Archive for the ‘Entertainment’ Category


Important Writ of Injunction

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: May 8, 1903

Important Writ of Injunction

Happiness of Harry Holm for the Summer Has Been Dealt Crushing Blow

Faces a Dire Predicament

Has Been Enjoined From Occupying His Favorite Seat in Grand Stand

Harry Holm has been enjoined. Never again may he occupy his favorite perch in the grand stand at Riverside park, just where he can watch the balls curve over the home plate and tell whether or not the  umpire is right or wrong. The injunction has been served upon its hapless victim and unless he can break it, he will have to go and sit in the bleachers, for never again can he be happy in the grand stand, save in  his old accustomed place.

The full extent and purport of this malignant document, which has been gotten out by J.F. Ford, J.C. Walburger and G.F. Rankin as plaintiffs, is shown by the following literal translation:

“To the said defendant: You are hereby notified that on or before the 14th day of August, A.D., 1903, there will be on file in the district court of Webster county, Iowa, the petition of the plaintiffs, aforesaid, enjoining you from occupying the seat in the grand stand at Riverside park in Fort Dodge, Iowa, the seat referred to being more fully described as being located directly back of the home plate in Riverside ball park and fourth row from the ground, and you are farther notified not to occupy or attempt to occupy the third or fifth row, and that you are h ereby relegated to the rear to make room for real fans.”

Healy Bros. & Kelleher appear as attorneys for the plaintiff. Harry has not yet retained an attorney. He is thinking over a plan of resting his case with the ladies of Fort Dodge. Before this gentle tribunal he feels sure that so harsh and unjust a measure as this will not be for an instant countenanced.

The clause about his not being a real fan also rankles in Harry’s memory. “I’ll show ’em,” he remarked. “If they won’t let me sit in the grand stand where I want to, I’ll go into the bleachers or climb a telegraph pole, but they won’t keep me from seeing if I have to use a balloon.”


Fort Dodge as an Art Center

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: March 10, 1905

Fort Dodge as an Art Center

What is Being Accomplished by the Constant Efforts of Fort Dodge Artists

An Interesting Sketch Club

Anyone is Privileged to Join and Much Interest is Being Awakened Among Lovers of the Fascinating Art – Meets Thursday Afternoons

A sketching club has been organized which meets Thursday afternoons after school in Recital Hal (sic). The class has been sketching for several weeks and a great deal of interest is being awakened and about twelve gather every week to take advantage of this excellent opportunity to develop talent.

Different members of the club pose each time, or furnish some one who will and fifteen minute sketches are made. By timing the sketches, there is a certain amount of ambition aroused to see who can accomplish the most in the allotted time.

Among those who sketch are Miss Lizzie Newberry, one of Fort Dodge’s best known artists,; and Carl Hepler, who studied recently at the art Institute in Chicago. Mr. Hepler as well as Miss Newberry is able to suggest a great many points to the amateurs who sketch, and much good is being derived from the classes.

Anyone who wishes is privileged to join the class, and as there is no stated instruction, there is no charge to the ambitious beginner, although they can not but be helped by the regular practice, and association with those interested.

Another art class which is accomplishing much good in Fort Dodge is that instructed by Miss Florence Young at the Mosaic club, one evening a week for the benefit of those who cannot study at other times. This class has been sketching all winter and is accomplishing much.

Miss Young is also elevating Fort Dodge art by teaching china painting and Miss Edna Richardson has a very large class in this line of work.

At Recital hall Miss Carrie Newberry and Miss Lizzie Newberry also have a very interesting class in china painting, and the hall itself is an artistic place to visit, with its many pretty pictures on the walls and the quantities of beautiful china which helps to adorn this attractively arranged hall.

The smell of the plants and oils is very attractive to one who has the craving for art, and this  Bohemian den is worthy of many visits from Fort Dodge people who are interested.

With these professional instructors quietly and constantly at work and the instruction which is developing the school children together with the many able artists who work in their homes, the artistic developments of Fort Dodge should surely not suffer.


Bryan Draws a Large Audience

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: March 5, 1905

Bryan Draws a Large Audience

Closing Number of the Y.M.C.A. Court Was By The Orator.

Talked on Trip Around World

He Saw Many Things of Interest, But Put the United States at The Head of the List – Orator is Bald and Fat, but Just as Magnetic.

William Jennings Bryan, taken about 1907. Image from Library of Congress.

Between twelve and fifteen hundred people attended the lecture by W.J. Bryant (sic) at the armory Monday night. Most of them had heard him before, but the charm of his oratory and genial presence never grows old with audiences.

Since he was here the first time in 1895 he has made several political speeches here and appeared once on the Chatauqua grounds. He has changed in appearance in those eleven years. He is downright bald now, and has added weight to the point of being fat. But his voice is of the same clear, mellow tone. It filled the large auditorium, while he spoke without an effort. He is lecturing constantly, but the exercise of this voice has no effect on its fine quality.

Mr. Bryan eschewed the subject of politics, saying he was happy and contended (sic) with his condition as it is and thought he had better not talk about politics while he felt that way.

His address at Fort Dodge was the story of his observations on his trip abroad, the journey around the world.  Those who followed the lob gook of the journey in his letters to the newspapers at the time were already familiar with the incidents he told orally here. But it was a treat for them to hear it told again by Bryan himself. Whether the smoothness of his address and the wonderful facility with which he uses the right word in the right place is the result of hard work or extemporaneous effort the effect is that of off-hand conversation with apparently not a thought as to the make-up of the sentences.

Mr. Bryan and his family made the trip around the world traveling westward from the United States. He reversed that order in his lecture, beginning with observations about Europe and ending with Japan. Mr. Bryan showed his patriotism by his comparisons which in all cases were in favor of the United States. It is pleasant to hear, but perhaps the people of this country need to hear more of the things they are surpassed in.

As one looks back on the lecture it seems to have been scattered fragments arranged with no particular order in mind. When a 25,000 mile trip is described in one hour and fifteen minutes there must needs be some pretty big jumps.

The most interesting points of the address were of the presentation at the court of the King and Queen of Norway, the reception by the Emperor of Japan, both of which functions were exceedingly ceremonious and decidedly brief. Amusement was created by Bryan’s descriptions of his graceful bows and efforts to follow the proper customs even to the extent of wearing evening clothes at 9 o’clock in the morning. He said it always looked to him as though a man had missed the last car when he appeared in a swallow-tail coat in the morning.

Bryan said he was nearest to royalty among the Dattos in the Philippines. He sat alongside their royal sovereign under two red umbrellas. Bryan has a good story in this connection which always brings a laugh. When they were awaiting the approach of this Datto ruler he was heard firing a salute. They counted the sounds and it am0unted to twenty-one. That is the president’s salute and Bryan was touched by the courtesy – but the firing continued. This must be for the second term, they thought: but when they passed the forty-second guna nd started on the third term they felt uneasy.

Bryan drew comparisons between Confucianism, the religion of China, and Christianity and thought the negative principles of the Oriental religion probably had much to do with China’s stagnation for 2,000 years.

Bryan expects to see Japan adopt Christianity just as that country has adopted the other means of progress of western nations.

Tribute was paid by the speaker to the doctrine of international peace and the conspicuous part President Roosevelt took in bringing the Oriental war to a close. He also gave King edward a compliment and said he enjoyed his call upon him and found him affable and easy of manner, the most democratic ruler in Europe.

Bryan had a visit with the Czar of Russia, but feared from the way he had acted since then he had not accepted his advice. He thought it was of some value to his own reputation to have been alone with the Czar half an  hour for he had been called an anarchist ten years ago, but the Czar of Russia was very shrewd in finding out anarchists and yet he had confidence enough to permit him to have an audience.

The hardest thing in making a trip around the world is to get good drinking water. they bought boiled water and bottled water, but occasionally found all that was really imported about the bottled water was the labels. He thought all nations should do more honor to the hen. All the way around the world they depended on eggs for food and untainted nourishment.

Mr. Bryan came to Fort Dodge from Omaha.  He was entertained while here at the residence of E.H. Rich.


Marble Season in Full Blast

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: Feb. 28, 1905

Marble Season in Full Blast

Fort Dodge Dealers Are Kept Busy Supplying the Small Youth With Marbles.

The Games Remain the Same

In Some Ways the Class of Marbles Has Been Bettered, But Still The Higher Classes Are Not in As Big Demand.

The small boy and marbles are connected in everyone’s thoughts at this time of year, and no matter if the streets are covered with mud, you can find the small boy at his game everywhere you go. The local dealers report the sale this year as being very large, and that already, hundreds of thousands have been disposed of.

One dealer in speaking of the matter to a Messenger reporter this morning said that the class of marbles most in demand continued to be the “comies” and “chinies,” while “glassies” held a good place in the sale. He said that as far as he knew there was little demand for the more expensive agates or cornelians this year.

The small boy changes his whims with the marble constantly. One dealer says that he finds the crockery marbles, that is in marble terms the “crockeries” were in big demand. These marbles are more expensive than either the “comies” or “chinies” but are still a cheap grade of marble. This man said that two years back the demand for these was very small but last year it grew greatly, and that before the end of this season he expect4ed that the demand for these would out reach all others.

With the older marble players, the “crockeries” and “glassies” will be used almost exclusively, as the cheaper grade do not make a big enough stake for the players with the more pronounced gambling spirit in them. Thus far however the sale has been confined to the cheaper grades, but as the season advances, the dealer expect that the sale of the better classes will grow greater.

The games played by the marble players have not changed much so far this season, and as a rule the games are the same as have been played for year. Of course as the streets are muddy, much of the playing so far is the games “Odd or Even” of (sic) “Five or Under Five” or with the figures changed.


Moving Picture Theater Planned

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: Feb. 18, 1907

Moving Picture Theater Planned

What is Known  as Family Theatorium Starts in Colby Building.

Arrangements have been made for the establishing here of a “Family Theatorium,” or, in other and plainer language, a moving picture show. The Colby building on First Avenue South, occupied for a short time by the ill-fated Alexas theater, will be engaged for the new enterprise which will be managed by Bryson Hutchinson.

Mr. Hutchinson went to Des Moines last week and made a contact for two changes of pictures a week here. He said concerning his plan:

“We will be opened for business the last of this week and will run a clean, reputable, low priced house. We will give three entertainments a day and if we can average 100 patrons per performance we can make it a permanent attraction. The pictures we get will be of the best quality and just as good as can be seen in large cities. We will have an electric piano for music and later on may have a regular vaudeville program. The admission fee will be ten cents.”

“I think a clean performance like ours will add considerably to the amusement attractions of Fort Dodge. That ought to help the town.”


Haunted House on 4th Street

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: Jan. 17, 1907

Haunted House on 4th Street

Mysterious Rappings Puzle (sic) The Police – Frighten Others.

Reliable Persons Hear Them

Acting Chief of Police Chas. Grant, Manager Griffith of the Duncombe House and Others Have Heard the Noises – Big Crowd Last Night.

What some people believe to be a real haunted house haunted house (sic) has been discovered on Fourth street directly in the rear of the Duncombe hotel. For several days mysterious raps loud enough to be heard all over the house, and coming three at a time, now in one room, now in another, have terrorized the occupants of the place.

A family named Wilson lives downstairs, and the upper part of the house is occupied by Mrs. Dr. Lloyd and her three children. It was first thought that the children were responsible for the rappings but this has been disproven.

Policeman Talks.

Acting Chief of Police Charles Grant went down to the place night before last. This is the story he told to a Messenger reporter:

“I don’t know what to make of it. I was skeptical and wouldn’t believe at first there were any rappings. I laughed at the stories that were told Mr. Griffith, of the Duncombe House, was with me. We waited about half an hour and then about half past seven o’clock we heard the three raps loud and distinct. Griffight went upstairs and I stayed down stairs. He told me that just as he went upstairs and started to go into a room off the hall he heard the three raps again and they seem to be right on the door he was entering, within a foot of his face, yet he could see nothing. I don’t believe in ghosts, but I certainly heard that noise, and I’d like to know what makes it. One time it will come from one room and the next time from another. It moves all over the house.”

Examined House.

The house is an ordinary frame structure but quite solid and well built. Yesterday Mr. Plumb, an employe (sic) of the Grove auto garage, went to the place and with a lantern and sounding apparatus went over every nook and cranny, tested the floors and ceilings for loose boards, etc., but everything was found solid. There are no water pipes, gas pipes, sewer pipes or anything of the kind in the building that could make a noise.

Big Crowd Last Night.

The residents of that part of the city are all excitement. Last night a crowd of not less than one hundred people gathered within the house and stood without. Nearly all heard the rappings.

The occupants of the house state that they are not often heard in the day time, though sometimes this occurs. Usually they start about seven thirty o’clock and come about every five minutes until midnight, when they cease.

Sometimes they will not be heard for an hour at a time. The children have been watched and it is practically certain the noise is not made by them.

Three policemen and representatives of the newspapers will visit the  house tonight.

The Fort Dodge Messenger: Jan. 10, 1903

They Won in the Box Contest

Misses Hannah Hanson and Jennie Pollock Receive Highest Number of Ballots

Voting Was Lively Today

Miss Hanson Received 212 Votes and Miss Pollock 93. Other Teachers in the Race

Miss Hannah Hanson and Miss Jennie Pollock are the winners in the Messenger box contest for the performance of Charles B. Hanford, in “Much Ado About Nothing,” at the Midland on next Monday evening. Having received the highest number of votes in the contest for the post popular school teacher of Fort Dodge they are each entitled to a box for this performance and have the privilege of inviting five friends to occupy it with them.

The voting was fast and furious this morning. Miss Hanson’s friends rallied to her support, and when the time came to count the ballots at noon, she was found to have 212 of the little paper slips to her credit. Miss Jennie Pollock who was the favorite on Friday, did not do so well today, but came next with 93 votes.

Miss Ella Fin had many friends who exerted themselves in her behalf and she received 74 votes.

The full list of teachers for whom coupons were cast is as follows:

Hannah Hanson
Jennie Pollock
Ella Fink
Grace Fibbs
Maude Herrick
Cora Newton
Florence Anderson
Myrtle Hill

Pugilist Jim Jeffries to be Here Soon

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: Jan. 3, 1905

Pugilist Jim Jeffries to be Here Soon

Champion Will Appear on Stage of Midland as Davy Crockett.

He is Drawing Large Crowds

After The Performance Jeffries Will Give an Exhibition Three Round Bout With Soft Gloves With His Trainer.

James Jeffries, the greatest pug on earth, will actually appear in Fort Dodge and “act” before a Fort Dodge. The added attraction of a three-round bout between the big pugilist and his trainer will also be put on after the play at the same price of admission.

It is expected that the big fellow will draw one of the largest crowds that ever filled a Fort Dodge opera house, and that S.R.O. signs will occupy prominent places in the lobby as early as seven o’clock on the night of his appearance.

The play put on by the big bruiser will be “David Crockett,” in which Jeffries takes the title role, and in the impersonation of the husky countryman, it is stated he appears very well indeed, acting the part in a most pleasing manner.

Jeffries in “The Man From The West,” in his tour thru the east last year, made a decided hit with his part, and he is said to be no less a success in his present part. This city will be one of a very few in the state that will be favored with a visit from the pugilist on his way thru.

In his tour of the country on the stage, he is keeping himself in trim for his work in the ring, by the three round bouts after each performance in which he appears with his trainer. This feature, beside keeping the fistic (sic) champion in constant trim, is a great drawing card and adds greatly to the number of seat sales in each engagement. The exhibition while not in the nature of a fight, is a thoroughly scientific affair and will be of great interests to the entire crowd.


Lovers of a Single Day Wed

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: Dec. 31, 1906

Lovers of a Single Day Wed

J. Inman Marries May Monte a Chorus Girl With “Show Girl.”

Met Her On Saturday Night

And After a Day Spent in the Company of Miss Monte Induces Her to Become His Bride – Both Left for Iowa Falls This Afternoon.

After knowing his bride but a single day, John Inman, a workman of the Green-Wheeler shoe factory, was married to Miss Mae Monte, a member of the “Show Girl” chorus, this afternoon. The ceremony was performed by Justice Martin about 2 o’clock. Mr. and Mrs. Inman leaving on the afternoon train over the Illinois Central railroad, together with the theatrical organization, which appears at Iowa Falls tonight.

Ainman (sic) hails from Nashville, Tenn., which is his native city. He has resided in Fort Dodge since last spring, and has been employed at the Green-Wheeler shoe factory, being one of the highest salaried employees.

His bride is a professional chorus girl who came to the city in the chorus of the “Show Girl” company last Saturday noon, prior to which time she had no intention of marrying, or had even seen the groom.

The story is the old one – “Love at First Sight.” After the performance on Saturday night Inman met Miss Monte. Sunday was passed together and at noon today, an application for a marriage license was made. Following it the ceremony was performed by Justice Martin, Fred Loeber, of this city, employed as a stage hand at the Midland theater, and Florence Mackey, another member of the “Show Girl” chorus witnessed it.


Blanden Scores a Success as Hamlet

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: Dec. 9, 1903

Blanden Scores a Success as Hamlet

Fort Dodge Man is Praised for Work Before the Footlights.

He Plays the Title Role

Lon Blanden, Son of Colonel L. Blanden, and a Native of This City.

Every little while, a new Fort Dodge man comes out into the lime light of fame. The latest son of Fort Dodge to attain noticeable mention is Lon Blanden. Mr. Blanden is the nephew of Col. L. Blanden, and the brother of the well known poet, Charles Blanden, who is also a son of Fort Dodge, though for years he has been a successful business man of Chicago.

Lon Blanden was a resident of Fort Dodge in his young manhood. He had a magnificent voice and was prominent in musical circles. His ability as an actor, both on the state and in real life, was often remarked by his friends and when he went on the stage some years ago it was felt that he would surely gain an enviable reputation. The hopes of his friends have been longer delayed than was expected, but the opportune time has come for Mr. Blanden to leave light comedy and melodrama and take upon himself some more notable parts. He is especially suited in his face, manner and gifts for tragedy, and the announcement that he is starring in Hamlet is not a surprise to his acquaintances here. The following is from the Providence Journal:

“It was a distinctly creditable presentation in which the feature was the strong and powerful playing of Mr. Lon Blanden, as the Prince of Denmakr. Mr. Blanden is a player of the legitimate school who follows in his characterization of the great Dane, the advice of Hamlet to the players and who gave a scholarly and remarkably able exposition of this great character study. His playing would attract attention in a more pretentious production; coming as it does in a week’s work of a summer stock company, playing at popular prices, it is the more unusual. His enunciation was clear and usually distinct; he gave the soliloquies with dramatic force and his whole conception of the role was apparent as the result of years of study of the most interesting of Shakespeare’s characters. It was a worthy effort, that stands out from the work of the other members of the company, although his support was uniformly good and in several respects especially so.” – The Providence Journal