While going through my stash of historical items, I ran across several things I had never scanned.
This image shows the old RR spur that use to run down to Gray. Based on the style of cars, the picture was taken in the early 1950s.

How many historians/genealogists are able to tell a story like I can with my database?
Hopefully more Manning connected people will want their family history to be part of the Manning Historical Database I'm building.
The more people share with me the more "stories" I can tell and show through scanned images from my database.


aerial view of Manning
Jay Musfeldt is a loyal Manning historian who helps me with information on situations I feature on my web page.
He'll tell me little memories/experiences he has for many of the pictures I show, such as the one above.
Here is some of the conversations we had back and forth sharing information.
I noticed that the old Knudsen Implement Company building (Farmall). One of my first 4-H meetings was at that building. Topic was tractor safety. That would be late 1951 or 52. Jay

The building Jay is referring to was down the hill from Mueller's furniture on Third Street.


Matchbook shows address
That building was built by Dultmeier, then used by the Creamery (I think), and then became a machinery shop/business for Radeleff & Emerson, and then by Knudsen, next J&S Feed, and now John Altenhein car repair.
Here is a view of the front of the building - Emerson (not sure what his first name was) on the left and Charles Radeleff (name on the horseshoe shaped sign) on the right.
There are no bricks yet on Third Street, so this is pre-1915.
I scanned this picture from the Radeleff collection mailed to me about 10 years ago from the Radeleff family in California.

2005 view of the same building above - John's Auto Repair


August 17, 1919 advertising


April 4, 1946 advertising

Card set given away by Knudsen

I'm always looking for old business "give-aways" like this to either scan if the person wants it back or to store for a future Manning Museum.

Next, Jay noticed that the old Bunz Implement building and Puck Implement building are in the picture.

Both buildings were built in 1950 and here are some images from that time...


Puck building


Bunz Implement company open house 1950

Bill Wiese, Arthur Gruhn, Amos Kusel, Johannes Bunz, Betty (Grelck) Grimm
Betty's dad, Henry Grelck and my dad were 2nd cousins.
My dad and Art Gruhn were silent partners with Hannes Bunz.



Hannes Bunz


1961 Highway 141 widened to 4 lane


Anne's Drive Inn


B = Bunz, P = Puck, RR = Northwestern railroad to Gray, HS = high school, CS = county shed
The most exciting part for me in the picture is it shows the old spur that ran down to Gray.
I don't have any other photos that show this, especially from the air.
It went through our land we owned which was adjacent/south of the Carroll County shed and behind the Puck Implement property.
The shed that John Frees built is not there yet, that my dad purchased along with the property in 1967.

Some of you may remember this as the "school busbarn" where lots of Homecoming floats were built...

Here is part of the original abstract of this property. It shows a lot of interesting names of previous owners and how often it changed hands.

Frees property sold to Amos Kusel


John Frees - he later became the city manager

Councilman Larry Hansen with John on his day of retirement


Next, Jay and I talked about the old grade school between Second & Third Streets and a number of other areas in the northern part of Manning.
Wesley Cooper (former class of 1958) told me this about a memory he had of the old grade school: I started third grade in the old elementary school, with the "silo" fire escape - the boys always looked forward to fire drills.
R = Rocksein property, CC = Catholic Cemetery, MSY = Milwaukee stock yards, FS = fuel storage tanks for various businesses, L = Lutheran Church, GS = Grade School, C = Catholic Church, P = Presbyterian Church, M = Methodist Church, LR = Lloyd Rix Feed store

The old grade school

March 1965 - this school was dedicated in 1907 and held all grades K - 12
Then in 1918 the high school was built along 141 and the school above held grades K - 9

spring of 1965

spring of 1965

red arrow points to part of the spiral fire escape that is left standing

Howard Schumann 1945 - fire escapes on the north side of the school
I was told by someone who attended this school in 9th grade in 1938 that when the first kid went down the slide for a fire drill, that they had to use a big towel to slide on.
The reason is, some of the boys would find out about the fire drill and then pee in that chute just ahead of the drill. So kids were ornery back then too.

My dad and I tore out a lot of the flooring and other lumber from that school before they set it on fire - he would sell the lumber to various farmers.
We also used the flooring in some of our buildings and we still have some of that flooring, so for those of you who attended this school, your footprints are still haunting those boards here on our farm : -))))


First floor layout - scanned from the 1907 Philosophian (first school yearbook)

Second floor


view from the southeast


unknown student - notice the path was once bricks before they poured a concrete sidewalk


I love the wording on the sign "Help make lawn - Keep off from ground"


I'm not sure when, but at some point they had to remove the fancy dome...probably for fear of collapse


Classes dismissed - now they had removed even more of the fancy part of the roof


1883 - the original wooden school that stood at the same location as the 1907 school
Note the boys with their feet dangling out of the windows
there is one house which can be seen at the very lower right-hand corner of the building
Note there are no trees yet


As the town grew they had to add on to the back of the school

9 - 12 students 1906 - the last year before building the brick school

As to the Graner and Monson homes and then later Brotherton home further north, I can tell you a story behind that 15 acre area, as told to me by my uncle Melvin Kusel who heard the story from Charlie Parker of the Parker's Corner family.
When John Parker (Charlie's dad) retired he divided up a small parcel of the Parker land for himself, which was just north of the Milwaukee RR and Catholic Cemetery.
John was going to build a home on that acreage but died before he accomplished it. He already had a well dug on the southeast corner of that property. Melvin Kusel filled in that well when he farmed the property and I could still see some bricks and a sunken area when we farmed that field for Ross Graner.
Then the Parker children sold that acreage later on at some point and those newer houses were built.
You may or may not know about the Rocksien house that still stands there north of the other 3 newer houses.


Rocksien house 2000

Charles Rocksien & son Lee Rocksien driving
Lee died of a heart attack (age 36) right before heading to Burma for active service during WWII.

This was a catalog home and hauled in sections and erected.


Barn in the background that fell on top of Nick Schrum in the 1956 windstorm

Nick Schrum rented the Rocksien land and farm place and was killed in the August 6, 1956 windstorm while milking his cows in the barn.

I was born August 1st and on the 5th mother and I came home from the Carroll hospital and the next morning the big storm came out of the Northwest and right through our farm and on across the Schrum farm.
After the storm, my dad heard about Nick and went to help. As he was helping volunteers find Nick under the collapsed barn they ran into dead milk cows. One of the cow's head was smashed but her tail was still flopping...that was too much for dad and he did not want to see what Nick would look like so he left the scene.
A few years before Dr. John Hornberger passed away, I asked him about Nick. Doc told me they finally had dug a tunnel to Nick, so Doc crawled through and gave Nick morphine. Then they pulled him out from under the barn and took him to the hospital where he died later on.

So while I obviously have no memories of this event, it has always been something I have connected with since I lived through this storm.
We lost a lot of trees on our farm but were lucky on our farmplace because we lost no buildings, but one thing that always showed me the power of that storm was when we remodeled the barn, we re-plumbed the large support timbers that were about 6 inches off vertical. That windstorm had moved the whole barn and large basement concrete wall on the north side about 6 inches.

This storm occurred a few days before the scheduled 75th Diamond Jubilee Celebration in Manning - it was almost cancelled.
But in true form, the Manning citizens came through and cleaned everything up and the celebration was held.


The roof collapsed on Clark station on the west end of Manning along 141

Large windows on Main Street businesses were blown in.

Elden Schroeder standing, unknown on cab, and I think Ray Pratt on the far side

Is this Madison street? - could that be Dick Vehrs' old Buick?


Later Ronnie & Ruth Hiatt lived in the Rocksien house for a while.

Charles Rocksien married Ida Parker (one of John's daughters), so that is the connection to that Parker farm.
The south part of our Kusel farm that is in the city limits was owned by the Parker/Levan family. John's wife Mary had a sister who was Ann Levan and she homesteaded here first and then Mary & John moved to Manning in 1879.

Parker's Corner - later known as Kusel's corner (Mel & Marge)

Back: Clara, Jennie, Charles, John, Mary, Minnie
Front: Grace, Charles Rocksien, Ida


Back: Jennie Parker, Grace Parker, Ida Parker
Middle: Charles Parker, John Parker, Mary (Levan) Parker
Front Row: Clara Parker, Minnie Parker
John served for the Union during the Civil War.


People often wonder why I am so interested in Manning history and know so much about it, and it is because of all of my family connections and living just north of Manning, with land inside the city limits, and the fact that my mom's side (Ehrichs) came here in 1873, Kusel side 1874, Grau side in 1884, etc.
So the Manning community is really my family too...


I hope you found this feature interesting and will consider contacting me about the old Manning/family pictures you have so I can scan them and add them to the Manning Historical database and maybe someday tell a story with your pix too.


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