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Local

Jocko the monkey, John Rosendahl and two bottles of whisky

Morris
Morris

It was back in February of 1902 that John Rosendahl, a farmer living south of the river, ended up with a pet monkey. The same monkey that George De Peyster had for a long time. And therein hangs a tale.

John Rosendahl came into Morris one day a bought two half pint bottles of whiskey for medical use. He hid the bottles in the pantry and felt sure they would be there in case he was bitten by a snake or some family member got sick in the middle of the night.

Time passed with no need for the “remedy.” But finally, one day, Mr. Rosendahl thought he felt badly. He went to the pantry and reached for one of the bottles.

They weren’t on the same shelf where he left them. They were on a different shelf. And they were empty.

He figured that some of the hired men on the farm found out about the whisky and helped themselves. He accused each one of them of stealing. But they all denied knowing anything about the little stash.

So Rosenthal went back to town and bought another supply of whisky, and placed the bottles back on the same shelf. Later, when he went to get one of the bottles both of them were empty, and the corks were back in place. Again, the thought of the hired men crossed his mind. But he simply went back into town and bought another supply and put it back on the same shelf.

This time, he was determined to catch the thief. He kept an eye on the pantry door.

One day, he was surprised to see Jocko, the monkey, go into the pantry. He watched as the monkey climbed up the shelf where the bottles were kept. He grabbed one of the bottles by the neck, pulled the cork, and emptied the contents onto the floor. And before Rosendahl could stop him, Jocko did the same thing with the other bottle.

The mystery was solved. Before John Rosendahl got him, Jocko the monkey was raised in a prohibition household. And furthermore, he probably didn’t like the taste of firewater.

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