Heroes for History

Kathleen J. McCully, Executive Director
Isanti County Historical Society

Fifteen weeks and counting since the fire that made history. For those that attended the pancake breakfast and the Heritage Jam this past weekend, Isanti County Historical Society extends their thanks. The pancakes, sausages and toppings were so delicious. That maple syrup and butter is way too hard to resist in my opinion, and after serving over 100 folks I can see it is a favorite with many more of you as well. The Heritage Jam produced wonderful, wonderful music and even though our competition for the afternoon was the Vikings/Packers game, we had a modest turnout and a great afternoon. Everyone is really in for a great treat if they purchased one or more of the homemade preserves—these folks really know what they are doing.

Heroes for History include all event attendees, every volunteer who gave their time on such a nice weekend, Nicki Klanderud and Linda Gerlach of the Cambridge Chamber of Commerce, Vicky LeFebvre, ICHS staff and board, and the four bands who donated their performance time on our behalf; New’s Getting Old, My Cousin Dallas, Galactic Cowboy Orchestra and Michael Monroe. We can never say thank you enough to those that are committed to contributing to our success and future endeavors.

This week we are regrouping and starting additional computer training so that everyone processing our returned documents will be following the same processes and procedures. Computers are still foreign to some so all the practice we can have will only be to our advantage. We have had many a discussion about technology, and many laughs remembering the same reactions to the “technologies of the day” of each past generation.

For instance, from hand stitching to treadle sewing machines, then electric sewing machines, and on to computerized sewing machines. From telephones with the hand crank and a switchboard operator, to a rotary dialed phone and a party line, to a single line with push buttons, from a land line to a cell phone that can do anything you could ever have dreamed of wanting. Or shorthand-taking secretaries and transcriptionists, to hand-held tape recorders, or voice activated software that types for you. Washing clothes in the stream, washboards, washtubs and hand cranked wringers, electric wringer washers, washers with an agitator, front-loaders that spin, steam washing machines, wow! Just about every facet of our lives has seen a similar progression in technological advancements, and I am sure each generation has had those that openly embraced the newest advance with wide-eyed awe and open arms. On the flip side, there were also those that were more skeptical and sure that “this will never last.”

So here we are in 2011, with great technologies that will only make our jobs easier and faster if we are able to take the time to practice, hone, and assess our skills and procedures as we face the large amount of fire damaged material. But let us never forget that behind the best technology of the day are the people who are committed to learning how to use it, applying it to the specific jobs and professions they do, and who troubleshoot the problems when they arise. Three cheers to these folks, who work hand-in-hand with technology to do their jobs.

If you want to support ICHS, donations are greatly appreciated and can be made by mail, at our website, or directly at Cambridge State Bank. For all other inquiries, visit www.ichs.ws, call us at 763-689-4229, email at [email protected] or drop us a letter at 1700 E. Rum River Drive S., Suite K, Cambridge, MN 55008. We are open by appointment only at this time.