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DAKOTA DATEBOOK: Don’t Kick a Lady

December 29, 2017 — In December 1921, Martin Gunseth drove to Napoleon North Dakota with a team of horses. On returning to where he had left the wagon, he caught Mrs. Christ Schock unharnessing the horses. “Well, she was trying to unhitch mine team, and I couldn’t stop her,” Gunseth said, and with no other recourse he kicked Mrs. Schock in the shins.

Mrs. Schock reported the assault to the authorities. On December 29 the Bismarck Tribune reported that Mr. Gunseth was called before a judge to explain why he kicked poor Mrs. Schock. Although Mr. Gunseth had the court’s sympathy, when the judge issued his verdict he warned that you “shouldn’t kick a lady anyway,” and fined Mr. Gunseth ten dollars.

Dakota Datebook written by Derek Dahlsad

“Dakota Datebook” is a radio series from Prairie Public in partnership with the State Historical Society of North Dakota and with funding from the North Dakota Humanities Council. See all the Dakota Datebooks at