Today in the Dauphin Herald – Nov 27 – 1913, 1919

1913 Nov 27 – Given Two Months

Peter Pandro, a Galician from the Fork River district, appeared before P.M. Munson on Friday, charged with stealing a gold watch from W. Lawson, with whom he had been working. Pandro acknowledged the theft and was sentenced to two months in jail at Portage la Prairie.

1913 Nov 27 – Had Nose Broken

A spread rail near Kamsack threw two cars of a freight train off the track on Wednesday and delayed traffic for several hours. Brakeman John McRae, of this town, had his nose broken in the accident.

1913 Nov 27 – Fork River

Miss Alice Clark, of Dauphin, is spending a shot time here among her friends.
John Mathews left for Winnipegosis, having taken a position with Frank Hector, storekeeper.
N. Slobojan, Mowat Centre, is a visitor to Dauphin on business.
Messrs. Forst and Howitson and others took in the dance at Winnipegosis on Thursday night and report a whale of a time, never to be forgotten.
Mr. and Mrs. Gordan Weaver, of Winnipegosis are spending the weekend at the home of T.N. Briggs.
Fred. King and S. Bailey returned from a trip north and report the fishing town exceptionally quiet.
“Say, Mike, run over to the store and get us a dozen fresh eggs while we unload.” Arriving at the store he shouted back: “Pat, there’s only eleven eggs and Biddy’s on the nest. Hold the train a minute.” Then biddy flies off and Mike arrives with the dozen eggs all O.K., and off we go for Dauphin. Next.
Fred. Cooper has arrived home from a few days vacation at Dauphin.
Wm. Stonehouse, carpenter and contractor, has returned home after spending the summer with the A.T. Co., at Winnipegosis and South Bay.
The members of the S.S. and Women’s Auxiliary of All Saints’ Church held a meeting on Wednesday and arranged for a Xmas tree and programme to be held in Dec. 23rd.
Mr. Elliot, Methodist student of Winnipegosis, is spending the weekend visiting members of his congregation.
Alfred Snelgrove has returned home from Yorkton, where he has been the last two months with his threshing outfit.
Dunc. Briggs and MAX King have left for the north to draw fish for the Armstrong Trading Co.

1913 Nov 27 – Winnipegosis

Howard Armstrong, of Fork River, who was under remand on a charge of stealing, was brought up before the magistrate, Mr. Parker, on Monday, the case being dismissed for want of evidence, a verdict that was popular with all.
Miss Spence proceeded to Dauphin hospital on Monday, having to be conveyed to the station on an ambulance.
The government school inspector, conducted by Coun. Tom Toye, made a visit to all the schools in the district during the past week.
Mr. De Rouchess, of Pine Creek, has suffered a great loss through having some thousands of skins confiscated by the Inspector visiting his store.
A dance was given by the bachelors in conjunction with the spinsters (who supplied the refreshments) of this town on Monday night. Everybody enjoyed themselves immensely, the “turkey trot” and “bunny hug” being in great demand, the dancing lasting up to the wee sma’ hours of the morning. The music was supplied by Mr. Watson, being ably assisted by his wife. Noticeably among the guests present were Constable Hunkings, Messrs. Cunliffe, Paddock, Morton and Watson and their respective wives with Misses Stevenson, Goodman and many others. Numerous “boys” from Fork River took the opportunity of enjoying themselves on this occasion.
I. Foster, reeve of Landsdowne, near Galdstone, visited us on Wednesday for the purpose of buying a couple of car loads of cattle, but found that the surrounding country had been gleaned by previous operators who already left.
Mr. Graffe has taken over the Lake View hotel livery stable and no doubt this caterer for equine wants will make a success of it, as “Billy” Ford, proprietor of the hotel, has gone to considerable expense in renovating the barn and being a genial “Mine host” with a charming personality, both man and beast will be well provided for.
“Billy” Walmesley, pool room proprietor, intends standing as councillor for ward 4 in the coming election, and as he is greatly respected, it is hoped that everybody will give the support due to him, as he is an old timer, always to the front in all kinds of sport and making it his business to push forward the interests of the town on every occasion. “Billy” should do well in the council chamber as he has a most varied and vigorous style of speech.
Captain Reid, of Shoal River, is visiting the town after a considerable absence.

1913 Nov 27 – Bicton Heath

Winnipegosis, Nov. 21.
Frank Hechter was the delegate to the District Grain Growers convention at Dauphin. Frank is now a horny handed son of toil.
The snowstorm on Monday has put a stop to the stock grazing in the open.
The ratepayers from this section will attend the next meeting of the council, on Dec. 5th, in a body. This will mean a road to the school.
Mr. Wenger is contemplating holding an auction sale at an early date.

1913 Nov 27 – Ethelbert

Mr. A. McPhedran and wife have returned from Fort William, where they were visiting relatives.
Mr. Leary has been to Winnipeg interviewing the Returned Soldiers Pension Board.
Miss McLennan was a visitor to the hospital here this week.
The Victory Loan in Ethelbert sure was a success. The allotment was $25 000, but over $45 000 was subscribed. The canvassers did good work.

1913 Nov 27 – Winnipegosis

Monday, Dec. 22nd, at the Rex Hall, is the date fixed for the Union Sunday School Christmas tree and entertainment. The scholars are engaged upon the preparation of a comedy entitled “Santa Claus and the Magic Carpet,” and a good miscellaneous program.
Mr. F.G. Shears returned on Saturday from a trip to Dauphin.
The winter fishing season opened on the 20th.

Today in the Dauphin Herald – Oct 18 – 1917

1917 Oct 18 – Births

MUNRO – At Fork River, on Oct. 6th, to Mr. and Mrs. Alex. Munro, twins, both boys.

1917 Oct 18 – Many Fines at Winnipegosis

A number of parties appeared before Magistrate Whale at Winnipegosis on Tuesday at the instance of Inspector Gurton. Seven were fined and one case withdrawn. The fines and costs amounted to $800. One of the parties fined had been doing a thriving business in selling “cordials,” “liniments” and “bunion” cures, all to be taken inwardly.

1917 Oct 18 – Fork River Boys and Girls Club

This fair took place on Friday, Oct. 11th. The conditions were most unfavourable as the weather could not very well have been worse and the settlement being in the middle of the threshing prevented the grownups as well as many of the children from attending and there were numbers of exhibits which the children had no doubt taken great pains with that never appeared at all. The following is the first prize:
Wheat sheaf – 1st, Fred Yager, 2nd, Peter Yepletney.
Twenty pounds threashed wheat – 1st, Peter Yepletney, 2nd, Fred Yager.
Pair of pigs – 1st, Robert Williams.
One pig – Lawrence Shannon.
Half bushel of potatoes – 1st, Nellie Kolikitchka, 2nd, Albert Galcuski, 3rd, Maurice Delcourt, 4th, Peter Yepletney, 5th, Blanche Hunt, 6th, Maurice Delcourt, 7th, Mable Russell, 8th, Peter Zepletney, 9th, Peter Rudkanvitch, 10th, Emilie Strasden.
Trio of white Wyandotts – 1st, Edith Shannon, 2nd, David Nowosad, 3rd, Clara Hunt.
Trio of barred rocks – 1st, Lawrence Rowe, 2nd, Robert Williams.
Trio of buff Orpingtons – 1st, Alice Nowosad, 2nd, Robert Williams.
Trio of white Leghorns – F. Benner.
Trio of black Minorcas – 1st, Jenny Chernowes, 2nd, Metro Yarish.
Trio brown Leghorns – Mike Barcuski.
Sewing, girls over 14 – Alice Nowosad.
Girls under 14 – 1st, Clara Hunt, 2nd, Edith Shannon.
Foal – Joe Shannon.
Loaf of Bread – 1st, Clara Hunt, 2nd, Mable Russell.
Canned peas – 1st, Viola Rowe, 2nd, L. Rowe.
Canned beans – 1st, Karl Shields, 2nd, L. Rowe.
Beast poultry coup (special) – Alice Nowosad.
Crocheting (special) – Emilie Strasden, 2nd, Mary Mazurka.

SCHOOL PRIZE LIST.
Writing:
Grade 1 – 1st, Adolf Redwasky, 2nd, Stephen Nowosad.
Grade 2 – 1st, Charlie Yager, 2nd, John Wowk.
Grade 3 – 1st, Bernice Rowe, 2nd, Michael Michalina Hilash.
Grade 4 – 1st, John Pick, 2nd, Wasyl Fediuk.
Grade 5 – 1st, Aug. Perwin, 2nd, Dave Nowosad.
Grade 6 – 1st, Peter Zapitlney, 2nd, Erma Delcourt.
Grade 7 – Duncan Robertson.
Grade 8 – 1st, Edith Shannon, 2nd, Clara Hunt.

Map Drawing (war map of the world):
Grade 4 – 1st, Viola Rowe, 2nd, Arthur Jamieson.
Grade 6 – 1st, Dorothy Venables, 2nd, Blanche Hunt.
Grade 8 – 1st, Edith Shannon, 2nd, Clara Hunt.

Scribblers:
Grade 8 – 1st, Clara Hunt, 2nd, Edith Shannon.
Grade 6 – 1st, Erma Delcourt, 2nd, Dorothy Venables.
Grade 5 – 1st, Annie Phillipchuk, 2nd, Evelyn Robertson.
Grade 4 – 1st, Viola Rowe, 2nd, Arthur Jamieson.
Grade 3 – 1st, Patty Richardson, 2nd, Bernice Rowe.
Grade 2 – 1st, Goldie Shuchett, 2nd, Victor Forster.
Grade 1 – 1st, Danny Wilson, 2nd, Stephen Nowosad.

Paper folding:
Grade 3 and 4 – 1st, Nellie Saloman, 2nd, Joe Masiowski.
Grade 1 – 1st, Agnus Masiowski, 2nd, Teenie Laporawski.

Raffia Collection: 1st, Mowat School, 2nd, Pine View.

Fancy Flowers: first, Mary Muzyaka, second, Jenny Janowski.

Collection of Leaves:
Grade 8 – 1st, Alice Nowosad, 2nd, Clare Hunt
Grade 6 – 1st, Erma Delcourt, 2nd, Blanche Hunt.
Grade 5 – 1st, Annie Phillichuk, 2nd, Dane Nowosad.
Grade 4 – 1st, Sofia Yaroslawky, 2nd, Joe Nowosad.
Grade 3 – Pearl Reid.
Grade 2 – Bernard Hunt.

Collection of woods:
Grade 2 – Earnest Halfinbrak.
Grade 4 – 1st, Albert Janowski, 2nd, Alexander Zaplatney.
Grade 6 – Peter Zaplatney.

School chorus, 1st, Mossey School, 2nd, Janowski.

1917 Oct 18 – Fork River

Mr. and Mrs. Cameron, of Neepawa, are visiting at the home of Mr. Sandy Cameron at Mowat.
The annual S.S. service will be held in All Saints’ Sunday afternoon, Oct. 21st, at 3 o’clock.
Mr. and Mrs. Ed. Cameron, of Neepawa, are visiting at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Nat Little.
Mr. Levins, of Winnipeg, has put in a large pair of scales and is buying wheat for the McLanghlin Co.
Quite a little of the Winnipegosis “cordial” is said to have reached here. It is sure hot stuff.
Renew your subscription to the Herald promptly.

1917 Oct 18 – Winnipegosis

Thanking the people of Winnipegosis for their liberal support and hoping we can make as good a showing in the coming year.
Inspector Gurton was here on Tuesday and Magistrate T.H. Whale disposed of the liquor cases. Seven of the “boys” had to come across with the coin of the realm. The total of the fines and costs amounted to $800.
It was sure hard on “the old man,” who did such a thriving business with his “liniments” and “cordials” and “bunion” cures. The fall business was just beginning to pick up, too.
Magistrate Whale says if the cases keep up he will have to procure a wig and gown.
Most of the fishermen are at the north end of the lake preparing for the winter’s work.

Today in the Dauphin Herald – Oct 17 – 1912, 1918

1912 Oct 17 – Committed for Trial

One night last week several windows were broken in the store of Katz & Brackman at Ethelbert. I.J. Katz, who happened to be in town, swore that he saw Peter Pundy and another party that he could not recognize in the dark, break the windows with an axe. Pundy was brought before Magistrate Skaife, on the charge, and after two nights were consumed in hearing and evidence, was committed for trial. F.E. Simpson appeared for the prosecution and J.L. Bowman for the defence.

1912 Oct 17 – Ethelbert

A preliminary hearing was held before Police Magistrate R. Skaife on the evenings of the tenth and eleventh of Oct. An information, charging Peter Pundy, was laid by H. Brachman of the firm of Katz & Brachman, with breaking four panes of glass and other damages, amounting to over $20, during the night of Oct. 10th, to their store on Main Street. Considerable interest was manifested by the Ruthenian population, the court being crowded each night until midnight and feeling ran high. Mr. Simpson, of Dauphin, put the case for prosecution, and Mr. Bowman for the defence. After a prolonged and careful hearing, it was thought by the magistrate, the charge needed further investigation and Pundy was remanded for trial at Portage la Prairie. He was allowed at large, after entering into bail himself in $200, and two others for $150 each, for his appearance at Portage to stand his trial.
The Elevator is nearing completion and will need only a few more days to make it ready to receive the crop.
Norman Booth, the buyer for the Elevator Co., went west a few days ago, where he was united in the bonds of matrimony to Miss Olive Ward, the daughter of Cross Ward, postmaster of Deepdale. Mr. Booth and his wife have returned to Ethelbert, where they will reside until the grain season is over. Cross Ward is an old resident of Ethelbert and our hearty congratulations are given to the newly wed couple, that they may live long, and prosper in their new undertaking.
Geo. Marantz has commenced business in John McLean’s store, and is doing his best to attract customers by a good display of new goods in his windows.
J. McLean expects to transfer the balance of his stock still unsold at an early date. He retains the grist mill which he hopes to run as usual this winter.
The ever present and crying need of the hour, is now, and ever will be, good roads to move the crops.
There are rumours that something will be done, in this direction, by the Council availing themselves of the government’s offer to pay two-thirds of the cost of constructing main roads through the district.

1912 Oct 17 – Fork River

J. McCaulay, Massey-Harris travelling agent, was here a few days on business with D. Kennedy.
Peter Ellis, after spending the week-end with his family, has returned to Kamsack.
Samuel Bailey took a trip to Dauphin on business last week.
Clem Kennis, who has been at Prince Albert for some months, returned home and states the harvest very late all over the West.
Robertson & Snelgrove are shipping their threshing outfit to Yorkton for the season and Pat Powers is going along. Nothing like lots of “Power.”
Miss L. Clark, of Dauphin, is visiting at the home of her parents.
Rev. H.H. Scrase paid Winnipegosis a visit lately to meet some persons from Meadow Portage on church business.
Mrs. G. Tilt, of Dauphin, is spending a few days on the farm on the Mossey.
Miss Margaret and Gertrude Kennedy are visiting with Mrs. Chas. Wilkes of Winnipegosis.
Mr. Scelly was up last week from Dauphin visiting Mr. Clemons.
Mr. Glendenning is visiting his uncle, Thos. Glendenning, on the Mossey for a few days.
Next Sunday, Oct. 20th, special children’s service at the English church at 3 o’clock, and on Sunday, Oct. 27th, the annual harvest festival service will be held and a suitable sermon for the occasion will be preached by the Rev. H.H. Scrase. All are welcome to the services.
Rev. Sam. Cruch, late of Glenella and family, are visiting at the home of Mrs. Kennedy for a few days on their way to Tullesford, Sask.

1912 Oct 17 – Sifton

Church of England services are held regularly every fortnight at Sifton (Tuesday evening) and also at other times by arrangement.

1912 Oct 17 – Winnipegosis

Harvest festival service will be held at Winnipegosis school house at 7.30 on Oct. 20th. Collection will be made for the Home Mission Fund. The sermon will be preached by the Rev. H.H. Scrase, minister in charge.
J.R. Parker, of the Standard Lumber Co., has gone to Winnipeg to endeavour to secure men for work in the woods.
Jos. Birrell took his child to the hospital at Dauphin on Monday.
Active preparations are being made for the winter’s fishing. The prospects for fishing are said to be exceptionally poor.
The cattle industry in these parts is proving most profitable. Several shipments were recently made to Dauphin. Campbell Benson was the purchaser.

1918 Oct 17 – This Week’s Casualties

Pte. William Alfred Cleland, Dauphin, killed. (William Alfred Cleland, 1894, 865829)
Pte. Chas. Gray, Dauphin, killed. (???)
Pte. Francis Ingram Rogers, Asheville, wounded. (Francis Ingram Rogers, 1899, 1001239)
Pte. Harold Allan Dunlop, Dauphin, wounded. (Harold Allan Dunlop, 1897, 718788)
Pte. Campbell, Winnipegosis, wounded. (???)
Pte. Chris Benson, Dauphin, wounded. (Christian T Benson, 1887, 1000081)
Pte. Orval Wood Struthers, Dauphin, gunshot wound in right leg. (Orval Wood Struthers, 1895, 151250)
Pte. J.H. Paulson, Winnipegosis, wounded. (Johann Hannibal Paulson, 1891, 2504017)
Pte. W.S. Hamilton, Dauphin, gassed. (???)
Pte. George Edward Buchannon, Dauphin, wounded. (George Edward Buchannon, 1894, 1000633)
Pte. Ray Neely, Dauphin, wounded. (Ray Neely, 1897, 1000556)
Pte. William Meldrum, Dauphin, wounded. (William Meldrum, 1897, 1000280)
Pte. Harry Hamilton Olson, Dauphin. (???)
Pte. E.N. Humphries, Dauphin, wounded. (???)

1918 Oct 17 – Churches and Schools Closed

By order of the health officer of the town all churches, schools and public places of amusement have been closed on account of the Spanish influenza epidemic.

1918 Oct 17 – The Man of the Hour
Gen. Spanish Flu.

1918 Oct 17 – TOWN OF DAUPHIN
SPANISH INFLUENZA
WARNING TO THE PUBLIC

This disease is very prevalent in some parts of the world today, and has reached our Town. It is therefore advisable that people generally should know something about it, its symptoms, and the measure and method of its communicability; and should be advised as to the general rules for its restraint and cure.
Spanish Influenza is generally believed to be a variety of the old type of Influenza with which we have been long familiar, with in addition possibly some increase of virulence, due to the conditions and places in which this present epidemic had its origin.
It is a “Germ” disease, and is conveyed from one suffering from it to others, by the secretions of the mouth, nose, throat and lungs. The use of towels or cups in common will readily spread it. Coughing, spitting or sneezing by anyone who has it, in the company of others, will readily spread it. Crowded and ill ventilated living rooms and sleeping places, as well as ill ventilated and insanitary places of work are conductive to its dissemination.
The following are the symptoms which generally accompany an attack:
Fever, headache, backache, inflamed throat, and often bleeding from the nose. In addition to these symptoms, in more severe cases a troublesome cough with a sense of constriction in the chest follows. From these develop the case of Broncho-Pneumonia which is the feature of the disease mainly responsible for deaths.
If cases should come to your neighbourhood, think first of Prevention. Don’t go to any house or place in which there may be persons with the above symptoms. Don’t let any person suffering from these symptoms come to your home or place of business. Don’t use common towels or drinking cups in any place. Keep away from people who have the disease, if you do you won’t get it. If on the other hand, you mingle with people who have it there is no known method of disinfection which would prevention your taking it. Therefore stay away and keep in he open air and sunlight as much as possible.
If you should be attacked by the disease, go to bed at once. Rest and Warmth are very important factors in its cure. Take warm drinks, live on fluids, and send for your Physician. Having done these things promptly, there is usually little danger. Not doing them, and taking chance, may turn a very mild illness into a very serious and sometimes a fatal one.
Attendants on all cases should wear gauze masks.

E. BOTTOMLEY,
Health Officer, Town of Dauphin.

1918 Oct 17 – Fork River

Mr. Hanson, auditor for the Armstrong Trading Co., spent a few days in town lately.
Leo Beck has purchased the threshing outfit of Charles Bugg and is making the straw fly.
There are now five outfits threshing within a radius of three miles so good progress is being made with the work.
Potatoes, yes sir. From a pound of Victory seed 50 lbs. were produced. When I comes to grain or vegetables Fork River district stands at the top.
Mrs. Moxam, from Winnipeg, is visiting at the home of Mr. Sam Reid.
So far the Spanish Flue has laid its hand lightly on us. However, we must not be behind the times or out of fashion, so that anyone from now on who gets a cold will claim to have had an encounter with His Nibbs King Flu. But, say, if we could only resort to the remedy of happy memory, hot toddy, wouldn’t the male portion of the population be suddenly afflicted.

1918 Oct 17 – Sifton

Sunday automobile travelling is just as prevalent as ever. The writer counted nine in town last Sunday. There are lots of places where yellow paint and rotten eggs could be used a plenty.
The foundations for the large Ruthenian hall has been laid and the material is on the ground.
It is about time the foreigners (and most of them are still foreigners and pride themselves on it) learned to take notice of our national statutory holidays. On Thanksgiving Day may loads of grain drove into market, the owners knowing nothing of the day, caring less, and most indignant at not being able to unload. But let an Anglo-Saxon try t hire one on a saint’s or holy day – nothing doing!
Philip Wood and Leslie Kennedy and Miss Lottie Isaacovitch and enjoying a short holiday here.
This district is not behind most of the districts in grain yields. Thirty bushels to the acre is quite common, and as high as 40 and even 50 bushels to the acre has been threshed.
W. Terin still delivers fresh fish to town, easing up the H.C.L.
An average of two car loads of live stock are shipped from here each week throughout the year, excepting possibly three months.
Several gas tractors have been sold at this point, with a promise of many more next season.
Our roads, and especially our culverts, are generally speaking, a disgrace. The wear and tear to rolling stock and automobiles, not to mention horse flesh, is beyond calculation. A culvert one foot or more above the grade was responsible for a small automobile wreck on Saturday in ward 6. The council will be asked to pay the damages.
Glorious Indian summer, with a forecast of winter within the next two months at least.

Today in the Dauphin Herald – Oct 13 – 1910

1910 Oct 13 – Fined $60

Thos. Shannon, of Fork River, administered a severe beating to a neighbouring farmer, Morley Snelgrove, and was arraigned before Geo. O. Bellamy, P.M., of Winnipegosis, and fined $40 and costs for the assault and $10 and costs for trespass. The beating given to Snelgrove was a terrible one.

1910 Oct 13 – Killed by Fall From Wagon

A sad accident occurred last Tuesday evening about seven o’clock some sixteen miles from Roblin, by which James Blakely, eldest son of Mr. Robert Blakely, of Grandview, met an almost instantaneous death. He had been for a long time employed as a freighter for the Hanbury camps, and in company with a young Englishman named Joe pulled out of Roblin with two loads immediately after dinner on Tuesday, and they had got about sixteen miles on their journey when it began to rain. Blakely evidently had reached back on his load to get his coat and standing up was in the act of putting it on when the wheel dropped into a rut, throwing the unfortunate man to the ground between the horses. He struck on the side of his head, dislocating the neck. He died just as the driver of the rig following reached him and pulled him from under the horses. – Grandview Exponent.

1910 Oct 13 – Fork River

Mrs. Dallas and Mrs. G. Shannon paid Dauphin a visit last week.
Hugh Harley, of Swan River, was here doing business last week.
D.F. Wilson returned from Dauphin last week.
G. Tilt was a visitor to Dauphin last week.
Miss Nixon left last week on a visit to friends in Winnipeg.
Mr. Salter, of the Winnipeg Portrait Oil Co. has been here doing business.
Mrs. C. Clark paid a flying visit to Winnipegosis a day or two ago.
Mr. and Mrs. Sims, North Dakota, have been visiting Mr. and Mrs. J. Lockhart of this district.
Next Sunday special service at the English Church, Children’s Day. Sermons appropriate for the day will be preached by the missionary in charge.

Today in the Dauphin Herald – Oct 3 – 1912, 1918

1912 Oct 3 – Fined $50 and Costs

Fred Buchij, a Galician, had a row over cattle with another Galician at Valley River. In the melee Buchij ran a pitchfork into the other man. The case was tried before P.M. Munson on Wednesday and Buchij fined $50 and costs. He paid up.

1912 Oct 3 – Killed at Kamsack

Thos. Powell, formerly of Dauphin, was killed at Kamsack on Monday. He was a car repairer. He was working under a car when a train shunted on the track and shoved the car over him. He was badly crushed. Powell was at one time an employee in the railway shops here.

1912 Oct 3 – Threshing Progress

Threshing commenced in several parts of the district this week and will be general if the fine weather continues. A great deal of the grain is being stacked this fall with the object of going ahead with the plowing.

1912 Oct 3 – Mossey River Council

The council met at Fork River on the 25th Sept. All members present.
The minutes of the previous meeting were read and adopted.
Communications were read from Sarnia Bridge Co., Supt. Irwin, of C.N.R., the solicitors, the Highway Commissioner, J.P. Grenon and the Million for the Manitoba League.
A report of the public works committee condemning the Bailey Bridge unsafe for traffic was read.
Nicholson – Robertson – That the Minster of Public Works be asked to send an engineer to examine the site of the Bailey Bridge and that government aid be asked for to construct it.
Hunt – Nicholson – That the clerk write Supt. Irwin, of the C.N.R., re ditch from Mossey River north to the Sanderson Creek and also re crossing on Cocker Road.
Seiffert – Nicholson – That the council pass a by-law to expropriate a roadway sixty six feet wide along the west side of the C.N. through the N.W. 18-30-18.
McAuley – Robertson – That the clerk write the rural municipality of Dauphin and ask that some of the members of its council meet Reeve Lacey and Coun. Robertson at the bridge across the Mossey River on the boundary line between the two municipalities to consider what is best to be done as the bridge is becoming unsafe.
Nicholson – Toye – That no action be taken towards collecting the price of the Shannon road from Thomas Shannon till Dec. 1st, 1913.
Nicholson – Robertson – That the declarations of Councillors McAuley, Toye and Nicholson for $13.80, $17.70 and $24.30 respectively for letting and inspecting work be passed.
Nicholson – Robertson – That no person be allowed to dump garbage within 200 yards of any residence, street or road in the village of Fork River, and that the Armstrong Trading Co., be notified to remove the refuse deposited by them behind the Orange Hall immediately.
Nicholson – McAuley – That the Minister of the Interior re memorialized to throw the swamp lands in the municipality open for the homesteads.
Hunt – Nicholson – That the C.N.R. be asked to place an agent at Fork River during the shipping season.
A by-law to establish the rate for 1912 was passed, the rates being municipal rate, 12 mills; municipal commissioner’s rate ½ a mill, and the general school rate 4 mills.
McAuley – Toye – That the Council adjourn to meet at Winnipegosis on November 1st.

1912 Oct 3 – Fork River

The Rev. H.H. Scrase visited Rural Dean Wiley and on his return visited Sifton on church business.
Thomas Shannon returned from a business trip to Winnipegosis.
The northern Elevator Co., has a gang here putting up an elevator. An elevator is needed here and it will fill a long felt want.
Archie McKerchar and W. Clarkson of Winnipegosis, spent Wednesday evening with the boys at the Orange Hall and report things booming among the fishermen there.
The cattle buyers are getting busy. One shipped part of a car of sheep last week.
Mrs. R. McEachern and son Donnie, visited Mrs. J.E. Morris, of Winnipegosis, last week.
Mrs. H. Scrase returned from Winnipegosis after spending a few days with her friends and while there attended the installation of officers of the W.A. at the point.
A large number attended the council meeting but no miracles have been performed so far to the satisfaction of the people as promised year ago.
Mrs. C.L. White, of Winnipegosis, is visiting at the home of Mrs. D. Kennedy.
Jim Parker is now living on the old Parker farm and keeps his gang moving. We are always glad to see new faces among us.
Rev. H. Scrase will hold divine service in All Saints’ Church every Sunday afternoon at 3 o’clock at Fork River and Winnipegosis school house every Sunday at 7.30 p.m. and at Sifton on Mondays and Tuesdays evening as will be arranged there by next Sunday.
Nat Little arrived home on the special Saturday evening from his trip south. Specials seem to be the order of the day. Nothing like lots of train service, if they only come the same day as advertised. Nuff said.

1912 Oct 3 – Winnipegosis

Fine weather is again with us and our people are wearing pleasant faces. Do you know, people are a good deal like the weather, they change quickly. When the sun is shining all have pleasant faces; when it is dull and overcast long dismal countenance surround us. Give us the man who smiles whether it rains or shines. He’s the one worth while.

Friend, life will frequently grow
Dreary: no fortunate isles
Lie where time’s dun water flow
Give me the fellow who smiles.

Peter McArthur returned to town on Saturday from Dauphin.
All Saints’ Church was the scene of a pretty wedding on Monday, when William Christensen was united in the holy bond of wedlock to Marie Louise Lebel. The ceremony was performed by the Rev. Father Derome of Makinak.
The “old-timers” sketches running in the Herald are quite interesting. Winnipegosis has a few men who are well worth writing up. They have seen the country under all conditions, and what’s more, have made good. We’ll name just a few. peter McArthur, Jos. Grenon, Sr., Tom Whale, and Hughie McKellar, the fish expert. To have Hughie tell the history of the little fishes from the cradle to the table, would prove a mighty interesting chapter. In a future issue of the herald Hugie will be asked to tell what he knows.
Capt. Coffey has been here during the past week. The Capt. is nothing if not optimistic. He looks for a good season fishing.

1918 Oct 3 – The Week’s Casualties

Pte. T. Grenier, Makinak, killed in action. (Telesphore Joseph Grenier, 1895, 291698)
Pte. Chas. W. Skinner, Dauphin, wounded and missing. (Charles Winstanley Skinner, 1898, 1001047)
Pte. Harold Tomalin, Dauphin, killed in action. Pte. Tomalin was a fireman on the C.N.R. when he enlisted last January. His parents, Mr. and Mrs. Wm. Tomalin, reside at Magnet, Man. (Harold Tomalin, 1896, 2129193)

1918 Oct 3 – Dramatic Meeting on Battle Front

One of the Dauphin boys writes the Herald of a dramatic meeting he had with another local boy at night. “We were,” he writes; “on the move and had come to a stop on account of the congestion of traffic. A fleet of Fritz’s planes came out and dropped about fifty bombs around us. Looking around by the light that the bombs made I saw another Dauphin boy about ten feet away. We only had time for a handshake and wish for “good luck” when the traffic moved on.

1918 Oct 3 – Fork River

Mr. Pettit, of Winnipeg, paid this burgh a visit in the interest of the new Victory War Bond campaign.
Mrs. Tait, of Indian Head, Sask., is visiting at her parents, Mr. and Mrs. H. Timewell.
Mr. Love has arrived from Lake Manitoba and has taken charge of the Salada School, west of town.
Max King was a visitor to Winnipeg for a few days on business with the Military branch.
We notice Dauphin merchants are closing their stores at 6.30 p.m. What a contrast to some of our stores in this burg which are kept open much longer hours and sometimes on Sundays. The latter should be stopped at once.
James McDonald has finished his residence and moved into it.
T.A. Briggs has received a shipment of horses for Bonanza farm. The man who is able to receive a bunch of horses these days must have a bonanza bank account.
Fork River farms are in demand a good prices. Several deals are likely to go through shorty.
A Herald subscriber tells your correspondent he is mistaken when he states that “King potato” has not been crowned. He sure is the crowned potentate of this part of the country at any rate.

1918 Oct 3 – Winnipegosis

RED CROSS NOTICE.
The annual meeting of the Red Cross Society will be held on Tuesday evening, the 8th of October, at 8 o’clock, in Rex Hall. Every member is requested to be present. A report of work done during the year will be made by the secretary, and officers will be elected for the coming year. It is for the purpose of electing officers that a full attendance is requested.
Don’t forget that this work is for the wounded men of our army and navy, who have been winning the victories we are so jubilant about just now.

E.L. MACARTHUR,
Sec.-Treasurer.

Today in the Dauphin Herald – Aug 28 – 1913

1913 Aug 28 – Broke His Leg

John Coleen, of Red Deer Point, Lake Winnipegosis, broke his leg on Tuesday by falling out of a wagon. He was brought to the hospital here on Wednesday by Dr. Medd.

1913 Aug 28 – Ethelbert

Peter Pundy was arraigned before Magistrate Skaife last week charged by George Marantz with plastering manure over he windows of his store. He was found guilty and the fine and costs amounted to $31. There is talk of Pundy appealing the case.
Wheat cutting is going ahead with all possible speed. The bulk of the crop will be cut by Saturday night.
The Ruthenians have organized a Conservative association with a good membership. The following are the officers elected: Sam Hughes, M.P.P., Honorary President; N.A. Hryhorczuk, President; P. Kuzyk, Vice; K.F. Slipetz, sec.-treasurer and organizer.

1913 Aug 28 – Fork River

Mr. and Mrs. J. Clemens of Dauphin, spent a short time renewing old acquaintances last week.
Mr. Morrison, of the Canadian Oil Co. of Winnipeg, was busy here taking orders for gasoline and oil.
Our weed inspector is busy these days. One of our farmers was mulcted to the tune of twenty-five dollars and costs. We are informed another man at Winnipegosis was put to the trouble of having a gang of men cutting down a common weed for sow thistle. This weed business seems a complicated proposition and needs handling very carefully. The enforcing of the act has become a necessity here.
We are informed that a new fruit store is in operation. Opposition is the life of trade we are told.
Fred. Storrar returned from Winnipegosis, where he had charge of a booth during the picnic and reports a swell time.
Mrs. McEacheron and son, Donny, are spending, a few days with her sister, Mrs. E. Morris, at Winnipegosis.
In the absence of the constable last week we hear the lady suffragettes held a successful meeting and everything passed off quietly till they meet again.
Mrs. Kennedy and family and Miss A. Godkin returned from Winnipegosis, after spending a week at that point among their numerous friends.
Quite a number took in the trainmen’s picnic to Winnipegosis and report having a good time there.
James McDonald returned from a two weeks’ visit among friends in the south and is looking hearty and has resumed charge of the express automobile.
Picture to yourself Main Street east in our little burgh where night after night a band of from twenty to forty head of cattle laying around till there is not room to pass between them and the dwelling houses with a team and the aroma that arises with a hot sun beating down on it every day. Again, a benighted traveller crossing over in the dark and landing in one of those pyramids dedicated to the memory of cowology. A voice calling to be helped out and a pillar of brimstone and fire arises blazoned with it, to the downfall of those who put the herd law out of existence. Is it not a disgrace to a civilized community to put up with such a state of affairs.
Mrs. W. King returned from a short stay at Winnipegosis with her daughter, Mrs. E. Morris, during the illness of her little son who died last week.
The Rev. Mr. Roberts held service in the Methodist Church on the 24th.
The Rev. Mr. Wosney will hold service in All Saints’ English Church every Sunday at three in the afternoon till further notice.
The first car of fish of the season passed through here from Lake Winnipegosis last week.
A large assortment of vegetables is shipped from this point which is sampled by the stock running at large to the discomfort of the shipper.

Six Points To The Scaffold

Using one of the many prompts from Geneabloggers I decided to document an interesting criminal case from the Winnipeg Free Press involving robbery and murder. Here is a digital version of an article from the Magazine Section of the Winnipeg Free Press printed on Saturday, June 6, 1942.

It is a dramatic account of the murder investigation of 23 year-old Peter Demcheson (Peter Demschyzn), a young settler from the Fork River area in the Mossey River Municipality that occurred approximately 10 years prior on Oct. 14, 1930. Peter attended the Mowat School for a number of years before leaving school to aid his family on their homestead. His murderer, Joseph Verhoski (Joe Veroski), was eventually caught and was hung for the crime on February 2, 1931.

This story is interesting to note as it is revisited again in an article in the Winnipeg Free Press printed on Saturday, June 26, 2004. The article documents that the R.M. of Mossey had recently converted to the numbered road system thereby changing the once interesting name Murder Hill Road to Road 180 N. While changing the names of road to something that may be easier to mange we lose interesting tidbits that could identify what occurred in the community’s past.

———-

Six Points To The Scaffold ~ By Edward Green (6 Jun 1942)

Months of the Most Detailed and Disappointing Investigation Work Ever Carried on by the Manitoba Provincial Police Were Rewarded by The Evidence of a Ballistics Expert and Another Rural Murder Mystery Was Solved.

GENERAL science is merciless, but the science of forensic ballistics is more so by its cold impartiality to life or death area in the criminal courts. Today it is accepted as irrefutable evidence, pro or con, in all Canadian courts of justice, but the following story deals with the time it was first reluctantly admitted to the courts of Manitoba.

Our story opens when William Demcheson, homesteader living near Fork River, a tiny settlement on the highway between Dauphin and Winnipegosis in northern Manitoba, looked anxiously at the darkening sky. The bleak October day was drawing to a close, and the steady downpour of rain had turned to snow. The first chill touch of a long prairie winter was in the air.

Demcheson wondered what could be delaying his brother Peter, who had left earlier in the day to keep an appointment with Dr. Medd, of Winnipegosis. Peter had taken William’s Ford car for the trip and he should have been home by this time. It was probable he was having a hard time negotiating the muddy highway, but somehow or other, William was not satisfied with this possibility. As the night wore on he grew more and more restless, his imagination running riot. Finally he went to bed.

Next morning William was still more anxious because Peter had not returned. Knowing his brother as he did, he was sure some hard luck had befallen him. He reasoned that if Peter had been delayed on some legitimate matter he would have sent word. He was of the quiet, studious type, not prone to staying out late or absenting himself from home without giving a sound reason. William turned to his work, his mind a prey to a million worries.

Two days later, Peter was still absent and William was new thoroughly alarmed. He sought the assistance of his neighbors and they organized a search party. They scoured the road and willow bushes for miles around, but there was no sign of Peter or the car. William immediately made his way to Winnipegosis, where he learned from Dr. Medd that his brother had supposedly left for home on the afternoon of October 14. The local practitioner could give no information as to where Peter might be, and with a fixed conviction that something terrible had happened, William lost no time in communicating with the Manitoba Provincial police at Dauphin. Sergeant G. A. Renton, in charge of the detachment, listened to his story and at once detailed Constable Bayfield to assist the local search party.

Under the able direction of the constable the entire country around Fork River was combed without result. On being questioned by Bayfield Dr. Medd said that Peter had had an abscess lanced while in his office. The abscess had been on his left cheek and had presented no difficulty. The doctor’s answers set at ease any doubts as to the missing man’s physical condition. It had been thought that Peter, weakened by illness, might have lost control of the car and met with an accident.

Many persons had traversed that highway, however, and if there had been a car smash they certainly would have reported it. That possibility was now scouted by the doctor’s opinion. The constable therefore decided to begin a methodical search, starting at Winnipegosis and working toward Fork River.

The occupants of every house along the highway were questioned. None of them had see Peter Demcheson or the Ford car. They were very emphatic on that point. Yes, they knew, and liked the young man, but as the weather had been very inclement they had not been outside as much as usual. No, they hadn’t even noticed any new car tracks, but the roads were so slushy that it would be impossible to identify any tire marks. However, they all agreed that it would be possible for Demcheson to have passed without being seen. Apparently, so far as the search party was concerned, Peter Demcheson and his Ford car had vanished in thin air somewhere between Dr. Medd’s office and the outskirts of Winnipegosis.

Discerned Something in A Thick Clump of Bush

But Constable Bayfield knew that men and automobiles do net vanish without trace. He spread the members of his party out and ordered them to proceed carefully covering an area a half-mile wide on each side of the road. So carefully and thoroughly did they search that it took them hours to cover a few miles.

But they went on in the biting cold until, while pushing through some heavy bush, one of the searchers discerned something in a thick clump of bush. Rushing forward, after calling his companions the man stopped when he saw a Ford car covered with brush. But there was no sign of its driver.

Though night was falling, a diligent search of the vicinity failed to uncover any trace of Peter Demcheson. There were no signs of a struggle; nor was there anything about the abandoned car to indicate that violence had taken place. This was puzzling, for if Demcheson had driven the car into the bush, where was he now? Why would he deliberately hide his brother’s automobile?

Bayfield turned to William Demcheson, who stood by, horror-stricken. Sympathetic, but persistent questioning by the constable elicited the fact that Peter had intimated he might go to Dauphin after visiting Dr. Medd. But if Peter had gone to Dauphin why was the car left in the bush just three miles out of Winnipegosis?

Winnipegosis was next subjected to a thorough canvass in an effort to discover if Peter had accepted a lift from other persons going to Dauphin. No information to this effect was discovered and William insisted that the search be continued along the highway.

Two hundred yards northeast of the point where the car was discovered, Thomas Bednas, a storekeeper, stopped about 15 feet from the road allowance and inspected a pile of brush. He noticed a heavy stone on top of the brush pile and wondered why it should be there. He called other members of the search party and when Constable Bayfield arrived he pointed to something in the brush. It was a piece of cloth.

The brush was hurriedly thrown aside by eager hands. Fearful, William Demcheson stood by.

There, on the muddy ground, lay the dead body of Peter Demcheson. Arms outspread, and hatless, with the surgical dressing still on his face, the unfortunate man’s sightless eyes stared up to the grey sky. A hasty examination for the cause of death showed he had been shot through the left breast. A ragged wound about one and one-half inches in diameter indicated that the weapon used was a shotgun fired at an angle.

Cautioning every member of the party to remain where they stood, Constable Bayfield began a minute search of the immediate surroundings. Nine feet southwest of the body lay a number of freshly cut poplar poles. A few more poles lay in a shallow ditch as though hastily cast aside. Bayfield inspected them certain they were connected with the tragedy.

Continuing his search, the constable covered the ground carefully. Twelve feet west of the body he found a discharged shotgun shell. It was a l2-gage Meteor, a popular brand, made by the Dominion Cartridge company. Close by he picked up another shell. It was from a .32 caliber pistol and made by the same company. About 30 feet farther on he found a plain cardboard wad, and 10 feet away, in the same line of flight, lay another wad. Bayfield wrapped these finds and placed them in his pocket for safekeeping.

Thirty-eight feet from the body, almost on the road, was a stained area about 10 inches in diameter, which Dr. Medd, who was with the party, decided was a bloodstain. According to the position of the stain, in relation to that of the wads, here was where Demcheson had been shot down. In a partial reconstruction of the tragedy, Bayfield deduced that Demcheson had alighted from the car for some reason and had been slain from ambush.

That the unfortunate youth had been murdered, there was not the slightest doubt. The sweater he wore had been pulled up at the back in a manner that indicated it had been used to drag the inert form along the ground. The stained spot proved that a large amount of blood had been spilled and after suffering such a wound no man could possibly have crawled that distance. Death, according to Dr. Medd, had been instantaneous.

PUZZLED as to who could have committed such a brutal murder, Constable Bayfield fingered the shells in his pocket. Judging from them, the slayer must be armed with a pistol and a shotgun. Why should any man in this peaceful district carry two deadly weapons? Bayfield didn’t know, but he was determined to find the answer. He ordered the body of Peter Demcheson removed to Winnipegosis to await the action of a coroner’s jury.

No information as to the motive for the crime was brought to light at the inquest. The post-mortem showed that the left lung had been disintegrated by a charge of shot, which had also shattered the spinal column. The wound ranged downward, and it was the opinion of the coroner that Demcheson had been shot while he was in a stooping position. Bayfield recalled those poplar poles. Evidently they had been used to block the road and when Demcheson alighted to remove them he had been shot.

Now that the crime of murder had been established, the police were faced with the task of apprehending the murderer. If a motive could be found the task would be simplified in this sparsely settled district. But if no motive were uncovered the apprehension of the slayer would be extremely difficult.

Sergeant Renton arrived from Dauphin to take charge of the investigation. Aside from the shotgun and pistol shells he had nothing to work on.

Inquiries in the district brought nothing but praise for young Demcheson. He was a like-able youth, just finishing his high school education. After school hours he helped his brother with the farm work and was steady and industrious. He had no love affairs and he had carried only five dollars on him when he left his brother’s home on that fatal day. Surely no one would murder a man for such a paltry sum. Yet, somebody had killed him and the reason was going to be hard to find, for all were agreed that Peter Demcheson was a fine young man who would have harmed no one.

Renton was up against a dead end for the moment. He sent out a police alarm for all suspicious characters to be picked up for questioning. There was little chance for strangers to slip through this part of the country unnoticed.

But on the day Peter Demcheson was laid to rest the general opinion of all was that here was a murder that would go unsolved. The police didn’t appear to be doing anything other than walk around and ask questions which produced useless answers. It seemed, someone suggested, as if they didn’t care whether the murderer was ever caught.

This idea was erroneous. Sergeant Renton and Constables Bayfield and Klapecki were quietly investigating every angle of the case.

On October 27, six days after Demcheson’s body had been found, a sawed-off, double-barreled shotgun was handed to Chief of Police Smith, of Dauphin, by J. Miles, Canadian National railways investigator. He said that the gun had been found by a yard clerk named Parrel in a disused bunk car on the icehouse tracks in the east yards. The door of the car had been open and the clerk entered. He had seen a coat, and under a seat he had found the gun. The weapon was turned over to Sergeant Renton.

Meantime a report came in from C. C. Baker, storekeeper at Gilbert Plains, a small town about 20 miles from Dauphin. He said his store had been broken into and a shotgun was missing. He wasn’t sure if ammunition had been taken, but if so it would be Meteor brand.

Likely Clue Has To Be Abandoned

Renton was trying to connect the shotgun theft with the killing of Demcheson when Chief Smith appeared with an old felt hat and a handkerchief. The latter had safety-pins in its corners as if it had been used for a mask.

If these were to be regarded as clues in the Demcheson case it might be said that they pointed nowhere. The felt hat was of a common type made by the thousands and could be found on the shelves of any country store. But the handkerchief had two initials, “J.W.,” worked in one corner.

Renton realized that an attempt to trace the owner of the handkerchief would be a tedious, if not impossible task. It was of cheap quality, to be found in any store, and so far as Renton or Smith knew, there was no one in town with the initials “J.W.” Like the hat, the handkerchief had to be abandoned as a likely clue.

Back in his office, Renton turned his attention to the gun found in the bunk car. It was too early yet for him to offer an opinion as to whether the weapon was connected with the murder of Peter Demcheson. Dauphin was fifty miles from the scene of the crime; and, moreover, Demcheson had not been killed with a sawed-off shotgun. In any event, who would carry a shotgun fifty miles to ambush a man unless he had a deadly grudge? Most certainly no one who knew the Demchesons would ever attempt to rob them. And if they didn’t know the family it was a far-fetched theory that a bandit would shoot a man down in cold blood on the off-chance that he carried a sum of money.

Comparing the shell found at the murder scene with those taken from the gun, Renton discovered they were identical. This fact proved nothing, for Meteor shells were common in that part of the country. They were a standard make and sold at a popular price. It was safe to say that almost every person who owned a shotgun in the district had a box of Meteor shells for it.

Methodically Renton began a thorough examination of the gun. He found it to be a Davis 12-gauge hammerless, double-barreled model. The two barrels had been raggedly cut and were not more than four inches in length. The cutting was evidently the work of an amateur, for the cut had passed through the cocking mechanism and destroyed its usefulness. It was possible to cock the weapon with a screwdriver, but it was a difficult task. The butt had been sawed off too short to get a firm grip on it for firing. Without doubt, the man who sawed this gun off knew little about firearms.

Working on this theory—if he had known so little as to cut the gun through the cocking mechanism it was reasonable to assume that he would not have sufficient intelligence to use a screwdriver in cocking it. Had he known enough to cock the weapon by other means he would have realized that in cutting it off too short he was destroying its usefulness. There were no fingerprints on the gun and Renton finally placed it in the police vault for safekeeping.

Seated at his desk, Renton went through his files. He noted that Oliphant and McDonald, hardware dealers in Dauphin, had reported a robbery on October 10, in which a shotgun had been stolen. A check showed it to be a Davis double-barreled gun. Going to the vault, Renton checked the numbers on the sawed-off weapon with those of the gun reported stolen. They were identical and proved that this was the gun stolen from Oliphant and McDonald.

Slightly piqued by this turn, Renton was endeavoring to straighten out the tangle when another startling discovery was made. Police, searching the latish, on the outskirts of Dauphin, found a 12-gauge Marlin pump gun. It was promptly identified as the one stolen from Baker’s store at Gilbert Plains.

Here again the gun was mutilated, so as to make it unworkable. The slide action was sawn through in an amateurish attempt to create a riot gun. The saw cuts had hopelessly mined the weapon and it could not be fired by any means.

THE finding of the second gun complicated matters. Apparently the man who had broken into the Gilbert Plains store was also responsible for the Oliphant and McDonald robbery. The two robberies were committed close together, and in both instances shotguns were stolen and sawed off. Who, in that part of the country, desired a murderous weapon to conceal on his person? The sawed-off idea pointed to a city gangster, but what man with any sense would attempt to contrive a weapon to commit a robbery, or murder, in a district far removed from city hideouts?

The carrying of shotguns was not forbidden by law, but coming back to the Demcheson murder, Renton remembered the pistol shell. It was possible this shell had been dropped by a hunter. On the other hand, the murderer might have fired with a pistol, and missed. In that case, Demcheson would have attempted to escape, whereas the bloodstain showed that he had fallen a few feet from the car. In any event, Dauphin, where the weapons were found, was over fifty miles away; not a great distance in some respects, but too far for a stranger to travel unnoticed.

Unlike many cases where clues were lacking, this one had many, but none pointed a definite lead other than there was an unknown individual with a mania for stealing shotguns and sawing them off—and that he was a rank amateur at the work.

In an attempt to uncover a motive, Demcheson’s past life was subjected to another minute scrutiny. No new information was uncovered. The boy had led a blameless life.

Renton was annoyed at his failure to locate a tangible hint of the identity of the killer. He took Constables Bayfield and Klapecki with him to the bunk car where the gun was found and they went over its interior with a fine tooth comb. It was evident that the car had been used as a living quarters for some time, but there was no trace of the whereabouts of its former occupant. If he were a hobo, why did he not go to the hobo jungle where he would find companionship and a bowl of mulligan?

Renton shrewdly guessed that the man who had occupied that car had good reason to lie low. Perhaps he had been seen by some of the yard men. Surely one of them would have noticed a man living in a bunk car.

Carefully and quietly the investigation went forward. Yard men gave varied descriptions of the man they had seen, from time to time around the old bunk car. None of them agreed. The well-known faculty of the human mind for error, or failure to recall essentials, was being displayed in full strength.

Once again, Renton subjected the movements of almost everyone in the Dauphin and Winnipegosis districts to scrutiny. So engrossed did Renton become in his task that a door-to-door canvass was made by him and his men; a gargantuan task, but not too great for this man-hunter. All interviewed gave satisfactory accounts of their movements on the day of the murder and a check proved them correct.

Such persistence, however, could not go entirely unrewarded. At last there came a break. One man in the Winnipegosis area had disappeared a short time after Demcheson’s death.

Here, Renton determined, was something on which to work. It was not very much, for the people who mentioned this fact were reticent when it came to mentioning names or giving information. They admitted they knew little about the man other than he had vanished shortly after the tragedy. Renton obtained a fairly accurate description of the fellow which was corroborated by comparing it with others received from different people.

Burglar, Killer May Be Same Man

Renton returned to Dauphin and commenced rounding up bits of information relative to the Oliphant and McDonald robbery. Checking back on his tiles he found an account given by a man who lived in an apartment opposite the hardware store. He said he had heard the breaking of glass and on looking out of his window had seen a man leaving the store. The man passed beneath an arc light and he had obtained a good view of him. On comparing the eye-witness description of the burglar with that of the missing Winnipegosis man. Renton felt a thrill run through him. The descriptions were identical.

Though he had little real evidence on which to base his theory, Renton was firmly convinced that the man who burgled the hardware store and the killer of Peter Demcheson were one and the same. True, Demcheson had been killed by a shotgun in good condition but that meant little to Renton. Shotguns were plentiful. If he could once lay this fellow by the heels he felt he would have something. He at once prepared a police circular and had it sent out all over western Canada.

Months passed, during which time, Renton and his men continued their quiet investigation of the Demcheson case. Nothing had been heard of the missing man and Renton was seated in his office one day when a woman appeared. She was a middle-aged woman, her wan face still retaining some traces of its former beauty, but in her eyes was the mark of tragedy and want.

“I am Mrs. Joe Verhoski,” she said simply.

Renton started. Verhoski was the name of the missing man. No one had mentioned that he had a wife. Concealing his elation, Renton asked the woman what she wanted.

“My husband is missing and I want you to find him,” she said. “I am poor, and I need him.”

Renton mentally reflected that he too wanted to find Joe Verhoski, but for an entirely different reason. He did not tell the woman this, however. Instead, he asked her to describe her husband.

In halting tones the woman complied. Renton mentally compared her description with that given by others. There were a few discrepancies, but when she had finished, the sergeant had an exceedingly accurate picture of Joe Verhoski.

Continuing his questioning, Renton learned that Verhoski had appeared from somewhere out of the west, settled in the Winnipegosis district and wooed and won this woman in a whirlwind courtship. She knew nothing of his past, but he had appeared to be kind and considerate of her and he seemed likely to make a good husband. That illusion was quickly dispelled, however, for he had vanished, taking with him her few valuables. Now she was destitute and about to become a mother.

“When did you marry Verhoski?” Renton asked.

“On October 17,” was the startling reply.

Despite his effort at self-control, Renton was jolted out of his calm. If his suppositions were correct, and he had no reason to assume otherwise, Joe Verhoski had married this unfortunate woman three days after slaying Peter Demcheson. What manner of a man was Verhoski?

RENTON was a man with a kind heart. He made arrangements that Mrs. Verhoski be cared for and then set about preparing new circulars. He was now certain that the hardware store burglar, the killer of Demcheson and the man who stayed in the bunk car in the yards were the same person.

To corroborate this, Renton went back to the yards again and interrogated employees. With their memories refreshed by a partial description, yard men were unanimous in identifying Joe Verhoski as the man who stayed in the bunk car. But, they said, Joe was a poor, hard-working homesteader, and he merely slept in the car when he came to town as he had no money to pay for a hotel room. They could, they said, have told the sergeant all about Joe Verhoski long ago had they even dreamed that he was anything but a homesteader. Yes, they knew he stayed in the car, but they didn’t think he ever owned a gun; in fact, they knew him so well that he was practically accepted as one of them, or something to that effect.

Renton sent out requests to all police officers that Verhoski be arrested on a wife desertion charge. He cautioned in his bulletin that under no consideration must there be mention made to him of the Demcheson killing. He did not wish to give Verhoski warning that he was suspected and thus give him a chance to prepare an alibi. Besides, Renton was only too well aware of the fact that he didn’t have a single thing to link Verhoski with the killing.

Weeks passed and nothing was heard. Renton continued his investigations. He now learned that Verhoski had wandered about the country, stopping here and there at scattered homesteads and going on his way next morning. He seemed to be bearing southeast, and then from out of the blue came a telegram from the governor of the Portage la Prairie jail, around 50 miles west of Winnipeg, that a man named Joe Verhoski was at present serving 60-day sentence and would be released in a short time. The telegram explained that it had been known that Verhoski was wanted, but the jail officials wished to be certain of their prisoner’s identity before notifying Renton that his man was in their custody.

Renton immediately got in touch with Portage la Prairie officials and learned that Verhoski was serving the sentence for carrying concealed weapons. He had been found in an abandoned warehouse in the railroad yards at Portage by railway police. On being searched he had been in possession of a sawed-off shotgun loaded with Meteor shells.

Though Renton was elated he was also skeptical. The mere possession of a sawed-off shotgun did not mean that its owner had killed a man. There must be some means by which that gun could be tied to the actual killing and so far no such methods of providing that evidence had been admitted to the Manitoba courts of law. Though the science of forensic ballistics was used in other parts it was not accepted as an exact science by the law courts of the prairie province.

When Joe Verhoski was released from the Portage la Prairie jail he swaggered down the steps with a sneer on his face. He turned and waved his hand in derision at the governor; turned again, and walked right into the arms of Constable Klapecki from Dauphin.

Before Verhoski was fully aware of what had happened to him he was whisked back to Dauphin and placed in solitary confinement. In their brief meeting, Renton had sized up his suspect and realized that questioning would only result in a pack of lies. There was, the sergeant reasoned, only one way to treat a man like Verhoski. Shut him up and let him stew in his own juice.

Prepared to Match Wits With Police Officials

Verhoski was puzzled. He had been prepared to match wits with the police on being brought to Dauphin and he now found himself in the position of a man with excellent weapons without the opportunity of using them. And like that man, since he was denied a chance to use them in a legitimate way he was eager to display their worth by demonstration.

This was what Renton was waiting for. Each time Verhoski sent for him he went to the cell, listened politely while his suspect gave an account of his wanderings for the past few months, and then walked away, disbelief on his face. Verhoski, now frantic because his stories weren’t going over so good, elaborated on his statements. Still Renton made no comment. He didn’t even reply when Verhoski demanded answers. But he did send Klapecki and Bayfield out to check on the stories. They were proven to be false in every detail.

But Renton wasn’t idle. His mind was working overtime on the problem of tying Verhoski to the Demcheson murder. No matter how certain he might be that he had Demcheson’s killer under lock and key he would have to have something more concrete than faith it he sent the man to trial on a murder charge. (Continued on Page Five.)

(Continued From Page Three.) He turned to the gun taken from Verhoski at Portage la Prairie.

It was in good order—a perfect specimen of he sawed-off type. Practice, Renton thought, makes perfect. It was possible that this was the gun used to slay Demcheson. A ballistic expert would be able to provide the answer to the puzzling question.

But the services of a ballistic expect cost money. The nearest one, Dr. Glen Murphy, of Winnipeg, was ready to conduct tests if he were so requested. He had the equipment and ample experience, but so far, the government had shown itself highly skeptical of results. Nevertheless, Sergeant Renton persisted in his requests that Dr. Murphy be allowed to test the weapon. Finally it was sent to him, with the shell found at the scene of the Demcheson murder.

As the days went by, Renters became anxious. If the gun found on Verhoski had not fired the death shell he would be forced to send his man to trial on a lesser charge and allow him to escape the more serious count. Which course he would follow depended entirely on the findings of the ballistic expert.

Seven days later, Renton received a report from Dr. Murphy. It was accompanied by micro-photographs showing the effects of the firing pin on the primer at the base of the shell. The report stated that the gun was a 12-gauge hammerless model made by J. Manton and company. But what interested Renton greatly was the last line of the report. The shell HAD NOT been fired from that gun.

Though a victory for the science of ballistics it was a bad setback for Sergeant Renton. All of his work seemed doomed to go for nothing. He was in that aggravating position that besets most police officers in the course of their work. He knew he had the guilty man, but he couldn’t prove it. If he could tie Verhoski to the gun found in the bunk car and the shell found at the crime he would have something that couldn’t be talked away.

But the province of Manitoba was loath to speed money on what it termed useless work. Conservative to the extreme, the authorities felt that ballistics were all very well in their place but that they did not represent a good investment in police work. They took the view that they were accepting the word of a scientist without question where the matter of life and death was concerned. This, they felt, was too radical a step to take. Unless, they said, the scientist could produce something that was easily understood by all concerned, they would have nothing to do with him.

SERGEANT Renton felt downcast over this decision. In a conference with other police officials he suggested sending the gun found in the bunk car to Dr. Murphy. The others observed that Demcheson had not been killed by a sawed-off shotgun, but Renton countered with the fact that the gun could have been sawed off after the crime. He had, he pointed out, a definite connection between the gun found in the car and the man now in custody. Though not wishing to go over his superiors’ heads he intimated that he was willing to bear the expense of the tests himself if he were given permission. After a talk with Inspector Brown official permission was finally given to send the second gun to Dr. Murphy.

It was all or nothing now. Renton was staking his reputation on the outcome of a ballistic expert’s finding. More than that he was staking the future of forensic ballistics in the courts of Manitoba. He determined that while waiting for the expert’s reports he would sound out his prisoner.

Verhoski was beginning to show the effects of silent treatment. He was nervous, and eager to talk. Renton stood before the cell and surveyed him with studied indifference. Finally, Verhoski could stand it no longer. In an effort to make conversation he blurted out:

“Did you ever find out who killed Peter Demcheson?”

Not by word or sign did Renton show he had heard the question. But he felt a thrill. For Verhoski had not at any time been given to suspect that he was being held in connection with that crime. Evidently, Renton thought, the fellow’s conscience was beginning to trouble him.

Verhoski became angered.

“You should be out looking for the man who killed him instead of keeping me locked up here,” he fidgeted.

Renton merely eyed him.

“What am I going to be charged with?” Verhoski finally demanded.

“You might,” Renton said meaningly, “be charged with the murder of Peter Demcheson.”

Verhoski stared in alarm as Renton turned and left the cell room.

Back in his office, Renton chafed with impatience. If he could only hear from Dr. Murphy he would know what to do. He was still fretting about what he thought was delay, when Verhoski suddenly sent word that he wished to make a statement concerning the Demcheson crime. Renton smiled grimly and left his office. Before going, however, he nodded to Bayfield and Klapecki to go and hear what Verhoski had to say.

Cautioned Accused As to Legal Rights

At the cell room, the two constables cautioned Verhoski as to his legal rights and asked him to reconsider his decision to speak. Verhoski refused to listen. He was determined, he said, to talk about the crime. A stenographer was sent for and the constables awaited Verhoski’s story.

Verhoski lighted a cigarette and began to talk. He said he came from the west and being unable to find work in Dauphin he broke into the store and stole the shotgun. The next day he went to Fork River and stayed at Nick Shewchuck’s place for the night. Leaving early next morning he wandered along the road until he saw a Ford car coming from Winnipegosis. He determined to rob the driver so he threw some poles across the road. The driver stopped the car and alighted to remove the poles. Verhoski then stepped from the bush and ordered him to throw up his hands.

The driver refused. He grasped the barrel of the weapon and in the ensuing struggle the gun was discharged. The man fell dead so Verhoski dragged the body into the bush and rifled the pockets, obtaining $1.35. He covered the body with brush and drove the car into the bush. He denied owning a revolver or pistol and could not account for the pistol shell found at the scene of the crime.

After this confession, Verhoski asked that his wife be sent for. She came, but the only words she could get from him were:

“Well, what are you going to do about it?”

The distraught woman did nothing. She walked out and left him. Verhoski became angry and said he wanted to talk some more.

He said that he later obtained a hacksaw blade and cut the gun off. He then found it was useless, but carried it with him to Dauphin and left it in the bunk car. He went to town and when he returned two hours later the gun was missing. He denied stealing the Marlin pump gun from Baker’s store at Gilbert Plains.

Renton scanned this confession with some gratification, but little solid comfort. He could spot holes a mile wide in the story and none knew better than he what an astute lawyer could do with a confession like that. It was possible that the confession would not even be admitted as evidence. If a single doubt were raised about it the defence would demand it be thrown out. If this happened, Renton didn’t like to think of the spot he would be in.

Even as he sat drumming his desk with a pencil a report was on its way. Renton was still pondering every angle of the case when Dr. Murphy’s findings were laid before him. A single glance at them and Sergeant Renton promptly laid a charge of willful murder against Joseph Verhoski. A swift preliminary hearing followed and Verhoski was ordered to appear before a higher court.

The legal fraternity of Manitoba watched this case with deep interest. It marked a turning point in the rules of evidence. Modern science was taking its place in the musty halls of justice and this was the test case. They awaited the outcome with crossed fingers.

Joseph Verhoski went on trial for his life before Mr. Justice Adamson. He was defended by D.D. Bates, a skillful criminal lawyer with a reputation for ripping evidence to shreds. C.S.A. Rogers, K.C., represented the crown.

A FEW preliminary witnesses: women who told of Verhoski coming to their homes and begging meals, made their way to the witness stand and departed without having said anything of much value. The only evidence given which did count was given when a woman said that Joseph Verhoski’s real name was John Wecheko.

The handkerchief found in the box car was initialed “J.W.,” but even that was worthless evidence when applied to a capital charge. Verhoski’s counsel was on his feet in an instant and demanded to know whether his client was being tried for murder or for changing his name. Justice Adamson ruled that Verhoski’s counsel was justified in his objection. The handkerchief evidence was stricken from the records.

Evidence was next given which proved Verhoski had a long, criminal record. He had served an eight-year term for a murderous assault on a prison guard and he had also caused a fire in which three lives were lost.

It was open knowledge that Verhoski had deliberately set the fire, but no actual evidence was uncovered that would warrant trying him on a charge of murder.

Once again, Verhoski’s counsel was on his feet in vigorous protest. Were they trying his client on his record or on a charge of murdering Peter Demcheson. Justice Adamson allowed this objection also.

So far the crown had been worsted at every turn. Bates was fighting a victorious battle for his client and Renton saw months of accurate police work going for nothing. Then Crown Prosecutor Rogers began to read Verhoski’s confession.

Bates now began to fight in real earnest. He said the confession was nothing more than a concoction of the police and that Verhoski had been coerced into signing it. He charged that the police, finding themselves at their wits’ end for evidence, had fabricated the confession and had promised Verhoski immunity if he signed it. He demanded that the confession not be allowed.

Justice Adamson promptly ordered the court cleared. He then called Constables Bayfield and Klapecki to the stand, and after putting them under oath, severely cross-examined them as to how they obtained the confession.

In reply, the constables denied any coercion and pointed out that Verhoski had described the crime and surroundings so accurately that this in itself was sufficient proof he had been on the scene. No other person, they persisted, could have given such a convincing word picture had he not been there. The stenographer also was called and told that Verhoski had given the statement of his own free will. The judge agreed with the constables that there had been no coercion. The confession was admitted as evidence and the trial continued.

Then things began to happen. The defence put up a spirited attack on the statements of every witness; and when the name of Dr. G. Glen Murphy was called, Bates went after him tooth and nail. He questioned his science, his ability to use it and its value in court. In effect, his words were intended to place Dr. Murphy in a questionable light. He asked the jury if they were going to allow themselves to be hoodwinked by a scientist using scientific terms which he himself did not know the true meaning of.

Ballistics Triumph In a Murder Charge

Dr. Murphy was calm and in reply to a question from Crown Prosecutor Rogers he stated that the gun now in court was the gun which had fired the shell found at the scene of the crime. Rogers turned to the jury in triumph, for it had been definitely established that Verhoski had stolen that gun from Oliphant and McDonald’s store and that he had carried it until he lost it in the bunk car. Instantly, Bates, the defence counsel, was on his feet.

“Are you prepared to swear that this gun fired that shell?” he demanded.

“I am,” replied Dr. Murphy.

“Are you prepared to prove to me, and this jury, that no other gun could have fired that shell?” Bates asked derisively.

“I am prepared to prove to you, or anyone else, in terms you can understand that the chance of any other gun having fired that shell are less than one in five million. In this case I might even say one in twenty-five million.”

“How?”

At last the big moment had arrived. For the first time in Manitoba jurisprudence a scientist was going to give evidence that would, if accepted, send a man to the scaffold. The confession had faded into insignificance now. If Dr. Murphy’s evidence was unconvincing, Verhoski would walk from that court a free man. None knew this better than Renton.

Another important point had also arisen. Verhoski had admitted ownership of the gun and his counsel was hammering home the statement that Demcheson had been killed by accident. Dr. Murphy must not only prove that the gun in question fired the shot, but he must also prove that it had been deliberately fired.

Coolly, Dr. Murphy unfolded a set of micro-photographs and displayed them to the jury. He stated they were photos taken through micro-luminar lenses, of the primers in the base of the shell sent to him for examination. Two of the photographs were of the test shells fired from the sawed-off gun which Verhoski admitted owning, and the third was the shell found on the ground near Demcheson’s body. One of the photos differed from the others, which were exactly alike. The differing photo was from a shell fired from the left hand barrel of the gun. The others had been fired from the right hand barrel. And the gun that fired them lay on the table for all to see.

Dr. Murphy pointed out six different points where an accurate comparison could be made of the primer marks. The jury examined the photos with great interest. When they concluded their examination of the photos there wasn’t the shadow of a doubt about their being convinced.

The next step was to refute Verhoski’s statement that the gun had been discharged in a struggle.

The ballistician set up some heavy cardboard frames pierced with ragged holes and blackened around the edges. He explained that the holes were made by shotgun charges being fired at-measured distances. Referring to the post-mortem statement he said that the course of the wound showed that the gun had either been fired from a height, or that Demcheson had been stooping when shot. There were no powder marks on either the clothing or the body, which was significant. Pointing to the cardboard, Dr. Murphy showed that powder marks were visible up to a distance of eight feet. Taking the hole in Demcheson’s body as a comparison, he proved that Demcheson was at least ten feet away when he received the fatal charge. The charge, Dr. Murphy said, had been fired from a choke-bored barrel.

When Dr. Murphy left the stand, Bates spread his hands, eloquently, with finality. None knew better than he the futility of questioning that evidence. He glanced at Verhoski and shook his head as if to prepare him for the worst.

It came in the form of a verdict of guilty from the jury. Verhoski was sentenced to be hanged in the Headingly jail and at 7.15 o’clock on the morning of February 2, Joseph Verhoski went through the trap in the floor of the execution chamber; the first murderer placed there by the immutable findings of science as applied to the courts of Manitoba.

———-

Murder Hill Road no more ~ By Billy Redekop (26 Jun 2004)

Dark name that recalled gruesome deed slips into town’s history.

WINNIPEGOSIS — If life is a highway, Murder Hill Road is where it ends.

Or so it did for Peter Demschyzn in a sensational murder case here 74 years ago. Local residents shrug when asked about the uncommon road name. Modern street names, usually dreamed up by developers, tend to promote happy thoughts, not tragic footnotes.

“It was stating a fact. The local council didn’t know what else to call it,” said Edna Medd, who runs the local museum in Winnipegosis, 380 kilometres northwest of Winnipeg. It was also a case of a fatal mix-up of Model T Fords. On Oct. 14, 1930, Demschyzn travelled to town to see Dr. Alfred Medd, Edna’s father.

“Peter Demschyzn had five dollars in his pocket. He’d borrowed the five dollars from his brother.
“He came here to get a boil lanced, and dad did it in his office. He had a couple pieces of adhesive on his face when he left,” said Medd.

Demschyzn came from a prosperous farm family. He and his two brothers farmed with their father. They were one of the few families to own a motor vehicle, a Model T Ford. Demschyzn’s family thought he had gone to Dauphin for the boil removal. So when they didn’t hear from Peter, they assumed he had stayed the night in Dauphin.

It was also before telephones, and electricity hadn’t even arrived yet. “We didn’t have electricity until 1939,” explained Medd.

Several days later, a farmer, out looking for his cattle, stumbled upon Demschyzn’s car hidden in some bushes. A search party was organized and found Peter’s body buried just off what became Murder Hill Road, about five kilometres south of Winnipegosis.

“The body had been dragged 25 feet, and covered with brush and a rock to hold the brush,” said Medd.

Demschyzn had been killed by a shotgun blast to his left chest at close range. The murder shocked the small community on the south basin of Lake Winnipegosis. “My dad carried a revolver after that for quite a long time,” said Medd.

“Winnipegosis was always a peaceful town,” she said. At its peak, the village on the south basin of Lake Winnipegosis had about 1,200 residents, compared to 770 today.
“My parents left their doors unlocked until after the Second World War,” said Medd.

Manitoba Provincial Police patrolled rural Manitoba at the time. Eight months later, the police arrested Joseph Verhosky of George Street in Winnipegosis. The key piece of evidence was an empty shotgun shell at the murder scene. The distinctive markings on the spent shell led police to Verhosky’s weapon. It was the first case in Manitoba in which ballistics were used to solve a crime.
Verhosky’s plan was to rob a cattle buyer as he left an auction in Winnipegosis, figuring he would have at least $100.

“The cattle buyer had a lot of money, and he was flashing it around town,” said local resident Ray Snyder. The cattle buyer also had a motor vehicle, a Model T Ford, one of the few vehicles in the area. Verhosky cut down some trees, laid them across the road, and waited in the bush. It is the oldest trick in the book by today’s standards, but not very old back then when there were few motor vehicles. Neither did Verhosky anticipate someone else with a vehicle coming along.

When Demschyzn drove up in his Model T, and got out of his car to move the tree, Verhosky assumed he was the cattle buyer. He let him have it with a shotgun blast from close range, killing Demschyzn so there wouldn’t be any witnesses. But all Verhosky got was three dollars. Demschyzn had spent two dollars in town filling up his vehicle. Verhosky was captured and hanged.

Known for over half a century as Murder Hill Road, the road sign finally came down last month.
The RM of Mossey, in which the road is situated, has converted to the numbered road system recently recommended by the Association of Manitoba Municipalities. Murder Hill Road is now Road 180 N. That indicates it is a east-west road 180 miles from the American border. The murder was at the fork of Road 180 N and Road 107 West.