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Goose Bone Club


The opening of the goose hunting season today seems to indicate the coming of spring to North Dakota, but everyone wonders when that will happen. Since 1886, in Pennsylvania, they have relied on the shadow of a groundhog to predict spring’s arrival, but on this date in 1888, a group of Devils Lake men organized the Goose Bone Club. According to a theory at the time, if the breast bone of a migrating goose was soft, spring was right around the corner; if hard, then spring would arrive several weeks later. Exactly how many weeks, could be judged by the degree of hardness. The members never did make a prediction as they encountered one little problem – first they had to catch a goose, and the geese didn’t appear until spring had officially arrived on the calendar.

By Jim Davis


Devils Lake Inter-Ocean February 25, 1888