Peninsula Enterprise, April 28, 1894


Infrastructure -- Commercial - Other

Accomac C. H. is coming to the front. Several new enterprises have recently been started here and the number is to be still further augmented. In a few weeks Mr. Moses Smith will open a first-class bakery in the town -- the only one, we believe, that will be found in operation on the Eastern Shore of Virginia.


Transportation -- Water - Steamboats

It is among the probabilities that a steam launch will shortly be secured to ply between the wharves on Folly Creek and the beach, during the summer months.


Professionals -- Doctors

Dr. George T. Scarburgh, one of the best known and most skillful physicians in this section, has secured office quarters opposite the ENTERPRISE establishment.


Tourists and sportsmen -- Other recreation - Bicycling


One of our bicyclist made the trip from Salisbury to this place, a distance of 50 miles, last week, in 6 hours.


Sea -- Shellfish - Clamming : SeasideTourists and sportsmen -- Other recreation - ResortsTransportation -- Railroad - SteamboatsTourists and sportsmen -- Other recreation - Bicycling


Our clam market has been extra good for the last 30 days and our people have been busily engaged in catching and shipping them.

Mr. Charles Fennis, banker of London, while in this county on a visit to friends in New York desiring to spend a few weeks at some seaside resort, was advised to visit Chincoteague, and is now stopping at the Atlantic.

Some of the P. W. & B. R. R., officials while here last week, visited Wisharts Point for the purpose of conferring with the citizens of that vicinity in regard to the running of steamer Chincoteague to that place. They have not arrived yet at any definite conclusion in the matter.

Bicycling fever struck our Island this week.


Infrastructure -- Commercial - Residential constructionTourists and sportsmen -- Other recreation - Horse racing

Fair Oaks.

Our mechanic, Thomas S. Kellam, is busy putting the finishing touches on new dwelling of S. C. Turlington.

One of our expert marksmen pulled the trigger to drop the hawk that had the chicken, but his best shirt on the wire got the contents on his gun.

Trainer G. A. Brown, son of the veteran trainer, Peter Brown, Lexington Ky., is at the Fair ground track making things look silky and getting ready for warm company this season and our track superintendent, Mr. S. C. Turlington, don't seem to be in arrears very far with some gilt edge youngsters, "Miss Bendee" and Delmont in the lead, both bred in the purple.


Forests -- Barrel factories Transportation -- Water - Boat buildingTourists and sportsmen -- Other recreation - Fraternal ordersWeather -- Northeast stormsfields -- Crops - White potatoes : Seed and slips


Business is gradually looking up here and we have less complaints of "hard times" from our business men now.

S. R. Stebbins & Son, barrel manufacturers at Franklin City, have sold out their entire business to W. M. Needles, and hereafter the business will be conducted at same place under the firm name of W. M. Needles & Co.

John F. Powell, our enterprising merchant, and master mechanic, has just completed a first-class bateau, and if all reports are correct, the boat may come in competition with the fastest, now known, although not intended for a boat race.

The widow of the late Capt. W. K. Collins, drowned on the 19th of February, 1893, during the great storm that swept the Atlantic coast, has not received the amount of insurance on the life of her husband from the Golden Chain, but is expecting it as soon as a guardian shall qualify for one of the children.

Some of our citizens have found that the early planting of round potatoes is not always the best thing to do. In several cases here the potatoes have rotted and a second planting has been necessary.


Sea -- Finfish - Catch : DrumNatural resources -- Conservation - GameTourists and sportsmen -- Other recreation - Resorts


Drum fishing is the latest fad of the town.

Club men are falling in every day and applying for non-resident certificates from the Eastern Shore Game Protective Association.

Preparations are being made at the hotel for a large number of spring visitors from the North. The first detachment embracing a party of a dozen will reach here next week.

Oystermen's Meeting.

Sea -- Shellfish - Oystering : BaysideWatermen -- Watermen's organizations

A meeting of the oystermen is hereby called at Accomac C. H., next Monday. I will report as treasurer on that day of the "Oystermen's Association," organized for the protection of our rights in Pocomoke Sound. The attendance of those who collected the money for the purpose designated, especially desired.

John W. Bowdoin.

The Eastern Virginia Medical Society.

Professionals -- Doctors

A number of physicians representing different sections of the Eastern Shore of Virginia met at Onley, Wednesday last and formed a medical society for the advancement of medical science and social intercourse. On motion Dr. E. W. Robertson, of Onancock, was made temporary chairman and Dr. G. P. Moore, of Cape Charles, secretary. A committee, composed of Drs. J. H. Ayers, C. L. Harmanson, G. P. Moore, G. W. LeCato and E. B. Finney, was appointed to draft by-laws and constitution, the same to be reported for adoption at next meeting. The chair was instructed to invite Dr. George T. Scarburgh, of Accomac C. H., to address the society at its next meeting. Other propositions relative to permanent organization were discussed, when the meeting adjourned to meet at Onley, Wednesday, May 16th, at 3:30 p. m., when permanent organization will be effected. All physicians in Accomac and Northampton are earnestly requested to be present. Physicians north of Onley will be in time for the meeting by coming on afternoon train, and they can return by north-bound train at night.


Sea -- Shellfish - Oystering : BaysideSea -- Shellfish - Oystering : Law enforcementSea -- Shellfish - Oystering : LitigationInfrastructure -- Public - Government : Maryland-Virginia boundary



The Courts of Virginia had the Right to Try Wharton for Fishing in the Sound. Judgement of Court Confirmed.

Washington, D. C., April 23. -- The controversy between the States of Maryland and Virginia over the arrest of residents of the former for taking oysters in the waters of the latter, was decided in the United States Supreme Court today, Mr. Justice Field announcing the opinion, which sustained the contention of Virginia on every material point of issue.


The case at bar came up on appeal from the judgment of the Circuit Court for the Eastern district of Virginia refusing to discharge Robert L. Wharton on a writ of habeas corpus from the custody of John H. Wise, sheriff of Accomac county, Va. Wharton was a resident of Maryland and was arrested and convicted of violating a law of Virginia, which prohibits the taking of oysters or other shell fish from the waters of the State by any person other than a resident of the State, in taking oysters from Pocomoke sound. Wharton, on trial of the indictment against him, pleaded want of jurisdiction by the Virginia courts to try him, because the act of the Legislature of Virginia, under which the indictment was found, had not been adopted or ratified by the Legislature of Maryland, and because by the compact of 1795 between those States, which was still in force, the waters of Pocomoke sound were a part of the Pocomoke river, which was mentioned in that compact. The court held the plea to be insufficient and fined Wharton $500. The judgement of the Unites States Circuit Court refused to interfere and dismissed the petition for the writ of habeas corpus. From that judgement the petitioner appealed to the United States Supreme Court.


In disposing of the appeal Justice Field reviewed at length the compact made between the States of Maryland and Virginia in 1785, upon the interpretation of which the determination of the controversy depended. That compact, the Justice said, grew out of the inconveniences experienced by the citizens of both States from the want of established and recognized regulations between them respecting the jurisdiction and navigation of the Potomac, which formed a boundary between them for a hundred miles or more. It was drafted by commissioners appointed by both States, who met at Mount Vernon, and was ratified and approved by the Legislature of each. Its validity has often been questioned, said the Justice, so far as its provisions were inconsistent with those of the Constitution of the United States, and afterwards adopted, they were superseded by it. But as an operative agreement binding the action of the two States upon the subjects embraced, when not inconsistent with the COnstitution, its validity has often been recognized by their authorities. As stated by counsel, stipulations as to riparian rights of fishery and as to jurisdiction in and over waters lying between the two States remained as they previously existed.

The contention made by counsel for Maryland, on behalf of Wharton, was that by a true construction of sections 7 and 8 of the compact of 1785; her citizens were lawfully entitled to exercise a common right of fishery, including the right to catch and take oysters in the Potomac river, including Pocomoke sound, which was alleged to be part of that river; but that if they did not possess that right they could not be subjected to trial in the courts of Virginia for the offences charged to have been committed in those waters against the citizens of that State.


After quoting the provisions of the section designated, Justice Field concluded that no clause in the compact gave any right to Maryland to fish in the Pocomoke river, and that Pocomoke river and Pocomoke sound until the "Black Jenkins award, of 1877," never lost their square and distinct character and designation. The objection to the jurisdiction of the courts of Virginia to try Wharton for the offence charged, Justice Field said, did not find any support in the tenth section of the compact. That section provided only for the trial of citizens of Maryland in that State where offences were committed by them; in Virginia upon citizens of that State. The offence charged against Wharton and for which he was tried and convicted, was one against the State of Virginia, and not one against any of her individual citizens. Upon these grounds the judgement of the Circuit Court in refusing to discharge Wharton must be affirmed.


In its opinion, the Court says:

The question whether Pocomoke sound is to be considered as part of Pocomoke river is immaterial, in view of the conclusion we have stated, that the compact gives no right to the citizens of Maryland to fish in the waters of that river, and only refers to the river in providing that legislation or regulations, preserving and keeping open its channel free from obstructions, shall be enacted by the mutual consent and approval of the two States. But owing to the earnestness with which the identity of the river and sound has been pressed, it is proper to state that, after a careful examination of the documentary evidence offered on the subject, we are clear that the river and sound were at the time the compact was made, and for many years preceding it, considered and designated as separate and distinct bodies of water, and after that date, down to what is termed the "Black Jenkins award of 1877," they never lost their separate and distinct character and designation. And we agree with the statement of the court below, in considering this subject, that there is no map of these waters and no joint official document existing in relation to them, which has confounded the river with the sound, or claimed that the sound is the river or any part of the river Pocomoke. The objection to the jurisdiction of the courts of Virginia to try the appellant for the offense charged does not find any support in the tenth section of the compact of 1785. That section only provides for the trial of citizens of Maryland in that State where offences are committed by them in Virginia upon citizens of that State. It was so held by the Court of Appeals of Virginia in Hendricks against Commonwealth, above cited.

Mr. Justice Harlan and Mr. Justice Gray concurred in the result, with Mr. Justice Field.


Transportation -- Railroad - Rates and fares

Uniform Annual Release.

-- Station, -- 189-

Whereas, the -- Company has two different rates of charges for tolls and transportation upon certain articles, viz: -- One higher rate, upon the payment of which it assumes the ordinary liability of a common carrier upon its line or railroad, for property transported by it; and another, lower rate, at which it transports for all those who release it from all liability, so far as may lawfully be done, for any loss or damage to property entrusted to it for transportation.

And, whereas, -- the undersigned has -- determined to ship all property which -- may furnish for transportation and receive all property consigned to -- by other parties (whether the shippers of said property have executed a release or not), during the year ending upon the -- day of 189-. at the reduced rates above referred to, and in said consideration thereof the release,so far as -- lawfully may, the said company and any and every other railroad or transportation company to which the said property may be delivered for transportation to or toward its place of destination, from all liability for any loss thereof or damage thereto, considering that the difference in -- favor in the cost is equivalent to the risk of transportation.

Therefore, in consideration of the premises, the said -- do -- hereby release and discharge, so far as -- lawfully may, the railroad company and all other railroad or transportation companies to which the said property may be delivered for transportation to or toward its place of destination, from all claims, demands or liabilities for any loss there of or damage thereto, however occurring, by fire or otherwise, or whether by negligence of the said railroad or transportation companies, or of their agents or employees or otherwise, while the same is in their care, custody or possession.

And the said -- hereby authorize the said railroad or transportation company and any such other railroad or transportation company, as -- agent, to deliver the said property to any other railroad or transportation company over whose routes it may be carried to or toward its place of destination, and -- agree that no such railroad or transportation company shall be considered as carrier of said property beyond its own road or line, or in any event be held liable for loss of or damage to said property while in the possession of any other railroad or transportation company to which the said property may be delivered as aforesaid.

This contract is supplemental to the contract contained in any bill of lading issued in respect to any shipment made by the above named shipper.

In witness whereof, The said -- has executed this Release in -- this -- day of -- A. D. 189-.

-- , Shipper.

-- , Railroad Agent.

[This Contract is to be executed in such numbers as each company may require, copies to be forwarded to such officials as may be designated by the proper official of each company.

It shall be filed in the proper office of the initial company, and the property carried thereunder shall be way-billed as "released."]

Published for the information of our farmers and commented on in editorial column.


Sea -- Shellfish - Oystering : BaysideSea -- Shellfish - Oystering : Law enforcementSea -- Shellfish - Oystering : Litigation

The decision of the Supreme Court of the United States in reference to Pocomoke Sound has been announced and sustains the claims of Virginia on every material point at issue. That citizens of Maryland have no right to take oysters in the Virginia portion of the sound has been settled finally and forever, and our neighbors across the border who cannot do without our oysters in the future, if law abiding citizens, must either buy them, or if they wish to catch them they must cast their lot with us. No treaty can ever be negotiated between the two States as the Baltimore Sun suggests, granting the privilege to them. Virginia has already been bereft of too much of her territory and privileges for such a proposition to be entertained for one moment and any suggestion to the contrary is prejudicial to the good understanding and friendly relations which ought to exist between the States. Between Maryland and Virginia there ought to be peace and the good citizens of the former bowing to the decision of the highest tribunal in the land, will do all in their power to preserve it, whatever their regrets and disappointments in the matter.


Sea -- Shellfish - Oystering : BaysideSea -- Shellfish - Oystering : Law enforcement

Capt. A. J. Reed is no longer the commander of the oyster police schooner Tangier, to the surprise, regret and indignation of many of the citizens of Accomac. He has been retired by the Board of the Chesapeake and its Tributaries, it seems, upon charges of citizens of Tangier Island merely, and in utter disregard of the wishes of all the other people of the county. He has been dismissed from the service, it seems, without the formality of an investigation even, if the statement of the Richmond Times, "that the Governor says, that no action had been taken in regard to the charges preferred against Captain Reed" can be accepted as correct. A gallant officer, endorsed by the officials of the county because of his efficiency, approved of by the people, because of his vigilance, is thus summarily disposed of, why? The answer in our opinion, can be found, in the fact, that the Board was either ignorant of the duties imposed upon them, or careless in the performance of them -- and whatever the reason that actuated them cannot rid themselves of the stupidity, by which they arrived at their conclusions. To listen to about 200 oystermen on the Island, rather than about 2,000 on the mainland, to accept the unsupported statements of citizens of Tangier against Capt. Reed rather than of the courts under whose surveillance he was constantly, to appoint as a police officer a man entirely unknown to them, rather than one who like Capt. Reed had been tried and found to be one of the best police officers the State had ever had and to depose him without investigation, shows ignorance, carelessness and stupidity on the part of the Board, which calls for the indignant protests of the citizens of Accomac. Reed was not investigated, and charges therefore not sustained, but the Board deserves to be, which has so stolidly performed its duties, as it seems to have done in the matter.


Transportation -- Railroad - Rates and fares

A paper not intended for publication, headed "uniform annual release," now being quietly circulated for the signatures of our farmers, by officials of New York, Philadelphia and Norfolk Railroad Co., appears in this issue of the ENTERPRISE. No one, however cursorily he may read the paper, will arrive at the conclusion, we believe, that the railroad company is asking them to relinquish rights, with a view to advance the interests of the shippers. There seems to be but one inference on the other hand, that any release which secretly they are thus asked to execute, will place them more in the power of and under subjection to the railroad company than they are now. Even bearing gifts to them, so entirely does this company and do most corporations of that character, seek to promote their own interests, rather than that of the people, we believe it would be our duty to say to them, beware, but when as in this instance they are asked to surrender so much for so little, we should be false against them, if we did not caution them against taking a step, which the railroad authorities by their methods seem to suggest would be a false one. This release cannot be in the interests of our farmers when the railroad authorities, by their acts show, that is cannot bear the light of inspection and criticism. Caution at least is necessary on the part of our shippers. Paying as they now do, a hundred thousand dollars or more annually for shipping their produce to markets than do farmers for like shipments, twice as remote from northern markets as we are, caution is not only necessary, but a failure on the part of our shippers to exercise it would be stupid beyond our comprehension.

Peninsula Enterprise
Accomac Court House
April 28, 1894