Home Life History History: W.H. Horton, game warden in 1937

History: W.H. Horton, game warden in 1937

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The editor of The Bossier Banner spoke up about a game warden for Bossier Parish in the April 15, 1937 issue of the paper.

“During yesterday’s session of the Police Jury, the parish’s new game warden, W. H. Horton, who is being paid by the jury, reported that he had, since going to work last month, confiscated some 39 illegal fish nets and collected over $125, for netting and fishing licenses.”

“There are several aspects of this matter which deserve consideration on the part of our people and our state officials.  The results of Mr. Horton’s work, during the short period he has been on duty, show conclusively that we do need a game warden, to protect our fish in our lakes and streams, especially in Bodcau and Bistineau lakes.  Most of Mr. Horton’s endeavors to date have been on the latter body of water, although he will begin this week to patrol Bodcau.”

“Since he has collected a tidy sum for licenses, all of which money goes to the state and not to Bossier Parish, it seems that a game warden would almost earn his wages.  As things now stand, the parish is paying his salary, with no assistance from the state.  It seems to us that the state should pay at least half of his wages, if not all of them.”

“With our ever increasing population, more and more fishermen are depleting the supply of game and commercial fish in our streams and lakes.  Unless we take immediate and drastic steps to protect them, either with state or parish funds, our sportsmen will ere long have no place in which to enjoy out-of-door life, especially fishing, boating, duck hunting and swimming.”

“While game wardens can do nothing to keep our streams fit for swimming, our Conservation Commission can and is doing something in this direction.  By prosecuting those oil producers and industrial plants which are polluting our streams, they are protecting fish and waters as well.”

“We commend these thoughts to our people and to our state officials.  We feel that the employment of a game warden is a most important matter and we are of the opinion that the state should bear its fair portion of the expenses.”

Today the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries employs over 200 game wardens, known as ‘wildlife officers’ to defend and preserve natural resources throughout the state and enforce applicable wildlife regulations.

Ann Middleton is Director of the Bossier Parish Library Historical Center. She can be reached at (318) 746-7717 or by e-mail at amiddlet@state.lib.la.us