days gone by

1947: Pleading guilty, six sentenced in cattle thefts


August 1, 2012

Hot, dry conditions this growing season have taken a toll on area farmers and gardeners, leaving everyone hoping for rain.

James Jesser of rural Iroquois said he has a well and irrigates his garden, but the extreme heat has put some stress on the plants.

Artists of all skill levels are encouraged to participate in the fourth annual Harvey Dunn Memorial Society Plein Air ‘Paint Out’ Aug. 10-12 at De Smet. Nearly 30 amateur and professional artists participated last year.

August 6, 1997

Township representatives Tuesday told county commissioners they’ve been doing a terrible job on roads, and that is why people don’t believe raising taxes will help much. Some at the meeting said they think the county should spend more of its reserves before raising taxes. Commissioners had called the meeting with township officials to explain why they need to raise taxes to repair roads.

Additional meetings with city residents will be held in the coming weeks in Arlington, Lake Preston and De Smet, Paul Pankratz of Arlington, commission chairman said.

August 3, 1972

Jim Ogren, son of Mr. and Mrs. Allan Ogren, De Smet, attended the national agribusiness conference of the American Institute of Cooperatives at Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa, July 30-August 3. Jim was sponsored by Kingsbury Electric Cooperative and the Farmers Union Oil Companies at Lake Preston and De Smet.

Two of the three men who escaped from the Davison County jail in Mitchell Wednesday were arrested early Friday morning south of De Smet. The men, described as armed and dangerous, were arrested by Kingsbury County Deputy Sheriff Merle Melstad and De Smet policeman Gary Groce, assisted by state highway patrolman Ben Johnson.

A group of De Smet couples surprised the Harley McFerrans Friday evening with a “Welcome to Town” party, presenting them with a gift of four Harvey Dunn prints.

August 7, 1947

Confessions on the part of the six involved brought the local cattle theft case to a close Friday, without the delay and expense of trial and with penitentiary sentences. The six appeared before Judge William H. Warren in circuit court Friday forenoon, pleading guilty to the charges against them. They were returned to the courtroom for sentencing at 1:30, allowing each to tell his own story of the crime and to be questioned by the court and attorneys, which occupied the afternoon. It was after six o’clock before the last sentence was pronounced.

Confessions made by all six of the persons involved gave officers a complete story of the thefts of cattle from the Alfred Halverson and Ted Leckey pastures. Arriving July 3, their raiding party visited the Leckey pasture, only to find the cattle so wild they abandoned the theft. Returning to the pasture July 7, they rounded up 12 head of cattle, only to have to take to the fields when Rudolph Hendricks drove along. He put the stock in his pasture, and the rustlers had to get them out and start home again. When arrested and confronted with the evidence the officers had gathered, the six parties were cooperative and gave the details.


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