Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Is There A Doctor In Your House?

Did you know the AMA (American Medical Association) maintained a database of deceased physicians?  The AMA Deceased Physicians Card File developed out of an attempt by the AMA to keep a reliable directory of physicians in the United States.  Up until 1969, the staff maintained over 350,000 of these physician index cards and after that date began entering the information into a computer database.  In 1993, two volumes of these cards were published as Directory of Deceased American Physicians 1804-1929. 

The database is searchable at Ancestry.  Knowing that I had a few physicians in my family, I decided to see what I could find.

Dr. William Anderson CHEW (1858-1914) was a physician of Salamonia, Jay County, Indiana and my paternal 2nd-great granduncle.  He was found in the database, though they have him indexed as William H. CHEW.

I did not find an entry for his father, Dr. Ezekiel Cooper CHEW (1822-1888), who also practiced in Salamonia.

Jethro Ayres HATCH (1836-1912), my maternal cousin 5 times removed, was a graduate of Rush Medical College and practiced in Indiana and Illinois before retiring to Texas.

Abraham Leander SHERICK, my paternal 2nd-great granduncle, practiced in Ashland, Ohio and founded his own private hospital.  He interned at Bellevue Hospital in New York and attended Baldwin University.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Are You Reading My Mail?

I think Wendy at All My Branches Genealogy must be reading my mail or my mind.  Her recent post on Genealogy Attention Deficit Disorder had me rolling with laughter until it dawned on me that she was describing my genealogical condition.

Many times I've started out working on Ancestry or some other database such as FindAGrave to begin filling in the gaps in my genealogy database.  Maybe it's making sure I have a burial place listed for all direct ancestors, or maybe it's making sure I've documented where everyone was in the 1930 census, etc.  No matter what my goal, it doesn't take too long for Genealogy Attention Deficit Disorder (GADD) to take over and soon I find myself tracking down vital information far from my original goal.

Why is it so hard to remain on task?  Perhaps it is due to the benefits of today's technology that allows us to have so many records to search from the comforts of home.  I can so relate to Wendy's experiences in getting so caught up in tracking down the tidbits of information that you lose sense of time.  When I'm "in the zone" I've been known to forget to eat!

But it's not just the online databases causing this disorder.  My piles of photocopied records from a research trip last November stand waiting, unentered and undocumented.  My inbox is full of research from other researchers that would make interesting blog posts.  I have notebooks created specifically for researching certain locales that I've yet to complete, and several unfinished posts to be written for this blog.  My research goals for 2011 are woefully incomplete.  All due to Genealogy Attention Deficit Disorder.

Exploring WWII U.S. Navy Records Online

Ancestry has placed the U.S. World War II Navy Muster Rolls, 1938-1949 online, and what a lot of good information I've found this Memorial Day.  The muster rolls give information such as the sailor's name, his service number, when and where they enlisted, as well as movements from ship to ship.  

  • John M. High - he was my maternal great-uncle.  Served aboard the USS Oklahoma and survived Pearl Harbor.  He came onboard the Oklahoma on 9-3-1938 and enlisted in the Navy on 4-10-1937.  It appears he was aboard the USS Sepulga after the attack.
  • Floyd Ray Lambertson - another maternal great-uncle.  He served aboard LST 779, the ship that supplied the famous flag photographed at Iwo Jima.  He enlisted 1-4-1944 at Indianapolis, Indiana and was rated as a "Comm. Rep." [Navy friends - help me out here]

I did not find everyone that I believe should be listed in this database.  Perhaps not all have been indexed.  The information provided is very valuable, including service numbers of the men who served.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Sunday's Obituary: Mathias Jefferson Atkinson (1863-1923)

Portland Commercial-Review, August 25, 1923, page 1


Mathias Jefferson Atkinson, 59, died Friday afternoon at 3:30 o'clock at his home southwest of Salamonia.  Death was the result of heart trouble, from which he has suffered for the past ten years.  He became seriously ill two weeks ago and for eighty hours before his death was unconscious.  An X-ray taken of his heart a short time ago showed it to be three times its natural size.

The deceased was born in Madison township, November 23, 1863, the son of Daniel and Sarah (Long) Atkinson.  He has made his home on the farm where he died all but two years of his life.

Surviving are the widow, Mary Ellen (LeMaster) Atkinson, and two half sisters, Mrs. Charles Jetter and Mrs. John Van Croft, of near Salamonia.  No children survive.

No funeral arrangements have been made.

Mathias Jefferson Atkinson was my paternal great-granduncle, the husband of Mary Elsie (LeMASTER) ATKINSON (1872-1942).  Note the obituary listed her name as "Mary Ellen", the first time I have seen it so named.  The obituary lists no children, but family history states they raised a foster child, Albert Frank ATKINSON (1897-    ).

Sunday’s Obituary – if you have obituaries of family members and ancestors, consider posting them along with other information about that person as part of Sunday’s Obituary. This is an ongoing series developed by Leslie Ann at Ancestors Live Here.

Black Sheep Sunday: Prisoners To Stay In City Says Sheriff

Kokomo Daily Tribune, April 5, 1925, page 1


Denies Report That They Will Be Taken Away For "Safe Keeping."


Pierpont and Skeer Were to Be Arraigned on Bank Robbery Charges Today

Harry Pierpont and Thaddeus "Ted" Skeer were taken into city court this afternoon.

But no proceedings were had.  Prosecuting Attorney Homer H. Miller made a statement to City Judge Joe Cripe in which he stated that by agreement between himself and attorneys for the prisoners, the preliminary hearing might be set for Thursday afternoon.  This the court agreed to.

Pierpont and Skeer were a focal point for hundreds of pairs of curious eyes.  Word had gotten abroad that the two men charged with the holdup and robbery of the South Kokomo bank on Friday, March 27, would be arraigned, and a crowd of spectators had assembled to catch a glimpse of the two youths who could stage so sensational an episode for a community that has known nothing of the kind since before the Civil War.

Pierpont and Skeer, though they were manacled together and surrounded by an ample guard of officers, had nothing of the appearance of the type of desperado which many people seem to picture them.  On the contrary they appeared like two ordinary young men, such as might be encountered on the streets or in store or factory anywhere in the city.

Sheriff Joseph Lindley emphatically denied today that Pierpont and Skeer, charged with robbery of the South Kokomo bank on March 27 would be spirited away from Kokomo and lodged in another jail for safekeeping.

The sheriff made this denial in response to inquiries touching a report that he was conveying them to Pendleton until proper disposition shall have been made of their cases.

"They are hear and they are going to stay here." Sheriff Lindley added. "I am not only watching them personally but I have plenty of help.  They are not going to get away."

The ease with which jail deliveries have been effected in the past from Howard county's antiquated bastille has occasioned apprehension in the minds of some citizens that the place would be inadequate to hold experienced criminals, such as Skeer and Pierpont are known to be, but that the sheriff is taking no chances with them is indicated by the care and forethought he has given to making the place secure, either against attempts from within to escape or any effort that might be made outside to effect a delivery.

"The men will be here when the law calls for them," Sheriff Lindley said in conclusion.

That the law would require the presence of Pierpont and Skeer in court this afternoon was indicated by Prosecutor Homer B. Miller, who said that they would be arraigned before City Judge Joe Cripe who issued the warrants for their arrest.

This will be largely in the nature of a formality, as it is expected the two men will be bound over to the Howard circuit court, their bonds fixed, and the next step will be the preliminary hearing before Judge John Marshall.

Mr. Miller said he hoped to have a preliminary hearing of the charges against the bandit suspects Tuesday afternoon.

He said that he would not await action by the Howard county grand jury, but would prosecute immediately on affidavits making charges covering the holdup and robbery of the South Kokomo bank.

No late new developments came to light today in the case of the two men being held here.

Inquiry at police headquarters as to when Hayes would be brought to Kokomo elicited from Chief of Police Underwood a statement that he had not yet been informed as to when the Detroit authorities would be through with him.

Hayes was arrested at Detroit at the same time Skeer and Pierpont were taken into custody.  The Detroit authorities refused to turn him over to the Kokomo police, stating that they wanted to use him as a material witness in a murder case there.

The Kokomo police were promised that Hayes would be delivered to them as soon as his testimony was obtained in the Detroit case.

Mr. and Mrs. J.G. Pierpont of Brazil, Ind., where he is a prominent business man, came to Kokomo Sunday and arranged with the law firm of Overson & Manning and Healy and Carl Bree to look after the interests of Harry Pierpont when he is arraigned in court.

The same lawyers have also been retained to defend Harry Pierpont during the subsequent trial.

Mr. and Mrs. Pierpont are the young man's parents.

Also the same lawyers indicated that they would represent Skeer.

This article was found at the Kokomo-Howard County Library in the vertical file regarding cousin Harry Pierport (1902-1934). I am enjoying transcribing the news accounts of his robbery of the South Kokomo bank and subsequent arrest.

Black Sheep Sunday – create a post with the main focus being an ancestor with a “shaded past.” Bring out your ne’er-do-wells, your cads, your black widows, your horse thieves and tell their stories. And don’t forget to check out the International Black Sheep Society of Genealogists (IBSSG). This is an ongoing series at GeneaBloggers.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Surname Saturday: McMillen

The McMILLEN surname is in Eileen's maternal line.  The origins of the surname appear to be Irish.

Stories and history:

Ahnentafel # 27: Katherine McMillen (c1849-1916).  Katherine was born circa 1849 in Indiana.  She married October 27, 1867 in Marshall County, Indiana to George Peeples (1836-1918).  George was born September 24, 1836 in Miami County, Indiana.  George was a farmer in Union Township, Marshall County, Indiana and served in the Civil War.  They had 5 children.  George died January 15, 1918 in Culver, Marshall County, Indiana.  Katherine died April 26, 1916 in Culver, Marshall County, Indiana.  Both are buried at the Washington-Lawson Cemetery, Union Township, Marshall County, Indiana.

Ahnentafel # 54: James McMillen (c1811-aft1880). James was born circa 1811 in New York.  He married Julia ________ (c1811-aft1880).  They raised 6 children in Union and Green Townships, Marshall County, Indiana.  The last record of both James and Julia is the 1880 census in Green Township, Marshall County, Indiana.

Related blog posts:

Surname Saturday – create a post in which you discuss a surname and mention its origins, its geographical location(s) and how it fits into your genealogy research. Surname Saturday is an ongoing series at GeneaBloggers.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Family Recipe Friday: Rhubarb Crumble / Rhubarb Strawberry Freezer-Jam

Gloria LeMaster's rhubarb plants
[Mom shared some more recipes for today's post.]

Spring's Treasure--Rhubarb, the "pie plant".

I always know when Spring has arrived as my patch of rhubarb starts to peak through the soil.   The crop that I have had for over 37 years died last year so I planted a new crop.   I don't think it's the same variety that I had but it seems to be the most popular one in this area---Victoria.   Rhubarb is actually a vegetable that is related to celery but everyone considers it a fruit.   Its tart flavor is usually paired with strawberries but I like to pair it with pineapple when making a pie.   Rhubarb is a natural medicine, low in calories, yet high in calcium and potassium, plus plenty of vitamins , minerals, fiber, etc.   When it is planted, it can not picked until the second year and then is recommended to do so sparingly.  After that it can be harvested as much as you can use.  In the fall, put a side dressing of manure around the rhubarb.  Rhubarb is to be pulled rather than cut.   Remove the leaves and coarse ends.  Store in plastic bags in the refrigerator until ready to use in your favorite recipe or store it in the freezer--just wash and cut it into desired pieces.


Makes 6 servings

This recipe came from Karen Sayre, a neighbor.   She gave it to me because we had red rhubarb.   We got the starts from a former neighbor John Horn, who lived across the street from us when we lived at 214 W. Monroe Street.

    1 cup flour                                                    
    3/4 cup uncooked oatmeal                                       
    1 cup brown sugar                                              
    1/2 cup margarine                                              
    1 teaspoon cinnamon                                            
    4 cups rhubarb, cut in small pieces                            
    1 cup sugar                                                    
    2 tablespoons cornstarch                                       
    1 cup water                                                    
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract                                     
    2-3 drops red food coloring                                    
    Cool whip                                               
Mix the flour, oatmeal, brown sugar, margarine, and cinnamon until crumbly.   Press half of the mixture into a buttered 9-inch square pan.   Place rhubarb over crumbs.   Cook until sugar, cornstarch, water, and vanilla until thick.  Add 2-3 drops of red food coloring.   Pour over rhubarb and sprinkle with remaining crumb mixture.   Bake at 350 for 1 hour.   (put a cookie sheet under pan in case it bubbles over while baking).   Cool slightly and top with Cool Whip or ice cream.


So easy that even the kids can help make this.

    4-5 cups rhubarb, cut into 1/2 inch pieces                     
    3 cups sugar                                                   
    1 3-ounce box strawberry jello                       
Place cut rhubarb in a bowl and sprinkle with saucepan.   Let stand at least 20 minutes or until sugar is dissolved.  Boil mixture about 20 minutes.   Remove from heat and add jello.   (You can add a few drops of red food coloring for more color).   Pour into 4 sterilized half-pint jars.   Keep refrigerated or place in freezer until ready to use.

Family Recipe Friday – is an opportunity to share your family recipes with fellow bloggers and foodies alike. Whether it’s an old-fashioned recipe passed down through generations, a recipe uncovered through your family history research, or a discovered recipe that embraces your ancestral heritage share them on Family Recipe Friday. This series was suggested by Lynn Palermo of The Armchair Genealogist.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Exploratory Data Analysis: Virgil Lee Wright (1894-1972)

Virgil & Edna Wright, 50th Anniversary photo (1965)

Virgil Lee Wright (1894-1972) was my maternal great-grandfather.  What follows is an exploratory analysis of the biographical facts I have discovered about him.

1. Vital records

     1.1. Birth certificate

          Virgil was born July 6, 1894 in Orestes, Madison County, Indiana1.  The State of Indiana began requiring births be recorded in 1907, however, many counties have records available going back to 1880.  The W.P.A. index compiled for Madison County, Indiana did not list a birth record for Virgil.

          1.1.1. Birth Notice in Newspaper

               If Virgil's birth was recorded in a newspaper, I have not yet discovered it.  The Alexandria-Monroe Public Library has editions of the local newspaper, the Tribune, only as far back as 1905.

          1.1.2. Bible Record

               I'm not aware of any surviving Bible record of the Wright family.  My understanding of family lore was that the John Wright family Bible was purposely destroyed/burned by a daughter-in-law.

          1.1.3. Baptismal Record

               The Wright's were associated with the First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), but I do not know if they were members at this time.  I am not aware of any records of baptism for Virgil at this time.

          1.1.4. Adoption Record

               There is no indication that Virgil was adopted.

     1.2. Marriage License

          Virgil was married on June 19, 1915 in Alexandria, Madison County, Indiana to Edna Muriel Pierce1.  I didn't realize I didn't have a copy of their marriage license from Madison County, but that's one of the reasons for working out this analysis.  Will have to seek it out soon.

          1.2.1. Marriage notice in newspaper

               Searches of the local newspaper, the Alexandria Times-Tribune, have failed to locate a mention of the nuptials of Virgil and Edna.

          1.2.2. Anniversary notice

               Virgil and Edna's Golden Anniversary (50th) was mentioned in the Anderson, Indiana Daily Bulletin on June 16, 19652. There may be other newspapers that mention this anniversary as well.  

          1.2.3. Divorce decree

               There is no indication that a divorce ever occurred, though a search of court records has not been completed.

     1.3. Death certificate

          Virgil died March 25, 1972 in Alexandria, Madison County, Indiana.3.  He died at the Bradford Nursing home in Alexandria4.  The cause of death was listed as hypostatic pneumonia3.

          1.3.1. Obituary in newspaper

               Virgil's obituary appeared in the March 27, 1972 edition of the Anderson Daily Bulletin and the Elwood Call-Leader.  I need to obtain the date that his obituary ran in the Alexandria Times-Tribune.

          1.3.2. Funeral home record

               Virgil's funeral was conducted by the Karl M. Kyle Funeral Home.  I need to try and find out if there exists a record of the funeral, which may contain information about cost, who paid for what, etc.

          1.3.3. Tombstone photograph

               Virgil's tombstone in the Park View cemetery in Alexandria has been photographed.  It lists him as Virgil L. 1894-1972 and his wife, Muriel 1897-1968 is also listed; included is their date of marriage "June 19, 1915"5.

2. Census Records

     2.1. Federal Census Records

          2.1.1. 1930 Federal Census

               On April 19, 1930, Virgil was enumerated in Monroe Township, Madison County, Indiana6, as Virgil Wright, married farmer, age 35, born in Indiana.  His father was listed as born in Ohio and his mother born in Indiana.  He could read and write and spoke English.  He was renting his home and owned a radio.

          2.1.2. 1920 Federal Census

               On January 15, 1920, Virgil was enumerated in Monroe Township, Madison County, Indiana7, as Virgil Wright, married farmer, age 25, born in Indiana.  His father was listed as born in Ohio and his mother born in Indiana.  He could read and write and spoke English.  He was renting his home.

          2.1.3. 1910 Federal Census

               On May 5, 1910, Virgil was enumerated in Monroe Township, Madison County, Indiana8, in the household of his father,  John W. Wright.  He is listed as Virgil A., age 15, at home, born in Indiana, a farmer, and attended school within the year.  His father is listed as born in Ohio and his mother as born in Indiana.

          2.1.4. 1900 Federal Census

               On June 27, 1900, Virgil was enumerated in Monroe Township, Madison County, Indiana9, in the household of his father, John W. Wright.  He is listed as Virgil L., age 5, at home, born in Indiana.  Both of his parents are listed as being born in Indiana.

     2.2. State Census Records

          The State of Indiana conducted state census in 1853, 1857, 1871, 1877, 1883, 1889, 1901, 1913, 1919 and 1931.  These however, were merely for the purposes of determining legislative apportionment.

     2.3. Agricultural Census Records

          I have not yet investigated these types of census records to see what information might be shed on the Wright farm.

3. Military Records

     3.1. Draft Registration

          Virgil registered for the draft during World War I on June 5, 191710.  He is listed as medium build with brown hair and grey eyes.  The card has his name listed as "Virgile Wright", born July 6, 1894, residing at Rural Route 19, Alexandria, Indiana.  He was a self-employed farmer.

          Virgil registered for the draft during World War II

     3.2. Pension Records

          Not applicable, as I have found no evidence that Virgil ever served in the military.

     3.3. Service Records

          Not applicable.

4. Land Records

     4.1. Deed Records

          Deed records need to be thoroughly researched in Madison County, Indiana.  All evidence indicates that Virgil's entire adult life was spent in Monroe Township, Madison County.

     4.2. Plat map / county map

          Madison County published a plat map in 1880, 1891, 1893, 1901, 1910, 1915, 1921, 1923, 1931 and 1940 that may be relevant to my search on Virgil and the Wright family.

5. Supplemental records

     Supplemental records available to research for Virgil include county/city directories, court records and will and probate records.  Searching these will be on my next "to-do list" research trip in Madison County at the library.


1. Freeman, Sandra, "John William Wright - Ellen King family group sheet." Compiled [n.d.].  Alexandria, Indiana, USA.
2. Golden Wedding article, Anderson Daily-Bulletin, Anderson, Indiana, USA, June 16, 1965, page 2.
3. Virgil Lee Wright, death certificate no. 1972-C068 (1972), Madison County Health Department, Anderson, Indiana.
4. Virgil Wright obituary.  Elwood Call-Leader, Elwood, Indiana, March 27, 1972.
5. Park View Cemetery (Alexandria, Indiana), Virgil L. and Muriel Wright marker, photographed by Travis LeMaster.
6. Virgil Wright household, 1930 U.S. census, population schedule, Monroe Township, Madison County, Indiana, ED 48-46, SD 5, sheet 6A, dwelling 112, family 121, National Archives micropublication T626, roll 605.
7. Virgil Wright household, 1920 U.S. census, population schedule, Monroe Township, Madison County, Indiana, ED 122, SD 8, sheet 4A, dwelling 81, family 81, National Archives micropublication T625, roll 449, page 43.
8. John W. Wright household, 1910 U.S. census, population schedule, Monroe Township, Madison County, Indiana, ED 17, SD 8, sheet 11B, dwelling 259, family 259, National Archives micropublication T624, roll 364.
9. John W. Wright household, 1900 U.S. census, population schedule, Monroe Township, Madison County, Indiana, ED 96, SD 8, sheet 21B, dwelling 398, family 432, National Archives micropublication T623, roll 386.
10. Ancestry.com. World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918[database online]. Provo, Utah.  Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2005.  Original data: United States Selective Service Registration System. World War I Selective Service Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918. Washington, D.C., National Archives and Records Administration. M1509, 4582 rolls.  Imaged from Family History Library microfilm.
11. Ancestry.com. U.S. World War II Draft Registration Cards, 1942[database online]. Provo, Utah. Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2007.  Original data: United States Selective Service System. Selective Registration Cards, World War II: Fourth Registration. National Archives and Records Administration Branch locations: National Archives and Records Administration Region Branches.

This post was developed as part of the series relating to Building My 2011 Research Template, an attempt to systematically document and source the details of my ancestors' lives. Comments regarding this template and the conclusions draw in this article are welcomed.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Black Sheep Sunday: Identify Three Men As Kokomo Bank Bandits

Kokomo Daily Tribune, Kokomo, Indiana, April 3, 1925, p. 1


All Bonds Amounting To $6,200 Are Recovered From Men Under Arrest

Two of Suspects Expected to Arrive Here in Custody Tonight - Third Held at Detroit in Connection with Murder Case - Local Police, Pinkerton Operative and Ft. Wayne Police Captain Credited with Running Gang to Cover.

Officers Thompson and Rosenbrock of the Kokomo police department are expected to arrive in the city sometime before midnight tonight with two of the  most important prisoners the local bastille has had since the memorable days of John Pullen, Howard county's most notorious desperado.

The two prisoners are Harry Pierpont, 22, alias Frank Mason, and Thaddeus Skeer, 24 years old.

They are charged with being participants in the robbery of the South Kokomo bank on Friday, March 27.  They were arrested at Detroit Thursday on information given through the local police department and an operative of the Pinkerton Detective agency, who in turn got busy after receiving a red hot tip from the Ft. Wayne police department.  It is likely however that the arrests would have been effected within a short time if the tip had not been given.

A third man arrested at Detroit in connection with the robbery is James Roscoe Hayes, alias "Whitey," one member of the bandit gang who is more or less well known in this city.  Hayes was a singer with a company of dance musicians and vocalists, known as Sullivan's entertainers, who appeared for a time at a local theater several months ago.  Hayes was with the company at that time.

Hayes will not be brought back to Kokomo, at this time, as the Detroit authorities notified the Kokomo police that they meant to detain Hayes in the Michigan city where he is wanted as a material witness in a murder case there.

Pierpont, Skeer and Hayes were all positively identified this morning by A.E. Gorton, cashier of the South Kokomo bank; "Chic" Nelson, golf professional at the Country Club, and Vernon Shaw.

Nelson witnessed the bank robbery from the window of the drug store across the street, at the time recognizing in one of the men a person whom he had seen frequently in Kokomo.

Shaw was the man who entered the bank while the robbery was in progress and was struck by one of the bandits, who took from him $18 in money.

The member of the bandit gang identified by Nelson was Hayes, the singer.

Hayes is said to have served time in Leavenworth prison as a deserter from the army.

It was on the clue furnished by Nelson's recognition of Hayes that led Kokomo police to attempt to track him, finally locating him at a Detroit address which was under surveillance.

A ramification enters the local robbery at this point because of a similar robbery that was staged at Marion, Ind. last fall.  Since then, Grant county authorities have been searching for a man believed to be Pierpont, and for this reason the pursuit of the perpetrators of the Kokomo holdup was joined by the sheriff of Grant county and much information regarding the supposed bandits was gained through an interchange of data.

Then still another ramification opened up with the robbery of the bank at Laketon, a village in Wabash county, last Saturday, the day following the holdup here.  On the presumption that both crimes were committed by the same gang, the authorities of Wabash county also joined in the pursuit.

When it comes to tracing bank robbers, all trains run together.  Police officers, in a general way, are on the lookout for bank bandits pretty much all the time, if not for crimes committed in their own cities at least for bank robberies in neighboring cities, and when a bank bandit is caught and identified, at once he links up through various ramifications to the robberies elsewhere.  Usually there are one or more women involved and often it is through the women that the bold bandits come to grief.

The quartet who so successfully staged the holdup of the South Kokomo Bank last Friday have been admired for the masterly manner in which they staged the crime.  As a matter of fact their motions both prior to and since the robbery, as unearthed by the Kokomo police, reveal that they are, in the vernacular of the day, "dutch."  Any four men who are desperate enough and who are criminally bent could have staged the same sort of holdup and got away with it as successfully at any bank in Kokomo.

And it was a woman who led to the undoing of the three men now under arrest, two of whom are being brought to Kokomo.  Her set was unconscious on her part, but effective just the same.

Catching bank bandits is largely a matter of knowing who they are and, if possible, ascertaining who and where their "sweeties" hang out.

Having suspected Hayes and Pierpont as members of the gang, identifying the others was largely a matter of using information already known to deduce the likely identities of other members of the gang.  With this in hand, it was probable that Skeer would show up in Ft. Wayne because he had a girl there.

And so it happened.  Skeer did have a girl in Ft. Wayne, one Louise Brunner, and when he arranged for her to meet him in Detroit Thursday Captain Pappert of the Ft. Wayne police department got wind of the circumstances and the rest was merely a matter of trailing the girl to the "hangout" in the Michigan City.

Here credit must be given, too, to F.C. Huntington, Pinkerton operative, for prompt action in the matter.  Huntington has been in KokomoOmer L. Main and other officers of the Kokomo police department.

In short, the trails of all officers working on the case pointed so positively in the same direction that they were never in doubt as to the identities of the gang.

That at least three and possibly four or more members of the gang were in this city during a period of four and possibly five weeks preceding the robbery of the South Kokomo bank, was positively determined by the police today.

The three under arrest have been identified here as three men who had rooms with Mrs. Pearl Mulendore, [sic] 718 North Main street.  In this connection, Mrs. Mullendore is said to have visited C.T. Brown, justice of the peace and attorney at law, in behalf of Harry Pierpont the night of March 22, when he and Everett Bridgewater of Sellersburg, Ind., were arrested here on suspicion in connection with a missing car.  The men's possession of a Ford roadster in which they were apprehended was discovered to be legitimate and they were released.  The services of an attorney were not needed, but Attorney Brown's contact with Pierpont, one of the men arrested at Detroit, is told in detail further along in this account.

It was not until 3 or 3:30 o'clock Thursday afternoon that the Kokomo police had knowledge of the arrests at Detroit, and then through the sheriff of Wabash county who got his information, apparently, from a news dispatch going over the wires in his city.  Inquiries followed, however, and the facts were quickly ascertained.

This forenoon Charles Jinkerson, president of the South Kokomo bank, received the following telegram from A.E. Gorton, sent from Detroit:
"Hot dog! Bonds all recovered.  Tall guy man who hit Shaw, and maybe backroom man here.  Do not send my car to Peru.  Will come with officers.  Telephone mother news.  Sure feel good over outcome. - Gorton."
That Bridgewater was not captured with the other three men seems to be certain today.  That his apprehension is believed to be only a matter of short time was expressed confidently by the police and C.F. Huntington, Pinkerton operative connected with the Indianapolis branch of that agency.

Miss Brunner is not being held as an accomplice in the robbery here but as a material witness.

Just how much of the booty besides the bonds has been recovered seems uncertain today.  Gorton's telegram is authority for the statement that all the negotiable papers were recovered.  As for the amount of cash the three men had in their possession nothing definite is known.

However, the police learned today that the three carried large "rolls" while here and that they spent money lavishly on at least two different occasions.

They learned of a wild party at a restaurant in Vaile avenue, near the Plate Glass, where women were being entertained by three or four men believed to be members of the gang and three of whom are the ones under arrest.  This was prior to the robbery here.

At this party the proprietor of this restaurant expressed doubt over whether he would be repaid for his liberal entertainment, whereupon one of the men laid a handful of gold coins on the counter and told him to "take his money out of that" and return the change after the party broke up.  This party lasted until 2 or 3 o'clock in the morning.

On another party at Anderson prior to the robbery here the three men being brought back from Detroit showed the women in their company that they were well supplied with money, which they were spending "like a drunken sailor."

That the three prisoners at Detroit waived extradition was a gratification to the police here, though the latter were prepared for this emergency.

A warrant was issued by Judge Joe Cripe of the city court which contained an interesting feature.  One of the charges against the three alleged bandits is petit larceny.  This is explained by the fact that Judge Marshall could not be located when the officers were in a hurry to obtain warrants, and Judge Cripe was resorted to.  His court has no jurisdiction over the larger crime of which the men are accused, but has jurisdiction over petit larceny cases, which are felonies and also extradition.  To meet the emergency and to arm the police who went to Detroit with warrants that would be valid to secure possession of the prisoners, the charge of petit larceny was made, based on the fact that the men who robbed the bank took eighteen dollars from Vernon Shaw.

That C.T. Brown, attorney and justice of the peace has room to congratulate himself would appear from facts elicited by police investigation.  Attorney Brown was visited at his office Sunday night, March 22 by Harry Pierpont, alias Frank Mason, one of the men in custody at Detroit, and who is accused of being one of the bandits robbing the South Kokomo bank March 27.  Attorney Brown has since identified Pierpont by a prison photograph of the man, shown him for that purpose.  It was a side view which convinced Attorney Brown that the man had been to his office on the date in question.

Attorney Brown was awakened shortly past midnight by a rap on the rear door of his office where he has a bed room, and asking who was there listened to a woman's voice who said that she had come to employ him in behalf of two men who had been arrested in front of her residence door.  Attorney Brown said that he would dress and open the door at once which he did.  Thereupon Mrs. Mulendore [sic] entered the office.  She and the attorney were acquainted as he had some months ago performed the marriage ceremony making her Mrs. Mulendore. [sic]  She explained that two men friends of a roomer at her home had been taken into police custody and they desired his services in a legal capacity.  Attorney Brown told the woman to bring them up.  Instead of the men apprehended appearing, the man now known as Harry Pierpont alias Frank Mason put in an appearance along with Dewey Elliott, a local man who was acting the part of a good Samaritan in assisting Mrs. Mulendore [sic] and her roomer Pierpont.

Pierpont took the lead in the conversation and explained that two of his friends were detained at police station and he wished to know if they needed bond and to ascertain the amount required and it would be forthcoming.  Attorney Brown inquired names but was told that these were immaterial as the person talking, afterwards learned to be Pierpont, had no charges against him and the name was of no consequence.  What names the apprehended men had given Pierpont said he did not know but that the police blotter could explain that point to the attorney.  The mystery of the matter impressed Attorney Brown that it was probably a violation of the liquor law.  He then made no special effort to inquire into names and real facts.  When he visited headquarters he was told that the suspects had been released.  He did not even know upon what charge the men had been held, and returned to his office to find Pierpont.  That man was gone.

Pierpont had given Attorney Brown a gold certificate for $100 and the attorney observed that he had a fat roll of bills in his bill fold but of course of what denomination he did not know.  Dewey Elliott alone remained.  Attorney Brown's phone rang and a voice asked what disposition had been made of the cases against the suspects and the attorney was told to deduct his bill for his services from the certificate and return the balance to Mr. Elliott.

Attorney Brown informed Mr. Elliott that he would rather return the certificate to the man who handed it to him as he could not give the change required, $90 in money.  Attorney Brown having fixed his fee at $10.

Elliott volunteered that he would pay the attorney fee and get it off of Pierpont as soon as he went back to the house.  Elliott thereupon paid Attorney Brown his fee, giving him two five dollar bills and left the office.

Attorney Brown thought nothing more of the incident until he heard of the bank robbery when his mind ran back to the mysterious visit.

He learned that the suspects had been picked up by the police for auto theft but as the facts did not justify detention they were released.  Attorney Brown then related the details of the mysterious conduct in his office.

He also drew a breath of relief.  He had in his safe which was unlocked $75 which had been deposited that evening for bond after banking hours.  He did not make a practice of keeping money on hands but happened to have this amount that particular evening.  It was within easy reach of the suspected bank bandit.

Cousin Harry PIERPONT (1902-1934) was captured in Detroit and brought back to Kokomo to stand trial for the robbery of the South Kokomo bank, starting a chain of events which I hope to further chronicle.  Pearl Elliott, nee Mullendore, operated a house of prostitution in Kokomo.  Dewey Elliott was her husband.

Black Sheep Sunday – create a post with the main focus being an ancestor with a “shaded past.” Bring out your ne’er-do-wells, your cads, your black widows, your horse thieves and tell their stories. And don’t forget to check out the International Black Sheep Society of Genealogists (IBSSG). This is an ongoing series at GeneaBloggers.