days gone by

1946: De Smet buildings are on the move!


July 20, 2011

City offices will move from its building on Calumet Avenue to the former Wells Fargo building. The building, built in 1979, was home to a First Federal Bank, Farmers and Merchants Bank, Marquette Bank, and most recently, Wells Fargo. Wells Fargo closed the doors on the De Smet branch in February of this year. The city purchased the former Wells Fargo building for $90,000. The present existing city hall building was built in 1940 under the Work Project Administration (WPA) program, and at one time housed the police department, city hall, the library and public restrooms. The building will undergo renovations including an addition to provide space for the De Smet Economic Development Corporation and a visitor center. “We would like to get everything in place before we move,” City Finance Officer Eileen Wolkow said.

July 24, 1996

Bernie Stoel, a local postal service worker and barber, and four others are being inducted Oct. 5 into the South Dakota Softball Association Hall of Fame in Sioux Falls. He began his softball career in Edgerton, Minn., as a 16-year-old playing in a church league. Stoel then spent eight years playing in Sioux Falls leagues before moving to De Smet. Softball wasn’t an active sport here, so Stoel started a team. Because they lacked a pitcher, he started to throw the ball. He’s been pitching ever since, despite a biceps injury in the 1980s that threatened to cut his playing days short. Until the ‘80s, Stoel threw a “rise” ball and was a strikeout pitcher. After his injury, he perfected a “drop” ball with a lot of control and continued to throw. He has pitched three perfect games and nine no-hitters in his career. In 1990, he pitched two different teams to different state titles. In all, Stoel has played fastpitch for 31 years. He said the highlight of his career was getting to play long enough on the same team to play with both of his sons, Mark and Jeff. Marv McCune, who has played softball with Stoel for years, offered the nomination. “He has done as much or more for the game of fastpitch as many of those already inducted,” McCune said. “I truly feel his time has come.”

July 22, 1971

Organization of the board of education for De Smet School District 104 brought re-election of Robert Bell as president, and selection of Maurice Kruger as vice-president. The other members of the board are Mrs. Dan Slaight, De Smet, Clarence Rabenberg, Bancroft and Calvin Poppen, Bancroft, the latter a new member seated following the election. The board continued Mrs. Rodney (Leona) Brandt as clerk and Alan Purintun as treasurer. Meetings of the board are held the second Thursday of each month.

The vacancy in office manager at The De Smet News has been filled, with Mrs. Charles Brown taking the position on Monday, to succeed Mrs. Glenn Anderson, whose death occurred earlier this month. Mrs. Brown has been a member of The News’ staff for some months as a composition typist. She is to be succeeded in this position by Mrs. Claire Langland of De Smet, who returns to the staff after some years as a mother and homemaker, employed part-time at the Champlin Service Station and Curve Café operation of her husband. Mrs. Langland, as Marie Nuttbrock, was in charge of The News’ office some years ago, having come from Willow Lake to take the position.

July 18, 1946

Getting buildings moved has been a necessary part in many of the improvements and additions made to De Smet this summer. Roy Campbell has returned to the moving business, from gravel work in recent years, and to his equipment and skill, several owe the moving of buildings to locations here, George Spencer also moving several. Biggest job of the season was the moving of the large residence of Paul Garry from Iroquois. It required a long route, south to the Esmond-Mathews store road and north again, to avoid the highway. The house arrived with no mishap, however. Mr. Campbell has another big job, started this week, in moving the former Couse house, also one of some size, to a lot on Fourth Street, west of Second Avenue. The large Campbell barn was moved to the one-time Dunklee farm north of town for John Wilkins, its owner. Mr. Spencer moved the Odd Fellow building.

July 14, 1911

The cement sidewalk on the south side of the courthouse is being repaired.

P.A. O’Hora is cutting a field of wheat that promised a yield of twenty bushels to the acre until the grasshoppers got at it, and now Mr. O’Hora does not expect over eight or ten bushels.

Miss Amanda Clement, the noted lady umpire, spent a week in De Smet visiting the Sasses and other friends, going from here to Iroquois to umpire the two games on Sport Day.


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