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
Jeanne Windham
Advisory Board of Directors
Phyllis Fulkerson
Jim Pomajevich
June 23, 2008 Volume VII
A N o n - P r o f i t 5 0 1 ( c ) ( 3 ) C o r p o r a t i o n • 8 1 - 0 4 3 7 3 8 6
36094 Memory Lane Polson, MT 59860 406-883-6804 www.miracleofamericamuseum.org • info@miracleofamericamuseum.org
December 2008
Winter here has turned downright vicious as of this writing. It's in the
teens right now, and 10" of snow is predicted in our valley by the end of
the week.
As 2008 draws to a close, we are so thankful for our family, friends,
donors and visitors.
We again had visitors from all 50 states and 40
Because of the financial concerns for many, we are offering
free admission for children 12 and under, accompanied by at least one
adult. Adults will be half price until January 2, 2009.
Joanne is mending well, thanks in part to family and friends who
were so helpful as well as all those who prayed for her. She goes to
sleep at night thanking God for each person by name, whom she knew
were praying for her. She always goes to sleep before she reaches the
end. Once Joanne was back at home, Gil started a bad bout with kidney
stones. He lost about 20 lbs. in the three weeks. Unfortunately the
weight returned and settled in his midsection. He's feeling healthy
although cold now.
Bluebird Car
Ron and Barb Buentemeier
donated a 1924 Overland 4-door
touring car. It is the “Bluebird" model and was also called a sedan
roadster. We're showing you the best side. The original owners only
partially covered it and the right side fenders and splash pan rusted
badly and need replacement. So keep your eyes peeled for parts as
this is a rare model and is highly worthy of restoration.
Survey Upcoming
We have been invited to join
other museums throughout the land
in a special financial survey. The
government may finally be
concerned about the slimness of our
budgets. We ll keep you posted.
In this issue:
• Quarterly Report
• Some Bluebirds go Overland
• Sustaining Members
• Remembering Jerry
• Four Big Smiles
• Donations, new displays and a Whopper
• Music Pickers entertain Saterdays
In Memoriam
We are saddened that
Jerry Stolle
, our
webmaster, recently
passed away. He started
in the 90s and kept up our
website which has been
highly successful
bringing visitors to the
valley to visit the
museum. He donated
many hours of time, also
photographing the
participants displaying
their crafts on Live History Days. After coming in at least
monthly, to photograph something, Jerry in 2002 donated a
new 5 megapixel Sony camera which is used several times
a week taking a digital photograph of something or another.
It has become almost as important a tool as the computer.
Gary Adams
- Clinton “Bulldog" chainsaw
Axmen of Missoula
- several useful display pieces;
Dee Barba
- several aviation items in memory of
her husband Bill - including Instruments, framed
art, a flight suit Bill wore when flying his WW I
SE5A replica;
Pat Fleming -
Installed a couple of new handles in
blacksmith hammers. He has a knack for installing
them true and tight. He also donated a lamp and
misc. articles;
Howard Hudson-
Who never ceases to amaze us
with his donations, donated a rabbit fur hat and
muff, lunchbox full of old Christmas cards, 1923s
and '30 medicine cabinet items and the list goes on
for four pages;
Art Mangels -
of Dillon
bought and donated a nice
original gas tank for our 1912 Seagrave chain-drive
fire truck. The tank was spotted in a Butte antique
store, by our “bird dog"
Bob Lassila
of Great Falls.
Bob is the one who spotted our vintage car hauler.
He has a very good eye;
Bert and Kathy Smith
of Smith & Edwards in
Ogden Utah, donated a couple of cases of pocket
sized U S Constitutions with indexes which we sell
in our gift shop;
Lulu Stock
- Donated vintage spices, medications,
a neat period plaid child's bib overalls, two beautiful
dresses from the late 1800s. and other clothing;
Greg Stone
- Donated a Standard Gas Pump sign
and an antique spark plug;
Tom Tiffany
Donated antique appliances, tools
A huge salute of thanks to our
New Sustaining Members:
Paul & Susan Brueggeman
Helen R Mc Clellan
Thanks to these folks and all our
sustaining and family members, we are
able to preserve and present history for all to
appreciate. We cannot accomplish this without
your help.
Gil had special Trick or
Treaters on Halloween night.
With their mother's blessing, Gil
titled this photo “Indians Four".
The children took their masks off
so you could see their smiles as
they sat on Gil's restored 1941
Indian Four Cylinder motorcycle.
From the front to back are Sierra,
Robert, Jonathan and Olivia
Newsletter layout courtesy of
Carmine Mowbray of
With the cooler weather the popular Pickin' in the Park Musicians have moved to the
Miracle of America Museum - It is warm and dry inside and there is a great floor for
dancing if you want! The group will be jamming' there every Saturday from 1 to 4 pm.
So EVERYONE, for a toe tapping good time, join us for some great music!!
newsreels before the movie started that being buzzed right
in Ronan caused quite a stir. Reportedly everyone vacated
the theater to see if they were being attacked. If anyone
knows the date and type of airplane, please let us know. A
photo does not do this display justice. Please come in and
get the “feel" of it.
James Dudley Kemp
from Ronan High School in 1934. He joined
the Army Air Corps in 1940 and retired from
the US Air Force as a Brigadier General in
1978. His widow,
Wanda Kemp Maxson
, of
Kerrville, TX recently donated a very
complete grouping of his flight jacket,
helmet, medals, flight log and miscellaneous
related memorabilia, enough to fill three
showcases. She then generously donated
$1000 to purchase three matching showcases
to use in displaying and protecting the items.
Many of the awards are “One-of-a-kind".
Jim Burton
of Polson is Kemp's nephew
and helped pay for the repairs necessary after
the postal service damaged the boxes and one
item. Jim also helped arrange his uncle's
souvenirs. As a lad Jim remembers going to
Missoula to see his uncle. Kemp would fly different
airplanes and occasionally needed to land in Missoula.
One time he “buzzed" Ronan's Main Street. Of course
this was war time and it was movie time at the Gaiety
theater . You can imagine after watching WW II
No question about it – the biggest and heaviest
donation this quarter was a circa 1910 Rumley Twin
Cylinder Steam Tractor. It spent its prior life between
Lewistown, Bozeman and Phillipsburg running sawmills
and thrashing machines. In fact, thanks to
Nancy Evans
we also have the
large, mostly
wooden thrashing
machine (grain
separator) that this
engine powered.
Gil's brother, Art,
hauled that from
Bozeman for us.
One of the donors,
Jim Paugh
, of
Coffee Creek, MT,
hauled the engine
for us. He was one
of the three-part ownership. The other partners agreeing to
donate it to the MOAM were
Jim Waldbillig
Phillipsburg and the late
David Norton
of Bozeman.
The tractor runs and we drove it a couple of hundred
yards into one of the large tractor buildings using
compressed air. David likes
running the engines, but he
does allow Gil to blow the
whistles occasionally.
Because of liability issues
and the large amount of work
involved to build up a head
of steam. we operate our
steam tractors and switching
engine with compressed air,
using one of two antique air
compressors. We can operate
them in about 5 minutes after
starting the compressor.
Gil is nearly dwarfed by the Rumley Twin Cylinder steam tractor
Miracle of America Museum
36094 Memory Lane
Polson, MT 59860
We are committed to giving
history a future.
Can you, will you help?
Here are ways you may be able to
help us sustain our goals:
• Volunteer time or skills
• Donate Items for display
Gifting Methods:
Bequests, Real Estate, Stocks and Bonds,
Cash Trusts, Charitable Gift
Annuities,Securities Memorials, Life
Insurance Gifts
Your tax or estate planner may be able to
show you ways to take tax advantages.
Miracle of America is a non-
profit charitable organization
recognized by the IRS.
Gifts are tax-deductible.
Gloria in excelsis, Deo
Postage Paid
Polson, MT
Permit #89