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ABBOTT, LEVI A. (DR. REVEREND)             



Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 19, 1916

Today was the ninety-second anniversary of the birth of Rev. Dr. L. A. Abbott, retired Baptist clergyman. Dr. Abbottis well preserved mentally and physically, and as evidence of this the Telegraph prints his message to his friends, and a poem which he furnished as a form of observing his ninety-second anniversary. Dr. Abbott says:


"I have often felt a degree of pleasure in the knowledge that my birthday was on the anniversary of the Battle of Lexington, April 19, 1775, when the first blow was struck for our national life, and also for the fact that on that eventful day when Captain Jonathan Wilson fell, pierced by British bullets, one of our family, Moses Abbott, stepped forward to command in the battle of those brave Minute Men of Bedford, Lexington and Concord. He had rushed from Bedford with his company bearing in his hands that red flag, as if already blood-stained with its immortal device of raised hand, with grasped sword and undying proclamation, "Vinces aut Morire," conquer or die.


By the bridge that arched the flood, Their flag to April's breeze unfurled.

Here once the embattled farmers stood, And fired the shot heard round the world.


My great-grandfather on my father's side, Uriah Abbott, was a brave officer through most of the years of the revolution, and my great-grandfather on my mother's side, Benjamin O'Bear, was a famous captain of the privateers letters of Marque, Dart and Freedom, making important captures of English merchantmen. On the Dart, at one time, were four beside the captain bearing the family name, also one of the family was in the Battle of Bunker Hill. On my last visit to my old home, Beverly, Mass., on searching the town records I found this record of my great-grandfather of whom I have just written: 'Benjamin O'bear, lost at sea, aged 30.'  Whether in violent storm the Freedom was sunk, or by English guns is not known. Perhaps in some personal venture he was drowned.


I am sometimes asked how it seems to look back over a long life. There are two ways in life's review, one in which life appears as a coil of rope, and one can slowly go back in thought knowing each incident, event or scene. In these thoughts life seems long. Another way is to step across all or nearly all of the coils, and in a moment you are in the scenes of young manhood, boyhood or even childhood, and things are viewed. In life's review most of the scenes are pleasant indeed, and those not so are few and shriveled up. Especially is this so of my sea life of ten years, and I often now make the old voyage in the night watches, for the most part the winds are fine, the water runs low and the decks are dry, which often was not the case when the sailing was real. In my youth, much of life was anticipation, but now there is not much anticipation as to self in matters of time. Yet my interest in life is quite intense, as to the distant horrid war, as to Mexico near and especially intense as to my loved land. I am a believer in proper preparedness, but the extreme people really shock me."



Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 19, 1918

Rev. Dr. L. A. Abbott was jointly celebrating today his own 94th birthday, and the anniversary of the battle of Lexington and Concord. His birthday falling on the greatest anniversary in the history of the United States, Dr. Abbott has always been very patriotic and today he is one of the most deeply interested in the welfare of this country. Beside this, he may be regarded as one of the very finest specimens of the nonagenarian class in the city of Alton, and we have a goodly number of men and women who have passed four score years and ten. When he was 92 years of age Dr. Abbott was asked to write down his view of life at that age. Today he informed the Telegraph he has taken another perspective of life from the added height of two years more, and at ninety-four he wrote down how it felt to be ninety-four. While Alton has many old people who can prove that Alton is a city that brings long life to its citizens, there are few who can, or will, make the showing of mental and physical strength and vigor at the age of 94 that Dr. Abbott can show. The following poem was written by Dr. Abbott on his 94th birthday, for the Telegraph:

How Does It Seem at Ninety-Four?

How does it seem at ninety-four?

A little different from before, Way back, to childhood's life intent.

And so, I note, with some surprise

How near some early scene now lies.


I stand between my grandsire's knees -

He hears me read and spell with ease.

I, barefoot, run along sea lines

Or, slowly, move beneath great pines.

I sail my tiny ship again,

The big ships out of right remain.



Oft in the stilly night I glow.

And think and think of long ago;

But in the day, war is my thought -

When will the winning day be brought?

When Uncle Sam gets there in force

He'll do the deed and end the course.


Such is my faith, unfaltering, real,

Whatever comes of woes or weal -

I feel I'm represented there

By brave grandsons to do and dare,

So in great hope, and little fear,

I, cheery, face another year.           April 19, 1918     L. A. Abbott





Source:  Alton Evening Telegraph, May 23, 1922

At a very pretty church wedding Monday afternoon at four o'clock, Miss Ellen Louise Schulte became the bride of Charles Adams of Jerseyville. The wedding ceremony was performed by the Rev. Joseph Jenkins at the First Baptist Church in this city [Alton], of which the bride has been a member for a number of years. The bride, who is the only daughter of Mrs. Mary Schulte, was attired in a dress over a century old, it being worn by a bride of 1810. The material was cream canton crepe and was brought to this country from Canton China, by Captain Spry, a sea captain, for his daughter's wedding gown. A beautiful shawl of delicate gray silk, beautifully embroidered by the Chinese, which was worn by Captain Spry's daughter at her wedding, was also worn by Miss Schulte. These exquisite heirlooms were given to Captain Spry's granddaughter, Mrs. Louise Patterson, formerly of Jerseyville, and at her death they were given to Miss Schulte with the request that she wear them at her wedding. The bride wore as her wrap a large shawl of white silk, brought from Japan by the sea captain, and adorned with heavy white embroidery. Mr. Adams is the youngest son of Mrs. Olive Adams, and a grandson of the late Mr. and Mrs. Charles Adams, pioneer residents of Jersey County. He is engaged in farming and has furnished a home for his bride on the James Persell farm, one-half mile east of Jerseyville. More than a hundred friends and relatives witnessed the ceremony at the church. The church was decorated by the young ladies of Miss Schulte's Sunday School Class, who also acted as ushers. After the ceremony, a wedding luncheon was served to fifty relatives and friends of the young couple at their new home.



ALLEN, BENJAMIN (CAPTAIN)             Officer Allen Wantonly Shot

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 15, 1902

Capt. Ben. Allen, one of the oldest and most efficient officers of the Alton police force, is lying in St. Joseph's hospital dangerously wounded by a bullet in his abdomen. The shot was fired by Christopher Davis, who was frenzied with intoxication and rage because of a wrong said to have been committed in his family. Davis made threats Saturday night that he would exterminate a whole family, a single member of which had given offense, and for the purpose he purchased a new revolver and was displaying it in saloons while he primed himself with drink. He threatened to kill the first officer who interfered also. Capt. Allen was notified about 10:30 o'clock Saturday night that Davis was threatening to shoot someone and he started for the saloon on Second street, opposite the police station, where the frenzied man was. The officer intended to disarm the man, but did not have time. As he stepped up to Davis the latter drew his revolver and began shooting, the first shot taking effect in Allen's right wrist and the second in the right side of the abdomen. Davis started to run, and the plucky officer drew his gun and started in pursuit. Davis turned at Second and Market streets and ran up Market street, followed by the wounded officer who emptied several chambers of his revolver at his fleeing assailant. Davis was caught by Capt. O'Leary and Deputy Sheriff Dreisoerner at Third and Market streets. He was arrested and is in jail awaiting the outcome of his victim's injuries. Officer Allen was taken to the hospital where Drs. Bowman and Shaff attended him. Today they made an examination with the X-ray for the purpose of locating the bullet.



ALLEN, ERNEST L.                   Alton Man to Receive War Cross From French Government

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, February 6, 1920

Ernest L. Allen, residing at 309 Vine street, has been notified that a Croix de Guerre with bronze star has been awarded him by the French government, and it will be presented to him Monday afternoon at 2 o'clock by Capt. W. L. Grabbe, officer in charge of the United States Marine Corps recruiting station at St. Louis. The award is being delivered through the Marine Corps because Allen served in that branch of the service during the war. Mr. Allen, an employee of the Standard Oil Co., in the experimental department, enlisted in the Marine corps April 20, 1917. He served in the 5th regiment, second division, and for a period of four months was on the fighting line all of the time. The worst fighting he saw was in Belleauwood and San Mihiel sector. He was on the Champagne front October 4, 1918, when he was wounded. Speaking today of the Croix de Guerre being awarded to him, he said he was not informed as to what particular exploit was to be recognized, nor why he was getting the recognition. He said he had heard that Croix de Guerre was to be given to him, but that when he wrote to inquire about it, he received no reply. When informed by the Telegraph today that the presentation was to be made Monday, he said that so far no notice of it had come to him. He is 26 years old and has lived here nine years.



William D. Armstrong, Alton ComposerARMSTRONG, WILLIAM D.               Alton's Composer of Music Given Honor

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 12, 1912

William D. Armstrong, Alton's altogether modest and ambitious composer of music, has been given an honor that seldom comes to composers, and which may be said to be the solitary instance of its being conferred upon an Alton person. He has been elected to membership in the Societe des Auteurs, Compositeurs et Editeurs de Musique of Paris, France. The notification came a few days ago and quite took Mr. Armstrong's breath away. He was not expecting it, and he can not guess whence came the favor which caused his name to be suggested for membership in this distinguished society. He has been working away on some very fine musical compositions, has published some which have met great favor, both in America and Europe, and has been giving no thought to the possibility of being made the subject of favorable consideration by such a distinguished body. His modesty has been one of his characteristic features, so there are few Alton people who realize the wide vogue Mr. Armstrong's pieces have had, and are still having. He has been to some extent a living illustration of the prophet who was not given his full honor in the community where he was born and reared. The letter which came was a surprise. It was sent from New York by the American branch of the society notifying him that he had been elected to membership in the Paris parent body, and requesting that he mail his acceptance at once. Inasmuch as it is considered a high honor, Mr. Armstrong responded favorably, and his acceptance is on its way to Paris. The American society has the English translation, "The Society of Authors, Composers and Publishers of Music." Many noted men have belonged to this society, and all of the noted musicians of today are included in its membership. Altonians will feel as much gratification over the honor that has come to Mr. Armstrong as he does, and that he is pleased very mildly expresses the real feelings of Mr. Armstrong.


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Source: Rochester, New York Democrat Chronicle, June 21, 1903

Mrs. August Bailey, who with her young son and daughter was found lying unconscious along the Big Four railroad track near East Alton, Ill., with wounds in their heads, early yesterday, died last night without regaining consciousness. The children have revived, but have not been able to give an account of the assault or tell who committed it. The girl, it is believed, will die, but the boy has a change of recovery.



BALSTER-TOBIAS FEUD                            Bad Blood

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 5, 1905

A very ugly fight took place this morning near Bethalto, between Conrad Tobias, Ben Tobias, Henry Tobias, brothers, on one side, and Henry Balster, John Balster and Willie Balster, brothers, on the other side. The Balsters are all sons of the late Dick Balster, a candidate for Congress last fall. The mother of the Balsters is a sister to the Tobias brothers. Trouble has been brewing between the six men for some time. The Tobias' had leased a piece of ground from the Balsters, which they planted in clover. The ground was to have been turned over to the Balsters August first, but which they did not do because they had not cut their clover. The Balsters had shot the Tobias' chickens, which further enraged the Tobias brothers. Henry Balster plowed the ground of Conrad Tobias. This morning they met and after the exchange of some words, Henry Balster pulled a gun and shot Conrad Tobias below the groin; the latter took the gun away from Henry and shot him in the leg. Billy Balster had a shotgun, which he wanted to use, but his brother John tried to prevent Billy using it and urged him to discharge both barrels in the ground. Billy finally used the butt end of the gun on the head of Ben Tobias, splitting his skull. Mrs. Balster then threw herself on the prostrate form of her son to keep her brother from killing her son outright. The battle was finally stopped and physicians were sent for, Dr. Thrailkill and Dr. Watson, but they could not locate the bullets and all parties were taken to their homes. Ben Tobias is quite seriously injured and Henry Balster's wound, in the leg, may result badly. The Balsters belong to a family that is very wealthy. The father of the Balster boys died last winter from the effects of pneumonia, and he was a well known farmer who had considerable to do with politics, having been a candidate for Congress twice on the Populist ticket. The Tobiases are also a well known and well-to-do family.  No arrests had been made up to a late hour today, but no doubt after the result of the battle is determined arrests may be made. Just who is the chief aggressor is difficult for neighbors to determine, and the unfortunate affair is laid at the door of a series of accumulating misunderstandings and bad blood.  Henry Balster, one of the principals in the battle, was interviewed by a Telegraph reporter and he gave a description of the fight. He said that he, with his brothers, went to take possession of the land which had been held under a lease by the Tobias brothers, this morning. The Balster brothers expected trouble with their uncles and went armed to defend themselves in case hostilities broke out. When they arrived with a plow and horses and began plowing in the field of clover which was planted by their uncles, and which the Tobias brothers had not yet harvested, the Tobias brothers appeared on the scene. It is said the Tobias brothers were unarmed, but that when they appeared and hostilities began to develop, Henry Balster drew a revolver and fired the first shot. This Mr. Balster admits. He shot his uncle, Ben Tobias, in the groin, after which Conrad Tobias took Balster's revolver from him and shot him in the calf of the leg. Mrs. Balster, a sister of the Tobias brothers, anticipating trouble, had followed her sons to the field and took an active part in the melee, saving her son from being badly injured, it is said. John Balster had been knocked down and was lying in the road, while the remainder of the family were struggling on a bridge, leading to the clover field in dispute. Mrs. Balster first unhitched the plow horses to prevent a disastrous runaway, and seeing her son prostrate and about to be attacked by her own brother, threw herself on the prostrate body and defended her son from the blows that were being aimed at him by his infuriated uncles. Mrs. Balster herself is said to have sustained injuries on the head and shoulders from blows which struck her during the excitement. The Balster brothers hesitated to use their firearms and defended themselves with sticks and clubs against the attacks of the three uncles. According to Henry Balster, five shots were fired, some of them accidentally, and only two of them took effect. The fight occured on what is known as the Cox place, about a quarter of a mile southeast of Bethalto. Henry Balster said that warrants would be sworn out by his side of the controversy, and there was little doubt the Tobias brothers would swear warrants too.


[Notes: It was reported on August 7, 1905 that Warrants were procured by the Tobias brothers against their three nephews, the Balster brothers, charging assault with deadly weapons. Bonds of $500 each were furnished by the Balsters, and the case was to be tried the next Saturday before Squire Brunton at Bethalto. The Balster brothers stated they were determined to obtain possession of their land, and that they would resume work plowing the clover field. The Tobias brothers stated they would not try to prevent them from plowing, but would apply for an injunction asking that the Balsters be restrained until the clover could be harvested. All the victims of gunshots recovered from their wounds. Unfortunately there are newspapers missing during this time period, and I could find no further information on the result of the trial.]




Source: Syracuse, New York Daily Standard, April 26, 1883

Professor A. F. Bandlier, of the American Archaeological Institute, S. F. Baldler, of Tuscon, and a Mexican, have been captured in Sonora by Apaches and taken into the mountains. Doubtless they have been murdered. Bandlier has been investigating Indian antiquities for several years. His family reside at Highland, Ill.




Source: Edwardsville Intelligencer, August 28, 1896

Ben Bange has bought the Clover Leaf butcher shop next to Hotz & Son's lumberyard, and has assumed control. Mr. Bange is an industrious young man, and has a wide acquaintance. He will sell choice meats, and give courteous treatment, and relies on the public for a fair share of patronage. The Clover Leaf management continue to conduct the shop opposite Tuxhorn Bros.' store.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, January 18, 1907

Ellis L. Barnard has put on exhibition at his new store in the Central Hotel building on Piasa street a handmade clock upon which he devoted three years of study and hard work. Every piece of the clock, including the very smallest screws used to hold it together, was made by Mr. Barnard's hands with a file as his principal tool. He made the parts out of brass pieces and he polished them after he had reduced them to the state of exactness he desired them, and to the observer the clock now appears to be one of the most beautiful pieces of brass workmanship to be found. The principal labor is in the pendulum, which is a triumph of mechanical skill, combined with exact computation. Mr. Barnard claims that the pendulum is a "compensating" one, that is it equalizes expansion and contraction due to heat and cold. The pendulum ball is suspended from a ruby point by nine bars of alternating steel and brass. The relative expansion of brass to iron is 100 to 61. Accordingly, there is allowance made in the arrangement of the brass and iron bars and in their length for the expansion and contraction so that it will be uniform and will not effect the swinging of the pendulum. The clock is made to run 8 days, and is operated by weights. The pendulum when started will swing four or five hours without any further impetus being given it than the original one. The clock is enclosed in a handsome case composed principally of glass panels which exhibits the mechanism. Mr. Barnard will have the clock in operation tomorrow, and he says that it will keep the most accurate time. When the maker of the clock says that he made every piece of it by hand, even to the minutest screws which hold it together, he is making a statement that is very unusual and will invest it with great interest. Mr. Barnard began building the clock in 1880 and finished it in 1892, but he never had the clock in operation and on exhibition before, in a regular clock case.



BARNSBACK, GEORGE            An Example Worthy of Imitation

Source: Alton Telegraph, March 8, 1845

It is with feelings of the highest gratification that we are called upon to record an act of liberality on the part of our estimable citizen and worthy Representative, George Barnsback, Esq., which is unexampled in the history of this state. Mr. Barnsback was urged to become a candidate for the Legislature against his wishes, and finally yielded to the solicitation of his friends with the greatest reluctance. During a session of thirteen weeks, he was never absent from his seat a single day, and his votes stand recorded as enduring monuments that he reflected the true interests of his constituents, and opposed all measures having a tendency to oppress the people, whether in the shape of increased taxation or any other way. He made no professions of devotion to the people's interests, but has shown by his votes and his acts how deeply he sympathizes with them in their losses, not only by flood, but by the partial destruction of the crops for the last two seasons. Mr. Barnsback reached Edwardsville on Tuesday of this week by stage, and was at the time laboring under severe indisposition. The County Commissions' Court was in session, and mustering strength to walk to the Clerk's office, he drew from his pocket one hundred and fifty dollars in Auditor's Warrants, being more than half of his pay as a member of the Legislature, and presented it to the County Court to be by them appropriated for the benefit of the poor in this county. What adds to the noble generosity of this benefactor is the fact that he enjoined it upon all present that nothing should be said about it. But it would be doing both him and his constituents injustice, were this generous act of his to be concealed from the public gaze. During the whole winter, the writer has witnessed personally the devotion of Mr. Barnsback by his votes, to what we regard as the true interest of the people of this county and the state at large. We consequently entertained for him feelings of the highest respect and admiration, this noble generosity on his part of giving more than half his pay, as a member of the Legislature, to his poor and suffering constituents, has increased that respect and admiration into feelings of veneration and gratitude. We should like to add more, but have not the time.




BASSETT, ROBERT E.                      Returns from the West

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 8, 1909

Robert E. Bassett returned home this morning from Silver City, N. M., where he has been staying for the benefit of his health. His appearance indicates that he found the health he went after by living out of doors, riding broncos and getting back as close to nature as he could. He weighs 145 pounds and never in his life did he weigh more than 125 pounds. Mr. Bassett expects to resume his duties as advertising manager for the Cotton Belt railroad at once. He became so expert at riding broncos that he could manage the worst of them, and was transformed from an eastern tenderfoot invalid into a man of muscle and skill at managing vicious beasts. Mr. Bassett says that he will continue his outdoor life, and will sleep outside all the time. He has not slept in the house all winter, and finds it very beneficial. He will guard carefully against a new attack of the malady from which he suffered and which at one time seemed about to end his life, long ago. He has learned the rules of right living and by applying them he has regained his health and strength.



BEALL, EDMOND (SENATOR)              Washes the Linens

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, October 6, 1913

Anyone in Alton who wants to have any washing done, call on Senator Edmond Beall. The 47th senatorial district's representative in the Illinois Senate has taken up a fad of doing laundry work. Some time ago he became interested in the purchase of an electric washing machine, guaranteed to do the work of laundrying household linen with efficiency and dispatch. The senator bought the machine and since then he has been putting in his Monday mornings at home. He was planning to go to Springfield Sunday night with Lieutenant Governor O'Hara, but he recalled that Monday was wash day and so he stayed in his home and will go to Springfield tonight. The senator says that he can turn out twelve tubs of thoroughly laundered linen before 11 o'clock in the morning. He can clean clothes as fast as they can be carried out and hung on the line. The machine is fascinating, and the senator is having a time of it - until the novelty wears off. He has superintended the working of the electric machine for three weeks now, and he is more interested than ever. The reason he bought the machine is that there was some trouble in getting competent help on wash day.



BEALL, EDMOND (MAYOR)                Plans To Sell Chicken Farm

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, January 16, 1917

Mayor Edmond Beall is planning to sell his ten acre chicken farm outside of the city limits of Alton. At the present time he has an exceptionally fine collection of poultry on the place. This includes 800 white leghorn chickens, ducks, geese, turkeys and peafowls. The poultry houses have been conducted along the latest lines. The advertisement of the sale of the farm will appear the last of this week, unless the mayor changes his plans. When asked this afternoon why he intended to sell out his chicken farm he refused to give any reasons. Many who have enjoyed fresh eggs furnished from the mayor's chicken farm will regret to learn that he plans to dispose of his farm and the business.



BEALL, [EDMOND] MAYOR                   Former Mayor Beall Assaulted on Street

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, October 22, 1918

Former Mayor Beall was assaulted on Fourth street this morning by William Raymond, a garbage hauler, and before Charles Townsend pulled off the assailant, Mr. Beall had received several stiff punches on the head at the hands of the garbage hauler. The attack was made without warning, Mr. Beall said. He was walking along Fourth street between Piasa and Belle and had just left a friend when Raymond stepped out from the side of a building where he was evidently lying in wait for Mr. Beall. Without comment he struck the ex-mayor and staggered him up against a building. Mr. Beall, who recently passed his seventieth birthday, is not as active as he once was and this, coupled with the element of surprise, caused him to be an easy victim for the garbage hauler. Raymond was arrested afterward, and fined $10 and costs for the assault. The trouble arose over Raymond's loss of a garbage job at the Illini Hotel. He formerly had the job of hauling the garbage from there, but for some time a man employed on Mr. Beall's farm has been getting the garbage and taking it out to the farm to be fed the hogs. Raymond resented the taking of the hotel from him, and some time ago made complaint to the city clerk about it, claiming Beall should take out a license. During the assault this morning Raymond said something about the ex-mayor being in the garbage hauling business without a license. At the time he complained to the city clerk, it was explained to Raymond that Beall's farm manager was merely hauling the garbage for his own use and that no license was required unless a man was engaged in the general garbage hauling business. When Raymond entered a plea of guilty, he demanded that Beall be fined for attacking him with his cane, which the ex-mayor denied. Raymond paid up and remarking he would go at once to spend 40 cents over some bar. Mr. Beall said that Raymond had been drinking when he made the attack.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 10, 1918

On account of the scarcity of sugar [during WWI], there was no lemonade or cake served today when Mr. and Mrs. Edmond Beall received their friends in honor of their fiftieth wedding anniversary. On account of the war, too, the couple did not hold any formal reception, but extend an invitation to all their friends to come and call on them any time during the day. Letters of congratulation to the couple commenced to come Monday from all parts of the country, old friends having seen in the Telegraph where the anniversary would be observed. Beall is one of the best known men in this part of the country, has served as Senator as well as filling the office of Mayor of Alton for several terms. Both he and his wife are in the best of health and spirit. Mr. and Mrs. Beall are life long residents of this city, the latter having been before her marriage fifty years ago today Miss Mary Harris. The couple have a family of five children, all residents of this city. The children are: Ed Beall Jr.; Roy Beall; Wesley Beall; Mrs. L. Caywood and Mrs. Hattie Gill. Mrs. Beall has two brothers and two sisters: Charles H. Harris, Ben Harris, Miss Adah Harris and Mrs. Anna Weld. Mr. Beall presented his wife with fifty white roses, bearing the card "Still My Bride." He also gave her fifty dollars in gold in honor of the golden event. The couple received handsome gifts of gold from their children, relatives and friends, as well as hundreds of congratulations from their many friends who called during the day.




Source: The New York Times, November 16, 1869

Click here to read the story. 




Source: Syracuse, New York Daily Journal, September 27, 1866

On the 7th Inst, as Mr. David Berry, living near Alton, Ill., was driving his team into his yard, the bees from one hundred or more hives, made a sudden attack upon the horses and himself, stinging both of the animals to death, and Mr. Berry severely. It appears, from Mr. Berry's statement, that the attack was simultaneous from all the swarms, and that It was impossible to escape their fury except by flight.



Source: Alton Telegraph, March 2, 1893

Mr. C. Boeschenstein and wife will represent Edwardsville at the inauguration of Mr. Cleveland as President. Mr. Boeschenstein should improve his opportunity and inform Mr. Cleveland that notwithstanding "Old Madison" is not represented in the Legislature by any member of the lower house being a chairman of any committee, there are multitudes of Madison county Democrats who think themselves perfectly able to fill the offices.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, January 20, 1912

She is still a girl at 92. She never has lost her interest in the boys and girls, their courtships, their marriages and subsequent events in their careers. This may be said of Mrs. Mary M. Bostwick, 116 north Main street, Upper Alton. To the interviewer, she put the question when he called to see her, "did you go to the dance at Wyman Institute?" (Western Military Academy), and when the reporter said "yes," she wanted to know whom he took and whether she was pretty, and which was the prettier - that girl or her sister. She wanted to know all about the young people, and she found out too. There is where Mrs. Bostwick has preserved her beauty, her strength, mind and vitality. She is never to grow old in feeling, and if her muscles would permit her to get around better, she would doubtless be the belle of some ball yet, as her conversational powers and her knowledge of young people's affairs would make her a delightful companion.


Mrs. Bostwick has lived long in that so many immigrants to the west followed. At Cincinnati, Mary's family [the Highams] boarded a flat-boat and came down the Ohio river to the Mississippi, and up the Father of Waters to St. Louis. They spent the winter of 1828-1829 at St. Louis, and next summer came to Alton. The flat-boat was moored at the foot of Spring street, named for the large spring which flowed into the river at that point. At that time Alton was little better than a small parcel of the vast wilderness that was the most prominent characteristic of the new west. There were two distinct settlements - Upper Alton and Lower Alton, and Upper Alton was almost twice as large as its sister on the river. Mrs. Bostwick makes her home with her son, John Bostwick. When a Telegraph reporter called on her to hear her story, she smiled and jokingly asked, "Will it pay?" Mrs. Bostwick is in her ninety-second year, and still is in excellent health. She no longer reads the daily papers, but is an interesting conversationalist and delights to narrate her reminiscences in return for some of the news of the day. When asked for her picture, at first she was averse to parting with it, not because she feared it would never be returned, but because she claimed that she was no longer as beautiful as formerly. But this is not the case. Mrs. Bostwick retains much of her youthful vivacity, if not of body, as least of spirit. Her eyes sparkle like those of a happy girl, and her features light up when she is unusually animated. Besides her youthfulness, there is a quiet, exalted something in her demeanor that is especially noticeable. Indeed, were she still living in the ancestral home in old England, she would be "Lady" Bostwick, as her family were of the nobility before her grandfather forsook the old state of things and struck out to taste of the new world. And to this day, some of her more intimate friends call her "Lady" Bostwick.


"When I first arrived in Alton, there were just five families living in lower Alton," said Mrs. Bostwick in the course of her story. "They were the two Howards, the Clark, Seeley, Hawley and Montone families. I cannot recall all the families who lived in the more thickly settled Upper Alton. Enoch Long lived in a wooden structure where the Burnap home now stands on the corner of College and Main streets. At the birth of his son, Hasting, who must be eighty years old by this time, the large tree in the Burnap front yard, of which only a huge dead trunk is left standing, was planted by Mr. Long. Two other families in Upper Alton were the Wells and Lowes. Dr. Stanton also was one of the old-timers. When my mother became ill at the log cabin in lower Alton, which was our home for several months after our arrival in Alton, we moved to Upper Alton where mother could be near medical attendance."


Mrs. Bostwick has lived in Upper Alton ever since. At the age of sixteen, she attended the female seminary at Jacksonville, Ill., at the present time grown into the Illinois Woman's college. She is the oldest former pupil of the school, having lacked one year of doing sufficient work to complete the course. At the alumnae reunion last year, Mrs. Bostwick was urgently solicited to be present, but was unable to attend. The only other Altonian who attended the seminary at that time was Miss Harriet Godfrey, daughter of Captain Benjamin Godfrey, later Mrs. John M. Pearson. On her return home from Jacksonville in 1886, Elijah P. Lovejoy was one of the occupants of Mrs. Bostwick's coach. She remembers him as a most homely man, strongly marked with smallpox and most positive and outspoken in his convictions. During the entire trip she conversed with the great martyr, little dreaming what an immortal character he was to become.


Mrs. Bostwick has been acquainted with every president of Shurtleff College except the last two. She claims that "Father" Hubbel Loomis deserves as much credit for the founding of Alton Seminary (later Shurtleff College) as Rev. John M. Peck, who moved his Rock Spring Theological Seminary to Upper Alton in 1832. Before 1832, "Father" Loomis had conducted a school immediately across from the Upper Alton post office. When Alton Seminary was opened, Loomis became principal, and the school gained immediate prestige by the transfer of his numerous pupils. Mrs. Catherine Clark, later Mrs. Bostwick's step-mother, was another of the early teachers of Alton, having taught in the old Baptist church vestry on Second street [Broadway], where the Taphorn building now stands. Mrs. Bostwick's grandfather, John Higham Sr., possesses the distinction of having been a school mate of Robert Fulton in Albany, N. Y., and her father, John Higham Jr., when a small boy of eight years, accompanied the famous inventor on the first trip of the Clermont up the Hudson river. Fulton was very kind to the little boy, assisting him on the boat and showing him a comfortable seat.


The history of Madison county of 1882 says the "General Pike" was the first steamboat to ascend the Mississippi river above the Ohio river in 1817. This boat could not have passed Alton, for Mrs. Bostwick remembers that after she came to Alton she saw the boat, which the older inhabitants claimed was the first steamboat to pass Alton.


Mrs. Bostwick read the Telegraph for many years and was a personal friend of George T. Brown, the editor of the Courier. James Brown was also one of her intimate friends, and she was always a welcome guest in the Brown household.


John Higham introduce the first tame pigeons into Alton. When he brought his family to Alton from the east, he brought along two tame pigeons in a little cage. These he liberated in Alton, and they multiplied so quickly that in a short time the town was literally overrun with pigeons.


Mrs. Bostwick clearly remembers the Piasa Bird painted on the bluffs above Alton, and recalls how the Indians, coming down the river in their canoes, shot at the painted monster with arrows. They did not regard it as a bird, but rather as a devil and enemy of the tribe. As Mrs. Bostwick remembers, it was a cross between bird and animal with wings and long legs and talons. She says none of the pictures she has seen resemble it.


Mrs. Bostwick, in 1840, married John Bostwick, who has long since been dead [he died in 1855]. Of her four children, two are living - John Bostwick of this city, and Mrs. Dora M. Spaulding of California. Mrs. Bostwick's biography and reminiscences could well be expanded into an account of several volume's extent. She is one of Alton's oldest survivors of the strictly pioneer days, when a rough cabin was the only token of civilization.


[John Bostwick Sr. (1789-1855) was Mary's husband. He played an important role in the early development of Upper Alton. John Bostwick purchased eight acres of land in Upper Alton, which later became Western Military Academy. He began to build a large house for his family on the west side of Seminary Street, but it was destroyed by fire. Bostwick started a second house across the street. In 1838, Edward Wyman, visiting Alton on a business trip, saw and admired the home. Wyman, years later, traded land in St. Louis for the eight-acre piece of land in Upper Alton and founded the Wyman Institute.]




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 26, 1917

Will Bray, a well known restaurant man and boarding house conductor, will try to raise much of the vegetables he will need during the next winter, and he intends doing it right here in Alton and close to his boarding house in the eastern part of the city. He has secured two large lots and these are being planted in corn, potatoes, beans and smaller vegetables. He has these two lots in addition to his own back yard, and it is a large one and not a foot of ground will be allowed to loaf. There will be no flowers or grass on the lots and Mr. Bray expects to raise enough of all kinds of vegetables to do him next winter. Beans will be planted with the corn later, and even should the summer be drought afflicted, his three lots will not, as he can irrigate with city water.




Read the letter written to Jonathan Brockway of Troy, Illinois, from his father Reed Brockway. Written in 1820 and sent to the Edwardsville Post Office.



BROWN, MAUD                    Temporarily Deranged - Wanders from Home to Fosterburg

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, January 17, 1900

Maud Brown, the 16 year old daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Don S. Brown of 423 Alby street, wandered off yesterday afternoon while in a fit of temporary aberration of mind and did not return until this noon, when she was brought back home by some Fosterburg people by whom she was found wandering along the country road. Maud is a bright young girl, and is in the eighth grade of Lincoln school.  She left home at noon yesterday to go to school, but she did not appear there, and she was seen at 1 o'clock standing at the corner of Twelfth and Alton streets. When she did not return home after school, her parents became alarmed, and later the assistance of the night police was asked in tracing the girl. Officer Welch and Mr. Brown started out to hunt for her, and the only clue they obtained was that she had been seen standing near the Big Four freight depot in the afternoon. All night long the father and the police officer tramped across the country asking everyone they met if the missing girl had been seen. The parents were in painful suspense, as the girl had never expressed being unhappy in her home, and it was feared she had been kidnapped. The searchers had given up and were returning home at noon, when the father saw his daughter in a farm wagon on Second street riding between a man and a woman. The people who were bringing her to Alton said the girl was met at dusk last evening walking along the road 1 1/2 miles from Fosterburg. She was apparently deranged mentally, and was taken to the home of a family named Grueber, where she remained all night. She told a rambling story and could recollect none of the circumstances leading up to the time she was picked up near Fosterburg. She said she was from Alton, and this morning the Grueber's brought her to town. When she arrived home she could tell nothing of her experience, and her mind is completely blank as to all that happened during the 24 hours. She says she felt a headache when she left home yesterday noon, and that was the last she recalls. Her parents say Maud's temporary mental derangement is probably due to over study, coupled with ill health. She had recovered her senses this afternoon but remembers nothing of the twenty-four hours she was away from home.



BRUCE, ROBERT/Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 15, 1902            An American Hero

Robert Bruce was a member of the famous Ninth U. S. infantry that was sent from the Philippines to Pekin, China last summer. Mr. Bruce had served in the Philippine service before going to China. In the two campaigns he was wounded seven times, one time in the temple. The palate of his mouth has been shot away, and a silver plate takes its place. This renders his enunciation rather indistinct. Other wounds make his disability most serious. He has been notified that a pension of $45 a month has been awarded him, with back pay to the amount of $2,250. He is a machinist by trade, and when he gets work he will be able to support himself. Just now he is without funds. Some of the men who have met him have assisted him. He will only need this assistance a few days longer. He has been about two months in St. Joseph's hospital, suffering from typhoid fever. He is of Scotch birth, from Glasgow. He has one daughter in an academy, who will graduate therefrom in eight months. His wife and one child died when he was away, some nine months before he was discharged. Altogether he has an interesting history that appeals to every humane and patriotic heart.



The Philippine-American War (1899-1902) was an armed conflict between the United States and Filipino revolutionaries. The conflict arose from the struggle of the First Philippine Republic to secure independence from the United States following the latter's acquisition of the Philippines from Spain after the Spanish-American War. The war was a continuation of the Philippine struggle for independence that began in 1896 with the Philippine Revolution.


The China Relief Expedition was an expedition in China undertaken by the United States Armed Forces to rescue United States citizens, European nationals, and other foreign nationals during the latter years of the Boxer Rebellion, which lasted from 1898 to 1901. The China Relief Expedition was part of a multi-national military effort known as the Eight-Nation Alliance to which the United States contributed troops between 1900 and 1901. Towards the close of the expedition, the focus shifted from rescuing non-combatants to suppressing the rebellion. By 1902, at least in the city of Peking, the Boxer Rebellion had been effectively controlled.]



BRUNO, TONY                 Stages Successful Defense Against Demands of Two Masked Robbers

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 14, 1921

Tony Bruno, an Italian living on Harriet Street and conducting a little store there, was shot in a successful resistance of a holdup by two masked men last night at 8 o'clock. Bruno refused to throw up his hands, offered resistance to the two men and one of them shot him. Bruno got possession of a revolver and fired as the two robbers were escaping through his store door to the street, and he thinks he may have wounded one of the men. Bruno was sitting in his kitchen, off which opens a little room occupied as a bedroom. His wife had gone to bed and he was sitting up a while waiting for some chance customers to come into the store. They came, but they wore handkerchiefs tied over their faces and they didn't want to buy, they wanted to get the proprietor's money. They pulled a revolver on Bruno and told him to give up his money. Bruno told them he would not do it, he would die first. With that he made a thrust at one of the men with his arm and the other fellow fired twice at Bruno, hitting him once. Bruno dodged into the bedroom, where under a pillow he had a revolver. The two bandits turned to run out of the place and Bruno fired as they passed through the door. The bullet did not hit the wall or the door and Bruno thinks for that reason one of the robbers carried it away with him. Dr. Worden, who took care of Bruno, said that the ball entered his left shoulder and did not come out. There was very little blood shed though the bullet traveled close to a large artery beneath the collar bone. Today an x-ray examination of the wounded man was made to locate the ball. Bruno is a powerful built man, though not very tall. After he had vanquished the two holdup men, he enjoyed greatly telling of his experience. He did not know he was shot until after the bandits had left the place. He was unable to give any good description of them. Bruno happened to have a considerable sum of money in his pocket at the time of the attempted holdup.


Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 16, 1921

A surgical operation performed on Tony Bruno, yesterday afternoon at St. Joseph's hospital, resulted in the extracting of the bullet which was fired into him by a bandit who was one of two trying to hold up and rob Bruno in his little store on Harriet avenue a few nights ago. The condition of Bruno was alarming today, but the attending surgeon said that he might survive the wound. The ball was extracted because Bruno had been showing fever and there was fear that infection might have set in. As a precautionary measure, the wounded man made preparations for dissolution while he was still able to do so, before undergoing the surgical operation which was a hazardous one on account of the dangerous place where it was necessary to explore in taking the lead from the man's body. The surgeon succeeded in accomplishing what they were after without injuring any of the vital spots which were close by where the bullet had lodged.


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CHALLACOMBE, JAMES              Leg Shattered When Horse Fell on It

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, February 7, 1917

James Challacombe, residing on the old Nicholas Challacombe place in Godfrey township, was in a desperate plight this morning when pinioned by the leg under his horse, the leg shattered, he was so far from help on a lonely lane that his calls for help could barely be heard. Mr. Challacombe, who is well known in Alton, was riding horseback from his own home to that of William Ehrler. He had passed the place of C. C. Osborne, turning in on a little traveled lane, leading to his destination. The horse stumbled on level ground and falling, Mr. Challacombe was unable to get out from under and the full weight of the horse came down on the rider's left leg. The horse did not rise for some reason, and there Mr. Challacombe lay. He was suffering excruciating tortures from the broken leg, and he was so far away from the Osborne house there was small chance of his being heard in his cries for help. It chanced, when Mr. Challacombe was beginning to suffer from being on the cold ground in addition to the pain that was in the leg, a lucky turn of the wind carried the sound of his voice to the Osborne home. Mr. Osborne, hearing the cries, hastened in the direction from which they came, and there he found Mr. Challacombe lying, still held down by the horse. It is doubtful that he would have been able to have risen even though the horse had released him, as he was too badly hurt. Mr. Osborne conveyed him to the house and surgeons were called. They found the bone of the leg so badly crushed that there is some doubt as to possibility of the leg ever being a good one again. The bones are shattered, and only the very good constitution of Mr. Challacombe will ever admit of his having a good leg out of the injured one. Mr. Challacombe formerly lived in Alton, but for a number of years has resided on the place where his father lived many years, and where the father died a few years ago from the effects of burns he received by accidnet.




Source: Alton Telegraph, September 6, 1877

Saturday evening, about 9 o'clock, as Dr. C. M. Smith was riding down Belle street in his buggy on his return home from making some professional calls, he met, near Clifford's grocery store, a buggy driven by Frank Charless of Godfrey, who was accompanied by two other young men. The horses driven by Carless were going quite rapidly, and Dr. Smith tried, in the intense darkness, to turn out of the way, but in vain; his buggy collided with the other, threw him out and inflicted such severe injuries that he was taken home in a semi-unconscious condition, in which state he still remains. Dr. Davis was called, and did all that was possible to relieve the sufferer. It is feared that internal injuries were received, but hopes are entertained of his ultimate recovery. Frank Charless was thrown out of his wagon and dragged some distance, but succeeded in stopping his team without receiving any serious hurt, but one of the men with him was badly bruised by the concussion. The third occupant escaped uninjured. Both buggies were badly broken. Dr. Smith's condition shows some improvement this afternoon, we are glad to state, and his friends are correspondingly encouraged.




Source: Alton Telegraph, August 12, 1886

Probate Court News - Mahala Charless of Godfrey; Mary E. Charless makes final settlement as administratrix and is discharged.


Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 1, 1909

The farm home of Miss Mary Charless in Godfrey Township had been ransacked by daylight burglars who secured $25 cash and jewelry, including two gold rings and a watch. The intrusion took place while Miss Charless was supervising farmhands at work in the fields.


Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 29, 1919

Miss Mary Charless has given up the fight to hold the old home in Godfrey township, to which she clung tenaciously during years of litigation, and other years of desperate financing. Her great hope that she would be able to hang on to the place, that somehow, someway, she would be able to stay there until she died has proved a vain one. Miss Charless, until her departure a few days ago from the place, had never slept a night away from under that old roof. She was born there and had seen others her age become grandmothers, and all the time she lived on the one place. She had tried farming the 420 acres, but had not proved a success at farming. Some said it was the management. Though the old farm did not return her enough to enable her to live and pay the increasing debts, she still wanted to cling to it. Several times she was facing loss of the place, but she clung to it, managing by desperate financing to stay. Finally, when she had made her last financial transaction and she had failed to make good on it, and the sheriff was ready to fly the flag over the place, Miss Mary again took a chance. She succeeded in getting two lawyers interested in her case who would go ahead and see if they could save anything out of the wreck, but the court decided the wreck was complete, total, hopeless. Miss Charless had a certain time she could stay on the place and she stayed, but, the time neared for her to turn it over to another. Miss Charless quite recently stored her old furniture with a friend in Godfrey, and like the Arabs, quietly slipped away. Some say she has gone to the home of her sister, Mrs. Emma Eldred in Kansas, who has promised to be all that a sister should be to Miss Mary for the remainder of her life. There are many who wonder how Miss Mary is going to be content to be away from that old place, and who guess that she isn't going to be satisfied at all, because the place has been a part of her, just like one's children would be, only more so, because Miss Mary has never been away from the place more than twelve hours at any time in her life, and always managed to get back to sleep in her own bed in her own room. The place is tenanted by H. Buck, who moved there from the Edwardsville neighborhood, having rented the farm from the owners who took it under mortgage foreclosure several years ago, but who were prevented by the litigation Miss Charless maintained, from getting into possession until now.



CHESSEN, JAMES             Retired Farmer Still Breaking Colts to Work and Training Canines to do Tricks

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 17, 1916

James Chessen, the retired farmer and livestock dealer, was 86 years old a few days ago, and the anniversary was observed by a family gathering at his home. He enjoyed all the fun at the gathering that any one did, and appeared to enjoy the eatables even more heartily than they. Today he is breaking a young colt of pedigreed stock to work in harness, and that is a favorite amusement with him. With other horse breakers the job is looked upon as something very difficult; with him it is a pleasure, and the colts appear to recognize in him their master, and at the same time their friend, and they speedily become eager to respond to the pull of the rein or the light touch of the whip. He has with him constantly in his training buggy a little dog, and it too is highly education. It is as full of tricks as a toy store just before Christmas, and Mr. Chessen taught it all of the tricks after repeated lessons. Job was not in it with Mr. Chessen when it comes to the matter of patience, for it requires immense quantities of that virtue to take a dog or wild colt, and train either to the degree that he does. Mr. Chessen eats well, sees well, sleeps well, and is all right physically in every way except that his hearing is not as good as it used to be.


Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 26, 1916        Dances the "Broomstick" Dance for Quests

James Chessen, 89 years of age, retired farmer, livestock dealer, animal trainer and jigger, was the star attraction yesterday all day and until midnight last night at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Julius Haas, the latter being his daughter. He danced the "broomstick" dance, said to be a very difficult one for all present but himself. To him it was as easy as rolling off a log, and he gave several exhibitions of skill during the afternoon and evening as a jig dancer. His granddaughter, Miss Josephine Chessen, daughter of former Alderman and Mrs. James Chessen, presided at the piano and delighted the guests also with several vocal selections. Thirty-eight persons were at the gathering and they brought their appetites with them. That they would do so was expected evidently, as Mrs. Haas had prepared two large turkeys and one large goose for the dinner meal (with trimmings, including regular old fashioned English plum pudding). For supper the guests had turkey and ham. James H. Chessen and Charles Chessen and families were present from East Alton. The star of the gathering is hale, hearty and happy in spite of his 89 years, and he was the life of the party in many ways. In addition to dancing jigs, he sang several songs and sang them well, among them being "Old King Cole," an interminable ditty.



CLARK, HOMER             Wins Championship Prize as Premier Marksman

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 25, 1917

Homer Clark of Alton again vindicated his title to being premier marksman with a shotgun in the United States, when he defeated all rivals in the match for the professional championship of the United States. He made a poor score, 94, but the others were worse. Wind made the shooting difficult. Clark, a few days ago, successfully defended his title to all around championship. He is shooting against some of the greatest shots in the country.



CLARK, JENNIE L.                 Woman Shops With "Shinplasters" 

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 1, 1917

Mrs. Jennie L. Clark of Park Avenue, Upper Alton, evidently decided that these war times is a good time to spend Civil War money that she has had in her possession a long number of years. Mrs. Clark is the widow of the former postmaster of the little town of Piasa, whose death occurred some years ago. She and her husband conducted a store in Piasa many years. Mrs. Clark purchased a home on Park avenue and is now a resident of Alton. This morning, Mrs. Clark was doing some shopping up town, and she was in the William T. Black store on Washington avenue making a few purchases. Mr. Black was surprised when Mrs. Clark handed him several 25-cent pieces in currency, which were issued by the United States treasury during the Civil War when silver was very scarce. The 25-cent bills were in excellent shape and some of them were almost new in appearance. Each had the photograph of some of the U. S. presidents, mostly Washington, and the bills showed they had been very carefully handled the little they were used. Mrs. Clark said she had the bills over fifty years. She had laid them away at the time they were in circulation and had kept them ever since. She said she was tired of keeping them and believed it a good time to use the money they represented. Mr. Black took the currency for the face value, which was a quarter of a dollar. Several men in the store who witnessed the transaction offered to exchange a silver quarter for one of the bills and Mrs. Clark got rid of all she had right there. It was the first old time shin plaster currency tendered for business purposes in Upper Alton in many years. Very probably a younger man would have been afraid of the old money, but Mr. Black had handled that kind of money many years ago when he was a Civil War soldier, and he well knew the bills were as good today as when issued by Uncle Sam. Mrs. Clark also had a 25-cent Canadian bill just the size of the U. S. money, but this was refused for its face value.



COLLINS, LUCY (nee PRICE)        Graduate of Optometry

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, February 18, 1918

Being the grandmother of a six months old grandchild did not prevent Mrs. Harry Collins of East Broadway, wife of Harry Collins, the transfer man, from studying and completing a course which gained for her a degree of doctor of optics. Mrs. Collins has been assisting Dr. G. E. Wilkinson in his office, and studied under him. She got along fine in her work, and two weeks ago went to Kansas City to take a short and special course, which ended in an examination in which 78 took part. Mrs. Collins was the highest of 12 out of 78 who passed the examination, and came home in great spirits over the success of her undertaking. While she was studying under and assisting Dr. Wilkinson, Mrs. Collins kept house for her husband and three children, and oversees to the raising of a little grandson. She studied at odd times, and gets the knowledge needed to get the degree. Mrs. Collins is 40 years of age, and was before her marriage Miss Lucy Price, a graduate of the Alton High School and of Shurtleff College. After graduating from college Miss Price taught at Shurtleff for a year, and then married Harry Collins. Mrs. Collins will hereafter be known as Dr. Lucy Collins.



CONLEY, PAT        Loses Old Time Pipe He Brought From Ireland

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, June 26, 1914

It was old but it was beautiful - The sweetest thing I know.

That ever burned tobacco,  In the Isle where praties grow;

'Twas colored like a Cork colleen, Or a Tip'rary rose with a lovely shamrock growing

Where the steam and bowl repose.


Who hath woe is one of the questions being debated this morning by the members of the L. P. Mediation board in regular convention on the shady side of the city hall building. Not having a directory of possessors of woe with him, the Telegraph reporter to whom the question was directed passed up the answer and was informed that Pat Conley, the well known glassblower, had a full complement of it. He acquired a warranty deed to large gobs of woe, and he did not want them at that. The reason for it was given as follows: When on a visit to Ireland about 35 years ago, he was presented with a handsome pipe of meerschaum (white mineral used in making pipe bowls) which he prized highly and which grew handsomer as the years went by. The bowl, stem and all were meerschaum, and had become beautifully colored. The pictures of a shamrock and a banshee on the pipe had grown more lovely also, and as a dissipater of the blues, a restorer of shattered nerves, and a solace all around, the pipe had a value of about $10,000. Now it is smashed to smithereens and a glassblower who is doing insurance work on the side is the cause of it. He surrounded Mr. Conley at his home last night and insisted that Pat take out an insurance policy on his own life; on every member in his family; and on each relative he has on earth. Mr. Conley did not like to refuse to do anything at all for his fellow craftsman, but he certainly did not want to do as much as was asked, and he became very nervous. The pipe was with him as usual, and it was dropped finally because of nervousness of its owner, and its numerous parts can never be put together.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 28, 1917

Surgeons and specialists have succeeded in saving the sight of one eye for Ed Craig, the East Broadway blacksmith and horseshoer, but it was a hard fight and a close call. One eye was injured so severely in an accident he sustained while at work in his shop, that the sight became completely destroyed, and the other eye became so seriously affected that it was feared for some time that he would lose the sight of that also. He is back at work, however, and his uninjured eye is getting stronger right along. The sight of the other one is gone forever, it is feared.




Source:  Auburn, New York Citizen, December 8, 1908

There is a woman in Alton, Ill., Mrs. Mary Craig, 77 years old, who hasn't tasted water for forty years. And yet they say woman is not eligible to the suffrage.



CRIVELLO, AUGUSTUS 'GUS'       Put Foot in Shoes With Tarantula, Then Felt It With His Hand

Augustus Crivello, one of the proprietors of the Piasa Street Delicatessen, had a scare yesterday, but he came through without any worse consequences than a scare when he put his foot into his shoe and feeling something soft and squirming in there, he pulled out a huge tarantula that was very much alive. It was one of the huge spiders which sometimes are transported from Central America in banana bunches. Some people say that the big spiders are poisonous, and anyhow they are ugly enough to be blamed with almost any form of villainy on earth, and their looks will convict them. The shoes Gus was putting on he had been keeping at the fruit store, and the tarantula, coming in on a bunch of bananas, had crawled into the shoe as a safe place to be. Gus had his foot clear in the shoe, but it felt crowded and he knew there must be something inside that did not belong there. Then he pulled off the shoe and began exploring with his hand. He touched something that was fuzzy and apparently covered with legs. He shook the shoe and out dropped a tarantula. There is an old Sicilian legend that he who is bitten by a tarantula dances the "tarantella" dance, as the spider's poison is supposed to frenzy anyone and the Italians named this dance after observing the effects of a tarantula bite on a human being, so the Sicilian legend infers. Gus hasn't been doing any tarantella dance, as the spider failed to make connection of its business end with his person, and he is regarding himself as lucky. The body of the spider is about 2 inches long and its legs are huge things.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 24, 1900

Probably the oldest swimmer ever in the Alton natatorium, and certainly few as old ever swam in any natatorium [swimming pool], took a swim yesterday afternoon in the natatorium on the levee. The swimmer is Michael Crivello, aged 89 years. He came to this country from Sicily a few years ago, and although then far beyond the usually allotted span of life, he made the trip unattended, enjoying good health all the way. His grandchildren dared him to go swimming with then, and the old man being an old sailor and in his younger days a good swimmer, accepted the dare. He went swimming and enjoyed it too, suffering no bad results from the exposure in the water. Crivello took another swim this afternoon, and snapshots of him were taken with a camera as he stood, before the swim, dressed in a bathing suit, as he was standing ready to dive and as he was taking the water. Several pictures were taken also as he was swimming about the pool. The old man said he enjoyed the swim and was enthusiastic as the boys with which the placed was swarmed.



CROFTON, EMMA (nee KNAPP)                             Throat Cut By Husband's Nephew In Revenge

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 12, 1910                

Mrs. Emma Crofton, aged 35, the wife of Peter Crofton, was fatally wounded [note: she did survive the attack] Saturday morning just before noon at the home, 2010 Johnson street, by Ollie Nickish, aged 22, the nephew of her husband's first wife. The motive of the assault was revenge. Streaming with blood, Mrs. Crofton appeared at the back door of the home of her neighbor, Mrs. Lafayette Davis, about 11:30 a.m., and fell fainting. Her throat was cut on the right side from her larynx to her right ear. On her forehead was an ugly wound. The woman was able to gasp only, "Ollin Nick---" and could say no more. Later, the story was gleaned from her by asking her questions and letter her nod her head, as she could not talk, her windpipe being severed. It developed that Nickish has served several terms in the reform school for stealing. He was left an orphan when young, and Mr. and Mrs. Crofton, the latter now dead, took him in and gave him a home. They befriended him and tried to raise him properly, but failed. About three years ago he robbed Crofton, taking some jewelry and money. When arrested he was prosecuted by Crofton and sent to the state reformatory at Pontiac. That was three years ago he robbed Crofton, and Mr. Crofton says was released one year ago. In the reformatory he had vowed revenge. When he was released he went back to the Crofton home and applied for re-admission there. Mr. Crofton, who had remarried in the meantime, ordered him off the place. Nickish went away in an ugly mood. He was not seen again until this morning. Ezra Pierce, who lives about a block away, saw Nickish standing around the front door of the Crofton home, but paid no attention to him. No one responded to Nickish's efforts to call someone to the door. Later Mr. Pierce saw Mrs. Crofton go out in the yard to get a bucket of coal, and then he saw Nickish go around the house. When Mrs. Crofton was gone, Nickish slipped into the kitchen where she had been at work cleaning chickens, and was behind the kitchen door as she entered. According to the signs given by Mrs. Crofton, she found him in the house and he immediately seized a long butcher knife she was using and attacked her. The indications are that the struggle must have been carried through the house, as a pool of blood was on the parlor carpet. Mrs. Crofton made a desperate fight. The appearance of the kitchen indicated that she had struggled hard with her assailant to save her life. Her clothes were nearly torn off her, and her body and arms were covered with bruises. The strange feature of it was that the next door neighbors knew nothing of the battle until after Mrs. Crofton went to the Davis house. When Nickish had finished cutting Mrs. Crofton, he left her lying on the floor, and going out locked the door behind him. He was seen standing a few minutes in front of the house, then went south on Johnson street to the street car track. Mrs. Crofton, behind locked doors, raised the kitchen window, jumped out, though fainting from loss of blood, climbed a fence and ran across the yard to her neighbor's house. Dr. Shaff was summoned and he found that her larynx had been cut in twain, her external jugular vein had been severed, and other blood vessels cut. She was almost dead from loss of blood. The doctor made a hurry up trip to his office in his auto to get the proper instruments to perform the operation of making a saline transfusion to fill her arterial system with salt water, in the hope of saving her life. He said, however, that he did not believe she could live. Mr. Crofton was summoned too. Officer Fahrig happened to be close by and the police station was notified. Deputy Sheriff Crowe started out too on a search for Nickish, and notified all neighboring places that Nickish was wanted. Neighbors gathered around and did what they could to help. Mrs. Crofton remained at the Davis home, and there Dr. Shaff, assisted by Dr. F. C. Joesting, made a battle to save the wounded woman's life. Being unable to speak, she could make no formal statement. A Telegraph reporter assisted her husband in getting from her the facts which are as given above. She answered questions that were asked by nodding her head. She made it known that she knew she would die, and received the rites of the Catholic church before she made her sign statement. Mrs. Crofton said that Nickish made no remarks to her, and did not say a word before he attacked her. An examination of the house showed that after the assault was committed Nickish searched the house, or it might have been done before. He stole two gold watches and about $3 in money, the latter being taken from a drawer in the sideboard in the kitchen. The knife with which the cutting was done has a blade about 15 inches long and was very sharp. It was found lying under a grape vine, covered with blood and hair. Mrs. Crofton was formerly Miss Emma Knapp, and was employed in the Hoppe store on Third street before her marriage. She has a mother, Mrs. Margaret Knapp of Alton; three sisters, Mrs. Cosmos Keller of Jerseyville, Mrs. Winifred McCarty, and Mrs. Robert Douglas of St. Louis; and two brothers, George Knapp of Des Moines and Henry Knapp of Indianapolis.


Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 14, 1910

Mrs. Peter Crofton is recovering steadily from the injuries she received, and the surgeons believe that she has a good chance to get well. After Drs. Shaff and Joesting sewed up the wounds Saturday afternoon and three times filled her arterial system with salt water until her system could build up its blood supply, she began rallying and was able to make a statement Sunday. She tells the story about as published in the Telegraph Saturday evening. One important variation however, is that Mrs. Crofton says she fainted after being overcome by Ollie Nickisch, and that she must have lain unconscious for three quarters of an hour. While she was unconscious the house was robbed by Nickisch, and even her wedding ring was stolen from her finger. Yesterday Mrs. Crofton was moved to her home from the home of Lafayette Davis, to which she had gone after escaping from her own home after the murderous assault. Efforts are being made to capture Nickisch, and notices have been sent to all the surrounding territory. A reward was offered today for his arrest. Mrs. Crofton says that her assailant gagged her, and when she revived she found that he had choked down her throat a piece of cloth. She had much difficulty in getting the gag out of her mouth. This was found outside the window where she dropped it. According to Mrs. Crofton, Nickisch knocked her down, jumped on her several times, kicked her, then knelt on her breast and drew the knife across her throat. The doctors say that his clothes must certainly have been drenched with blood, as the blood would be forced out of the severed blood vessels and would gush all over him. The report is that he hid in the woods all day Saturday and evaded searchers, then made his escape Saturday night. He is said to have been able to jump trains going 20 miles an hour, and would have no difficulty in getting away without paying railroad fare.




CULP, FRANK              

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 20, 1912

In speaking of the historical display at Edwardsville, the Republican says: "Mr. Culp states he had more than 2,000 pieces on display, and will no doubt be awarded several of the prizes. The old powder tester was picked up by a negro rag picker. It has been examined by members of several historical societies who claim it is very rare. In all probability, the tester, which looks like an old-time revolver, was made as a model. Although very old, the parts are movable and is of the flint-lock pattern. The powder was placed in a cylinder and covered with a cap. By the explosion, a wheel was revolved and the ratchet, which was numbered, showed the strength. Mr. Culp is also showing the wooden leg of Captain Abel Moore, lost during the Black Hawk War. Capt. Moore had sent a man on foot to New York in 1812 to get the leg for him. He is also showing a Religious Discourse, published in 1702, and an almanac of 1788. He has a tav receipt about 100 years old which gives the value of two horses at $140, and three slaves at $1,400. The first book of records from the office of county clerk is being shown. Perhaps the most interesting parts of the book are the several pages devoted to instruments filed by Gov. Edward Coles, in which he announced to the world he had freed negro slaves inherited from his father, who had died in the south. The penmanship is very plain. Mr. Culp is also showing two chairs which are more than 125 years old. They were brought to Ft. Russell township some time in 1800 by Samuel Williams, who emigrated from Kentucky. In after years, Williams made four overland trips from Ft. Russell to Texas, and in each they were taken with him."


Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 11, 1915                  Friend Steals Indian Curios and Get Away ... Now Under Arrest

Gus Friend of Bethalto proved anything but friendly when he made away with about $1,500 worth of rare coins and Indian relics belonging to Frank Culp, manager of the Upper Alton branch of the Kinloch Telephone Company. Mr. Culp had spent years making the collection and had stored away in the attic of the farmhouse of his father, J. S. Culp, several thousand dollars worth of interesting curios, which probably can not be given a definite money value.....Friend was employed at the J. S. Culp farm, northeast of Upper Alton, about a year ago, when the members of the Culp family went to Springfield to attend the State Fair. During the absence of the family, Friend quit working, and when the members of the family returned he was gone. Even then the theft was not discovered until on Thanksgiving day a year ago, when at a family reunion, Frank Culp, who was present, suggested bringing down some of his curios and Indian relics. He went upstairs into the attic and to his surprise found that over half of the curios had been taken away. Friend was suspected. He denied the charge, but was trapped shortly afterwards when a man sent by the Culps in the guise of a curio purchaser found many of the articles in Friend's possession. Friend then confessed and promised to restore the goods in case he were not arrested....Friend slipped away and was not seen until a few days ago....A hearing was had before Justice S. G. Cooper yesterday, and he was put under bond and taken to the county jail by Herb Culp, a deputy sheriff and brother of Frank Culp, and Peter Meyer, a Bethalto constable. Included in the collection which was the work of probably fifty or more years of various members of the Culp family, principally Frank Culp, who made such collections a sort of hobby, were rare coins, Indian head arrows and old keys. Curio collectors have several times made offers of several thousand dollars for the unbroken collection. The Culps are members of an old time family in Wood River township, and many of the stolen goods were regarded an heirlooms of the family, and were handed down through several generations.



CUPSTECK, ANDREAS                      Goes Insane From Overheating and Hard Work

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 18, 1906

Andreas Cupsteck, an Austrian employed at the Queen City quarries, went crazy yesterday from overheating and too hard work with insufficient food, combined with homesickness, and became very violent. He was ordered taken to St. Joseph's hospital by Supervisor Elble, where he was confined over night, but he escaped during the night and wandered back half-clad to the Queen City quarries. This morning he appeared there and terrified the men who were at work. The frenzied man tore his clothing from his body and conducted himself in such a threatening manner that he was the cause of all the men leaving their work. He was taken in charge by Deputy Sheriff Russell, and this noon was taken to Edwardsville to be placed in the county hospital for the insane. Cupsteck's case is said to be hopeless.


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DALUEGE, EDELBERG             Boy "Bound Out" Just as Slaves Were Before the Civil War

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 11, 1915

A legal paper that echoed of the times before the war was filed with Recorder of Deeds John Berner in Edwardsville this morning, and so far as known it is the first such indenture since the time before the Civil War....The indenture in this case, will of which is legally filed, binds out Edelberg Daluege of Troy, aged 11 years, to Mr. and Mrs. John Bress of that place. The boy is bound out till he is 16 years of age, when he must be freed because he will be sixteen years of age. The boy is a son of Fred Daluege, whose wife died a short time ago leaving five children. Two have been adopted, two are in an orphan asylum, and the last one has been bound out. The boy signs an agreement to serve and obey his new "masters" and to keep their secrets and not to destroy their properties and to aid them and will not waste their goods, that he will not play cards nor enter saloons, shoot dice nor contract matrimony. The new "masters" agree that they will teach the charge the art of farming, to read and write and arithmetic, and allow him meat and board, washing and apparel. At the expiration of the agreement, which is in 1920, the boy is to receive a new Bible, two suits of clothes, and $20 in money.




Source: The Journal and Advisor, Auburn, New York, October 2, 1839

The town of Alton, Illinois was the scene of much excitement during the early part of the month, in consequence of a lawyer at that place named G. T. M. Davis, having gone off supposedly to Canada, with funds to a large amount, belonging to his clients. It is said he carried with him about $15,000 or $20,000 belonging to his clients in New York, Philadelphia, and Boston, and has left a host of creditors at Alton. He left a daughter on a sick bed at Alton, who died soon after he decamped.




Source: The Journal and Advisor, Auburn, New York, October 9, 1839

We last week inserted an article deeply censuring Mr. T. M. Davis, of Alton; (Illinois) for the manner in which it was asserted he had "gone off" from that place. As an act of justice to Mr. D. we insert his explanation of the charges there brought against him, contained in the following letter to the editors of the Journal of Commerce.

Syracuse, Sept. 18,1839.  Editors of the Journal of Commerce -
Gentlemen: I have just seen in your paper an article purporting to be a copy of a letter dated at Alton, in the state of Illinois, announcing that I had absconded from that place with a large amount of money belonging to my clients, and that I had fled to Canada. Seven years since I removed to Alton from this place; and have during the whole of that time resided there. My wife has been for nearly two months at this place on a visit, during all which time I believe it was well known at Alton that I intended to come after and return with her. I traveled in the most public conveyances, came in company with many gentlemen from that state who are acquainted with me, and some of whom I presume are now in your city. My name may be found upon the public registers of every hotel at which I stopped from that place to this. It was well known to the most reputable inhabitants of the city of Alton that I was preparing for the journey and intended to go to New York and Philadelphia. I hope to be in your city in a very few days, and shall convince my clients of the falsity of the publication referred to. I presume I know the source of the article which you have copied; and in regard to the author I have only to say that at home he cannot injure me, and I shall hope that ultimately he will not be able to do so abroad. GEO. T. M. DAVIS. of Alton, Illinois."



DAVIS, LEVI          Oldest Lawyer in Madison County Tells on His 50th Marriage Anniversary of His Retirement

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, October 22, 1918

Levi Davis, the oldest lawyer in Madison county, announced today on the fiftieth anniversary of his marriage, that he had retired from the practice of law. Mr. Davis said that he was not taking a holiday today, as he has chosen to have on long holiday now. He has closed the office he had occupied for 26 years in the building of the Alton National bank, and he will lead the life of a retired gentleman henceforth. Mr. Davis has had the reputation of being one of the ablest lawyers in Madison County. He began practice in 1868, and he had been continuously at it ever since. He was formerly associated with Charles P. Wise, his brother-in-law, in the law business, but for a number of years he has practiced alone. Mr. Davis said that the war has had the effect of causing a general shrinkage in law business. He said that he had been gradually retiring from the business so that the last step he had taken had been no sudden shock to him. Mr. Davis is in good health, but he concluded it was no use to continue working as he had reached a time of life, 76 years, when he might as well take it easy. He served during the Civil war as a Union soldier, and on leaving the army spent a few years in law school. Then he came back to Alton to practice law. He married here and raised his family of children, and is ready for enjoying himself. Mr. and Mrs. Davis plan no former observance of their golden wedding anniversary.




Source: Oswego, New York Daily Times, March 3, 1893

Dr. W. Day of Highland, Ill., died in a private [railroad] car in the, West Shore railroad yard at Wechawken, New York yesterday. His death was caused by an overdose of anti-pyrine, taken for a severe attack of neuralgia.




Source: Utica, New York Daily Observer, June 11, 1872

On Sunday last, while the family was at church, the residence of Jacob Deck, near Upper Alton, Ill., was robbed of $4,100, including $2,200 in coin, and $1,900 in currency, the robbery being committed by a dissolute son and two companions, who are all in arrest. More than half the money had at last accounts been recovered.




Source: Alton Daily Telegraph, Tuesday, May 2, 1893

The notorious James Dukes, of Godfrey, the man who a year or two ago shot Brown of North Alton, was in town yesterday on a spree and towards nightfall began making trouble. When Officer Sweeney attempted to lock him up he resisted. Officer Tonsor went to the assistance of Officer Sweeney, Dukes at once turned on Tonsor and struck him one or two blows, when the officer used his club on the ruffian with such effect as to immediately bring him to terms. He was locked up for the night. Dukes was fined $10 and costs this morning by Squire Quarton for disturbing the peace. He gave notice of an appeal, but up to two o'clock had failed to give bonds and is being held in "durance vile."



Source: The Evening Journal, Albany, New York, February 15, 1850
A man named E. W. Dunn has been lately arrested by St. Louis officers, at Alton, Illinois. In his house was found a large amount of counterfeit money, and a complete bogus manufactory. - The Marshal approached the house, and gained ready admittance ; they found two females in the parlor, who received them kindly. Inquiring for Dunn, and learning that he was up stairs sick, the officers gave an alarm for a party outside to enter, one of the females, the wife of Dunn, rushed for the stairs, but was caught by Marshal Stein. Marshal Felps instantly proceeded to Dunn's room and secured him. The women showed battle with the officers, and Mrs. Dunn upbraided her husband for being taken, strenuously urging him to shoot. On reaching the house, $1,800 In bogus money was found, consisting of Mexican, dollars, five franc pieces, American half and quarter dollars, dimes and half dimes. They found the moulds for these several pieces, together with a galvanic battery and everything requisite for the manufacture of spurious coin. The $1,800 secured by the officers was principally in Mexican dollars and five franc pieces, neatly executed and well calculated to deceive. Dunn has been living in Alton about two years and a half, and professed to be a speculator in patent weights - he never followed any ostensible business. It is supposed that he has been carrying on the counterfeit business ever since he first went to Alton, and from his present wealth succeeded in putting about $20,000 of his coin into circulation. His arrest and exposure created quite a sensation, as the man has heretofore been regarded above such suspicion. He and the two females were lodged in jail.


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EARL, CHARLES AND ROSA      -        Divorce Suit - Husband Leaves Wife Twelve Times in Thirteen Years

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 28, 1918

There is a limit to all things. Twelve partings and twelve happy reunions are enough for Mrs. Rosa Earl of Alton.  She has filed a suit for divorce from her husband, Charles Earl. In the suit she charges that she was married to him in 1901. In the fifteen years that the couple lived together she claims that they separated twelve times. Each time they forgot their troubles and decided to live together again, until the thirteenth time. The thirteenth time they separated was on October 30, 1916. They have not been united since that time. Mrs. Earl is petitioning that she be granted a divorce in the Alton City Court.




Source: Alton Weekly Courier, November 25, 1858

On Tuesday evening about the hour of ten, as one of our citizens, Mr. George Emery, who is a clerk in the office of the Illinois Mutual Insurance Company, was proceeding on his way home, being at that time near the crossing of Ninth street and the Chicago, Alton and St. Louis Railroad, he was approached from behind by some miscreant, who, without a moment's warning, drew back his fist, armed as it is supposed with brass knuckles, knocked him down, and struck him several blows while he way lying upon the ground, cutting away a small part of his nose. To hide his guuilt, the ruffian then dragged his victim, now in an insensible state, to the Railroad, and placed him across the track. Fortunately for Mr. Emery, he was discovered by one of the employees of the Railroad Company, just before the cars came in sight, who removed him from his dangerous position. We are happy to state that Mr. Emery was able to be out yesterday, and will doubtless recover entirely in a few days. It is thought that from the fact that he was not robbed, the miscreant mistook him for some other party.




Source: Poughkeepsie, New York Daily Eagle

Miss Liddle Enke committed suicide at Alton, Ill. by jumping into a cistern.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 28, 1922

Ellison Enos, football star, son of Dr. W. H. Enos, came near suffering grave injuries Wednesday evening in his motorboat, after starting for a ride with Harrison Wood. His trousers leg became caught in the motor and winding on the motor, his leg was drawn against the revolving engine, and two bad cuts were caused. Fortunately before he could suffer injuries that would cripple him for life, the engine stopped itself and with the assistance of Harrison Wood he was disentangled. The cuts are above his heel at a place where, if the engine had not bee stopped, he might have suffered the tearing out of tendons, which would have permanently crippled him. It required seventeen stitches to close the wounds. He was able to be up and around today. Similar cases of men being caught in moving engines have resulted in very serious injuries.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, October 14, 1918

There is one colony of bees in Alton that has not been loafing on the job and the owner will get from the hive a fine lot of honey, besides leaving enough for the winter use of the bees, according to a gentleman who knows something of the situation and the outlook. Some bee owners here declare their bees did not make enough honey to keep themselves from starving over winter. The honey-producing colony spoken of belongs to Dr. W. H. Enos. They live in the second story of his barn and garage, in the rear of the Enos Sanitarium on East Third street. They are working now and have been all spring and summer, and while other bees might have failed to find honey-making flowers, the Enos bees evidently located flowers somewhere, for the hives show the result of their work. This is probably the only colony of bees in Madison County, living in a comfortable building, steam heated in winter, and fine and airy in the summer. That they are producers when others are loafers seems to prove they appreciate the care given them.




Source: June 22, 1893

John Estep is a fisherman who haunts the waters of the Mississippi near the mouth of Woodriver, and yesterday he went over to Missouri frog hunting, he having received an order from St. Louis for frog hams. Among other frogs he captured, one with five fully developed legs, and he is as proud as a pea fowl about it. In speaking about his latest catch, last evening, Mr. Estep said: 'I ketched a frog once that had whiskers like a cat. I ketched another one once that had a tail like a muskrat's. 'Nother time I hauled in a big feller that only had one hind leg, and that was enough like a chicken's to have a spur on it, but it didn't. Then there was a curious old frog I ketched years ago that had a head you'd a swore belonged to a snapping turtle, and the nobby feller with a regular white streak round his neck like a dude's collar, and a round spot covering one of his eyes that made him look exactly as if he was wearing one of them dandy eye glasses. Then there was the frog I ketched that was so cross-eyed I was almost afraid to take it off the hook. But I consider this here five legged frog the biggest piece of flesh of the kind I ever ketched. I'll tell you why: It ain't no freak, this five legger aint. It is the result of deliberation on the part of the frogs. Frogs is gettin' scarce, but folks has got to have them and the frogs know it. Frogs is the smartest things in creation. Now what does them five legs on this frog mean? It means that the frogs haint no doubt of what they are here fur, and knowing they are growing lesser and lesser on the face of the earth, and in the swamps thereof, they are jest agoing into the growing of more legs, so that the decrease in the number of frogs will be made up by the increase in the number of their fat and juicy kickers. This fellow only has five. They'll be doing better bimeby, and some of these days I will fetch in a stock of frogs wearing all the way from eight to ten legs apiece, and every one of them of a quality to make a frog-eater go crazy with delight. Mind what I tell ye; frogs is revolutin' and I know it."


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Source: Alton Telegraph, January 24, 1873

Sunday morning a man named William Farr, confined in the city jail, on charge of larceny, made his escape through the aid of an outside accomplice. The jailer, Mr. P. Pickard, never allowed the prisoner outside his iron cell except in cases of necessity; but at some time, while in the corridor, the prisoner obtained a hammer and some acids, which an accomplice had slipped in through the grating of a window. With these he went to work on the fastenings of his cell door. The acids were applied to the iron into which the bolt was slid, and in time had so eaten into the material that a blow with the hammer was sufficient to break it off. This done, he drew back the bolt with a piece of wire and walked out of his cell. When in the corridor, the prisoner took a shovel full of coals from the stove, climbed up to the ceiling (which is the floor of the entrance to the Library room), and set it on fire, hanging his bed blanket around the flames to keep the light from being seen from the street. He next went to work with a saw, made from an iron spoon, and assisted by the fire, soon had a hole through the ceiling large enough to admit him to the room above. He then took a bucket of water and put out the fire, not, we suppose, for the sake of saving the building, but that he might crawl through the hole without being burned. Having reached the room above, all he had to do was to open the door and walk out, a free man. He must have been engaged all night at the job, and Mr. Pickard thinks it was about seven o'clock in the morning when he finally got clear. The escape was discovered by Mr. P. when he came to the jail in the morning to feed the prisoners. Farr certainly manifested great ingenuity in effecting his escape. The same amount of genius, applied to any honest avocation, would have made his fortune. The escaped prisoner left all his tools behind him to tell the story of "how it was done."


Nothing has yet been heard from Wm. Farr, who escaped from jail on Sunday morning. He is doubtless by this time "over the hills and Farr away."


Source: Alton Weekly Telegraph, March 7, 1873

Indictments were found against William Farr, lately escaped from jail.

[As far as I know, William Farr was never captured.]



FENSTERMAN, MARY - Shot by Sister During Celebration of Armistice (WWI)

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 12, 1918

The peace celebration of Monday morning was the cause of the shooting of Miss Mary Fensterman of 519 Lawton street, by her sister, Miss Clara Fensterman, in an accidental manner. The condition of Miss Fensterman is not considered serious and no bad complications are expected by the attending physician. On hearing of the armistice being signed, the Fensterman family arose and went down town, returning home about 6 o'clock. When they got home Miss Clara Fensterman got out a revolver and was going to load it when it exploded and accidently shot Miss Mary Fensterman. The shot went in at the side, down toward the abdomen. A physician was summoned who examined the injury and stated that it was only a flesh wound. The bullet did not come out and the physician did not make any attempt to get it, fearing to create a more serious condition. Today Miss Fensterman was reported as resting easy. Upon hearing the good news yesterday, the Fensterman family was highly elated, as their son and brother, Ben Fensterman, is serving the colors in France. The Misses Fensterman are employed at Western, and have made shells for the boys to fire into the Germans. Recently the family received a letter from their son and brother, in which he wrote that he was unpacking boxes of Western shells which he knew his sisters had assisted in manufacturing. The Fensterman girls are daughters of Mrs. Emma Fensterman. The family recently came here from Bunker Hill to reside.



FOSTER, MICHA - Returns to Old Home After Forty-Five Years Absence

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 21, 1903

Forty-five years ago, Micha Foster left his home in Fosterburg and went to Colorado where he engaged in mining at Pike's Peak, remaining there four years. He then went to Prescott, Arizona, where he has since resided and where he became prominent. He is an uncle of Taylor Foster of East Alton, and of J. W. Foster of New Douglas, and his parents were among the Madison pioneer settlers. His relatives here had not heard from him in all these years until in May, when he wrote. His nephew, Oscar Wood of Wood River, visited him, and Mr. Foster accompanied him home and is now a guest of his sister, Mrs. Aurora Woods, who is 92 years old, at Woodburn. He has another sister, Mrs. Rosa Jenkinson, aged 77 years, living at Fosterburg. Mr. Foster is 73 years old. Taylor Foster stated this morning that for 10 years his father and other relatives advertised for information as to the whereabouts of Micha Foster, but never heard anything in reply, and after a few more years Micha Foster's estate was administered upon and divided among the heirs. The estate left behind by the gold seeker was valued at about $3,000.




Source: The Evening Journal, Albany, New York, December 20, 1866

Miss Kate Fowler, of Alton, Illinois, had a terrible earache, and for want of a better remedy, poured a teaspoonful of. the oil of peppermint into her ear. She very soon became delirious and died soon after.



Source: Syracuse, New York Daily Journal, November 25, 1861

Awful - In Madison county, Illinois, a few days ago, a crazy German named Fribert, who had lost his reason on the death of his wife, shot dead his four children, then blew his own brains out.




Source:  The Stevens Point Journal, Stevens Point, WI, July 28, 1906

Edwardsville, IL Farmer Killed By Cow, Jul 1906

August Frickenstein, 42 years old, a well-known Madison county farmer, was butted to death by a muley cow when he attempted to take the cow's calf away from her for the market.



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GARDNER, CLARENCE                 Arm Frightfully Mutilated in Machine

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 15, 1917

Clarence Gardner, living in Siring addition, sustained terrible injuries Friday afternoon in the plant of the Laclede Steel Co., when he became fast with his arm in an ash conveyor that was in motion. Only the prompt stopping of the machine by fellow workmen who saw his plight saved him from being torn to pieces over a wheel around which the carriers of the ash conveyer travel. His right arm was carried around the wheel and the victim was struggling desperately to release himself when the machine was stopped and he was taken out. The surgeons who attended his injuries say that they were astonished, on making a close examination, to find a very peculiar injury. There was a slit about two inches long in the forearm just below the elbow. Down near the wrist there was a horrible state of mutilation of the wrist and palm. It developed that a piece of metal which evidently was twisting, had pierced where the slit was and working undernearth the skin had ground the muscle underneath into hamburg steak consistency, and great chunks of ground meat were taken out from under the skin. The palm of the hand was denuded of skin and the muscles underneath were torn from the bone. The surgeons are making an effort to save the forearm, but there is nothing certain owing to the horrible lacerations of the muscles, which are ground off the bone.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 13, 1923

James Gill, a farmer living at East Alton, went through a horrible experience yesterday afternoon on Worden avenue, when the breaking of the forward support on his hayrack allowed him to be precipitated with some bales of hay down on the horses' backs, and from there behind the frightened animals. Gill was riding on the load of baled hay, and when near the old Dan Gillham place, the ladder on the front of the hayrack broke off. This removed the support of the bales and they easily slid out from under Gill, carrying him down in a confused heap with the hay. The frightened horses began to run away and Gill dropped down behind them, and after being dragged for a while he was released and the team went on. The horses were stopped after a run of about three blocks. Gill sustained a fracture of his left arm and the side of his head was badly scraped. He suffered some other injuries.




Source: Alton Weekly Courier, May 13, 1853

The citizens of Alton have paid an honorable, but most well deserved compliment to the exertions of Capt. Godfrey, in securing the early construction of the Alton and Springfield Railroad. It will gratify every friend of progress and enterprise, that even this testimonial is made; but it should not stop there. When men are endowed with the energy and liberality of spirit to awaken and push forward to an early consummation a great enterprise of this kind, they are entitled to something more substantial than a service of plate. The decline of life should be as calm and free from care as the day has been useful and beneficial to the community.  From the St. Louis Republican.



Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 24, 1901

The heirs of Capt. Benjamin Godfrey, the pioneer who founded Monticello Seminary and at one time was the wealthiest man in this part of the state, are trying to secure possession of a tract of 80 acres of land near Carlinville that belongs to the estate, but which had been forgotten for twelve years by the owners. Some time about 1890, the administrator of the estate of Benjamin Godfrey and guardian of the minor children, advertised the remaining property for sale. Some land in Madison county was sold, but the Macoupin county farm was never sold, through oversight. The land has since then been unclaimed by the heirs. Mayne Godfrey, the last of the heirs to become of age, through his attorney, B. J. O'Neil, has been looking up the property of the grandfather, Benjamin Godfrey, and is trying to learn what disposition was made of it. Investigation has revealed the fact that 43 acres of land were sold at tax sale to M. L. Kepplinger. It is said that 37 acres is being held in possession by Sam P. Dugger. A few days ago Mayne Godfrey, with Mr. O'Neil, went to Carlinville to tender the county clerk the amount due on the tax sale. The law permits minor heirs to redeem property sold at tax sale within a short period after coming of age. The county clerk took the matter under advisement, and today wrote Mr. O'Neil that he would not issue the certificate of redemption. A suit for possession of the property will probably be instituted. Regarding the Minnesota property, little is known. It is believed to be valuable, as inquiries concerning it have been received by the heirs and offers to buy it also have been made. Capt. Godfrey is known to have had valuable possessions of land in various parts of the country and other pieces of unclaimed property may be discovered.




Source: Bridgeport California Chronicle Union 1911-1914

County's Officers had searched in vain while the fugitive was hidden in the village - how he was caught.
Through an opening 18 inches square George Goehl of Collinsville, confessed slayer of Anthony Gallamano, received his meals and necessaries of life and eluded the authorities of Madison county. Illinois, two years. He was arrested in his biding place the other night by a posse headed by Joseph Long, chief of police of Collinsville. Goehl, who is a carpenter, has been sought for the killing of Gallamano at a picnic at Horseshoe Lake. May 29, 1910. Gallamano was stabbed in the back by Goehl, who disappeared mysteriously after the cutting and authorities had "been baffled in their efforts to find him. Gallamano, who was the proprietor of a soda water factory in Collinsville, lived only six days after he was injured and in an ante-mortem statement declared Goehl was his assailant. After the stabbing, the traction lines from Collinsville to Horseshoe Lake were watched for Goehl, but no trace was found. The authorities went to the Goehl home in Fletcher Heights, which is in the outskirts of Collinsville, but the search was in vain. Chief Long received information the other day that Goehl was again in the vicinity of his home and quietly took a squad of men with him to make the arrest. As a special precaution, and in order to disarm the suspicion of Goehl's relatives, a butcher wagon was pressed into service and a boy drove Chief Long and his aids to the Goehl home. They remained in hiding in the bed of the wagon as they passed the house, fearing their approach might be communicated to the fugitive and he might again escape. After dark they surrounded the house, while Chief Long and one of his men approached the front door. They knocked and were admitted by the parents of the fugitive. The chief and his men were told the young man was not In the house, but they insisted that they had come for a search and would make one. Outbuildings were first inspected and then the house gone over carefully, but not a sign was found of the young man. The chief, going through the garret, noticed a curtain hanging over a small opening in the wall. This led to a small hole under the eaves. One of the officers, with his revolver In his hand and armed with an electric searchlight, entered the bode. His foot struck against a soft object huddled under the eaves, and, flashing his light, the officer discovered Goehl. The young man readily surrendered and told of his flight after the killing and his return to the protection of his family. He said he was glad the affair was ended, and that he was ready to stand trial.



Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, Friday, March 24, 1899

Walter Gracey is to be released from the penitentiary. In all probability he was made a free man today and will be home tomorrow, to join his destitute family. Gracey has received a pardon, and his wife and family, who are in very strained circumstances, are rejoicing today over the prospect of his return. Gracey was convicted at the September term of the City Court of an assault upon L. Golike and sentenced to prison. The sentence seemed too severe for the offense, which was a trivial one, as no one thought Gracey would receive more than a small fine. Senator Brenholt, who assisted States' Attorney Staats in prosecuting the case, offered to compromise, by the prisoner asserting a fine of $25 and costs. This the defense refused to agree to and when the case was given to the jury, it sentenced Gracey to the penitentiary. Gracey had to be taken from his wife and children, leaving them penniless and without any means of support. Efforts were at once begun to have the prisoner pardoned, that he might return home and care for his family. He had previously borne a good reputation, the scrape was an unfortunate one, and that he should have to suffer punishment in the penitentiary seemed too severe. This morning, Mr. J. P. Bellenger received a letter from Senator Brenholt stating that the Governor had interceded in Gracey's behalf and he would be released. Gracey has served six months in the penitentiary, which is more than enough punishment for the charge on which he was convicted.




Source: Oswego, New York Daily Times, May 21, 1918

Theodore Gravely of Alton, Ill., who is with the American forces in France has sent to an Alton friend a battered penny which he says saved his life. He writes that he was in the front trenches and was carrying the coin in the pocket of his topcoat when a bullet struck it and was deflected by it. He writes that the bullet would have pierced his heart if it had not been for the penny.




Source: Oswego, New York Daily Times, November 2, 1894

Mrs. Catherine Greenan, a wealthy widow of Collinsville, Ill., was married to Louis Kreela, a coal miner, last night. Mrs. Greenan has an income of over R37,000 a year. She is 62 years old, and has buried two husbands, while her third is only 38 years old.



Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, June 17, 1915

A party of young people of Mitchell and Oldenburg charvaried Mr. and Mrs. B. Grolmes last evening at their home near Canal Station. The party went to the Grolmes home on a hayrack and carrying many noise making instruments which they used to good advantage in the charivari. The young people enjoyed a fine evening with Mr. and Mrs. Grolmes and before leaving for their return trip, enjoyed excellent refreshments. Those present were the Misses Emma Hoehn, Katherine Hoehn, Lena Eichacker, Amelia Klug, Anna Hackethal, Mary Hackethal, Velma Dossey, Bertha Dossey and Dorothy Marcum, and the Messrs. Ray Adams, Louis Hoehn, John Eichacker, William Eichacker, James Hackethal, George Hackethal, Barney P. Tibbit, Dossey, Clinton, Hagard, Frank Overbeck, Joseph Droppelmann, George Klug, Lewis Hunter, Edward Hunter, Emil Buehrer and Clarence Eichleberger.




Source: Utica Morning Herald, New York, December 10, 1887

In Alton, Illinois a falling scaffold killed Fred Groshen/Greshen and seriously injured seven others.



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HAEBERLE, FREDERICK                  Graduates From U. S. Naval Academy In Annapolis

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 29, 1917

Frederick Haeberle, a former Alton boy, graduated today at Annapolis from the United States Naval Academy, where he was honor man in a class of 180, carrying out a long series of successes in the scholarship line for which he has been known all through the years he has been getting his education. Fred Haeberle, with the other graduates, will go to sea in a few days as a navy officer. The graduating class was hurried through its work when the war with Germany began to loom, and the young men in the class will be pressed into service in the navy where there is great need for them. An interesting feature of the graduating festivities is that Mr. Haeberle has with him there Miss Fay Davis, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John R. Davis of the North Side. Mrs. Davis accompanied Miss Davis to Annapolis to see Mr. Haeberle graduate and receive his commission in the navy, and rumor here has it that the young couple have made known their engagement. Miss Davis is one of the most attractive girls in Alton, and is known for her beauty, her charming manner, and her talents as an elocutionist have delighted many Alton audiences. There is a double interest, therefore, in the graduating of this former Alton boy from the United States Naval Academy and the beginning of his career as a naval officer.




Source: Alton Telegraph, September 6, 1877

Master Harry Hapgood, son of Mr. C. H. Hapgood of the Plow Factory, fell from a hammock at his father's residence on Prospect street, Sunday, and broke both bones of his arm. Dr. Garvin was called, and performed the necessary surgical operations.




Source: Alton Telegraph, June 26, 1913

A representative of the trustees of the Carnegie Hero Fund has made two trips to Upper Alton to investigate a claim for a Carnegie medal made in behalf of Gertrude, the 17 years old daughter of William Harris, who saved the life of her grandmother, Mrs. Nathan Harris, two years ago, when Mrs. Harris was being attacked by a vicious cow. The cow had a young calf, and was in a frantic state of mind. When Mrs. Harris went into the cow lot, the cow rushed at her, then went back to the calf. Every time Mrs. Harris would attempt to get up after being knocked down, the cow would knock her down again, and finally fractured the aged woman's hip. Gertrude Harris ran to her grandmother's assistance, and armed with a pitchfork which she wielded against the cow, she kept the cow off while, by degrees, she rolled her grandmother out of harm's way until other help could be procured. The aged woman was unable to help herself, her hip being broken. The girl performed a dangerous feat in fighting off the cow, which had long sharp horns, and it was because of this fact the girl was recommended to the consideration of the Carnegie Hero Commission.




Source: Alton Telegraph, June 26, 1913

Thursday was the time set for the will of the late T. N. Harris, who died, leaving a valuable estate, for the three sons to make settlement with the five daughters mentioned in the will. The three sons, Jesse, John and Samuel Harris, were required to make payment of $10,000 to be divided between the five daughters of Mr. Harris, or their heirs, within one year. The year expired today and the sons made good on the provision of the will. The three sons take possession of the 370 acres of fine farming land as their share of the estate of their father. There are four daughters living, Mrs. T. P. Dooling, Mrs. Jesse Campbell, Mrs. Ben Budde, Mrs. William Titchenal, and the daughter of the fifth, a Miss Prugh, receives her deceased mother's share. One son was cut out in the will of Mr. Harris.



Jacob Hartmann, age 97



Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 9, 1920

Jacob Hartmann, for many years a prominent business man, today called on J. T. Callahan, clerk of the City Court, to interview him about the chances of completing his process of becoming an American citizen. Trembling from the exertion of climbing the city hall stairs today, Mr. Hartmann was almost pathetic in his statement of his desire to become a citizen. He loves the country in which he believed he held citizenship, he was interested in its political affairs, and he had prospered greatly here. Now, at 74, he wants to complete his claim to the name of "American" if it is possible for him to do so. The circumstances of Mr. Hartmann being in this light of an alien enemy are worth repeating. He came to America and to Alton when eight years old. His father was drowned soon after coming here. Never knowing that his father had not been naturalized, Mr. Hartmann supposed he had been, and never bothered about getting his citizenship papers. He went on and voted, he was active in politics and it was a great surprise to him in recent years to discover he was no citizen. He happened to sign the citizenship petition for a friend. In the course of reviewing the friend's application, the government agents looked up the status of Mr. Hartmann. No record of his naturalization could be found, and he then said he supposed his father was a citizen, but the father manifestly was not. He had died in too short a time after coming here to have perfected citizenship title. So Jake Hartmann was an alien, and when the war came on he was, worst of all, an alien enemy, but withal still a devoted believer in the cause of the United States. His chief quarrels were with those who differed even slightly from the strictest adherence to the cause of America. Now, past 74 years of age, he wants to live the remainder of his days and die an American citizen. "I have seen many a man who made a lot of money here who wasn't loyal at heart to the United States, and I had many an argument with them," Hartmann said today to a Telegraph representative. "I want to get the final papers if possible. I want most of all to be an American citizen and be really entitled to claim the protection of the American flag." There is no camouflage about Hartmann, either. Everyone who knows him knows his staunch devotion to the United States, his tolerance with those who would put any other flag or country ahead of the Stars and Stripes.


[NOTE:  Jacob Hartmann was born in Germany, November 1, 1843.  He accompanied his parents, two brothers and one sister from Germany to America. They arrived at New Orleans, but their stay there was brief because an epidemic of yellow fever was raging. His father drowned two years after their arrival in Alton.  Hartmann's first job after settling in Alton was with Col. Friend S. Rutherford, currying horses and carrying wood for $4 a month and board. Later, he worked in a packing house, a stove foundry and in a grocery store.  At age 23, when he had saved enough money, he began his own grocery store at 512 E. Broadway, which he operated for 50 years. He was married to Josephine Stolze Hartmann. At the time of his death on August 22, 1941, at the age of 97, he was believed to be Alton's oldest male citizen, and was the oldest licensed automobile owner in Alton. In 1939, in his recollections of Alton, Hartmann described downtown streets of early Alton, saying that where Sears was, there used to be "Johannes Row," a settlement of German families. The women washed their clothes in Piasa creek near a pond where Snyder's store was. He recalled that there was a mill where the Hippodrome formerly stood, the waterwheel of which was motivated by Piasa Creek. (Piasa Creek, also called Fountain Creek, ran through the center of downtown Alton, and was later filled in and a street built over it .... which is Piasa Street.) His first vote was cast for George B. McClelland and against Lincoln in 1864. When asked about Hitler's policy in Germany, Mr. Hartman said he would repeat the advice given to Hitler by the former Kaiser:  "Don't do as I did; don't make a fool of yourself." Mr. Hartman has no patriotic love for his native Germany. He has made his living and money here, and it is to the United States he has always given his allegiance.  Shown in the photo is Jacob Hartmann on his 97th birthday, holding a photo of a presidential candidate.  Jacob Hartmann did receive his citizenship.]



HASKELL, WILLIAM A. (DOCTOR)         Will Probated - Leaves Library to Son

The will of Dr. William A. Haskell has been probated. It disposes of an estate which is said to be worth about $47,000, and $7,000 is classed as real estate. The will gives all household effects to his wife, Florence E. Haskell, and to his son, John A. Haskell, he gives his magnificent library. The balance of the estate he divided between his sister, Miss Helen Haskell, and his wife. The will originally made a bequest to the Jennie D. Hayner Library the money to be used in buying medical works, but this provision was revoked by a codicil which was framed after Dr. Haskell had given his own medical library to the Jennie D. Hayner Library.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 20, 1915

In a hopeless search for valuables, the burglars who, it was reported in the Telegraph yesterday had raided the Hayner residence recently, turned the whole house topsy turvy and left it in such a state of disarray, and showed such a disregard for expense they entailed on the owner, that it will be quite a job to straighten up things. Mrs. Hayner, it develops, had put in the bank all silverware and everything else she might have cause to think burglars might want to steal. She had left her furniture carefully covered and draperies over other things to protect them from dust during the time the house would be vacant, when she was away on her summer trip. The burglars stripped all coverings off furniture and statuary, broke open trunks and boxes, scattered papers and clothing around the house, heaped up garments and other things taken from drawers and closets, leaving them in great piles on the floors. They left several iron bars they had used in making themselves free to enter any place in the house they chose to get into. There was not a room in the house that escaped the despoiling hands of the burglars. But it is not believed that they got anything of value. In one room where Mrs. Hayner kept a collection of oriental curios, the burglars showed vandalistic inclinations, breaking up some of the choicest things in the collection. In one room, it is said, it was difficult to force a way because of the pile of goods the burglars laid against the door and did not deem of sufficient value to them to take along. The house had been emptied of anything that would be made good loot for a thief before it was closed for the summer.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 4, 1908

Barr Dailey of Dailey Bros., at Second and Shields street, has on exhibition there an interesting collection of ancient objects. It is supposed that the articles are over 150 years of age. At least they antedate the memory of any person now living, and only tradition identifies them and the use for which they were originally intended. An old fashioned lamp that was used to burn linseed oil with a wick for illuminating purposes; an old sheath as the old time scythe was known; a pair of carders for carding wool; and a willow basket in which grain was winnowed constitute the collection. The sheath has a straight handle and the curve which is made in a modern scythe handle is made up for by a straight arm projecting downward from the handle. On the top of the sheath handle was formerly a place where coal tar was put and then sand was sifted over it to furnish a whetting surface for the blade that was attached to the handle for cutting wheat. The willow basket, scoop-shaped, is in fine condition. All the wheat after being flailed was put in the basket and shaken up and the chaff was fanned off the top. A bell-cord that was covered with vari-colored ornamental beads is also in the collection. The whole collection is the property now of John Heiens, and came down to him from his grandfather, Henry Heiens, who formerly lived near Fosterburg. They were part of the older Heien's collection and were highly valued by him.




Source: Alton Daily Telegraph, September 27, 1882

Last Sunday as Mr. B. Hellrung, of Omphghent, with his wagon, attempted to cross the railroad at Milton bridge and was run into by the "Plug," one mule was killed and the other crippled. The occupants of the wagon were not seriously hurt.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, February 28, 1917

From time immemorial sweet tales of kindly grandmothers have been told and the memory of them have always lived green and fragrant in the minds of grandchildren and the latter's children. Alton has a fairy grandmother too, apparently; perhaps Alton has many fairy grandmothers, but here is one of record. C. J. Jacoby told a Telegraph reporter this morning that Saturday he sold three of the best of Chickering Bros. pianos to Mrs. Elizabeth Hellrung, a well known, long time resident of Alton, and at the time of the purchase she stated that she intended making presents of them to three granddaughters as "something by which they will remember Grandma." The children are of three different families, and the girls were overwhelmed with delight when told about the handsome presents they are to get through the goodness of their grandmother. One of the girls lives in Milwaukee, with her parents, and the piano will be shipped to her there. The other two reside in Alton.




Source: Alton Telegraph, February 19, 1847

Elias Hibbard, Esq., of Upper Alton, has invented a press suitable for pressing hay, hemp, or cotton. The construction is rather novel, though simple, and susceptible of being made very cheap. It embraces the combined power of the lever and screw, having a double set of toggle joints, brought to bear upon the substance to be pressed by the application of a double screw. A model may be seen at Col. Ketcham's store in this city. It is worthy the attention of our farmers, who are raising hemp or hay for shipment, and will, we think, take the place of all the power presses for farming purposes now in use.  Signed by A.



HOGUE, MABEL          Helps Husband Build a Store at Their Home on State Street - Digs Cellar

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 28, 1914

...An Alton woman is aiding her husband in lines that are usually left for men. Mrs. Mabel Hogue of State street is assisting her husband, A. J. Hogue, to build a store at their home on State street. Mrs. Hogue has been attracting much attention by laboring with her husband in excavating the cellar for the store building that is to go up in front of the house where the Hogue's live. The cellar is a deep one, and though the work is being done on a much traveled street, and the little woman is attracting much attention, she does not object because, as she says, she is helping her husband and that is what she believes she ought to do.....Mrs. Hogue is young, good looking, and apparently scarcely more than a girl. Mr. Hogue has not bee in the best of health, but he works every day and his wife determined to aid him. She plans to continue working on the superstructure of the house and she predicts that she will almost complete the work herself....She is the mother of three children and beside looking after them she does her own housework and throws in the work digging the cellar and planning to construct the little building in which the Hogues will conduct a store.



HUBER, CHRISTINA                  Regains Mind at an Advanced Age

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, June 8, 1914

Mrs. Christina Huber, aged 85, for 22 years an inmate of an Insane Hospital at Jacksonville, is back at the home of her daughter, Mrs. Henry Yost at Brighton, and Sunday she was the happiest guest at a family reunion at the Yost home. The party was in honor of Mr. and Mrs. William Yost, who were married two weeks ago. Twenty-six of the members of the family were present. Among there were some Alton relatives. Mrs. Huber became overheated nearly a quarter of a century ago, and she never regained her mental composure. She was committed to the insane hospital 22 years ago, and recently she showed such a wonderful change for the better that the children decided that they would take their mother back to their home and let her pass her closing days amid familiar scenes with those whom she had loved the most of all. Mrs. Huber is almost completely restored to health mentally, and is enjoying her stay in her old home. Her children say that there will not again let her go back to the hospital, and they do not believe that there will be any need for her to return, as she seems to be permanently recovered; notwithstanding her great age.




Source: Utica, New York Morning Herald, 1869

Monday, an old man named William Hudson, near Alton, Ill., was found lying dead in his cabin, where he lived alone. When found, his ear and part of his cheek and neck had been gnawed away by a dog.




Who is William Perry?  Experience of a Fair Illinoisian In Saratoga.

Source: The Daily Observer, Utica, New York, October 26, 1875
From the Saratogian, Oct. 22. Among the arrivals on the 9:35 A. M. train at the Saratoga railroad depot last Wednesday morning was a Miss Hulbert, of Alton, Illinois. She was about eighteen years of age, and of a very modest and retiring appearance. She had expected to meet her uncle, one William Perry, and some friends here, who had been telegraphed to be at the depot on her arrival. Miss Hulbert left Alton on Friday, Oct. 15 and consequently had been six days on the route, having been detained on more than one occasion by trains not making connections. She was thoroughly exhausted, as she had not rode a single mile in a sleeping-car during her journey. No one greeting her on embarking from the train, she took a seat in the depot, momentarily hoping and expecting the appearance of her friends. Hours passing away and no one presenting themselves, the young lady became heart sick and bewildered, and tears filled her eyes. She attracted the attention of a large number. The young lady sat in the depot till about three o'clock in the afternoon, when the company's agent, D. K. Wilson, interested himself in her case, rendering her every assistance within his power. She was escorted to the residence of several families of Perrys here, but they proved not to be her relatives. Being a total stranger in a strange place and having been warned by her father, previous to starting, to be constantly on her guard lest some accident should befall her, she hardly dared to trust herself to the protection of some of our most prominent citizens, who generously interested themselves in her behalf. Not finding her relatives, she determined t o return immediately to her Illinois home and it was almost an impossibility to induce her to accept the hospitalities of Saratogians and partake of a single meal here. Fatigued by extended travel and despondent at not meeting those who should have been on hand, Miss H. was the picture of despair, and elicited the sympathies of all those who were endeavoring to assist her. Kindly refusing generous offers for a further search for her branch of the Perrys the young lady tendered her heartfelt thanks for what had been done for her, and lef t , on the evening train for Alton, where she has probably arrived by this time. She stated that her father is an invalid, and that her mission here was in reference to some legal papers which she had in her possession, and which were of no small importance to her uncle, Wm. Perry. As she was unaccustomed to travel, she would not have taken the thousand-mile journey if her parent had not been an invalid and could not come himself. Should this meet the observation of the William Perry alluded to, he will see to what amount of trouble and suffering he put the fair Illinoisan to by not meeting her or making some arrangement for her reception on her arrival here. It will give Miss Hulbert an experience that she will not very soon forget.



HUNTER, IDA          Movie Thriller Enacted as Girl is Made Captive

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 11, 1923

A Granite City girl, with her skull fractured and other injuries, was the center of a mild sensation because of her refusal to reveal the name of an Alton young man with whom, she said, she was spending yesterday in the country when she was seized by four men, forced into an automobile and carried away. How she happened to be lying insensible by the road she could not say, but she was of the opinion she might have leaped from the automobile, or was thrown from the car, in a struggle. She was found lying on the road near Collinsville. The girl is Miss Ida Hunter, aged 19, 1826 D. street, Granite City. The girl mysteriously refused to talk about the young man who was with her first. In her hand, when found, was a note on which was scribbled a melodramatic note: "Come to my rescue, I am in great danger. Send word to Carl Warden." It was signed Ida Hunter. Miss Hunter, on last Tuesday, had a visit from some young man who, she said, forced his way into her house when she was alone, threatened her, and when he left, carried away one of her dresses. The girl was taken to East St. Louis last night for surgical treatment. She refused to talk to anyone but Chief of Police Johnson of Granite City. The Collinsville doctor who attended the girl obtained the name of the Alton young man who had been with her, but he declined to reveal it, deepening further the melodramatic aspect of the girl's experience. According to the story, it would have made a great movie thriller if a camera man had been near to snap it as it was going on. Opening with a peaceful pastoral setting, lad and lass in springtime, out in the great open spaces, letting the world wag on, regardless. Suddenly the scene is rudely interrupted by arrival of four heavy villains in high powered car. Lad seems to fade out here. What he did is not reported. Maybe he will appear later in the story. Villains force struggling girl into big car and dash off. She fights. Finally villains throw her from speeding car and leave her by roadside to die. Farmer boys find her, girl revives, refuses to tell important facts in the case that would lead to discovering the identity of her escort. but, her story is heightened by story of the Granite City chief of police who tells of mysterious nocturnal visitor in her home a few days before, who threatened the girl and then carried away a dress of the girl.


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IRELAND, JOHN         Failed to Rally From Shock of Blow on Head with Baseball, and Surgical Relief is Planned

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 30, 1913

John Ireland, the member of the East Alton Blues who was struck with a ball pitched by John Balster in the game between the East Alton Blue and the Bethalto team, was removed to St. Joseph's Hospital this morning for an operation to be performed by Dr. J. N. Shaff, to remove the pressure of the skull from the brain. The pressure of the skull is believed to have formed a blood clot there, as he bled at the nose all night last night and paralysis of the brain set in. It is hoped that the operation will relieve the injury. The surgical operation was performed because there seemed to be a depression in the skull where the ball struck Ireland, and the surgeons believed that there had been a fracture of the inner table of the skull, which had caused the blood clot to form. By trephining the skull and draining away the blood clot, it was believed it would be possible to relieve the pressure and permit the young man to regain his normal senses, and be relieved from the paralysis which would inevitably disable him, at least partially, unless the pressure was taken away. The operation was performed late this afternoon and the surgeons believed it would be successful.




Source: Alton Telegraph, May 12, 1881/Submitted by Marsha Ensminger
Mr. Alexander Isch and Miss Louisa Kreig, of Fosterburg, were married at the home of the bride's mother, May 5th, by the Rev. M. Shultz, of Upper Alton. After the ceremony was performed, a large company of friends and relatives sat down to a table spread with all the delicacies of the season and beautifully decorated with flowers. Many presents were received, but, owing to the fact that only a portion of them were labeled, we mention only a few: An elegant picture of the bride's father, was the gift of Mr. John Kreig; handsome glass pitcher, cake stand, fruit dish and towels, Mrs. Jacob Krieg; silver castor, Thos. Krieg; fruit stand, Mrs. Shepheard, bread tray, Mrs. Savage; fruit stand, Miss Kate Savage; ornamental air castle, Miss Linda Newhouse; flower vases, Mrs. Yerkes: cake stand, Mr. and Mrs. Henry Young; fruit dish, Miss Lulu Miller; cup, E. B. Young: towels and tidy, Mrs. Goliko; butter knife, Miss Maria Flager, set of silver teaspoons, Miss Martha Blanke; set of gilded china plates and a teapot, Miss Kate Munse; flower vase, Miss Minnie Penning; castor, Miss Annie Maiden. May a long and happy life of joy and sunshine be the lot of the newly wedded pair.

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Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, Friday, June 30, 1899

The family of Dr. E. O. James had a fearful awakening this morning. Their pretty home at Manning and Amelia streets in Upper Alton was in flames and was soon a heap of charred wood and ashes. At about 4:30 o'clock Misses Anna and Susie James awoke to find the room filled with stifling smoke and to hear the crackling flames beneath them. The whole family was aroused and escaped with scanty apparel, but later most of the clothes in the house was saved. The furniture down stairs were carried out but no effort was made to save that upstairs. The house was entirely consumed. It was an old 12-room house, recently remodeled and had been the James home over forty years. It was surrounded by a grove of fine shade trees which was very badly damaged by the heat and flames. The origin of the fire is a mystery as no fire had been made in the stove since noon. It is supposed it was of incendiary origin or caused by mice eating matches. The insurance, $2,500, will cover the loss.



JOB, ALICE E.                Alton Artist Has Write-Up in New York Times

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 16, 1903

The New York Times of May 8 contains a very flattering write-up of the work of an artist "new" in that city but whose work is of such merit as to at once attract the attention of and call forth encomiums from critics of international fame. The artist is Miss Alice E. Job, daughter of Hon. Z. B. Job of Alton. She was always talented, and as a girl excelled in drawing, painting, etc. She studied several years in Paris at the Julian Studio and with Puvis de Chavannes, and her work attracted attention and warm praise there some years ago. Alton friends knew of her genius in her chosen work and were proud of her success, and they as well as Altonians generally will be delighted to know that her creations are now receiving richly deserved recognition and high tribute from the world at large. Following is an extract from the article mentioned:  "Certain landscapes at the Macbeth Gallery, 237 Fifth avenue, are signed by a name new in this city - A. E. Job - and reveal an individual touch. Some are in oils, others have the high lights touched in pastels. They are impressions of atmospheric effects, in some such regions as the southern coast of Long Island. 'Marsh Fog' renders the effect of early autumn on both sides of a winding creek crossed by a footbridge. The tones are dull and warm. 'Dunes in Autumn' has a dull blue cloudy sky above a line of long slender trees silver birches and others, and a foreground full of tufts of coarse grass. 'March at Evening' shows the crescent moon reflected in a long wake in the creek from the greenish, yellowish, pinkish sky; the foreground is crossed by a causeway and a foot-bridge that spans the creek. 'Marsh Night' is perhaps the best of the half dozen Stimmungsbilder. The creek is a dull stretch of gray-blue water with greenish tints in which the stars make long reflected golden bars. A few spectral trees are dimly seen. A good color sense and a distinctive feeling for the poetic side of nature appear in these pictures."  This is the result of her training in Paris. Such consummations do not come without effort, and Miss Job has improved her opportunities. Miss Job believes in the future of American art and is enamored of American landscape as is manifested in her painting of the Atlantic coast.




Source: St. Louis Globe Democrat, October 19, 1875

Yesterday was the twenty-fifth anniversary of the marriage of Rev. Dr. and Mrs. C. J. Johnson, and their many friends gathered about them last evening at their beautiful home in Alton, to do honor to the occasion in a silver wedding. Rev. Dr. Johnson, who is the Secretary of the Western District of the American Baptist Publication Society, is widely known throughout the West by his earnest efforts in the cause of religion. Though fifty-one years of age, he is the picture of vigorous manhood, and his every movement bears the mark of earnest purpose. He was ordained to the ministry in 1843, at Burlington, Iowa. After occupying the pulpit for twenty years, he retired there from to become the agent of the Baptist Publication Society at Burlington. This position was held until 1848, when Rev. Dr. Johnson came to St. Louis to take charge of the interest of the society here, and from that time forward the sphere of its usefulness has been constantly widening.....After an hour's ride the party reached its destination, and was soon ushered into the hospitable mansion, which was the objective point. So large a delegation was hardly to be expected from a distant point, but the welcome was in proportion to the size of the assemblage....The large house had its capacity well tested, but the arrangements were most excellent, and the spirit of true hospitality was manifest on every hand. Dr. and Mrs. Johnson held court in one of the reception rooms, and gave audience to their guests, if not in royal, in most acceptable style. In the library were displayed the handsomest tokens of an esteem born of long acquaintance and deep friendship. A more beautiful collection or ornamental and useful articles in silver it would be difficult to imagine. Apparently every possible want had been anticipated....[List of the presents]...After the company had been fairly seated in its surroundings, a thanksgiving prayer was offered by Rev. Dr. Randolph, following which, preceded by the bride and groom, the guests preceded to supper, which proved a sumptuous repast, well worthy the occasion. It required some time to discuss so liberal a spread, but when all had been satisfied, a few brief addresses, most appropriate under the circumstances, were delivered by Rev. Dr. Burlingham, Rev. Dr. Ford, Hon. N. Cole, and Rev. Dr. Kenrick. The best of cheer prevailed throughout, and when, at 9:30 o'clock, the St. Louis guests were notified to prepare for departure, it seemed a ruthless curtailment of pleasure to obey. But time and the trains wait for no man, and at 10 o'clock, all were aboard and homeward bound, and all having an earnest wish for the continued welfare of the host and hostess of the evening.




Source: Alton Weekly Courier, August 17, 1854

A man named Dairl Jones was brought before Justice Pinkard yesterday on a charge of selling cattle belonging to others. It appears he had sold four two year olds and one calf to Mr. Thomas Key, one of our butchers, for which he received $50. The money was subsequently returned. It was proved on trial that the cattle were the property of J. B. Lathy, Esq., of Upper Alton. He was required to give bail in the sum of $300 for his appearance at the next term of the Circuit Court. He found difficulty in procuring security and has probably gone to jail.



JUNETTE, JESSE JAMES          Uncle of the "James Boys" - Jesse James Named After Him

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 23, 1902

North Alton News - Jesse James Junette is very feeble and quite ill at his home in Godfrey township near here. He is 92 years of age and has lived in Alton and vicinity since 1832. He is an uncle of the "James Boys," and Jesse James was named after him. Jesse James' father was a half-brother of Mr. Junnette, and they were greatly attached to each other. The old gentleman is unable to help himself now in anyway, and must be cared for like a child. His wife is still living, but she is younger than he and is stronger and more healthful. Both are living with a son.




Source: Fayetteville, New York Bulletin, 1901

Joseph Junette, who farms one of the job ranches on the Alton bluffs at Alton, Ill., thinks he will engage extensively in "duck" farming and educate the fowls to eat potato bugs at $1 a day per duck. Just now, Junette is enjoying an income of $15 a day from fifteen ducks, which he trained to clear potato patches of bugs. He put the ducks in a pen and fed them on potato bugs exclusively after starving them until they were glad to get the bug diet. Junette tried them first on his own patch, which comprised several acres. The ducks went through the patch like a neighborhood scandal. After the performance, Junette shut up the brigade in the bug pen so they would not acquire a taste for other diet. The ducks are in great demand on the farms in Junette's neighborhood. Farmers are glad to pay $1.50 per hour for the services of the brigade.


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KAESHEIMER, AUG.             Wins Family Consent to be Hero - Enlists in U. S. Cavalry

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 12, 1914

After four months persuasion, Aug. Kaesheimer has secured the permission of his mother to join the United States Cavalry, and he left this morning to enlist at St. Louis. Kaesheimer is but twenty years of age, but he has been longing for a place in the army for several years. His grandfather, James Pack, was a soldier in the Civil War, and from the time he was a little tot, the boy has listened to his grandfather's stirring tales of battle. It was while he was still a lad that he decided to follow his grandfather's footsteps. Several months ago he went to St. Louis and enlisted. Everything was ready for him to go to the front, but his mother's permission. He assured the authorities that this would be readily given, but when they wrote to Alton, she sent him money to come home instead. Since that time Kaesheimer has been begging his mother continually to allow him to join the army. He even went so far as to go on a strike and refuse to work if she did not grant his request. He wore a smile as he left Union Depot today on a C. & A. train, and shouted to some of his friends, "I'll see you again in four years."



KALENDS, THOMAS          Alton Greek a Hero - Captures Colors of Turkish Regiment in Infantry Charge

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 3, 1913

Word has come to John Venardos that Thomas Kalends, his nephew, had distinguished himself by bravery in a fight at Bizani, March 15, word of which has just arrived. Kalends, it will be remembered, was a bootblack [person who shines boots for a living] in a barber shop on Piasa shop. He was a student of the classics, and he was so well posted in Greek language that he undertook to teach, at Shurtleff College, some of the professors in Greek, who desired to acquire the correct pronunciations. Kalends left Alton some time ago, and when war broke out against Turkey, and his country became in need of his services, he enlisted. Kalends was in an infantry regiment and one evening at dusk, his regiment charged a Turkish fortification that guarded the town of Bezani. Tom was in the fore of the charge and leaping over the fortifications, he seized the Turkish flag and carried it triumphantly to his commander. Kalends has gone through the war without being injured, so far as his Alton relatives know.



KELEHER, JAMES "PEGGY"            Temper Almost Ends In Self-Hanging

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 5, 1914

James Keleher's desire to blaspheme got him near to the door of death late Friday afternoon. It was an unlucky day for "Peggy," so known because he wears a peg leg, since he lost his flesh and blood leg in an accident. Peggy is hard as tacks, mean as a catamount, and vicious in the extreme. When he fights he kicks, bites, scratches and slugs. He is known as an all around bad man. He was arrested for disorderly conduct, and when put in the jail he enjoyed his confinement by pouring forth a stream of filthy vituperation and blasphemy on everybody who came in sight. Chief Lynn then locked him in a cell, but Peggy thought he would put one over on the Chief, and continue his blasphemies and filthy talk at the top of his powerful voice, even though thus confined. At the top of the cell is a little opening about six inches wide where bars once were and now nothing remains but the jagged points of the rusted out barrier. Through this hole Peggy managed to work his head. Only the remarkable narrowness of his head admitted of this trick. Turning his head sideways, he poker it through, then turned it back to normal position. His one foot and the end of his peg leg rested on the grating of the cell door. There Peggy continued to blaspheme and shout his imprecations on everybody. But he went too far. In his rage, his peg leg slipped and then his foot slipped, and down he dropped, his whole body being suspended by his neck, into which the jagged rusty points of steel were gouging with cruel effect. Peggy then began to shriek for help, and someone reported the condition of the prisoner at police headquarters. Chief Lynn, Officers Fahrig and Bund, and Red Calvey went down. They lifted Peggy's form up to relieve the strain, then somebody took him by the ears and forcibly twisted his head sideways to pass it through the narrow ____, and Peggy was free again, but almost all in. He dropped to the floor of the cell, completely worn out. He was ready to go to the county jail today. The police at first thought Peggy had made his last "swear," but he fooled them through the grace of a hardy constitution.



KELLEY, ELLA  "The Strawberry Girl" Markets Wheat Crop

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 5, 1919

Miss Ella Kelley, "the Strawberry Girl," today sold her wheat crop to the Sparks Milling Co., which amounted to almost five hundred dollars. Miss Kelley is a girl of 18 years and is the daughter of C. H. Kelley, a foreman for John D. Rockefeller at the Wood River refinery. Mr. Kelley has a small farm on the northeast limits of Upper Alton. It is known as the Campbell place, and as he is busy all the time at his work at Wood River, the daughter operates the farm. She has a younger brother who gives her some help in the work by the management and the biggest part of the work is done by her. Miss Kelley hauls hundreds of crates of strawberries to Alton during the season - the berries are ripe and she is known as the strawberry girl because of this fact. She drives a fine team of black mares, and she is so fond of her team that her father's automobile does not appeal to her in the least. With the fine team she put in a small field of wheat last fall on the farm, and it was threshed yesterday. The young lady hired the Sargent truck to haul the grain to market, and it was sold at the Sparks mill. If she had threshed one more sack of wheat than she did, her returns would have gone a few cents over the five hundred dollar mark.




Source: Alton Weekly Courier, June 4, 1857

Read the trial here.




Source: Utica, New York Daily Observer, September 9, 1873

Kate Kilbey, of Madison County, Ill., went blind just after graduating from an eastern seminary, since which time she has prepared her two brothers for college and fitted her youngest sister for entrance to the Monticello Seminary.



Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 28, 1919

The engagement of Miss Ruth Wright to Earl Kirk was announced last evening at a party given at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Aleto Rilke, at their home on Broadway. The home was prettily decorated in red, white and blue. Cupids and hearts were used in the decorations in the dining room. Games were played during the evening and refreshments were served, after which the announcement was made. The couple is to be married on Monday morning at 9 o'clock. The ceremony will be performed at the home of Mrs. Rieke. Those who attended the announcement party last evening were: Misses Beulah Fields, Grace Elliot, and Herman Schussle, Hugh Ford, Clarence Pelot and Harvell Embley, of Alton, and Misses Stella and Edith Hunter, Julia Bauer, Josephine Vanpreter, Ruth Wright and Eunice Rieke, and Alfred Moore, and Earl Kirk of East Alton.


Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 30, 1919

East Alton - Miss Ruth Wright and Mr. Earl Kirk, both of this place, will be quietly married Monday morning at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Leto Rieke. Last Tuesday several young people of Alton and East Alton tendered them a linen shower at the Rieke home. A good time was enjoyed and a nice lunch was served by Mrs. Rieke. Many presents were received by the bride-to-be. Those present from Alton were Misses Bulah Fields, Grace Elliott, Messrs. Hugh Ford, Herman Schussler, Clarence Pelot, Harold Embrey. Those from East Alton were Misses Julia Bower, Stella Hunter, Edith Hunter, Eunice Reike, Josephine Van Preter, Ruth Wright, Messrs. Earl Kirk and Alfred Moore. A good time was enjoyed by all present.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 2, 1919/Submitted by Jim Kirk

Miss Ruth Wright and Mr. Earl Kirk were quietly married yesterday morning at the home of her friends, Mr. and Mrs. Leto Reike, on Broadway. The ceremony was performed by Rev. O. E. Taylor of the Baptist Church. They will make East Alton their future home with the best wishes of their many friends. Those who witnessed the ceremony were Mr. and Mrs. Howard Flack of Detroit, Mich. and Mr. and Mrs. Leto Reike, Mrs. John Van Preter and Miss Eva Flack of East Alton.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph/Submitted by Jim Kirk

January 24, 1921 - - Earl Kirk is confined to his home on Bowman Ave. by an attack of influenza.

January 27, 1921 - - Earl Kirk is now able to be up after being confined to his bed for several days with the influenza.

April 30, 1921 - - Mrs. Earl Kirk and little son were Alton visitors yesterday.

August 9, 1923 - - Mr. and Mrs. Earl Kirk and son, have returned from a visit with relatives in Wellsville [Mo.].

September 20, 1923 - - Mr. and Mrs. Earl Kirk and son, Earl Jr., have returned to their home here [East Alton] after a few days visit with relatives in Benton. Ill.

October 5, 1923 - - Mr. and Mrs. Earl Kirk are entertaining the latter's mother and sister from Wellsville, Mo., for a while at their home on Belle street.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 12, 1920/Submitted by Jim Kirk

Mrs. James Kirk suffered a paralytic stroke yesterday morning at the home of her son, Earl Kirk. Mrs. Kirk was said to be slightly improved this morning.




Source: Syracuse, New York Daily Journal, October 1, 1894

William Knlcker, manager of a store and saloon at Edwardsville crossing, six miles below Alton, was wounded by unknown highwaymen Friday night and died Saturday afternoon.



KOWALSKI, JOSEPH                 Man Accidently Shoots Left Arm Off At Elbow While Hunting Rabbits

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, October 19, 1914

Joseph Kowalski, formerly a Wood River saloon keeper, accidentally shot himself in the left arm yesterday morning while hunting on the Mike Schreiber place. His arm was so badly shattered that it had to be amputated by Drs. W. E. Barton and J. T. Kessinger at St. Joseph's Hospital. He was also made very weak from loss of blood, but it is thought he will recover....


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Source: Alton Telegraph, November 24, 1913
Mysterious Killing in Betts Saloon Sunday. Dragged to Sidewalk.   Participants refused to talk for publication, and deep mystery surrounds the killing.

Walter Langley was killed Sunday night in the saloon of James Betts at Second and State Streets. The facts concerning the killing were exceedingly hard to find. The indications were that after Langley was fatally injured he was dragged out to the sidewalk and left there, where he was found by Officer Scoville who had the ambulance called and conveyed him to police headquarters. When taken in there a doctor was called who decided that Langley was dead. He had probably been dead for some time, and was undoubtedly dead when the policeman found him. The indications are that the one blow struck Langley by Betts, according the Betts' admission, was enough to kill the man. If Betts' story is true this is the second instance in that immediate vicinity of a man being killed by a blow of a fist. At police headquarters all information was refused by Betts who said he had nothing to say until he told his story to the coroner's jury. According to the story gleaned from hear-say reports and some statements which Betts made early to the police, he claimed that Langley went into the Betts saloon and carried out a quart jar, which had been on the bar. He returned to the saloon and when the jar was demanded trouble was started. Betts told that he was struck by Langley and that in defense he struck Langley back. He claimed he hit but one blow, and that with his fist, and that he had no idea that Langley had been killed by the blow. After the killing an order was given to close up the Betts saloon and to arrest everybody in it. Five men including Betts, were held. Betts and one witness being behind the unlocked door of the detention room which opens off the central police office. The saloon was re-opened this morning and doing a good business. Owing to the dense mystery which seemed to surround the killing of Langley, and the silence maintained by the principal, Betts, and his witnesses, it is believed that there is more to the story then filtered out. Coroner J. M. Sims was called and arrived this afternoon for the purpose of impaneling a jury and holding inquest. Five witnesses of the tragedy were detained in jail until after the coroner's inquest. An autopsy performed this afternoon in the Jacoby undertaking establishment by Dr. J. M. Sims, county coroner, establishes the fact, as far as the autopsy had proceeded at 3 o'clock that Walter ("Buck") Langley was murdered. No responsibility for the murder can be fixed, but four men are locked up, charged with knowing something about the affray in the James Betts' saloon at Second and State streets in which Langley got worster and was thrown out on the sidewalk. At 3 o'clock the inquest was set to be held in the city hall and a number of witnesses were brought in by Deput Sheriff Fitzgerald, but the inquest had to be deferred an hour or so because the coroner was busy with the autopsy. The autopsy reveals that the man had been struck in the back of the head with some blunt instrument, which could easily have caused his death. There are also several bad bruises on his face but these could have been caused by falling as he was thrown out of the saloon. Betts refused to confirm or deny the report current on the streets that he had struck the man. He said that he wanted to be a George Washington and would not say anything except the truth and that before the coroner's jury. The three men in jail refused to say anything on being prompted by outsiders. One of the men started to give a story which he said he told the night captain last night, when an outsider cautioned him to keep quiet. Coroner's undertaker, Berner, had similar trouble in finding out anything about the matter this morning and had several arguments with men who wanted to stop his investigation in the matter. Deputy Sheriff Peter Fitzgerald, who happened to enter an east end saloon, learned that a man had just been in there detailing an account of the killing, of which he said he was an eye witness. Fitzgerald went on the trail, caught the man in the Moose saloon and arrested him and held him as a witness for the coroner's inquest. The man declared even after he was arrested as a witness that Langley was struck without provocation and that he was killed with a club. Langley is 40 years of age and lives with his mother and brother, Wesley, at 408 Lockyer addition. He worked as section boss of the C.P. and St. L. [railroads] several times, and was once section boss at Lockhaven, where he formerly resided. He is single. He leaves beside his mother, three brothers and three sisters.



LAWLER, JOHN - Man Caught in Steel Rolls at Steel Plant

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 23, 1921

John Lawler, employed at the plant of the Laclede Steel Company, lost his left arm at the elbow as the result of a bad accident that occurred this morning at the steel plant. Lawler was working about one of ____ rolling machines when he became caught in the rolls. The machine at the time was rolling out reinforcing iron. Lawler was being drawn into the rolls and probably would have followed the bar of reinforcing iron on through the rolls and would have been mashed to a pulp, but for the fact that his predicament was discovered in time to admit of the mill being shut down and the unfortunate man released. When Lawler was taken from the machine his arm had been crushed to his elbow, and the surgeons who attended him after he had been rushed to St. Joseph's Hospital found that amputation at the elbow would be necessary. It was said that it was probable that Lawler would recover, as he is believed to have suffered no other injuries. The temperature of the iron rolls in which the bars of iron are rolled is high, and the injured man not only suffered a crushing, but a bad burning of the injured arm. The victim of the accident was formerly on the Alton fire department. It was said this afternoon that the victim owed his life to the fact that the mill was turning slower than usual, the power having been pulled so a ______ could be made, and Lawler stuck his hand in a dangerous place to shut off the water, whereupon his hand became caught. The rolls made only a few turns after Lawler's hand became _____ in the rolls.



LAYTON, UNKNOWN WIFE OF GUY                    The Terrible Assault of Mrs. Layton

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 19, 1913

Mrs. Guy Layton, aged 31, living on Averill avenue, was beaten, robbed and forced to submit to a criminal assault by two men who followed her home Thursday night as she was going home from a day's work in the Hoppe Toy Store. In jail is Floyd Jones, who was identified both by Mrs. Layton and by a streetcar conductor, Louis Ohley, who says he saw Jones get off a streetcar after Mrs. Layton. Jones' face is marked with some scratches she inflicted on him with her fingernails in her struggle with him and his companion in crime. According to Mrs. Layton's story, she noticed as she got off the streetcar, which left downtown at 9:10 o'clock, that a man got off with her. As she stepped to the pavement the man lurched against her, and she quickened her steps to go to her home nearby. The man seemed to go in an opposite direction, but suddenly he came up behind her and addressed her, "Hello chubby." Mrs. Layton told the man he must be mistaken in his woman, as she did not know him. The man then jumped on her, choked her form behind, and had a hard struggle with her. Her neck shows the bruised mark from the fingers of her assailant, substantiating her story of being choked almost to insensibility. The man who had seized her than called for an assistant, whom Mrs. Layton says she had not seen up to that time, and he directed his assistant to known in her knees, for the purpose of getting her on the ground. Both the men then committed a criminal assault upon the helpless woman. Mrs. Layton lay for over an hour insensible, and then she managed to crawl to the McHenry home nearby and told her story. She was in a bad way, and a doctor was called. Mrs. Layton had in her stocking $12 in money, which the two assailants failed to get from her, but they did rob her of $5.08, which she had in her purse. Mrs. Layton's description of her assailant was supplemented by the aid of the streetcar conductor, and the arrest was made of Floyd Jones at 2 a.m. at his home. Within an hour after his arrest, he had been taken before Mrs. Layton who positively identified him, and the identification was clinched by her information that she had put some scratches on the flesh of her assailant. Jones carried just such a scratch as she described. Mrs. Layton begged to be given a revolver so she could shoot Jones, as she trembled with excitement on again facing her assailant as he was under arrest. The streetcar conductor, Ohley, also identified Jones as the man who had been on the car and got off with Mrs. Layton. Jones has been arrested before and bears a bad reputation. Mrs. Layton's husband is working at Festus, Mo., and as she desired to supplement his earnings somewhat, she took a place in the Hoppe Toy Store for the holidays, as she was familiar with the stock. She left the store after 9 o'clock, it was said at the store, and took the 9:10 streetcar for Upper Alton. Jones was bound over to the grand jury this morning by Magistrate Lessner, in $5,000 bond, waiving preliminary examination. He was taken to Edwardsville at one.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, January 6, 1890

William Lee, a fisherman who lives across the river, was arrested and fined at St. Charles a few days ago for operating a skiff ferry between the Illinois and Missouri shore at this point. Lee was permitted to run the ferry by consent of the owners of the Altonian and Mr. Henry G. McPike, who owns the land known as McPike Island. The Altonian being away from the place and unable to return to take care of the trade, Lee's ferry was run as an accommodation to Missouri Point people. Someone who was jealous of Lee informed St. Charles County officials that he was running a ferry between Alton and Missouri shore, and Lee was arrested. He was fined $20 and costs, and sentenced to ten days in jail.


Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 7, 1900

Bill Lee, a fisherman who "batches" in a cabin on McPike Island, was in the city today and he told to several parties and to the police a story that is as full of shivers as an ice house. About three weeks ago, a man and a woman tramped into Bill's bailiwick and sought shelter. The man gave his name as John Davison, and said the woman was his wife. He also said he wanted to get board there for his wife, while he was over in Joe Golike's camp at work. Bill consented, and Davison went away and worked until he had $7 to the good, when he returned, and both he and his wife remained a few days at the cabin. Last Friday night, Davison borrowed Bill's skiff saying he wanted to come over to Alton to make a few purchases, including some "liker."  His wife accompanied him, and that is the last seen of them by Bill. He was very much excited today, it is said, and claims that he knows a man who saw the skiff land on this side of the river, and who says there was no woman in it. Bill says Davison knocked her into the river en route, and that she is now lying in the river between here and the island. One of the oars was broken, and the fisherman thinks this was done in striking at the woman. The boat was tied up near the ferry boat landing, and the man who saw it land says that the occupant struck out down the Bluff line track towards St. Louis. The story is given for what it is worth. It may be as Bill says, but it is more than likely that the couple landed all right and are still here, or have pursued their way together southward.


Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, October 13, 1902

William Lee, better known as Deaf Bill, was over from McPike's island Sunday to get a certificate of marriage. He was arrested on a charge that the now Mrs. Lee was not his wife, and that in disregard of social laws and customs they were living together. Lee and his housekeeper were married Saturday, and this morning when charged with not being married they produced the certificate. They were discharged. 


Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 18, 1902

The St. Charles Cosmos contains the following about "Deaf Bill" Lee, who was married in this city a few months ago, and who is Deputy Pooh Bah of Missouri Point:  "Bill Lee was brought to this city [St. Charles] Tuesday morning by the officers of the law from West Alton, where he has resided for a number of years. Lee was charged by John Ernst with stealing a pair of rubber boots from him valued at $5.50. He was arrested Monday at West Alton by Deputy Sheriff Rayburn. He appeared before Justice Bruns and entered a plea of guilty, whereupon the court fined him $10 and costs, together with fifteen days in the county jail. Lee resides on the riverbank at West Alton in a shanty boat. He was recently married to the woman he is living with, and during the process of his hearing the court asked him what his wife's name was when he answered, "I do not remember, it was some peculiar name."    


Drunken Woman Commits Havoc - Tries to Burn Herself in Jail Cell

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 23, 1905

Prompt action on the part of night captain, J. N. Ashlock of the police, saved the life of the wife of "Deaf Bill" Lee, who was locked in a cell in jail to restrain her from committing violence. The woman attempted to burn herself to death by lighting the mattresses that constituted her bed, and would have succeeded but for the shouts of her fellow prisoners in jail. The woman was arrested for being intoxicated on the streets and was put in the detention room off the police headquarters' room, where female prisoners are usually kept. The room is not substantially constructed, and when the woman began wrecking the furniture in the room, trying to batter down the walls and threatening to cause considerable damage to the place, Capt. Ashlock took her downstairs and locked her up in a cell alone. She continued her violent talk but was unable to do anything in the cell that would cause any damage, at first. There were in the corridor of the jail three prisoners who were on the city street sweeping gang, and they were aroused about midnight by the woman who begged them for a match to light a cigarette so she could take a smoke. The prisoners, thinking perhaps she might go to sleep if she was humored, and permit them to sleep, gave her some matches and a few minutes later she had started a fire in the three mattresses which were given to her as a bed. The prisoners called and shouted for help, but as there was few people on the streets they were not heard until street car men, who were passing, noticed the fire blazing in the jail and ran to the office to notify Capt. Ashlock. The police captain, in the excitement, forgot to take his keys with him and was obliged to run back to the office after his keys after running down to the jail door to investigate. When he did get into the corridor the smoke from the burning mattresses was stifling and he could unlock the door only with the greatest difficulty. Finally he did get the door open, and there was the woman, standing in the small cell, deliberately trying to ignite her clothes. She was in a frenzy and when Capt. Ashlock tried to take her out of the cell she fought viciously. Capt. Ashlock finally seized her and dragged her out of the cell, then dragged the burning mattresses out after her. The woman then jumped on top of the pile of mattresses and tried again to burn herself. Capt. Ashlock resorted to physical force then, and striking the woman knocked her down. The woman jumped up again and then fell in a faint. She was dragged away from the burning mattresses, and in his efforts to put out the fire Capt. Ashlock burned himself slightly, and his trousers were burned about the bottoms. The prisoners, by his direction, carried water to him in buckets and threw it on the woman and the blazing mattress. By a strange chance, it seemed the providence which is especially in charge of drunken people saved the woman from being burned, although the fire she kindled in the little cell might well have burned her to death. The woman pleaded guilty and was fined $3 and costs for being drunk and disorderly. No charge of burning the jail mattresses was made.



LEMEN, HARRY R. (DOCTOR)    Receives Offer of Commission as Surgeon in the Army in China

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 21, 1900

Dr. H. R. Lemen today received a telegram from Assistant Surgeon General Bache at Washington, requesting him to accept a position as surgeon in a regiment that will be sent to China to avenge the murders of Americans perpetrated by Boxers. The telegram was in answer to a written application by Dr. Lemen for service in China. In 1898 he gave up a lucrative practice in this vicinity to go to Cuba to fight as a Private in the regular army. The telegram requested that he forward by wire his reply, and that if he accepts the position to which he will be appointed contracts will be forwarded to him at once for signing and he will then be subject to orders to sail at once for China. During the war in Cuba, Dr. Lemen so distinguished himself that after the battle he was promoted to a position as assistant surgeon, and so acceptable was he that he was known all over the camps about Santiago as the best surgeon there, and he was appealed to for assistance by men who were not under his care. His record in Cuba probably determined the Surgeon General to ask him to again take up the arduous duties of the field and to sail for the orient. Dr. Lemen will be most valuable in the East, as he served as a surgeon during the war between China and Japan, and while there he acquired knowledge of diseases peculiar to the East that would make him most useful to the army. Dr. Lemen wired to Assistant Sugeon General Bache this afternoon that he would accept the office. Dr. Peter Beckman also wired his willingness to accept a commission in the army in China. He too enlisted as a Private and was promoted at the same time under the same circumstances as Dr. Lemen, and he served also in the Philippines until he resigned to begin practice in Alton. Dr. Beckman expects to receive a reply to his telegram volunteering his services within a few days, and the probability is that he will also go to China. He has done good service in the army and would be a valuable man in the service in China because of his Philippine experience.



LEVIS, CHARLES - Buys Hull's Bluff

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 24, 1916

Charles Levis, who has been one of a syndicate owning the old Hull farm, later known as the Physical Culture farm, has purchased the land from the other members of the syndicate. Mr. Levis plans to erect a handsome country home on the site, and he will have a very delightful place. The site is popularly known as Hull's bluff. The view from there is one of the best along the Mississippi River. Many years ago a fruit farm was conducted there, but the orchards are about extinct. At one time there was a great orchard of cherry trees on the farm, and many thousands of cherry birds would flock there season after season. Only a few of the trees survive, and efforts to get new orchards started have failed.



Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, October 23, 1918

An airplane with two flyers in it passed over Alton headed south yesterday afternoon, and it was flying high and swiftly. The Telegraph learns that earlier in the day these bird men and their machine created a great deal of interest in Grafton road localities and out on the bluffs, where they gyrated to some extent just to show that they were masters of the air. The machine landed in a field on the A. T. Hawley farm, and later were taken to the Levis Castle in an auto sent form the castle after them, and they were entertained several hours at that hospitable home by members of the Charles Levis family. They ate dinner at the home, and while birdmen have exceptional opportunities of getting many magnificent views from the sky, it is doubtful if they ever obtain a more magnificent view at one time than can be obtained from this castle. From a Grafton road resident it is learned that the airplane that flew low over that section yesterday afternoon scared cattle and horses and other live stock almost "stiff." The live stock in the pastures lost as little time as possible getting away from the monster bird and fowls in the barnyards and loitering on roads were terrified when they saw that big hawk hovering over them and getting ready, apparently, to swoop down and get a dozen or two of them for dinner.



LINDSTROM, WALTER      Marries Woman Who Looks Like His Dead Sweetheart Who Saved His Life

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 9, 1901

In connection with the marriage of Walter Lindstrom to Miss Mabel Begole of Topeka, Kansas, yesterday, an interesting romance is related by the groom, who had been a bachelor forty years, out of respect to the memory of a woman who had given up her life on the plains that many years ago to save his life. Lindstrom says that when he was a youth of 20, he, with a young woman to whom he was engaged to be married, were members of a party that was crossing the plains, the party was attacked by Indians. He was being scalped by an Indian when the young woman came to his rescue and saved his life, but she was killed before assistance was given, and the Indians were driven off. Lindstrom bears to this day a great scar on his forehead where the Indians attempted to lift his scalp. For forty years he remained true to the memory of his sweetheart who was murdered on the plains, and until recently had no thought of marriage. One day he saw a picture of a young woman in a newspaper who looked like his dead sweetheart. He wrote to her and subsequently they were engaged to be married. The marriage in Alton Monday was the culmination of the little romance. The groom gave his age as 50, but he is evidently much older, while the bride is 26.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 21, 1910

An ancient note given by his father to Thaddeus L. Loomis, April 12, 1827, was found in the documents of the late Mr. Loomis, at the home of B. L. Dorsey in Alton. The note was written to his father, Thaddeus Loomis, by Horace Loomis, and is dated at Salisbury, N. Y., and is evidence of an indebtedness of the grandfather to the grandson for $16.13. The note reads as follows:


Salisbury, April 12th, 1827.  Due Thaddeus Loomis sixteen dollars and thirteen cents, on three percent interest, until paid, for value received by me, Horace Loomis. I hereby assign over the above not to my grandson Thaddeus Loomis for his name and request my executor to keep the same at annual interest until of lawful age to receive the same.  Salisbury, Sept. 2, 1828, Thaddeus Loomis.


The grandson died in Alton last winter near 90 years of age. The note was transferred to that grandson by his grandfather. It is supposed the note was paid, although it was never returned to the maker and was kept by Mr. Loomis all the remainder of his long life, 82 years. The document is yellow with age, but the writing is still plain and the paper is in good condition.




LOTI, SAMUEL - One of the "Pathfinders" Celebrates 79th Birthday

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 15, 1905

Samuel Loti, one of John C. Freemont's "Pathfinders," and a member of the memorable expedition he made from St. Louis to the Pacific coast in 1847, was celebrating his seventy-ninth birthday today. Loti is still in good health, and is very much alive on topics of current interest. Notwithstanding the hardships he underwent in his early days, he is feeling very well on the beginning of his eightieth year of his life. He was born at Burlington, Vt., and lived there until he was nearly 18 years of age. He enlisted with Fremont for the western trip of exploration, immediately after he arrived from a western trip, the Pathinder trip being Loti's second into the wilds. He accompanied Fremont to the mouth of the Feather river, near Sacramento. Alton has another old resident who was in the expedition, Henry Mayo, who was Fremont's camp cook.



LOWE, MICHAEL A. - Sale of Estate - Tract of One Hundred Acres in Upper Alton

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 14, 1916

One of the most important real estate transactions ever made in Alton is to occur on the 27th day of April when the M. A. Lowe place, located on South Main street in Upper Alton, is to be sold, according to the specifications of the will left by Mr. Lowe. The date of the sale on the 27th will be the sixth anniversary of the death of Mr. Lowe. The will provides for the sale six years after his death, and the sale will be held six years to the day following the death of this old time Upper Alton citizen. Mr. Lowe was almost 90 years old when he died. The Mike Lowe place fronts on Main street, two blocks, and the portion that fronts on this street is a beautiful piece of real estate. There is something like one hundred acres in the place, about half of it being in the city limits and the other half out. The tract is a valuable one, and the sale of the place will be watched with great interest by many people of this city and by real estate men from other places. It is very probably that the buyers, who ever they may be, will subdivide the place and open streets through it. There is much discussion as to the amount of money the tract will bring, and this feature of the big deal will be watched with interest. At the time of Mr. Lowe's death he left three children, the two sons, Edward and James, and the one daughter, Mrs. Frank B. Tesson, who went down with the Lusitania last summer. Mrs. Tesson left three heirs, William, Charles and Roy Adkins of Upper Alton. Mr. Lowe left two granddaughters also at the time of his death, thus there are four divisions of the estate to be made, two direct heirs and the two sets of grandchildren. In his will Mr. Lowe made provisions for holding the property togethere six years after his death, and he named W. W. Lowe as executor of the estate. The two sons objected to the arrangements, and petitioned the court to set aside W. W. Lowe as administrator and appoint T. A. Rice in his place. The petition was granted and T. A. Rice, who then lived on the Phillips place across the street from the Lowe homestead, was appointed administrator and handled the place one year. At the end of the year the court discharged Mr. Rice as administrator and reinstated W. W. Lowe, who has since taken care of the property.  During the last two or three years L. E. Plattenier, the East Second street fruit and vegetable dealer, has been the tenant on the Lowe place, and under his management it has produced pretty good crops, although the seasons were all about as bad as they could be. The sale of this important tract will be watched with much interest. The heirs know of numerous parties who expect to be bidders. The house which is a large brick structure, was at one time the finest residence in Upper Alton. It is surrounded by a large grove of monster oak trees and for many years the Lowe place was a summer boarding place for St. Louis people who came up to Alton to spend the summer months.



LUFT, CHARLES G. - Record Breaking Blacksmith Sells Horseshoeing Shop

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, June 11, 1917

Charles G. Luft, blacksmith, horseshoer, auto salesman, garage and machine shop conductor, and houses and lots subdivision booster, Monday morning disposed of his blacksmith shop business and fixtures to John P. Abernathy, an experienced blacksmith and horseshoer of St. Louis, and possession given immediately. Mr. Luft is the man who made a record never equalled before or since, a few years ago, when during a spell of weather when sleet was king and covered the ground, arrived at his blacksmith shop early one morning to find it surrounded by horses and their owners. The equines were in a shoeless and helpless condition, and Mr. Luft and five helpers got busy. Then the record was made of putting a shoe on a horse in one minute and a half, and that rate was kept up until 326 shoes had been attached and the nails driven in. His father, the late George Luft, built the shop and started business there many years ago, and C. G. Luft, as a boy and man, has spent 32 years in that shop. That is why he is feeling a little doubtful about retaining his health away from it. It was a sort of strength builder and nerve sustainer for him - a homemade health resort as it were, and he thinks he will have to visit the shop occasionally (or some other shop) and shoe a horse or two and swing a 100 pound sledge around for thirty minutes or so to keep himself physically fit. He will devote his time and attention now to selling lots and houses in his East Alton addition, and to selling automobiles and auto trucks here in town. Mr. Abernathy, the new owner, comes to Alton well recommended and will add another to Alton's desirable citizens.


LUFT, CHARLES G. - Blacksmith Shop Sold Back to Him After Mrs. Abernathy Refuses to Live in Alton

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, June 18, 1917

Charles G. Luft, who was greatly tickled last week because he had disposed of his Belle street blacksmith and horseshoeing shop, after hammering away in it for 30 years or more, had his tickles all changed to regrets when the purchaser, Mr. Abernathy of St. Louis, begged so hard to 'renig' that Mr. Luft succumbed and bought back the shop. It is said that he made something on the deal, however, at that. He wants to see, and he thinks Mr. Abernathy would have made a success of the business and would have made a good citizen, but Mrs. Abernathy refused to live in Alton and Mr. Abernathy did not care about moving here by his "lonely."



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McCORKLE, THOMAS         Former Alton Resident, Born On The Site of the Post Office at Third and Alby, Returns For Visit

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, October 1, 1913

Thomas McCorkle, a native of Alton who was born on the site of the present post office at Third and Alby streets, arrived from Ravenden, Ark., with his sister, Mrs. Sarah Griffing, and will spend two weeks with Joab Watkins in Alton. Mr. McCorkle's return is an interesting event to many an Alton person who remembers him. He lived here until 1877 when he moved from Alton, and the last time he was here was 22 years ago. He met many people who recognized him. He made a visit at the Telegraph office, where he was employed for many years and was a competent and capable man. The present foreman of the Telegraph office was just entering as an apprentice when Mr. McCorkle was in the Telegraph office. They recognized each other at sight, though both have grown much older. Mr. McCorkle likens himself to Rip Van Winkle coming back to his old home. He says he has been up in the Ozark mountains, where an automobile nor an electric car do not go, the land being too rough for either type of conveyance to get through. He is living in retirement. Mr. McCorkle never married, but he says he raised his father's family, and he felt that he could not be blamed for not having one of his own.



McKEE, ALBERT B. (DOCTOR) and brother, CHARLES B.                 Shocking Double Suicide   (submitted by Marsha Ensminger)

Source: Troy Weekly Call, March 21, 1903, page 1, column 1, 2, and 4

Good by my darling wife, baby, mother and sister. I feel innocent of the charge, but can't stand the suspense. I'm only losing a few years of hard work, but the agony and the shadow cast over my relatives is too much for me. I have always tried to be upright and straight. Don't worry about us, we are going cheerfully. I have the best wife on earth and I want for her to see many happy days, and hope the boy will become a useful man. Please don't publish.     A. B. McKEE.

I am going with Albert, I can't stand it either. Albert and I have always tried to do what was right and feel we have. Good by.      CHARLIE.

The above letters contain the last words to relatives and the world by Dr. Albert B. McKee, a well known physician of Edwardsville, and Charles Mc Kee, his brother and life-long companion, who were discovered side by side at an early hour Tuesday morning in the stable at the Doctor's residence on St. Louis street. When found Dr. McKee was sitting erect with his hands hanging over his knees; Charles McKee, the brother, was lying near him. Life was not quite extinct, but he was unconscious and breathing heavily. Near the men on the floor were two of the Doctor's medicine cases, a hypodermic syringe and graduate glass and a number of morphine tablets. The men were found by Jacob Klein, who was in the employ of Dr. McKee. When Klein made the discovery he ran at once for medical assistance, first securing Dr. H. T. Wharff. Dr. Wharff administered a few injections of atrophine, an antidote for morphine poisoning, in the system of Charles. By this time Dr. E. W. Fiegenbaum arrived and the hopeless patient was carried into Dr. McKee's office where he died in a few minutes. In his mouth were found pieces of morphine tablets of which he must have eaten a good many. On the Doctor's lower limbs were nearly a dozen punctures from the syringe with which he had made injections of the deadly drug, which induced death in a very short time, as the physicians stated that the Doctor had been dead for several hours when found. The cause of the dual suicide which agitated Edwardsville and received wide-spread attention, was induced by charges of a. sensational character preferred. against Dr. McKee by Miss Emma Roewekamp, daughter of a prominent farmer residing near Edwardsville. Miss Roewekamp is employed as a domestic in a West End home in that city, and recently went to Dr. McKee for treatment. It was on on Saturday, March 7, she claims, that the Doctor made a criminal assault upon her, and legal proceedure (sic) against the action was instituted on Friday of last week when Constable John Glass served papers on Dr. McKee who accompaned (sic) the constable to a justice's court. Bond in the sum of $1,500, with Joseph N. McKee and Charles McKee sureties, was given and the trial was to have taken place today. The defense was to have been represented by Attorney C.W. Terry and the prosecution by State's' Attorney R. J. Brown and Attorney E. B. Glass. The charges preferred against Dr. McKee worried him to a great extent as he realized in them a disgrace to himself and family and a sacrifice to his personal reputation and professional practice, both of which stood high. The news of the sensation soon spread over Edwardsville and the intimate friends of the Doctor discussed the matter with him. To a friend who called at his office on the eve of the tragedy, Dr. McKee said: "It is an awful charge, and I am innocent. They can't prove anything of the kind. It's attempt at blackmail." The visitor observed that the Doctor was much excited and worried, and as he was taking his leave, Charles McKee, the brother, entered and appeared to be very much in the same mood. Dr. McKee stated that he was to make a professional call at Worden that evening and must be off. The visitor also heard Charles McKee say that he and the Doctor had some very important business which no one must know anything about, and excused himself remarking that they would talk it over on the way to the train. Dr. McKee left Edwardsville for Worden at 5:30 p. m. At the latter place he appeared in a jovial, frame of mind and gave not the slightest intimation what was to follow. He returned to Edwardsville at 8:15 and arriving at the office he told his hired man he could retire and that he would attend to the closing up. After this the Doctor and his brother are supposed to have shut themselves in and made final preparations for the double suicide. At 10:30 Charles went out for a bottle of champaigne (sic), the purpose of which was to aid the poison in doing its work. After these arrangements the two repaired to the barn, locked themselves in and administered the deadly drug which took their lives. At an inquest held Wednesday morning by Deputy Coroner Hoskins, evidence in conformity with the facts as before stated was introduced. At the time of holding the inquest the letters above published had not been found, but they were discovered in the Doctor's desk and hurriedly sent forth and arrived after the verdict of the jury had been rendered. They were, however, read to the jury before it disbanded. The verdict of the jury was that the men came to their death through morphine poison, self-administered and with suicidal intent. The funeral took place Thursday morning at 10'clock from the deceased Doctor's residence to Oaklawn cemetery where interment was made.

Albert B. and Charles McKee, aged 41 and 42 years, respectively, were born on the McKee homestead several miles northwest of Troy and followed farming in their younger days. After taking a collegiate course of study, the former spent several years at teaching school, after which he took up the study of medicine. He was graduated from the Rush Medical College of Chicago in 1893, and after some experience and practice at various places, he located permanently at Edwardsville. He was married on June 1, 1899, to Miss Agnes L. Keown, a daughter of of (sic) Mr. and Mrs. L. C. Keown. Dr. McKee was a physician of recognized ability and widely known throughout the county. He was associated with a number of fraternal insurance orders and was medical examiner for some. He also had charge of the hospital at the county poor farm. His standing in the community in which he lived was in every way good. Charles McKee, the brother, was never married and lived with his mother and sister. He was a man of quiet manners and tastes, and of late years followed the avocation of a traveling salesman for a harvesting machine company and was to have left the following day to take up his work. His suicide can only be attributed to sympathy with his brother with whom he shared both joys and sorrows and was a life-long comrade. The family of the brothers are prostrated over the tragedy and their many friends are grieved over their deliberate action and the deplorable affair. Many of the Doctor's friends believe him innocent of the grave charge placed against him and that further developments may occur to further clear the incident. Among those attending the funeral of the McKee brothers at Edwardsville Thursday were: Mesdames Wm. Baird, E. S. Donoho, August Droll, Charles McKittrick and Enly Tilley.



Source:  Edwardsville Intelligencer, May 25, 1892/Submitted by Marjorie Adams (great-great granddaughter)

Barney McMichael, of Alhambra, was the subject of a special from Decatur, published in the St. Louis Globe Democrat, Sunday. Under the head "Led a Remarkable Life," appeared the following:

A remarkable character in this section is J. B. McMichael, a native of Scotland, who will be 98 in January. He has never taken a dose of medicine nor called on a physician for treatment. He is well preserved, and the other day walked twenty-six miles from Vandalia to Herrick. He settled in Madison county, Ill., in 1820, read law under Abraham Lincoln and graduated with Dick Yates. He was sheriff of Madison county twelve years and was postmaster sixteen years. He has seen every president from John Adams to Ben Harrison, served in the Black Hawk was under Lincoln, and with Jeff Davis, helped to organize the republican party, voted for Fillmore and went to the Philadelphia convention as a delegate. He was a personal friend of Lincoln's, saw him breathe his last, and was accidentally at the depot when Guiteau shot Garfield. He saw Mrs. Suratt hung, saw the ashes of the barn where Boston Corbett shot Booth, has seen fifty-four men hung and four women executed, but is not in favor of capital punishment. He saw Lovejoy murdered at Alton on November 9, 1837, and he himself came near having both legs shot off for being a black abolitionist. He carries bullet marks on his head and limbs. In his lifetime McMichael has lost a fortune, but now has a competency acquired in tree culture and fruit raising. Mr. McMichael was in Edwardsville this morning, and on being interrogated stated that he was born in 1815 and is hence 77 years old. He came to the county in 1827, was married here in 1846, was deputy sheriff three terms, from 1856 to 1862, and was treasurer two terms, from 1863 to 1867.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, January 10, 1900               Burglars Raid Mt. Lookout Place

The home of the Hon. Henry G. McPike was raided by burglars last night, but nothing of value was secured by them. Entrance was effected by way of a window on the back porch. The burglars used an axe to pry open the window. Their way through the house was strewn with burned matches and marked with muddy footprints. Nearly every room in the house was visited in the search for money, but none was secured by the burglars. They left the house by way of a door and carried the axe to the side gate where they left it hanging in a tree. Mr. McPike measured the footprints of the burglars in the mud at the window where they entered, and the measure was that of a small man and a medium sized man. Two months ago Mr. McPike's home was entered by burglars, and a fruitless search was made then by the intruders. The burglars were frightened away the first time, as there were indications of a hasty departure and a bundle of gloves, probably stolen, was found on the floor wrapped in a copy of the Auburn Citizen.


Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 29, 1901             Mt. Lookout Visited by Many Friends

Mt. Lookout, the home of Hon. H. G. McPike, is being visited by many of his friends these days during the time when the first of the prettiest and best flowers are in full bloom. Mr. McPike has a collection of flowers of all kinds, and especially of roses, that is not excelled by any in this part of the state, and Mt. Lookout is now a veritable mass of fragrant blooms. Preparations are going on for the strawberry meeting of the Horticultural society to be held next week or the week following, the date not having been set definitely as the meeting will be held when the strawberries are at their best. Mr. McPike says that his blooming plants will be in all their glory at that time, and visitors will have an opportunity of enjoying the beauties of the place. There are beds of roses aggregating 1,000 feet in length, all the prettiest and choicest varieties being included in the collection. Mt. Lookout is now a place of real interest and is one of the best attractions Alton people can show visitors.  


McPike Grape Wins World's Fair Silver Medal

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 18, 1905

Hon. H. G. McPike is today the happiest man in Alton. He received this morning a letter from the Superior Judges of Awards of the World's Fair, notifying him that his grape, the McPike, had been selected as the most deserving of the silver medal award of all the grapes on exhibition at the Louisiana Purchase Exposition. The letter was enclosed with a diploma certifying to the award. The diploma in itself is only a forerunner of the silver medal, which is the imperishable symbol of the perfection of the McPike grape, and which is being made in the United States mint at Philadelphia. The diploma in itself is a work of art and is worthy of being kept in the McPike family as a valuable heirloom for generations to come, inasmuch as Mr. McPike propagated the grape which won the first prize among its kind. The description of the medal which Mr. McPike is notified he will receive is given in the letter. In the composition of the observe of the medal are shown two figures, one of which, Columbia, is about to envelope the youthful maiden at her side, typifying the Louisiana Purchase, in the flag of the stars and stripes, thus receiving her into the sisterhood of states. The other figure is depicted in the act of divesting herself of the cloak of France, symbolized in the emblem of Napoleon, the busy bee, embroidered thereon. In the background is shown the rising sun, the dawn of a new era in the progress of the nation. The reverse of the medal shows an architectural tablet bearing an inscription giving the grade of the medal; below the tablet are two dolphins symbolizing our eastern and western boundaries, the whole surmounted by an American Eagle spreading wins from ocean to ocean.  Mr. McPike was greatly surprised to receive the notice and the diploma today. He had vainly tried to ascertain the result of the work of the jury on awards, but could learn nothing until now, nearly a year after the World's Fair closed.



McPIKE, MRS. HENRY GUEST            Needs Money in Germany - Have Been Cared for by American Ambassador in Berlin

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 9, 1914

A letter has been received from Mrs. H. G. McPike of Alton, who with her daughter has been in Berlin ever since the outbreak of the war. Mrs. McPike is intending to stay in Berlin, but up to the time she had written the letter her stay there would have been compulsory, as she has been without money. Though several lots of money have been sent to her, the Alton woman has not received any, and she has been living in hopes that it would arrive. A sufficient sum to relieve her needs for some time was sent in the care of the United States Government, but the difficulty in the way of getting any cablegrams there, and her inability to cash money orders, has prevented her getting any communication with this country. The letter was written prior to the arrival of the Tennessee with money for the Berlin Americans. Mrs. McPike is praising the treatment she has received from the Germans, and she has suffered for nothing, except that she needs some money to pay her debts and her letters of credit are no good in the present state of affairs. Mrs. McPike says nothing of wanting to come home from Berlin, and she evidently has no fear that the Russians will get into Berlin and make it desirable for her to leave.




Source: Skaneateles Democrat, New York, April 16, 1857

Mrs. Macready, the well-known dramatic reader, was seriously injured at Alton, Illinois a few days since by stepping into a hole on the levee in the night.




Source: New York, NY Harpers Weekly, July 17, 1858

The case of Mrs. Macready, the reader of Shakespeare, against the City of Alton, Ill., for injuries received in the Spring of 1857, by falling off a side-walk, for which she claimed $20,000 damages, was brought to a close on Wednesday. She obtained a verdict for $300.




Source: Oswego, New York Palladium, March 17, 1906

Fear that her home was burning caused Mrs. Frances Maguire of Alton, Ill., a deaf mute, to speak for the first time in her life yesterday afternoon. She ran down the street crying "fire" as if she had heard and said the word from childhood. When the fire department arrived, it found the fire was a bonfire outside the house and the smoke filled Mrs. Maguire's house and frightened her. She has not been able to speak since.




Source: Syracuse, New York Daily Standard, March 29, 1898

Alton Woman Looking for Brother and Sisters

Chief of Police Charles R. Wright has received the following letter:  Dear Sir - I ask for information concerning the whereabouts of my brother, Michael Howard, and sisters, Mary Callagan and Hannah Howard. My sister, Mary Callagan's husband's name was Connor Callagan. He was a farmer and died in Ireland. His widow and family came to this country 40 or 50 years ago and settled in Syracuse. My sister, Hannah Howard, married a man by the name of Maddigan. When last heard from they were in Canada. My brother, Michael Howard, kept a boarding home about three miles from Syracuse. He worked on a railroad. My mother and father died in Ireland. My brother and sisters came from County Clare, Ireland. I wish to learn particularly about Michael Howard, to find him if living, or to learn about his children if he is dead. Yours truly, Mrs. Helen Mahony, Monroe Street, Alton, Ill.




Source: The Daily Journal, Syracuse, New York, December 13, 1867

Joseph Marshall, a mulatto has been arrested on suspicion of being one of the parties who murdered the Pepy family near Alton, Illinois last Monday.




Source: The New York Times, July 13, 1908

Miss Lottie Mayer swam twenty-six miles, from Alton to St. Louis, yesterday in 5 hours and 18 minutes. Nine years ago, John C. Meyers, floating much of the way on his back, covered the distance in 7 hours. Miss Mayer did not stop once to rest, and her feat is declared to break the world's record. Miss Mayer and her party left Fluent dock at Alton in the launch Columbia, and in the presence of a throng of several hundred, she jumped into midstream, attired in black trunks, promptly at 2:20 p.m. From the first, Miss Mayer's stroke was strong and regular. She hugged the Illinois shore until she had passed the mouth of the Missouri River, to get the full benefit of the current; then she swung across to the channel along the Missouri shore. Practically throughout the remarkable trip, Miss Mayer swam overhand. Occasionally she shifted to the side stroke for variation. At no time did she float on her back.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 14, 1914

Judge Dunnegan today embodied in a naturalization decree this morning permission for Konstantenas Meholopolos to change his name, as well as his citizenship, and gave him full permission hereafter to make himself known as Gus Mehilos. When he came to America he shortened up his name a bit for convenience sake, as it took too much room on a sign, and as signs must be paid for according to the number of letters, the name was expensive.....




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, January 25, 1911

Mrs. E. B. Meriwether Tuesday lost her old driving horse she had used for a dozen years. The horse was about 24 years of age. Mrs. Meriwether bought the animal as a safe buggy horse for herself, and the horse never abused her confidence, although in years gone by the animal was a race horse of considerable note. His name was Dick Long, and he is said to have run a half mile in 50 seconds when he was young. Unfortunately for the career of the thoroughbred racer the animal got hurt in a railroad wreck and his leg was no good for running races in his future career. He was spirited always, but behaved as any thoroughbred horse ought to do who has a long line of registered ancestors, and has come reputation to keep untarnished. Mrs. Meriwether was so attached to the horse she would not consent to having the carcass hauled away to the river, skinned and buried there. She had a big grave dug in her back yard and had the horse interred there, lying at full length in the bottom of the grave. Some of the neighbors became a little anxious about it, but it was decided finally that any horse buried six feet in the ground would never rise to annoy anyone, and so old Dick Long was permitted to repose in the premises of his former owner. It was a case of a faithful old servant being given the benefit of love and affection in his death that he had received in his life during the time Mrs. Meriwether owned him.




Source: The Evening Journal, Albany, New York, May 1, 1847

The body of Mr. Peter Merrill, late Postmaster at Alton, Illinois, was found among some driftwood, about twenty yards from the bank of the Mississippi river. The deceased, who manifested strong symptoms of mental derangement about the first of this month, disappeared suddenly on the evening of the 2nd.




Source: The Alton Evening Telegraph, Wednesday, April 19, 1899

The marriage of Mr. William Miller to Miss Lillie Steizel, daughter of Mr. Charles Steizel, Sr., of North Alton, was solemnized at four o'clock Tuesday afternoon at the home of the bride. The wedding was a very quiet one and only a few friends of the contracting parties besides the relatives were present. The ceremony was performed by Rev. W. H. Bradley in the parlors of the Steizel home. A dainty wedding supper was served after the ceremony, and Mr. and Mrs. Miller left on a wedding trip to St. Louis and from there will go to Chicago. The groom of this happy marriage is the well known young carriage manufacturer. He has a large circle of friends who will extend congratulations. The bride is a charming young lady and much admired. Mr. and Mrs. Miller will be at home on Twelfth street at the residence of Mr. Daniel Miller.




Source: The Alton Evening Telegraph, Friday, June 16, 1899

One of the most brilliant society weddings of the year was that last evening, when Mr. and Mrs. A. K. Root gave in marriage their daughter, Miss Harriet H. Root, to Archibald C. Mills. The wedding is of more than ordinary interest because of the social prominence of the two young people, whose lives were united, also of the two families, both being among the best known in business and social circles in Alton and St. Louis. The wedding was elaborate in detail and very pretty in effect. The house decorations were elegant in every particular. The decorations were in white and green, in keeping with the college colors of the groom. The beautiful parlors were banked with palms, ferns and June lilies. The ceremony took place in the spacious parlors of the Root mansion at 6 o'clock. Rev. George R. Gebauer of the Unitarian church performed the ceremony. The bridal party consisting of Miss Edith Kimball, of Chicago, and Miss Louise Sader, of Chicago, and Miss Louise Sauer, of Chicago, who were the ribbon-maids, and Miss Alice Gray of Evanston, who was bridesmaid, the bride, Miss Harriet H. Root, and the groom with his best man, Ralph Root, descended the stairs, while Mrs. C. B. Rohland played the wedding march from Lohengrin. The party took its place in the parlors before the officiating minister and the marriage ceremony was said. The bride in this happy wedding is the youngest daughter of Mr. and Mrs. A. K. Root, and has a high social position. She was a student at Monticello and would have graduated next year. She is a young woman whose many good qualities and her happy disposition have endeared her to her circle of intimate friends and made her a great favorite. The groom is the son of Mr. and Mrs. A. E. Mills, of Upper Alton, and he also is prominent in society. He graduated from Dartmouth College several years ago and has been engaged in business with the firm of Mills and Averill in St. Louis since. The ceremony was witnessed by about forty-five invited guests, relatives and very intimate friends of the family. After the ceremony an elegant wedding supper was served. Mr. and Mrs. Archie Mills left last night for Chicago, and from there will go to Chelsea, Vt., Mr. A. E. Mills' summer home, where they will spend the summer months. They will return in September and will reside in Alton for a while. Among the guests from out of the city were Mr. and Mrs. Averill and sons, Alexander and Walter, of St. Louis; Mrs. J. Linabarger, Eureka Springs, Ark.; Miss Louise Sauer, Miss Alice Gray, Mr. Howard A. Gray, Miss Edith Kimball of Chicago; Mrs. Jones of Kansas City; Miss Hattie Eaton of Shipman, and Mrs. Haughton of St. Louis.




Source: The Hartford Republican (Kentucky), Friday, September 16, 1904

Joy at greeting his mother after a separation of seven years caused so great a shock to Emmanuel Minor, of Wichita, Kansas, at Alton, that he had hardly spoken ten words to her before he sank in a chair and expired before a physician could reach him. As a result of her son's sudden death, Mrs. Minor is overcome with grief, and tears are entertained that she will not withstand the shock. Seven years ago Minor left Alton and went to Kansas for his health, settling at Wichita. As he expected, he regained his strength and continued to remain there. For the past few years he has written his mother that he intended visiting her during the World's Fair and recently she has been counting the days until he should arrive. Minor reached Alton and at once hurried to his mother's house at the center of Ninth and Belle Streets. They greeted each other affectionately. The son appeared to be unusually excited, and when his mother offered him a chair, he sat down, apparently in a state of collapse. Mrs. Minor called a physician, but before he could reach the house the young man was dead. He was 22 years old.




Source: Alton Telegraph, July 2, 1842

Capt. Abel Moore has forty acres of the heaviest wheat we have ever seen in this country. It is full six feet high, and a sheaf bound with a single binder was weighed in our city last week, and weighed ninety-five pounds. It was raised on his farm, four miles from this city. Can any of our sister counties beat this?




Source: Oswego, New York Palladium, November 21, 1893

Charles W. Moore, of this city, an Alton fire man, died last night from typhoid fever. Moore was a young married man. His parents are of the Christian science faiths and they took charge of the patient and gave him Christian science treatment. The patient gradually grew worse but was given no medicine, and after he had become delirious he was taken out of bed by his Christian science friends, and walked about the room they endeavoring to convince him that he was not sick, but that he only thought he was. Moore's wife, who protested all along at the Christian science treatment, a week ago called in the police and drove the scientists from the house and summoned a doctor. The physician, however, was called too late, and death ended his sufferings last night.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, June 22, 1904

Maj. Franklin Moore of Upper Alton, the venerable veteran of the Civil War, today made complaint at the Police court that Constable Harry Streeper visited him at his home in Upper Alton last night, and drawing a revolver on him threatened to shoot him.  Maj. Moore, being nearly 79 and also blind, was unable to defend himself and he returned to his home. He had with him two witnesses who corroborated his story. The matter will be laid before State's Attorney Brown. Maj. Moore says Streeper drew his revolver and threatened to shoot the top of his head off.



MOORE, ISAAC (DOCTOR)/Source: Alton Telegraph, September 11, 1913

Dr. Isaac Moore, a well-known physician of Alton, was stricken with paralysis of his right side Tuesday at his home. Though in no condition to come downtown, the doctor is not of the kind that gives up easily and he refused to stay at home. He insisted so strongly on making his regular trip to his office that at last Mrs. Moore acquiesced in his determination and he came downtown yesterday morning. It was with the greatest difficulty that the paralyzed man could get to the street car and afterward get off the car and go to his office. Mrs. Moore attended him all the way, and had other assistance. Dr. Moore, in attempting to get up the stairs to his office on the second floor of a building on City Hall Square, fell and nearly collapsed. He was assisted to the office and there he was given attention by a doctor who had called to look after him. Dr. Moore's condition is very grave. He fully realizes what has happened to him, and he desired to continue about his usual activities, notwithstanding the fact that he was almost completely helpless and his exertions might cause a second stroke that would prove fatal. He is a son of the late Major Moore of Upper Alton, one of the sturdiest sons Alton ever sent forth to the adventures of battle, and Dr. Moore himself inherited the qualities of his father and is possessed of a grim determination not to yield to the paralysis, but to keep going until he is completely disabled, if such should be the consequences.



MOORE, TROY/Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 6, 1908                 Old Soldier Celebrates Ninetieth Anniversary

Troy Moore of Upper Alton today observed his ninetieth anniversary. He was born August 6, 1818 at Waterloo, Illinois. He has lived in Upper Alton since 1818. Captain Moore is perhaps the best preserved old man in Madison county. His hair is a beautiful brown with just a few gray hairs around his temples and the beginning of sidewhiskers on his cheek, beside his ears. His sight is keen and his hearing good for one of his years. His hands are so steady that he shaves himself twice a week, and his strength is so well preserved that he has been amusing himself and passing away his time by cutting the grass on the lawn, pushing a lawnmower that many a man of less years would hire someone else to push. His vision is so good that he still enjoys shooting at a target with a target rifle, and he can read good sized print without the aid of glasses. He uses glasses to assist him in reading the daily newspapers in which he is deeply interested. In the sunset of life he is making his home with his daughter, Mrs. Z. L. Miller in Upper Alton, passing his days happily and enjoying the society of his friends and neighbors who gathered today to congratulate him and help him felicitate on the turning of his ninetieth year. Captain Moore was the father of the street railway system in Alton. He drove the first omnibus between Alton and Upper Alton, and later when a horse railway was started he became connected with that, and he was one time assistant superintendent. His son, James Moore, is still collecting fares between Alton and Upper Alton after over fifty years of service, having been broken into the business by his father.  Captain Moore has been a member of the Methodist church since he was 14 years of age.  When asked to what he attributed his good health and longevity he smiled and said, "early piety" [reverence to God].  As an indication of his strength of character it may be said that when he was 15 years of age he began the use of tobacco and continued its use until four years ago, when he swore off after over seventy years of the use of the week.  Captain Moore enlisted in the army in 1864 as a private soldier in the 32nd Illinois. After the battle of Shiloh he was promoted to the rank of second lieutenant for gallantry. He fired the last gun in the battle of Shiloh. After the fall of Atlanta he resigned and came home, but stayed here only a few months, as he organized a company in the 152 Illinois volunteers and was elected Captain. He fought in eight regular battles, including the fall of Atlanta, and he was also at the siege of Vicksburg. Captain Moore's favorite reading is the Bible. He never loses a chance to vote, and has participated in every election since he became of age. He has always been a Republican since the party was formed. He has four children living:  Mrs. Z. L. Miller and James Moore of Upper Alton; Edward Moore of St. Louis; and Mrs. Alice Booge of Sioux City, Iowa. Judging from the appearance of Captain Moore, he may see many more birthdays. His only affliction is a hip that was partially disabled by an accidental fall which fractured the hip joint and made it difficult for him to get around for a long time.



MORGAN, HENRY (CAPTAIN) AND MRS./Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 28, 1920          Observe 64th Wedding Anniversary

Capt. and Mrs. Henry A. Morgan of Washington Avenue, Upper Alton, today observed the 64th anniversary of their marriage. They are the oldest married couple of the city. They were married 64 years ago in the McKinney place at the corner of Grove street and Central avenue. Capt. Morgan said that the house that stands there now was quite new when he and his bride were made husband and wife in it, sixty four years ago. The date of their marriage was April 15, and the 64th anniversary passed by last month, but because of the fact that their granddaughter, Mrs. Harry Terry, of Grafton, was ill and could not be with them, they gave no notice to their anniversary. Today Mrs. Terry came to Alton and spent the day with Capt. and Mrs. Morgan, and the observance of the wedding anniversary followed. Capt. Morgan is 93 years old, and his bride of sixty-four years ago is 84. They have been a spry old couple up to a few months ago, when Capt. Morgan fell in the house and the shock of the fall caused him to lose the use of his legs. He is obliged in consequence to sit in his chair all the time. Otherwise he is feeling fine, has a good appetite, and enjoys himself every day. Mrs. Morgan is very spry and attends to her housework herself. Both have maintained their faculties wonderfully, and neither of them has the least difficulty in hearing, but in face they hear better than many people much younger. It was a happy day for the old couple to look back over the long years of their married lives, and to think that they have survived so many years. Their friends congratulate them upon their 64th anniversary, and they wish that they may spend many more happy anniversaries as they did today.



MAJOR JAMES N. MORGAN, U. S. N. RETIRED/Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 7, 1909                  Notified Act of Congress Made Him Lieutenant Colonel

Major James N. Morgan, U. S. N., retired, of Alton, has received notice that a special act of Congress has raised him to the grade of a retired lieutenant colonel, which carries with it an increase of pay. As a retired army officer, he receives half the pay he would get if active. Maj. Morgan filled the position of lieutenant colonel when he was discharged from the Army, March 18, 1865. He was then in the 144th Illinois, of which Col. John Kuhn was commander. After his discharge from army at the close of the Civil war, he re-enlisted and was given the rank of a second lieutenant, from which rank he was promoted until he was a major at the time he was retired from the army on reaching the retiring age. It took him just 44 years and a few weeks to earn back in time of peace the rank he had earned while in active service in war time. The many friends of Maj. Morgan, now Lieutenant Colonel Morgan, will be gratified to know that he has received the recognition to which he is entitled. The increase in pay is enough to make it interesting and worthwhile to receive the promotion in rank.



MOORE, ISAAC (DOCTOR)/Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 19, 1907

Dr. Isaac Moore is mourning the loss of a treasured keepsake which was with $35 in a pocket book he lost on an interurban car while going to St. Louis yesterday. After he missed the pocket book he searched the car but could not find it, and it is supposed some passenger or newsboy picked it up. Dr. Moore says that the finder may keep the money if he will only return the gold pocket piece in the pocket book. The pocket piece was presented to his father, the late Major Moore, during the Civil War. The piece was made of a $10 gold piece flattened out and suitably inscribed. It was given to his father in 1863 by Captain Hanks as a testimonial of esteem.



MORLEY, ANN - DELICATE SURGERY PERFORMED UPON/Source: Alton Weekly Courier, December 24, 1857

About four weeks since, Dr. George T. Allen was called to perform a surgical operation upon a little girl about seven years of age, named Ann Morley, the daughter of a widow lady residing in the eastern portion of our city, known as Hunterstown. At the age of ten months the child was fearfully burned by falling upon a red-hot stove. The left side of the face and neck were so affected that a very serious contraction of the integuments, fascia and muscles was the result, by which the head was drawn forward and sidewise, and the chin greatly depressed, so that the features were fearfully disfigured. The child was placed  under the full influence of chloroform, and the skin, fascia, and the contracted muscles of the throat were severed; and when the head was raised to a natural position, an orifice was found nearly three inches wide, and seven or eight inches long. A portion of the skin of the lower neck and left shoulder of sufficient size was detached, excepting a breadth of about one half inch at the base, and turned so as to cover the orifice, and was made fast by sutures and adhesive plaster. The little patient was entirely unconscious of the operation, and could hardly be persuaded that it had been performed. The wounds are now rapidly healing; the substituted skin has smoothly united with that at the edges of the orifice, and a new skin has formed over those portions of the neck and shoulder whence the substitute skin was removed. The child can be seen at the residence of her mother in the lower part of Hunterstown. This is the first operation of this nature that has come under our observation. The skillful manner of its execution reflects the highest credit upon the operator. Dr. Allen has performed many difficult surgical operations since he commenced practice in our city, and this masterly professional stroke is another satisfactory evidence of his title to his wide reputation as a surgeon.



MORRISON, WILLIAM - Leg is Cut Off While Trying to Save Others

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 10, 1916

William Morrison, switchman on the joint levee crew, was seriously injured when he fell from the top of a box car on the levee this morning, and his left leg was cut off and he suffered other injuries. Morrison lost his leg in an attempt to save others from being injured after a string of cars had broke away from the levee engine while the crew was making a delivery to the Standard-Tilton Milling Co. As the string of cars neared the Standard Milling Co., three of the cars broke loose from the remainder of the train. They were traveling at a fairly good rate of speed and Morrison happened to be on one of the three cars at the time. He realized at once that they would crash into a string of cars which were already on the Standard-Tilton track, and that there was a chance of some of the men working for the mill being injured. He ran forward to set the hand brake on the first car. While he was doing this, the three cars crashed into the string of cars in back of the mill with such a force that Morrison was thrown from the ______ car to the track directly ____  wheels of the car he had _______. He had no chance to get out and one truck passed over his left leg, cutting it off. Frank Yager, engineer; Thomas Lawless, fireman; John Bray, foreman; and Hy Loehr, switchman, were all on the train at the time of the accident. They rushed at once to the assistance of Morrison, and took him to a room nearby where he was given first aid. The ambulance and surgeons were called at once, and he was hurried to the St. Joseph's hospital. Through it all Morrison did not lose consciousness, and he was game. Not once did he give an outcry after the accident. At one time he complained that he was sick at his stomach, but outside of that he said nothing. Morrison was employed on the levee crew for a number of years and is well known in Alton. He has a wife and two children and the family have been living on Alby street. The left leg was taken off at the knee. At the St. Joseph's Hospital this afternoon it was stated that Morrison was improving fairly well. His right leg was badly bruised.




Source: Utica New York Daily Observer, November 11, 1869

About seven years ago, Henry Muller, a farmer of Madison county, Illinois, who lives only three miles from St. Louis, returned home, from the fields, when he was informed that his son, a, boy scarcely eight years, could not be found about the premises. Mr. Muller made diligent researches for the discovery of his lost boy, but they were in vain. His house being on the road he fancied that movers from the interior had stolen the boy and taken him away across the river, perhaps to a great distance from his home. Day before yesterday, more than seven years after the child was lost, he found him, now fifteen years old, in good health and in excellent spirits, at the Orphans' Home, on Eleventh street, between Monroe and Market streets, in this city, and was permitted by the lady patronesses of the institution to take him home, after having proved to their satisfaction that he was the boy's father. A former neighbor of Muller, a farmer by the name of A. B. Evans, who now lives six miles south of Columbia, had discovered him. He passed about three years ago by the Orphans' Home, when he saw amongst the children playing on the Street a boy whom he recognized at once as Muller's son. Evans had left his old place some time before the child was missing, and thought that Muller himself might have brought him to the asylum. Accordingly time passed on without his advising his friend. Last week, however, three years after he had first discovered little Henry, he met the father here in the city, where both farmers had come to sell their products. Evans desired to know everything that had happened since his removal from Madison county, and when Muller told him that his boy was stolen, Evans expressed his belief that he knew where the child was. They went together to the asylum. All the children were called into the parlor, and the father at once recognized the boy by his great resemblance to his mother, who had died. The boy, however, did not recognize his father, though he showed great satisfaction at finding that he was not an orphan. His father described the size and location of a mole on the boy's body's which, together with a comparison of the dates, and especially the unmistakable paternal sentiment of Muller, completely convinced the a ladies of his claims. The child, it appears, was brought to, the asylum by an old woman, who found him in the street, sometime in 1862, and was recorded in the books of the asylum as Henry Wisten. The father may feel exceedingly happy that his child fell in such good hands. For though the boy is not very advanced in literary studies, he received a simple but good moral education, and was regarded as one of the most honest, faithful and laborious boys in the asylum. It seems, however, that the father must have been exceedingly negligent at the commencement, in seeking after his lost child, and the institution had not done much to discover his parents. If the facts of such a child having been brought to the asylum had been published in the newspapers of the city, at the time, it is almost certain that the father would not have searched for his boy in vain for so many years.


MURPHY, JAMES F.               Was He A Romeo Or a Cad?    Sensational Court Case - Murphy Pleas Free Love

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 23, 1913

James F. Murphy was bound over to the grand jury yesterday afternoon under $100 bond by Justice of the Peace George Pfeiffer, on a charge of attempt to assault criminally his housekeeper, Miss Myrtle Scates. The case was full of sensations from the start to the finish, and any justice of the peace would have had trouble preserving order under the circumstances. As usual, in Murphy's lawsuits, he conducted his own defense. When he took the stand in his own behalf, he began telling of minor incidents of several months before the night in question, and E. C. Haagen objected. Pfeiffer sustained the objection and then Murphy rose to his feet, and in eloquent language demanded a fair and impartial trial, and that he be considered innocent until he was proven guilty. Pfeiffer threatened him with contempt of court, but Murphy only replied, "I will lay in jail until I rot before I would submit to such treatment." During the testimony Murphy rivaled a Daniel Webster making his famous "The murderer cannot keep his secret" speech. He told of the beautiful moonlight, a summer night, a still, calm air, the July flowers sending their fragrance through the windows, all nature breathing love. He spoke of his age of 40, and a beautiful maiden of 15. He told of glancing into her room and noting her bathed principally in moonlight. He went in and spoke his love for her. He did not deny it, he said, and gloried in his love for the girl - but here the rhapsody ended as the girl caused his arrest. Murphy gained his point and was allowed to proceed with his story. When Murphy kept telling of the beauty and lovable qualities of the girl in quest of, the justice again interfered and told Murphy he did not care to hear of his love affairs. Haagen then objected to this testimony being given, and the objection was sustained. Murphy said, "Thank you," and the judge told him to "Keep the change." When Murphy rose to make his final plea, Haagen asked the court to call him when Murphy finished and he would make his rebuttal. Then the assistant state's attorney left the courtroom, but returned before Murphy finished his talk. Murphy's three little children were with him through the trial and listened to his story in which he admitted that he was guilty in a way. Deputy Sheriff Peter Fitzgerald and Rev. S. D. McKenny and J. L. Lampert signed his bond.


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Source: Poughkeepsie, New York Daily Eagle

Bernard Nienhaus, of Alton Junction, is the twenty-sixth victim of the Wann catastrophe (oil explosion), his death occurring at noon yesterday. The death of three more is expected.




Source: The New York Times, February 8, 1890

Edmund Noonan, late Clerk of the City Court of Alton, Ill.; Frederick Valbracht, late Deputy Sheriff, and J. P. Thornton, late Deputy Clerk of the same court, were arrested in Alton last night by United States Deputy Marshal Hobart, having been indicted by the United States Grand Jury at Springfield, for issuing illegal naturalization papers.



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OWENS, FRANK        Skyscraper Pioneer Visits Old Home In Alton For Few Days - Built First Skyscraper in the World

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 30, 1913

Alton produced the man who first conceived the idea of a skyscraper and who erected the tallest building in the world thirty years ago. He is Frank Owens, a native of Alton, and now revisiting the scene of his nativity. He is a cousin of Alex. Weaver and Mrs. Ginter, and his wife is a cousin of the Levis brothers of Alton. Thirty years ago Mr. Owens erected a fourteen story building in Chicago. There was not such a building in the world at that time. So visionary and dangerous was the plan considered, Mr. Owens had to assume all responsibility for the safety of the building, either from winds or from settling in the sands that underlay Chicago. He was confident that his idea of building upward was a good one, and he took all responsibility. However, after he had the building tenanted, he lost all his money in other ventures and went broke. He has been living in San Francisco with his family, and he is on his way back to Chicago. He is sixty years of age, but he is still full of ideas, and he intends to launch a new idea in Chicago, where he made his first success and failure. Owens plans to start a chain of pure food stores in Chicago in the poor parts of the city, where poor people can buy food products. He says he may still be ahead of the times, but he is confident that even at 60 he can found a new enterprise that will make the poor rise up and call him blessed, as he plans to sell goods at low prices to the poor. Mr. Owens was in business in Alton until he was 30, then went to Chicago thirty years ago and started out in business on a big scale. He is enterprising, progressive, and full of ideas. He plans to move his family from California to Chicago, and will go from this city to Chicago in a few days. He wanted his presence in Alton kept secret.


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Police Officer James Pack Has Accident While Bathing
Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 23, 1907
Officer James P. Pack was rescued from drowning in his own house last evening while taking a bath in an ordinary wash tub. The tub is a big one, and because of its size it is usually chosen by Pack as the vessel to hold the water in which he takes semi-occasional baths. The size of the tub came near being Pack's undoing. He had about finished the bath when he started to sit down on the edge to finish up, and slipped in such a way that he plunged forward headfirst and his head just slipped down inside the tub, and the force of the fall carried his head to the bottom of the tub. It was an awkward predicament for him to be in, and he might have drowned, but his efforts to release himself from the trap into which he had fallen, with his feet held on one side of the tub and his head against the other inside wall of it, and his body doubled up as near like a jackknife as his corpulency would permit, turned the whole tub full of water over on the floor. Pack was stuck, however, and he continued to struggle until members of his family came and succeeded in pulling the bathtub off the police officer and released him from his embarrassing predicament.


Source: Amenia, New York Harlem Valley Times, February 19, 1916

Back in 1859, James P. Pack, now seventy-three years old, of Alton, Ill., gave Miss Mary Smith, then seventeen years of age, two shirts to wash for him. Recently Pack announced publicly that he had squared the debt and exhibited a receipt for 20 cents plus interest for fifty-six years, totaling 76 cents. Only Mary Smith's signature read Mrs. Mary Pack. Pack, a former Alton policeman, an old soldier and champion fiddler, always contended that when he married the girls years ago who washed shirts, the debt was cancelled. But Mrs. Pack thought otherwise. She always maintained that she was entitled to the money because it was an obligation incurred before they began life on the single entry bookkeeping plan. While Mrs. Pack declares she has washed hundreds of her husband's shirts since, the work extended upon the two garments in her girlhood days remains most vividly in her memory. Therefore, Mrs. Pack has been trying for fifty-six years to collect the debt. But every time Mrs. Pack mentioned the shirts, Pack looked the other way and began to talk about the weather. Finally, however, Mrs. Pack's persistence won. She convinced her husband that a man's wife who is kind enough to wash his shirts before marriage is entitled to pay after the wedding bells have sounded. Incidentally, Alton has been planning a pay up week, when every Altonite is to settle up with his or her neighbors.



Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 11, 1916

Colonel James Patterson Pack, former policeman, politician, fiddler, warrior, and still very much alive, was 73 years old today and was receiving the congratulations of his many friends and acquaintances all over the city. He has no use at all for Doc Osler and his 60 years old theory, and is in fact a living illustration of the falsity of it himself. He is active and vigorous, eats well and sleeps better, and in no way shows his age. He fought during the war of the rebellion and is one of the very few men living today who made an entire Confederate regiment run. He served many years on the Alton police force, and has filled every office in the local Grand Army of the Republic Post, and some in the state organization. He could cover his noble and expansive breast with medals won in old fiddlers' contests, and he announces that he has not quit winning yet. He intends making a century run of it, and he has many friends in the city who hope he may.



PADDOCK, GAIUS                         

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 3, 1900

Gaius Paddock of St. Louis, formerly of Alton, will celebrate the Fourth of July at Paddock's Grove, this county. Paddock's Grove is the old homestead of the family, having been originally located in 1827 by the grandfather of the present Gaius Paddock, prior to 1827, on the Fourth of July of said year. The Fourth was grandly celebrated there. The present fourth will be opened with a fox chase. The hills along the creek are teaming with the animals, and some rare sport is anticipated. The hunt will begin between 3 and 4 o'clock. At daybreak the old banner that was carried in the first Harrison campaign in 1840, and is treasured among the relics with which the old Paddock place is filled, will be unfurled to the breeze and saluted. The day will be observed in patriotic manner, and there will be addresses by Mr. Paddock and others, and a display of fireworks in the evening.


Master of Old Historic Home Celebrates Birthday by Entertaining County Historical Society

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 21, 1923

On the event of his 87th birthday anniversary Saturday, Gaius Paddock was host to the members of the Madison County Historical Society, at his beautiful and historic old home in Fort Russell Township. Mr. Paddock entertained his guests in a summer pavilion, covered with wisteria vines and with the beautiful purple flowers just in their prime. The Paddock home has been there for over a hundred years. It is filled with old books and valuable heirlooms that tell of another day. Paddock pointed out to his guests an apple tree which his father planted one hundred years ago, and it had during all of the life time of Mr. Paddock, borne fruit, and is now starting into its second century. The guests came with basket lunches, and on a spacious lawn and among the blooming spirea ate their lunches and enjoyed the hospitable atmosphere of the old historic Paddock home. W. D. Armstrong, President of the society, presided, and first called upon the host, Gaius Paddock. Mr. Paddock, in a short but fitting talk, welcomed his guests to his home. He said,

"I count myself most happy for the pleasure it gives me to welcome you to this old homestead which has given shelter to many during the past century, and this occasion is rendered doubly enjoyable by the event which has brought us together, the laudable object of this historical society, that is endeavoring to record important events of the early state history and of this county of Madison, which was particularly prominent in the formation of the state, and led the way to make it one of the most important in this country. These men of Madison county, who were noted for their wisdom and vision of the future, were not blinded by existing conditions, prejudice and party passions, and who believed that a difference of opinion was not a difference of principal. I refer especially to Governor Cole and his associates, who kept alive, developed and put into practice the great fundamental principles of a government for the people, by the people, as taught and put into practice effectively by the immortal Abraham Lincoln, which resulted in fixing the destiny of this government for many generations to come, and which has given the great blessings to all man kind which the world has ever know."

Mr. Paddock then talked of the Paddock cemetery, where his ancestors are buried. The cemetery was in sight of the pavilion where the visitors were sitting. Mr. Paddock's grandfather and his father are buried in this little cemetery. Mr. Paddock said,

"We are now sitting in sight of these monuments beneath which rest the dust of these ancestors whose earthly lives are an inspiration to their descendants, these grandsons and granddaughters, who are here today to welcome you."

Mr. Paddock concluded by saying that here within sight were the dearest associations of his life, and ended with the words of the post:

"How dear to my heart, are the scenes of my childhood,

When fond recollection, presents them to view.

The orchard, the meadow, the deep tangled wildwood,

And every loved spot which my infancy knew."

With this, Mr. Paddock bid his guests welcome to this old historic home and thanked them for coming. President W. D. Armstrong told of the Illinois Centennial held in Alton and of the interest of Madison county in it. Mrs. C. H. Burton of Edwardsville, the historian of the Madison County Hospital Society, read a paper which told of the organization of the society in Edwardsville in October 1921. Dr. Trovillion of the State Hospital at Alton, told of old Fort Massac at Metropolis, Ill. Dr. Trovillion lived there as a boy and told an interesting story of what the fort was and the part it played in the settlement of the great northwest. A massacre by the Indians caused the fort to get it's name, Fort Massac. H. P. S. Smith, of Fort Russell, told of the fort at that point in Madison county, and told how his father saw the remaining timbers of the stockade when he was a boy. Mr. Smith said the Alton Telegraph had been in his home for almost the life of the paper, and that he lately found a copy of the Telegraph of 1865 telling the story of Lincoln's assassination. The house Mr. Smith lives in was built of brocks made by the Whyers brick yard at Fosterburg, and the sand, 176 loads of it, came from Paddock's creek. Mrs. Henry M. Needles of Granite City, President of the Women's Federated Clubs of this congressional district, made a most interesting talk of the early history of this and St. Clair county, and told of a massacre in which only a little red haired girl was saved, because the Indians would not kill a person with red hair. The child, taken away by the Indians, lived with them for three years when French hunters took her away from the Indians to Quebec, and she was later returned to Virginia to her relatives, six years after her capture by the Indians. Senator Giberson talked on Lovejoy, Hon. N. G. Flagg talked on legislation affecting historical matters, Rev. S. D. McKenney talked on Alton and it's splendid democratic spirit, J. D. McAdams talked on Monks mound and why we should keep the mounds. W. T. Norton talked on "The Old Home We Are Visiting," telling of the Paddock home and reciting that besides Mr. Paddock's ancestors, other noted men, among them Willard Flagg and his wife, the parents of Hon. N. G. Flagg, are buried in the little cemetery that is in the Paddock yard. Gilson Brown told of the establishment of the First Methodist church in this county in Upper Alton in 1818. The visitors then walked back into the Paddock pasture and viewed "the deep tangled wildwood" which is still so dear to the heart of the master of the old Paddock farm. It was agreed at the meeting yesterday that a movement shall be attempted to get the State Superintendent of Instruction to have county history be a part of the school curriculum one month of the year in the State schools, each vicinity to study its own county history. Miss Lanterman reported that a room has been set apart for the use of the Madison County Historical Society in the County Court House and that the Probate Judge has been made custodian of properties put there. Many rare old books and other valuable records are in homes where they are liable to destruction and which the owners want the county to own.


PADDOCK, GAIUS           Nears His Hundredth Birthday

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, January 15, 1936

Nearly as old as the Telegraph, Madison county's oldest resident is Gaius Paddock of the Moro neighborhood. Next May he will join the Telegraph in the ranks of centenarians. To no one now living can this Centennial of the Telegraph be of greater interest and of greater significance than to Gaius Paddock, since his life is approximately co-incident with the life of the newspaper. He is looking forward to next May 13, when he will celebrate his own centennial. Born in 1836, already he has seen one hundred Christmas seasons and one hundred Fourth's of July. He was born on Market street, between Sixth and Seventh streets in a two-story brick house on the site of the present American Hotel in St. Louis. His father was Orville Paddock, son of Gaius Paddock, a Revolutionary soldier. The latter had migrated West from Vermont about 1818, first to St. Charles, thence to St. Louis (then a town of some 3,000 population), and thence about 1820 to the present Paddock homestead three miles east of Moro, Ill., where he died in 1831. The Orville Paddock family moved to Springfield, Ill. in 1840, and it was in the latter town that Gaius Paddock spent his boyhood, attending school in a small frame schoolhouse in the outskirts of the then small town. When 10 or 12 years of age he began to clerk in a store, and was there privileged often to see the gaunt form of Abraham Lincoln, in the store and on the streets. He has a vivid recollection of witnessing the Mississippi flood of 1844, while on a visit to relatives in St. Louis, when the stagecoach was the deluxe method of travel, and railroads merely an extravagant dream. Upon reaching early manhood, Mr. Paddock moved with his father to Alton, and for many years clerked in the hardware store of Topping Bros. on West Broadway. While still residing in Alton, in the present H. K. Johnston house on East Fourth street, he established himself in the wholesale hardware business in St. Louis, the firm being the Paddock-Hawley Hardware Co. on North Main street, which business continued until 1905. He had, meantime, in the 1880s, moved his home to St. Louis, remaining there until his retirement, in 1905, to his grandfather's homestead "Paddock-Wood" near Moro. There he spends the summer months, returning each winter to an apartment in St. Louis. In the Alton City Directory of 1858, among the then officers of Piasa Lodge No. 27, A. F. and A. M., is the name of Gaius Paddock as secretary - 78 years ago. He could write an interesting and informative history of the Alton community of pre-Civil War days, for his acquaintance was wide and his memory throughout all these decades has been remarkable. Always a man of public spirit, Mr. Paddock has been deeply interested - and is so still, in his one hundredth year - in public affairs, is a deep reader, and keeps informed on the questions of the day. He enjoys social life and his contacts with old friends, and is an ideal example of the gentleman of the old school. He can look back in retrospect on the past century. Born in the ox-cart days, he has lived to see the railroad, the automobile, the airplane; has lived to see the invention of the telegraph, the telephone and the radio! Born when Andrew Jackson was president, he has lived under no less than 25 presidents! And when next May 13 comes, it is the earnest hope of the Telegraph that Mr. Paddock will have a happy one-hundredth birthday.



PADDOCK, WARREN                               Near Tragedy at Foot of Ridge Street

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, June 14, 1905

Warren Paddock had a narrow escape from a horrible death Tuesday evening as the result of the caving in of the bank formed at the foot of Ridge street, where all the garbage and trash hauled by garbage haulers and others is dumped under the supervision of a city officer. The place is the city dumping ground, and it is customary for people owning teams and wagons to haul trash to that point. Tuesday evening, Paddock, who works at the Dick grocery on Fifth and Ridge streets, was trying to back a wagon to the edge of the embankment so he could dump a load of trash over the bank, when the crown of the embankment caved in. It had been weakened by the water in the river rising, and when the bank gave away the horse, wagon and driver were precipitated into the filthy pool of garbage and water. The water was about up to Paddock's shoulders. When the wagon went over the embankment, it turned on its side, and Paddock was thrown out, but fell with his foot caught between the wagon bed and wagon wheel. He could not extricate himself immediately, and was completely immersed in a pool of slop and rubbish. He held his breath and struggled successfully to liberate his foot. Then he swam ashore and tried to free the horse, which was floundering in the mass of slop and debris, and would have been drowned if it had not been for Paddock's efforts to release him from the wagon. Paddock cut the harness, and the horse got up. The animal was badly cut on the hind legs by contact with the rough edges of tin cans, wires and other metallic substances that entered into the makeup of the bank of refuse. Paddock says he did not swallow any of the water, as he managed to hold his breath while he struggled to free himself from the wagon. His clothing was covered with filth however. Some men who were near by, seeing the accident, ran to Paddock's assistance and managed to get the horse and wagon out of the pool.




Active Career of the Head of the Indianapolis Ticket

Source: Evening Herald, Syracuse, New York 1896
John McAuley Palmer is a native of Kentucky. Ho was born In Scott county on September 18, 1817. When he was 14 years old the family moved to Madison County, Illinois. He entered Alton (now Shurtleff) college in 1835, but owing to lack of funds, was never graduated. Afterward he taught school to support himself, and in 1839 was admitted to the bar. He was elected Probate Judge of Macoupin county in 1843 and re-elected in 1848. He went to the State Senate in 1852 and again in 1854. He was a delegate to the first Republican State convention in Illinois in 1856 and presided over it. The same year he was a delegate to the convention in Philadelphia, which nominated John C. Fremont for President. In 1860 he was one of the electors-at-large on the Lincoln ticket, and the following year attended the peace conference at Washington. He was elected Colonel of the Fourteenth regiment of Illinois infantry May 9th, 1861, and in the following November was made Brigadier General of Volunteers. He led a division in Pope's operations against New Madrid and Island No. 10 in March and April, 1862, and later took part in the operations against Corinth. He took part in the battle of Murfreesboro in December 1862, after which he was promoted to be Major General of Volunteers. At Chickamauga, Palma commanded a division, and in October, 1863, he was assigned to the command of the Fourteenth Army corps. He distinguished himself at Lookout Mountain and Missionary Ridge. General Palmer was elected Governor of Illinois as a Republican in 1868. Afterward, not being in harmony with his party on the issue of protection, he left it. As a Democrat, he was defeated for Governor in 1888. Two years later he was elected United States Senator by a Democratic Legislature. Of silver, Senator Palmer has said: "I am in favor of the free coinage of silver when, and only when, it is of the same value with gold." He opposed the Bland bill; he fought mightily for the repeal of the silver purchasing clause of the Sherman law. During the strike at Homestead, Senator Palmer strongly defended the rights of the workmen. As far back as 1888, in accepting the nomination for Governor of Illinois, he made a speech that was everywhere quoted. In it, he denounced the practice of employing private detectives, armed agents to suppress strikes. After a half century of politics, Senator Palmer is a poor man. His first wife died in 1886. In 1888 Senator Palmer married Mrs. Hannah L. Kimball of Springfield. She is a cultured, refined and helpful woman, for whose opinions the Senator has the deepest respect. She is much younger than her husband. He has a modest homestead at Springfield and owns a farm at Carlinville. In Washington, his life is of the simplest. His oldest son, John Mayo Palmer, is his law partner.



Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 15, 1902

Officer Green Parker is 47 years of age today. His brother, Wilse, is 44 years old today and Officer Parker in speaking of the 15th day of May said: "It is an unfortunate day for me. My mother died on May 15. I lost my first wife on May 15, and my oldest sister died on May 15. And to add the cap sheaf to this stack of woe, I have to take my daughter to the Anna Insane Asylum May 15, 1902. It is the saddest day of my life." Officer Parker's daughter is about 24 years of age and her mental trouble was caused by long continued illness. She was taken to the asylum today by her father, for whom, in his affliction, the greatest sympathy is felt by the citizens generally, and his numerous friends.



PFEIFFENBERGER, JOHN MATHER (DOCTOR)   - Finds Fossil Tusk When Excavating for New Home

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, June 27, 1917

Dr. J. M. Pfeiffenberger brought to the Telegraph office a fossil tusk which was found by workmen in making excavation at his new home at the end of Bluff street, where stone retaining walls are being built. In digging down a few days ago, a nodule was found, and on being broken open it disclosed some teeth of an animal. Today the tusk was found close to where the nodule had been picked up. Dr. Pfeiffenberger will go clear to solid rock for the foundation of his series of walls that will rise terrace-like to the level of the property. He recently bought the house from the Watson estate.


[Dr. Pfeiffenberger was the son of architect Lucas Pfeiffenberger, and was a skilled surgeon. His home was located at 456 Bluff Street in Alton.]



PIERCE, JOSEPH - Young Man Squeezed in Hot Mold - In Horrible Plight

Source: Alton Telegraph, March 6, 1913

Joseph Pierce, 1124 Staunton street, is at St. Joseph's hospital suffering from a horrible burn on his left arm which may cause the loss of the arm. He is 19 years of age. The accident occurred at 3:45 a.m. Tuesday, and is one of the most horrible that has happened in Alton. Held with his arm tight in a red hot vise-like arrangement on one of the automatic glassblowing machines, the young man could not be liberated for some time owing to the fact that his fellow workers had stopped the revolutions of the machine that held him. The part that caught his arm was the blank molds and the bottle molds, which come together after the blank mold has sucked up the molten glass and has passed from over the trough of glass, and has blown the blank. A knife that cuts smooth the end of the molten glass string that will drag after the blank mold, needed to be replaced and with the machine still in operation, Pierce was making the change. In some way that has not been explained, Pierce does not know exactly how his arm became caught between the blank mold and the bottle mold. These molds must be kept red hot to make the bottles smooth, and it was while held in this heated vise the young man was maimed. His fellow workers stopped the machine without thinking that Pierce's only way of escape was to allow the machine to turn around to the point where the upper and lower molds part company. They started the machine up again, after some delay, and Pierce, who had to step backward as the machine turned, had to walk half way around with the machine before he could effect his release from the hot molds. He was rushed to the hospital and there it was found that his arm might have to be amputated. The bone was not crushed, but the flesh was burned completely off. The statement was made today that while it is customary to make the changes of knives while the machine is in operation, the change is effected in a manner different from that employed by Pierce when the accident occurred. E. B. Pierce, the father of Joseph Pierce, said today that he has hope that his boy's left arm may be saved. The boy's arm was burned almost to a crisp by being caught in a red hot mold of an automatic glassblowing machine, yesterday morning. The attending surgeon is not sure that it will be possible to save the arm, but every effort to do so is being made.


Alton Telegraph, March 13, 1913

Three surgeons operated upon Joseph Pierce last night and amputated the left arm, which was burned and crushed in the red hot molds of an automatic glassblowing machine last week. The young man has been in the hospital ever since the accident, suffering intense pain. Hemorrhages from the charred ends of the arteries and veins in the arm caused loss of so much blood that it became apparent that an operation to remove the arm about six inches below the shoulder would be necessary.




Source: Alton Telegraph, December 23, 1864

We have understood that it had been intended by our esteemed friend, W. G. Pinckard, Esq., to have celebrated the fiftieth anniversary of his wedding day, yesterday, but owing to his late sudden and severe illness, it did not take place. Mr. Pinckard was married on the 15th of December, 1814, in Ohio, and came to Alton in 1818, and consequently has been a resident of Alton for the past forty-six years, and is now the oldest citizen in the place. He is 71 years of age, and his worthy consort and companion is aged 68. They have had 14 children - of whom only three sons and three daughters are now living. Mr. P. has been remarkably healthy and robust all his life, and up to a few days since was as active and energetic as a man of thirty years. He was then taken down with a spell of sickness, but we are happy to learn that he is fast recovering and will probably be able to be out again in a few days. His lady has always - since we have known her - which has been nearly thirty years - been feeble and afflicted, but still she is yet exceedingly active both in body and mind. We have said this much of this worthy pair, as there are not many couples in the west who have arrived at the fiftieth anniversary of their marriage day.



POWLESS, ALVIN                Believed Dead, Returns

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 2, 1917

Upper Alton relatives of Alvin Powless are just recovering from a shock they received one day last week, when he walked in and informed them that he is not dead as they had believed him to be for many years. So great was the shock that members of the family said nothing about the return of the lost member of the family until they fully realized that the man who came home is really the Alvin Powless who went away from Upper Alton 24 years ago to join the army, going to the Philippine Islands. Saturday, Mr. Powless called on a number of his friends who still live here and with whom he was acquainted before going away. The young man is the son of Lewis Powless, a well known old resident of Upper Alton. He is a brother of Francis Powless and Mrs. Lewis Megowen. Twenty-four years ago he joined the army and went to the Philippines, and after writing a few letters home he got out of the habit and quit. So long a time went by without hearing from him, that the family took it for granted he had died or been killed. Years went by, his mother died, but the young man was never heard from. He says he got out of the habit of writing and just quit. He was in Alaska three years and has been in many different parts of the world.




Source: The New York Times, April 5, 1918

Robert P. Prager, a German born Socialist, was dragged from the basement of the Collinsville, Ill., City Hall, twelve miles from St. Louis, tonight by leaders of a mob of from three to four hundred men, marched barefooted to a point one-half mile outside of the Collinsville limits and lynched. He was accused of having made disloyal remarks to Maryville, Ill. miners. His capture by the mob and lynching came after he had been hidden by the Collinsville police among a lot of tiling in the basement of the City Hall while Mayor Siegel made a speech to the mob from the steps of the City Hall, pleading with his hearers to give the prisoner the right of trial. The police previously had rushed the job and captured Prager while he was being marched through the main street of the city with an American flag tied about him. Twice before the mob wreaked its vengeance on the man it appeared that he would have escaped from it - once when he fled from Maryville to Collinsville, a distance of four miles, and again when the police, after hiding their prisoner, told the job he had been spirited out of the city. But the mob leaders each time took up the search for their victim, and stayed with it until they found him. The lynching took place on the old National Road, leading toward St. Louis. While police were rushing toward the scene in an automobile from East St. Louis, Prager, who was a baker and miner, 32 years old, was strung up to a tree. The lynching took place about 12:30 o'clock Friday morning. The body was found a few minutes later and the Coroner of Edwardsville, Madison County, notified. The trouble started at Maryville. Prager was employed there in the Bruno Bakery. Recently he made application to join the Miners' Union, and sought work in the coal mines. He said he had worked as a miner in Germany. While his application for membership in the union was pending, Prager is said to have harrangued some of the miners on socialism. In the course of his remarks he made statements they interpreted as disloyal and pro-German. When a recent wave of patriotism swept over many Illinois towns the miners and others at Maryville organized a committee to deal with Prager. The committee was to have taken him in custody yesterday afternoon. Prager heard of it, and fled to Maryville. The committee followed and searched for him. He was found in a house here in which he formerly resided, and dragged into the street. His shoes were stripped off, and members of the mob began pulling off his clothes when some one produced an American flag. It was wrapped about him and tied. With the prisoner bareheaded and stumbling every few steps, a parade was started up the main street of the city. It had proceeded several blocks when a policeman led a squad of other officers in a dash into the crowd. They captured the prisoner. He was hurried to the police station, members of the mob following. Later he was retaken by the mob.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 23, 1901

Among the visitors today at the carnival was Jacob Preuitt of Fosterburg. He was born January 1, 1816, just east of Milton - the predecessor of Alton. He has lived all these years, now nearly 88, in Madison county and in an adjoining township, Foster, to Alton. He was born six months after the Wood river massacre, June 1814 - where the Moore family lost their lives. Jacob Preuitt saw the first house that was built in Alton, near what is now the corner of Second and Piasa streets. He has seen the town grow to its present proportions and says when he was a boy there was not a house between Alton and Chicago. He carried wheat to the little mill at the ill-fated town of Milton, whose cemetery is now all that is left of that ill-fated village, whose inhabitants died in an epidemic of fever prior to Alton's birth. Mr. Preuitt is in good health and quite active. The Telegraph wishes him many years of life with a large measure of strength and health. It is probably that Mr. Preuitt is Madison County's oldest native inhabitant.




Source: The New York Times, July 21, 1852

While Harvey Pritchett, son of James Pritchett, living in Looking-Glass Prairie, Madison County, Illinois, was engaged in cutting wheat with a reaping machine, his horses took fright and started to run. Springing from his seat to stop them, he fell in front of the reaper, which caught him and dragged him along some distance, severing one of his thighs almost entirely from his body, and otherwise wounding him so severely that he died in about six hours after the accident occurred.



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Source: Alton Telegraph, September 4, 1913

John Rain, former North [Alton] Side business man, was dangerously wounded by Bert Morrison, a Fieldon bartender, after Rain had first shot Morrison with a rifle in the abdomen. Morrison shot Rain with two barrels of a shot gun, the shot lodging in Rain's left shoulder as Rain had turned to run away after he had wounded Morrison. The double shooting occurred Tuesday afternoon at the mouth of Otter Creek on the Illinois River. Rain was sought in Alton on a warrant for committing an assault upon Mrs. John Shelton at Hop Hollow last Saturday night. At the same time, Chris Rain assaulted Mr. Shelton. In making his escape, John Rain took a little motor boat he had been using and went up the Illinois River to resume "shelling," and Tuesday afternoon he met two Jersey County men, Bert Morrison, a Fieldon bartender, and Charles Powers of Jerseyville. The trio had been drinking and a quarrel followed during which Rain shot Morrison in the abdomen with a rifle, the ball making a wound that looked to be very dangerous. Immediately when he was shot, Morrison, so the earliest story went, seized a double-barreled shotgun and he fire as Rain turned to run, and the shot lodged in Rain's left shoulder, making a very ugly wound. Surgical help was procured at once and Morrison was taken to his home at Fieldon. There was no place to keep John Rain except in the steamboat warehouse at the mouth of Otter Creek. He was given such surgical attention as was possible, and suffered intense pain. It was decided to bring him to Alton in a yacht, but as there was none nearer than Grafton, there was considerable delay in getting the wounded man to Alton. The long delay, it was believed, might result in blood poisoning setting in. The surgeon attending Rain estimated there were about 170 shot lodged in his shoulder, and the flesh was badly torn. Morrison, the man whom Rain shot, is 36 years of age and has a family at Fieldon. Rain arrived at Alton this morning and was taken to St. Joseph's Hospital. He was stronger than could have been expected, after the long suffering and lack of proper treatment, and while he might recover under ordinary circumstances, there was considerable doubt as to the outcome of his wounds. There seems to be some doubt as to how the shooting really occurred, as all the parties are silent. Mrs. Joseph Rain, mother of the wounded young man, went up the river to meet the boat conveying her son to Alton and took charge of him. Deputy Sheriff Peter Fitzgerald has two warrants for the arrest of John Rain, one of them charging him with the larceny of a motor boat belonging, it is claimed, to Charles Burgess, and the other charges him with assaulting Mrs. John Shelton last Saturday night. Sheriff Ross Chappell of Jerseyville was down today for the purpose of arresting John Rain and taking him to Jerseyville. Chappell said that he wants Rain on a charge of shooting Morrison, and he will maintain a guard at the hospital to see that the wounded man does not escape. The Madison County authorities are inclined to waive their charges against Rain in favor of the Jersey County authorities who are very desirous of getting hold of Rain to prosecute him. Chappell does not believe that Rain was shot by Morrison, as he says the range was so close that if Morrison had fired the gun the shot would have bored a hole clear through Rain and he would probably have been instantly killed.


[NOTE: The Madison County court charged John Rain with assault against Mrs. Shelton. He plead guilty and paid a fine of $5. Jersey County at first charged Rain with assault with a deadly weapon with intent to do bodily harm, but the States Attorney reduced the charge. Rain paid a fine of $450. Both Rain and Morrison recovered from their injuries.]




Source: Albany, New York Evening Journal, September 30, 1893

Alton - Judge Irvin B. Randle, one of the oldest and most prominent citizens of this county, died yesterday, aged [unreadable]. He was a personal friend of Abraham Lincoln and was first to carry him the news of his nomination in 1861.




Source: Alton Telegraph, Thursday, May 18, 1893

The following letter from the assistant prosecuting attorney of Redkey, Indiana, the place where John F. Reagen, of this city, was shot by a woman of ill-repute, explains itself. It is addressed to the wounded man's brother in this city [Alton], and in justice to him and his friends here it is published:  "Redkey, Indiana., May 13, 1893. Charles Reagen, 1312 East Third St., Alton, Ill.:  Dear Sir, Your brother, John F. Reagen, was shot here at this place on the night of May 11th, by one Leota Curtis Vernon, a woman of bad repute. The woman is at present in jail waiting the action of the Grand Jury. I will say on behalf of your brother, from the best information I can get, that he is in no way to blame, and that he was cruelly shot by a heartless woman. Since he has been stopping at this place, he has in every way conducted himself as a gentleman, and has the respect of all who know him. The citizens are very indignant over the occurrence, and in justice to your brother and friends I felt it my duty to inform you of the fact that he is in no way considered responsible for his being shot. I hope that he may get along all right and I desire that you write me occasionally, informing me of his condition, and should his wound prove fatal, I should like very much to know, so that justice may be meted out to the party that shot him. Hoping to receive an early reply, I am very truly, Dell Dragoo, Deputy Prosecuting Attorney."   J. F. Reagen is lying at the Sisters' hospital in this city in a dangerous condition, and unless the physicians succeed in removing the bullet that is lodged in his head, there is but little hope of recovery. The bullet is lodged between the eyes and an operation will have to be performed before it can be extracted.




Source: Alton Telegraph, May 25, 1893

About five o'clock Tuesday evening two ruffians went to the home of Mrs. Mary Reid, on Common street, just beyond Washington school. They asked if her husband was home and when told that he was not, they enquired when he would get back from work. She told them that he would be back after six o'clock. One of the men then forced his way into the room and grappled with Mrs. Reid, locking the door after him. He choked her, but she loosened his hold and grabbed a hatchet nearby and turned on him. The brute did not attack her again. The second man forced the door in and Mrs. Reid, still holding the hatched, told them that she would kill the first one that touched her. She piled several chairs in front of her, all the time crying bitterly. The men after helping themselves to everything eatable in the house left. They mounted horses, which were left tied outside, and rode away. Mrs. Reid is a woman 45 years of age and has been sickly. She describes the one man as being tall with a black moustache and wearing a black Derby hat. She would recognize him should she see him again.



REUTER, GEORGE   -       Barn Burns 100 Feet From Home and No One is Roused From Their Sleep

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, October 5, 1917

One of the most remarkable fires that has occurred in Alton and vicinity was that which destroyed a barn and its contents on the place of George Reuter, north of Upper Alton. The first that Mr. Reuter knew of his loss was when he got up this morning to feed his stock. In his barn he had three horses and two mules. Their carcasses were lying in the ruins of the barn, and there was nothing but wreckage left of what had been a well stocked barn.  Mr. Reuter lost the three horses and two mules, about ten tons of timothy hay, and about four loads of cow peas. He had just started Thursday hauling his cow peas into the barn. Whether they were not sufficiently cured and started a fire is not known. In the barnyard were four cows and they would have suffered but for the fact the fire burned down the fence and the cattle escaped, without being singed. Mr. Reuter lost every horse and mule he owned, and also all his harness. The remarkable feature of the fire was that the Reuter home was 100 feet from the burning barn, and the family slept through the fire. But even more remarkable was the fact that all the neighbors did the same. Across the road is the home of Gottlieb Brandt; a quarter mile away is the home of the Frederick Brothers, and another quarter mile off is Sunnyside Farm, the home of Mrs. Voorhees. Not one of these families knew of the fire until morning. Mr. Reuter was wondering what time the fire occurred, and learned that people two miles away had seen an immense fire beginning between 10 and 11 o'clock, but had not gone near it. So far as known no one went near the fire, no one passed the place during the time it was in progress, and not a person heard the frantic screams of the horses and mules trapped in the burning building as they were slowly roasted to death. It was said today that Mr. Reuter had some insurance, but not near enough to cover his loss. The high prices of hay, cow peas, horses, mules and harness and other property burned in the burn makes the loss that much greater. Mr. Reuter lives in the old George Harrison place, near Union School house, north of Upper Alton.




Source: Syracuse, New York Daily Standard, 1897

B. C. Richardson of Alton, Ill., a graduate of Syracuse University and now a teacher in Alton high school, is spending a few days in town. He is an interesting talker because of being a close observer. Alton is an old town on the Mississippi, famous in its day as a shipping point for western Illinois. It was famous also as an abolition headquarters and the scene of Lovejoy's murder. Lovejoy is remembered by the older generation, but the youngsters will do well to look him up, for his work on the press and his inking off in the fight for the freedom of the slaves was important. Alton is a very old town for the West. Mr. Richardson knows an old riverboat captain who says that many a package of express matter carried on his boat has been directed "St. Louis - near Alton."




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 12, 1911

A Seattle paper, speaking of those who lead the shooting sport in the west and have built it to be a great sport among many men, has the following to say of F. C. Riehl, formerly of this city; the same being from the pen of Thomas D. Richter:  "The East undoubtedly did the West a great service when it sent out into the great northwest territory, Frank C. Riehl, one of the most capable, most energetic and progressive shooting men in the country. Since he has been in this territory, he has been one of the prime movers in the Pacific Indians of which he is the Herald-Custodian. He has been a big factor in putting shooting on a high plain in this section, and has been of material assistance in making the tournaments of the Pacific Indians what they are, model gatherings. For the fourth successive year Mr. Riehl is sending out his call for the annual tournament to be held at Eugene, Oregon."  The estimation in which the Pacific coast shooters seem to hold Mr. Riehl would indicate he has reached the top of the shooting heap in the far West. Mr. Riehl is a shot of national fame, and is as handy with his pen as with his aim, having much literary attainment.




Source: Warwick Dispatch, March 16, 1887, Warwick, Orange County, New York the four daughters of Ignatius Riggin, of Madison County, Illinois, not only make their own dresses and other clothing, but spin and weave the cloth of which are made from raw cotton and wool. Mr. Riggin is a rich man, rated worth $230,000, and his daughters are pretty, intelligent, and accomplished. They live luxuriously in a handsome house, expensively and tastefully furnished. Home-made clothing is the father's hobby, and the girls sensibly indulge him in it.


ROACH, MRS. JOHN             Adopts a Child

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 27, 1919

Mrs. John Roach of West Ninth street has completed the necessary details of formally adopting a six year old boy, whose name she has changed to from Hermann to Rand. Mrs. Roach, the mother of eleven children, longed to have a child again, her youngest child being 12 years of age. Another family had taken the boy from the orphanage and were unable to keep him. Mrs. Roach was asked by Rev. Fr. Tarrant if she would be willing to take the child, and she accepted the offer. She had once before temporarily taken a child, but was obliged to give it back. This time she has arranged for the permanent retention of the child as she has gone through the courts with adoption proceedings, and she even changed the given name of the child. She first took the child May 1, and now feels that the child is permanently established in her home.




Source: Syracuse, New York Daily Courier, 1870

In Alton, Ill. Monday night, William Robin, while burglariously entering the house of W. W. Martin, was shot and killed by the latter.



ROSE, THOMAS                   Kicked in the Face by Mule - Sustained Serious Injuries - Escaped Hospital and Wanders

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 26, 1914

Last week Thomas Rose, a farmhand working for Henry Balster, was kicked in the face by a mule and sustained injuries which have developed very seriously. He was brought to St. Joseph's hospital for treatment. Owing to the nature of the injuries to his jaw, it has been found very difficult to get good results and progress seems to have been very slow and discouraging. Last night, during the night, Rose managed to get away from the hospital during a temporary period of delirium, while it was believed he was sound asleep, and he wandered away to East Alton. He was found early this morning by Owen Henrichs, section foreman on the Big Four. Henrichs was riding along on his speeder when he saw the man wandering around and he caught him and induced the young man to accompany him to Bethalto where Balster took him to Dr. Moore. The young man will be returned to the hospital at Alton. The jaw was found by surgeons to be so splintered by the mule's kick that a very difficult piece of dental surgery is necessary, requiring special instruments to accomplish the results desired. It was necessary to send to St. Louis for some of the appliances needed to handle the fractures. Rose, it was said this morning, tore the bandages off his jaw before leaving the hospital, and he departed with no support for the fractured jaw, leaving him in a bad way, and there is little doubt that his bad condition will be aggravated by the escape from the hospital. Mr. Balster was in town today and said that Rose had torn loose the wires which had been put in his jaws to bold them together, and that the man was in a bad condition. He will not bring him back to Alton, he said.



ROSENBERGER, ANDREW                Nonagenarian Still Vigorous

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 20, 1911

Andrew Rosenberger of Staunton street, aged 92, is probably the most active old man in Alton. There are several nonagenarians in the city who are still hale and hearty, but most of them are quite content to sit back in their easy chairs and let the younger men take their places in the hustle and bustle of life. But no so Mr. Rosenberger. Although 92 years old, he is still about his work. Yesterday he was down town with a team, loading a wagon with fence posts on Belle street. He has dug the holes for a new fence, and will set the posts himself. He does not believe that it is the proper thing for a young-old man to let an old-young man take his place in the world, and with this theory he keeps right on day after day, and thinks that he keeps so much the younger by his thrifty habits. When he has his new fence finished, he can well be proud of it, for there are few 92 year old men who are in physical condition to dig post holes, haul the posts, and set the posts, all by themselves.



ROUSSOU, JOHN             At Last Claims His Bride Who Traveled 7,000 Miles From Alexandria, Africa

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 28, 1915

After several weeks of hardship, after traveling over 7,000 miles and believing many times that Cupid was not after all a good guide many times, Miss Smaragda Sirichas yesterday afternoon became the bride of John Roussou, the Piasa street restaurant and hotel man, and they are now settled in their new home in the hotel on Piasa street.  The marriage ceremony was performed yesterday afternoon by a Greek priest in St. Louis, this being necessary to insure Roussou coming into property that he has coming to him in Athens, his old home....John Venardos, an old friend of Roussou, acted as sponsor and best man at the wedding yesterday, and the bride, attired in a beautiful wedding gown with a long train, was attended by her father who came the entire 7,000 miles to deliver her safely to her lover, and will return at once to Alexandria....Roussou, a member of a well to do Greek family in Athens, left a number of years ago for America. He promised his sweetheart he would send for her and they have corresponded all this time. The girl's people moved to Alexandria, Africa. When Roussou decided he could not wait long, he wrote his sweetheart to come.....Their difficulties in getting into this country, and the delay of the bride's trunks are known to Altonians through the stories published in this paper....The father, a man of 60 years, now happy because he has made his daughter happy, will pack up and start a long journey, filled with many dangers as it is mostly on the water....The bride does not speak a word of English, but is studying hard to learn our language.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 26, 1917

Mrs. Henrietta Rundle and her helpless but otherwise healthy daughter, Miss Alice, were taken to St. Joseph's Hospital Saturday evening, following an accident in which the 85 year old mother, and caretaker of the daughter, fractured her left hip joint. The mother, it is said, has little chance for recovery. The care of the daughter has been one that has interested many people for a long time. Twelve years ago the daughter was brought to Alton on a cot, and she has not been out of bed in all those years, nor, it is said, had she been out of bed for some time prior to that. She had been postmistress at Hamburg, Calhoun County, and was studying to become a school teacher. For some reason she took to her bed. Some say it was because of spinal troubles. However, if she ever had spinal troubles there is no evidence of it now. Dr. George K. Worden, who examined the daughter at the hospital Saturday morning, pronounced her in every respect normal, physically and mentally, with the exception that she had, by so many years of inaction, so weakened her muscles she probably is unable to move about now. The mother, who is said to have a son in California, seemed to believe the daughter was an invalid and so treated her. She waited on the girl, though she was fast failing in strength due to her great age. The family lived at Sixth and George streets, and neighbors say that for years the mother, having no water in her home, would carry water for the house, and that she attended to all the household duties. She drew some assistance from the county and had some income of her own from her son. The two women were very unwilling to leave their home, but Dr. G. K. Worden, county physician, exercised his authority and ordered that they be moved, regardless of their wishes. Sunday morning when Dr. Worden interviewed the bedridden daughter, he made an examination to ascertain what was wrong with her, and found that there was nothing wrong except what could be remedied by the woman exercising her muscles and restoring their strength. He forced her to agree, very unwillingly on her part, that she wanted to get up and around and he also forced her to promise that she would help get herself in shape to wait on her mother instead of the mother waiting on her. The daughter will be taught to walk and it may be months before she is able, after so many years of staying in bed. The mother, it was learned, had gone to the grocery store of A. F. Cousley to get some supplies, and was on her way home when she fell in front of the residence of R. G. Webb, on Sixth street, a block from the store, and sustained the hip fracture. Her age is what makes her recovery doubtful.


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Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 30, 1908

"Willow Ben," strange as it may seem to the many Alton people who know him, has a name like any other person. His right name is Ben Sawyer. Ben was in Alton today and while here was queried by a Telegraph reporter who had curiosity to learn what Ben's surname is. Everybody knows him as Willow Ben because he lives in the willows, and nobody ever thought of asking him his last name. Willow Ben fitted him, and that was the name he had and the one he responded to when called. He had no difficulty in remembering his name, even though he had not used it in a long time. He is a specimen of perfect content. Alone, he lives down the river and makes a living by attending to the river beacons nearby to guide steamboat pilots. He catches and sells fish. With his pets, a dog, a cat, and a goat, he is perfectly happy. He comes to Alton to buy provisions occasionally, and meets his friends. His principal enjoyment is in killing and eating chicken hawks, as he considers them a great delicacy.




Source: Alton Daily Telegraph, January 12, 1884

Mr. S. T. Sawyer, of this city, who came to this county from Vermont in 1831, and is one of the oldest lawyers in the State, belongs to one of those stalwart New England families remarkable for longevity. Although Mr. Sawyer has reached the ripe age of 77, he does not consider himself an old man yet, judged by the age to which many members of his family have attained. His father was a soldier in the Revolutionary war, and died at the age of 90; his mother died at 88. Mr. Sawyer had a large number of brothers and sisters, several of whom still live at an advanced age; of his surviving sisters, one is 87, another 85, a third 74; of his brothers still living, one is 81, and the other, the youngest in the family, is 67. Another brother died at the age of 80, and a second at 60. His oldest brother, who had been a Captain in the War of 1812, settled in this county in 1816 and died, at a comparatively early age, in 1835. The husband of his oldest sister is a farmer in Vermont, and at the age of 89, is carrying on his business as actively as he did 50 years ago. Mrs. Sawyer's family is also remarkable for longevity, and could present almost as interesting a record as her husband's of members who have passed the age of three score years and ten.



SAXE, WILL J.                The Strange Case of Will J. Saxe

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, January 15, 1900

The disappearance of Will J. Saxe from his home in Alton and his office in St. Louis, has caused a deep sensation in both the social and business circles in which he moved. Because it was thought he might return, the fact of his absence was not noted in the Alton papers until now, when the case has become known to every person in the city and the sought-for man is still missing. In an interview yesterday, Mr. P. W. Coyle, Mr. Saxe's father-in-law, said: "So far as I can learn, the disappearance of Mr. Saxe is entirely shrouded in mystery. He has always been most dutiful in his relations with his wife and has always spent his leisure time at home. He never drank and his superiors say that he was attentive to his work. On Monday morning last, he left for St. Louis at the usual hour. Nothing in his demeanor or acts created any suspicion of any character as he was leaving. At 5 o'clock that night he left the office as usual. From that time on I have not been able to secure a single trace of his whereabouts. He handled none of the company's money, was in excellent standing with his superiors, had exhibited no despondency, and his married life had been singularly free from domestic differences. We all feel quite broken up over the matter, though we hope that each succeeding day will bring him back to his home."  Mr. Coyle has put forth every effort to find the missing man, but not a trace of him has been discovered since Mr. Saxe left his office. He has been in the employ of the Wabash for the past three years. A year ago last November he was married to Miss Gertrude Coyle, only daughter of Phillip W. Coyle, assistant general freight agent of the Wabash Railroad. Since that time Mr. and Mrs. Saxe have resided with the Coyle family.


Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, January 17, 1900

Will J Saxe is not dead as his wife and friends feared he might be, or at least he was still alive last Thursday. A friend of the family, a prominent railroad man of Chicago and formerly of St. Louis, has reported having met him on the streets of Chicago last Thursday. The gentleman was not aware of the strange disappearance of Mr. Saxe, and he spoke to him as an acquaintance. Saxe did not recognize the gentleman and passed on. Later when the friend of the family learned of the disappearance of Mr. Saxe, he informed the family of the meeting in Chicago. It is supposed the missing man is still in Chicago and is keeping his whereabouts a secret. It is still asserted by the family that there is no known reason for his strange desertion of his home, although every effort to explain the mystery has been made.




Source: The Daily Observer, Utica, New York, August 12, 1872

John Schemmerhorn of Alton, Illinois thought one of his cows was afflicted with the hollow horn last week. To satisfy himself, he caught the beast and held her by the tail while his wife rapped on the horn with a tack hammer. A moment later, a barnyard tableaux was seen, as Schemmerhorn soared over a ten-foot board fence, and his wife had an aperture in her Dolly Varden that a week's constant labor with a sewing machine will hardly repair.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 7, 1922

Chris Schutz, a 75 year old man who has been a well known character in Godfrey township for many years, has suffered the loss of all his worldly possessions - $44 - which he lost in a pocketbook. The old man had been staying, rent free, on the place of Mrs. Luella G. Paddock of Godfrey, and Mrs. Paddock has interested herself in helping the aged man recover his money. She said that he had been saving the money little by little to have something to keep him next winter. He is not able to do a great deal of work, but is willing to do all he can. It took a long time to save the $44, and it is as much a loss to Schultz as millions would be to some people frequent as it may be for losers of in the world. For this reason, ... money to find it, the hope is expressed that old man Schultz's money will be given back to him by whoever may have found it and does not know who owns it. For this reason the conspicuous publicity is being to the announcement because it appears to have more than ordinary merit in it. The lost money is everything the old man had.



SCHWALLENSTECKER, HERBERT ALFRED             Wants Name Shortened

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 14, 1918

War time efficiency can be applied even in names. Herbert Alfred Schwallenstecker has illustrated this by a petition which he has filed in the City Court asking that his name be shortened. Schwallenstecker, in the petition filed in the court, recites that there are sixteen letters in his name. He says that it is hard for people to spell or remember the name. It is also troublesome to write such a long name. He has asked the court that the name be changed to Stecker.



SCHWEGEL, NICHOLAS            Yager Park Man Kills Burglar

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 29, 1904

Nicholas Schwegel, who conducts a butcher shop and meat market in Yager Park, shot and killed a burglar just before midnight, Wednesday, in his shop. The burglar made a hard fight, although unarmed, and hurled various implements of the shop at the proprietor, who was standing outside the shop and was shooting in. Schwegel says he fired four times at the burglar, but only one ball took effect, lodging at the base of the neck at the end of the collarbone. A large blood vessel must have been cut, producing death in about ten minutes. The burglar ran a distance of about 150 feet, falling down several times, Schwegel pursuing him in his night clothes, and finally the wounded man fell dead as he encountered a barbed wire fence along the Big Four right-of-way. The coroner's inquest was held Thursday morning, conducted by Deputy Coroner W. H. Bauer. The jury found a verdict of justifiable homicide.....The burglar is believed to be an ex-convict, as he wore a suit of clothes which were probably given him on his discharge from prison. He had removed his shoes, and they were found outside the butcher shop. He was 5 feet 8 inches high, about 40 years of age, and on his face was a ten-day growth of beard. He had been seen around the city for several days prior to Wednesday night, and was seen Wednesday around the Schwegel place. In the pocket of the dead man was found a copy of a St. Louis paper containing a marked account of two highwaymen holding up and stabbing two St. Louis men in St. Louis last Sunday night. It is believed by Chief Maxwell that the dead man is one of the men mentioned in the newspaper. Schwegel thought that the burglar had an accomplice, as once he called to someone to shoot Schwegel, but no other person was seen.




Source: Alton Daily Telegraph, Tuesday, May 2, 1893

Mr. Charles Seibold, yesterday, found it necessary to have a delicate operation performed on one of his fine black hearse horses. The horse had become a "roarer" and it was found necessary to insert a tube in his throat. Dr. J. C. Booker yesterday inserted the silver tube and the operation proved very successful, as the horse uses his new wind pipe with perfect ease.



SEMPLE, GENERAL JAMES (founder of Sempletown, part of Alton now) (this was before the railroad was completed to Alton)

Source: Alton Telegraph, September 27, 1845

Gen. Semple made two trials of his steam car on the prairie near Springfield a few days since. We learn by a letter from a friend, as well as by information furnished by the engineer who constructed the machinery, that it me their most sanguine expectations. Gen. Semple expects to be able to make the trip from Alton to Springfield and back daily. Should he succeed in this, the advantage that will accrue from the invention, to both this city and Springfield, will be incalculable.




Source: Alton Telegraph, February 25, 1913

Elbert Shepherd went to East Alton yesterday to attend the meeting of the Liquor Dealer's Protective Association.


A marriage license was granted today to Elbert Sheppard and Mrs. Mabel Stierley [Sterling], both of Wood River. The groom is a saloon proprietor at Wood River, and the bride has been a school teacher there. The couple's engagement had become known, but they kept the time of the marriage secret and there has been considerable guessing among the couple's friends. The ceremony took place in Alton today.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 3, 1913

Mr. and Mrs. Elbert Shepherd will take charge of the telephone home tomorrow and will take charge of the Star telephone work.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, February 26, 1913

Elbert Shepherd, one of the popular young men of Wood River, in business with Henry Carstens, Jr., in Benbow City, was married last night at 7:30 at the home of the Rev. S. D. McKenny in Alton. They returned after the marriage and will reside in Wood River. Mrs. Sterling is a teacher in the Wood River school, having taught for several years and will remain at her position until the close of the term when she will resign. Both young people have many friends in Wood River. The engagement was announced for some time, but the exact date of the wedding was not known to their friends.


Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, February 27, 1913

Mr. and Mrs. Elbert Shepherd who were married Tuesday night were given a rousing charivari last night at their home by their friends, Mr. Shepherd had everything in readiness for the occasion, which he had been warned of in advance, and ordered the crowd to go to his saloon where several kegs of beer were opened and the crowd was given a treat. The noise of the charivari was stopped when the crowd were informed of their treat.




Source: Alton Daily Telegraph, October 5, 1893

Last evening at seven o'clock at the residence of Capt. J. A. Bruner on State street, Mr. William Harry Short, of this city [Alton], and Miss Julia Godfrey, were united in marriage. Rev. G. W. Smith of the Presbyterian church officiated. The attendants of the bride were Miss May Armstrong and Miss Lizzie Bland. The groom is a well known and popular mail carrier, and the bride is one of the society leaders of Godfrey and a granddaughter of Capt. Benjamin Godfrey. The happy bride and groom left on the late train for Chicago where they will spend their honeymoon. Among the attendants from abroad were Miss H. N. Haskell and Miss Armstrong, of Monticello Seminary; Miss Stella Hilliard of Brighton, Miss Florence Paillon of St. Louis, and Mr. Charles Short, of East St. Louis, beside a large number of Godfrey and Alton friends. The presents attesting the respect in which both bride and groom are held were both numerous and handsome. A large number of the friends of the young people gathered at the depot to bid them God-speed. They were showered with rice, and the traditional "old shoe" was attached to either end of a trunk belonging to them. There was much merriment and joyous congratulations all round.



SHUBERT, KATHERINE [widow of GEORGE]            House Falls Around Aged Woman and Blind Daughter

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 21, 1913

An old brick house in Moro, belonging to Mrs. Katherine Shubert, widow of George Shubert, collapsed yesterday evening about 5:30 o'clock under very unusual circumstances. Mrs. Shubert, who is about 93 years of age and unable to get around well, was partly covered by the rubbish, but fortunately was seated in a part of the room where the least bricks and plaster fell, and escaped with only a broken rib and some scalp wounds. The occurrence was a remarkable one. The house was two stories high, of brick, and consisted of a main part, 16x24, and an ____ adjoining. It had been a combination store and dwelling, with rooms upstairs which the Shuberts used as living apartments. The aged Mrs. Shubert lived there with her blind daughter, Miss Barbara Shubert, and Miss Barbara, though blind, did much of the house work. When the accident occurred the mother was seated upstairs in her room, and Miss Barbara was down stairs preparing supper. Without any warning whatever, and without any apparent cause but old age, the walls of the building collapsed. Three of the walls fell, some inward and some outward, down to the second floor, and there the wreckage stopped. The roof broke in half along the ridge and half slid on one side of the house and half slid on the other, dropping down into the yard. The aged Mrs. Shubert saw the walls go down, the roof part and drop away, and the aged lady thought the world was coming to an end. Neighbors heard the rending and crashing of the structure and ran to give aid. Miss Barbara had hurried up the stairway in the undamaged _ell of the house, and going out then on the flor of the wrecked portion she discovered the way obstructed with debris. She waited until nearby neighbors reached her and they released Mrs. Shubert. Soon afterward the four walls fell down, then the second floor fell in and the house was a complete wreck. The Shuberts are known as well-to-do people. Mr. Shubert died about nine years ago.



SIGLOCH, GOTTLIEB                  Former Altonian Hung By Mexican Bandits - Lives to Tell the Tale

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 14, 1913

Gottlieb Sigloch, a former resident of Alton, now back here on a visit, knows what it feels like to be hanged by the neck. He didn't succumb to the effects of the hanging, thanks to the fact that his would-be executioners forgot to tie his hands, or thought it wasn't necessary, and Sigloch managed to protect his windpipe from the rope until he was cut down by his two sons, Henry, aged 20, and August, aged 14. Sigloch was living on a fifty acre tract he bought at El Choto, in the province of San Luis Potosi, Mexico. He was happy enough until he began to have visits from these so-called rebels, who are really bandits masquerading in the guise of supporters of one side or the other in Mexico. Sigloch had about 35 Mexicans working for him, and one of these was a "patriot." He learned that Sigloch had sold something for $100, and decided that the cause needed the money. So he brought his gang when Sigloch's sons were away, and demanded all his money. Sigloch had worked too hard to give it up that easy, and he refused. The "patriots" then hung him up to the rafters of his house, passing the rope around his neck and while they were not particular that he should die, it really made no difference to them whether he died or not. They hung him up just as one would a ham or a side of bacon, or a quarter of beef, to get him out of their way. They were very careless about the fact that the man's windpipe is easily shut by pressure of a noose. Sigloch managed to hold above his neck of the rope with his hands, which were free, and thus he saved the pressure on his windpipe and his sons came in ten minutes later and cut him down. The patriots got only 35 cents. Mr. Sigloch then decided to accede to his son's wishes and come back to Alton. It was a long, hard trip, occupying six weeks, getting down to the coast and thence to this country, but they got back safely and are glad to be here. Mr. Sigloch will live in the North Side, boarding, and his two sons will stay in the country near Melville. They plan to go back to their place in Mexico as soon as troubles are over. The three tell of many outrages visited on Americans, and believe it is a poor place for an American to be unless Uncle Sam sends troops down there and restores order to the troubled country.



SINCLAIR, W. B.         Maniac Loose on the Sinclair Place

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, June 22, 1922

Without a stitch of clothing on him, and nothing to conceal any part of his anatomy except a red necktie for a belt and a handkerchief bound round his head, a patient form the Alton State Hospital today caused considerable loss to W. B. Sinclair, who lives on the Spinner place between the C. & A., and the Burlington railroads, east of Upper Alton. The insane man was having the time of his life, clad in his "birthday" clothes, but before he got through he decided to disguise himself in a pair of trousers belonging to Mr. Sinclair and a little shirt that was far too short for him. He was wearing this when captured. During his raid on the Sinclair place, which began about 10 a.m. today, the maniac killed 52 capons, fifty young chickens, punched about twenty holes with a pitch fork in the legs of a horse he tried to hitch to a wagon, took apart every section of two sets of harness and carried a great pile of articles, including empty sacks, a roll of tar paper, harness, horse blankets, to the railroad track where he piled them in a heap. Mrs. Sinclair happened to notice the naked man running about the place and she was terrified. She telephoned to the state hospital and about an hour later she said, the man was sent after and was taken back to the hospital. Mr. Sinclair told the Telegraph that the man got into an outbuilding where there was a large quantity of supplies for the farm stored, and he overthrew everything, pulling apart some things and tossing others in a heap. It would take him weeks, Mr. Sinclair said, to straighten up after the visit of the maniac at his place. The capons, which Mr. Sinclair says are missing, weighed about two pounds each. They had recently been caponized and were being kept in a pen so they would grow fast and fatten quickly. The little chickens were younger than the capons and were being kept penned up, ready to be turned into capons too. Mr. Sinclair planning to do the work in the next few days. The capons he said are worth about $2 each. Some of the dead ones were found in a sack which the insane man had with him, but the others are still missing and what he did with them the owner is unable to say. Mr. Sinclair thought that the pranks of the state hospital visitor were much like Halloween pranks by boys. The patient seemed to be having a bully good time of it. He seemed to be searching for something and was having a hard time to find what he wanted. This is the first instance in a long time of a patient at the hospital getting out on such a rampage. Speaking of the man's nakedness, Mr. Sinclair said that the fellow found an old pair of trousers in the shed he was rummaging, and put them on, and he also found a short shirt which came about eight inches from meeting the top of his trousers. Describing the injuries to his horse, Mr. Sinclair said that the patient found the horse in the lot, and undertook to hitch him to a wagon. The horse was not agreeable to the project of the maniac, and the crazy man seized a pitchfork and kept jabbing the horse until the animal was bleeding from fully twenty holes in his legs.



SLOCUM, ELMER              Altonian Arrives in Scotland to Introduce New Glass Blowing System

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, January 18, 1917

Elmer Slocum, formerly of this city, has arrived in Liverpool with the first of the American glass blowers. His brother, Warren, of Alton, received a postal card from him yesterday, which was mailed from England on January 2. Slocum made the trip with a party from Baltimore. He explained that the American glass blowers were taken to Scotland to introduce the American system of blowing bottles with the block and plate and the stem and clean iron. Under the twister system now used there, it is impossible to turn out over 40 dozen bottles per day. Under the American system the men make from 100 to 150 dozen per day. A number of other Altonians are on their way to Scotland now to take positions in the factories there.




Source: The Genoa Tribune, New York, April 30, 1920

Dryden Pastor Resigns.  After serving three years as pastor of the Presbyterian church of Dryden. Rev. Arnold Smith has presented his resignation. The Presbyterian church of Edwardsville, Illinois, which extended him a unanimous call has a membership of 375. The city to which he goes has a population approximating 8,000 and is the seat of Madison county. Illinois. Mr. Smith will be within twelve miles of the village church which his father, also a Presbyterian minister, supplied many years ago. He hopes to begin his work on his new field May 16.



Source: Alton Telegraph, September 6, 1877

Saturday evening, about 9 o'clock, as Dr. C. M. Smith was riding down Belle street in his buggy on his return home from making some professional calls, he met, near Clifford's grocery store, a buggy driven by Frank Charless of Godfrey, who was accompanied by two other young men. The horses driven by Carless were going quite rapidly, and Dr. Smith tried, in the intense darkness, to turn out of the way, but in vain; his buggy collided with the other, threw him out and inflicted such severe injuries that he was taken home in a semi-unconscious condition, in which state he still remains. Dr. Davis was called, and did all that was possible to relieve the sufferer. It is feared that internal injuries were received, but hopes are entertained of his ultimate recovery. Frank Charless was thrown out of his wagon and dragged some distance, but succeeded in stopping his team without receiving any serious hurt, but one of the men with him was badly bruised by the concussion. The third occupant escaped uninjured. Both buggies were badly broken. Dr. Smith's condition shows some improvement this afternoon, we are glad to state, and his friends are correspondingly encouraged.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 3, 1881/Submitted by Marsha Ensminger               1861 - 1881.   Of Years a Score
The twentieth anniversary of the marriage of Mr. and Mrs. Robert B. Smith was celebrated by a grand reception of their friends at their spacious homestead in Middletown Monday eve., where most elaborate and costly preparations had been made for the enjoyment and entertainment of the guests. The residence was ablaze with light, making a dazzling appearance from afar, and a brilliant locomotive headlight made the approaches as bright as day. At the appointed hour the guests began to arrive and soon the large parlars (sic), halls and corridors were thronged with the beauty and fashion of the city: belles and beaux, matrons and benedicts, neighbors and friends, all were there to offer congratulations on the auspicious anniversary. The residence is admirably adapted for a large party, the rooms being so arranged that they can be, practically, thrown into one large apartment. As the guests arrived the cordial greeting extended them by the hospitable host and hostess, gave happy augury of the pleasant hours to follow. Mr. Robt. B. Smith and Miss Helen P. Child were married Feb. 28, 1861, at the Unitarian church by the Rev. Mr. Bruce, an Episcopal minister. Their entire married life has been spent in this city with the exception of brief visits abroad. With the bride and groom of twenty years ago time has dealt gently, their youthful appearance giving little indication that two decades of married life have passed over their heads. They were the recipients of unnumbered kind wishes, the hope being expressed that their pathway might ever be strewn with roses, with not a thorn of disquietude or sorrow. The bride received in an elegant costume of pearl white silk, point lace and diamond ornaments. Her dress was much admired. She was assisted by her sister-in-law, Miss Sarah Smith. The costumes worn by the ladies present were remarkable for their costliness and beauty, and attracted much attention. The exquisite floral ornamentation of the rooms attracted the undisguised admiration of the visitors. The skill of the florist had been lavishly displayed in artistic designs and devices, festoons, and arches of trailing evergreens; flowery parterres of prized exotics; wreaths, bouquets, plants of almost every conceivable variety, added new attractions at every turn; the alcoves, halls and drawing rooms rivaling Flora's bowers in the tropical luxuriance of the display. Perfect taste reigned supreme in every ornamentation, and as music with its voluptuous swell rose and fell in perfect cadence in the perfumed air, and graceful forms wedded the poetry of motion to the harmony of sound, the scene resembled one of enchantment. While many of the large and brilliant company joined in the dance, others in nook, corner or alcove engaged in social converse, enjoyed the scene of loveliness and drank in the concord of sweet strains with delighted appreciation. The music was furnished by the St. Louis Grand Orchestra and was simply magnificent, the instruments consisting of four violins, piccolo or flute, clarionet (sic), cornet, two French horns, trombone, violoncello, double bass, tenor drum and triangle. The Bluff City never was favored with its like before. The performers were all artistes and the combination such that the effects were exquisite. In addition to the dance music some selections from favorite operas were rendered, the whole affording a musical treat of artistic completeness. Supper was served on call in the dining hall, the menu embracing the rarest and daintiest dishes that the skill of the caterer could devise, and in prodigal abundance. Delicacies and luxuries, vied with substantials in tempting the palate of the guests; meats, salads, fruits, ices, confectionery, cakes in great variety, all added their attractions to the feast. The floral adornments of the tables, consisting of the rarest hothouse flowers, tastefully arranged, gave an harmonious finish to the appointments of the table. The presents were profuse in number and of great bounty and variety. Wonderful creations of skill and taste are many of these fragile specimens of china, and the display on this occasion was a new revelation of the marvels tolling brains and cunning fingers can conceive and execute. The master workmen in the art seemed to have gathered there the triumphs of their most beautiful creations. So many and such elegant mementoes of affection and esteem must have been highly gratifying to the recipients. In addition to the large number of the residents of the Bluff City in attendance the following ladies and gentlemen from abroad were present: Mr. and Mrs. H. C. Wilson, Misses May Hawley and Birdie Scott; Messrs. James and Peter Nicholson, P. Ray, F. C. Hawley, James Miller, C. K. Garrison, G. Lewis, all of St. Louis; Mr. Albert Bingham, California; Mr. W. C. Penn, Chicago: Prof. and Mrs. Wyman, Upper Alton, and others. Regrets were received from relatives and friends in New York, Ohio and other distant points. The gathering was regarded in every respect us the most brilliant ever witnessed in Alton. The complete arrangements, and splendid entertainment given by the bride and groom will be long and pleasantly remembered by the fortunate recipients of their courteous hospitality.


SPILLMAN, WILLIAM                   72 Years Old Man Lives on 15 Cents a Day

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 25, 1914

The Telegraph several days published a story about a resident of this city who is living on fifteen cents a day, and getting everything he wants. The story was doubted by some, but the man himself says it is all straight, and that if everybody would be content with the things that content and satisfy him, all could live on a similar sum. The man's name is William Spillman, and he is about 72 years old. He is a native of Virginia and fought on the Confederate side during the war of the rebellion. He is a bachelor, not because he is a woman hater, but because he thinks that a woman is like lots of other things in life - not absolutely necessary to a man's happiness, and he never was sportsman enough to take the chance of marrying a woman and being happy every after as her husband. He is a Bryan Democrat and a Methodist. He is sincere in his religious convictions and beliefs, and he says that he would rather starve than do any work on Sunday. He does not chew or smoke, and never did. Neither does he use profane language of any kind, and no one has ever seen him angry or ever heard a cross or petulant word issue from his lips. He makes a living preparing and selling horse radish during the winter months and he raises vegetables during summer and fall on lots in the city that would otherwise be overrun with weeds. He has rooms in the basement of a house in Belle street near Seventh, and he is his own cook and bottle washer. His factory adjoins his living rooms. Mr. Spillman has the appearance of being 55 or 60 years old, but no older, and taken altogether is a most remarkable man. He was never sick in his life, never has called in or on a doctor, and his teeth never needed fixing by a dentist, his eyes are good but he uses glasses in reading at night to keep them good.



SPINNER, BERNHARDT              Sick With Pneumonia, Tries to Shoot Overseer of the Poor

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, January 17, 1916

Bernard Spinner, living on a farm one mile from Upper Alton, turned on his would be benefactor this morning and for a time threatened to take his life. Overseer of the Poor Joseph Hermann of Alton, who intended to play the part of benefactor to the old man, had to put up a fight for his life to escape from the house, and said today that he would make no more attempts to have the sick man taken to St. Joseph's Hospital. The attention of Mr. Hermann was called to the Spinner case early this morning by neighbors who lived near him. They stated that the old shack in which Spinner lived was in a very bad condition; that he was seriously ill and without food and care; they asked that something be done for him....Upon arriving at the house, Mr. Hermann found that the old man was in a serious condition from pneumonia and that the case was fully as bad as the neighbors had reported. The house was very cold, notwithstanding a small fire, which had been built by some of the old man's neighbors this morning. There was no food in the house and he was getting no care except what neighbors could give, while snow was coming in the roof of the home in some places. Mr. Hermann asked him if he did not want to go to the county hospital. Mr. Spinner refused to make the trip and when Mr. Hermann insisted in the name of humanity Mr. Spinner shouted, "Get out of here or I'll shoot you!" and he reached under the mattress of the bed for a gun. Mr. Hermann grabbed the hand with the gun, but the old man made a reach for the gun with his other hand. Notwithstanding his serious condition, the old man is still very strong and the Overseer of the Poor was finally forced to fly from the house to keep from being killed....It is said in the neighborhood in which Mr. Spinner lives that he is well to do. He is the owner of forty acres of farm land on which his shack is located, but he refused to spend any money. For years he has refused to spend any money, and at one time he sent his wife to the County Poor Farm when she became blind and he could care for her no longer. She lived at the cost of the county for fifteen or twenty years. Supervisor Gus Haller received a call from James Mullen, Chief of Police, this afternoon, requesting him to go after Spinner, as Spinner's home was in Wood River township. Haller deputized Charles Beach, and the two men came to Alton on the interurban car and took the ambulance at Second and Washington streets to go to Spinner's home. Haller said he was not afraid of Spinner and that he would take him by force if necessary. Gus Haller turned the trick and removed Spinner to St. Joseph's Hospital. The city ambulance was backed up in Spinner's yard and Haller entered the house and told the old man to get ready for the trip. When he reached for the gun Haller took it away from him and the carried him to the waiting ambulance against his wishes.




Source: The New York Times, February 6, 1910

Ziva Staishim, owner of a hotel here [Madison], became so joyful when he got a divorce at Edwardsville that he at once spent $23,000 to show his feeling in the matter. Of the amount $20,000 was given to his three children, who are now in Austria with their mother. He then sent out couriers from Edwardsville to gather his friends at Madison and Granite City and started homeward, lavishing money as he went. At Madison, he celebrated with hundreds of friends and acquaintances and then sent to Granite City to get others. Gathering as many as his hotel would hold, he spent the remainder of the evening showing them how happy he was to be free. Mrs. Staishim recently returned to Austria with her children, and Staishim, who is 35 years old, charged that she deserted him. When Judge Hadley today handed down his decree along with sixteen others, he immediately got beside himself with joy.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 15, 1902

The Still family, which is one of the oldest in Illinois, assembled in annual reunion on Thursday at the home of Mrs. Thomas Hunt, a daughter of Thomas Still of Godfrey, who lives about three miles from Piasa. More than 100 relatives from all parts of the country were present, very many going from Alton, Godfrey and Wood River townships. Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Still came from England sixty years ago and settled here, and they have been in this vicinity ever since. Mr. Still celebrated his 82nd birthday at his home in Godfrey, August 7. He is still hearty and vigorous. At the big reunion Thursday, the day was one of greatest pleasure, and the eatables served consisted of about everything good for the inner man that the country could afford.



STONER, JOHN          Fire Destroys Stoner Barn

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 26, 1919

Spontaneous combustion is supposed to be the cause of the fire that destroyed the barn and all of the machinery on the farm of John Stoner, two miles north of Bethalto. The fire broke out at three o'clock in the afternoon. Mr. Stoner was in Bethalto at the time, and his wife was alone on the farm. She said the flames broke out suddenly in all parts of the barn. She tried to untie the livestock in the barn, but was unable to do that on account of the flames. One mule and two calves perished in the fire. Twenty-five loads of hay, and all the farm machinery were in the barn as well as a storm buggy and a motorcycle. All were lost in the fire.


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Source: Alton Telegraph, October 15, 1891

Tuesday evening at 7 o'clock, at the residence of the bride's father, 120 West Fourth street, occurred the wedding of Mr. William Telgman and Miss Emilie J. Laughlin. The groom is a prosperous young business man of Chicago, formerly of Godfrey, and the bride is a daughter of Mr. Thompson Laughlin. The ceremony was performed by Rev. Mr. Scawthon, of the Methodist church, in the presence of a large number of relatives and friends. After the ceremony an elegant wedding supper was served. Mr. and Mrs. Telgman received many handsome presents. After the congratulations and good wishes of their many friends, they left for Chicago.




Source: The Alton Telegraph, Thursday, June 12, 1913

Van Titchenal met with a serious accident Tuesday noon at the P. H. Neuhaus farm where he had been sawing lumber. They had just finished the lumber and had set the wood saw to cut stove wood. The driving belt had slipped from the engine flywheel several times and started to wrap around the pulley on the saw shaft. The shaft also has a heavy balance wheel on it, and when speeded up will run for some time. Titchenal grabbed the belt to stop the speed and in some way was drawn against the pulley with great force. His right arm was crushed to a pulp between the wrist and elbow and some of the bones of the right side of the face were also injured, causing blood to flow from the mouth and nose. Charles Harrison and William Challengsworth who were working with him, released him and he was taken to his home at Fosterburg. Dr. Moore was called and after viewing the injury called for Dr. Shaff of Alton. They decided that there was no possibility of saving the injured arm and it was amputated a short distance below the elbow. Titchenal showed remarkable nerve from the time of the accident until the operation. He did not faint or groan, although he could see blood and pieces of his flesh on the belt, and about four inches of the bone in his arm was protruding through the flesh. One piece of bone was picked up from the ground after the accident. The doctors wanted to carry him from the bed on which he was resting to the operating table, but he told them he could walk himself and walked from the bed to the table and lay down. The accident is a great misfortune to Mr. Titchenal. He is an industrious hard-working young man and a most skillful sawyer, always taking great pride in his work. He is also an inventive genius and at one time had a perpetual motion machine which he built himself. He is afflicted with asthma and is often compelled to sleep out of doors in order to be able to breathe, which will be very hard on him while recovering from the accident. He came out from the effects of the operation in good shape.




Source: Alton Telegraph, September 17, 1847

The well known farm called the "Tichnell Farm," lying on the road from the "Buck Inn" to Upper Alton; and containing 118 acres, is now offered for sale on advantageous terms. About 40 acres are under a good state of improvement, with buildings convenient, and an excellent orchard of choice fruit trees. The balance of the land is well timbered, and convenient to Alton, making the place a very desirable location. For terms, apply to Capt. Josiah Little, Upper Alton, or on the premises to J. Thompson.



George Francis TrainTRAIN, GEORGE FRANCIS               The Amazing Mr. Train - Story of His Life as Published by D. Appleton & Co.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 18, 1902 

Everything concerning George Francis Train is interesting to the older citizens of Alton, as his wife was an Alton lady [Henrietta Wilhelmina Wilkinson Davis], daughter of the late Gen. George Turnbull M. Davis, one mayor of Alton. In 1863, Train returned to Alton and lectured here. He had hurriedly left St. Louis in fear of arrest by the military authorities for seditious language. He came to Alton and stopped with his brother-in-law, Capt. "Jim" Davis, then living in the J. R. Woods house on East Third street. The Colonel commanding in Alton received orders to arrest Train, but getting word of it he fled on horseback ("two on one horse" as he afterwards put it) to the residence of Robert P. Tansey, now the residence of Dr. M. R. Lindley on Eleventh street, where he slept in a hay-mow until the next morning, and thus escaped arrest. A short resume of a portion of Train's story will be interesting to the Alton public:


Train intimates that it was his ideas and suggestions that led to erasers on pencils, the perforation of sheets of postage stamps, the attachment of steps to carriages, and the nose on bottles. Fortunes were made out of the first and last; the second he says he took direct to Rowland Hill when he introduced penny postage into England. Here is a characteristic bit: "'Look at that girl with the curls,' said I. 'Do you knew her?' he asked. 'I never saw her before,' I answered, 'but she shall be my wife.'"  On their wedding journey, Train and his wife occupied the first "bridal chamber" in the world. It was at the Burnet house in Cincinnati, and the charge was $15 a day.  His bride was Miss Davis of Alton, daughter of Col. George T. M. Davis, and an aunt of ex-Alderman George T. Davis of this city.


On the way across the Atlantic soon after, Train's captain refused to go to the rescue of a wrecked passenger vessel because it would forfeit the insurance policy. Train, as part owner, took the matter into his own hands. Two hundred persons were saved under extraordinary circumstances. Rescuers and rescued would have starved had not Train broken into the cargo and fed everybody on cornmeal mush all the way across.


He became interested in phrenology, and the verdict of experts on his head was: "You will be either a great reformer or a great pirate. It merely depends upon the direction you take in ethics!"


He tore up a partnership contract with $15,000 a year when he was 22, and started out for himself. He went to Australia and made $95,000 in commissions the first year. The first thing he did was to plan and help build a railway two miles long to save ten miles of river at Melbourne. He had a large warehouse built for him in Boston and set it up in Melbourne. He introduced at least fifty "Yankee nations" into Australia, including buggies, hoes, and canned goods. When his first born was expected, he sent his wife home that his son might be born on American soil and thus have a chance of becoming President. He learned later that nationality follows the parents, and about the same time that the child was a girl.


Train also tells of his campaign for President in 1872, in which he made the public pay his expenses and a good deal more too, in order that he might be heard. He claims that he made $90,000 clear in this campaign. So that Bryan was only following Train's example when he made the towns put up the cash for his visit before he would get off his car to speak. Bryan made more than Train did, but came no nearer an election.



Train died in 1904, and is buried in Brooklyn, New York. Widely known on account of his eccentricity. He traveled around the world in eighty days in 1870. Train wrote numerous books about his travels and his financial adventures. His wife died in 1879, and is also buried in Brooklyn, New York.




Source: Edwardsville Intelligencer, October 6, 1886/Submitted by Jane Denny

At 7:30 o'clock, this evening, Mr. C. N. Travous and Miss Gillian L. Torrence will be united in marriage , at St. John's M.E. Church.  Rev. E. M. West will officiate, and Mr. Jas. B. Dale and Dr. C. C. Corbett will act as ushers.  Immediately after the ceremony the couple will be entertained at the residence of Dr. Pogue, by the directors of the public library.  This is to be a surprise to the couple.  None but the directors and their families, the young attorneys and their best girls, the ushers and relatives will be invited.  During the evening the celebrated Enterprise band will serenade the happy twain.  On tomorrow evening Mr. and Mrs. Cyrus Happy will tender them a reception, to which their numerous friends have been invited. The bride is the only daughter of Mrs. S. J. Torrence, and an accomplished young lady, well known in Edwardsville society.  The groom is a prominent young attorney, associated with Cyrus Happy in the practice of his profession.  Charlie has plead his suite well in this case and won it without judge or jury.  The INTELLIGENCER joins their host of friends in congratulations, and wishes them ought else but a pleasant and prosperous journey through life.


Source: Edwardsville Intelligencer, October 13, 1886/Submitted by Jane Denny
Last Thursday evening Mr. and Mrs. Cyrus Happy tendered a reception to Mr. and Mrs. C. N Travous. About two hundred invitations were issued, the major portion responding. At 8 o'clock the several rooms were filled with guests eager to extend their congratulations and best wishes to the happy twain, who were stationed near the center of the parlor, which had previous been handsomely decorated with flowers. Immediately above them hung a huge bell, labeled "chestnut," but nevertheless it was not rung every often. At about 11 o'clock a delicious supper was served by the hostess, after which the young people indulged in dancing. The orchestra, composed of Messrs. William and George Schwarz, Ed. Randle, E. O. Crane and F. W. Tunnell, were stationed in the hall and discoursed delightful music at intervals during the evening. The occasion was a most pleasant one and will long be remembered by Charles and his fair bride.


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Source: Edwardsville Intelligencer,  April 13, 1909/Submitted by Robert C. Snyder

Mrs. Adaline Uhl and grandson, William Shea, of Poag, returned home this morning from Highland, where they spent the Easter holidays with Mrs. Adam Huber and family.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 10, 1908

Readers of the Telegraph will remember how several months ago Joseph Uhle, the east Second street barber, wounded a wild crow while hunting near the glassworks and how he used the wounded bird afterwards to attract other crows to places where the hunters could kill them for the bounty. Since then Mr. Uhle has succeeded in completely domesticating the bird, and for "ways that are dark and tricks that are vain," this bird has the heathen Chinese beat a mile, according to stories being told by neighbors and friends of Joseph. The crow enjoys full liberty to go where it pleases, and is no longer caged up or tied. It will not leave the barber shop very far, unless its master goes too, and apparently a mogul engine with a full head of steam would not be able to pull it away from Mr. Uhle. The bird will not exactly lather a customer, but it will brush the hairs off a customer's back and neck during the process of hair cutting, the brushing being done with its wings. The best story, however, being told of the bird and its sagacity, is that it has become an accomplished chimney sweep, and in the early morning, when the chimney is cool inside, the bird will fly up on the roof, look around a little, then fly to the chimney top. It descends the chimney with its wings outspread in such a way that the soot goes down with the bird, and the trip is made often enough to rid the flue of most of its black belongings. If Joe can train the crow to sweep other chimneys, there is a great career ahead of it in Alton, and great future as an unfrenzied financier ahead of him with the bird.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 19, 1910

John C. Ulrich, a farmer living about three miles from Upper Alton, has cut down an immense elm tree that had been the biggest forest tree for miles around. It is said to have been about 200 feet in height. The trunk of the tree was the wonder and admiration of all who saw it. When Mr. Ulrich felled it yesterday, he measured the trunk and it was 5 feet 6 inches in diameter, at a point 18 inches from the ground. It was 4 feet 8 inches at a height of 30 feet from the ground. Mr. Ulrich relates that he once cut a limb off the tree that yielded him 150 feet of lumber. He sold the tree to John Casella, who intends having it cut up into lumber and will use it for building wagon beds. Mr. Ulrich says that the tree was struck by lightning a few years ago and was damaged on one side. Otherwise it was in good condition. He desired to get it off his farm, as he wanted to use the land and the immense spread of branches of the tree shaded the ground so it prevented him getting good crops under the tree. The tree was the finest specimen of its kind for many miles around, and was the most conspicuous object a person could see because of its great height, its magnificent proportions, and its beautiful form.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, June 2, 1903

Louis Unger, who for the past 20 years has conducted a blacksmith and horseshoeing shop at 549 East Second street, has sold his tools and stock to George Beek and will retire from business. Mr. Unger has been swinging the hammer and pounding the anvil for 52 years, and 42 years of that time has been spent in Alton [since 1861]. He has shod thousands of horses in that time, has made horseshoes by hand, and been accounted one of the best all-around workmen in Alton. He landed in St. Louis with his father in 1844, the year of the high water, and says conditions this year resemble those of that ill-fated year.


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Source: The Register, 1902/Submitted by Steven Ward

The case of Minnie Ward, administratrix of the estate of John A. Ward, vs. American Car & Foundry Co., of Madison, Ill., brought to the October term of the Madison County Circuit Court, has been removed by the defendants to the Federal court on the ground that it is a foreign corporation. The case will stand for trial at the January term at Springfield. The Register readers will remember that Mr. Ward was employed as a switchman in the yards of the American Car & Foundry Co., and that he was injured while a car was being backed into a paint shop. In some manner he was caught between some scaffolding at the entrance to the shop and the facing of the car door and was fatally injured, dying the next day. Mr. Ward lived in Mount Vernon the greater part of his life.




Source: Edwardsville Intelligencer, June 26, 1896/Submitted by Jane Denny

One of the most notable weddings of the month of June took place Wednesday evening at the pleasant home of Judge and Mrs. B. R. Burroughs. The contracting parties were their daughter, Miss Maude, and Master-in Chancery Wilbur M. Warnock. The floral decorations and other preparations were on an elaborate scale. It was a pink and white wedding, and in every room the predominating colors were agreeably blended. The spacious double parlors had received special attention. To the front was arranged a canopy of smilax and ferns and an embankment of palms. Festoons of smilax, in graceful loops, were suspended from the center of the ceiling to the four corners. This latter formed part of the adornment in almost every room. Here and there the eye was attracted by roses of pink and white. Promptly at seven o'clock Schwarz's orchestra, which was stationed in the upper hall, played Lohengrin's wedding march, and the bridal party proceeded through the back parlor and took position underneath the canopy of smilax and ferns. First came the groom accompanied by the groomsman, Mr. John L. Stanley, followed by Miss Nora Burroughs, the maid of honor, and the bride leaning on the arm of her father. The pretty ring ceremony was performed by Presiding Elder W. E. Ravenscroft, in the presence of sixty guests, relatives and intimate friends. Following the ceremony the couple received the hearty congratulations and well wishes of the assembled guests. From half-past-seven until nine o'clock they were tendered a reception, and upwards of two hundred responded to invitations. Dainty refreshments, in pink and white, prepared by St. Louis caterers, were served. Music was rendered by the orchestra. At nine the guests began to depart. Half an hour later the couple were driven to the lower depot, and boarded the Wabash train for St. Lois. They will make a two weeks' tour of the West. The bride was costumed in ivory white satin, lined with coral taffeta, trimmed in duchesse lace; a white tulle veil was confined to the hair with a sunburst of diamonds; she carried a bouquet of white bridal roses, fringed with lilies of the valley. Her going-away gown was of covert cloth, tailor-made, with hat and gloves to match. Miss Nora Burroughs, maid of honor, wore a girlish gown of white, lace-trimmed organdie over coral taffeta, and carried a bouquet of La France roses. Mrs. Burroughs, mother of the bridge, was attired in black peu de sol silk, trimmed in Persian silk and cut jet. Mrs. L. Warnock, of Columbia, mother of the groom, wore black satin, trimmed in real lace. The bride is the eldest daughter of Judge and Mrs. B. R. Burroughs, a gracious and accomplished young lady. She is a leader in society circles, and is highly esteemed by all. The groom is a well-known lawyer, a member of the firm Travous & Warnock, and stands well in the front of the profession. He studied law under Judge Burroughs, was associated with him in the practice, and was afterwards appointed master-in-chancery and is now filling his fourth term. He occupies a prominent position in business and social affairs. The legion of friends of the happy couple join in wishing them an abundance of success and happiness.



Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 25, 1918

Mrs. John Waters, a Godfrey matron whose husband owns a big farm and is unable to get help when he needs it for fall plowing [due to WWI], is doing her patriotic part by helping with the plowing herself. Mr. and Mrs. Waters children old enough to help have been sent to school and they are unable to get assistance on the place during most of the time. Mrs. Waters, after getting her household work done, goes to the field and takes charge of gang plows drawn by four horses. She never did any plowing before, but it seems that the work came naturally to her as she is doing a fine job.




Source: The Alton Telegraph, Thursday, September 4, 1913

William Waters of Godfrey, who lives in the old stone mansion built by Benjamin Godfrey and is known as one of the most progressive and prosperous farmers of Godfrey township, has finished cataloguing about 7,000 articles in a collection of Indian relics. He has some that are very fine and highly valued by collectors. Mr. Waters has been engaged for many years on his collection and is one of the best posted men and an authority on this subject. He recently acquired most of the fine collection which E. M. Bowman had, and has included them in his collection.



WATKINS, JOAB                Member of Methodist Church Fifty

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 8, 1910

As a testimonial of their appreciation of his good work in the Methodist church, and on the eve of his departure to make his home in Idaho, the members of the official board of the Methodist Episcopal church held a meeting last night to bid him goodbye. The officers presented Mr. Watkins with a handsome hold headed cane, and George E. Camp made a feeling, little presentation speech.  B. F. Richardson read a set of resolutions adopted by the board expressing their appreciation of his untiring work for the church and as a member of the official board. Mr. Watkins came to the Alton vicinity in 1856 and has for fifty years been a member of the Methodist church in Alton. For forty years he has served on the board and his loss as a member of the governing body of the church is keenly felt because of his great experience and at all times activity in all matter pertaining to the business of the church. Mr. Watkins leaves Thursday for Fayette, Idaho with his daughter, Theo., there to make his home with his son.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, February 21, 1919

A most enjoyable party was given last evening at the home of Mr. and Mrs. William Wickenhauser, the sprightly and lovely young ladies of the family and the amusement were so good and varied that the guests found it impossible to break away for home until a late or rather early hour. The house was decorated in red, white and blue colors, with Washington hatchets scattered around in convenient places, and the amusements consisted of dancing, cards, other games and music, vocal and instrumental. Music was furnished by Irvin Dinges and the young ladies of the home, and the refreshments served amounted to a banquet - and a good one at that. Among the guests were: Misses Mary Shields, Grace Murphy, Alice Smith, Eva Murrell, Ida Miller, Katheryn Winger, Mary Winger, Mary Kendal, Mabel and Bertha Fulkerson, Jewel Schelle, Ida Yager, Lillian Walker; Messrs. Glenn Moore, Irvin Dinges, Victor Henkhaus, Albert Pelot, Victor Ursch, George, Herbert, William, Ed and Albert Wickenhauser, and George Seeger. The guests agree that it was the most enjoyable social affair given this winter in that locality, and are anxious for an encore.




Source: Rochester, New York Democrat and Chronicle, December 10, 1899

She Is a Business Woman. One of Her Feats Was to Own and Sell a Railroad Franchise.

Mrs. Grace A. Wilson, of Collinsville, Ill., who was married yesterday at the Planters' hotel to Captain Henry of Indianapolis, is a most remarkable woman. Judging by the statements of her friends in this city. She is perhaps the only woman in this part of the United States who has originated the plans for a new railroad, secured the options on the right of way and made all the arrangements whereby the road may be built at any time. In addition to this, she owns a large coal field which this railroad will put in touch with the market, owns and operates a bell foundry and has charge of large real estate interests. The wisdom which Mrs. Henry has shown in her conduct of business is perhaps the result of self-reliance which was developed very early in life. She is a St. Louis girl, her maiden name being Grace A. Logan. Her father was a well-known insurance man, who died nearly a quarter of a century ago, when she was 15 years of age. The daughter soon afterward married the late O. B. Wilson, a prominent business man of Collinsville, Ill. He spent a great deal of time in this city. Two daughters were born to Mr. and Mrs., Wilson, both being now grown. Mrs. Henry's business career dates from the time when her first husband became a confirmed invalid, about six years ago. He was the owner of a bell foundry in Collinsville. The business was an exacting one and although it was established the care which devolved upon the wife of the invalid was one which many a man of mature business judgment would have assumed with some doubts. From the first then Mrs. Wilson met with success and the business of the factory grew under her management Four years ago Mr. Wilson died. Her two years experience stood Mrs. Wilson in good stead. She invested surplus capital in real estate at Collinsville. Then she learned of the coal fields near Madison and she put her money into them, until she controlled as much of the coal land as any of the capitalists in that district. The result is that at the present day she owns a large part of the Madison coal fields. Mrs. Wilson thought that she ought to have better transportation facilities. Then she did a most remarkable thing. She projected a railroad to connect with the Illinois Central at Collinsville. More than that, she incorporated the company, securing outside capital. The name of the newly-incorporated company in the charter was given as the "St. Louis and Eastern." Then she went to work to secure a right of way. This is usually considered one of the hardest propositions in railroad building, but she did not hesitate. She personally laid out the route which she wanted the road to take. The whole length of the road, as she projected it, is about seventy-five miles. To secure the options she undertook to visit the owners of the land for about one-third of the entire distance. It took time and perseverance. She succeeded and held to tike options. Then she did another remarkable thing. She announced that she did not care to go any further with the road, but if any capitalists wanted to syndicate and buy her out, they might do so. She named her price and got it. What that price is none of her friends claim to know, though it is said that she mentioned the fact one day that she had not made quite as much out of it as she ought to have done. Since she sold out the road, which was not so very long ago, she has attended to her bell foundry. She still owns the coal mines at the end of the proposed road, besides her real estate interests in Collinsville.



WINCHELL, IRA           Six Gallons of Booze is Taken in Still Raid    (Prohibition Era)

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 6, 1922

A raid was conducted this morning on the home of Ira A. Winchell on Hillcrest avenue, by Officers McReynolds and Hudnut, which resulted in seizure of a very well made still, about six gallons of booze and some other stuff. There was no mash found. Winchell had the knowledge to color the moonshine he was making and it would have passed for regular whisky. It appeared that he had been taught to make whisky by someone who knew his business. The officers who made the raid said that Winchell denied owning the still. It was in the cellar of his home and had been used there. The worm [coiled copper tube] was kept hidden in a sort of a sub cellar excavation that was always covered. Mrs. Winchell, the officers believe, did not know what was going on. She said that her husband worked every day at the Federal Lead plant, that he had nearly finished paying for his house and she regretted exceedingly that their happy home would be endangered by the discovery of the still there.


[Winchell lived at 2903 Hillcrest in Alton.]




Source: The New York Times, October 9, 1914

Alton, Ill., Oct. 8 - A negro burglar was choked to death here today by Joseph Winkler, after the negro had cut Winkler, his wife, and son with a razor. Winkler's son, Frederick, 18 years of age, awoke to see the negro leaning over his bed. A struggle began and the rest of the family were awakened, hurrying to the aid of the son. The elder Winkler seized the burglar and began to choke him while Frederick went for a rope with which the negro was bound. The police were notified, but when they arrived the man was dead.




Source: Alton Telegraph, May 20, 1875

Mrs. John Woodruff, living on Fifth street, met with a sad accident on Sunday morning at her residence. When about to descend a long flight of stairs, she made a mis-step and fell with great force from the top to the bottom, her head striking the floor with such violence as to cut a gash five inches long. She also suffered other injuries. So serious was the wound on her head that a long time elapsed before the physicians in attendance could stop the flow of blood. Mrs. Woodruff is quite advanced in years, and the fall was therefore a great shock to her system, but her many friends trust that the permanent ill effects will be experienced.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, October 15, 1923

East Alton - Mrs. Mary Wright and daughter, who have been visiting the former's daughter, Mrs. Earl Kirk and family for a while, have returned to their home in Wellsville, Mo.


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YOUNGER, JAMES?            Was Mysterious Man From Alton Mistaken for James Younger, of the Younger Gang?

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 8, 1901

A Telegraph reporter was told a curious story this morning concerning the alleged Jim Younger, now about to be pardoned from the Minnesota penitentiary where he has been incarcerated since 1876 for bank robbery and murder. The story briefly is that the party is not Jim Younger at all, but a former well known Alton man who was with the James and Younger gangs after the war, and who was with the Youngers at Fairfield, Minn., when the memorable raid was made. "Jim Younger was killed in that raid, and Cole and Bob Younger certainly must have agreed to keep secret the fact that the Alton member was wearing the name of their dead brother. The authorities of Minnesota did not know Jim Younger, and the imposition was easily practiced. The object was to keep the mother and brothers, all respected and respectable citizens of Alton, from learning of the double murderous and robbing life led by the son during his frequent absences from Alton. Papers at the time were full of photographs of the captured robbers, and the man called Jim Younger was recognized by several Altonians, intimates of the person in question, as the missing Alton man. A few weeks after the conviction of the robbers in Minnesota, the clothing, watch, rings and some other personal effects of the Altonian were sent to the mother in this city from Stillwater, Minnesota, with the information that the son had died and was buried there. She wanted the body sent to Alton but it never came, and she died believing her son had preceded her to the spirit land. Several member of the family are still alive and are respected citizens, and the Telegraph will suppress the name for awhile anyway until further proof is adduced. The young man married into a family prominent in Alton 30 years ago, but deserted his wife who died of a broken heart. He had a son who is now thought to be in St. Louis with an uncle. The young man went to the war from Alton and served in the army as a drummer. A mess mate and constant companion of his lives in Alton, and says positively that the alleged Jim Younger is the Alton drummer. After the war he would go away and remain absent for months. Always when he returned he would bring plenty of money with him. The last time he was here was in the winter of 1875, and intimates of his say he brought back $20,000 with him that time. He remained a couple of months, left several thousands of dollars, it is thought, for the care of his son, and left in a hurry. In those days Mink Oben operated a saloon and a big billiard hall where Immenga's saloon now is. This man - call him "Jim" for short - was playing billiards there with a friend who still lives in Alton. The front door opened and three strangers entered. The room was filled with people, but "Jim" noticed the strangers. He dropped his cue and telling the friend to come, hurried out the back way and up to Andy Mather's livery stable and secured a rig and drove madly to Godfrey, where he caught a northbound train. The friend drove the horse back to Alton, and "Jim" got away. The pictures appearing in the papers the past few days, and said to be photographs of Younger, are said by his intimates here to be dead ringers of "Jim," and it was only a couple of months after he left here the last time that the Northfield raid occurred.


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Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 22, 1902

Mr. Nicholas Zerwas, the blacksmith-in-chief at the brick plant, has a curious, beautiful and valuable (because of historic associations) cane in his possession which he prizes highly, and which has descended from his grandfather, Nicholas Zerwas, who was a soldier with Napoleon, and who helped the great conqueror make history. The cane is made from the root of a wild apple tree, and was fashioned in 1802. Napoleon's face is carved on the front end of the hand piece; the face of Rustan, a general, and associate and friend of the elder Mr. Zerwas, is on the back end of the piece. At intervals the full length of the cane are the heads of animals, dogs, wolves, rabbits, etc., carved in such a distinct and elaborate manner as to clearly indicate the genius of the make. Figures of the Prussian eagle and doves, quail, etc. also appear on the cane. Although one hundred years old, the figures and faces are clear and prominent. Napoleon's nose is worn flat by long handling, and history is our warrant for the statement that this is about the only way anyone could handle Napoleon's nose with impunity. The cane was left by its original owner to his son, Nicholas, who died a few years ago at a very advanced age at the home of his son, Nicholas, here, and who left it in turn to this son. Mr. Zerwas says he has been offered flattering sums of money for the cane by French societies in St. Louis, but it is not for sale, he adds, positively.


Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 31, 1903           North Alton Has a Genius

North Alton has a genius all right, in the person of Nic Zerwas, the blacksmith in-chief at the brick plant. Besides being a first-class blacksmith and horseshoer, he is a sculptor of genius and a musical prodigy. Give him a soft lead pencil and a sheet of white paper, and we will back him against any Alton artist, amateur or professional, living or dead, for unerring accuracy of line, skillful management of light and shade, arrangement of values, composition, obiaraoscuro, perspective, foreshortening and rapidity of execution and every other artistic detail, catch as catoncan, strangle hold barred, both shoulders on the mattress to constitute a fall and may the best man win. He has had no instruction as a draughtsman, and yet he has the masterful technique of a finished expert and the rapidity of a skillful hand in continual practice. All this advanced attainment without instruction indicates artistic genius of a high order, and Nic can dash off a sketch as deftly as he shoes a horse or takes a bar of iron and fashions it into anything he pleases.




Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 15, 1920                     Wife Tells of Slavery On Home Farm

Out of the 89 suits filed for the May term of the Circuit court, 32 are for divorce and one of the most remarkable claims for divorce is that of Mrs. Louise Zirges of Prairietown, who seeks separation from G. W. Zirges. She had reared a family of nine, all of whom are of age except her son, Arthur, who is fourteen. Mrs. Zirges declares that her treatment is such she cannot endure it any longer. She avers she served as a hired hand on the farm as well as doing housework, cooking, washing, and sewing. In addition to that, she says that she was subjected to inhuman treatment, was choked one time and was threatened with death by her husband who, she says, carries a revolver, and she fears would make good in his threats. Shotgun and rifle were used to threaten her. In 1914 she sued for separation, but was persuaded by her husband, she says, to drop the suit and she returned to him. The cruelties, she says, were renewed since then. Her husband's farm is only 62 acres. She says she has contributed to the family savings by raising chickens and garden stuff.


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