Qtown History: 8/12/1919; Gypsies Begone!
“When the party of gypsies rounded up by the police here Monday afternoon were released, they left the city- and they left in a hurry”
This story comes from the Quincy Daily Journal, and tells of a suspicious band of gypsies…a term often referring to those “shady” people who were just passing through town. More or less strangers who may or may not be of any ethnic background. The term Gypsy carried with it the connotation that, the individual or party had ill intentions when entering a community. This particular group was being held in prison on the suspicion that they possibly stole a car. Apparently, no supporting evidence could be found, and the suspicion turned to “another party of gypsies” who passed through town in the same time range.
The story is rather said when you think about the kind of public attitude that exists against strangers in a town, as well as the derogatory terminology that is used to refer to a group of people who in all reality are merely strangers in a small town. I’d like to think that today we are not as quick to classify strangers as potentially dangerous, but I think there still exists a bit of human nature that leads us to fear what’s strange to us.