Julia King Story

I can remember as a child sitting out under the oak tree in my grandmother’s back yard on those blistery hot days of August. This was a time before air conditioning, or turbo fans—a time when you rented your phone from the phone company and there were no microwave ovens or home computers. A time when you had to work a little harder but life seemed a little simpler. We would sit under that oak waiting in anticipation for a breeze to come by—there was nothing to do because it was just to hot to move—except talk.


Or maybe for you it was during the holidays while you waited for your grandmother to finish baking the pies so you could have that delicious baked left over crust with cinnamon sprinkled on it. In anticipation you would sit and wait and wait and wait …. keeping your grandmother company with the questions that only kids will ask—so as not to miss out on the delectable prize

What is the point of all this reminiscing you ask?

When Sharon, our city clerk, came across a historical paper written around 1967 by Julia E. King. She gave the article to me as a newsletter idea. I was excited to read it. As I sat down to cherish ever word, an image came into my head of a conversation between a child and a grandmother occurring maybe during one of the scenarios I presented in the first two paragraphs.

Forgive my arrogance for assuming I can pull this off but the following is my rendition of "Stacy Remembered" by J. E. King in a conversation form. So sit down and think back to a time you shared with one of your grandparents, or an elderly aunt or uncle and enjoy. The Best part you might even learn something. KD

Who were the first people that lived in Stacy/Lent?

Well, the first building in the town of lent was just above the Stacy cemetery and was a log cabin and is still a part of this home now owned by Blaines.

This was William Robinson (a great grandfather of Mrs. Bart Olson. He came from Scotland and was a tall, husky, shrewd man and married to Christiana Styrmalth.

They had lived in the east for a while and then moved to the spot I mentioned before 1 mile north of Stacy which is on highway 61, seven children were born to this marriage

John and Mary Lent emigrated from Germany.

Harvey Lent was only 19 years of age when they came across. It took them seven weeks to cross the ocean.

My great grandfather Lent built a small log cabin, which is now on the Bart Olson farm.

There were eleven children in this family. Great grandfather Lent made a rocker and a chair without nails and it is still on the B. T. Olson place

How did they get food and stuff?

Harvey Lent (for whom the town of Lent was named was a great reader and church member.) Well, he married Maggie Robinson and six children were born to them. He packed his supplies from St. Paul, then a mere trading post 35 miles away. The supplies were occasionally hauled with oxen. He traded salt to the Indians for venison and tanned the hides. Grandmother Lent made gloves and moccasins out of the hides. She also made her soap and lye. Their meals consisted mostly of corn-bread-berries-venison-honey and wild fowls.

At this time the stagecoach ran from St. Paul to Superior. Mrs. B.T. Olson’s mother (Mrs. A. W. Sherm (Eva)) had to herd the cows, as there were no fences.

She was born Oct. 10, 1877, Only the fields were fenced. At this time when cows were turned loose in the morning, they were watched as to what direction they went and sometimes they were obliged to go as far as eight miles in the evening to find them.

Blueberries were very plentiful. Took all day to pick a bushel and sold for about $2.00 per bushel. But these berries are very scarce around here now.

Grandfather Sherman moved from Linwood and ran a store also built the first large house seen from the depot. Stacy was first called "Middle-Branch" Later a man by the name of Stacy B. Collins moved here and sold land. The town of Stacy was named after him. Joshua Hobbs, Frank Dawson, Mr. Henry and Sherman were among the first store keepers. J. M. Tucker and brothers came here in about 1898 and bought out the Dyerman and other store at that time.

J. M. Tucker was here about twelve years when F. C. Keacher and Dell Lent bought him out.

Harry Shorrocks also built a store here next to the house where Walter Lent now lives which was the first house built in the town of Stacy.

The first post-office (very small) is out at the Francis Dawson place and should be given to the Historical Society.

The store owned by F. C. Keacher was built 41 years ago and has since been remodeled by Mrs. King and is now an apartment building. The only store in Stacy now is run by Dahl Brothers on Highway 61 and also has a large hardware store in connection with it.

The Rustic Inn and the Stacy garage as well as the English Lutheran church is located there, as in a Baptist basement Church a little over one mile from Stacy on Highway 61. The Methodist church was here in town over 50 yrs. And was moved out to Linwood where there had been no church for many years. Other stores run a feed store bought potatoes, all other kinds of other produce plus blueberries later several more houses were built and many potato buyers were here. He also bought both green and dry cord-wood $1.50 and $2.50 per cord. Stacy was considered a very good market.

Potatoes were hauled in wagons or sleds and the market was black with the loads rolling in early in the A.M. I (Mrs. King) worked there for several years and so did the Dennerlys, who later purchased one of these stores. F. C. Keacher and D. C. Lent purchased the Tucker store after he decided to move to Aitkin on account of sending his son Clifford to High School and tho’t him too young to be away from home. He ran a store there in Aitkin for years and later on the McGregor boys became his partners there. Later he went out near Edgemont, S.D. and he and his son took up claims. They also had a store and mill. He died there about 5 years ago.

What about schools?

Cora Lent and Anna Moore were the first teachers in the two-room schoolhouse that stood where the garage now is.

It moved across the track in about 1920 Mrs. Logan Grant’s great grandfather built the Second house in Stacy in 1885. He walked to Taylor’s Falls to pay the taxes in the first years. Emil Heinke was another one of the Stacy merchants about 15 years. He retired about 20 year ago. Died in Jan. 1964 and is buried in the Stacy Cemetery.

Did you have a mayor?

F. C. Keacher was the first mayor of Stacy 41 year ago. Byers and Curtis and Jim Nordius were the first blacksmiths. Later Nordin built the garage, which is now, a part of the store building "Dahl Bros". Connie Lindquist was a depot agent here for a number of years. So was G. L. Warner. From 1913 to 1926, Louis Peterson weighed the produce on the big scales owned by F. C. Keacher for years. Arnold Lent was County Treasurer of Chisago Co. for about 40 yrs. Having quit about two years ago.

Laurence Patak from Germany moved here in 1914 and run a barber shop until May 27th 1914. He and Carl Johnson, the Postmaster, were drowned on Rush Lake when a quick wind storm came up and turned the boat over, neither could swim. L. P. Depot boarded up as in most towns.

The new Post Office built by Lester Hewson in 1941 and the Postmaster now is Bert Stranlind.

Keacher’s store built in 1923, in the last few years it was turned into an apartment house. The store next to it built by Harry Shorrocks in about 1905 is now a factory and home.

Has there always been a town hall?

The first Hall still in use for elections, lodge meetings, dances, etc. The school moved from the corner where the garage now stands and remodeled across from the Hall, made modern, has two teachers.

Children that where in the 7th grade are transported by bus to Chisago City. Several warehouses and the feed mill owned by Edgar Barrot were run by Oscar Rieck, 17 years plus 5 years in the store. He has now passed on. (Son Carl and Warner Patak run the barber shop)

How did everyone talk to each other—so far from where they came?

Well the telephone office is now gone as the Telephone Company was bought out by the Chisago City Telephone Company in 1963.

Mrs. Oscar Beck was the first post-mistress, a small building by the railroad track on the Oscar Rieck lot and lived in it during the winter in the back part. Her earnings were about $20.00 per month, this was in 1898 and she kept the Post Office open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Died in 1953. Frank Sherman got the Post Office in 1901 the Northern Pacific Railway had been built as far as Wyoming in 1872.

John Dyermau and Mr. Henry were two of the first store keepers. There were a good many registered letters in those days. It cost 8¢ to register a letter plus 2¢ for postage. There were three rural Post Offices receiving mail from Stacy, Linwood, Oxford and Bloomford, they received mail and sent mail three times a week. The Carrier drove a horse and buggy or cart and had three mail sacks but contained little mail. True-blood was one of the first station agents.

Did you go to church?

Stacy did not have a church building when I was 10 years old. A hall was put up by the Woodman lodge and J. M. Tucker who also handled lumber offered to furnish the material at cost if it could be used for church services. It was built about 42 years ago. Many attended there, the hall belonged to Dyerman who also gave a piece of land near there to build a Methodist church.

No church and then three went up all of a sudden, English, Lutheran, Swedish Lutheran, Methodist.

This was over 50 years ago. The cyclone going thru here took the Swedish Lutheran church almost before it was used. It was never rebuilt. They held services in the Methodist and also the Lutheran churches for a while.

This cyclone also completely demolished the Geo Baxter home, donations were taken up and a new home started again on the same spot. Later the building was sold and Baxters built another home on the other side of the highway 61, they had a large family and at about 92 yrs. of age Geo Baxter passed away and his wife almost a year ago. (88 years of age). They and two sons are buried in the Stacy Cemetery.

The first Pastor of the Methodist Church was John L. Parish (a student at Hamline). He married Mary Sunburg of Stacy and they are now spending their last days in Anoka in a house there, recently purchased by them. The first Lutheran Pastor was Elzie Baxter received (rev. Jenson) a broken leg in the cyclone.

The Stacy Cemetery- a part of the land first settled was given to the Stacy village and the oldest stone in the cemetery dates back to 1864 (William Robinson, died Dec. 4th)

Another hall was built 42 years ago, but was destroyed shortly by fire and the woodman never rebuilt it.

On highway 61 is a town hall and also where the village fire trucks are kept. Next to it is a garage, the first one located there was torn down when the highway was moved as was the Lindquist house sold and moved across the track by Gerald Fladland but is now the property of Mr. Dufeck. The Baxters, Frank Petersons, Sunburgs, and Wallers had some of the largest families in Stacy in those days. For a while there were not many children, but at the present time new families moved in and we have many children again.

The first blacksmith was old man Byers later run by James Nordin (now gone) who located on the highway with a garage. The Rustic Inn has been here a few years and is well patronized on highway 61 across from Dahls Super Market.

A liquor store on the opposite corner from the garage, the Lutheran church newly remodeled on 61 about 2 good blocks from the corner of Main Street and 61 and part of the first schoolhouse built in it. In 1917 the Inter-State Lumber came to town, run by Art Anderson and is no more. Was here for many years. Creamery and D.C. Lents store gone a good many years. Store building and shoe shop destroyed by fire and run by grandpa Rieck (shoe shop).

The older members past on and the younger ones were obliged to seek jobs in other towns and many of these younger ones settled there. Wilfred Keacher and Gerald Fladland spent most of their lives here and built new homes. Warner Patak has come back now also building a new home on 61, a number of the other younger ones have bought lots here and expect to build here soon.

The Methodist church consolidated with the Wyoming Methodist church on account of small membership, Rev. Bell was the pastor for 10 years living in North Branch. He died in 1953 and is buried in the Stacy cemetery. Some years later his wife passed away at the Walker home and was sent here for burial, died June 27th 1959.

Our present mayor is Sheldon Anderson.

Francis Waller, Vernon Waller and Mr. E. C. Waller as well as Ernest Richardson; Walter Shorrocks and Pete Norve were some of the first mail carriers on the routes. (one route here now, Laurence Frenning the mail carrier.)

So Stacy has changed a lot—huh?

The highway No. 19 running east of Stacy was just a place without a road surrounded by trees, meadows and a duck lake named "Mud Lake". The first 40 acres out of the village was owned by Louis Soderstrom.

When they were ready to move his place was sold to F. C. Keacher of Stacy, Minn. It was used for hunting wild ducks and other game.

Different city hunters were glad to rent for the purpose of duck hunting, especially. About 1938 F. C. Keacher and Jacob Kaufman each giving $50.00 so as to get the road started thru there instead of having to go a mile north of Stacy, then south so Kaufman could get to town.

This road for many years went no farther than the 40 acre line north of the Keacher property.

Kaufman’s could walk across to Stacy, but would have to go on the next road one mile north and up past the cemetery and down to the village of Stacy which made a long way and very unhandy. In the mean time F. C. Keacher built a three room cottage and both the children and themselves enjoyed very much going down there to cool off after leaving the store.

Later it became a six room cottage and was given to Wilfred Keacher and he lived in it until some years later a road went further thru to Chisago. Now is a pretty good road and much traveled that No.19.

Having decided to buy the homes and property of which there were a number it was decided to have it for a Game Refuge and so east of Stacy there are no houses until you come to the first cross-road. (State bought the places).

Deunerly and Lilya moved to Aitkin in 1905 were in the store business. Frank Lilya bought acres of potatoes to ship to his brother in Illinois. Cora Leiet and Frank Lilya lived here for a number of years, when he passed away after an operation in 1923, His son, Wilbur Lilya is a druggist in Pine City now and he also had a daughter Helen, who lives in the west. (Born in Stacy).

Harry and Kate Shorrocks moved to Siren, Wis. Built a store and home there also bought potatoes.

Mr. Trueblood was the first station agent remembered here.

A bank was built by Fred Warner in 1909 and he was the cashier

Frank Dawson taught school in Stacy about 1866, also had a store here in 1876, John Dyerman had a store here in 1894, Dawson also one of the first post masters, Lester Hewson one of the last postmasters, Bert Stranlin the present one, Fred Lent’s family had a farm about a mile from Stacy. Dell Lent, Arnold Lent, Cy Lent, Fred Lent , Laura and Grace , Fred Lents children . Dell Lent still lives on the A.W. Sherman place.