Day in History: Rochester celebrates quiet Christmas with many men away

December 28, 2017

1992 – 25 years ago

• Members of the Hope Hustlers 4-H Club and Steele County’s Future Farmers of America chapter have been invited to participate in Bill Clinton’s inaugural parade next month. The kids will ride on a float saluting agriculture and their hometown, which shares its name with Clinton’s Arkansas home.

• The newly formed Rochester Amateur Sports Commission will be working at acquiring new amateur sporting events for Rochester. The organization will work with the Rochester Convention and Visitors Bureau.

1967 – 50 years ago

• The 1968 Snowflake Festive parade in Austin will be held on Jan. 13. The weeklong event will include many activities.

• A total of $6,182 was collected during the annual Christmas appeal. Capt. Raymond Sweazy reported this sum from the kettles and mail appeal. Money is used to buy baskets of food for the needy as well as clothing and toys. Gifts are purchased for Rochester State Hospital patients, nursing home patients and inmates in jail.

1942 – 75 years ago

• Close of Yule shopping ushered in Christmas and the holiday was observed centered in the home. This was Rochester’s second Christmas of the war and it found absence of many of its men. Also noticeable was a reduced volume of traffic because of gasoline rationing. However, it was a white Christmas as the area received a fresh coat of snow.

• Christmas babies born at Staint Marys included a daughter born to Mr. and Mrs. Henry Hermanson of Utica and a son to Mr. and Mrs. Harry Klassey of Austin.

1917 – 100 years ago

• The Rochester Fire Department had to make three calls on Christmas Day. One of the calls was to the Commercial Hotel. All fires were chimney fires and there was little damage and no injuries.

• Former Gov. Adolph Eberhart was in Rochester today on business. He took the opportunity to greet many of his old friends in the city.

• A New Year’s Eve dance will be given in the Masonic Temple hall for the benefit of the ice skating rink.

From news services

Ten years ago: Opposition leader Benazir Bhutto, 54, was assassinated in a gun and suicide-bomb attack in Pakistan following a campaign rally. Kenya held an election pitting incumbent president Mwai Kibaki against opposition candidate Raila Odinga; both candidates ended up claiming victory in a vote that observers said was seriously flawed. (Kenya was racked by weeks of ethnic violence; Kibaki and Odinga ended up forming a coalition government.)

Five years ago: An Indian-born man, Sunando Sen, was shoved to his death from a New York City subway platform; suspect Erika Menendez later pleaded guilty to manslaughter and was sentenced to 24 years in prison. (Authorities say Menendez pushed Sen because she thought he was Muslim; Sen was Hindu.) Retired Army general Norman Schwarzkopf, 78, died in Tampa, Florida. Character actor Harry Carey Jr., 91, died in Santa Barbara, California.

One year ago: Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, accompanied by President Barack Obama, visited Pearl Harbor in Hawaii, where he offered his “sincere and everlasting condolences to the souls of those who lost their lives” in Japan’s 1941 attack; Abe did not apologize, but conceded his country “must never repeat the horrors of war again.” Actress Carrie Fisher died in a hospital four days after suffering a medical emergency aboard a flight to Los Angeles; she was 60. Cavaliers superstar LeBron James was voted AP Male Athlete of the Year after bringing the NBA title to Cleveland.

Today’s birthdays: Actor John Amos is 78. ABC News correspondent Cokie Roberts is 74. Rock musician Mick Jones (Foreigner) is 73. Singer Tracy Nelson is 73. Actor Gerard Depardieu is 69. Jazz singer-musician T.S. Monk is 68. Singer-songwriter Karla Bonoff is 66. Rock musician David Knopfler (Dire Straits) is 65. Actress Tovah Feldshuh is 64. Journalist-turned-politician Arthur Kent is 64. Actress Maryam D’Abo is 57. Country musician Jeff Bryant is 55. Actor Ian Gomez is 53. Actress Theresa Randle is 53. Actress Eva LaRue is 51. Wrestler and actor Bill Goldberg is 51. Actress Tracey Cherelle Jones is 48. Bluegrass singer-musician Darrin Vincent (Dailey & Vincent) is 48. Rock musician Guthrie Govan is 46. Musician Matt Slocum is 45. Actor Wilson Cruz is 44. Singer Olu is 44. Actor Masi Oka is 43. Actor Aaron Stanford is 41. Actress Emilie de Ravin is 36. Christian rock musician James Mead (Kutless) is 35. Rock singer Hayley Williams (Paramore) is 29. Country singer Shay Mooney (Dan & Shay) is 26.