We'll do a post about Joe soon, so you can stop worrying about it.
When we were researching the pics late in 2010, we didn't recognize many Pierz names. The Pierz Journals weren't online yet then, so even if we'd known the kids' names (shoulder shrug) it wouldn't have made much difference. However, when we get going on a story....well, you know how it is...
Anyway, the pics are only tangentially what this post's about...read on:
The war games held in Morrison Co that summer simply couldn't happen now. The Red and Blue armies made up of the fourth army from Minnesota, Kansas and Nebraska, started near Mille Lacs Lake. The object was to "capture" Camp Ripley (about 40 miles away). Farmers gave permission (some reluctantly) for the army's use of their land, and towns were warned. Maneuvers were six days long, and then both armies went home.
Two months later, in October, 1940, some kids east of Pierz found a bullet in the ditch across from their farm. Boys being boys, they wanted to see what it could do. They took it in the house to see if it'd fit in their dads' gun, but the shell was too big, so they went to the garage and put it in a vise. Three brothers, ages 11, 9 and 7, plus a 30 year old neighbor and relative watched as the 11 year old hit the thing with a hammer and punch. It exploded (even blanks have gun powder inside) and casing pieces hit the 9 year old in the right eye.
When their parents came home an hour and a half later, Gerald was rushed to the hospital in Little Falls, where the doctor removed his eye.
We know all this cuz there are documents and newspaper articles online that our master researcher found. In addition, Larry saved these articles that shed a lot more light on the political situation in Pierz then. They're definitely worth a read!