Who knew that there was so much controversy surrounding the clearing of cattle from the roadway? Knowing that Warren County was primarily a rural county in the late 1800’s, it seems like this would be a very cut and dry instance where the cattle are rounded up and returned to their rightful owner. Well it appears that the cattle running at large on the roadway was the tip of the iceberg for a feud that had been ongoing between the Gustin family and Samuel R. Crane.
The first documented case we have found is The State of Ohio vs. Levi Gustin, where Levi is charged with “Assault & Battery on Samuel R. Crane & Resisting/Obstructing officer Samuel R. Crane” dated January of 1876. The final case we have uncovered thus far is The State of Ohio vs. Jesse Gustin, where Jesse is charged with “Assault & Battery on Samuel R. Crane” dated September of 1886.
The instances that led to these Assault & Battery/Resisting charges? Cows. The case just before Jesse’s in 1886 is The State of Ohio vs. Samuel R. Crane in which he is charged with “Resisting Officer Jesse Gustin in execution of his duties as Road Supervisor from preventing him from taking up certain cattle running at large.
Although I do not think we will ever get to the heart of this story, it is clear that their feud goes much deeper than the removal and return of those free roaming cows.