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Today's word on journalism

Friday, May 12, 2006


PETERSBORO, Utah -- Gloom like a Bulwer-Lyttonesque pall hung heavily over the Cache Valley as word came that the WORD had gone.

"As he stared at her ample bosom, he daydreamed of the dual Stromberg carburetors in his vintage Triumph Spitfire. . . ." No, wait. . . . That's actual Bulwer-Lyttonism. Scratch it.

We conclude, with joy and trumpets and a tankard or two, the 10th season of TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM. What began in 1995 as a professor's strategy to get his students to read email (guess that worked!) now has spread, birdflu-like, far beyond that unwilling audience to self-flagellating WORD volunteers on five-and-a-half continents. But the willing and unwilling alike--the halt and addled and addicted and deluded--will have to get a life and smell the roses, for a while anyway.

Today marks the end of the WORD for this academic season. Even ere the rosy dawn that didth bust o'er this glade, this vale, this happy home. . . . ooops. Avert already, Sir Bulwer, you mangy cur!!!!

See you in the fall. . . TP

Hyrum Museum contains more than just history

By Cory Broussard

April 20, 2006 | HYRUM -- The Hyrum Museum holds more than just the history of the town, it also holds the past of one of its residents, Valoei Albrecht.

Albrecht, who gives tours and runs the museum in the Hyrum Civic Center, has lived in Hyrum her entire life. She can't remember where or when exactly she was born, but every item in the museum has a lengthy story about her past.

Albrecht started the museum with her husband over 10 years ago, and most of the artifacts are things they collected over the years together. When her husband died a few years ago Albrecht continued to run the museum by herself.

When asked about her past, the small-framed woman leans on her cane and struggles to remember. But ask her about the school bell that used to hang from Lincoln Elementary and she can tell you that it could be heard from over a mile away, and it used to signal the end of her recess break. She can't tell you if her brother is still alive, last she heard he was near death, but she can tell you he was a world-renowned botanist and show you the book he wrote.

"He was a very smart man," Albrecht said.

The museum almost seams like a catalog of Albrecht's life, helping her remember things she would have otherwise forgotten. A display that shows baby clothes from Hyrum's old days contains the dress that her mother wore when she was a baby. There is a photograph of her father and his colleagues that is blurred from ice on the lens.

"I don't know which one he is, but I remember that he had a high forehead that went all the way to the back of his head," Albrecht said. "If they didn't have hats on in that picture I would know which one he was."

A picture of the local doctor who looked after her while she was pregnant, hangs against one of the walls. On July 1 he told her that she was going to be fine while he was on vacation. On July 4 her son was born. Albrecht didn't mind though. "He's my Yankee Doodle Dandy," Albrecht said.

She leads patrons to a globe in the corner of the museum and asks if they want to know how she gets ahead in the world. Her shaky hands open a flap in the globe and she places an old Barbie head inside.

"That's how I get ahead in the world," Albrecht says.

Albrecht give tours of the museum three times a week, on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. Visitors can step back into the history of Hyrum and Albrecht's life from 2 to 5 in the afternoon.


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