20 years ago (2001)

There was a time when area residents knew a phone number as easily as the calendar year. The phone number for the Dispatch in 1943 was 74. The Brainerd Bottling works was 415. A local doctor was 943. But today, the surge in phones means not only four-digit numbers, but an explosion of prefixes such as 828, 824, 829, 855, etc.

30 years ago (1991)

(Photo) Carla Thiede, daughter of Paul and Dee Thiede of Pequot Lakes, is crowned Miss 1991 Brainerd Lakes at Tornstrom Auditorium by Juliette McCoy, the 1990 winner. The pageant was sponsored by the Brainerd Jaycees and the Brainerd Women of Today.

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40 years ago (1981)

At 11 p.m. last night a man walked into the Northeast Spur gas station, pulled aside his jacket to show a pistol and walked out with $224 cash. Two hours later police arrested a suspect in the men's room at Perkin's, and finding cash and a pistol in his car. The station attendant picked the suspect out of a lineup. And the man's job? Security guard.

60 years ago (1961)

Washington High School's debate team won the 36th annual Upper Midwest meet at Gustavus Adolphus College, defeating 36 other high schools for the title. Individual honors went to Nikki Smith, winner in extemporaneous speech. Other members are Christie Hohman, Win Borden, Carol Whitney and Mary Cockrell.

80 years ago (1941)

Fire destroyed a new, modern cabin and all its furnishings on Gull Lake near Pine Harbor yesterday. The cabin belongs to P.G. Downton, Minneapolis, who spends his summers here. The caretaker “Little John” Nielson, broke into the burning cabin but was able to save only a few items.

100 years ago (1921)

The Brainerd Electric Company is completing a $900 contract installing new lighting fixtures in the post office and placing them at points where experience required they were most suitable.