Last updated: May 27. 2014 7:59PM - 270 Views
By Charlie Miller Contributing Columnist



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May 29, 1914

Madison County Democrat — No News. The Wild West (Jefferson) – Jan. 12, 1865 – A man named Gallagher, was arrested in West Jefferson on Tuesday, and brought to jail on a charge of shooting another man in a drunken row.


— July 6, 1868 — On a visit to West Jefferson, we were shown the eventful place where Chub Hann was murdered a few weeks ago. It appears that after being stabbed through the heart, the unfortunate man walked several rooms of an adjoining house and out into the garden before he fell. The murderer is still at large.


— Oct. 2, 1889 — Murder in West Jefferson — Local grocery owner, Samuel Stickley, was assaulted by a man named George Boles, who beat him over the head with a revolver, fracturing his skull, causing his death a few days later on Sept. 26. The murder took place in front of Mr. Stickley’s store on the corner of Main and Walnut streets.


— May 22, 1895 — A man comes in from a hard day’s work and is met at the door by a drunken wife. A family quarrel ensues, and a loaded pistol is produced. A shot followed by a cry of pain, and a murderess flees the county. Such is the tale of matricide reported from West Jefferson. Theo White, living on the Asa Silver farm on Urbana Pike was shot by his wife and killed. (She was captured in December and sentenced to life in prison.)


— Sept. 23, 1896 — West Jefferson has another murder to add to its list of unfortunate homicides. Edmund Buck, who owned the Hotel Buck, was killed about noon by March Ricks, a local barber. Ricks was jailed by officers George Baber and Sprague. He was taken to London for fear of being lynched. (He also received a life sentence.)


— July 21, 1897 — Another murder in West Jefferson — 13-year-old Maud Whipple, daughter of Mrs. Kate Whipple, of West Jefferson, was found shot near Big Darby, two miles west of town. Mrs. David Taylor, 47, was arrested as a suspect.


— March 2, 1898 — Another murder near West Jefferson — Three miles west of town on the London-West Jefferson Road, near the home of Thomas Pearce. The dead man, Joe Millholland, had been shot and then placed on the Little Miami Railroad tracks and ran over by a train. The guilty party is not known. (The holes gave ‘em away.)


— Sept. 14, 1901 — A West Jefferson woman’s death caused by the assault of her husband. Mrs. Julia Murry died here after having been kicked by her husband, Mr. James Murry. Later he was arrested in London, England in January of 1903. James tended bar in his father’s saloon. (Please note this is no relation to the present Murray family.)


— Oct. 8, 1909 — At 8:30 p.m. in front of Brown’s Grocery, Al Winegardner attempted to kill his wife. After shooting her in the neck, he then turned the gun on Officers ‘Bird’ Clark and Oscar Sprague. The crowed just emerging from a movie at the Opera House, began to dive for cover. Mr. Wills who fell while trying to escape the bullets, twisted his ankle, and was unable to get up, and for a while was believed shot. A total of 14 shots were exchanged, one striking Winegardner in the hip. Clark’s coat had been singed by one of the bullets. A plate glass window in John Taggart’s grocery was shattered. Many bullets lodged in near by buildings. Mrs. Winegardner was taken to the hospital in Columbus.


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