100 Years Back – 1915
• Our school record for attendance and tardiness has been very bad. During the first two months of school the number of days lost was 289; number of days tardiness 115. In other words during the first two months, the entire school was absent one and one-sixth days, at a cost of $70 to the district. The superintendent will make this appeal to parents: Do not keep pupils out of school for work; also do not make them run errands just before nine o’clock. We are trying to teach pupils punctuality, yet oftentimes parents, by giving children duties to perform which cause them to become tardy, are creating just the opposite habit. Please help the school to establish a better record by insisting that your child makes a perfect attendance record.• Sunday was an ideal day for November and served to induce practically every autoist to make a trip. Like the old story of the spider and the fly, it lured many to disaster, for the heavy rain and windstorm which struck late in the afternoon, caught many, yes, very many.
• Mr. and Mrs. Emil Krassin and family spent Sunday at the Henry Buschow home near Wells. They were caught in the rain, but only stopped long enough to put on his chains at the Wm. Raetz home and his “darn little Ford rambled right along.”
75 Years Back – 1940
• New Richland and community shared in the worst November blizzard ever experienced in Minnesota and the Northwest. Rain which prevailed Monday morning later turned into sleet of short duration and this into snow which was accompanied by wind of a velocity of from 40 to 60 miles an hour. The effects of this storm were devastating even to the extent of many persons losing their lives. All Armistice Day doings were called off and by 5 p.m. the gale had risen to full propensity. Sixty-five rural students were obliged to stay in town Monday night and residents opened their homes to the stranded ones. School was not resumed till Wednesday. Throughout the state many persons perished, some stranded in cars, others dying from exposure in different ways. The death toll is expected to reach 40. The Central Electric and Telephone Company’s rural lines were demolished by the heavy sleet storm, and toll lines out of here either way are down and unworkable as late as this morning. Between Owatonna and Albert Lea, five miles of Tri-State company’s lines were demolished. The worst property loss is that sustained by Harry Sunde and C. A. Routh, the loss of 65 head of steers.
• Browns Valley—After lying dormant for 38 years, a pocket watch which had been placed in the casket with Mr. G. Rank nearly 40 years ago was uncovered last week when the remains of four bodies were moved to a new resting place. The watch kept almost perfect time when wound, and by a strange coincidence, the watch had stopped at exactly 2:13, which was the exact time it was found.
50 Years Back – 1965
• Named to the Gopher All-Conference team last week from New Richland were Jeff Jessen, son of Mr. and Mrs. Ellis J. Jessen, and Mike Minske, son of Alvin Minske. Named to the team from Janesville were linemen: Mike Mulcahy, Curt Braatz Bill Hoverstein, and Steve Mork, and backs Pat Phillips and Tom Misgen. Members from Medford were linemen: Ed Tricker, Jim Cole, Lyle Krogn, Dave Lageson, and backs: Dana Finne and Jim Eastling. Blooming Prairie members were linemen Bob Tonolli and Dave Tollefson, and backs Ken Esplan and Keith Ingvaldson. Waterville’s back, Dennis Bittrick, was also named to the team.
• In action in Steele County district court a week ago, Judge John F. Cahill sentenced Harland Hagen, 31, to a seven-year term, the outgrowth of a $4,100 check issued to Johnson Motor Co. of Owatonna last June. Sentence was stayed and Hagen was placed on probation, but was promptly picked up by Waseca officials who are charging him with a misdemeanor in conjunction with a past check-passing incident in Waseca county. He had been in the Steele County jail since July.
25 Years Back – 1990
• Following are essays submitted by New Richland-Hartland-Ellendale-Geneva students for Education Week on the subject “The Teacher Who Has Influenced Me The Most”:
Mr. Pelzl was my math teacher for three years. Now, in my opinion, math isn’t one of the more interesting subjects in school. But Mr. Pelzl’s math classes were always fun and time flew by. To be a good teacher you have to get the kids involved and enthusiastic in what you are trying to get across, which is what Mr. Pelzl did for me. I wasn’t “in to” math before, but by the time I finished algebra class in ninth grade, math was my favorite subject and also the one I did best in.—Jane Nordhorn, Grade Ten
My kindergarten teacher, Mrs. Thorstad, taught me a lot of different things, like how to share, how not to always be first in line and other things, how to read, how to write, how to recite the alphabet better than I could before and a lot more. She was always cheerful and happy. She seemed like she enjoyed her job very much and she liked kids a lot, too. I bet it would be nerve wracking to take care of so many little kids’ needs almost all at the same time, but she never showed it.—Kari Nelson, Grade Ten
Mr. Cyr is about the only teacher I know that is willing to answer your questions and he doesn’t get angry or look at you like you’re dumb. He also makes class kind of fun sometimes when we make predictions on the score for that night’s game during football season. Which ever row made the closest prediction got an extra point on their daily assignment. One more reason is that he lets us take retakes on our tests if we want to improve our scores and other teachers don’t usually let us do that.—Angie Menefee, Grade Nine
• The State of Minnesota has ordained that all governmental units hold Truth-in-Taxation hearings this fall. The tax information notices overstate the size of proposed 1991 county property tax increases and are confusing taxpayers. The way the property tax adjustment has been made by the Department of Revenue, it appears the increase in property taxes will be higher than it really is, according to Waseca County authorities. Everyone seems confused by the procedure. Those who have questions are urged to attend the hearing.
Compiled by Jessica Lutgens