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Chuck Johnson, Fairbanks, AK, is the winner!

The murder of Gust Piper is the answer for Number 517 of Orofino History Trivia a special feature to celebrate the history and heritage of Clearwater Country.

Join in the discovery!

Monday: A barking dog

Tuesday: Born in Germany

Wednesday: Was to be a witness in a criminal action

Thursday: Came to Ahsahka in 1903

Friday: Clearwater County Coroner's jury brought in a verdict of murder

Saturday: Some people thought it was suicide.

Monday: Sheriff Leo Ratliff

Tuesday: Prosecutor Sam Swayne

Wednesday: Lived in a cabin near Dent

Thursday: February 1941

Friday: A gunshot wound through the head

Saturday: Found by the man who owned the ground he lived on.

According to regional newspapers of the day, Gust Piper was found in his cabin near Dent shot through the head in February 1941. Law enforcement investigated the death as possible foul play, though some believed it was suicide.

He had been scheduled to testiby in a criminal case before the district court against Jasper Safely, North Fork, who had been accused of stealing a calf from the Martin Zimmerman place.

It was Zimmerman that found Piper in his cabin after the continued barking of a dog. Piper lived on Zimmerman's land. The injured man was taken to the Burn's Hospital, but succumbed to his wound.

A Clearwater County Coroner's jury deliberated for 45 minutes Feb. 27 before delivering a verdict of murder in the fatal shooting. The newspaper accounts never mentioned who may have been accused of the murder.

Leo Ratliff was the sheriff and Sam Swayne the prosecuting attorney involved in the case.

Piper had no know relatives. He was born in Germany and came to the U.S. when he was 9 years old. He came to Ahsahka in 1903. In the accounts, his name was recorded as Gus and Gust and his age was between 73 and 85.

For further details on the case see:,%20gust.html.

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Orofino, ID 83544
Orofino 476 0733
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