over the years I came back to visit Uncle Carroll as often as possible. Carroll was the least sociable character I ever met. He rarely visited anyone. In fact Dick Johnson lived just down the road from Carroll, Carroll wouldn’t talk to him. So Dick took it upon himself to start a conversation. Dick then watched after him until he died.

The water we drank came from the Siem farm. It was the best water I ever remember drinking, it was always cold. Art and Eva were good friends.

Misery is a beautiful state but to hot and humid in the summer. I spend my retirement working with/for Vets and fishing the many rivers that are close to St Louis.

Larry to Don:


Sorry I havn’t got back to you sooner. I was thinking about your comment about Carroll being unsociable. After reading many of the stories written about him and what he accomplished during his life time I dont’t think that was always the case. However, I think that as people, in particular men, get into their later years they seem to hold back and shy away from other people. I know several in my family that did the same thing. They actually were all real nice folks, but just would not go out of their way to strike up a conversation with anyone. I think there are several reasons for this, one being that as most of us age we start to loose are hearing. It gets hard to understand what some people are saying. I’m finding that out now. People with soft voices and most kids, I can,t undrstand, so I end up asking them to talk slower, and louder and to repeat . If there is any background noise forget it. I know I’m going to have to get hearing aids eventually, but I don’t want to. I know that is one reason why people shy away from other people and avoid crowds. Another reason why people shy away from other people is that when you deal with other people their problems have a tendancy to become your problems. When you get up in age I think most people and again mostly men figure that they have seen and had to work through enough problems and don’t want to get involved with solving any more. I always thought my great uncle was wasting his life sitting back in his chair, smoking his pipe, and watching the leaves flutter and turn in the breeze just outside the window. He would do that for hours every day. You know, now that I’m retired and can kick back, there is something that is calming and almost hypnotic about relaxing and watching the leaves. It almost makes me want to get a pipe and light up. Maybe I’ll consider it again in about 10 years, if it crosses my mind. I havn’t smoked for almost 40 years, but I remember my great uncle didn,t mind if I took one of his pipes filled it with his tobacco and kicked back and had a smoke and a conversation with him. I was about 12 years old. Them were the days? I had a couple of uncles who smoked roll your own cigarettes using Bullderm tobacco in the sack orPrince Albert tobacco in the can. One uncle could roll a cigarette with one hand. I had to use both hands. They always claimed, that roll your own cigarettes never started a fire. Because if you didn’t draw on a roll your own , it simply went out and you would have to relite, or if you laid it somewhere it would simply go out. Where as, with a taylor made cigarette it would keep burning until there was nothing left no matter if it was in your mouth or an ash tray, or a pile of dry leaves. They didn’t set much store with taylor made cigarettes


Larry to Don:


There were two parts of these messages that did not go through. Your reply to the last message, was that Bud Anderson and Carroll Carlson were good friends before and after the war and that Bud had informed you that Carroll Carlson had become introverted due to his experiences in the war, where he was involved in several major battles and that he was a lot more light hearted and friendlier before the war.

Don I remember Bud Anderson being quite a jokster. Bud’s family was putting up hay on my Great Uncles (Henry Dietrich’s) place. Frank Hackman my uncle was in the stack. At that time the object was to build a hay stack to the largest dimensions possible and still get the stack moving people to move it from the hay field into your farm yard. They usually charged by the stack and just gripped about the size of the stack but you still got it moved for the same price. Anyway my Uncle Frank was in the stack. His job was to keep the edges of the stack vertical and packed to highest point possible or to the height the farmhand could reach. The last item of business to complete the stack was to top it off so that the middle of the stack was higher and moisture would drain off the stack and not into the stack. Frank had been in the stacks all day. The day was hot and I ‘m sure Frank was tired. It was the last stack of the day. Lorenzo Anderson running the farmhand hoisted the hay up to the center top of the stack. There was a push off on the farmhand that pushed the hay off the end of the tines onto the center of the stack. This action also happened to push my uncle off the stack. He came sliding and tumbling to the ground with his fork in his hand. Bud and I were sitting in the pickup watching and waiting for them to finish up saw all of this happen. Bud couldn’t contain himself and begin laughing. My Uncle Frank was glaring at him with pitch fork in hand. Then Bud knowing Frank was a bachelor said the wrost possible thing he could think of, at that instant. He said, Frank you almost made your wife a widow, and just howled with laughter. Its a good thing old Bud had that pickup in gear and fast with his foot on the accelerator, otherwise he would of been wearing a pitch fork for a tale. Bud always liked to tease Uncle Frank about his wife. As I remember Bud. He stood about 6ft.5in. and always had a smile on his face and always found something to laugh about. I bet Carroll had some good times with old Bud Anderson?


Question from Lois Tweten: Helena, MT

Neola Kofoid Garbe’s reply in Red: Minot & Bottineau, ND

Hi Gary,

You certainly have a lot of wonderful information! Thanks to you and Bev Morinville Azure for adding me to your list/blog even tho I don’t know many folk.

But…I do have a question. In the 40’s 1942-49 when I lived on Ohmer street – a block North on the East side of the hospital…two houses to the North, on the corner, Johnnie and I played with Smallie Houle…Do you know who that is now? Maybe you do Neola? Hi Lois, Smallie/Smollie (Raymond Houle) lived three houses north from the corner. I THINK the Monson family had moved their house to the corner of the block (straight west from our house) when your family still lived in Bottineau. Monson’s house was on the corner, someone named Nordmark–maybe Marlyn, was next. Then it was Houle’s house. I think the Lyle Mahler family lived in this house later. Smallie/Smollie was one of the bunch who chased each other around the neighborhood after school on May 1. I’m sure you remember “May Day ” was BIG day in our neighbor. As you know May baskets were delivered, usually after school, and that’s when the chasing/fun started. I can still remember running after/from the other kids. You/Johnnie delivered your baskets in the morning (When we got up in the morning, baskets from you/Johnnie were already hanging on our doors. It would have been a big surprise/disappointment if they hadn’t been there.), so you could sit back and relax while the rest of us were running. I think Smollie/Raymond passed away a few years ago. I thought I had his obituary, but I can’t locate it. Eileen, did I send it to you?

We played with Dennis Langehoud Dennis Langehaug lived on Bennett St. He/my brother, Jim, were good friends in high school. Dennis is a fun-loving fellow. Did you see the picture of Dennis/your brother, Johnnie/me that was taken at the Class of ’58’s 50-year reunion? If not, I’ll send it to you–I think Johnnie has it, too., Billy Sauscer (spelling is all wrong). But after my Dad, Kenneth Tweten died, and Mom married Harold Skjervem we moved away and then I’ve lost touch with so many until this Dunseith blog.

Thanks for any information…

An old Bottineau classmate until 1949, in my 4th grade. Lois Tweten


Allen, I am reposting this from several days ago. I did not realize I had forgotten to identify it was from you until I noticed it with the last group that I send these daily messages to. Gary

From Allen Richard (65): Midland, MI

In August Nathan and Kristina were inn ND while he was on furlough fro his position in Homeland Security in Alaska. They didn’t have time to make it to MI and I couldn’t make it to ND. We met in the Minneapple for a fun couple days.

To make an adventure of it by taking the old Charger. Yeah — I still have it. Some of you may remember it as “Dakota Midnight” in CB radio days.

I want to dispel any rumors that my trip caused gas prices to go up — although i could have created a temporary shortage of premium in a couple places —- I re did it mechanically — and watering 450 horses takes a considerable amount of fluid. Yeah–its “baditude” is much worse than ever. (13 MPG on premium–saving up for an overdrive transmission — should get close to 20 mpg then)

The trip was event free and I managed to shave nearly two hours off my usual time from Midland to the Minneapple — partly buy using a GPS and finding a great route. Alaina and I made it in 12.5 hours out and 12 flat back — of course it rained most of the way back mand Ol’ Midnight will create a “religious experience” in a split second on wet pavement.

There is a “MOPAR Power Tour” every year and so far I’ve not been able to participate. So this summer we did one of our own. In the next few years I’d like to drive back to Dunseith for a Peace Garden car show. The Charger hasn’t been there for nearly 25 years. Dick — keep me posted OK? In respect to our old friend Jack Smith — I’ll drive — not haul it.

Anyway here are a few pictures —

Nathan, Kristina and Alaina — only 5 min from the Mall of America–but she still didn’t find a dress for homecoming.

OK — so I always have to get in the picture–must be a throw back to political days

About my T-shirt—The Great Lakes Loons is the name of our minor league baseball team — Clayton Kershaw went straight to the Dodgers from Midland MI.

Message/Pictures from Cheryl Larson Dakin (71): cheryl.dakin@yahoo.com BEDFORD, TX

Hi Gary

I’m attaching a couple more pictures I thought might be of interest to those Larsons and Hansons out there. I can’t identify the grandchildren in the picture with Kjersten, but her greatgrandchildren on the blog might know. The other picture is of my dad’s 7th birthday party (it would have been 1932). He’s in the center of the photo, and Frances Morinville is behind him. She’s very easy to recognize. My Uncle Dick (Richard Larson married my mom’s sister Jerrine Richard) is in the little blond boy in the front. (Hi Uncle Dick!)

Thanks Gary!

Cheryl Larson

Cheryl, I did not realize that Jerrine Richard (49) is your mom’s sister let alone married to your dad’s brother Dick. She is another one I did not have on the master email list either, however she is and has been on our daily distribution list. Gary

Richard Larson


4930 NE 86th St

Seattle, WA 98115

(206) 524-4566



Norman Larson’s 7th birthday with brother Dick (little blond boy in front) and Frances Hansen Morinville (center back)

Kjersten Adriensen age 90 with grandkids

01/02/2017 (2476)

Reply to Picture
From Bob Hosmer (’56):   Lynnwood, WA.

The Westerman girl in the picture Dick Johnson sent is Bertha Westerman.  I believe she’s the younger of the two sisters.  They had a younger sister, Imogene, who lived with my wife and me for a short time when I was in seminary.   Bob Hosmer

Johnson, Dick 2475


Turtle Mountain Home
Posting from Vickie Metcalfe (’70):  Bottineau, ND

Gary and friends,

Wintering in ND returns me to fond Turtle Mountain  memories.

Recollecting early memories of going to my Turtle Mountain Home; was the journey by rear wheel drive car  or the black Ford pickup driven by my dad.  Rain, shine, or freezing cold, Dad always kept his window rolled down and his elbow  folded over the door.  Mom sat in the passenger seat, my sister and I either stood on the ‘bump’ or sat on the seat between them.

Old Highway Number 3 wound around lakes, sloughs and creeks, up, down, and over the tree covered hills  about 10 miles North of Dunseith

Finally, we’d see the Oliver Handeland farm to the right; Dad would say,  ‘Here go up the ‘Jim Smith Hill’.”

Then we were on the flat  homestead meadow.  Slowing, Dad stuck his arm out to signal right.

The car turned at  ‘Snoose’ Box Junction.  A mile East in the distance one could see another Oak hill, the  road curved by  the Carlson Farm  sitting  across the road from the Seim Farm.  I’d look to see if  Kingfra (aka Art) and Fafa’s (aka Eva’) windmill was turning, or if it was later in the day  watch to see their warm twinkling lights. It was always a warm welcoming neighborly feeling.

Another mile, another curve, over a coulee, east well, and up the ‘big’ hill to the mail box.

Nestled  turning south, down under a hill among the trees and hazel brush; Oak, Poplar, Bam, American Elm, Paper Birch, Pin cherry, Chokecherry, Juneberry  and brush which dominated, protected and sheltered our humble dwelling from the North winds.

We were told, it was a cold winter day, a short few years before,leaving mom and my sister snug with his in-laws; Dad had walked  south cross country south from Grandpa and Grandma Lamb’s on highway #43; through  the woods in three foot deep snow. They used their savings accumulated by dad’s plastering in Washington, to buy the little farmstead from Bill Childs who had purchased it from John Randon. (I believe Bill Childs wife was related to Lude Peterson. Lude and Lily for a time lived across the road before moving to Spokane.)   Mom, Dad and my sister lived the spring and summer in one of the little houses by Kelvin Store before Bill Childs and his son moved out. Of course, Dad knew all these people previously whilst living with the Seim family.

A small one bedroom house  covered with brick tarpaper with homemade wood rain gutters, faced south with an entry room attached on the east. The entry room housed a big wood box beside steep stairs that led down below the kitchen to the cellar. Under a mirror sat a white enamel water basin on the dry sink.


Over the wood box on a shelf stood a water bucket and a communal dipper. It did not have indoor plumbing.  One day I climbing up over the wood in the box for a drink, I pulled the whole cold water bucket over me. Along with  the shock of cold water wakeup call I also got a swift spank on my behind!

Around a corner, into the small kitchen was an Admiral fridge and combination wood-electric stove, On the east wall over another brick chimney hung a Murphy table. Mom would pull that table down to prepare food and  for meals. The floor covering was linoleum.

Mom, only used ‘Dakota Maid’ flour  purchased at  Hosmer Store or Lucien and Hannah  Bedard’s Red Owl in Dunseith. Mom used egg money to buy staples for the little pantry behind the Murphy table. One chore for us as children was washing the eggs and putting into the crate. Sometimes she sold the eggs at Kelvin.

The dining room/living room were kept cozy with a parlor oil burner, foldout couch, farm table and chairs, all the furniture came with the house when it was purchased.

Between the living room and  the one bedroom hung a huge floor to ceiling mirror backed by closets and shelves. Whenever our cousins came we had fun with antics and that mirror!

My sister , I,  and Prince Albert  became expert cigarette makers using a cigarette maker which  given to Dad who smoked heavily after WWII.

The house was not equipped with a hot water heater but,  lots of firewood cut in deep winter by dad  and Barney and brought home by  the team of  Prince and Corky.

The wood sat and dried out to cure until late summer. Then long lengths of wood would be pushed and cut into smaller pieces by several  neighbor fellows through a saw mounted on the front of a  ?B John Deere. Early September brought a hard working pair; the Gunville brothers  who split all the wood in a  timely manner, a huge mountain of split firewood.

Mom using a wringer washing machine washed clothes usually early in the week I seem to think it was Monday, that was the day she’d bake 14 loaves of bread.

It seemed the job of washing clothes took the greater part of a day.  Mom heated water on the combination wood electric stove

We girls loved to push the clothes carefully through the wringer flattening  the clothes and  pushed out excess water .

Mom carried the laundry out the back door to the clothesline which was hitched between two oak trees.

How I loved cold winter days when there was fresh warm bread, butter, chokecherry jelly and cocoa or eggnog made by us girls.

My sister and I beat the mixture, turning a hand beater; eggs, sugar, vanilla, and milk  aroma smelled delish!  Yummy  eggnog!   Mom would make us take turns. When it was my  turn, mom would place  the bowl on a kitchen chair,  I’d  be  on my tippy toes, cracking eggs,  reaching  and turning that beater.  My sister was forever hollering, “Mom, she did not  beat the egg’s enough!  “Mom! Egg shells!

…….  Well maybe the eggnog  was kinda, sorta slimy, but I was determined to have my turn and I thought I was good at beating eggs.

Later in the day, before evening milking chores,  mom would gather and bring clothes in from the line. We girls felt it was especially funny watching her carry under her arm  quite stiff, long, and  frozen  dad’s big union suit!  The  frozen sheets of laundry smelling so wondrously fresh and clean was set to be ironed or hung to dry further.

I know, I will never be as tough as my parents or those of the Greatest Generation. Too much,  I enjoy my front wheel drive, indoor plumbing, electric heat, laundry room etc.

Long gone are those days  of yesteryear. I will continue to keep memories close to keep me warm on these cold N.D. winter days.

Until Later.
Vickie Metcalfe


Stuck in the 50’s


Blog (536) posted on August 31, 2009

Posted on August 31, 2009

From Jeanmarie (Jean) Abrahamson (65): Denver, CO

Hi Gary!
a friend give me a computer so I’m online again, still have limited
amount of time since i’m sitting in dialysis over 12 hours per week.
need a kidney transplant

Folks, I had a wonderful visit with Jeanmarie this morning. She has been on dialysis for a few months now. Things have been pretty rough for her the last while. She has been struggling, but she is hanging in there. She has lost about a third of her body weight and she was not heavy to begin with. She currently weighs about 100 lbs. She can be reached at her email address listed above. For those of you wishing to call her, please let me know so I can give you her phone number. I know she’d love to hear from some of you folks. She mentioned she had just talked to her mother a short time before I called.

Jeanmarie, Now that you have a computer, I have you back on our distribution list. Please keep us posted with your situation. Hang in there, you are on the upswing now. Gary

First Cousins and DHS class mates of 65:
Kenny Nerpel & Jeanmarie Abrahamson – August 2007

Reply from Florence Pladson Sime: Dunseith, ND

Gary, in response to my brother talking about my brother David. We were snowed in so our aunt Adeline Olson met dad at the main road and took my mother and David to Botno. They got to doctor Malveys office and Adeline went in and the doctor came out to the car and he told them to get David to the hospital and he died in route. He had pnemonia and there was 3 more of us that had it.

Florence, As I remember you guys were living on the Zieman place west of Salem Church up in the hills when David died. Those were some mighty tough years for you guys. Adeline Pladson Olson was your Dad’s sister. Gary

2009 Alaska Cruise:
Florence Pladson Sime, Keith Pladson & Becky Sime Coles

Question from Lois Tweten: Helena MT

Hi Gary,

You certainly have a lot of wonderful information! Thanks to you and Bev Morinville Azure for adding me to your list/blog even tho I don’t know many folk.

But…I do have a question. In the 40’s 1942-49 when I lived on Ohmer street – a block North on the East side of the hospital…two houses to the North, on the corner, Johnnie and I played with Smallie Houle…Do you know who that is now? Maybe you do Neola?

We played with Dennis Langehoud, Billy Sauscer (spelling is all wrong). But after my Dad, Kenneth Tweten died, and Mom married Harold Skjervem we moved away and then I’ve lost touch with so many until this Dunseith blog.

Thanks for any information…

An old Bottineau classmate until 1949, in my 4th grade. Lois Tweten

Picture L to R: Sarah, Danelle, Greg & Angela (Berube) Malget

Back: Ray Brennan
Front L to R: Max Peterson, Nels Landsverk & Lee Stickland



Security State Bank & the Alan Campbell Family: