Monday, July 25, 2011

1877 Attempted Robbery

Quite a sensation was created on the streets of our usually quiet village on Monday at about ten o'clock by an individual (name unknown) who came in from the east, representing himself to be an advertising agent, and reporting that he had been hailed when near the "hogback," about a mile and a-half out, by two men who attempted to stop his horse and demanded his money. Constable Collins, in comopany with a posse of men and boys started out, no doubt with visions of a first-class chase and a desperate struggle with a band of highwaymen. Arriving at the point above-mentioned, they found several young men from the village who were recognized by the more-scared-than-hurt advertising agent as the desperadoes. The boys were questioned and said they simply hollered to the man as he passed and said, "Save your money and buy a farm!" It amounts to nothing only this: The man says he understood the boys to say, "Let's have your money!" and was sure at the time that that was what they were after and if they had followed him, he would have fired upon them in which case it might have proved a very serious piece of fun for the boys.

The above article was found in an 1877 issue of The Fowlerville Review. A couple items caught my eye as I was reading this and deciding if I should post it:

1) "Hogback" was mentioned about a mile and a half east of town. I'm assuming that was how Hogsback Road finally got its name, and

2) The name "Collins" showed up. In a few years there would be a Collins Greenhouse and there is also Collins Street. I'm also assuming this may have been from the family that had a village constable.

My only wish would have been that the posse was so-named -- I wonder how many and who was willing to saddle up and ride out of town on a moment's notice.

As a follow-up to the above article, in 1912 a short obituary was posted for a William L. Collins. Could this have been the constable? It read, William L. Collins died at his home in Topeka, Kansas, on Sunday, Jan. 7, after many years of suffering with cancer. His wife is a sister of Mrs. H.C. Benjamin of Conway. The deceased will be remembered by many of the older citizens as a former resident of this village.

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