Events

Middle School Essay Contest Winners

Washburn Essay Winners & Education  Outreach Coordinator John Gidley

Richard I. Bong Veterans Historical Center is proud to announce the winners of the 2016-17 Middle School Essay contest. Students were asked to answer the question “How do the new technologies and inventions created during World War II affect or shape our lives today?”

“The response was overwhelming, all the students did a great job” said John Gidley, Education and Outreach Coordinator for the Center. “It was so hard to narrow it down to just three winners.”
The winners were chosen from 100 essays that were submitted from Northern Wisconsin and Northern Minnesota. The winners received a $50 cash prize, 4 admissions to the Center and an “American’s Ace of Aces” book by General George C. Kenny.

2016-17 Middle School Essay Contest” winners are:
-Sorley Swanstrom-Arnold, Grade 8, Washburn Middle School, Washburn Wisconsin.
-Sarah Earing, Grade 7, Washburn Middle School, Washburn Wisconsin
-Sebastian Rosales, Grade 7, Washburn Middle School, Washburn Wisconsin

Honorable mentions are:
-Jack Broadmore, Grade 6, Ordean East Middle School, Duluth Minnesota
-Lily Wheeler, Grade 7, Washburn Middle School, Washburn Wisconsin
-Collin Krmpotich, Grade 7, NorthStar Community Charter School, Minong Wisconsin
-Meghan Dougherty, Grade 8, Washburn Middle School, Washburn Wisconsin

The Mission of the Richard I. Bong Veterans Historical Center is to preserve and honor the memory of Major Bong and all veterans of World War II, as well as subsequent conflicts and to provide educational resources for the Twin Ports area community and beyond.

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World War II Shipbuilding in Duluth and Superior Book Signing and Program

On May 25th the Richard I Bong Veterans Historical Center will host local author Gerald Sandvick and his new book, World War II Shipbuilding in Duluth and Superior. It is the newest addition to Arcadia Publishing’s popular Images of America series.

World War II hinged on the Allies having enough ships to both fight the enemy and to carry millions of tons of war goods across the world’s oceans. Shipyards on the Atlantic, Gulf, and Pacific Coasts built thousands of vessels, but America’s sometimes forgotten Fourth Coast, the Great Lakes, built hundreds of ships as well.

From 1940 to 1945, warships, cargo haulers, Coast Guard tenders, and fleet service auxiliaries of many types were launched from the Twin Ports. Half a dozen shipyards in Duluth-Superior produced more than 200 vessels of 10 main types, up to 338 feet long and 5,000 tons, all having to make close to a 2,400-mile journey to the ocean.

The shipyards grew from nearly nothing in 1939 to become industries employing thousands of men and women by 1945 and making a major contribution to the story of America in World War II.

Join us on May 25th at 6:30 p.m. in celebrating the book’s publication with an author program followed by a book signing.

Refreshments will be provided.
The Mission of the Richard I. Bong Veterans Historical Center is to preserve and honor the memory of Major Bong and all veterans of World War II, as well as subsequent conflicts and to provide educational resources for the Twin Ports area community and beyond.

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Richard I Bong Veterans Center to host World War I program and display

Muster of Troops Superior, Wisconsin,” image, 1917. University Archives, UW-Superior Special Collections; Superior, Wisconsin

On April 13th, the Richard I Bong Veterans Center will host Clyde Annala, who will review World War One, its cause, the conflict, and consequences while providing a look at life in the Twin Ports during this tumultuous time.
Clyde is a lifelong Northland resident, who joined the U.S. Army in 1968. He served with the 82nd Airborne Division, and a tour in Vietnam with the 25th Infantry Division and 247th “Dustoff” Air Ambulance Detachment. After his service, he was a police officer for 26 years, retiring from the Duluth Police Department as a detective, sergeant, and tactical commander. He has been researching the Twin Ports during WW I for many years.

 

In addition to the program, we will be opening our brand new trench display. Visitors will have the opportunity to see a mock WWI trench that includes authentic Army equipment and uniforms. We invite you to come and witness the local stories of fallen WWI veterans and experience what it was like for them as they battled in the iconic trenches.

Refreshments will be provided. The program will start at 6:30 p.m.

The Mission of the Richard I. Bong Veterans Historical Center is to preserve and honor the memory of Major Bong and all veterans of World War II, as well as subsequent conflicts and to provide educational resources for the Twin Ports area community and beyond.

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Bong Veterans Center announces new Executive Director

Hayes Scriven

The Richard I. Bong Veterans Historical Center announces that Hayes Scriven has joined the Center as its new Executive Director. Scriven, a native of Nerstrand, Minnesota, started at the Center on March 6, replacing Robert Furhrman who had been at the reins for the last 10 years.

Scriven, a 2005 University of Minnesota Duluth graduate, spent his senior year at the center as an intern. He assisted in the development of the “Holidays on the Homefront” exhibit. After graduating, he spent the next 11 years at the Northfield Historical Society where he served as Executive Director.

“In the process of doing our due diligence on the hiring of a new Executive Director we reached out to a few local museum professionals in the area,” said Bong Center Chairman Terry Lundeberg. “Hayes name continued to pop up in conversations so we knew we wanted to bring him in for an interview.”

“During the interview process we knew immediately that Hayes was the individual we wanted and couldn’t wait to get him to Northland,” said Board Member Ryan Kern. “There is something to be said about the Bong Center when you can go out and recruit your ideal candidate and they see your vision and want to be a part of it.”

“I am extremely excited to be back in the Twin Ports area,” Scriven stated. “My wife and I have always said, if there was an opportunity to get back to Northland we would seriously considered it. We love it up here!” Scriven credits his time at the center as an intern for where is love of local history comes from. “When I was interning here I fell in love with the personal stories I was researching. I felt a connection and a better understanding for the area. I knew after that internship that I wanted to work in a small museum, to preserve and document local history.”

Under Scriven’s leadership, the Northfield Historical Society had been awarded nearly $450,000 through the Minnesota Historical Society’s Historical and Cultural Heritage Grant (“Legacy”) program. These grants facilitated the construction of an elevator and six ADA-compliant restrooms, and the installation of compact archival shelving — all at the society’s downtown Northfield Scriver Building. The grants also have allowed the Society to hire professional staff in order to complete several curatorial projects.

“I am very honored to be coming back to such a great organization. The Bong Center is a very important part of the Northland and I am very eager to help preserve and document the local military history.” “We have an amazing staff and board here and we are going to do great things!”

The Mission of the Richard I. Bong Veterans Historical Center is to preserve and honor the memory of Major Bong and all veterans of World War II, as well as subsequent conflicts and to provide educational resources for the Twin Ports area community and beyond.

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Big Band Dance

Saturday, February 25, 2017

6:00pm-9:00pm

 

Swing to the sounds of the big bands.  Music is provided by the Esko High School Jazz Band.  Dancing instructions compliments of Samantha Weller, UMD/Duluth Swing Dancing Club

Admission is $5.00 per person with a family cap of $25.00

Tickets sold at the door

Snacks and soda are available for purchase

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Camp Bong

FOR THE KIDS!

Camp Bong is an event for children grades 2 through 6. Children will camp out in our museum and enjoy a number of activities including getting behind the wheel of a P-38 fighter plane. Camp Bong is March 31st and space is limited. Register Today!

 

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2017 High School Essay Contest

In a historic press conference on April 7, 1954 President Eisenhower alluded to a “Falling Domino Principle” in which he explained the strategic importance of Vietnam in Southeast Asia. He related that if it fell into the hands of the communists, soon after the rest of the region would fall. This announcement laid the foundation for the United States involvement in Vietnam. Looking back some sixty plus years, The Richard I. Bong Veterans Historical Center asks the question:

 “Was the United States effective in deterring the spread of Communism in Southeast Asia as a result of our presence in Vietnam?”

Remember to be original and creative in your essay writing.  Center staff will read and evaluate all essays.

 

Awards:

  • The top essay will receive a Grand Prize of $250.
  • A $50 cash prize will be awarded to the First and Second Runner-Up.
  • Three honorable mentions will receive consolation prizes.
  • Winning essays will be posted on the Center’s web site. The honorable mentions will be listed on the web site.

 

Eligibility:

  • Contest is open to all students in grades 9-12 in Wisconsin and Minnesota.
  • Your essay must be original and 500 words or less. Only one essay per student may be submitted.
  • Essays may be emailed to the Education Outreach Coordinator at the Bong Historical Center

Deadline is Friday, April 28th, 2017 at 5:00 pm.

Further guidelines, formatting requirements, and submission instructions.

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“The Twin Ports in the Cold War”

pic1Come visit our newest exhibit and learn how the Cold War affected our region.  From jet interceptors and missiles to radar installations and bomb shelters, the Twin Ports was on the Front Line of the decades-long nuclear stare-down.

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