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Wagner, Edward W. - The Monterey New Era, June 25, 1891

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Joined: 27 Nov 2007
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Location: Monterey County, California

PostPosted: Tue Nov 27, 2007 3:11 pm    Post subject: Wagner, Edward W. - The Monterey New Era, June 25, 1891 Reply with quote


An Estimable Citizen Slaughtered.


He Deliberately Murders an Unoffending Gentleman.

Last Friday night, one of the most atrocious crimes ever recorded in the criminal annals of the State was perpetrated in this city. Charles HAWES, a painter doing business at Pacific Grove, came into town on the evening mentioned and about half-past ten entered the Del Monte Drug Store, just as the clerk, Edward W. WAGNER, was about to close up, and asked for ten cents worth of morphine. WAGNER put up the drug, and after registering HAWES’ name on the poison-book, handed him the vial. “I will settle with Jim in the morning,” HAWES said, referring to the proprietor, James MOORE; but WAGNER, having been in MOORE’s employ but a few weeks, and HAWES being a stranger to him, told him, in a quiet, gentlemanly manner, that he could not give credit to a stranger and requested him to pay the small sum. HAWES then threw down his purse and told him to take his pay out of that. This he declined to do, when the ruffian threw down ten cents, at the same time applying a vile epithet to WAGNER and becoming generally abusive. WAGNER ordered him out of the store, but instead of leaving HAWES drew a pistol and fired at WAGNER, who was standing about four feet away. The bullet struck WAGNER’s right thumb, tearing away that member, and then entered the abdominal cavity half an inch below the navel. WAGNER exclaimed, “My God! you have killed me!” HAWES attempted to fire a second shot, when WAGNER rushed forward and grappled with him, and during the scuffle managed to wrench the pistol from his grasp. HAWES then ran behind the prescription case and cried, “Don’t shoot me! don’t shoot!” WAGNER replied, “I won’t shoot!” HAWES then came out and made a desperate attempt to recover his pistol, but H. T. BRADFORD, passing at the time and hearing the shot and the cries for mercy, gave the alarm and A. L. LUCE, Dr. [HAMER?], Dan MORAN and others rushed into the store, overpowered HAWES, who had succeeded in wrestling the pistol from the weakening grasp of his victim, took his weapon from him and turned him over to the city Marshal, who lodged him in jail. A considerable number of citizens had gathered and followed the prisoner to the jail, which he would never have been allowed to enter had it been known that his victim was mortally wounded. As it was, the expressions of indignation were so strong that the cowardly ruffian trembled for the safety of his worthless carcass. In the meantime Drs. FAULKNER and WESTFALL were summoned and made an examination of the wounded man, and probed the wound, but were unable to locate the bullet. The physicians deeming the wound fatal, his ante mortem statement was taken. His brother, Julius WAGNER, of Silver City, N.M., who happened to be in San Francisco, was telephoned to at midnight and arrived on the midday train Saturday, sending word before starting, to a friend in San Jose, to break the news gently to his brother’s wife, who came down on the evening train. Word was also sent to his sister, Mrs. B. SENS, of Los Angeles, who, with her husband, arrived on Monday in time for the funeral. Dr. WRIGHT, of San Jose, was also sent for, and on his arrival Saturday Mr. WAGNER was removed from his room in the rear of the store to the Central Hotel and Dr. WRIGHT, Dr. TRIMMER, of Pacific Grove, and Drs. SMITH and WESTFALL, of Monterey, made a thorough examination of the wound and removed the bullet, which had penetrated the intestinestines [sic] in four or five places and lodged near the bladder. They pronounced the wound fatal and it was not expected that he would live through the night. But under the tender ministrations of Mr. and Mrs. TIBBETTS, Mr. MOROE and other sympathizers, and watched over in loving solicitude by his heart-broken wife and brother, he lingered until half-past six on Sunday evening. Mr. WAGNER had only been in Monterey a few weeks, having come here from San Jose when Mr. MOORE purchased the drug store, but all who had met him spoke of him as a quiet, peacable [sic] gentleman. That he was so is abundantly evidenced by the fact that he refrained from shooting his murderer when he held the loaded pistol in his hand and knew that he was mortally wounded. Not one man in ten thousand would have spared his assailant under such circumstances and it shows that not only was he a peaceable man, but also posessed [sic] of a noble soul that scorned to take the vengeance within his grasp. He leaves a wife and two children, girls, one seven and the other three years of age. So many were the expressions of indignation uttered by the citizens on Saturday that it was fully expected the cowardly miscreant would be taken from the jail at night and the county saved the expense of a prosecution. The sheriff therefore quietly removed him that evening to Salinas and lodged him in the county jail. Monday morning an inquest was held by acting coroner WESTFALL and a verdict returned in accordance with the facts. Justice of the peace WESTFALL at once issued a warrant charging HAWES with murder in the first degree, but sheriff HORTON refused to surrender his prisoner to the Justice’s court holding him as his prisoner. Deceased was a member of Covert Lodge, No. 11, F.&.A.M., Omaha, and of Omaha Chapter, No. 1, R.A.M. The funeral on Monday afternoon was conducted, at the request of his bereaved [[A portion of text may be missing here--MTF]] fraternity surrounding the last resting place of their deceased brothers, and listening with bowed head to the solemn service of the ritual pronounced in sonorous tones by Past Master T. G. LAMBERT, and the final prayer and benediction by Rev. Bro. FACKENTHALL, the grief stricken relatives viewing with anguished hearts the lowering into the narrow tomb the mortal remains of him of whom they had been so cruelly bereft, and the terrible event of which this was the sequel, caused a feeling of awe to pervade the whole assemblage and brought tears of grief to many eyes. Learning that the widow and fatherless children had been left unprovided for by the sudden calling away of the bread-winner, Mr. MOORE and Mr. TIBBETS started a subscription for their benefit and, we are we are [sic] proud to say, met with a liberal response from our citizens. Everybody was glad of the opportunity to thus tangibly express the deep sympathy that pervades the entire community for these bereaved ones in their hour of trial. The amount subscribed so far is, in Monterey $166.75, and in Pacific Grove $89.50, making a total of $256.25. The list is still open and anyone wishing to contibute [sic] may hand their subscriptions to Mr. MOORE or Mr. TIBBETTS in Monterey, or to Mr. RUSH in Pacific Grove.
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