Ramsey County, Minnesota

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Divorce News and Proceedings

Henry and Marie Herbert

George and Frances Kester

[Source: The Saint Paul Globe (MN) February 22, 1905; transcribed by Mary Kay Krogman]

Judge Lewis yesterday granted a decree of absolute divorce to Henry C. Herbert from Marie E. Herbert. The couple were married in Fairmont, May 25, 1903, and the plaintiff alleges that his wife deserted him while they were residing in this city, October 10, 1903.

George W. Kester was also granted an absolute divorce from Frances M. Kester, because of desertion upon the part of the defendant. The couple had been married for thirty-three years and the alleged desertion occurred at Oskaloosa, Iowa, in June, 1903.

Thomas and Helen Huddleston

[Source: The Saint Paul Globe (MN) January 7, 1880; transcribed by Mary Kay Krogman]

The Case Approaching A Final Termination.
The Huddleston divorce case came before Judge Simons yesterday forenoon for final hearing, Mr. S. L. Pierce appearing for the plaintiff, and Mr. W. P. Clough representing the interests of the defendant. The hearing came on by mutual consent of both parties, Mr. Pierce stating that only enough testimony would be taken to establish a prima facie case, and Mr. Clough explained that he had been instructed by his client not to cross-examine or interpose any objection to the testimony of the witnesses.

The plaintiff, Mrs. Huddleston, and Miss Minnie Huddleston, daughter of the defendant, appeared in court, being unaccompanied, save by their lawyer, while defendant was conspicuous only by his absence.

The plaintiff in the action is a lady above the medium height, with dark hair and eyes and a fresh complexion, the reverse of careworn, the only indication of trouble being a perpendicular line or wrinkle, which is visible from time to time, extending from the eye to a rather delicately moulded mouth and nostrils. She was attired in a dark habit, notably free from ornamentation.

Miss Minnie Huddleston, daughter of the defendant, is a prepossessing young lady of about twenty summers. She is petite in size, with dark hair and eyes and a rather refined looking countenance, the effect of which is heightened by a pair of eye glasses, which are worn constantly.

Mrs. Huddleston was first sworn, her testimony being substantially as follows: Witness had read the complaint and the allegations therein were all true.

Had always been a faithful wife and had never been guilty of unfaithfulness or indiscretion. Had never been guilty of any criminal misconduct. Had always endeavored to treat the defendant kindly and had conducted herself at all times in a wifely manner. Had been married in August, 1870. In August, 1876, defendant had kicked witness out of bed. Defendant had came in at a late hour and was evidently under the influence of liquor. He had first abused witness, and becoming tired of his importunities she had requested permission to go to sleep, whereupon he had kicked her out of bed. She had attempted to rise, when defendant commenced pounding her.

Witness had then screamed, when her sister rushed into the room and exclaimed, "Tom, what are you trying to do?" to which he replied, that he was trying to make her behave. He then told witness to pack up and leave the house, after which she occupied another bed from defendant. During the scuffle a mosquito net had been badly torn.

Witness here adverted to defendants' conduct at the table in December, 1877. Defendant had come home out of humor, and abused and scolded the entire family. Witness had tried to pacify him by laughing at his ill humor, when defendant became angry and threw a glass of ale into her face. He then threw her off the chair and commenced kicking her when the daughter of defendant came to the rescue. Witness had been painfully hurt on both occasions. After the first abuse she had been laid up for three days, during which time she had to have an attendant, being afraid to be left in the room alone. Defendant was always very passionate, and had no control over his temper, which had conspired to make her existence very unhappy and wretched.

In August, 1879, defendant left the house one morning, and, as witness was without a servant, he had been requested to take his lunch down town. The family had eaten a cold lunch and dinner had been prepared and was in waiting when defendant came home in the evening. Witness was standing in the dining room with the baby when defendant made his appearance. He looked at the table, and not satisfied with the preparations, flew at her, abusing her in a shameful manner and pulling her hair.

Witness here related his conduct with regard to tearing up the pin cushion.

In September, 1879, defendant commenced abusing her early one morning in their bed room. Witness made an effort to dress, saying that she wanted to attend to the children, whereupon defendant had taken her by the throat and choked her. On the evening of the same day he had charged her with infidelity, to which she replied that he had no cause for suspicion. He then took her by the throat and pushed her against the bureau, when she threatened to call a policeman.

In reply to a question witness stated that he had no reason to suspect that she was not true to him. He had once said, "You know my suspicions; and if I had the least particle of evidence I would throw you over that fence." In the spring of 1878, when the baby was a few months old he had kept her awake all night, saying that he didn't want to sleep at night, but preferred sleeping in the day time. About 8 o'clock in the morning when she was dressing the baby he told her to leave the room as he wanted to sleep.

Witness replied that she would go as soon as she had finished bathing the baby. He rose from the bed and told her to go instantly, taking her by the throat and threatening to kill her. She left with the remark that she would thereafter room by herself.

Witness had afterwards occupied his apartment on proper occasions. Witness concluded by referring to his habits, which were described as dissipated, and to his treatment, which she said had nearly driven her wild.

Have lived with my stepmother since her marriage in 1870. Think she always tried her best to please my father, in every way; when he was expected home she tried to think of everything so that he couldn't find fault. She has never been other than kind to my brother Harmon and myself. At the time of his kicking her out of bed, when I reached the room he had hold of her and was throwing her down; he was very angry - white in the face. I helped hold him till mother got away - she was injured; she complained of her hurts and kept her room several days; I saw black and blue spots on one side of her body and on her arm. She was always afraid of him and unhappy when he was expected home. As a rule he was ill-natured, though there were times when he was good-natured to all of us. At the time of the table scene no one had spoken until Harmon said something to mother and she answered him; what they said I did not hear, but father seemed to think it was about him, became enraged at once and threw a glass of ale in her face; then he went over and threw her down and around until she got away and went out from the room. He didn't kick me out that time. She did not exasperate him by her talking, but often kept from talking for hours rather than give him an excuse for anger. On the occasion when Harry wouldn't kiss him, and he became angry at mother about it, and was shaking her, I went to them, and that was the time he kicked me out of the front door; I went round to the side of the house and asked mother if I should go for some one and she said yes, if he kept on; I did no go, but came in and went up stairs; it was then he cut up the tidy I was working; he did not afterwards pay me for it. On another occasion I heard him throw her against a door; I did not then go to their room, but said in mine that afternoon; I heard what they were saying, but can only state the substance of it; substantially what I heard was that he accused her of being untrue to him; he said he knew it was so; I know he had his hand on her throat at that time, as she said. Her deportment with gentlemen was nothing but proper; I never knew anyone who cared less for a gentlemen's company; she saw but few at our house; they were mostly my friends, or gentlemen who came to call on me. She kept house well; she was very industrious; always improving every hour. At the time of the table upsetting, he came home at 8 o'clock - it was in summer - and expected dinner; we had given him up, supposing he wasn't coming; I was up stairs where I heard a great crash; I went down and found the table upset and everything on it, as it had been waiting for him, on the floor, I do not think it was safe for her to stay in the house with him. I do not think she would have lived two months longer if she had stayed there.

Mrs. Huddleston, in answer to Judge Simons - There has not been an agreement between the plaintiff and I, that he should not appear on this point.

Miss Huddleston, in answer to the Judge - I do not know of such an agreement being made.

Mr. Clough - I think I can assure your Honor that no such agreement has been made.

Judge Simons, desiring that the evidence should be corroborated, a recess was had while other witnesses were sent for.

After the recess, Mrs. H. R. Hollinshead testified to her acquaintance with Mrs. Huddleston and her knowledge of the Huddleston family troubles. As to any violent outbreaks she only knew of them from hearsay; but she observed that Mr. Huddleston's manner was not affectionate toward his wife; it was domineering and disagreeable. Mrs. Huddleston always seemed depressed; saw her soon after the occasion of hair-pulling described in the complaint; saw the mark on her temple; she made no remark about it, but she was unhappy. When Mrs. Huddleston first came to St. Paul she was a picture of robust health; saw that she was growing thinner, and last summer noticed a great change in her. About a week before she left her home met her on the street, and was frightened at her appearance - she was so white. Was anxious and unhappy about her; was afraid he would kill her. Do not think it would have been safe for her to stay with him. She was a perfect housekeeper, and took good care of the children and their clothes.

was in the employ of Mr. and Mrs. Huddleston in 1877. She seemed afraid of him; he after [sic.] threatened to knock her down or kick her out. One day about Christmas, heard a scream; went to the stairs and met Mrs. H. and the children, she was very pale and frightened; the children said their papa had thrown a glass of ale in their mama's face and hurt her; her face was wet with the ale. She always seemed afraid of him; when he came home she would as how he was, and if I said he was cross she would seem afraid. He often came home late; having heard him coming in when I was getting up in the morning. When I saw him coming in late he appeared intoxicated; have heard him get the whisky jug at such times; once he sent me for it. Once, when I came from kindling the kitchen fire in the morning, I found him sitting in a chair; I thought he might be dead, and touched him, when I saw he was alive; I said to him he had better go upstairs and go to bed, and he got up, mumbling something, and went up stairs. She always saw that nothing should be wasted and took good care of the children.

A decree of divorce, which had been prepared, was now submitted to the court, and also a deed of trust, providing for a division of the property, which allots to Mrs. Huddleston and her children the homestead, No. 254 Exchange street, and the household goods and furniture, with $600 in cash. Accompanying the deed of trust Mr. Clough, for defendant, deposited with the court certified checks for $600. He wished the plaintiff to sign the deed of trust. The judge hesitated wishing first to be assured the statute provisions were complied with in the form of the deed, but on the assurance of Mr. Clough, assented to by Mr. Pierce, that he had freshly examined the statute and drawn the deed accordingly, she was permitted to complete the deed, leaving upon deposit with the court.

Mr. Pierce suggested the importance of early action, as the allowance to Mrs. Huddleston for her support at the hotel expired with the day.

Judge Simons to Mr. Clough - Am I to understand this hearing to-day was by arrangement of the parties?

Mr. Clough - Yes, we agree to the deed of trust, but there is no further agreement.

The judge holds the papers under advisement.

Next Chapter:

[Source: The Saint Paul Globe (MN) January 9, 1880; transcribed by Mary Kay Krogman]
The Huddleston Divorce Suite Ended - - The Divorce Granted - - Mrs. Huddleston Has the Children, a Home and $600

The closing act of finale in the Huddleston divorce case transpired yesterday forenoon, when a decree was signed by Judge Simons, granting a full and absolute divorce.

The custody of the children is given to the plaintiff, together with the homestead property situated on Franklin street, and the sum of $600, this portion of the decree being exclusively published in Wednesday's issue of the GLOBE. The conditions of the decree are quite interesting, and the document is herewith given in full:

This cause came on to be heard before the court at general term, Jan. 6th, 1880, with consent of parties, and upon due notice to the defendant, and the plaintiff appeared at such hearing in person and by her attorney, and the defendant appeared at such hearing by Messrs. Allis & Allis and W. P. Clough, Esq., his attorneys; and the court having heard the evidence adduced by the plaintiff, no evidence having been adduced by the defendant, and having fully advised itself in the premises;
Now, therefore, the court doth adjudge and decree, and it is hereby adjudged and decreed, that the defendant, Thomas R. Huddleston, and the plaintiff, Helen M. Huddleston, were married as in the complaint alleged; that they have since been husband and wife; that there is issue of said marriage, to-wit, three children now living, Harmon Huddleston, Mary Huddleston, and Thomas Harry Huddleston, aged respectively eight, five and two years; that the defendant, Thomas R. Huddleston, has been guilty of cruel and inhuman treatment of the plaintiff, Helen M. Huddleston, as in the complaint alleged; that in consequence thereof the marriage of the said plaintiff and the said defendant be and the same hereby is dissolved, and the parties are hereby restored to all the rights of unmarried persons, as fully as if said marriage had never taken place; that the defendant, Thomas R. Huddleston, shall, within five days after the signing of this decree, pay to the plaintiff, Helen M. Huddleston, or to her lawfully authorized agent or attorney for her, for the expenses of this suit, and for the support and maintenance of herself and of the said children, the sum of six hundred dollars, in cash; that, as a further provision for the support and maintenance of the plaintiff and of her said children, the defendant and the plaintiff are directed to convey, by such instrument or instruments as shall be approved by the court, or by any of the judges thereof, to such trustee or trustees as the court or one of the judges thereof shall designate or approve, the house and lot lately occupied by the plaintiff and defendant as their homestead, situated in the city of St. Paul, in said county, known as 254 Exchange street, together with all the furniture of the parties in said house save that in the bedroom thereof lately occupied by the defendant upon the following trusts and following uses, that is to say: the said trustee or trustees shall maintain and preserve the said property out of the income therefrom, and keep the buildings thereon insured, and shall pay all taxes and assessments thereon, and protect and defend the title thereto. The plaintiff may, if she choose so to do, occupy the said property herself, with the said children, upon condition of paying to said trustee or trustees sufficient sums of money from time to time to pay the taxes and assessments upon such property, and for the insurance of the same, and for the necessary preservation of the same. In case the plaintiff shall, at any time, fail to perform the said conditions, the said trustee or trustees shall rent said property to the best advantage, and shall pay over to the plaintiff for the support and maintenance of herself and her said children, the net income of said property subject to the following conditions: In case of the marriage of the plaintiff, or her refusal or neglect to maintain the said children during their minority, then the one-half part and no more of the rents, incomes and profits of said property shall be enjoyed by the plaintiff, and the remainder shall be paid to the guardian or guardians of the said children. In case the plaintiff, after her marriage, or after her refusal or neglect to maintain the said children, shall choose to occupy the said property herself, in such case, in addition to payment of taxes, assessments and insurance, she shall pay over to said trustee or trustees a sum of money from month to month, equal to one-half the fair rental value, after deducting taxes, assessments and insurance. On plaintiff's death the said property shall pass, in fee simple, to the said children, or to the survivor or survivors of them, or to their heirs, in equal shares, the heirs of either of them who may have deceased being entitled to the share of such deceased child.

The plaintiff shall have the custody of the children, subject to the right of the defendant to visit the same, on all reasonable occasions, up to the arrival of the same at the age of nine years respectively. After that age, the plaintiff and defendant to have the joint right of directing the education and training of the children, provided, that the sole custody of said children shall not be taken from the plaintiff after they reach nine years of age, by the defendant, without the consent of the plaintiff, except the same shall be ordered by the court, as hereinafter provided. In case the parties disagree in respect to the custody, education or training of either of said children, after he or she shall have arrived at the age of nine years, then such disagreement in respect to such child may be submitted to the court upon the application of either party.

In case the parties shall hereafter mutually desire to make any change in the disposition of the hereinbefore described property, or to entirely rescind the said disposition thereof they may do so by their joint deed.

The furniture in the house hereinbefore mentioned shall be under the exclusive use and control of the plaintiff, and may be disposed of by her in case she thinks best for the interests of herself and children.

The foregoing allowances to, and provisions for, the plaintiff, out of the property of the defendant, are in full of all rights of dower, and other rights of the plaintiff in the property of the defendant and in full of all demands of the plaintiff against him or his estate.

Louisa C. and Thomas McMahon

Source: The Saint Paul Globe (MN) August 7, 1886; transcribed by Mary Kay Krogman
A divorce was granted Louisa C. McMahon from her husband, Thomas McMahon, in the district court yesterday. The parties were married at Madelia, Minn., Nov. 6, 1875, and the divorce was granted on the ground of habitual drunkenness and cruel and inhuman treatment of the defendant. The decree gives the plaintiff the custody of the child and allows her to resume her maiden name, Louisa C. Ochs.

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