Wednesday, February 21, 2018


Walter Clyde and Jimbo with goats.
Scanland Collection; 0000.004.038
The January 3, 1952 issue of The PlantersPress carried the following story.

“In the suburbs of Bossier City there is a herd of goats whose climbing probably would compare with that of almost any mountain-climbing animals.”

“These amazing animals were publicized last Saturday in the Shreveport Journal, as follows:”

“Goats have always been labeled as hard-headed and very dumb critters, but a herd belonging to Bossier Parish Chief Deputy Steve Norris has found a way to escape stray dogs which have been killing them off during the years.”

“The herd, now made up of about twenty-five animals, is pastured at the abandoned Cities Service refinery just outside of Bossier City. The abandoned property has been the herd’s home for about seven years.”

“The old towers of the refinery are the refuge of the goats from their would-be killers and are also used as their air-conditioned bases, being closer to any available breeze during the summer. The goats obtain access to the towers, which stand almost 75 feet high, by means of steel walkways to the high perches.”

“And, as far as is known, the sure-footed beasts have never made a misstep and taken the hard way out toward the dinner table, Norris said.”

When Norris first pastured the herd at the refinery there were about 75 goats in it. But the marauding dogs have chased the creatures, killing some of them and driving others to their death in water holes on the property.”

“A goat, unlike most other animals, cannot swim. And sometimes they even die when they get into water, even though their heads may never go under the surface. It has been surmised that the goat suffocates or dies of a paralysis.” [A little research proves this to be false. Goats can, indeed, swim.]

“But the Norris herd has found the escape route and is gradually increasing.”

“The goats can usually be seen climbing the ladders to the tower tops during the early morning or late evening. The ascension is sometimes witnessed by passing motorists, who find the sight entertaining.”

“One woman found no entertainment in it several years ago, it is reported.”

“Upon seeing the goats atop the towers and roaming the stairways above the ground, she drove to the Bossier City police station to request that the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals be informed to make the owner remove the animals from the dangerous perch.”

To discover more anomalies from Bossier Parish visit the Bossier Parish Library History Center.

By: Ann Middleton

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