Located In:
Itasca County between the cities of Hibbing &
Grand Rapids

Population:
1,000

Recreation:
Miskovich-Morrow Ball Park; VFW Memorial Park & picnic area; Mike Peluso Outdoor Skating Rink; Swan Lake Country Club 9-hole golf course; Swan Lake public boat landing & fishing dock; groomed trails by the Greenway Snowmobile Club; Mesabi Bike Trail connecting
Ely to Grand Rapids

Former Home to:
Mike Peluso

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In the Midst of Northern Minnesota's Iron Range
"The Town That Never Was"

 

Guestbook

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Welcome to the Pengilly Guestbook. 
We invite you to share your memories/thoughts/comments.

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11 Oct 2008

What a fantastic success this celebration was due mainly to the hard work, time and effort put in by the Planning Committee for the past year.  The parade was a bona fide dee-light, visiting with friends and family one can not put a price tag on and the endless calendar of events made it a fun filled time for everyone.  This could be an ongoing event from the little town that is!  Thanks to all for the success of the event.  

Rita Peters
ritametermaid04@yahoo.com


27 Sept 2008 - by Barb Shipka

The Pengilly Centennial 2008 celebration is now history.  What a great celebration and fun time it was!  Nearly 2000 people came to celebrate this special three-day event.  It was good to see so many old friends and meet new acquaintances.

"The Rest of the Story," an addendum to the Pengilly History & Memories Book, is currently under progress. Each individual who purchased the history & memory book will be given a complimentary copy.  Stay tuned to the website for updates.

Additional copies of the Pengilly History & Memory Book as well as the Pengilly DVD are available for sale.

Any questions? -  Contact Barb Shipka -- ezeedays@aol.com -- (218) 327-2639. 


19 Sept 2008

What a perfect and fun filled week-end we had for the Centennial. I saw alot of people I hadn't seen since high school, and some we hadn't seen since we moved from Pengilly. I want to thank the committee for some long and hard hours working to make this such a success. My Mom had a fun time riding in the parade and she met alot of people she hadn't seen in ages. I know she is still talking about the fun time she had. Thanks again for the memories.  

Rita Nelson

13 Sept 2008

Thank you to all the members of the Pengilly Centennial Committee for all your diligent and deliberate work in organizing the very successful Centennial.

Betty Royal

9 Sept 2008

Kudos to all involved with this 100-year celebration! I’m Clarence Larson, or (as I found out) better known as Betty’s brother! I was asked many times who I was, and after a while, I just said “Betty’s brother”. I don’t know if there are any other “Betty’s” in Pengilly, but they all knew who she was! My father and mother were John Sigurd and Hildur Larson, living on the “old” Highway 169 between Oxhide and Snowball lakes. I graduated from Greenway in 1951 and IJC in 1953. I started the 100 years on Friday afternoon where I visited with Armas Yuhala and wife Karen, who had their cafe trailer serving fry bread, corn on the cob, etc. Armas is the nicest guy in class of ’51. Sat. morning, parked in St. Kevin’s CC; one of the parking attendants told of a buddy who traveled for four days from the island of Guam to be there! Saw my brother Wally, wife Marlys, their daughter Kathie and her husband, Pete Moran. Pete had a BBQ cooker cooking several turkeys at a time and sold shredded turkey sandwiches and corn on the cob. My sister, Betty Judnitsch and her daughters Leeanne and Carole had a kraft booth. Talked to Rolly Badavinac, Bernadine Oja Krtnich, and my cousin Bobby Eckstrum (and wife Jane) who I haven’t seen in 55 years. The parade was amazing! It must have lasted for an hour or more! My brother-in-law Bud (Betty’s husband) drove one of his many tractors pulling a “hay wagon” with the staff of the celebration on board. Betty’s granddaughter Katy Mostoller drove her rebuilt ’79 Pontiac Firebird in the parade. Many other old cars and trucks were great to see. Sunday breakfast at the Lone Pine Hall, great ham and egg quiche. Drove north past Nashwauk past Nurkka’s store on Hwy 65. Hadn’t been up there since ‘55. There is a radar dome a few miles north of Nashwauk! 11 am mass at St. Kevin’s capped a beautiful weekend with Fr. Hoffman and the choir loft filled with the “Singing Slovenes”. Sat in front of Pete and Ruth Pavich, former neighbors across the Hwy 169. My only wish is that more of my generation could have made it also. The weather could not have been better!
 
Greetings from White Bear Lake, MN. caltssale@att.net

6 Sept 2008

Hello everyone!!...Justin Gustafson here!  I live in Ely, MN now but most of my family still lives in Pengilly.  My family moved to Pengilly in 1929, so we have a long history there.  Had a great time at the celebration and it was really nice to see so many people that I haven't seen in such a long time.  We had a float with most of the Gustafsons aboard and everyone had alot of fun!  I just wanted to send a big thank you out to all those that worked so hard over the past 2 years to make Pengilly's 100th birthday a huge success!!!  Thank you!!!! Justin and Katie Gustafson

1 Sept 2008

I would like to start by commenting on the website.  It is one of the best I have seen in a long time.  I am not just saying that because it was put together by my cousin Barb's daughter, it is a great website.  I liked the photo gallery, and I did "borrow" the photo of my Uncle Dominic.  (sorry - ha! ha!).

After reading through the guestbook, I see almost everyone still remembers "Ann's Cafe", and the HUGE ice cream cones and big juicy hamburgers.

Although I only lived in Pengilly for a short period back in the late 60s, I had a real good time, as it sure beats the heck out of New Jersey - hey please send Mike Peluso back here, we really need him!!

Anyway, "Happy 100th Birthday" to all the good folks in the "Swan-gilly" area.

Guy Royal

31 August 2008
 
Hi. Dan Marshall here.  Friday started off the events with a flourish.  We had much to do as an organization and town.  Families and friends poured in from all points of the compass to come help us celebrate Pengilly’s 100th.  The vendors have kept us fed and liquified on two of the most beautiful days of the year.  The turn out was fantastic.  Transportation from the parking areas was made possible by bus support and many just took the time to enjoy the walk from a friend or relatives place. 

Saturday getting ready for the parade made many realize how popular this event was as some extra entrants showed up to join us.  All were welcomed and allowed to participate.  The jaunt from one end of town to the other took just over an hour to get all the participants through.  The number of people that made it HOME for the event was fantastic.  Hope we can do even better at the 150 year mark.  Maybe by then we will no longer be the town that never was. 

Dan

29 August 2008

I have also spent my childhood in Pengilly. I just wish my Grandmother, Ida Rantala could have been here to see this.

Like everyone else, my fondest memories are of Ann’s café and the Tar road go cart races. The fun we use to have at the sand pit, box factory and can’t forget the many trips to the beach. Oxide was another hang out to fish and swim for us kids. The Walker kids, Lanes, Jelens & the Peluso boys had some really great games of kick the can. There are just too many memories a person could write about our childhoods, but Pengilly was a pretty fun place to grow up. Oh, one more memory would be the snowmobiling on the golf course.  My e-mail address is Jsutherland12@hotmail.com if anyone would like to chat about the good old days.  Take care and great job on this website. 

Julie (Lane) Sutherland.


23 August 2008

Hello - My mother, Alice Herman (Hjarmazinski), was born in Grand Rapids in 1930 and lived on a homestead near Pengilly and Swan Lake.  Her grandmother, Agnes, resided in Pengilly and ran a boarding house.   In the midst of WW II, Alice and six other folks rode in a car to Washington state as the adult family were told  by a relative there was "good work with good pay" to be had in the shipyards around Seattle. However, many of her family remained in Pengilly.  Alice asked me to find out about the Centennial History book as her cousin, Norma Erickson, received a copy.  My mother doesn't own a computer, but I hope to have her out to my place soon to read all the comments.  I think she would recognize places and people and enjoy reading about the town that has ever been the "perfect place" to spend her childhood years. 

Jean L.

19 August 2008

Hello,  I grew up in Pengilly and lived on the west side of Swan lake across from Hagen's Resort.  I remember when Rick and Margaret Myers lived there.  My parents were Marvin and Bernice Swehla.  They are both deceased, but they live on with all the happy memories.  I remember our first snowmobile.  It was a skidoo.  I'd spend many winter nights with my dear friend Diane Bergman and I'd take the "Skidoo" in the dark, across the lake to the beach landing and up the road to her house.  Dad would say before my crossing, "If you reach some water by the creek, just give it a little gas."  I was brave then.  I remember when dad bought me a motorcycle.  It was a Yamaha.  Ricky Myers had one just like it.  Then other kids would acquire them and we'd go riding around the lake.  When I was very young, I'd go with my mother to Oja's store and she'd sit me up to the soda counter and Ann would be working.  My dad would tell this story every year to my boys when we'd come home;  I guess I told a patrolman who was sitting next to me at the counter that my dad shot deer out of season.  Ann told my mother.  We had so many happy memories of the beach and waiting for the boys to come by in their boats.  My second home was the Delli Quadri's and love to go there still.  Walking up to Ann's Cafe for a nickel ice cream or popsicle was a treat.  Even then she'd tell my mom everything.  Such wonderful memories with so many wonderful people.  My husband and I plan to attend the Centennial.

Sherry Frisk (Swehla)

19 August 2008


I am Jan (Janice Moe) Dzwonkowski and now live out of Gilbert, MN. My family lived at Indian Point Resort from 1951 until 1954 and knew Gene & Irene Maki, Gert and the dog Flicka. We spent a lot of time on the old Swan Lake Bridge and surrounding area (it was never the same after they put in the old bridge). Families would come from all over to spend Saturdays and Sundays at the Bridge in the summer. They'd bring the whole family and I imagine a picnic lunch. In the fall of 1954 we moved to the "East Side" and met a lot of new friends such as Joan Saylor, Mary Lou Newell, Daryll Robertson, Sharon and Darryl Caroon, etc. My sister Karen and I had a wonderful time while we lived there. I moved away when I got married in 1957 and our folks Ed and Opal moved away a few years later. They had built the house where, later on, Audie Fox shot and killed a police officer.

There were a lot of kids on the East Side. We held many dances and parties at the old Lone Pine Hall. We played softball on an empty lot (later the Tawney family built a house there) and played hide and seek, preferably in the dark. Our mothers would chaperone.

Many of us went to MYF at the Methodist Church. We would meet in the basement as the top of the church hadn't been built yet. My good friend Joan Saylor and Roger Strom of Goodland were the first couple to be married in the upper story (1961).

I remember when the old O'Brien Creek bridge was torn down and a new one built. We had to drive all around the south side of the lake to go anywhere.

They say you can't go back, but you really can....in your memories.

Jan (Moe) Dzwonkowski

12 August 2008

I've never been to Pengilly and probably wouldn't have heard about it if it hadn't been for one of the Marshall girls looking into her mother's past.  She found out that Shirley Marshall's father was William Adair and he had 5 other children.  I am the youngest of those 5.  Shirley phoned us and she and Molly both came to Vancouver, Canada and my sister and I went to the airport to meet them.  We felt like family right away.  They came to Nanaimo, where we live and visited for a few days.  That was in 1994 and they came again in 1997, this time Suzie, Colleen, Cathy and Mike came with Shirley.  Our brother, Don and his wife Ev, came down from Prince George and also our sister-in-law Alice Adair.  Our brothers Bill and Sam had both passed on by then. It is nice having family in Pengilly and only wish we lived closer so we could get to know them better. 

Joan (Adair) Parker

11 August 2008

Many, many thanks are sent in the direction of those of you who worked so diligently this past year putting in the time, energy and effort to hopefully have the end result as satisfying to you as it will be to those of us who plan on attending.  I just recently got my website up and running so I can truly appreciate the time intensity of running and operating one.  My website is www.DejaVuRPeters.com and I have been designing centennial jewelry for those of you who might be interested in something designed by a "local" home girl.  I look forward to seeing everyone - my family will be there.  Leaving California on August 27th and will be in Minnesota until October 6th!!

Thank you staffers for making this past year memorable by being able to check into the "home" page.

Voya Con Dios!    Rita Fiskewold Peters


1 July 2008

My parents were George and Dorthy Beck. George came from South Dakota and worked in the mines and Dorthy came from Warba, by way of St. Peter, Minnesota. Their first home was in Nashwauk before buying a home in Pengilly, this home was located south of the school or on the opposite side from Marshall’s home. Dorthy taught school in Bear Lake and the Pengilly grade school for a number of years, than was a sub in the school.

I have two sisters and one brother. Kathleen [Beck] Elich Marble, Charles Beck Circle Pines Minneapolis, Diana [Beck] Wenino Palm Dale California and Robert is now residing in Casa Grande, Arizona.

My memories of this small town are mostly about the good friends, the good times had at the beach, and of course the fall hunting which was the best of times. In the winter we spent most of our time sliding on the hill next to our home and on the hockey rink, but this rink was between Marshall’s home and the school. Many afternoons and evenings were spent shoveling snow from the ice before hockey games with neighboring towns or pick up games with the town kids.
The families on our side of the block were the Ross family, Lapitz family, Kasper family, Beck family, Goss family and on the other side were the Christians, Ojas, in the early years before moving to the lake side, Wilbert Christian family, than the Bobich family.

We all graduated from Greenway High School in Coleraine before moving on to different stages of our lives. Kathy worked for M A Hanna for many years, Charles spent four years in the Navy spending time off the Coast of Lebanon, while his cousin, Ted Beck, was on shore with the 82nd airborne sometime in the late 1950's then moving to Minneapolis spending his working years for a trucking company. Diana spent time in the Cities before moving to Texas for a few years then on to California where she now resides. Robert spent three years with Army Security Agency spending time at Ft. Devins Mass and then on to Korea during the Gulf of Tonkin incident, which was the start of the Vietnam War, then working for Blandin Paper Co. in Grand Rapids where we had our home for 34 years.

Bette and I have traveled over much of the states and have seen some awesome and wonderful sites, but none so moving as the Vietnam Memorial in Washington D.C. I had tears in my eyes looking at Richard Koski's name printed on the wall. He died in the early part of the war when his helicopter was shot down. I can remember building a raft with Richard to sail across the lake, but his dad came home from work that afternoon and he made us tear it apart.

There are tragic memories to remember also. Mrs. Bobich and Mrs. Bjork were killed in a car accident while on a buying trip for Oja’s store, Pat Marshall dying at a young age, Ronnie Mackey in a car accident North of Nashwauk, if I forgot anyone please add them in your own memories.

Bette and I will not be coming home this year because of Bette's health and gas prices. We hope you will have fun reminiscing with these past memories.

Robert W. Beck

30 June 2008
by barb shipka - taken from the 'Pengilly History & Memory' book:

PALMER'S TAVERN:In the early 1940's, Mae Palmer owned and operated Palmer's Tavern with the help of Nick Fragnito.  It was located where  the present day Community Center is now located.  They sold this tavern to J. J. Hansen and he later sold it to John and Mary Baratto in the mid 40s and it became know as the 'Penguin Club'.  Barattos sold the Penguin Club to Virginia Jam.

29 June 2008

A note to Joyce Yochum --
Hi Joyce, you are the 1st person to mention the Plamor.  My Uncle Nicky Fragnito and May Palmer ran that for years when I was a little gal. I think before I went to School, may be late 40's early 50's.  I think the reason the older ones aren't sending in their comments is because they don't have a computer. Or have passed away, any way my Mom, Minnie Fragnito and I and possibly my brothers will be at the celebration in Aug 2008, so I hope all you come to at least one event so we can talk about the good old days. Who ever sent in the picture the 6th grade class, I would love a copy of it.  My heart throb of the Pengilly skating shack/rink Delbert Luma was in that picture.  I'm sure he didn't know I existed but just ask Gayle Laird, that is all I would talk about and then when I would see him there I didn't say a word to him, he was my Fonzy! Ok, looking forward to seeing you all in Aug, you guys better be there

Josi Fragnito

23 June 2008

Hi Golfers,

If you'd like to play in the 4 person golf tournament on Sunday, August 31, 2008 and if you need partners, please write on this site to request people to join you and send your $100 ($25 per person) fee and team members names to Terri Hedblom 17798 Co. Rd. 83 Pengilly, MN 55775 as soon as possible. Checks should be written to Pengilly Centennial Fund. Your team will only be registered once your 4 person team and fees are paid. The first 16 teams will play for the monies which are collected. Many prizes will also be given away. Please get those teams together and be ready for a good time.

Molly Randall

28 May 2008


 I have fond memories of Pengilly from two summers lifeguarding at the beach (1961-62.)  I've always said that was one of the best jobs I ever had, and I loved every minute of it!  Those were much simpler times when parents could send their children to the beach for the afternoon and never worry about them.  I remember spending hours playing Crazy 8's or Go Fish with little kids.  I remember finally working up the courage to dive from the tower on the raft.  I never had to rescue anyone, and I don't recall any kind of problems.    My aunt and uncle, Oiva and Arleen Ryhti, had a cabin on Swan Lake near Indian Point, and my sister Kathy and I often stayed there when we were in elementary school.  My uncle let us row the boat over to Indian Point for ice cream cones, something we considered a great adventure.  I learned to water ski behind my uncle's boat back in the 50's.   When we got married in 1964, Don and I rented a cabin in Stone's Bay that we purchased the following year.  Eventually we sold it to Leo LeBron who donated it to the DNR in a conservation easement forever preserving 80 acres on the south end of Swan Lake. Growing up in Calumet, I recall my grandmother bringing over her handwritten grocery list every week for us to call in to Oja's.  Because Grandpa Will never had a car, they depended on Oja's delivery service as many people did in those days.

Margaret (Will) Haapoja

13 May 2008

Hello to all from Barb Shipka, Pengilly Centennial Committee --

There are only three months until our Pengilly Centennial celebration and we are very excited and our schedule is very full.  If you plan on attending and would like to volunteer for a two-hour shift on Saturday, August 30th by helping with games, parking, memory room, etc, call Danna Shofner at 218-885-1991.  If you plan to enter the parade call Linda or Jim Flint at 218-885-1686 or 218-360-1521.

Our Pengilly History & Memory Book has been sent to the publisher and should be back before the end of June.  We thank everyone who has purchased a book and a limited number of extras are available.

Tell your friends about our website and check it often for info re/events and souvenirs.  Any other questions? email ---ezeedays@aol.com---

12 May 2008

Hi all my name is Ed Shofner, and I have been a resident of Pengilly off and on for my entire life. It seems that I always make my way back to the home town. I have lived many places in my life, but if I had my choice it would be Pengilly. I can't quite explain why, but it has that easy feeling, like everything is ok. And yes it has had its good and bad residents, of which I have been categorized under both, by one person or another.  Pengilly has proven that a community need not be a city, or have elected officials to function in a civil manner. I hope that Pengilly always remains the quiet place I have always compared other places to.

18 Apr 2008

What a fantastic website!  However, most of the people responding are people who lived there after I left.  Soooo-- a little history from my generation please.  My folks owned the PlaMor Tavern (which I understand was torn down) many years ago.  My dad was a terrific guy who seemed to be a magnet for people to seek out.  His name was John Yochum.  He and my mother originally moved to Pengilly and bought the then named "Edgewater Resort" located south  of Pengilly about 3 miles.  I was only about 5 years old but do remember ------- The house we lived in was probably an old time lodge at one time.  The bedrooms were upstairs and there was many rooms on each side of the long hallway.   It was very spooky for me. The downstairs had a mammoth fireplace in the middle, a big dance floor extended out toward the beach of Swan Lake, and a small bar at the end of the "family room".  My dad and mother had many dances and "big bands" of the area playing on the weekends.  A great many people had a marvelous time dancing.  My dad and brothers had to "prop" up the piers holding up the dance floor after each dance night to make sure it didn't give way.  This must have been around 1940. My folks then sold the Edgewater Resort and purchased the PlaMor Tavern which was located directly across from Oja's Store.  Our family living quarters were above the tavern which was located in the basement.  My folks had many Saturday night dances.  They had great New Year's Eve dances for several years.  My mom would make her famous Southern fried chicken with all the trimmings and at midnight would serve a complete dinner for all the party goers.  There would be long tables covered with white sheets and decorated with the decor of the day with china and shiny silverware displayed. I got the cart before the horse here for a moment, but sometime after the folks had the tavern, mom decided she wanted to add a restaurant so plans were made to add a room on the north side of the PlaMor.  Mom ordered a huge stove with a big grill and all the trimmings of the day.  She was thrilled to have that item.  Then came all the fixings for the front part, the stools, ice cream freezer, candy counter, booths made, new dishes, and all that goes with business as a restaurant.  (No dishwasher in those days - I did them.)

Mom's menu was never big but she tried several different items which went well, but most people enjoyed the homemade pies and ice cream dishes.  Mom got sick some time after that and the restaurant was taken over by my sister for awhile, then Mary and Joe Baratto had it, and I don't know what happened finally - but while it lasted, it was an experience. Dad owned the big lot next between the Crea property and the tavern.  So when the outdoor movies came into being, we had movies on the weekends also.  I remember that area being full of cars with families and having a great time. When I was about 13 years of age, Bagger's Grocery Market, just north of the railroad tracks, constructed a hotdog/hamburger stand in the summer.  They hired  me to run it.  It was popular after baseball games or some special event.  I also remember "stacking" the ice cream cones for people I liked! I graduated from Coleraine High School in 1953 and went to work for Oja's immediately.  In fact, I partied all night the night I graduated and got home at sunrise and went to work that morning.  Met my mom at the back door of home but not a word was said.  Guess she thought I was home safe and nothing else mattered.   I left Pengilly with Barbara Shipka (Royal) about 6 months after we both graduated and worked at Oja's for Minneapolis to find a better job and to just get out on our own.  I stayed in Minneapolis less than a year, quit my job and returned to Pengilly.  My brothers and sisters-in-law were visiting from California, so guess what?  I went to California with them, got a job, got married and so on and so on. Well, I hope some of you remember the "olden days" and recall some of these incidents.  I remember the Nordgrens, Miskovichs, Rantalas, Ojas, Badavinacs, Ann Marie who so many recall her good hamburgers, but it seems so long ago now. I'm looking forward to the published book of memories - I don't know if I'll be able to make it back for the celebration, however my heart will be there with all of you who do.  I don't plan too far ahead these days. 

Love and Happy Days to Everyone - Joyce Yochum Warmbrodt, Red Bluff, CA  96080 

17 Apr 2008

Eva Simpson--

I read your letter to the Guest Book and you sounded familiar to me.  You are about 10 years older than me and I think you use to babysit me and my 3 brothers with my Uncle Hooner Chellico, from Nashwauk.  Do you remember the Fragnito kids?  Plunky and Minnie's kids?  That's us.  I lived in Lacey Washington from 1986-2005 and now I'm in Calif.  I will be going back up to Lacey in May to see my son.  Email me if you want me to get in touch with you or we will see you at the Centennial in August.  My email is josifragnito@aol.com and my phone is 253 376 1891. 

Looking forward to it.  Josi Fragnito  Le Grand, CA253 378 1891

15 Apr 2008

Hi all "former" Pengillyians!

I say former cause I go back a long way.  My name is Eva (Simpson) Hobbs.  My family moved to Shelton Wa. in Dec of 1951 and returned for visits and "Simpson Elton" family reunions every other year for many years.  I lived the first 15 years of my life in Pengilly and they were "formative years"  believe me.  My grandparents were Grams and Gramps Simpson and we were cousins to the Blaines and Fiskewolds.  There was quite a gang of us and a very inventive group who, not having very much in the way of material things, managed to contrive and create things to entertain ourselves which wasn't always in our best interests!

There were 10 kids in our family but we are down to four - my sisters Dolores and Maryellen and brother Joe and myself and we all hope to make the celebration in August.  Hope to see some of the "kids" I went to school with along with a slew of relatives! See you in August.Eva Simpson HobbsShelton Wa.

A note from the webmaster:  The Nordgren Family Reunion photo mentioned below can be found in the photo gallery of this site. . . . . . . . .

31 Mar 2008

Hi....Found this photo taken at a family reunion in 1993.  Upper left............... Helen Nordgren.    Passed away December 2003 Lower left................Donnie Nordgren.  Lives in San Diego, California.  Retired from 30 years in                              the US Navy.  Now owns a Auto Body Shop in San Diego.  Middle    .................Barbara Beissel (Nordgren).  Lives in Fanning Springs, Florida.  Is a Professional Dog Handler 25+ years.  Right      .................Nancy McClain (Nordgren).  Lives in Marble, Minnesota with her husband Larry.  Both are retired & living the good life.  
Barbara Beissel
barbarabeissel@aol.com

30 Mar 2008

Second Grade, Pengilly Class Picture (in the photo gallery):

I was told the girl in the 2nd row from the top, second one in is Sandra Sherman,  next to her is David Larsen. Can any one verify that?

Thanks Josi Fragnito

8 Mar 2008

Hey everybody,
I lived in Pengilly for about half of my life but sadly moved about a year and a half ago. I now live in Tulsa, Oklahoma and there isn’t much of anything that’s the same as Pengilly, the lakes, the outdoors, and especially the people. Although I no longer live there, I will always consider it home.  I want to give a special thank you to Pam and “Gram” Roberts who have always treated me like family and given me a place to stay.
 Thank You.
Jimmy Beck

24 Feb 2008

Hello from Minnie (Chellico) Fragnito and Angeline (Chellico) Tripp visiting with Ann (Ferraro) Jenko from Nashwauk.
 We look forward to celebrating  with you in August.

 Click on the link below to view a short musical clip of "da range"......enjoy!

 http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid1243816230?bctid=1414281685

 Minnie & Angeline

8 Feb 2008

When the subject presents itself, I always tell people that I had a great childhood in Northern Minnesota. The winters were just as fun as the summers. Pengilly is a great place to call home.  We lived on the lake on West Shore Drive and attended Nashwauk-Keewatin Schools. We had to walk up our hilly driveway and down the dead end road to catch the school bus. In the winter my dad, Cliff Flint, would drag a small shack on skids to the end of Fuzzy Ross' driveway so we could stay out of the rain or out of the cold wind in the winter while waiting for the bus. The Greenway bus was always the first to go by, to our disappointment, as we remained huddled and freezing. There were quite a few of us waiting for that bus everyday! Then as the years went by and everyone graduated from high school, there was only my brother John and I left to wait. Patti McDermond (Rebrovich) and I had the Barbie Doll Club when we were little girls. I remember when Patti moved out of Greenway district and came to Nashwauk in 6th grade. I spent more time laughing that year than learning. Then, as we grew older, there were the snowmobile parties. We spent a lot of time snowmobiling!  I remember riding my bike down the big hill on West Shore Drive and trying to go as fast as possible to get past those mean looking cows at the bottom. What the heck was I thinking, they were fenced in?! I loved riding my bike to Pete's APCO to visit my brother Jim when he was working and get a bottle of pop. I remember getting Christmas candy from Santa at the "old St. Kevin's church." (tar paper shack) I remember attending catechism at St. Kevin's during the summer with the nuns. That's where the Nashwauk and Greenway kids could get to know each other a little better (Billy Miskovich & Colleen Marshall to name a few). Main beach was another meeting place for that purpose. Looking back, it was a bit strange to come from the same town and go to different schools.  I remember the cute boys at the Deaf Camp but couldn't communicate with them without a pencil. I loved going to Indian Point to get ice cream in the summer, going to Ann's Café for penny candy and the A&W Root Beer stand in Nashwauk. I remember my dad snowplowing on the lake to prepare for the St. Kevin's fishing contest and the excitement of the whole ordeal. I'm sure all the snowmobile activity during the contest chased the fish away!  I remember cheering for the Greenway Raider hockey team because Nashwauk didn't have a hockey team. I remember when they won the state championships and I would snowmobile up to Ann's Café to watch them come back into town from Mpls. The highway would be lined with cheering fans.  I remember the Yugoslav picnics at Grozy's point and the button box bands playing great ethnic music.  I looked forward to Nashwauk's July 4th celebrations and all the people that would come home from all over the US to attend. I remember the waterskiing competition we (Terry Bemis, Karen Shea, Pam Grozdanich, myself and 7 other skiers) had with John Arnold and friends. Terry Bemis with his boat pulled 10 skiers at one time and, I think, eventually, John got 10 skiers up behind his boat. The hardest part was finding enough skis and ropes.  I remember when Susan Grozdanich and I swam from my house to Indian Point while Pam Grozdanich rowed a boat beside us. There were many summer days that Pam and I would water ski until we ran out of gas in the boat. In the winter, we would use the snowmobile to pack down the snow to make a runway for her dad's airplane. Milan Grozdanich was always working on a plane in his hanger by the lake. I remember making snow bank forts....skating on the lake....spending hours making saucer slides with Pam G....ski jumps on the neighbors driveway with Pam G....getting snowmobiles stuck in slush on the lake with Pam G....walking all the way down West Shore Drive and collecting Halloween candy....how beautiful the trees looked in the fall....listening to the Loons during the summer evenings....riding my bike all the way around the lake....playing "king of the raft" on the lake with the "town" kids staying at their cabins...trying to ride Egerdahl's Shetland pony....catching perch at the end of the dock....looking for bloodsuckers between our toes....throwing a towel in the air and screaming so the bats would fly around and scare us....catching fire flies in a jar....working at Butler Tac for Ray Anick (aka Jim) and with Marion Barta (thanks for putting up with me). How many times was that big rock painted at the junction of Hwy 65 and West Shore Drive?  I wish that my boys could have childhood experiences as good as mine. Times sure have changed.

Thanks for the memories Pengilly. 
Jocelyn Long,  Tampa, FL  

25 Jan 2008


Though my job has brought me many places in this world, I always remember my home town proudly.

-The smell of lilacs, red clover and wild roses in the spring
-Picking wild blue berries, strawberries, pin cherries, chokecherries for my mom so she can make the best jelly and pies in the world.
-Sitting on the porch eating rhubarb and sugar
-Spending all day at the main beach…..but only after all the chores were done
-Getting golf balls out of the creek and selling them back to the golfers for candy money
-Going to Ann’s Café and buying penny candy, ice-cream cones and a huge plate of fries
-Chasing foul balls at the baseball games so we could get $.10
-Camping and fishing
-Riding those old run down snowmobiles with Carrie Flint and having a blast, but praying to god we would make it back to her folk’s house before they broke down
-Going sliding on the golf course, and always working up the nerve to go down Devil's Hill
-Hanging at the skating rink just because there was nothing else to do in the winter
-Building huge snow forts and snowmen with Pennie and Beaver.

I just wanted to say great web site and I wouldn’t trade growing up in Pengilly for anything in the world. What great times we had (Mike, Carrie, Brian, Tim, Brent, Jackie, Cindy, Leaf, and Missy). I do hope your centennial is one for the books and who knows, I just might be back in the States for that one.

Misti Rude
Daughter of Gerry and Joyce Rude
United States Air Force
In transient to Korea

19 Jan 2008

Pengilly Rocks!
I have a lot of great memories from growing up in Pengilly. My Dad (Dennis Sandberg) owned Swan Lake 76 in the 80's.

Our place on the west side of the lake looks so much smaller today. I must have caught 100's of walleyes in front of our old place. I tried fishing there a couple of years ago and two jet ski's buzzed me just when they started to bite. Playing golf at Swan Lake country Club, swimming at the beach, playing hockey every night at the rink, smoking cigs at the church, hanging out at Ann's - that's the good stuff.  I stop in town a couple of times a year but I don't usually run into anyone from the old crowd - Nick, Ken, Keith. Leanne, Deanna, Joyce, Dave.  It is nice to see that Pengilly is far from forgotten.

Pengilly forever!
 KEVIN SANDBERG

18 Jan 2008

I just got done reading the article on the unveiling of the new Pengilly sign, very nice job. It looks great.

I have so many memories of growing up in Pengilly, where do you start, there are so many. The skating rink, the warming shack and the old guy that would tie your laces for you. The sliding hill behind the school that no child would be allowed on these days!
 
Fishing golf balls out of the creek on the golf course. I remember Beth Cogger getting this HUGE splinter in the bottom of her foot from the bridge across the creek. I remember being pulled behind Dawn Bradley's snowmobile on a blue plastic surfboard too, probably would not be able to do that either. Sliding down the hill and right across the creek.

Who can forget Ann's Cafe? The fries that came in a brown paper bag and enough to feed the whole family. Oh, and the ice cream cones! And I could never figure out why Ann sent me home when I went in without a shirt ( I was probably six ) when Brad Cogger did not have to wear his..

The old post office, I still remember our old combination. The first car accident I ever had was in the post office parking lot when I slid into the utility pole...first question dad asked was if the
truck was ok :)

Getting into trouble for throwing mud balls at cars, the guy who's car we hit was not happy and me and an unknown accomplice were grounded for awhile.

Main Beach, spent many a summer day on that beach. Remember you had to swim to the slide and back before you were allowed to swim out to the raft.
 
I have so much more but will stop. It has been fun reading the posts!
 
Pengilly was a great place to grow up. Hope to be able to participate in the upcoming festivities.

Rachel Barta

16 Jan 2008

Just looking at all the comments people have made over the last two years has brought back many memories.  Pete Marinoff told me to check the site out as it had many great comments and he was so right! My name is Chuck Nelson and lived on the east side of Swan Lake just south of the Arnold residence and on the lakeside across from LeRoy and Chi-Chi Lueck. My mother and dad are Russell and Margaret Nelson who moved from Pengilly in 1965 to Superior, Wisconsin (our house was sold to "Bus" Andy Anderson and later Creas owned it).  They were residents of the same house in Superior until 2007 when they moved to an assisted living complex in Prairie du Sac, Wisconsin close to my sister (Ruth Anne Lohr-Nelson) who has taught school in the Wanekee School System for over 30 years. My older brother, Dave (Nashwauk-1960), was a pilot in the Marine Corps and actually made a career of it retiring a few years back as a full-bird colonel.  He now lives in New Bern, NC. Everyone's comments on the summers are right on...I was only 6 or 8 when they played the movies at Marinoff's.  One of my best friends in those days was Pete's brother, Chris, who I believe lives in Shoreview, MN now.  So many friends to list but the Lueck's, (LeRoy & Fred), the Marinoff's (Pete, Chris, Jim, & Bonnie), the Arnolds (Barb, Bob, Pat, Theresa, Kathy, Becky, and John), the Morrissettes, Darrell Anderson were my neighborhood friends.  Then there were the guys I played baseball with...Rick & Mick Metzer (Peggie's brothers), Bob Dubovich, Gary Damyanovich, Al Gustafson, Terry Funk to name a few. I do remember Josi Fragnito, Kathy Orlovich, Wendy Koski, Peggy Metzer to name of the Pengilly girls...fond memories to say the least. I sure would like to know where everybody is now and would also like to know how many have expressed their interest in coming back this summer. 

Chuck Nelson
Stuart, Florida
cnelsn446@aol.com

14 Jan 2008

Hi, we are new part time residents to Pengilly and have greatly enjoyed reading the guest book. I know that there are a number of folks both year round and summer only residents who are also relatively new to the area. When we read about Oja’s, Main Beach, the skating rink, Anns Café, the Dam, and all the other places mentioned in the guest book it congers up wonderful visions of a time which nearly everyone refers to as “The Good Old Days.” However, having not lived there in the years everyone is talking about it is very difficult to picture where these places were, or what now occupies the space. I hope that as part of the Centennial preparation there will be a map so us new timers can appreciate more of what the old timers remember. 

Looking forward to the celebration!
John and Sharon Benson

21 Dec 2007


Wow what a great web site..... I was born in Hennepin Minnesota in 1965 then moved to Pengilly. I remember going to Swan Lake and going swimming and riding my bike to Ann's cafe and having her big hamburgers and the large bag of fries she gave us. And don't forget the milk shakes.  We felt really spoiled if we got to go to the drive up A&W stand. We use to also ride our bikes and go fishing. The hill in Calumet was a bear to ride back up on our long journey home. I just want to say I loved my friends (Sandy Kangas, Buggsy). They were my best friends in school. I remember picking pin cherries at Mitzi Metzer's house. I use to think they were rich because they had a tree in their yard. LOL  Oh and of course do not forget the dam.  I think everyone hung out there. My grandfather ran the skating rank. ( Ben Ladoux). He spoiled us with my grandmother's baking goods.  Oh how much fun we had. Those were really the good ol days.  I was just home last week.  I wish I would of had time to see all the old places.  But spending time with my grandmother (Elfrieda Ladoux) was so much fun. And seeing family I have not seen in years was great. But I will for sure be home for the celebration. Hope to see all my old friends there.

Thanks for such a great website.
 Gerrie Hanke(Ladoux)
hotazgal999@aol.com

2 Dec 2007

Greetings to  Friends in Pengilly, I'm Sharon (Johnson) Sullivan, daughter of Albert and Rose Johnson.  My dad, Al, was the manager of the grocery department at Oja's.   My parents lived in "Ojaville" when I was born.  We lived in the last house next to Salmi's.  My parents and I  moved to the Eastside of Swan Lake in May of 1948,  I have a younger sister, Jeanne.  We lived  for 22 years kitty-corner from the Lone Pine Town Hall and attended N-K schools.

Since my dad worked at Oja's for over 25 years, I have many memories of the store.  I remember the Oja boys had a Dalmation dog named, "Archie." When I was quite small,  I would take "Archie" into the back-room of the store, have him sit down and I would sit behind him and slide down the small slide that went into the store basement.  The slide was used for sending cases of canned goods to storage.  I also remember taking a pack of Black Jack gum from behind Betty Doust's counter.  My father was so mad at me.  He made me apologize to Betty and take five pennies out of my bank to pay her.  After that, I was afraid of both Betty and Mary Jane Ricker, the other check out.  I have memories of  sitting on the floor and reading comic books at the store until my dad or a clerk told us to go home.  I also remember sitting at the lunch counter and making annoying noises with our straws in the bottom of the paper cone cup and being asked to leave.  I was fascinated to watch Leona Anick post the monthly charge slips on the big rack.  Mr. Ed Oja was the postmaster. We had a mail box at the store before the rural route came into being.  Our box was 72.  I remember asking Mr. Oja for the mail and buying 3-cent stamps. I think the store phone number was 2211.

Christmas Eve 1964 was the night of the big fire.  My mother and I were washing dishes after dinner.  Fritz Roberts came running into our house yelling, "Al-- the store is on fire!"  My dad went up to the store and didn't return until after midnight.  He also spent most of Christmas Day at the store because he was concerned that the vacuumed packed cans would injure someone as they exploded.

I spent summers during my elementary and junior high years at Main Beach.  I remember Louie and Ann DeLucca owning the Lakeview Tavern and Louie getting after me for coming into the tavern with sandy feet and a wet bathing suit.
 The skating rink was a favorite place.  That's where I got to know the Pengilly kids since I didn't go to Pengilly School.
 We loved going to visit Santa by the big tree across from Oja's store.  We all knew Santa  was Michael Orlovich, and Santa knew us all by name and who are parents were.  Lone Pine Town Hall had a special Christmas gathering for the local children one or two years.  I don't know who sponsored the event....perhaps the Eastside Ladies, which my mother belonged.

I grew up with the Linquist, Tumola, and Royal girls at the lake.  Rosemary, Lynne, and Betty were two years older than I.  As I got older and involved in activities at school, my closest friends were Becky Arnold, Karen Hamilton, Roberta Dagg, and Robbie Ross.

I attended Itasca Community College, one year in Coleraine and one year in Grand Rapids.  I car pooled with  Pat Arnold and Margaret Kasper.  I knew Margaret from Girl Scouts.  She and Carol Molick (dad was the Pengilly depot agent) belonged to my Girl Scout Troop.

I remember that Pasty Day was on Wednesday when the women of the Methodist Church made pastys.  Dad always brought home "dinner size" and "lunch size" as my mother called them.
 The little white Pengilly library is where I did my services hours in order to receive a service hour bar in Senior Girl Scouts.  Mrs. Langton was the librarian.

My uncle and aunt, Nick and Marilane Damyanoivch, Cousins, David, Gary and Barbie, lived on old Highway 65.  I remember standing on their white picket fence watching the parade.  Soon their home was moved for the new highway to go through.

There are many wonderful memories of Pengilly.  I hope to be in Pengilly for the big event the end of August 2008 and visit with many of you.
Sharon (Johnson) Sullivan
San Jose, CA 
mail: sjbythebay@sbcglobal.net

26 Nov 2007

I have fond memories of growing up in my hometown of Pengilly, MN. The summers seemed so long and lazy when I was young. It’s something we long for the rest of our lives and will never have again... but we don’t know that till it’s too late and we’re all grown up. Life was so simple and safe and our parents didn’t worry when we were gone all day playing. I so enjoyed going daily and swimming at Main Beach down by Bob Badavinac’s on Swan Lake. We would leave barefoot with a towel and our suits on, (no sunscreen), around noon when the lifeguards got there and I don’t think we left once till supper time.  We often had a dime or nickel and used to go for penny candy at Anne’s Café by the Post Office. When I was 16 my cousin Barbie Damyanovich and I became the local lifeguards. We loved making money while getting a tan and being with our friends. Work started at 1:00 p.m. and that lent to having a healthy night life and yet never missing a day of work.

 I also remember playing with Kevin Hancock the neighbor boy, my siblings Timmy, Kathy, Danny, and Susie in the field across from our house where we had a camp in the “Big Tree”. That majestic willow tree was so enjoyable to climb and hang out in. We played house, war, Tarzan, cowboy and Indians often till dark. You know every kid had to be home before dark! We kids were going to protest its being cut down when the new Highway 65 went through, but that didn’t work because they cut it down while we were all in school. Progress isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. It makes me sad that I can’t find anyone who took a picture of our Big Tree!

Our chilly snow filled Northern Minnesota winters lasted unseemly long. But, living next to the skating rink, snowmobiling, sledding, and ice fishing took the edge off of our long winters. We skated after homework most nights under starry skies with our pals or siblings. At age 10 I think I wore the same old white skates for three years! I so wanted the pale slate blue skates with sparkling blue pompoms like my friend had. Now I don’t even know if I have a pair of skates. My first set of skates had double blades and attached to my boots. No one wore helmets on their heads, no way, you just held the hand of an older sister or brother till you got the hang of it. The old skating rink was directly between the school and our house till 1960’s or so. In the summer it was daring fun to balance and walk or race a pal along the top edge of the boards on the rink. We often had people coming to get drinking water from the skating shack and to use the phone. The boys on the Greenway Hockey team would practice and pay me a nickel if I would run and get them water. I even got good at sharpening my skates on my dad’s grinder out in the garage. One night when the rink was closed, under a full moon, my sisters and I went out and skated till midnight in the crisp dark blue evening.
 
We had one of the first snowmobiles made called the “Foxtrack”. That red bomber could go over poplar trees about three to four inches thick! It was not fast, had a steering wheel, you sat on a 2 person bench, it shifted forward, had neutral and reverse and it worked best for trail blazing.
  
I miss the great ice fishing contests we used to have on Swan Lake. I think the Catholic Church used to put that on for a fundraiser. Once we lost the Pengilly Grade School and big local functions ended Pengilly seemed to lose its sense of community. That is why I am so glad to see this centennial taking place.
   
My best friends growing up were my first cousins, Candy Blaine and Barbie Damyanovich and both, along with sister Susie, stood up for me in my wedding.  Other good friends were Karen Shea, Tina Gregg (?spelling), and Sandy McRay. I think I lived many a summer down at Karen Shea’s lake home. We often were on Swan Lake goofing around or jumping on tire tubes on the beach. Those old mining truck tire tubes were so huge you needed a ladder or friend to get you in and out of the center. 

I miss the old Pengilly Grade School being open. I loved the halls and remember Grandma Hall’s picture hanging by the entrance to the gym... her eyes always looked like they were watching you. My Mom says she was a Godly Christian woman and headed up a temperance league against drinking back in the day.
 
Rumor has it that the teachers could start school once the (always late) Marshall kids got to school. I can still hear my new shoes clicking down the hall and how big I thought I was. The Kindergarten teacher Mrs. Marsha Berg taught my Mom and said she would retire when she taught the last Marshall kid... that was my sister Sue. Vida Potter was the school cook when I was at the Pengilly Grade School. She was the best cook there ever was. I still think about her homemade bread with butter. Everything she cooked was excellent.

Colleen (Marshall) Vaneps 

21 Nov 2007


Happy Thanksgiving to all Pengillians and families. We just heard about Joanne's loss of her husband Don and have no address to contact her at so thought we would send it to the guest book and somebody there could let her know that our thoughts and prayers are with her and her family during this time of loss. I am in California, spending the winter with my daughter Rita. I was fortunate enough to be able to bring my favorite companion - Frank, a Westie pup that I have now become owner of. We are enjoying the warmth and sunshine and want to send a hearty hello to all. My daughter Rita came back to Minnesota for her birthday in October to visit us, her son Steffan and his new baby boy Ayden Joseph who is my great grandson. So, I, daughter Gwen and Rita took the opportunity to drive up to Grand Rapids to visit my sister DeLoris Metzer. It was wonderful to see her and I am reporting she is doing fine. We also visited with Mickey Metzer, my nephew, Mike Marshall my god son and Kenny and LaVonne Blaine.  I will be returning back to St. Cloud after Valentine's Day 2008.

I can be reached at ritametermaid04@yahoo.com
Vivian Fiskewold

15 Nov 2007

It had been a long flight on a military plane, which means mesh seats and fluctuations between extreme cold and boiling hot, not to mention eight hours of practical solitude. There was only one other civilian passenger on this trip and we had not talked since boarding the plane, and even then it was just polite chit-chat. As we were landing we started talking more; I learned that he was a trucker of sorts for the military and was just coming from Norway back to the states and that he was traveling to Minnesota. I was surprised at such an unlikely coincidence.

After he helped me move my luggage off of the plane and as he drove me to the BX, he asked where I was planning on going in Minnesota. I had been asked that a lot before and during the trip so I had a prearranged answer of sorts, “Oh, nowhere you would know, just a small town called Pengilly, middle-of-nowhere type thing." His response, other than the usual, polite “So what city is that near?” was “Ha, well my wife has a lake house there, just off of Swan Lake.”  I was taken slightly aback and we continued to talk about Pengilly for a while. He was on a return flight from Norway and I was just coming home from England, it still amazes me that somehow, two people that far away from Minnesota or even the states, could both be from Pengilly. I had told him about the Pengilly Centennial, if he’s driving through, he might just come by and say hello.

Sometimes, random acts of kindness can open your eyes to the little miracles in the world. A teacher told me that coincidences are a result of the universe's laziness, but he also believes we will be marrying robots in thirty year's time. So I am more inclined to believe that things happen for a reason, maybe it was just because I needed a ride to the BX. 

Carrie Marshall (daughter of Dan Marshall)

2 Nov 2007


The greatest thing that Pengilly did for me was to nurture a fabulous husband!!! Thanks to all the people that contributed to his character and personality. I feel very blessed to be married to a Pengillian!!! THANK YOU!!!  From an appreciative wife.

31 Oct 2007


My name is Russ Sundquist. I live in St. Paul with my wife Deb. We have 4 children. I have practiced law in St. Paul since 1980.
 
I have great fondness for the time I spent at my home on Swan Lake. I lived in 2nd Cooley from birth through the fall of sixth grade. When the mines shut down 2nd Cooley, my family moved to a new home on Swan Lake. We arrived in October, 1962. My father purchased our land from Mr. McKilliken in the mid 50’s.  Mr McKilliken lived in the house now owned by Ray Jacobson. I recall peeking into his livingroom window and seeing brass candlesticks. I thought they were very fancy. The first family we got to know were the Arnolds. Tweet and Kathy were about my age. I next met the Keellers and then Jimi Fena. Jimi and did lots of mischief in our neighborhood for the next 3 years. Soon Fred Galley, Dave  Erck, Mike Anderson, Pat Andreas and Greg Perella joined our group. The girls that drew our attentions were: Wendy DellaQuadri, Lynn Olson, Pam Keeler, Sherry Sweela, Kathy Walker, Gayle Christianson,  and many others. They were all beautiful. Still are.  Our summers were especially rich. I did not like the fall when my summer friends left town.

My work career in Pengilly started with lawn mowing for Paul Willard. He was a member of the Methodist Church  and so was my family.  When I was in 8th grade  and complained to my mom I had no money she suggested I ask Paul if he wanted me to cut his grass. Paul was very gracious and agreed. I did that for 2 summers. In the 10th grade I went to work for Bob Badavinac in his gas station. This allowed me to get to know most people from Pengilly. I liked Elmer Hay a lot. He had a great sense of humor. I remember when it was a very big deal when Fran Aries Bonneville took more than $10 to fill her gas tank. That was a huge amount. Fran seemed very unconcerned about this tab. As I recall it was actually $12 of super. I thought we had stepped into a new era. I then went to work in the mines after my senior year, and then drove school bus for NK while I went to Hibbing JC. I then traveled to Northfield, Minn and finished my college degree at St. Olaf. In my junior year of college, Norb Arnold got me a job with the Minnesota Senate as a Page for the 1974 session. That was fun.  I will always call Pengilly/Swan Lake my home. I always enjoy my trips back home.
 
Russ S.

31 Oct 2007

Like many others, I also have some very fond memories of growing up in Pengilly. Because we lived two miles south, we experienced different memories from those kids that lived “in town”. We were the only kids in our whole area that attended Greenway Schools as we lived on the west side of old Highway 65. Our playmates growing up were kids that attended Nashwauk-Keewatin Schools (Laurie Hagen, Menards, Doughertys, Healds, Grozdanichs, Abrahamsons). Instead of going to the Main Beach, we simply walked across the road and went swimming, tubing, canoeing on Swan Lake, at any one of our neighbors, where we were always welcome. However, we spent the majority of our summers at Healds, where we spent many hot afternoons swimming on their raft. I will never forget how Tony Heald would spend endless hours pulling us kids around on water skis behind his boat and how I hoped every time that I would “let go” of the rope at the right dock (as I was very nearsighted and couldn’t wear my glasses skiing). While our parents were at work all day, us kids would complete our chore list early in the morning and play the remaining part of the day. We had full reign of our neighborhood within about a mile radius and we used every bit of it day and night!  I remember wearing red clothing near the fence line of Egerdahl’s cattle and the cattle “charging” us; playing in the creek that ran through our property into Swan Lake and my sister, Jackie, always falling in; playing in the woods and digging up the “Indian” mounds in search of artifacts; making forts in the woods or where ever we could find a place (our best fort was in Heald’s chicken coop); riding our bikes to the “big rock” and to the “top of the hill”; drawing, with coal found from an old coal pile, “roads” on the road for our bikes; playing kickball on the road and literally playing on the road (it really was our playground); riding our bikes to the BookMobile at Indian Point Resort; driving our 10 horse snowmobiles around our property and Swan Lake at a ridiculous young age, without our parents, while pulling each other around on sleds for hours on end; sliding down Peterson’s or Heald’s driveways to the lake and asking the neighbors to turn on their lights for us -- once at the bottom of the hill and on the lake, lying on our backs making snow angels, admiring the night sky, and listening in the distance to the crackling of the ice or a snowmobile; playing for endless hours in the deep snow day and night; ice skating at night in front of Healds with a gas lantern; us kids “dark house” fishing in front of Healds complete with lunch on the stove; our big summer BBQs with the lamb and pig on the spit, with family & friends at our house well into the early morning hours, only to return for breakfast the next morning; Serbian Christmas celebrations with the lamb and pig and a house full of family & friends never minding that the next day may be a “work” day; our first jobs at the A&W Root Beer Stand in Nashwauk and having to ride our bikes (the 14 mile round trek) to and from work each day.

I also have very fond and vivid memories of Pengilly Elementary School, where I attended Kindergarten (1969) through the sixth grade (1976). Our class was the last graduating sixth grade class before its closing that summer. I remember what havoc its closing had with many Pengilly residents and the surrounding communities. We were the Greenway High School graduating class of 1982. I have memories of:
Our teachers & staff: Mrs. Milton (Kindergarten) – who I remember as being fairly old at that time; Ms. Mallaro (1st & 2nd) - who liked to chew Doublemint gum; Mrs. Nurkka (3rd) - extremely laid back where the class pretty much ran themselves; Ms. Bonaventura (4th) - an exceptional teacher with high standards, who scared the living daylights out of me; Mr. Grell (5th) – tall & easy-going;  Mr. Peterson (6th) – young & energetic who sent birthday cards; Mr. Brennan (Principal) – who walked with a limp; Mrs. Peluso (playground attendant); Mrs. Kuusi (cook); Mrs. Raich (special education); Ben LaDoux, Jr. (janitor); Mr. Shock (speech).   Playing hopscotch, jumping rope, and “Chinese” jump rope on the pavement on the front side of the school; bringing our bags of marbles & “steelies” to school in the springtime; our parents letting us ride our bikes to school the last day of school (quite an adventure for us having to ride those 2 miles into “town”); whirling round & round as fast as we could go on the merry-go-round and twirling round & round on the small twirling bar on the playground; sliding down Grandma Goss’ hill in the winter-time and being careful not to ruin the butts of our snowsuits; walking the perimeter of the school with Mrs. Peluso during lunchtime and the sheer loudness of her whistle; going into Ms. Bonaventura’s class and confirming for myself how tough and frightening she really was (not to mention the fact that someone, won’t mention names here, stole her chalk stick, never to be returned, and how our whole class suffered for that that entire year)!; the Pengilly Skating Rink where Ben LaDoux, Sr. would keep those big kids in order and the warmth the furnace gave off during those cold winter days; the awesome Halloween parties put on by the PTA (where my mom was president) and the excitement of all the games in the gymnasium and throughout the school, cakewalks, etc; walking into the Little White Library and being amazed at how small it really was and how many books it contained.

Pengilly was a great place to grow up and I am looking forward to the Centennial.
Shelley Shipka LaDoux
Pengilly Centennial Webmaster

21 Oct 2007


My memories of the summers my family shared with the Pearsons at our cabin between Dick Whitney’s and Oz Seavey’s house were easy to remember. My memories are as follows:
Visiting Mr. & Mrs. Smith, Jill and Sheila, when I was very young, every-time we came out to the cabin.  Playing croquet with Dick Whitney’s children.  When we were young boys, the Thouin’s and Pearson’s got together on weekends. Dave and Dick Thouin, and Jim, Rob, and Tom Pearson would stuff our swimsuits with wet sand and attempt to run off Dick Whitney’s dock without our suits falling down before we jumped into the water. Most of the time we didn’t make it!

Going to Oja’s store and exploring the isles. I also bought my first pair of swim fins and mask there.The mouthwatering hamburgers, fries and malts at Anne’s and Judy’s. FANTASTIC.  The Sunday morning my brother and I were swimming and coerced Bob Seavey to run off Dick Whitney’s dock wearing his Sunday suit before church.  Playing cards with Mrs. Jacobson.  Picking blueberries along the driveway of the cabin.  The Sunday we came home from Mass and our dog Flip had cornered a skunk under the cabin and got sprayed. We went out for breakfast!  Catching Lightening Bugs in a jar to light up our bedroom at night.  My cousins and I rocking the inner tube until we flipped over in the water.  Watching the herons wade in the water in front of Mutka’s cabin and the Loons swimming and singing while fishing.  Fishing off Barta’s dock with my dog between 5 and 9 a.m. every morning we were at the cabin.  Eating the fresh fish I caught with eggs, potatoes, toast and orange juice.  Riding across the lake or fishing in the boat along the weed-beds south of Fena’s with my dog in the bow.  Enjoying the buffet dinners with my dad’s and my Uncle Ian’s bar-b-qued chicken.  The 5th and 8th holes at the Swan Lake Country Club. Also trying to avoid hitting the ”Beer Tree” on the 7th fairway!  The day I played golf with Tim Marshall and he recorded a 25 on the first hole!  Reading on the indoor porch of the cabin during rainstorms.  Our family gathering in front of the fire in the living room of the cabin on Sunday night.  Working at Butler Taconite Plant with “Big Mike Shipka” and Mr. Miskovich!
Just sitting on the beach in front of our cabin.

Dave Thouin

28 Sept 2007


Hi All,

I am writing this for my Mom, (Darleene Vail), as she does not have a computer to do this on.  She writes:
We moved to Pengilly in the spring of 1945.  Charles was 3 1/2 and Kay was born in November.  We lived next door to the Hamburger Shack; then in 1949 we moved over to Marshall Street.

Riley worked in the mines for 36 years. He retired in 1979 and every winter after that we went to AZ.  Riley passed away May 22, 2000 and I am still going to AZ in the winter.

Besides the 2 children, I have 4 grandkids, 7 great-grandkids, and on Aug. 25 2007, Brooklynn Reliegh was born, my great-great-granddaughter.

I hope to see a lot of you folks at the centennial. 
Darleene Vail
By Kay (Vail) Dworzynski
ron-kaye@bacavalley.com
 
21 Sept 2007


What a dee-light to go to the website and see the photographs that my brother and I scanned and emailed in. Thank you so much! I think we covered a multitude of Pengillians in the photogs and hope everyone enjoys them. I want to personally thank the people who are working diligently to put this whole thing together - you guys rock!

Rita Fiskewold

8 Sept 2007


Fragnitos and Fisks Reading any one of the posts in this guestbook spawns many more memories of Pengilly.
 Josi has a great point about e-mail addresses.  When I was showing my mom the website and this guestbook, she wanted to know how "Mini" (Josi's mom) is doing and she also wanted to know how "Virginia" (Edwards, Lee Jam's mom) is doing.  I suspect there are some privacy issues here, regarding e-mail addresses, and having one's e-mail address up on the www for the whole wide world to use.  Perhaps Shelley could mention at the initial sign-in that e-mail addresses are optional and that one can leave one's e-mail address at the end of a post if they want it included.  (Like Josi did and like I'm going to do.  So all the people who have been searching frantically for both of us will now find us...) Johnny Fragnito and my sister Rita and Darrel Johnson (who was eventually Rita's first husband) were all in the Fifth Grade at Pengilly Grade School in the fall of 1959 when I started Kindergarten.  Johhny Horton's song "The Battle of New Orleans" was a big cross-over hit both pop and country and Mrs. Berg was duly impressed when I sang the whole song on the first day of school.  (There are a few more lyrics in that song than in, let's say, "Twinkle-twinkle, Little Star...") I remember Johnny Fragnito standing on the top steps of the school on one of those cement "railings" and shooting marbles out of some kind of an air gun.  All the kids down below would scramble to get the marbles.  Then, if you gave him two marbles, you got to shoot one yourself.  Somehow, I get the feeling that Johnny made some money somewhere out there in the world... Josi and Johnny had a younger brother, Joe, who started kindergarten with me in 1959.  They also had another brother, Jimmy, who was in the second grade with my other sister, Gwen, in 1959. So each of us Fisk's had a Fragnito in our class at Pengilly School. Joe had red curly hair and went by the moniker of "Bee."  After a wrestling match behind the school on the first day--which resulted in rolling down the hill and lots of grass stains on our new school clothes--Bee and I became good pals for the remainder of that school year.  (Yes, the first day of school at Pengilly Grade School was a singing, fighting, action-packed day that didn't stop for seven years...until that first long, lonely and scary ride over to the new world and new people at the Bovey Jr. High...) It was fun to go to Bee's place after school.  I remember eating rigatoni (for the first time) over at Fragnito's, getting pop from Plunky at the garage, and driving around the yard and station on go-carts. The Fragnito's lived in the house behind the gas station. Back to the Fragnito's and Fisk's, it was a sad day early in the fall of 1960 when my buddy Bee had to leave First Grade to "move to Montana." We were just getting going with Mrs. Stuland who had decided that I could help Bee learn to read, and away he went. Years later, when I was going to grad school at the University of Montana in Missoula, I was always going to try to find the Fragnito's.  But I didn't.  However, it should also be noted that I did spend a lot of time in Missoula Saloons (like Red's Bar, The Ox, Al & Vick's, and Luke's--named after Hank Williams's pseudonym "Luke the Drifter") getting a secondary education from my dad's cousin--Loren "Sarge" Simpson."  After a career in the army that began in WW II and included teaching ROTC at the U of M, Missoula, Loren retired in Missoula. Circling back to Josi's question about the parade in front of Oja's store:  somebody might be able to figure out who's who.  I was told by both my Aunt Shirley Marshall and Jean Blaine that this was in 1958, the year of the Minnesota Centennial.  That is why many of the men wore their military uniforms. The star in the car is a Dobas, older sister of Joel and Bernadette, and she was Miss Minnesota, or a finalist in this pageant or something like that.  Apparently the "Navy" boys were situated in front of the photographer as the star car passed by the camera. Jean said that my dad (Ralph Ted Fiskewold) was one of the sailors.  Though I was only four years old for most of 1958, I recall being at this event.   Pengilly was surrounded by lakes, creeks, pines, poplar, and railroad tracks; there were two major highways on which to hitchhike out of town (or later drive); the railroads criss-crossed right near our home with cool trestles to climb and swing on;  there were culverts and dried-out culverts and another trestle down by Obrien Creek;  a golf course right in the middle of town; a city dump; an abandoned mine on the north side of Ox Hide Lake; and many memories up at the old ball park.  All of this provided more doggone places for a kid to play and hide out and hang out than any unselfish kid could possibly ask for.  We hopped on rail cars, hitch-hiked to Grand Rapids and Hibbing, shot rats at the dump, and had lots of fun. Everybody had a .22 rifle. What self-respecting kid who grew up in Pengilly in the 50's and 60's can't still hear Liola Goss hollering for the Pengilly Baseball team while selling beer, pop, candy and chips from the concession stand and at the same time keeping track of what kids brought in how many bottles for a penny apiece and what kids brought in foul balls at a nickel each?  Talk about multi-tasking... From the time that I could walk, my dad took me to the beer joints--the Penguin Club, the Pla-Moor, the Lakeview--and they always smelled great and they were cool and dark on hot summer days.  And the patrons of the bar always gave me money to play the jukebox. (Between playing jukeboxes at bars and comic books from our neighbors, the Goodman's, and having two older sisters who read constantly--I could read by the time I started kindergarten.) Beer was a dime and pop was a dime and my dad's face just fell one day when Neil Edwards (at the Penguin Club) told him "You'll need another nickel."  "What went up?" dad said, clinging the nickel onto the hardwood bar of the Penguin Club.  "Beer," Neil said. "But I heard pop's going up to 15 cents pretty soon, too." Needless to say, I didn't ask for a five cent candy bar that day. I was happy enough with my seven oz. bottle of 7up. As Ramblin' Jack Elliot would say:  "What a state. What a statement. What a time, what a beach, what a dog!" 

Ted Fiskevold
Detroit Lakes, MN
tedf@lakesnet.net 
P.S. I've had great malts at Judy's, Ann's, and Indian Point (remember the walk-up ice-cream stand).  And great spaghetti out at Burrato's!  We'll never know if Judy made a better malt than Ann Marie.

8 Sept 2007

Howdy Again! I love Pengilly - I go back every couple of years to visit - I worked for a guy here in Quail Valley who's father was the Personnel Director for Cooley Mines and he use to go to Swan Lake, had a cabin there. Their name was Hayes. Eunice Plagemann worked for him in Cooley - small world. My email address is ritametermaid04@yahoo.com and my phone number is 951-246-1808 for those who would like to contact me. I live in a community similar to Pengilly, it reminds me of Pengilly - small town atmosphere. I just closed up my non-profit resource center that I was Director of for 12 years and will have ample time on my hands to come back this next summer to be with my family. I've been an elected official for 9 years first appointed to the position for 18 months and then reelected twice to the School Board. I love working with the kids. I was sad when my family sold our home in Pengilly it was like loosing a family member. Darel Johnson, who was my neighbor there in Pengilly who I married and divorced lives about 20 miles from me. We had a son, Brett who is a Riverside County Sheriff. I loved hanging out with Peggy Metzer, Kathy Orlovich, Gayle Laird, Josie........they were the coolest! And when I got to play baseball with them - Wow!! I coached both adult and youth baseball teams out here in California and ran the youth Boxing Program in Perris for 8 years. I could go on and on as everyone has said that gets on the site. Would love to hear from everybody. Josie - I saw your brother Johnny when I was with Bonnie Marinoff one time when I came home. He was gorgeous and fun to be with. On and on and on --------

Rita Fiskewold Peters

7 Sept 2007

Hi, It's me again, Josi Fragnito, I was wondering if anyone knows who is sitting on the car in front of Oja's store in the picture of the parade on the Pengilly website.  Also, it would be nice if the people writing into the guest book would give their email, phone numbers, or address so we can get in touch with each other.  I plan on being there to celebrate with Pengilly, my mom, Minnie Fragnito will be there, she still lives in Missoula, Mt.  Rita Fiskewold Peters, I live in California now too, my cell number is 253 376 1891 call me.  We might be near each other.  Remember my brother Johnny had a crush on you.  I would tease him and call him a "Rita Lover" and he would get mad and cry to Mom that I called him names, we still talk about our great childhood growing up in Pengilly.  I too would have loved to have my boys raised in a neighborhood like Pengilly.  Nobody believes the stories about Pengilly, we were so blessed and so lucky to have been part of that history. 

Signing out,
Josi Fragnito
Le Grand, CA
josifragnito@hotmail.com

2 Sept 2007

Hello.  I've enjoyed the website and photogs.  My kids are gonna send some of our family favorites that involve Pengilly.  I moved to Pengilly in 1942 from Bowstring. My father, John Jones, went to work for J & L in Calumet. We lived right by the Railroad tracks (across the road from Kertnichs).  My mother, Cubie Bell, loved her flower gardens and vegetable gardens. She played canasta with Mrs. Kertnich, Mrs. Crusoe, and Mrs. Calvick.  In fact, the train wreck that Lee Jam mentioned came right down into the yard of the house where we used to live.  My brother Albert lived there at the time of the wreck.  By that time, I had been married to Ralph "Ted" Fiskewold for about 10 years.  We got married in 1949 and we had three kids:  Rita, Gwen and Ted.  My husband Ted was born in 1927 right in Pengilly in the house that the Calvicks later lived in.  I live in St. Cloud now and would like to say "hi" to all my Pengilly friends.  Living in Pengilly for 60 years was great. My husband "Ted" passed away in September of 2003. We had 54 years together, and 22 of those were after he retired from Hanna.  We spent eight months a year in Florida for 20 years or so. My sister Dee (Jones) Metzer was my best friend. She now lives in Grand Rapids. Many of my other Pengilly friends were the Bartz girls (Eloise Morrow and Mary Badavinac), Donna (Salmi) Beeule, Kathy (Beck) Elich, Patty (Leguari) William, and Eunice (Gangle) Plaagaman. I miss them all. I have fond memories of picking berries with Grandma Simpson, growing my flower and vegetable gardens, sewing doll clothes for the church bazaar, and fishing from shore at Indian Point.  I remember when I was growing up in Pengilly during the WW II and my dad used to take us kids to the movies in Calumet or Nashwauk.  He had a truck and he would pick up all the Fiskewold, Blaine and Simpson kids who were hitch-hiking to the movies. My mom loved her movies! Ted and I had a great time raising our three kids in Pengilly. I will be at the centennial event and hope to see a lot of my old friends and family! 

Vivian Jones Fiskewold

31 Aug 2007

Wow! What a fabulous website! I will be sending some photographs in the next week. I remember Baseball games - collecting soda bottles for a penny - playing softball with Kathy Orlovich, Peggy Metzer, Gayle Laird with Pete Marinoff as our coach, what fun. Golfing, taking lessons, shagging balls out of the creek. Pengilly Grade School with Christmas Programs, Blue Birds at Linda Anicks, going tobaggoning at Buck Lake with the Girl Scouts when my mother and Eloise Morrow were leaders. Walking to Swan Lake when the tar was so hot your feet would blister. The Little White Library, sitting around the pot belly stove reading - sometimes I can still smell the books and the smoke from the stove. The Skating Shack in the winter time. My sister sticking her tongue on something metal every winter. Fishing contests with the Catholic Church each winter. Riding the school bus forever to Bovey and Coleraine - yuk! Working in the cafeteria at Pengilly Grade School with Ms. Vaughn.....Being the first girl to attend gun safety classes cuz my dad made me --Yup! 

I remember Oja's and Christmas with Mike Orlovich as Santa and Ann's Cafe when my sister started a fire in the trash can and when Oja's burned down.  I remember the Penguin Club because my mom and dad were close friends of Virginia and Neil Edwards.  And the Marinoff's - Bonnie is still one of my very dearest friends.  I remember snow and frozen lakes and that I don't miss.  I've been in California for 37 years now so I almost feel like a native Californian!   The times were innocent, we didn't have the pressures that kids face today - the pace of life was slow and meaningful.  There are times when I need to go to a tranquil place and my thoughts do wander to life in Pengilly.  Pengilly is a great place to be from, a great place to have grown up in.  Sometimes I feel sad because my kids weren't able to experience some of the wonderful things I did growing up.  I will be there for the 100th Anniversary.  It will be great seeing a lot of people that hopefully will be attending this event.  Rock On!

Rita (Fiskewold Johnson) Peters
Quail Valley, CA

29 Aug 2007


Hi everyone.  Well, I made it 'full circle' on Half Circle Drive.  I'm living in Mom and Dad's house (Kenny and Tilly Laird).  I might add that I love it.  The minute I stepped back into the house I felt as though I had never left.  Who ever said, "You can't go home again"?I have lots of memories of growing up in Pengilly. Pete, you should know that Josi and I were going to build a concession stand and sell treats. We never made it. But I think that if they had kept on with the outdoor movies we would have eventually given you a run for your money! You know, that Josi is quite a salesperson. I think everyone in town loved those outdoor movies and were sad to see them stop.

My Mom and Dad taught Josi and I to play Canasta. We played often and a lot. We used to play gin rummy too. But Canasta was always our favorite. It was a treat when we used to go to the skating rink and Dick Craven, Ronny Mackey, and Delbert Luoma would play cards in the skating shack. Josi always had such a crush on Delbert. In the winter we walked to the skating rink every day (even after school) and in the summer we walked to Main Beach (we spent an awful lot of time there). In the summer we played softball. David Damyanovich was our coach.  Terry Bobich was our pitcher. One time he was giving her a bad time, teasing, and she whipped that ball at him, hitting him in the upper arm. He quit giving her a bad time.

Kids now a days say they don't have anything to do. If that's true, they just don't know the fun games we used to play. There was anti-i-over, stretch, jumping on one of the big inner-tubes that my Dad brought home from the mine, jumping and sliding down the sawdust pile at the box factory, statues, climbing the big tree in the woods across from Marshall's, building camps in the woods, playing office in the box factory, walking the tracks, etc. My brother and sister used to play 'here comes the game warden' instead of 'cowboys and indians'. There were always things to do. One day Josi and I had to do the dishes before she could come out and play. When Minnie and Plunky came home, we had the rubber spray head with the little lever on it spraying all over the kitchen. They opened the door and Minnie got hit full force with the water from the sprayer. Then there was the day we decided to walk down to the other end of town and visit all the kids we had met in kindergarten. We were gone all day visiting Kathy Orlovich, Jan Olson, Peggy Metzer etc. Was my Mom mad when we finally made it home!

I'll never forget the time that Mr. Guello (6th grade teacher) had the class work in small groups to write short stories. We could be anywhere in the school or on the school grounds. Josi, Kathy Orlovich, Michael Kasper, and I formed a group and worked on our story in the 'sick room'. Mr. Guello began checking to see where everyone was and he knocked on the door of the sick room. Michael held the door shut while Mr. Guello was pushing the door to get it open. When he finally did he was pretty mad! After that we could work in our groups but had to stay in the class room.

Everybody keeps talking about the great malts from Ann's Cafe. They should have tasted the ones from Judy's Cafe. Now those were some great malts!!! Judy's Cafe was where the Crazy Loon is now.

Say, about the train wreck. Mom, Dad, and I all slept through it. Never knew anything had happened until the next morning. I have always wondered how that happened too. It split the town in two. Inconvenient until they got it cleaned up. At that time you had to go over the tracks to get from one side of town to the other. On our end we had to go around the Calumet cutoff to get to Oja's store where the post office was.

The music was so different then. We had lots of funny songs such as Flying Purple People Eaters, Tie Me Kangaroo Down, Ahab the Arab, The Monster Mash, Alley Oop, May the Bird of Paradise Fly Up Your Nose, Countin' Flowers On the Wall, My Bucket's Got a Hole In It, I'm Henry the Eighth, I could go on and on. We also had lots of songs about love (especially teen love) like The Leader of the Pack followed by The Leader of the Laundromat, Smoke Gets In Your Eyes, Dreamy Eyes, Venus, and who could ever forget, The Lion Sleeps Tonight? I always wondered what happened to "Wonderland by Night". It was an instrumental but it was so pretty and I haven't heard it in years. The Lettermen's "Little Surfer Girl" always reminded me of Peggy Metzer. Gee, those were fun times.

I hope that a lot of people come to the Pengilly Centennial Celebration. I would love to see and visit with a lot of people that I haven't seen in so long. Like I said, there was always something to do and we did it all. Lee Jam was right when she said that those were innocent times. One big indicator of the innocence of those times is the music. Before I forget, I remember the dayly bus incidents with the policeman in Calumet. We would tear up every bit of paper we had from the time we left the school until we reach Calumet. The bus would stop and we'd throw all the torn paper out the windows. It was kind of like a class-action. I can't help but laugh every time I think about it.
 
Well, I'm gonna close for now. I hope to see a lot of you at the celebration. It will be a lot of fun and well worth the time for everyone to share old times and catch up on new.

Gayle Laird

8 Aug 2007


The Train Wreck and Other Memories
My name is Lee Jam and my mom owned the Penguin Club, which she bought in 1957 after my dad was killed in a car accident a few years earlier. One night not long after we moved to Pengilly, I was awakened from a sound sleep and I knew from the screeching on the tracks and loud crash a train had derailed. I wanted to get dressed and run down and see it but my mom told me to go back to sleep. As soon as I woke up the next morning, I dressed and ran down past the box factory toward the tracks to see the huge black steam engine on it's side, coal from the coal car strewn everywhere, iron ore cars jackknifed or tipped over and iron ore everywhere. I remember wishing I had a camera. The cars that remained on the tracks blocked Highway 65 and I wondered how they would ever get the cars and engine back on the tracks. To my surprise everything was squared away in a very short time.

Highway 65 during those years ran from 169 past the Laird's house, Rantala's house, Plunky's gas station, the Penguin Club, and Judy's Cafe, which had the best steaks around. The new catholic church had yet to be built. St. Kevin's was a tar paper church next door to the Penguin Club and across from Plunky's. One afternoon I was batting a ball around and batted one right through the church window. Oops! I think my mom paid about $3 to get a new window.
 
I was 10 years old the year that we moved to Pengilly, it was an adventure living there as a kid. So many people have posted memories that are still clear to me: the box factory, the sand pit where we used to slide down the hill in the winter, Indian Point bridge, Nordgren's resort, the golf course, and of course the Main Beach! I lived there in the summer--was there from morning to night and enjoyed jumping off the tower and diving from the midway point of the tower--never could get up the nerve to dive from the top, only jump. We walked the tracks and tressels by the baseball field, played in the culverts down the tracks past where the new catholic church is today, caught tadpoles in the creek behind the grade school just below Goss's house, played in the woods near the sand pit, and so much more. It was a different time in our history... a time of innocence before JFK's assassination.

JFK campaigned in Minnesota and came to Hibbing. I didn't get to see him, but I remember it was big news on the Range. I was married the day after he was assassinated. I had no way of knowing then that I would live 20 years of my life in JFK's Massachusetts and am currently planning on semi-retirement there in 2008. I've been in Silicon Valley long enough.
I also remember when Bob Dylan's first songs were played on the radio. The DJ pronounced the 'y' as an 'i'--anyone remember that?

We used to get our mail at Oja's Store--box 145 was our mailbox and our phone number was 9401. Odd how these things stay with you for so many years.

For a time in the early 1960s we lived on the lake across the road from the Plagmann family--Laurel and I were good friends. Also across the road was Mary Bartz who I believe was a telephone operator in Nashwauk--I remember her as being very kind. Kids on that side of the road were bussed to Nashwauk and we were bussed to Bovey for Junior High and Coleraine for HS.

I went to a lot of Nashwauk games and got to know a lot of people there who decades later got to get reacquainted with over the web. The web made the planet a lot smaller place. Living on the lake I also met a lot of others from around the lake: Diane and Tommy Saylor, Sharon and Amy Poore, their neighbor Mary Lou Newell who I believe lives or lived in our old house on the River Road past the Itasca Hospital in Grand Rapids.

After high school I lived in Minneapolis for a short time and then left in February 1967 for the San Francisco Bay Area. My mom and the four younger kids followed several months later when school was out. The Penguin Club eventually burned--not sure when that was--and there's a community center (I think) on that site now. I've only been back about five or six times over the years. Lived first in San Francisco until 1972 and then on Boston's beautiful North Shore from 1972 to 1992 when I returned to the Bay Area.

I'm going to try hard to get to the Pengilly Centennial next year. It would be great to see people after so many years.

Lee Jam
Redwood City, CA

7 Aug 2007

Hi, my name is Barb (Royal) Shipka and I am compiling information for Pengilly’s Centennial History and Memories book which will include: photos and memories, history, past and present businesses and organizations, pictures of Pengilly residents over 90 years old, and military pictures.

Thus far, I have received some interesting history, memories, and photos of early Pengilly. With the publisher deadline soon approaching, I would like to hear from YOU………. today! At the time of submission, we will be taking pre-orders for our book, as there will be a limited number of extra books ordered.

Please send to me your favorite story and/or bit of information now, so it can be included in our book: Barb Shipka, P. O. Box 215, Pengilly, MN 55775-0215 or email, ezeedays@aol.com -- any questions? 218-885-2639.

If you have enjoyed this website, please pass along the above information, as well as the website address (www.pengillymn.com), to all of your friends and neighbors and Thank You for dropping in and visiting our site and keeping posted on all the upcoming events of Pengilly.

6 Aug 2007

My memories of growing up on the East Side of Swan Lake/Pengilly area relate to my experiences of enjoying Swan Lake during all four seasons of the year...skating, snowmobiling, swimming and sailing.

Plunky's Garage was a fond memory because my brothers worked there and sometimes they would bring me home strawberry pop for a treat. They would also have lots of "stories" to tell about working at Plunky's.

An ice cream cone at Indian Point Bridge and later at Ann's Cafe was always a nice treat. You needed two hands to hold onto the over-sized cone!

Oja's Store had "everything".

I now have an opportunity to visit the Pengilly area a couple of times every summer and I enjoy playing golf at the Swan Lake Country Club each time I visit. What a great course. Always a fun time!

THANK YOU to the Committee members for all their dedication and hard work in planning the Celebration. I am looking forward to attending next summer's Celebration.

Betty Royal :)

6 Aug 2007


Oh my God! I just today was given this web site and clicked on to see the old Swan Lake Bridge. We used to dive off the top of that bridge and lived to tell about it......and Oja's store....my mother, Helen Nordgren, worked there until the store burned down. My father, Earl, was the first baby born in Pengilly. His parents, Carl and Martha Nordgren, arrived by raft to the property where the Nordgren Family lived for many years.....where Swan Lake ended and Swan River began .....across from "the Cove." I remember fondly the wonderful summers swimming and swimming and swimming! How I loved the water. My mother always said I could swim before I could walk. I attended Pengilly Elementary School and still remember a teacher I loved dearly, Miss Calenduci. I cannot remember the correct spelling of her name but this is close. I have lost touch with everyone so this has been a wonderful trip down memory lane. I will be back on as more information filters in. I lived in Minneapolis for many years and seven years ago I decided to move out of the cold and into the warmth of Florida to a small town called Fanning Springs, about a half hour from the Gulf.

 Barbara (Nordgren) Beissel

2 Aug 2007

Hi everyone,
Many times Gayle Laird and I would say "growing up in Pengilly" was like a fairy tale. I was in Pengilly from 1946-1960. My Dad, "Plunky," decided to sell the garage after his father died and moved us to Missoula, MT. I cried my eyes out with my best friends, Gayle Laird, Kathy Orlovich, Peggy Metzer, Jan Olsen, Wendy Koski, Mary Ellen Crea, Lee Jam, Bonnie Marinoff and Joyce Goldbran to name a few. Dad would let me come back every summer so I didn't lose touch with most of them. We had a cabin on Swan Lake and he built us a raft and my brothers and I, with our dog "Blacky," would ride in the raft to "Main Beach" (my brothers were under 5 years old). We liked swimming to the raft at "Main Beach" and the boys would push us off. Remember when we couldn't go in the water during "Indian Days" when the water would be red? To this day I don't know why that happened. We would go fishing in "Oxide Lake" across the highway, but it was scared because I think the boys would go skinny dipping there.

We Pengilly girls had a club called the "B-Bop Brats" and we would set up our office down in the box factory. We had desks and chairs and office supplies, we thought we were "big shots." We had to be "on guard" though or the Pengilly boys would come and mess up our offices. One day Gayle, Sharon Van Epps and I decided to build a fort behind our house, we lived behind my dad's garage, "Plunky's Garage". We carried wagons full after wagons full of boards from the box factory and built a 2 story fort, does any one remember that, we slept upstairs and Sharon Van Epps had her own corner to sleep in, we put in a concrete floor, a door and window, we had curtains and a small stove we cooked jello and hot dogs on. When the HWY 65 came through Mr. Baggers land, the HWY Dept gave me $50 for my fort and they tore it down. I remember the skating rink and the warming shack, it was so cold but we still walked down to go skating and every time we would play crack the whip my glasses would fly off and brake. We use to skate on Swan Lake and I remember Mr. Laird always had a fishing hole and shack on the lake, it was fun to see the water through the hole.  Who remembers the sand pit? We used to play for hours there until my uncle, Louie Chellico, killed the black bear down there. Dad hung it in our garage and skinned it to eat. I had nightmares about that bear getting me for years, I was trying to get in Collier's or later Walker's house, running up the stairs and shutting the screen door. We use to walk the railroad tracks by the box factory and find agates. Do you remember the scare of the bomb shelters, Gayle and I would try to find out where they were just in case the Russians would come. I never remember any crime or bad things happening to anyone while we were growing up, we would leave our house early in the morning and be gone all day and I don't remember Mom worrying about us. I use to make the best "Rubber Guns" my dad had all the old tire tubes. We used the wood from the box factory, the boards were cut in rectangles "2x1/2x12" and I could make double Decker with the clothes pins. We didn't need toys, but I know my mom and dad bought us all these cool toys for Christmas and my brothers John, Jim and the Bee would have them broken by nightfall. My dad would blow up the old tubes for us and we would jump on them, then we would take them to the lake" Main Beach" and have a ball with them. My uncle, Hooner Chellico, ran the "Lakeview" tavern and he would take my brother Johnny and I on Sunday after Mass to clean up the mess everyone would make on Saturday evening. That place seemed so big to me. Remember when Saint Kevin's church was a tar paper shack across from Plunky's garage, every Friday Mom would make cheese pizza and Father would come over after confessions to eat cheese pizza because we couldn't have meat. Who remembers coming to my house after school (the bus stopped at our house) to watch TV "The Mickey Mouse Club" and Spin and Marty? Who remembers going to the creeks and catching frogs and blowing them up and putting them on the highway and when the car ran over them it sounded like a flat tire, that was a terrible thing to do. We had a Girl Scout troop and Campfire Girls, I remember meeting at the Pengilly Elementary School and Goldie Orlovich was our leader, we marched in the parade with our Girl Scout float. Who remembers learning to dance in the gym at the Pengilly grade school, the waltz and square dance? Kathy Orlovich lived by the golf course and everyone went golfing even if we didn't know how, I don't remember if we paid to golf or not. I remember when Gayle had a 2 seater outhouse and when we did a sleepover, instead of going outside, she had a white pot that went under her bed. She had a pump in the kitchen sink and if you used the water you had to remember to keep some water to "prime the pump" or Mrs. Laird would get upset. Who remembers playing "stretch" with the pocket knife? We would throw or drop the knife and the other person would have to stretch to the knife until someone got stretched out, the other would win. I remember when the Post Office was in Oja's store. I loved to go to that store, they had everything. As kids we walked everywhere. But my dad loved vehicles, he got me a scooter and Gayle, Kathy and I could all fit on it at once and we drove it down to Oja's store. I remember the snow outside my bedroom window as high and the window sill and I would open the window and jump in the snow. Who remembers riding the bus to Bovey and Coleraine and when we went through Calumet, the policeman would stop the bus because we threw things out the window, we called him Chester because he limped, we were very bad. Well I'm just babbling on now, I enjoyed reading everyone's comments.

Would love to hear from you at josifragnito@hotmail.com
Josi FragnitoLe Grand, CA

19 Jul 2007

Plunky's Garage
Minnie Chellico and John J. Fragnito “Plunky” from Nashwauk were married on 4 Oct 1941. Before Plunky was drafted into the Army Air Corps, WWII, he worked at the Ford Garage in Nashwauk as a mechanic. After the WWII, Plunky and Minnie bought the Tydal gas station in Pengilly, MN from the Collier Family in 1945. Plunky provided fuel, bottle gas and mechanical services to the Pengilly/Swan Lake area. Later he changed to PURE gas. He would deliver the bottle gas in the middle of winter day and night to any one who would run out. He could fix any automobile, a self taught mechanic. Plunky always had a worker to pump the gas and take bottle gas orders and schedule service on automobiles. His nephew, James “Hooner” Chellico from Nashwauk, was his first employee followed by Richard Royal, then Mickey Pecharch, then Donald Royal (Plunky nick-named Donald “Humphrey” which he is still called today), and Peter Marinoff all from Pengilly. Plunky had a knack of nick-naming everyone.

Minnie and Plunky raised their 4 children, Mary Jo “Josi” born 1946, Johnny Jr. born 1948, Jimmy born 1952, and Joe “the Bee” born 1953. Plunky added the living room, piano room, and Josi’s bedroom onto the house behind the Garage. The family lived in the home until Plunky sold the business and house to Bob Badavinac in 1960 and moved his family to Missoula, Montana where Minnie, The Bee and Jimmy still reside. Plunky passed away on 4 June 1983 and is at rest in the Veteran’s Cemetery in Missoula. Josi lives in Le Grand, California and Johnny is in Chelan, WA.

Josi Fragnito
LeGrand, CA

4 Jul 2007

There was a time, in the early or mid 50's, that the people from Pengilly and elsewhere could go to free movies in our little town. Most of the time, the movies were shown at the old "Club 65" which was owned by the Marinoff family. At other times, they were shown at a lot across from Oja's store where the present post office sits. How, you may ask, can money be made by showing people a movie for free? Why would anyone do it? The answer.......they weren't actually free.........the businessmen in town paid for them. It was a way for them to attract people into town.......and when in town, the people would do their shopping, drinking, etc. Therefore, the movies were only free for the people who attended them. Makes sense now, doesn't it?

Now, with free movies being projected on the large sheet in our yard, it was time for the Marinoff boy's to take advantage of the situation.  The first night, I, along with my brothers, Krist and Jim, and good friend, Ron Rantala, popped up a large quantity of popcorn.  Having Ron join the Marinoff ranks was a business decision made by myself because he had confidence selling this popcorn, that was manhandled by four or five kids, to the public.  I didn't.  Anyway, it was a success.  Now, we could take our money and reinvest it.  And we did so by buying candy, chips, and bagged pop corn from a vender.  We were on our way to becoming entrepreneurs.  With commercial goods, I didn’t need Rantala any more.  I fired him. The venture lasted for a few more weeks until we all tired of the whole thing and the competition from Van Epps store basically ran us out of business. Now the down side of these free movies was my dad and Robert Shofner.  Dad made us kids clean up the yard the next day and then he pocketed the rental monies .  And one night Robert Shofner came to my yard to watch a free movie and he beat me up.   I really didn't have a chance against him because earlier that day, I hurt my arm in a bike accident. I had wrecked Denny Baggers new English racer on Tresler's hill (hill on the short cut road to Calumet).  The brand new English racer was not worth much after I hit a rock, and went over the handlebars.  Anyway, thanks, Robert.......and no, I don't want a rematch.  Once is enough. 

Peter Marinoff

30 Jun 2007

I recall Pengilly from a totally different viewpoint. My aunt and uncle (George and Esther Hill) lived in Pengilly with their daughters Joanne and Charlotte. My dad ran a potato and dairy farm west of Cohasset and every Saturday during the school year we would deliver potatoes to homes, the school, and Oja's store in Pengilly plus the cafe in the early 1950's-1969. I would often ride with my dad and help deliver lifting whatever I could to earn my keep. Often my keep would be to stop at a restaurant for lunch (a VERY RARE treat during those days). We would also be sure to stop and visit Esther, my dad's sister. I recall my uncle George building a ski jump in his back yard and making exciting jumps for those of us off the farm. He also played harmonica for the family and danced in his living room for the kids. Uncle George ALWAYS had a treat for us kids...a stick of juicy fruit gum...again...another special treat we seldom got at home. Esther belonged to the Methodist Church and would often invite us up for the 'harvest dinner' held each fall...all you could eat ...and boy did we. The ladies and men that put that on will always be remembered for their great cooking and kindnesses to little kids attending the event. Swimming in Swan Lake was a major treat...we could walk out quite a way before the drop off hit and scared the life out of us...and having fish under feet made life and swimming that much more enjoyable. Today I fish the lake seeking that 'walleye' I here tell about...but I think someone puts him to bed each time I come to town...as I have yet to catch one. I also had connections to Pengilly when I worked as a mortician at Peterson Funeral Chapel in Coleraine. We would hold several services in town of people I knew growing up...their families would help me recall days gone by and treat me and my dad (who often helped ME on funerals there) with a great deal of respect and friendliness...even in those times of sorrow. Once in a while dad and I would go to Ann's Cafe so Dad and Ann could visit ...hamburger, coke, and fries for $1.25 in 1991 still!! She was a great cook and kind lady. I have enjoyed working on the Centennial Committee and visiting with many of my friends there...looking forward to 2008.
See you all there.

Brian Carlson, now of Grand Rapids.

18 Jun 2007

Pengilly............what wonderful memories. Living between the two tracks was an adventure. With the box factory and the sandpit just a hop, skip, and a jump away........there was adventures to be had. Unless Ronnie Mackey and his crew from "Indian Hill" were in a bad mood and decided to beat you up. They never did, but the threat was always there. And who didn't steal wood from the box factory to built their fort out in the woods (am I still liable for this dishonest act?). And once the box factory closed for the night, there was a way to get onto the roof and jump into the sawdust pile. As I recall, my old friend, Ron Rantala, was the leader in most of the mischief created around that area. I lived between Mr. Bagger and Mr. Black. Mr. Bagger never wanted you on his land and Mr. Black never wanted anyone to pick his sour plums. That left the Marinoff boys and their visiting friends planning ways to get the plums from Mr. Black and and ways to cross Mr. Bagger's land without getting caught. I now thank them both for giving us a good chase. They never caught us, but they certainly knew how to stir up a bunch of kids.

And there were all of my great old friends.....Jerry Heino, Marv Koivisto, Ronnie Mackey, Bobby Goss, Charlie Vail, and Gary Nobel.  We spent hours together roaming the streets of Pengilly at all hours of the day and night.......sometimes getting into a little trouble, but most of the time, just chumming together.  We would spend most of our time at Marv Koivisto's home........Marv thought that he was popular but we were all more interested in his sisters Janet, Joyce, and Judy.  Main beach was always a great hangout, also.  There were days that we would get there in the early afternoon and swim and fight on the raft for the entire day.  Oh, yes, and if we tired of main beach, we could walk down the shore a bit and swim off of Whitney's raft.....which, as I recall, was quite elaborate.....for a Pengilly kid.  Thank you Whitney's.  And who could ever forget the countless times that the kids in Pengilly could count on Santa (Mike Orlovich) to give them a nice supply of candy during Christmas.  I remember being ill one Christmas and not being able to get to the tree where Santa was giving out the treats, and he brought them personally to our house.  And if you ever got a flat tire on your bicycle and went to Plunky's garage, he would holler at you the whole time he was fixing your tire and then would not charge you for the patch.  And remember Polly Morrow, Pengilly's, own personal barber who loved the Yankee's.  And he also loved the Pengilly Penguins.  Polly left us much too soon.   And I also remember Peter Laird who got killed while serving in the armed forces.  I remember his funeral procession as being very big and very sad.  Peter also left us much too soon.   Pengilly, no one could ask for more than what was offered then.  A golf course where kids were not necessarily welcomed, but were put up with as we took short cuts to cross town.  A lake which took up way too much time out of our day.  Oja's, where one could read comic books for free.  And sand pits and box factories and swamps and creeks.  We had it all.  And we knew it.
Peter Marinoff

12 Jun 2007

Hi
My name is Jim Blaine, this is a really good web site. Lots of fun looking at the pictures.  Does anyone have any pictures of Bagger's Store or Ted Lee's Gas Station, the old Pengilly School or Club 65? There used to be a gas station next to where the Tic Tock Cafe was. It was run by Erick Johnson I think; later by Gust Lindquist.
 
I sent an email to the webmaster asking if anyone remembers what we used to call the Swimming Hole on the Golf Course . LOL. I don't think it's appropriate to say it here. John Paul Carpenter used to run a McNess Rt. from his home in Pengilly, He had really good necter . Fred Zerbe was a Butcher for Ed Oja. So was Andy Bjork. Vern Marshall made two or three dollars on a bet when he worked for the RR track gang. You would never believe what he did to win.
Maybe you can use some of this BS lol lol. Keep up the really good work.

12 Jun 2007

Hi, Marvin Koivisto & Joyce Saarela. 1962 and 1963 Greenway Grads. My mother Verna also worked at Oja's store. Nice town to grow up in. We now live in Yuma, AZ with 360 days of sunshine. Don't miss the bugs and snow. Hope everyone has a nice reunion. Lots of good memories.

12 Jun 2007

Hi!
My name is Jim Blaine, Just wanted to say that the first baby born in Pengilly was Earl Nordgren, and as I remember it the Bridge at Indian Point was always called the Indian Point Bridge. Is there any information on a place on the east side of the lake we used to call Bachelor's Paradise? There used to be several old men that lived there, Lars. Gus , Chicken Gus. were two of them. Also Charlie Grantis and Big Bill Lain lived in that area. Charlie Grantis lived on my dad's 40 near Hay Creek.
Please do not assume I am old enough to remember when Earl Nordgren was born . This was told to me by my Brother-in-Law F. Vern Marshall. Earl and my dad were good friends though.  Has anyone made a map of the paths that we used to use to get around that area?Does anyone remember what the swimming hole on the Golf Course was called. LOL LOL . Don't think you can put it in here LOL. Used to swim there lots.
This is a super Website , you are doing a wonderful job.

07 Jun 2007

Greeting Pengillians! My last visit home was in 1965 with my parents Merlin and Millie and brothers Gaylon and Myron Vangen to my Grandma Olga Vangens. I was just 16 years old and I sure wasn't use to a "small town environment". Thank goodness for the Whitney family. I got to hang out with Mary Kaye who was my age. She was from a very large family but I can't recall just how many there was, but it was a bunch! What I recall the most is my walks across the street to Swan Lake's Beach. Us California girls had to keep up their suntan. I went from Chocolate brown to a beautiful Golden tan. I also have such fond memories of the Olson family who lived next door to Grandma. I remember the barbque's and the fresh Strawberry shortcake for dessert. I remember walking to the post office to check if any mail for me from my boyfriend in CA. Plus always loved the malts served at the little restaurant. Now that I'm older I know I would enjoy even more now than then the beauty and peacefulness of a small town. It's crazy out here in CA. Have a great Centennial. Wish I could join you but not sure if I can at this time due to health issues. Good thoughts are with you all.

Marcia (Vangen) Harlow

05 Jun 2007

I worked at Oja's Market in 1944 and 1945. Married to Merlin Vangen in 1947 in Nashwauk. Merlin owned "Merlin's Cafe". Moved to CA in 1951 and I don't miss the snow. Enjoyed looking at the website with my daughter Marcia and son Myron.
 
Thank you.
Millie (Shipka) Vangen

04 Jun 2007


Hello Pengilly, I am a misplaced Nashwaukian living out in Calif. Just got word of this web site - keep it going - it's great. I have great memories of Pengilly, My Aunt and Uncle, Harriet and Frank Zagar lived about 3 blocks from Main Beach, and spending summer with my cousins, Dick, Jim and Paul were the best. We would play Robin Hood for hours in the two wooded areas next to their house - I remember the free movie nights shown on the big sheet and the yummy home made popcorn sold at those movies. Some of my relatives had cabins on Swan Lake - so I was very fortunate to always have a chance to cool off during those hot muggy Minnesota summers. I remember driving out (in the middle of the night I think) with my parents to see the big train wreck at the entrance to Pengilly. As a kid, that was quite an adventure. Now looking back, I certainly hope no one was hurt. Remember driving to Pengilly to shop at Ojas for just about anything you needed. So sad when it burned down. Always had fun in your community. Keep up the good work and congratulations on your upcoming "huge" celebration. I'll be back.
 
Patsy "Forss" Partain

02 Jun 2007

I remember when Oja's burned down Christmas eve. We lived across the street. We left our house.  My sister Sue said goodbye to our house. I was five or six years old. (Was it 1965?) the Fetziks were living there. We went to the Krussow's for Christmas, they were everyone's gramma and grampa. I remember cans popping for days afterwards in the rubble. Anyone remember the Krussows?

02 Jun 2007

This is a great site and long overdue. I remember the Marshalls (probably Dan) icing the hill behind the school so we could slide down in our "go to school shoes" in the winter. Thanks for your service, by the way, Dan! Say hi to Sue! My mom and dad are still living there on Swan Lake where they raised three pretty good kids. After 55 years of marriage they do not want to be anywhere else. I visit and I take my kids and their friends to see what a great place it is. One of my kids brought a friend up and she had lived in London, Saudi Arabia, and Southern California. She said Pengilly was her favorite. I bought her a t-shirt.

David Willard

30 May 2007

Even though I wasn't born in Pengilly, I still consider it "home." My parents, Charles "Chuck" and Diane "Dee" Bradley raised my brother and I there. There is a park dedicated to my dad at the community center. Both of my parents had a true sense of community living in Pengilly. I have a lot of great memories. I remembering going to Ann's cafe, where she was always busy, so I answered the phone and sold candy, etc. while I hung out there. I usually got a free burger or something for helping. I was a lifeguard at the Swan Lake beach. I used to waitress for Margaret at Mr. Roberts. I still go there on occasion to say "hi" and of course eat. I remember our neighborhood night games (especially, tin can alley) with the Johnson and Becicka crew as neighbors, we always had plenty of kids to play! Hopefully the statue of limitations has ran out on my following memories...spear fishing in the crick on the golf course and running from the DNR man...keg parties at the tressel behind the ballpark or at Michaelson's field or Draper pit. I have many friends who still are there and hope to see them at the celebration!

Dawn "Bradley" Morrow

29 May 2007

Hi, I sure have enjoyed the pictures and stories that have been coming in. How many remember walking from the school to the Little White Library after school when it was at the corner across from the 76 station? There were times when we would run back to the school just in time to catch our bus. There was something about that little one room library that I hold on to as a fond memory. I also enjoy sipping coffee from the cups I have purchased at the ITC.

Rita (Kotaska) Nelson.

26 May 2007
Hello All! The best thing I remember as a child was going to Ann's Cafe. Loading up on her penny candy and the food and malt's were always great. Life was good growing up in a small town. See ya all in Aug. 2008.
 
Amy (McNeil) Melius

24 May 2007

Hi all my Mom just told me about this Web site, it is great. A GREAT JOB to all. I remember so many things about Pengilly, like Pete M said the outdoor movies, taking a blanket to sit on going over to Van Epps store to get pop and goodies to eat while watching. Going down to the Main beach to swim, without a life guard. Growing up next to the Marshalls, Ulenkamps, Meterzs, Cravens & Hancocks and the Douasts across the field and Oja's Store and Ann's what a place.  Hope to see all in Aug 08

Kay {Vail} Dworzynski

24 May 2007


I am a young Pengillian and I know that plenty of people around my age group are going to be attending the centennial events! My memories of Pengilly start with camping with my family at the Deaf Camp, Staying at Mr. Roberts on the 4th, riding our bikes to softball practice and stopping at Ann's Cafe and the ICT for treats and getting golf balls out of the crick at the course! This should be a fun time for everyone.

Katie Kessler (Sertich)

21 May 2007

Thank you for visiting our website! Pengilly was a great place to grow up in or visit. Please tell us what you remember while you were here and if you're still here. On Friday, August 29, 2008 we are having Registration, but also a gathering of friends who went to the Pengilly School. What do remember about going to school there? How about the skating rink? Even though Some went to Nashwauk/Keewatin schools and lived in Pengilly, please share your thoughts and memories. We all had some common links. Tell us about them, please. Our committee is busy planning many events that draw us together before the Centennial, so check in often to see what's happening and then join us!

Molly (Marshall) Randall

21 May 2007

Please keep the memories coming in to our website! We'd love hearing all your stories from what you can think of while living in Pengilly. We'd like to hear from anyone who had any connections to our "Town That Never Was". How about the school...what do you remember? Remember the skating rink? On Friday of the Centennial we're going to have a Registration and gathering of anyone who went to the elementary school. If you just want to stay and visit with us, that's fine too. Bring along pictures and stories to exchange. Thank you and spread the news to family and friends to check us out.

Molly (Marshall) Randall

20 May 2007

What a wonderful website! I especially loved the old pictures. Pengilly was a wonderful place to grow up. Like most everyone else my age, my memories are of spending time at Ann's Cafe, the beach and the Teen hang-out by the beach. I too plan to attend and hope to see many old friends that weekend.

Vicky Badavinac

18 May 2007

What I remember most is weekends visiting my grandma, Joyce Stensrude. We'd walk down to the corner gas station or up on the old train tracks. She'd always feed the neighborhood dogs leftover meat. Pengilly holds a special place in my heart.

18 May 2007

Pengilly has always been home to me, although I have lived in many towns and cities across the US, Pengilly will always be home. I now live in Hibbing. My best memories are the main beach and my next door neighbor Pat Marshall and all the stories he used to tell and never miss a beat. Pat would make them up and he could tell great stories for hours on end, he would have been a great man.

Bill Edwards

17 May 2007

Hello Pengilly, I'm so thrilled to see a website and be able to contribute. My pictures will be arriving soon via my brother & sister-in-law. I've now lived in WA state longer than I did in MN, but I have so many memories of Pengilly!! The penny candy and malts at Ann's, riding my bike 2 miles to early morning swimming lessons at Main Beach, spending time with my Grandma Langton. Too many to mention... Looking forward to the reunion next year.

Margaret (Summers) Bonnell

15 May 2007

I do remember the free movies at our residence in the year(s) 1953-54-or so. If you wish, I could write a short article about it. Also, my mother has pictures of the train wreck.....might be interesting.

Peter Marinoff

09 May 2007

Barb and Shelly what a great job on this web site you guys rock. I do have an addition to the family fun days on July 14th there will be a street dance with a live band sponsored by the Crazy Loon and Dozers. I will get the name of the band soon.

06 May 2007

What a great idea to have this web site. I also remember the large portions at Ann's cafe and the times I would ride bike or walk the 3 1/2 miles into town to the beach. What fun my brothers and sister and I would have digging worms and selling them to all the fishermen at the swan lake bridge. We then would buy treats at the Indian Point Resort. It sure was fun growing up in a small town. Looking forward to the centennial.

06 May 2007

hello this is betty toronto just dropping by to say "hi"

04 May 2007

I would like to say that you have done a good job on the web site!! I remember Ann's BIG burgers, malts and the BIG bag of french fries she always gave us!! The chewy red coins in the candy case were always good and the ice cream cones were way too tall !!!!! The beach was the place to go and I always could find something to buy at Oja's. Pengilly was a good place to grow-up and still is a nice place to live!!!!

03 May 2007

What I remember the most in my youth were the long summers. They seemed to last forever. I loved going to the beach in front of Badavinac's home. I enjoyed many a day swimming at Swan Lake Beach. Where in my teens I was a lifeguard. We Marshall kids loved playing tin can alley, hanging out in the big tree, and swinging on the flag pole at the school. Good job on the web site!!

Colleen Vaneps

03 May 2007

All we needed was a swimsuit and towel wrapped around us. As kids we could hardly wait to get down to the beach during the summer. It was difficult walking barefoot on the pavement when it was hot, so we tried to stay on the sandy shoulders. We seldom wore shoes to the beach because with all the kids in our family we only had one or two pairs at the most and they were our school or church ones. The Lakeview was nearby and we would go into the bar to get candy and chips. I can still remember the smell of that bar. If we were lucky someone we knew would be in there who would buy us our treats!

03 May 2007

Hello to everyone from another of the Marshall kids, Kathy Prawer. I won't ever forget how great my chocolate malt tasted from Ann's Cafe. To this day, none has been the equal. Anyone else remember reading the comic books in the rack by the door of Oja's grocery store? I remember my brother Tim reading them to me, until one of the employees would come and shoo us away.

03 May 2007

I would like to say how proud I am to serve in the Air Force and expect to be home for the Centennial. The site looks great. I remember delivering papers for years around most of the center of "Town" and mowing so many lawns. Of course Pete's APCO sold gas for $0.35 cents a gallon and the mower can only held half a gallon. Also loved to go to the laundromat and get a red cream soda. Ann's burgers were the very best to be had and she always gave us kids more than we could eat so we shared them out.

Daniel Marshall, from Basrah Iraq. Got to 102 F yesterday and expect 105 F today.

 
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