Friday, January 30, 2009


In the fall of 1956, children from all over Thief River Falls, entered the Lincoln High School as 7th graders. We were lumped in with six grades, the oldest being seniors.

Seniors had pesky baby sisters who liked to follow brothers and little girls who adored seniors who played hockey. And wondered about De Souza, the exchange student from Brazil and what he was like besides very handsome.

As Old Trunks flips through the pages, another set of twins are found. Their names are Larry and Lee Johnson and they must be identical. One played baseball a couple of years, otherwise they teams together in FFA and TAB club. What is TAB Club?

The girls wore their hair short and many of them chose collars tucked into their sweaters for graduation pictures. Glasses were cat eyes for most of the girls and heavy top rims for the guys. The 'cool' guys had a flip in their hair; the rest was short or crew cut.

Although every under class picture was told to put their hands in their laps, the women listened and the males chose to put their hands on their knees. A guy thing, I would guess.

The junior class, which would graduate in 1959 already have changed their dress like code. Women are wearing more flair in their skirts and the men are offering plaids and strips ; nearly all are in blue jeans. No females were allowed to wear pants let along jeans. More people wear glasses. Need or fad? Who can tell.

The back row of the freshman picture is too dark to match faces to the names. Lots of sweaters are in style for the female population. A set of twins from 1960 look little alike.

The seventh graders, graduating class of 1962 look very, very young. They are tall, short, big, and little not everyone has caught up. Some look frightened; others very pleasant. Girls in the front row are wearing anklets.

Flip a few pages to the orchestra where you see Soozi next to Jim and wonder if you ever knew how long she played a stringed instrument.

Try to imagine that Students Brightened Christmas with a play about Mary and Joesph complete with wise men.

Although we were seventh graders we did not mingle with debaters and thespians, library fundamentals or the Prowler or paper staff. We were too young for distributive education. Males found purpose in FFA; girls did not join. It did not appear women could be crossing guards either.

We did not play football, basketball, hockey, or baseball. We wanted to start a girl's hockey team in 1959-60 but it was not allowed. Talk about NOT rounding out our activities. There were no males in FHA, FNA, cheerleading, either.

Throughout our years we would sit in the bleachers for our class picture, if Robert or Judy didn't move, I would be between them. Bagne, Baker, Ballingrud. By eighth grade, we were crowded into Old Washington with its hot painted walls. Thespians and Debater was still out of our reach and junior high council begins; it is said it was for efficiency. David, Betty, Barbara, and Clare would represent their class. The FTA was on its second year.

Two males sit in the front row of the FFA picture. Both are dressed in striped shirts, jeans, and loafers. One is blond and the other brunette. Are Russell and Ronald Beisenger twins?

Most women in the FHA club are wearing nylons and flats shoes. The school winter carnival had a king and queen. The class that won had the royality. Imagine the surprise of the upper classmen when our eighth grade class won by selling the most Christmas corsages door to door.

Our class was starting to show up in places like tennis and golf. We were on our way.

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