Saturday, August 31, 2013

"...because of his frequent display of firearms..."

...The fight over the new town-site of Spooner is a famous one in northern Minnesota and has been in the courts for the last year. Spooner, which is located on the Rainy river about a mile from Baudette, is situated upon land claimed by the Spooner townsite company and was entered by that company under the townsite law. The land was also claimed as a homestead by Matt Gannon. The feeling between the two factions at Spooner and Baudette has been intensely bitter, but at the election last spring Gannon was elected chairman of the township of Spooner and was afterwards known as the "mayor of Spooner."

   His re election increased the bitterness of the fight, which in the past has had several chapters in which gun plays figured, and Saturday morning the two factions came together. It is claimed that Gannon was the first man to draw a gun.

   Gannon has many old acquaintances in Bemidji and they tell of a large number of scrapes that he has been mixed up in. While running the Sherman house at Crookston a number of years ago, Gannon shot his clerk, Chas. Johnson, in the leg. He was tried for assault with a deadly weapon but was acquitted. It is also claimed that he served a year and a half at the Wisconsin penitentiary at Waupan. He was mayor of Cass Lake several years ago and got mixed up in a townsite fight there.

   Gannon came to Bemidji in 1898 and opened a gambling room. He remained here for about a year and took a prominent part in village politics. It is claimed that he managed the first campaign for one of the candidates for president of the council. While in Bemidji be made quite a few friends, but he was disliked by a large majority of the citizens because of his frequent display of firearms. He was a well known character over all of northern Minnesota. He was a typical frontiersman of the rougher type and always carried a gun. It is claimed that he was backed in his townsite fight at Spooner by the Backus-Brooks interests.

   He was married while a resident of Crookston and leaves a wife and three children.

[The Bemidji Daily Pioneer, Bemidji, Minnesota, Tuesday, April 11, 1905. Volume 2. Number 291 Pg. 4]
   Sounds like a few of our current politicians, doesn't it? [And of course the unconstitutional laws that they pass never apply to them.] Notice how Mr. Gannon was able to keep and bear arms after serving his time in prison? Because that is exactly what was intended by the Second Amendment of the United States Constitution.

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