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Havre men work to preserve local high school history


Havre Daily News/Ryan Welch

Ron Hellman, left, and Jerry Engleson pose Tuesday with Havre High School year books.

Two community members are aiming to preserve annuals from the past while raising money for Havre High School.

The friends, Ron Hellman and Jerry Engleson, are now housing, between them, more than 700 high school yearbooks, Hellman said.

In 1991, Hellman said, he found out that the high school was going to throw out all the extra old annuals it had because of a lack of storage space.

Remembering Engleson's dad had a collection of annuals, helped him come up with the idea to take in the annuals himself.

Hellman said he contacted his friend and asked him if he would be interested in helping preserve the remaining annuals. Engleson agreed.

"We were so upset that someone would dump them. ... It was 30 or 40 cases," he said.

Each of them is storing half the yearbooks, Hellman said.

"At last count, we had 750 annuals," he said, adding that they would like to let the public know they have these annuals and they are selling them for $10 each.

"All the money will go back to the high school," Hellman said, after going in and talking to former Havre High School Principal Mike Haugen and deciding on a good price.

Havre Public School District Clerk Shanna Flores said the district has not decided where donation money from the yearbooks will go yet, adding that once a person has money they would like to donate to the school, it helps for them to have an idea or suggestion about where they would like the money to go to, such as to a certain activity.

For the years from 1992-97, Hellman said, he doesn't have a lot of annuals, but after those years, he has a ton of them.

"(The school) over-ordered 160 one year," he said.

"Kids order the yearbooks individually now, so there are not as many extra (as in previous years)," Haugen said.

People may be interested in purchasing the yearbooks for the memories, Hellman said, adding that there may not only be students but parents who want to remember their high school days.

Hellman also hopes if any community people have old annuals that they don't want, not only from Havre High School but also from Havre Central and Montana State University-Northern, that they contact him.

"We would like to collect them instead of people getting rid of them," he said.

He is interested in finding annuals before 1992, especially from 1969 to 1973, as those seem to be years that people are interested in obtaining, Hellman said.

People interested in purchasing a yearbook or donating a yearbook can contact Hellman at 265-9656.


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