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1956 Porter Diamond Jubilee - A Celebration of the First 75 years

JUNE 22-23 1956

Take a look at Porter's 75th anniversary newspaper! This is an interactive version of the Jubilee's 12 page paper. Due to deterioration, some parts of the paper may be distorted. The original paper is made of six sheets of half-folded 32" X 22" paper, the size typically used today by most daily news papers. Because of its size, each page had to be reconstructed from four scans, so some mismatches are visible throughout the paper.

Porter "Lone Tree" News - Published for Porter's 75th Anniversary

Click on the Page for a large image of each page.

Click on any of the pages to view full size


 Porter's Two-Day


JUNE 22 AND 23


1 to 3 p.m. - Man on the Street Radio Broadcast, Radio Station KMHL

3 to 4 p.m. - Kiddie Parade - Doll Buggies, Trikes, Ponies, Covered Wagons, Miscellaneous, $15 in prizes. Five prizes for best entries.

4 to 4:30 - Emergency Squad ? ? ?

6 p.m. - Water Fight, Fire Departments from Ghent, Minneota, Taunton, Canby, Gary and Ivanhoe.

8 to 9:30 p.m. - Historical Pageant.

9:30 p.m. - Beard Judging and Costume Judging. Prizes will be given.

10 p.m. - Old Fashioned Ball.



10 to 11:30 a.m. - Breakfast Hollywood Style. Henry Jacobson, Tyler, Master of Ceremonies; Durward Stringer, Canby, Assistant MC.

12:30 to 2:30 p.m. - Mile-Long Historical Parade featuring local entries and many from towns and firms in the surrounding area. Many Bands.

2:30 to 3:30 p.m. - Time Capsule Ceremony on Main Street. Prominent speaker. Historical objects to be encased in copper and concrete vault which will be opened in 1981 - on Porter's Centennial.

1:00 p.m. - Prysbolling. $1.00 entry fee with added money for prizes. Contest to be managed by Charles Coequyt, Francis VanHyfte and Elmer Okrina.

3:30 to 4:30 p.m. - Greased Pig Contest for Kids, Managed by Robert Boulton.

4:30 to 5 p.m. - Emergency Squad ? ? ?

8 p.m. - Historical Pageant.


Page 1 Articles -

1905 Porter Baseball Team



CIVIC LEADER-- Pictured above is the late Ora D. Thompson, for years a mail carrier at the Porter post office, who was a civic leader in the community for many years. The Thompson family posed for this photo in front of the Henry Johnson house.

-exact date not known, approx 1900

FAMOUS PORTER TEAM - This is a picture of the famous Porter baseball team that made such a great record 51 years ago this summer (1905). The players are: Back row, left to right: Tom K.T. Nomeland, Oliver Hanson, Frank Evans, Ole Olson, Carl Knutson. Middle row: Henry Knutson, Carl Knutson, Ole Knutson, Halvor Almberg. Front row: Elmer Anderson, Emil Lange, Anton Christianson.




This was Porter 74 years ago -- in 1882 (Village was 1 year old at this time)

Once in a Lifetime!

Yes, the people of Porter and Community will have a chance at the jubilee, June 22 and 23, to see three old-time doctors in action. They have very graciously consented to come out of retirement for the occasion and act as an emergency squad for Porter’s Diamond Jubilee, and have generously agreed to give one free operation in order for young people of today, to see an actual practice, the way their forefathers were operated upon.

Now, if you have any serious thing at all ailing you, we urge you to try to stand the pain and let us examine you those days at jubilee, as it might be beneficial to you and we know it will be educational for the public.

Many of our techniques have been copied and in some instances stolen from us as we were too busy to patent them.

We hope that there is someone living today that we operated on in the past who will be kind enough to make themselves available June 22 and 23 or both days, and testify to our efficiency.

Our first demonstration will be held at 3.30 p.m., June 22, and in the evening of June 23, time and place to be announced from sound truck.

If we operate on you, remember that you will never need another one. Remember the pleasure is all ours.





This View of Porter was taken about 40 years ago (1916)

History of Porter Community

This story is starts on the first and ends on the last page of the newspaper

Please Note: Due to the deteriorating condition of this newspaper, some words had to be deciphered with a "best effort."

This history was compiled by Mrs. Dan Dybsetter, Mrs. Lena Jacobson, and Mrs. R. O. Miller.

Porter is an incorporated village on the Northwestern railroad in the western part of Yellow Medicine county. The platted portion of the village is on Section 33, Wergeland township. The census of 1910 gave Porter a population of 253. It is one of the progressive little municipalities of the county and has ambitions to become greater. In a business way it takes rank with many towns of greater population, having a bank, several up-to-date stores, elevators, lumber yard, several shops, restaurants, two churches, a school, fire department and other institutions.

Porter was founded in 1881, but before that date occurred a number of interesting events connected with the site and vicinity which we should consider when dealing with the history of the town.

It will be remembered that the Northwestern railroad (the Winona and St. Peter) was built through western Yellow Medicine county in 1873, but that, owing to the sparsely settled condition of the country, train service was not begun until several years later. During the early seventies, there was no thought of a town where Porter was later built. Canby was founded in 1876, train service was established on the railroad and the settlers in Wergeland township were very well satisfied with the new conditions.

For the convenience of the homesteaders in the community, a post office was established in 1875 just south of the future village, over the line in Lincoln county. It was named Harstad and was kept at the home of G. A. Harstad, who was postmaster. This office was maintained until after the founding of Porter and was then moved to the village and re-christened. The first structure erected on the site now occupied by the village was put up in 1876. It was a little sod hut built by boys herding cattle in the vicinity. It was used as an alehouse by them and afforded shelter while attending to their duties.

There was a rapid settlement in western Yellow Medicine county in the late seventies and early eighties, and the requirements of the settlers brought about the founding of Porter. In 1881 the railroad company established the station--that is, it constructed a sidetrack there and permitted the shipment of grain from that point. The same season the L. C. Porter Milling Company also put in a warehouse. Ole Dahl, the first resident of Porter, was engaged by both firms to buy grain at the new station. For a short time he was the sole inhabitant. The only other improvement during 1881 was made by W. E. Drummond, who erected a 12x12 "box" and opened a blacksmith shop, which he conducted three years.

The Winona and St. Peter Railway Company platted the Porter town site October 15, 1881. The original plat embraced four blocks and 20 warehouse lots, surveyed from land owned by the company on the south half of section 33, Wergeland. Thomas F. Nicholl was the surveyor. The town site was named Porter, in honor of L. C. Porter, whose company was the first to engage in business in the town.

In the spring of 1882 Harstad post office was moved to the village, re christened Dalston, and Ole Dahl became postmaster. A short time later in the same year the name was changed to Porter, to correspond with the town site designation. Early in the spring Mr. Dahl, the grain buyer, erected a little shack, 12x16 feet, 8 feet high, near the site of the present cement store building, and put in a small stock of groceries, valued at about $500. In this pioneer store he also conducted the post office.

During the summer of 1882 a more pretentious building was put up on Main Street and plans made for a better store. Aanond Gunderson, a farmer, was the builder of the structure, which was 20x30 feet in dimension and two stories high. In the fall this building was rented by J. F. Fries and Paul Gunderson, who purchased the Dahl stock and engaged in business under the firm name of Fries and Gunderson. They enlarged the stock, established a general merchandise store, and were in business until 1891. In the fall of 1883 they erected a 22x64 foot building, 12 feet high, on the site of the present hardware store, and the following January moved to their new home.

During the next few years the progress was not great. The railroad company erected a depot and platform in 1884. Peter Westrom opened a blacksmith shop in 1885 and continued in business until his death in recent years. About the time of his arrival Fries and Gunderson erected a house, in which he lived. The same year Ole Knutson opened a second general store in the building formerly occupied by Fries and Gunderson. Ole Dahl built a house on the south side of the track in 1886, built an addition to it, and opened a store on the south side.

A correspondent to the Canby News of February 12, 1892, stated that there were then in Porter two stores, three warehouses, a blacksmith shop and a station agent. Nelson Brothers were at the time erecting lumber sheds, and the erection of the Lutheran church was started. There was then no school, church or saloon in the village.

There was not much advancement in Porter during the hard times period of the early nineties, but the closing years of the decade marked rapid progress. In 1897 and 1898 many new buildings were put up and several firms established new business enterprises. A directory of the village compiled in November, 1897, listed the following:

C. A. Berg & Co., general store.

J. L. Stanesby, general store.

Charles Gilbertson, furniture store.

Nelson Brothers, lumber yard.

Evenson and Gunderson, meat market and livery barn.

E. E. Ellingson, harness shop.

Hull and Halvorsen, blacksmith shop.

Gust Miller, farm implements and elevator manager.

Frank L. Minnie, agent, Farmers’ Produce Company.

Porter became incorporated early in 1898. Thirty-eight residents petitioned the county board to take the necessary action, and the petition was favorably acted upon January 4. The residents asked for the incorporation of 1,440 acres, described as section 33, the south half of Section 28, the southeast quarter of Section 29, and the east half of Section 32, all in Wergeland township. The election to decide the question was held at C. A. Berg’s Hall February 10, when 44 votes were cast, all except one being favorable. A. I. Anderson, Gust Miller, and Paul Gunderson were inspectors of that election. The village was declared incorporated by the county board February 16, and the village’s first officers were elected March 8. Forty-eight votes were polled. The first elective village officers were: President, A. I. Anderson; trustees, Paul Gunderson, B. M. Dahl, J. L. Stansby; recorder, O. G. Olson; treasurer, J. A. Jacobson; justices, T. E. Ellingson, Mark Hill; constables, Oscar Miller, James Morrison.

The year of incorporation, 1898, witnessed greater progress than any previous twelve month period in the town’s history. The benefits o incorporation were evidenced in better streets, sidewalks, etc. The 15 years that have elapsed since Porter began local government have indeed been prosperous ones. There has been no boom to build up the village, but its progress has been steady and healthy. The village had a population of 196 in 1900. Five years later it was 233, and the census of 1910 showed 253 residents in the corporate limits.

Porter has had one disastrous fire in its history. During the closing days of 1907 four business houses were destroyed by the lurid leveler, others were damaged to some extent, and there were one or two narrow escapes from death in the flames. Nearly every man, woman and child in the village assisted in fighting the fire. The town pump was frozen and by the time water could be secured the fire had made great headway. After three buildings had been burned, the flames were checked by tearing down a fourth one. Only by the narrowest margin were any of the buildings in the business part of town saved.

After the fire, in January 1908, the Porter fire Department was organized with T. E. Ellingson as chief. The department now has 16 members. Its water supply is secured from six wells. Its equipment consists of a hand pump, chemical engine, hook and ladder truck, hose cart and 600 feet of hose.

For a number of years during the early history of Porter no school was conducted in the village. In 1883 a school district was organized in southern Wergeland township, but the schoolhouse was erected a couple of miles northwest of the village. It was in that school the pupils of Porter attended until the Porter district was organized in 1898.

School Dist. No. 83 was organized February 15, 1898, with the following directors: A. I. Anderson, Paul Gunderson and F. L. Minnie. The building was put up the following June at a cost of $2,500.


Arial View of Porter Taken During June 1956 (Circled building on right is the Porter School, circled building on the left is the Arthur and Marguerite Petersen residence)

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