Thursday, December 15, 2016

Murder And Execution

Jerome Brooks, 23, and Charles Carr, 22,  were known in this area for making trouble.

They were tired for the murder of Asher W. Slater.
On the night of April 20, 1871 one man kept Slater, a shop keeper in downtown Logansport, occupied with an order of a bucket of molasses, while the other came up behind him and beat Slater over the head and robbed him of $140 from his pocket and about $15 from his cash drawer. Slater died from the head wound, loss of blood, and concussion of his brain.

Charles Carr pleaded guilty to second degree murder, which carried life imprisonment, rather than death by hanging.

Jerome stood trial before Judge Horace P. Biddle.

Jerome Brooks confessed to the murder.
Full confession can be found in the Democratic Pharos, November 1, 1871, page 2.

He was executed in Delphi, Carroll County, Indian. A large crowd had gathered to witness the hanging, but were disappointed, because under the law all public executions were prohibited.

The Sheriff and a number of peace officers were detailed for this duty.

Brooks was interviewed by several people up to the time of being led to the gallows. He spoke to all in an indifferent manner. He did not seem to realize his awful fate and showed the same levity of manner from his arrest up to time for the execution.

He was taken in a closed carriage from the jail to a gallows erected in the courthouse yard, which was enclosed with a frame structure and a roof.

He mounted the steps with no sign of fear other than heavy breathing. He placed the noose around his own neck. When asked if he had any last words he said. “No. I’m ready. Blood should be on no man’s head.” He bid each person a formal farewell. The Sheriff read the death warrant. When asked again if he had anything to say, Brooks said, “I shall never forget Bringhurst.” (His defense attorney.) After death the body was cut down and taken to Logansport for burial in Mt. Hope cemetery.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Women's Suffrage

This is an election year. It is an important election, although not any more important than any other, because importance is relevant. But, because this is an election year the Museum Curator thought that a display having to do with Women's Suffrage would be appropriate.

This is Susan B. Anthony circa 1855. I have no doubt, dear reader, that you know about her and I'm not even going to try to rehash what has been printed and posted by many more, way-better-qualified people than myself. Rather...I wish to share info and acknowledge some Cass County women who involved with this movement. Namely, Lois Wilson, Dora Smith, Sage Velle Fenton, and Anna Dunn Noland.

This letter, written by Susan B. Anthony and addressed to  Lois Wilson, Logansport , is among the Cass County Historical Soc.'s collection. 1888. For years the museum Curator had been under the impression that Lois Wilson was married to a local attorney. Wrong. Her husband was Harvey J. Wilson, Truant Officer and they lived at 416 Eighth Street, Logansport.

Research tells us that this local group of suffragettes was small at the time of this letter, 1888, and the group sort of dissolved until 1908, when there were many more local women ready to speak out, march, and generally make some noise for the right for women to vote!

On December 7, 1908 a meeting was held in Logansport, Indiana. This meeting was organized and promoted by Dora (Mrs. Oliver P.) Smith, of 409 North Street. Her husband was a cigar maker and I can't help but picture him and "the boys" sitting around a table in the back of the cigar store talking about the little women and their little cause. Cute - aren't they? having meetings and imagining what politics is all about...just so long as they get home in time to make dinner and clean up the kitchen afterward.


Mrs. Anna Dunn Noland, Logansport, was the state president but was out of town and unable to attend. But, Miss Peppinger, San Antonio, Texas, national secretary of the Women's Suffrage society was in attendance.
By the way - I had to dig around for most of the ladies' first names. Everyone was Mrs. "Husband's First Name" in those days. In the case of Miss Peppinger - I had no luck finding her first name.

Note: Anna was married to Dr. Franklin J. Noland, eye, ear, nose and throat specialist. They lived at 424 1/2 Broadway.

Here is a news clipping of that meeting: Logansport Daily Reporter, page 1

The bottom line reads "Of course some people will call us hair-pullers, and laugh at us,"..."but we will stay in the race until we win." quoting Dora Smith.
In 1913 the Women Suffrage movement was converging on Washington DC.
Meanwhile, here at home the Logansport Journal Tribune was interviewing for opinions about the new "slit skirt".
Concerning slit skirts, 1913.
Mrs. Anna Noland, suffragist leader in Logansport and one whose views are generally broad and unbiased, expresses her opinion: “I can see nothing wrong about the slit skirt. I think all the evil lies in the mind of the beholder. One must admit there are some people who have always been able to make evil out of the most innocent things. I think the skirts are very comfortable. To me they serve the same purpose as the short skirt: comfort and convenience. I do not like the tight skirt simply because it is an affection since it hinders a woman’s moving about.” When asked if her opinion was the same for all slit skirts she said, “No, I do not like a few of the slit skirts, but they were very extreme and therefore immodest. They are calculated merely for attention.”

Mrs. Isaac N. Crawford’s opinion: “No, I do not like the slit skirt and I think that every woman who appears in a slit skirt should be placed in jail. They are immoral. They invite disrespect and even insults from men.”
NOTE: Mrs. Crawford's husband owned a large farming implement and hardware store in the downtown.

Sage Velle Fenton
Above: That young lady in the center, in the back row, was Sage Velle Fenton.
  • Born 1888
  • Graduate of LHS 1907 - a member of the very first high school annual "The Tattler" staff.
  • Graduate of Vassar 1911.
  • Daughter of Charles O. Fenton and Carrie D. Taylor Fenton, followed in her father's footsteps as he put her in charge of the Logansport Times, of which he was owner.
  • Champion of Women Suffrage and the Prohibition of liquor.
  • She drowned while on vacation in Florida in 1916, as her fiancĂ© and family watched in horror. She was 28.

January 17, 1936 – page 1 Pharos Tribune

Anna Dunn Noland Dies At Home of Her Sister

Well-known local lady who led campaign for woman suffrage dies at Kouts, Indiana. After long illness

Anna Dunn Noland, champion of woman's suffrage and state president of the Equal Suffrage association for 13 years, died Friday morning at the home of her sister, Mrs. Sarah, Noland in Kouts, Ind. She was 71 years old. Mrs. Noland widow of the late Dr. James Noland; and a native of this city was removed from her home a half mile north of here on the Michigan road to the home of her sister last Saturday. Her condition was serious then. About two weeks before Christmas Mrs. Noland was found unconscious on the floor in the kitchen of her home, by neighbors who came to call. She had been bedfast since. Her condition responded to treatment and she grew better for a, time, only to suffer a relapse that resulted in death. Mrs. Noland was born in Logansport the daughter, of Mr. and Mrs. M. H. Dunn and spent her early girlhood here later moving with her parents to Star City where her father engaged in the grain elevator and lumber business.

Following her marriage to Dr. Noland they moved to North Judson in 1883. About 1890 Dr. Noland transferred his field of endeavor to Logansport and an active Mrs. Noland became a worker in the ranks of the Woman's Christian Temperance Union. At this time Mrs. Noland manifested a deep and burning interest in the equal suffrage movement and in 1910 was elected vice-president of the state association at a convention in Kokomo. Within a short time she became president and was re-elected to the illustrious-office 12 times. During her terms of leadership of the Equal Suffrage association Mrs. Noland campaigned the state in the interest of her work and cultivated a wide circle of friends in every walk of life by her earnestness, zeal, personality and tireless energy. Finally she saw the object of the association accomplished in the adoption of a constitutional amendment and subsequently retired from active work.

Parade at Hebron, Indiana

August 26, 1920 United States Secretary of State signed the Anthony Amendment into law.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

George H. Lynas and The Apron Factory 1919

George H. Lynas was associated with his father’s -  Dr. James B. Lynas - business - assuming presidency of the company in 1901 after "J. B.’s" death.

On the third floor of the 519-523 E. Market street building was  a complete little factory which, no doubt, was unknown to over 99 per cent of the people of Logansport. This factory produced aprons and it grew from a very small beginning to the point where it occupied floor space 64x34 feet in dimension. At first only one or two women worked there. More employees were added. The aprons made in the Lynas factory were sold through the same agency that handled all other products of the Lynas establishment.

Modern machinery was installed. The table on which the fabric cutter worked was located on the east side of the room and extended a distance of 54 feet. Next to this table there were shelves.
Running through the center of the room was a large ironing table. There were fourteen 10 straight head sewing machines in the factory, much like the one pictured above.
The room wasn't wired for electric lights because of the "great benefit of the natural lighting" and instead skylights were installed "which furnish an abundance of light".

August 3, 1919 ad for help wanted Logansport Pharos Reporter, page 16.
On the north side of the large room one could look out over the city, in a nice, well-furnished little recreation space. A large piano was the central object in the space. On the floor there were rugs and scattered about were comfortable chairs "for the benefit of the workers of the factory, at the noon hour and during intermissions throughout the day".
On the south side of the large room occupied by the machines was a convenient dressing-room.
Miss Jennie Bryer, an experienced seamstress was placed in charge of the work in the Lynas apron factory.

George H. Lynas died December 13, 1926.

George's brother, Will, sold the Dr. Lynas & Son business in 1938. It was finally dissolved as a business in 1965.

Friday, April 22, 2016

Canal Boats,Miami Tribe and Pioneer Day Memories

Memories of Nathan Stackhouse of Anoka, Indiana, Cass County.

Nathan Stackhouse (1848-1939) was a member of one of Cass County, Indiana's pioneer families. He was born in 1848 in an area that became the Purdue University campus at West Lafayette. He came to eastern Cass County as a toddler, a year or two later. Before he died he was interviewed by the local newspapers and I, for one, as a historian, am so glad that he was able to share the following snippets of local history.

A Canal packet boat.
Nathan's uncle, Joe Cuppy, was captain of a canal boat - the "Americus" -  and Nathan was thrilled to ride on it because he was allowed to ride on the roof where he could get a great view of the passing landscape. "The mules slowly plodded along the tow path in front of us and in our floating through the towns of West Logan and Logansport, including our trip across the Eel River on the aqueduct at what is now 5th Street. We finally got off the boat at the lock in Miami Township and met a wagon pulled by oxen which took us across the Wabash River to my grandmother's house."

George Winter painting "Indians on The Eel River" 1850

People crossed the river at other points but the very best and only real ford of the Wabash between Logansport and Peru was the old Indian ford between what is today Cass Station bridge and the eastern end of Country Club Island. The ford stopped being used only after bridges were built at Lewisburg, 18th Street and finally Cass Station.

The correct name for Country Club Island is Cedar Island. Nathan's wife's Uncle was the first white man who owned it, buying it from the US Government, which had of course obtained it from the Native Americans.

Vintage post card image of a cliff at Cedar Island, Logansport, Indiana

Cedar Island was a favorite place for family picnics. Large numbers of people from the city of Logansport would go to it on Sundays in carriages, buggies and canal boats. For a time there was a baseball diamond at the west end of the island. Later Charles Bowyer grew a watermelon patch on the site and even later it became home to Soloman Brandt's fine chickens and dogs.
Much later the Country Club bought it and converted the west end of the island into a lawn and built a clubhouse.

The "cliff" is about 30 feet high and is plainly visible from Cass Station Bridge. Solid limestone - it overlooks the ancient Indian ford.

Nathan in an interview in 1938 - his 90th birthday - "I distinctly recall the Indian trails of the area. I used them for many years before any wagon roads were built."

It might be good to mention here that one of Nathan's friends was Gabriel Godfroy, a Miami Tribe leader, son of Chief Francis Godfroy.

Gabriel Godfroy

Chief Francis Godfroy (1788-1840)

"The Miami liked my family, especially my grandmother, very much. One of the trails led from the Mississinewa valley Indian towns past Pipe Creek Falls to the south side of Logansport. I often saw parties of as many as 15 to 20 Indians coming down this trail, sometimes on horseback, mostly on foot. They always marched in single file and at a dog-trot pace. Sometimes they brought their hunting dogs along."

"Sometimes the Indians would camp near to our home. Often they would dismount their ponies and command them to return to the Mississinewa country. The ponies were well trained and would follow the lead pony that had a small bell around its neck."

Nathan continued, "When the Indians were making a long trip they sometimes brought a cow or two along with them. My grandmother would send me out with a pail to get some milk. They not only let me milk their cow, they would insist that I fill the pail to the brim."

Though he never knew where they went after crossing the Wabash River, Nathan remembered an old Indian trail that led from near Onward to this ford at Cass Station, because just east it crossed a trail that passed his own home. He told of seeing mothers carrying babies on their backs, swaddled onto early type baby carrier.

Golf course - Logansport Golf Club

Most of the area of the Country Club - later the Logansport Golf Club - which now serves as a beautiful golf links was formerly a vast checkerboard of ponds, swamps and rocky hummocks.

More from Nathan's interview - "Though the Indians as a whole ceased living in Tipton Township a few still lingered and one fellow even worked for us for a long time. His name was Bannion, but we called him 'Billy'. He was short, but muscular and strong as an ox. He had long black hair which he wore tied back or braided. I think he liked us because we were a music-loving family, and he certainly loved music. He would play the fiddle for hours on end for our enjoyment. But he was a good worker and valuable to have around the farm.

Photo images courtesy Miami of Ohio

We knew and understood the Miami - understood much that was meaningless to our less informed neighbors. For example, we knew that if the Indians were wearing red handkerchiefs around their foreheads they were on their way to visit somebody. That is, we knew they weren't out on a hunting expedition."


"One time the Miami were planning a big barbecue near Peru (Indiana, in neighboring Miami County) but were having trouble gathering enough steers to roast for the occasion. They came down into our region to hunt for steers. Judge (David) Dykeman, who had several on his Washington Township place - Dykeman's Spring - cheerfully donated a steer to them. Gabriel Godfroy and one other Indian came to get this steer. We helped them lasso and load it. As a reward for our assistance, we were guests of Gabriel Godfroy himself at the gathering."

Nathan Stackhouse lived out his days in Tipton Township, Cass County, Indiana. He died in June, 1939.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

The Logansport Ottos

The Logansport Ottos - Pro Baseball Team

Otto Kraus came to Logansport in 1869. He worked at a clothing store. Otto's brother, Max, came to town about 1870 and opened Kraus Brothers Clothing store. In 1886 Otto organized and sponsored a semi-pro baseball team, naming the team the Ottos.

1907 Ottos

Back: Evens, Wilson, Enyart, Manager, Ensfield, Wise
Middle: Gordon, Cuppy, Michell, Kesling, Conrad, Clark
Front: Kesling, Kummer, Carroll

Notable members included George Cuppy, who pitched for the Cleveland Indians, Johnny "Red" Corriden, Herald Ireland, Zeke Smith, Frank Bowerman, Frank Stapleton, Wallace Taylor and William Nies who all went on to play in the Minor or Major leagues.

1910 Ottos - back row right end is Johnny "Red" Corriden

Johnny "Red" Corriden (1887-1959) was a player, coach, manager and scout in American Major League Baseball. A short stop and third baseman in his playing days, he appeared in 223 major league games with the St. Louis Browns, Detroit Tigers and Chicago Cubs, batting .205. After his playing career ended Corriden coached and managed in the minor leagues during the 1920s. In 1932 he was named a coach with the Chicago Cubs. For the next 17 years he would assist managers such as Rogers Hornsby, Charlie Grimm, Gabby Hartnett, Lee Durocher and Bucky Harris with the Cubs (1932-40), Brooklyn Dodgers (1941-46) and New York Yankees (1947-48) - working for 5 pennant-winning teams.

1914 Ottos

1914 Logansport Ottos
Back - Cody (ump), Watson (3b), Copeland (rf), Thomas (lf), Shirley (2b), Avery (p), Patterson (p), Moore (ump) Front – Brown (1b), Thorpe (cf), Wainscott (c), Berman (manager), Moran (c), Kennedy (ss), Michelle (c a p)

1916 Ottos

1916 Ottos Team, Indiana State Champions
Back: Richeson, L. Watson, Watson, Green, Beal, J. Watson, Coble
Front: Kesling, Claffey, Berman (insuit), Al Scheer, Wise, Barnard, Hayner (mascot)

Newspaper clip from August of 1916, Logansport Press:

Logansport Pharos Tribune, October 14, 1916, page 5:

The twelve inning tie which the Logansport Ottos and the Anderson Eagles staged last Sunday will be played off tomorrow at Anderson. The locals are all set for the contest and will go to Anderson with a stronger force than they had last Sunday. This increase in the strength of the locals is in the signing of Red Corriden to work with the Ottos the rest of the season.

In the local team will be Eller, pitcher, and Zeke Smith, Al Scheer. Corriden, Jay Watson and Leon Watson and Eddie Wise, together with Coble, Bruder and Roberts, who has proven a heavy hitter in the pinches. Seven of this nine have been in leagues and with such a force, dope points to the locals as victors in the contests. Cy Falkenburg will oppose Eller on the mound. Falkenburg is an Indianapolis A. A. twirler. He is not new to Scheer and Corriden as during the just closed American Association season each batted against him on several occasions. Last Sunday, Scheer touched "Falky" for two safeties while Eller himself got three. A number of local fans are going to see the Anderson game tomorrow.

In the 1914 season - the ball field.
The ball field was in the area where the Columbia Elementary and Middle School campus is now, described as " E. Columbia Street, Peter Street to Sycamore Street" (Sycamore was renamed N. Third Street)

1914 postcard image taken at a practice "Wainscott Behind The Bat"

The players of the Logansport Ottos minor league baseball team played in the Indiana State League (no classification) 1896. There were six teams in the Indiana State league in 1896; Anderson, Connersville, Elwood, Kokomo "Blues", Logansport "Ottos", and Rushville. Source

Friday, April 1, 2016

Cass County Children's Home

The Cass County Children's Home aka Orphan Home

The first "home" was in the former home of Judge William Z. Stuart at what is now 216-218 Wheatland Avenue, Logansport, IN when  at the close of the Civil War a group of local women cared for 3 or 4 children.

The second home was on the southwest corner of Melbourne Avenue and Wilkinson Street.

The Orphan's Home was organized under Indiana state law of February 1870. A temporary organization was formed and on February 1, 1878 the name Orphan's Home Association was adopted. Around this time a legislative act was passed that provided County Commissioners in several counties to establish orphans' homes.

In 1882 the Cass County Commission bought the former Lewis Chamberlain Home* at 1339 Pleasant Hill for $2500 with $500 in improvements.
*Note - Logansport Attorney Lewis Chamberlain - a native of New Jersey -  built the home in 1867 on Pleasant Hill but soon vacated because his wife did not appreciate living so far away from the downtown.

Orphan's Home on Pleasant Hill

Additions and improvements in the amount of $7,256 were made to the home in 1903.
 The home suffered two fires, the worst of which occurred on April 3, 1906. During the time of rebuilding the orphans were cared for at the Mexico, Indiana Home in Miami County.

The home was rebuilt and completed for occupancy in January 1907 at a cost of $8,235.

Later photo of the Cass County Children's Home

Early reports indicated that the children were from Cass and surrounding counties. Year-end reports indicated that children were either returned to their families, placed in another facility or placed with "good families".

Post card image of the orphanage.

During the early years it was not uncommon for children to be placed in the orphanage while their parents looked for work. This was quite common during the Great Depression years.

Monday, January 6, 1908 The Logansport Pharos:
Sub headline Other Matters Before the County Commissioners Today
"The Orphans Home for December was allowed $105.50 for care and board of Stella Kahler, Eddie Talbert, Lucile Stuart, James Thorp, Bertha Neff, Gilbert McGuire, Iran Nean, Bessie Nean, Harry Brooks, Earl Brooks, Thomas Loracons, Sadie Kadman, Charles Foster and Goldie Stuart. "

While the Cass County Historical Society does NOT have any records of any kind left by the orphanage there is a list of names of children living there in April of 1907:
Stella Kahler, Eddie Talbert, Lucile Stuart, Frank Keneline, James Thorp (or Sharp?), Bertha Neff, Willia Berry, Gilbert McGuire, Mildred Howell, William Brann, Alice Brann, Rex Warner, Judson Shultz, Ivan Uran and Denise Uran.

...and at the time of the 1910 census

Rebecca Carney, Matron, age 56; Ola Dellon, 34, Margaret Moriarty, 27 and Jasper McGuire (janitor), age 44
Mabel Timberlake 13, Goldie Stewart 14, Stella Kahler 12, Sadie Rodman 11, Ara Hayden 10, Esther Dillon 3, Geneva Wheeler 2, Nora Moriarty* (less than a year old), Jim Sharpe 11, Roy Hayden 9, Merle Hayden 5, Harold Warner 3, Vernon Bumgartner 7, Ardella Goshen 16.
*Nora Moriarty died of diphtheria in the orphan home Jan. 30, 1913.

 Above and Below: Photos taken in 1956

Rebuilt in 1907 used by generations of area orphans over the next 90 years.
In 1994 a new wing was added to the house.
In 2001 the old portion of the building was abandoned as children were moved into the new section.
On March 14, 2003 the final child left the facility.
In August 2008, the Cass County Commissioners closed the home.
In 2009 the property was purchased and the original, old home was razed. The remaining newer wing was converted into an assisted living home. It currently is doing business as "Pleasant Escape".

Monday, January 18, 2016

Mariel Apartments Logansport, Indiana

The Mariel Apartments are located at 1011 North Street. 


 In the mid-1930's A. J. Meyers brought those apartments into existence. The building had been vacant for a long time.  It was also the Meyers' who installed the prominent "red" neon sign above the front door proudly announcing the MARIEL APARTMENTS, named for their daughter, Mariel. Those apartments have been in continuous operation since their creation, both by the Meyers’ and the owners who subsequently followed, and the "red" neon sign had been continuously lighted until most recently. 

Before it was an apartment building.
The previous owners were Frank and Helen Bott. He was Vice President of Bridge City Candy Company on 4th Street - she taught music. By 1935 the property was vacant and remained vacant until 1941. It was described as "more than a handy man's special". A. J. Meyers' trade skills came into play.

Mariel Meyers was a Logansport High School graduate.  She earned two college degrees in the U.S. and also a doctorate in medicine in Mexico, but she never was able to get reciprocity in the U.S.  She very much went her own way.  She died in the 1990s.
When the apartments were opened the front entrance was given the 1011 North Street address.  Some time later the side apartment was given an 11th Street address.  The apartments apparently met with immediate popular appeal, as they were always full.