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December 03 1915/2015

Forest City – The Erie “Flyer” came down on scheduled time Sunday morning. Con Dillon was the conductor in charge. Patrick Harrigan, the veteran engineer, pulled throttle of a new engine of the 500 class. Jack Dugan was baggeman and Tom Campbell the official announcer. The train is being well patronized and is proving a boom to the people along the line. With the improved train service comes better facilities. A postal clerk has been assigned to the flyer and much of the incoming first class mail, which formerly came in on the D & H, will arrive an hour earlier each morning.

Auburn Twp. – Albert Hughes, farmer, age 31, took a gun about 9:30 Sunday evening and nearly shot his wife’s head off. Neighbors were soon on the scene and describe the sights too gruesome to behold. Hughes says he and a companion were going hunting the following day and took his gun down to examine it when it was accidentally discharged. Jealousness is ascribed by many as the reason for the tragedy. Hughes is in the Montrose jail. Their 8 year old daughter witnessed the tragedy and told of a quarrel between her parents just before the shooting took place, the dispute being over a pack of cards which Hughes could not find in the house. The little girl alleges that her father then secured his double-barreled shotgun and deliberately fired at his wife.

Alford, Harford Twp. – Glenn Richard has filed a suit against the Delaware, Lackawanna and Western Railroad claiming that on the afternoon of September 15, 1914, while driving a horse and wagon loaded with produce along the old plank road near Alford, had his horse and wagon go over the embankment, thereby throwing him over and down the embankment for a distance of some 60 ft. The horse was killed, wagon smashed and Mr. Richardson so badly injured that his life was despaired of for some time. He, however, recovered, but has been left a cripple, with a wife and young child. His claim is that part of the road was in an unsafe condition and unguarded when the company changed the road at that point.

South Montrose – Mr. and Mrs. H. H. Sprout delightfully entertained a number of young people, at a candy pull, Thanksgiving evening, in honor of their nephew, William Sprout.

Montrose – It is rumored that Charlie Chaplin, who will appear at the Colonia theatre on Dec. 8th, in the “Chaplin Review,” rivals the famous Scotch comedian, Harry Lauder, in the manner of being thrifty. He demanded a salary of $1025 per week. When asked what the $25 was for, he replied: “Well, you see, it has always been my desire to save a clear thousand per week outside my living expenses.” The company signed him up for eleven hundred, and let it go at that.

Middletown Twp. – Edward Gillen, an aged resident of this place, met with a tragic end near Lawton, Friday night, when he became bewildered in the darkness and was drowned in the Wyalusing creek. In the evening, driving his horse, which was blind, it is presumed that he got off the road near the bridge across the Wyalusing creek, and benumbed with cold, fell from the rocky sides of the creek into the water below, which is about three feet deep at this point, and being unable to save himself was drowned. He was a bachelor, with three brothers, S. J. Gillen, of Middletown, and John and Charles Gillen, of Binghamton; also one sister, Mrs. Mary Delhanty, of Hallstead.

Springville – A party of hunters one day last week made the mistake of hunting with a ferret and on Friday, paid $129.50 for the privilege. Expensive rabbits.

Lenoxville – A three ton auto truck went thru a bridge below this place recently, which reminds us that we must build our bridges a little stronger.

Liberty Twp. – We have one lady in Liberty that went out to the hen house and found Mr. Skunk in the hen’s nest so she walks in and takes Mr. Man by the neck and carries him out and took a stone and pounded him on the head until he was dead.

Nicholson – A freight car door, loosened by the breeze while crossing the big bridge, enacted the role of an aeroplane the other day. It landed upon the roof of the John Maxey house, some distance away. If this is to be of frequent occurrence, east of the old culvert will be a good place for agents to write accident and life insurance.

Susquehanna – Donovan F. Aldridge, of Jackson, former salesman of Owens hardware at this place, has purchased the tea and coffee business formerly handled by Charles Brown., Mr. Brown having purchased the hardware business of Deakin & Ash in this place.

Meshoppen – While John W. Bowman, of Bunnell Hill, was driving to the milk station with his milk last Wednesday morning, he had a narrow escape, when the tongue of the wagon slipped through the ring in the neck-yoke as he was coming down Rattle snake hill. Mr. Bowman was unable to hold the spirited team as the wagon ran against them with the result that he and the cans of milk were dumped out as the wagon over-turned or bounded from one knoll to another. The milk was spilled, the wagon damaged and the horses bruised considerable and Mr. Bowman is thankful that he received no broken bones, although he has many sore spots. The accident broke into a daily routine of carrying the milk to the milk station that has not been missed by Mr. Bowman or some member of his family in 27 years, 10 years of which trips to the station were made twice a day. The matter is a record worthy of note and if you will do a little figuring you will find there are over 13,500 trips. Mr. Bowman is now milking 13 cows but much of the time has had 35 or 40 milkers.

News Brief: Gasoline has jumped to 20 cents a gallon retail.  It is reported it will go to 25 cents before Christmas.

The Trial for the Murder of Jackson Pepper – Atty. George P. Little followed his statement by arguing that there being no evidence of a malicious attempt on the part of defendant (Shew) to commit murder, that he therefore ought not to be convicted of murder in the first degree; there was no robbery, the fact that money was found on Jackson Pepper’s person after the assault proves this—else the money would have been taken—therefore the act of assembly which says it is murder in the first degree where a person is killed when a robbery is being committed does not apply in this case as there was no robbery. Men with murder in their heart do not go along a well-travelled road, showing themselves to all.  It is preposterous to say that such men have planned deliberate murder.  In closing he pointed out that the confession, in his opinion, was surrounded by circumstances looking so much like compulsion, as to make it useless. B. O. Camp drummed up the defense, spending a good deal of time in discussion of Shew’s alleged confession, reading from it, and carrying the idea that it was in a manner forced from Shew, and alleging also that the D. A. did not always keep truth on his side in his zeal to get the confession.  He said the D. A. being determined to hang Shew, after taking down 20 pages of “confession” was still not satisfied, and so he had Selden Munger take down a second one, as scene No. 2, and pointed out what he said were discrepancies between the two. He argued that Eagan was the originator and manager and was much more blamable than was Shew, and appealed for mercy for Shew. Mr. McCollum, for the prosecution, launched forcefully into the details of the crime. There had never been a serious crime in the Courts from Rush, they are law abiding citizens down there and when Jackson Pepper, a defenseless old man, was found murdered in his barn, you can imagine there was great horror and excitement in Rush. The route was traced and item by item Mr. McCollum went over the evidence, making an able and eloquent effort that held the closest attention of the great audience.  He was followed by the Judge in a clear charge to the jury, after which they brought in a verdict of guilty of murder in the first degree. Conclusion next week. The above article is a murder mystery that took place in 1898 in Rush Twp., Susquehanna County, brought to you in conjunction with “Susquehanna County Reads” program.

Compiled By: Betty Smith

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