Peninsula Enterprise, February 1, 1896


reprinted from Cape Charles Headlight.Infrastructure -- Public - Government : Lighthouse service

Mr. F. J. Rolley, second assistant light keeper at Smith's Island, has been promoted to chief light keeper on Hog Island, and Mr. George E. Ames, of this place, will fill the place thus made vacant.



The number of marriages in Accomac in the year 1895, duly authorized by license from the clerk of our county court were 250, of which 141 were white and 109 were colored. The estimate that about fifty more took the vows, which made them man and wife in Maryland, is probably about correct.


Transportation -- Water - Marine railwaysSea -- Shellfish - Oystering : Law enforcement

The steamer Chesapeake, of Virginia Oyster Navy, collided with the schooner General Hancock, owned by Capt. Jeff D. Mears, of Messongo, near Smith Point Light, last week. The Hancock sank immediately, but has since been gotten up and is now on the ways in Great Wicomico. No lives were lost. The repairs to the schooner will cost about $200.


Forests -- Forest products - Lumber

S. K. Martin & Co., Harborton, have just received, and are offering at lowest market pries, 200,000 cypress shingles, cypress for potato bed frames and first growth of North Carolina heart pine for rails or pickets.


Infrastructure -- Public - Government : Town

Belle Haven.

Our people are preparing to meet the requirements of the town ordinances, which go into effect on the first of February.


Transportation -- Railroad - FreightInfrastructure -- Commercial - Commercial construction


Lewis Nock & Co., will have a car load of ground feed here next week, consisting of wheat, middling, brand, etc., which they offer at $1 per 100 pounds. This is cheap considering the recent advance in ground feed, but they buy by car load lots and can sell cheap.

Riggin & Houston have shut their mill down to have the machinery thoroughly overhauled and repaired, and then the hope to make full time to the joy of many.

We are to have a blacksmith settle with us from Delaware. His shop is now being built on Mr. Trader's land adjoining the postoffice, and no doubt with proper attention it will pay well.


Moral -- Property crime


Captain Thomas Johnson offers a liberal reward for a skiff taken from his vessel at anchor, near the wharf, a few days ago.


Forests -- Forest products - Walnut logsAfrican-Americans -- Race relationsInfrastructure -- Commercial - Granaries


The "Walnut Tree Co.," shipped two car loads of timber from our station last Monday.

Considerable excitement was occasioned in our town, last Monday night, by the bad behavior of two colored visitors.

Mr. E. E. Miles, of Onancock, has bought a lot at this place, on which he proposes to build a granary for storing grain and feed.


Infrastructure -- Public : ChurchesDiseaseInfrastructure -- Public - Government : Town


A revival meeting at our M. E. Church, South, closed on Wednesday of last week. The exercises were conducted by Rev. A. A. Whitmore, of Cambridge, Md., assisted by the pastor, Rev. Mr. Williams. The sermons of the visiting brother were excellent and persuasive. Ten persons were converted during the meeting.

There have been several cases of pneumonia here recently and attended with fatal results in three instances: Mrs. Ann Spence, relict of John Spence, died January 13th, of the disease, aged about 65 years; Mrs. E. B. Moore died from effects of same, January 15th, aged 43 years, and James Ellis, another victim, died on January 16th, aged 32 years.

A public meeting was held here on last Monday night, looking to the incorporation of Sykes, and a resolution to that effect was passed. A bill will be introduced into our Legislature authorizing same. It was agreed that the following be named as first officials: George W. Glenn, mayor; Noah Miles, W. C. Lewis, John R. Drewer, E. B. Moore, C. M. Lewis and George N. Weaver, council.

Steamer J. W. Hawkins.

Sea -- Fish factories

The Baltimore Sun in a late issue contains the following notice of the Steamer J. W. Hawkins.

"Capt. James Woodrow has arrived from New York. He navigated the fishing steamer J. W. Hawkins from this port to Port Morris, where she was delivered to Mr. G. J. Tinsley, who purchased the vessel here last week from the American Fish Guano Company, of Harborton, Va.

The Hawkins is to be used as a steam lighter in and around New York. On the run from Baltimore the Hawkins stopped at Pungoteague, Va., to gather her fleet of fishing dories which has been left there. After coaling at Norfolk she proceeded to Port Morris, near Hell Gate, where all the crew shipping in Baltimore were paid off."

Commonwealth vs. Melvin.

Sea -- Shellfish - Oystering : Litigation

Our county court has been engaged for several days this week in hearing the case of the Commonwealth vs. William E. Melvin, for trespass on an oyster rock claimed by Mr. Ralph Burroughs as his private property -- the claim of the defense being that ordinary low water is between the shore and said rock, and that it is therefore a public rock. Scores of witnesses were heard for and against the claims of both and the case, after argument by J. W. G. Blackstone and B. T. Gunter, Jr., for Commonwealth, and N. B. Wescott for the defense, was submitted on Thursday to the jury. At the time of going to press no decision in the matter had been reached by the jury.

Extending Its Business.

Transportation -- Railroad - Corporate

The Manufacturers' Record of January 24th says: "The application of the New York, Philadelphia and Norfolk Company for authority from the Virginia Legislature to extend its line in and around Portsmouth is understood to mean that the Pennsylvania Company, of which the New York, Philadelphia and Norfolk is a division, intends increasing its facilities for securing business at that port and enlarging its terminal facilities. At present the New York, Philadelphia and Norfolk has used its docks at Norfolk for most of its Southern business, except that secured over the Norfolk and Southern, which has been ferried across Hampton Roads to the Cape Charles terminus of the line from Berkley, the Norfolk and Southern terminus. It is believed that the New York, Philadelphia and Norfolk intends constructing a belt road around Portsmouth, with branches into the trucking section adjacent to the city."

Important Oyster Bills in the State Senate.

Sea -- Shellfish - Oystering : Legislation

Richmond, Va., Jan. 29.

The most important measures concerning proposed oyster legislation introduced this session were two bills in the Senate today by Mr. Keezell, of Rockingham. These contemplate carrying out a scheme long discussed and which has the endorsement of Capt. L. J. H. Baylor, who made the survey of the Virginia oyster grounds, and other experts. These bills are intended to foster and encourage oyster culture in the Chesapeake bay, the first one being that the area of the Chesapeake bay proper, which is more than two statue miles from mean low-water mark, and is not embraced in the survey of natural oyster beds and rocks made under acts of 1892-94, may be occupied for the purpose of planting or propagation of oysters thereon by any person or persons. As the law now stands the oyster grounds may only be rented by residents of Virginia. Mr. Keezell proposes to throw open the Chesapeake bottoms to the world.

The other bill provides that any person renting one hundred or more acres of land from the State of Virginia for the purpose of planting or propagating oysters thereon may be authorized to own and run one or more steamers for the purpose of dredging and cultivating oysters. Such persons are to forfeit $5,000 and their boats and outfits if convicted of dredging any of the natural rocks of the State.

To Regulate the Size of Barrels Used for Shipment of Truck.

Forests -- Forest products - Barrels

The following bill has been prepared and will, with slight amendments perhaps, be introduced in the Legislature by Mr. S. Wilkins Matthews:

1. Be it enacted by the General Assembly of Virginia, that on and after the first day of May, 1896, it shall not be lawful for any person in this State to use for the shipment of those agricultural products commonly called "truck," a barrel of less size or dimensions than as follows, to wit: At the ends or heads, seventeen (17) inches, inside measurement. At the middle or bilge, nineteen (19) inches, inside measurement. Length of staves, twenty-eight (28) inches, over all. All the barrels thereafter manufactured in this State, or offered for sale in this State, to be used for the shipment of truck shall be stamped by burning on the side of one of the staves thereof the word, "standard truck barrel," together with the name of the person or firm manufacturing the same.

2. Any person in this State, whether he be a manufacturer, agent, commission merchant or farmer, who shall use or attempt to use for the shipment of truck, a barrel of smaller size or dimensions than is prescribed in the foregoing section, shall be fined in a sum not less than five nor more than ten dollars for each and every barrel so used or attempted to be used for such purpose, recoverable before any Justice of the Peace in the same manner as other fines are recoverable by law, one half of the fine so imposed to go to the informer, the residue to be placed to the credit of the school fund of the county wherein the same is recovered. In addition to the fine so imposed, the justice shall cause all such barrels of smaller size than herein described to be immediately destroyed by burning. But it shall not be unlawful to use or manufacture a barrel of larger dimensions than herein set forth, either stamped or unstamped.

3. This act shall be in force from its passage.

Fire at Eastville Station.

Transportation -- Railroad - Stations and sidings

The New York, Phila. and Norfolk R. R. depot at Eastville Station was entirely destroyed by fire Friday night of last week. The fire was discovered about 9:30 o'clock, and before help could arrive the building was enveloped in flames. Mr. Paul Chapman, assistant agent, and Mr. Alfred Morris and family, who occupied the second floor, and who had just retired for the night, barely escaped with their lives. Most of the freight and several of the express packages were saved, but all else, including the postoffice, was destroyed. An engine came up from Cape Charles, but was too late to do any good. The fire originated on the second floor, and was due, it is thought, to a defective flue. The total loss is about $6,000. The station was insured.

Local Option Mass-Meeting.

Moral -- Alcohol

All persons in Accomac and Northampton counties are earnestly requested to meet at Eastville on court day, 10th of February. A mass-meeting has been called for that date in the Y. M. C. A. Hall at 12 noon. The object of this meeting is to formulate some system of work for the no license campaign. Let all friends of local option be present.

JOHN W. GUY, Sec. of L. Option Com.


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


We beg leave to report through your columns depredations on our oyster beds in Pocomoke Sound in spite of the fact that we have brave police captains, the fast steam launch Accomack and the clipper sail vessel Pocomoke to protect them.

We submit for the information of your readers, and especially those who believe that the Pocomoke Sound is protected and that our police force attends to its duties, the following times and places when Maryland thieves were seen dredging in that sound:

On the 5th of January, 1896, there were three boats dredging on Ledge rock -- but neither of the police boats were to be seen.

On the 9th of January, 1896, two boats were dredging on Dog fish rock -- and no police boat on duty.

On the 19th day of January, 1896, three boats dredged on the Middle-ground rock -- and no police boat on duty that day.

On the 23d day of January seven boats started to dredge on Ledge rock. Captain Thomas saw them and fired a cannon. They left and so did Captain Thomas for Messongo, for fear he would not get in harbor before night. Capt. Thomas did not return, but the seven boats did and went to work.

On the 24th of January six boats were seen dredging on Ledge rock and one on Middle-ground rock -- the sail boat Pocomoke was lying to her anchor in Messongo part of the day -- the steamer Accomack is hardly ever seen in the part of the sound where she is most needed.

We beg leave to submit further, we can prove that there are more violations of the dredging law going on now than there have been for two years and we, the oystermen, do hope and pray that these police captains will perform their duties better in the future, or that if they are tired that they will get out and let some one get in, who will attend to the duties expected of them.

The facts given above will be vouched for by eight oystermen whose names are given on paper sent to the ENTERPRISE for publication.


Sykes, Jan. 25, 1896.


Transportation -- Railroad - Legislation

A bill introduced in the legislature of Virginia, looking to the enlargement of the privileges of the railroad companies of the State, has aroused a feeling of indignation in some sections of this part of the Commonwealth, which seems to indicate that there will be "some statesmen out of a job" who are now supporting the measure, when the people are again heard from at the polls. That a bill should be introduced in the Legislature and supported by them, "permitting railroad companies to obstruct a crossing for five minutes unless some one demands that it shall be cleared" -- a privilege denied to the citizens -- is beyond their comprehension, and our Legislature may take our word for it, that the mutterings now heard are but the precursors of a storm which will break upon them in all its fury when they return home to give an account of their stewardship. Enlarge the privileges of railroad companies! -- for what reason? Have they not already encroached sufficiently upon the rights of the people? The answer to the queries will be given by our representatives, and we merely suggest, that the wishes of the people, whose servants they are, ought to be considered, perhaps, in the matter.

Peninsula Enterprise
Accomac Court House
February 1, 1896