John G. Sugland, 54th Massachusetts Infantry


John G. Sugland's letter home, dated "May 20th 1864" was written from St. Andrews Parish, Charleston, South Carolina. It is addressed to Addison Whithed---also spelled Whitehead, Whithead, Whithed---Vernon's Recruiting Officer, Postmaster, Town Clerk, and Town Treasurer of Vernon.


Mr. Adesson

Whithead

Vernon

Vermont


PrivateJohnG.Sugland,CivilWarLetter,May20th1864,Sent,AddisonWhithead.jpg

Courtesy Of Special Collections, University of Vermont Libraries


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JohnSugland'sCivilWarLetter,May20,1864,PageTwo.jpg


Transcribing is difficult, with words missing---


St Andrews paris S. C.

May 20th 1864


Dear sir: i am well and hope
these few lines will find you the
same - please send me
and then things
for please rite all of the news
in vernon wont you - i am agoing
to be paid off soon and get
all of the Bounty and it comes
to $400 and 76 dollars
besides our monthly pay
this is pretty much all for
this time about - Give franses
another cent of my money
for she is riting every
body in the 54 besides
me as far as i can find
out - tis worth sunthing
to find out sunthing
She has help spend $83 00


and the other $5 00
she wont have anny
benefit of unless she acts
different - this is all - rite soon
this is from John G. Sugland
to Adesson Whithead
Charleston S. C.


The postal cancellation "U. S. Ship" may refer to the steamer "Island City", which carried John Sugland's Company "K" on May 6, 1864 to his camp in an open field by a plank road on Charleston Neck. St. Andrews Parish lies west from Charleston.


The inscription on the envelope is---


Soldiers Letter
W L Whitney
2d Lt. &. a. adjt
54th Mass vols


LieutenantWilliamL.Whitney,54thMassachusettsInfantry.jpg


William Lambert Whitney, Jr. was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts on March 11, 1811. This officer was also an Acting Adjutant. His father was the Treasurer of the Cambridge Savings Bank before and throughout the Civil War.


John Sugland spent the final weeks in his military service in what became known as the Defense of Charleston. There remained on James Island, an arsenal of twenty guns that had for years thwarted Federal ships---


FortJohnson,JamesIsland,FortSumterDistant,CharlestonHarbor,SouthCarolina.jpg

Fort Johnson -- Fort Sumter Distant

George N. Barnard, Photographer


Lieutenant Whitney, with Company K, on July 31, was ordered to Fort Johnson to dismount guns on James Island for transportation elsewhere. This work was prosecuted until the company was relieved on August 16.


Luis F. Emilio, "A Brave Black Regiment; The History of the 54th Massachusetts, 1863-1865."


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The Sugland Family


Richard Sugland, the father of John Sugland, was born in Connecticut in 1806. In Colrain, Massachusetts, on April 25, 1831 Richard Sugland and Violet Green, both residents, declared their intentions to marry. They separated some time after the children were born. Richard Sugland was "Found dead, cause unknown" in Vernon, Vermont on March 3, 1859. Violet Sugland aged seventy-two was living in Bernardston in 1865 in the household of Silas Green aged seventy.


Violet Green, "Lettie" was related to Peter Green and his wife Violett of Colrain, both born in Africa. Lettie was born about 1794 or 1795. Her older brother Charles was a blacksmith. Her nephew was Francis W. Green, called Frank "Barber" Green of Brattleboro, Vermont.


John G. Sugland was born in Keene, New Hampshire in 1841-1842. [The initial G may stand for Green or possibly Gould]. Francis W. Green, called "Barber Green" of Brattleboro testified that he had known John Sugland since he was a baby.


John G. Sugland's sister was Lucinda. His younger brother was Albert, a servant in the household of the farmer Isaac B. Taft. Albert also posted bills and whitewashed.


John Sugland married Sophronia M. Colgrove, daughter of Stephen Colgrove and Lovina Slate, on December 25, 1862 in Northfield, Massachusetts. Rev. John Murray performed the ceremony in the Unitarian church.


The Suglands lived in a house with 1 1/2 acres of land along the Huckle Hill Road, about one mile west from Lily Pond and near a cranberry swamp. The Colgrove family lived closeby north. Other neighbors were Hosea Blanchard, Charles R. Brooks, and George W. Lee, and Daniel and Lucretia J. Kendall.


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Huckle Hill, Vernon, 1869


Deacon Robert Allen---his son Robert Clark Allen, and his daughter Sarah Augusta Allen especially---were friends and neighbors to John and Sopronia Sugland in Vernon. John Sugland worked on his neighbors' farms, sold hens and roosters. Sophronia told fortunes. The Suglands went to the young peoples' prayer meeting at the Allens' on February 26, 1868.


"One report says that he was suspected of foul play in connection with his father's death and that at one time, when two or three men, who owed him a grudge, set upon him to punish him, he hurt one of them so that he died."


During the war John Sugland was arrested in Vernon on a charge of doing violence to another man, but he was released from jail by the selectmen, on his promise to enlist in the 54th Massachusetts Infantry (Colored). John G. Sugland was in Camp Holbrook in Brattleboro within two days.


Gen. John Wolcott Phelps, admitted to the bar at the Windham County Courthouse in Septmeber 1863, reportedly helped to convince John Sugland to enlist. John G. Sugland enlisted as a private at age twenty-one in Company K, 54th Massachusetts Infantry (Colored) on December 14, 1863.


John Sugland was soon admitted to the Civil War Hospital in Brattleboro, where Sopronia visited him. The pair impressed the Hospital Steward Rinaldo N. Hescock---who later served as the hospital library keeper, and later testified both for Sugland's June 15, 1883 invalid pension application, and at his investigation for murder in 1887.


After a brief furlough to Vernon, Private Sugland was mustered in on January 22, 1864 and arrived at Hilton Head on February 1 with his Co. "K", en route to Morris Island and to Barbour Station. He reached Olustee Flat after an eighteen mile march.


John Sugland boarded the steamer "J. B. Collins" with Co. "K", bound for Florida and the Battle of Olustee (Ocean Pond) on February 20, 1864.


John Sugland later fought in the Battle of Honey Hill in Jasper County, South Carolina on November 30, 1864, helping to advance Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman's march, at the Battle of Boykin's Mill on April 18, 1865 before Savannah, and finally in the Defense of Charleston---


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Fort Johnson -- Fort Sumter Distant


Lieutenant Whitney, with Company K, on July 31, was ordered to Fort Johnson to dismount guns on James Island for transportation elsewhere. This work was prosecuted until the company was relieved on August 16.


Luis F. Emilio, "A Brave Black Regiment; The History of the 54th Massachusetts, 1863-1865."


John G. Sugland also served from November 1864 until February 1865 with the Provost Guard on Morris Island. This guard was an early counterpart for the military police. Sometimes Sugland was recorded as "Absent".


Private John G. Sugland mustered out on August 20, 1865, with $6 deducted from his pay for deciding to keep his gun and other equipment. He embarked the next night on the steamer "C. F. Thompson", clearing soon thereafter for Gallop's Island in Boston Harbor.


John G. Sugland applied for his Civil War pension on June 15, 1885. He is described as being 5' 8" tall, with Black eyes, Black hair, Black complexion. Another description gives Sugland "a trace of either Spanish or Indian blood which somewhat modified the usual negro features."


By 1870 John Sugland was living in Guilford, Vermont along the Broad Brook in Algiers, the village settlement in East Guilford. Helen Adelaide Burt, called Addie, lived with Sugland there in 1881. She was the daughter of Napoleon Burt and Nellie O. Burt of Rutland, Vermont.


The Burt family emigrated from Canada to Castile, Wyoming County, New York---southeast from Toronto---then removed to Burlington, thence to Rutland. They owned a house along Strongs Avenue in Rutland.


Francis N. Burt, called Frank was a laborer who boarded at the Strongs Avenue house. He was likely the paternal uncle for Helen Adelaide Burt. Helen's grandparents were probably William N. Burt and his wife Elizabeth, who remained in Castile, New York.


Helen Adelaide Burt was born in 1862 and was born in Burlington. She came to Brattleboro, and her family moved to Rutland. When she was about nineteen years old in 1881, she was living with John Sugland in Algiers (East Guilford) on the Broad Brook. She did not like John Sugland after he tried to give her "love powders or something".


Helen Burt was reportedly "good looking", diminutive, standing 5' 2". She had dark eyes, and jet-black hair cut short and combed back from the forehead. Helen wore a black hat with one side turned up, with red ribbons and feathers.


Helen carried a parasol, and always "walked with her eyes cast down upon the ground". Mr. Tenney, the railroad depot stage driver, helped to carry her mottled tin trunk to her new lodgings.


On her last day, Helen was wearing a striped skirt, a blue flannel dress, and a black jersey, with ear jewels, and carrying a purse or pocket-book in her stocking, containing two one-dollar bills---one with a portrait of George Washington on it---a piece of sweet flag, and pieces of snake root.


Almost four months after her daughter Helen's murder, Nellie was sentenced on October 12, 1887 to thirty-three days in the Vermont House of Correction for intoxication. She was forty-one years old. Nellie served six days and was discharged---the "manner of discharge" is indicated as "paid $9.28".


"Joseph Sugland, a colored man, was examined before Justice Newton, Tuesday, charged with stealing a string of gold beads and $12 in money from Eliza Bardwell, one year ago. In default of bail he was sent to Newfane." ---Vermont Record And Farmer, January 10, 1879.


Samuel Sugland and Lucy Freeman, both of Colrain, married in Montague, Massachusetts on April 9, 1832. Their son Samuel Sugland, Jr. married Mary Abbie Todd on July 8, 1861 at age twenty-one. Abbie Todd was the daughter of Thomas Todd and Jemima.


Samuel Sugland Jr. and Abbie's children were Eliza Sugland born May 4, 1862 in Northampton, Massachusetts; Lizzie Sugland born November 26, 1863 in Northampton; Lorenzo Sugland born September 18, 1865 in Northampton.


Another Lorenzo Sugland, the son of Samuel, Sr. and Lucy, was born in Northampton about 1847 and later moved to Deerfield. He was working as a farm laborer in Amherst when he enlisted on January 4, 1864 in the 5th Massachusetts Cavalry, Company "D".


Lorenzo Sugland lived in the household of Army Surgeon D. B. Nelson Fish for a time in 1865 and was discharged with disability on June 15, 1865.


Lorenzo's younger brother Elbridge Sugland was born about 1849 or 1850 and spent his childhood years in Northampton and later in Deefield. Some years after the war he visited the Vermont State House of Correction, placed there for an altercation in Vernon involving a butcher knife.


Samuel Sugland, Jr.'s next son, William H. Sugland, was born in South Deerfield, Massachusetts about 1867, and he died in Boston on February 18, 1899 aged thirty-one. He was married and worked as a waiter.


Samuel and Abbie's last son, Lewis Elbridge Sugland, was born on May 2, 1872 in South Deerfield.


John G. Sugland's son---John Richard Sugland---was born in Vernon on October 28, 1868. Son John was a farm hand in West Brattleboro, where he died at the age of thirty-two on January 11, 1901. The horse that he was harnessing---recently arrived for William G. Doolittle from Boston---kicked him in the abdomen.


Arthur H. Sugland is the second son, born on November 23, 1870 in Springfield, Massachusetts, "Black", to "Sugland" born in Northampton, and "Sophronia" born also in Northampton.


Calista E. Sugland, John Sugland's daughter, called herself by the "nickname" Calista Gould in 1887. She married the colored laborer Elijah Todd on January 1, 1890, the ceremony performed by Justice of the Peace William S. Newton.


Violet Sugland was born December 12, 1872, delivered by Dr. Thomas Goodwillie.


_


African American Civil War Memorial


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The African American Civil War Memorial stands at the corner of Vermont Avenue, 10th Street, and U Street NW in Washington, D.C. This 9' 1/2" bronze consists of a front high bas-relief and lower relief on the backside. The backside consists of a family group as the soldier, a son, leaves for the war.


The front has three infantry soldiers and a sailor as protectors of the fight for freedom. It was completed in early 1997 and installed on the two foot high round base on July 16, 1998 and dedicated on July 18, 1998.


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The Spirit of Freedom was cast in Baltimore, Maryland at the New Arts Foundry. The architects for the project were Devrouax and Purnell Architects and Ed Dunson & Associates designed the site. The sculptor is Ed Hamilton.


The name John G. Sugland is engraved upon the memorial plaque.


African American Civil War Memorial
Freedom Foundation and Museum
1925 Vermont Avenue NW
Washington, D. C. 20001


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Pvt. John G. Sugland


He is buried at the Tyler Cemetery in Vernon, Vermont with a plain field stone as a marker.


James R. Fuller

"Men of Color, To Arms! Vermont African-Americans in the Civil War".

(iUniversity, Incorporated, 2001), pages 162-163.


Can this be the marker?


It stands 2' 7" high and is located about 125 feet north from his father-in-law Stephen Colgrove and his mother-in-law Lovina Slate's gravestones. This is the only plain stone marker in the entire cemetery. It may be an old "thrufter" or through stone, taken from a local stone wall. The thrufter stone was sometimes spindle-shaped, its purpose was to bind other wall stones together, especially at corners, in the manner of dovetail joints in wood.


The Tyler Cemetery is located at 1298 Pond Road, Vernon, Vermont.


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Pvt. John G. Sugland, Co. K, 54th Massachusetts Infantry (Colored) June 2012 Stone.jpg


"Dedication Ceremony of the Grave Marker of Civil War Soldier Pvt. John G. Sugland"

June 24, 2012

Author - Barbara Moseley
Master of Ceremony - Dale Gassett


Researchers are indebted to Barbara Moseley for composing this booklet. Years studying military and pension records, genealogy, Vernon local diaries, and following family lore---her grandfather Arthur T. Jackson remembered John G. Sugland---are all reflected here.


Vernon Historians
4201 Fort Bridgman Road
P. O. Box 282
Vernon, VT 05354


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Richard And Lucinda Suglin


A few rods north of Old Anna's hut lived a negro family named Suglin, the conspicuous members of which were the father, Richard, and the oldest daughter, Lucinda. Richard was an athlete and enjoyed a fight as much as he did a nice dinner of chicken or lamb, of which delicacies he was exceedingly fond. He always attended the musters and trainings of the militia of those days and was sure to be in a fight with some one very soon after arriving on the field. It was rare indeed that he got the worst of such a contest, for he was quick and powerful and seemed to be totally oblivious to the dreadful blows which were sometimes rained upon his wooly head and ebony face. Ordinarily, Richard was peaceable and good-natures, fighting being indulged in purely for recreation and generally without provocation.


Lucinda, the daughter, inherited some of her father's peculiarities, especially his fighting propensity and love of frolic. She could sing and dance quite attractively, and did not hesitate to spar with any young man who dared to stand up before her. The "accomplishments" which characterized Richard and his daughter, however, were not appreciated by his neighbors, all of whom seemed to rejoice when the family emigrated to another state. Since their departure the raising of lambs and poultry in the vicinity of their old home has been attended to with less loss than it was in the days when Richard used to attribute the disappearance of this kind of property to the depredations of hawks and foxes.


Thomas C. Rand, A Sketch of Keene, The Gem of the Ashuelot Valley. Originally Published in the Granite Monthly for February, 1895, To Which Are Added, Reminiscences of Keene People, Originally Published in the New Hampshire Sentinel, Over the Signature "Ash Swamp." Page 34.


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Silas Green


Probable murder at Vernon Vt.- Silas Green, an old colored man, formerly a resident of Bernardston, but recently of Vernon, Vt. has been unaccountably missing since last Fri. night, when he was last seen by one of his neighbors at his residence shelling corn and apparently in his usual health. His sudden disappearance has excited suspicions of foul play, and the whole town, headed by the Selectmen, made a thorough search Wed. to no avail. Green was between 80 and 90 years of age and very infirm, being scarcely able to walk. He owned the house and 2 acres of land, and up to Fri. lived with a colored man and wife named Vanall. He also had a nephew named Sugland, who lived near, and Mrs. Vanall was his niece. The Vanall family were to provide for his sustenance, and at his decease the property, both real and personal, was to be given to them; but he had frequently threatened to apply to the town for aid, feeling that his support was entirely inadequate. Sugland and the Vanalls went away Fri. morning, to go a mile or two distant, where Sugland proposed to locate. They left the old man without fuel or provisions, except a few cold boiled potatoes, and did not return until Sun. morning, when, according to their testimony, they found the premises vacant, and immediately carried the old man's bed into the attic, thinking he would never return to occupy it. The neighbors searched the premises Mon. and Tues., but obtained no clue to the missing man. Since that time, Vanall, who is extremely ignorant, if not non compos, has been arrested, and there is little doubt that he is the murderer, although sufficient evidence has not yet been obtained to hold him. He was seen returning to the house, after the disappearance of the old man, with a shovel and an old ax, and the ax had been in frozen ground. Vanll is still under arrest, and the authorities are in hopes of ferreting out the mystery. The body has been found.


Gazette & Courier, Monday, December 11, 1871.


William Vanall was about thirty-eight years old at this time, and his wife Mary Ann was slightly older. Their son, John H. W. Vanall was twenty. Lilas Green (male, aged seventy-five) was also living with them, and William's brother-in-law, William Todd, aged seventy-nine. The Vanalls later removed to Guilford.


Violet Sugland, the widow of Richard, was living in Bernardston in 1865 in the household of Silas Green. Violet was seventy-two years old, and Silas was seventy.


Vernon.


---The excitment in this place regarding the disappearance of Silas Green, a negro, aged about 90 years, has terminated. He was last seen on Friday the 1st inst., and a thorough search was made, for several days, but no discovery was made, and grave suspicions of foul play were entertained. On Monday evening of this week, however, the body was discovered, some 70 rods from his residence, at the foot of a tree, in a sitting posture. Some leaves were found to have been gathered together, and matches near by, from which it would seem that the old man had tried to make a fire, but being unable to do so, had frozen to death. He was found by Timothy D. Lynde, a negro, and nephew of the old man. This Lynde claimed to have had a revelation of the locality in a vision at Northampton, Mass. He arose and drew a map of the spot where he saw the body in his dream, and going immediately to Vernon found it precisely where he had dreamt. The old man's keys, wallet and a little change were found undisturbed in his pocket. On Tuesday a post-mortem examination was made by Dr. Thos. Goodwillie, but nothing indicating violence was discovered, and it is evident now that the suppositions of foul play were unfounded.


Vermont Record And Farmer, December 15, 1871.


The Vermont Phoenix for December 15, 1871 adds the detail that "A parcel of leaves and twigs tied up in a handkerchief lay at his side, and a few matches were scattered about. Appearances indicated that he had tried tomake a fire, but, being completely chilled, had suddenly died."


The Vermont Phoenix also gives the name as "Timothy V. D. Lynde".


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Saving Levi Moore


On the 22nd inst. Levi Moore went with his horses on to the mountain in the west part of town, after a load of logs. A large log lying the wrong side of the stump, Moore hitched his horses to the log to roll it over. When the log was nearly over, the chain broke and the log rolled back onto Mr. Moore's legs, breaking his left leg about half-way between the knee and ankle. Fortunately, there were choppers nearby and one John Sugland, with herculean strength, took a lever and moved the log sufficiently for him to get out. He was taken home by a neighbor and his wounds cared for by Dr. Goodwillie.


This newspaper notice has been cited by one source as dated August 1874.


Levi Moore was married to Mary A. Wood and owned land near the Hinesburg Baptist Church in Guilford.


Statement From W. H. Alexander.


It will be remembered that last September when complaints were often made about the sale of liquors I made a proposition to the people to buy and sell all they wished for fifteen days and then stop. That answered my purpose fully and we got through 1880 without presenting one person for trial. Nevertheless a liquor nuisance has existed in the extreme south part of the village for years, which no law would reach, until the late nuisance act, which was supposed to meet such cases as this. That most shameful of all gatherings at Trendall's on Saturday night, was composed of ten strangers. Trendall, the negro, John Sugland from Vernon, and wife, with cider, wine and whiskey on hand. The party was now complete with the exception of the girl ledt at Sugland's, two miles away. Trendall placing his overcoat and gloves on one of the party, sent for the girl to complete the party. He returned with the desired object, when the cider and wine mixed with whiskey was passed freely by Trendall until 2 o'clock Sunday morning, when a serious difficulty arose as to the ownership of the girl, when T. ordered one out of his house, for which he was assaulted; the fellow left and took the girl with him. On their way home they were overtaken, the girl taken from him by force, and he pounded until their cries of murder frightened their assailants away. Complaint was made to me. I found that the fighters had all left town, and when I failed to get Trendall's promise to abate that nuisance, I arrested him under the nuisance act. The case was fairly presented to a very intelligent Jury. The charges of violation of the nuisance act were not only proved, but acknowledged by the defendant; nevertheless, the Jury returned their verdict of not guilty. Now let no man hereafter make complaint to me under that very wise nuisance act, as no intelligent Jury will convict for its violation. Let no man take any case, of liberty to violate upon what I have said above as I shall hereafter refer all complaints to the State's Attorney, Reed, and all settlements will be made at Newfane.


Grand Juror.


Windham County Reformer, January 28, 1881.


William Trendall's house stood near the old camp grounds---Camp Holbrook---and the former Civil War Hospital grounds. It stood at the corner of present Moreland and Fairgrounds Roads, across the street from the old "barracks cemetery" site. Trendall and his wife Isabella primarily entertained Irish railroad workers. Dr. Charles A. Gray was summoned occasionally.


The statement here is from Willard H. Alexander. The jury under discussion was composed of Gen. W. W. Lynde, F. W. Brooks, H. F. Smith, W. H. Estabrook, H. W. Simonds, and J. W. Burnap. Appearing for the State was E. W. Stoddard, and Haskins & Goodnow defended William Trendall.


William Trendall enlisted from Swanton, Vermont as a private in Company M, First Vermont Cavalry on April 14, 1864 and mustered in the same day. He mustered out on August 9, 1865 and died in Brattleboro on February 1, 1892.


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Vernon.


Murderous Assault---A Man Attacked And

Severely Wounded With A Butcher Knife.


Last Saturday evening, two colored men named Elbridge Sugland and Charles Van Alstine, who have been engaged in chopping wood the past winter, had a wordy altercation at the house of John Sugland where they were boarding. From words they soon came to blows, and in this contest Van Alstine got the better of his adversary, who agreed to behave himself if Van Alstine would let him up, which he did do. Soon after Sugland went up stairs to bed, and Van Alstine with John Sugland's son, a lad about ten or a dozen years old, followed and took another bed in the same chamber. Sometime after midnight the Sugland boy was awakened by Elbridge Sugland who stood over the bed with a light in one hand and a large butcher knife in the other, and before he had time to arouse his sleeping companion Sugland plunged the knife at Van Alstine's throat. The knife made a fearful gash just under and near his left ear, whereupon Van Alstine sprang up in bed and caught the blade of the knife in his right hand and called loudly for help. The would be murderer wrenched the knife out of his hand cutting him very severely, upon which Van Alstine, in defending himself, grasped the knife with his other hand, and the result was, that hand was horribly cut. In the melee the light was put out, but John Sugland, who slept below, was aroused by the cries of the bleeding victim, rushed up stairs and by his timely interference prevented what otherwise would have been a murder. John Sugland turned the miscreant from his house, and it is reported that he spent the day (Sunday) at William Trendell's. On Monday Elbridge Sugland was seen on the street in Brattleboro, but soon left town and it is supposed that he has taken refuge in New Hampshire. On Tuesday, Van Alstine was able to come to this village, and made complaint against his assailant. What further steps have been taken in the matter we are not advised, but for the reputation and well being of the community, we hope the offender will be captured and brought to justice. Men who will commit such heinous and cowardly offences, ought not to be permitted to roam at large.


Later.--- Sugland has since been arrested by Sheriff Lovell of Bellows Falls.


Vermont Phoenix, April 1, 1881.


Elbridge Sugland was sentenced to one year and one hundred ninety eight days in the Vermont State House of Correction, following his conviction on October 17, 1881 for assault and battery. He was the son of Samuel Sugland, Sr. and Lucy Freeman.


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Mrs. Sophronia M. Sugland


Mrs. Sophronia M. Sugland died very suddenly at Athol, New York on December 29, 1906, while visiting her sister, Mrs. Emma Gallup. Rev. Mr. Cornell conducted the funeral from her long-time home in Guilford, Vermont.


Mrs. Sugland was born in Vernon in February, 1843, daughter of Stephen and Lovina (Slate) Colgrove. In 1858 she married John G. Sugland, who later served three years in the war in Company K, 54th Massachusetts volunteers, and who later committed suicide in the lockup at Brattleboro in June, 1887, having been arrested there on the charge of murdering Adelaide Burt and confined there pending a hearing. Mrs. Sugland leaves no near relatives except her sister Emma. Her only child, John, jr., was killed by a vicious horse a few years ago and her only brother, George Colgrove, who was a soldier, fell in the attack on Petersburg June 23, 1864. For the past 30 years she had lived here most of the time and was an honest, peaceable, hard working woman. Burial was in the Tyler cemetery in Vernon.


Brattleboro Reformer, February 15, 1907.


Sophronia Sugland was slightly lame, following a broken right ankle. She was a housekeeper for the Vernon farmer John Tittemore in February 1895.


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Mrs. Albert Sugland's Suicide


A suicide at Saxtons River Tuesday has interest here from the fact of the family being well known and often seen upon our streets. Mrs. Albert Sugland, a white woman who has lived for many years with a negro as his wife, took a dose of laudanum Tuesday morning, with the avowed purpose of self-destruction, and died in the evening. They have lived the past year and a half in one of C. C. Frost's tenement houses, where she was when found suffering from the effects of the drug. Dr. Osgood was called and did his best to save her life, but without avail. They had lived in Westminster village eight or ten years previous to moving to Saxtons River, and no one seems to know who the woman was, or where she came from previous to that. The two were between 50 and 60 years of age, the woman said to be 52. Mr. Sugland had always made his business that of a whitewasher, and was a good workman, but addicted to drink. At Westminster he took the cure for the habit and went without drinking a year or so, but soon relapsed, and the despondency of the woman was caused by his vicious habits and abuse. The body is to be buried in the cemetery at Westminster today.


Vermont Phoenix, February 25, 1898.


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The Sugland Case Recalled In 1939


Any attempt to delve into the history of Brattleboro's police department would seemingly fall short of its purpose if some reference wasn't made of the sensational Sugland murder-suicide case and if it wasn't pointed out that one of the two local jail deliveries was made in the long-scorned town hall lock-up.


The Sugland case, as it was popularly known then, provided the town with one of the most shocking crimes in its annals. John G. Sugland, a Negro in his early 40's who was employed by Fred Waite as a woodchopper, hanged himself in the old jail June 23, 1887. And this suicide, which came timely enough to electrify the townsfolk, was considered by officials to be a confession and justice done for the dastardly murder of a pretty young white woman, Helen A. Burt.


Four days before, the body of Miss Burt had been found floating in the Connecticut, just below the old toll bridge, by R. N. Hescock. The woman had been brutally killed by blows on the head with some blunt instrument. When Hescock dragged the corpse from the river his eyes took in a horrible sight. The body was naked from the waist down, the dress having been pulled up and tied over the head---to keep blood from splashing before it was thrown in the river, the officials decided.


It was known the woman had associated with the well-liked Negro, had been with him in his shanty on many occasions. It was thought he was very jealous of her. It was learned he had been seen with her about the last time anyone saw her alive.


So officials had a No. 1 suspect and decided to go after him. But Sugland was to have that much triumph over the law. He gave himself up voluntarily---for examination, of course. He was placed in the town hall jail and a preliminary investigation was started into the death of Helen Burt, a misguided young woman perhaps, but one who was more or less popular among the younger folks.


Some 30 witnesses paraded before Justice W. S. Newton and placed some damaging, some harmless evidence in the hands of investigators. Jacob Cartledge, a Negro friend of Sugland's, told a lot but not as much as he knew, the officials opined. They locked him up, too.


Before Cartlege ever had a chance to spill all that was in his mind, however, Selectman S. N. Herrick made a gruesome discovery. He went into the cell room on a Thursday to see if Sugland had been fed his dinner and he found the body of the Negro hanging by a rope, improvised from strips of a blanket, from grill work overhead.


It was commonly thought that relatives of Sugland visited him in his cell and told him Cartledge was going to talk. And Cartledge did talk---afterward. He told police he was working on the river bank the day Miss Burt's body was believed to have been hurled into the water. He said Sugland came along and told him to keep his eye on the river.


"If a girl's body floats by let me know," Cartledge declared Sugland had demanded of him. "I was afraid of him," Cartledge asserted.


There the case ended. Sugland was given a decent burial as was the woman he practically confessed killing. But it was many years afterward that townspeople began to shake off morbid memories.


Brattleboro Daily Reformer, Friday, December 8, 1939.


"They're Moving the Town Bastille---Right Back to the Old Trouble Spot".

Extract from the article.


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The Witnesses


The witnesses who were called before Justice William S. Newton, while John Sugland was locked up included---


Fred M. Waite, Seth N. Herrick, Austin J. Gleason, Dr. James Conland, Dr. Henry D. Holton, Dennis Tasker, Austin E. Russell, Charles W. Wilcox, Calista Sugland, John R. Sugland, Jacob Cartledge, A. G. Carleton, Nicholas Baker, Fletcher Benton, John Carney, Frank Norcross, Alexander Cummings, Silas W. Richardson, Mrs. Anna Babbitt, Mrs. Diantha Mixer, John Fitzgerald, Leslie O. Thayer, Patrick Austin, Daniel Manning, Mrs. Henry Almond, Henry Almond, Lawrence Heaphey, Levi M. Walker, Barney Breslin, Andrew J. Horton, George W. Esterbrook, John B. Walker, Charles C. Clancy, and Edgar M. Applin.


From these witnesses it is learned that---


Helen Adelaide Burt was born in 1862 and came originally from Burlington. She came to Brattleboro, and her family moved to Rutland. When she was about nineteen years old in 1881, she was living with John Sugland in Algiers (East Guilford) on the Broad Brook. She did not like John Sugland after he tried to give her "love powders or something".


Helen Burt was reportedly "good looking", diminutive, standing 5' 2". She had dark eyes, and jet-black hair cut short and combed back from the forehead. Helen wore a black hat with one side turned up, with red ribbons and feathers.


Helen carried a parasol, and always "walked with her eyes cast down upon the ground". Mr. Tenney, the railroad depot stage driver, helped to carry her mottled tin trunk to her new lodgings.


On her last day, Helen was wearing a striped skirt, a blue flannel dress, and a black jersey, with ear jewels, and carrying a purse or pocket-book in her stocking, containing two one-dollar bills, a piece of sweet flag, and pieces of snake root.


After living in Dummerston for about three years, in June 1886 or so, John Sugland built a shanty in the woods on the land of Fred M. Waite, a quarter mile from the Connecticut River and one mile from the Dummerston Station---along the road leading from John Houghton's ferry, and located south east from Houghton's house.


The shanty had two rooms, front and back, fitted with bunks. John Sugland's daughter Calista moved into the back room on July 5, 1886. Sugland could be seen sawing logs on a side hill near this shanty.


John Sugland was often observed going down the stairs leading from behind the Town Hall down to the tracks at a place near the railroad's blacksmith shop, or walking along the tracks. "There goes Sugland."


Frank Johnson, Charles Reed, and Abbott Sargent worked with Sugland getting timber over the track when the trains were not running.


Henry Almond recalled shaking his hand and learning from Sugland about a wood chopping job that Cal Gibson had. [Calvin P. Gibson was the mail carrier from Dummerston depot to West Chesterfield, New Hampshire.]


Daniel "Dummy" Manning, while he was busy shovelling at Fuller's sand bank, noticed Sugland's new suit of clothes, the new white shirt, and was told that it had cost $30.


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John Sugland's New Lock-Up


NewLockup,VermontPhoenix,October8,1886.jpg

Vermont Phoenix, October 8, 1886


---The selectmen have got the lock up well advanced toward completion. It occupies a space 25 or 30 feet wide, extending across the whole east end of the town hall basement, which gives a length of 56 feet. It is separated from the rest of the basement by a solid wall built of the brick taken out of the vault torn away to make room for the new post-office. The apartment has five windows, and is entered by a door cut in the southeast corner. It will be light, dry, and every way wholesome. To begin with, four cells or cages will be built of solid oak and set in the middle of the room, with a corridor running all around them. In the north end a room is being finished off where police courts can be held, or it may be need to confine prisoners whom the offices do not care to put in the cells.


Vermont Phoenix, September 10, 1886.


"It is a curious fact that Sugland cut the very timber that he hung himself on."


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Time Served


Fred M. Waite, John Sugland's employer for four years, believed in his worker's innocence, and at his own expense hired Waterman & Martin to defend him---"He told them to charge the bill to him, and if at any time he became satisfied of Sugland's guilt he should hold himself at liberty to discharge them."


"Mr. Waite says that in all the time he has known Sugland, he had never seen anything ugly about him but once, and "then he was so mad that he was white".


While in jail, John Sugland at times spoke with small groups of boys through his cell window in the back of the town hall building. His wife Sophronia was outside the lockup at 12:20, shortly before he hanged---"a slight fluttering of the pulse was perceptible" just as he was being cut down.


"On Sugland's person was found a silver watch, chain, a bottle of perfumery, 26 cents, some nickels and cents, and a copy of the Rutland Daily Herald of which he had been a subscriber for several months."


After the hanging, an interesting fact came to light---"It is a curious fact that Sugland cut the very timber that he hung himself on." The woodcutter had long before fashioned his cell's cross-hatched ceiling beams from stout oak.


"Sugland was a member of a colored lodge of masons at Springfield, and some of the negroes here telegraphed yesterday to see if the lodge would bury him, but of course it won't."


Brattleboro Reformer, June 24, 1887.

The quotations are extracts from this article.


A woman recorded as Addie M. Burt is also buried in the Tyler Cemetery in Vernon.


John Sugland's pride in his Civil War service with the Massachusetts 54th Infantry, combined with his effective exclusion from the celebrations and the ceremonies to dedicate the Civil War monument on the Common that weekend---the heightened emotions---may have had some bearing on this murder.


North Panel, Civil War Monument, Brattleboro Common.jpg

North Panel, Civil War Monument, Brattleboro Common


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A Week Of Excitement.


And a Dramatic Succession of Criminal Events.

The Body of a Murdered Girl Found Sunday in the River

John Sugland, the well-known Negro, is Arrested for the Crime and Commits Suicide before his Examination is finished.


The Story Of The Week's Sensations Told In Detail.


This week has been one of strange and unusual excitement in Brattleboro, and the succession of startling incidents has been all the more exciting for the reason that the ordinary course of our community life is so free from serious criminal disclosures of any kind. Last Sunday morning, just as the church bells were ringing, the body of a young woman who had evidently been murdered was found floating in the river, just off Root's island below the toll-bridge.


Sugland, the Murderer.


John G. Sugland, whose own final act confesses him the murderer of the unfortunate girl, Helen Burt, was a negro, "as black as the ace of spades," but with a trace of either Spanish or Indian blood which somewhat modified the usual negro features. He was tall, straight, well formed and powerfully built. He had a bright, intelligent face, which hardly bore the impress of his real character. He had high cheek bones and close woolly hair, but the lips were thin and there was nothing of the stolidity of expression which marks the average negro face. He evidently took much pride in her personal appearance and was well known about town as wearing a neat black suit and Grand Army hat. His history was a more doubtful one, and he has always borne a hard name. During the war he was arrested on a charge of doing violence to a man, in Vernon, and was released from jail on his promise to enlist in the 54th Massachusetts (black) regiment, then being raised, which he did. Since the war he has lived in Vernon, Guilford and Brattleboro, and has been best known on account of the unsavory crowd with which he has been connected and the rows of all sorts in which he has been engaged. One report says that he was suspected of foul play in connection with his father's death and that, at one time, when two or three men, who owed him a grudge, set upon him to punish him, he beat one of them so that he died. Of late he has been at work for Fred Waite as a wood-chopper, as stated in the testimony. He has had a white woman living with him as his wife. He had two children, a girl and a boy of 18 and 19.


A letter came from Hinsdale this morning saying that a sister of the man whom Sugland murdered in 1863 is now living there and could give information about him.


Vermont Phoenix, Friday, June 24, 1887.


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The Investigation.


Tuesday Morning's Session


The preliminary examination of John G. Sugland, on a charge of murdering Helen Addie Burt, began before Justice Wm. S. Newton at the town hall on Tuesday morning. A large crowd of people was in attendance. The court was called to order at 10:40 and the state's attorney's complaint was read by Mr. Mann in person. The complaint alleges that the said Sugland did, in the town of Dummerston, with a piece of wood, iron, or other instrument, assault said Helen A. Burt and inflict on her a mortal injury; a second count in the complaint alleges that the deed was done in Brattleboro.


Rinaldo N. Hescock was the first witness called and sworn. The witness lives in Brattleboro and works in the Estey organ shops. Last Sunday morning, just as the 9 o'clock church bells were ringing, he was down on Root's island at a point almost in a straight line down from Gleason's coal sheds. He there discovered an object lying in the water about 20 feet from the shore, and about 10 rods below the bend in the river. It was a human body with just the hips sticking up above the water. It seemed to have floated there and to have just caught on a stone enough to hold it. He took off his shoes and stockings and waded out and took hold of the body by one heel and pulled it in far enough so that it would not float away and then went up and notified Mr. Herrick. Herrick came down and A. J. Gleason and an Irishman. At Mr. Herrick's request the witness turned the body over. It was all naked below the hips except the shoes and stockings. It was the body of a woman; had on a striped skirt, a blue flannel dress and a black jersey. The dress skirt was pulled up over the head and was tied around the neck. At Mr. Herrick's request he cut the string and pulled down the clothing. The eyes were open and somewhat protruding. The tongue at first was mostly in the mouth, but afterward swelled rapidly; the face at first was not badly discolored, but changed fast. Mr. Herrick thought it was some body that had floated down and would not be called for, and proposed to bury it there in the sand. Sent for tools and had a grave dug. Witness did not feel satisfied with this and stooped down and pressed the hair apart and found a wound on the head about four inches long. When he found this Mr. Herrick changed his mind about burying the body. The dress was tied about the neck with a cord about a sixteenth of an inch in size. In one stocking found a purse containing two one-dollar bills, one with portrait of Geo. Washington and one with portrait of Martha Washington; also in the purse a piece of sweet flag and pieces of snake root. The body when found was four or five rods from the main current of the river; was in still water except what ripples came in.


Dr. Conland and Mr. Bond, the undertaker, were sent for and came; the body was put in a box and packed in ice and afterward was carried to the cemetery and put in the tomb. All agreed it could not have been a case of suicide.


Vermont Phoenix, Friday, June 24, 1887.


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The True Story Of The Sugland Murder.


Some interesting facts in connection with the Sugland murder case, which made such a sensation nearly three years ago, have recently come to our knowledge. It will be remembered that the supposition was at the time that Sugland followed his victim, the Burt girl, down the railroad track, in the evening, and overtook and killed her somewhere above the West river bridge, secreting her body for two or three days and then throwing it into the river. After Sugland's suicide his family told a story to this effect, at least, that being angry because she had again left him, he swore that he would punish her, and taking a big clasp knife and a revolver started out to follow her. His wife has since admitted, however, that the fatal blow was struck in the woodchopper's shanty, Sugland knocking the girl over with his fist without meaning to kill her. This was on the Sunday just a week before the body was discovered, when there was rum and a general scrimmage in the shanty, Mrs. Sugland's face showing t the time of the trial the mark of a heavy blow. Further than this we find it to be true that during the summer following the murder Sugland's son told two people in whom he had confidence what he then claimed to be the true story of the occurrence. This story was that the Burt girl got drunk on the Sunday in question and was noisy and ugly as usual on such occasions. She made an exhibition of herself in this way outside the shanty, which John disliked, and made her go inside, and then ordered her to sit down and keep still. This she refused to do, and when she persisted, Sugland, in his anger, dealt her a tremendous blow, knocking her clean over the table, her head striking the stove and cutting the gash in the scalp which the doctors said appeared to have been made by some blunt instrument. She did not get up, and when it was found that she was dead the body was hidden in the shanty until night, and then was carried out to the river, the dress pulled up and tied over the head, stones put in, and then Sugland and his boy waded in as far as possible with the horrible burden and dropped it to the bottom. "I told him," the boy said, in telling the story, "that he ought to put a big stone on her." The stones worked out of the dress as the body filled with gas and began to rise, and when John found that it had floated off he came down and notified Cartledge to look out for it. The rest of the story, and how it all came out, is too recent and too well remembered to need repeating. Had Sugland recognized the difference between murder in the first degree and manslaughter his course might have been different.


This narrative is of interest for the reason, if for no other, that it does away with any imagining of what horrible scene may have occurred when the powerful negro overtook his victim alone in the dark and tortured her with threats and upbraiding before wreaking his vengeance on her.


Vermont Phoenix, April 11, 1890.


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The Unsolved


This 1887 case of John G. Sugland cannot be closed. Murder in the second degree is not impossible, and the terrible likelihood yet remains, that the man hanged himself in order to close the investigation---and so to protect another person---the true murderer or murderers.


Sacrifice is not impossible. In another case five years later, Lizzie Borden shielded her older sister Emma in Fall River, Massachusetts, stoically committing social suicide, and allowing the truly guilty Borden to escape.


It remains the fact, that John Sugland did not lack courage, and the man was clearly not a stranger to risking his life repeatedly in order to save others. Perhaps he learned that in the 54th Massachusetts Infantry.


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Sugland's Suicide.


The fact that Sugland had committed suicide was discovered by Mr. Herrick when, at 1 o'clock Thursday afternoon, he went to the lock-up to see if the prisoner had had his dinner. As he approached the door of Sugland's cell he saw his body hanging inside, and told Officer Coolidge, who just then came in, to speak to Selectman G. A. Boyden. Mr. Boyden was close at hand and came at once and cut down the body, Mr. Coolidge assisting, while Mr. Herrick ran for a doctor. There was a flutter of life in the pulse and one or two gasps for breath. Dr. Tucker soon came, but life was extinct, though the natural warmth still remained. It proved that Sugland had torn a strip off one of the heavy army blankets on his bed, twisted it into a rope, passed it over one of the stout oak slats which formed the roof of his cell or cage, and then got up on his chair and adjusted the noose around his neck and stepped off. There was sufficient height so that his feet hung clear of the floor. Death was by suffocation.


The Reasons for the Suicide.


In order to state intelligibly the reasons which probably induced Sugland to take his own life it is necessary to refer at some length to Jacob Cartledge, the black man whose unsatisfactory testimony on the witness stand on Tuesday and Wednesday is alluded to in our report of the testimony. It was so evident that this man knew more than he would tell that he was locked up by the authorities to await developments after he came off the witness stand on Wednesday. During the afternoon he sent word that he would tell all he knew if let out. It was evident that he stood in fear of Sugland, whom he knew of old, and the officers, not wishing to let them have a chance to talk over night, put Cartledge in the old lock-up. It was noticed, when he was finally left for the night, that Sugland was nervous and anxious to know what had been done with "Jake."


Early Wednesday morning State's Attorney Mann visited Cartledge in his cell to see whether he would not reveal something to him. The man talked freely: told about his coming to Brattleboro two or three years ago, and some things which he knew about Sugland. He told of altercations which he had seen between Sugland and the Burt girl, and how once when he was fishing near Sugland's house he saw Sugland follow her out of the house and knock her down with his fist, making the blood run on her face.


The essential and startling thing which he told, however, was that on Thursday of last week Sugland came to where he was chopping on the cave bank and told him he wanted he (Cartledge) should keep watch of the river and see "if anything went down by," and it was obedience to this notice that he went down to the river Saturday night. He told Mr. Mann at that time that Sugland didn't say anything about a dead body, but he mistrusted that was what he meant, and he was afraid he might see one.


He said he was afraid of Sugland, but on being assured of protection promised to go into court in the afternoon and make a clean breast of all he knew. It was the intention of the officers to keep this information secret, but Cartledge himself communicated it to some one through the window, and in this way it became generally known on the street, and the interest in the approaching afternoon session of the court grew great accordingly.


While the fact is not certainly known, the reasonable supposition is that some one contrived to tell Sugland through the window that "Jake" would "peach," and this drove him to suicide.


It must be remembered, however, that aside from this, to the guilty man it was only too evident to what conclusion all the evidence was pointing, and he saw its force as others could not who were groping in the dark. Still further, he unquestionably had a positive infatuation for the dead girl, and was filled with a sort of wild brute love and jealousy for her. Possessed with this, he could not live peaceably with her, and life seemed intolerable after he had killed her.


The authorities did not at first let it be known that Sugland was dead, or until they had visited Cartledge in the old lock-up to see what more could be drawn from him before he knew what had happened. The slectmen and counsel went to him at once, and he repeated, with some variations, what he had said to Mr. Mann in the morning. An intimation was then made to him that Sugland had confessed, upon which he said that Sugland told him on the Thursday in question that he "was going to kill the girl" and wanted him to look out for the body. When finally told that Sugland was dead, he rose up on his knees on his bed and said, "Oh, nobody knows how 'fraid I was ob dat man; I was more 'fraid ob him dan I was ob de Lord." Just at night the state's attorney and Col. Haskins again visited him to see if he would not reveal further knowledge of the murder. This time he said that it was on Friday and not on Thursday that Sugland came to him, and that Sugland told him "he had killed the girl" and wanted him to watch for the body.


The man was evidently mixed as to the days, and the probability is that this latter statement is the true one. It is inconceivable that a man of Sugland's coolness and shrewdness should have told another that he was going to kill the girl; but after the deed was done and the body was in the river, it was perfectly natural that he should be anxious and uneasy to know whether his victim had floated on down unnoticed.


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But in these cases
We still have judgment here, that we but teach
Bloody instructions, which, being taught, return
To plague th' inventor: this even-handed justice
Commends the ingredients of our poisoned chalice
To our own lips.


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Sugland's Funeral and Burial.


The closing scene in the week's tragedy was enacted this afternoon, when at 3:30 Sugland's funeral was held, and immediately after the body was taken to Vernon for burial. The body was placed in a plain coffin and the service was held in the room on the first floor of the town hall building where Wednesday's hearing was held. The Rev. Mr. Illman officiated, delivering a very appropriate address and offering prayer. Sugland's wife, daughter and son were present and went with the body to Vernon. Four colored men, Andy Reed, John Clarkson, and two others, acted as bearers. The burial was at Vernon by request of Mrs. Sugland, both his parents and her's being buried there.


The burial was, of course, at the expense of the town, the family having no money, and everything was done "decently and in order."


________________


The Union Universalist Church in Vernon, Vermont was a wooden structure built in 1845, which could seat three hundred people.


The Rev. Thomas Weston Illman was the pastor for the Murray Universalist Church in Attleboro, Massachusetts, the Universalist Church in Brattleboro during 1887-1889, and the First Congregational Unitarian Church in Vineland, New Jersey before removing to Philedelphia.


While living on Green Street in Brattleboro, Rev. T. W. Illman spoke the services in the Universalist church in Vernon on a rotational basis, about once a month. He preached in Vernon at 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, July 3, 1887.


Rev. Thomas W. Illman's papers are housed in the Harvard Divinity School's Andover-Harvard Theological Library, in the Unitarian Universalist Ministers and Lay Leaders File. His Sunday, August 25, 1889 sermon "Jacob's Ladder" was quite popular in Brattleboro.


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Pall Bearers


John Henry Clarkson


John Henry Clarkson, black, was born in Nashville, Tennessee in December 1856 and married Rachel Cooper in Vermont on September 4, 1879. He worked in Brattleboro as a laborer, a watchman, and as a coachman for Civil War veteran, Col. George W. Hooker, during 1883-1889.


Rachel was born in Virginia in March 1859 and her mother---Cherry Bryand---was born in Virginia or Tennessee about 1824. After living for years at 6 Frost Street, the Clarkson family removed to Springfield, Massachusetts. Their son John C. Clarkson was born there about 1900.


John Henry Clarkson's father was also named John Henry Clarkson, married to Mary. One "Mrs. Clarkson (colored)" is listed in the East Parish Church Records in Rutland, Vermont for dying on January 8, 1860.


Andrew Johnson Reed


Andrew Johnson Reed was another pall bearer for John Sugland. Andy Reed was born August 10, 1842 in Charlottesville, Virginia. Dr. George F. Gale is the Civil War surgeon who met him at Aquia Creek. Reed later worked for Ozias L. Miner on the farm along the Whetstone brook south of the Creamery bridge, and for Deacon Isaac Hines.


Andy Reed married Georgietta Colden on February 17, 1874 at the home of Judge Charles Royall Tyler, the ceremony performed by the Rev. Charles Clarke Harris of St. Michael's Episcopal Church.


Georgietta was born in Hampton, Virginia around 1853, the daughter of Richard and Sarah Colden. She was working for Allan D. Brown, Commander, United States Navy, retired, and a future Episcopal minister.


Their children, John and Richard, were probably adopted from Georgietta's sister Annie L. Colden, who died of consumption at the age of nineteen years and seven months, unmarried, on April 12, 1883. The Reed family lived for years in a house on Forest Street.


The two unnamed pall bearers were quite possibly Jacob Cartledge, and either Francis W. Green, called Frank "Barber" Green, or his son Francis W. Green, Jr.


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Murder Aftermath.


That portion of our edition of last week which was circulated in Brattleboro contained record of the fact that the funeral of John Sugland, the negro murderer and suicide, was held Friday afternoon at 3:30 in a room in the town hall building. The Rev. Mr. Illman of the Universalist church delivered a short address and offered prayer, and the body was taken to Vernon for burial, accompanied by the family of the dead man and four colored men as pall bearers.


Facts which have come to light since last Friday leave small doubt that Sugland murdered Addie Burt on Monday night, June 13, six days before the body was found in the river. The wife and daughter do not talk about the matter, Mrs. Sugland only saying that she thought she "got out of the job pretty well," but the boy John has told Mr. Waite and others facts which show beyond reasonable doubt that the murder was done at the time named. He says that on Sunday, the 12th, and Monday the 13th, there was whiskey in the house, and his father, mother and the Burt girl were well set up with it. They had several rows and fights. Monday afternoon the Burt girl drew a long club on his mother and would have struck her had not his sister seized the club and pulled it away. Just at night they had the row mentioned last week, when Sugland hit the Burt girl and tumbled her over. She was mad and drunk, and changed her clothes and started off, coming by the highway. About half an hour after, John says, his father took his big dirk knife and started off, coming down the railroad track. His remark as he left the house was that "he was going to take a walk for his health." He did not get back, according to the story of Mrs. Sugland and the girl, until after 2 o'clock in the morning, when he told them that if anybody came and asked any questions they were to say that he went to bed at 8 o'clock and was in bed all night. Of this John says he only knows what his mother and sister told him.


John Sugland says his father was dreadfully nervous all the week after Monday: he was constantly listening while at work for any unusual sound, and ran frequently to the top of the hill near by to see if any one was coming. He would start at the slightest sound and seize his axe as if to defend himself. He must have been thinking all the while what he should do with the body and undoubtedly stood in mortal dread of it. Why a man of Sugland's shrewdness should have chosen to throw the body into the river instead of burying it is difficult to understand.


Sugland's wife and daughter are now in Vernon, but are going away, they say, the mother to New York and the girl to Ohio. The boy is at work for Mr. Waite.


Vermont Phoenix, July 1, 1887.


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Deacon Robert Allen


Deacon Robert Allen, father of Orrin P. Allen, was born in Shutesbury, Mass., April 16, 1805, removing with his parents to Wallingford, Vt. in 1806. He died in Vernon, Vt., August 21, 1889, was a real estate owner and farmer in Vernon, where he was for many years a Deacon of the Church of the Advent, a man widely known for his hospitality, integrity, and piety. He married October 23, 1832, Eliza Paine Doolittle, born in Townshend, Vt., February 25, 1812, daughter of Roswell and Carissa (Burt) Doolittle---son of Amzi and Jerusha (Smith) Doolittle (she, Jerusha, was great-grand-daughter of the Rev. Henry Smith, of Weathersfield, 1640); son of the Rev. Benjamin and Lydia (Todd) Doolittle, of Northfield; son of John and Mary (Peck) Doolittle, of Wallingford, Conn., where he was one of the leading men. Abraham Doolittle was the son of Sir Archibald Clark, Laird of Doolittle, of County Midlothian, Scotland, who was descended from Sir Alamus Clark, of Comrie Castle, in 1349. The Laird of Doolittle was Assistant Secretary to James I of England. His son, Abraham Doolittle, was born in London in 1620. It is said that the Laird, being a Puritan, would "do little" for the Church of England, and in consequence received the sobriquet of Doolittle, which name his descendants adopted. . .


The children of Robert and Eliza Pain Allen are: Orrin Peer, born September 30, 1833. Jason Cady, born in Wallingford, Vt., February 26, 1835,married Dec 1, 1864, Mary S. Combes; he is a real estate owner and farmer in Vernon, Vt., where he is a Justice of the Peace, and has been an Assessor and Selectman. Julia Augusta, born July 30, 1837, in Newfane, Vt., died there, January 23, 1839. Charles Anderson, born in Jamaica, Vt., February 1, 1840, married September 6, 1864, Abbie E. Ball, and died in early manhood at Athens, Vt., August 11, 1865; his wife died September 9,1872. Robert Clark, born in Jamaica, Vt., October 8, 1842, married, first, June 16, 1864, Jane A. Rockwood, of North Springfield, Vt., who died April 29, 1867; married second October 3, 1867, Lucy C. Lockwood, who died November 7, 1868; married, third, November 15, 1869, Mrs. Hattie M. Henry. He resides in North Springfield, Vt., where he is a carpenter and road supervisor. Sarah Augusta, born in Jamaica, Vt., October 30, 1846, married January 18, 1869, Lafayette Stoddard, who resides in Vernon, Vt. Vesta Eliza, born in Windham, Vt., November 6, 1854, died in Vernon, January 16, 1862.


The Leading Citizens of Hampden County, Massachusetts

(Boston: Biographical Review Publishing Company, 1895), pages 865-866.


Robert Allen travelled extensively, a peddler for patent medicines as early as 1862. Allen concocted "Antalgica"---and was subsequently called "Antalgicky" Allen, so as to distinguish him from his son, Robert Clark Allen. Another son was Orrin P. Allen who sold Antalgica from out Palmer, Massachusetts---


Dr.HigginsGreatAntalgica,1880,O.P.Allen,Palmer,Massachusetts,VegetablePainReliever.jpg


c1880 Dr. Higgins Great Antalgica O. P. Allen Palmer, Mass., with text on the paper labels as follows (Dr. Higgins Great Antalgica or Vegetable Pain Reliever A Celebrated Medicine for the Cure of all kinds of pain, it is a sure Cure prepared only by the sole proprietors O. P. Allen Palmer, Mass.) with lots of other great detailed text, cork top finish, aqua in color, blown glass, measures 7 1/2 inches tall, Excellent Condition, Great Attic find.


Orrin Peer Allen was the author for "Descendants of Nicholas Cady, of Watertown, Mass., 1645-1910. (Palmer, Massachusetts: C. B. Fiske, 1910).


Robert Allen's young daughter Sarah Augusta once sold a subscription for "Laws of Life"---a popular health journal---to her neighbor John G. Sugland. Most likely this journal advertised Antalgica? The Suglands perhaps imbibed Antalgica as well, sovereign remedy, doubtless, for sore woodchopping muscles.


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54th Massachusetts Infantry Pay Controversy


Private John G. Sugland's "Company Muster Roll" for July and August 1864 reports him "Present" and then in the Remarks section appears---


Free on or before April 19 1861.


This relates to the bureaucratically complicated controversy concerning the unequal payment and provisioning for black soldiers in the Union Army. These wrongs were known to the 54th Massachusetts.


The enlisted men of the 54th were recruited on the promise of pay and allowances equal to their white counterparts. This was supposed to amount to subsistence and $13 a month. Instead African-American soldiers were paid $10 a month with $3 withheld for clothing, equaling $7 in the end of the month. White troops had nothing withheld from their monthly pay for clothing.


Colonel Robert Gould Shaw and many others immediately began protesting the measure. Although the State of Massachusetts offered to make up the difference in pay, on principle, a regiment-wide boycott of the pay tables on paydays became the norm.


ColonelRobertGouldShaw,54thMassachusettsInfantry.jpg

Colonel Robert Gould Shaw

Killed July 18, 1863


After Shaw's death at Fort Wagner, Colonel Edward N. Hallowell took up the fight to get back full pay for the troops. His second in command, Lt. Col. Henry N. Hooper, took command of the regiment on June 18, 1864 after Hallowell was granted permission to proceed North to press the claims of the regiment for equal pay in person.


After nearly a month Colonel Hallowell returned on July 16. Finally the U.S. Congress took action and on September 28, 1864, the men of the 54th were paid from enlistment, most after 18 months of service.


The Congressional bill authorized equal and full pay to those enlisted troops who were free men as of April 19, 1864. Of course not all the troops qualified. Colonel Hallowell, a Quaker, rationalized that because he did not believe in slavery he could therefore have all the troops swear that they were free men.


Before being given their back pay the entire regiment was administered what became known as "the Quaker oath." Colonel Hallowell skillfully crafted the oath to say: "You do solemnly swear that on or before the 19th day of April 1864, no man had the right to demand unrequited labor of you so help you Lord."


Edward N. Hallowell misspelled "1864" in his hand-written transcript of the oath and actually said "1861" while administering the oath.


Refusing their reduced pay became a point of honor for the men of the 54th. In fact, at the Battle of Olustee, when ordered forward to protect the retreat of the Union forces, the men moved forward shouting, "Massachusetts and Seven Dollars a Month!" Unknown to them, Congress had just voted to pay colored troops the same as white troops.


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Vermont Homicides, 1881-1890


Criminal Justice Research Center

Ohio State University


1887, June 16 Brattleboro, WDH
P

Class: certain
Crime: HOM / SUI
Rela: ROMANCE SUITED by SUITOR
Motive: JEALOUSY / POSSESSIVE
Intox?: unknown
Day of week: Th
Holiday?: n
Time of day: [night]
Days to death: 0


HOM: John H. Sugland m. Helen Addie [aka "Ad"] Burt


Weapon: [club] 2 and prob. 3 heavy blows to the head -- "ugly" gash 3" to 4" long. // JS hanged himself in his cell with a rope woven from the blanket in the cell -- d. circa noon, Th.


Circumstances: in the woods in Brattleboro or Dummerston (the court could not determine the exact location of the murder)


Inquest: i.d. 6/19/1897: jurors from Hinsdale (where body was found): verdict: died from blow to head with blunt object by unk. person. Autopsy by Dr. Holton.


Indictment:


Term:


Court proceedings: jailed. Hanged himself in his cell.


Note: see 1881 aik. case of Elbridge Sugland


Source:


Newspaper:


BFP, 6/21 & 24/1887


VW 6/22/1887 (W): HOM in VT: WDH: Helen A. Burt (30) found in Ct River at Brattleboro, Sat. [sic] "Foul play is plainly evident from a large gash in the head and the victim's skirts being drawn up and tied over her head. The woman had been staying in the families of William Trendall, an Englishman, and John Sugland, a negro. She was last seen in Sugland's company on the railroad track Friday. The testimony of Sugland's children show that he and the deceased had an altercation some day last week, when he knocked her over the table. Her pocketbook was found in her stocking and her jewelry was intact. Sugland is a wood-chopper. The body was taken in charge by the Brattleboro authorities, who are taking steps to apprehend the suspected murderer." // VW 6/29: SUI: JS committed suicide in his cell. hanged.


VT PHOENIX, 6/24/1887: HAB found by Reinaldo S. Hescock (who works in the shops at the Estey organ factory) floating on Sun. morning at 9 am in Ct. River just off Root's Landing below the toll bridge, just as the church bells were ringing. "naked to the waist [except for shoes and stockings] with the clothes pulled up over the head and tied around the neck with a string." Before the head wound was found, it was thought that the body was of "some strange person who had probably committed suicide."


JS came to Brat. on M in company of his employer, Fred Waite, to surrender to authorities. FW did not defend JS's "general character," but considered him innocent of the the murder, and hired counsel to ensure JS got a fair hearing.


The testimony in the examination on T and W was not conclusive, but the most damaging testimony was scheduled for Th morning. On Th, 1 pm, JS found hanged in his cell.


Suspicion fell on JS, a "well known" negro, because "the Burt girl was in the habit of staying at his house and being about with him, and his general reputation made people believe him capable of the crime." HAB had been in Brat. "more or less for several years." Has a mother (said to be serving a sentence in the House of Correction) now living Rutland & also a brother & sister. The family came from somewhere in New York & had lived in Burlington before moving to Rutland. HAB "good looking" -- a "hard" character who hung out with "the lowest elements in town, including the Suglands, and the hangers on at ____hall's and Mrs. Almond's. Had been "very intimate" with Joe Norman, a young Frenchman, who had worked for J. Taylor in his stable, & was last season with John Baker up on the Hall place. JN left town last November and has not been seen in Brat. since; now working on the farm of Mr. Nevins of the Holyoke Lumber Company in Holyoke, Mass. It was suspected for a time that the body of a man found murdered in the river at Turner's Falls in Mass. was JN, because of the marks [tatoos] on the left arm, but a telegram since revealed that JN is alive and well. "Sugland was jealous of Norman and had threatened both him and the girl if they did not keep away from each other."


There was a row on the M night at JS's before the girl left there. "Some whiskey had been drunk, the Burt girl was under its influence and she and 'John' had high words. He brought her into the house once or twice when she was outside making noise, and giving him 'some of her lip,' and finally hit her a blow with the palm of his hand in the face which sent her 'plumb over' on to young John Sugland who sat at the table eating his supper. Soon after this incident the girl put on her things and left," and the prob. for the officers is to determine where she was from that time until Th. afternoon, when she was last seen alive. JS's children told of the row before JS's arrest on M: at the examination on the witness stand, "they were conveniently unable to 'remember' it."


Testimony:


Reinaldo S. Hescock: found body. Saw several tracks made by large bare feet going to and from the shore near the body.


S. N. Herrick, first selectman: ear jewels, purse, & money still on the body.


Fred M. Waite: HAB had been at JS's shanty more or less frequently since it was built 11 months ago. JS's home on a road leading from Houghton's ferry up to John Houghton's place, about .25 mi. from the river & 1 mi. from Dummerston station.


Dennis Tasker, postmaster: HAB had called the past 6 to 8 mo. at his office for mail: she also asked for letters for Letty Gould and Letty Gould Sugland. Mrs. Henry Almond and JS have also called for letters for her, as had Frank Green and Frank Green, Jr.


Callsin Gould (colored, 19, daught. of JS; says her "real name" is Sugland and that Gould is her "nickname"): has lived with her father since July 5 last year. Had come there from Oberlin, Ohio. Was brought up in Boston & went from there to Oberlin. First met HAB last Dec., then HAB went to Rutland & returned to Brat. 3 mo. ago and had her trunk brought to JS's. HAB stayed there "until she went away a week ago last Thursday night; she went to Springfield; came back Saturday night [at the Dummerston station]." 2 rooms in the house: CG's mother, father, and HAB slept in the front room, CG & her brother in the back room. Wit. last saw HAB on M night, when the row occurred; HAB left the house soon after.


Wit. says she was "pretty friendly" with HAB but not "very" friendly, "had no trouble with her." Denies having told the selectmen about the alleged row on M night before HAB disappeared.


John R. Sugland (colored, 19, son of JS): had lived with his father & had been at work for FW. He & is father chopped together all week, Monday through Friday, and were both home at night [ditto CG's testimony], except for a half day on Weds. when wit. went fishing & his father stayed at home & worked. His mother was away two days at work at a neighbor's.


Has known HAB three or four yrs., since they began work for FW. First came to their house when they lived in Algiers on Broad Brook; Mrs. Almond brought HAB there. When HAB went away M night she said she was going to Brattleboro; wit. supposed she was going to Big Eastern's, as she always went there. Denies his father & HAB had quarreled on M night, though once previously they had "jawed a little." No recollection of the time Joe Norman came to the house to see HAB.


William Trendall (an Englishman): had known HAB when she lived at Sugland's in Guilford, as much as seven years ago. "Had heard of her at Sugland's, but had not seen her since last fall, when she was there with Joe Noman. She and Joe were 'very great' together. John Sugland and Addie were very intimate. Sugland used to say that he liked her before anybody else. He had threatened to kill Norman if he found him with her." One day last fall she and Norman went to Guilford and got some whiskey, and Addie came back 'pretty hot, I tell ye.' Sugland came there and said he wished he could get his hands on Norman and he would cut him up. Sugland had often sent her money to come to him but she wouldn't stay. He had talked abusively to her and had often said that she had got to be 'a good for nothing, dirty rotten creature." Norman was "terribly afraid" of JS, & had told wit. so. JN & HAB had gone away to Springfield together for 8 or 9 days, & JS threatened to kill her is she "didn't stop going" with JN.


Frank Green, barber: wit. had known JS since he was a baby; "he is 42 years old now." [[wit. or JS?]] Ditto WT's testimony. JS had threatened to kill HAB & JN & then commit suicide. Heard that when JN went once to JS's house, and JS's son when into the woods to get JS (who was chopping), JS ran to the house with an ax, threatening JN, & HAB persuaded JN to leave.


Wit. admits that he has sometimes been friendly with JS & sometimes not. Admits that he had threatened to "get even" with JS. "That's what I said."


Several witnesses testify to seeing JS with a woman along the RR tracks on Th. and to hearing a women's cries of distress, including "Help," on Th. night near the river.


Jacob [aka Jake] Carthedge ("a black man") [ed. -- the wit. gave the appearance of knowing more than he would tell; & S. W. Richardson thought he saw JS with JC on Th. afternoon, but could not be sure]: knew HAB. admitted, when pressed, that he had told Boynton, the shoe dealer, on Sunday that "he didn't know anything about her being killed and din't want to know anything about it; if he did his body might be floating dcown the river some day. Wouldn't give any reason why he thought his body might be floating down the river. Wouldn't say that he knew Sugland was revengeful or quick tempered." Wit. was "asked sharply about a statement he had made the day before to the effect that Helen never had liked John Sugland since he tried to 'drug' her. He didn't remember making such a statement; had heard the Big Eastern [[what?]] say some such thing."


Mrs. Henry Almond: lives at Wallace Newman's house near Alexander's garden. Has lived in Brat. about 9 yrs, had known JS 5 or 6 yrs, & had known HAB a long time, since wit. knew HAB's family when they all lived in Burlington (before HAB & her family moved to Rutland). On friendly terms with HAB & saw her with JS's daught. 3 weeks ago, but HAB hadn't been to wit's house since last fall. JS had always been "fond" of HAB; wit. does not recall JS having made any threats. Wit. did not hear any talk of JS having given HAB "love powders or something."


Henry Almond: on his most recent talk with JS about HAB. Wit. was at work last Th afternoon at Fuller's sand bank with several others, "Dummy" Manning among them. Saw JS that afternoon, shook hands with him; & saw JS again on Sat. Talked about HAB. JS said "he told her he would send her money to come and stop with him a while. She came, and now had gone to Springfield. Spoke in a way as though he would rather she had staid with him. Supposed she had gone down there to see another man." Never heard JS make any threats against HAB. "After a racket that she and others had at Trundall's last fall, he [[JS]] told her to 'keep away from his house, for God's sake, for he didn't want any such trouble there.'"


On the suicide: authorities held Jacob Cartledge after his inadequate testimony at the examination -- JC admitted he feared JS & would tell all if released. JS had been asking before his death about what was being done with "Jake." Editor's speculation: the expectation that JC would turn state's evidence probably led JS to commit suicide. JC spoke freely to the officers on Weds. after his testimony, though he clearly was fearful of JS: said he had seen JS hit HAB in a quarrel two yrs ago, so that blood ran down HAB's face; and had been asked on Th. by JS to come to the river on Sat. night and keep watch while JS took care of something. [[not clear if JC was telling the truth -- the ed.'s description here is entirely second hand -- not in JC's words]] JS left no note & never acknowledged responsibility for the murder. JS also feared the testimony of Dummy Manning, who was prepared to say that he saw JS wearing a new white shirt on Th afternoon, & that JS bought another new white shirt from "the Jew clothing store" on Friday, possibly to replace the one he had stained with blood on Th. night.


JS: biog: a negro, "'as black as the ace of spades,' but with a trace of either Spanish or Indian blood which somewhat modified the usual negro features. He was tall, straight, well formed and powerfully built. He had a bright, intelligent face, which hardly bore the impress of his real character. . . . He evidently took much pride in his personal appearance and was well known about town as wearing a neat black suit and Grand Army hat. His history was a more than doubtful one, and he has always borne a hard name. During the war he was arrested on a charge of doing violence to a man by Vernon, and was released from jail on his promise to enlist in the 54th Massachusetts Black regiment, then being raised, which he did." Since the war he has lived in Vernon, Guilford, and Brat., "and has been best known on account of the unsavory crowd with which he has been connected and the rows of all sorts in which he has been engaged. One report says that he was suspected of foul play in connection with his father's death and that at one time, when two or three men, who owed him a grudge, set upon him to punish him, he hurt one of them so that he died. . . . He had a white woman living with him as his wife."


HAB biography (from Rutland Herald): daught. of Mrs. Nellie Burt of Strong's Ave. HAB bore "a bad reputation," & is claimed that JS was her husband. About 16 mo. ago, JS was arrested on the street in Rutland by an officer for carrying a dirk knife "and peeping into houses."


Jacob Cartledge (an "old negro"): released. Testified that he had talked to JS on Th. afternoon at the City Hall in Brat., & JS hinted that he was going to kill HAB because "she was running around so much."


JS's funeral: buried at public expense in Vernon, where his and his wife's parents are buried. Rev. Tilman officiated. Present: Mrs. S, his son & daught. Four colored men (Andy ___, ___ __son, and two others), were pallbearers.


NHP, 6/23/1887 (Th): HOM in VT: Helen A. Burt (30), found in Ct river opposite the depot at Brattleboro, VT, Sunday. Foul play was plainly evident from a large gash in the head, and the victim's skirts being drawn up and tied over her head." She had been staying in the families of Wm Trendall, an Englishman & John Sugland, a negro, "the latter of whom bears a hard repuation." Last seen in JS's company on the RR track last F. Testimony of JS's children: "he and the deceased had an altercation some day last week, when he knocked her over a table. Her pocket-book was found in her stocking. Her jewelry was intact." JS a woodchopper, in the vicinity about 10 yrs. Taken into custody by Brattleboro authorities. 6/30: Jake Cartledge [another negro], arrested as accessory before the fact in the murder, cleared after "rigid examination." Had nothing to do with the murder. JC testified "that Sugland told him, Friday, that he had killed the girl, and wanted the witness to go to the river and watch to see if the body came down, which he did on Saturday night." On Friday, instead of a session of the court, a funeral was held in the court room for the victim. "The expense was borne by the town, the Masonic lodge of Springfield, to which the deceased belonged, declining to take charge of the remains." // 6/30: 2nd article: 20 persons testified at the examination of JS. Testimony showed that JS was in Brat. on Thurs, the day the murder supposedly occurred. Mr. Babbitt & Mrs. Mixer, who live in Dorman B Eaton's house, near West River bridge, heard "cries of distress at about midnight," Thursday night. They thought the cries came from near the iron bridge. Other testimony to show that JS & HAB were together on Thursday, "on which day it is claimed the victim came from Springfield, Mass." // 6/30: JS, the negro suspect, hanged himself in his cell, Th noon. JC had promised to offer more damaging testimony at the examination that afternoon, & a rumor was about that the girl's hat & parasol had been found, "which might have come to the ears of Sugland. It was generally inferred from his conversation the night before, and manifest nervousness that he thought the state had more evidence against him than it really had and this thought led him to suicide."


Census:


Genealogy:

Accused: John Sugland

Ethnicity: [nb Prot]
Race: b
Gender: m
Age: adult
Literate: 42
Marital Status: m
Children: a teenaged son (18) & daught. (19)
Occupation: wood chopper, employee for past 3 yrs of Fred M. Waite; lived in a shanty in the woods on FMW's place
Town: Brattleboro; moved there from Boston
Birthplace:
Religion:
Organizations:


Victim: Helen A. Burt

Ethnicity: [nb English]
Race: w
Gender: m
Age: 24
Literate:
Marital Status: s
Children: n
Occupation:
Town: Brattleboro
Birthplace:
Religion:
Organizations:


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BroadBrookHouse,EastGuilford,AlgiersVillage,1875.jpg

Broad Brook House 1875

Algiers Village, East Guilford


_____________________________________________________________________________


Alternate Transcription:


Weapon: [club] 2 and prob. 3 heavy blows to the head -- "ugly" gash 3" to 4" long. // JS hanged himself in his cell with a rope woven from the blanket in the cell -- d. circa noon, Th.


Circumstances: in the woods in Brattleboro or Dummerston (the court could not determine the exact location of the murder)


Inquest: i.d. 6/19/1897: jurors from Hinsdale (where body was found): verdict: died from blow to head with blunt object by unk. person. Autopsy by Dr. Holton.


Indictment:


Term:


Court proceedings: jailed. Hanged himself in his cell.


Note: see 1881 aik. case of Elbridge Sugland


Source:


Newspaper:

BFP, 6/21 & 24/1887


VW 6/22/1887 (W): HOM in VT: WDH: Helen A. Burt (30) found in Ct River at Brattleboro, Sat. [sic] "Foul play is plainly evident from a large gash in the head and the victim's skirts being drawn up and tied over her head. The woman had been staying in the families of William Trendall, an Englishman, and John Sugland, a negro. She was last seen in Sugland's company on the railroad track Friday. The testimony of Sugland's children show that he and the deceased had an altercation some day last week, when he knocked her over the table. Her pocketbook was found in her stocking and her jewelry was intact. Sugland is a wood-chopper. The body was taken in charge by the Brattleboro authorities, who are taking steps to apprehend the suspected murderer." // VW 6/29: SUI: JS committed suicide in his cell. hanged.


VT PHOENIX, 6/24/1887: HAB found by Reinaldo S. Hescock (who works in the shops at the Estey organ factory) floating on Sun. morning at 9am in Ct. River just off Root's Landing below the toll bridge, just as the church bells were ringing. "naked to the waist [except for shoes and stockings] with the clothes pulled up over the head and tied around the neck with a string." Before the head wound was found, it was thought that the body was of "some strange person who had probably committed suicide."


JS came to Brat. on M in company of his employer, Fred Waite, to surrender to authorities. FW did not defend JS's "general character," but considered him innocent of the the murder, and hired counsel to ensure JS got a fair hearing.


The testimony in the examination on T and W was not conclusive, but the most damaging testimony was scheduled for Th morning. On Th, 1pm, JS found hanged in his cell.


Suspicion fell on JS, a "well known" negro, because "the Burt girl was in the habit of staying at his house and being about with him, and his general reputation made people believe him capable of the crime." HAB had been in Brat. "more or less for several years." Has a mother (said to be serving a sentence in the House of Correction) now living Rutland & also a brother & sister. The family came from somewhere in New York & had lived in Burlington before moving to Rutland. HAB "good looking" -- a "hard" character who hung out with "the lowest elements in town, including the Suglands, and the hangers on at ____hall's and Mrs. Almond's. Had been "very intimate" with Joe Norman, a young Frenchman, who had worked for J. Taylor in his stable, & was last season with John Baker up on the Hall place. JN left town last November and has not been seen in Brat. since; now working on the farm of Mr. Nevins of the Holyoke Lumber Company in Holyoke, Mass. It was suspected for a time that the body of a man found murdered in the river at Turner's Falls in Mass. was JN, because of the marks [tatoos] on the left arm, but a telegram since revealed that JN is alive and well. "Sugland was jealous of Norman and had threatened both him and the girl if they did not keep away from each other."


There was a row on the M night at JS's before the girl left there. "Some whiskey had been drunk, the Burt girl was under its influence and she and 'John' had high words. He brought her into the house once or twice when she was outside making noise, and giving him 'some of her lip,' and finally hit her a blow with the palm of his hand in the face which sent her 'plumb over' on to young John Sugland who sat at the table eating his supper. Soon after this incident the girl put on her things and left," and the prob. for the officers is to determine where she was from that time until Th. afternoon, when she was last seen alive. JS's children told of the row before JS's arrest on M: at the examination on the witness stand, "they were conveniently unable to 'remember' it."


Testimony:


Reinaldo S. Hescock: found body. Saw several tracks made by large bare feet going to and from the shore near the body.


S. N. Herrick, first selectman: ear jewels, purse, & money still on the body.


Fred M. Waite: HAB had been at JS's shanty more or less frequently since it was built 11 months ago. JS's home on a road leading from Houghton's ferry up to John Houghton's place, about .25 mi. from the river & 1 mi. from Dummerston station.


Dennis Tasker, postmaster: HAB had called the past 6 to 8 mo. at his office for mail: she also asked for letters for Letty Gould and Letty Gould Sugland. Mrs. Henry Almond and JS have also called for letters for her, as had Frank Green and Frank Green, Jr.


Callsin Gould (colored, 19, daught. of JS; says her "real name" is Sugland and that Gould is her "nickname"): has lived with her father since July 5 last year. Had come there from Oberlin, Ohio. Was brought up in Boston & went from there to Oberlin. First met HAB last Dec., then HAB went to Rutland & returned to Brat. 3 mo. ago and had her trunk brought to JS's. HAB stayed there "until she went away a week ago last Thursday night; she went to Springfield; came back Saturday night [at the Dummerston station]." 2 rooms in the house: CG's mother, father, and HAB slept in the front room, CG & her brother in the back room. Wit. last saw HAB on M night, when the row occurred; HAB left the house soon after.


Wit. says she was "pretty friendly" with HAB but not "very" friendly, "had no trouble with her." Denies having told the selectmen about the alleged row on M night before HAB disappeared.


John R. Sugland (colored, 19, son of JS): had lived with his father & had been at work for FW. He & is father chopped together all week, Monday through Friday, and were both home at night [ditto CG's testimony], except for a half day on Weds. when wit. went fishing & his father stayed at home & worked. His mother was away two days at work at a neighbor's.


Has known HAB three or four yrs., since they began work for FW. First came to their house when they lived in Algiers on Broad Brook; Mrs. Almond brought HAB there. When HAB went away M night she said she was going to Brattleboro; wit. supposed she was going to Big Eastern's, as she always went there. Denies his father & HAB had quarreled on M night, though once previously they had "jawed a little." No recollection of the time Joe Norman came to the house to see HAB.


William Trendall (an Englishman): had known HAB when she lived at Sugland's in Guilford, as much as seven years ago. "Had heard of her at Sugland's, but had not seen her since last fall, when she was there with Joe Noman. She and Joe were 'very great' together. John Sugland and Addie were very intimate. Sugland used to say that he liked her before anybody else. He had threatened to kill Norman if he found him with her." One day last fall she and Norman went to Guilford and got some whiskey, and Addie came back 'pretty hot, I tell ye.' Sugland came there and said he wished he could get his hands on Norman and he would cut him up. Sugland had often sent her money to come to him but she wouldn't stay. He had talked abusively to her and had often said that she had got to be 'a good for nothing, dirty rotten creature." Norman was "terribly afraid" of JS, & had told wit. so. JN & HAB had gone away to Springfield together for 8 or 9 days, & JS threatened to kill her is she "didn't stop going" with JN.


Frank Green, barber: wit. had known JS since he was a baby; "he is 42 years old now." [[wit. or JS?]] Ditto WT's testimony. JS had threatened to kill HAB & JN & then commit suicide. Heard that when JN went once to JS's house, and JS's son when into the woods to get JS (who was chopping), JS ran to the house with an ax, threatening JN, & HAB persuaded JN to leave.


Wit. admits that he has sometimes been friendly with JS & sometimes not. Admits that he had threatened to "get even" with JS. "That's what I said."


Several witnesses testify to seeing JS with a woman along the RR tracks on Th. and to hearing a women's cries of distress, including "Help," on Th. night near the river.


Jacob [aka Jake] Carthedge ("a black man") [ed. -- the wit. gave the appearance of knwoing more than he would tell; & S. W. Richardson thought he saw JS with JC on Th. afternoon, but could not be sure]: knew HAB. admitted, when pressed, that he had told Boynton, the shoe dealer, on Sunday that "he didn't know anything about her being killed and din't want to know anything about it; if he did his body might be floating dcown the river some day. Wouldn't give any reason why he thought his body might be floating down the river. Wouldn't say that he knew Sugland was revengeful or quick tempered." Wit. was "asked sharply about a statement he had made the day before to the effect that Helen never had liked John Sugland since he tried to 'drug' her. He didn't remember making such a statement; had heard the Big Eastern [[what?]] say some such thing."


Mrs. Henry Almond: lives at Wallace Newman's house near Alexander's garden. Has lived in Brat. about 9 yrs, had known JS 5 or 6 yrs, & had known HAB a long time, since wit. knew HAB's family when they all lived in Burlington (before HAB & her family moved to Rutland). On friendly terms with HAB & saw her with JS's daught. 3 weeks ago, but HAB hadn't been to wit's house since last fall. JS had always been "fond" of HAB; wit. does not recall JS having made any threats. Wit. did not hear any talk of JS having given HAB "love powders or something."


Henry Almond: on his most recent talk with JS about HAB. Wit. was at work last Th afternoon at Fuller's sand bank with several others, "Dummy" Manning among them. Saw JS that afternoon, shook hands with him; & saw JS again on Sat. Talked about HAB. JS said "he told her he would send her money to come and stop with him a while. She came, and now had ogne to Springfield. Spoke in a way as though he would rather she had staid with him. Supposed she had gone down there to see another man." Never heard JS make any threats against HAB. "After a racket that she and others had at Trundall's last fall, he [[JS]] told her to 'keep away from his house, for God's sake, for he didn't want any such trouble there.'"


On the suicide: authorities held Jacob Cartledge after his inadequate testimony at the examination -- JC admitted he feared JS & would tell all if released. JS had been asking before his death about what was being done with "Jake." Editor's speculation: the expectation that JC would turn state's evidence probably led JS to commit suicide. JC spoke freely to the officers on Weds. after his testimony, though he clearly was fearful of JS: said he had seen JS hit HAB in a quarrel two yrs ago, so that blood ran down HAB's face; and had been asked on Th. by JS to come to the river on Sat. night and keep watch while JS took care of something. [[not clear if JC was telling the truth -- the ed.'s description here is entirely second hand -- not in JC's words]] JS left no note & never acknowledged responsibility for the murder. JS also feared the testimony of Dummy Manning, who was prepared to say that he saw JS wearing a new white shirt on Th afternoon, & that JS bought another new white shirt from "the Jew clothing store" on Friday, possibly to replace the one he had stained with blood on Th. night.


JS: biog: a negro, "'as black as the ace of spades,' but with a trace of either Spanish or Indian blood which somewhat modified the usual negro features. He was tall, straight, well formed and powerfully built. He had a bright, intelligent face, which hardly bore the impress of his real character. . . . He evidently took much pride in his personal appearance and was well known about town as wearing a neat black suit and Grand Army hat. His history was a more than doubtful one, and he has always borne a hard name. During the war he was arrested on a charge of doing violence to a man by Vernon, and was released from jail on his promise to enlist in the 54th Massachusetts Black regiment, then being raised, which he did." Since the war he has lived in Vernon, Guilford, and Brat., "and has been best known on account of the unsavory crowd with which he has been connected and the rows of all sorts in which he has been engaged. One report says that he was suspected of foul play in connection with his father's death and taht at one time, when two or three men, who owed him a grudge, set upon him to punish him, he hurt one of them so that he died. . . . He had a white woman living with him as his wife."


HAB biography (from Rutland Herald): daught. of Mrs. Nellie Burt of Strong's Ave. HAB bore "a bad reputation," & is claimed that JS was her husband. About 16 mo. ago, JS was arrested on the street in Rutland by an officer for carrying a dirk knife "and peeping into houses."


Jacob Cartledge (an "old negro"): released. Testified that he had talked to JS on Th. afternoon at the City Hall in Brat., & JS hinted that he was going to kill HAB because "she was running around so much."


JS's funeral: buried at public expense in Vernon, where his and his wife's parents are buried. Rev. Tilman officiated. Present: Mrs. S, his son & daught. Four colored men (Andy ___, ___ __son, and two others), were pallbearers.


NHP, 6/23/1887 (Th): HOM in VT: Helen A. Burt (30), found in Ct river opposite the depot at Brattleboro, VT, Sunday. Foul play was plainly evident from a large gash in the head, and the victim's skirts being drawn up and tied over her head." She had been staying in the families of Wm Trendall, an Englishman & John Sugland, a negro, "the latter of whom bears a hard repuation." Last seen in JS's company on the RR track last F. Testimony of JS's children: "he and the deceased had an altercation some day last week, when he knocked her over a table. Her pocket-book was found in her stocking. Her jewelry was intact." JS a woodchopper, in the vicinity about 10 yrs. Taken into custody by Brattleboro authorities. 6/30: Jake Cartledge [another negro], arrested as accessory before the fact in the murder, cleared after "rigid examination." Had nothing to do with the murder. JC testified "that Sugland told him, Friday, that he had killed the girl, adn wanted the witness to go to the river and watch to see if the body came down, which he did on Saturday night." On Friday, instead of a session of the court, a funeral was held in the court room for the victim. "The expense was borne by the town, the Masonic lodge of Springfield, to which the deceased belonged, declining to take charge of the remains." // 6/30: 2nd article: 20 persons testified at the examination of JS. Testimony showed that JS was in Brat. on Thurs, the day the murder supposedly occurred. Mr. Babbitt & Mrs. Mixer, who live in Dorman B Eaton's house, near West River bridge, heard "cries of distress at about midnight," Thursday night. They thought the cries came from near the iron bridge. Other testimony to show that JS & HAB were together on Thursday, "on which day it is claimed the victim came from Springfield, Mass." // 6/30: JS, the negro suspect, hanged himself in his cell, Th noon. JC had promised to offer more damaging testimony at the examination that afternoon, & a rumor was about that the girl's hat & parasol had been found, "which might have come to the ears of Sugland. It was generally inferred from his conversation the night before, and manifest nervousness that he thought the state had more evidence against him than it really had and this thought led him to suicide."


Census:


Genealogy:

Accused: John Sugland

Ethnicity: [nb Prot]
Race: b
Gender: m
Age: adult
Literate: 42
Marital Status: m
Children: a teenaged son (18) & daught. (19)
Occupation: wood chopper, employee for past 3 yrs of Fred M. Waite; lived in a shanty in the woods on FMW's place
Town: Brattleboro; moved there from Boston
Birthplace:
Religion:
Organizations:


Victim: Helen A. Burt

Ethnicity: [nb English]
Race: w
Gender: m
Age: 24
Literate:
Marital Status: s
Children: n
Occupation:
Town: Brattleboro
Birthplace:
Religion:
Organizations:


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FrederickDouglass4January1866TownHallLecture.jpg

Advertisement From The Vermont Record


Frederick Douglass' committment to speak in Brattleboro in 1865 was broken, the scheduled speaker being hopelessly delayed in the chaos in New York City in the days immediately following the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln.


The advertisement in the Vermont Record shown above, printed eight months after his cancelled lecture, indicates the continuing popularity of Frederick Douglass as a speaker.


Following the Emancipation Proclamation, Frederick Douglass on March 2, 1863, from Rochester, New York, called for---


Men Of Color, To Arms!


By every consideration which binds you to your enslaved fellow countrymen, and the peace and welfare of your country; by every aspiration which you cherish for the freedom and equality of yourselves and your children; by all the ties of blood and identity which make us one with the brave black men now fighting our battles in Louisiana, in South Carolina, I urge you to fly to arms, and smite with death the power that would bury the Government and your liberty in the same hopeless grave.


UnitedStates1863Flag.jpg


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Fifty-Fourth Massachusetts Regiment (Colored)


Organized at Readville and mustered in May 13, 1863. Left Boston on Steamer "De Molay" for Hilton Head, S. C., May 28, arriving there June 3. Attached to U. S. Forces, St. Helena Island, S. C., 10th Army Corps, Dept. of the South, to July, 1863. 3rd Brigade 1st Division, Morris Island, S. C., 10th Army Corps, July, 1863. 3rd Brigade, Morris Island, S. C., to August, 1863. 4th Brigade, Morris Island, S. C., to November, 1863. 3rd Brigade, Morris Island, S. C., to January, 1864. Montgomery's Brigade, District of Hilton Head, S. C., to February, 1864. Montgomery's Brigade, District of Florida, February, 1864. 3rd Brigade, Ames' Division, District of Florida, to April, 1864. Folly and Morris Islands, S. C., Northern District, Dept. South, to October, 1864. 1st Separate Brigade, Dept. South, to November, 1864. 2nd Brigade, Coast Division, Dept. South, to February, 1865. 1st Separate Brigade, Northern District, Dept. South, to March, 1865. 1st Separate Brigade, District of Charleston, S. C., Dept. South, to June, 1865. 3rd Sub-District, District of, Charleston, Dept. South Carolina, to August, 1865.


Service: At Thompson's Plantation near Beaufort, S. C., June 4-8, 1863. Moved to St. Simon's Island June 8-9. Expedition up Altamaha River June 10-11. At St. Simon's Island June 12-24. At St. Helena Island June 25-July 8. To Stono Inlet July 8. Expedition against James Island July 9-16. Affair Legaresville July 13. Secessionville July 16. Moved to Morris Island July 16-18. Assault on Fort Wagner July 18. Siege operations against Forts Wagner and Gregg, Morris Island, July 18-September 7, and against Fort Sumpter and Charleston September 7, 1863, to January 28, 1864. Capture of Forts Wagner and Gregg September 7, 1863. Moved to Hilton Head, S. C., January 28, 1864. Expedition to Jacksonville, Fla., February 5-7. Capture of Jacksonville February 6. Expedition to Lake City, Fla., February 7-22. Battle of Oolustee February 20. Duty at Jacksonville till April 17. Moved to Morris Island April 17-18. Duty on Morris and Folly Islands, S. C., till November, 1864. Expedition to James Island June 30-July 10. Actions on James Island July 2, 9 and 10. Six Companies in charge of rebel prisoners under fire of Charleston Batteries September 7 to October 20. Eight Companies moved to Hilton Head, November 27. (Cos. "B" and "F" at Morris Island till February, 1865.) Expedition to Boyd's Neck, S. C., November 29-30. Boyd's Landing November 29. Battle of Honey Hill November 30. Demonstration on Charleston Camp; Savannah Railroad December 6-9. Moved to Graham's Neck December 20. Connect with Sherman's Army at Pocotaligo, S. C., January 15, 1865. March to Charleston January 15-February 23, skirmishing all the way. (Cos. "B" and "F" occupy Charleston February 18.) Regiment on duty at Charleston February 27 to March 12. At Savannah, Ga., March 13-27. At Georgetown, S. C., March 31-April 5. Potter's Expedition to Camden April 5-25. Seven Mile Bridge April 6. Destruction of Eppes' Bridge, Black River, April 7. Dingle's Mills April 9. Destruction of Rolling Stock at Wateree Junction April 11. Singleton's Plantation April 12. Statesburg April 15. Occupation of Camden April 17. Boykin's Mills April 18. At Georgetown April 25. Duty at Georgetown, Charleston, and various points in South Carolina April 25 to August 17. Mustered out at Mount Pleasant, S. C., August 20, 1865. Discharged at Boston, Mass., September 1, 1865.


Regiment lost during service 5 Officers and 104 Enlisted men killed and mortally wounded and 1 Officer and 160 Enlisted men by disease. Total 270.


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Jacob Cartledge


JacobCartledge,Saturday,September5,1908,KillsRattlesnake.jpg

September 5, 1908


Town's Ex-Slave In Need Of Funds


Efforts to Secure More Pension for "Jake" Cartlidge

__________


Born in Slavery, Sold on the Block,

Beaten by Cruel Taskmasters--

Served in Pennsylvania Regiment.


Efforts are being made in behalf of "Jake" Cartlidge, Brattleboro's only living ex-slave, that he may secure an increase in pension under a recent act of Congress. As Mr. Cartlidge does not know his exact age the decision of the authorities in Washington is doubtful. He claims to be about 75 years old. He has had an interesting life-story and for the past 40 years has been a familiar figure in the town.


According to "Jake's" own story, he was born in Georgia, the son of a slave. When in a talkative mood he tells interesting stories of his early life and of the beatings that he received at the hands of cruel masters. He remembers being sold on the block at one time and his memory on this point may go far toward getting his pension increased from $12 a month to $20. For some reason not explained he was taken to a town with a number of other slaves one day and they were placed on the block. He says with some degree of pride that he was a "likely" worker and when he was placed on the block the auctioneer of human flesh extolled his qualities in that respect. A man in the crowd about the block asked, "How old is that yar nigger?" The auctioneer answered "Thirty years old." As that was shortly before Cartlidge enlisted in 1864 it places his age around 75 years, as he claims.*


After being sold he was taken to a town in Georgia where he says he was under the hand of a hard task-master. "Jake" says that many nights he was unable to sleep because of the whip-lash welts on his body and for lack of food. It was in the latter part of 1863 that that he suffered these beatings and harsh treatment, and as the slave-holders of the South were in straightened circumstances because of the war it is no wonder that the slaves felt the effects.


For several months the slave was abused by his master and then, unable to stand the treatment longer, he made a break for liberty. He worked his way north and trudged many weary miles, and he can remember going many days without food and of sleeping in the fields and woods at night. Finally he reached a point in what is thought to have been Pennsylvania and obtained work in a gang of colored men who were cutting ties for a new railroad. Cartlidge was at work one day when a man on horseback approached and asked him a few questions and then said, "How would you like to be a soldier?" "Jake" never had had any experience with the soldiers and said, "What do I have to do?" The man on horseback told him that all he would have to do would be to carry a gun and wear a handsome uniform. The latter argument was a strong one with the colored man and he agreed to become a soldier. The man on the horse directed him to the union camp and there "Jake" was enlisted under the Stars and Stripes. He became a member of Company D, 43d Pennsylvania regiment, United States colored infantry, March 23, 1864, and remained in service until Oct. 28, 1865, when he was mustered out in Brownsville, Texas.**


He does not remember any very severe engagements with the soldiers of the South, but he was in one of the important coups of the war and which would have been effective had the Union soldiers done as was expected. They were before Petersburg and the Confederates were fortified on a hill. Between the two lines there was a ravine and under it the troops dug a tunnel, mined it and exploded a large quantity of powder. The southerners' fortifications were blown up and the colored troops charged the enemy. They entered behind the fortification and engaged the Confederates but the other Union forces did not come to their assistance as had been planned and the 43d Pennsylvania was forced to retreat. That was the hottest fight in which Mr. Cartlidge was engaged.


After he was mustered out he tramped from Texas to Vermont and arrived in Rutland. He remained there probably not more than a year and then came to this town. For about 40 years he has lived here and made a living by doing odd jobs and working on teams. He worked for several years for Leslie Yauvey, the coal dealer, but advancing years have reduced his strength and he is not able to perform much hard labor. He is under the care of a guardian, Bert Thatcher of Chesterfield, N. H., who advises him what to do. He has a small sum of money in the bank, but he can not earn much money and the pension he draws barely pays his board and room in the old Putnam house on Prospect street. If he is not granted an increase in pension efforts may be made to get him into the soldiers' home in Bennington, but as that institution is for Vermont soldiers only he may not be admitted.


At one time Mr. Cartlidge lost a part of one foot while working in a coal mine in Virginia.


Vermont Phoenix, December 6, 1912.


*Since the auction which sold Jacob Cartlidge took place early in 1863---and his age was stated to be thirty---then Jacob would be born about 1833. In other words, he was more like seventy-nine years old, than seventy-five, in December 1912 when this article was printed.


If the auctioneer was enhancing his sale by reducing the slave's real age, then Jacob may have been older than thirty in reality---and so eighty years or older at the closing of year 1912.


**The present records give Jacob's mustering in with the 43rd Pennsylvania Regiment as January 23, 1864, and his mustering out with the company as October 20, 1865.


The Battle of the Crater took place on July 30, 1864.


________________


Jacob Cartledge, a negro best known to local fame through an incident connected with the Sugland trial, has received a pension with a comfortable sum of back pay, and is now a gentleman of leisure. He served in a Pennsylvania regiment.


Vermont Phoenix, May 3, 1889.


________________


Jacob Cartledge died at the Brattleboro Retreat on November 11, 1919 at the age of eighty-five. He had been living at the Retreat for the last five years. His last guardian was Henry J. Allen, the Canal Street florist.


His father was also named Jacob Cartledge. This son who escaped from Georgia was buried in the Mather Street, or the West Brattleboro Cemetery. The funeral service was conducted by Rev. Delmar E. Trout from the Universalist Church.


When Jacob Cartledge first came to Brattleboro, he chopped in the woods for a living. He then became a helper with the coal teams of Leslie B. Yauvey and E. B. Barrows, for which he is best remembered.


Cartledge then worked on farms in West Chesterfield, New Hampshire, and later removed to the John Allaire house on Prospect Street in Brattleboro, formerly the residence of Lewis Putnam, the old-time liveryman, thence to the Brattleboro Retreat.


Jacob Cartledge's obituary records that---


He drew a pension of $38 a month, and at one time he had several hundred dollars in a savings bank, but it gradually dwindled away and some of it fell into the hands of unscrupulous persons who took advantage of him.


Many remember his courteous low bows and his salutation,

"Good morning my good man."


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The Green Family Of Colrain, Massachusetts


This is simply a collection of references to, and research concerning the Green and Sugland families. A formal, accurate genealogy is "easier said than done"---


Peter Green (a man of color), who lived in Colrain, Franklin County, Massachusetts, and died in 1836. He had served in the American Revolution in Captain Samuel Pell's company, Colonel Philip Cortlandt's Regiment, 4th New York line, Continental establishment. After the war he sold his bounty land in New York State and relocated to Colrain. He received a Revolutionary War pension out of Greenfield, pension application number S32772.


___________________


"Peter Greene (c.1750 - c.1836) . . .was a blacksmith, farm laborer, and former slave who served in a New York regiment during the Revolutionary War and subsequently settled in Colrain, Massachusetts; he married twice and had several children, including sons Peter Green, Jr. (1787-1865), and James "Jim" Greene (1807-1871)."


Harriet E. Wilson, "Our Nig: Or, Sketches from the Life of a Free Black". (Boston: Geo. C. Rand & Avery, September 5, 1859). This autobiographical novel was reprinted in 2005 by Penguin Books, "Edited with an Introduction and Notes by P. Gabrielle Foreman and Reginald H. Pitts".


Harriet E. (Green) Wilson was born on March 15, 1825 in Milford, New Hampshire, and died in Quincy, Massachusetts on June 28, 1900. Her father was Joshua Green, an African-American "hooper of barrels". Her grandfather was possibly Peter Greene (1750-1836).


____________________


Charles Green


Birth: January 11, 1791
Colrain
Franklin County
Massachusetts
Death: April 6, 1864
Colrain
Franklin County
Massachusetts


Son of Peter Green and Violette ____ Green.


Brother of Peter Green, Jr.


He was a blacksmith.


He was head of household in 1840, five "free colored persons". One was over age 55, one male 36-54, one female 36-54, and there were two males between the age of 10 and 23.


A "Lettie Green", aged 63, Black, is living with him at the time of the 1850 census, as are two younger Greens, Frederick (14) and Sarah (29). They are described as Mulatto. Lettis died in 1861, and her death record indicates she was Charles' sister. Frederick Green died in 1865 and "Anson White, negro" is listed as his father. Sarah and Lettis are also listed in the 1860 census in Charles' household, along with two children, Sophronia Green (8) and Charles H Green (4). In the next household is a Peter Green, aged 73. Peter's death records the same parents as Charles, so he was a brother. It further states that both parents, Peter and Violett, were born in Africa.


He married Lucinda Dors, intentions recorded at Colrain, Massachusetts in October 1816.


Brick School Cemetery, Colrain, Franklin County, Massachusetts


Created by: Kevin Avery
Record added: Jul 20, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 73644325


____________________


Francis W. Green, senior, died on October 29, 1900 aged eighty-five years, seven months, and four days. He was found in a chair, by his boarder on Birge Street, Jacob Cartledge.


"Barber Green" was a native of Colrain, Massachusetts who learned the blacksmith's trade from his uncle Charles Green. Frank was later a charcoal burner, and a teamster in Bennington who once drove a team from Woodford to Hinsdale, New Hampshire.


Coming to Brattleboro when he was about 1855, Frank Green learned the barber's trade from Andrew Bradshaw, and then conducted his own shop in Greenfield, Massachusetts for five years---earning his nickname, Frank "Barber" Green.


Frank Green married Madeline "Madelia" Mundell, widow Virnis Pierce, on January 1, 1857. He returned to Brattleboro and set up shop in the old Fisk building on Main Street, where the Hooker Building now stands.


Francis W. Green was probably one of the four pall bearers at John G. Sugland's funeral in Vernon in 1887---unless it was his son, Francis W. Green, Jr. His children were Emerett, Mrs. Wilmot R. Gaige, Emily H. Green, Elijah Green, and Katie Elsie.


Violet Green, or "Lettie" apparently separated from Richard Sugland. She is not mentioned as living with him in Keene, New Hampshire after giving birth to John G. Sugland about 1842. Neither is she mentioned for residence with Richard in Vernon, Vermont.


Lettie Green is in the household of Charles Green in Colrain, Massachusetts in 1850, and in the household of Sarah Green in 1855, also in Colrain.


___________________


Colrain, Massachusetts
Vital Records To 1850


Green


Betsy, d. John and Sarah, May 13, 1783.
James, s. John and Sarah, Apr. 24, 1787.
John, s. John and Sarah, May 10, 1793.
Lydia, d. John and Sarah, Mar. 4, 1791.
Nathaniel, s. John and Sarah, July 12, 1797.
Pamely, d. John and Sarah, Apr. 19, 1795.
Polly, d. John and Sarah, Mar. 3, 1789.
Sarah, d. John and Sarah, May 23, 1785.
----, d. Charles, blacksmith, and Sarah, Aug. 31, 1848.


___________________


Holland, Josiah Gilbert
History of Western Massachusetts.
The Counties of Hampden, Hampshire, Franklin & Berkshire
Springfield, Massachusetts: Samuel Bowles & Company, 1855.
Vol. I, 520 pp; Vol. II 619 pp, three parts.
Call number 974.4, H71


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They Yelled Stuffers.


Mature Men Were the Worst Offenders,

but Two High School Boys Were Arrested---

One Fined and the Other Declared Not Guilty.


You may yell "Stuffers, 'uffers, 'uffers, 'uffers," or "ki-y-yi-yi" on the street if you want to, but you will be liable to a fine of $5 and costs.


For months and years the young men and boys have made life miserable to Frank Green, an employee of Frost & Proctor, by shouting "Stuffers," with variations. How the word originated is not known, but its utterance has had an effect on Green similar to that of a red rag on a bull. He would fume and rage and threaten summary vengeance on his tormentors.


Of course it was foolish for Green to lose his temper at the shouts, because in this way he simply invited their continuation; but he, unfortunately, wasn't built this way.


It was also contemptible for full-grown men to continue the torment, and they ought to have known better; but, unfortunately, there was a case of structural weakness on their side, also.


And so the shouts have gone on and on, and have become both a nuisance and a disgrace. The worst offenders have been young men employed on Main street---some of them not so very young, either---and the school boys, seeing the way things were going, have thoughtlessly joined with those older.


The cries became almost continuous Wednesday afternoon, and many people remarked that the proceedings were outrageous. Col. Hooker, the town grand juror, who was in Frost & Proctor's store, at length asked State's Attorney Fitts, who was passing, to bring action against two High school boys, who, with several companions, were standing in front of the Y. M. C. A. rooms. The two boys were John Stewart and Arthur Brasor. Warrants were issued for their arrest on the charge of disturbing the peace. During the afternoon Mr. Gordon arrested Stewart.


It should be said right here that Stewart is a bright, attractive boy, of excellent reputation and of good family. He is not inclined to mischief more than the average boy of good health and spirits. He heard the cries and joined in them, without any idea of committing a breach of the peace.


He was arraigned before Justice Newton, and had no consultation with counsel or with his father. He frankly acknowledged that he had shouted, and was therefore fined $5 and costs, amounting to over $9. He asked for opportunity to get the money, and going out with Sheriff Gordon met Charles H. Thompson, who promptly paid the fine.


Papers were not served on Brasor until yesterday. He declared that he was innocent, and his brothers at once arranged to have him defended.


The case was brought before Justice Newton in the afternoon. the charges as stated in the three counts were in brief that on May 8 he disturbed the public peace and that on two other occasions he willfully annoyed and teased a feeble-minded person. Brasor asked for a trial by jury and the following jurors were drawn: G. H. Ryder, Hiland Haskins, John Wright, A. J. Currier, F. D. Weld and C. I. Knapp. The witnesses for the state were Frank Green, Wells S. Frost, Col. Hooker, H. B. Chamberlain, S. W. Edgett, H. P. Wellman, Leroy F. Adams, Major Childs and Judge Tyler. Green testified as to the occurrences on Wednesday, stating positively that he heard Stewart and Brasor calling him the usual names. Mr. Frost testified as to Brasor's custom of annoying Green. Col. Hooker testified to the disturbance on Wednesday and also concerning Green's peculiar mental make-up, as did the other witnesses for the state.


The witnesses for the defence, were the respondent, John Stewart, Dan Stolte, Hayes Morey, Harry Wellman, Fred Adams, Geo. Stone and "Toby" Bean, the boys who were with Brasor Wednesday. The testimony of these witnesses was a sweeping denial of the charges against Brasor, both as to the occurrences of Wednesday and as to his conduct toward Green at other times.The examination of witnesses took until after 6 o'clock, when the court adjourned until 7:30. The evening session of nearly two hours was held in the town hall, when the arguments of counsel were presented. The jury, after being out about 15 minutes, brought in a verdict of "not guilty." State's Attorney Fitts appreared for the state and Geo. B. Hitt for the respondent.


There was an attendance of 200 or 300 in the hall. When the High school boys had filed out into the street they cried in unison a single time: "He's all right. Who's all right? Brasor." And the case had become a matter of history.


The mouthy attacks on Green had reached a point where suppression was in order, but it is to be regretted that the prime offenders---mature men---were not prosecuted. They go free, while a lesser offender suffers the prosecution. John Stewart's offence is not to be condoned or lightly passed over, but his action since the arrest shows that he is of the right metal. He faced the music frankly and truthfully, says that he ought not to have done what he did, and that he is sorry for it.


Now let the real offenders show their manhood by keeping their mouths shut.


Vermont Phoenix, Friday, May 10, 1895.


Arthur Harrison Brasor was born at the Brattleboro Retreat in January 1879. His father was the French Canadian-born Egbert Brasor, his mother was the Irish-born Margaret Holland.


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Rinaldo N. Hescock


RinaldoNathanHescock,VermontCivilWar.jpg


Was Wounded And Taken Prisoner.

Death of Rinaldo N. Hescock, Civil War Veteran --

Formerly For 30 Years Employed at Esteys'.


Rinaldo Nathan Hescock, a veteran of the 2d Vermont regiment who was wounded in battle and a prisoner in Libby prison a few weeks, died last night. He had suffered from mental trouble several years.


Mr. Hescock was born in Townshend, July 13, 1835, a son of Nathan and Samantha (Boole) Hescock. His boyhood was spent in his native town and soon after moving to Brattleboro he enlisted in Company C, 2d Vermont Volunteers. The regiment participated in the battle of Bull Run, and the following spring in the retreat at Savage Station. Mr. Hescock, with several others of his command, was taken prisoner.


After three weeks in Libby prison he was confined two weeks in Belle Island prison and was then exchanged. He was wounded in the right arm in a skirmish after the battle of Malvern Hill and was one of the first to be sent to the hospital established at Brattleboro. Being incapacitated for further service he was transferred to the 13th Veteran Reserve corps, and during his convalescence was in charge of the reading room and library at the hospital.


After the war he was employed some time in the Wells machine shop and later was employed for 20 years in the case making department of the Estey Organ Co.


Mr. Hescock leaves his wife, who was Miss Emma Chase of Brattleboro and three children, Mrs. Arthur Howe of Ludlow, Mass., Miss Ruby Hescock of Brattleboro and Brian V. Hescock, a civil engineer of Brooklyn.


Brattleboro Reformer, May 9, 1917.


At the United States General Hospital in Brattleboro, Rinaldo Hescock as Hospital Steward observed Sophronia visiting her husband John G. Sugland. Hescock testified twenty-four years later at the investigation for murder, as to Sugland's whereabouts.


The Brattleboro Reformer, Civil War Veterans series for October 20, 1914---


Mr. Hescock rejoined his regiment soon after the battle of Malvern Hill. Not long after that, as he was aiming his rifle, a bullet entered his right arm near the wrist, came out near the elbow, again entered the muscle of the upper arm and came out near the shoulder. He was taken with other wounded to a schoolhouse where the wounded were laid in rows on the schoolhouse floor. The surgeons wanted to amputate his arm, but he objected so strenuously that they dressed the wounds and left him.


He was greatly cheered by a visit from John W. Frost and Elbridge Gerry of Brattleboro. About that time Gov. Holbrook petitioned for the establishment of a hospital at Brattleboro and when one was authorized Mr. Hescock was one of the Vermonters who was sent to it for care and treatment. It was while in the hospital in Brattleboro that Mr. Hescock was transferred to Company G of the 13th regiment, Veteran Reserve corps. He was in charge of the reception room and library of the hospital a long time during his convalescence and was there at the time of his final discharge from the service.


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