I’ve always been fascinated by history..especially the history of the company where I worked for 32 years.
If anybody had a question..or needed information about the station’s background or its early celebrities, I was the go-to guy.
I first started rummaging through the Keloland archives in 1978 when I was asked to put together the two hour special celebrating Kelo’s 25th anniversary.
I spent months going through old films and boxes of photographs. I did it again for our 35th, 40th and 50th anniversary specials.
The point is, I thought I’d seen every film, video or photograph that was ever shot..so imagine my glee when I got an email from Michael Hartig wondering if I’d be interested in some pictures he had received from Ken Mills,another former Kelo Radio guy, who has produced a fine documentary on Midcontinent Broadcasting.
Michael is the son of Leo and Gena Hartig who were on-air personalities at Keloland for nearly 20 years. They were great people and I learned a lot from them both. Leo passed away several years ago but Eugenia is still going strong and looking great. She lives in Omaha now..close to all three of her boys.
When I received the disc and downloaded the images, I just sort of giggled at seeing so many for the first time.
I thought I might share a few of them here with you every once in a while.
The photo below is of Roger Russell going through some of the mail sent in from viewers of the Morrell Treasure Chest. He was one of several guys that hosted the nightly drawing. Roger also filled in on weather and news..plus he did lots of commercials and had a regular shift on KELO radio.
The Treasure Chest couldn’t have been simpler. Just pick the correct key to open the lock and receive a treasure trove of Morrell meat products.
I’m not sure if more products were added after each unsuccessful draw. Maybe somebody remembers.
The next photo I find especially interesting.(Try enlarging it on your computer to see the numbers better) It was taken in our new Kelo TV studios on election night 1960. I don’t know any of the ladies on the phones..but the guys doing the broadcast are..from left to right..news director, Doug Hill, Bart Kull, Will Carlson and Murray Stewart.
1960 was the year when John Kennedy edged Richard Nixon for the presidency. (Not in Republican South Dakota, of course.)
It was the year when George McGovern tried unsuccessfully to unseat longtime GOP Senator, Karl Mundt. McGovern was later named by President Kennedy to head up his Food For Peace program.
It was also the year that Democrat governor, Ralph Herseth (Stephanie’s grandpa) was unseated after just one term by Republican, Archie Gubbrud.
Both incumbent Republican Congressmen (yes, we used to have two) Ben Reifel and E.Y. Berry cruised to re-election that year.
Kennedy ended up carrying the state of Minnesota, but DFL’ers weren’t able to get their man, Orville Freeman, re-elected governor. He lost to Republican, Elmer Anderson.
But Freeman wasn’t without a job long. Kennedy named him U.S. Secretary of Agriculture..a post he held until 1969.
Let me know if enjoy these pictures and behind the scene narratives..there are lots to share.
You can also find several old Kelo photos by clicking Keloland history down the left side of our home page.