Peculiar Bets

I found this story in The Star, Thursday, Iss: 104 (August 30, 1900); pg. 1. It reads:

“Peculiar bets on the outcome of the Presidential election are causing considerable amusement in the Western States. If Mr. McKinley is elected, Henry Winstead of Kinkley Junction, Indiana, is to engage in a butting match with a full-grown ram; while should Mr. Bryan be the victor, John Burns, of the same town, will drink three pints of hard cider while standing on his head in a barrel.

“Arthur Williams, of Burr Oak, Michigan, has agreed to support the mother-in-law of his neighbour, George Stebbens, if the Democrats win, while if they lose, Mr. Stebbens will twist the tail of a vicious mule owned by Williams once a day for three weeks.

“The strangest bet of all has been made by George Wren, of Deepwells, Wisconsin, and Samuel Carpenter, of a neighbouring town. If the former, who is an ardent Bryanite, loses, he is to wear all his clothes backwards during the next four years, and if he wins, the other man is to walk backwards during Mr. Bryan’s incumbency of office, and is to eat crow pie every day for breakfast.”

As McKinley DID win that election, and assuming all men followed through on their bets, presumably Henry Winstead died headbutting a ram, George Stebbens spent three weeks assaulting and probably rightfully being kicked by an ill-tempered animal, and George Wren spent the next four years looking like a complete tit.

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