Murder motive never found
George Quick, 29, a farmer who was serving a term of not less than 20 years in Clinton Prison, Dannemora, for killing his 25-year-old wife near King’s Station, about 6 miles north of Saratoga Springs on Sept. 4, 1911, died of tuberculosis in prison on Wednesday morning, May 1, 1912. Quick was tried on the charge of murder in the first degree on Dec. 16, 1911 before a special term of the Supreme Court at Ballston over which ex-Justice Joseph A. Kellogg of Glens Falls presided.
Quick was found guilty of murder in the second degree. When he was sentenced to Clinton Prison he was in very ill health and it was thought he would not live to serve his term. Soon after he was removed to Dannemora the murderer wrote to his attorney that he was well cared for and that he had a clean place to sleep and plenty to eat, two essentials of life which he had never had before, he said. He declared that his life in prison was more pleasant than the one he had led outside the prison walls.
Note…The full details of this strange case appeared in this column in the Sept. 17, 2011 issue of the Adirondack Journal. There was obviously a dark secret behind the murder that I have never been able to discover by perusing old newspapers.
Quick lived in poverty with his wife, who was said to have been beautiful, in a run-down hovel. The day of her murder he had borrowed a shotgun from his next door neighbor and than drove his wife to the cemetery to visit the grave of their infant son. When they returned home he shot her in the back, blowing a big hole between her shoulder blades which punctured her left lungs. He than dumped her in the woodshed where she died of shock and hemorrhage. At trial it was brought out that he had not been drinking the day of the murder.
When the shocked neighbor asked Quick why he had done it, he replied “You will know later!” He was taken to the Warren County Jail in Lake George where he refused to talk about it any further and the full story, to my knowledge, never came out.
At trial his lawyer submitted a plea of insanity. Quick was dying of consumption (pulmonary tuberculosis), which was very common in those days and he was sent away to Clinton Prison where he lived in a cell and also in a comfortable place in his own mind where no one else was allowed to enter. His jailors were kind and treated him well. George Quick took his secrets to the grave with him and his pitiful story passed off into Adirondack lore.
Lively blaze burns bridge
The Hudson Valley Railway Company’s bridge across the Schroon River, at the south end of Warrensburgh, narrowly escaped destruction by fire on Sunday night, May 12, 1912.
The 10 p.m. southbound car had some trouble with its motor and stopped on the north end of the bridge for quite some time, throwing a shower of sparks on the ties. Soon after the car passed along Miss Mary Davis, from her home nearby, saw a bright light on the bridge. Her curiosity was excited and she informed her father, Charles Davis who at once investigated. He found a lively blaze, fanned by a strong wind, rapidly eating into the ties.
With the assistance of a neighbor and several pails of water, he extinguished the fire which in a short time would probably have been beyond control.
Miss Davis states that the bridge has caught fire in the same way several times before and it seems probable that it may again. Some morning the company might just find themselves minus a bridge. (Note…Charles Davis and his family lived in the big farmhouse still standing on the south end of the trailer park at 1 Main St. It is today owned by Roger Shaw.)
School submits report
A total of teacher’s wages from July 1, 1912 to July 1, 1913 are estimated to be $6,659 for the year. Fuel and janitor’s services combined are $1,450. The balance left in the school fund as of May 2, 1912 is $1,399.71. Total disbursements for the past year were $12,358.03.
A new heating plant will be placed in the Warrensburgh High School building this year to save excessive coal bills. The old furnaces ate up a staggering $832 worth of coal last winter and trustees are bound to end such wasteful and excessive extravagance such as this which is a shameful imposition on taxpayers. The cost of the new furnace is not to exceed $3,000 and will be paid for in installments over three years.
The several small furnaces which consume this enormous quantity of fuel were installed thirteen years ago and may now be considered antiquated.
New boat plies Lake George
“Mountaineer” is the name selected for the new motor boat to be placed on Lake George this season for the accommodation of patrons who desire to make short trips along the lake shore. The boat was built this past winter and will have accommodations for between fifty and sixty passengers.
A steamer by the same name was on Lake George waters in 1824. The name was selected by President L.F. Loree of the Delaware and Hudson Company.
Helen Keller, the famous deaf and blind girl, who despite her handicap went through Radcliffe College in four years winning an A.B. degree and has attained no little fame as an author, will soon become a resident of Schenectady.
Chestnuts probably will not be found in this area after 1916, according to the State College of Agriculture. The trees in the Hudson Valley as far north as Lake George at least have been ravished by what is known as the Chestnut Bark Disease and it is the opinion of experts that little or nothing can be done to save them. In 1904, the disease was first discovered.
John Gould, a Whitehall young man, committed suicide by jumping from a bridge into the barge canal at that place at 1 o’clock Saturday afternoon, May 11, 1912 and about 100 persons witnessed the act. The distance to the water was thirty feet and the man sank for the last time before anyone could reach him. The motive is unknown.
Sweet and sour notes
We have ceased to worry about the predicted coal famine. It is getting warm enough now so that we can let our parlor fires and furnaces go out for a while.
James McPhillips, attorney, while journeying to Glens Falls from Friend’s Lake, sustained a painful injury in attempting to crank the automobile in which he was riding. A small bone in the wrist of his right arm was broken.
The Honorable L. W. Emerson has purchased a magnificent seven-passenger Mora automobile. Mrs. Emerson and her chauffeur, Jesse Stone, bought the car from Syracuse, arriving in Warrensburgh Thursday morning, May 9, 1912. It is one of the handsomest and largest touring cars in this vicinity. (Note…Banker Louis W. Emerson was married to widow Ella Fuller Thomas whose family, the Fullers, once owned a historic boarding house in the early days on the corner of Main and Water streets, where later the old Warren Inn used to stand before it burned.)
Looking back in history — It was just 22 years ago, May 6, 1890 that veteran river driver of 42 years, Russell Carpenter, 60, of Warrensburgh, went down in his boat in a log jam 6 miles above North River. His last words were, “I guess I am gone, boys!” Fourteen months later his foot, encased in a river driving shoe, was found three miles below Thurman Station. It was buried on the John Gillingham farm near there.
Readers are welcome to contact Adirondack Journal correspondent Jean Hadden at email@example.com or 623-2210.