Archive for the ‘Government’ Category


Remember Iowa’s Natal Day

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Evening Messenger, Dec. 30, 1896

Remember Iowa’s Natal Day

DES MOINES, Dec. 29 — Des Moines was decked with flags yesterday in honor of the semicentennial anniversary of Iowa’s statehood. Fifty years ago the act for admission of Iowa was approved by the president. City, county, state and school buildings and business houses and residences generally were decorated with flags, but there were no other observations aside from a national salute at sunrise.

Semi-weekly Chronicle, Dec. 30, 1896

Listed under “Additional Local” on Page 4

Monday was the fiftieth anniversary of Iowa’s statehood, and was a day appropriate for the display of national colors as recommended by the proclamation of the governor. Iowa has a proud record back of her and a promising future ahead. In increase of wealth and population, as well as in the development of great natural resources, Iowa in every way does credit to the great republic and is one of the brightest stars in the jeweled band of union. Fifty years has seen this great commonwealth develope (sic) from a vast ocean of rank prairie grass backboned with timber bordered streams to a veritable garden of fertility. The rich loam has been turned int gold; the forests have fenced the prairie farms and the bountiful portion of mineral wealth has been ever a potent factor in aiding our material progress. The hamlets of fifty years ago have grown to cities and the cities have grown rich and populous. All will now go well with the Hawkeye state if the political doctors haven’t forced her to swallow an over dose of their particular kind of confidence which produces nausea and headache.


Improvements in Fire Department

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: Aug. 4, 1904

Improvements in Fire Department

Shall Another Station Be Built and New Wagon Ordered?

Present System Inadequate

Says Fire Marshal Lowry Who Advocated Purchase of Chemical Wagon and New Station. Fire Committee Discusses Matter

Does Fort Dodge Need a new fire house, locate presumably on the corner of Twelfth street and First avenue north, and a new wagon which will be fitted up for the extinguishing of fires by chemicals? These are two momentous questions which will be discussed by the city council at their next regular meeting Monday night.

Need of Chemical Wagon

In the opinion of Fire Marshal Lowry, the present fire protection is inadequate to the needs of the city. Over sixty per cent of the fires could be put out by chemicals, thus saving the loss of damage to property by water. But the present wagon is fitted out with only two two gallon extinguishers. At a meeting of the fire committee held last night the matter was taken under advisement and a recommendation will be made to the city council next Monday to purchase a new chemical wagon. Such a wagon would be about the size of the present wagon, but would contain a forty gallon tank of chemicals under the seat with two smaller tanks on each side of the wagon. Two hundred feet of chemical hose would be included and a root and extension ladders. 1,000 feet of water hose will also be carried. the cost of such a wagon complete would not exceed $1,700 (about $42,775 today). It would weigh 8,000 pounds when empty and would be equipped with three-inch rubber tires. This wagon would serve as a protection to districts outside of the city mains, the chemicals being as effective one place as another.

The present wagon would by no means go out of use. It could be kept in the present house and the old hook and ladder which is now stored in the fire house and which is very seldom used, could be taken elsewhere. In case of large fires a hack team could be secured and both wagons used, but as chemicals are used in the main, the new wagon would be taken out for the most part. (Editor’s note: They are suggesting that in case of a large fire, someone would run to a livery stable and hire horses to run the old hook and ladder. Times have certainly changed.)

Need of Second Department

It is also the intention to bring up the matter of having a second station. It is argued that should two fires happen to take place at the same time in opposite parts of the city protection could not be offered. The present East End department consists of but a hose car and relies entirely on volunteers in case of fire. It is thought that a station located on the city’s property on the corner of Twelfth street and First avenue would be in the proper place. This location would make it almost the central part of the city and at the same time save the lower department of the run up hill to the east part of the city which is always so exasperating. A second station could be maintained with very little cost after the building had once been built, as there would be plenty of apparatus when the new wagon had been purchased.

Waterloo Has Two Wagons

Those of the department in favor of the improvement say that inasmuch as other towns of size not larger than this, hav1e superior protection to that in Fort Dodge, a change for the better should be made. Waterloo has two chemical wagons. The water committee is composed of John Ruge, Guy Ranking, Jesse Beal, and Louis Fessler.


Mayor ‘Gainst Swimmin’

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: July 7, 1906

Mayor ‘Gainst Swimmin’

Posts Sign at the River Which Warns the Small Boys to Keep Away From the Stream


All persons are warned not to go in swimming within five miles above the city waterworks as the city’s jurisdiction extends that far.
S.J. Benett (sic)

The above notice posted at the river bank near the city waterworks has struck terror into the hearts of the small boys of the city who have been in the habit of taking an occasional plunge at any point along the river that their desire suggests. Complaints from residents living near the river has been the cause of hte posting of the sign, and on this occasion the mayor, though his jurisdiction usually extends only to the city limits has moved his authority line up the stream and barred the bathers entirely. The order will be strictly enforced too. The police have orders to arrest all violators.


Title to 160 Acres is Now in Question

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: May 12, 1903

Title to 160 Acres is Now in Question

Webster County Land Which Was Once Included in Swamp Land Grant is Claimed by Denver Lawyer

The title of fifteen forty acre tracts of Webster county land, with an average value of fully $40 an acre ($958 today) and a total value of $24,000 ($574,788), is now in dispute, owing to an action taken by the county board of supervisors two years ago, at which time, on the recommendation of their agent, S.J. Bennett, they waived the rights of the county on these tracts, which were originally included in the swamp land grant. Upon t his action of the county the swamp land selections on these tracts were canceled by the United States land office at Des Moines.

All this time, the owners of the fifteen tracts in question were blissfully unconscious that anything was going on, no notice having been served upon them. When they learned what had been done, their titles had already been cancelled, and a Denver lawyer names Moses had filed application for the purchase of the lands for the regular government price, a proceeding which he was perfectly free to pursue under the law. The owners were notified a day or two ago, and by prompt action were able to reach the land office at Des Moines in time to give themselves at least a fighting chance to reclaim the title to their property. Had Mr. Moses go this payment to the land office before the files filed their remonstrance, he would have received the title to the land, but the remonstrance arrived first, and the matter will probably go to the interior department at Washington for final action. To save their title to the land, it will be necessary for the owners to undo all that has been done with the department in Washington and it will probably be considerable time before the litigation is concluded.

Attorney Frank Farrell, who has been retained to represent the present occupants of the land, gave the history of the transaction this morning as follows:

“Two years ago, an agent from the department of the interior in Washington came here to adjust the swamp land grant in this county. The board appointed as their agent in the matter S.J. Bennett, at that time a member of the board, who made a tour of the county with the representative of the interior department, and made a waiver upon part of the county covering some fifteen tracts of 40 acres each, on the theory that they were not swamp lands, and not properly included wihtin the swamp land grant.

“These tracts were all regularly selected as swamp lands as early at (sic) 1869 and the selection was reported to the proper officers of the state and the United States, but the county had neglected to call upon the governor of the state for the patents covering the same. All of these tracts were included in the sale of swamp lands made by the county in 1860. The county’s grantee sold them to different parties, and most of them have been transferred, by deeds of general warranty, many times during that period. All of the tracts have been regularly taxed for more than forty years. All are under improvement and cultivation, and all but three of the tracts have been continuously occupied by the owners for periods ranging from ten to twenty years. The other tracts have been occupied by tenants.

“It seems that in the adjustment with the agent from the interior department, the county, thru its agent, made formal waiver to its claim to the lands as being swamp lands. On the strength of this waiver the swamp land selections were cancelled at the United States land office at Des Moines and this cancellation was later approved by the general land office at Washington. The owners or occupants of these lands had no notice of the proceedings.

“Upon the approval of the cancellation, a Mr. Moses of Denver, Col., had an application on file for the purchase of the lands at the government price. Information as to the action that had been taken came to the owners and occupants a day or two ago, and action was taken immediately with regard to doing all that was possible to retain the title of the lands.”


Quiet School Election

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: March 12, 1907

Quiet School Election

Only 48 Votes Cast Yesterday and E.H. Williams Was of Course Elected

It wasn’t much of a task for the judges and clerks of yesterday’s school election to make the count when the polls closed last evening. Only forty-eight votes were cast, twenty-three at the Salvation Army Barracks, polling place for the 2nd and 3rd wards and twenty-five at Strobel’s shoe shop, polling place for the 1st and 4th wards.

E.H. Williams the only director to be elected was consequently chosen almost unanimously to succeed himself. The votes, with the exception of a few jokers, were all straight.


Street Car Route Has Been Outlined

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: March 3, 1903

Street Car Route Has Been Outlined

Fort Dodge Light & Power Co. Announces Line to be Followed by Extension

Present Petition to Council

Ask That Streets be Brought to Grade at Points Along the New Line

The management of the Fort Dodge Light and Power company has determined the route to be followed by the extension of the car line which is planned to be constructed this spring. The route is as follows:

From Twelfth street and Central avenue:

South on Twelfth street to Fourth avenue south,

East on Fourth avenue south to Eighteenth street,

South on Eighteenth street to a point two blocks within the Oleson Land company’s tract,

East to the grand stand of the Mineral City Park association.

The entire extension contemplated is two and one-quarter miles in length. The company has already sufficient material on hand to complete the construction of one mile.

A petition was presented to the city council on Monday evening asking that at certain specified points the streets be brought to grade along the proposed route of the extension. The council referred the matter to the street and alley committee. None of the changes asked are of any special importance. One is for a two foot cut for a short distance on Fourth avenue south between Twelfth and Thirteenth street, just in front of the German Lutheran church. A short fill is also requested on Eighteenth street between Fourth and Fifth avenues south.

Manager Will Healy, of the Fort Dodge Light and Power company stated this morning that the company expected to begin work on their extension as soon as possible after a grade had been adjusted, if the council should take favorable action on their petition.


Oleson Park Deed is Filed

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: Jan. 24, 1906

Oleson Park Deed is Filed

O.M. Oleson Present Deed of Oleson Park to The City Today.

Senator O.M. Oleson formally conveyed the tract of land known as Oleson park to the city this morning by placing a deed to the property with Mayor Bennett.

Through the gift to the city was made nearly a year ago the final step in the transfer was not completed until today. The deed shows that the tract contains 70.81 acres. It will be filed for record at once. The park board are daily expecting to hear form the eastern landscape artist who has been employed to draw plans for beautifying the park. The tax of four thousand dollars is due in less than two months and active operations along the line of improvement will probably be started at that time.


Stop SOPA and PIPA

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Many websites are dark today in protest of two bills before Congress right now. The danger if the bills pass is that the Internet will be crippled, sites will be taken down for suspected copyright infringement/piracy without due process, ordinary people will be prosecuted for doing so much as posting a video of themselves singing a copyrighted song or quoting a copyrighted work.

I’m not tech-savvy enough to take my sites down and get them back up, so my support is this: watch this video and see the dangers, then contact your senators and representatives. Tell them that SOPA and PIPA are not going to solve the problem of piracy and they are likely to cause more problems in the long run.

I realize this post doesn’t fit in with the purpose of this website, but it’s important. I purposely only use articles that are before 1923 and therefore out of copyright. I believe that even if I were to use more recent articles, it would be considered fair use under copyright law. But if I did use more recent articles, under SOPA or PIPA my site could be shut down and I could be prosecuted.

Carol Foltz


PROTECT IP / SOPA Breaks The Internet from Fight for the Future on Vimeo.


Wants Pictures of Inebriates

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: Jan. 11, 1906

Wants Pictures of Inebriates

Saloonkeepers to Ask for Changes in State Black List Laws.

They Seek For Protection

Want Several Holidays Cut Out of Closing List – Secretary J.J. Klein Goes to Des Moines to Join Other Members of the Legislative Committee.

Photographs as a means of enabling saloonkeepers to identify parties to whom they have been notified not to sell liquors are to be one of the requirements of the state law governing the conduct of saloons, if the efforts of the Iowa Retail Liquor Dealers’ association during the present session of the legislature is successful. J.J. Klein, secretary of the association, left yesterday for Des Moines to join the other members of a committee now at work there with the object of bringing about this and other changes in the state liquor law. The other members of the committee are: President, C.A. Stephens, Cedar Rapids; Margin Ingwersen, Clinton; and L.C. Stevens of Sioux City. All four of the men are members of the executive committee of the association and were appointed to the task of framing bills for the legislature at a meeting held last December in Davenport.

Changes Wanted.

It is understood that the changes in the present law which are desired are mainly these: The elimination of New Years, Washington’s birthday and Labor day as days on which the saloons must close; a provision that the friends of inebriates shall furnish saloon keepers with photographs and descriptions of those to whom they are forbidden to sell liquor, and the reduction of the number of signers to saloon petitions in small towns from 80 to 65 per cent, besides making it necessary to obtain the consent only of property owners residing upon the street where the saloon is located.

The saloon men also want the law amended so that they will not be held responsible for selling to minors and inebriates unless they do so knowingly.

A suit is now being waged against four Council Bluffs saloon men in which a woman is seeking to get $10,000 of the saloonists’ hard earnings for selling liquor to her husband, after being notified not to do so. Similar cases have occurred elsewhere and it (sic) such cases that have aroused the saloonkeepers to an effort to protect themselves.

Would Give Protection.

“A bartender may see a man on the street and speak to him for years without knowing his name,” said one of the fraternity yesterday. “If the man’s wife or mother notified the bartender not to sell him liquor, how would he know to whom the notification referred? It is utterly impossible as the law now stands, for us to have any safety whatever, and the photograph scheme would give us just the protection we need.”

The Iowa Retail Liquor Dealers’ association comprises probably two-thirds of the dealers in Council Bluffs and throughout Iowa. Back of it stand the big brewing and distilling firms, which own a large proportion of the saloons now in operation. The association is not merely a picnic organization, but is for working purposes. When suits are started against saloonists for apparent blackmail the association takes a hand and fights them to a finish.

That the liquor business is feeling the sort of strength that comes from union is shown by the fact that arrangements are now being made for the building of a large brewery at Le Mars. A few years ago anyone that embarked in a business of that sort in Iowa would have been thought a candidate for the commissioners of insanity, declared one dealer yesterday but the work of the association has put the liquor business on so firm a footing as to make a large expansion seem likely all over the state.

No one seems to doubt, say well informed liquor dealers, that a fight of large proportions is about to be waged in the direction of securing a more lenient liquor law than the one now in force, as plenty of capital, energy and other useful resources are on hand.

The Fort Dodge Messenger: Jan. 4, 1904

New Officers Take The Oath

Successful Candidates in Recent County and Township Elections, Take Office.

Supervisors are in Session

Treasurer Ryan Appoints Assistant Depuey (sic) – Sheriff Selects Woolsey.

County treasurer, sheriff, surveyor, coroner and county superintendent of schools, two supervisors and township officers to fill vacancies took the oath of office today. The county officers are:

Treasurer – J.T. Ryan.
Sheriff – Henry Olson.
Surveyor – C.H. Reynolds.
Coroner – A.H. McCreight.
Superintendent – A.L. Brown.

The supervisors are:

First district – A.F. Simpson of Duncombe to succeed himself.
Second district – P.H. Cain of Clare, to succeed J.T. Ryan.

Treasurer J.T. Ryan today appointed O.F. Weiss, assistant deputy. No appointment was filled for deputy treasurer although it is known that E.H. Cox will be appointed to that office. Clark Woolsey has been appointed deputy sheriff to succeed himself.

By acclamation Swan Johnson, of Dayton, was appointed chairman to succeed A.F. Simpson. The board is now engaged in settling with the former treasurer, J.A. Lindquist. The following program has been made out by the board:

Tuesday, January 12.
Appointment of court house janitors, county physicians and official newspapers and book binders.

Wednesday January 13
Annual inspection of poor farm.

Thursday, January 14
Ditches, roads and bridges and appointment of commissioner of poor and over-seer of poor farm.

The standing committees for the year are:

Claims – Cain and Hilstrom.
Settlement with county officers – Collins and Simpson.
Roads – Simpson and Johnson.