Posts Tagged ‘1893’


Judge Hyatt Adjourned Court

   Posted by: admin    in Court matters

Fort Dodge Daily Chronicle: Oct. 20, 1893

Judge Hyatt Adjourned Court

Judge Hyatt Adjourned Court Last Evening, Until a Week From Next Monday – Grand Jury’s Report.

The Webster County district court adjourned last evening untill (sic) a week from next Monday. After listening to the report of the Grand Jury which returned three indictments two fro assault with intent to committ (sic) murder, and one a liquor nusiance (sic). The grand jury has transact4ed considerable business this session taking in to consideration the trouble they experienced in getting witnesses together. They also made a tour of inspection through the county jail and report every thing in good shape, and also reccomend (sic) that the jail be equipped with electric light as the only means of lighting the jail at the present is with a tallow tip.

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They Fished in Vain

   Posted by: admin    in Animals, Fish stories

Fort Dodge Daily Chronicle: Oct. 19, 1893

They Fished in Vain

Bert Heath and Frank Barker Lost Their Horse, Never got a Bite and Hoofed it Home.

A good joke on Bert Heath and Frank Barker is going the rounds. It seems that these gentlemen got an idea into their heads that they knew something about fishing, so yesterday they got their tackel (sic) and bait together and started up the Des Moines river about six miles for a fish, and after arriving at the point there they thought they could do a good line of business, they unloaded their wagon and unhitched their horse and Mr. Barker took the animal up the river a short distance from where they had first stopped and tied him in the timber, and then went back to join Mr. Heath in a general crusade against the little minnows which they worried, until darkness had overtaken them, without any apparent success.

By this time they had wandered up the river about two miles from where they had tied their horse. Mr. Barker then suggested that they go back and get the horse and return home. There was no opposition to Mr. Barker’s suggestion, as they were not overloaded with fish to such an extent but what they could carry all they had caught, so back they went, hunting for the horse and they hunted long and they hunted late, but their search was fruitless, as it was too dark to even discover a white elephant.

Finally about 12 o’clock they gave the search up and decided to tramp it back home, a distance of six miles, and when they reached town they took an alley for home, footsore and weary. Mr. Heath could have been seen making tracks early this morning for the scene of their lost one, and returned after a two hours search with the poor old gray horse that was tied up to a tree all night.

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Strange Sights and Sounds Be These

   Posted by: admin    in Railroad, Tara

The Fort Dodge Messenger: June 5, 1893

Strange Sights and Sounds Be These

Grim Ghosts are Haunting the Rock Island Bridge Over the North Lizzard.

There may not be any ghosts holding high carnival nights on the Rock Island bridge over the North Lizzard, but there are a number of railway employes (sic) and people in that vicinity who cannot be convinced of that fact. Conductor Joe Donald, of the Rock Island, is one of these. His brother is another. The operator at Tara has seen a few things that he cannot explain, and Section Foreman Chelgren has also had  his hair raised by strange sights and sounds. Any number of curious Tara people can also be produced as witnesses to prove that the bridge is “haunted.”

The bridge in question is a small wooden pile bridge over the North Lizzard, three-quarters of a mile north of Tara. It was on this bridge that William Roberts, a young man working with a pile driving crew, lost his life a couple of years ago, being killed by a (paragraph ends here and is continued later) flying pile. Since then the railway men have been more or less afraid of the bridge, but until recently saw nothing on which to base their suspicions.

Section Foreman Chelgren “saw” the operator’s story and went  him several better a few evenings later. He was returning after nightfall with his section men, pumping away cheerfully on a hand car and figuring on getting to their belated supper just as soon as possible. As they neared the North Lizzard bridge all the men noticed the light of a locomotive apparently moving on the bridge. they stopped the hand car with a jerk and hustled the car off the track to let the train pass. The light came no nearer and after waiting a while they put the car back on the rails and slowly pumped up to the bridge. As they approached it the light grew dimmer and dimmer and finally disappeared. There was no sight or sound of a train. A superstitious fear came over the crowd of men and they did not have the courage to cross the bridge.

They waited talking to each other in awe stricken whispers. Suddenly strange sounds floated out on the night air with startling distinctness. The listeners heard the clanking and rattling of machinery and then a dull thud like the falling hammer of a pile driver. Then again came silence. The men were badly rattled and were afraid to cross the bridge. Finally they took the hand car down the track and giving it a good start sent it rattling over the bridge, without any occupants. It crossed in safety and they followed on foot with fear and trembling.

Since then a number of skeptical Tara citizens have seen the strange sights and heard the ghostly pile driving and the town is in a ferment of excitement over the affair. Ghost hunting partied are organized every evening but no one has as yet captured his ghostship.

The station agent at Tara was the first to discover the “harnt.” One evening he had just closed up the office and was going home for the night when he glanced up the track and saw the head light of a locomotive apparently on the bridge. He immediately jumped to the conclusion that a special train was coming and that the train dispatcher at Des Moines had failed to notify him. He rushed back to his instrument and ticked off a message to Des Moines, asking about the “special” that  had stopped on the bridge near Tara. He got a reply informing him that a Roman chariot race was probably occurring in his head. The operator was mystified and walked out to the bridge to investigate. When he got to the trestle there was no light and no sign of any train. He lost no time in getting back to Tara.

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