Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Fireman's Parade

Marietta Intelligencer, September 8, 1852

It is but a short time, we think not more than three or four months, since a Fire company was organized in the upper ward of this corporation, and we were not a little surprised at the "turn out' which it made on Saturday last. We confess that we look upon such a parade as that of Saturday with much greater pleasure than almost any other, for the reason that the services of these men, with their engine, are necessary to the protection of the property of our citizens.

The engine which this company has in charge, though of much less power than the one purchased last year for the 1st Ward, is really a fine one, and if it is kept in good order - as we doubt not it will be by the "Defiance Company" - it will be of great service, and may often entirely stop the progress of fires which would prove very destructive if no engine was nearer than the one in the 1st ward.

The Engine House of this company is near the "Sacra Via." A very good bell has been procured for it, of sufficient size to alarm the people of the upper ward before notice of a fire in that neighborhood could be given in the 1st ward.

The members of the company have adopted a very neat uniform, and we understand have regular and frequent meetings. They have taken hold of the business in the right spirit - with a determination to maintain a thorough organization, to keep up a full company, to have their engine and apparatus always in good working order, and to be always "on hand" when they are needed.

We hope our citizens, and our authorities, will give them substantial "aid and comfort," so that they may not only keep their engine and fixtures in good repair, but purchase such additional hose, buckets, etc. etc. as may from time to time be needed.

We also hope that this demonstration may "provoke to good works" the other fire companies in Marietta and Harmar, and lead to a more thorough and efficient organization of our entire fire department.

We learn that after the parade on Saturday, the members of the "Defiance Company" were addressed by N. Ward, H. A. Towne and Davis Green, Esqrs.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Registered as Girl, Marietta Man Must Prove "She Is Me"

Marietta Daily Times, September 11, 1917

Down in El Paso, Texas, there's a former Marietta resident named Henry S. Stephenson who has been protesting since last Tuesday that he is not a woman. He convinced Probate Judge A. A. Schramm and Clerk of Courts A. L. Savage. But it cost him $5.25 in telegraph tolls.

And now, in his efforts to get a passport, he's facing a task even more difficult. When he goes before customs officials with evidence tending to show that a nice little pink and white baby girl born here on June 9, 1868, in less than 50 years evoluted into a coarse, bewhiskered man, 'tis then he will need to be rid of the conversation handicap prevailing between Marietta and El Paso. No one of sound judgment would volunteer to support a contention such as that, with words costing a nickel each. 

This man Stephenson telegraphed a week ago to Clerk of Courts Savage:  "Need birth certificate to secure passport. I was born at Marietta on June 9, 1868. Please advise if I am registered, answer collect here."  The telegram was turned over to Judge Schramm. He investigated records in the probate court and found that on the date specified a baby named Stephenson had been registered. But it was listed under the head of "females." The child's name did not appear, though names of its father and mother, Henry Stephenson and Rebecca Sheets Stephenson, were appended. 

In a reply to his wire the interesting news was conveyed to Stephenson at El Paso. Next day there came another telegram from Stephenson. "She is me," he said in effort. "I am Henry Stephenson to whom reference is made. Am certain there has been a mistake. Please prepare certificate acknowledging same under your seal and forward to me here, care Toltec club, with bill attached. I will remit immediately. Urgent."

Judge Schramm couldn't send the original certificate. Likewise he couldn't change the record showing that Stephenson was at one time a nice little baby girl. There was a delay of a day or two, and into the court house came another telegram from Stephenson. "Have you mailed birth certificate? Very important. Please answer," it said.

Late Monday Judge Schramm mailed him a transcript from the record. There was no alteration made. It shows him to be a female, and it's up to him to prove it if he isn't. A letter accompanying the transcript, in which the judge calls attention to the probability of the entry's having been an error, may help the El Paso man.

The error in the entry was made during the incumbency of Luman W. Chamberlain as probate judge. He served from 1864 until 1870.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Milk Wagon Hit By Auto, Upset

The Register-Leader, July 5, 1916

Much milk was spilled and dozens of bottles were broken at 11:30 this morning when an automobile driven by Miss Kathryn Alexander struck the rear end of the Jersey Heights dairy delivery wagon, owned by J. S. Devol and driven by Donovan Williamson, upsetting the wagon at the corner of Second and Putnam streets. The wagon had just turned the corner and Miss Alexander followed.

Williamson was in the wagon when it was turned over, but he was not injured. The shafts of the wagon were broken and this probably saved the horse from injury. The accident was witnessed by a large crowd. The right fender of the Alexander car was bent in the collision.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Fatal Stabbing Affray

The Marietta Register, May 17, 1866

On Saturday last, after the circus exhibition, three citizens of West Virginia, opposite Marietta, when returning home, engaged in a drunken brawl on the ferry boat J. B. McMillan. During the fracas, one of the men, named Reed, stabbed one of the others named Kinnaird in the bowels, inflicting a wound from which he died the following Monday morning. The third man, named Ritchie, also received a severe, but not dangerous, stab in the side. Reed was then knocked down by one of the passengers and the knife taken from him. On reaching the Virginia shore, Reed was arrested by a Constable, but managed to escape, and has thus far eluded all efforts of the officers to re-capture him.

The case, carefully summed up, stands thus: Three neighbors start to town in the morning, warm friends; before they return home, one of them receives a death blow from his friend - another receives a fearful wound - and the third is made an exile from home and friends, a fugitive from justice, a vagabond on the face of the earth!

Truly the power of strong drink is fearful when it can thus make demons of men and blast their lives forever.

The Marietta Register, May 24, 1866:

Reed, who fatally stabbed Kinnaird, on the Williamsport ferry boat, was arrested at Athens on Wednesday, 16th inst., by Sheriff Johnson, and brought to Marietta and lodged in Jail, from whence he was removed to Parkersburg on Friday evening. He voluntarily went over the river with the Sheriff of Wood County, West Virginia, thereby avoiding the delay of a requisition from the Governor.

The Marietta Register, June 21, 1866:

 In order to correct the many misstatements and false rumors about the affray that occurred on the Ferry Boat between Williamstown and Marietta on the 12th of May, we publish the following testimony as given by State witnesses during the trial:

E. D. Geren, sworn - I saw the beginning of the affray; saw four persons only aft of the boiler on the ferry boat, when the affray took place, viz: Almstead [Armistead] Kinnaird, John Uhl, Russell Reed, and a man said to be Robert Ritchie; all seemed to be under the influence of liquor; heard some loud talk, and the first that I saw of the affray was that Kinnaird struck Reed, and then Kinnaird and Reed clinched; they were down; Reed rose up with Kinnaird; and then I saw John Uhl strike at Reed, and then Ritchie clinched Reed and they both fell over the stove together; and when they rose up, I saw a knife in Reed's hand; did not see him cut any person; all seemed to be fighting against Reed.

Robert Campbell, sworn - Did not see the commencement; Kinnaird, Reed and Uhl were in conflict; I went in to part them and Ritchie pulled me away; Kinnaird was on top; Reed turned him and got up; did not see Reed cut Kinnaird; at the time we had hold of Reed, he pulled out the knife; he did not say what he intended to do; he did strike at me; they all had the appearance of being intoxicated; the two were against Reed; when I first went in, Ritchie was there; I saw Kinnaird strike Reed when we were holding him; Reed was rather holding back; Reed's knife was visible when Kinnaird struck him; the room was five feet wide and twenty feet long.

George Metcalf, sworn - Was on my way over the river; when I went on the boat, Kinnaird and Reed were clinched; Kinnaird struck at Reed over my shoulders twice; Kinnaird kept pressing forward, and I slapped him; I went off and returned; Kinnaird had hold of Reed; did not see Reed strike Ritchie; when Kinnaird Went off the boat; he said he'd pay me for it; I was standing between Reed and him, when Kinnaird struck him twice; Ritchie said, "let him (K.) go, and whip the damn little rascal"; they were all drunk.

James W. Kinnaird, sworn - Was not in the cabin of the boat; Reed came down and said he was pretty tight, and I saw he was; John Uhl called A. Kinnaird back in the cabin; had a canteen with him; saw Kinnaird after the fracas was over, but did not know he was cut; he was pretty tight; they were all tight; when Reed went back, he was doing nothing; when Kinnaird had him down, he was choking him black; Kinnaird was a very strong man; when Reed left the boat, his hand was bleeding very freely.

L. C. Arbour, sworn - I came down to go over on the boat; saw there was a fuss; they had hold of Reed; I saw Kinnaird pushing to him, trying to strike him; Reed said, "give me my hat, and I'll go out"; I saw him make a motion, , but did not see him strike Kinnaird with the knife; I tried to push Kinnaird, but couldn't do it; I pushed Ritchie back; Uhl was cursing Reed; Ritchie, Kinnaird and Uhl were all making at Reed.

Rufus Campbell, sworn - I run the ferry boat; Kinnaird and Reed clinched and fell over the stove; Kinnaird on top; Kinnaird shoved me over, and struck Reed; and Ritchie said, "let Kinnaird whip him"; Kinnaird, Ritchie, Reed and Uhl were engaged; did not see Kinnaird cut; it was 5-1/2 o'clock in the evening; Kinnaird could see the knife, and after he saw it, he pushed me one side and struck Reed; it was a pretty hard blow; Reed told the men not to crowd him; he seemed only to want to get the men away from him.

Taking into consideration the above testimony, the extreme youth of young Reed (18 years), who was defending himself against three (3) grown men, and as for the justness of the sentence passed upon him, we leave only for the loyal public to decide.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

An Important Law - Registry of Births and Deaths

The Marietta Register, April 18, 1867

By a recent act of the Ohio Legislature, the Probate Judges of the several counties of this State are required to keep a record of Births and Deaths within their respective counties.

Physicians and professional midwives are required to report to the Probate Judge quarterly, January, April, July and October, date and place of birth, name, sex and color of child, and names and residence of parents.

Physicians, Ministers and Sextons are required to report deaths, giving name, age and residence of deceased.

A fine of ten dollars is imposed for a violation of the act.

Blank reports will be furnished by Probate Judges. Let every person see to it that this record is complete, thereby saving much trouble in the future.