Murder and Mayhem.....continued
Stage driver George Ferguson shot!
The day began as usual for George Ferguson on May 23, 1886. He awoke and arrived at the livery stable at Glendale, where he hitched his two horses to a stage coach. He loaded his passengers and luggage, and proceeded to Melrose. There, his passengers disembarked and he warmly greeted his fares seeking transportation on the return portion of George’s round trip. Those passengers included Narcisse Ledoux, Glendale tavern owner; Thomas Merchant, a commercial traveler; a man named Blackburn and two young Miller girls, Effie and Lizzie, and one unidentified girl.
The stage departed on time with Mr.Thomas Merchant sitting on the bench beside Ferguson, LeDoux and Blackburn sitting behind Ferguson. The money constituting the H.C. payroll for the month and amounting to $25,000 had been sent up previously by freight in a nail deg, The hold up occurred during an April evening in a lonely spot along Trapper Creek a spot overlooked by bare, inhospitable hills. About 2 miles from Melrose, they were stunned when a person appeared in the middle of the road in front of them. Suddenly, a masked man ordered the driver to halt, firing the fatal shot simultaneously with the command. According to old timers, Merchant was a man whose excitability verged on hysteria. As soon as the shot was fired, the salesman cried" I'm shot, I'm shot! The frenzied horses bolted and LeDoux leaped to the front seat. Ferguson, his torso riddled with shot, was sprawled lifelessly across the boot. He would never again urge his horses over the marrow, old state road.
The bandit, no doubt appalled by the unexpected denouncement of the holdup ,made no attempt to search the stage and had vanished on horseback, Two masks and a mule loading shot gun with one barrel discharged and the other loaded with wadding which were found in the brush near the scene of the holdup, signified that there may have been two highwaymen, and that intended to frighten and not to murder the driver. The stage arrived in front of Ed Alward’s Pharmacy and the victim was removed to the inside, where he was pronounced as no longer alive. Merchant immediately offered a $25 reward for information leading to the capture of the brutal attacker, and that reward amount eventually grew to a sizable $700. In less than an hour, a posse was formed to find the killer. Dr. Jones, J.B. Losee, James Bateman and A.L. Pickett were a few of the highly respected citizens, whom were part of the group. The group searched throughout the night with hopes of finding the assailant that took the life of one of Glendale’s citizens. They scoured the area from Trapper Creek to Birch Creek, and returned the next morning with a couple of masks and a double barrel shotgun, which were found near the scene of the crime.
On the evening of the crime, Ed Harrison came down from Soap Gulch, a few miles northeast of Melrose, Harrison was on his way to Glendale but missed the stage, So he decided to walk to the smelter town. By this time the Glendalites were combing the road and surrounding hills for Ferguson's murderer. Consequently, Harrison was taken into custody, After the party reached the Melrose Hotel with their prisoner, the flighty Merchant, having heard Harrison's voice, cried, "That's the man. That's the man. I recognize his voice" The suspect was indeed on the spot but he was soon able to repudiate the salesman's false testimony proving his (Harrison's) whereabouts at the of the shooting. Melrose and Glendale citizens state that if a man had been hanged each time Merchant thought he recognized the murderer's voice there would have been a wholesale execution.
The search continued and a tipster reported the sighting of two suspicious men in the Frying Pan basin. The posse’s efforts began to focus in that region. It was learned that the two had helped themselves to food from one of the cabins in the area before eluding their followers. The murderer and his partner was tracked to the Point of Rocks, Twin Bridges, through Pipestone Pass and into Silver Bow County. Sheriff Sullivan of Butte notified Sheriff Jones of Beaverhead County that the two had been captured and were being held in jail until they could be sent to Dillon. Jones immediately traveled to Butte, interviewed the two and decided that they were not the pair in question. They were released. The shot gun was the evidence that led to the arrest of Thomas Harding in Butte. The gun proved to be one which Harding had borrowed from an old prospector in the Butte area, Harding ,28, was a native of Cohoes New York and had recently come to Glendale. Two other men, Kennedy and Gregory, were also new arrivals and had immediately fraternized with Harding. Charlie LaDoux, proprietor of the Old Timer's Saloon in Glendale, was robbed of $600 shortly before the state holdup and strongly suspected the three newcomers of the theft. With the help of a witness in the case, the Beaverhead County law man then arrested Thomas Harding while still in Butte. He was questioned and then taken to be imprisoned in the Dillon jail. A preliminary hearing was scheduled to present the circumstantial evidence against Harding, evidence that would show jurors that it is quite probable that he pulled the trigger.
The proceedings at the county Court House were presided by Justice Schmalhausen, of Glendale. W.S. Barbour, a Dillon attorney conducted the examinations of the witnesses for the Territory of Montana, while the defendant, without counsel, represented himself. The evidence was presented and it was decided that there was enough to send the man and the case against him to trial. Harding maintained his innocence and stated that he was mining during the time that the brutal attack occurred. Justice Schmalhausen concluded that there was reason to hold Harding without bail and wait for the action of the grand jury. Paradoxically enough, Merchant was the star witness throughout the affair. The two Miller girls, Charlie LaDoux and Blackburn were not called to testify, even during the trial. Thomas Harding protesting his innocence, was sent to the gallows by circumstantial evidence for the murder of George Ferguson.
Before a trial of his peers, Thomas Harding was convicted of the crimes charged against him and sentenced to death. March 25, 1887 was his last day to live. Up until the last minutes before his appointment with the hangman, Harding’s counsel, Mr. Duffy, tried to convince the governor of the Territory to save the man’s life, but without success. Harding was served his last breakfast at 9:00 A.M. and was then taken to the barber shop for his last shave. At 2:30 P.M., the convicted Harding was removed from his cell and taken to gallows. His final remarks were ones of innocence. He was then hung and when his body was completely lifeless, it was cut down and buried in the local cemetery. George Ferguson was buried in the Glendale Cemetery. His head stone still stands in tribute as a memory of a life which was taken before his time. George Ferguson came to Glendale from his home in Missouri when he was but a youth, and got a job waiting table at the boarding house in the Ore Camp. He was extremely popular with everyone. Young Ferguson’s parents were dead, but he had a brother Roland and a sister back in Missouri and a brother living at Divide. George sent for Roland, who, a bewildered tenderfoot lad of fourteen years of age, came to make his home in Glendale. The boy, at first lived with Jack Reynolds and later with Dr.Schmalhousen. Roland took his brother’s place in the ore camp boarding house and George was appointed to drive the stage between Glendale and Melrose where he was soon to meet his untimely death. Roland Ferguson, now a resident of Butte,Montana says that when he first set foot n the smelter town it was a wild camp or so it seemed to him. He tells this story,”One day when I was indulging my curiosity about the smelter, I saw a company official enter a small shed, The shed was the bath-house but, not being aware of this, I thought I'd just look inside and see what the man was doing, The pompous official indignantly declared that I was spying on him and made a great fuss, even threatening arrest, I still remember the terrible fright I had. I could almost feel the hangman noose around my neck. Glendale was a wild, western town and I was certain that I would be hanged for my misdemeanor".
May 29, 1886
The following article is taken from the pages of the Butte Inter-Mountain
MURDERED BY A ROAD AGENT
A Driver Shot On His Seat - Escape Of The Murderer AndThe Pursuit.
Last Saturday night, the 23rd inst., while the mail wagon was going up from Melrose to Glendale at about 8 o’clock, a cold-blooded murder was enacted, which is perhaps without parallel in the history of Montana, not expecting the days of terror when the road agents were wiped out by the Vigilantes. At the crossing of Trapper Creek, a man suddenly appeared in front of the team, with a shotgun in his hands, and commanded the driver, George Ferguson, to stop. The command not being instantly obeyed, the man shouted - “Stop, you s--of a b---h,” and immediately discharged one barrel of his shotgun at the driver. At short range the buckshot took deadly effect and young Ferguson fell forward onto the double trees of the wagon, from which position he was taken by Thos. S. Merchant, a commercial traveler, who was one of the six passengers on the spring wagon at the time of the tragedy. The crack of the gun frightened the horses and they ran away for a mile or so up the road before they could be stopped. Ferguson never spoke after receiving the fatal charge of buckshot in his forehead and face, and breathed his last in a few minutes after his arrival at Glendale.
The Glendale community was immediately aroused, and preparations for the pursuit of the murderer were quickly made. A large posse of armed men were soon at the scene of the murder, and in pursuing the man, scoured the country from Trapper Creek to Birch Creek. Sheriff Jones, receiving a dispatch, proceeded to the Birch Creek section after a posse to intercept the murderer should he try to escape that way. On Sunday, three boys, engaged in driving horses, saw two men in Frying Pan Basin, about eight miles from Birch Creek, with two horses picketed and the saddles laying on the ground near by. The two men are described as follows: One a tall, slim man, light mustache, black coat, and blue overalls; the other man was medium sized, compact build, and dark complexioned. The two horses were afterward captured and brought to Dillon and proved to be the horses stolen from Dovespeck & Eustis, butchers in Butte. The pursuit was kept up by a large force of armed men in the mountains northeast of Argenta. Two men answering the above description stopped at the log cabin on Cat Creek - eight miles from Frying Pan Basin - over night. These men got bread and bacon at that cabin next morning and left, taking to the woods. Parties are still on the search, and the range of mountains from Bannack to Dewey’s Flat will be thoroughly gone over. The description of the men is meager, which will make their identification uncertain. Liberal rewards, amounting in the aggregate to $700, have been offered for the apprehension of the perpetrator of the murder. Young Ferguson was buried at Glendale, where he has lived for a number of years. On the scene of the murder a double-barreled shotgun was found with one barrel discharged, and the presumption is that more than one man made the attempt to rob the mail wagon.
LATEST - The Butte Inter-Mountain, of the 27th, contains an account of the capture, by Sheriff Sullivan and Deputy Contway, of two men answering the description of the two men seen in Frying Pan Basin and at the log cabin on Cat Creek. The two men were tracked to Point of Rocks, Twin Bridges, through the Pipestone Pass, and on to Blacktail, where they were captured and lodged in the Butte jail. Sheriff Jones went to Butte to help to identify the men from the descriptions obtained by parties who saw the men with the horses, and at the log cabin on Cat Creek.
June 5, 1886
THE GUILTY MAN
Sheriff Jones went to Butte to help identify the two men captured by Sheriff Sullivan of Silver Bow County, who were supposed to be implicated in the murder of young Ferguson, the stage driver, near Glendale. The two men held on suspicion were not identified and they were turned loose. While in Butte, Sheriff Jones, aided by a man who will testify in the case, arrested a man named Harding. The circumstantial evidence against Harding is very strong, and his positive identification as the man who committed the murder is quite probable. Harding’s preliminary examination will take place in Dillon, owing to the feeling manifested in the case will here by next Monday, when the examination will be held. Harding is securely held in the county jail. He keeps his own counsel and has nothing to say about any connection with the murder.
June 12, 1886
The preliminary examination of Thomas H. Harding, charge with the murder of George Ferguson, the Melrose-Glendale stage driver, on May 22nd, was held at the Court House on last Tuesday before Justice Schmalhausen, of Glendale. W.S. Barbour conducted the examinations of witnesses on the part of the Territory, and the defendant being without counsel, conducted his own case. The evidence elicited at the examination strongly pointed to Harding as the man who did the shooting. In fact, some of the evidence was positive, while the chain of circumstantial evidence was very strong and well linked together, and of a decidedly damaging character to the prisoner, whose appearance in court was not prepossessing. As is usual in all preliminary examinations of defendants much irrelevant evidence was taken down which in a trial in the District Court would be excluded. But as it is only the province of a committing magistrate to examine and find out whether there is probably a sufficient cause to hold a defendant, latitude is given in this class of examinations in order to bring out the material facts of the case. The evidence on the part of the people points strongly, but not erringly, to Harding as the perpetrator of the murder. Harding made a statement in which he endeavored to account for his whereabouts and for his absence from Butte at the time of the shooting, by stating that was at the time prospecting on an iron lead. His statements was considerably mixed up, and was contradictory in many respects. It is not the intention or purpose of the Tribune to try, convict and condemn the defendant. That will be the duty of a higher court and a jury to perform. On the conclusion of the testimony Justice Schmalhausen held Harding, without bail, to await the action of the next grand jury, and the defendant was committed to the county jail.
November 5, 1886
In the case of the Territory vs. Thomas H. Harding the jury rendered a verdict of guilty of murder in the first degree, and this evening Judge Galbraith sentenced the prisoner to be hung on the 22nd of December. Mr. Merchant identified Harding as the murderer, and the evidence was complete and thorough
January 7, 1887
THE HARDING CASE: The hearing in the Harding appeal case came before the Supreme Court this morning. The following points were offered to sustain a demand for the reversal of the judgment in the lower court:
First. That the grand jury that indicted the defendant was not a legal one, for the reason that one member, Lambert Eliel, was not a citizen of the United States, consequently not competent to act as such juror. Further, that such juror was made and became a citizen of the United States after the finding of the indictment against said Harding.
Second. That the indictment was not signed by district Attorney Pemberton as required by law, and that the court erred in permitting the appointment of United States District Attorney Robt. B. Smith to prosecute the case, and by whom the indictment is signed as prosecuting attorney pro tem. Further, that the court had no authority in law for making such an appointment.
Third. Errors in refusing certain instructions offered by the defendant, to go before the jury.
Fourth. For denying the first application of the defendant the right of continuance on the grounds of absence of important witnesses, much to the detriment of his case, and only allowing him twenty-four hours in which to plead, and about forty-eight hours thereafter in which to proceed to trial.
We have not yet heard whether the defendant’s cause has been remanded for a new trial or not. Those familiar with the law say that the first two points made by Campbell, Harding’s counsel, are strong ones.
January 14, 1887
HARDING TO HANG. The Supreme Court Refuses the Murderer a New Trial.
As announced in the last issue of the Tribune, the appeal case of Harding, the murderer of Geo. Ferguson, the Glendale stage driver, was argued before the Supreme Court Thursday of last week. The points upon which Harding’s counsel asked for a reversal of the decision of the lower court were as follows:
First. That the grand jury that indicted the defendant was not a legal one, for the reason that one member, Lambert Eliel, was not a citizen of the United States, consequently not competent to act as such juror. Further, that such juror was made and became a citizen of the United States after the finding of the indictment against Harding.
Second. That the indictment was not signed by district Attorney Pemberton as required by law, and that the court erred in permitting the appointment of United States Attorney Robt B. Smith to prosecute the cast, and by whom the indictment is signed as prosecuting attorney pro tem. Further, that the court had no authority in law for making such an appointment.
Third. Errors in refusing certain instructions offered by the defendant, to go before the jury.
Fourth. For denying the first application of the defendant the right of continuance on the grounds of absence of important witnesses, much to the detriment of his case, and only allowing him twenty-four hours in which to plead, and but forty-eight hours thereafter in which to proceed to trial.
The case was taken under advisement by the Supreme Court, and on Monday the decision of the lower court was affirmed by Chief Justice Wade and associate Justice McLeary, associate Justice Back dissenting. The sheriff will carry out the execution on Friday, Jan 21st, unless the governor of the territory exercise his right of pardon. Wednesday morning J.H. Duffy, of the firm of Campbell & Duffy, counsel for Harding, went to Helena to see the Governor to endeavor to obtain a respite of 60 days to enable them to bring the matter before the Supreme Court of the United States on motion for a new trial. We have not yet heard whether the respite has been granted, but it is highly improbably that the governor will under the circumstances interfere.
January 21, 1887
The Prisoner Reprieved for Thirty Days by the Governor.
Last Monday, Governor Hauser granted a reprieve of thirty days to Harding, the Glendale stage robber, who was to have been hung today, in order to permit his attorneys, Campbell & Duffy, to apply to the Supreme Court of the United States for a new trial. The prisoner’s counsel will proceed shortly to Washington, to present his case before the U.S. Supreme court, though there is little hope that the court will take the case under consideration, and Harding’s attorneys themselves think that their only chance of success lies in the writ of certiorari.
Harding’s counsel have been most persistent in their efforts to save him, and though the prisoner himself is without money, it is said that they are backed by wealthy officials in New York, where Harding’s people live. In case the U.S. Supreme court takes the case under consideration, it is probable that the President will grant a further reprieve. The Helena Independent says that application has been made to Governor Hauser for the offer of a reward for the apprehension and conviction of the second man involved in the crime in which Harding is convicted. There was an accomplice with Harding at the time of the shooting, and he has never been apprehended. It is rumored here that some clue has been obtained to the robber, and it only remains for the authorities to offer a reward to insure his arrest.
January 28, 1887
Harding’s Supposed Accomplice Arrested. We reported several weeks ago that the officers were on the track of the accomplice of Harding, the Glendale stage robber.
Last night Sheriff Jones brought in the man supposed to be the accomplice. Several days ago the sheriff wired Marshal Jolly, at Butte, to arrest a man there by the name of Michael Kennedy, which was promptly done, but a description of the person wanted, which was afterwards sent, proved that he had arrested the wrong man. Wednesday Sheriff Jones went up to Butte and with Jolly arrested a man by the name of Michael C. Kennedy, who answered the description, on the charge of being an accessory to the murder. He is a miner, and is supposed to have been in hiding at Butte ever since the time of the robbery. It is said that he is the man who fired upon Jim Murray when he attempted to capture the robbers.
Kennedy is safely lodged in the jail. The sheriff is of course reticent as to the clue which lead to the prisoner’s identification.
Februrary 4, 1887
They Believe Him Innocent. Kennedy, who was arrested in Butte, last week, and brought to Dillon, charged with complicity in the murder of the Glendale stage driver, has many friends in that town who claim that he is entirely innocent, and that he has been arrested so as to enable Harding to get a further stay of proceedings. The Miner states that Patrick Mullen (at whose house Kennedy was arrested) has know Kennedy since the spring of 1879, and that he has worked for him (Mullen) for two years of the time. As to the statements published, of his being a hard case and coming here from Nevada, Mr. Mullen says that Kennedy never was in that state, nor was he at Philipsburg. He is represented as a very industrious man - a hard working miner. That instead of associating with the drinking, vicious class of men, to the contrary, his associates were of the opposite class.
Kennedy was to have had an examination today, but it has been postponed to Monday forenoon at 10 o’clock.
Februrary 11, 1887
HELD WITHOUT BAIL.
Kennedy’s Preliminary Hearing - His Former Mistress Testifies Against Him. Michael C. Kennedy, arrested a few weeks since, upon the charge of being an accomplice to Thos. H. Harding in the murder of George Ferguson, the Glendale-Melrose stage driver, had his preliminary examination Monday, before H.R. Melton, probate Judge. Wm. Scallon, of Butte, appeared for the defendant; W.S. Barbour, county attorney, and R.B. Smith, U.S. attorney, for the prosecution. A number of witnesses testified. The principal witness for the prosecution was Ida Bates, Kennedy’s former mistress, who swore that he told her all about the murder, how it was done and who was present at the killing. The defense tried to prove an alibi. After the lawyers finished their argument, Judge Melton concluded to hold Kennedy, without bail, to await the action of the grand jury. The prisoner’s counsel will apply for a writ of habeas corpus on the ground that the evidence did not warrant the finding.
Februrary 18, 1887
The Governor Grants Harding Another Lease of Life.
Harding certainly has a pair of industrious attorneys working for him, and if his neck does not escape the noose it will not be because of anything they have left undone to save him. Their efforts in his behalf are well know, and it was not much of a surprise to Dillonites when it was announced that the Governor had granted a further reprieve of four weeks. J.H. Duffy went to Helena last week and made a requisition upon Governor Leslie for an additional reprieve for the criminal to apply to the supreme court of the United States for a writ of habeas corpus and certiorari. The former respite was granted for the purpose of appealing to the aforesaid court, but it was discovered that appeal to that tribunal would not stand, hence the latter method was adopted. Upon that showing the Governor granted the further desired respite until Friday, March 25th, pending which date the necessary documents must be prepared and forwarded to Washington. The filing of the papers in the United States supreme court will prove a stay to the further execution of justice until the case is finally disposed of in that court, which may take several months.
March 25, 1887
Thomas Harding Hanged
THE EXTREME PENALTY:
THOMAS H. HARDING HANGED FOR THE MURDER OF GEORGE FERGUSON.
Efforts for Reprieve Kept Up Until the Last - Demeanor of the Prisoner During His Last Moments - No Confession Made - First Legal Hanging in Beaverhead County.
Friday, March 25th was the last day on earth for Thomas H. Harding, condemned to die on the gallows for the murder of George Ferguson, the Glendale stage driver, last May, the particulars of which are fresh in the minds of our readers. Up to the last moments his attorneys had not ceased their efforts for reprieve or commutation of sentence, but the governor refused to do anything in the matter. Father Dols informed him, last night, of the governor’s decision. Harding remarked that it was “d--- sudden.” The prisoner was awake early, indeed he slept but little. About nine o’clock he ate a hearty breakfast and at ten was shaved for the last time, by Brownie, the barber. He told Brownie not to be too particular, as it was his last shave. Mr. Duffy, his counsel, called upon him and told him there was no hope. He received the news with apparent indifference. He passed the morning in conversation with Father Dols, his counsel and others. At 2:30 Harding was led from the jail by Father Dols, accompanied by the Sheriff, and taken to the corner of the yard where the gallows was erected. The prisoner was dressed in a neat suit of black, wore slippers and was hatless. The scaffold was soon reached. Harding was cool and collected, he did not show any signs of nervousness, or fear though he was very pale. He stepped naturally to the gallows and stopped beneath the dangling rope. Sheriff Jones pinioned his legs and arms and adjusted the noose, which was of 5/8 inch cotton rope. The Sheriff advanced to the front of the prisoner and repeated the death warrant, after which he asked Harding if he had anything to say, to which Harding said: “I forgive everybody.” At 2:35 the 290 pound (a box of sheet tin) weight fell and Harding shot up with a jerk that broke his neck. In six minutes his heart ceased to beat. He was left hanging some time longer before he was cut down and placed in his coffin. The space around the instrument of death was occupied by the officials and spectators. Outside was a crowd of men watching and waiting for the awful moment to arrive. The crowd was kept away from the jail fence by armed guards. The coffin was furnished by the Dillon Furniture Co. Father Dols remained with the condemned man until the last moment and gave him what consolation he could. Drs. Pickman and Leason were the physicians in attendance; the former designed the gallows, which is the style known as the New York gallows. Harding was reprieved three times. He was refused a new trial in the District Court, and the Supreme Court of Montana sustained the decision of the lower court. A plea for habeas corpus was made to the U.S. Supreme Court, which refused to consider the case. This week another application for the writ of habeas corpus was made to Judge Galbraith without avail: also application to the governor and president for another respite, with like results. The case has attracted attention all of the inter-mountain country. Harding was 30 years of age, and was born near Cohoes, N.Y.
The Brewmaster's suspicious death:
May 20, 1887
A Body Found
Twin Bridges, May 18, 1887
A dead body was found last week, seven miles below Melrose, 100 yards from the railroad track and 200 yards from the Big Hole river. It had evidently been lying there at least four months. He might have been frozen, but there is no evidence of his having felt cold. He was lying on his back, straight as though he had lain down to sleep. A fire had run through the thick underbrush and briars, ten days ago, and had burned the face so as to destroy the features. One hand was also burned. Had two upper front teeth, not very wide but rather long, but the teeth on each side were gone; whiskers were red, streaked with gray, coat, vest and pants alike, of dark brown cloth; red woolen underclothes and brown woolen over shirt, all nearly new, and miners’ hobnail shoes.
Justice Jones, of Twin Bridges, held an inquest on Sunday, the jury, returning a verdict of “death from exposure and destitution.” The body was that of a small man, not over five foot three, or four inches in height and one hundred and fifteen or twenty pounds weight. There were no papers of anything by which to identify him.
The Brewmaster's suspicious death:
One of the earliest establishments at Glendale was the Brewery built by John Mannheim in 1875, called the "Montana Brewery". Mannheim began his business at Bannack City, Montana in 1863. With the shift in focus to the Bryant Mining District, John Mannheim relocated to the new smelter town of Glendale. When John arrived, Glendale had not yet chosen the name for it's new community. He was among a handful of men who were the first to settle this area but his time in Glendale was very short. John Mannheim became involved in legal processes and his brewery would then pass to Frank Gilg in June of 1878. John Mannheim would pass away in Madison County, Montana in 1879. John Mannheim's daughter, Elizabeth would marry the son of the Hecla Consolidated Mining Company's founder at Glendale.
For a brief time, Gilg had a partner by the name of Andrew Hemrich who eventually moved on to Seattle in 1883 and would continue in the business of brewing with a partner by the name of Kopp. Within two years, Andrew would go into business with his father, John Hemrich and brother-in-law and form a Corporation, The Bay View Brewing Company which in 1893 would merge with the Seattle Malting & Brewing Company, becoming the largest brewing company on the west coast. Frank Gilg sold to Louis Heinbockel and his brother-in-law Frank Sidell in late 1879 or early 1880. In 1884 Frank Schultz, in partnership with Albert Gamer, purchased it from Heinbockel. Schultz & Gamer put Peter Wagner in charge of the daily operations. Later, Gamer sold his interest in the brewery, at which time Schultz brought in Jacob Schoenaur to serve as head brew master.
On the night of July 4, 1887, while the majority of the Glendalites danced in the big rink on the hill, Jacob Shoenauer, Brewmaster, was burned to death in his home. The man had retired and from all appearances had made no effort to escape the fire trap. The roaring flames had gained so much headway before attracting attention that nothing could be saved, It is said that kerosene fumes were very noticeable in the area of the conflagration and it was hinted by some that the fire culminated a heinous and well plotted crime, The more forthright of the old timers openly assert that Shoenauer was murdered in his bed and robbed; and that the hand of the murderer saturated parts of the building with kerosene and with a match, converted the place into a funeral pile for the luckless German brewer. Not long after Shoenauer's death, a heretofore indigent resident of Glendale set himself up in business to the amazement of everyone, (At this point in the tale there is a lifting of the narrator's eyebrows.) But whatever suspicions and whether or not they were groundless, Glendale folk did not follow them up with an investigation, And so another unsolved riddle rests on a shelf of mining camp history.
July 8, 1887
A Fire in Glendale Brewery Causes the Death of Jacob Schoenauer – The celebration of the Fourth.
GLENDALE, July 6, 1887
To the Editor of the Dillon Tribune:
The 4th of July was celebrated here. Business houses and a number of residences were decked with green trees and flags a flying. Horse, wheel-barrow and foot racing occupied a part of the afternoon, until the time came for base ball, when the two nines had a lively set-to until 6:30 o’clock, when all adjourned for supper. After supper a magnificent display of fireworks was set off near the rink, after which the delighted spectators adjourned to the rink to indulge in the light fantastic etc. The Glendale cornet band gave us some of their sweetest and best music during the afternoon and evening.
Everything passed off very pleasantly and several remarked what a joyous Fourth we are having, but their joy was turned into sorrow, at 11:30 p.m., when the cry of fire was heard, and the ringing bells called our citizens to their duty. The Glendale Brewery was on fire in the upper story. The hose was soon attached to the water plugs, but was found too short to reach the building; a few buckets were procured, but water was too far away to do much good with them. All at once the query was passed from lip to lip, “Where is Jacob Schoenauer?” And was answered, “he must be in the burning building,” but none believed it. Although every effort was made to reach his room, without success. The entire building was burned to the ground. By that time the water from the lengthened hose began playing on the fiery mass and the blackened remains of a human being were discovered therein. As soon as possible to get at the body, several willing hands lent their aid in securing the same.
On arriving at the place they found that the head was burned off and supposed it had fallen into the cellar; the body was lying over two joists, over the cellar, in which was a fiery mass of coals: the limbs seemed to be perfect but on moving the body the limbs crumbled to dust, leaving only the bare trunk of what was once the portly frame of Jacob Schoenauer. He was a native of Switzerland and at the time of his death was 33 years old. At the last term of the district court he took out papers of citizenship and became a citizen of the United States. John P. Hulsizer and Schoenauer were partners in the saloon. The latter at 10 o’clock went up stairs to bed taking with him a miner’s candlestick and candle and also his dog and cat. Hulsizer kept open until about 11 o’clock and went to his cabin and retired and was awakened half an hour later by the cry of fire. He thinks Schoenauer must have fallen asleep and left the light burning, and it must have been knocked down by one of the animals, or dropped down through the candle stick on to some inflammable substances, thus causing the fearful destruction of life and property. The adjoining building, owned and occupied by John T. Murphy as a warehouse, was also destroyed with its contents. There was no insurance on any of the above property. John G. Schmidt, of Glen station, was the owner of the brewery building, which is valued at about $3,000. The funeral of Jacob Shoenauer took place last evening at 5 o’clock. He was followed to his last resting place by a goodly number of our citizens, who sincerely mourn his sudden and tragic fate.
This is the old, old story, houses mostly of wood; a small fire which quickly spreads until it becomes entirely beyond control, destroying thousands of dollars worth of property. Here is a town containing everything needful for the conflagration and with a large amount of valuable property at risk. Had the Hecla Smelter shared in the destruction (which, by the way, looked very, probably at one time during the fire) the loss would have been up at least to $75,000; and for protection of all this against fire, dependence is placed upon an inadequate water supply and about 400 feet of decomposed hose. Had the town been equipped with one good hand engine even the fire could have been stayed and the life of Jacob Shoenauer could probably have been saved. By this time our business men must see the necessity of having a fire department; hand engines may do, but steam is preferable. Insurance companies will fight shy, if there is no show to extinguish a fire.
August 12, 1887
Z.C. Maddux Killed.
Wednesday morning C.A. Clayton, Z.C. Maddux, Wm. Peterson and Chas Powers, got in a dispute over some hay land, the right to which was claimed by both factions. Peterson, Maddux and Powers went to Clayton’s armed and after talking awhile, angry words were exchanged, when Clayton went into the house, got a navy revolver and began firing on the three men. Maddux was shot in the left side below the left shoulder: another shot took effect in his back. Powers was shot in the hand while aiming at Clayton.Clayton’s hired man hitched up and took the wounded men home. Clayton went to Butte and surrendered himself. Maddux died late in the afternoon. The people around Melrose seem to have more sympathy for the dead man than for his slayer.
August 19, 1887
The Examination into the Melrose Shooting Continued Till Next Monday
Monday’s Inter Mountain: This morning at 9 o’clock the examination of Charles A. Clayton, for the murder of Z.C. Maddux, began in Judge Lippencott’s court. The prisoner is a man of medium size and with light hair, and chin beard and moustache of a reddish color. He is very decided and energetic in his talk and in his movements. He was quite firm and self possessed during the examination and the continual consultation with his lawyers, Messrs. Cole and Pemberton. There were four witnesses examined, including young Peterson, who went up in the wagon with Powers and Maddux. His testimony showed that he had been quite badly rattled during the shooting, and was too much occupied in running away to not many particulars. The defense endeavored to show by cross examination that Clayton had repeatedly warned Maddux not to approach him, but no definite testimony of this nature was adduced. The testimony of the other witnesses was not leading in its character. The principal witness is Charles Powers, the man who was driving the team at the time of the shooting, and who was shot three times by Clayton in the right arm and left hand and the right shoulder. His wounds are not serious, but very painful, and he was not able to be present at the examination. Accordingly the court decided that it would be necessary to postpone the examination, and he accordingly did so. It will be completed on Monday, when it is thought Powers will be able to appear and testify.
HOW IT OCCURRED
An Impartial Statement of the Causes Leading to the Shooting of Maddux by C.A. Clayton Last Wednesday.
Butte Miner: A gentleman who claims to be conversant with the origin of the quarrel between Maddux and Clayton says the land about which the dispute arose is Government land but that Clayton’s claim to it rests on the ground that he cleaned the land up for the purpose of cutting hay on it two years ago.
The strip of land is not more than five acres in extent and lies about a mile above Clayton’s ranch, while it is more than three miles to the Maddux ranch. He states that Clayton went to some trouble in cleaning it so that he could use his mowing machine upon it. Our informant states that Clayton cut the hay from it two years ago but did not last year as it was not worth cutting. He intended doing so this year, but while he was at his ranch on Soap Gulch Maddux came and cut the hay, or sent men to do it. Clayton, on his return saw them at work there and remonstrated with them, but they, of course, acting under orders, had no defense to make or excuse the offer. Clayton then said that he knew Maddux had been packing a six-shooter for him and fussing about water privileges for years back, “but,” he is reported to have said, “if you move that hay off that ground I’ll give Maddux a racket to the full extent of the law.” On Wednesday last, our informant continues, Maddux with his hired men, Peterson and Powers, came with a hayrack to remove the hay which had been cut by his men and Clayton met them on the road. He was with his mowing machine. He had his coat off and in the pocket of it was a six-shooter. Our informant states that the man, Maddux, was a very large, powerful man, much more than a match for Clayton in a personal encounter, and that Maddux had frequently expressed in public his intention of doing up Clayton whenever he got an opportunity, of which Clayton was aware.
Clayton is said to have asked Maddux, “Why do you play such dirty tricks as this on me? I have a right to that land because I and my boy cleaned that land up over two years ago, and here you come two or three miles above your ranch to take this hay that you have no right to.” Maddux is reported to have replied that he cleaned the land thirteen years ago. Clayton denied this and reaffirmed what he had done for the purpose of reaping it with his mowing machine. Maddux is then said to have given the lie which roused Clayton so he dared him to come down off the wagon. Maddux asked if he had any weapons about him which Clayton said he had not. Maddux had a gun in his hand which he gave to Powers who is reported to have held it down, the muzzle pointed in Clayton’s direction. Maddux then came down from the wagon and advanced towards Clayton who backed towards his mowing machine where his coat was. Two of three times, our informant states, “you’re coming, are you?” and kept backing to his coat, and each time Maddux replied, “yes. I’m coming,” making threatening gestures. When Maddux crowded Clayton to the machine and latter picked up his coat and got his revolver and fired, shooting Maddux twice, and then seeing Powers raising the gun he held, he shot at him, hitting him in the area so that he dropped the gun. This is the statement of the affair as related to the Miner representative, and it was added that the bad blood in the men originated in a quarrel several years ago about a horse that Clayton and Maddux both claimed and which the former obtained possession of though the latter’s brand was upon it.
August 26, 1887
HELD WITHOUT BAIL
Preliminary Examination of Clayton for the Murder of Maddux.
On Monday the preliminary examination of Charles A. Clayton for killing Z.E. Maddux, was held at Butte before Justice Lippincott. The witnesses examined were J.H. Whiting, James Andrews and James Powers. The testimony of the first two was positive as to threats made by Clayton on different occasions to take the life of Maddux. Powers is the man present at the shooting who was shot in the hands by Clayton, and for whose testimony the examination had been adjourned. He testified that Clayton enticed Maddux from the wagon stating that he was unarmed and would settle it by a fist fight. Maddux handed the gun to Powers and got down from the wagon. When he advanced a couple of steps toward Clayton, the latter drew his pistol and began to fire. He fired three shots at Maddux, who had turned to run toward the wagon for his gun. The first grazed his side and the last two took effect in his back. Clayton then fired two shots at Powers, which took effect in his left hand and right hand and arm. Powers then fell from the wagon, and while lying helpless in the road says that Clayton approached and fired the last shot in the revolver, which took effect in the shoulder.
These three witnesses made a very damaging case against Clayton, and with but short deliberation Judge Lippincott decided to hold him without bail to answer to the charge of murder before the grand jury. Clayton was represented as the examination by Messrs. Cole and Pemberton, while Attorney DeWitt conducted the prosecution. Clayton took the sentence coolly, and when the examination was finished, about noon, he was conducted back to jail by Sheriff Lloyd. All present at the examination thought that a very clear case of premeditated murder had been made out against the defendent.
"Molly Mac Guires"
The established citizenry of Glendale often unwittingly rubbed shoulders with itinerant outlaws and gangsters who came and went as unobtrusively as possible, Few persons knew that a group of "Molly Mac Guires" worked for a brief period at the Glendale Smelter. The Molly Mac Guires were a secret Irish order, said to be a branch of the Physical Force Party of Ireland. This organization gained a foothold in the coal regions of Pennsylvania about 1854. They brought on great coal mine strikes in the Quaker State and murdered many of the mine officials as well as law officers. Finally, the industrialists of Pennsylvania captained by Franklin B.Gowan, secured the services of a young Pinkerton detective James MacParlan. The youthful Irishman spent three years becoming one of the "gang" and gaining the confidence of the "Mollies". MacParlan obtained damaging and irrefutable evidence against the agitators and about 20 of the leaders were executed. The brilliant detective succeeded in uprooting the "Mollies"and their reign of terror but a few of these gangsters fled to the west and some of them came to Glendale and went to work at the smelter The famous James MacParlan trailed the Mollies to the smelter town, only to find that they had departed without beat of the drum, the night before his arrival, not even calling at the pay office for their wages. The agitators had undoubtedly been well informed about the detective's movements.
The gangsters went to the Coeur D' Alene district in northern Idaho, Here they soon began their demagogic practices among the laboring men, especially the miners. Some time afterward Steuenberg, ex governor of Idaho, was assassinated by members of this notorious gang. But the inexorable MacParlan, that tireless disciple of Themis, had followed the Molly Mac Guires to Idaho and again dismembered the organization, Through MacParlan, the men implicated in the Steuenberg assassination were found guilty and imprisoned. The Idaho affair between the Pinkerton star detective and the Molly Mac Guires occasioned a great deal of controversy and much has been written on the subject.
Jesse James Visits our Burg
Glendale had many emigrants from Missouri among its early day residents. The smelter camp even had a Missouri town, two families lived there having moved to Glendale some years before from Clay County, Missouri. The fellow "Missourians" spoken of by Marguerite LaMarche in her story were Tom Sappington's family as well as Joe Sheppard's family. This county was also the home of the famous and infamous Jesse James. In fact the paternal heads of the families knew Jesse James who had allegedly came to Glendale and paid them a hurried and surreptitious visit. The brevity of the outlaw's call was greatly appreciated since he was not at all in popular demand as a house guest. What called Jesse James to Glendale will never transpire. No doubt he accidentally discovered that he knew someone in the town and Jesse was not a man who would overlook an opportunity to practice a bit of extortion lest auld acquaintance be forgot. Whether or not Jesse did indeed visit, recent legends told by George "Shorty" Eighorn and Jim LaMarche to younger generations, place Jesse James in our midst. The story passed on through them and probably earlier generations tells of the local banker (presumably Noah Armstrong & Co. Banking) having taken all their money and gold and placing it in an "Ax box" with a padlock and simply leaving it on the front porch of the bank overnight with a lookout standing watch through the night from a building directly across the street. The goal was to hide the bank's riches in " broad daylight where it would be too obvious of a place to hide such wealth to a would be robber such as Jesse James". True or false, This legend seems to have grown legs somewhere and quite possibly may have taken place.
High grading, undetected and otherwise , was carried on in the Hecla Mining District during its boom days, Wherever there are miners whose neck risking, back breaking work is to burrow through the deep recesses of the earth, blasting out its treasure, high grading will be found. It is not so strange that a miner, working for an insufficient wage in rich ore, will frequently succumb to temptation and carry the rock away a little at a time or cover up a pocket until he is able to dig it out secretly.
The most outstanding venture in high grading was made by a young teamster of Glendale, and caused a mighty buzzing the length of Trapper Gulch. The hauling contractor of the Hecla Consolidated had for some time been aware of shortages in the sacks of ore hauled from the concentrator to Glendale. One day two youth's of the smelter town who were equipped "nose for news" and blessed with an unearthly instinct which led them to ferret out scandal and intrigue, discovered a cache of ore under a shelving rock on the road four or five miles above Glendale, En due time the report of the hidden ore reached the ears of company officials who investigated quietly and found 1400 sacks of valuable ore. The Hecla Company representatives were reasonably certain as to the identity of the defaulting teamster and laid a trap for him. The young teamster, having unloaded at Glendale started back to Greenwood one fall evening with provisions for the boarding house there, He was followed by two H.C. functionaries to Greenwood where they all ate supper.
The teamster was made very uncomfortable as well as suspicious by the presence of the company men, and after hastily finishing his meal he started for Glendale. The night was clear and quiet with a bright moon which cast shadows of the pine trees and the boulders into grotesque shapes, The low insistent murmur of Trapper Creek and the heavy thump of the ore wagon's big wheels as they skidded across the rocks muffled the sound made by the official's horse and buggy. As they reached a certain point in the road, the occupants of the sleuthing equipage took a short cut which brought back into the main road ahead of the young teamster. After they came to the spot where the 1400 sacks of ore were secreted one of the officials concealed himself behind the rocks while his companion drove to Glendale to get a deputy.
The ore hauler, who had loitered along hoping that the men in the buggy would pass him, must have concluded that the officials were spending the night at Greenwood, At all events, The young man stopped at his cache ostensibly confident that he was unobserved and began to load the sacks into the wagon, This took considerable time, Meanwhile, the official arrived with the deputy and both concealed themselves where they could watch the teamster transfer his plunder, 400 sacks seemed to be his quota. He then covered the ore with hay, climbed to the seat of his wagon and drove away towards Glendale at a rapid pace. Realizing that he was under suspicion, but determined to dispose of the ore, the teamster apparently intended to find a new hiding place for his booty.
The ore rustler was arrested at Glendale. It so happened that one of the trio who witnessed the young man's larceny had established a Sunday school for boys years before and shortly after coming to the smelter town, The youthful teamster had been one of the first to enroll in this class. So he sought clemency from his former monitor. But the latter , though grieved because the precepts which he had so earnestly striven to inculcate were unheeded by the erring one, had other obligations to discharge and remained adamant. The law took its course which did not run temporarily at last, father than the Big Hole River.
The prisoner, whom deputies were removing to Dillon bid farewell to his wife and child and other members of his family who live near Melrose. The deputies acceded to the request of their charge but failed to accompany him into the house. The young man went through the building and out to the rear where a horse stood, saddled and ready, and made a quick get away. The teamster did not lack friends and his family had been apprised of his arrest the night before. Two years elapsed before the ore rustler was apprehended. He was tried in a charge of grand larceny, found guilty and fined $1000.
The Crime of the Century
"The crime of the century" On April 3rd, 1895, Miss Blanche Lamont left her house in San Francisco on her way to school. A girl of about twenty years had moved from Montana, having taught school to miner's children at Hecla, home to the mines of the Hecla Consolidated Mining Company. When Blanche did not return home, her family reported her disappearance to the police and was published in the papers. On April 13, 1895, the day before Easter Sunday, some ladies of the Emmanuel Baptist Church went to that place of worship for the purpose of decorating. When going about their business, they opened the door of a small room or closet in the library and were horrified to discover the body of another girl by the name of Miss Minnie Williams. It was quickly reported to the police. The finger of suspicion quickly pointed to William Henry Theoodore Durrant. The disappearance of Miss Lamont was quickly connected to the finding of Miss Minnie Williams. Searches were made throughout the church and the nude corpse of Miss Lamont was found in the unfinished belfry of the Church. Durrant was charged with the double murders of these girls, one of whom, Durrant had quite an affection for.
It was not clear as to why Durrant murdered either of these girls and maintained his innocence up until the end when a rope was tied around his neck and the gallow upon which he stood fell from below him. The trial was covered in major newspapers around the country and the world. It was probably one of the most notable cases of the time and one of the earliest serial killings in our country. The body of Blanche was returned to her home in Dillon, Montana and she was laid to rest there. The church was eventually demolished and surprisingly, it's original location is up for debate as the city had underwent a major facelift and restructuring after the 1906 earthquake. Durrant was cremated and his family disappeared into history taking his remains with them. It is not known where he eventually ended up or where his family settled. After the trial, Durrant was a household name and one can imagine the difficulty of the family having to live in the shadows of this event.
Justice Court Glendale Township Beaverhead County State of Montana
The State of Montana (Plaintiff) VS Jake Skrnigar (Defendant)
Be it remembered that on the 9th day of April A.D. 1899 came Mrs John Kambich and being duly sworn , made complaint against one Jake Skunigar for willfully attempting to attack the said Planitiff with an axe and saying that he would chop the said Plaintiff head off, all of which is contrary to the laws of the State of Montana . I filed said complaint and immediately issued a warrant for the arrest of the said Jake Skrnigar which was duly accompolished the 10th day of April 1899 and brought befor me to plead either guilty of not guilty