POLICE WILL ARREST ALL CAUGHT PLAYING PRANKS. ~ Order Goes Out for No Mercy Toward Those That Practice Outlawry on Halloween.

October 30, 1908

Order Goes Out for No Mercy Toward
Those That Practice Outlawry
on Halloween.

Have the kids in your block been holding whispering conferences on the street corners this week? Then take heed. This is clothes line night.

If your family washing is being done today, wind up the line at sundown and put it away, for it is "loser weeper" if you don't. You may find it tied to somebody's porch bench two or three blocks down the street, and then again you may not.

Clothes line night has become recognized among the youngsters as a greater night of frolic than Halloween. People don't expect mischief makers then as they do on the witches' eve, and there are so many startling surprises that can be sprung on the uninitiated. It is lots of fun to see folks stopped in their hurried walk and hear the queer words they say when they find out it's only a rope that stopped them. It's exciting to be chased for blocks after the folks hear the suspicious "tee-hees" from the bushes. It's sport to tie the knob of the front door to a post on the porch so that it cannot be opened, and then ring the doorbell merrily until a red, angry face appears and a fist shakes menacingly.

But it's most fun to take the nice, new clothes lines down and cut them into tiny pieces and scatter them in them all over the yard.

But here's a damper to the sport of clothesline night and all other nights, especially Halloween. The police have been given strict orders to be on the trail of all boys all of the nights until Halloween has gone for another year.

The order says, in part: "Keep a sharp lookout and arrest all persons (men or boys) who may be found destroying, or attempting to destroy, personal property." The order goes further and says "any kind of property," meaning of course, that if the boys should try to move one man's lot over onto another's, arrests would follow.

Special stress is being laid upon the specific act of "soaping the car tracks." Any boys or grownups caught doing this will be swooped down upon and lodged in the nearest police station.

There is to be no such thing as papa appearing on the scene after arrest, saying: "This is my boy; he's not bad, only mischievous," and the mischievous one being released on a personal bond. The order is to require only cash bonds or book the offenders for investigation, from which there is no appeal, no such thing as bond. So, small boys, big boys, young boys and old boys, be good, or at least, be very careful.