1880 Homicides in Marin County

CROCKETT EBERMAN — GRAZIER AND WIFE — LEONARD — WILLIAM RANDALL — WILLIAM SWINERTON — — THOMAS SPAULDING — JOHN — JOHN HARRIS — JOHNSON — INGOLLS — ROSANNA JENSEN — MRS. TIMOTHY CRONIN —T J — WILLIAMSON — HARRY JONES — CHARLES TAYLOR — EMMA SPOHRS — SENORA GARCIA — JOHN MESSINA — PATRICK MONEHAN — JOHN — WILLIAM BROWN — ALEYER HUBERT — CARL PETER RUSH — CHUNG HING HOOT— PAUL RIEGER — BLASS TALAMONTAS — ANTONIO FULTON — KARL HERMAN KOHLER — C. P. SEVERANCE 

No county of its size has such a bloody record as this, some of the murders committed in it are almost beyond description, the last we have been able to chronicle being the most weird in its various phases. This love of crime is a fatality which would appear to follow the Indian into his partial civilization, the Mexican Spaniard from his native clime, the Anglo-Saxon from his far off land and the Mongolian from his Celestial Empire. All would seem last to the natural cry which springs alike from instinct and religion, that " whoso man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed," for dread crimes are not committed by the violent and passionate alone; we might almost say, would that they were, then should the chilling deeds of horrid murder be confined to the crouching assassin, and the hellish deed of suicide be the work of the insane. But human nature is various and confusing in its many failings, temper will outstrip discretion, a blow will be struck, a shot fired and life will be taken, and though escape of present punishment may be effected, happily we know that a dread fear of detection in the future, will haunt the criminal, for it is truly said, " conscience makes cowards of us all." The following notices of the homicides in Marin County have been gleaned from a careful perusal of the local papers and information obtained from the old the records are in such a state that it has been impossible to distinguish all those that have been brought to trial. What we have done we give to the reader. 
Murder of Crockett 
— In the month of March, 1856, Charles McCauley murdered Crockett under circumstances, which, as near as we can learn, were these: McCauley kept a saloon at the head of bay at that point where the road to Point Reyes commences the ascent of the hill. He had not been on terms of friendship with previously and on this day their quarrel broke out afresh, during which McCauley remarked to that he was the bigger man and armed, for he had a knife in his boot. on being thus taunted threw his weapon aside when McCauley pulled out a revolver and shot four bullets through the body of , who fell, but at once got up and walked to a tree under which he sat for some time until he died. McCauley was arrested and was held in bail, which he could not procure, was kept in jail for one year and on trial was acquitted.


Murder of and his wife — who kept a saloon in part of his house at the head of bay, sometime in the year 1856, was with his wife, murdered under the following circumstances: John Carroll and Thomas Hammond went into the saloon, and while there the latter got into a quarrel with the proprietor, when the first named ruffian drew a revolver saying he would shoot anyone that interfered. , who was sickly, was beaten so severely by Hammond that eventually he died. On Mrs. interfering, she was knocked down, stamped upon, and torn with the rowels of a Spanish spur from the effects of which she died a few days after her husband. Carroll and Hammond were both tried and sentenced to twenty-one years in the State Prison. 

Killing of Leonard — man named Chick, who had at one time been a resident of Nevada City, where he lived with his wife and little girl, when there, made the acquaintance of one Leonard, who had estranged the affections of Chick's wife from him and persuaded her to leave her home. This she did departing ostensibly for the Eastern States and taking with her the child; instead, however, of immediately taking that journey she proceeded to San Francisco where she met Leonard, and with him came to Novato to reside. Chick hearing of his followed his wife and claimed his child, whom they had hidden. On making some noise, he was warned by Leonard to leave he would get fixed." Chick went out and borrowed a gun, secreted himself under a bridge and waited for Leonard who in a short time came to water his horse and was shot with a charge of pistol bullets, which lodged in the small of his back, he then ran about fifty yards, fell, and died in half an hour. Chick was arrested for the offence, tried and acquitted. 

Killing of William Randall — 
circumstances attending this tragedy are these: It would appear that Charles Nelson and William Randall had located on a certain tract of land contiguous to that occupied by John Miller, and which he had long wished to possess. On the establishment of Nelson and Randall, Miller commenced a fierce war against them, and on two occasions shot at and missed Charles Nelson. In 1861, Nelson sold out to in June of the same year he was shot by Miller, who had already fired seven times at him. It would seem that Miller was in the habit of tearing down Randall's fence, and permitting his stock to run at large upon the ranch. On the morning of the shooting, Randall and his brother-in-law were driving out the stock when they came to a gate where they found Miller and his son, each armed, Miller with a rifle and the latter with a double-barreled shot-gun. Some words passed between when, on the arrival of another brother-in-law), the gun was taken from the younger Miller by the newcomer. Upon this, Miller, the elder, presented the rifle which he carried at the last arrival, when Randall rode up towards Miller with a small pistol in his hand, on this move Miller whirled round and fired at Randall striking him in the abdomen. This was at 10 A. M.; at 7 P. M., he died. Miller was tried and sentenced to eleven years in the State Prison. A new trial was had in the Supreme Court and the case finally wore itself out. Miller used all his means in his defense, and ultimately went to Watsonville where he dropped dead in the street in the of 1879.

Stabbing of William — At , head of bay, on March 28, 1861, in front of Levy's store, William , alias Bill , was stabbed by Peter .

Killing of McLaughlin — January 24, 1863, McLaughlin was setting ten-pins in the bowling alley of Parsons for the amusement of a boy who was rolling the ball, when Parsons entered and told the boy to stop rolling. McLaughlin asked the boy why he stopped, and at the same time took a ball in his hand and was in the act of rolling it, when Parsons struck him and knocked him down. When McLaughlin got up, some harsh words passed, after which Parsons entered a room behind the bar, when McLaughlin charged him with going after a knife. On the return of Parsons, McLaughlin struck him with a pen-knife, cutting him over the eye, when Parsons picked up a hatchet. McLaughlin ran, Parsons in pursuit. About thirty yards from the house McLaughlin fell into a ditch, and was in the act of getting up, when Parsons, who had by this time overtaken him, struck him two blows with the hatchet, from the effects of which he died.

Murder of Thomas Spaulding
 — Thomas Spaulding was killed by S. in , May 21, 1863.

Murder of John Killing of John Harris
— man was murdered June 8, 1863, by an Indian in township.

 — John Harris, a native of Liverpool, England, was killed, November 7, 1863, at the house of Terence Donnelly, about two miles from San Rafael, by his partner, Fred. The circumstances of the case are mainly as follows: It appears that the deceased (Harris), Blodgett (the murderer), and a man named Smith, arrived at the house of Donnelly on the night in question, and obtaining permission to prepare supper, set about the task, and while eating, some words arose between Smith and Blodgett, which, however, amounted to nothing. It seems that the best of feeling did not exist on the part of Blodgett toward Harris, and words of an angry nature Harris got up from the table, remarking, " although I am sick, I believe I can lick you ! " Blodgett at the same time arose from the table, and retreated towards the back door of the house, whilst Smith in the meantime had taken hold of Harris, said, " don’t make any fuss," when Blodgett seizing a shot-gun, fired, the charge entering the right breast of Harris, about two inches below the nipple, killing him instantly. Blodgett gave himself up to the authorities in San Rafael, where he admitted that he had killed Harris, and said if he could kill but one more man he would die satisfied.


Shooting of Johnson

— On January 30, 1865, an old resident of Marin County was killed on his own ranch, under the following circumstances: A young man named Frank Taylor had been hunting upon in company with another young and in returning home passed the house of Johnson, who was near by at work. When Taylor approached, Johnson came forward and said, you are in the habit of shooting cattle, are you ? " Taylor replied, , I am not." — you," said Johnson, " if you shoot any of my cows, I will blow the top of your head off." Taylor said that he was glad there was a witness present to hear the threat, and told Johnson he had better take care how he threatened to shoot men. Johnson then came nearer and said he was almost persuaded to knock his head off, and told him to put down his gun. Taylor said he would not, when Johnson sprang forward and seized the gun. A brief struggle ensued, during which a woman, with whom Johnson was living, cried out to him to come away from Taylor and let him alone. Taylor succeeded in retaining his gun — a double-barreled shot gun, and Johnson ran to the house, exclaiming as he went, " G— — you, I will shoot you now." Taylor ran from the house and had got about four hundred yards away, when he heard and saw Johnson running after him with his double-barreled gun. Taylor was charged with No 8 shot, but he hastily put down two charges of buck-shot as he ran, and heard Johnson cry out, " Stand, you — — cowardly — — — — !" Taylor stopped and turning round, said: "Johnson, you may shoot me, but I will not stir a Johnson had got within a few yards and fired, shooting Taylor in the side and thigh, instantly cocked his own gun and fired at Johnson, who instantly fell, when Taylor hastened to his house.

Murder of 

— On May 20, 1865

, one of the officers of the State Prison at Point San Quentin, discovered in the foundry some iron hooks, and inquiring for what they were intended, was told that they were made for a convict named Thurman. He was asked what they were made for, and replied that they were to hang his trunk on. The man who made them and Thurman were ordered to he punished. On being taken to the ladder, and while Thurman's companion was being flogged, Thurman rushed into the cooper's shop, and seizing a broad-ax, attacked another convict named , and split his head open, killing him instantly.

Murder of Mrs. Rosanna Jensen

— Rosanna Jensen, wife of Hans Jensen, living near Novato, was found in a small slough in the marsh, about a quarter of a mile from her dwelling, on June 29, 1866, where it appeared that she had been conveyed after being murdered by some person or persons unknown. The facts are these: On the Sunday morning previous (June 24th) to the finding of the body, some trifling altercation, of a family-jar character, had occurred between Mrs. Jensen and her husband, but was apparently settled, and harmony restored. The husband left home at about ten o'clock in the morning to go to Novato for meat, stopping on the route at two of his neighbors, with each of whom he spent about an hour and a half. 

On returning in the evening in time to attend the milking of his cows, he found his wife absent. After looking about the premises and not finding her, he concluded that she had gone to one of the neighbors and would soon come home. She not returning that night, Jensen got a neighbor and friend to stay at his house and attend to his affairs, while he made inquiry and search in the neighborhood. Finding no trace of her, and feeling alarmed, he, on Wednesday, concluded it was best to inform the people of the neighborhood of her disappearance, and ask their help in a general and more thorough search. On Thursday morning the neighbors assembled at his house and commenced a general search through the. and over the hills and marsh, and on Friday the body was found as above stated. Jensen was arrested on suspicion of having committed the deed. Upon examination before Justice Haven, no evidence appearing against him, he was discharged. The circumstance which appeared to direct suspicion on the husband was, that is if the above statement, which was his, be true, she must have been murdered and the body carried to the place where found after ten o'clock, and before his return on Sunday ; and the exposure of the place to view by persons passing is such that no one would have ventured to convey it there for concealment in the day time, therefore it seemed that she must have been murdered either on Saturday night or Sunday morning. According to his statement there were three hundred and forty-six dollars concealed in the bed, of which his wife had, which were also taken.

Murder of Mrs. Cronin

— wife of Timothy Cronin, of Bolinas, mysteriously disappeared from her house and family about August 12, I860. Suspicion of foul play fell upon her husband and his brother, who were arrested and a day for examination was set. Search had been made for the missing woman for some time, and on Wednesday morning, August 15th, just before the examination took place, the body was found in a ravine, in which there was running water, near the house of the deceased. It appears that after the woman was murdered she'' was buried as above stated, and a built over her grave. The parties searching for the body, observing that the duck pond was of recent construction, concluded to examine it, at which Cronin objected, stating that he did not wish it destroyed. They, however, proceeded to make the investigation, when Cronin turned from the spot and fled. About this time the body was discovered, when some of the party fired at Cronin, hoping to impede his flight, but without effect, until Jesus procured a horse and succeeded in arresting him by means of a lasso. The body of the murdered woman was found wrapped in some gunny sacks, and had the appearance of having been beaten and bruised in a horrible manner. Though very much decomposed, it was easily identified as that of Mrs. Cronin. It appeared that husband and wife had been leading an unhappy life. The prisoner and his brother, James Cronin, were 
examined before Justice , and sufficient evidence of their guilt appearing, they were held to answer. Timothy Cronin was convicted and sentenced to death at the November term of the District Court, 1866. Anew trial was applied for, but was denied; an appeal was, however, taken. He was once more sentenced to death on February 3, 1868, and suffered the extreme penalty of the law in San , May 8, 1868.

Murder of T. J. McKeon

— About 7 P. M., on the evening of Wednesday, February 13, 1867, some Indians came to the store of T. J. McKeon, a store keeper on bay, and whilst he was drawing liquor from a barrel one of them struck him on the back of the head with an axe, killing him instantly. They continued at the store drinking liquor until about three o'clock the next morning, when they packed up such goods as they wanted — as much as they could carry — and after setting fire to the building left the scene. They stated that there were two Spaniards with them, who instigated them to kill McKeon, saying he had money, and if they did not kill him (McKeon) they would kill them (the Indians), and that the Spaniards got two hundred dollars each. About one hundred and fifty dollars in coin were found upon the Indians which thought to be all the money they found in the store. The burning building excited attention across the and on Thursday morning the whole neighborhood was aroused and a party from Key's Port came up and joined in a search among the hills and ravines for something that might lead to a clue to the incendiaries and murderers. As a party was passing along a ridge above a deep ravine covered with a thick growth of brushes, they heard a voice crying out to them, away, or we will shoot you," at the same instant the report of three shots was heard. The party on the hill then saw the three Indians, and being armed returned the fire, killing one of the Indians instantly and wounding severely the other two. The goods they had carried from the store, and the one hundred and fifty dollars found on their persons were taken into possession, and the two Indians were carried into where their wounds were attended to, they being afterwards taken to San Rafael.

Killing of Williamson —

The body of a farmer named Williamson, which bore evident marks of foul play, was found in Walker's creek, , February 20, 1868.


Homicide of Harry Jones

— the night of March 15, 1872, the body of Harry Jones, a resident of Novato for seventeen years, was found in the horse trough in front of his house under circumstances which led many to believe that he had been foully dealt with. The following particulars were adduced before the jury upon holding the It appears that his wife last saw him alive some half or three-quarters of an hour before the body was found. Jones was at his store in the evening, with Bill Webb, Andrew Lawson, a blacksmith residing at Novato named Brown, Chris. , a son of Webb's, aged eleven or twelve years, a boy who lived with the deceased, and a stranger whose name was unknown. Mr. Lawson stated that Brown had some difficulty with Jones, both being under the influence of liquor, during which the former knocked the deceased down and kicked him about the face and head. Webb left the store about ten o'clock, leaving Brown, and Mrs. Jones, wife of deceased, there, the latter being behind the counter. Mrs. Jones subsequently closed the store and went to her residence a few yards distant, accompanied by deceased. Deceased went out of the house, and was gone probably about ten minutes when his wife sent a boy to look for him, who, however, could not find him. Mrs. Jones thereupon went out a short time after and found him in the trough, as above described, dead. About half-past ten o'clock Mrs. Cornell, who lived near the place heard two screams, one loud the other faint. Half an hour later Mrs. Jones went to Mrs. Cornell and informed her that her husband was found dead as above The body when found was afloat in the water in the trough, which was deep; it had the appearance about the neck of being choked, and showed a severe cut in the upper lip.

Murder of Charles Taylor

— On March 22, 1872, a tragedy occurred in the State Prison, wherein one Charles Taylor, a convict, lost his life at the hands of Jose Serrano, also a convict.

Murder of Emma 
— On May 23, 1872, a terrible tragedy was enacted in Angel Island, in which a soldier named Fritz Kimmel shot and instantly killed Emma , a girl of fourteen years of age, in a fit of jealousy. There was a ball given at Camp Reynolds for the benefit of the noncommissioned officers and privates of Company H, Twelfth Infantry. While the guests were at the supper table, Kimmel arose from his seat, and going to Emma, put a pistol to her head and fired. She fell dead, and before the horror-stricken guests could prevent it, the murderer placed the weapon to his own head and fired, killing himself instantly. A military Court of Inquiry was held, which developed the following facts: Kimmel was leader of the Twelfth Infantry Band, a young German, who was accounted a fine musician. Miss , his victim, was the daughter of a member of the band. Kimmel was a constant visitor in the family of Mr. , and it was evident that he admired the daughter, Emma. On the night of the 23d, an entertainment was given by the Hackett Dramatic Club (composed of enlisted men of the island), to Company H, Twelfth Infantry, which was about to leave the island. During the early part of the ball, Kimmel played a violin, occasionally promenading the floor alone, but speaking to no one. Miss saluted him pleasantly, but his responses were cold and distant; Miss accompanied Sergeant Sheehan to supper. Kimmel seated himself on the opposite side of the table and at some distance. After watching them for some time, he abruptly loft the table and went to his room, but soon returned and advanced directly to the seat of Miss , presented a pistol to her temple and fired, killing her instantly. The murderer stepped back a few paces, placed the pistol to his own head and fired. He fell backward to the floor and died instantly.

Murder of Senora Garcia —

On April 17, 1873, Senora Loretta Garcia, relict of the late Don Rafael Garcia, a lady about sixty years of age, of high character, wealth and social position, and of blameless life, was foully murdered with a navy pistol in her own house, by a low fellow named Ambrosia . At the time of the commission of the murder, the only third person present was a little adopted daughter of Senora Garcia, about six years of age. Her testimony was to the effect that the villain entered the house and spent some fifteen minutes in conversation with the old lady, marriage forming a large part, if not the only topic in the talk, after which he drew a large navy pistol and shot her, the charge entering the left side, above and near the heart. She fell upon her face and was trying to rise when he went up close to her and shot her again in the side of the head, producing almost instantaneous death. He then endeavored to fire the house. He poured burning fluid on the walls, which were papered, and tried to light it with matches, but it would not burn. Meantime the little girl ran away screaming for help, and the villain began to fear he could not conceal his ghastly crime, and that retribution would overtake him. He ran down to the nearest house, and asked the lady, I look pale ? I have killed Senora Garcia., and now I will kill myself!" This lady seeing his pistol and his fiendish expression, was frightened and started to run, but quickly heard a report, and turned in time to see him fall and almost instantly expire, having shot himself through the head in precisely the same spot as that in which he shot his defenseless victim.

Homicide of John Messina

— John Messina, an Italian fisherman, living on bay, near Marshall, but in Bolinas township, gave a birthday party on June 24, 1875, to which he invited a number of friends. The festivities were prolonged far into the morning of the 25th, and the friends had a merry time of it, but the occasion had a sad and tragic ending, and it was the last earthly jubilee for John Messina. Just as the gray dawn began to appear in the eastern sky, a dispute arose between a man named Lothario and one Joseph , which culminated in drawing a murderous knife on , who started to run, giving chase. drew a pistol and discharged it in the air to intimidate his foe, but as it had no effect, he fired behind him, and the ball struck Messina in the heart, killing him instantly. The presiding Justice of the Peace decided that the killing was accidental.

Killing of Patrick —

 On Thursday evening of 

November 4, 1875

, a row occurred at the Indian in , which culminated on Sunday evening in the sudden and violent death of a white man. An Indian known by the name of Big Jose Salvador, made an assault on his sister, the widow of , with a knife. He had the woman down, when a lad, her son, seized his pistol from his hip pocket, and ran away with it. Jose gave chase to the boy, and the woman improved the opportunity to escape. She swore out a warrant for the arrest of her assailant, before Justice Rodgers: charging him with an assault with a deadly weapon, with intent to kill. The Justice put the warrant in the hands of John R. , who, with Louis Dempsey, went on Sunday evening to the , to arrest the Indian.

The officers searched through several cabins, and at last came to one in which Patrick was sleeping, to whom they told their errand. He said he also had a warrant for Jose", but they could not arrest him. said he had a warrant for the Indian, and he intended to try to serve it. and Dempsey (who is known as John ) then had some words, during which the former got hold of the officer, and the two had a little scuffle, though there was a picket fence between them. was a large and very powerful man. Just then, a young man from Mrs. Irvine's came up and told that the Indian was in such a cabin, pointing to it. started for it, calling Dempsey to go with him. It seems that then got hold of , who drew his pistol, but the cylinder fell out. Dempsey, seeing that ' weapon was not available, drew his pistol, and cocked it so that could hear it. The latter then walked toward Dempsey, saying, would not shoot me." Dempsey retreated, and told to stop. advanced, saying, would not shoot me." Dempsey finally said he would go back no further, and still going towards him, he fired, his ball entering forehead, and producing instant death. This tragedy seems to have ended the Indian crusade, as nothing further was heard about the arrest of the Indian. Dempsey immediately gave himself up to await examination. A Coroner's jury was impaneled on Sunday evening, consisting of E. R. Cornwell, Frank , H. , A. J. Winslow, David Taylor, E. M. Welch, P. Fox and one other, to investigate death. Their verdict simply declared the facts, and neither condemned nor justified the act. Dempsey was examined before Justice Rodgers on Tuesday afternoon. The Justice telegraphed for District Attorney Bowers to attend and represent the people, but prior engagements prevented. E. B. Mahon, Esq., appeared and defended Dempsey, who was acquitted of all blame in the premises, and released from custody. seems to have had the reputation' of being quiet and good-natured when sober, but when intoxicated a pretty rough customer to handle.

Murder of John McKnight

— John McKnight, aged sixty-seven years, living near bay, was murdered in his own house on the night of the 15th or morning of the 16th. The murderer broke the door open with the poll of an ax. McKnight had evidently been wakened by the noise, and sprang out of bed making towards the door, when, as is supposed from bruises on his face, he was knocked down, and then stabbed twice — once superficially in the right side of the neck, in the location of the jugular vein, and once to the depth of about five inches in the left breast— the knife passing entirely through the apex of the heart. Mr. McKnight owned thirteen acres of land which he had improved and fixed up very nicely for the poultry business, in which he had there been engaged for years. He was a harmless old man, lived entirely alone, kept no money in the house, and, as booty could not have been the object of the murder, it is a mystery what was. This is the seventh, eighth or ninth man that has been murdered on bay during the last few years, the author of the deed in each instance escaping punishment.

Murder of William Brown

— On October 21, 1876, William Brown, a well-to-do farmer of valley, was in Petaluma, collecting money and attending to some business matters. He left town for his home, about ten miles distant, in the afternoon. He stopped at a saloon in the valley and there met Salazar and . He invited them to drink several times, and while so doing exhibited some money, about sixty dollars in all. Near evening he left the saloon for his home, a few miles distant. He was followed by Salazar and , both intent upon robbing him for the money they knew he possessed. When near him, Salazar threw his lariat over Mr. Brown and dragged him from his buggy. The horses immediately ran off, and followed, caught them and tied them to a fence. When Brown was dragged out he made some little resistance, but Salazar stabbed him fatally several times and proceeded to rob him of his money, watch and ring. They left him dead and traveled bask to the saloon. The cries of Mr. Brown were distinctly heard at his home, but little thought was given to them. Being expected home long before that hour, his absence caused a little anxiety, and a member of his family went out upon the road to watch for him. His team was then discovered tied to the fence, further search revealing his body lying on the road. He was found dead, having been stabbed several times. After killing him the murderers went back to Spanish town, where they remained until arrested. They were then brought to Petaluma, where Sheriff had great trouble in keeping them safe from a mob, who were about to make an effort to capture the prisoners and hang them immediately. They were conveyed to San Rafael, committed to await the action 'of the Grand Jury, indicted for murder in the first degree, and were tried in the March term of the District Court. The Indian was sentenced to the State Prison for twenty years. Salazar was defended by H. Wilkins of San Rafael, had a fair and impartial trial, was convicted and sentenced to be hanged. He desired a new trial, motion was made and denied. The ! crime on the scaffold, May 31, 1877.

Killing of Hubert

 — victim of this atrocity was a peddler aged seventeen years, and was coldly murdered for money and to cover the crime of taking it. From a small beginning of a few pieces of cheap lace, which he packed upon his back, he had grown to that of carrying his goods upon a horse, riding or walking, as he chose. He had a widowed mother and orphan sister in San Francisco, who were largely supported by his persevering efforts. By strictly temperate habits, economy and untiring industry, he had given comfort to his loved and loving mother. Having on a trip about the Christmas holidays got together a few dollars — probably about fifty — someone bearing the image of man, gangrened with avarice, and reckless of all consequences, in cold blood, and with no provocation other than a desire of possessing Hubert's little stock, took his innocent life by shooting him with a shot gun loaded with buck-shot, which took effect in the neck and upper part of the left breast, producing almost instant death. His body was afterwards dragged with a to a culvert over a deep but narrow cut in the Bolinas and road, near the head of creek. The body was discovered by the merest accident on December 31, 1876, fully two days after the deed had been committed. Suspicion fell upon Joseph Bernal, who was arrested and tried, but was released on account of the insufficiency of evidence.

Murder of Carl Peter

Rush 

— On June 1, 1877, Peter Rush, an old farmer of Novato, went out to his field to work, taking his luncheon. He left at the house his wife and an Indian boy. A man employed by Rush on the place started for Petaluma that morning, leaving the house first. The man returned about five o'clock. Rush was expected in early to do the chores, and as he did not come, the boy was sent out for him, but could not find him. The man finished up his chores, and then, taking a lantern he and the boy went out to look for Rush. About half an hour after they had left, as Mrs. Rush was sitting at the window reading, a gun was discharged through it, large shot perforating her book, the flying glass scratching her neck, and the shot lodging in a bed, the wad setting fire to it. After searching, about an hour, the man and boy returned to the house, and reported that they had found nothing of Rush, and there the search was dropped for that night. No notice was given to the neighbors of the extraordinary events. The next morning word was sent to & De , and a force of fifteen or twenty men visited the premises, and commenced an active search for the missing man. All that day was spent in the hunt, but no clue was obtained to the whereabouts of Rush. The search was resumed on the 3rd, and in the afternoon, the murdered body of Peter Rush was found, in the field adjoining where he had been at work. He had been shot in the back, and his upper jaw was broken as if by a heavy blow. The body had been dragged by hand to a fence, and under it, and on the opposite side of the fence from where he had been at work, and there covered up with grass and brush. The appearance of the body indicated that he had been dead several days. The victim of this murder was formerly a sailor, a native of Denmark, aged fifty years. He had lived in Novato about twenty years, and his estate was estimated at from twenty to thirty thousand dollars. The murderer was never found.

Murder of Chung Hoot 

— On 

August 8, 1877

, Wong, Chung -Hoot, Lee , and another Chinaman, were engaged in abalone fishing at bay, and lived in a cabin together on Preston's Point. About ten days before the murder, Wong and Chung -Hoot quarreled about some trivial matter connected with their business, but it passed over for the time without any serious trouble, and they continued upon apparently friendly terms for some days. On the 7th of August the fourth Chinaman left the fishery and went to San Francisco, and on the next day the tragedy occurred. Chung was at work late in the afternoon nailing some boards upon the cabin, while Wong was seated inside, and Lee was engaged in some occupation a short distance away. Whether any words passed between the two is not known, but Wong suddenly drew a pistol and fired from the door at Chung, killing him instantly. Lee , hearing the shot, hurried up to the cabin, and was confronted by the leveled pistol of the murderer, who threatened to kill him also if he ever breathed a word of what he saw. With the pistol still aimed at the frightened man's head Wong compelled him to go with him in search of a good spot to bury the body of Chung, and together the two walked over the sand beach until they found a place where the murdered man could be concealed from the sight of chance wanderers on the Point. This completed, they returned to the cabin, where the murdered man was lying, and tied a rope around his neck, with which Lee dragged the body across the sands to the grave on the beach, followed by Wong with his pistol in his hand, where it was buried. With the pistol at his head, the murderer extorted the promise from Lee , that the dread secret should never be divulged — and thus they parted, Lee going to San Francisco. As soon as he reached the city, he informed the President of the Sam Yup Company, to which Chung -Hoot belonged. Wong, relying upon the promise of Lee , went to the city also, a few days afterwards, was recognized by some of the Sara Yup men, and arrested and delivered into custody. He was tried and convicted of the .murder in the. January 28, 1878.


Murder of Paul

— Paul , a merchant of San Francisco, went up to on Saturday, April 19th. Leaving the train at that station, he took to the creek intending to fish through the day, and spend the night with some friends in the neighborhood. He was expected to return home on Sunday, but he did not come. Monday passed and no word came from him, when his friends became anxious, and on Tuesday search was instituted. This was kept up until Friday, when his body was found on the bank of the creek where he had been fishing, riddled with bullets, and robbed of all valuables as well as a part of the clothing. A Spaniard of San Antonio township was first suspected of the murder, but his innocence was fully established, and he was released. Sheriff then became confident thatSalvador, a big Indian outlaw, a bold and desperate fellow, whom the Indians called " Salvador the Brave," was the assassin. On Friday, the day before the murder of Mr. , Salvador was in , without funds, and he started that day for bay, on a route that would take him through the region of the murder. The next Monday he was in with plenty of money, drinking copiously and spending freely. Although the Indians were loath to tell anything about him, they divulged the fact that he had a gold watch, and from their description the pants he wore were those of . May 6th Sheriff took out a warrant for his arrest, and hearing that Salvador was at Marshall, went up there but did not find the indications were, however, that he had secreted himself in a on the Point Reyes side of the bay. Mr. went to , and got a volunteer posse, consisting of Hugh Walker, James Friend, Edward Lewis, Frank and James Duncan, all well armed, got into the saddle on Saturday night, and proceeded to Point Reyes. Before daylight on Sunday the was surrounded. Shortly after day-break the Sheriff, seeing no stir, gave a signal and the party closed in and instituted a search, but found no trace of him. The Indians told a great many conflicting stories, the only thing clear being their endeavor to screen Salvador. Still, it is now 'believed, that he was there at the time. The Sheriff and posse next searched every on the side of the bay, but got no trace of the desperado. At this juncture Mr. received a dispatch from two city detectives named Hogan and , saying that Salvador was at ; thither the indefatigable Sheriff at once proceeded, but the wily Indian had again given them the slip, and all trace of him was lost. The theory of the murder, as advanced by the officials was, that he was on his way to Bay when he encountered ; that he first shot him in the side, and when he fell forward he fired the four shots into his back, then dragged him off under the bush and robbed him. Let us here give the description of the ruffian: Age about thirty-seven; height five feet nine inches; complexion sallow; eyes and hair black; round, full features; heavy moustache; high cheek scar between the eyebrows; scar on right cheek; scar on left wrist ; several cupping marks on right fore-arm ; cross in Indian ink on right fore-arm; well built and weighs about one hundred and eighty pounds. 

You should be very cartful how you operate in attempting his arrest, as he is a powerful and desperate man. When last seen he had a Henry rifle, a dragoon six-shooter, bull-dog five-shooter and a bowie-knife. He was committed to the State prison in September, 1867, for four years, for the murder of McKean on bay. He has a mother and sister at the , a sister at the on bay, in Marin County, and also a sister at the near Ukiah, Mendocino County. He frequents all these places, and also all the on the Russian river." While a thorough and effective search was being made in all portions of Marin, circulars containing the above minute description had been sent into the adjacent counties, and no stone was left unturned so that his capture might be . On Saturday, the 17th of May, Mr. received a telegram from Sheriff Dinwiddie, of Sonoma, asking for a warrant for the arrest of Salvador, who, he said, was on a near Sebastopol in that County. The requisite authority was at once dispatched and Mr. Dinwiddie proceeded to the scene. Mr. Walker, on whose placeSalvador was, and who knew him as soon as he received the circular, informed Sheriff Dinwiddie that he was there. When the latter arrived, Mr. Walker pointed to an Indian house, telling him that he could find his man there, or ascertain where he was. Mr. Dinwiddie went in and asked an Indian where he was. He replied, Salvador gone. Not here." The Sheriff returned to Mr. Walker and reported, but the latter reassured him, and he went back and asked the fellow for Salvador, who replied as before. The Sheriff then went back to Mr. Walker again, and this time Mr. W. went into the house with him. “Why,” said Walker, is Salvador himself !” “Throw up your hands," said the Indian obeyed, and was forthwith handcuffed. He had no arms upon him, his only weapon being a bowie-knife. He was at once brought to San Rafael and lodged in the County jail. On the 26th of May he was examined before Justice of the Peace Hughes and was held to answer before the Grand Jury. He was indicted on the 2nd of June; on the 23d of July he was arraigned and allowed until the following day to plead to the indictment, when he entered a plea of not guilty, and Monday, the 28th, was set for trial. On that day the regular panel was exhausted without getting a jury, and a new venire of fifty was ordered, returnable on the 30th, at five o'clock in the afternoon, of which day the empanelling was completed and the trial commenced. , Thomas Redmond, James , James , T. H. Collins, Louis Peter, James Fagan, A. J. Edwards, J. S. , John , P. L. Bourne, found a verdict of murder in the first degree, and Monday, August 4th, was set for passing sentence. On that date the death sentence was passed by the Court in the manner following: To the usual question, whether he had anything to say why sentence should not be pronounced upon him, he replied, no. The Court then said : It is ordered, adjudged and decreed that you, the defendant, Salvador, standing as you do, convicted by the verdict of the jury of murder in the first degree, for having feloniously willfully, premeditatedly, and with malice aforethought, killed and murdered Paul , in Marin County, State of California, on the 19th day of April, 1879, and are adjudged guilty of murder in the first degree, the judgment of the Court and sentence of the law is that you, Salvador, be committed to the custody of the Sheriff of the County of Marin, to be by him, said Sheriff, taken at a time to be appointed and named in a warrant to be issued in pursuance of this judgment, to some place within the walls of the County jail of Marin County, or to some other convenient private place in said County of Marin, and that you there be hanged by the neck by said Sheriff until you are dead, and may Heaven have mercy on your soul. The warrant was forwarded to Sheriff in due course, and Thursday, the 2nd of October, fixed for the execution, previous to the carrying out of which, he made a confession, so horrible in its details, that all crimes hitherto enacted on this coast pall before the atrocities of this fiend's life. His first crime of note was the stabbing to death of Ills brother Cruz, at , in 1860, during a quarrel. He was not arrested for this. The next murder committed was that of an Indian named Jose, who, Salvador says, threatened to kill him. He found this victim on Paper Mill creek, and stabbed him to death. The murder was never unraveled until Salvador confessed it. In 1866, Salvador killed an Indian called Whisky Bill, at Bodega, Sonoma County. This occurred in an attack made by Bill and some other Indians on his brother. In this case he was acquitted on the grounds of self-defense. In the same year he was arrested for the murder of McKeon on bay. His brother-in-law, Jose' De , and his own brother assisted him to evade arrest, and during the fight De was killed by the officers, and his brother received wounds of which he died soon after. Salvador was shot seven times and at length arrested. He was sent to the penitentiary for seven years for the murder of McKeon, which affair he afterwards denied being implicated in. Shortly after his release he killed an unknown Indian with a knife in a quarrel in valley. This crime until his confession was also a mystery. In 1878 Salvadorand a companion kicked a Chinaman to death on the North Pacific Coast Railroad, whom, he alleged, assaulted a squaw named Big Mary. This is the same that led Salvador's pursuers off the scent after the murder of , enabling him to escape. Salvador's sister once swore out a warrant at for Salvador's arrest for threats to kill her. His last devilish deed was committed while he was seeking protection from the rain under a tree. came in sight without seeing him, and he shot him dead. After the crime he remained in Marin Countyfor several days, but, becoming alarmed, he left for San Jose, via and Oakland, from which place he walked to his destination. In San Jose he stayed with Jose Salazar for three days, when he returned to Marin County, via Petaluma, on foot. On the 12th of May, after leaving Petaluma, he, from a high hill, saw Sheriff and posse, who were searching for him. He then went to Sebastopol, near which place he was arrested as above described. Such is this chapter of horrors; let us wind up the dreary story with an account of his last moments of life: At eleven o'clock on the day appointed for the expiation of his manifold crimes, Mr. son and several others entered the cell of the condemned, fell upon his knees before them, asking for their forgiveness. The gentlemen shook hands with him and left. Immediately thereafter he was taken into the cell occupied by his mother and sisters them all, standing the wailings of his mother without flinching. His mother then uttered a weird, wild prayer in the Indian dialect, and laid her hands upon the head of her son, who had sunk down upon his knees before the crouching figure of the old woman. At half -past twelve he partook with apparent relish of his last meal. Meanwhile the doors of the Court House had been barred and those holding invitations to witness the execution were admitted by a small door in the fence. Thomas H. then proceeded to adjust the rope, a three- quarter-inch whale-line, to the cross-beam, and everything being in readiness, the Sheriff, accompanied by his deputies, and the reporters of the press, proceeded to the cell of the condemned man. The reading of the death warrant produced no visible effect upon Salvador, who during the whole time held a small crucifix between his hands, without the slightest vibration. The march to the gallows was then taken, with Sheriffs , and Dinwiddie, of Sonoma, at the head of the procession. Following them, with firm step, walked the culprit, between two Spanish padres in their robes of office, chanting the prayers for the dying. Under-Sheriff Gordon and Deputy followed. Several other Deputy Sheriffs brought up the rear. Arrived upon the scaffold, Salvador, with a desperate look downward upon the treacherous trap, took his position under the gibbet. To the question of the Sheriff, whether he had anything to state before he met his fate, he answered in a low voice: am thankful to you all, and especially to Sheriff , for the kind treatment I have received. I know I have committed a terrible crime and am willing to give up my life for it." The straps were then placed around the doomed man's legs and arms, , until then, stood up unflinchingly among the officers who surrounded him. But when Under-Sheriff Gordon adjusted the fatal noose around his neck, a slight tremor commenced to run through the limbs of the criminal. Sheriff , without delay, slipped the black cap on his head, and stepping back, waved his handkerchief to Deputy Duncan. A slight motion of the latter's hand and precisely at twenty minutes past one in the afternoon of October 2, 1879, the heavy trap shot down, leaving the murderer of Paul suspended in mid-air.

Killing of Blass . — On 

May 2, 1879

, Blass was killed near Marshall, on bay, by Joe under the following circumstances: Blass and two men, returning from a ball at Marshall, stopped at the house where . Some drinking was indulged in, when Blass became quarrelsome, and was requested by Joe to leave, as he did not desire to have any trouble. Blass left about noon, and went to his own house about two hundred feet distant, but returned immediately. Joe seeing him coming, shut the front door where Blass tried to get admittance, saying at the same time, will kill you." Not being able to gain admittance there, he went to the back door, and seizing the ax, which was lying close by, knocked in the upper panel of the door. Joe seized his gun which was standing close by, Blass then threw the ax through the hole in the door, again saying will kill you," and Joe fired shooting him in the breast. On being examined, the Justice of the Peace decided it to be justifiable homicide.

Killing of Antonio Fulton

— On the morning of June 26, 1879, Richard Moore, who had been in charge of the powder works near California City, and had been discharged for neglect, met Mr. Fulton, the manager of the works, who had crossed from San Francisco with his family in a sloop, and before his wife and children, shot Fulton through the head killing him instantly. He then placed the pistol to his own head, fired, and fell dead beside his victim.

Murder of Karl Herman Kohler

— William A. was committed to the State Prison about two years ago, on a charge of larceny. In an evil hour for all parties concerned, he was assigned to the workshop of the California Furniture Company of which Herman Kohler was foreman. Kohler seems to have been a man not entirely without faults. He had his own ideas of workshop discipline, and lived up to them. To how great an extent he aggravated can never be definitely known, as the matter rests alone upon the testimony of himself. But certainly there must have been some provocation, as it is not reasonable to suppose that a helpless convict would strike down his overseer, unless laboring under the sense of wrong. 

This much is certain, that Kohler frequently chided him for his mechanical incapacity and on one occasion reported him as a fit subject for discipline. During all this time was more or less of an invalid. He claimed that he was utterly unable, by reason of his infirmities, to perform manual labor. That Kohler continually hounded him on to do what he could not, that he menaced him with corporal punishment and so irritated him that finally, flesh and blood could stand it no longer. On the other hand it was shown on the trial that Kohler, though somewhat severe, was not more so than the circumstances demanded, and that so far as the work went he had assigned to the lightest employment in the room, namely, sand-papering the furniture. On the day of the murder, February 6, 1879, — following own account, Kohler approached his bench examining the work of the morning. Not being pleased with the inspection, he discharged a volley of abuse and left with the remark: "You mutton-head. I'll have you fixed this time." He had walked away a short distance when , in an uncontrollable fit of passion, sprang upon him, felling him to the ground with a hammer, and striking him twice as he lay prostrate on the floor. Kohler's skull was fractured in two places. He lingered for three or four days, and died. The trial developed evidence about as follows: Messrs. Bowel's and C. B. Darwin appeared for the people and H. Wilkins for the prisoner. The case was vigorously conducted on both sides, but the result was a foregone conclusion. Whatever palliation there might have been was swallowed up in the great necessity of an example to check the spirit of convict insubordination. And after an absence of a few minutes, the jury returned with a verdict of murder in the first degree. The law's delay at length proved unavailing and the day for carrying the sentence into effect was finally fixed for January 16, 1880. Influential men at the East, including Speaker Randall, interested themselves to obtain executive clemency, but to no purpose. In jail, the conduct of was various. He made several efforts to escape, two of which nearly succeeded. At times he had been prostrated with sickness. Frequently he would seem to be utterly overcome by his impending doom, while on other occasions he would assume a stoical indifference; but under all the thin disguises it was evident that the horror of his situation was never for an instant out of his mind. It sat down with him at his daily meals; it was his sole companion during long months of solitary it drew closer to him as the shadow of night descended and did not even leave him in his dreams. The final scene of the tragedy was probably the least in the sufferings of the unhappy man. In fact, when it was proposed to apply for a reprieve on account of his physical weakness, he vehemently protested, saying that death would be a happy release from his misery. The gallows erected, were the same used in former executions. The last night was spent with Father Reardon in prayer and final preparation. made his peace with all the world, humbly asking Sheriff to forgive him for the trouble caused by his wayward disposition, and thanked him for all his kindness while under his care. His state of health, however, seemed so deplorable that the Priest, Sheriff, and Doctor Taliaferro, offered to send a joint telegram to the Governor asking for a reprieve, but refused, saying, that the time had come and that he would prefer to let the law take its course, rather than live with the certainty of death hanging over him. He arose the next morning saying that he felt better than he had for some time past. At a quarter to one o'clock the death warrant was read to the prisoner in his cell. He expressed a complete willingness to die, and said he had no fear. At one o'clock precisely the procession moved from the cell to the scaffold, Fathers Reardon and in front, closely followed by , the Sheriff's deputies and assistants bringing up the rear. Though weak from sickness and confinement he walked unaided and with a tolerable firm step. His only remark was when the assistants were strapping his he complained that too much force was used. Sheriff wisely expedited matters, dispensing with all formalities. The black cap was adjusted; the rope placed around his neck, and in just two minutes after leaving the cell, the trap fell — the earthly troubles of William were at an end. His last audible words were to the Sheriff; he simply said "Do your duty sharp."

Murder of C. P. Severance — conception and execution of the murder of Charley Severance were unique and masterly. The case will take a conspicuous place among the causes " of this coast, if not of the world. Wong Chi Long had worked nearly three years for Mr. Throckmorton, under Mr. Severance, and had saved so much that he went home to China. He left the way open to return, by obtaining a promise that he should have his place if he chose to come back to it. Perhaps the horror now passed into history lay in his mind before he took that vacation; perhaps it was conceived while he was away, or it may have first occurred to him during this last year of his service. It is plain that his plan was well matured — it was not the result of a sudden impulse. He had, no doubt, waited long for a favorable time, and at last it came. Everything seemed to be in his favor on the second of April, 1880. It was collection day; Mr. Severance would come in about night, his pocket heavy with what would make the cook a rich man in China. Not a guest was at the ranch. Even Mrs. Severance and the children were absent. Mr. Throckmorton and three friends had an appointment to be there that night, but it was abandoned on account of the storm. If they had gone, they would have joined Charley at Victor's, and the horrid crime would have been defeated or postponed. In the leisure hours of that day a grave had been dug within a few feet of the house, and in nothing more than in the manner of that job is shown the consummate skill of this fiendish murderer. Each stratum of earth taken out of the grave was carefully laid by itself, to be as carefully replaced, and so skillfully was this can-led out that if the villain could have kept his tongue as well as he dug and refilled the grave, only the sound of the resurrection trumpet would have revealed it. Not long after Severance reached home that night — it was probably after dark — he went out, and no doubt was milking, when the Chinaman stealthily approached him from behind, and dealt him a powerful blow with an ax in the back of the head. The contents of a pistol were rapidly shot into him, one ball passing through his heart. The blow with the ax was fatal, the pistol wounds not bleeding shows that the blood was congealed. His watch was pulled off, but owing to the Chinese dread of touching a dead body, his pockets were not searched, and over a hundred dollars were buried with him. The cunning which had guided the fellow in digging the grave did not forsake him in refilling it. The remains of the victim were dragged with a rope around the neck, and carefully disposed of in the grave. Articles of clothing were laid over the body, and it was so solidly covered, the earth being moistened and tramped down as each layer was replaced, that a mere suspicion would never have led to its being re-opened. After it was filled and leveled off, the surface was scratched over, as by a hen, and a hen's nest, which had been lifted off to begin with, was carefully replaced. Nearly every trace of the foul deed was carefully obliterated — the bloody ax being the only evidence the cool fiend overlooked. Wong then secured his treasure, and began to plan his escape. But the vision of a life of luxury in his native land, when he should reach it with his blood-stained wealth, was not his only company that night. He was not the stolid brute which many of his countrymen are. The qualities which had made him both an efficient and a trusted now made him alive to his base ingratitude, and fearful lest his crime should overtake him. His nerves quivered with fear, and his blood burned with fever. He spent a wakeful and remorseful night, but it was nothing to the ghoul-haunted terrors soon to come upon him. The next morning, wearied and worried, he left the scene of his horrid deed, with his ill-gotten gold, and started, as he hoped, for China. But suspicion followed him. He had barely time to secret his effects under a washhouse floor in , before the hand of the law was on him. His tongue was not as cunning as his hand had been. He could not talk as he had wrought. With determined and desperate villainy he tried to fasten the crime on another, , a neighbor. In two days the public excitement had become intense, and the region was full of busy men, intent on finding out what was only known to Wong. He and the Portuguese whom he had falsely accused were lodged in jail, and the officers of the law and citizens worked night and day to find the missing man. Detectives Lees, Coffee and , from the city, conferred with -Sheriff Mason, and then took hold of the case with him. They had a perfect understanding to begin with, and after that worked in perfect harmony together. Mr. Lees obtained Sheriff Mason's consent that he should interview Wong, all by himself, whenever he the only condition being that the prisoner should not be abused or roughly handled. Mr. Lees' methods with Wong are not known, beyond the strategy of putting another Chinese prisoner with him, to draw out the facts. Although it is further understood that Wong thought Lees was his friend, perhaps a lawyer employed by his countrymen to secure his release. His visits to that cell are frequent. He stays an hour, a half hour, longer, lie comes and goes. The special efforts of the officers go on, the miscellaneous, but persistent and determined search of friends and neighbors are made in every ravine, gulch, and secluded place in the region. On the twelfth day after the crime the little knot of officers are digging under a shed near the house. The earth is solid. There is not a sign that dirt or pebble in that spot had been disturbed since the American occupation. But the digging goes on, down one, two, three, four feet, and then the arm of a man is seen. A little more dirt is carefully removed, and enough is disclosed to identify the body of Severance. It was not wholly uncovered that day, and next morning Coroner Eden was there with casket and ice, and the remains of the murdered man were brought to San Rafael. The autopsy confirmed one part of Wong's statement, viz., five shots had been fired. Communication between the detective and the Chinaman was kept up, and last Saturday morning, following another revelation wormed from him, the officers went to the washhouse in , where they found the money, to obtain which Severance was killed, and with a pistol and jacket belonging to Wong Chi Long. This completed the work. The mystery was solved. The whole dark story of the crime was told. The money and other articles were taken to the Chinaman by the officers. The father and widow of Severance were present Lees then threw off his previous strategy, and now became Wong's accuser. He was stunned and dazed, but still stuck to his denial, and clung to the thin lie, Portuguese," " The Portuguese." He denied owning the jacket, though Mrs. Severance testified she made it for him; he denied owning the pistol, which was identified as his; and he pretended he had never before seen the watch and chain, which Severance had always worn. The funeral of Severance took place from the Presbyterian in San Rafael, Sunday, 18th, Rev. James. S. McDonald officiating. It was the largest funeral ever seen in the County, and very many strong men were moved to tears by the unutterable sadness of the occasion. The funeral was conducted by the Ancient Order of United Workmen, of which deceased was an honored member, the and San Rafael Lodges uniting. The remains were buried in Mount Tamalpais Cemetery, beside a little son of the deceased, who was buried there a few months ago. At the grave the liturgy of the Order was read by the officers of the Lodge. The character of Charles W. Severance was good and noble. Mr. Throckmorton, who knew him best, pays the highest tribute to his ability and personal worth. He was a young man of much more than ordinary promise. But for his untimely taking off, he would have come into prominence as a leader, in any sphere he might have chosen. But for his extreme modesty and retiring disposition, he would have been much more prominent than he was. He leaves a father and mother, a widow and two children, a brother and sister, and a legion of friends. As soon as the web of evidence began to close about the suspected Chinaman, he was locked up each night in an iron cell. The first night in there he was very uneasy, and pleaded hard to be allowed outside, but his petition was unheeded. All that night and the next he cried and moaned most piteously, and Friday night, at lock-up, he fell upon his knees before the Sheriff and begged in agony that he might stay in the large cell. But in he went. He was still the first part of that night, but later the Chinaman in another cell heard a most unearthly cry, followed by yells and screams of mortal terror. He asked him what was the matter, and Wong answered that the man's devil had come to him. He imitated the noise made by his approach, and described his appearance, and appeared to be in a perfect agony of terror. He said he would rather die than pass another night there. Sheriff Mason had taken every precaution to prevent his doing himself bodily harm. His cue was unbraided and taken away, his sash was taken off, and his bedstead was removed from the cell. His condition was not extraordinary Sunday morning, and the Sheriff's attention was directed more to the mutterings of lynch and the danger from the outside, than to the fear of the prisoner's self-destruction. As soon as Severance's funeral was over, Sheriff Mason hurried to the to make sure that attempt at violence should be made, when he found the dead body of Wong, suspended by the neck. The Chinaman had torn up one of his under garments, and tied and twisted the strips into a rope. On the upper part of the tank were half-inch holes, six inches apart, for ventilation. He had managed to pass the end of his rope through one of these holes and bring it back through another, and this was repeated, so that the rope was tied through four holes. He then made a loop through which he put his head, perhaps doubling his mattress to stand on, and then threw his weight on his neck. He was strangled to death. His body lay in the Coroner's back room while the inquest upon his victim was proceeding in the front room. It remained there, lying in the zinc box, until Wednesday morning. The earth refused to receive and hide it. No cemetery would give it room, and his own countrymen said ." At last the Coroner was obliged to go to the city and get a permit to bury him in the Chinese cemetery, where he took it yesterday

History of Marin County,
 California - San FranciscoCal. Alley, Bowen & Co., Publishers - 1880
Transcribed by: Marianne, 
12 October 2008, Pages 238-269

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