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Legends of the print shop

Aug 25

Written by:
8/25/2016 2:22 PM  RssIcon

In case you've never had reason to visit, in the basement of the Government Services Center in Duluth is the County Print Shop. It started in 1948 and over the years has moved from the Courthouse to the GSC, and has evolved in its capabilities and responsibilities. And for almost its entire time in existence, it's been run by one of these two men:

Robert Ballou and Ron TomShack

On the left is Robert Ballou, now age 92. Robert was the first Print Shop employee, and worked for the County from 1948 until 1982. On the right is Ron TomShack, who started working in the Print Shop in 1984 and been there ever since.

Together, these two men have contributed 66 years of service printing and making copies of a variety of necessary documents. But there's something else in the Print Shop that's been working even longer.

This hollow drill bit is used for drilling holes in paper. The machine is one of the original pieces of equipment from when the Print Shop first opened, and is still in use today - 68 years later!

Hole punch machine in print shop

While the two men's careers never overlapped, they've gotten to know each other over the years. Robert continues to stop in to the Print Shop a couple times a month.

From County Board documents and presentations, to property tax statements and bills, it's fascinating to think about how much history has been touched by that machine, and by these two men's hands.


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