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Pathways Through Our Past

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Bemidji, 56619
Bemidji Pioneer
(218) 333-9819 customer support
Bemidji Minnesota P.O. Box 455 56619

I took some time the other day to do what I'm always suggesting that you do. I reviewed the Tri Sigma scrap books that are in the History Center Library. These women have really contributed a lot to the Blackduck community.

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One particular project had to do with dressing dolls, giving awards and then distributing the dolls to young girls in the area. The dolls shown in the scrap books were absolutely adorable. It was a long time ago. Where are these dolls today? If you were lucky enough to receive one, please let us hear from you.

Agnes Perrault -- remember her? I do. She lived in the house on the corner of Main and Carlson (old Highway 71) in the house that resembles a barn. I liked the looks of that house, still do.

Agnes was a good friend of my Aunt Loretta (Langord) Pafko when I was a young girl and though she sometimes seemed cranky, I always liked being around her. Now I'd probably label her as a classy lady. I also learned more about her by digging through old records...

Agnes' family came to Blackduck in 1905. She was the youngest of 11 children. At the early age of 13 and having been bonded by Postmaster Martin Leet, Agnes became an assistant clerk in the Blackduck Post Office. She worked for E.N. Smith, Leet and Glen Squires.

Agnes was a devout Catholic and held many offices in the Ladies of St. Ann's Society. She took care of the altars at the church, decorating them with flowers from her garden for over five years and cooked for visiting priests and members of the church on special occasions. She was also a member of the church choir for many years.

Agnes was known by many as a good friend and a willing neighbor, tending the sick and needy and visiting the lonely and elderly. She cared for her own family until they died.

In 1940, Agnes operated a style shop of her own until 1945, then worked for Kolden and Thompson and for Everett and Irvin Swanson. In 1951, Agnes was employed by the Skogmo Store in the Swanson building, which was later purchased by L.S. Troppman of Bemidji and managed by Agnes.

She also worked for Orin Wolden as a bookkeeper for a year. When the school bond for enlargement of the school was having trouble being passed, she wrote letters and was instrumental in getting the bond passed.

Agnes worked for the good of the community and interests of her many friends. Guess she wasn't quite as quiet and unassuming as I remember. (And, maybe I gave her reason to be cranky, sometimes?)

The History and Art Center's Parking Lot Sale a couple of weeks ago, ended up inside Charlie's old Super Value store garage due to the nasty weather. Charlie and Scott are good landlords and we appreciate all they do for us. Ditto for the donations we received for our sale and from our visiting friends. What's a little rain? As Little Orphan Annie says/sings... The sun will come out tomorrow!

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