The queen and her court

The queen and her court, 1953. After selling the most buttons used to fund Hibbing's 6oth Anniversary celebration, Joanne Tomaino was crowned Miss Hibbing. Her court of duchesses and princesses, chosen based on their successful sales of buttons were, (clockwise, starting at the queen's left) Jean Teske, Joan Crawford, Nancy Perttula, Nancy Lyckholm, Sally Koskinen, Nancy Higginbotham, Doris Egeland, Evangeline Kangalos, Barbara Scander, queen-heir.

When it comes to summer celebrations, Hibbing has put on some quite spectacular events over the years. Honoring Hibbing’s birthdays, or anniversaries as they are also called, these big parties came to be known as Jubilees. In 1953, in honor of the 60th Anniversary of Hibbing, a particularly memorable Jubilee was organized.

In conjunction with the Jubilee, the St. Louis County Fair was held during the same week. It broke all attendance records. Also during those days in 1953 there were class reunions, banquets, dedications, and a huge parade. All were reported to be very well-attended. One of the most noted events was the queen contest. 20 young women ranging in age from 18 to 22 hoped to become Miss Hibbing. The winning candidate was the young woman who sold the most Jubilee buttons and the runner-up was named the queen-heir.

My great thanks to Joanne Tomaino Lipovetz who brought to my attention the outstanding celebration held in the summer of 1953. Joanne’s memories and scrapbook, along with the Hibbing Daily Tribunes from August, 1953, and a dozen or more newsletters prepared for the queen candidates. These newsletters were given to the candidates on an almost daily basis in the weeks leading up to the Jubilee. The newsletters were prepared by the indefatigable Irene Bedard, chairman of the queen committee for the 60th anniversary. Irene worked at the Hibbing Daily Tribune and was a proud supporter of all things Hibbing.

~ Mary Palcich Keyes

Queen Candidates

No celebration is complete without a queen; this being coronation year (Queen Elizabeth II was crowned Great Britain’s queen on June 2, 1953~MPK) Hibbing will have a full royal court during the 60th Anniversary celebration.

Hibbing is fortunate to have so many lovely girls, not only lovely but charming as well.

The success of the celebration will depend on the following queens and their sales of buttons:

Maureen Hurley, sponsored by the Hibbing Youth Center. Bernie Ahachich, sponsored by Nides Fashion Shop. Joan Crawford, sponsored by the Hibbing Daily Tribune. Marilyn Keto, sponsored by Montgomery Ward & Co. . Sally Koskinen, sponsored by the Lions Club. Vanita Beidler, sponsored by the Elks Lodge. Doris Egeland, sponsored by Central Labor Union. Sally Patterson, sponsored by Feldman’s Dept. Store. Bernadine Cavalier, sponsored by Sapero’s Style Shop. Joanne Tomaino, sponsored by M.A. Hanna Co. . MaryAnn Babich, sponsored by Kohler Electric Co. . Nancy Higginbotham, sponsored by the Moose Lodge. Jean Teske, sponsored by Cleveland Cliffs Co. . Nancy Lyckholm, sponsored by Hibbing Fire Department. Rhea Daneiko, sponsored by Hibbing Junior College. Mabel Clemans, sponsored by Industrial Area, Hwy. 169. Rosemary Krier, sponsored by Degree of Honor, Protective Association. Evangeline Kangalos, sponsored by NW Bell Telephone Company Employees. Nancy Perttula, sponsored by West Mesaba 4-H Clubs. Barbara Scander, sponsored by Hibbing Business and Professional Women’s Club.

Queens and Floats

Queen candidates whose sponsors also have floats in the parade will ride on their sponsor’s float. Other queen candidates are assigned to other floats, either by request of those entering the float, or by arrangement of your chairman.

Weather permitting, all candidates will wear formals. The question has been raised, should formals be long or ballerina length. This is optional.

Coronation Ball

The Coronation Ball is set for Saturday, August 15th in the Memorial Building Arena. Dancing will begin at 9:30 P.M. There will be Folk Dances at the start and during intermission.

The Grand March will begin about 9:45 P.M. and lead into the coronation ceremony. Minnesota Governor C. Elmer Anderson will crown the queen.

Candidates will have their own escorts for the dance—that is, ask the man of your choice…because your chairman is no Dan Cupid!

Thousands Come To Hibbing For Jubilee

Hibbing wound up its biggest celebration Sunday, closing the Diamond Jubilee program with the dedication to the late Judge Thomas Brady at the Bennett Park ball field and the attractions of the St. Louis County Fair. The events were all blessed with good weather.

At the ball field, a plaque was unveiled in memory of pioneer Hibbing Municipal judge Thomas Brady. Judge Edward Freeman (retired) of Virginia said, “This plaque is being presented because Judge Brady was the founder and patron and organizer of good baseball in the Village of Hibbing.”

The multi-day celebration attracted thousands of visitors to Hibbing, including hundreds of former residents. The parade Friday was seen by the largest crowd ever to watch an event in Hibbing. The two-hour parade attracted between more than 20,000 spectators, according to the Hibbing police. Several dozen sparkling floats glided down Howard Street to the delight of the crowds. Gold Star Mothers and First Settlers rode in special cars until being escorted to the reviewing stand located between 5th and 6th Avenue.

The Elks Lodge hosted a reception and tea for all the visiting queens from other towns, the Hibbing candidates, their mothers and chaperones, following the parade. A replica of the coronation crown worn by Queen Elizabeth II of England served as the table centerpiece. It was made by Mrs. Lyli Holcomb of Kelly Lake and took 200 hours to construct this exact duplicate. Gold candles flanked the crown, and cedar branches decorated the tea table. Garden flowers were used to trim the clubrooms. Stacia O’Grady presented a program of background piano music throughout the reception.

On Saturday, Hibbing’s past was re-lived and its future toasted at the First Settlers banquet which preceded the coronation ball. About 350 persons attended the banquet. Guests of honor were Gov. and Mrs. Anderson; Mrs. H.W. Mathewson Jr., granddaughter of Frank Hibbing, the founder of the Ore Capital; Glen Merritt, Duluth, and Harry Merritt, Charleston, N.C., sons of members of the famous Merritt family which pioneered the iron ore industry on the Mesaba Range; Robert Longyear, who with his late father conducted early mine exploration work, and the Hibbing queen candidates.

Victor Hultstrand, the principal speaker, praised the faith of the pioneers of the community who refused to accept the idea that the life of a mining town must be short. Their ability to overcome obstacles made Hibbing the metropolis of the Iron Range, he declared.

David Graham brought the greetings of the First Settlers, and Winfield Remington made opening remarks. Dr. Richard Barden of the St. Louis County Historical Society related some of the history of the area.

The climax of Saturday was the crowning of Miss Joanne Tomaino, sponsored by the M.A. Hanna Co., as Hibbing’s queen. The crown was placed on Miss Tomaino’s head by Governor C. Elmer Anderson at the coronation ball in the Memorial Arena.

Miss Barbara Scander was named “queen heir” to reign in the absence of the queen. Princesses named were Evangeline Kangalos, Doris Egeland, Sally Koskinen, and Nancy Higginbotham. Selected as duchesses were Jeanne Teske, Joan Crawford, Nancy Perttula, Nancy Lyckholm. Ladies in waiting were the remaining candidates.

Basil Young was master of ceremonies at the coronation and Mayor Arthur Carleton welcomed visitors.

Soloist was Mrs. Ruth Frisk Ryan, who sang “Song of Peace” written by a former Hibbing resident, Mrs. Badonna Hallock Stein, Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Gerald Thomas, 60th Anniversary chairman, was the master of ceremonies for the night, and the Rev. Martin Heine gave the invocation and benediction. The dinner was served by St. Rita’s Guild.

Hibbing Queens Raise $7,213 For Jubilee

Hibbing queen candidates during the 60th anniversary celebration sold $7,213 worth of anniversary buttons, a final tabulation during a meeting of the anniversary committee Monday at the village hall revealed.

Outstanding accounts were ordered paid and closed, leaving $2,821.82 in the treasury, Eldred Sundberg, anniversary treasurer reported. A contingent fund was set up by the anniversary committee to send Miss Joanne Tomaino, Hibbing 60th anniversary queen, as Hibbing’s representative to the St. Paul Winter Carnival, Minneapolis Aquatennial, and Duluth and Range community fetes.

Plans also call for providing Miss Tomaino with a wardrobe from the anniversary committee funds.

It was decided that funds remaining would be governed by a committee of 12 representatives of organizations active in the anniversary celebration. A portion of the fund is to be retained as working capital for a brief annual Hibbing celebration.

From George Fisher’s Column “Along the Iron Range”

We observed a blind man viewing Hibbing’s 60th Jubilee parade and literally seeing it through the eyes and words of his dear wife.


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