The Way We Were

From the Sentinel 100, 75, 50 and 25 years ago

Oct. 5, 1922

The following letter received by Mrs. Josephine Mason refers to work allotted to the local Red Cross women last spring for convalescent hospitals. Twenty-two suits of pajamas and 12 convalescent robes were made. For a few weeks a few women remained faithful to the work, sacrificing home and social duty that the work might be finished in the allotted time. “The report of production on your letter notifying us of your shipment, safely at hand. We want to tell you how very grateful we were for this wonderful work for our disabled men in Port Townsend Hospital. I think the men will be especially appreciative that this work was done in Alaska by your workers. Please believe that every garment will be delivered to some ex-servicemen who is not yet getting his compensation and so has no means with which to buy such necessities.”

Oct. 10, 1947

Frank Metcalf, newly appointed Territorial Highway Engineer as successor to the late Leonard Smith, stopped off in Wrangell today between planes. He looked over several proposed projects here with Mayor Doris Barnes and members of the city council before going on to Ketchikan on the afternoon plane. He expects to return here in a week or 10 days to spend some time making a closer examination of projects. Metcalf, a long-time Alaskan, is one of the best known engineers in the territory and has done much engineering work through this section of the country. He was appointed this week by Gov. Gruening and on his first official day in office visited Wrangell.

Oct. 13, 1972

On-again, off-again plans to pave the Wrangell airport are off again, the state disclosed this week. In a letter to Chamber of Commerce President Bob Wagoner, State Director of Aviation Ed Granger verified what the chamber had been fearing – that surfacing has been omitted from a schedule of next summer for economic reasons. Wagner said neither the city nor the chamber had been made aware that the improvement project had been dropped. It was discovered when a legal advertisement was published concerning the improvement plan, with the paving portion missing. The airport project, which also includes lengthening the runway from 5,000 to 6,350 feet, runway lighting and removal of a view-limiting “hump” from the runway's midpoint, is contingent on passage of state capital improvement bonds next month.

Oct. 9, 1997

Mark Galla has the distinguished title now of being the first man to shoot an elk in Southeast Alaska. He earned it on the first hunting day of the season on Etolin Island, and it was the first hunt for one of the herd planted there 10 years ago. Twenty five permits were drawn, five of which were raffled by several sports groups. After getting over the initial surprise in June of being drawn for the permit, Galla then discovered that his wife’s name, Dee, had also been drawn. She plans to hunt in a week or two. The bull, approximately 6 to 8 years old, had a 6-by-6 rack and weighed around 1,000 pounds. Galla says it took five trips, including the trip in, to get all the meat and two men back to Wrangell. In an effort to develop a herd on Zarembo Island and some of the bordering islands, 50 Elk were planted there 10 years ago. The experiment has proved successful, with a herd now numbering 250 on the islands.


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