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You think today’s travel security was tough? Try 1903 standards.

You thought taking your shoes off in the airport security line was tough? Check out travel security in 1903.

Reprinted from the June 19, 1903 Vidette, which cited the Aberdeen Sun:

R.B. Bryan and wife returned from Mexico Monday afternoon after an absence of six months.

Mr. Bryan is the son of State School Superintendent Bryan, and has lived in Aberdeen for years, but is now residing temporarily in Mexico because he can make more money there as an electrician than he can here.

Speaking of his trip home he said: “We boarded the steamer “Alamos Topolobampo” for Guaymas. The boat stopped at Mazantian to put off the mail. When we reached Guaymas we were immediately put in quarantine on an island two miles from Guaymas on account of bubonic plague at Mazatlan. The boat however, went into Guaymas and unloaded its cargo, while we had to stay on the island eight days. Our trunks with all our baggage was run through a steam fumigator, and everything that had any leather about it was destroyed by the heat. After this, forty of us, both men and women, were compelled to go into a big room and take a shower bath all together, everyone being completely naked. We were marched from there into another room where we had to sit around for forty minutes before we get into our clothes, all protests being unavailing.

“That night an Englishman, who was on the boat with us, and who had some money, endeavored to escape by stealing a boat. His body was found the next day on a nearby island with a bullet hole in the temple. He was brought back to our island by Mexicans for identification, and was taken out and dumped into the bay.

“An account of the indignities offered to myself and wife were reported to the American consul at Guaymas, but no notice was taken of it. We also reported in person the murder of the Englishman to the British consul, but he refused to believe what we said. We finally arrived in Aberdeen and we are mighty glad to get here.”

Mrs. Bryan said: “The bigger the lie you tell about (traveling in) Mexico, the more apt you are to be telling the truth. It is worse than any accounts we can give you.”