Letter to the editor: Thanks to all who helped record Silver Bay history
I am writing to thank everyone who worked to make the production and May 9th release of the book “Company Town: An Oral History about Life in Silver Bay, Minnesota, 1950s – 1980s” a success. The book is based on interviews with 64 longtime or former residence of Silver Bay and seeks to show how Silver Bay’s former status as a “company town” set it apart from most other small towns across America. All of the interviewees deserve credit for their willingness to help preserve Silver Bay’s history through this project.
I especially want to thank Ruth Koepke, who opened the archives of the Bay Area Historical Society and provided several excellent interviews from the past to incorporate into the book — some BAHS interviews were of people who are no longer with us, which underscores the importance of doing this project.
William M. Kelley High School Principal Joe Nicklay deserves special credit for his willingness to serve as the grant facilitator, and the Lake Superior School District staff members have been excellent, too. Sue Spies of Carefree Living in Silver Bay provided a beautiful facility for holding meetings to record interviews with longtime area residents and for gathering together to celebrate the book’s release, and Gretchen Jacobson from Carefree provided snacks and refreshments for the interview sessions.
Kelley High School students Brett Mensing, Alexis Jacobson and Sabrina Jacobson assisted during interview sessions. They, along with project intern Cody Durkee, a junior at Northwestern College, provided assistance for the book release event, as well. Cody worked on publicity for the book and the event, and he also worked on transcription of interviews, as did Lauryn White and Kelsey Ericson from Northwestern.
Kent Kaiser, Ph.D.
KHS Class of 1984
St. Paul, Minn.