Memories of Businesses in Vergas, Minnesota

Note: If you can add to this information, please email me at linda@detroitlakes.com
Memories of Businesses

Appliance & Floor Covering

December 1, 1973, the major appliance and floor covering division of the Vergas Hardware was purchased from Roger and Rodney Hanson by Wayne and Betty Cummings, and renamed Vergas Appliance & Floor Covering. Wayne is the son of Murray and Jean Cummings of Minneapolis and the grandson of Henry and Anna Hanson, founders of the business. Betty is the daughter of Orville and Mable Flatin of Pelican Rapids. Wayne and Betty operated this business until they sold.

August Bruhn

August Bruhn came from Carver County to live in the Frazee area where he had a blacksmith shop. During the 20's he worked for William Sauer and later had his own shop and garage near the Vergas Oil Company. In the years following, this garage was operated by Gordon Chaffee, Laurel (Twig) Leaf and Harry Friese.

Back 40 Autobody

Justin Buermann runs an automobile body repair and restoration shop at 520 South Pelican Avenue in Vergas. The shop specializes in restorations and show cars, and its products have been featured in parades, newspaper articles, 4x4 vehicle magazines, car shows, and even at the annual steam thresher reunion at Rollag, Minnesota. Justin completed his first attempt at the complete color change, rust repair, and custom painting of a vehicle at his father's garage at the family resort, Maplewood Resort, on Little Sugarbush Lake before he moved to Vergas.

Tom's Backhoe

In 1994, Tom Falk started in the business of underground construction with the purchase of a backhoe, previously being in the business of interstate trucking. Born in Courtenay, North Dakota, in 1958 to parents who were farmers, Harold and Jean Falk, he graduated from Wimbledon High School in 1977. After college and various jobs, he settled in Fargo selling insurance from 1987 through 1991. Moving to Vergas in 1991 and purchasing the former Ross Smith farm, he went into the trucking business and in 1994 purchased a backhoe and started in the underground construction business. He lives south of Vergas where he also runs his business. A single father, he has three children, John, Chalsey, and Jamie.

Gordon's Butter & Dairy Museum

Gordon's Butter & Dairy Museum is located in the lower level of the Vergas State Bank. It is open to the public FREE during banking hours or by special appointment. The Museum contains over 500 individual items that relate to the dairy industry and butter making. New items are added every year.

The Museum is owned by Gordon Dahlgren, President of the Vergas State Bank. He grew up on a farm milking cows and so is no stranger to dairying and butter making they were done in the past. The collection represents over 40 years of collecting. The most popular items and collectibles are DeLaval items, butter molds and stamps, churns, cream separators, cheese boxes, and milk bottles. Homemade butter is churned each year at Vergas Dairy Day in June and on other special occasions.

Bob Chambers Garage

Bob Chambers came to Vergas the summer of 1946 and built a small repair shop doing general repair work and wrecker service. In1960 he was awarded the Ford franchise selling Ford tractors and implements. Bob passed away in January, 1971, and his business was sold to Willard Haarstick..

Ottertail County Garage

The Ottertail County Garage was the former Ed Euken Garage with employees Harry Wesley (1946 to 1981), Roy Bruhn (1947 to 1982)and Ray Glawe (1952 to 1984). Presently working out of the County Garage are Terry Bennett and Dwight Berven.

Edward Euken Garage

Edward Euken, born in Germany in 1889, was married to Maggie Folkerts of Illinois who was also born in 1889. About 1920 they moved into Vergas from a farm near Dent, Minnesota. Mr. Euken purchased the Chevrolet Garage and the home previously built by Harry Jacobs. In 1925 he leased the service department to Conrad and John Lee while he continued the auto sales business. This arrangement was of short duration, when Conrad and John sold their interest to Jake Huebner before going to work for their brother, Leonard, in Pelican Rapids. There were a number of changes in the management of this garage and being a solid structure, it eventually became the County Garage.

The Vergas Graphic

The only newspaper printed in Vergas was called The Vergas Graphic. The first issue was printed on June 11, 1926, and first publisher was C.O. Nelson. The following is the salutatory from the second page of the first issue. " A year ago the community expert, Prof. Frank Weber, advised us that Vergas, Ottertail County, would be a good place to start a newspaper. The advice stuck in our mind and as soon as we were at liberty we made a trip up here to look the town over and interview the business men. We found the village to be attractive and the business prospects reasonably good. We also visited several other places, but none were quite so inviting as Vergas. Naturally, therefore, we decided to locate here and this issue of The Vergas Graphic is the result of that decision. It is not a great paper, but we believe it will compare with any other printed in a village like this. As we become acquainted with our territory we will be able to collect more news items. At the same time we expect to increase the advertising patronage and make that part of the paper as valuable to the subscribers as the news section. Vergas has reached the point where it has a choice as to its future for some years. Will it keep growing, or will it stop and wait for a new generation to develop it? This question is of importance to the Graphic. Unless the town grows this paper cannot grow and we doubt if any other enterprise can grow in a dead or dormant town. The publisher has received a pleasant welcome to Vergas. He hopes this welcome will be extended o the Graphic, and that mutually satisfactory relations will continue for a long time.

There were three editors through the history of The Vergas Graphic. They were as follows: C.O. Nelson, Bert Mayfield, and Howard Miller. In 1936 a fire destroyed the newspaper office. That was the demise of The Vergas Graphic. The Graphic's slogan was, "the greatest newspaper in northwest Ottertail County."

Heisler Country Store

Marvin Heisler was born on July 28, 1950, in Harvey, North Dakota to the late Joe and Bernice Heisler. He went to school in Harvey and graduated in 1969. He moved to Ottertail, Minnesota, in1972, and with his brother went into dairy farming. He married Sandy Falk, daughter of the late Harold and Jean Falk, in Courtenay, North Dakota, on August 2, 1974. She was born on March 19, 1956, in Courtenay, North Dakota. In 1972 she moved with her family for the summer to Rush Lake near Perham, Minnesota, where they had purchased The Lanterns Restaurant, operating it during May through September, returning back home to Courtenay for the rest of the year. She graduated from Wimbledon High School in 1974.They lived at Ottertail, Minnesota, dairy faring until 1979, when they moved to Vergas. Marvin then went into the interstate trucking business. In 1992 he started a car wash one mile south of Vergas, on the corner of County Road 4 and County Road 130, In 1995, he turned the adjacent building next to the car wash into a convenience store, offering food, bait, and self-service gas. In 1997 he built on and added an auto maintenance shop and laundromat. In 2000 he added gravel and black dirt to his business. In 2001 a campground was added, to be finished in 2002. A gaming room has been built with shower facilities for campers. Plans for expansion include an indoor swimming pool. Sandy started working in the Vergas Municipal Liquor Store as a clerk on May 5, 1987. Upon retirement of the manager on August 1, 1991, she was hired as manager, a position she holds at the present time. To this union, three children were born. Dustin, who graduated from Perham High School in 1994, drove truck for Heisler Trucking, Inc., doing interstate trucking. In 2001 he purchased the business with Theo. Blauert as a partner. Brandon graduated from Perham High School in 1999. He attended Detroit Lakes Vo Technical College and is now working for the Sears Roebuck retail store in Detroit Lakes, Minnesota. Cody, a junior at Perham High School, works in the Country Store and is at home.

Hinze Markets

Ed Hinze started a meat market in 1904, where the new creamery, or present liquor store now stands. H.F. Hinze bought this meat market in 1905 and operated it until 1917 when he was burned out. Aug Cummings had a meat market a short while in that time, next to A.P. Fankhanel's Saloon. Herman Magadenz started a meat market in 1921, and sold out to H.F. Hinze in 1923. Ambrose Hinze started working in 1932 with his dad. In 1937 H.F. Hinze and Son put in a line of groceries with the meat. In 1953 H.F. Hinze sold out to Ambrose Hinze. Ambrose ran the store until 1975 when he sold it to Ron Goodman.

Harry Jacobs

Harry Jacobs was one of the early blacksmiths in Vergas, who worked for William Sauer a short time before he went into business for himself. He built the home now occupied by Fred Meyer and his shop was on that same lot. Later on, he built a large cement block garage, which he operated until 1920, when he sold the home and business to Ed Euken. That building has now become the county garage. Joe Williams worked for Mr. Jacobs and continued as a blacksmith after the place was sold. By this time the automobile was fast becoming the mode of transportation and the need for blacksmiths was not as great as it had been. Harry Jacobs, married to Minnie Lee, was the father of two children: Raymond, who died at 3 years of age, after a brief illness, and Harold who as a Marine in World War II, was lost in the Pacific. His widow, Minnie Jacobs, makes her home in St.Cloud, Minnesota.

Hoffman's Sanitary Meat Market

R.C. (Rudy) Hoffman purchased the meat market portion of the Peterson Store from Herman Schattschneider in 1952. Rudy also did custom butchering and continued making the Schattschneider homemade sausage. In 1957 Rudy sold the meat market operation to Donald Peterson who continued the business until his retirement in 1971.

John's Place

John's Place was owned and operated by Clarence and Lucille Fankhanel. They opened their business on September 27, 1935, at 6 p.m. At first their business was a restaurant, when meals were 35 cents a plate dinner. Their customers were made up of railroad crews, road construction crews, as well as their many friends in the area. They discontinued meals after their first child was born. Their business was then mainly beverages, magazines, and confections. Among the persons who assisted them during their first years were: Albert Katzke, Melvin (Mutch) Wiese, Adeline Rosentreter (McKenzie), Gertrude Rosentreter (Glawe), Charles Svare, David Sapp and Donald Bennett. After 37 years of business they retired.

Joe Williams

Joe Williams and his family came from southern Minnesota to Deer Creek where he started a blacksmith shop. In 1916 he came to Vergas and worked for Harry Jacobs in his shop located near the present County Garage site. Later he worked for Louis Walde who also had a blacksmith shop located near where the present Sportsman's Center is now. Later he purchased the Jacobs' shop and did blacksmithing, shoeing horses, etc., until fire destroyed the place in the winter of 1922. Insurance didn't cover his loss so he couldn't rebuild. He then worked for William Sauer for about 7 years.

Lakeland Hotel

In 1905 Mr. and Mrs. Chasteen Cummings and sons, Ogg and Milo, moved from North Dakota to Vergas to work on the railroad that was being built. During the first spring and summer they lived in a tent near the present Vergas Park. During this time the family decided to build a hotel to accommodate workers and salesmen in Vergas. In 1906 work began. Trees, stumps and stones had to be removed. By 1907 their hotel was completed, and was called Lakeland. The building was located on the corner of Elm Street and Railroad Avenue.

The new hotel, modern for its day, consisted of a dining room, office, sitting room, washroom and one bedroom on the ground floor and 10 spacious bedrooms on the second level. The Cummings winter headquarters was moved next to the hotel and made into a kitchen. Large wood stoves were used for cooking and heating, kerosene lamps for lighting, and the water had to be carried from quite a distance. For many years business was brisk. Later the business tapered off. The hotel was then changed into apartments, but gradually became unoccupied and was torn down in 1936. Cummings served as constable of Vergas for many years.

Lemke Tavern and Restaurant

Herman Lemke, one of the early pioneers of Vergas, purchased the John Bruhn Saloon in 1911 trading his farm for the saloon. The saloon was operated until Prohibition came in 1920. It was then turned into a restaurant and called the Lemke Restaurant. Herman's wife, Martha, did all the baking and prepared three meals daily for the public. The restaurant burned to the ground in January, 1926, and was not rebuilt. This restaurant was located where the present B & B TV Shop in now located.

Leonard Lee Garage

Leonard Lee, son of Iver Lee, opened a garage in Vergas about 1912, located in the former planning mill building. With the help of his brothers as mechanics, he maintained a repair shop as well as a dealership in cars. He sold Fords, Chevrolets, tires, auto parts, and some farm machinery. Leonard was elected a member of the Vergas Fire Department on February 5, 1913, and became the Chief Engineer on January 5,1916. In those days, members were voted into the department and if they were accepted, they paid 50 cents to join.

As a member of the band, he was active in the community until he entered the Army during World War I. Upon his return from the war, he resumed the garage business, married a Vergas schoolteacher, Clara Aanru, and moved to Pelican Rapids. There he owned and operated the Chevrolet Garage until his retirement. There were three children born to this couple: Dewayne, Wetzel, and Katherine.

Return to Memories

The Log House and Homestead on Spirit Lake

In 1985 Lyle and Yvonne Tweton moved a log house from McIntosh, Minnesota, to the shores of Spirit Lake, four miles west of Vergas, to property formerly owned by Carl Friedholm. The loghouse had been owned by Lyle's great-grandfather. It was used for several years as a summer home by the family. In 1990 the doors opened for a Bed & Breakfast business. The log house had been carefully restored and filled with antiques, primitives, and wicker furniture. The three-story house has two bedrooms and private baths, with enlarged antique beds and goose down comforters. The Log House was in business four years and the Twetons decided more room was needed, so they expanded into the1902 farmhouse, using the upstairs for three more rented units. A full gourmet breakfast is brought to the guests' rooms or served on the enclosed porches. Guests may swim, hike, fish, shop in area stores or relax as desired. The Log House and Homestead are open year-round for business. Suzanne Tweton, daughter of Lyle and Yvonne, is now the innkeeper.

Loon's Nest Restaurant

Tim Strom was born in Crookston, Minnesota, on June 29, 1957. In the 1970's he moved with his family from Ada where they had been living to Perham, Minnesota. He graduated from Perham High School. On August 7, 1982, he married Cheryl in Perham, Minnesota. Cheryl was born in Great Falls, Montana, on October 29, 1959, where she also attended school. In 1983 they bought Ebling's Cafe in Perham which they operated for three years. After selling Ebling's they purchased Strom's Cafe, presently known as Lakes Cafe, in Perham in 1986, operating that until 1995. In 1994, they bought Strom's Steakhouse in Perham, operating that until 1999. During the time of owning Strom's Cafe, they also owned and operated the Pizza Shop for four years. In 1995, they came to Vergas, buying the Loon's Nest Restaurant, which they are presently operating. During this time, Cheryl owned and operated the Main Street Restaurant in Detroit Lakes, Minnesota, for one year. To this union, one daughter was born, Jamie, who was born on October 1, 1982, in Perham. She is presently going to school in Detroit Lakes, Minnesota, and also works at the Loon's Nest Restaurant.

Louis Walde

Louis Walde also had a blacksmith shop. This was located near the present site of Sportsman's Center. He did all the usual blacksmithing and also did custom wood sawing for the people of the area. As nearly everyone burned wood for fuel, he moved his "rig" from home to home to cut piles of poles into stove-length wood.

Moe's Garage

Moe's Garage was built in 1956, by Otto Moe and his son, Merlyn (Bub). Otto operated the garage until ill health forced him to quit. Merlyn then took over, and does repair and overhaul work. Merlyn works along with his wife, Jan, as bookkeeper. The Moes have three children Nancy, Billy and Kellie. Moe's Garage is located about two blocks southeast of Hanson's Plumbing.

Paul's Insulation, Inc.

In 1970 Paul Anderson and Donald Zitzow started a new business of installing blown in insulation to homes, cottages and farm buildings, to conserve energy and prevent heat loss. The business grew to a point that trucking the insulation in from other states got too expensive. So in January 1976 they decided to build a business of their own. They are manufacturing their own insulation material and will sell it to other firms in the state. Paper was collected from all over by businesses, churches, Lion's Club, and athletes. The paper was ground to a pulp again with chemicals to make it fire retardant, and rodent proof. A 30' x 128' building was constructed on the Soo Line property. The business began operation June 1, 1976 until it was sold.

The Quality Store

The Quality Store was owned and operated by Walter Ruff. In 1924Henry Bartel and Gust Broberg purchased the business from Walter Ruff, who kept ownership of the building. Henry Bartel came to Vergas from Evergreen where he had lived on his father's farm. Both Bartel and Broberg roomed at the Little Radisson Hotel. The Quality Store, which sold groceries and dry goods, was located in the Clarence Fankhanel building or more recently where the beauty shop and real estate office are located. They operated the store from 1924 until 1928, when the business was sold. Henry Bartel married Gretchen Hein, daughter of Emil and Emilie Hein, at St. John's Lutheran Church in Vergas on June 12, 1928. They then moved to Frazee where Henry managed the Peterson Biddick store for 25 years until the store was closed. He then worked for Daggett Truck Line, Frazee, Minnesota, in maintenance for 28 years, retiring at the age of 68 years old. Henry will be 97 years old on December 14, 2001, and Gretchen will be 93 years old on December 29, 2001. Both still live in their home. On June 12, 2001, they celebrated 73 years of marriage. To this union, three children were born, Danny (Karen, deceased) Bartel, living in Mackay, Idaho; Ardelle (Carlos) Lordalen, Lowry, Minnesota; and Roger (JoAnn) Bartel, Perham, Minnesota; and eight grandchildren.

S. and F. Oil Company

Evander Schimelpfenig and Karl Fankhanel ventured a partnership and built a service station and bulk plant in September, 1937,known as the S. and F. Oil Company. Mr. Schimelpfenig sold his interest to Mr. Fankhanel in May,1939. His first employee was Ferd. A. Bunkowske. After 37 years the station was sold to the Vergas Oil Co., Inc. The last employees were Greg Dahlgren, Bruce Moe, and George Stebbins who had been employed there the last 20 years.

Schattschneider Meat Market

Mr. and Mrs. Herman Schattschneider, (Amelia Kroll), were born inPoland (Germany) in 1880. in 1902, Mr. Schattschneider arrived in the United States, coming directly to the Vergas area, where he worked on the farms of Mike Eichmiller and Herman Klug. Prior to leaving Poland he had worked as a butcher, and learned the sausage-making trade. He was joined two years later by Mrs. Schattschneider who traveled to the State accompanied by their son, Adolph, age three. From 1904 until 1925, Mr. and Mrs. Schattschneider farmed in the Vergas area. In 1925, Mr. Schattschneider moved into Vergas and opened a meat market in the Little Radisson Hotel, owned by Mr. and Mrs. Andrew Priske. Later he moved the business to the Charles A. Peterson general store, where he continued to operate a meat market until he retired February 1, 1952, at which time he sold the business to Rudy Hoffman. Mr. Schattschneider was widely known as the "Old German Butcher." He did his own butchering, cut all his meat, and specialized in making a variety of old style German sausage; this he sold locally, and also shipped to numerous customers who had learned of his sausage products during their visits to Vergas. Mr. and Mrs. Schattschneider had three children, Adolph, who married Emma Buehler; Bertha, who married William Bunkowski; and Wanda, who married William Wilke. Mr. Schattschneider died February 24, 1956, at the age of 76. He was preceded in death by his wife in 1955, at age 75.

Hildur Sheldrup and John Moberg

Hildur Sheldrup and John Moberg in the early days of Vergas, operated a blacksmith and welding shop located next to the Iver Lee planing mill. According to the "old timers," Mr. Sheldrup was a truly skilled and inventive mechanic who built his own electric light system, generated by a single cylinder gas engine. He purchased the first welding torch that was used in Vergas, and this was essential to the type of work he did. These men built some sleighs and wagons and made repairs on farm machinery, improvising those parts that were not always available. John Moberg was more interested in cabinet work and later on he spent most of his time as a carpenter. Mr. Sheldrup, married to Anna Lee, built the house now occupied by Lucille Fankhanel. They had six children: Laura, Clifford, Stella, Gladys, Delores, and Marlin. John Moberg married Clara Lee, and their children were Arthur, Willard, Eunice, James, Florence, and Joanne.

Alvin Ole” & Lucille Soland Alvin, nickname Ole, (son of Lambert who came from Norway and Amanda Soland) and Lucille (daughter of Wenzel and Minnie Lachowitzer) Soland were life long residents of the Vergas Community. Together they farmed for many years in Candor Township. Parents of two children: Wenzel “Bub” who married Florence Strelau. They had four children, Bruce, Barb, Brenda and Bryan. Ole and Lucille’s youngest child, Phyllis, married James Leitheiser. They also had four children, Douglas, Mark, Jane and Wayne. Between the two families there are nineteen grandchildren. Ole and Lucille loved old time dance, playing cards and in their later years learned to enjoy a bonfire after a family picnic.

Sportsman's Center

Mr. and Mrs. James Mistelske built a basement as the nucleus of the present Sportsman's Center in 1946. Jim sold bait and also machinery. In 1950 they erected a structure above the ground, expanding the bait business and opening a cafe. Thus was born the Sportsman's Center. A unique feature of the cafe was that the food was prepared in a kitchen on the lower level, and brought up to the dining area on a dumbwaiter. After a few years another large section was added to house additional minnow tanks. Jim and Lucille, and James, Jr. (better known as "Putz" operated the business until 1962 when they sold to Mr. and Mrs. Ralph Woodall. Ralph and Clare Woodall conducted the business for two years and sold it to Earl Nelson and his son, Roger. After three years Mr. Nelson was forced to quit due to ill health, at which time Cass and Lucille McArthur managed the business for about a year. In 1969 Lloyd and Sally Schmidt bought the establishment from the Nelsons. They were in business until 1975 when they sold to Jim and Irene Uhl and Don and Pat Petersen, who operated it until they sold.

Vergas 66

Vergas 66 Gas & Convenience opened its doors on August 8, 1996. Dennis and JoAnn Iverson and Dan and Kim Doyle purchased the Sportsman's Landing restaurant from Jim and Trish Sooy and started conversion from restaurant to convenience store in July,1996. The entire conversion process took only four weeks, including installation of gas pumps and construction on the building to alter the entry of the store which included the front porch.

Formerly this building was the Altona Supperclub/bar. During the digging of the pump lines old horse shoes were uncovered. The old Altona stable was also located at 121 Linden Street many, many years ago. The original building included a large stone fireplace which remains as a historical centerpiece to the Vergas66 convenience store. Since the "66" opened, services have been continually added, such as bulk fuel delivery, propane, bait, videos, and ATM cash services, which complement the other convenience store merchandise. In March 2001 the store undertook another project with the addition of a deli kitchen under the Deli Max logo. Items include pizza, hot/cold subs, breakfast items, and more to come. Vergas 66 takes pride in sponsoring home town events, including donations, sponsorships, and volunteer time with local activities and has belonged to the Vergas Community Club it opened in 1996.

The Village Cafe

The Village Cafe was started as a cafe and bakery about 1940 by George (Dud) and Janet Robideaux in the building formerly the Adam Dey General Store. They operated until 1943 when Mr. and Mrs. Henry Sapp purchased it. Later in 1943 it was sold to Frances Schmidt who operated it as a cafe until 1945 when she sold it to DeLyle Swenson. About 1947 Ed Franklin purchased the building and throughout the years there were a number of managers - Vivian Franklin and Lenore Jacobson (sisters of Ed), Mrs. Esther Strand, Bill and Bertha Bunkowski. During this time Ed Franklin did extensive remodeling. In 1967 Ralph and Clare Woodall bought the cafe from Evelyn Franklin and they added the Loon's Nest, a dining room. In April 1969, it was sold to Mr. and Mrs. Dale Glawe. In April 1969 Dale and Vernice Glawe purchased the Village Cafe and Loon's Nest from Ralph and Clare Woodall. The Glawes operated a very successful business for seven years, along with the help of their two daughters, Nancy and Becky, their son, Glen, and also the devoted help of their waitress, Beatrice Wesley, who has been with them for seven years. On May 1, 1976, Mr. and Mrs. Robert Shields and daughter Patty of Winnipeg took over the duties of operating the Village Cafe and Loon's Nest until they sold the business.

Walter Ruff Garage

Mr. and Mrs. Walter Ruff were residents of Vergas from 1916 until 1926. They were the parents of three children, Otto, now of Colorado, and twins, Laura and Lawrence. In 1916 Mr. Ruff built a cement block garage where the present Ford Equipment Shop is. During the winter months there was no call for auto repair work because the cars were not used, so he worked for Adam Dey in his store for a number of years. Mr. Ruff had the garage until 1919 when he sold it to Alex Wilschewski. He then worked as a section hand on the railroad for a year and later worked for the Farmers' Equity with Emil Fehlauer as manager. He later operated a general store on Main Street until 1926 when he and his family moved to Grand Island, Nebraska.

Welcome Inn

The Welcome Inn was started in 1924 by Frank and Bessie Schepper. It was located on Main Street. At the time of the Welcome Inn there were railroad crews that came to town for their meals and lunches. The Welcome Inn was closed in 1925.

William Sauer Blacksmith Shop

One of the early settlers of Vergas was William Sauer. He was born in Germany in 1877 and came to this country in 1891 at the age of 14. His first years here were spent at Akeley and Park Rapids where he learned the blacksmith trade. In 1903 he worked for James Hill laying railroad to the West. Mr. Sauer arrived in Vergas, then known as Altona, in 1904 and helped plot the town site and opened a blacksmith and wagon works shop near where the County Garage is. Harry Jacobs worked for him then. It is not certain whether Mr. Jacobs bought the business then, but Mr. Sauer left Vergas for several seasons to work in the harvest fields in the Dakotas. He used his bicycle for transportation. About 1920 he started the blacksmith shop that was located at 1stAvenue and Linden Street. Mr. Sauer was an expert workman with wood and iron, using his talents in building and repairing wagons and sleds. Many hard hours were put into shoeing horses, repairing (setting) wagon wheels and repairing plow lays using his forge, anvil, and trip hammer. Later, as the auto replaced horses more and more, the shop turned to auto repairs and a filling station, although he still shoed horses until about 1927. He retired from work at the age of 82in 1959. The building, lot, and remaining tools were sold. Several years ago the building was razed and an old landmark disappeared.

Zitzow Electric Incorporated

Don Zitzow took over the electrical contracting business from A.H. Dey in January, 1965, after working for Mr. Dey for 19years. He has his office in his home and has a warehouse he purchased from his father, Ewald Zitzow, in 1970. One half is used for electrical supplies, and the other half is utilized by Paul's Insulation. Mr. Zitzow's first hired help was his son, Duane, who is now the owner of the business.