Livestock Stolen From Mennonites Who Refused to Buy War Bonds

During World War Ⅰ in the United States, there was an ostensibly voluntary war funding drive in which people were encouraged to buy “Liberty Bonds.” In many cases, though, bond purchases were made effectively mandatory by a vigilante enforcement system that was even more ruthless than that of the government’s official revenue department. Here’s another example, from the New York Times:

Seize Live Stock For Loan

South Dakota Committeemen Force Mennonites to Contribute

When an unconfirmed rumor was received that members of a Mennonite colony at Jamesville, near here, had refused to buy Liberty bonds, officers in charge of the loan campaign visited the colony and drove away 100 head of steers and 1,000 sheep.

In a statement issued subsequently it was said the animals would be sold and the money invested in Liberty bonds and applied to the Jamesville quota. The Mennonites offered no opposition to the bond “salesmen.”