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August "Gust" Swanson 1871-1886


Posted By: Merllene Andre Bendixen (email)
Date: 3/1/2012 at 00:13:48

The Deadly Shot Gun
Two young men of Richland township, Gus Swanson and R.A. Newton, were out early Thursday morning goose hunting each not knowing of the others presence. It was scarcely daylight, and as Swanson was crawling through the grass Newton mistook him for a goose and fired. Alas, he was soon undeceived, and found he had sent a charge of buck shot into his young neighbor’s head. Dr. Green was summoned but he found the patient dying – three buckshot having passed through his brain. Newton is almost distracted with remorse. (Milford Mail, Milford, IA, October 21, 1886)

An unfortunate accident occurred Friday [October 15, 1886] morning in Richland Twp., Dickinson county, whereby August Swanson, aged about seventeen, was accidentally shot and killed by a companion named Newton. Swanson was working for a neighbor, H.D. Cole, while Newton was employed by Mr. B. Larbig, he mason, who was at the time engaged in plastering Mr. Cole’s house. Swanson staid at his father’s house at night and early Friday morning stopped while on his way to his work to crawl upon some geese in a lake by Newton had seen the geese from Mr. Cole’s house, and taking a gun started after the same game, neither of them knowing the other was about the lake. Newton crawled up to and shot at what he supposed was a goose in the grass but when he rushed up to secure his game he found the body of young Swanson with two buckshot through his brain. It was a distressing affair, casting gloom over the whole settlement. The young man who did the shooting is overwhelmed with grief at the result of his thoughtlessness. The funeral was held in the Clump school house and the remains buried in the cemetery east of town Saturday. (Northern Vindicator, Estherville, IA, October 22, 1886)

A Fatal Shot
A very distressing accident occurred in southwest Richland last Friday. Early in the morning, Gus. Swanson and Andrew Newton, living about a mile apart, saw a flock of geese alight in a slough not far from the home of each. Each went in stealthy persuit, without knowledge of the other’s approach. Crawling through the tall grass Newton saw an object which he mistook for his game and sent a load of buckshot after it. The charge was received by Swanson full in the face. He lingered for a few hours totally unconscious. Deceased was about seventeen years of age. Further particulars might be of interest but we cannot secure other details with sufficient accuracy. (Spirit Lake Beacon, Spirit Lake, IA, October 22, 1886)


Emmet Obituaries maintained by Lynn Diemer-Mathews.
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