Rolland Stokes, Town Marshall and Utility Superintendent (right) and
John Hawkins, Town Engineer (left) inspect the new treatment plant
August 14th, 1972.
Rolland oversees the inspection of a galvanized steel box found
buried in the Battlefield. This box contained the remains of an
Irish Setter buried in the late 1930's. It would be exhumed two
more times before the steel box would be removed. The steel
box attracted undo attention from metal detectors etc. The
dog was laid to rest in the original location.
Rolland Stokes who was the first “official” Battle Ground Town Marshall and
also worked for the town supporting the water, sewage and streets during the
late 60s and all of the 70s is still planning one last trip to Battle Ground.
Rolland is now 84 years old and lives with his wife Pat of 63 years in the
Kansas City area. His Health has been strong for 83 years but he is now truly
feeling his age. Rolland came to Battle Ground in September of 1965 to manage
the United Methodist Church Camp on the grounds of the now Tippecanoe
Battlefield area. A few years later in 1968 Rolland became an employee of the
town of Battle Ground and in 1970 at the age of 46 attended the police academy
as the oldest member. In the first few years as marshal the family sedan and a
magnetic strobe light became the town’s patrol car which eventually progressed
to a full squad car in late 1971 or early 72. During these years , Battle Ground
was experiencing some trying times and kept Rolland busy with keeping the peace,
negotiating with the citizens and helping the County Sheriffs deal with the
local events of the Battle of Old Tippecanoe, The Pow Wow , the Fiddlers
Gathering and other events that kept the unique town of Battle Ground ticking.
To this day one of his most memorable events as town marshal was escorting the
US presidential honor guard down the streets of the town during the Battle of
Along with Rolland’s marshal duties he was certified to maintain the water and sewage treatment facility, assist with city streets and signage and was heavily involved with the growth of the town with the engineers and planners. He truly gave his days, nights and weekends to supporting Battle Ground. I’m sure as with any marshal, police officer or municipality there tends to be some disagreements and clashes with people that make that career a daily challenge. One of his most rewarding moments however was a time toward the end of his role in the late 70s when he was ready to resign and some of those daily challenges and most troublesome town citizens came to his support. This welcomed support caused his heartfelt need to continue for a while longer. He truly gave a huge part of his life to the town and hopefully made an impact with the town and people. I know he still wonders how several of those citizens and teenagers ended up.
Rolland can’t travel much anymore but he has planned his last visit and will eventually have his final resting spot in Battle Ground. We of course are all hoping for a few more years and look forward to any story , word of gratitude and/or old pictures that could be passed on to him.
Please send to firstname.lastname@example.org
According to the Lafayette Journal and Courier, Rolland Stokes passed away 3/18/2009.