Executive Board of Directors
Gil Mangels, President
Cathleen Wilde, VP
Mel Adams, VP
Joanne Mangels, Secretary
Gracia Normandeau Jones
Kendall Dupuis
Mike Maddy
Stan Cohen
Donna Maddux
Nancy Pray
Ned Wilde
Advisory Board of Directors
Paul Bonelli
Jim Pomajevich
A Non-Profit 501(c) (3) Corporation • 81-0437386
36094 Memory Lane Polson, MT 59860 406-883-6804
October 2010
Mounted square nail collection and "Handy Andy" tool set, donated
by Carl Skabronski .
Saying the summer of 2010 was very busy, is putting it mildly. Our 50
state visited during July, and visitors have come from 32 countries and seven
Canadian provinces. Because of the Centennial celebrations for both Glacier
National Park and Polson (in which we participated), we didn't mention that
this is Miracle of America's 25
Numerous antique/vintage auto clubs made us a part of their itinerary. The
Model T Ford Club of America graced our parking lot with 90 Fords from
1909 thru 1927. We were part of their national tour. That same week we hosted
part of the Polson High School Class of '60 reunion. Gil was very pleased that
so many of his old classmates were able to visit. A few became donors as well.
Judy [Fleming] Millard
donated a Bible and other religious books printed in
the Eskimo language;
Mary Ann Marsh
: Typewriter and early mounted
photos of her father;
Kathy [Pritchard] and husband Lorin Vlach
made a
cash donation for the WW2 Freedom truck which appears in at least one parade
each year. Frequent donor
Carl Skabronski
brought misc. gifts including his
mounted square nail collection and a Handy Andy juvenile carpentry set.
We were also pleased to be included in the Missoula Harley Davidson's
"Poker Run".
With our receptionist, Erma, retiring,
and Joanne's health problems, we are so
grateful for Kathy Korf, supervisor/
recruiter for the Experience Works
program. She has found us two very
capable people for receptionist.
David Jacobson
has been with us
several weeks and is a real people person.
He has made it a point to learn everything
he can about both local and museum
history. He works 10-2 Monday-Friday.
Dawn Merritt
is just coming on
board and will cover 2-5 weekdays and
afternoons on Saturday. She is excited
about being here and we believe she will
be a real asset.
Tami Baer
has volunteered at the
desk at times so Gil doesn't have to take
as much time off from his shop.
New Staff
Bill Reynolds of Polson often
brings us things that are very rare or
unusual for museum display. Bill
recently brought four beautiful Indian
spearheads and an arrowhead that his
great-grandfather, William Tandy
Reynolds found in Kansas circa 1870.
The black and white pictures in the
newsletter do not do them justice, so
we encourage you to take a look at our
website for the colored version. Bill's
Newsletter layout courtesy of
Carmine Mowbray of
grandfather Charles Edwin Reynolds
homesteaded in the Polson area in 1910
when Bill's father, Charley was 13
years old. Charley served as a sergeant
in the 12
U.S. Cavalry from
1914-1920. Included in the donations
were the military web belt, ammo
pouch and .45 holster that he wore.
A souvenir silk scarf was also
donated that Bill brought home from his
time in the 5
Air Force in Korea. It has
the US Military patches pictured as well
as the flags of other nations serving
under the United Nations. Some would
argue that rather than bringing world
peace history has shown that the UN
has really advanced the cause of tyrants.
Come in and see the unique and
rare ivory walrus tusk cribbage board
that was in the Reynolds family for
many years. It is carved on one end to
look like the head of a Polar bear. It is
resting on a small ivory stand which
was carved to look like a seal. It is
now on display in our "Roots"
An interesting Montana historical
side note with the Reynolds family, is
that Bill's great uncle, "Lonesome
Charley" Reynolds was chief of
Custer's scouts and died heroically
with Major Reno on 25 June 1876 at
the Little Big Horn.
Bill Reynolds
A huge salute of thanks to our
Family Memberships:
Bob Fabian
Lester Johnson
Dwight Deyo
Dave and Suzie Marshall
Bill and Joane Mc Dermott
Ken and Teri Miller
Tami Morrison
Ruth Raihl
Macauley Morrison
One of our many recent donations . . . Grace Poloson
donated these beautiful baby moccasins. Our
collection continues to grow thanks to the kindness of
our community!
Neil DeGolier
- 1983 Pacar 31' motor home which
has been useful as a motel unit when volunteers have
stayed over for a few days;
Jan Smith Kasson
donated her father Sam's "Smith
Motors" shop coveralls. Gil immediately hung them
in the auto building. The following week two
families were excited to see them because their father
had worked for Sam. Jan also brought three framed
photos of her dad when he was Mayor and also with
a new Polson fire truck he procured through his
Dodge dealer connections in 1960;
Tom Newgard -
numerous items from the Mordie
Newgard estate including tins and boxes for the
hardware and general stores, harness hardware for
the saddle shop, antique glasses for the optometrist
shop, a fishing knife for the fishing displays—well,
you get the point!
Jerry Roat
who lives on Finley Point often brings
useful and unique things like antique tools, auto
parts, etc. The most recent automobile item, though,
Gil had to take his trailer and pick it up because it
was a complete car, a 1960 Dodge Matador 4 door
David Bosley
got it running and driving, but
the brakes need overhauling before it's ready for the
Mike Noble
- Montana political booklet, "Westward
I Go Free", the story of J.F.K. in Montana.
Walt Jones Memorial -
Rixon Rafter
$20 Green Mtn School Restoration in Memory of
Emma Doris by
Helen Ohlson, Arden, Delaware;
Marvin Carlyle
- box old school books;
Howard Hudson
- misc household and business
Nancy Peace
- Two large Redwing crocks, two silk
kimonos, four branding irons, roller skates with
pompoms and case, wicker fishing creel, farm
implements, Tennessee flat top box and other items
too numerous to list here;
Jill and Jerod Sweesy
- Adding machine, tools,
Pepsi carrier, etc;
Kelli and Luke Schroeder
- Framed copy of
Germany's unconditional WW II surrender, gauges
from WW II plane, misc;
Norman and Jean Swanson
donated a neat 1912
folding Chataqua Industrial Art School Desk with a
rolling screen with many line drawings, pictures,
schematics to inspire students. They also donated a
10" high carved wooden figure of a Kenyan warrior;
Lester Johnson
- Army vehicle and ag manuals;
John McGrew
- Two military uniforms and
Kewpie box cameras;
John Varnum -
spoils of war Nazi trade union flag
brought home from WW11 by his father;
Dear Mr. Mangels,
I just thought I would send some pictures
that I took of you and your museum when
my husband and I visited. We enjoyed your
exhibits and it took us down memory lane in
so many ways. There is a picture of me
sitting at your soda fountain, too.
Good luck with your future collections and
exhibits. We will send people your way that
visit Montana.
Enjoy your fall weather,
Jenice Benedict, Harwood, TX
Postage Paid
Polson, MT
Permit #89
Miracle of America Museum
36094 Memory Lane
Polson, MT 59860
Membership to the Miracle of America
Museum is tax-deductible and allows you free
admission, newsletters and 10% discount in our gift
We really appreciate our supporters who
remember to send donations.
A star beside your name on the address label
means this may be the last newsletter you receive
unless we hear from you. If you wish to remain on
our mailing list, please let us know.
Family membership: $25 to $99
Annual Sustaining: $100 to $199
Corporate Sustaining: $200 to $999
Lifetime: $1000 or above
Thank you very much for your support
GPCF Grant
Thanks to the Greater Polson Community
Foundation grant, our new archive-safe and
energy-efficient lighting is now underway.
Looking Forward to
Live History Days
Our popular annual Live History Days
weekend will be July 16-17, 2011. It continues to
grow each year. Many visitors are already asking
about it.
Additional Donations:
Lucille Buchmann brought effects
of three veterans of her family including
a photo of seven veterans, all being
The memorabilia was from her
father John Sagmiller, WWI; brother,
Norm Sagmiller, and husband Otto
Buchmann, both having served in
WWII. These items are displayed in a
glass case in the larger military room
including patches, ribbons,
and medals.
Of particular note is the
Bronze Star and citation
and thank you letter
presented to Otto by Major
General Geoffrey Keyes.