Baseball Winter Is Not Far Behind

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I had met Joe Macintosh during the summer of 1956. Joe ran the Dairy Queen in the heart of the Great Northern Railway Butte Division, at a place called Havre, Montana population 10,000. The Butte Division is known for two seasons, summer and winter. Hand me down truisms from generation to generations would produce the old sayings that rolled off the tongues of the regulars to visitors: “One thing about being in Havre at 40 below”, is how a response would most likely begin with a visitor, “you add that to a forty mile an hour wind… it keeps the riff raff out.” Or, “When it’s 40 below and we get a 40 mile an hour wind you know winter is not far behind.” …show more content…

The Eastbound passengers, after spending hours cruising east of the Rocky Mountains with only wheat fields and as far one could see, surely were asking one another, “Why anyone would live here and what do they look like?” By the time, the Westbound arrived in Havre; the look from the dome car passengers was one of quizzical awe. Rising from their dome car seats and looking out the windows the passengers were straining to get a glimpse of a brochure promised mountain-any mountain. The brochures didn’t mention much about the thousand miles of Great Plains from Fargo, North Dakota to Cut Bank, Montana. It would be six more westbound hours, before those mountain views appeared. Like a shy bride, the residents of Havre did not flock to see the arrival each noon. Not unlike the shy bride, if folks were near the depot, most would not hesitate to take a quick glance at the train trying to make sense out of the depot activity. Years ago, Havre prided itself at having everything you need; that is to say, one of everything you need. Except for banks and bars, the Havre business community unspokenly seemed to frown on businesses that might want to come in and offer competition to an existing business or family interests. Joe McIntosh owned a Dairy Queen in Havre - the only Dairy Queen. . As a matter of fact, Joe had the only soft ice cream outlet in the town. That was Joes. Everyone knew it and respected his stake. Joe ran

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