Friday morning a young man by the name of Ryan, at about 9 a.m., while in search of cattle called at the farm of Thos. Rafferty, sec. 24 Sheridan township, and found Mr. Rafferty lying on the floor in an unconscious condition. He at once went to a near neighbor, Jack Shea's for assistance and they called Dr. Quinn of Meriden, and carried the unconscious man to Mr. Shea's home. Everything was done to revive Mr. Rafferty that he might be able to tell the story of the previous night but it was unavailing and he passed away at about 12:30 without regaining consciousness. There is considerable mystery about this death. When Ryan called, the shack was in great disorder, a brick had been knocked from beneath the heavy stove, and pipe knocked down, the table cloth torn from the table and the contents dishes and a clock were found on the floor, the clock stopped at 5 o'clock which is thought to mark the hour when Mr. Rafferty became unconscious. The doors of a cupboard were found open and the contents partially thrown upon the floor. The pockets of Mr. Rafferty's clothes appeared to have been turned out and afterwards partially replaced, twelve cents were found upon his person, although he was supposed to possess considerable money, as he was the owner of 120 acres of good land and he was unmarried and had few wants. Some years ago Mr. Rafferty's house, a small affair was discovered on fire at an early morning hour, and he only escaped by climbing through a window. There has always been suspicion that this fire was not of natural origin, though who could have wished the old man harm is a mystery. He was making plans to build a house having rented the farm and was supposed to have considerable money about him for building purposes.
Although the shack gave every evidence of a fierce struggle and one hand of Mr. Rafferty was burned by coming in contact with the hot stove there are no bruises on his person which would be likely to cause death. Dr. Quinn soon after his arrival on the scene realizing that Mr. Rafferty could not recover called the sheriff and coroner and these with the county attorney were soon on the ground where a careful survey of the surroundings was made. The coroner called a jury consisting of R. J. Smyth, C. A. Banister and F. M. Molyneux who commenced the investigation by surveying the premises and then adjourning to the city hall; the body was brought to Appleyards' undertaking establishment where a post mortem conducted by Drs. Quinn or Meriden, and Drs. P. B. Cleaves and Clarence Hall of this city, was made. As above stated no marks of violence sufficient to cause death were found, but the stomach and contents were found in an unnatural condition which gives rise to the suspicion that he may have been drugged and the stomach and contents have been sent to the state chemist at Iowa City for analysis.
Mr. Rafferty had spent Wednesday night at his shack with Dennis Piggott and Wednesday they called at Mr. Rafferty's brother-in-law's, Henry Long, and he was apparently in good health. At about five o'clock Thursday night young Piggott says he talked with Mr. Rafferty and he was then all right. Mr. Long was in town that day and bought some things for Mr. Rafferty and on returning that evening called for Mr. Rafferty to come and get them, but there was no response. Mr. Long was wet and cold and living near thought he would deliver these the next day and did not get out of the wagon but drove home, not dreaming that anything was wrong with Mr. Rafferty.
Thos. Rafferty was seventy-five years of age and was born in Ireland. In 1869 he homesteaded the 80 on which he lived, afterwards adding an additional forth, he never married but lived along. Though living a lonely life he was not a misanthropist but on the contrary was of a lively and genial disposition and sought company, he was a member of the Odd Fellows lodge and of the Order of Rebekah at Meriden and yesterday afternoon was buried under the auspices of the lodge in Meriden, the interment being in Oak Hill cemetery. We understand that his nearest relative in this county is Mrs. Henry Long, his sister. Dr. Long of the state hospital is a nephew and Mrs. Jack Shea is a niece and we understand there are other nieces and nephews in Ireland.
Will Frame Program For Presentation to Congress.
Fifteen men of the district, all conversant with farm conditions and possessing definite ideas as to remedial farm legislation needs, have been invited by congressman Guy M. Gillette to hold a conference at Cherokee at 1 p.m., Monday, Dec. 3. Purpose of the session, which probably will be held at the courthouse, is to draw up a program of farm legislation for introduction at the next session of congress.
"Reaction to my plan to bring together men of sound though perhaps conflicting ideas in an effort to determine how best to meet the needs of farmers is very encouraging," the congressman stated.
Men invited to attend the meeting are Adrian Bowers of LeMars, Concillatioan commissioner for the district; Senator Garrett Roelfs of Sioux Center; Senator I. G. Chrystal of Coon Rapids; O. L. Brownlee of the Sioux City tribune; R. F. Starzel of the LeMars Globe Post; John Carey of the Sioux City Journal; Carl H. Wilkin of Wall Lake, editor of the Progressive Union Farmer; President Schultz of the Plymouth county Farmer's Union; Lou Mighell, Washta; Ed Ellison, Lawton; Erwin Griesse and Hans Willken, Rock Rapids; W. W. White, spirit Lake, representative of various farm organization.
"The Commodity Credit corporation must be given a new lease of life as it expires, I understand, with NRA," one of the invited men commented in discussing the conference. "The AAA and corn loan plan should be broadened enough to take care of farm loans and the program, if set up, would not require sale of bonds as the farm mortgages are already in existence. It would mean the necessity of the loan companies taking government bonds, in lieu of their mortgages.
"Instead of the present appraisal system, which I think is neither practical nor fair to producer or land owner, the warehousing and loan boards should be combined. This board could then act in each county as an appraisal committee.
"Decentralization of the Federal Land bank, with one set up in each state, would eliminate lots of lost motion that we have at present."
Opinions of other farm leaders on these same problems will be discussed and the group will endeavor to reach a common understanding as to the agricultural legislation needed. The congressmen hope through this meeting to learn of his farm constituents' wishes.
In announcing plans for the Cherokee Garden Club tea December 3, a spokesman for the organization said members wished to publicly congratulate the Cherokee Park Board for hiring Don Sinek, landscape architect, to start plans for Gillette Park last year.
Garden Club is sponsoring the tea on that date in Hotel Lewis to raise money for the Park Board project.
Sinek, a graduate of Iowa State University in landscape architecture, currently is landscape architect for the State University of Iowa.
For a fee of $275 per year, he comes here twice a year and provides the Park Board with needed plans. Sinek was engaged last year for this service and completed the preliminary plans for Gillette Park involving elevations and needed grading.
Garden Club officials explained that the city could not afford to allow this fee in the park Board's 1960 budget. The club is sponsoring the tea in an effort to raise funds for continuation of Sinek's needed services in planning the development of Gillette Park.
Tickets for the benefit event may be obtained from Garden Club members or at the door on Thursday, December 3.
There will be informal modeling of holiday and cruise wear form Hope's Fashion Farm from 2 to 3 p.m. and again from 3 to 4 p.m.
Collision Near Quimby
Minor damage resulted from a collision at 11:40 A.M. Thursday 1 ½ miles east of Quimby on the blacktop.
According to report of the Cherokee County sheriff's office, a car driven by Mrs. Harry Jenness of rural Quimby was struck as she was turning into a farm driveway.
The other vehicle involved was driven by John Arthur Johnson, also of rural Quimby, who was proceeding in the same direction.
As he applied his brakes when Mrs. Jenness turned off, his car skidded on ice and hit the rear end of the Jenness car. Neither driver was injured.
Environmental officials have found Cherokee's industrial sewage treatment plant in violation of open dumping laws and have required immediate removal of sludge there.
Stating the sludge contains chemicals which pose a danger of groundwater contamination, Iowa department of Water, Air and Waste Management officials have asked the mayor and City Council members to indicate by Nov. 30 how and when the sludge will be removed and to have the sludge removed by Dec. 31.
The City Council is slated to discuss the matter at its regular meeting tonight. "We need to get our game plan together on what we want to do on this thing," said City Administrator Gil Bremicker.
The sludge was deposited into pits and trenches on the treatment plant property at Wilson Foods Corp. as part of a removal project last year. This was done despite the fact that city officials were advised in August, 1983 that all sludges removed from the facility would have to be disposed of by land application, department officials said.
Shortly after environmental officials toured the facility in May, Bremicker told IDWAWM that the sludge was placed in the pits because it was too thick to inject into the soil and it would facilitate completion of the sludge removal project.
Bremicker has also told IDWAWM that the city is involved in litigation against the contractor who was hired to conduct the lagoon cleaning project and the sludge may be evidence.
The contractor, Giese Construction Co., claims that the city misrepresented how much sludge there was to remove in the project's bidding specifications. Giese has submitted a bill asking for $118,122 in addition to the original $130,000 project bid.
The city has refused payment beyond the $130,000, maintaining the contract was on a lump sum payment basis.
However, IDWAWM informed the city this month in a letter that it does not find that to be a valid reason for further delay of the final disposal.
Bremicker said the evidence, including samples and measurements, has been "pretty well" obtained by now.
John Metcalfe, regional IDWAWM department director, said the sludge could appear in somebody's water supply. As for how dangerous it would be, Metcalfe said, "It's impossible to address something like that."
Under one option, the city could take the sludge to the county landfill, which would require special waste authorization, Metcalfe said.
Or, city officials could apply for a permit that would allow them to spread the sludge on a certain type of land in quantities that would not cause buildup in the chemicals, he said.