West Virginia State Site

Miscellaneous News Items From West Virginia's Past

Mower County Transcript, April 8, 1885, page 1 Lansing, MN
Submitted by: Robin Line

The Stories of Distress in West Virginia-The People Living on Parched Corn.
Information received from the suffering districts in West Virginia says the people are in bad condition and on the verge of starvation. They are asking for bread. Animals are starving to death. In many places strong men are begging for an ear of corn to keep soul and body together. The condition of the farmers is distressing. In many parts of the suffering section many gain a livelihood by running timber, but for months there has been no rise in the rivers or mountain streams, hence the people are suffering for food because no timber can be run. Unless a rise comes soon, there will yet be months of suffering. The people held out well, trying to keep the story of their suffering from going abroad, but the time has come when hunger pinches them, and they now ask for food. In the northern part of the county great suffering has been experienced among mountain farmers. Lumbermen say matters are truly distressing. Children and women eat parched corn, when they get it, and are thankful. The winter was severe, and the people poor and with no work. In many places stock died in large numbers from starvation.

Richard Dowell, who committed a double murder in West Virginia thirteen years ago, has just been captured in Dakota. [The Indiana State Sentinel; (Indianapolis, IN) April 3, 1889]

The New Daily Telegraph (Bluefield, West Virginia)
Monday, January 20, 1896

The Miraculous Experience of Young Grier
He Barely Escapes Death in the Yards on His Way to the Shops for Employment

A young man by the name of Grier, enroute to the machine shops in search of employment yesterday morning, met with what might have been his death under the trucks of a freight train., which was motionless when he tried to make his way under it, but started off ere he was clear, and two trucks passed over his legs.  He was taken up by the horrified witnesses to the affair and removed to his boarding house, where, upon examination of the physician, it was discovered that not a bone was broken. The flesh was quite badly torn.  His wounds were dressed and he reported as doing well and not much the worse off from his experience, which in most cases would have resulted in loss of both limbs and perhaps death.

The New Daily Telegraph (Bluefield, West Virginia)

Tuesday, January 21, 1896


Another Assault Upon a Child Creates Great Excitement in Parkersburg,

Parkersburg, W. Va., Jan. 20 - Another terrible excitement was caused here today when it became known that another attempt to assault a child  had been made and that the assailant had been arrested and was in jail.  Last night Charles, commonly known as "Chuck" Russel, was arrested by Policeman Carter, charged  with attempting to outrage an 8-year-old girl, the daughter of Russel's wife by a former marriage. In the excited state of feeling over the Wetherill affair, the officers thought it was best, to hurry Russel into jail before the story of the assault became known for fear he would be lynched.  The story was kept until this morning, when the street in the vicinity of the jail and in front of the justice's office was croweded with excited people. When the prisoner was brought out curses and threats were hurled at him, and it only needed one commanding word to have caused his lynching.

When the trail opened up and the child told her story, in which she said that Russell had knocked her down with a club, the excitement became so intense that the prisoner was hurridly hustled out of the room and back to jail before the preliminary trial was concluded. Perhaps the only thing that saved Russell from lynching was the report that the assailant of Miss Wetherill had been captured and that officers were bringning him back to the city.

Death Announcements

MIKEL, William,
b. West Virginia, 1813, married Catharine Warner; died McLean County, Ill. Oct. 15, 1879.

Children: Mrs. Elizabeth Leech, Silvanus Mikel, Mrs. Margaret Kendall, John Mikel, Mrs. Nancy Davis, Mrs. Kate Martin, Susan Mikel, Mrs. Mary Hatfield, Andrew J. Mikel, Jacob W. Mikel, Mrs. Sallie Marteeny, William Mikel Jr., Joseph Mikel. [Compiled from old newspapers by Milo Custer in 1912 - Submitted by Teri Colglazier]


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