George Bell

George Bell was the cashier working when the Plato bank was robbed.

It was winter, 1902, in the little McLeod County town of Plato. In town was a bank, and at the bank was a cashier named George Bell, who was busy attending to business. A man entered the bank just as the clock struck 10. He was alone, and wearing a mask — no doubt that trouble was afoot.

The masked man carried a .38 revolver. As he approached Bell he pointed the weapon in the cashier’s direction and demanded he hand over the keys to the vault. Bell was alone, no other employee was present to help, and no other customers were in attendance. With no witnesses present, the cashier reluctantly agreed to hand over the keys.

Brian Haines is the executive director of the McLeod County History Center, 380 School Road N.W., Hutchinson. Hours are 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday through Friday, noon to 4 p.m. Saturday and by appointment. For more information, call 320-587-2109.