Way Back When

(The Spirit is pleased to share with our readers vignettes of life in the 19th century as originally reported in past issues of the newspapers. These reproduced stories include their original headlines and spelling.)

Local Intelligence
Sept. 9, 1896

Arrested for Malicious Mischief
Dr. Beyer and Dr. Shields have a dispute about a line on North Findley street, both claiming an alley. Last Saturday Des Freas and Ferl Long were having some coal hauled.

They could not get to their coal houses without going through land claimed by Drs Shields and Beyer, and which had been fenced in by Dr. Shields.

Mr. Freas complained to Dr. Beyer about it and the Doctor told him to let down the fence and go through and he would take any consequences that might result.

So Des let down the fence.

Dr. Shields had them both arrested for malicious mischeif.

They were given a hearing before Squire Lowry and held for court.

Sept 23, 1896

The trial of Irvin Bussler on a charge of stealing $83 from George Heigney, of this place, was concluded in a somewhat dramatic manner.

The evidence tended to show that Constable Record, in attempting to recover the money, had lead the young man to believe that, if he would tell where it was, nothing would be done about it.

As a confession made to an officer under a promise of that kind cannot be used as evidence against him, and there was no doubt of his guilt.

He believed him guilty and the jury believed him guilty, but under this technicality of law, he would not be convicted. “If however,” said the Judge, “you have and sense of honor about you, you will go immediately, and use the first money you earn to pay back to these old people what you have taken from them.”

It is said that the Bussler’s attorney has some trouble in preventing him from pleading guilty, in which case he would certainly have been sent down the river.