Week 13: #52 Ancestors – In the Paper
By Eilene Lyon
You know I don’t shy away from even the most salacious aspects of my ancestors’ lives. Let’s face it, not all people in the past were admirable characters – and some of them left descendants.
Someday, I swear, I’m going to find a Nobel laureate, a respected politician (okay, that’s an oxymoron), a person who saved a town from a devastating flood, or some other heroic soul in my family tree.
For sheer notoriety, the tale of Adoph Dills takes the prize. It begins in the summer of 1884 in a sleepy, little farming community in western Iowa…
Now you know about as much as I do. The Dills case utterly vanishes from the news after August 28, 1884. Adolph is like a slow train wreck that you can’t seem to avert your eyes from. (Note the geographic distribution of the sources, below.)
Feature image: Reproduction claim shanty at the Charles Ingalls homestead near DeSmet, South Dakota (E. Lyon 2015)
All clippings from Newspapers.com, cited in order:
Wood River Times (Hailey, ID) June 27, 1884 p. 2.
“Married a Child” St. Louis Post-Dispatch (MO) August 22, 1884 p. 2.
“A Nice Man is Farmer Dills” Star Tribune (Minneapolis, MN) August 23, 1884 p. 2.
“A Venerable Vulture” The Cairo Bulletin (IL) August 23, 1884 p. 1.
“Wanted for Two Crimes” Quad-City Times (Davenport, IA) August 24, 1884 p. 4.
“The Sheriff Has a Doubt” The Critic (Washington, DC) August 25, 1884 p. 1.
St. Louis Post-Dispatch August 25, 1884 p. 8.
“A Scoundrel’s Life in Jeopardy” The Evening Bulletin (Maysville, KY) August 26, 1884 p. 1.
“More of a Disgusting Case” Sioux City Journal, August 27, 1884 p. 3.