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Wallace Avenue, Linesville, Crawford County, PA - established 1815
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Alfred James Andrews

Alfred James Andrews

Male 1868 - 1890  (22 years)

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  • Name Alfred James Andrews 
    Born 6 Mar 1868  Ponsanooth, County Cornwall, England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    Christening 16 Mar 1890  Bellefonte, Centre County, Pennsylvania, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    baptized while in prison 
    Died 9 Apr 1890  Bellefonte, Centre County, Pennsylvania, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    • cause of death: hanged for murder
    • * From a newspaper clipping in the collection of Shirley Ann Stroup Van Dusen:
      HISTORY OF THE CRIME
      About 12 M. on November 27, 1889, the residents of the usually quiet little Hamlet known as Karthaus, situated on the West Branch of the Susquehanna River, in Clearfield County, PA were startled by the news that a young lady had been found murdered on the turnpike, about one half mile across the river in Centre County.
      The information was given by James Marsteller, William Oswalt, and Jacob Beechdel, who had started from Snow Shoe that morning for Boak's hunting camp, located some miles from Karthaus, in Clearfield County, Pa. When these men came within one half mile of the Karthaus bridge they found the lifeless form of a young girl lying on her face in the middle of the road. They drove to Karthaus and gave the alarm. The citizens rushed to the place designated and were horrified to find the dead body to be that of Clara Price, aged a little over sixteen years, and the daughter of David Price, a well-to-do and respectable citizen of Karthaus.
      An inquest was held by Esquire Rankin, and one bullet hole was found in her body, which produced instant death, another bullet had passed through the lower lobe of one of her ears, and another one had perforated a basket which she was carrying on her arm.
      Clara Price had been staying at the home of Eugene Meeker, as company for his wife while he was attending his lumber job on Sandy.
      On that fatal Wednesday morning Clara Price left Eugene Meeker's to visit her parents at Karthaus, taking with her a basket containing articles as presents to her family. Eugene Meeker's house is about three-quarters of a mile form the pike, which is reached by path. Clara Price took the path, and was seen along the pike near where the path came on the turnpike. She was seen and recognized by those living in the house along the road she traveled. The same persons saw Andrew's passing along the road but a short distance behind Clara Price.
      Mrs. Watson, who lives in the last house on the road before you reach the river, and about one mile from the Karthaus bridge that spans the river at that place, saw Clara Price pass her house about half-past 9 o'clock a.m. of the morning the dead body was found, and a minute or two afterward she saw Alfred Andrews he was about fifteen yards behind Clara.
      About half way between Mrs. Watson's and the river there is a sharp curve in the road, preventing further view of the road from Mrs. Watson's house and just beyond the curve going towards the river, is where the murder was committed and the dead body found. From Mrs. Watson's to the bridge there are woods on both sides of the pike until you get to the river. It is a lonely and weird place, and such a place as would be chosen for a villain to commit a horrible crime.
      The description of the man following the girl along the road answered that of Andrew, who formerly resided at Karthaus, but at the time of the
      murder lived with his wife and child at Brisbin, Clearfield County, Pa. who, on the following Sunday after the tragedy, was arrested at his home and confined in the Centre County Jail at Bellefonte, Pa.


      HIS TRIAL
      As no person saw Andrews commit the horrible deed, all the evidence at the trial was, of a necessity, circumstantial. Andrews was traced by the Commonwealth, from his home in Brisbin to within a few hundred feet of where the dead body was found, and at that spot foot-prints were discovered in the mud that exactly corresponded in size to the shoes Andrews wore on the ostensible trip to Karthaus. From where the body was found, the prisoner was traced through the woods to Moyer's lumber camp, some three-fourths of a mile from the place where the tragedy occurred, and from there back to his home in Brisbin, which he reached the next day after committing the assassination .
      The tracks in the road showed there had been a tussle several feet from where the body was found, and after that the victim had run several rods back towards Watson's and fell dead in her tracks, with her face to the ground.
      It was shown by expert evidence, who had made the proper tests, that the blood-stains found on Andrew's shoes were drops of human blood; and ex-Judge Orvis's theory was that blood fell on the shoes from Clara's private parts, which Dr. Nevling swore freshly lacerated, whilst the prisoner was making the assault. This theory Andrews in his confession denies, and states that the blood-stains on his shoes, if any, came from blood of a chicken which he killed the Saturday night before his arrest.
      The trial lasted for six days, and was one of the most exciting trials that ever took place in the county of Centre. The prisoners attorneys, Messers Ed. Chambers and Col. Jack Spangler, contested every inch of legal ground on behalf of their client, and made two of the most eloquent appeals to the jury on behalf of Andrews that were ever heard in the Centre County Courthouse.
      The commonwealth was represented by those two able lawyers, District-Attorney Myers and ex-Judge Orvis, the latter having a reputation of being a successful criminal lawyer without a peer in the State. His address to the jury, on that occasion, was a plain, unvarnished statement of a combination of facts, all pointing directly to the prisoner as the party who assassinated Clara Price. They were grouped together in such an ingenious and truthful manner difficulty in finding Alfred Andrews guilty of murder in the first degree, and Judge Hurst sentenced the prisoner, Andrews, to be hung until he was dead.
      At this writing, Governor Beavor has not fixed the day of Andrew's execution, but it is presumed it will take place some time in April, 1890.
      The county the prisoner was born in is somewhat celebrated in history, as being the locality where John Wesley was inspired to write that beautiful hymn, which commences:
      "Lo! on a narrow neck of land
      "Twixt two unbounded seas I stand,"
      In addition to which there is a large pit, known as Gwenup Pit, which was originally the entrance to a large shaft of one of the prosperous tin-mines. This pit is now sacred to all Methodists, who on Whit-Monday of every year are drawn there from Cornwall and the adjacent county of Devon to hear sermons from some of the best of the best men in the county in commemoration of Methodism. The pit is circular, amphitheater in form, and the seating accommodation is hewn out of the sides, descending tier after tier. A few yards distant is a little chapel (Methodist) where hundreds of souls have been loved of God, and many sent to the uttermost parts of the world to preach His free salvation. Many preachers have come from this circuit, notable Rev. John McKenny, who has been in London for many years, and three brothers named Jenkins.
      McKenny and Jenkins's having worked in the tin-mines in that neighborhood for several years. It was in Cornwall that John Wesley lived a week on blackberries, which fact is referred to in his journal, as also the pit incident.
      It is but justice to state that Andrews denies that he attempted to commit a rape on Clara Price and then murdered her to conceal his crime.


      ANDREW'S CONFESSION - Centre County Jail, Bellefonte, Pa., February 6, 1890
      I, Alfred Andrews, make this a true and correct statement of my life, with the knowledge of the fate that is before me.
      I was born in the year 1868, March 6, in the county of Cornwall, England, in the town of Ponsanooth; was fourteen months old when my mother died; was given charge of an old lady by the name of Johanna Prisk; remained with her until the age of about twelve or fourteen years. My father then took me in charge at the farm, and put me to school. Played truant, about one-half of the time. He caught me playing truant for which he gave me a complete thrashing, and I am sorry to say, it done me no good. He told me that if I would not attend school he would put me to breaking ballast, and which I was hoping that he would, for I was tired of school. I was then about fifteen years old. I went to a neighbor's farm and stole two weeks of a low-wheeled carriage. My intention was to build a bicycle. Father found out the theft I had committed, and chastised me for it, which done me no good. By the way, at this time I had a step-mother, and her I could not agree. It seems to me that she was always trying to bet me to run away from home. She threatened to poison me in the presence of my father, for which father struck her, and told me to go out and get the hired man to hitch up a rig and take her home to her folks, which I did, and the man came to the house, by which time they had trouble all settled, and that caused her to hate me worse than ever. My father done some butchering with his farming, and took care of the bones arising therefrom, storing them away. She sold them at different times and blamed me with the selling of them. At this time I was in possession of an old pistol and went to my neighbors', got to shooting at a mark, at which time I accidentally shot a girl with fine shot. In justice to myself, I must say this was purely an accident; no trouble arose from it. This made father much more strict with me. The following market-day father returned home, and had not succeeded in selling all of his meat, which on his return he put into the meathouse. The Sunday evening following, my step-mother came down and unbolted the door of the meat-house, and the dogs got in and destroyed the meat, and on Monday morning she called my father's attention to it. He got quite angry. At this time I was at the cow-stable, milking. Father cut the handle of the broom to beat me with. This was about seven o'clock Monday morning. Step-mother came running to the cow-stable, and says, "Run, he will kill you!" I left the bucket of milk set there and ran away; he followed me a distance of about a mile. I kept ahead of him, running down to Mrs. Prisk, in the village of Ponsanooth; went to her house and told her of the trouble, and she locked me in her house, and started to my home, a distance of three miles, asked of his treatment of me. He requested her to tell me to come back. She answered "No, never, unless you act differently towards him." I would not return home on account of being afraid of him. Mrs. Prisk asked me what I would like to work at. I stated that I would like to break stones or ballasts on the township road, to cause father to be ashamed of his treatment. While working I was staying with Mrs. Prisk; she treated me very kindly, her having promised my mother on her death-bed to care for me as long as I lived, and she desiring to fulfill her promise made to a dying mother. With all of this lady's kindness, I became more reckless, being under no restraint, doing as I pleased. During this time I done some petty thieving in broad daylight, stealing money and a jar of candy from a neighboring store, the keeper of the store being related in some way. Not being caught at this, I became bolder, went back to the same store, and took money; was caught behind the counter at the money-drawer; was not arrested but severely reprimanded by the townspeople. This done me no good.
      At this time I commenced to drink; this brought me closer to the influence of bad men, who persuaded me to break into my grandmother's store, which I did in broad daylight; went behind the counter and stole one pound, being about five dollars, and put it in my mouth; was seen taking it by my grandmother. I ran out into the Street, she followed me, and pressed me to deliver up the stolen money. Still no arrest, and being so bad, I was ashamed of my doings in that town and concluded that I would run away.
      One Friday, while Mrs. Prisk was at market, I broke into the house, having borrowed a hand-saw, breaking into her bureau to get the money which was in there, securing about seventeen pounds, or eighty-five dollars in American money. I took this money and went to the railroad station and bought a ticket, which is three hundred miles from the village of Ponsanooth, arriving at the great Paddington railroad station in London. On arriving there, I went down on Oxford Street, this being in the city. I then secured lodgings in a rather low-grade house, stopping there about two months, and squandering nearly all my stolen money in different parts of the city; so my pocket becoming empty, I was compelled to work. Seeing an advertisement in a window on Allburn Street, went in, made application for work, and was refused on account of having my hands in my pockets, telling me to get out of the place as quick as I could, as I did not want work. From there I went to a restaurant between Oxford and Allburn Streets; there I secured work as dish-washer. I worked there about three months; went from there to West Kensington, getting work there with a cab-driver.
      From this place I went to work for a butcher. During all this time I never wrote home. While working for the butcher I stole two watches, one lady's and one gentlemen's watch, and stole, at the same time, about one pound of money, and escaped for Windsor Castle. While on my way there I took this watch, a lady's gold watch, to a pawn-shop. The initials of the lady was cut on the watch. While in the pawn-shop I asked what he would give me for the watch. He says "Leave the watch here and return in a few minutes. I done so. He asked me where I lived, and I told him below the Castle. While going down to the house I was arrested, and, this being my first arrest, the officer taking me to the pawn-shop; when getting there the officer asked the shopkeeper whether this was the man wanted; he identified me as the one. After being arrested I was asked where the other property was. This compelled me to give an account of myself.
      Before being arrested I had formed acquaintance of a soldier, and being desirous of getting into the service as a drummer boy, he claimed that he was a recruiting officer. We both went out to the fair-grounds and got drunk, I giving him one of the stolen watches, and being closely questioned, I was compelled to tell what I had done with the watch. He then was arrested also; I was then taken to identify him. I claimed I could, and they took me from the lockup to Windsor Castle and called the roll of all the soldiers from the castle. They were there all sorts and sizes, possibly three or four thousand. I picked out a man, but he proved to be the wrong man. I was then told that I was mistaken in the person. I was then taken to the hospital; there I found a man in a different uniform. He had his head bandaged, having been in a fight. We were then both taken to the lockup. I was sentenced on the charge of stealing, for two months at hard labor, he receiving six months, and further received two months in the guard-house after serving his six months at hard labor. When my two months' sentence expired the authorities sent me home, an officer taking me home to the station and buying me a ticket for Penryu, this being within three miles of Ponsanooth, arriving there on Sunday. After what I had done I was ashamed to go to Mrs. Prisk, but went home and broke into my grandmother's house, her store being connected with the house. I ransacked the house and store, stealing about ten dollars in money, tobacco, and several pairs of stockings. Mrs. Prisk heard the noise, there only being an alley between my grandmother's house and Mrs. Prisk's. Not being satisfied, I broke into Mrs. Prisk's house; stole about three dollars from her. When I was going through the window she came downstairs, I making my escape. This was bout one o'clock at night.
      I walked to Falmouth, it being a seaport town, seven miles from Ponsanooth; stayed there about one week. While there I was trying to join the "Ganges," it being a war-ship; got my papers, but could not go any further in this matter, not having my parents consent. I then concluded I would go home. In going home my folks heard of me coming, and grandmother sent a policeman to meet me; there being two roads we did not meet, each taking a different road. Mrs. Prisk me me on the road I had taken, asking when I had been at home last, thinking that I was the one doing the house-breaking. I told her that this was my first time being home since my going away. Not believing me, she examined my stockings; being a good detective, she got the bulge on me; she made me take them off, taking charge of having done so, but she had proof in her possession, knowing the kind of stockings stolen from grandmother, and finding one pair on my feet, she took me into her house.
      By some means grandmother heard of my being at Mrs. Prisk's; she notified the officer, and directed him to go and examine my stockings. When he came and found none on my feet; he took me to my grandmother; I denied again that I had done the stealing, claiming that this was the first time at home since the running away. Promising Mrs. Prisk that I would be a better boy, she took me in again, getting me a place to work at breaking ballast. For some time I was a better boy, and in coming home from work one day, I met father, he asking me what I was working at. I told him what I was doing. He asked me what kind of trade would I like to learn. I preferred the carpenter trade. He put me to work at it, paying all expenses. I received one shilling per week, remaining at trade one year.
      During this time I still kept stealing money from Mrs. Prisk, buying a horn with the money, and joining a band. At this time the old lady and I had a fight, and I threw a table knife at her, striking her on the wrist, doing her some injury. I then caught her by the hair, pulling her on the floor, her crying for mercy, asking me not to hurt her, telling me that I would go to the gallows. I remarked that I did not care.
      About this time I made up my mind to come to America, but she protested against my coming; and not having money enough of my own to come with, she, after my ill-treatment, furnished me with a ticket.
      It was in August, 1885, when I started for America; went by train to Liverpool, took the ship "City of Chester" Inman line, and arrived at Castle Garden, New York, getting there on a Friday, and started same evening for Wilksbarre. Got on wrong train and landed in Altoona. I there got acquainted with an Irishman, going with him to Baker's mines, at or above the horseshoe bend, at which place I worked about one month, and then I formed acquaintance of a man by the name of J. Morris, of Cameron County, Pa., going with him to Cameron, and secured work at the mines; stayed there for two months, when the mines were shut down.
      From there I came to Lock Haven; got work with R.D. Peck, liveryman; was with him from fall to spring, it being the winter of 1885 and '86. Was then taken sick, and then went to the Central Hotel of George Runyan's; was there two weeks. From there I went to West Keating, stopping there two days. From there I went to Keating, some thirteen miles from West Keating, going to work there for George Reed in and around about two months. From there I went to Beech Creek, was employed by the Hon. J.W. Murry, he being one of my own country men; was with him nearly three months. Went from there to Casteen and worked for John McCloud; his brother came from McKean County to buy a team; buying the one that I was driving, taking me with him to drive team; stayed with him about two months, it being cold weather. Leaving him, went to some farmer, I believe his name was A. Perry, working for my board; got well acquainted with the old people, they being great hunters, killing a great many foxes that winter, at least fifty of them. They had the fox skins hanging on the front porch. I was living with A. Perry; the skins belonged to J. Perry. I stole the entire lot one night, taking them into the woods, hiding them in a brush-pile. The next day I took them to Smithport, being the county-seat of McKean County. I went to a justice to provide for getting the bounty for scalps. He accused me of the stealing, and asked me to remain awhile, he going out. I concluded I had business elsewhere, and left without future delay, having carried the skins to town, leaving Mr. Perry to make the settlement.
      From there I went to Olean, New York State, getting two baggage-cars; went to Salamanca; there formed acquaintance of several tramps; finally reached Pittsburg, Pa., worked there for the Natural Gas Company at McKee's Rocks; remained there some little time. Left Pittsburg for Lock Haven by freight; arrested at Johnstown for riding on an observation car; giving the policeman two dollars, he let me go, and advised me how to get to Altoona on a coke car, reaching Lock Haven; there two nights with John McCloud.
      From there I went to Karthaus; got acquainted with Tom Rupp, boarding with him; went to work for A.J. Spear, operator of mines. Not being used to working in mines, I asked him for work outside; he giving me a job under the dump, piking slate from coal in the cars. My orders were that when I founded any slate or dirt in coal, to report to the boss weighman and he would dock the miner mining this particular car of coal that might have slate and dirt in. I speak of this only to show why I gained the ill will of so many miners.
      I went from dump to durn-house, there I was greasing cars; the brakeman and I had some trouble here I was removed from drum-house and put to prospecting for coal; worked at this awhile, and boss and I disagreed about wages. This was the beginning of the year 1887. Went from Karthaus to Snow Shoe, worked at Sugar Camp Mines; boarded with George Casher (bank No. 1). Returned to Karthaus; went to prospecting for coal for A.J. Spear; was then living in Zell's house at Karthaus.
      About this time I broke into a box car and stole four pair of boots, six pair of shoes, one cheese, one barrel of salt meat, one box of coffee, one box of soap, one box of tobacco, twelves boxes of cigars, and three barrels of flour. Took the stolen goods and hid it in the ground. This, of course, created quite an excitement, and detectives were employed in the matter. The goods were not found.
    Alfred J. Andrews Murder Trial, Start to Finish
    Alfred J. Andrews Murder Trial, Start to Finish (9)
    collection of newspaper articles talking about the murder of a young girl, to the arrest, trial, conviction and hanging of the suspect - Alfred James Andrews
    Notes 
    • * From a newspaper clipping in the collection of Shirley Ann Stroup Van Dusen:

      HISTORY OF THE CRIME
      About 12 M. on November 27, 1889, the residents of the usually quiet little Hamlet known as Karthaus, situated on the West Branch of the Susquehanna River, in Clearfield County, PA were startled by the news that a young lady had been found murdered on the turnpike, about one half mile across the river in Centre County.
      The information was given by James Marsteller, William Oswalt, and Jacob Beechdel, who had started from Snow Shoe that morning for Boak's hunting camp, located some miles from Karthaus, in Clearfield County, Pa. When these men came within one half mile of the Karthaus bridge they found the lifeless form of a young girl lying on her face in the middle of the road. They drove to Karthaus and gave the alarm. The citizens rushed to the place designated and were horrified to find the dead body to be that of Clara Price, aged a little over sixteen years, and the daughter of David Price, a well-to-do and respectable citizen of Karthaus.
      An inquest was held by Esquire Rankin, and one bullet hole was found in her body, which produced instant death, another bullet had passed through the lower lobe of one of her ears, and another one had perforated a basket which she was carrying on her arm.
      Clara Price had been staying at the home of Eugene Meeker, as company for his wife while he was attending his lumber job on Sandy.
      On that fatal Wednesday morning Clara Price left Eugene Meeker's to visit her parents at Karthaus, taking with her a basket containing articles as presents to her family. Eugene Meeker's house is about three-quarters of a mile from the pike, which is reached by path. Clara Price took the path, and was seen along the pike near where the path came on the turnpike. She was seen and recognized by those living in the house along the road she traveled. The same persons saw Andrew's passing along the road but a short distance behind Clara Price.
      Mrs. Watson, who lives in the last house on the road before you reach the river, and about one mile from the Karthaus bridge that spans the river at that place, saw Clara Price pass her house about half-past 9 o'clock a.m. of the morning the dead body was found, and a minute or two afterward she saw Alfred Andrews he was about fifteen yards behind Clara.
      About half way between Mrs. Watson's and the river there is a sharp curve in the road, preventing further view of the road from Mrs. Watson's house and just beyond the curve going towards the river, is where the murder was committed and the dead body found. From Mrs. Watson's to the bridge there are woods on both sides of the pike until you get to the river. It is a lonely and weird place, and such a place as would be chosen for a villain to commit a horrible crime.
      The description of the man following the girl along the road answered that of Andrew, who formerly resided at Karthaus, but at the time of the murder lived with his wife and child at Brisbin, Clearfield County, Pa. who, on the following Sunday after the tragedy, was arrested at his home and confined in the Centre County Jail at Bellefonte, Pa.


      HIS TRIAL
      As no person saw Andrews commit the horrible deed, all the evidence at the trial was, of a necessity, circumstantial. Andrews was traced by the Commonwealth, from his home in Brisbin to within a few hundred feet of where the dead body was found, and at that spot foot-prints were discovered in the mud that exactly corresponded in size to the shoes Andrews wore on the ostensible trip to Karthaus. From where the body was found, the prisoner was traced through the woods to Moyer's lumber camp, some three-fourths of a mile from the place where the tragedy occurred, and from there back to his home in Brisbin, which he reached the next day after committing the assassination .
      The tracks in the road showed there had been a tussle several feet from where the body was found, and after that the victim had run several rods back towards Watson's and fell dead in her tracks, with her face to the ground.
      It was shown by expert evidence, who had made the proper tests, that the blood-stains found on Andrew's shoes were drops of human blood; and ex-Judge Orvis's theory was that blood fell on the shoes from Clara's private parts, which Dr. Nevling swore freshly lacerated, whilst the prisoner was making the assault. This theory Andrews in his confession denies, and states that the blood-stains on his shoes, if any, came from blood of a chicken which he killed the Saturday night before his arrest.
      The trial lasted for six days, and was one of the most exciting trials that ever took place in the county of Centre. The prisoners attorneys, Messers Ed. Chambers and Col. Jack Spangler, contested every inch of legal ground on behalf of their client, and made two of the most eloquent appeals to the jury on behalf of Andrews that were ever heard in the Centre County Courthouse.
      The commonwealth was represented by those two able lawyers, District-Attorney Myers and ex-Judge Orvis, the latter having a reputation of being a successful criminal lawyer without a peer in the State. His address to the jury, on that occasion, was a plain, unvarnished statement of a combination of facts, all pointing directly to the prisoner as the party who assassinated Clara Price. They were grouped together in such an ingenious and truthful manner difficulty in finding Alfred Andrews guilty of murder in the first degree, and Judge Hurst sentenced the prisoner, Andrews, to be hung until he was dead.
      At this writing, Governor Beavor has not fixed the day of Andrew's execution, but it is presumed it will take place some time in April, 1890.
      The county the prisoner was born in is somewhat celebrated in history, as being the locality where John Wesley was inspired to write that beautiful hymn, which commences:
      "Lo! on a narrow neck of land
      "Twixt two unbounded seas I stand,"
      In addition to which there is a large pit, known as Gwenup Pit, which was originally the entrance to a large shaft of one of the prosperous tin-mines. This pit is now sacred to all Methodists, who on Whit-Monday of every year are drawn there from Cornwall and the adjacent county of Devon to hear sermons from some of the best of the best men in the county in commemoration of Methodism. The pit is circular, amphitheater in form, and the seating accommodation is hewn out of the sides, descending tier after tier. A few yards distant is a little chapel (Methodist) where hundreds of souls have been loved of God, and many sent to the uttermost parts of the world to preach His free salvation. Many preachers have come from this circuit, notable Rev. John McKenny, who has been in London for many years, and three brothers named Jenkins.
      McKenny and Jenkins's having worked in the tin-mines in that neighborhood for several years. It was in Cornwall that John Wesley lived a week on blackberries, which fact is referred to in his journal, as also the pit incident.
      It is but justice to state that Andrews denies that he attempted to commit a rape on Clara Price and then murdered her to conceal his crime.


      ANDREW'S CONFESSION - Centre County Jail, Bellefonte, Pa., February 6, 1890
      I, Alfred Andrews, make this a true and correct statement of my life, with the knowledge of the fate that is before me.
      I was born in the year 1868, March 6, in the county of Cornwall, England, in the town of Ponsanooth; was fourteen months old when my mother died; was given charge of an old lady by the name of Johanna Prisk; remained with her until the age of about twelve or fourteen years. My father then took me in charge at the farm, and put me to school. Played truant, about one-half of the time. He caught me playing truant for which he gave me a complete thrashing, and I am sorry to say, it done me no good. He told me that if I would not attend school he would put me to breaking ballast, and which I was hoping that he would, for I was tired of school. I was then about fifteen years old. I went to a neighbor's farm and stole two wheels of a low-wheeled carriage. My intention was to build a bicycle. Father found out the theft I had committed, and chastised me for it, which done me no good. By the way, at this time I had a step-mother, and her I could not agree. It seems to me that she was always trying to bet me to run away from home. She threatened to poison me in the presence of my father, for which father struck her, and told me to go out and get the hired man to hitch up a rig and take her home to her folks, which I did, and the man came to the house, by which time they had trouble all settled, and that caused her to hate me worse than ever. My father done some butchering with his farming, and took care of the bones arising therefrom, storing them away. She sold them at different times and blamed me with the selling of them. At this time I was in possession of an old pistol and went to my neighbors', got to shooting at a mark, at which time I accidentally shot a girl with fine shot. In justice to myself, I must say this was purely an accident; no trouble arose from it. This made father much more strict with me. The following market-day father returned home, and had not succeeded in selling all of his meat, which on his return he put into the meathouse. The Sunday evening following, my step-mother came down and unbolted the door of the meat-house, and the dogs got in and destroyed the meat, and on Monday morning she called my father's attention to it. He got quite angry. At this time I was at the cow-stable, milking. Father cut the handle of the broom to beat me with. This was about seven o'clock Monday morning. Step-mother came running to the cow-stable, and says, "Run, he will kill you!" I left the bucket of milk set there and ran away; he followed me a distance of about a mile. I kept ahead of him, running down to Mrs. Prisk, in the village of Ponsanooth; went to her house and told her of the trouble, and she locked me in her house, and started to my home, a distance of three miles, asked of his treatment of me. He requested her to tell me to come back. She answered "No, never, unless you act differently towards him." I would not return home on account of being afraid of him. Mrs. Prisk asked me what I would like to work at. I stated that I would like to break stones or ballasts on the township road, to cause father to be ashamed of his treatment. While working I was staying with Mrs. Prisk; she treated me very kindly, her having promised my mother on her death-bed to care for me as long as I lived, and she desiring to fulfill her promise made to a dying mother. With all of this lady's kindness, I became more reckless, being under no restraint, doing as I pleased. During this time I done some petty thieving in broad daylight, stealing money and a jar of candy from a neighboring store, the keeper of the store being related in some way. Not being caught at this, I became bolder, went back to the same store, and took money; was caught behind the counter at the money-drawer; was not arrested but severely reprimanded by the townspeople. This done me no good.
      At this time I commenced to drink; this brought me closer to the influence of bad men, who persuaded me to break into my grandmother's store, which I did in broad daylight; went behind the counter and stole one pound, being about five dollars, and put it in my mouth; was seen taking it by my grandmother. I ran out into the Street, the followed me, and pressed me to deliver up the stolen money. Still no arrest, and being so bad, I was ashamed of my doings in that town and concluded that I would run away.
      One Friday, while Mrs. Prisk was at market, I broke into the house, having borrowed a hand-saw, breaking into her bureau to get the money which was in there, securing about seventeen pounds, or eighty-five dollars in American money. I took this money and went to the railroad station and bought a ticket, which is three hundred miles from the village of Ponsanooth, arriving at the great Paddington railroad station in London. On arriving there, I went down on Oxford Street, this being in the city. I then secured lodgings in a rather low-grade house, stopping there about two months, and squandering nearly all my stolen money in different parts of the city; so my pocket becoming empty, I was compelled to work. Seeing an advertisement in a window on Allburn Street, went in, made application for work, and was refused on account of having my hands in my pockets, telling me to get out of the place as quick as I could, as I did not want work. From there I went to a restaurant between Oxford and Allburn Streets; there I secured work as dish-washer. I worked there about three months; went from there to West Kensington, getting work there with a cab-driver.
      From this place I went to work for a butcher. During all this time I never wrote home. While working for the butcher I stole two watches, one lady's and one gentlemen's watch, and stole, at the same time, about one pound of money, and escaped for Windsor Castle. While on my way there I took this watch, a lady's gold watch, to a pawn-shop. The initials of the lady was cut on the watch. While in the pawn-shop I asked what he would give me for the watch. He says "Leave the watch here and return in a few minutes. I done so. He asked me where I lived, and I told him below the Castle. While going down to the house I was arrested, and, this being my first arrest, the officer taking me to the pawn-shop; when getting there the officer asked the shopkeeper whether this was the man wanted; he identified me as the one. After being arrested I was asked where the other property was. This compelled me to give an account of myself.
      Before being arrested I had formed acquaintance of a soldier, and being desirous of getting into the service as a drummer boy, he claimed that he was a recruiting officer. We both went out to the fair-grounds and got drunk, I giving him one of the stolen watches, and being closely questioned, I was compelled to tell what I had done with the watch. He then was arrested also; I was then taken to identify him. I claimed I could, and they took me from the lockup to Windsor Castle and called the roll of all the soldiers from the castle. They were there all sorts and sizes, possibly three or four thousand. I picked out a man, but he proved to be the wrong man. I was then told that I was mistaken in the person. I was then taken to the hospital; there I found a man in a different uniform. He had his head bandaged, having been in a fight. We were then both taken to the lockup. I was sentenced on the charge of stealing, for two months at hard labor, he receiving six months, and further received two months in the guard-house after serving his six months at hard labor. When my two months' sentence expired the authorities sent me home, an officer taking me home to the station and buying me a ticket for Penryu, this being within three miles of Ponsanooth, arriving there on Sunday. After what I had done I was ashamed to go to Mrs. Prisk, but went home and broke into my grandmother's house, her store being connected with the house. I ransacked the house and store, stealing about ten dollars in money, tobacco, and several pairs of stockings. Mrs. Prisk heard the noise, there only being an alley between my grandmother's house and Mrs. Prisk's. Not being satisfied, I broke into Mrs. Prisk's house; stole about three dollars from her. When I was going through the window she came downstairs, I making my escape. This was bout one o'clock at night.
      I walked to Falmouth, it being a seaport town, seven miles from Ponsanooth; stayed there about one week. While there I was trying to join the "Ganges," it being a war-ship; got my papers, but could not go any further in this matter, not having my parents consent. I then concluded I would go home. In going home my folks heard of me coming, and grandmother sent a policeman to meet me; there being two roads we did not meet, each taking a different road. Mrs. Prisk me me on the road I had taken, asking when I had been at home last, thinking that I was the one doing the house-breaking. I told her that this was my first time being home since my going away. Not believing me, she examined my stockings; being a good detective, she got the bulge on me; she made me take them off, taking charge of having done so, but she had proof in her possession, knowing the kind of stockings stolen from grandmother, and finding one pair on my feet, she took me into her house.
      By some means grandmother heard of my being at Mrs. Prisk's; she notified the officer, and directed him to go and examine my stockings. When he came and found none on
      my feet; he took me to my grandmother; I denied again that I had done the stealing, claiming that this was the first time at home since the running away. Promising Mrs. Prisk that I would be a better boy, she took me in again, getting me a place to work at breaking ballast. For some time I was a better boy, and in coming home from work one day, I met father, he asking me what I was working at. I told him what I was doing. He asked me what kind of trade would I like to learn. I preferred the carpenter trade. He put me to work at it, paying all expenses. I received one shilling per week, remaining at trade one year.
      During this time I still kept stealing money from Mrs. Prisk, buying a horn with the money, and joining a band. At this time the old lady and I had a fight, and I threw a table knife at her, striking her on the wrist, doing her some injury. I then caught her by the hair, pulling her on the floor, her crying for mercy, asking me not to hurt her, telling me that I would go to the gallows. I remarked that I did not care.
      About this time I made up my mind to come to America, but she protested against my coming; and not having money enough of my own to come with, she, after my ill-treatment, furnished me with a ticket.
      It was in August, 1885, when I started for America; went by train to Liverpool, took the ship "City of Chester" Inman line, and arrived at Castle Garden, New York, getting there on a Friday, and started same evening for Wilksbarre. Got on wrong train and landed in Altoona. I there got acquainted with an Irishman, going with him to Baker's mines, at or above the horseshoe bend, at which place I worked about one month, and then I formed acquaintance of a man by the name of J. Morris, of Cameron County, Pa., going with him to Cameron, and secured work at the mines; stayed there for two months, when the mines were shut down.
      From there I came to Lock Haven; got work with R.D. Peck, liveryman; was with him from fall to spring, it being the winter of 1885 and '86. Was then taken sick, and then went to the Central Hotel of George Runyan's; was there two weeks. From there I went to West Keating, stopping there two days. From there I went to Keating, some thirteen miles from West Keating, going to work there for George Reed in and around about two months. From there I went to Beech Creek, was employed by the Hon. J.W. Murry, he being one of my own country men; was with him nearly three months. Went from there to Casteen and worked for John McCloud; his brother came from McKean County to buy a team; buying the one that I was driving, taking me with him to drive team; stayed with him about two months, it being cold weather. Leaving him, went to some farmer, I believe his name was A. Perry, working for my board; got well acquainted with the old people, they being great hunters, killing a great many foxes that winter, at least fifty of them. They had the fox skins hanging on the front porch. I was living with A. Perry; the skins belonged to J. Perry. I stole the entire lot one night, taking them into the woods, hiding them in a brush-pile. The next day I took them to Smithport, being the county-seat of McKean County. I went to a justice to provide for getting the bounty for scalps. He accused me of the stealing, and asked me to remain awhile, he going out. I concluded I had business elsewhere, and left without future delay, having carried the skins to town, leaving Mr. Perry to make the settlement.
      From there I went to Olean, New York State, getting two baggage-cars; went to Salamanca; there formed acquaintance of several tramps; finally reached Pittsburg, Pa., worked there for the Natural Gas Company at McKee's Rocks; remained there some little time. Left Pittsburg for Lock Haven by freight; arrested at Johnstown for riding on an observation car; giving the policeman two dollars, he let me go, and advised me hot to get to Altoona on a coke car, reaching Lock Haven; there two nights with John McCloud.
      From there I went to Karthaus; got acquainted with Tom Rupp, boarding with him; went to work for A.J. Spear, operator of mines. Not being used to working in mines, I asked him for work outside; he giving me a job under the dump, piking slate from coal in the cars. My orders were that when I founded any slate or dirt in coal, to report to the boss weighman and he would dock the miner mining this particular car of coal that might have slate and dirt in. I speak of this only to show why I gained the ill will of so many miners.
      I went from dump to durn-house, there I was greasing cars; the brakeman and I had some trouble here I was removed from drum-house and put to prospecting for coal; worked at this awhile, and boss and I disagreed about wages. This was the beginning of the year 1887. Went from Karthaus to Snow Shoe, worked at Sugar Camp Mines; boarded with George Casher (bank No. 1). Returned to Karthaus; went to prospecting for coal for A.J. Spear; was then living in Zell's house at Karthaus.
      About this time I broke into a box car and stole four pair of boots, six pair of shoes, one cheese, one barrel of salt meat, one box of coffee, one box of soap, one box of tobacco, twelves boxes of cigars, and three barrels of flour. Took the stolen goods and hid it in the ground. This, of course, created quite an excitement, and detectives were employed in the matter. The goods were not found.
    Person ID I3889  Local Families
    Last Modified 15 May 2017 

    Family Mary Jane Rupe,   b. 25 Jun 1868, Lilly, Blair County, Pennsylvania, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 30 Apr 1945, Philipsburg, Centre County, Pennsylvania, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 76 years) 
    Children 
    +1. Arthur Andrews,   b. 26 Oct 1887, Pennsylvania, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 27 Oct 1918, Philipsburg, Centre County, Pennsylvania, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 31 years)
    +2. Lorena B. Andrews,   b. 26 Jan 1890, Pennsylvania, USA Find all individuals with events at this location
    Last Modified 31 Dec 2014 
    Family ID F1695  Group Sheet

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    Photos 2
    Alfred James Andrews
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