Bancroft news

Fall is in the air

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Brad Magness of Huron was the speaker Sept. 20 at the Presbyterian Church.

Adah and Micah Perry, children of the Alan Perrys, visited their grandmother, Linda Perry, on Saturday and Sunday.

Thanks to all who were so helpful with the information about the phenomenon of the amazing sun of last Sunday. I guess you are never too old to learn something new. I noticed that tonight the sun was again different, more reddish than last Sunday, but still beautiful.

Janice White of Brookings came last Tuesday to have supper with her mother Rose Grothe. They attended the visitation for Karen Carlson. She was a Bancroft alumna, graduating in 1961. Her private funeral was Wednesday at the Lake Preston UCC Church. Our hearts go out to her family at this time of sorrow.

Sept. 21 is the first day of fall, and the countryside is sure looking fall-like. Cane and corn have been cut for silage, hay bales stacked along the fences, road ditches mowed and all of the other signs that the 'season has marched on'. There are several places where the land has been readied for spring already. I hope we don't have a lot of the tremendous 'cutting wind ' to take away all the good top-soil and put it into the ditches where it does nobody any good. There has not been a killing frost yet, so the trees are mostly in their green finery, with only an occasional yellow one, and here and there one tinged with red. All are very beautiful.

Let there be light

The first lighting system in Bancroft was a system of lamps on poles that were lighted by hand. Bill Dirksen was the lamp lighter. (I remember the lovely song “The Old Lamplighter of Long, Long Ago!”) The first electric lights were powered by batteries that were charged by a one-cylinder diesel engine located in the basement of the Eilt Claassen building (later the Zell Brothers building). This engine was started by heating an igniter red hot and tossing it into a combustion chamber while the engine was being turned by hand. Failure to start resulted in doing the whole thing over again. (Sorry ladies, I don't understand it either, but to the gentlemen reading, it MAY make sense, but this is my information.)

In November of 1927, Bancroft residents filed a petition requesting a vote to sell the city's municipal system to Northwestern Public Service Company. At the Dec. 6, 1927, election, 30 citizens voted to sell to NWPS, and six voted against the proposal. As a result of the positive vote, Northwestern signed a contract with the city and agreed to build the lines necessary to tie Bancroft into the company's electrical system.

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