Mt Pleasant News

Wash Journal   Fairfield Ledger
Neighbors Growing Together | Sep 18, 2018

Putting down his pistol

Father Tom retires from Old Threshers’ Gunslingers
Sep 06, 2017
Photo by: Karyn Spory Tom Lane, known as Father Tom to the Old Threshers Gunslingers, celebrated his 20th and final  year as part of the western show in the North Village.

By Karyn Spory, Mt. Pleasant News


The smoke from the bank robbery attempt still hung in the air as the slain members of the Dillon Gang stood back up, reveling in the applause from the crowd during one of Saturday’s performances of the Old Threshers Smokin’ Gunslingers American West Show.

This attempted bank robbery was a little more special than the rest, however. Old Threshers Sheriff Frosty Hermanstorfer grabbed a microphone and asked Father Tom, the voice and time keeper of the Gunslingers, to make his way to the center of the North Village. “This man not only announces us, but keeps us in order and on time for all of our performances,” Hermanstorfer told the crowd. “This is his 20th year as part of the Gunslingers and this year he’s decided will be his last.”

Outside of the Gunslingers, Father Tom goes by Tom Lane and resides in Maquoketa. “I actually got started down here in 1993,” said Lane who was a Mt. Pleasant resident at the time. “I left the group in 2005 when my job took me away.” But it couldn’t keep him away for long. Five years later the Gunslingers found themselves in a “tight pinch” and asked Lane to reprise his role. “I’ve been back since then. That’s my 20-year history with the group.”

On Saturday, Lane was presented with a plaque to commemorate his time in the North Village.

When asked what made him come back year after year to play cops and robbers he said, the people. Whether they portray a Sheriff’s deputy or a member of the Dillon Gang, Lane said they’re all “wonderful folk.”

“Over the years I’ve made some of the best friends I’ve ever had in this group,” he said.

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