Morris Herald – August 4, 1876

Excerpts from The Morris Herald for August 4, 1876



Last Saturday we visited Minooka. We found business, as it is in Morris, quiet, but the business men all predict an early revival of trade, when happiness will reign supreme.

Politics are not as yet creating much excitement. The only person we saw who was overly zealous was Steward’s standard-bearer of Aux Sable, the great “Reformer,” Sammy Higginbottom. Sammy is “loud” on Steward, and predicts the utter annihilation of the Republican host in November next.

The town is more excited at present over numerous depredations committed, as it would seem, by an organized band of thieves. For several months past, at different times stores have been entered, smoke houses open, chicken roosts visited and horses taken away. Finally, it would seem that this work is to come to an end. Our readers will remember that last week, we mentioned the arrest of Frank Wagoner from this place, on the charge of horse stealing, and that he was sent to jail to await trail at the next term of Court. Frank expected his friends in Minooka to come to his rescue and relieve him from confinement, which they failed to do, and that he might have company in his misery he has ‘squealed’ and it would now seem as though Justice would have her due. On Saturday Frank made his revelation and on that evening Chas. Theuysen was brought to Morris. (The particulars of his arrest, and that of others connected with this affair will be found in another column.)  Others will soon follow, and there is rejoicing among the denizens of Minooka at the thought that the end of their troubles is nigh.

On Thursday afternoon of last week the barn of Mr. Erastus Worthing, who lives about two and a half miles north of Minooka, was consumed by fire, together with five horses, sixteen tons of hay, and over 4,000 bushels of corn in the cribs. The origin of the fire is not known. Some claim that spontaneous combustion through means of the hay was the cause, while others think it was the work of an incendiary. The most plausible story we were able to gain was as follows: About three o’clock in the afternoon a tramp came to the house and asked for something to eat. Food was given him by the hired girl, the only person about the house at the time, which he ate, and then made a demand for money. The girl informed him that they had no money about the house. He replied that ‘that was the way with all the farmers.” He started off, the girl not noticing which way he went, and it is presumed that he went to the stable and while there smoking he fell asleep and the hay caught fire from his lighted pipe.  The men were at the time in the field, near by at work, but before they could reach the house, the stable was in a blaze and they were unable to save any of the contents or anything near by. The loss is estimated at about $4,000 beside $1,200 they had already received from Knapp & Thayer on the corn which had not been delivered. There was no insurance on any of the property. The loss will come very heavy on both Erastus and Samuel Worthing, who owned the horses, hay and corn, and it will be some time before they will be able to overcome it.

On Friday night the shoe shop of Jacob Geddleman was entered by burglars, by cutting out a pane of glass in the front window, but nothing of consequence was taken therefrom. The burglars were doubtless frightened away.

On Sunday, the 25th ult., Fred W. Weese was married to Miss Pauline Heisschler, by the Rev. Chapman. Fred has recently had much business to transact in his capacity of Deputy Sheriff and no doubt felt the need of a partner which he captured by the shackles of law. “May you live long and be happy.”

On Thursday, the 27th inst., Joseph O’Brien, who resides about 1 ½ miles northwest of Minooka, while leading bull out in a field, was gored by the animal in the right side, inflicting a severe flesh wound.  He is doing well under the treatment of Dr. Ferguson.

Knapp and Thayer have shipped a great deal of corn this season. They have shipped seventeen boat loads to Chicago and other points.


Tatham has gotten up a “cheap table” in his store, on which he places goods which he desires to dispose of at very reduced rates. Look at them.

Desirable house and lot in Morris for sale or exchange for farm land in this or the adjoining states. Also a farm for sale. J. N. Reading, Agent


J.W. Massey’s estate house and lots on West side, and six lots across the R.R. West of Cunnea’s. S. E. Massey, Ex.


On last Saturday Frank Wagoner, the gentleman from Minooka, who now languishes in the county jail awaiting the convening of the November term of Court, under charge of holding on to a bridle which was on the head of a horse of another party, and carrying the said bridle down into Livingston county, began to lament his fate, and as none of his “pals” came to his rescue in furnishing him bail, he determined upon having company and accordingly opened his heart to Sheriff Schroder. The Sheriff listened to his story, and in order to see how it would read he called to his aid Squire McBride, who penned a narrative showing how on a certain night, one Frank Waggoner, with his accomplices, Charles Thompson and Levi Walters, did enter a pasture and gaze upon horseflesh; how Thompson pointed out the horse of his neighbor, Terrelly, and furnished a bridle by which the horse might be managed, and how Walters furnished a saddle. Then was told how Thompson took the horse to a certain tree and tied him there to await the arrival of Wagoner, and how the latter rode him across the country and when he got in Livingston county traded for another horse, and how on his return he came back to Walters’ and left the second horse.  This was all told by Frank and duly sworn to.  Accordingly warrants were issued for Chas. Thompson and Levi Walters. Word was sent to Minooka to Deputy F.W. Weese to arrest Thompson, which that gentleman did and landed his charge safely in jail on Saturday night. Early Monday morning Schroder started for Walters and before dinner returned with him in charge. The two men were taken before Justice McBride and held to bail in the sum of $1,000 each for appearance at the next terms of Court. Walters secured bail, his father going on his bond, and Thompson was committed to jail.

The 36th Reunion

A meeting of surviving comrades of the 36th Illinois Volunteers was held at the Kendall County Bank Saturday evening the 22nd inst., to arrange for the upcoming reunion to be held in Yorkville, September 21st, 1876.

J. P. Dennison, the secretary of the association, was present from Chicago, and most of the comrades residing in Yorkville and Bristol. The meeting organized by electing T. P. Hill chairman and L. G. Bennett secretary. And after consultation, this organization and programme was adopted:

M. B. Castle to be President of the day; M. F. Cornell, Marshall; with the following programme:

1st, Music by the Band.

2nd, Prayer by Chaplain Haigh

3rd, Song by Glee Club

4th, Address of Welcome by Jeremiah Evarts

5th, Response by J. L. Dryden

6th, Music by the Band.

7th, Address by Gen. John A. Logan

8th, Song by the Glee Club

9th, Dinner

10th, Business meeting at the Court House

The reunion will be held in the grove near the residence of L. G. Bennett. The chairmen of the following committees were appointed:  Reception committee, Henry Haigh; Committee on music, A. H. Litchfield, F. M. Hobbs and Fred Hill. Kendall Record.


Marriage licenses have been issued during the month of July to the following named persons:

  • George McBayne and Emma Harris
  • George Sharp and Melora Patterson
  • Montgomery Sharp and Isabella Fulton
  • Jesse Bull and Jane Wheeler
  • John M. June and Sarah White
  • Alexander Bruce and Catherine Anderson
  • John M. Burger and Sophia Wahls


Bruce – Anderson – July 19th, by Alexander Trotter, Esq., Alexander, Bruce and Miss Catherine Anderson, all of Felix.


On Thursday of last week Walter Adams made complaint against his son-in-law, John Thiry, charging him with disorderly conduct. For some two months there has been more or less trouble between Adams and Thiry, this being the third or fourth time the latter has been brought before the Police Court on complaint of the former.  After a hearing of the evidence Justice McBride fined the boy $20 and costs; and in default he was sent to jail.  Charles Dietrich, who was arrested with him, was discharged, there being no evidence against him.

Adams charged that Thiry, who is a minor, was in the habit of getting liquor from Mat. A’Hearn, and would come home drunk and raise cain generally. On the way to the jail, Thiry said that he had got liquor from A’Hern, and many times on Sunday.  On this statement Thiry was again taken before Justice McBride when he signed two affidavits, the first setting forth that A’Hern had sold liquors to minors, and the other charging A’Hern with keeping an open tippling house on the Sabbath. A’Hern was immediately arrested and brought before the Court on the charges contained in the affidavits, but when Thiry was called upon to testify, he went square back on his affidavits, as did A’Hern and there being no evidence against the latter, he was discharged.

On Saturday morning Thiry was taken from jail and brought before Esquire Lott, on the charge of perjury. He waived examination and was bound over to the November term of Circuit Court, in the sum of $500, when the case will be brought up for investigation before the grand jury.


We are handed the following, taken from the New York Weekly, which will no doubt be enjoyed by some of the friends of “Old Abe” in this vicinity. The communication is from Seneca:

Two young men from Chicago went to Seneca to spend a few days, and put up at the house of Old Abe, a well-known sportsman. Their experience in rural life was somewhat limited, but their thirst after knowledge was great. It was resolved to go on a coon hunt, and a very dark night was chosen for the sport. Old Abe led them up on the Illinois river bluff, which at this place is full of ravines, and for hours he made them crawl around on their hands and knees to keep them from falling into crevasses, which he said were numerous, although there were none at all. About two o’clock he brought them within a mile and a half from home, on the banks of the canal. The gravel pit at this place rendered the canal wider than usual, and very shallow for a mile or more at the north side. Turning to the Chicagoans, who were nearly tired out, he said:

“Boys, you see that light?” pointing to the headlight of a locomotive in Seneca. “That’s my house. It’s only about a mile and a half across to it, but it’s all slough – very shallow, however; while to get around the slough is at least six miles.  Now, which will you do – go through, or around?”

“Through the canal,” said the tired men.

Old Abe led the men into the stream and turning parallel to the banks, led them a full mile down the canal. They were not ten feet from the bank at any time.  They never knew the trick that was played upon them.  Seneca.


Remaining in the Post Office, at Morris, Grundy County, Ills., for the week ending July 31, 1876, and uncalled for. Persons calling for any of the following letters will please call for “Advertised.”

  • Billings, Miss Lizzie
  • Fillmore, Mr. C. W.
  • Ilang, Ole
  • McFinley, Miss M. A.
  • Martin, Mrs. T. W.
  • O’Neil, Alix
  • Reeves, Benjamin
  • Quincy, Mr. Varo
  • Sampson, Miss Mollie
  • Welsh, Edwin (2)
  • Wright, W. H.
  • Langley, Mrs. H. H. (Canada)
  • Kramer, T. (Norg)
  • Larson, Andre P. (Norg)
  • L. Whitney, P.M.


Typed and submitted by Kathleen Berner Groll.

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