Washington County Tidbits 1870-79

Tidbits are newspaper articles, etc. which mention names, places, and other information possibly useful to the researcher.

E-mail your Washington County, MO Tidbit to Larry Flesher,

Submitted by Thomas Fea

Washington County Journal - April 1870

Kelly - At his residence in Potosi, Monday evening, March 29th, 1870 of consumption, Mr. Dennis Kelly, aged 30 years, 8 months, 28 days.
Mr. Kelly was a native of Galloway county, Ireland, from whence he removed at an early age, and thence emigrated to this country. Coming to Potosi some thirteen years since. Mr. Kelly, by habits of untiring industry and application, secured to himself success in his chosen avocation of merchant, and an unblemished name for integrity and promptness. Just as he seemed within reach of a rapid and easy attainment of his ambitions, death has withdrawn him from the contest. Mr. Kelly left a devoted wife (daughter of Thomas Fea, Esq., of this county) and three interesting children, to mourn the loss of their protector.
Submitted by Thomas Fea

Washington County Journal - April 13th, 1870


It will be remembered that we published sworn testimony regarding the bad treatment of these men by the Mexican authorities. The Washington County (Mo) Journal, of April 13 says:
We have upon our desk a copy of the Arizona Citizen of March 4th, in which we find the subjoined account of the arrest, imprisonment, and two trials of two young men, James Fea and Uriah Johnston, the first named a well known citizen of this county and the latter also having been a former resident, being a nephew of Judge J. B. Johnston, and brother-in-law of W. H. Fergusson. These young gentlemen bear unexceptional character as industrious, peaceable, law-abiding citizens, -- men of unquestionable veracity, and their complaint is entitled to earnest, prompt consideration from the United States government.


Vol. 1, Tucson, Pima Co., A. T., Saturday, March 4, 1871, No. 21, Front Page.

Americans In Mexico

How they are Treated by the Sonora Authorities.
Following is a condensed history, in the form of sworn testimony, showing what befell James Fea, Uria G. Johnston and Walter Welsh in their way home through the Republic of Mexico. The testimony exhibits what penalties the Sonora authorities inflict on American citizens for permitting themselves to be attacked and robbed by gangs of Mexican highwaymen and assassins, and how the latter are officially shielded from punishment. This case is from an official standpoint, a counterpart of the Mission Camp Massacre, except that in the latter instance the deed was done on American soil, and great care taken that the attacked parties could neither pursue the murderers nor be brought to punishment for allowing Mexicans to kill and rob them.

The two deponents in the case before us, bear a good name for industry and integrity with all who know them in Arizona. Mr. Fea was the engineer at the Santa Rita sawmill, and many men about Tucson have long and favorable known him. Their testimony will be forwarded to Washington, and here it is:

Personally appeared before me Charles H. Meyers, a justice of the peace in and for Tucson precinct, Pima county, Arizona Territory, James Fea and Uria G. Johnston, and the subscribing witnesses hereto, and each for himself testifies under oath as follows, to-wit: That on or about August 20, 1870, he in company with the other and Walter Welsh left Arizona Territory for the Port of Guaymas in the State of Sonora, in the Republic of Mexico, bound for his home in the United States of which Country he and companions are citizens; that when quietly on their way and about 120 miles on their route from the Arizona line in the State of Sonora, they were each and all attacked by men of Mexican birth from an ambush, and Mr. Walter Welsh mortally wounded by the attacking party, and that he died soon thereafter; and that acting upon the advice of Welch [spelling of his name changes here] who felt that he could not live but an hour or so at most, each of deponents fled to the city of Magdalena in Sonora, and related what occurred and sought aid to capture and bring to punishment the attacking parties; that thereupon the authorities of said Magdalena caused each of themselves to be arrested and imprisoned on charge of murder; that the arrest was made upon a report of Mexicans who professes to have examined the scene of attack and who reported no trace of tracks except those made by deponents; that at deponents' request, they were permitted to hire horses and men and repair to the scene of the attack, and showed the tracks and ambush of the assassins, and that thereafter those who attempted to fasten the crime of murder upon deponents admitted that they saw other tracks but forgot to report the fact; that after their return from showing the evidence of their innocence and the guilt of others, they were tried and acquitted by a court in Magdalena; that the verdict was sent to Ures for approval of the Supreme Court, and was annulled; that deponents were again arrested, imprisoned and tried, and acquitted by a jury and court of Magdalena and that said verdict was finally approved at Ures; that the date of the first imprisonment occurred about September 1, 1870, and was of but short duration actually in prison yet constantly under duress; that the second actual incarceration in jail was on or about Oct. 20, 1870 and continued up till Dec. 26th, following when the second trial occurred; that after the second acquittal, they were each restrained from leaving the city until February 6, 1871, and that in fact they were deprived of the liberty from Sept 1, 1870 to Feb. 6, 1871, without the least evidence against them of guilt or of violation of any law of said State of Sonora, but on the contrary in the face of ample proof that other men known to deponents by sight were the perpetrators of the crime of murdering their companion Welch, and that no effort was made for their arrest; that while deponents were in jail, they were compelled to purchase and pay with their own money for all the food they ate and every other personal necessity; that they paid $25 for horses and the designated men to examine the scene of the murder and attack upon them; that after their entire acquittal of all charges and approval of the verdict at Ures, they were compelled to bay $35.50 to the magistrate of Magdalena before he would permit them to leave; that their arrest and detention for the time specified above, was made to cost them a large amount of money needlessly and as deponents verily believe maliciously; that the magistrate of Magdalena was heard to publicly declare on the streets of that city, the he wished the citizens or people - meaning Mexican - would murder every American who came among them; that the same magistrate obtained from the body of the murdered man Welsh the sum of $155, and that at the time of their departure from Magdalena, he still retained said amount of cash; that they are fully of opinion that the Mexican authorities desire and encourage the murder and plundering of American citizens, but that there are many Mexican citizens who desire justice alone should be meted to all; that in their individual cases, several Mexican citizens gave them valuable aid, but for which they would still have been prisoners, if not hung or shot by the Mexican authorities. And deponents further state that their cases are entitled to the fullest consideration of the United States Government, and that the Mexican Government should be compelled to repair the damage inflicted upon themselves so far as money can repay the pangs of unjust incarceration, loss of many months time, a frustration of their lawful and proper designs in returning to their house.

Subscribed and sworn to before me this 25th day of February 1871.

Justice of the Peace, Pima county, Territory of Arizona

This story is about James Fea of Potosi and Uria G. Johnston who was also from Missouri and a former resident of Washington, County. James Fea was in Arizona at the time of his father's death in November, 1870. This is what happened before he was able to return to Potosi, the next year. -ed.

Washington County Journal - Potosi, Thursday, July 21, 1870

A DOUBLE TRAGEDY -- One man seriously cut, and another killed! A horrible tragedy transpired at Coleman's Store, Liberty township, in this county, on Saturday last, resulting in the infliction of seven serious knife wounds upon one party, and the instantaneous killing, by a pistol shot, of another. During Saturday afternoon a considerable crowd had assembled in the vicinity of Mr. Firmin Coleman's store, to participate in a shooting match. At about three o'clock, according to our information, many of the party having become Intoxicated and boisterous, Jasper Vandever - a young man who had not heretofore borne a good character, -- made an assault (which we are assured was entirely unprovoked) upon the person of James Talbott, who had been engaged in the match.

That part of the affair not having been up to the present time made the subject of legal Investigation, we are unable to give the details. In the course of the difficulty, however, Vandever inflicted upon Talbott seven severe stabs with a large, ugly looking pocket knife.

The Injured man was placed on the porch of Mr. Coleman's store In a bleeding, fainting condition, and medical aid summoned. A little later In the afternoon Hiram Talbott, a younger brother of the victim of the first affray, returned to the neighborhood from a visit to the residence of his sister, on Black river. At the store of Mr. A. L. Edwards, about two miles from the scene of bloodshed he was first Informed of the affair, by a bystander. A young acquaintance, Marion Walser, according to the evidence adduced, then proposed to Hiram Talbott to go to the place where his brother was supposed to be lying in a dying condition, and kill Vandever.

The two rode off together to Coleman's store, one of them borrowing a pistol on the way and Walser carrying It, arrived upon the spot and in the immediate presence of the wounded man, another scene of blood was quickly enacted. Just after dismounting, Walser drew forth the pistol and handed it to young Talbott. Vandever was advancing upon the porch at the moment - It is stated by some with a show to attack another man who had In some way offended him. As young Talbott saw him advancing, he accosted him with a peremptory challenge, to which, however, Vandever did not seem to heed, at all. With his first attempt Talbott did not discharge his pistol - It snapping; Instantly re-cocking It he fired, and with but too deadly aim. With the report Vandever fell forward upon his face, and with a gasp or two expired.

Talbott, seeing the fearful result of his passion, threw down his pistol, mounted his horse, and hurriedly rode away. Walser followed soon after, and before the authorities could be apprised of the fact the two made good their escape under cover of night. A subsequent examination of the body of Vandever discovered that the pistol ball had entered the right side, and passing through is heart, come out upon the left. The weapon used was a clumsy, single-barreled pistol, made from the breech of a common rifle barrel, very plainly mounted and about 44 calibre. In Vandevere's pocket was found the knife with which he cut Talbott, and projecting from his boot leg an Iron poker, both of which, together with the pistol, are now in the possession of Sheriff Breckenridge. Beside the stabs received by James Talbott, in his encounter with Vandever, the latter bruised him severely In the breast by repeated blows with a rock. He has, however, so far recovered from his injuries as to have been removed to his home, and is now reported In a fair way for recovery.

Of the slain and his slayer, it is but just for us to repeat in this connection what we have heard Iterated and reiterated by their neighbors; that while Vandever was a vicious, dangerous man, especially under the Influence of Intoxicating liquors, as was very frequently the case, Talbott has been known as a peaceable and strictly temperate young man, easily Influenced, and of a very impulsive temperament.

Submitted by Christine Lembeck

Madison Wisconsin State Journal, November 11, 1870

Boiler Explosion - An explosion took place a few days ago at Messrs. Clarkson and Henson's saw mill situated some seven miles south of Potosi, Mo., which was the cause of serious and perhaps fatal, injury to four persons. The force of the explosion was so great that the whole engine and boiler were lifted from their place and carried bodily through the roof of the mill, and having made several revolutions in the air, were deposited upon the ground 125 feet from their original position.
Submitted by Thomas Fea

The Washington County Journal - Thursday, November 24, 1870

Explosion of a boiler! One man killed and another severely scalded! Destruction of a Mill!
At about three o'clock today a shocking accident occurred at the steam saw mill of Messrs. Fea and Turnbull (generally known as Caldwell's Mill) resulting in the death of an estimable citizen Mr. Thomas (Brown) Fea and severe, although not dangerous injuries to his son, Mr. Joseph (Smith) Fea. The Mill had been lying idle for a long time, until about two weeks hence when it was leased by Messrs Fea and Turnbull, and put in operation. At the hour named the Mill was started after an intermission of about an hour in the operation. Mr. Thomas Fea was firing and his son, Joseph Fea, was running an edger nearby when the boiler exploded with such force as to break and scatter the machinery in every direction. Mr. Thomas Fea received injuries, from scalding and otherwise, which resulted in his death within an hour or two. His son, Joseph, was severely scalded on his arm and hand but not otherwise injured. It is thought Mr. Fea was a native of Scotland. We think about fifty years of age. His honored family have the earnest sympathy of our Community in their sad bereavement.
Thomas Brown FEA died 24 Nov 1870 and is buried in Potosi Presbyterian Cemetery - ed.
Submitted by Christine Lembeck

Wellsville Genesee Valley Free Press, January 4, 1871

Amasa Frissell, of Potosi, Missouri, while hunting on the 14th, stumbled and killed himself with his gun.
Submitted by Thomas Fea

The Lincoln County Herald, January 12, 1871

A good silver ore is reported on Flat Creek, Washington county, in this State.
Submitted by Esther M. Ziock Carroll

Decatur Republican - 27 July 1871

The land on which the city of Wilmington, Delaware, is situated, is likely to become the subject of litigation. Some 200 years ago, more or less, a man named Springer leased 800 acres of land to a German for 99 years; that at the end of that time, no one appearing to claim the land, it was sold, & became the site of the city of Wilmington. The Springer family have found the original deeds, & are about to lay claim to the fee simple of the 800 acres, now valued at $80,000,000. The heirs of the original Springer now reside in Illinois, St. Louis, & Potosi, Missouri, & elsewhere.

Submitted by Christine Lembeck

Indianapolis Evening Journal, December 7, 1872

Thirteen stores, shops, etc., including the Journal printing office, in Potosi, Missouri, embracing the larger portion of the business part of the town, were destroyed by fire yesterday. Loss not stated, but said to be heavy, with very little insurance.

Daily Democrat, Sedalia, Missouri, December 9, 1872

The Washington County Journal, Maj. Geo. B. Clarke, Auditor of State elect was burned on the evening of the 5th at Potosi, Missouri. The presses, type, fixtures, books, etc. were entirely consumed. No insurance.

We extend to Bro. Clarke our liveliest sympathy in his loss. A considerable portion of the town of Potosi was destroyed at the same time, but the extent of the loss we have not learned.

Submitted by Christine Lembeck

Wyoming Post, December 14, 1872

The larger portion of the business part of Potosi, Mo., has been destroyed by fire. The Journal office was burned.
Submitted by Christine Lembeck

Titusville Morning Herald, February 20, 1873

Grading for the double track of the St. Louis and Iron Mountain Railroad is being rapidly pushed ahead. At least 100 men are daily employed on the line between Cadet and Mineral Point.

The Hamilton Iron Company will erect a blast furnace in Blanton Settlement, in the northwestern part of Washington County, Missouri, to be in blast next July or August. The company has a capital of $150,000.00

Submitted by Christine Lembeck

The Fair Play - April 10, 1873

A few days ago a young man from Washington Co., Mo, name J. F. O'Farrell, in waiting at the Vandalia Railroad depot, was accosted by a man who gave his name as W. Woods, and represented that he owned a farm near Collinsville, Illinois. He made an agreement to hire O'Farrell to work for him. Woods then asked him to lend $25 to pay for freight. O'Farrell had only $16.75, which the bogus farmer took, leaving the young man dead broke. He admitted that he did not read the papers, and had never heard of confidence games.

Potosi Weekly, June 26, 1873

BEQUETTE. - In St. Louis, on the 16th inst., Mr. Charles Bequette, age 65.

CONWAY. - At his residence, near Potosi, on the 25th inst., Mr. Archie Conway, in the 70th year of his age.

CLARKE. - In Jefferson City, this morning at 1 o'clock, Cornelia, wife of Major George B. Clarke.

FLETCHER. - In St. Louis on the inst., Mrs. Margaret Fletcher, Mother of Ex-Governor Thomas C. Fletcher. She had been a resident of the state 55 years.

In same newspaper:
Mr. William McGrain, chief clerk in the State Auditor's office was in town the early part of this week. He looks hale and hearty. From him we learn that May, the eldest daughter of Maj. Clark has been confined to her bed for some 90 days. Her disease in Meningitis.

Judge E. B. Ewing, of the Supreme Court, died suddenly of Meningitis at the Iron Mountain, on the 21st inst.

Judge Wm B. Napton, formerly a member of the Court has been appointed by Gov. Woodson to fill the vacancy by the death of Judge Ewing.

All persons indebted to the undersigned either by note or Book account are respectfully requested to call and settle the same without delay, as I expect to close my present business of Merchandising by the 4th of July next; preparatory to making a change in my business.

Prompt attention to the above, may save both cost and trouble.

Hopewell Furnace, June 10th 1873

Note: "inst." means "last" or "the most recent" - Ed.

Potosi Weekly Newspaper, July 10, 1873

BRYAN. - At DeSoto, Mo. July 3rd, 1873, Lily Amelia, infant daughter ofCharles and Elisabeth Bryan, aged four months.

At the residence of the bride's father, June 24th, 1873, by Rev. E. R. Jones, Mr. L. Judson to Miss Mary Love, all of Dent County.

The undersigned will pay the highest market price in Cash for mineral on his Diggings or delivered at his Store.

June 12th, 1873

This great Dyspepsia Panacea has the largest sale of any other preparation in the world. Why? Because we say to every one that is afflicted with Dyspepsia Liver Complaint, Costiveness Headache, Heartburn, Waterbrash, SourStomach, Indigestion or any disease depending upon pure blood, healthy Liver and Stomach to call R. P. Waring Drug Store, Potosi or Gust Hamel, DeSoto, Mo. and get one of our sample bottles free of charge. Regular size 75 cents. Try it.

Wholesale Agents, St. Louis, Mo.

Potosi Weekly Newspaper, July 17, 1873

KENNETT. - Near Pevely, on Monday, July 14th, Rebecca B., beloved wife of Press G. Kennett, aged 20 years and 7 months.

HAEFNER. - At Des Arc, Mo., on Saturday, July 12th, 1873, to John V. Haefner and wife, a black-haired girl.

On last Saturday, John Purtum shot and killed James F. Scott. The murder was committed on the military road, just south of the Martin farm on Little Black, about fifteen miles from this place. We have learned but little of this sad affair, but from what we have gathered it grew out of an old feud. Our informent tells us, that they met in the road late in the evening when a few words was passed on the subject, when Purtum drew his pistol and commenced to fire on Scott. Four shots were fired when Scott fell from his horse and expired in a few moments: there was but one shot that took effect,it entering near the spine in the region of the small of the back, ranging forward and upward, passing near or through the heart and lodging against the breast bone. Thus ended one of the worse deeds ever commited in our country.

Mr. Scott was one of the best young men in our country, in other words he was a perfect gentlemen. He was but a few days home from Columbia, where he had been attending the State University for the last year.

Mr. Scott leaves a host of friends behind him to mourn his untimely death. We offer our warmest sympathies to his parents and friends. Up to the present writing Purtum has not been arrested. Notwithstanding the efforts of Sheriff Tubb, Purtum has dodged every effort for his capture. -- Black River News.

Potosi Weekly Newspaper, July 24, 1873

HAMMACK - LEMASTER--In Fredericktown, July 12th, 1873, by Rev. V. T. Settle, Mr. James Hammack and Miss Maggie Lemaster.

Mr. Jos. C. Bass has the St. Louis House for rent. Those desiring rooms or the entire building, can be accomodated by calling on him.

Mr. Dan'l Dunklin of Mineral Point and Sam Jenkins of St. Louis, met with an accident on Friday night, as they came to town from the Point in a hack. Owing to the darkness the driver ran the horses out of the road on a bank and capsized the vehicle and the boys were caught under it. They were considerably bruised but managed to dance a set or two.

We are pleased to state the announcement in our issue of the 10th inst., that Col. Kitchen and his estimable lady had died of Cholera at Poplar Bluff, was untrue. Our information came through Mr. P. M. Robinson of Irondale, a brother of Mrs. K. who had been notified of his sister's death. Col. K. and family are at present at Irondale. They report the Cholera as very bad at the Bluff. The Col. lost four members of his family.

Note: "inst." means "last" or "the most recent" - Ed.

Potosi Weekly Newspaper, Aug. 7, 1873

Hornsey - Peebles---On the 4th inst., by Rev. Father Ring, Mr. Wm. W. Hornsey to Miss Emily Peebles, all of Potosi.

ORDER OF PUBLICATION (State of Missouri) In Circuit Court, to October term, 1873 Washington County

In vacation July 22nd, 1873

Jacob Coleman) Petition for Divorce.
Rachel Coleman) Order of Publication

W. E McGREADY, Circuit Clerk
J. R. Arnold, Att'y for plaintiff
(It lists the petition, but is rather lengthy; no other names are mentioned, only that Rachel was not a resident of Missouri.)

Note: "inst." means "last" or "the most recent" - Ed.

ST. LOUIS, AUG. 21, 1873

Frank Harris, Esq.
Secy. Washington Co. A & M Ass'n

Dear Sir:--Your favor of 20th, inst is received. We will sell tickets to persons attending your fair from Kimmswick, Fredericktown and Ironton on the Arkansas Branch and the intermediate stations at one and one fifth (1 1/5) fare for the round trip.

If any exhibitors or others from St. Louis desire to visit the fair they can procure tickets at the reduced rate by applying at our general ticket office. All stock and merchandise will be returned, to original point of shipment free, on presentation of certificate of the Secretary of Association stating that they have been on exhibition.

Yours Respectfully,
T. McKissock, Gen'l Supt.

Note: "inst." means "last" or "the most recent" - Ed.

August 28, 1873, Potosi Weekly Newspaper

Mr. Joseph Walker, who left our town about two months ago, in company with the Hornsey boys, for Texas, returned last evening fully satisfied with that country. The Hornsey boys will return in a few days.

Mr. James Wallace of Red Fork, Arkansas was in town during the past week on a visit to his friends and relations. Jim looks hale and hearty and reports business good in his section.

On last Friday night Pat. Flood gave a ball at his residence on Brushy Run, about two miles from town. Quite a crowd had assembled to enjoy the pleasures, of the "light fantastic." Among others present was Joseph DeGonia and his brother Frank who had been to Potosi in the afternoon and had no doubt visited Happy Hollow, and of course felt as happy a "Big Sunflower." They had not been on the ground long before a slight unpleasantness arose between them and some other parties present, which it seems culminated in a regular free fight, in which Joe, was placed hors du combat from receiving a severe stab in the back, when in the act of retreating in good order and in rather quick time. The wound is in the lower dorsal region a little to the right of the spine column, and although a severe and painful one is not considered by the Doctor as of a very serious character. After receiving the wound he attempted to make his way to his father's who lived but a short distance, but becoming exhausted from loss of blood, he probably fainted and lay in the woods all night but succeeded in reaching his father's early next morning. It is said that Frank Parks did the cutting, Frank is non est.

WANTED: A good wagon, Ironer, and horseshoer. Apply to F. P. Marrow, Caledonia, Mo.

August 28, 1873, Potosi Weekly Newspaper

On last Thursday, Bud Pucket was taken before Judge Harrison on the charge of having assaulted one Rubideau and fined $10.95.

Potosi Weekly Newspaper, August 28, 1873

In February 1872, at Kingston, in this county, one Willis Deering, assaulted Frank Farnsworth with a knife and gave him some severe stabs. Deering was subsequently indicted by our grand jury but until a day or two since he was succeeded in eluding our officers. Sheriff Anthony learning of his being in Monroe County, Illinois, obtained a requisition from Gov. Woodson and arrested Deering. He brought him to town last night and lodged him in jail. He was this morning released on $1,000 bail. Judge Thos. B. Higginbotham and Henry E. Cheatam going on his bond. Judge Dinning approved the bond. We again repeat that Sheriff Anthony deserves the thanks of this community for the energy and promptness he displays in hunting up criminals and securing their arrests.

Hon. John Evens during the present week sold to Mr. James Wallace of Mineral Point 240 acres of land lying near the above named town and adjoining the mines of Mr. V. B. Mesplay. Mr. W. bought the land for the purpose of developing it for minerals. Being one of our most enterprising business men Mr. W. will not fail to give it a fair and thorough trial. We wish him success.

Mr. Jos. H. Walton who has just returned from Salem reports that town as a lively business place. He says its presents as busy an appearance on evenings as Fourth Street in St. Louis. What gives it its life, activity and bustle are the iron mines in its immediate vicinity.

Sept. 18, 1873 Potosi Weekly Newspaper

The election for School Directors for the Town of Potosi resulted as follows:

For one year:

G.P. Holland -- 19 votes
G.I. Van Alen -- 25 votes
Patrick Dallen -- 1 vote
Benj. Davidson -- 4 votes

For two years:

Perry Patterson -- 22 votes
Wm. A. Ryan -- 24 votes
Firmin Desloge -- 58 votes
Benj. Davidson -- 61 votes
John Teasdale -- 1 vote
John M. Anthony -- 1 vote
G.I. Van Alen -- 2 votes

For three years:

John M. Anthony -- 59 votes
Patrick Dallen -- 56 votes
John Teasdale -- 1 vote

Messrs Davidson and Desloge were elected for two years and Anthony and Dallen for three years. There was no vacancy for the one year term. Messrs Hall and Long holding over. This gives us a good Board and we expect the schools of the town will exhibit a marked improvement during the coming year.

Mrs. J. W. Nedwideck who is always alive to the wants of the people of this place has determined to keep constantly on hand a supply of fresh oysters which she proposes to serve in every style and at all hours. These she will also sell by the keg, can or dozen.

Mr. Wm. H. Blaine who has brought home from Annapolis, seriously ill with fever, has as we are pleased to learn almost entirely recovered under the skilful treatment of Dr. O'Mara.

We understand the Hamilton Iron Works are approaching completion and that in a few weeks they will commence the operation of manufacturing pig iron.

CASEY: At Shibboleth in this county on the 13th inst. Rose Teresa, daughter of George W. and Mary Casey, aged one year and seven months.

ROBINSON: September 13th, John T., infant son of John T. and Effie E. Robbinson aged 13 months.

Oct. 2, 1873 Potosi Weekly Newspaper

Prof. Waring will on Friday Evening if the weather will permit make a grand Balloon ascension from in front of his drug store on High Street. He has shown us the Balloon and has all his preparations completed and assured us that this will be no Graphic failure. The public are cordially invited to attend.

COLMAN-COLE - By the Rev. W. O. Short, on Sept. 17th, at the residence of the Bride's father, Mr. Rufas Colman to Miss Susan Cole, youngest daughter of Mr. Watson Cole.

Wm. Murphy met with a painful though not serious accident on last Saturday night. Whilst on his road home he fell from the upper bridge. His left thigh and side were considerably bruised and a watch in his pocket was so completely smashed as to render it worthless.

Oct 9, 1873 Potosi Weekly Newspaper

Georg L. Simms, at his residence on Flat River, St. Francois Co., aged 33 years, leaves a wife & 5 children to mourn his loss.

On Friday, the 24th of Sept. Mr. M. Flynn of Richwoods, met with quite a serious accident. In attempting to head a ram in a narrow passage the animal endeavored to jump over him and struck him in the breast with his horns, knocking Mr. F. insensible for a few minutes. Mr. F. was brought to his sister's near the place and is now we are pleased to see able to be in attendance on court.

(Newspaper acually put Mr. F.; The newspaper abbreviates a lot)

October 30, 1873 Potosi Weekly Newspaper

Lot E. Doty, whilst on a spree at Richwoods a few days since, bantering a friend for a wrestling match, having been accepted, resulted in Doty's having a leg broken. He is now lying at the residence of Mr. M. Flynn.

November 6, 1873 Potosi Weekly Newspaper

Maddock, at Des Arc, Mo. of inflammatory croup, on Oct. 29, 1873. John Lawrence, son of Patrick M. and Martha E. Maddock, aged 3 years and 7 weeks.

McGrain-Crane--At the residence of the bride's parents on Thursday, Oct. 30th by Rev. Father Conness. Mr. Wm M. McGrain of Jefferson City to Miss Agnes Crane, of this place.

November 20, 1873 Potosi Weekly Local News

W. S. Relfe Esq., is attending the St. Francois Circuit Court.

From Prof. Sheppard we learn that Messrs Coffman and Blacklege have sold the Avon mines in Ste. Genevieve county to a Chicago company for the sum of $25,000.

On last Saturday night, Mr. John H. Cooley was struck on the elbow with a stone and severely hurt. He has since then been confined to his bed, but is rapidly improving.

Several of the hunting party returned on last Saturday and report having met with great success. On Monday we noticed quite a quantity of provisions being sent to the camp.

Mr. Jas McDermott's new house is rapidly approaching completion.

On a recent visit to Mineral Point, we noticed quite a # of small buildings were being erected.

On last Saturday night our town was the scene of wild disorder. Several parties got on a drunk and happening in Murphy's saloon in Happy Hollow were soon engaged in fighting. Being ejected from that place they made things lively on the street for a time, by throwing rocks at every person who showed himself or herself and by uttering the most disgusting obscenities. A lady whilst passing on the street was stoned and several persons whilst quietly standing on the street were compelled to seek shelter in neighboring buildings from the stones hurled at them. We understand these disgraceful scenes were kept up from early in the evening until a late hour at night and yet no officer made his appearance to put a stop to them or to arrest those engaged in them. We have in our midst a sheriff and his deputy, a constable, and a town marshall and his deputy and yet not one of these was on hand when needed and Squire Malony was compelled to deputize a private citizen to execute a warrant against Thomas Higgins, charged with having assaulted Dick Ashburn. We have no charges to make against sheriff Anthony who is our town marshal. We regard him as a conscientious, good officer who never shrinks from doing his duty yet as his business so frequently calls him from town, we think he would do himself and the community a favor by handing in his resignation as town marshal and thus give the trustee a chance to appoint some man to that position who will be on hand to promptly arrest all peace breakers.

November 13, 1873, Potosi Weekly Newspaper

Judge F. K. Boyd, J. W. Clarke, Capt. Hunter, W. J. Casey, J. W. Nedwideck, John R. Higgins and Walter Reynolds left town for the Wilderness where they intend to have a grand hunt for several weeks.

Capt. Robinson, John B. Deane, and Al. Rexford have gone to Webster where they expect to be joined by Don Mc. N. Palmer, Henry Wyman and others after exploring some Caves in that vicinity to take an extended hunt.

We predict an advance in the price of provisions of all kinds in the neighborhood in which the hunters camp.

Submitted by Sharon Hartzell Smith

November 27, 1873

Mike McCoole
The case of the State vs Mike McCoole in the St. Louis court of criminal corrections is progressing slowly. Our readers will remember he is charged with having killed Patsey Manly. The evidence places Mike in a rather tight place.

Mr. John Emelaur having completed Mr. Palmer's Furnace at Webster has returned to town. We learn it is his intention to give a grand ball to his friends, at an early age, in honor of the event.

On last Sunday night the store of Mr. Noah Williams at Mineral Point was broken into and a number of articles of clothing and a few bills taken. Mr. W. being sick does not know the extent of his loss.

The School House was also visited and the desks forced open but as might be expected nothing of much value was secured at this place.

We may expect owning to the great stringency of money matters and the consequent destitution in the large cities to hear of frequent burglaries along the lines of the railroads, so many persons being idle and out of money many will take to the country in quest of plunder. Our merchants should use precautions to prevent their premises from being raided.

Supreme Court
On Monday last the Supreme Court filed fifty-seven decisions. Amongst the cases decided were Coop vs Northutt, affirmed. Caldwell vs Fea, et al, reversed and remanded.

Adjourned over till Monday.

November 27, 1873, Potosi Weekly Newspaper

We are in receipt of the Tribune, a neat 40 column paper published at DeSoto by Messrs. Jos. J. and Saml B. Brady , late of the Farmington Argus. The paper is independent in politics and devoted to the development of the interests of DeSoto. We welcome it to our list of exchanges and wish its publishers success.

We learn from Mr. Relfe that an ejectment suit of Latty Kennett vs Gabriel Barron taken on change of venue from this to St. Francois Co., was decided on last Saturday in favor of plaintiff.

Fred. Bruce (or Brune), a gentlemen of the quiet little town of Farmington being of lawful age and of sound mind and body, concluded to take unto himself a partner in the great business of life, and accordingly selected a Miss Laura Williams, who had also reached her majority, and who was a daughter of Dr. Billy Williams, of the aforesaid town, as a person who would suit him. Fred. was willing and she was willing, but the parents couldn't exactly give their consent. But the bright hopes and many anticipations of pleasure were not to be ___ blasted. The couple quietly stole away from the stubborn father and came to Fredericktown, stopped at the residence of Mr. S-----, secured the services of "a man of God," and in less time than it takes to tell it the two were made one, and are now enjoying all of that rest (if it be rest) promised to those who throw off the single yoke of oppression and hitch themselves for all time to come in a set of double harness.

Parents, you had better say yes!---Bee

(The paper had a crease in it before blasted and it actually says Mr. ---- who performed the ceremony)

Severe Accident
We learn from a correspondent at Bourbon, that a lady named Mrs. Mary Hogan, aged eighty-four years, and the mother of Dr. S. Horine, of Bourbon, met with a severe accident, a short time since. While taking a walk in the grounds adjoining her son's residence she slipped and fell, injuring her hip severely. It was first thought to be dislocated, but Dr. Ekstedt being called, he pronounced it a partial fracture. At last accounts the lady was entirely helpless and suffering intensely, sleep only being obtained by means of opiates.---Mirror.

Fred B. Phillips, of this county, (formerly of New Madrid) has received from Hon. R. A. Hatcher the appointment to the Military Academy at West Point, in the place vacated by Mr. Edgar, of Ironton. Fred is the boy for the position and we feel confident he will stand the examination and be an honor of this part of the state.--Bee.

We are informed that the American Plate Glass Co., of Crystal City have suspended work at that place for the winter. Their experience of last winter convinced them, that they could not do justice to themselves by continuing work through the winter. They calculate resuming again in the spring, and will probably complete all buildings and machinery ready for making glass before the summer is over.---Jefferson Co. Democrat.

Submitted by Christine Lembeck

Sedalia Daily Democrat, Sedalia, Missouri, February 16, 1874

Mineral Point, Missouri, February 14
A quarrel occurred at Iron Mountain Missouri this morning, between a German man and his wife, caused by jealousy, he accusing her of being untrue to him. It ended in a fight, the husband getting the worst of it. He took a double barrel shotgun and went to the door, placing the muzzle to his forehead and blew his brains out. Name not learned yet.
Submitted by Christine Lembeck

The Andrew County Republican - April 3, 1874

Dr. James A. McCollum, one of the most prominent citizens of Washington county, Mo., was accidently shot and killed at Potosi, a few days ago, by a young son, through the careless handling of a pistol.
Submitted by Christine Lembeck

Pacific Rural Press, October 17, 1874

It becomes our painful duty to record the untimely death of Christopher G. McCormick, who was a member of West Grafton Grange, No. 89, P. of H. Brother McCormick was kicked by a vicious horse, on August 4th, and died August 12th. His remains were interred by the West Grafton Grange according to the ritual of the Order. He leaves a wife and nine children to mourn his loss. Brother McCormick was an exemplary Christian, beloved and respected by all who knew him, a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church South, and at the time of his death, Superintendent of a Sabbath School. He was born in Washington County, Missouri, June 16, 1830. Aged 44 years, 1 month, 26 days at the time of his death.
Submitted by Christine Lembeck

Sedalia Daily Democrat, Sedalia, Missouri, December 18, 1874

The Potosi Independent says:
Haince and his partner, who are mining on the lands of M. Flynn at Richwoods, are doing remarkably well. They have reached a depth of seventy feet and have a body of mineral stilt "going down". In sinking this depth they have taken out between forty and fifty thousand pounds of ore. Two hands can raise from 1100 to 1500 pounds per day, worth $36 to $50.

Submitted by Christine Lembeck

Sedalia Daily Democrat, September 18, 1875

Jack Wisdom, a violent, turbulent character, was killed near Palmer, Washington county, on the eighth inst., by Marlon (or Martin) Darnell. Wisdom was the aggressor, having struck Darnell over the head with a heavy whip, when the latter cut Wisdom three times with a small knife, causing death in ten minutes. Wisdom killed a man in 1861, and was sentenced to be hung, but escaped punishment, having been pardoned by Governor Fletcher.
Submitted by Christine Lembeck

Mountain Democrat, Placerville, California, September 30, 1876

At Silver City, Nevada, September 20, 1876, of pneumonia, C. L. Roussin, a native of Washington County, Missouri, aged 36 years.

Sedalia Daily Democrat, Sedalia, Missouri, May 19, 1878

Bismarck - May 17
Irondale is a beautiful little place, located on the Iron Mountain and Southern Railroad five miles above here. It has a world wide reputation as being the location of the E. Harrison & Co., iron works, and for some time past has been very quiet, by reason of the stopping of the furnaces. The Murphy movement took hold on the town a few weeks since, and last night the regular meeting of the Reform Club was held. Among those in attendance was a young man named McVeigh and a man named Woods, both sober and industrious residents of the community. Upon leaving the club and starting for home they were followed by a crowd, of which a chap named Wallen was leader. At the Iron Company's store McVeigh and Woods were opened fire on, and McVeigh was found dead, a pistol ball having pierced his breast. Woods escaped unhurt. It appears that a number of these parties were arrested a year or so ago, and McVeigh then turned state's evidence against some of them, and the old feud resulted in last night's tragedy. Woods accosted Wallen today in town and after accusing him of doing the deed last night, fired at him. He was soon arrested and is now in custody. The sheriff who was absent in St. Louis, was telegraphed to at once, and he and Deputy Hill are now in Irondale working up the case.

Submitted by Thomas Fea

The State Journal., November 08, 1878.

Three Brothers Guilty. The present term of our circuit court has been looked forward to with more than unusual and peculiar interest by a large number of citizens of our county, as the docket showed that a number of criminal cases of more or less importance were to be heard. Among the most important ones were those of the Degonia brothers - Joseph, Antoine and Frank - for the murder of Jules Polite in August of last year, while at a dance, about one mile north of Potosi, and the result of the trials is not unexpected to those best acquainted with the facts connected with the affair.

Washington county has had but one hanging since the dark days of the rebellion, though we must admit there have been a number of crimes added to its criminal history that, had the law been rigidly enforced, and justly meted out in a few of the first instances, it would perhaps have prevented the murder of Polite and others like it. But such was not done, and the law should always be "allowed to take its course." The verdict of the jury in the case of Joseph, who, the evidence shows, inflicted the wounds on Polite, is that he is "guilty of murder in the first degree."

The other brothers pleaded guilty and were sentenced to ten years in the penitentiary.

The evidence adduced in this trial shows that on the night of the 25th of August, 1877, a dance was held at the house of Baptiste Degonia, in Desloge Hollow, about one mile north of Potosi. Jules Polite with three friends arrived there about 12 o'clock and danced till about three, when Polite insisting that one of his friends should dance in a set that was then on the floor, an altercation occurred between him and Antoine Degonia. Polite left the room stating that the yard was the place to settle the matter and invited Antoine to come out. Wm. Orr seized Antoine and prevented his going outside, while the women of the house shut and held the door. Antoine struggled awhile, and releasing himself from Orr, jumped out of a window and ran around the house, and when he came in sight of Polite, threw two rocks at him, one of which struck him in the side. Antoine then rushed up to Polite and struck him with his fist. They then clinched. At this time Joseph Degonia, who had been standing a short distance off brandishing a knife, which witnesses attempted to take from him, ran up behind Polite and commenced striking at him with it. Polite then freeing himself from Antoine started to run around the house, followed by the three Degonia brothers, and as he attempted to cross a small fence which surrounded the house, was stabbed several times in the back by Joseph Degonia. From this place Polite ran some twenty or thirty yards into the brush, still followed by the three Degonias. Wm. Orr, the principal witness for the State, who had followed closely behind, in one or two minutes after Polite's disappearance met the Degonia boys within a few feet of where he last saw him when Joe Degonia, raising his right hand, and again brandishing his knife, said to Orr: "I got him, Uncle Bi'l I got him." The Degonia boys then went to the house while where Joe boasted to one Daniel Boyer, while showing him the knife, that he held Polite with his left hand and cut him with his right. They remained then but a short time in the house when Joe started to accompany Minerva Marler to her home, and showing his knife to her and Louis Jolley and Jack Larue, he stated that "it was a d—d good knife, that he was not afraid to show it to anybody, and that he had got in on Polite three good cuts that he had counted." Polite was not seen alive after his disappearance whilst pursued by the Degonias, but his body was found in a shallow mine the following day, a few feet from where last seen by Orr.

Since the arrest of the boys fourteen months ago the have been principally confined in the jail at St. Louis, and though they are now in pretty fair health, they do no present the robust appearance they did at that time. Their faces are thin and pale and bear a troubled look. They are descendants of the old French settlers that first opened up the mines of the Southeast, and have always followed the vocation of their fathers. They possess more than ordinary good sense, but have had but little education. - Potosi Independent.

The Plain Dealer
Fredericktown, Iron Co, MO
W.J. Collier, Editor
Thursday, Jan 2, 1879

~Washington Co.~

-An unknown disease is killing horses in the county. J. WRIGHT lost four and T. L. JUDD one.
-Some rich discoveries have been made on the mineral lands belonging to Wm. LONG and Michael FLYNN.
-An old doctor from New York is hunting a hidden treasure in Meramec Hills, which is said to have been stowed away there for a half century by robbers, one of who recently died and confided the secret to the doctor.

The Weekly Gazette, Colorado Springs, Colorado, July 19, 1879

St. Louis - July 17
Gov. Phelps today granted a reprieve of three weeks to Joseph DeGonia who was to have been hanged at Potosi tomorrow for the murder of Jules Polite in 1877.

Submitted by Christine Lembeck

St. Louis Post Dispatch, October 28, 1879

"Missouri Lead"

About fifteen miles west of Potosi, the county seat of Washington County, and about eighty miles distant from St. Louis, are what are known as the Palmer Lead Mines. These mines are worked something after this manner: The man who wants to dig for lead goes to the manager of the company at Palmer and gets a permit to mine on the company's land. They stake him off a tract and the miner gets him a shovel, costing about $1.50, a tub at about $2.50, a rope $3.25, a pick $1.25, and goes to work. In most cases lead is found at a depth of twenty-five or thirty feet, sometimes it is much deeper - forty or fifty feet; frequently it is found very near the surface. Shallow mineral is often found in the very grass roots. Of course, all do not find mineral at once; but it is only a question of perseverance and industry. All find it in time in paying quantities. As soon as he does find it, it is taken to the surface and cleaned. Two men can, with a fair prospect, take of a thousand pounds a day. This ore is then weighted on the spot. The miner gets a receipt for it, and can get his money for it at once at the company's office. No store pay or scrip-all cash; and the miner's price for his mineral is governed by the lead market. At present, the ore is advancing in price rapidly. The miner gets a house furnished him free of charge on the company's land, and all the ground he wants, rent free, to raise what farm produce and vegetables he chooses, and he gets the privilege to cut all the wood he wants on the company's land free of charge - so that he has absolutely no expense but to buy his provisions, which can be bought there as cheaply as in St. Louis, and he need not be idle a day. It requires no special knowledge for this work. Any man that can use a pick and shovel can do it successfully. Boys frequently make large sums of money by digging ore in shallow holes. The railroad fare on the Iron Mountain Railroad to Potosi is about $2. It need cost but little to remove any household goods from St. Louis there, and to the strong, able workingman out of employment, and with house rent and coal bills to pay, what an opportunity is here for continued employment and free house room and an abundance of fuel gratis. The mines are not far from St. Louis, the poorest man here can reach them on foot in three or four days, and it seems to be a good opening for all unemployed men.

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Larry Flesher, Washington County, MO

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