To search for a particular subject term, click on the highlighted link containing that term at the bottom of the article. For example, if you are seeking more articles about animals, click on the highlighted link which says Animals/Reptiles/Amphibians.
Gazette & Courier - Monday, September 20, 1875
News of the week
Moses Hull of Boston and a crowd of other lunatics, profaned the Sabbath and the beautiful Lake Walden at Concord on the 12th by a noisy meeting, advocating free love and Spiritualism, and resolved "that our present system of marriage is slavery, and that, considering that idiocy, insanity, prostitution, adultery, rape, drunkenness and murder are its legitimate fruits, it is the duty of every lover of humanity to protest against it".
Gazette & Courier - Monday, August 30, 1875
News about town: Greenfield items
A desperate plan was laid by two of Greenfield’s young roughs, to burglarize Charles Keith’s grocery store last Wed. eve. About 11 o’clock in the eve. Miles Mowry, a clerk employed in the store, accompanied by E.S. Seaver, cutter for Seward & Willard, had occasion to go into the store. In the dark Mowry stumbled over someone secreted behind the counter. He at first thought it one of the other clerks trying to play a joke on him, but dragging the fellow out, he proved to be Jerry McAuliffe, the boy who, two years ago, broke into the store then kept by Mrs. S.F. Warner.
He served an 18 month’s sentence in the House of Correction at Pittsfield, and returned to Greenfield July 17th. Mowry and Seaver took McAuliff into the street and delivered him over to night policemen Jones and Carbee. McAuliff, when arrested, had a long dirk knife in his hand, the sheath of which was found in his pocket. It was not suspected at the time that there was another burglar in the store, and so it was locked and left for the night.
It leaked out the next day, when McAuliff was brought before Justice Brainard, that he was not alone. Another fellow, he said, cut a light from the back window with a diamond, through which they both got into the store, and it was their intention to open the safe, his comrade having the necessary tools. The fellow, he said, was not 4 ft. from him when he was taken from behind the counter, and he had a revolver cocked ready to shoot anyone who took hold of him.
McAuliff would not tell the boy’s name, but from what the Justice pumped out of him, it was suspected that Willard Gillett, employed about the Mansion House, was the second burglar, and he was accordingly arrested. Gillett denied the whole thing at once, but owned up little by little, and finally pleaded guilty to the charge of breaking and entering the store, with the intention of opening the safe to obtain money.
His trunk at the Mansion House was searched and in it was found a seven shooter loaded with six charges, capped and ready for execution, a long sheath knife, a policeman’s "billy", a hatchet, a diamond for cutting glass, a chisel, etc., beside some boxes of cigars and a few articles that are supposed to have been stolen. The magistrate bound each of the boys over to the Nov. court in the sum of $500.
Gillett was at one time employed by Dr. Severance, who now recollects numerous things that turned up missing while he was around the house. He afterward worked in Field & Hall’s printing office, but found he hadn’t a taste for that kind of work and so gave it up. A "form" of type was found in his trunk, from which he had probably printed some obscene literature for the benefit of his boy companions. He was certainly equipped for burglary on an extensive scale.
The wonder is, that with one of these boys armed with a dirk knife, and the other a pistol, they did not assault Mowry and Seaver when they entered the store. Had Mowry been alone, he might have had ugly treatment at their hands. McAuliff is 17 and Gillett 18.
Gazette & Courier - Monday, August 30, 1875
Assaults on ladies in railway carriages are becoming epidemic in Great Britain. Mr. Mooney, "a gentleman highly respected in Dublin", has been arrested for grossly assaulting a married lady in a railway carriage.
Gazette & Courier - Monday, August 30, 1875
News of the week
Elopement runs in the Wilhite family of Texas County, Mo. Sallie Wilhite ran away some years ago with her brother-in-law, Aaron Davis; he, however, returned to his wife, and she married a Mr. Neely, who eloped and left her. Two years ago, her cousin Ezekiel, ran away with a Mrs. Winland, both parties leaving families. Last month Aaron Davis's son Marion, a boy of 19, ran away with his brother's sister, a woman of 30, and to complete matters, his father has again eloped with his sister-in-law Sallie.
Gazette & Courier - Monday, August 23, 1875
The second week of the Superior Court was opened at 10 o’clock Mon. The jury in the case of Peleg Adams vs. John Single, and the countersuit of Single vs. Adams, brought in a verdict on each action separately, viz.: In the former for Adams, amount $522; and in the latter for Single, $808, giving a difference in Single’s favor of $286.
The criminal cases were then taken up before the second jury as follows: Timothy Sullivan of Greenfield, on two indictments for larceny. The transaction itself was so lately chronicled that it is unnecessary to repeat it here, but simply to state that the defendant is the party who carried off Conductor Tharp’s clothing, and A.N. Hull’s shoes from the Mansion House. He was found guilty and sentenced to two years at the State Prison at Charlestown; two days solitary. District Attorney for Commonwealth.
Patrick Fraine of Charlemont was tried on two indictments. One for arson and another for larceny from the building, both being tried at the same time. The first charge was for the alleged firing of the Zoar depot last March, and the second for stealing from the same. The defendant worked upon the railroad at the Tunnel and boarded at Zoar. The parties with whom he boarded testified that Fraine came home the night of the fire at 5 minutes before 9, and the alarm was given about half past 9.
The defendant, who had no council, cross questioned the witnesses with considerable shrewdness, and brought out from the depot master the fact that some railroad men were in the depot during the eve; the west end of which was used as a store, and that there was a large fire in the stove, so much that some of the party complained of the heat, but it was claimed that the fire was out, or nearly so, when the store was closed.
The party who lived near, and who seemed to have discovered the fire first, described it as wholly confined to the southwest end, or store part, and there seemed to be no fire in the rest of the building. The evidence seemed very small to hold the defendant on the charge of arson, and the verdict of the jury acquitted the prisoner at the bar therefor.
On the allegation of larceny, the evidence was more conclusive, two witnesses testifying to the defendant having pennies and 5 cent pieces in his pockets, some being in a pocket handkerchief and others done up in a pair of stockings in the defendant’s coat at the place he boarded. On this charge he was found guilty and sentenced to 2 years in the House of Correction at Pittsfield. District Attorney for Commonwealth.
Marshall H. Porter of Williamstown and Henry Smith of South Deerfield, for larceny, and the former also for receiving stolen goods. The defendant, Porter, a dark mulatto, who gave his age as 30, said he was visiting at South Deerfield. He claimed to have had nothing to do with the larceny, but said the articles found on him were given him by Henry Moore, although he acknowledged he knew they were stolen.
It appeared by the confession of Smith, who is a bright colored boy of about 16 years of age, that the larceny alleged consisted in entering the store in the building connected with the Bloody Brook House at South Deerfield; the boy Smith watching in the shade of a large elm tree in front of the store, while Porter and Moore entered the store by the bulk-head and did the stealing. The articles taken were 2 or 3 watches, a revolver, candy, some currency and silver coin and other miscellaneous items.
Henry Moore, indicted with the others for the larceny, was bailed by his father, an was not on hand to be tried with the others. Porter and Smith were found guilty and sentenced each to 3 years at the House of Correction in Pittsfield; District Attorney for Commonwealth, A. Brainard for Smith. A bench warrant was issued for the arrest of Henry Moore, who has become scarce in this region since the time he was required at this court to plead with the others to the alleged burglary.
George Doolittle of Greenfield, for assault and battery. The present case came up on an appeal from sentence of the magistrate. The said assault and battery was made upon H.E. Keuran, while visiting the Mansion House, the defendant being keeper of the hotel. The case was virtually decided on the testimony of Doolittle himself, who, after detailing the fact of seeing Keuran passing back and forth through the bar room to the wash room, had ordered Keuran to leave and not be hanging around there, to which the reply was made that he had as much money in there as the defendant, and should go when he got ready, at same time drawing a pocket knife and threatening bodily harm if he was put out; upon which the defendant struck him with his fist, and as he was going out struck him two more blows.
The fact of any knife being drawn was denied by Keuran, who also said he had no such knife as described with him at the time. Several witnesses detailed the facts as they saw them, several testifying they saw a knife in Keuran’s hand, but the court ruled that even if there was any justification for the first blow self defense did not require the others, and according to the defendant’s own testimony, the said blows were given when Keuran was getting away about as fast as he could. Verdict of guilty. Sentence deferred. District Attorney for Commonwealth, A. DeWolf for defendant.
The case of Michael Moran for larceny came up on appeal from a magistrate’s trail, and on motion the complaint was quashed for informality. D. Aiken for defendant.
Frank P. Bell of Coleraine for assalt and battery had a lengthy trial occupying the most of Thurs. The alleged assault was made with a shovel upon George H. Phillips, one of the Selectmen of the Town, and also another assault upon Newton G. Lake, who was with him at the time. The defendant has not lived very peaceably with certain of his neighbors for some time, and probably dates back to the adultery case of a few years ago, at which the present defendant was one of the parties.
The present difficulty seems to have arisen about one Joshua Fairbanks, a town pauper, at the time living at Bell’s house. Mr. Phillips testified that he went to the defendant’s house, either to get Fairbanks or to notify defendant that the town would not pay for his support. Upon which the defendant ordered them away, using abusive language, and that afterward he came out armed with a shovel and not only assaulted them with his fist, but struck at them with his shovel, and finally thrust the shovel against Mr. Phillips, knocking him down.
All this the defendant denied. The jury, however, found the "Christian Hill" defendant guilty. when the time for sentencing arrived, Bell had departed, he having been on bail since his preliminary trial before the magistrate. His bail was called and defaulted, and a bench warrant issued for his arrest. District Attorney for Commmonwealth, C.C. Conant for defendant. This closed the criminal cases and the civil list was resumed with.
Joseph H. Hollister vs. Quincy Mutual Fire Insurance Co. In this case the plaintiff claims a sum due him on a policy in said company. The company, however, defend, alleging that the plaintiff has no claim on them, as he had failed to pay an assessment made in the required time, and his policy had consequently lapsed to the company. The court ordered the jury to return a verdict for the defendant, upon the law involved on an agreed statement of facts, and the case goes at once to the Supreme Court on the questions of law. C.C. Conant for plaintiff, D. Aiken for defendant.
Edward E. Coleman et al. vs. Loren S. Bartlett et al. - This was an action of contract for the recovery of the price of a turbine water wheel, made by E.E. Coleman & Co. of Shelburne Falls, for Loren S. Bartlett & Son of Northampton - the value of the wheel, worksetting the same and interest, amounting to $567.
The wheel in question was put into the mill some 2 years ago, and the contract therefor, the defendants allege, was that the plaintiffs agreed to put in the said wheel and to warrant it to work to the satisfaction of the defendants; that it should use less water and give more power than the wheel they were then using; but after trying the wheel for some time, with the same water as on the old wheel, found they got less power and could not operate the mill; and that on notice given of these facts to the defendants, they endeavored to remedy the defects, but still it did not work to their satisfaction, and they therefore refused to pay for the same.
The case was very thoroughly heard and a great amount of evidence introduced to show the conditions under which wheels are usually put into mills, the nature of turbine wheels in general, and much other matter relative thereto - of interest, perhaps to mill owners, or to the relative value of turbines and the conditions necessary to their successful working; but as a whole, the general interest in the case was not so great as in many others. Verdict for defendants. S.T. Field for plffs.; DW. Bond & H.H. Bond for defts.
Lyman J. Wait vs. Justin Thayer et al. - This case was partially presented to the jury, but was suspended to enable counsel to go to Brattleboro to take the deposition of S.F. Warner. The action is on a promissory note of $1000, given by Warner and endorsed by Thayer, Sargent & Co.of Northampton, Mr. Warner being at the time a member of the above named firm. The case attracts considerable attention on account of several nice points of commercial law involved.
While waiting for the taking of the deposition mentioned, the case of Joel R. Davenport vs. the inhabitants of Coleraine was taken up before the same jury. This action is for injury alleged to have been received by the plaintiff while traveling on the highway in said town. The case is still on trial.
The cases of Mary M. Hillman vs. The Inhabitants of Charlemont, and that of Chandler A. Vincent vs. The Inhabitants of Rowe stand next in order of trial. It will probably take the most of the present week to finish up the cases still standing for trial.
Gazette & Courier - Monday, August 23, 1875
News of the week
The details of a brutal and long continued case of assault have just come to light in Philadelphia. A well known and wealthy married man named John L. Kates, some years ago, seduced a 15 year old girl named Pemberton, and has held her in a life of semi-slavery ever since. Recently she attended a picnic without permission, and when she returned, he charged her with infidelity, knocked her down, beat her in a brutal manner, and then tearing all the clothes off her, poured burning fluid all over her, and set fire to her with the fiendish purpose to burn her alive.
The interference of some people in the house alone prevented the consummation of his design. On Fri. eve. last, he again whipped her in a brutal manner and swore he would disfigure her so she would never be able to go out. Tues. the neighbors complained of him, and he was arrested and held in $2200 bail for appearance at court.
Mary E. Woodard vs. Samuel S. Eastman et al. - This was an action of libel brought by the plaintiff, the wife of Elbridge O. Woodard of Greenfield, against the defendants, publishers of the Gazette & Courier, claiming $5000 as compensation for the damage to her character, by a certain item published in the paper of the defendants on the 25th of Jan. last. The following is the plaintiff’s declaration, and the plaintiff says the defendants printed and published, and caused and procured to be printed, published and circulated, in a certain newspaper, edited and issued by the defendants at Greenfield, in the same county, this false, scandalous and defamatory libel of and concerning the plaintiff, a copy whereof is hereby annexed:
Copy of libel annexed: "Our village was disturbed by a lively row Sat. eve. It appears that Elbridge G. Woodard, whose wife is employed in the kitchen of the Mansion House, had learned from intercepted letters that one Bailey, a blacksmith of Shelburne Falls, had planned an elopement with Mrs. W. Woodard [meaning thereby the plaintiff; and further meaning that she, the plaintiff, had secretly devised, agreed and arranged with the said Bailey, and he with her, to run away and leave her lawful husband, the said Elbridge G. Woodard, and to live with him, the said Bailey, in adultery], his brother Galusha Woodard, and a friend were in waiting at the appointed hour, and when Bailey made his appearance at the rear of the Mansion House, pounced upon him, one Woodard using his fists and the other a whip-stock. Officer Kimball finally separated the parties, but Bailey was badly punished. Thoroughly scared, he rushed for his team at the American House, and made hasty tracks for home, while Woodard, in another sleigh, followed in his pursuit."
Whereby the plaintiff was and is greatly injured in her name, character and reputation, and was and is held up and exposed to public ignominy, shame, and disgrace, and was and is otherwise, greatly damnified. By the plaintiff’s attorney, Charles G. Delano.
Defendants’ answer - And now the defendants come, and for answer say, that they admit that they are the publishers of the Gazette & Courier, and that the article set forth in plaintiff’s declaration was published in the issue of January 25, 1875. The defendants deny each and every other allegation contained in said declaration, and leave the plaintiff to prove the same. They deny that said alleged libelous article is false, scandalous or malicious. They deny that said plaintiff has been in any way injured in her name, character or reputation by said publication...And the defendants aver that said article, as published by them, is substantially true; and they say that the village was disturbed on said Sat. eve. by a lively row; that the plaintiff was employed at the Mansion House; that letters had been intercepted, and that the plaintiff’s husband had learned from said letters that one Bailey had planned an elopement with the plaintiff; that said husband and Galusha, his brother, were in waiting at the appointed hour, and that when Bailey made his appearance in the rear of the Mansion House, they pounced upon him, one with fists, and the other with a whip-stock; and that the parties were separated by Officer Kimball; and Bailey was badly punished, and rushed for his team at the American House, and drove rapidly homeward, pursued by Woodard.
And the defendant further say that said article, set forth in plaintiff’s declaration, was so published by them in good faith, without malice toward the plaintiff, as current news of the day, and substantially as stated by the husband of the plaintiff to the defendants and to the bystanders and to others, on said Sat. eve., and at other times...That said words "that one Bailey planned an elopement with Mrs. W." do not, in their plain, common and natural import, accuse the plaintiff of any action whatever in the matter. It is Bailey who has planned...By C.C. Conant, Defendant’s Att’y.
It was decided to proceed with the case, and C.G. Delano, Esq., counsel for the plaintiff, opened by alleging that the words of the obnoxious item were false, and would be an injury to his client for a long time; would lacerate her feelings and hold her up before the community in shame and disgrace. Admitting that a portion of the facts were true, he said the objectionable words were those which alleged elopement...The counsel then read an item alluding to the libel case, from a recent issue of the Springfield Union, the responsibility for the publication of which he tried to trace to the defendants...
The first witness called by the prosecution was the junior editor of the Gazette & Courier, who was asked under oath, the extent of the circulation of the paper. [This is rather a delicate question with some publishers, but we have no reason to be ashamed of our growth, in the court room or elsewhere]. Mary E. Woodard was next put upon the stand. She had lived in Greenfield about 10 years, and had been married 17 years to Elbridge G. Woodard. She held property and did business in her own name. The publication of the article which she had alleged was libelous, had been made the subject of no little talk and comment about town, and she cited instances when it had been the occasion of sneers and derision when she walked the streets.
People who had been friendly before now cut her acquaintance. She described an interview which she had with Mr. Eastman after the publication of the item. She said that she was real sorry that it had appeared, and asked him to retract it; but he said it was all true, and he could prove it. On the cross examination she said she had worked at the Mansion House 3 days, at the time of the disturbance there. Her husband came for her that night about 7 o’clock in the eve. to take her home. He went out to get his horse; had been gone half an hour when he came back and said there was a gentleman at the door who wanted to see her. She went to the door, saw a gentleman and went right back.
Afterwards she heard a noise but didn’t hear anything said. Didn’t know what the disturbance was about; didn’t anticipate any row; didn’t know what it was. Saw Bailey the week before at the house of friends at Shelburne Falls, and played cards with him. She saw her husband the next day after the fracas, but didn’t see him again that night. She never got a letter from Bailey; didn’t know whether her husband had intercepted one or not; she never wrote to him. She had lived in Coleraine a number of years with her husband. He was in the war 3 years. She had no talk with Mr. Doolittle after the trouble at the Mansion House about the matter, never told anybody that her husband had intercepted letters.
She never told Maggie Tracy anything about it nor Jim Butler. She never had any trouble at Coleraine with her husband; never heard any stories about her character; didn’t remember asking Hugh B. Miller if an accusation of unchastity by her husband was sufficient ground for divorce. She never told Euclid Owen that she was "going to get a good slice out of Eastman". never asked him if they could go back more than 5 years on her character. Didn’t sit on a sofa with Bailey at Shelburne Falls; never told him that he was the "first man that ever turned his back on her". In direct testimony she did not expect her husband to call upon her the night of the fracas. He asked her if she got a letter from Bailey, and she told him she hadn’t.
The prosecution rested their case her, and C.C. Conant Esq. opened for the defense. He told the jury that he would prove that the complainant’s character could not have been greatly injured by the publication, because it was already soiled by a reputation for unchastity in this and an adjoining town; but it would appear in testimony; that the statement published was substantially true. He would show that Bailey received a letter, and came to Greenfield to meet her in obedience to it; that this proposed meeting was the reason that Woodard committed the assault, and because Bailey was going to run away with his wife. Before the witnesses for the defense were called to testify, Lilla B. Woodard, a daughter of the plaintiff, was put upon the stand by the prosecution, and she said that she had complained to her mother about the treatment she receives from the children at school in consequence of the scandal.
The first witness for the defense was Samuel S. Eastman, the senior editor of the Gazette & Courier. He described the interview with Mrs. Woodard at his house after the publication. she asked him if he had not published something about her, and he replied by inquiring if Bailey did not come to meet her, and if letters were not intercepted. She did not deny, but she said "You can’t prove it". She did not ask him to retract or apologize, but was violent in her talk and behavior, and said she would give him all the law he wanted.
E.A. Hall, the junior proprietor of the Gazette was called to the stand, and said that he wrote the item giving an account of the disturbance, that he had no malice towards Mrs. Woodard, and knew her only by reputation. In the cross examination he told how he obtained the facts, as published, by Officer Kimball, whom Woodard had told that he (Woodard) had intercepted letters from Bailey to his wife, arranging to run away with her. Darwin F. Hamilton, a clerk in the post office, did not recollect of a letter passing through the office directed to Mrs. Woodard.
George Doolittle, proprietor of the Mansion House, said the plaintiff worked for him two days at the time of the fracas. He recollected the disturbance. Mrs. Woodard was in the pastry room at the time, adjoining the kitchen, where the sound of voices outside could be plainly heard. He saw Mrs. Woodard when she came for her pay, and she said she ran away because of the trouble. Maggie Tracy, meat cook at the Mansion House, testified that she slept with Mrs. Woodard the night after the disturbance. Mrs. W. told her then that her husband said he had received letters from Shelburne Falls directed to her.
Mrs. Woodard told her that she was "a’feared" to go home. At the time of the disturbance, she (Maggie) was in her room, second story, facing Federal Street, and heard Woodard say that the man was going to run away with his wife, and that he had letters in his pocket to show it. Joseph A. Bailey of Shelburne Falls was the next witness put upon the stand. He saw Mrs. Woodard at Shelburne Falls, at the house of one White, where he joined with her in a game of cards. He left her about 11 o’clock. He came to Greenfield the night of Jan. 23, and hitched his horse at the American House; went to the Mansion House alone; met a man at the entrance of the stable yard, of whom he inquired for the hostler; the man lead him to a short distance and then assaulted him.
He didn’t know as he saw Mrs. Woodard or any other woman. He received a letter from "M.E. Woodard" that day, asking him to meet her in the eve. at the American House. He met a man there, by the name of Hossington, who told him that she wasn’t there. When he was with her at White’s, at Shelburne Falls, she said, when he was seated beside her on a sofa, that "I was the first man that ever turned his back on her". On the cross examination, Bailey said that Hossington told him at Shelburne Falls, the day of the fracas at Greenfield, that he would get a letter from Mrs. Woodard. When he stopped at the American House he went in and took a drink of whiskey. He denied that he knew Mrs. Woodard was at the Mansion House. When asked his name during the fracas, he said it was "Hilliard".
Hugh B. Miller of Coleraine was next called. He had known plaintiff since 1860; her reputation for chastity in Coleraine was not good, and he should think that it was the same at Greenfield. Thomas D. Purrinton of Coleraine knew this woman, and her reputation for chastity was not the best. Charles Webster Smith of Coleraine had heard people say "she" was not what she should be. J.B. Clark of Coleraine said her reputation for chastity was not the best. Dwight Jewett of South Deerfield was acquainted with the plaintiff, and her general reputation for chastity was bad. When cross examined, he said her father and brother had called her character into question. C.B. Tilton of South Deerfield corroborated Mr. Jewett’s statement. Alfred Wells of Greenfield knew Mary Woodard’s reputation, and it was bad. Bela Kellogg of Greenfield said her reputation for chastity was not what it should be.
J.H. Beals testified that his place of business on the night of Jan. 23, was opposite the kitchen of the Mansion House on Federal Street. He thought the noise of the fracas could be heard 20 rods. The distance from the pastry room across the kitchen was 14 ft. He could hear the talk in his store with the door shut. He heard Woodard ask Kimball to arrest Bailey, and when the officer said he would arrest him if he didn’t stop, Woodard said "Mr. Kimball, you don’t understand, this man has had sexual intercourse with my wife" or words to that effect.
C.H. McClellan being called, said that he was a storekeeper in Greenfield. Had known plaintiff in Coleraine and Greenfield, and her reputation for chastity was not good. J.M. Monson has known her for some years, and her reputation has been bad ever since he knew her. Euclid Owen testified to having had conversation with plaintiff in reference to the case. She had asked him how much she was likely to get; a thousand dollars would do her a great deal of good; she meant to "get a good slice out of Eastman". she asked if they could go back on her character to the time she lived in Coelraine. He told her that they could not go back more than 5 years.
Henry L. Miller said that his shop was 22 paces from the entrance to the Mansion House. He heard Woodard’s voice answer to a question "This man was going to run away with my wife". He heard it distinctly. George A. Kimball, the officer who quelled the disturbance, testified that he heard the noise of the fracas as far off as Howland & Lowell’s store, some 15 rods. He found Bailey in the custody of Woodard, told the latter to let him go, and the former to clear out. Kimball declined to arrest Bailey because he had no authority. In answer to his inquiry, Bailey gave his name as "Couillard". Woodard said his name wasn’t Couillard, but Bailey, as he had a letter in his pocket.
The disturbance was within 3 ft. of the windows of the kitchen. Thomas Todd, employed in the Federal Street Market, testified that he went out when he heard the row; saw a fellow running and Woodard after him. In answer to his inquiry, Woodard said the fellow was after his wife. Heard Woodard say to Mr. Kimball, that he had got a letter in his pocket to show the man’s name. This last statement was corroborated by Samuel J. Lyons, who heard a portion of the conversation. Miss Belle W. Eastman, daughter of the senior proprietor of the paper, corroborated her father’s testimony in regard to the conversation between him and Mrs. W., at the interview at the former’s house. She remembered distinctly shutting the hall door when ushering Mrs. W. into the house. Mrs. Woodard did not ask her father to retract the statements in the publication.
The defense here rested their case, and the prosecution then called the following witnesses, who had known the plaintiff and had not heard her reputation called in question: S.L. Shattuck, George W. Potter, Joel Wilson, Hattie A. Sessions, Sarah H. Brown (of Leyden), Lewis W. White. The latter lives at Shelburne Falls, and it was at his house where Bailey was introduced to Mrs. Woodard. They played "Old Maid". Hossington, his wife’s brother, was present. He didn’t see anything out of character. The testimony of Mrs. White was substantially the same. Elbridge G. Woodard, the husband of the plaintiff, was slow called to the stand. He couldn’t describe much of the Mansion House fracas.
He said the letter he told Kimball he had in his pocket was from the Warrior Mowing Machine Co., on the back of which he had some memoranda. He said he heard Bailey was coming there from Bill Hossington. He didn’t have any letter which he had destroyed. He didn’t know that he had told S.D. Bardwell of Shelburne Falls that he had destroyed a letter from Bailey to his wife. He didn’t know that he had left instructions at the post office to have all letters addressed to his wife detained and given to him. On the night of the fracas he didn’t know Bailey. He thrashed a man he did not know, and that he couldn’t see in the dark. He followed him to Shelburne Falls.
Went to Bardwell’s to enter a complaint against Bailey for riding out with his wife. He was over there the same day in Bailey’s shop with Hossington, told him about Bailey and his wife. He didn’t tell Mr. Bardwell that Bailey said he had had all he wanted out of Mrs. Woodard. At this point the prosecution called to the stand Dr. Charles L. Fisk, L.L. Luey, George Pierce Jr., James Newton, A.A. Rankin and S.O. Lamb, who couldn’t recollect that they had heard Mrs. Woodard’s character called to question.
S.D. Bardwell, a magistrate at shelburne Falls, was called by the defense in rebuttal. Woodard came to him on the night of the 23rd of Jan. saying that he had taken a letter from the post office in Greenfield, directed to his wife, purporting to come from Bailey, arranging a meeting. He (Woodard) was exasperated and proceeded to catch Bailey when he came according to his appointment. A complaint of rape was made on Woodard’s representation. On cross examination Mr. Bardwell said that Bailey was tried before him on the complaint, but was discharged because neither Mr. nor Mrs. Woodard appeared against him. Euclid Owen was also called to the stand to contradict Woodard’s statements. Woodard told him that he was about starting for Conway that Sat.; he went into the post office and took out a letter for his wife and noticed it was from Shelburne Falls. He opened it and found it was from Bailey. He didn’t say what he did with the letter.
The evidence in the case was now in, and W.S.B. Hopkins Esq. of Worcester presented the cause of the defense to the jury. It was one of those cases that it was always unpleasant to try, but nevertheless should be tried fully and fairly. There were several points in the statements of the alleged libelous article upon which both sides agree. The counsel for the prosecution objected to the portion which says: "One Bailey, a blacksmith at Shelburne Falls, had planned an elopement with Mrs. W." Were these words libelous? The words were capable of two constructions, and it was left for the jury to determine which was intended...
[Follows a long rehashing of the evidence]. Judge Aldrich charged the jury at considerable length, and with unusual clearness. He explained the difference between slander and libel. A libel is a false imputation which is written or published, holding up the slandered party to more public ridicule and contempt than would words spoken in slander. the plaintiff claims that she has sustained damage in consequence of the article published. The defendants admit the publication. they say that it is not libelous, does not hold up Mrs. Woodard to shame and ridicule. It was not claimed that there was any actual malice on the part of the defendants.
The question of inference or interpretation of the words should be decided by the jury; they should determine the obnoxious meaning; should see practical common sense to reach a verdict; they should decide whether the words were applicable to the plaintiff or not; whether Bailey planned an elopement with Mrs. Woodard or without her aid. If the import of the language was that it was a plan of Bailey alone, then it was no imputation upon Mrs. Woodard. the defendants say that if it was a charge upon Mrs. Woodard, they can prove that it is true. It was for the jury to say whether the truth was established or not.
The judge reviewed the evidence. If what Woodard said in the fracas was competent evidence, it must be proven that it was within the hearing of his wife. This the jury should determine. If the matter is libelous and also true, you must find for the defendants, if libelous and untrue, the verdict should be for the plaintiff. In fixing damage to character, the jury should take the standing of the woman before the public for chastity. A bad character may be hurt, and it was for them to determine the extent. It was competent for the defense to show a bad reputation 10 years before. If a woman years ago was lascivious, the presumption is that her character continues the same. The jury were to judge whether before the publication she was a pure woman.
The case was given to the jury at 4:30 on Thurs. Their first duty was to choose a foreman, as E.D. Merriam, the foreman previously chosen, was challenged off. The judge kept the court open till 9 o’clock in the eve. and then adjourned, and the jury were out all night. At 9 the next morning, they announced that they had still failed to agree, and were called into the court room. The judge took the occasion to say that he thought the case a clear one, and it should not have detained them but a short time. In a case of this type, the burden of proof rested with the plaintiff. It was necessary for the defendants to show only the truth by a preponderance of evidence.
They should show the truth by a fair amount of testimony, absolute truth was not insisted upon. It was the duty of the jury to render a verdict if possible. They should pay proper respect to each others’ opinions. He then sent them out to make another attempt. About half past 11 in the forenoon, the jury sent in for instruction, asking if the word "appears" used in the article alleged to be libelous, did not indicate that there was no direct charge. His Honor instructed them that that was the very point which they themselves must determine. He added that he wanted them to understand that he was not detaining them. If they were satisfied that they could not agree, they might say so and be dismissed. But the jury retired to their room, and in 5 minutes returned a verdict for the defendants. They had had a siege of 19 hours and were dismissed until Mon. morning.
The counsel for the plaintiff had filed a bill of exceptions, which has not yet been approved by the judge.
Gazette & Courier - Monday, August 16, 1875
An imitator of Jesse Pomeroy
The Boston Post says that much excitement was created in Newton, Mass. last week in consequence of the development regarding a youth named Archibald Jackson, who was examined before trial justice B.B. Johnson on the 3rd. Jackson, who is about 18 years of age and respectably connected, inveigled into a field a child named William Mullen. With Jackson was a boy named John Dwyer, 9 years younger, who was intimidated by his older companion to join him, not knowing for what purpose he was wanted.
When Jackson succeeded in getting the Mullen child into the field, he deliberately stripped him naked and then administered to him a severe whipping, after which he taunted the little fellow on his helpless condition. While thus engaged, Jackson saw approaching a girl about 11 years of age, whereupon he tied the limbs of the Mullen boy, and then called the girl to him. At first she appeared reluctant but was induced to draw near to Jackson, who seized and led her to the prostrate form of his little victim, compelling her to gaze upon the boy in his nude state.
He then released the girl who fled at once. Then he untied young Mullen, who dressed rapidly and was about to depart, when Jackson again approached him with the evident intention of renewing his atrocities. Young Mullen, however, was dressed by this time, and in such a desperate frame of mind, that when he saw his tormentor approaching, he drew out his pocket knife and threatened to stab Johnson.
The latter thereupon picked up an ax halve he had carried, dealt the lad a very severe blow upon one hand, compelling him to drop the weapon and flee for his life. He succeeded in reaching his home without further injury, and then gave information which led to the arrest of Jackson.
The suit brought by Mary E. Woodard against the proprietors of the Gazette and Courier for libel, has the past week been on trial before the Superior court, and has engrossed more or less of the public attention. We publish elsewhere a report of the trial, which we have endeavored to make impartial. We wish, however to say, that the introduction of the testimony reflecting upon the character of the plaintiff, was rendered necessary in our own defense...It is the first suit of the kind in which we have ever been engaged, and we trust that it will be the last...
We admit that we sometimes make mistakes, through informants who may be in error, or correspondents who may have a meaning in their words that is not to us apparent. Every publisher is thus liable to make misstatements; but we assure our readers that we are always ready to make retraction and redress for these wrongs. Let it be shown in a proper way that we are in error, and we promise to make all suitable correction. As stated by the senior publisher of the paper on the witness stand, we hold ourselves responsible for every line which appears in our paper.
The verdict of the jury for the defendants throws all of the taxable costs in defending the suit on Mrs. Woodard.
Gazette & Courier - Monday, August 2, 1875
A shameful case of cruelty
A shameful case of cruelty to a dying woman has just come to light at Somerville, where a woman who was in the last stages of consumption was left upon a hard bed over-run with vermin by her relatives, who held drunken orgies in the room, often striking her and denying her medical assistance, till a woman in the city heard of it and took the sufferer to her residence, where she died.
Gazette & Courier - Monday, August 2, 1875
News of the week
A man named Baker, a Providence painter about 40 years old, was arrested at Oak Bluffs, Martha's Vineyard a few days ago, for attempting to outrage several little girls, daughters of summer residents, but as the parents did not wish to give publicity to the matter, he was allowed to go on condition of leaving the State.
Irving Richmond of Florida, who pleaded guilty of adultery last week at Pittsfield, was given 18 months in the house of correction, and Abbie L. Myers of Florida, confessing to the same crime, was sent up for 15 months.
Gazette & Courier - Monday, July 19, 1875
Rev. J.W. Hanner
Rev. J.W. Hanner, Presiding Elder of the Methodist church for the Murfreesboro (Tenn.) district - 65 years old, 45 years a minister, prominent and eloquent - has been suspended for trying to seduce a young woman.
Gazette & Courier - Monday, June 14, 1875
A horrible double outrage was perpetrated by a negro upon 2 sisters
A horrible double outrage was perpetrated by a negro upon 2 sisters, aged 20 and 23, named Johnson, white girls living in Dekalb county, Georgia a few days since. They were at home alone with a little brother, who tried in vain to kill the negro with an ax. A negro named Gordon Jones has been arrested on suspicion and taken to the house for identification.
Gazette & Courier - Monday, June 14, 1875
News of the week
A tragedy at Harmony, Me. On Sun. eve. the 6th, Miss Ada Marble, daughter of Winslow Marble of Harmony, Me., a young lady 21 years of age, and of irreproachable character, went out alone to take a walk before going to bed. As she did not return search was made for her, and on Mon. morning her body was found in Main stream in about 2 ft. of water. The indications are of outrage and murder, and a coroner's inquest is to be held.
Gazette & Courier - Monday, June 7, 1875
News of the week
John L. White of Boston is under arrest for outraging the person of Emma G. Escabel, the 10 year old daughter of his washerwoman, the girl having yielded to him through the influence of a promised visit to Barnum's hippodrome and a new silk dress.
Tues. night Philip Parr, a German farmer living 7 miles from St. Louis, was murdered, and his wife, who was about to become a mother, brutally ravished by an unknown negro. Intense excitement prevails in the neighborhood, and 20 mounted horsemen have been scouring the woods and fields all day, but at last accounts had found no trace of the murderer. [Read about the execution of the killer, Henry Brown, in the article "Execution at St. Louis" in the New York Times Oct. 23, 1875 edition].
Gazette & Courier - Monday, May 24, 1875
A Jersey clerical scandal
The latest case of clerical falling from grace is the Rev. John W. Porter, formerly an ex-confederate, then pastor of a small church down on the Maine coast, but latterly a dispenser of religious truth to the Baptist Church at Van Syckle's Corners near Clifton, N.J. and teacher of the village school. His victim is a mere child, Selinda Stires, not 14 years of age, daughter of the man he boarded with, and an unusually bright pupil in his school.
/ About a month ago, he went to Boston and married a Southern lady, with whom he had become acquainted in Maine, and returning, was proceeding to settle down, when the child, Selinda Stires, being about to become a mother, confessed that her seducer was her teacher and pastor. Confronted with the charge by Selinda's father, the reverend gentleman confessed his guilt and declared himself willing to make all the reparation in his power, and - here is the most singular part of the scandal - this he judged could best be done by giving Mr. Stires a bill of sale on his horse and buggy. The father, a man of rare worldly sagacity, without a moment's hesitation, closed with the offer, because, as he said, the mischief was done, and no man could give more than he possessed in atonement. The next morning, the earliest train through Annandale, which is the nearest railway station to Van Syckle's Corners, took the Rev. John W. Porter and his wife toward Philadelphia. [Good news - I see that Selinda got married in 1881, 5 years after the event].
Gazette & Courier - Monday, May 24, 1875
News of the week
First cousins were married in Ottawa, Kansas last wek. When the relationship was discovered, the Judge and minister waited on the parties, read the law to them, and informed them that they must consider themselves unmarried.
Gazette & Courier - Monday, May 10, 1875
A sad sequel to an unhappy married life
The sad story of the death of Mrs. Anna Curtis, soprano of the Church of the Atonement in New York from the effects of an abortion, and of her previous unhappy intimacy with Benjamin Gregory, the organist of the church, has a sequel equally sad. Her husband, Tyler Curtis, who was in San Francisco at the time of her death, received the sad event from a telegram asking him what should be done with his wife's body. He hurriedly telegraphed to have the body placed in a receiving vault until his arrival. While packing up his effects preparatory to leaving San Francisco, he got an evening paper in which he read with grieved amazement the story of his wife's shame. Dazed and heartbroken, he took the train for New York, where he arrived on Apr. 8. The sudden shock to his feelings was too much for him to bear, and he sank rapidly, dying on Thurs. from grief and prostration under the blow which he had received. [For more on this story, see the New York Times article of March 19, 1875 entitled "Mrs. Tyler Curtis' Funeral"].