June of ’71: Twin Ports to ship ore, coal from western states

At the top of the news fifty years ago was a growing mining industry in the west potentially feeding Duluth-Superior harbor traffic. The June 9, 1971 Duluth Herald reported “at least one, and possibly two, new bulk commodities” mined in Wyoming, Montana and North Dakota “appear likely to be hauled to Duluth by rail to be loaded on board lake and ocean-going vessels.”

The commodities mentioned were bentonite ore, “a clay-like substance used as a binder in taconite pelletizing operations,” and coal, which “historically moved to Lake Superior ports from Lake Erie, originating in West Virginia and Pennsylvania mines,” but when mined in western states could reverse the pattern of shipments.

Also in the news, the Minnesota Twins were poised to draft Duluth Central standout Bruce Skoglund. It was the first time the team selected a player from Duluth. Skoglund, “a husky 6-0, 200-pound catcher,” sports reporter Bruce Bennett wrote, expected to sign a contract “just after his class’s graduation ceremonies at the Arena-Auditorium.”

Skoglund was selected in Round #29, 660th overall, in the 1971 Amateur Entry Draft and ultimately played on two Twins farm teams in 1971 and ’72.

Bennett wrote that Skoglund was at graduation practice when Twins scout Gerry Flathman called to offer a contract, so Flathman spoke with Skoglund’s mother, Mrs. Kenneth Pfeiffer of 901 Anderson Road.

Caption: Dairy Delights … Three of the 10 candidates for the 1971 Northeast Dairy Princess contest try a generous sample of the products they will be promoting if they eventually win a state contest later this year. The regional winner was selected during a noon Kiwanis Club program at the Hotel Duluth. From left are Janet Borchardt, Willow River, representing Pine County; Sally Takala, Iron, representing St. Louis County and Donna Keutzer, Carlton, representing Carlton County.

Caption: Please Give Us a Home … These eight-week-old kittens are available through Arrowhead Animal Allies. They all are females, two with orange coloring and one a calico. — (Herald Photo.)

Caption: Senior Winners … Junior Optimist Club was the senior boys champion of the Duluth Area Junior Team Bowling Tournament. The team bowled at Pioneer Lanes. Members are, from left in front, Rod Lomprey, Stan Hakala and David Wilson. In back is Tim Hansen. Hakala mowed down 587 pins for the high series and 224 pins for the high game. Missing is Rich Grochowski.

Caption: Junior Kings … Trophies for the Pioneer Vikings, junior boys champion of the Duluth Area Junior Team Bowling Tournament, are displayed by team members from left to right, Mike Kusick, Dale Carlson, Craig Taft, Steve Anderson, and Paul Timmons. Kusick’s 656 series and 235 game were highs for the junior division. — (Herald Sportsphotos.)

Caption: Bantam Champs … Ridgeview Lanes’ bantam boys sport the hardware they won for first place in the Duluth Area Junior Team Bowling Tournament. Pictured left to right are members Mike Rose, Danny Monson, Brad Lindstrom, Clark Dickinson and Kerry Olson. Clark Dickinson bowled the highest game, a 212.

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