Ralph Johnson

Ralph Johnson, sixth-grade teacher at Hutchinson Middle School, was named the 1994 Teacher of the Year by the Hutchinson Education Association. He received the honor on May 2 at the HEA annual banquet. “I’ve always loved kids,” he said. “When I grew up, I was not the most perfect student. I remember a couple of teachers along the line that put me on a better track of life. I just thought maybe I could do that too.”

125 YEARS AGO: 1894

From the Heron Lake newspaper: Our lady bicyclists have adapted the sensible and stylish divided skirt for their jaunts at the wheel.

From the Buffalo Journal: American women, especially those who live in our cities and villages, appear to be rapidly degenerating into a race of invalids. They are becoming hothouse flowers needing the constant attention of the doctor. Outdoor exercise would give them health and vigor. Nothing is more conducive to health than digging in the fresh earth. Gardening for pleasure brings health and profit.

Wool is worth from 8 to 10 cents.

Hutchinson and Dassel baseballists played a parody of the national game with Dassel winning.

Merchants Viehman and Krienke now weigh out groceries to their customers on computing scales, a recent device, which gives the weight and figures the price of the article at the same time, and a most ingenious invention it is.

100 YEARS AGO: 1919

Hutchinson confectioners have been in doubt as to whether or not the special war tax of 1 cent should be added to the sale of ice cream cones, some having been charging and some not. A circular received by the Internal Revenue Department states specifically that the special tax of 1 cent must be added to the cost of the cone, as follows: “Ice cream sold in cones indicate that it usually would be consumed at or in proximity to the premises. The fact that the purchaser does not consume it but carries it away does not render it free from tax.”

There are lots of strangers on the streets of Hutchinson. Talk with them and you’ll find a lot of them want to locate right here in this city of good homes, churches, schools, wholesome society and the bustle of good, sound business. It is hoped that our City Council will not delay another day in the matter of employing a competent engineer to investigate our paving problems and tell us what to do and how to do it.

75 YEARS AGO: 1944

The Crow River District Court of Honor was one of the finest and most impressive ever held in this section. A large number of Scouts received recognition. The coveted Eagle presentation was made to eight boys from Hutchinson: Donald Englund, Walter Spannous, Roger Morrison, Kenneth Knutson, David Schramm, Richard Dobratz, Robert Schulte and Robert Prochnow.

Committees are working and plans are well advanced for the Water Carnival. An outstanding entertainment program has been booked, with Lou Brock as master of ceremonies. Plans are also being made for a queen contest and for a parade of water floats.

50 YEARS AGO: 1969

Burglars made off with $1,400 in cash and checks from the Kollhoff SuperValu store in Litchfield. Entrance to the firm was gained by forced entry and the theft was from a peeled safe.

The new food production achievement for a Minnesota registered Holstein cow has been set by an animal in a Hutchinson herd. The new record holder for her age is Greenore Anthony Missy, owned by Roger Olson of Hutchinson. The new class leader completed a lactation level of 29,719 pounds of milk and 889 pounds of butterfat in 365 days.

Hutchinson is one of six communities, which will host a 45-member ensemble of the Minnesota Orchestra during a series of musical adventures primarily for young people, funded by a federal Title III grant.

25 YEARS AGO: 1994

For the seventh straight year, the Hutchinson High School “We the People ... The Citizen and the Constitution” team made it to nationals in Washington, D.C. The competition is a rigorous academic program, which requires analytical skills and the application of constitutional principles and history to contemporary situations through mock Congressional hearings. Hutchinson’s team of 25 students was among 1,200 students competing from 48 states and the District of Columbia.

One of Hutchinson’s best known native sons, Les Kouba, will be the guest of honor May 9 in a special appearance at the McLeod County Historical Society’s Heritage and Cultural Center. Hutchinson Mayor Marlin Torgerson has proclaimed Monday as Les Kouba Day in Minnesota. “Kouba is good company and a good friend and we are looking forward to his visit and the opportunity to dedicate the day to him,” said Dave Johnson, Heritage Center director.

Looking Back is a weekly column by Kay Johnson, Leader staff writer, that highlights Hutchinson history. Photo submissions with captions are welcome. Contact the Leader by calling Johnson at 320-753-3641 or email johnson@hutchinsonleader.com.

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