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Looking back: ‘Immoral’ dancing banned, 192-pound cougar caught and first 1977 Bannock County baby arrives

Looking Back

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EAST IDAHO — is looking back in time at what life was like during this week in east Idaho history.

This week is Dec. 27 to Jan. 2.


SUGAR CITY — An ordinance prohibiting “immoral” dancing within the corporate limits of the village of Sugar City went into effect on Dec. 31, 1913.

The Sugar City Times reported that “immoral dance known as ragging, tango, bunny hug, Texas tommy, turkey trot, three-step, grizzly bear, or any other immoral or vulgar dance, evil in their tendencies, in any hall or place of amusement” is “unlawful” and punishable by a misdemeanor.

“Any person, persons, firm or corporation violating any of the provisions of this ordinance shall be fined in any sum not less than $10 or more than $50, or be imprisoned in the village jail one day for each $2 of such fine, and each violation shall be deemed a separate offense,” the article states.


IDAHO FALLS — Two boys from the St. Leon neighborhood north of town went before Judge W.D. Huffaker on charges of stealing candy, the Idaho Falls Post Register said on Dec. 27, 1933.

The boys confessed to stealing candy from a church bazaar and festival held at the St. Leon school, according to court reports.

“Ten other boys … were ordered by the judge to report to him with their parents next Saturday,” the newspaper noted.

The names of the boys were not released.


PRESTON — Three Riverdale men caught an almost 200-pound cougar, according to The Preston Citizen’s Dec. 28, 1961, newspaper.

“(The men) who are noted in this region for their ability to track and capture or kill cougars, took part in another hunt recently where a 192-pounder was taken,” the paper explained.

Trail Hound, a dog belonging to Theo Smith of Riverdale, “trailed the cougar and treed it” in the Blacksmith Fork Canyon area out of Logan, Utah.

“The animal was snared but choked to death,” The Preston Citizen wrote. “It measured nearly eight feet in length.”

Along with Theo, Dave and Dean Smith participated in the hunt.


POCATELLO — The first baby born in Bannock County in 1977 came almost six hours after the start of the new year, according to the Idaho State Journal.

The newspaper reported that Scott and Phyllis Amundsen were the parents of an 8 pound, 2-ounce boy. The parents were expecting a daughter, so a name for the boy hadn’t been decided at the time the article was printed. The baby was the parent’s fourth child, and he was born at Bannock Memorial Hospital.

Phyllis wanted to have the first baby of the new year, according to the paper, but Scott didn’t expect it to happen.

“(Phyllis) hit it perfect,” he added.

The family won over $300 in prizes from Pocatello businesses including a jumper, dinner for two, gift certificates, baby walker, diapers and movie passes.

Scott told the paper that the mother and baby were doing great.