Cooper Cleaners

Thomas Irgens and L.G. Olson, owners of the Model Clothing Company, opened a cleaning plant in the rear of their store.

Peter Overby, dry cleaner and tailor, was a long-time employee of the establishment.  Dry cleaning was done in a building across the alley to the south.  Sometime in the 1940's the cleaners moved into the building east of the Model Clothing, and the two buildings were connected by a doorway.  Peter Overby's daughter, Alyce (Lura), who worked there for a time, remembers that Christine Wagle did alterations.  Jim Donahue was another employee of the cleaning business for a time.  The cleaning business was sold to Richard Engbrecht about 1949.

Among the employees of the shop at the time he owned it were Lydia Solfield, Helga Soma and Sarah Sandvik.  The cleaning plant across the alley was destroyed by fire in 1958.  In 1959, Engbrecht sold his business to Walt Kerbaugh, who built an addition to the rear of the building and installed new equipment.  Mrs. Solfield and Mrs. Soma continued to work for the establishment.

The building was destroyed by fire in November of 1965, at the time the hotel burned.  A new building was built a block east, and the cleaners moved into it in March of 1966.

Kerbaugh sold the building to Grand Forks Federal Savings and Loan and closed out the business in July of 1974.

Source: Cooperstown, North Dakota 1882-1982 Centennial Page 208

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