Saturday, November 9, 2013

On This Date in Minnesota History: November 9

Nov. 9, 1955 – Dawson/Montevideo, Minn.-native Phyllis Gates married actor Rock Hudson on this date in Santa Barbara, Calif. Gates met Hudson when she worked as a secretary for influential Hollywood agent Henry Willson, who represented Hudson, Tab Hunter, Rory Calhoun and a string of other young stars.

Times file photo, Nov. 9, 1955
Film actor Rock Hudson, 29, and Phyllis Gates, 25, former executive assistant to actor's business manager, cut wedding cake after their surprise marriage Wednesday night in Santa Barbara.

Friday, November 8, 2013

On This Date in Minnesota History: November 8

November 8, 1960 – Filed on August 4, 1953, the patent for a data flight recorder (#2959459), more commonly known as the "black box," was approved on this date. This aviation innovation was a General Mills product developed in partnership with the University of Minnesota.

Data Flight Recorder

Thursday, November 7, 2013

On This Date in Minnesota History: November 7

Cooper Theater1

November 7, 1985 – On this date, “the St. Louis Park [Minn.] Cooper Theater was the scene of the premiere of ‘That Was Then, This is Now,’ a movie [filmed in St. Paul] based on a book by S.E. Hinton and co-starring Emilio Estevez. [Estevez] did not attend.”1

"That Was Then, This is Now"2


Wednesday, November 6, 2013

On This Date in Minnesota History: November 6

November 6, 1903 – The jury trying the case of the state against Jerry Galvin, indicted for the seduction of Cora May Agnew, went out today. The plaintiff alleged a promise of marriage, and it was on her allegation that the entire case rested.

The testimony for the state showed that the alleged promise had been made in the Meyer saloon in the Court block the second time the parties met. There was on the table in the wine room a piece of paper, and she wrote down the agreement and he wrote the same. She was at that time less than 17 years of age, a girl who had been strictly reared by her aunt and uncle. They were to be married, she said, on June 22.

The corroboration of her testimony as to the arrangement to marry was offered. The defendant Galvin had on one occasion accompanied her to her home with her aunt and uncle, where the girl brought up the subject of the engagement in the presence of her uncle, aunt and Galvin.

She said, “Jerry, my aunt won’t believe that we are engaged,” and to that Galvin had assented that they were engaged and were to be married in June. 

There had followed some reference to the youth of the girl, and the hope that she would make Galvin a good wife.

Galvin did not contradict the statements that he was at the house on that occasion, and sitting by the side of the girl on the sofa, but denied that he had answered that they were engaged. On the contrary, he claims to have replied that “it was all foolishness.”

The jury retired at 11:30 and reported to the court at 2:15. Galvin was found guilty of the crime and charged.

St. Paul Dispatch; “Jury Declares Him Guilty, Jerry Galvin’s Crime, His Failure to Keep an Agreement to Marry a West Side Girl”; Nov. 6, 1903; p. 7.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

On This Date in Minnesota History: November 5

November 5, 1878 – The village of Alexandria [Minn.] was incorporated February 20, 1877; and its charter as a city was adopted in 1908. The first passenger train on the railroad reached this place [on this date].”

"Settled in 1858 and established as a township on June 15, 1866, Alexandria was named in honor of Alexander Kinkaid, because he and his brother William were its first settlers, coming from Maryland. The form of the name follows that of the large city in Egypt, which was founded in the year 332 B. C. by Alexander the Great."

Great Northern Depot, Alexandria Minnesota, 1910's

Monday, November 4, 2013

On This Date in Minnesota History: November 4

November 4, 1862 – Dwight Woodbury was elected to the Minnesota legislature on this date, representing Anoka, Benton, Hennepin, Isanti, Manomin (defunct), Mille Lacs, and Sherburne counties.1 Born in Massachusetts in 1800, Woodbury had first come to Anoka County in 1855 from New York. “He bought large tracts of land in what is now St. Francis and built a dam and mills at that point.”2

In 1860, Woodbury bought the beautiful white house on Ferry Street from Dr. Samuel Shaw (Anoka’s first doctor), who had built the house in 1858. The home has had several owners, including Charles Kiewell, President of Grain Belt Brewery, but is best known in the area as the Woodbury House, and was listed as such on the National Registry of Historical Places on December 26, 1979.3

2Steinke, Ray; “History of St. Francis, Anoka County, Minnesota”; St. Francis Area Chamber of Commerce; 2005.

Woodbury House
Photo taken by Pamela J. Erickson. Released into the public domain Nov. 4, 2013,
as long as acknowledgement included.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

On This Date in Minnesota History: November 3

November 3, 1959 - The Wilson & Company packinghouse strike begins in Albert Lea, Minn. The conflict “between Wilson & Co. and the United Packinghouse Workers Local 6 began as a dispute about mandatory overtime hours scheduled by the company. It escalated after the workers’ contract expired between the two entities Sept. 1, 1959, and then on Nov. 3, 1959, the union officially called strike. The strike lasted through Feb. 23, 1960, when the two entities agreed to arbitration, though many workers were not called back for months.”

Strikers march down South Broadway in Albert Lea, MN (1960)