Cupid marks Hammer couple's 60th anniversary


Kyle Clayton / Petersburg Pilot

Art and Jeanine pose in front of a wall of family and vacation photos.

Art and Jeanine Hammer's wedding anniversary is on tomorrow's Valentine's Day.

Before meeting Jeanine during the summer of 1953, Art, nine years her senior, was used to the bachelor life.

"I was just a loose, single guy doing a lot of hunting and fishing, just bumming around," Art said.

Jeanine traveled to town with a friend whose sister was married to Art's brother. The pair met at a family dinner at Art's sisters house. They spent the following two weeks together.

"We went out together," Art said. "Everybody was going to a dance at the Elks Club or the Moose Club."

But that's not what won Jeanine over.

"He took me fishing," Jeanine said. "We went down to Castle River."

When Jeanine's vacation ended, she had to go back to Montana where she worked as a nurse.

"After we had been together a couple of weeks up here I had to go back to Montana to see if something was going to come of it," Art said.

It didn't take too long to find out. The couple decided to get married and set a date for the wedding but the ceremony had to get pushed back.

"Grandma said we couldn't get married because there was a death in the family," Art said. "So the wedding got postponed to Valentine's Day 1954."

Art and Jeanine married in a Presbyterian Church in Miles City, Montana that is still standing today.

Afterwards they came back to Petersburg to start their lives. They built a home in 1957-the same one they live in today.

Throughout the years, the couple has spent a lot of time traveling in their motorhome.

"We did that for 30 years," Art said. "The motorhome has been all the way from lower Mexico to Prudhoe Bay."

The couple has covered 38 states during their travels.

Despite their anniversary falling on the widely celebrated day of love, the couple doesn't make a big deal out of it. According to Art, that's not what makes a marriage work.

"You just gotta be together," Art said. "That's what we've been."

Click to see the Road Weather Information webcam from South Mitkof Highway at mile 33, Blaquiere Point

Submitted Photo

Art and Jeanine on their wedding day on Valentine's Day, 1954.


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