Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Ruth Anita Grant: Forgery

Ruth Anita Grant was born about 1926.

She was Inmate: #7511 Idaho State Prison
Rec: Nov 1948
Crime: Forgery
Term: 14 years
Age: 22

Lesson wasn't learned as she was arrested again in Colorado in 1961 on 2 forgery counts.

I tried to find a newspaper article on that charged but didn't, her name may have changed or she used an alias.

Here is William Smith's records I found.

He didn't have a lawyer and pleaded guilty to forgery, he was confined to hard labor for a term no longer than 14 years. Dated 30 Nov 1948.

Forgery is a white-collar crime that generally refers to the false making or material alteration of a legal instrument with the specific intent to defraud anyone. For instance forging a name on a check or document of some kind.

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Bessie T Taylor: Grand Larceny

Bessie T Taylor was born 3 May 1887 in Pennsylvania to Henry Taylor & Carnelia Payne.

She was married once to a Mr. Bush.

Inmate: #33033 San Quentin Prison
Rec: 30 Sep 1919
Crime: Grand Larceny
Term: 1-10
Age: 32

I just love her smile!!!!

She had 2 years of college. According to the 1930 census she was married and living with William Rudd in San Francisco.

This where she was arrested according to the newspaper article below.

Bessie Died at age 51 from breast cancer on 11 Nov 1938 in Philadelphia, PA 

So sad.

Monday, December 9, 2019

Lizzie Clements: Arson

Lizzie Clement(s) was born about 1869 in Texas. She had Typhoid fever. On the 14 May 1886 she set fire to J. W. Rodgers hen house and barn 2 days later. There was a young girl by the name of Tennie Parish employed by the Rogers who became friends with Lizzie. 

Here is a newspaper article:

She was arrested for arson and held for trial.Lizzie wanted Tinnie to leave the Rodgers family and live with her. Some folks were trying to keep them apart. Tinnie obeyed the Rodgers and that upset Lizzie, so she set fire to the Rodgers property.

There were other fires in the area, did Lizzie set those also? No proof found.

What I find rather sad is this 17 to 18 year old girl all alone. I understand back then they were considered adults at that age and usually married when they were 15 or 16, but there is never any mention of her family or where she comes from. 

I didn't find any genealogy information, only 4 newspaper clippings about these young girls and their plot to run away together. But what a story, even though we do not get much of an ending, and never find out what became of her and what her sentence was. I search through the Texas Convict records on Ancestry and came up empty.

 I also tried googling her and the crime and came up empty. I did however make her a tree on Ancestry, I am sure someday someone will send me a message or leave a comment giving me more information.

I wanted to write about this because I felt a connection to Lizzie and I don't want her to be forgotten.

Sunday, December 8, 2019

Mr. & Mrs. Anderson Play The Badger Game

Ethel Bailey Born about 1892 in Illinois and her husband Ralph J Anderson born about 1897 in California.

This married couple would pull The Badger game on their victims. What's a Badger Game you ask? An extortion scheme in which a woman places a man in a compromising position and then victimizes him by demanding money when her male accomplice, pretending to be an outraged husband or relative, enters and threatens violence, scandal, etc.

The were arrested on 15 Nov 1921 for robbery.

Here is a longer article explaining the whole story.

Inmate: 36087 San Quentin Prison
Rec: 4 Mar 1922
Crime: Robbery
Term: 1-life

Inmate: #36086 San Quentin prison
Rec: 4 Mar 1922
Crime: Robbery
Term: 1-Life

They were discharged on parole 3 Nov 1926

I found one child named Colleen Anderson and Ralph died 13 Jan 1962 in Sacramento County, CA., this was all the information I found the couple.

Interesting scam, she must of had to have had sex with some of these men, which I would think would not be an easy thing to do, or an easy life to live, what a way to make a living, could have been very dangerous.

Saturday, December 7, 2019

Best Friends Searight & Leroy Can't Stay Out Of Trouble

James Searight Alias Frank Jordan, Alias James Welsch. was born Aug 1877 in California.

Inmate: Sacramento County Jail
Crime: Robbery
Rec: 20 March 1898
Age: 20

Inmate: #4369 Folsom Prison
Rec: 20 Apr 1898
Crime: Robbery
Term: Life
Age: 20

Here's a newspaper articles explaining the robbery and assault with a deadly weapon.

Their first mistake was trying to rob a house with the occupants sleeping in it, then shooting the man with his own gun. Because he survived it is the only reason they charged with just robbery but why they got life. Which by the way they were pardoned in 17 Dec 1910 by the acting governor. They were paroled from prison on 1 Jan 1909.

Charles Leroy was born May 1872 in Missouri.
Alias"Ione" and James Walker.

Inmate: Sacramento County Jail
Rec: 20 March 1898
Crime: Robbery
Age: 24

Inmate:144263 San Quentin Prison
Rec:21 Apr 1898
Crime: Robbery
Term: Life
Age: 24
Paroled: 19 Apr 1908 and pardoned 17 Dec 1910

Here's the newspaper article about their clemency.

He was also INmate: 17723 San Quentin Prison I couldn't find his records for this inmate number.

James would get himself into trouble again

Inmate: 26864 San Quentin Prison
as James Welsch
Rec: 11 Oct 1913
Crime: Burglary 2nd Degree
Term: 1 Yr
Age: 24
Paroled: 11 May 1914

I didn't find any other information for these childhood pals. I believe James Welsch may have been his actual name, as far as I can tell with Charles there is no clue, I tried searching him with his alias and there too many close calls to choose one. I wonder if they mostly got into trouble while they were together, and maybe Charles was dead by 1913 and James was on his own. A theory anyhow. 

Friday, December 6, 2019

Grace Jones: Prostitute Murdered by Live In Boyfriend

Grace Jones or Grace Jennings was born about 1889 in East St. Louis, MO. She left home when she was 11 years old. Her mother was Louis Maiden name unknown married name of Meyers.

Inmate#5106 Sacramento County Jail
Rec: 12 Dec 1909
Crime: Vagrancy
Age: 20
Occupation: Prostitution 
Murdered 1 June 1912 by Bill Mason

I am not buying that story about the acid, his list of scars in his criminal records do not mention these, and one would think acid would leave scars of some sort.

The above article has a lot about Grace's life.

William Mason was born about 1866 in California. He had spent a lot of time in  and out of jail for crimes like petty larceny and such.

Inmate# 8394 Folsom Prison
Rec: 1 July 1912
Crime: Murder 1st Degree
Term: Life

Added by EDHGS to Find A Grave

And life it was, Bill died in Folsom Prison on 25 Oct 1919 and is buried in their cemetery.

Here's the link to his memorial:

Very sad lives they must of had.

Thursday, December 5, 2019

Charles Wilkinson Otis: Robs His Employer

Charles Wilkinson Otis was born May 1830 in New York. 

Inmate in the Sacramento County Jail

Inmate: #4210 Folsom Prison
Rec: 27 Oct 1897
Crime: Grand Larceny
Term: 5 Yrs
Age: 67
Discharged to Parole 27 May 1901

He had gotten into another bit of a bind in 1889, trying to steal a wagon.

I am almost sure he was married before he left New York to come to California. He did marry on 16 Oct 1867 in Sacramento, CA to a widow who had a daughter.

Lois Nutter(1825-1891)She divorced him by 1880 as stated in the census records. When she died she left everything to her daughter Adeline Alice Cully (1850-1909). Her first husband was Dr. Matthew D Cully (1818-1865).

Charles seemed to be a colorful gentleman, he was a jack of many trades, the farm job he had before robbing his employer seemed to be his longest. Maybe Mr. James Ryan should of been a little more careful of letting anyone know where he was putting all that money. A bank would of been a better choice. Charles only spent $100 of it on what besides booze we will never know.

The dollar experienced an average inflation rate of 2.88% per year during this period, meaning the real value of a dollar decreased. In other words, $100 in 1897 is equivalent in purchasing power to about $2,855.63 in 2015, a difference of $2,755.63 over 118 years.

This is what a $20 bill looked like in 1897.