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Lots of big things happened in years ending with an 8

St. Luke's Hospital is shown in this undated photo. Forum file photo1 / 3
Quentin Burdick Federal Courthouse in downtown Fargo. Forum file photo2 / 3
Bob Lind, Neighbors columnist3 / 3

And here we go into another year. Welcome to 2018, neighbors!

Just for fun to commemorate this first day of 2018, Neighbors went to a book published by The Forum in 1999 titled "The Century in Photos; 1900-1999" and pulled out events that occurred in years ending in "8" in the last century.

Here are some of them:

  • 1908: The 50th anniversary of Minnesota statehood was celebrated at the Minnesota State Fair in St. Paul, with 326,753 people attending the fair that week.
  • 1908: St. Luke's Hospital, Fargo, was founded. It now is Sanford Hospital.
  • 1918: An influenza epidemic killed 20 million people around the world, including 548,000 in the United States and its armed forces. In North Dakota alone, an estimated 2,700 died.
  • Aug. 24, 1928: The first all-talking movie was shown in New York City.
  • 1928: Carl Ben Eielson, a native of Hatton, N.D., made the first successful non-stop flight over the North Pole, accompanied by English explorer Hubert Wilkins. The house in Hatton where Carl Ben grew up now is the site of the Hatton Eielson Museum, and Fargo has a middle school named after him.
  • April 8, 1938: North Dakota Agricultural College, now North Dakota State University, lost its accreditation, and 1,200 students staged a mass protest.
  • June 1948: Carl White opened a Dairy Queen in Fargo's Island Park area. The soft ice cream drew long lines of people waiting to try the treat.
  • 1948: The American Crystal sugar beet plant was under construction in north Moorhead.
  • Jan. 31, 1958: The United States launched its first space satellite.
  • May 10, 1958: Beverly Mann, of Breckenridge, Minn., a student at Moorhead State (now Minnesota State University Moorhead) and the Clay County centennial queen, rode in the Clay County replica pioneer wagon in the Parade of the Century at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds.
  • June 1958: Louis L'Amour, the Jamestown, N.D., native who wrote more than 100 books, died.
  • June 1958: The Eagles presented a Ten Commandments monument to the International Peace Garden on the North Dakota-Manitoba border. The monument was unveiled by actor Charlton Heston, who portrayed Moses in the movie "The Ten Commandments" which was released later that year.
  • May 29, 1958: Fire destroyed the R.F. Gunkelman & Sons seed processing plant and elevator in downtown Fargo. The company had lost its seed cleaning building in Grandin, N.D., to fire two days earlier.
  • 1968: Congress authorized the North Dakota Garrison Diversion project.
  • 1968: The Pope issued a ban on all artificial birth control devices.
  • Jan. 13, 1978: Sen. Hubert H. Humphrey, D-Minn., died of cancer.
  • April 18, 1978: The U.S. Senate voted to turn the Panama Canal over to Panama.
  • June 21, 1978: President Gerald Ford appointed Air Force Gen. David Jones as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Jones was from Minot, N.D.
  • May 1988: A fundraising birthday party was held for North Dakota Gov. George Sinner on the Red River Valley Fairgrounds, West Fargo, sponsored by his re-election committee. Among those helping fry steaks on pitchforks was movie actress Angie Dickinson, a native of Kulm, N.D., who had recently been inducted into the North Dakota Roughrider Hall of Fame.
  • Sept. 8, 1998: Mark McGwire, of the St. Louis Cardinals baseball team, broke the season home-run record of 61 which had been held by Roger Maris, Fargo.
  • 1998: Football star Phil Hansen participated in the Roger Maris Celebrity Golf Tournament in Fargo. Phil played high school football in Oakes, N.D., and was an All-American at NDSU. He was drafted by the Buffalo Bills in 1991.
  • 1998: The Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks baseball team won the Northern League championship.
  • 1998: Darin Erstad, from Jamestown, N.D., was named to the American League All-Star baseball team while a member of the California Angels.
  • 1998: Baseball pitcher Rick Helling, who grew up in Lakota, N.D., and who played his last two seasons of American Legion ball in Fargo, won 20 games and earned a three-year contract worth $10.5 million from the Texas Rangers.
  • June 1998: The Stavkirke, a replica of a Norwegian church that was built by Guy Paulson, Fargo, was erected on the grounds of the Hjemkomst Interpretive Center, Moorhead.
  • July 1998: The $15 million addition to the Quentin N. Burdick Federal Courthouse, Fargo, was dedicated.

And there, neighbors, are some of the events in past years ending in "8."

Now let's see happens in 2018.

If you have an item of interest for this column, mail it to Neighbors, The Forum, Box 2020, Fargo, ND 58107, fax it to 241-5487 or email blind@forumcomm.com.

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