Peninsula Enterprise, February 8, 1896


Sea -- Fish factories

The American Fish Guano Co., Harborton, made an assignment last Tuesday, for the benefit of creditors.


Transportation -- Railroad - Corporate

The following statement shows the earnings and expenses of the New York, Philadelphia & Norfolk Railroad Company for 1895, as compared with the previous year. Jan 1 to Dec 31, 1892, gross earnings, $912,533; expenses, $710,619; net earnings, $291,914. Jan. 1 to Dec. 31, 1894, gross earnings, $904,691; expenses, &705,846; net earnings, &198,845. Increase, gross earnings &7,842; expenses, &4,773; net earnings, &3,069. -- Headlight.


Transportation -- Road - Maintenance

The Board of Supervisors at its meeting on Monday, decided to buy two more road machines for the county, and appointed Mr. Spencer F. Rogers, to negotiate for the purchase of same. The next meeting of the Board will be held on the 4th of March.


Moral -- AlcoholMoral -- Gambling

Rev. W. P. Wright, presiding elder, delivered a forcible and eloquent sermon at Drummondtown Methodist Church, on Sunday morning. He descanted at length upon the vices of the present day, and was especially severe in his arraignment of the evils incident to gambling and intemperance. He denounced in severe terms the gambling permitted at Agricultural Fairs and commended the movement for the suppression of intemperance, by voting against licenses. He complimented the officers of our court for their vigilance in enforcing the laws and urged his hearers to stand by and help them.


Transportation -- Railroad - Personnel

On February 1st, Mr. T. A. Joynes was appointed assistant to General Manager Willard Thomson, of the Baltimore, Chesapeake & Atlantic Railway Co. Mr. Joynes is succeeded by F. W. Battaile as purser of the steamer Eastern Shore, and Mr. C. L. Northam, of Onancock, succeeds F. W. Battaile as assistant purser.


Forests -- SawmillsTransportation -- Water - FreightInfrastructure -- Commercial - Grist millsInfrastructure -- Public - Government : Life-saving serviceInfrastructure -- Commercial - Banks


Messrs. H. Rowley & Bros., of Girdletree, Md., it is reported, have purchased a piece of land here and will put up a steam mill for sawing lumber, &c. -- the second of the kind here. Electric lights will be next on the line of our improvements.

Schooners Hastings and Susan Jane arrived here this week with cargo of building material -- and schooners Thomas Thomas, Palestine and John Wesley loaded with oysters for Fair Haven, Norfolk and New York, respectively.

Lewis & Disharoon received last week a steam mill for grinding feed, sawing up wood, &c., and will open their new business at an early date.

Capt. James Tracey, keeper of Assateague Life Saving Station, has lately been undergoing an investigation, but instead of being turned out, as many expected, has only been reprimanded, and is in receipt of a letter from General Superintendent Kimball, complimenting him in the most flattering terms for his past services.

The safe, furniture, &c., for our new bank has arrived and the bank will be opened on Monday, 10th inst. A Mr. Jones, of Pocomoke, it is reported, will be cashier, but our citizens want the place filled by Mr. J. T. Kenney, of this place, and W. J. Matthews, with a strong petition to that effect, visited Snow Hill, this week. Mr. Kenney has the confidence of our people, and to secure his services, means a liberal patronage of the bank by our people.


Forests -- Barrel factories Tourists and sportsmen -- Other recreation - Horse racingInfrastructure -- Commercial - Race tracks


Mr. D. Fisher has stopped work at his barrel factory on account of the bill now pending before the Legislature relating to a standard barrel.

The bill formulated and to be presented to the Legislature by Mr. W. Matthews, calling for a standard barrel, meets with the approval of our best farmers in this section.

W. S. Nock commenced work on his race track to day, and will have it completed by spring. He proposes to employ a trainer with the view of handling and training horses, entrusted to his care.


Infrastructure -- Public : Churches


Messrs. Truitt & Mears are putting the finishing touches on the steeple of our new Presbyterian Church.


Tourists and sportsmen -- Field sports - Hunting : Fox


Mr. Sam H. East will open a barrel factory here as successor of G. B. Jones. By strict attention to business he hopes to merit the patronage of the public.

A fox caught on Cedar Island, turned loose here on Saturday, was recaptured, after an exciting chase of about an hour.


Fields -- Other machineryInfrastructure -- Public : Schools


The road machine has been grading hills on road between here and Keller of late.

S. W. Ames & Co., are offering Disc harrows, with ball bearings, which lightens the draft nearly half and also have the Deering mowers, ball bearings.

Among the new scholars that entered the Pungoteague Academy, February 1st, was one from Germany.

Fishing Steamer Daisy Sold.

reprinted from Baltimore Sun.Sea -- Fish factories

The fishing steamer Daisy, of 126 tons register, hailing from Onancock, Va., was yesterday sold at United States marshal's sale at the wharves of the R. M. Spedden Company, foot of Broadway. Capt. R. M. Spedden was the purchaser for $1,600. The Daisy belonged to the American Fish Guano Company, which operated factories on the Pungoteague river, near Onancock. The company also owned the steamer J. W. Hawkins, which sank at sea with a Cuban filibustering party on board January 25. The Daisy was built at Noank, Conn., in 1874. The Isaac N. Veasy, another steamer of the Fish Guano Company, was sold in Norfolk January 26.

Local Option Elections.

Moral -- Alcohol

The following orders entered by Accomac county court at its January term last, explain themselves:

Virginia: -- At a court held for the country of Accomack, January 31st, A. D., 1896.

This day came Sylvanus W. Russell and three hundred and ninety-two other persons, representing that they are voters of Accomack county, and residents of the magisterial district of Metompkin in said county, and petitioned the court to order a local option election for said district, in accordance with the laws governing such elections; but said petitioners failing to produce before the court evidence that said petitioners constitute one-fourth of the persons voting at the preceding regular November election in said county, the said petition is continued until the third day of the next term of this court to enable the petitioners to produce, if they can, the evidence required by the statute to authorize the court to grant the prayer of said petition.

Same entry as to John E. West and one hundred and eighty eight others in Lee District.

Same entry as to Seymour B. Ward and one hundred and ninety-five others in Pungoteague district.

Reply of Officers of State Navy to Charges of Oystermen.

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


Permit me to answer, through the columns of your paper, the letter from Sykes, which appeared in your issue of the 1st inst.

It can be readily seen that the letter was intended as a slur, gotten up by a few soreheads, who have nothing else better to do. I am sure every fair-minded man, that makes his living out of Pocomoke Sound, will be willing to testify that there is better protection and less violations of the law, than for years.

I pronounce their letter absolutely false and without foundation. Since the steamer Accomac has been in commission there has never been a day or night, but what she was either in Tangier or Pocomoke Sound, protecting the oyster rocks. The steamer has had to make harbor at times, the weather being so bad that it was unfit and not safe for a boat to be out; but even then, she was always placed in a position that the sound could be seen and the steamer ready to move at any moment.

I take great pleasure in stating to the public, that both sounds are cruised day and night, whenever it is fit for a boat to run, and I have never seen a boat dredge, or even attempt to dredge while cruising the sound at night. In cruising it in the day, I have seen boats that looked a little suspicious, although I could not swear they were dredging. In fact, I could not get close enough to them to know what kind of a boat it was; I could only tell it was a small boat of some description. Several times of late, I have seen boats that I thought were dredging, and when I got to them found they were not even oystermen; whenever a sail is seen in the sound that does not always indicate that a man is violating the law, or even thinking about it. There have been violations of the law this season in Pocomoke Sound and nearly all were from Sykes Island and they were arrested, tried and convicted. The Accomac has repeatedly gone up the sound and when Sykes Island boats would see her coming, they would put sail on and go into Maryland; they knew they were violating the law, and to keep from being arrested, would flee into Maryland waters for a place of refuge.

I am constantly told by reliable oystermen in Pocomoke Sound, that make their living out of the sound, that the sound is well watched, and that their protection is better than it has been for years. I consider I know more about the sound, in regard to what is going on, than the entire community of Sykes Island. It is impossible for a person to stay on the Island and say that a boat is dredging in the sound; that is absurd.

They state in their letter, that on January 5th, 1896 -- "Three boats dredged on Ledge Rock -- and no police boat in the sound." On that day every creek in Pocomoke Sound was frozen over, rendering it impossible for any sail boat to get out; the schooner Pocomoke was frozen in, and remained frozen in until January 11th, when I broke her out of the ice. On that day steamer Accomac was in the sound and cruised the sound until 6 p.m., not a sail was seen of any description, wind heavy from northwest, very cold and ice making over the entire sound.

On January 9th, they say, dredging was going on and no police boat in the sound. The steamer Accomac was in the sound the entire day and cruised the sound as far up as the sand bar, where she encountered heavy ice. On that day from 6 a.m. to 4 p.m., it was a dead calm, creeks frozen over and not a boat of any description in the sound.

January 19th, 1896, they claim, dredging in the sound. The steamer Accomac on that day worked in Tangier Sound, was not in Pocomoke Sound at all. I am told by the captain of schooner Pocomoke, that his boat was on duty the entire day, that it was dead calm with a drizzling rain and no boats were out, that his boat lay out in the sound in full view of the rocks. I had it
in Tangier Sound calm all day with rain.

On January 23d, they claim, dredging going on. Both steamer Accomack and Schr. Pocomoke were in the sound on that day. It was very stormy, wind northeast, no boats were seen out in the sound at all; at 1 p.m. to 6 p.m., it was blowing almost a gale.

On January 24th, 1896, they claim, dredging going on in the sound. On that day both boats were in the sound. The steamer Accomac cruised the entire sound in a dense fog, came across several boats but all were complying with the law, at 4 p.m., calm, anchored in middle of the sound; on that day saw no violations at all. I have taken these statements from my log book, and am willing to swear that they are correct; my log book is kept daily and everything of note is always set down.

James H. Costin, Captain of State Steamer Accomac.


Sea -- Shellfish - Oystering : Law enforcement


Capt. Costin's statement is correct in every sense of the word; in fact, he has made a light statement of it to what it ought to be. My log book corresponds with his in every way, which I am willing to swear too. I can testify, that Captain Costin was in the sound every day, except on the 19th, then he was in Tangier Sound. On January 11th, 1896, steamer Accomack towed me out of the ice; on that day no boats were out.

They claim, dredging on 19th of January. I was in the sound the entire day, saw nothing of it. I was so situated that I could tell if anything was going on wrong. It was a dead calm all day with a drizzling rain, and had the boats desired to work it was impossible for them to do so, as they had no wind to work with.

On January 23d, they claim, I shot at some dredgers and then went up to Messongo. My gun has not been shot at a dredger this season. On that day it was very stormy, wind heavy from northeast, no sail boats out in the sound at all; saw the steamer Accomac in the sound at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. It was blowing a gale from northeast and continued so all day. I hope my readers, that you will see from the two letters that we have been criticised by people that know more about other people's affairs than they do their own.

John R. Thomas, Capt. Schr. Pocomoke.


Sea -- Shellfish - Oystering : Legislation

An unusual interest in oyster legislation had been manifested by members of the Legislature remote from the oyster grounds this session, and many bills of an impracticable kind have been introduced -- so visionary and proposing such radical legislation -- that the Tidewater members have been dumbfounded by the suggestions they contained. But deceived as they have been into believing, "that there is millions in our oyster beds," it is hard to conceive that they would have a bill passed by our Legislature, recently introduced by Mr. Jones, of Highland county, which not only throws open certain bottoms of the Chesapeake to all the world, but gives to non residents privileges not accorded to her own citizens, as will appear from following clause in said bill:

No person shall be deemed a resident of this State within the meaning of the chapter who is not a taxpayer in the State and shall not have resided therein twelve months next preceding the time when the offence with which he has been charged has been committed, unless he be a bona fide purchaser of land in the State and has actually settled thereon. Where the penalty is incurred by reason of the defendant being a non resident the burden of proof as to his residency shall be on him. But the section shall not prevent any person who rents from the Commonwealth one hundred or more acres of the Chesapeake bay, or any person or persons who become bona fide settlers on Fox Island or Fox islands, in Accomac county of this State, from becoming residents within the meaning of this section.

In other words, in accordance with the provisions of the above section, it is proposed to make any man a citizen who settles on Fox's island, belonging to Ellinger, who declares his intention to become a citizen of Virginia, and to allow him the privilege of taking oysters in Virginia immediately, but all other non-residents settling on lands in Virginia, though bona fide citizens of Virginia, have to remain one year before they have the same privileges. So much for this one section of this bill -- it has other provisions equally odious, which we have not space in these columns to point out, because of the late hour at which the bill came into our hands -- but the section quoted above is sufficient to disclose the fact that Mr. Jones has been imposed upon and that Ellinger is the real patron of the bill -- indeed information received by us, reasonably certain, is to the effect that it was drafted by attorneys employed by Mr. Ellinger in his interest. Such being the case it is proper to submit for the information of the members of our Legislature, who Mr. Ellinger this great champion of oyster legislation is and what interest he has in Virginia -- and briefly told: He pays taxes to the amount of $6.22 on all his property, in Virginia, real and personal, including oyster shells -- he gives in for purposes of taxation no oysters; he pays taxes on 127 acres of land, but has in his possession, according to the computation made by a practical surveyor 3029 acres, the greater portion of which is below low water mark and the best crabbing and oyster ground, which by imposing upon the members of the Legislature, was acquired by him under acts of assembly passed February 26th, 1894, page 46, acts 1893-94. With such a statement of facts, it can be readily seen, that he is an expert in oyster legislation, as he represents himself to be, but always in his own interest, and to the detriment of the great body of the people of Virginia interested in the oyster business -- and in view of these facts the query if pertinent, shall this squatter on Virginia soil, identified in no way with the best interests of her people be allowed to control oyster legislation, or will the people in Tidewater Virginia who have always had the best interests of the State at heart be allowed to have a voice in the matter? If the answer of the legislation should be for Ellinger and not the people, it would not be hard to conjecture what the result in Tidewater Virginia would be at the next election. The 1500 Democratic majority in the county of Accomac would certainly be a thing of the past. We call upon the members of our Legislature to consider these things and to investigate especially the assignment made to Mr. Ellinger under the Act above recited.

Fences in the County Road Must be Removed.

Transportation -- Road - MaintenanceInfrastructure -- Public : Fences

At a meeting of the Board of Supervisors of the county of Accomack, February 3d, 1896: Ordered that the surveyors of the several road election districts in the county, do cause to be presented to the grand jury each and every person whose fence or railing is in the county road, and who shall refuse to remove the same, or who shall fill up the gutters or ditches in said road. And that this order be published in the PENINSULA ENTERPRISE for three consecutive weeks.

A Copy -- Test: M. OLDHAM, JR., Clerk.

Peninsula Enterprise
Accomac Court House
February 8, 1896