Saturday, 10 March 2012

March 11, 1876

This morning on account of the miserable state of the rods and the threatening weather, the markets were by no means largely attended. The meat market was almost deserted, with the exception of a few loads of veal. The general produce market was largely attended but no change in prices could be detected. Butter is all of poor quality, some of it indeed a fit subject for the Board of Health.
Hamilton Spectator. March 11, 1876

Saturday, March 11, 1876 was a bleak day at the Hamilton Market Square, the depressing state of the late winter weather which had plagued the city and district had an effect on the amount of produce available.
      A follow up article appeared in the Saturday afternoon edition of the Spectator concerning the disposition of the black fortune teller reported in the previous days paper:
 “Yesterday afternoon, the trial of Miss Adley on the charge of obtaining money under false pretences was resumed. The complainant, Jenkins, on being cross-examined, said that he did give Miss Adley the fifty cents to have his fortune told, but to pump her to see if she knew anything of the whereabouts of his wife. Mr. Furlong, counsel for the defence, submitted that a case of false pretences could not be made out of that. The Court agreed and the case was dismissed.”
Coote’s Paradise was again in the news with two articles concerning the need to properly care for that important marshland:
“It is the intention of the proper authorities to keep a strict watch near the Dundas Marsh to prevent parties killing game or fishing out of season. This marsh if properly protected would become one of the most valuable sporting grounds in the Dominion.

“This morning Christopher Case and a man named Lyons were charged with breaking open muskrat houses in the Dundas Marsh. Lyons’ case was adjourned until the 25th of March. Case was found guilty and fined $10 and the costs of the court.”

Billiards were extremely popular among Hamilton’s sporting fraternity, particularly as regards an upcoming  tournament which would provide interesting spectator opportunities and even more, excellent betting opportunities :
“This promises to be the event of the season among sporting men. Every evening the several Billiard rooms of the city are crowded by parties eagerly watching the candidates’ practices, and judging to the best of their ability which was the best before they would buy their pools. The tournament will commence on Monday evening, in the Billiard Rooms of the Royal Hotel, the Egener Brothers leading off. The next evening Mr. Sam Davis of the St. Nicholas and Mr. Sexton will play Mr. Phelan of the Royal, commencing his innings on the third night. The tables used will all be relaid and covered with new cloth. The balls will also be perfectly new and of the best quality. An admittance fee will be charged at the door during the tournament.”
Finally the biggest news of the day, and the incident which garnered the most press coverage concerned a brutal assault involving a constable with the county force :
“Last evening about twenty minutes to seven, a desperate scuffle took place on the street in front of the St. Nicholas Hotel. The parties who fought were Mr. James Davis and his brother Samuel, who were brutally assaulted by Constable Everett and, it is alleged, by “Doc” Thompson. It is unnecessary to comment on the affair, as the circumstances of the case will be found in the following evidence which was adduced at the Police Court this morning. It will be seen that Everett brought the first charge :
SAMUEL D. EVERETT, testified : About seven o’clock last evening was standing with two men named Thompson and Lavis, when James Davis came along, and I said something about him being a thief; Davis turned round and insulted me; he then went into the St. Nicholas; we still stood on the sidewalk; a few minutes after, the two Davises came out, and Sam stood behind me; Jim Davis turned round  close to me and asked me who I was calling a thief; I said “you,”; he said, “you lie you son of a ----,”; with that Samuel Davis, from behind, struck me; I turned round to him and struck at him; Jim then struck me from the other side; I then took Sam Davis down when James Davis kicked me; I then let go of Samuel and seized James; Sam then kicked me; it then continued, and while I would have one down, the other would kick me.
Cross-examined by Mr. Waddell : I was in the St. Nicholas with “Doc” Thompson and got a drink; saw Sam Davis who is tending bar there; when they were passing me I said :there goes one of the thieves”; I am a county constable; I bit Sam Davis’ finger, but I was too busy at the time to know whether I bit it to the bone.
Arthur Thompson, sworn : Mr. Lavis, Everett and I were standing outside of the St. Nicholas last evening; Everett was saying something about Davis; James Davis came down the sidewalk and went into the St. Nicholas; as he was going in Everett pointed him out, and said “there goes one of the thieves”; after a while the two Davises came out together, and James said: “Who are you calling a thief?”; And Everett said, “I mean you,”; Sam Davis then struck Everett; Everett then knocked Sam Davis down, and Jim Davis kicked Everett; I pulled Jim Davis away and told him to stop; they then rolled into the street.
Cross-examined by Mr. Waddell : I did not interfere between Sam Davis and Everett: I did not pull Sam Davis under Everett; I did not hear Sam Davis cry out that Everett was biting his finger off; when James Davis came out of hotel, I did not say to Everett “Here he is.”
James Davis, sworn : About half past six I was going into the St. Nicholas Hotel when Everett said “there goes the d—n son of a --- of a thief now”; I went into te hotel and told my brother Sam what happened; he told me to stay in or I might get into trouble; in about 15 minutes my brother and I went out on business, when Thompson said “here he is”; Sam came out after me; Everett repeated his observation: I asked him to whom he referred, and he said, “you are the man”; I called him a liar, and he struck at me and missed me; he got me then by the coat and struck me, and then my brother  struck Everett; when Sam interfered to assist me, Thompson struck; I got loose from Everett, and then Everett seized Sam; my brother threw him, Everett falling under; Thompson then stepped up and kicked Sam’; Thompson then caight hold of Sam and pulled him over on the sidewalk pulling Everett on top.
Samuel Davis, sworn : I have charge of the billiard room at the St. Nicholas Hotel; the bartender was at tea and I took his place; Everett and Thompson came in and got a drink; Everett remarked to me that he could lick any son of a --- in the family; I made no remark; they then went into the billiard room and then went out; my brother then came in and told me that Everett had called him a thief as he was coming in; I told him not to notice it; shortly after the barkeeper asked to go and pay for some liquors; my brother went with me; as we went out, Thompson said “here he is” and Everett said “here’s the thieving son of a ---”;  James asked him what he meant; Everett replied that he was the person, and struck at him; they then clinched; I then interfered to stop the row;  I struck Everett; he then let go of my brother and took hold of me; he got my thumb into his mouth, and bit it through the flesh into the bone; I had Everett down when Thompson came up and kicked me in the ear and then pulled me off; Thompson and Everett were together in the St. Nicholas before when I was then; I did nothing until Everett struck my brother.
Samuel McCulloch : I saw the row; I first saw that Samuel was looking for his watch chain, and cap; while he was stooping Everett kicked him in the face; they then fought for a little while, when they were parted again.
Samuel F. Everett : I sent an anonymous letter to Mr. E. Abercrombie, the manager of the St. Nicholas, with regard to Davis; I told him that his place was becoming a den of thieves; I referred to Davis who had charge of the billiard rooms; I mentioned Davis and his crowd; I did this because Davis had called me a whiskey informer.
Edward Lavis : Thompson, Everett and I were standing on the sidewalk together; we were talking; Davis passed us and Everett called him a thief; shortly afterwards the two Davises came out together, when Everett called Davis a “d---d thief again; they then commenced to fight, but I don’t know which struck first; I was quite sober last evening.
Thos. Wakeman sworn : Am ball boy at the St. Nicholas Hotel; saw Everett and Thompson come into the bar and get a drink, and then come out and stand by the stove; heard them call Davis a d—d thief; I saw Everett clinch James Davis, and then Sam Davis went to protect him; some person then came up and struck Sam Davis; they were all standing up; afterwards got Sam’s finger in his mouth and bit it.
Thos. Joyce, sworn : Am night clerk at the St. Nicholas Hotel; the first I saw was two men fighting on the sidewalk; I saw Everett having Sam Davis down, and heard the latter cry out, “he is chewing my thumb”; when Sam Davis stopped to pick up his watch chain, Everett kicked him on the neck and grabbed him before he recovered his feet.
This closed the evidence.
The case was adjourned till four o’clock when His Worship will pass sentence on Everett.”

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