has always been an important part of the community, even before there was a community. Today’s park ground was part of the Luther French homestead in March, 1870, the town’s first real estate. The site of French’s first home, his dugout on the banks of School Creek is within the park. Though we credit French as Sutton’s founder, it is unlikely the prospect of a town was involved in Mr. French’s land decisions, much less the prospect of a park. He appears to have been a farmer just looking for a place to plant wheat. Sutton Park
John Maltby arrived early the next year to claim a homestead to the south of French’s and soon convinced Luther to subdivide his homestead into 600 lots for the town of
which French immediately began to sell off to newly arriving townspeople. In the fall of 1871, French sold the last 400 un-sold lots to the Clark brothers, moved further down School Creek into Sutton acquiring another plot of ground for his wheat and resumed farming. Fillmore County
French’s sale of his homestead became central to the dispute that Sutton had with the Burlington Railroad when French fumbled the proper legal sequence involving recording land sales negating a deal railroad officials believed they’d completed.