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Rippey, Iowa Pick and Shovel Gang in action July 14, 1913

Before taxes were enough to maintain roads, communities sometimes relied on the men of the area to do the maintenance. Rippey was no exception, coming together on July 14, 1913.


Jefferson Bee, July 16, 1913, page 4


Eighty-six Men Turn Out and Work Roads One Day This Week, With Big Results.

 We have frequently commented upon that live bunch of boosters at Rippey, and what they will do when they take a notion.

On Monday of this week eighty-six citizens, occupying twenty-two autos, and provided with picks, shovels, and other road working apparatus, spent the day upon Washington township highways.

The scheme, which materialized with such magnificent results, was the plan of Mr. John A. Cavanaugh, of the Rippey Savings Bank, who agreed with Mr. Jensen, the assistant cashier, that if a crowd would be organized for road working purposes, and perform as road workers for one day, he would banquet the entire company at the Pattee Hotel, in Perry.

Forty two notices were sent out to autoists and twenty-two cars were offered to haul the company. All highways within six miles of Rippey were gone over, and wherever a bad piece of road was encountered a car would stop, and a bump was picked off, or a chuck hole filed in, and the road made smooth.

As a result today there are better roads in that vicinity than in any part of the county. It cost the men participating only a day's time, and the hands which were lent to the work accomplished what would have cost the township a good many dollars, with probably not so good results.

A picture was taken of the group before they left Rippey, and this will appear in a good many papers in Iowa as a booster example for other towns.

Included in the day's labor was the spreading of sixty loads of gravel up on the streets of Rippey, the work being handled by four squads, and blue overalls and red bandanas proved a fine disguise for many of the workers. Men bent with years, men in the vigor of their manhood, young men and even boys joined in the crusade against the bumps and the low places. There were bankers, doctors, druggists, merchants, newspaper men clerks, retired farmers, laborers and all conditions of society represented there. They had but one thought, the betterment of the roads and the improvement of the highways—the trade avenues of their town.  Regardless of the fact that it made the roads to other towns better they worked the roads, figuring that a live and able campaign of selling on the part of their merchants would more than compensate for the efforts.

The road committee of the Perry Commercial Club banqueted with the workers. A postprandial feast was presided over by B. F. Osborn, of Rippey, and Perry's welcome was extended the visitors by R. E. Zerwekh, of the commercial club. He explained to them that the auto trip over a portion of the city had not been arranged for them so much for their pleasure, as it was that the people of Perry might get a better view of an assemblage of men who would leave their stores and offices, their work and pleasures, to devote themselves to the public good.

To avoid confusion each auto had to cover a certain road, an arrangement which greatly facilitated the work, For the great effort THE BEE extends congratulations to the Rippey Commercial Club, which has for its slogan, "Rippey Reaches Results."

 Before taxes were available for road and ditch maintenance, the dependability of good men coming together to maintain their roads, was community supported.  Story elsewhere in Rippey History.

Making up the "Pick and Shove! gang from Rippey were,

A. M. Morse A B. Stroud George Fry M. O Smith James Bennett E. Tuttle R. M. Lofstedt Max Van Scoy H. R. Crumley B. O. Kimrey Lester Crumley E. A. Shaw D. E. Ellis Paul Harmon Chance Galdon Harve Hiddleson Sol Johnson Oscar Burk (mascot) B. M Riley Wm Radebaugh J F Johnson Jay B States E S Burk E L. Lofstedt W H. Crumley J. M Parr Chas. Holmes H. L. Gilliland H. E. Vanhorn J. A. Duitman B. F. Osborn J. M. Cain Dean Stroud J. E. Rohrer F. B. Langdon J. M. Munson J. H. Shoemaker C. A. Lofstedt E. Radebaugh M. E. Winchell F. E. Senter George Wilson John Burk

H. O. Johnson S. D. McDowell Sim Fouch Clyde Bennett Lysle Burk W. C. Ellis E. H. Shaw S. D. Garren W. A. Shoemaker J. J. Derry Claude States Ira White Lester Rohrer Chas. Derry Wm. Culley James King Ernie Glidden M. F. Fry (Co. Supervisor) Wm. Chambers John Burk Delmar Vanhorn Ash Keever Thomas Chalmers Hadley Ladlie Wm. Littell N. P. Burk W. M. Osborn I. J. Burk, Mayor Dr. J. H. Shipley F. P. Meyers A. E. Jensen J. L. Dugan Russell E. Radebaugh C. H. Suydam Lester Johnson George Fouch G. W. Lofstedt H. E. Munson S. J. Winchell W. J. Roberts Alvin Bunn Frank Brown J. A. Haberer