Monday, November 21, 2016


Gen. Daniel Sickles.

The Cortland Democrat, Friday, July 7, 1893.

Gen. Sickles' Unpleasant Experience at Gettysburg. A Photographer Who was Sent off the Field by his Order Resorts to Law.
   GETTYSBURG, Penn., July 3. A strange sequel to Gen. Sickles' work at Gettysburg, in the course of which he has placed $300,000 of New York State's money into this field, occurred today when a Deputy Sheriff served notice upon the General in an action for trespass brought by William H. Tipton, the photographer, made returnable in the courts in this village on the fourth Monday of August.
   It seems that yesterday, in the course of the proceedings following the dedication of the New York State Monument in the cemetery, Mr. Tipton was ordered from the field by Gen. Sickles the instant he placed his deadly camera in position to photograph the group. This morning, when the Forty-fourth New York State Monument was dedicated on Little Round Top, Mr. Tipton again attempted to take a photograph, and was promptly ordered to remove his instrument by Gen. Sickles, Gen. Butterfield, the old commander of the regiment, Col. Freeman Connor, and Lieut. Col. Herndon.
   Upon his refusal to move, Col. Connor and a couple of his veterans moved forward and placed their hats over the camera, and when he persisted in holding his ground, the old soldiers folded his apparatus together and laid it on the ground.
   "You will hear from me later, "cried the photographer.
   "Take away your machine or we will break it," yelled the veterans.
   "All right, gentlemen," said the artist. "You are having your fun now; I will have mine later."
   The veterans jeered, but Tipton was as good as his word. He appealed to Judge McClean of the Common Pleas, for writs for Gen. Sickles, Gen. Butterfield, and Cols. Connor and Herndon.
   The Deputy Sheriff having the writs in charge went at once to Gen. Sickles' car, but thoughtfully put the Sickles' writ in his pocket upon finding that the General was asleep. He then tried to pay his respects to the three other officers, but was disgusted to find that while he was in their quarters a train was bearing them to Harrisburg.
   Gen. Sickles was in a jubilant mood tonight when The New York Time's correspondent called upon him.
   "Behold me in chains," he exclaimed. "You see me in the meshes of the Pennsylvania law. Yes, a writ has been served upon me and I have been endeavoring to determine on what grounds the complaint can be based. This objectionable photographer was ordered away from property that is owned by the state of New York. He claims action for trespass. But he is himself the trespasser.
   "I think I have a right to determine whom I shall permit to photograph me.
   "If an obnoxious person tries to take a snap-shot photograph of me, I have a perfect right to object, and what is more, to order him away from property in which I as a commissioner and an official of the state have an interest.''
   The amount of damage is not mentioned in the complaint, but the matter will be determined by the court in August. If it is decided in favor of the photographer the amount will then be fixed and his right to take photographs anywhere in the battlefield and of any one will be firmly established.
   This suit is the culmination of a long feud between the people of Adams county and the commander of the Third Corps, beginning July 2, 1863, when Gen. Sickles' attendants were charged by a thrifty farmer $5 apiece for two cotton sheets to be placed under his stretcher.
   It is in keeping with the well remembered policy of the inhabitants around here, who charged a quarter and even half a dollar for a cup of water, and a dollar for a piece of ham and a fried egg during the campaign.
   The worst imposition, however attempted was when the New York commission applied for conveyances for the three days' celebration. They were informed that the rate had been fixed at $25 a day for a hack, not the latest style by any means, but the old ramshackle vehicles that have been in active service here continuously for a quarter of a century.
   Gen. Sickles promptly and emphatically refused to accept these terms, and made arrangements at Hanover, Westminister, and Frederick for conveyances at $12 a day, about double the rates of ten years ago.
   As soon as the borough officers heard of this the town authorities promptly assembled and passed an ordinance imposing a tax of $5 each upon every imported hack or carriage horse.
   Gen. Sickles thereupon informed the authorities that rather than submit to such an imposition the Governor of the State, the Gettysburg Commissioners, and all the guests of the State would make the tour of the field afoot. This declaration brought the authorities from their high perch, and a rate of $12 a day was fixed for the conveyances.

It Exploded.
   Last Tuesday morning Adolph Frost, Jr., was ushering in the Fourth with dynamite fire crackers. He was just about to throw a lighted one into the air when it exploded in his hand. The thumb and two first fingers of his right hand were badly lacerated and blistered, and a piece of the left ear was nearly blown off. He received many small bruises on his body and two holes were torn in his hat. Dr. Reese was called and dressed the wounds which needed many stitches and though painful, will soon heal and allow Mr. Frost to resume his duties about the greenhouse.

LeRoy C. Smith Terribly Burned While Heating Balsam over a Stove—His Recovery not Expected.
   At 10 o'clock yesterday morning box 223, corner of Homer-ave. and Main-sts., sent in an alarm and the department started at a lively gait towards Homer. The fire was found to be in a two-story building nearly opposite the North Cortland House, and the firemen had water on the building as soon as the difficulties that confronted them could be overcome. It was nearly 1,000 ft. to water and the run to the place was over a mile. The house was pretty nearly ruined and but little was taken out of the second story where the family of Mr. LeRoy C. Smith lived, the first floor being used as a blacksmith shop.
   Mr. Smith is a blacksmith by trade and also a manufacturer of the Green Mountain Balsam. He was heating some of the balsam in the kitchen on second floor when some of it boiled over on the stove and ignited. In attempting to throw the large kettle out of the building it slopped over on his clothing and he was at once enveloped in flames. He jumped through the window to the soft ground below, followed by Mrs. Smith, who had caught up a quilt before following him. As soon as she struck the ground she threw the quilt about him and Mr. Smith dropped into a marshy place near by [sic] and rolled himself until he put out the fire.
   Mrs. Anna Blue, Mrs. Smith's mother, and her daughter Miss Lulu Blue, of Dryden, were in the room and as the kettle was burning at the door there was no place of egress. Al. Smith of Homer and Dan Kernan of the North Cortland house were passing on the highway, and seeing the fire and Mrs. Blue and daughter hanging to the front windows, got a ladder and went to their assistance and they were safely landed. Others soon arrived and Mr. Smith was carried in a blanket to Kernan's hotel, where Drs. Jewett, Dana and Bennett attended him.
   More than one half the surface of his body was found to be badly burned. Both of his legs, the right arm and shoulder, both hands and a circle about eight inches in width completely around the lower part of his body is burned to a crisp and the skin peeled off.
   Miss Mamie Yaples, who boarded at the house but was absent, lost all her clothing. A valuable new gold watch was destroyed and a [red] and tan dog lost his life and was found after the fire in the second story. Mr. Smith is 23 years of age. The rule is that where more than one third of the body is burned recovery is impossible. At 7 o'clock last evening it was thought he could not survive until morning.

Death of an Old Citizen.
   Mr. Mahlon Day Murphey, one of Cortland's oldest and most respected citizens, died at his home on Port Watson-st., last Sunday morning, of Bright's disease, from which complaint he had suffered for many months. Mr. Murphey was born in Locke, N. Y. in 1820. His father was a merchant at that place and when he died the son succeeded to the business. He was a successful business man and accumulated a comfortable fortune in a few years. Some thirty-eight years ago he retired from the mercantile business and purchased a handsome residence on Port Watson-st. in this village where he has since resided. For some years he acted as clerk at the Cortland House and later at the Messenger House. He was also a member of the private banking house of J. H. Wethey & Co. of Port Byron and about a dozen years ago he was clerk at the Empire House in Syracuse. For the past ten years he has been engaged in no business.
   On the 27th day of February last Mr. and Mrs. Murphey celebrated their golden wedding. Mr. Murphey was a genial companion and had many friends in this place and adjoining counties who will be sorry to learn of his death. He leaves besides a wife, three children, Mrs. I. H. M. Pomeroy, Mr. M. D. Murphey, Jr., and Mrs. Mabelle M. Miller.
   The funeral services were held from the house Wednesday at 10:30 o'clock.

Death of Mrs. Elmer E. Lakey.

   The following account of the illness and death of Mrs. Lakey we find in the Homer correspondence of the Syracuse Evening Herald of Monday last.
   Mrs. Elmer E. Lakey of Cortland died at the house of Mrs. Nathaniel Eaton, near the woolen mills, early yesterday morning of malignant diphtheria. Mrs. Lakey had been visiting her husband's sister in Moravia, who was a professional nurse. At the time Mrs. Lakey finished her visit, which was Monday afternoon, the nurse was suffering from what was supposed to be quinsy. Mrs. Lakey rode to Homer, but the last street car having gone to Cortland, she stopped at Mrs. Eatons, an old friend, for the night. She was taken quite ill in the night, and continued to grow worse rapidly until her death. The nurse, from whom she undoubtedly caught the disease died Saturday of diphtheria. Mrs. Lakey leaves a husband and a four-year old child. The body was taken to her former home in Groton yesterday morning and buried. She was twenty-seven years old.

Sidewalk Obstructions.
   The general term at Poughkeepsie handed down last week an important decision which settles the point that storekeepers have no right to keep boxes on the sidewalk in front of their place of business.
   One day several months ago in passing a store the plaintiff caught his brand new pair of trousers on a nail protruding from a box on the sidewalk and tore the garment badly. He sued for the value of the trousers, and a justice gave judgment for $9. The defendant took the case to the county court and the judge sustained the decision. The case was appealed to the general term which has affirmed the judgment with costs. The proceedings have cost about $150.

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