•100 years ago — March 1914•
Trouble comes in pairs
Wellington S. Morse, of New York City, who last fall was tried before Judge Raley and a jury in Warren County Court at Lake George on a charge of second-degree manslaughter and was acquitted, figured in another shooting case, March 11, 1914 in the big city.
Morse’s mother, Mrs. Hattie M. Morse, was attacked in her home by John H. Price, 35, a traveling salesman for Armour & Co. meat packers, who shot and dangerously wounded her and then shot and killed himself. He was in love with the woman and she had spurned his advances. She was shot in her own apartment on the third floor of the apartment building where Price formerly had lived. He then descended one flight of stairs to his current apartment and there ended his life with a bullet in his right temple. Wellington Morse had grappled with Price but was unable to save his mother. She was dangerously wounded but is expected to recover.
Morse was tried at Lake George in November, 1913 on a charge of having caused the death of 14- year old Frank Spaulding of Silver Bay by shooting him in the leg with a charge from a shot gun, in a camp at Thirteenth Lake, Sept. 2, 1913 near North River, in the town of Johnsburgh. Spaulding bled to death in an automobile on the way to the Glens Falls Hospital.
Morse was confined in the county jail at Lake George until after the trial at which his mother was present and then he accompanied her to New York. He was defended at the trial by Attorney Edward M. Angell of Glens Falls. The jury was out only twelve minutes before returning with a verdict of Not Guilty.
(Note: The story of the shooting death of Frank Spaulding was told in this column in the Sept. 21 Adirondack Journal.)
Deadly mix of gas and flaming kerosene
Carrying a lighted lantern, William F. McGinley, proprietor of a general stone at Adirondack, entered the cellar of his building on the night of March 11, 1914 to look for a leak in the acetylene gas plant which lights his store and living rooms on the second floor.
The gas, which had been leaking into the cellar for some time, was ignited by the blaze of the lantern and there was an explosion, the full force of which struck the merchant, severely burning his head and face. His moustache, eyebrows and eyelashes were burned off, as was all the hair on the right side of his head. His eyes were filled with the flying carbide and severely injured.
Partially stunned by the shock and unable to see because of the injury to his eyes, it was with great difficulty that he groped his way upstairs and attracted the attention of some young men coasting near the store. They assisted him to his rooms and Dr. George Bibby of Pottersville was summoned. McGinley’s injuries were not too serious and are not expected to be permanent. He is expected to recover his sight. Dr. M.C. McGinley and Miss Lena McGinley, a trained nurse, will care for their injured brother.
Mac Smith’s misfortune
Undersheriff Mac R. Smith, woke Saturday morning, March 14, 1914, from a night of sound and undisturbed sleep at his home in Lake George,and was horrified to find that he was totally blind in his left eye. Hoping the trouble was only temporary, Mr. Smith hastened to Glens Falls to consult Dr. Sherwood LeFeyre, an optician in that city and after an examination was given, little encouragement to hope for a restoration of sight in the orb that was affected was given.
On Monday night, March 16, 1914, Mr. Smith went to Albany to consult Dr. Cyrus S. Merrill, the eminent eye specialist who has a summer home in Warrensburgh. Dr. Merrill found that the trouble was caused by a small blood clot which had formed back of the eye and his prognosis was not favorable. He stated that after a time a small measure of sight might be restored but there was no hope that the eye would ever again be of much use. The other eye is not expected to be affected.
(Note: Mac Smith was one of the five children of Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Jefferson Smith and the brother of former Warrensburgh Supervisor Frank W. Smith who served from 1925 to 1931. Dr. Cyrus Merrill married Mary Griffing and their 1833 summer home at 3 Hudson St. was the Merrill Magee estate where their only daughter, Grace Merrill Lown Magee lived in the last years of her life. Grace, 94, died in 1979.)
Another Democrat honored
Former District Attorney John H. Cunningham, of Glens Falls, through the efforts of Hon. William M. Cameron and Thomas J. Dunn, the Democratic leaders of the city, has been landed in a position as Deputy Attorney General at a salary of $3,000 a year. Mr. Cunningham is well equipped for the position and his appointment will be a source of great satisfaction to his friends throughout the county, especially in Chestertown where he resided for many years.
He has for some time been engaged in prosecuting violations of the game laws for the state in Warren County and his work as a deputy attorney general will be along the same lines. He will begin his duties on March 9, 1914 and looks forward to his new job.
Memorial Gift bestowed
Philip E. Rice and mother, of Warrensburg, have sent $30 to the pastor of the Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Fred A. Gates, for a memorial window for the late John T. Rice, who was an elder of the church at the time of his death.
(Note: Philip E. Rice, the proprietor of the Brown Swan Club, at Schroon Lake, was the son-in-law of Lewis Thomson, owner and builder in 1906 of the present day Cornerstone Victorian Bed and Breakfast, where Philip Rice lived with his wife, Pearl Thomson Rice. He died in 1948.)
New boiler for County Home
The Supervisor’s Committee, composed of Supervisor Milton N. Eldridge, Fred Rogers and Harry S. Downs, appointed by the Warrensburgh Town Board to purchase and superintend the installment of new boilers for the heating plant at the County Home, awarded the contract to John G. Hunt, whose bid of $1,221.28 was the lowest. These boilers will heat all the buildings on the County Farm.
‘Little Women’ on the stage
The Empire Theatre, South Street, Glens Falls, presented the world’s famous story, a production of Louisa M. Alcott’s “Little Women,” on March 18, 1914, that was “glowing, kindly, simple and had adorable characters.” The play ran for one solid year at the Playhouse, New York City. Matinee – 25 cents.
News near and far
The thermometer registered 26 degrees below zero at Long Lake March 12, 1914, but the weather improves as the month progresses. Our snow is going fast and no one is sorry to see it go. Woodchucks and robins are here and we hope that spring will soon arrive.
The new Overland Model 76 automobile for 1914 may be seen at Haskell & Hall Co., Inc., in the Aldrich – McGann Block, Warrensburgh.
Frank H. and Theresa (Nolan) Phelan are the parents of a lovely little two-year-old daughter, Theresa Catherine Phelan, born June 25, 1911 in New York City. (Note: Theresa Catherine P. McLean, 102, of Stony Creek, the widow of Warren F. James Law, John F. Slattery and Robert McLean, died Feb. 21, 2014 in Tarpon Springs.)
Miss Lucilla Tracy, of the office force of the Empire Shirt Factory, attended the matinee performance of “Little Women” at the Empire Theatre in Glens Falls.
Mrs. Electa Dalaba of Bakers Mills fell on the ice going into her woodshed and broke her wrist. Dr. Lee of North Creek attended her.
In Athol, Bennie Tennyson has sold his farm to Orlin Needham. Silas Tucker and family are moving back from Lake George on to his farm in High Street. C.H. Russell of Pottersville is joining his blacksmith shop with his garage.
Mrs. Caroline (Wickham) Potter, an aged lady living on the outskirts of Chester, died March 17, 1914.
Don H. Heath, of Warrensburgh, has been ill all winter with inflammatory rheumatism. (Note: Don Heath’s blacksmith shop was on King St.)
C.E. Lavery’s store in Warrensburgh has just received a new line of spring and summer dress goods in nainsook, novelty plisse, mercerized crepe, warp welt, ripplettes, cord supreme, madras, percales, also rufflings, hamburgs, laces, etc.
The Spruce Mountain farmer who owned the dog that chased and fatally wounded a deer in that locality, settled the matter with Game Protector Bump of Lake George and the case is closed.
(Note: This awful story was told in the March 1, 2014 issue of the Adirondack Journal.)
Readers are welcome to contact Adirondack Journal correspondent Jean Hadden at firstname.lastname@example.org or 623-2210.