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Colonial Cases


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  3 January 1877 (4)


Of the 200 or more persons who were plunged down in to the gulf of death at Ashtabula not more than five or six escaped unhurt, while of the ninety-five wounded forty have died, making a total loss of life of at least 140 human beings who perished in the terrible disaster.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  2 February 1877 (4)

The coroner's inquest in the Rhoads murder case in Quincy, has been adjourned until Wednesday of next week.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  21 February 1877 (1)

In the Audrain Circuit Court last week the case of the State vs. Branstetter, charged with the murder of Jefferson D. Lowery, in the town of Vandalia, Audrain county, on the 28th of December last, came on for trial.  The case was submitted to the jury, who retired, and in about three hours returned a verdict of guilty of murder in the second degree, and assessed his punishment at imprisonment in the penitentiary for 83 years.  The judge in passing sentence, reduced the term of imprisonment to 60 years.  A motion for a new trial was made, but the court overruled it, and the sheriff left immediately with the prisoner for Jefferson City.

   Some two weeks ago the skeleton of a woman was found in the woods near Sturgeon, and at the inquest it was ascertained that she had been killed by a mover going  from Indiana to Kansas.  The man had a crippled hand and yesterday he was captured in Chariton county and brought to this place, were he awaits trial.  The testimony is mainly circumstantial, but there is scarcely a doubt but that he is the man who committed the crime.  His name is Buffington, and he is regarded as a hard case, indeed, having killed his man or two, and in all probability his little child, as it disappeared mysteriously.  It took a strong effort on the part of leading citizens to prevent him from being lynched.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  24 February 1877 (4)

Monroe County, Mo.

Joseph Spelling, who had been missing for about two weeks, was found on Tuesday, in a pond on the John Glenn farm, near Madison.  It is supposed that he had been in the pond for nearly two weeks. The coroner held an inquest on the body, and the verdict of the jury was that he came to his death by accidental drowning.

Clark County, Mo.

Kahoka Gazette.

A dreadful affair occurred near Luray last Wednesday.  On the day named, Mrs. Herron and her three children - two little boys, aged two and four years, and a little deaf and dumb girl - were at home, the other members of the family being away.  While the mother was engaged doing her ordinary household duties, the children were at play in an old corn-crib having but one entrance and containing a lot of husks and rubbish next the door.  Leaving the two boys at play. The little girl (from some unexplained cause) proceeded to the house and obtained a shovel full of coals which she placed upon the husks in the crib, setting them on fire and cutting off the only avenue of escape for the boys, who were in the back part of the building.  The mother heard the cried of her children and rushed frantically to save them, but was unable to rescue them until they were so badly burned that they died the following day.  Both the little bodies were buried in one coffin on Friday.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  17 March  1877 (4)


Scott McDonald Finds a Watery Grave in the Bay.

Yesterday the body of Scott McDonald, a boy about seventeen years of age, was found in the bay a short distance above the city.  The deceased was a nephew of Mrs. Kizar, who has a vineyard on the bluff adjoining the bay.  It was part of his business to cross passengers over the bay in a skiff kept for that purpose.  Yesterday morning he rowed a party of hunters over and did not return, but his absence did not cause any uneasiness, as it was supposed that he was amusing himself on the other side.  Later it was reported that the skiff had been seen floating at random in the bay, and an investigation of the facts attending his disappearance led to the belief that he had been drowned.  After a short search,. His body was found a short distance from the shore.

   It is said that the deceased was subject to fits, and the theory of his death is that after he had landed the hunters on the other side, he had a fit, and fell from the skiff into the water.

   Coroner Dick was notified of the facts in the case, but he thought that under the circumstances an inquest would be useless, and consequently none was held.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  30 March 1877 (4)


Nicodemus Roach was found lying face downward, last Friday, in the road, one mile east of Philadelphia, dead.  Judge Walker held an inquest.  Verdict: "Came to his death by falling from his horse while attacked with an epileptic fit - falling with his face in the mud and water and strangled to death."


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  4 April  1877 (4)


A Body Literally ground to Atoms by a Freight Train on the H. & St. Jo.

Tuesday afternoon  about half past three o'clock, freight train number 12, on the H. & St. Jo., passed over the body of a man lying on the track, literally crushing it to pieces, about a mile this side of Clarence.  There is a curve in the road at this point and the body was not discovered until too late to stop the train.  Whether the body had life or not at the time it was struck by the train, was not ascertained.  Mr. Lewis Ryder lives near this point, and he stated to the train  men that a negro stopped at his house and told him there was a man lying on the track and he had started to get him  off, but before he could reach him the train had passed over him.  A singular circumstance of the affair is that the negro did not get the man off the track himself instead of waiting to go and tell Mr. Ryder to get him off.  The train was stopped as soon as  possible and an  examination was made by Mr. Ryder and the train  men of the fragments of the clothing and body remaining, but nothing was discovered to identify the person.  A broken whisky bottle was found, and appearances indicated that the man was a laborer.  No possible blame can be attached to any of the train men.  Conductor W. L. Hance and the train men who were with him went to Clarence last night to testify before the coroner's inquest.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  10 April 1877 (4)


Rather Than Give up His Home Hiram Clark Dies on His Hearth-Stone.

Hiram H. Clark, a son of the late ex-governor Clark of Maryland,. lived with his family near Madison, Monroe county.  He had contracted for a piece of land from a man named Alexander, on which he had established his home.  He had made several payments on his farm, but notwithstanding he had striven hard, he had failed to make the others when they became due.   Alexander brought suit for the possession of the land, and it was awarded to him by the law, an d Clark must therefore consequently lose his home, his labor and his money.  It is reported that Clark said he would sooner die than give up his home.

   Constable Cliff Wade was sent with a posse of men to dispossess Clark.  He arrived at Clark's house Friday evening.  Clark and his family refused to move.  The Constable and his men moved his goods and chattels out in to the yard.  Meantime Clark sat in a chair with a revolver cocked laying on a table in front of him.

   It was very late when the constable finished moving the goods from the house and Clark's family, which consisted of his wife, two larger sons and several smaller children, had nowhere to lay their heads.  They were permitted to move some beds back into the house on which they slept during the night.  And until the hours of daylight, while the constable and his men kept watch, Clark still sat with his revolver cocked before him.

   With the dawn of day the crisis came.  All the family had left the room.  Every article of furniture except the chair on  which Clark sat and the table on which the revolver lay had again been moved out.

   "Old man," said the constable, "every thing has been moved out.  It is now time for you to go."  The constable and one of his men, Mont Riley, moved toward Clark as if they would eject him.  Clark quickly covered the body of the constable with his revolver, which he snapped.  Before he could cock his pistol again the constable and his man had fired three shots, and the stubborn old man  fell dead upon his hearthstone pierced by three bullets, one of which entered his head, another his neck and the third his heart, and either of which must have proved fatal.

   The tragedy occasioned great excitement in Madison and vicinity.  There was considerable discussion as to the cause which led to the death of Clark, a portion of the community claiming that the conduct of the constable had been irreproachable, while others charged that his treatment of Clark and his family had been such as to drive Clark to desperation.

    An inquest was held Sunday afternoon on the body of Clark, but we have not yet received the verdict returned.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  19 April 1877 (1)

On Monday of last week Mr. Wm. H. Evans, of Jasper township, aged 77 years, was found dead in the woods near his residence. He went out in the morning of the day above mentioned to feed some stock, and not returning in a reasonable length of time, search was made for him,, with the result above stated.  An inquest was held b y Walter Ellis, Esq., and the jury returned a verdict of death from apoplexy.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  10 July 1877 (1)


The Argument of Pistols and Clubs if not Convincing is at Least Conclusive.

A few days since there was a lively time at the colored church in Montgomery City.  A misunderstanding arose on some religious question, and as neither side could convince the other of its error, it was resolved to follow the practice so long established by their white brethren and do a little bloodletting.  When the  services closed there commenced a general row.  The arguments which each side failed to force into the heads of the other by reasoning, they attempted to drive through the skulls of their opponents with clubs,. And the words which failed to touch their hearts were shot into them with powder and lead.  There were fist fights innumerable, and many pistol shots were fired, one of which took effect in the breast of Robert Harris, producing almost instant death.  Ben Trimble was stabbed, and beaten on the head with a pistol.

   On Monday, Judge Ferguson, the coroner, held an inquest.  The jury returned a verdict to the effect that Rob't Harris came to his death from a pistol shot directed by Ben Trimble, colored.  The said Ben and his brother Henry are now under arrest on the charge of murdering Rob't Harris, and the preliminary examination is being held before 'Squire Lewis.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  6 August 1877 (1)

The coroner's inquest in the murder of Spencer and his children in Clark Co., Mo., leads to suspicion of Spencer's brother-in-law, Lewis, and a man by the name of Bailey.  They have been arrested.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  14 September 1877 (4



An infant was found in an old disused well at the fairgrounds in Bowling Green on Monday morning.  It is supposed that it was put in the well by its inhuman mother a short time after its birth and had been in there but a day or two.  Esquire Campbell had an inquest held over the corpse and the jury returned a verdict in accordance with the above facts.


A child of James Herring, living at Asher's ford, on Salt River, north of this place, was drowned on Friday the 7th.  The little girl only four years old, had followed her father to the river, where he was engaged in building a furnace, and when ready to return to the house, called his child and finding it made no appearance, went to the bank of the river, where he found from the traces in the mud, that she had stepped into the water and was absolutely, (we are informed) drowned in the water not more than 18 inches deep.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  29 October 1877 (4)

A man by the name of John Hayes was run over and killed by the C., B. & Q. passenger train near Millville, Saturday evening.  The victim had been at Quincy, and while returning home it is supposed he sat down upon the track and fell asleep.  His body was cut into pieces, which were gathered up and taken to Quincy, where an inquest was held.  Deceased was 38 years old and leaves a wife and two children.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  2 November 1877 (4)


A Man Falls Over a Precipice and Meets a Shocking Death.

Bartel Webber, 48 years old, in the employment of the Gas Company, this city, was found dead this morning, in the old Davis stone quarry.  It is supposed that in extinguishing the gas lights last night, he made a false step and fell fully thirty feet over the bluff. Striking his head against the rocks below, crushing in the top of his head, and scattering his brains around him.  His corpse presented a most ghastly sight.   Coroner Dick held an inquest this morning, and the jury returned a verdict in accordance with the above.


DAILY EVENING HERALD (St. Louis, Mo.), 26 September 1835 (2)

MELANCHOLY. - A SON SUPPOSED TO HAVE BEEN KILLED BY HIS FATHER. - On Monday, on consequence of some altercation, Mr. Hart Levi, No. 5 Elizabeth street, threw his son a young man, 21 years of age, down stairs, and injured him so severely that he died yesterday.  On the fact of the death coming to the ears of the Police Office, Justice Jopson immediately despatched two officers in search of the unfortunate father.  The justice hearing, however, that Levi had made his escape from Elizabeth street, and was making his way to the wharf, where the Albany steam boats start from, despatched a couple more of the officers in that direction.  Somewhere in the neighborhood of St. John's Park, Mr. Levi was caught, arrested, and brought to the Police Office.  The witnesses were immediately summoned, and the Coroner sent for.  Mr. Levi appeared to be in a high state of excitement, talking very freely about his son, &c.  Mr. Hopson told him - "Hold your tongue; don't criminate yourself by talking too much."

   The Coroner's inquest had not been finished when our paper went to press. - N. Y. Herald.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 28 May 1852 (1)


An inquest was held on Sunday, the 23d day of May, 1852; at the Upper Liberty Landing, over the body of some unknown man; so much decayed as not to be identified.  He had on a Blue Cassinett Box Coat, pantaloons Felt Cloth Flannel and checked Cotton shirt, drawers, good Boots and Socks, full six feet high, all the teeth sound, the hair on the head gone, no papers found.  In the fob, a Silver Detached Lever watch, with the letters P.S. roughly engraved on the inside of the case, and a whip lash or thong in the coat pocket.

   Verdict of Jury - deceased came to his death by means unknown to them, but supposed by accidental drowning.  MERIT TILLERY, J.P.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 27 August 1852 (1)

A man by the name of George Falston, a Frenchman died in a skiff, at our wharf last Sunday night.  He was a peddler of sea shells, and was descending the river trafficking at the different landings.  He had been sick several days, according to the account of a youth who was with him, but refused to leave the boat or have medical advice.  An inquest was held on his body, and a verdict of death from unknown cause rendered.  His money and effects are in the hands of the Mayor. - [Glasgow Times.]


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 8 April 1853 (1)

A Dead Body Found.

Yesterday afternoon the body of a woman was noticed floating past the Ferry boat.  It was brought ashore opposite Samuel & Moss' packing house, and an inquest held.  As no marks of violence could be detected, after a careful examination, a verdict of accidental drowning was rendered.

   The deceased appeared to be some twenty years of age, was of small stature, and had on as dark bombazine dress, and high shoes laced up in front.  Several cords were hung round her neck, to which were attached a trunk key, a small medal, and what was supposed to be an amulet.

   By her appearance and style of dress she was supposed to be an English woman, and the medal led to the opinion that she was a Catholic.

   The deceased seemed to have been in the water a long time - perhaps more than a month. - [Hannibal Journal.


A respectable citizen of Nodaway county recently married, by the name of Amaziah Morgan, was struck with lightning during a storm, one day last week, while crossing a small branch, riding a mule, with a new axe on his shoulder.  The metal appears to have attracted the eclectic fluid - instantly killing both him self and beast. - No marks were left of the destructive element excepting a slight mark on the beast, and a scorching of the man's cap. ... [Savannah Sentinel.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 17 June 1853 (1)

Death of James William Morrow.

MELANCHOLY SUICIDE. - A man by the name of James QW. Morrow, who had been engaged for several weeks in teaching [??] Commercial School in this city came to his death on Tuesday night last by his own hand, as near as we could learn under the following circumstances.  He had been laboring under a depressed state of mind for several days, and being entirely out of means, became desperate, and resolved upon taking his own life and thus rid himself of a sea of troubles.  He accordingly took out his pen knife, and after making several unsuccessful attempts, (as is supposed) at reaching his heart, cut his throat, and in this condition bled to death.  The trickling of blood upon the floor soon awakened two other gentlemen, who were sleeping in the same room, when they found him a lifeless corpse.  He was a young man about 26 years of age, and we should judge from his appearance, was a man of intelligence and good family.  His father, we learn is a resident of Virginia, and has already been advised of the death of his son.

   The coroner held an inquest over his body on Wednesday morning last, and the jury rendered a verdict of "came to his death by his own hand," when he was carried to his long homer, and his body deposited in mother earth. - St. Jo. Cycle. [Further paragraphs.]


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 17 February 1854 (4)

INFANTICIDE. - Our town was thrown into a little excitement on Saturday morning last, by the City Marshall's finding the body of an infant in the vault of a privy, in this city.  A coroner's Inquest was held, but the jury were unable to ascertain how or by what means the child came to its death.  They were fully satisfied that it had been murdered, but by who, or who was the mother of it, they could not ascertain.  How debased, and groveling, must be the mother who could thus destroy her own offspring, to say nothing of the enormity of the crime. The heart grows sick, contemplating the thought of such depravity in a human breast.  There is a dark unfathomable abyss of woe beyond the scene, which perchance no mortal eye has seen, or ear heard, and may never know, until the last great day. - Weston Reporter/.

THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 17 March 1854 (1)

DEVELOPMENT OF A MURDER. - On Saturday last a barrel of whisky or alcohol was put on board the steamer Alvin Adams at our wharf, which was directed, very illegibly, to Dr. Kelly, Lodago, Ia., but there was no entry of it on the receiving book of either of the Clerks.  Madison being the point to which freight for that place is shipped, the barrel was rolled out on Sunday upon the wharf boat at that place; there being no owner for it, and its rolling being peculiar, as if some heavy body was in it, it attracted observation at the time; after the boat left it was taken to the Railroad Depot, where the peculiarity of the case induced those having it in charge to open one of the heads, when in the liquor was found a naked body of a man who had a terrible gash across the throat and a severe bruise on the head.

   A Coroner's inquest was held but its findings we have not fully learned.  Much excitement was created in Madison thereby, and rumors were started that the body was that of a Mr. Slevin, who disappeared from Louisville on the 23d of January last.  By dispatched revived this morning, we learn that the body is not that of Mr. Slevin. - Cin. Atlas, 2d.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 14 April 1854 (1)

Melancholy Suicide.

A beautiful and interesting young wife committed suicide, night-before last, in her residence on Thalia street between Camp and Paytania, by taking laudanum. Cause - neglect on the part of her husband.  The name of the unfortunate woman was Mariana Lowe; she was about 17 years of age, and German by birth.  About a year since, she married a man named John Lowe, with whom she resided in Thalia street.  They lived unhappily together, and she has had for some time back good reason for believing her husband had ceased to love her or to remember and respect the vows he had made in marriage, and had transferred his affections to another woman who resided in the immediate neighborhood.

   He was in the habit of absenting himself for days from home, and his wife, it is said, had proofs strong as holy writ that he passed most of his time in company with the female above alluded to.  Day before yesterday, the young wife (her husband having been absent from her for several days,) repaired to the house of this woman, and inquired if her husband was not there.

   She was answered by the woman, "I don't know anything about your husband, but there is my husband," pointing to a gentleman seated in the room, in whom the young wife recognized her truant lord.  She uttered not a word of complaint, but, returning to her home, dispatched the servant to a drug store in the vicinity for an ounce of laudanum.  She wrote a long and extremely pathetic letter in the German language and then taking the laudanum laid herself down upon her unhonored bridal couch and soon her wronged spirit winged its eternal flight to that world where marriage vows are not broken and where all wrongs are redressed.

   Yesterday morning her mother visited the house very early, and found her daughter dead.  The Coroner was immediately sent for, an inquest was held on the body, and, after the examination of several witnesses and a post mortem examination of the body, the jury returned a verdict of "suicide by taking laudanum." 

   The letter she had written was addressed to her husband.  She stated, "that having nothing more to live for, deserted by him she loved, and robbed of all hopes of happiness in this world, she preferred death to the miserable existence which lay open before - and so she had calmly destroyed her own life by taking laudanum.  She would not upbraid her husband - forgave him all the wrongs she had suffered at his hands through his cruel neglect and desertion.  She hoped, too, that God would forgive him as she did - and that he might live long and happily." 

   The husband came in  while the inquest was being held, and appeared a good deal affected, and expressed deep sorrow for the loss of his youthful and beautiful wife; he, however, denied the charges of infidelity and neglect made against him by the letter of his wife as well as by the testimony of several witnesses. - N. O. Delta,


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 12 May 1854  (1)


In the year 1693 the body of a female was discovered in Newbury, under circumstances which rendered a coroner's inquest desirable.  A jury of twelve women was called and their verdict has been preserved. .....


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 18 August1854  (1)

FOUL PLAY. - A very genteel man was taken from the river near Hart's landing a few days since, who had no doubt been shot and thrown into the stream.  Nothing was found on his person by which he could be identified.  An inquest was held and verdict according to circumstances. - Cycle.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 1 September 1854  (1)

Horrible Affair.

Our town was thrown into considerable excitement on Tuesday evening last, on a report reaching here that Mr. B. F. Shoot, living on the Elk Fork, some four miles south of town, had, between two and three o'clock in the afternoon of that farm, killed his wife, by shooting her with a shot gun, and then attempted to destroy himself by ripping open his abdomen with a large butcher knife and letting out his bowels.  Medical aid and the Coroner were summoned to the spot of the awful tragedy, where a most revolting scene met their view.  The wife lay dead upon the floor, one arm nearly severed near the wrist, and some 20 or 25 shot having entered her left breast, seeming to have caused instant death.  In annotator part of the house lay the husband, apparently in great agony, his bowels protruding from the wound in the abdomen, and a large portion of the same were out and lying beside him.  The physicians replaced the bowels and sewed up the wound - while Coroner Grove held an Inquest over the body of the unfortunate woman; the verdict of the jury bring, in substance, that she came to her death by a charge from a gun in the hands of her husband.

   On the following day, Shoot was brought before Justice Abernathy, on a warrant issued by said Justice and placed in the hands of Constable Speed; and after an examination of the case the said Justice committed the prisoner to jail, refusing to allow him bail; where he now is, and fast recovering from the wound inflicted by his own hand.  James Carr, Esq., acted as counsel for the prisoner.

   The principal witness in the case is a little girl, some eight years of age, a sister of the murdered lady, who was the only person about the house when the deed was committed; she appears to be a very sprightly girl, as she gave in her testimony before the examining Justice uncommonly clear and free from, embarrassment for one of her age.  As steps are being taken to have the case promptly and properly disposed of, we forbear detailing the evidence in the case. - Suffice it to say, that this awful tragedy is traceable to the source from whence spring the most of the horrid and well as lesser crimes that blacken the records of the criminal courts of our country viz: the free use of ardent spirits.

   Shoot came to this county, from Kentucky, some eighteen months since; and about three months ago married a very young and quite handsome and respectable girl, a daughter of Mr. Elias Waltz, of this county - for the murder of whom he now stands committed. - He has been addicted to habits of intemperance, and his general course of conduct has been such as to give his friends considerable uneasiness and no little trouble, and others who have had knowledge of his manner of life predicted it would lead to some bad results.  This tragedy speaks in tones of thunder to the young as well as old, to beware how they temper with spirituous liquors - cautioning them to shun it as they would the deadliest poison.

   As a natural consequence our citizens were no little excited about this horrid affair; but their law-abiding spirit was a sure guarantee against lawless violence - all they ask, and what they expect, is, that justice  shall be done in the premises, - Paris (Mo.) Mercury.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 16 February 1855  (1)

Horrible Affair.

From a private letter dated Paton, Cape Girardeau, Mo., we are permitted to make the following extract:

   "An atrocious murder and house burning took place on Wednesday night last, within eight miles of this place.  A young man by the name of Buckner, some time since, married a widow who had a daughter nearly grown.  Not long after they were married, Buckner seduced the young lady, or, as some say, ravished her.  Since which time, Buckner, the old lady, and the girl \have been quarrelling and fighting. 

   On Wednesday night last Buckner returned home, after an absence of some two months, when his wife caught him and held him, while her daughter killed him with an axe ! To hide all traces of their work, they then set fire to the house, consuming the body of Buckner in the flames. 

   What led to the discovery of the murder was, the circumstance of Buckner being absent so long, and some of the neighbors seeing him come home on Wednesday evening.  They saw no more of him, so they went to raking and searching among the coals and ashes of the burnt house and found some bones, which excited fearful suspicions.  An inquest was held on yesterday, and they were declared to be human bones.  All the parties concerned have been arrested, except the young woman.  Mrs. Buckner has made a full confession."


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 2 March 1855  (2)

Wm. O. Russell  died on Friday last.  Our readers will remember that Mr. R. was cut to pieces by a negro with a large corn knife some two weeks since.  The Coroner held an inquest over the body of the deceased and rendered a verdict in accordance with the facts in the case.  Mr. Russell was a good citizen, and was universally esteemed by those who knew him.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 11 January 1856  (2)

FROZE TO DEATH. - On Saturday night last, Thos. Blythe, living about two  and a miles from this place, froze to death within a short distance of his residence.  The inquest held over his body by Justice Northcutt, found that he came to his death by intoxication and exposure.  He leaves a wife and several children. - Columbia Statesman.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 27 June 1856  (2)

We are informed by Thomas S. Dabney, Coroner of Clay county, that he was called upon on the 24th inst., to hold an inquest upon the body of a youth supposed to be about eleven years of age, who was found in the Missouri River, near the Randolph landing in this county.  A jury was summoned who rendered their verdict "that the deceased came to his death by accidental drowning." We are informed by the Coroner, that the body was first found by Wm. Carpenter, about one mile above Randolph on the N. side of the Missouri River in Clay county - that the body presented the appearance of having been in the water six or eight days.  The jury was satisfied from the deceased being found naked, that he probably had been accidentally drowned.  The body had been so long in the water, that it would be difficult to identify it.  It was impossible to ascertain the color of the eyes as they were destroyed.  The hair was a light brown.  The body was buried in the presence and with the assistance of the jury, and many of the citizens of the vicinity, in a plain, but substantial walnut coffin, one mile above the town of Randolph. # Papers in Platte, Buchanan and other counties above Clay are requested to copy this article.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 3 April 1857  (2)

Tragical Affair - 2 Men Killed.

A sad affair occurred in Old Chariton, last Sunday evening, which resulted in the death of john Moore, Sen., of that place, and the unknown man who murdered him.  The particulars of the affair are about these:

   Sunday evening a traveler stopped there, desiring to stay all night, which privilege was granted.  Mr. Moore was from home\, but returned about sun down , and found the traveler sitting in the porch.  He made some remark to him - passed on into the house,  inquired who he was, &c., and returned to where he was.   In a few minutes after he returned, he was heard to cry out, and when found, was leaning across a bench groaning.  He was taken in to the house, when it was ascertained that he had been stabbed in the left side.  He was unable to speak, and died in a few minutes.  There was no one about the house but servants, at the time, and while they were taking him into the house, the stranger started off towards Glasgow.

   Mr. Geo. Parish, who lives close by, and was soon on the ground, started after the man, ordering him to stop.  He refused, and continued on his way, keeping his open knife in his hands. Mr. Jackson Plains soon joined Mr. Parish and was requested by him to get a gun, which he did, and upon returning, Mr. Parish again summoned the man to give himself up, but he continued his way, keeping Mr. Parish off with his knife.  Mr. P. struck him with a stick, falling him to his knees; as he rose, he made at Mr. Parish, with his knife, when Mr. Plains shot him.  The ball took effect in the head, and he died almost immediately.

   An inquest was held on the bodies Monday Morning, by Justice Butler and a verdict rendered in accordance with the above facts - justifying Parish and Plains, on the score of self-defence.

   The man who killed Mr. Moore is described as follows: about 30 years old, 5 feet 7 inches high, heavy set, would weigh about 150 pounds, coarse features dark hair and eyes, sharp nose and chin, with some of his upper teeth out, on the left side; had a sore on his left leg, freshly dressed.  He came from the direction of Keytesville, on foot, and carried an old pair of saddle-bags, with few articles of clothing in them.  He wore a soft hat, and rough clothing.  He had on a pair of new cassimere pants, marked on the inside of the waistband, S. B. F., the mercantile mark on them  was d d s  - $7,00.  No clue to his name, or where he came from, has yet been found - and why he committed the deed, is a mystery.

   Mr. Moore was an old and highly esteemed citizen , urbane in his manner, and hospitable in his house.  He was between 75 and 8p-0 years old, and settled in Old Chariton, in 1818, where he has lived ever since.  [funeral.] - Glasgow Times.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 7 August 1857  (2)

A Most Shocking Murder.

We stop the press to announce the murder of a Mr. Stevens, of Kansas City, within the precincts of this city on yesterday evening, soon after nightfall.  The circumstances appear to be as follows:

   A Mr. Baines of this city decoyed Stevens to a spring a few hundred yards from the city, having previously conspired with two men, Knightson and Quarrels by name, to murder the aforesaid Stevens and rob him of his money, amounting to the sum of $108, whereupon Knightson and Quarrels, whilst Baines and Stevens were comfortably seated near the spring, appear in the capacity of robbers, offer violence to each of the parties - Baines escapes, whilst Stevens is killed.

   The most intense excitement prevailed among our citizens during the entire night, and, in truth it was with great difficulty that the officers could prevent the execution of mob law.

   A court of inquest was held over the body of Stevens on Friday night, which lasted until near daylight, when the jury returned a verdict, by which they pronounced the murder to have been committed by the three accomplices above mentioned.

   We should mention that Stevens was stabbed in eight places with something like a bowie knife, and that the vital stroke penetrated towards the lungs.  Let not these scoundrels go unwhipped of justice.  Let justice be dome though the heavens fall. - Leavenworth Herald.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 14 August 1857  (2)

The body of a man, in a state of decomposition, was found one day last week about eight miles north of Chillicothe, under a lone tree in the prairie, some distance from the road.  He was a traveler, and from papers found about the carcass, supposed to have been  John M. Pickering, from Indiana, on his way to Tennessee. - The tree under which the remains were found, had recently been struck by lightning which was supposed by the Coroner's inquest to have been the cause of his death. - [Chillicothe Chronicle.



INFANTICIDE. - An inquest was held to-day on the body of an infant found in a well.  The jury concluded it was born alive and thrown into the well.  What horrible things will some people do.  The heart sickens at the recital, and an honest person sometimes feels ashamed that he belongs to a race capable of such atrocities.

SATURDAY, 15TH. - CARR PLACE - Murder. - There is in the western part of this city a large park called "Carr Place," where persons are wont to assemble for various purposes, such as feasting, dancing, balloon-ascensions, fire-works, &c., &c.  To-day there was a festival there of some kind, and ere it closed two young men fell out and one was stabbed with a huge bowie knife, and instantly killed.  The man killed was some twenty years old, lived with his parents at the corner of tenth and Biddle streets.  His name was Fitzgerald.  He was killed by a young man named Kelly, who fled and has not been arrested, so far as we have learned.

AN INQUEST was held on the body of a German, who died suddenly from congestion of the brain, as was believed.

MONDAY, 17TH.  The man who committed the murder at Carr Place on Saturday has been arrested.

   The body of a well-dressed man was found in the river to-day, and around his neck was a flat-iron weighing seven pounds.  Rather indicative of foul play.




ARREST AND SUICIDE. - Some days since a person quite notorious for the attentions the police had been wont to bestow upon him, was being conveyed to the Workhouse, when he made his escape from those who had him in charge, went to the western part of the city, threw himself into a pond and was drowned.  To-day the body was recovered and an inquest held upon it.  The man answered to the name of Robinson.

FFRIDAY, 20TH. - IONQUEST.  An inquest was held on a body found floating in the river.

SATURDAY, 22D. - About noon, the night-watchman at Barnum's Hotel was found dead in his room, where he had gone to get some sleep, after watching all night.  He is thought to have died of congestion of the brain.


ST. LOUIS CHRISTIAN ADVOCATE, 3 September 1857 (3)


IKNQUEST. - An inquest was held on the body of a small boy found in the river.


One inquest on a body found in the river.


ST. LOUIS CHRISTIAN ADVOCATE, 17 September 1857 (3)


SUICIDE. - A man died suddenly yesterday in his drug-store, corner of Seventh and Olive streets.  Certain circumstances connected with his death, lead to the supposition that he had destroyed himself.

   From the testimony before the Coroner, it is now no longer a doubt, but that he committed suicide by taking morphine.  On the morning of his demise he made an assignment of all his goods for the benefit of his creditors, and instructed his clerks to pay no more debts.  When the clerk returned from dinner he found Mr. Armfield in a deep sleep, so sound that he found it impossible to awaken him.  In looking around, he discovered the cork of a bottle containing salts of morphine lying on the floor, and that the bottle had been removed from its position.  Mr. Armfield remained in this somnolent state until he expired, which was about nine o'clock in the evening.  The verdict of the jury was that the deceased came to his death from morphine administered by his own hand.


INQUEST. - Yesterday Coroner Kennedy held an inquest on the body of James Walsh, a boy seven years of age, step son of Mr. Michael O'Brien.  He was missed from home Wednesday morning, and search being made for him, his body, was found in the river, into which it was supposed he fell while playing about the wood boats.  Verdict: accidentally drowned.


ACCIDENTAL DEATH. - Mr. Thomas Smith, a carpenter, came to his death on Saturday evening, under the following circumstances:  he had been to the "Abbey" to attend the races, and was returning home after dark, when his horse commenced running, and the wheels of his buggy striking against a heavy lumber wagon, he was thrown out and instantly killed.


ST. LOUIS CHRISTIAN ADVOCATE, 24 September 1857 (3)


DEATH FROM SOMNABULISM. - Early on Monday morning, a young orphan girl, Ophelia Thomas, by name, boarding on the corner of Twelfth and Monroe streets, while in a state of somnambulism, jumped from a window of the third story, and was so badly injured as to cause death the day following.


DRWONED. - The body of a drowned man is tied up at the foot of Spruce street.  The Coroner has been notified, and an inquest will be held this morning.




YOUNG LAD DROWNED. - Yesterday a little boy named Wm. F. Holmes, son of Wm. Homes, Esq., of the Republican office, fell overboard from the steamer reindeer and was drowned.  He is eleven years old, four feet high. Had light hair and blue eyes, was dressed in colored blue jacket and pants.  His distressed father offers a liberal reward for the recovery of the body.


SAD CASUALTY. - Yesterday afternoon a painter named Greenleaf in the employ of H. Farmer & Son, was instantly killed by falling  from a scaffold upon which he was at work painting the front of the Banking House of Presbury & Co., corner of Main and Locust streets.  He was attempting to lower the scaffold by means of pulleys, when the staging slightly careened, and he fell, first striking an iron railing fronting the second story, and rebounding, he was precipitated head foremost on  to the pavement, killing him instantly.


DEATH FROM FALLING FROM A QINDOW. - The Coroner was Saturday morning called upon to hold an inquest upon the body of a man found in an alley, in the rear of Mr. Wilkinson's boarding-house, on Broadway and Cherry streets.

   The real name of the unfortunate man is not known, but he was called "Saxey," aged about thirty, and a tinner by trade.  On the evening previous was put to bed in a state of intoxication, in a room in the fourth story, and yesterday morning, was found dead in the alley immediately under the window of his room, his head being terribly fractured.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 23 October 1857  (2)

The Late Railroad Accident.

The fatal Railroad accident which occurred about three miles from this city, - a few hundred yards beyond Messrs. Mitchell & Mosely's distillery, - on Friday evening, has been thoroughly investigated by Mr. W. R. Penick, the Coroner.  It was clearly shown that the accident was unavoidable, beyond the power of any one on the train to prevent it.

   The cars were moving along slowly at the time, perhaps at the rate of five miles an hour, when the calf leaped out of the bushes by the side of the road, and stopped in the middle of the track, and before the break men could give a sign of warning, nearly the whole train was thrown violently off.  The coupling gave way at the same moment. One of the cars was raised in the air, and fell with a crash on the locomotive breaking all the upper works, and of course damaging it very badly.  The engineer and fireman did not leave their posts, until the car hung suspended over their heads, and jumped off in time to save themselves from the falling timbers.  At the moment of the collusion, the engineer shut off steam. And reversed the wheels.

   Mr. Cook the unfortunate victim of the catastrophe, in attempting to jump from the car, fell beneath the locomotive, and was dragged some distance, mangling him dreadfully, and causing instant death. - His remains were brought to the city, and the coroner held an inquest on Saturday morning. - St. Joseph Gazette.


ST. LOUIS CHRISTIAN ADVOCATE, 12 November  1857 (3)


INQUEST. - An inquest was held to-day on the body of a man who died from intemperance.


INQUESTS. - The Coroner held two inquests on yesterday - one on the body of a man who died from intemperance and exposure; the other on a man who had been accidentally drowned.  Verdicts accordingly.

   To-day another inquest was held on the body of a German who had drowned himself some days ago, because his wife disturbed his peace.  The body was not found till to-day.




A woman of bad habits died from a cut she received a few days ago on the hand, in a fuss with a man who lived in another part of the same building.  The man has been arrested.

   An Irish woman who kept a grocery on Carr street was burned to death by her clothes taking fire.  It is thought she was intoxicated at the time.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 4 December 1857  (1)

A MURDER. - In Friday morning last, word was brought to this city, that an Irishman, employed in getting out ties for the Railroad, had been found murdered in a ravine about two and a half miles above this city.  From the appearance of the ground where he was found a desperate encounter had taken place.  The body, it is supposed, had been first deposited in a place which the persons who committed the deed did not consider secure from observation, and they afterwards removed it to a bushy thicket, where it was found. - The body was stabbed in several places with a knife, and badly bruised by beating.  Tracks were discovered leading from where the body was found to a shanty nearby, but no other clue was obtained, as to whom committed the deed.  Coroner Penick held an inquest upon the body last Friday, and a verdict was returned in accordance with the above facts.  We have not learned the name of the murdered man. - St. Joseph Gazette.


ST. LOUIS CHRISTIAN ADVOCATE, 10 December 1857 (3)


HYDROPHOBIA. - A man named Morrison died this morning from the effects of a bite received on the hand from a dog on the 28th of October last.  He was at the time slightly bitten, and no concern was felt on the subject until Sunday last, when he complained of headache: soon his arm commenced swelling; convulsions followed, that rapidly increased in frequency and violence, until death ensued amid most horrible sufferings.

SUPPOSED MURDER. - A few days ago an inquest was held on the body of a man found near the Sulphur Springs about twenty miles below the city.  The man it was thought had certainly been murdered, but who he was, or by whom killed, the jury could not ascertain.

STRANGLED. - Two German boys, each about ten years old, went into a shop in the northern part of the city to gather chips; while there they disagreed, and one threw the other down, put his knee on his throat, and so strangled him that he died in a few hours afterwards.


ST. LOUIS CHRISTIAN ADVOCATE, 14 January 1858  (3)


One of the daily papers contains the following, which when properly considered, is very suggestive:

INTERESTING STATISTICS. - Coroner Kennedy informs us that from January 1st to December 31st. inclusive, he held 268 inquests.  The cases are classified as follows, according to the verdicts of the juries:

Murders ................................................ 26

Drowned .............................................. 94

Intemperance and Exposure ........................ 40

Infanticide .............................................  5

Suicide ................................................ 28

Accidental ............................................ 34

Unknown .............................................  11

Burned to death ......................................  4

Appoplexy and congestion of brain .............. 20

Hemorrhage of lungs ...............................  4

Struck b y ,lightning ............................... . 1

Of the above cases of inquests, there were of unknown person s eighty-one, of which number seventy-nine were found floating in the river.


The keeper of one of our numerous whisky shops died suddenly in a fit.


ST. LOUIS CHRISTIAN ADVOCATE, 4 February 1858  (3)


A shoemaker named Blake, while sitting in an alley near Washington Avenue, fell in a fit and expired suddenly.

Monday  1ST.

About a week ago a little German girl some three years old strayed from her home, was lost, and not found until yesterday, when the body was found in a thicket three miles west of Jefferson barracks and a mile and a half from the residence of her parents.


ST. LOUIS CHRISTIAN ADVOCATE, 25 February 1858  (3)


An inquest was held over the body of a child that had died suddenly, but the proof went to show that it had died in a spasm and not by violence.


An inquest was held on the body of a young man, an Irishman , who was yesterday accidentally drowned in the river near the foot of Locust street.


One of the most distressing occurrences with which this city has been visited for a long time past took place on last Saturday morning, an hour or two before daylight.  It was the burning of the Pacific Hotel, with the stores and goods therewith connected, and the loss of so many lives in a manner so shocking.  Between twenty and thirty persons are supposed to have perished in the flames, though at the time we write (Monday morning) it has not been satisfactorily ascertained how many perished.  A great number of bones have been found.  Subscriptions have been taken up to defray the expenses of giving the bodies a decent burial, and the solemn ceremonies will now soon be performed.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 19 March 1858  (1)

MYSTERIOUS. - Some excitement was produced at the wharf this morning by the finding in the river of a barrel containing the bodies of a man and a woman. The heads, legs, and arms had been severed from the body, and the heads and one foot were missing, which had probably  fallen out, as one of the heads of the barrel had fallen out.  The coroner, who held an inquest on the remains, thinks that the man was a negro and the woman white or a mulatto.  Little doubt is entertained that they had been thrown into the river by some medical students. - 'Lou. Jour.




An inquest was held to-day on the body of a miserable woman, who had died of intemperance and exposure.  Her husband is in the penitentiary, and she left an interesting little girl some six years of age.


A little boy was accidentally drowned, in a pond in the northern suburbs of the city.


MURDER. - Two men on the lower deck of the steamer Crescent City quarreled last evening, and one was fatally stabbed and died in a few minutes.  Judging from the names they were Germans, and the murdered man was named Koch.

   Another man, name unknown, fell from another steamer at the landing and was drowned.




AN INQUEST was held to-day on the body of a man found floating in the river.  He was recognized as one who had been on the Ocean Spray, and of course was a victim of that disaster.




FOUND DROWNED. -  Coroner Kennedy held an inquest yesterday at the foot of Salisbury street, in North St. Louis, on the body of an unknown man found floating in the river.  He was supposed to be about thirty-five years of age, and five feet and a half in height, stout built in proportion.  In his pocket was found a port-monnaie containing $28 in paper money, and some small change.  There were no marks on the body.  Verdict, death by drowning.


EXECUTION STAYED. - William H. Smith, the mulatto who murdered his wife and mother-in-law last August, and who was sentenced by Judge Clover to be hung on the 2d of April last, received, it may be recollected, a stay of execution from the Governor until the 7th inst., Friday next.  He has now received a second respite; this time for sixty days.  The gallows had already been erected in the jail-yard, and every preparation  made for carrying out the behests of the law.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 18 June 1858  (2)

Horrible Tragedy!

On Saturday night,. Between 11 and 12 o'clock, P.M., the City Marshall of Weston was aroused from bed to go to as house on the northern extremity of Leavenworth street, by the report that a man had been probably killed.

   He promptly repaired to the spot attended by several of his friends.  There a horrible sight met their view.  Sitting up in bed was a man by the name of Branham, face used up, his shirt covered with blood, and his wife, a young and good looking woman, much distressed, and attending to his bruises.  About twenty feet from the back door, in the garden, lay the dead body of Hugh Wilson, his forehead smashed in , and the blood and brains oozing out profusely, a large and bloody club by his side, with which the woman, wife of Branham, said she had done the deed in defence of her husband.

   The plain simple story that the two told, was that Wilson (intoxicated) had forced the lock of the back door, and jerked Branham  out of bed and dragged him into the garden.  The wife flew to the husband's assistance with a club, and by dint of well directed blows, made of Wilson the most horrible corpse one could well look upon.

   A watch was placed over the dead body by the City Marshal; Squire Colman was sent for, the husband and wife taken into custody and a jury of inquest summoned.

   The Jury of Inquest returned a verdict, we learn, in accordance with the above facts. - Platte Argus.


ST. LOUIS CHRISTIAN ADVOCATE, 16 September 1858  (3)


In a lonely spot on the farm of Mrs. Fitzwilliams, near the old St. Charles road, were found, on Friday evening, the remains of what was once a man.  Out of the green grass peeped the eye-less sockets of a bare and bleached skull.  The curved and desiccated bones of fingers that once pressed the hand of friendship, protruded powerless and cold from the garments of the poor wanderer.  How long had he lain there forsaken and forgotten ? The coroner's jury thought that months must have wasted the corpse.  The skeleton wore a black frock coat, blue undershirt, checked shirt, two pair of pants, and a brown vest.  The inquest was held yesterday noon.  Verdict: Death from cause unknown to the jurors.

SUUICICE. - A passenger from Kansas  Sunday committed suicide by jumping overboard from the steamer Hannibal City.  He was seen to throw over his pocket book, and then to jump.  His name was H. Schnuff, and his wife was accompanying him up the river.  She is sick, and he was depressed in mind.  The unhappy widow is now in the City Hospital.


BORDER STAR NEWSPAPER (Kansas, Mo.), 17 December 1859 (1)

A Coroner's Inquest was held last week on the body of Elisha Purdom, of this place.  Purdom had been engaged in a severe fight some weeks ago, and had never recovered from his bruises.  He died on Tuesday week.  A post mortem examination showed inward bruises.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 9 November 1860  (2)

Horrible Murder.

One of the most brutal murders that was ever committed, was upon the person of Miss Susan Jemima Barnes, of Callaway county, Mo., on the 27th inst.  The white family, consisting of the mother and brother of the deceased, being absent, the negro girl, who was a hired servant. It is supposed became enraged at the young lady, and it is thought that she attempted in the first place to cut the young lady's throat, and did sever the skin upon the throat, and made a large cut on the forehead, severed the upper lip, and lacerated the hands and arms in several places.  She then took the fire tongs and completely smashed in all the hinder part and the left side of the head, dislocated the teeth of the upper jaw, and scattered the blood and brains all over the house.

   She then changed her clothing, and secreted the bloody dress in the field and then resumed her work.  As soon as the facts were discovered the girl was arrested, an inquest held, and a verdict rendered of guilty.  When the dress was discovered she admitted the facts, begged to be punished and forgiven.  The officers started with her to the Fulton jail, but when they had proceeded about two miles, the incensed community wrested her from the officers and hung her to the first tree until she was dead.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 15 February 1861  (2)

FOUND DEAD. - A man by the name of Dennis Ryan, a Railroad hand, was found dead near this city, on Wednesday morning last.  Coroner Dabnehy held an inquest on him, and the jury returned a verdict of coming to his death by freezing.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 12 July 1861  (3)

Coroner's Inquest.

We learn that a man by the name of H. W. Clinton poisoned himself on yesterday.  The circumstances connected with the sad affair are as follows: He had been arrested on the charge of stealing a mule, buggy, and money of Dr. Tolbert, of Buchanan co., which caused him to resort to the above exigency of destroying his life.  The jury returned a verdict of coming to his death by taking an excessive dose of laudanum.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 19 July 1861  (2)


We learn from Dr. DABNEY, the Coroner of this county, that he held an inquest upon the body of a person who killed himself at the residence of George Stone, near this place, on Wednesday last.  The evidence showed that he had been arrested in Cass county, Mo., and was in the custody of three persons. Who were taking him to Buchanan county, to answer to a charge of grand larceny. - While in Independence, he procured a two ounce vial of laudanum, by simulating sickness; and he then induced the guard to let him stop - he (the deceased) complaining that he was too unwell to reach Liberty - as was their original design.  He retired early, and sometime during the night he took the laudanum.  When found in the morning, about day-break, he was insensible.  A physician was sent for, but too late to save him; he continued in a state of stupor until about 9 o'clock, A.M., when he died.

   Mr. Stone, who is one of our best citizens, was induced to entertain the party, by the deceased complaining of illness.  The evidence further disclosed that the deceased had been seen in Claiborne county, Tenn., in the fall of 1859, where he was known by the name of McDonaldson and represented himself as a native of Christian county, Ky.  Other witnesses recognized him as a person they had known under the aliases of H. W. Clinton and H. C. Hough.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 27 February 1863 (3)

DEAD BODY OF AN INFANT FOUND. - Coroner Mulkey was yesterday called upon to hold an inquest upon the dead body of a new born child, which had been found under the floor of a house in the vicinity of Farley, in this county.  The facts are, as we can learn, as follows" A family moved out of the house about a week ago, and another family had moved in.  While removing the flooring, the attention of the persons was called to a vault which was partly covered up with dirt.  The quilt was at once pulled out, when it was discovered that it contained the dead body of an infant.  There are a great many suppositions as to how it came there - whether it was murdered or not - but in the absence of the facts, we cannot state further.  The verdict of the Coroner's jury, which we shall publish next week, will perhaps afford a solution of the matter.  Until that time this rather curious affair must rest. - Platte City Conservator.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 22 May 1863  (2)

EXPENNDITURES.  [To end year May 1st 1863]

May 5, 1862: Paid John A Foster for holding inquest on dead body Wm. Griffin:  $20 20


July 7: pd T. Subiertte, J.P., for holding inquest on dead body found in Mo. River:  $24 25


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 15 January 1864 (4)


It is with feelings of most profound regret, that we find ourselves called upon to chronicle the death of our worthy fellow citizen John G. Moore who was shot and almost instantly killed on last Saturday night, at his residence, about one mile South of Keytesville.

   As there are in circulation several reports of a very contradictory character, in regard to this most unfortunate occurrence. We forbear attempting to give the particulars, until we shall receive the verdict of the Coroner's inquest. - Central City and Brunswicker.


CAPE GIRARDEAU WEEKLY ARGUS, Thursday, 24 March 1864 (1)


The Letters Left by the Deceased, &c.

From the Charleston (Mo.) Courier.

On Wednesday afternoon, March 9th, between three and four o'clock, our town was thrown in to a great state of commotion by the enactment of a tragedy that bewildered and excited both citizens and soldiers.  The particulars have been gathered from various sources, and we will give them as correct as possible.

   The unfortunate victim of this sad affair is Mrs. Jane Bartlett, living in Charleston, who has only been married since New Year's Eve.  It appears that her father went down on Wednesday afternoon to pay her a visit, which he was in the habit of doing about once a week.  On entering the room he saw his daughter lying on the lounge, and on his approach, discovered a pistol lying on her breast, her head and face being quite cold.  He immediately rushed out of the room and alarmed the neighbors, who, on reaching the house, found Mrs. Bartlett cold in death - shot through the heart, by her own hands.  Her husband was among the first at the house after the alarm, and appeared thunderstruck at the sight that met his gaze, asserting that he had no knowledge whatever what brought about the act of self-destruction.  Coroner Danforth was sent for, and an inquest held, the verdict being "suicide." [Reproduces wife's letters to husband; also a lengthy biography.]

Page 3


On Thursday last, an inquest was held a short distance below the city, on the remains of Patrick Dwyer.  He was found lying by the roadside, and the jug by his side told too plainly the verdict of the coroner's jury" "Death from intemperance and exposure."

   We are told, of a soldier found drowned in a pond of water two feet deep, just west of the city, but can find no one conversant with the facts.

   We also hear of an artilleryman found dead in a deep ditch, in the upper part of the city; but out information of this case is equally limited.


CAPE GIRARDEAU WEEKLY ARGUS, Thursday, 11 August 1864 (1)

Horrid Case.

Some week or two since an abandoned woman, in male attire, was discovered in one of the camps, and was immediately set across the river by the authorities.  On Saturday last she was found dead in one of the little cabins near the river, on the Illinois side, with most of her head and face eaten off, and otherwise mutilated, supposed to have been done by dogs.  The manner of her death was unknown to the jury of inquest held.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 2 June 1865  (1)

SUDDEN DEATH. - Day before yesterday a man who registered himself as "J. H. Ford, Kentucky," arrived on the steamer Emilie and stopped at the Gillis House. - He said he was desirous of going to Liberty, Missouri, but at the time of the departure of the stage for that point concluded to remain.  Yesterday morning he took his breakfast, and after strolling thro' the city for several hours returned to the hotel.

   The last seen of him alive, he was having his boots blacked by a negro in the house. Mr. Ford immediately afterwar5ds retired to his room.  The servant in calling at his apartments, to summon him for dinner, was horrified to find him dead. - Mr. Ford was about thirty years of age.

   The above facts are derived from the proprietor of the Gilliss House.  A coroner's inquest was held on the body last evening, the result of which we did not learn. - Kansas City Journal.


CAPE GIRARDEAU WEEKLY ARGUS, Thursday, 31 August 1865 (3)

Negro Shot.

On the 27th inst., one ---- Miller, and a negro named Samuel McNeely, had a falling out, and the negro told Miller he would shoot him; but they finally separated, and each went his way.  Next day (the 28th) they met near the residence of Miles Doyle, at the upper end of town when Miller immediately shot the negro, with a rifle, from the effects of which he died in a short time - death being hastened by internal hemorrhage.

   The ball entered between the second and third false ribs, and ranged downwards, passing through the spleen, stomach and liver.  It was extracted by Dr. Gilroy, shortly afterwards.

   The negro admitted that he threatened to shoot Miller, but said he had no idea of doing so, and thought the matter ended, till he received the shot.  This much was developed at the inquest held on the 29th.  Miller was promptly arrested, and had a preliminary examination on the 29th, before Esq. John J. Moore, which resulted in his being held to stand his trial before the Circuit Court, on a charge of murder, and in default of bail, going to jail.

   We hope "justice" will be rendered in the case, as we understand that the whilom Chaplain - the present overseer of refugees and Freedman, &c., &c. - is anxiously watching the trial, and in case his idea of "justice" is not carried out, will immediately take the affair into his own hands, call out the military, resume martial law, and execute "justice."


CAPE GIRARDEAU WEEKLY ARGUS, Thursday, 12 October 1865 (3)

Negro Killed.

On Saturday evening last, as a number of men who had been threshing grain, at E. B. Jenkins', a mile from Jackson, were about separating, some angry words passed between Francis McMinnis and a black man named Augustus Gordon, when McMinnis struck Gordon over the head with a heavy stick of some kind, felling him to the earth.  The negro got up, and started for home in a wagon, which he was driving, and, having been in liquor before he started, a neighbor, going the same road, noticed that he did not steer clear of all the stumps, and offered to drive for him, telling Gordon to lie down in the back end of the wagon and sleep, which he did.  On arriving home, those in charge of the wagon thought it best to let him sleep an hour or two longer which was done.  On attempting to awaken him, they discovered that he was dead.  A coroner's inquest was summoned next day, and a post mortem examination by Dr. Dickinson showed a fracture of the skull, three inches in length.  The jury returned a verdict of "Death from a blow at the hands of one Francis McMinnis."

   Meanwhile McMinnis was arrested, and held to bail in the sum of $400, for murder in the second degree; but none of his friends being present, he started to Jackson, in custody of a deputy sheriff and two assistants, to furnish the required amount.  When near the place where the difficulty occurred the day before, they were met by a brother of McMinnis, Who, with a revolver drawn, rescued the prisoner, and spirited him away to parts unknown.

   We have heard several versions of this affair, but we think the above as near correct as any we have heard.


CAPE GIRARDEAU WEEKLY ARGUS, Thursday, 11 January 1866 (3)


On Sunday evening the body of a new born infant, was found on the river bank, wrapped in rags and nailed up in a raisin box. The Coroner, Justice Moore, on Monday, held an inquest over the body, but no facts worthy of notice were elicited.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 18 May 1866 (1)

A Negro Violates a White Child ---He is Killed by the Mob.

From the Louisville Courier.

A terrible affair transpired in the ordinary quiet little village of Brunerstown, in this county, on Thursday, which caused the greatest excitement, and resulted in the death of a negro at the hands of an infuriated mob.  The facts, as we have been able to learn them, are these:

      A little daughter of a Mr. Humble, who resides in the village, of about nine years of age, had gone out to play as usual;, on Thursday afternoon, and whole near her father's residence was enticed away by a negro named James, who formerly belonged to Mr. Leb. Dorsey, who abused her person in a most savage and outrageous manner.  The poor child was found and taken home in a pitiable condition and a number of citizens at once started to search for the black fiend.  He was quickly found, and brought to the edge of the town, where a large and excited crowd had gathered, and preparations were at once made to hang him.

   While these were in progress, Mr. Humble, the father of the child, came running up, revolver in hand, and forcing his way through the crowd attempted to shoot the negro.  The caps on the pistol snapped twice, and the crowd having quickly given way in front of the revolver and behind the negro, the latter turned and run for his life.  But flight was useless.  The crowd started after him, opening fire from a dozen revolvers on him, and he was soon shot dead.  Squire Watts was then  sent for and held an inquest on the body, the jury returning a verdict in accordance with the above facts.


ST. LOUIS CHRISTIAN ADVOCATE, 12 September 1866  (2)


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 11 January 1867 (1)


Week before last some boys who were hunting on the farm of W. G. Cox, near Weston, found in a ravine, a short distance from Mr. Cox's residence, the skeleton of a man.  It had apparently lain there for a long while.  The boots and hat and a small portion of the clothing remained undecayed.  The Coroner being informed of the fact held an  inquest and had the remains decently buried.  He informs us that deceased had on a soldier's overcoat, with dark citizen clothes under it.  Short stogy boots and among the bones was a two bladed buck handle pocket knife with the letters I. X. L. on the large blade.  The height of deceased as indicated by the skeleton was about five feet nine inches.  The color of the hair was brown. - The jury returned a verdict that deceased came to his death from some cause to them unknown. - Weston Landmark.


CAPE GIRARDEAU WEEKLY ARGUS, Thursday, 4 April 1867 (3)

Coroner's Inquest.

On the 1st inst., Fritz Voester, a German baker, living just back of the court house, died in a way to induce a belief that he had committed suicide.  Coroner Gilroy summoned a jury to inquire into affairs, who, after a careful investigation, rendered the following verdict: "That Fritz Vorster came to his death from the effects of intoxicating liquor, on April 1st, 1867."


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 5 April 1867 (2)

Murder and Lynching at Sedalia.

The town of Sedalia was thrown into excitement on Saturday afternoon last, by the murder of Joe Geimer, a citizen of Sedalia.  The cold blooded deed was perpetrated by Joe Woods, one of bacon Montgomery's men.  Without any provocation of previous difficulty, so far as known, Woods shot Geimer through the breast killing him instantly.  Immediately after the occurrence the citizens caught Woods, put a rope around his neck, and after beating him almost to death, they dragged him through the town, and finally hung him, after which, to make "assurance doubly sure" they shot him through the head. He was dragged till not a particle of clothing was left on him, and the track the whole distance stained with blood. - He was nearly dead when hung up.

   A private letter relating these facts states that no one knows who killed Woods.  An inquest was held, and the verdict of the Coroner's jury was that "Joe Woods came to his death by the hands of persons unknown to the jury."

   The body hung stark-naked until [9?] o'clock on Sunday morning, and was frozen.  Woods was a sergeant under bacon Montgomery, and was charged with robbing Mitchell, a banker at Lexington, and participating in other crimes and outrages by the militia at that place.  Geimer was formerly a porter at Weil & Bro's of this city.  He was engaged in business at Sedalia, and was respected by all who knew him. - Rep. 29.


CAPE GIRARDEAU WEEKLY ARGUS, Thursday, 20 June 1867 (3)

A FLOATER. - A dead man was fished out of the river opposite the Convent, on Sunday last.  He was dressed in black pants, Check shirt, and brogan shoes, and must have been in the water for some time.  Coroner Gilroy held an inquest on the body, after which, it was decently interred by the city.


CAPE GIRARDEAU WEEKLY ARGUS, Thursday, 5 March 1868 (3)

INQUEST. -Coroner P. Gilroy was called, on Sunday morning, to hold an inquest on the body of an unknown man, found dead in his bed, at the Prescott House.  Deceased seemed to be an Irishman, who had come in off the railroad; about six feet high, light brown hair and moustache; had $7 20 in his pockets, but no papers or other evidence to indicate who he was, or whence he came.  Verdict of jury - "Death from congestive chill."


CAPE GIRARDEAU WEEKLY ARGUS, Thursday, 23 July 1868 (3)

SUDDEN DEATH. - Coroner Gilroy held an inquest on Tuesday evening on the body of a man who called on him for medical aid, and who, while waiting suddenly died at the coroner's house.  He w\as an Irishman by birth, about 30 or 35 years of age, stout built, light hair, about 5 feet 6 inches high - but his name or residence was unknown.  A verdict of death from general debility was recorded.


CAPE GIRARDEAU WEEKLY ARGUS, Thursday, 29 October 1868 (3)

A Dreadful Affair.

On Tuesday night, 20th inst., near Lakeville, Stoddard county, was enacted a most fearful tragedy.  Wm. S. Tull had been spreeing for some time, and coming home that night in worse condition than ever, he, after various acts of the most brutal character, undertook to kill his wife.  He knocked her down, and, while kneeling on her prostrate form, endeavoring to draw a revolver which he had in his pocket, his son John, a youth of nineteen, who had warned him to let his mother alone, entered, and seeing the imminent danger of his mother, snatched as gun from a rack, and dealt his father two blows on the back of the head, killing him in less time than it has taken us to relate it.  Justice Kappler held an inquest, and the jury, before whom young Tull was brought, after inquiring into the circumstances, rendered a verdict of justifiable homicide, and young Tull was discharged.


CAPE GIRARDEAU WEEKLY ARGUS, Thursday, 26 November 1868 (2)


Mr. Josiah Smith, one of the officers who conveyed McIntosh from the jail in Jackson to Neeley's landing, called upon us last Thursday; and we are satisfied, from his statement, that great wrong and injustice was done him and Travis, in the account of that affair given by the "Democracy."  We have known Mr. Smith for some years, and are satisfied he told us a straight story; and so far from the affair's being chargeable to them, they were not even present when it occurred, as they had executed their mission and retired to sleep, after guarding the prisoner from Jackson to the landing, and delivering him over to those designated to take charge of him.  After he had been shot, the guards went and waked Mr. Smith up, at his house, some distance off.  This is the evidence adduced before the Coroner's inquest held on the body; and it goes to show how more than doubly careful a public press should be in detailing such occurrences, to avoid criminating innocent parties.


WINONA DAILY REPUBLICAN, MN., Saturday 12 December  1868 (2)



CHICAGO, Dec 12. - A. M. Marshall, charged with the murder of his mother and brothers, in Platte county, Missouri, some time ago, for whose arrest a reward of $3,000 was offered, was secured last Sunday in Barry, Missouri, and lodged in jail.  The inducement to the crime was to secure the property which would revert to him at their death.


CAPE GIRARDEAU WEEKLY ARGUS, Thursday, 21 January 1869 (2)

A SINGULAR AND FATAL ACCIDENT. - Morris Moore, an old and much respected citizen of this county, met with his death in a manner as sad as it is mysterious.  He was driving in his buggy, somewhere in the neighborhood of Hawkins' Gin, and when last seen was as well as usual.  Tuesday evening, his horse, still hitched to the buggy, was found wandering about that neighborhood with no driver.  Search was instituted, and his body found in a little sluice of water on the main road.  A coroner's inquest was held but we have not been able to learn its verdict.  It is said he was subject to attacks of epilepsy, and it is supposed that he fell from his buggy while in one of these fits and perished. - [Commerce Dispatch.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 11 June 1869(3)

MAN KILLED. - A man was killed on the Railroad track in this city, on Wednesday night last, by the cars running over him.  He was cut in two about the thigh.  It is supposed he was intoxicated and had gone to sleep on the track.  His name was McNamar, and resided with Judge J. M. Jones.  He is said to have relations in Covington, Ky.  Coroner Moffert held an inquest.

CAPE GIRARDEAU WEEKLY ARGUS, Thursday, 30 December 1869 (3)

A MAN KILLS HIMSELF ON THE STREET. - Coroner Gilroy held an inquest on the 24th inst., on the body of James Lamb, who committed suicide by stabbing himself in three places, in the region of the stomach, two if the wounds penetrating the abdomen, causing death by internal hemorrhage.  The deceased was laboring under a fir of temporary insanity when he committed the fatal deed. - The jury returned a verdict in accordance with the above facts.  Lamb had arrived in the city only the day before, for the [purpose of superintending the rock work on the Cape Girardeau and State Line railroad, for Messrs. Killeen & Co., contractors. - He was a native of Ireland, and had a wife and child in the State of New York.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 25 February 1870  (2)

A Sad Case - A Body Found Imbedded in the Sand.

Some two months since, says the Weston Landmark, we learned from Mr. Mat Dale that his brother, Iriah Dale, was missing.  His absence could not be accounted for.  His brother knowing that he was subject to what is commonly known as the "blues," and at times subject to aberration of mind, was fearful that the missing man had committed suicide.  Having been last seen in the vicinity of Bee Creek, search was made by many of the neighbors and friends in the waters of said creek, but no traces could be found of the unfortunate man.  His continued absence caused the family of Mr. Mat Dale much uneasiness and sorrow, for they lived in the constant dread of hearing that their relative had lost his life whilst reason had left its throne.  On Sunday night last the body was found near the mouth of Platte river.  It was brought to Platte City, and upon the coroner's inquest it was found to be the body of Mr. Uriah Dale, identified by his brother, by his clothing and by papers found on his person.  The body was found imbedded in the sand at or near the bank of the river, partially covered with water.  It had lodged there in the drift wood and was frozen in the sand and mud.  It was a sad and pitiful object, the form of the man , but the features covered with mud and sand so as not to be distinguishable.  After the inquest the body was taken charge of by the relatives and the deceased and properly interred.  Mr. Dale has the sympathy of the community in this sad bereavement.

CAPE GIRARDEAU WEEKLY ARGUS, Thursday, 28 April 1870 (3)

A FLOATER. - The Coroner, Dr. Gilroy, held an inquest on the 24th inst., on the body of an unknown person found floating in the river at this place.  Deceased was five feet eight inches high, black hair, very short black whiskers; had on a blue hickory over-hall short; also blue flannel and red flannel under-shirts; dark pants, brogan shoes.  A pocket book containing $57, and a ticket for deck-passage on the steamer Stonewall, was found on the body.  There was nothing on the body to indicate who the deceased was.  The jury returned a verdict of drowned on the Stonewall.

   This is the third victim of the Stonewall which has recently been taken from the river.  One of the pilots at Commerce, and an unknown man above this city.


CAPE GIRARDEAU WEEKLY ARGUS, Thursday, 5 May 1870 (3)

FATAL ACCIDENT. - The Coroner, Dr. Gilroy, held an inquest on the body of Isaac Coffman, on the 3d inst.  The facts developed before the jury were, that on Sunday evening last, the deceased went out on a gunning, from the residence of Mrs. Jas. G. Conran, (for whom he was working,) and had not at the time returned.  On Monday search was made, but failing to find him, was renewed on Tuesday, when the dead body was found in a briar thicket, about one-fourth of a mile from Mrs. Conran's.  The jury returned a verdict of "death from the accidental discharge of a loaded shot-gun in his own hands," - severing the left carotid artery and jugular vein.  His mother, Mrs. Atherton, lives in this city.


CAPE GIRARDEAU WEEKLY ARGUS, Thursday, 2 June 1870 (3)

Coroner Gilroy held an inquest on Monday, on the remains of another victim of the Stonewall, brought ashore at this place, but could elicit nothing leading to identification.


Another body was taken from the river later in the day; and still another was seen floating past the city; ad yet another was taken out on Tuesday morning, having $17 and a deck ticket in one pocket.  It seems the channel of the river is shifting over to the eddy in which the Stonewall sunk, which displaces the sand previously washed over the bodies, and this sends them to the surface to drift down stream.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 22 July 1870  (1)


On last Sunday morning a little boy named Baldwin made a horrible discovery near the house of Mer. Humphrey at Daniel's branch, on the road leading from Platte City to Farley.  Near the road the boy was attracted by the curious actions of his dog; upon making an examination, the head and arm of a man were seen protruding g from a hollow log.  Of course, the boy gave the alarm. And soon a number of persons had collected upon the spot. The inquest held by Coroner Wilkinson the next day revealed the following facts:

   The deceased person was James T. Clardy, aged twenty-seven years, son of Mr. Clardy, who resides near Smithville.  A post mortem examination of the body showed a bullet hole through the center of the forehead, no other wounds being observed.  Near the body lay a pistol (a Remington navy), which was identified as belonging to the deceased.  Two of the chambers were empty and the guard was bent.  Underneath the body in the tree was found the pocket-book of the deceased, open and empty, although it is said that he had money on his person when last seen by his friends.  A few paces distant down the branch was found the hat of the murdered man.  The body was dressed in heavy clothes.  The pantaloons were pushed up nearly to the top of the boots, evidently by the effort to put the body in the log, and the right hand was off and missing.  In the pockets of the clothes were found a watch, and various letters and papers which served to identify the deceased.  One of the letters was addressed to his wife, stating that he expected to have a difficulty with Israel, and that when they met one or the other would be killed.  In anticipation of death, he bade her an affectionate farewell. It seems impossible that any one man could have thus stuffed the body into the log, and it is evident that death was not the result of suicide.

   Israel Heath, who would seem to be implicated by the letter referred to, is well known as an honorable and highly respected citizen - lately removed to some point in Kansas.  Those who know him will be loth to think him guilty of such a crime. Clardy disappeared about the last of March or the first of April.  The last seen of him alive being when he left the residence of his mother-in-law, Mrs. Prior, about that time, with the intention of going to see his father near Smithville.  Being involved in debt when his disappearance first created concern, it was thought that he had fled the country.  The Coroner's jury returned a verdict that the deceased came to his death by a pistol shot, at the hands of persons to them unknown. - Such simply are the facts as obtained from the Coroner, and other persons who were present at the inquest.  The murder is veiled in mystery, and presents features of the coolest atrocity. - We might draw a thousand inferences from the thousand reports in circulation in regard to the probable cause and the murderer, but for the present and until further developments are made, we must satisfy our readers with only the simple facts of the affair. - Platte City Reveille.


THE LIBERTY TRIBUNE, 16 September 1870  (3)



Inquest on W. McCracken filed in vacation, noted on record and coroner's account allowed.

Inquest on James Carrol received and coroner's fee bill allowed.

CAPE GIRARDEAU WEEKLY ARGUS, Thursday, 8 December 1870 (2)

A melancholy affair occurred in the woods near Fish Lake on Wednesday last.  John Griffin and a man by the name of Lyle were bog hunting, both having their guns along.  By some accident Griffin's gun went off, the ball entering Lyle's heart, and of course killing him instantly.  Judge Gardner held an inquest on the unfortunate victim on Thursday, but we have not heard the result of the investigation. - [Charleston Courier.]


CAPE GIRARDEAU WEEKLY ARGUS, Thursday, 4 May 1871 (4)

Another Murder.

On Wednesday last, the 19th inst., the citizens living in the vicinity of Lucas' Bend and Belmont were thrown into excitement by the report that Laz. Bratcher had shot and killed Frank Burton that morning.  The report proved too true, and Burton was found dead a few yards from Bratcher's house, having received seven buckshot from a single-barrel shot gun in the right lung, and a ball from a pistol through the heart.

   From Dr. Patterson, who was at the inquest, we obtained information enough to state that threats of vengeance had been made by each party for the past week or two.  It appears that Bratcher had rented part of his farm to Burton for crop purposes, but the meadow Laz. wished reserved for his own use.  Burton, however, persisted in turning his cattle in there, and they were turned out again and again by Bratcher, until at length Burton ceased his annoyance with the cattle, and then went and dead-headed Laz.'s pican trees.  This was too much for Bratcher to stand, and a quarrel of words ensued between the parties about the matter.  Burton had made threats around the neighborhood that he would take Bratcher's life, and on their first meeting afterward, Bratcher rushed into the house and armed himself, and came out and shot him as he was passing along the road.  At the inquest nothing could be learned whether any words were passed between them or not.  Burton it is said was unarmed.  Immediately after the shooting, Bratcher secured one of his best horses and left the country. - [Charleston Cour.]


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  18 December 1874

THE grand jury to-day found an indictment of manslaughter in the first degree, against Henry McElroy, for the murder of Tom Monahon.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  6 February 1875 (1)


The following accounts were allowed by the court:

Acc't on inquest of two colored children ............................... 21 00.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  6 February 1875 (1)

Mr. George M. Frank, who formerly conducted the brewery in this city, committed suicide at his home in El Dara, yesterday noon, by taking a dose of sulphuric acid.  He is said to have been dissipating for some time past and in consequence had some difficulty with his family.  Yesterday morning the quarrel was renewed, when the unhappy man ended the difficulty by seizing a bottle of the deadly poison and drinking its contents before he could be prevented.  Dr. Reynolds was at once summoned, but arrived too late to save him.  An inquest was being held at the time our informant left, but the result is not yet known.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  6 May 1875 (1)

The Quincy Herald published a report of the drowning of Miss Tyrer which is more or less in conflict with the report given in THE CLIPPER.  We have a private letter from Fabius which substantiates the report of THE CLIPPER.  The New Era also published a report of the affair which in substance is the same as that of THE CLIPPER.  The New Era, at the conclusion of the report says: "Squire Benson was sent for and held an inquest.  The jury brought in a verdict of suicide.  On her body was found her watch, still running, the key to her desk and a bundle of children's compositions.  As she lay at the bottom of the cold stream her watch ticked on and on as her pulses ceased to beat.  She was in the water from about half past eight o'clock till five.  The watch must have been wrong in the morning or else stopped in the water and started again, for sure it was running when her lifeless body was taken out of her watery grave."


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  26 May 1875 (1)


A Child Beaten to Death.

One of the most brutal murders ever perpetrated in a civilized community occurred in Quincy, yesterday.  The name of the murderer is John Fletcher, and his victim is a boy about four years of age - an adopted son.  At the inquest, Ann Fletcher, wife of the murderer, was called, and she testified that between four and five o'clock yesterday morning, when only half awake, she heard John whipping the child, and when she fully awoke the child was standing at the foot of the bed and John have it a kick in the stomach with his foot.  He then picked it up and putting his two hands around its neck choked it.  The child lived about four minutes, and did not move after it was choked.  He also had been in the habit of locking the child up in a wood shed, besides whipping it several times a day.  The child was adopted last August.

   A woman named Carrie Wilson testified that she lived with Mr. and Mrs. Fletcher and that the former had, during the winter, treated the child in a most scandalous manner, and had whipped it most all the time.  When she upbraided him for so doing he made her leave the house.

   Emma Forsythe testified that Fletcher always beat the child when he got mad at his wife and couldn't beat her.  The child was well before he commenced to beat it last night.

   Hattie Campbell said that Fletcher told her he would go to h-l or the penitentiary, but he would get the child out of the way; he meant to kill it sooner or later.

   Dr. Byrd, who made the post-mortem examination  of the child, stated that the child had died from being choked and otherwise abused, as the wounds on the body were sufficient to produce death.

   Fletcher has borne a bad reputation for some time, and more than one crime has been attributed to him.  When taken to the station he was morose and sullen and refused to converse with any on e, or tell anything about the affair.  He was bound over upon the coroner's warrant, it being deemed unnecessary to hold any preliminary examination.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  16 July 1875 (3)

AN inquest on the body of an infant found in a hole near Camp Point resulted in a verdict of death from inhuman neglect by the parents Mr. and Mrs. Jos. Brown.  The child was born on the 11th, after five months wedlock, and was left uncared for until the following morning when it was taken out and deposited in a shallow grave without even a rag about it.  One witness also testified that the child was seen to move a few minutes before being buried.  Mrs. Brown is laying sick at home and the husband has escaped.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  2 August 1875 (4)


The Bridge Over Bear Creek Gives Way and the Engine, Tender and Baggage Car Plunge into the Raging Stream.

The Engineer, Frank Bradley. Drowned, and the Fireman Makes a Narrow Escape.

This community was shocked, upon receiving the sad intelligence given in Sunday morning's CLIPPER, that an accident had occurred on the Hannibal and St. Joseph railroad during Saturday night, by which one of the most faithful engineers in the employ of the company - Mr. Frank Bradley - had been killed.


The severe rain storm during the day had swollen the creek to a fearful extent, submerging the banks and all the bottom lands in the vicinity.  The bridge had stood the test of three recent freshets, and was thought to be perfectly safe.  But late in the evening, it appears that a large tree came floating down upon the bosom of the flood, striking the center piers, moving them out of place and leaving the superstructure in a weak condition.  Along comes the ten o'clock train, the engineer slackens speed and, perfectly unconscious of impending danger, slowly approaches the unseen dead-fall.  Upon nearing the center of the bridge he is heard to cry out: "My God, we are gone up!" The engine is revered, but too late - the timbers snap and engine and tender go down with a crash. ...


Doctors Terry and T. S. Foster having made an examination of the body testified that they found some slight bruises about the face and forehead, also on the left wrist.  No other bruises or wounds were found, and it was their opinion that deceased came to his death by drowning.

   The testimony being all in, the jury found the following verdict:

   The undersigned being duly sworn and charged to diligently inquire and true presentment make, as to how, and in what manner, and by whom Frank Bradley came to his death, upon their oaths do say that the same Frank Bradley came to his death by drowning, at Bedar creek bridge, in Bear creek, he having been thrown from train No. 3 and engine No. 25, by breakage of said bridge, on the Hannibal & St. Joseph railroad, about one mile from the Hannibal depot, on the 31st day of July, 1875, at ten o'clock p.m.

J. M. GIBBS, JOSIAH LEAMON, PETER HEN RY, J. H. SAULSBURY, P. FITZPATRICK, N. B. DONLEY.  The inquest was held over the remains by Coroner Nathaniel Dick, ...

[Biography: aged 33, wife and four children.]


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  5 September 1875 (1)


About 1 o'clock yesterday morning, on the M., K. & T. track, at the foot of Center street, in this city, the horrible mangled body of John Sheridan was found lying across the track literally cut in two by the switch engine of that road.  The engineer was backing up at the time, and Mr. Hank Willis, who was on the platform, as soon as he felt the shock of the engine strike something, called out to the engineer, Mr. Geo. Wedgewood, and asked what they had struck, and upon looking down , Mr. Willis discovered the body of the unfortunate man.  The engine was immediately reversed, and Mr. Willis and Wedgewood reached him just in time to hear a low whisper of: "Oh! my God," from the body cut in twain, a gasp or two of breath, and the soul of John Sheridan had left its broken tenement forever.

   But little was known of the deceased, except that he was a boiler maker by trade - had worked three or four weeks at the H. & St. Jo. Shops, and more recently had worked a day or two for John Hartigan in his shop on Main street.  Mr. Hartigan had paid the deceased five or six dollars the evening previous to his death, and although he was known to be addicted to drink occasionally, he was by no means much under the influence of liquor as late as 9 o'clock the night of his death.

   A jury of inquest was summoned early yesterday morning by Coroner N at Dick, and after hearing such testimony as was available the jury returned the following:

   "We, the jury, do find and say that we believe from the evidence that John Sheridan, deceased, came to his death by being run  over by an engine on the M. K. & T. Ry. about 1 o'clock on the morning of September 4, 1875. A. J.. DICK, WARREN DUNCAN, S. M. COLEMAN, J. M. SHULSE, ANDREW SPROL, SMITH COTTRELL, Jury.

   When searched there was no money found on the person of the deceased, and this fact, coupled with the fact that he was not drunk at a late hour on the night of his death presents the matter of his death in some degree of mystery.

   The deceased was about thirty years of age and has a mother and two sisters living in Chicago.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  19 September 1875 (4)

A Mrs. J. H. Tomlinson of Barry, Ills., writes to the coroner here, enquiring about the J. H. Tomlinson, who suicided on the steamer Northwestern.  Her husband it seems bore the same name, and as he has been absent a long time and nothing heard from him, she fears that he is the one upon whom an inquest was recently held.  We can assure Mrs. Tomlinson, No. 2, that the unfortunate man was not her absent husband, as the body of the suicidist was properly identified by his wife and friends; besides papers were found upon his person , setting firth that he was a resident of Mr. Carroll, Illinois.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  21 September 1875 (1)


The fire was discovered shortly after 10 o'clock Sunday night, in D. D. Merriam & Son's lumber yard.  There was a strong wind, and before the fore could be controlled then lumber in the yard, and the office were consumed, and also ...

   A moulder, named Benjamin Butler, who was boarding at Peter Lief's and was sick at the time of the fire, was unable to get out and was burned to death.  His remains were found in the ruins yesterday morning.  A coroner's inquest was held yesterday when it appeared that he was in the employ of Smith, Hayner & Co., that he came to the city recently, and that he belonged in Leavenworth, where he had a wife and two children.  It was supposed that he was suffocated to death.  The remains were forwarded to Leavenworth yesterday for burial.  ...


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  24 September 1875 (4)

The coroner took six freeholders up the bay this morning, to hold an inquest in view of the remains of the floater found in that stream a few days since.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  26 September 1875 (4)

The floater upon whom an inquest was held at a point six miles above the city Friday, turned out to be the remains of a colored man who fell overboard while making and excursion from Quincy to LaGrange two weeks ago to-day.  A ticket found in his pocket established the fact that he was a passenger on that trip.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  29 November 1875 (4)


A Colored Man Meets with a Horrid Death by Falling from a Lime Kiln Bridge.

Levi Prater, a colored man in the employ of Munger Brothers, at their lime kiln in South Hannibal, met with a sudden death last night by falling from the bridge leading from the stone quarry to the crater of the kiln, the distance being about forty feet from the bridge to the ground.  His lantern having been found full of oil, and in an unbroken condition, attests the fact that the man, whose eye-sight was known to be defective, had dispensed with the lantern and had attempted to wheel rock to the kiln by means of a wheelbarrow, without light, and trusting to his familiarity with the track of the bridge.  At any rate he was found dead this morning, the body being in a mangled condition.  The deceased was an exemplary colored man, and by his industrious habits had won the esteem of all who knew him.  He leaves a wife and three children to deplore his horrid fate.


At the inquest held to-day in view of the remains of Levi Prater, who was killed b y falling off the run-way of the South Hannibal lime kiln last night, it was ascertained that the skull had been fractured; also a mortal wound had been inflicted in the left side.  The inquest was held by Judge Mills.


THE HANNIBAL CLIPPER (Hannibal, Mo.),  13 December 1875 (4)


Joe Lewis, of St. Louis, had a bottle of medicine in his room which smelt like whisky to a room-mate, who quietly took a swig unknown to Joe.  Consequence - an inquest was held on Louis Sigel last Friday.

  An old Baptist preacher of St. Louis, named Dunetz, who makes and sells Hoffman's Drops, was terribly burnt last Friday in the effort to save his wife's life, whose clothes had caught fire by the mixture boiling over.  The wife died, and the old man is not expected to recover.


Akron Weekly Pioneer Press (Akron, Washington Co.), Friday 10 February 1888 (1)

Cora Lee is Acquitted.

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Jan. 28. - The celebrated trial of Cora E. Lee on a charge of murdering Sarah Graham closed here this evening.  The jury was out just ten minutes and returned with a verdict of "not guilty."  There was no particular sensation in the court-room when the verdict was announced.  The defendant, when receiving congratulations, gave way to her feelings in copious tears.  The case of Mrs. Emma Malloy, the evangelist, indicted as an accessory before the fact to the bigamous marriage of Cora Lee and George E. Graham, has been taken on a change of venue to Ozark where she will be tried at the next term of the Circuit Court.

   Mrs. Sarah E. Graham was murdered in September, 1886.  She threatened to expose her husband, George Graham, for having committed bigamy, and Graham endeavored to compel her from telling the story of his misdeeds.  Mrs. Graham left Indiana for Missouri to expose her husband.  She met Graham, who told her that if she wished to track him further she would have to do it over a road five miles long.  She followed him, and was never seen alive again.  Her dead body was found near a well on Mrs. Malloy's farm a few days after.


GENTRY JOURNAL (Gentry, Arkansas), Friday 29 May 1896


Mrs. Frost of Cass County, Mo., Drowns her Three Children and Suicides.

HARRISONVILLE, Mo., May 27. - "Three children and a woman murdered. Bring coroner and come quick."

   This was the wording of a telegram received here from Cleveland, in the western part of this county, at 8 o'clock yesterday morning, and Deputy Sheriff F. M. Wooldridge, acting sheriff in Sheriff Hutton's absence at Jefferson City, prosecuting Attorney A. A. Whitsitt and Coroner F. E. Runneberger left for the scene.

   When the officials arrived there they learned that Mrs. Frost, known to her neighbors as "Mart," and liked generally, drowned her three children in a barrel of water Monday night and cut her throat.  Her motive is unknown and it is thought she must have been temporarily demented.

   Frost, the husband and father, is a well-top-do farmer and owns 120 or 200 acres of land north of Cleveland village.  He was absent in Kansas City at the time of the occurrence.

{This issue is full of steamer disasters, floods and cyclones, reports hundreds dead.]


A Fatal Missouri Feud.

Maysville, Mo., May 29. - Dr. Metcalf of Osborn shot and instantly killed Richard Gasmeyer of the same place.  The shooting was the result on an old feud.  Metcalf is under arrest.



GENTRY COURIER-JOURNAL (Arkansas), Friday 11 September 1896


Tramp Strung Up at Rhineland for Assaulting a Little Girl.

RHINELAND, Mo., Sept. 5. - Last night at 10 o'clock an angry mob of masked men assembled in front of the Rhineland hotel, prepared to lynch Thomas Larkin, a tramp giving his residence as New York, who brutally assaulted little Alla Gammon 11 years of age.  Admittance was refused by the guards.  The mob broke down the door and brought out Larkin.  He begged and prayed for them to spare him, but this only made them more enraged, and they took him to a tree near town and swung him up, where they left him for the coroner to hold an inquest.



Mutilated Body of Farmer Matthew Clark Found near Excelsior Springs.

EXCELSIOR SPRINGS, Mo., Sept. 7. - The body of Matthew Clark, a bachelor farmer was found yesterday morning by the roadside four miles south of here.  The head was horribly beaten and all indications point to murder, but there are absolutely no clues upon which the officers can work.  The sheriff and posse are now out searching for the murderer or murderers.  Clark was fairly well-to-do and had lived alone for many years.  So far as known he had no enemies.


JOURNAL-ADVANCE (Gentry, Arkansas), Friday 29 December 1899


A Missourian and His Three Children Dead - A Vow to His Dying Wife.

[Chillicothe], Mo., - William J., Thomas, a farmer whose home was near here, killed himself and three children Saturday night, it is supposed to keep the promise he made to his dying wife, who killed herself by talking laudanum a year ago.  The bodies of Thomas and the children were found in the ruins of their home Sunday morning.  As he had bought shot and borrowed a gun Saturday night, it is supposed he may have shot and killed the children before he set fire to the house.

   Mrs. Thomas killed herself on account of her husband's money troubles.  It was shown at the inquest that he had told several neighbors that while she was dying he had promised to kill the children and himself, that they might join her.  He had lost property during the year and it is supposed worry over poverty made him insane.

Published by Centre for Comparative Law, History and Governance at Macquarie Law School