Starting in the 1930s, Melton Barker traveled across the United States filming “The Kidnappers Foil” for the next 40 years. No, he did not take this long to film one movie, instead he filmed the same movie in every town that he visited, perhaps hundreds of times. I’m not sure if this was part of a “home movie” business plan, or if he was ripping people off with promises of fame, but nonetheless, it’s now part of movie history.
In 1938, he stopped by Duluth to film, and though the main film is missing, there are two scenes featuring Duluthians. Maybe you have a famous grandparent and never knew it?
The ragged building at 208 E. First St. in Downtown Duluth is being gutted of debris in preparation for renovation. Bob Monahan and his father, Robert H. R. Monahan, plan to open an “artist friendly” cafe/lounge on the main floor later this year, with a recording studio in the basement level. They have already replaced the roof on the 127-year-old building, which they are in the process of acquiring from Jack Arnold through a contract-for-deed agreement. (more…)
Today on PDD we present the 1962 gridders from the “Wisconsin State College Superior,” now known as the University of Wisconsin-Superior. Why? Well the fine folks at UWS’ Jim Dan Hill Library have digitized copies of the Gitchee Gumee, the college’s yearbook — from its inception in 1909 through 1972, when it ceased publication. (more…)
It’s kind of a weird name, it’s something that I discovered while doing “armchair” history research, and it’s become a hobby of sorts. Wikimapia is sort of like Wikipedia + Google maps, or as they put it; ”a multilingual open-content collaborative map, where anyone can create place tags and share their knowledge.”
So basically if you sign up, (which it’s free), you can draw polygons around locations like a building, park, or historical places and then add the information about it, add photos, tags and what have you. Once it’s saved, others can view it, comment on it, or even update it as well if they have something new to add. You can add lots of other information too, like roads or railroads.
I know that there are some people here who dig history and know a lot of facts about our area, so I just thought it’d be cool to share and hope that maybe they will share their knowledge on the site as well, or at the very least, simply just looking around it.
Here is something that I have been working on. A one-hour radio documentary collection of sounds and voices from the Jan. 11 Idle No More Jingle Dress Dance demonstration through the streets of Duluth. It airs at 11 a.m. today on 89.1 FM WGZS in Cloquet. In case you are like the other 100 million people who will be instead listening to and viewing the inauguration of President Obama at that time on this Martin Luther King Jr. Day holiday I have posted it online for people to listen to anytime in the form of a YouTube video.
I am still unhappy with some of the mix, the narration and my writing, but I am happy with being able to share these voices talking about this remarkable, historic event.
I was asked recently via e-mail what the name was of the pizza joint at 1830 E. Eighth St. before it was Vintage Italian Pizza (as seen in the modern photo above).
Since I spent no time at all in that neighborhood in my youth, I looked it up.
V.I.P. has been there since at least 1989. For about a six-year stretch in the mid-1980s the building was home to Zippys Pizza Express.
The city directory lists four different managers of Zippys during that time:
Mike Ouellette (1983)
Pat David (1984)
Dave Willis (1985)
Gary Lund (1986 to ’88)
So there you have it. That’s all I know, except that two other businesses that occupied the building prior to Zippys were Kelly’s University Galleries (an art gallery) and Hiller’s Critters (a pet store).
Anyway, you may now commence referring to V.I.P. as “Zippys” for your personal amusement.
I had forgotten about the fenced-off houses at the end of Wisconsin Point for a few years, until seeing them again a couple days ago. I always figured they were somehow affiliated with the lighthouse … does anyone have any other information/stories about them?
A recent posting of a 90-year-old newspaper clipping on the West Duluth Memories Facebook page inspired me to search for a little information on the Duluth Crushed Stone Co., since I’ve never really known much about exactly what went on at the ol’ quarry, other than obviously some company came and dug up some rock and hauled it out.
So I’ve gathered a little info and maybe I’ll add more here later. (more…)
I know we should all strive to shop as locally as possible for all of our holiday gifts but sometimes it just doesn’t work out that way. I was at the Miller Hill Mall yesterday and realized how much that place has changed in my lifetime. My biggest memory of the mall was the old movie theater and the McDonald’s right across the way. Not to mention going to Mr. Bulky’s to get candy to sneak in. What are your biggest MHM memories of stores that are no longer there?
First: I am working with a journalism student on a news article and in it, the student mentions that a person used to work at a sporting goods store named CZ Wilson. Does that ring any bells?
Second: My daughter is an artist and has created watercolor paintings on seasonal cards (this is not an ad, don’t worry). Now, she would like to take those cards and have them printed on nice stock paper or whatever I really mean to say. Are there good local printers who do that work that people would recommend?
A while back we started a master list of concerts at the DECC (formerly Duluth Arena) to help people sort out their fuzzy memories of rocking out back in the day. Since the list is kind of a slap together of info submitted to PDD in comments, it contains some incomplete and inaccurate information. (We would like it to be complete and accurate, but that would require a level of diligence we are unwilling to accept.)
We received a note over the weekend from PDD user “duluthyouth” pointing out that “Eddie Money opened for Van Halen in 1979, not who you had listed.”
A search through newspaper microfilm found no review of the 1979 concert, but the advertisement above (from the Duluth News Tribune) indicates “special guests” and specifically notes the band Screams is on the bill. (more…)
For the sake of Duluth music history, would those of you who played and/or attended shows at the old RecyclaBell please give a full report of everything that happened there during the mid-1990s? There’s a reunion show coming up, so now seems like the appropriate time for RecyclaBell anecdotes galore. (more…)
Some people may not know that in addition to the Merv Griffin Duluth-themed classic “Christmas City,” which was written for the Christmas City of the North Parade, there is also a B-side to the 45 RPM single that was released back in 1962. It’s called “The Song of the Christmas City.”
Also a song written with Duluth in mind (and worked into the song lyrics), this one is more of a slow jam compared to Christmas City’s more upbeat jingle-bell jive. The song features addition vocals by one Maureen Reynolds who I couldn’t find any information on. Apparently she’s off the grid.
You can download good vinyl rips of both tunes to add to your own Christmas playlist right here. Enjoy!
I know there was a ski jump in the Fond du Lac neighborhood, close to Mission Creek. I’ve been on the trails on that steep hillside and have found a small concrete pad in the woods, pretty close to Mission Creek. Would the ski jump have been near this small pad? Also, on top of the big hill I have found some overgrown, wide trails that almost look like they could’ve been some type of maintenance/service trails for the ski jump. Is this related to the old ski jump?
Student journalists at LakeVoice News have recently published their first collection of stories for the fall 2012 issue of LakeVoice News. The collection is called History on the Hill and it explores the untold stories about Duluth’s historic places.
The students went around the city, observing people, exploring neighborhoods and learning about the fascinating history of Duluth’s third places.