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Estherville Area

OUR hometown

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FEATURES: 4 Creators Bring Crafts to Life By Amy H. Peterson

10 Chew on This By Amy H. Peterson

Estherville history

18 Emigrants Came in Wagon Trains Estherville history

20 Saloons Raided by Indignant Women 22 Valentineʼs Day - By the Numbers EVERY ISSUE 12 14 16 24 26

Whatʼs in a Name? Hot Pics Crossword Upcoming Events Parting Shot

Estherville Area

OUR hometown

Contributors MANAGING EDITOR - David Swartz WRITERS: Amy H. Peterson PUBLISHER - Glen Caron ADVERTISING - Glen Caron GRAPHIC DESIGN - David Swartz Direct inquiries to: 10 North Seventh Street, Estherville, Iowa 51334 * 712-362-2622 Our Hometown is published every two months by The Estherville News, with all rights reserved, Copyright, 2019

Emmet Countyʼs first courthouse cost $12,000 to construct. It was located just north of the library where First Avenue North now runs. Find out about the Irish patriot Emmet County is named for on Page 12 in “Whatʼs in a Name? February 2019 ß OUR HOMETOWN ßß 3

Bobbie Richard hangs new quilt squares vertically to get an idea of placement.

Creators Bring

Crafts to


February 2019 ß OUR HOMETOWN ßß 4


In 2019, the Our Hometown wants to feature the crafters, creators, makers, builders, brewers, bakers, artisans, practitioners and mas‐ ters who start with raw materials and handcraft things we can use and enjoy. We’re starting with some local crafters: Bobbie and Gary Richard and Jeanette Walton.

Bobbie and Gary Richard participated in the Plein Air exhibit at Pearson Lakes Art Center. Painters work in various media to paint in the open air what they see in nature.


he Richard’s home on Estherville’s north side is filled with the results of Bobbie and Gary’s goal of trying new things. The couple enjoys photography, and rotates a set of pictures of local and out of state desti‐ nations for var‐ ious seasons. On the day we visited, they had a picture of Yellowstone Park in the June remnants of snow, and one of the bridge by Gull Point State Park in Wahpeton, covered in February snow. “I wanted to get fresh snow that morn‐ ing,” Gary said. “but it was too late by the Bobbie and Gary Richard created this sculptures from driftwood time I got there,” as evidenced by tire tracks already slicing through the packed drifts. The couple exhibited their work in the Lakes and has sold photos in the area. The couple has also made pottery at Pearson Lakes Art Center’s open studio and 3‐D art classes. “They’re not perfect by any means, but the point is to dig in and do something,” Gary said. Bobbie might be best known for her quilting. In addition to making quilts for veterans through the Quilts of Valor program, Bobbie participates in programs at both Wooden Bobbie Richard creates beaded jewelry with a variety of materials. Thimble and Homespun Quilt Shop in which crafters create one quilt square per month and February 2019 ß OUR HOMETOWN ßß 5

end the year with 12 put together as a 3x4 quilt (or expand their production to make it full sized). Bobbie made a red and black Midgets colors quilt at Wooden Thimble last year. She’s currently working on sev‐ eral different quilt projects, including one with a seasonal square per month. “Idle hands she has never had,” Gary said. Bobbie is also a prolific needle‐ worker, crocheting scarves, afghans and dishcloths with yarn from the Outlet Store. “We try to stay local for our materials,” Bobbie said. The couple adopted a family with two young girls for the holi‐ days through Upper Des Moines Opportunity, and Bobbie made them each a small chunky crochet afghan made with extra soft, che‐ nille‐type yarn. Jeanette Walton is a familiar face at Downtown Market and Heartland Coop with her pop can art: from sports teams to family names, inspirational sayings to any word you would want, Walton has redefined the task of recycling aluminum cans. As she’s February 2019 ß OUR HOMETOWN ßß 6

Jeanette Walton has been deep into making cards for Valentineʼs Day, she said. Walton uses different techniques and papers to make greeting cards. She has moved from lettered signs to various pictures and images in her wood-frame pop can signs.



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grown as an artist, Walton said she’s started to make new images from the multiple colors of the cans – pictures rather than always signs. When she started, Walton said, “They were too neat and colorful to just recycle.” Using the rainbow of soda, energy drink, juice drink and tea cans now available, she began cutting the alu‐ minum and forming designs and letters. “I do a lot of custom work. Any name, of course, any team, any‐ thing.” She creates wood Gary Richard was inspired by the desert of Arizona when he created this painting. frames and affixes the can creations onto the a Facebook page and can be through Heartland Coop. frames with soda can tabs for reached for a custom order “I love what I do,” Walton said. hangers on the back. Walton has

Bobbie Richard holds up her latest needle creations in her basement craft room. February 2019 ß OUR HOMETOWN ßß 8

More crafting Jaycie Frideres of Estherville spent some winter days creating this jewelry case with her dad in the wood shop. Her mom, Michelle Frideres, said she was very proud because she did a lot of the work herself. Photo submitted


362-5264 362-7305 February 2019 ß OUR HOMETOWN ßß 9


w e s i h th n o

VFW touts delicious menu BY



On a recent Thursday night, I met my friend, Deblyn, at the VFW for the steak and shrimp special. Deblyn had shrimp; I had steak. The steak was probably six ounces and a beauti‐ ful heart shape. The jumbo shrimp (of which Deblyn was so kind as to let me try one) were truly jumbo and came with a choice of tartar or cocktail sauce, or a special blend with garlic. The dinner came with a baked potato and green salad, all for $8.99. The atmosphere was casual, clean and inviting for a late din‐ ner, and the service was excellent, provided by a server with a history of serving the pub‐ lic in various capacities. Service is a reason to come to the VFW, according to VFW board member Mike Dalen. Dalen said the VFW, in addition to raising funds for local student scholarships and serv‐ ing veterans, is also the site of Estherville Community Dinners. In partnership with

February 2019 ß OUR HOMETOWN ßß 10

Chef Josh Thompson sits with Mike Dalen in the refurbished canteen area at the Estherville VFW.

Avera Holy Family Hospital and local churches, the VFW kitchen and hall pro� vides the venue and often the food at or below cost for the monthly dinners. Wednesdays from 5� 6:30 p.m., the VFW Auxiliary hosts its din� ner. The Auxiliary din� ner is a choice between two meats, potato, vegetable, dessert and drink all for $7.00. Chef Josh Thompson said the broasted chicken has enjoyed popularity in the last several months. “Most people don’t know the chicken is available to go, by the piece, or as part of a dinner with potato and vegetable,� Thompson said. The VFW has daily lunch specials ranging from hot beef com� mercial to meatloaf to chicken with a Saturday breakfast special and drinks available from the bar. The canteen strives to keep its prices reason� able to serve its clien� tele of families and. senior citizens as well as veterans. Dalen said, “It’s not just a place for veter� ans, but we want peo� ple to know we’re here to serve the whole community.� In addition to steak and shrimp, I have

enjoyed a burger and fries, prime rib sand� wich, the famous broasted chicken, and other sandwiches and goodies at the VFW canteen. I’ve attended meetings with terrific casseroles and other buffet food and fresh baked desserts in the trophy room, now called the honor room, which is set up with an AV system for any kind of presentation. I was fortunate enough to have sampled Chef Donzell’s outstanding made�to�order pasta bar with multiple meats and vegetables to pile atop bowtie pasta and two differ� ent homemade sauces, all sautÊed and cooked to order as the diner watches. The canteen is planning pasta nights and omelet mornings throughout the year for $15.95 to raise funds for their projects and get the community together

for a delicious meal. The next date is Feb 14 from 5�8. Bring your valentine. The food is made fresh on site by chefs who care about diners and about the mission

of the VFW. It’s frankly one of the best restau� rants in town and one that furthers a cause I think we can all get behind – serving our veterans and making our community great.

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What’s in a

name? Editor’s note: In each upcoming issue of Our Hometown, we plan to feature a story behind one of the names in our community. This month, we look at the name behind Emmet County. BY DAVID SWARTZ MANAGING EDITOR

Why do we live in Emmet County and why ‘Emmet’? According to the “History of Emmet County, Vol. 3, “When the leg‐ islative act of 1851,creating Emmet County and the Act of 1853 provid‐ ing for its organization, were passed, there was not a single perma‐ nent white settler within the borders of the county.” Emmet County was attached to Webster County until 1859 when it was organized as a separate county and named for Irish Patriot Robert Emmet. But who was Robert Emmet. According to Wikipedia, Robert Emmet (4 March 1778 – 20 September 1803) was an Irish Republican, and Irish nationalist patriot, orator and rebel leader. After leading an abortive rebellion against British rule in 1803, he was captured then tried and executed for high treason against the British king George III of Great Britain. He came from a wealthy Anglo‐Irish Protestant ascendancy Church of Ireland family who sympathized with Irish Catholics and Protestant Dissenters particularly in Ulster such as the Presbyterians and their lack of fair representation in Parliament. The Emmet family also sym‐ pathized with the rebel colonist patriots in the American Revolution. While Emmet's efforts to rebel against British rule failed, his actions and speech after his conviction inspired his compatriots. Emmet became a heroic figure in Irish history. His speech from the dock is widely quoted and remembered, especially among Irish nation‐ alists. As he and his family also supported the American Revolutionary War, he is remembered there as well. Robert Emmet's older brother, Thomas Addis Emmet emigrated to the United States shortly after Robert's execution. He eventually served as the New York State Attorney General. Many places in the United States have been named for Emmet, including this county, Emmet County, Mich., as well as Estherville’s neighbor town to the south—Emmetsburg.

February 2019 ß OUR HOMETOWN ßß 12

Emme t C o u n t y

Robert Emmet - Irish Patriot

February 2019 ß OUR HOMETOWN ßß 13

Photos by David Swartz

February 2019 ß OUR HOMETOWN ßß 14


Hot Pics

February 2019 ß OUR HOMETOWN ßß 15


Engraving Invitations Awards



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In the December issue of Our Hometown, we explored some of the 150 year history of newspapers in Estherville. The story on this page and the next story on Page 20 showcase two more stories from the Centennial Edition published in 1968 of the Estherville Daily News.

Emigrants came in wagon trains Editor’s note: The following article was taken from the Oct. 29, 1968 Centennial edition of the Estherville. News. The years 1870 and 1872 were years of population growth in Emmet County. Settlers came as individuals as sin‐ gle families or in “trains” of emi‐ grants as did those that arrived early in June of 1870. “A train of immigrants arriving in town yesterday,” reported the Northern Vindicator. “They passed through Emmetsburg. Some parties there, more selfish than truthful, told them that the land in this coun‐ ty was low and wet and barren of timber. “Emmet has far more dry land than Palo Alto, and she has 20 acres of timber where Palo Alto has one, and it is of a greater variety and better quality.” A week later the newspaper reported that “a ceaseless tide of emigrants is flowing into the north‐ west. “Every road leading from the east, southeast and northeast is daily lined with prairie schooners freight‐ ed with human beings and house‐

hold goods, seeking for homes and shrines northwestern Iowa.” They were advised to “secure a home in one of the fairest, most pro‐ ductive and health promoting por‐ tions of God’s green earth where the wicket cease from troubling and you can raise more produce to the acre and with less labor than in any part of the world.” Many of those arriving in June of 1872, were from Wisconsin. “Estherville is being viewed and visited by crowds of strangers almost every day, who never fail to speak of the fine site for a village that we have and predict a big future for us. “Four excellent gentlemen from Wisconsin secured as many home‐ steads in the east part of the county last week and have settled on them to carry on farming and stock raising as only Wisconsin farmers know how.” On May 25, 1870, 40 immigrant teams arrived in town and “it was not much of a day for immigrants, either.” A few days before, it was reported that “Peter Larson says that it only costs $70.75 to come from Christiana

February 2019 ß OUR HOMETOWN ßß 18

Norway, to Fort Dodge. Cheap enough. We hope to see many hun‐ dreds of Scandinavian people come into Emmet County this season. “This expressed hope was lavishly fulfilled as immigrants poured in from the Scandinavian counties dur‐ ing the next two decades, populat‐ ing the county with settlers from Norway, Sweden , and Denmark. Other nationalities who found homes in the pioneer period here were Irish, German, Scotch, and English. By 1873 there was a temporary reversal of the flow of immigration. “A large number of citizens of this county, the Northern Vindicator reported on Nov. 1, 1873,” on account of hard times, are tem‐ porarily abandoning their homes and going to different sections of the country to procure work during the winter.” They had been discouraged by grasshopper depredations the previ‐ ous summer, and feared to face a winter of privation. Most, however, planned to return in the spring” and improve and culti‐ vate their naturally rich and produc‐ tive acres of land.”





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Saloons raided by indignant women Editor’s note: The following article was taken from the Oct. 29, 1968 Centennial edi‐ tion of the Estherville. News. he temperance movement of the early 1870s reached Estherville with a vengeances on Feb. 16, 1872. On that historic night “whisky flowed in the streets, gutters were swimming with it, the crash of breaking glass and explosion of burst liquor kegs resounded through the community. “The Spartan women of Estherville,” declared the Northern Vindicator, “entered the fight against King Alcohol.” At the beginning of 1872 there were two saloons in Estherville. There was also occa‐ sional complaint that they were not always conducted in a lawful and orderly manner.


ming with whisky, and the interiors of the saloons presented a scene of desolation and ruin that one seldom beholds in a peaceful community. “The ladies, after completing the work they had set out to do, quietly returned to their homes and closed the self‐appointed labors of the vigilante committee.”


Although the women apparent considered the episode closed, this was far from true. The first reaction was one of amazement and indignation that supposedly “gentle women” would do such a thing. They were dubbed “Amazonian Shrews” in a letter to the editor of the Jackson, Minn., Republican. A letter in the Palo Alto Democrat inter‐ H preted the raid as an attack on “foreigners” The situation reached a crisis on Feb. 16 and specifically “an Irishman.” This allega‐ when a group of o irate women gathered to tion was denied. discuss a solution to the problem. It must The Northern Vindicator, which staunchly have been a stirring meeting. It ended with backed the women and their action, even to decisive action. the extent of calling their critics “champions “They went en masse and without warn‐ of whisky of harlots, of obscenity, of false‐ ing,” the Northern Vindicator reported, “ hood, of crime and every wickedness known and demolished the contents of the two to the devil’s catalogue,” suffered for its saloons.” stand with the cancellation of subscriptions. The 25 women, “mothers, daughters, H wives and sweethearts coming from the Although it was reported that 24 subscrip‐ most worthy families of the town,” made tions had been cancelled in one day, the edi‐ quick and effective work in demolishing tors, H.G. and Frank A. Day, claimed only casks, decanters, jars and bottles and pour‐ four persons had asked that their names be ing the “liquid and spiritous contents” into withdrawn from the list. Sympathizers the street. brought in 17 new subscriptions the follow‐ “For the distance of over a block,” the ing day. Vindicator relates, “the gutter was swim‐ News of the raid reached as far as New

February 2019 ß OUR HOMETOWN ßß 20

York City where pictorial papers carried artists’ concepts of the demolition of the saloons of Estherville. The women’s raid was followed the next week by an official raid conducted by the sheriff, under the search warrants act, and 50 gallons of spirits were seized in one of the saloons. A hearing on its forfeiture was scheduled for justice of the peace court.


Under pressure of criticism, the Ladies Temperance Association prepared an essay in defense of its action which was printed in full in the paper of March 30. While they deplored the necessity for “so repulsive an act,” they declared that they

could see in retrospect no other way of call‐ ing attention “to the flagrant disregard for the laws of the state.” Although they took the stand that forcible demolition of the contents of liquor estab‐ lishments should be resorted to only in cases of extreme necessity,” they pointed out that their action resulted in the destruc‐ tion of more than 100 gallons of “liquid damnation, and the arousal of unanimous sentiment in favor of temperance. Identity of the 25 “Amazonian Shrews’ was never revealed in print although, in a town of only 300 residents, the names of those who took part in the raid must have been no secret.

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The percentage of adults who say they celebrate the holiday.


The year that Pope Gelasius declared February 14 a day to honor Saint Valentine.

Valentine’s Day By the Numbers Valentine's Day is one of the most popular days of the year to cele‐ brate. Here's a look at some interesting numbers associated with this day to celebrate the love people have for one another.


The amount, in billions, that is spent on candy for Valentine's Day, according to the National Retail Federation.


The number of cards and gifts, in millions, sent each year for the day of love.

512: The average dollar amount spent per person for Valentine's Day.


The number of pounds, in millions, of chocolate bought during Valentine's Day week.


Percentage of men who purchase flowers or plants for Valentine's Day.

1: The dollar amount, in billions, that Americans are expected to spend on Valentine's Day cards. 8.6: Amount of dollars, in millions, spent on sparkling wine for Valentine's Day, making it the second most popular occasion, after New Year's Eve, to enjoy some bubbly.

15: Average cost, in dollars, of a box of chocolates. 2:

The ranking of red roses in comparison to other types of flowers gifted.


The average amount, in dollars, men spend on gifts. Women spend an average of $74 on gifts.

Sources: NRF, Greeting Card Association, National Confectioners Association, U.S. Postal Service, USDA

February 2019 ß OUR HOMETOWN ßß 22

February 2019 ß OUR HOMETOWN ßß 23


FARM, HOME AND LIVING SHOW The Farm, Home and Living Vendor Show is a great place to check out new products and services for your farm, home and life. This event is free to all spectators and offers a great opportunity to see what is new on the market in the community. The event will be held at the Estherville Regional Wellness Center at 415 S. 18th St. from 4-8 p.m. Friday, March 1 and 9 a.m.- 2 p.m. on Saturday, March 2. With over 50 vendors there is sure to be something for everyone. Food will be available for purchase throughout the entire event.

WINTER EXPLORATION AT THE LAKE A “Winter Exploration at the Lake” event will be held from 1-4 p.m., Sunday, Feb. 17 at the Emmet County Nature Center. The family-friendly day will include something for everyone. Activities include snow shoeing, survival skills and shelter building, snowman building competition, games, crafts, hot cocoa and more. This is a free event, but registration is required. Call 712-867 or email: to register.

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ELC Pops Concert The Estherville Lincoln Central Music Department will present its annual Pops Concert at 7 p.m., Thursday, March 7 at Roosevelt Auditorium.

ELC Fine Arts Coffee House The Estherville Lincoln Central Patrons of the Fine Arts will host a coffee house at 2 p.m., Sunday, March 24 at the ELC High School Gym. It will feature performances by small groups and individuals from the schoolʼs music department. Answer to crossword on Page 16

February 2019 ß OUR HOMETOWN ßß 25

g n i t r a P T SHO

February 2019 ß OUR HOMETOWN ßß 26

Photo submitted

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Profile for David Swartz

Our Hometown February 2019  

Our Hometown February 2019