Marriage & Divorce Articles from the Kokomo
(Howard County, Indiana)
A Kokomo Couple Temporarily Frustrated by an
The Peru Journal of Tuesday contained the following:
"Last evening about 5 o'clock Marshal BOZARTH received the following
Kokomo, July 13, 1885
TO THE MARSHAL:
Arrest my runaway daughter, Anna OSLER, sixteen years old, short,
chunky girl, light hair, accompanied by young man, Ben HOSTETLER,
eighteen, height 5 ½ feet, both ticketed to Michigan City. Enquire of
conductor on north bound train due there at 6.
In an interview had by a Journal reporter with the
would be benedict he said he was 20 years old, was a farmer, that he
was living with his father on a farm four miles west of Kokomo. He said
he met Miss Anna three weeks ago at Mrs. Woodworth's meetings, that he
took her home and had been with her nearly every night since.
He says she is a poor girl, who has earned her living
by working out since she was seven years old. Her father, he says, is a
worthless sort of a fellow and did not treat his daughter Anna in a
fatherly manner. He says her father told her last Sunday that she need
not come home any more. He also claims that the father has $15 of her
money which, if they are taken back to Kokomo, she will sue him for.
He says he could not bear to see the girl treated so
shamefully by her father and being in love, they concluded to get
married and failing to procure the necessary license in Kokomo, bought
tickets for Michigan City, where they intended to remain over night
with his uncle, when they would skip over to Michigan and be married
the next day. He says he is pretty well fixed in this world's goods and
he could and would take care of her.
The irate father of the would-be bride arrived on the
10:30 train and the matter was talked over. At first the stern parent
was obdurate and would take his daughter back home and let the young
man go to the d---l, but the officers advised and the young folks
coaxed and finally he consented that they might return to Kokomo, where
he would procure the license. Accordingly the party returned on the
next train and ere this are reveling in connubial bliss.
The Journal's prediction of connubial bliss is
doubtless correct, as the parties were granted license by Clerk Sailors
on Tuesday morning and it is supposed were duly made man and wife,
though by whom the knot was tied we know not.
--Kokomo Gazette Tribune, Tuesday, July 21, 1885
A Midnight Marriage
At midnight Monday, at the office of Mayor MOULLER, Mr.
Edward DERVAUX and Miss Julia WERY, Rev. C.H. Brown presiding. The
circumstances of the affair as may be inferred from the unseasonable
its consummation are a little out of the usual order, in fact, quite
and remarkably peculiar.
Miss Julia is an attractive little dame of
extraction, and for a time, acted as a saleslady at one of our dry
emporiums. Of late, she has been acting
in the capacity of a domestic at Amos HAWKINS’.
Monday afternoon, she complained of not feeling well and
asked to go to her home at the Junction for a few minutes’ stay. Late
evening, Amos, alarmed by her prolonged absence, invoked the aid of
SECRIST and a search was made for the missing girl, in which her
joined. It was suspected she might be in the house at the Junction
prospective liege lord boarded and the domicile was thoroughly searched
erratic Julia found in a closet, somewhat less than half clad, though
thoroughly frightened by the unexpected advent of the midnight
The parents insisted on an immediate marriage and all
decided that was the proper thing to do under the circumstances.
they came downtown to the Mayor’s office, and Clerk MOULDER and Rev.
routed from their peaceful slumbers, a license procured, and the
uniting their hands and fortunes was performed. Tom SECRIST acting as
groom’s right hand man. Julia, we understand, was in no wise averse of
-- Kokomo Evening Tribune, 24 Apr 1888, page 5
From the WPA Index to Howard County Marriages,
DERVAUX, Edward to July WERY -- married 24 April 1888. Entry in Ledger
C5 - page 495
Gone With a Handsomer Man
Mrs. Ed. Phillips Skips the Town with Truman
Hobson - The Abandoned Husband Ask for a Divorce
Last Saturday, when Ed. PHILLIPS took his noonday meal
and returned to the Armstrong, Landon & Hunt factory, he had a
wife. When he returned in the evening, the wife was not to be seen and
the home which for him had been none too cheerful was more desolate
than ever. A short investigation demonstrated that the star lodger of
the premises, Truman HOBSON, was also among the missing.
HOBSON and the woman took the train that evening, the
former giving out word that he was going to Danville, Ill., but it is
safe to say that the fleeing couple went in another direction.
The fugitives are both well known in Kokomo, the man
having gained his notoriety by killing a man in a fight four years ago
at a political rally, the circumstances of which are well remembered by
our readers. HOBSON was drunk, going through the crowd hurrahing for
Jeff DAVIS and making other taunting remarks, when Albert MILLER, an
aged pensioner of the late war, assaulted him, and in the fight MILLER
was knocked down and kicked to death. The grand jury at the first
sitting failed to indict HOBSON, but at the next session a true bill
was found. After a delay of many months the case came to trial and he
Mrs. PHILIPS was a Miss Ollie BOWERS, a sister of James
MCCARTY'S divorced wife and is a fine looking woman. She and PHILIPS
were married December 2, 1882, and of late have lived in what is known
as the "Flat Iron" district, near Hunt's factory. HOBSON, who formerly
worked with Deck MOORE at blacksmithing, has of late been assisting
Jesse GORDON in the gas well drilling business, and when in the city
lodged at the Philips home.
This morning the deserted husband, by Attorneys
BLACKLIDGE, SHIRLEY & MOON, began action for divorce. In his
complaint it is alleged that defendant during the past three or four
years has been wholly unmindful of her duties as a wife, was cruel and
inhuman, declaring she had no love for plaintiff and thought a divorce
would be the proper thing; that defendant seem to enjoy the company of
lewd and boisterous men [missing line] other men, and in many respects
deported herself as a lady would not; that plaintiff, in hope of final
reformation, clung to defendant until it was no longer in his power to
do so; that finally on February 27 defendant left for parts unknown, in
company with Truman HOBSON, saying she never expected to return.
--Kokomo Gazette Tribune, March 1, 1892
They Can't Agree
John DeWEESE , of Elwood wants a divorce from his wife,
Barbara. They were married at Kokomo December 25, 1888 and lived
together until two years ago. Then they separated. It is alleged she
took the household furniture and vamoosed, leaving the premises
deserted. John says Barbara has a violent temper and makes no effort to
-- Kokomo Dispatch 20 July 1896
Divided the Property
Both Contestants Get a Divorce in SAWYER vs.
As indicated in this paper Saturday. Judge KIRKPATRICK
ruled in the divorce case of Eugene W. SAWYER vs. Laura A. SAWYER late
Saturday evening. By his ruling a divorce is granted to the plaintiff
on his complaint and to the defendant on her cross-complaint, finding
that the plaintiff and defendant are owners by entireties of lot 61,
original plat of Kokomo; that the same is of value of $4000 and that
upon payment of $2000 by the plaintiff to the defendant within
forty-five days the defendant is ordered to execute a deed for her
interest in said property to plaintiff and in default thereof, W.C.
OVERTON is appointed a commissioner to execute such deed.
If the plaintiff fails to pay the money as above set
out, the defendant has the right to take the said property upon the
same terms within thirty days thereafter, and in case neither party so
takes it, said commissioner will sell the same and divide the proceeds
equally between the parties to the suit.
The defendant is to take the piano, secretary,
nut-picks, cake-knife, cake-stand, spoons, urn and tea set, and all
bedding and the bedstead in her room, the plaintiff is to take all
other property. The plaintiff is to pay [in] $200 attorney fees in
forty-five days and a judgement for $300 alimony except in case she
takes the property as above set out, then she [is] to take said sum out
of the payments.
In this ruling one of the most interesting divorce cases of recent
years is concluded and each of the parties interested is free to go his
or her way. Dr. SAWYER has a splendid practice in his profession and
will be able to meet all the demands of the court, though he, as is
usually the case in such matters, feels that he has not had the best of
it by any means. Mrs. SAWYER has a good business in the insurance line
and is also secretary of the Merchant's Protective association. The
finding of the court permits her to share in the profits of the
doctor's practice during their nine years married life, and leaves her
well prepared to meet the battle for bread and butter single-handed.
--Kokomo Dispatch, Thurs., November 19, 1891
Florence STONEBAKER, by D.A. WOODS, attorney, has filed
suit in the circuit court for a divorce from Michael STONEBAKER.
Plaintiff says she was driven on the fifth day of April from the
defendant's home by his threats to do her bodily injury. The parties
were married February 16 1891 and the plaintiff says at the time she
was less than fifteen years of age, while the defendant was forty-five
years old. The defendant was the stepfather of the plaintiff.
Defendant, it is alleged, has repeatedly cursed the
plaintiff and called her vile names. He is said to be lazy and
possessed of a violent temper which has driven his children by a former
wife from his home.
Mrs. STONEBAKER asks the custody of the two children.
-- Kokomo Dispatch 27 Sept. 1902
Wants A Divorce And Ten Thousand
Wife of Wealthy Monroe Township Farmer Wants to
Quit Him and Take Half of His Purse.
A divorce suit, that for a variety of reasons is one of
the most interesting that has ever found its way into the courts from
Western Howard, has been filed by the local firm of BLACKLIDGE, SHIRLEY
& WOLF. The plaintiff in the case is Sarah BURGIT, wife of Fred
BURGIT, one of the wealthiest of Monroe township's farmers and one of
the best known men in that quarter of the county. The wife charges
cruelty and asks that she be awarded alimony in the sum of $10,000 and
that she be given the custody of two minor children, girls, one aged
eight and one aged one.
Twenty-one years ago Fred BURGIT, then a man of
forty-five years of age and known throughout the country-side as an
eccentric bachelor and recluse, became smitten of the charms of
seventeen-year-old Sarah LA DOW, a young woman of French parentage who
lived near he village of Forest. The garrulous old bachelor proved a
gay bean and it took him not over long to woo and win the
impressionable, but pretty Sarah.
The good season came the wedding and then the couple
settled down with much promise of fair weather on the broad acres that
the groom owned and that still stretch to the southward from the
village of Shanghai. By-and-by there came a daughter. She grew apace
and she, too, is married now. With the passing years enter two other
children and a multiplicity of other cares to the young wife. She
insists that she tried to meet them with diligence and with proper
spirit and that she labored early and late, long and earnestly to make
her home a pleasant and happy one.
There came a time, however, when the disparity in years
and the former habits and eccentric inclinations of the husband began
to toll. Three score years found him a soured and fractious old man.
Constant abuse and threatened violence, the wife says, became her daily
lot, but for the sake of her children and in the hope of avoiding
notoriety she possessed herself in patience till like with her husband
became unbearable and she determined to seek relief in the courts.
It is estimated that BURGIT'S holdings are easily worth
$20,000 and the wife, in her plea for alimony asks for half of that
amount. The final separation of the parties occurred Monday, the
husband abandoning his home after a quarrel that day. The wife
immediately came to this city, retained attorneys and lodged her
complaint with the court.
-- Kokomo Daily Tribune, October 9, 1902
Man, Aged 80 Weds Woman 30 Yrs Old
While two unhappy couples were getting the complaints on
file in circuit court yesterday, asking for legal separation, a couple
appeared at the clerk's office and asked for the necessary papers to
make them husband and wife.
The groom-to-be was John H. FISSE, bowed with more than
four-score years, he having been born in Germany, March 2 1837. He was
compelled to get about with the assistance of a cane and was also
assisted up the stairway to the clerk's office by the bride-to-be,
Martha GRAHAM, aged 30 years.
The necessary document was soon prepared by the clerk
and the couple left the office apparently as happy and light hearted as
-- Kokomo Dispatch 10 October 1917
Ate All The Bacon
Mrs. Josephine JONES Accuses Her Aged Husband
in Divorce Suit
Sitting as special judge,
Attorney B.C. MOON this afternoon heard the evidence in the divorce
Josephine JOHNSON-JONES, 53 years old, against John K. JONES, 75 years
age.Mrs. JONES said that her aged husband
ate up all the bacon and potatoes that she had on hand as well as the
a gallon can and finally while she was moving from her own home in
one he had bought her, he ordered her to leave him and said he wanted a
divorce.Mrs. JONES said she could not
live with her husband whom she married March 10, 1919, separating from
May following.JONES, it was said,
would neither buy anything nor furnish her any money.
Judge MOON heard the case of
Mary JOHNSON against Alvin JOHNSON. The evidence was not completed in
-- Kokomo Daily Tribune, 15 May 1920