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Crookston Times - Crookston, MN
  • Kristina Gray Legendary Locals - Part VI of VI: Carnegie displays and activities during the reunion

  • Come visit the Carnegie building during the All Schools reunion on Friday and Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
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  •     Note to readers: Local historian Kristina Gray is writing a six-part series highlighting more of the “Legendary Locals” that she’s featuring in her new book that will be available for purchase during the All-School Reunion in Crookston June 26-29. The Times featured one installment in the series each week leading up to the start of the reunion, wrapping up with the following piece.   
        Come visit the Carnegie building during the All Schools reunion on Friday and Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.    
        The Polk County Historical Society is sponsoring a peek back into Crookston’s illustrious past.  Crookston collectors will be bringing some of their most prized possessions to show off in the south wing of the Carnegie building.    
        Also, about 25 black and white photos in their original 8x10 format will be showcased in the main lobby area.  These original photos were taken in the 1980s showing what Crookston storefronts used to look like.     
        You also do not want to miss the walking tours of Crookston on Saturday led by Phyllis Hagen. The first tour will start at 11:00 a.m. and the next one at 1:00 p.m. Both tours are leaving from the Carnegie and ending up at Widman’s Candy store. The tours will only be an hour long with costumed characters from the past showing up at each building stop.    
        There are MANY fascinating things to see and know about Crookston’s past.  One of Crookston’s more avid collectors, Cliff Oftelie, will have 1880s and 1890s tokens from Crookston’s past. He has been collecting memorabilia related to Crookston for over forty years. Also, Cliff may have ribbons when the county fair used to be in Crookston. I know Cliff will bring old match boxes listing the different businesses that held sway in Crookston in the olden days.      
        Another Crookstonite, from the CHS class of 1958, will bring her beautiful horse hair blanket that was produced by the Crookston Tannery at the turn of the 20th century.    
        I read earlier that at August Miller’s tannery, it took six months to make his products ready for the customer. Jean S. may also bring a $20 bill that has “Crookston” printed on it. I’ve seen only two such bills. I know that East Grand Forks also has a collector’s bill with the name of their town printed in it.     
    Page 2 of 2 -     I wonder what year these greenbacks were printed and what was the gimmick?  I am certain that these odd bills are worth a LOT more than $20 now on e-bay!   
        Mark Ecklund will exhibit a very nice display of the traveling tiara that has graced the heads of many girls from the graduating class of 1979.     
        I’m looking forward to hearing about the stories attached to this tiara that brightens the face of whoever receives it. The Carnegie will also display most of the years of the Central High School Optimists. These yearbooks go all the way back to the early 1900s. I’m wondering what graduation year will produce the most attention or laughs. You can learn a LOT about a certain time period from these annuals.                 
        There will be other noteworthy exhibits as well, so come and see for yourself.
        Next, please come to buy a copy of the newly released Crookston book titled “Legendary Locals of Crookston.” It was recently published by Arcadia Publishing just in time for this All Schools Reunion event.    
        You may also want to buy the “Images of America: Crookston” book that was released last summer by Arcadia as well.     
        There will be booklets of all the newspaper articles I have written for the Crookston Daily Times, these are more lengthy stories about the Legendary Locals. I found out that once I started researching about our legends, there was a LOT more to know and write about than what Arcadia allowed in their 128 page book. They are also featured in this new book of over 100 legends in Crookston.   
        Finally, if people come with more of their stories or what has been written down about past legends in Crookston, I may just have to write another book titled “MORE Legendary Locals of Crookston.”     
        For now, I am just happy to share the information I have learned. We live in an awesome city with incredible history. I hope to see and visit with you at the Carnegie on Friday and Saturday!
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