Bonnie and Clyde are the subjects of Saturday program

Editor’s note: Rod Stanhley will present a program entitled, “Bonnie & Clyde — Part # 2” on Saturday, June 23 at 1 p.m. at Mulberry Center Church, in the Wilson Brewer Park, 220 Ohio St., Webster City. This a free event.

Iowa historian Rod Stanley knows that Americans are always fascinated in the 85-year-old legend of Bonnie and Clyde and their bloody crime spree in Dallas County. Rod Stanley has said that his goal is to not glorify the criminal couple, but to teach people how they fit into United States and Iowa history.

Stanley, who is a retired educator taught history for 35 years, grew up in the Dallas County community of Dexter.

“Unfortunately, when I was growing up, I was not really interested in Bonnie and Clyde,” Stanley said. “I had heard about Bonnie and Clyde. I had heard about the Barrow Gang being in Dexter and I’ve even been on the site where the shootout took place.” He said that the lack of interest was due to the difference between 1933, when it actually happened, and the 1950’s or 1960’s, when he was a young lad.

After his retirement in 2006 and now living in Panora, he did programing for Forest Park in Perry which is operated by Dallas County Conservation.

“My interest turned to Bonnie and Clyde. I started doing all kinds of research,” Stanley said. “I started putting together stories, stories from people that were there, interviewing eyewitnesses that were there, and eyewitnesses that actually saw Bonnie and Clyde in the town of Dexter.”

Stanley has been giving presentations on the Barrow Gang for nearly a decade all over Iowa.

Due to popular demand, he returns to the Mulberry Center Church at Wilson Brewer Park on Saturday, June 23 at 1 p.m. with another outstanding presentation on Bonnie & Clyde. The title of this action packed presentation is “Bonnie & Clyde – Part #2.”

Rest assured that this program will be completely different from the one given by Stanley when he was here in 2016.  In 2016 he focused mostly on the Barrow Gang’s exploits during the Great Depression in and around his central Iowa hometown, including the biggest shootout in that county’s history.

The Barrow gang — Clyde Barrow, Bonnie Parker, Clyde’s older brother Buck Barrow, Buck’s wife Blanche Barrow and the teenaged W. D. Jones — came to spend four or five days camping in the Dexfield Park and making trips in and out of Dexter prior to the gunfight. The gangsters came to Iowa to lay up and lick their wounds after three of the gang members were hurt in a shootout in Platte City, Missouri. The reason they drove into Dexter was to find medical supplies and hide out from police in pursuit of them.

The Dexfield Park Shootout, north of Dexter happened on July 24, 1933.  Bonnie and Clyde escaped that day and although both were wounded, they were able to steal a car from the Feller Family.

Stanley begins Part #2 of Bonnie & Clyde by resolving several questions: What happened next? Where did they go and what did they do? He will talk about what happened to the Barrow Gang after they escaped from Dexfield Park. We will hear about the four bank robberies in Iowa, who the members of their gang were, how they eluded law officials, shootouts with the law, and how they were ambushed and killed in Gibsland, Louisiana.

Remember everyone, Rod Stanley told us that he would return another time, “To tell us the rest of the story about Bonnie & Clyde.”