Rock County, Wisconsin

"Gpysies at Oakdale School"


By Earl Dane Kidder; Courtesy of his grandson, Clark Kidder

I remember the time twelve wagons full of gypsies pulled in the schoolyard at the
Oakdale school. Otto STRIEGL tried his darndest to get them to leave, but the police had to let them stay for twelve days by law, because one of the women had just had a baby.
I sat and watched four of the girls jump on every farmer that went by and rob
them. One of the girls would hold him down and the others would rob him. I nearly died laughin'. They robbed the neighborhood blind. They stole cattle and would come in to my folks' barn and milk the cows every morning. They'd take my mom's bread and cream right out of the pantry! My mom was ready to kill 'em, but my dad just laughed about it. Us kids used to take off runnin' and hide behind the gooseberry bushes up on the hill behind the house. We were scared to death of them. That's how our folks used to control us kids. They'd tell us if we didn't behave, they'd give us to the gypsies.


©2002 ALHN-Rock County, Wisconsin
Last updated: June 18, 2006
Site Coordinator: Lori Niemuth