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1942: graduation procession from Gammage Library

The 1942 graduation procession from Gammage Library.

100 Years Ago 

From 1918 - Last Thursday morning our Normal School graduated 51 students wearing crepe dresses of blue and gold, who were placed upon the stage amid rows of gorgeous plants and festoons of the same class colors. Dr. Bloome presented the diplomas and in a most happy manner bespoke them the best in life and service. Dr. Baum then dismissed the audience with a blessing and the class of 1918 was on its way for life’s duties.

William Farnum, the famous William Fox star and his happy film family of 50 people, arrived in Flagstaff on Monday via a special train and set out immediately for the wilds of Arizona, where the company plans to stage and photograph the final scenes of “Riders of the Purple Sage.” They also plan to take many scenes for “Rainbow Trail." It is indeed rare to find a film company so eager and energetic as to photograph practically two stories at once.

The members of the Fire Department will now be paid for attending fires, a condition of affairs which should have been obtained long ago. At the last meeting of the city council it was decided to pay the chief $5 and the firemen $3 apiece for each fire attended by them. This is little enough for the hard work, ruined clothes and being liable for call at all times of the night and day.

For Sale: Three-speed Indian motorcycle or trade for horse and buggy. Box 947.

In many instances stockmen having leased land for the growing of grain have given over their lease to parties desiring ground for potato planting. Many homesteads that have lain sterile for the past years are being worked again this year in answer to the call for a record-breaking production of foodstuffs.

An effort is being made to induce ranchers to take up hog raising on a large scale. Hog raising has proved to be very lucrative in the East, with very little feed beside mast on the floor on the forest being required to fatten the animals for market.

There’s a tempting array of new books soon to be ready for you at the library. Some arrived this week, more are to follow. Some that were ordered will not be off the press until the end of May. We ordered a goodly number of children’s books. 

A shack near the old Catholic Church building caught fire Tuesday night a little after 10 o’clock and but for the prompt work of the fire department several adjoining buildings would have gone up in smoke. A young woman and two small children, occupants of the shack, barely escaped with their lives. The large two-story residence of L. Salso also suffered from the fire. The big fire truck was delayed somewhat by reason of a freight train on the crossing.

Hot weather always brings up the question on the part of the motorist, “How much air shall I let out of my tires?” The B. F. Goodrich Rubber Company took up the question and conducted several experiments, which have exploded this popular theory held by many motorists. Rising outside air temperatures makes little or no difference in the pressure of the inside of your tires.

An oil boom has struck Navajo County. It covers the whole section from about Holbrook to Snowflake and south as far as Dry Lake. Hundreds of acres are plastered with claims and machinery has been ordered.

A forest fire on the east side of Doney Park burned over 350 acres one day last week. It took the assistance of half a dozen or more forest rangers and fire guards to get it under control.

75 Years Ago 

1943 – A special shoe stamp is available for nurses aides who have no Stamp #17 available to them or any immediate member of their family. They may apply to the local ration board for a special nurses white shoe stamp.

Arizona and Nevada game officials are planning to trap beaver in the Colorado River to return the population to a number suitable to the available food supply.

OPA sugar ration coupons are available for home canning at the local ration board. All use must meet the one pound to 8 quart requirement. It is all right to ask a friend to borrow their pressure cooker without declaring your sugar.

Beginning on Tuesday May 18 and lasting for one whole week Brand Bros. Circus and Carnival will bring their 3-ring circus, 6 big shows and carnival with 10 big rides to Flagstaff City Park.

A slab pile fire at Saginaw & Manistee burned for several hours on Sunday. The high winds blew sparks that endangered nearby buildings while the fire department stood by to extinguish the flames as the sparks flew.

50 Years Ago 

1968 – A 17-year-old youth from Atlanta, Georgia, is being held for throwing rocks in downtown Flagstaff. Several NAU students were bloodied in the fracas. He was arrested following a fight by Patrolmen Gary Kirst and Bert Stanger. Chief Elmo Maxwell.

Thanks to many hands from NAU students, the Boy and Girl Scouts and many citizens, the city crews have been kept busy with three times as much trash being picked up as in the past.

The southbound lanes of I-17 are closed for repairs; the northbound lanes are divided for both north and south travel between the highway building at the south end of Milton and just south of Pulliam Airport. Speed limit is held down to 45 mph. 

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Flagstaff Hospital has its own pharmacy with Don Piper as pharmacist on duty during all regular hours and on call all the time. The cost of your pills is added to you regular hospital bill.

Head Start has a need for your unneeded toys as well as books and games in the 4- to 5-year-old bracket for their summer program. Community Action, 117 East Aspen.

The question has arisen and City Council is considering the possibility of establishing a commission to make a count of the city population. The current count is a part of the county count and the question is how valuable it would be. It will cost about $5,000 to do this.

25 Years Ago

1993 – Another aftershock shook our area early on Monday morning. The 2:52 a.m. shake was centered near Valle 50 miles northwest of Flagstaff as the others we have experienced and registered 3.0 on the Richter Scale. The Grand Canyon area has continued to feel small rumbles.

On Friday there was a partial solar eclipse just as the sun was rising at 5:19 am. 15 percent of the sun’s disk was blocked at the height of the cover at 5:49 a.m. This barely noticeable but interesting event occurred before most of us get up.

The low bid to improve Humphreys Street has left over $370,000 in next year’s city budget. Upon hearing this good news the City Council then unanimously supported an affordable housing program to be administered by Coconino County, with the city funding $100,000 of the $400,000 project. This money will come from the city’s Five-Year Capital Improvement program.

The City also now expects to be able to fund some needed drainage projects throughout the city with the Rio de Flag the primary target area. There is a need for at least $5 million to get our drainage problems under control and the council is also considering adding another $2 to city utility bills, which would generate an estimated $256,148 for this need.

The Arizona Department of Transportation is planning for some much-needed tree trimming and thinning along U.S. 180 and plans for public meetings to hear about concerns about what is too much and too little. There is no question of the need to clear many of the overhanging trees for simple safety reasons. There have been six fatalities in the past five years, a significant number given that only approximately 2,000 cars travel the road each day.

Although planes will not be flying out of our new airport terminal until Monday, the public is invited to come to the grand opening, which begins on Friday and lasts through the weekend. The new terminal building designed by Josh Barkly Architects Ltd. of Flagstaff includes updated passenger facilities. There is also more airplane storage and room for a third airline.

Erosion caused the closure of I-40 between Flagstaff and Ash Fork. State Highway workers were working on repairing the eastbound section near Pine Springs between Williams and Ash Fork when they discovered the earth under the westbound lanes where they had been diverting traffic was crumbling out from under the highway.

There are not a lot of roads in the area, so the necessary detour for both west and eastbound traffic was 200 miles long going by way of Verde, Prescott and Dewey before traffic was able to return to the interstate. It seems that the unusual amount of wet weather this season had soaked in and loosened the soils underneath the interstate. No structural damage was reported and the highway was reopened on Sunday.

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Compiled from the archives of the Coconino Sun and Arizona Daily Sun by Susannah Carney.

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