Peninsula Enterprise, May 9, 1885


Mental illness

Mr. Wm. H. Mears, an inmate of the lunatic asylum at Williamsburg from this county, died last Monday. He was a brother of our countymen, Mr. Calvin T. Mears and until his sad affliction was a useful citizen, who had the good opinion of all who knew him.


Moral -- Other violent crime

The verdict of the jury in the case of the Commonwealth vs. Wm. S. Kellam indicted for an attempt to kill Judge T. C. Parramore, and tried at this term by court, was imprisonment in the county jail 6 months and $500 fine. The case will be taken by writ of error to a higher court, and sentence was therefore suspended for the present. The defendant plead guilty to the indictment for carrying concealed weapons and was fined $20. Another indictment against him for endeavoring to impede the course of justice was nolle prosequied.


Sea -- Shellfish - Oystering : BaysideSea -- Shellfish - Crabbing : BaysideTourists and sportsmen -- Other recreation - ResortsInfrastructure -- Commercial - Real estateSea -- Shellfish - Oystering : Planting

Mr. Jno. B. Blizzard of Crisfield, Md., has moved to Foxes Island, this county, which he lately purchased of Mr. Planner Crockett, and proposes to engage largely in the planting of oysters and the soft crab business there, and at no distant day will open a first-class summer resort.


Infrastructure -- Commercial - Millineries

Accomac C. H.

Miss Ida V. Coard has moved to our town and opened a dressmaking establishment. The patronage of our ladies will be appreciated by her and we feel sure that the services rendered to them will be satisfactory.


Fields -- Crops - White potatoes : Diseases and pestsSea -- Finfish - Catch : TroutTourists and sportsmen -- Field sports - FishingMoral -- Alcohol

Belle Haven.

Our farmers have commenced to set out sweet potato sprouts, and the wails of the owners of Irish potato patches of the ravages of the "tater bug" are beginning to be long and loud.

Trout fish are plentiful in our market. A party of four gentlemen of elegant leisure of our town have just returned from a trip of a day with three bushels of them.

Doughty & Jacob's bar room now completed is one of the neatest on the Eastern Shore.


Sea -- Shellfish - Oystering : SeasideSea -- Shellfish - Oystering : PricesSea -- Finfish - Catch : Menhaden


Our menhaden catchers are overhauling boats, mending nets and setting their houses in order for the summer work. Messrs. Gum and Hickman have sold their interest in the fish business to Messrs. Mumford & Coffin. The management is to be under Mr. Samuel J. Mumford.

Our oystermen are scarcely getting cost out of their oysters, at thirty to forty cents per bushel. Large quantities are being sold at these figures.


Sea -- Finfish - Catch : MackeralSea -- Finfish - Catch : Sturgeon


West & Mason caught the first sheephead of the season, P. H. Davis the first sturgeon and Carmine & Bro., the first mackerel. Fish are caught, perhaps of greater variety and abundance in our waters than in any other part of Virginia.


Infrastructure -- Commercial - Residential constructionInfrastructure -- Commercial - Millineries


A new line of millinery and fancy goods has recently been received by Mrs. D. S. White.

A large dwelling house has recently been erected by Mr. Jno. T. Powell on one of his farms near Leemont.


Forests -- Forest products - LumberForests -- Shipping : WaterInfrastructure -- Utilities - IceInfrastructure -- Public : FencesInfrastructure -- Commercial - Residential construction


The Onancock Mill Company has shipped several cargoes of lumber to Baltimore in the last few weeks.

Hopkins & Bros., are erecting a large ice-house at the wharf which will soon be filled with northern ice.

T. W. Parker commenced an addition to his dwelling this week.

R. L. Hopkins is making great improvements on his lot in the way of new and neat fences, &c


Forests -- SawmillsFields -- Crops - FodderFields -- Crops - HayInfrastructure -- Commercial - Residential constructionTourists and sportsmen -- Other recreation - Fraternal ordersProfessionals -- BuildersFields -- Crops - Strawberries


Copes and White have now the most complete and best arranged steam mill in the county. They will soon build a three story addition to their mill.

Fodder is a scarce article in this section and those who have any to sell do not forget to ask the worth of it. Several of our fodder buyers have concluded hay is cheaper, and so are using it.

Dr. Broadwater will build a new house.

Broughton and Mathews will move their stock of merchandize in the new Masonic Hall.

Mr. Sewell Dennis will soon erect for himself a fine two story residence on Pruitt Avenue.

The new Masonic hall that is now under construction by Mr. John H. Haryis will be completed in ten days.

W. H. Pruitt is the boss strawberry man here. He recently sold to one party from Maryland, 30,000 Hyslop plants, and to other parties he has sold right many.

Our Mails.

Infrastructure -- Public - Government : Postal service

MR. EDITOR -- In common with many of my fellow citizens, I am growing very weary of our mail methods. I am glad to testify to the general efficiency of our local postmaster, although we differ politically, and I wish to "turn him out," but I must protest against the methods at Tasley station. I continually miss my daily papers four days -- papers within five hours of this office. Letters from Norfolk reach here not infrequently from five to eight days, and Philadelphia four to six. For one my patience is threadbare. I mention Tasley especially because a friend tells me (as an example of matters) that last night registered and others were "lying around loose" on the floors and the bags had to be brought back after delivery to carriers to receive matter left. Now, sir, this of itself is an outrage. But, my friend goes further. He says it is not uncommon for the carrier to assort his mail! Sir, this is utterly intolerable. I make no charge against the carriers -- I believe both entirely honest. I make no charge of dishonesty against the station postmaster, for I believe he to be honest; but, I do charge him with gross neglect, and permitting his office to be "run" by outsiders willfully and unlawfully to the detriment of the service and injury to the public. And I demand, with the whole people, an immediate and clear reform in this matter. If things are to go on as at Tasley -- and I hear they exist at other points -- we had as well return to the "old blind horse and stick gig" we have just escaped. I am afraid we've "swapped the devil for a witch" and got burnt in the trade. Can't you do something in the premises for us?



Architecture -- Courthouses

A correspondent of the Eastern Virginian, in its issue of last week, who seems to have neither a local habitation or a name, presumes to speak for all the citizens of the county on the Courthouse question. Whether he is a citizen or not we are uninformed by the article to which reference is made, and cannot, therefore, say that he had the right to give expression to his views even in his individual capacity. If a citizen, he cannot, because he has assumed the misnomer of "justice" claim to be the representative of the views of the majority of the people of the county. Surely they would not endorse the unjust attack which he has made upon the editor of this paper, the citizens of our town and the very worthy gentlemen who compose our Board of Supervisors. So far as we are concerned, we claim that we had the right to the opinion, that we needed a new Courthouse and that it was to the interest of the people of the county, that it be located where it now is. We arrived at our conclusion in the matter, not by reason of any special ties which bind us to the town, nor because of any property interest we have here which would be injured by the removal of the Courthouse, nor because any influence had been brought to bear upon us, which has caused us to advocate the continuance of the Courthouse at its present site. We have thought and acted for ourselves in the matter and contrary to what we believe to be our own interest. Despite the fact, that the newspaper business could be more advantageously conducted if its office was located on the line of a railroad, we have calculated the costs, the convenience and the interests of the public and have been willing to sacrifice our interests for the public good.

No, no, Mr. Injustice, "no change has come over the spirit of our dream" as you charge. We believed that our Courthouse "had outlived the days of its usefulness" that it was too small and too badly arranged to furnish the accommodations which our people need -- that we had the ability to build a new Courthouse and we said so, and do still. The order for a new Courthouse made by our Board of Supervisors, which they had the right to do by reason of legislative enactment had our approval then, and would have our unqualified approval now but for recent decisions in regard to our debt question. In view of the burdens to which our taxpayers may be subjected by those decisions, while we believe our people would be able to meet them as well as the tax to be imposed for building a new Courthouse, we think probably it is better to err on the safe side and we concur in the opinion of two of our Supervisors as expressed in THE ENTERPRISE of last week, that it is better to retrace our steps, until the finances of Virginia are in a better condition. Certainly we are not for a new Courthouse as "Justice" now seems to be if other interests of greater importance are to be sacrificed. The current expenses of our government will have to be met, our public schools by all means should be supported, the expenses of lunatic asylums and other institutions of a like character must be provided for and if they impose all the burdens upon us we are able to bear, by all means, let the building of our new Courthouse be postponed.

In regard to the attack so unjustly made upon our Board of Supervisors, we need not say in their defense, that no one who knows them and is willing to accord to them what is due to them, would suspect either of them of being a party to a dishonorable act. No more honorable or intelligent set of men can be found in our county. The writer happens to know each of them intimately, that each of them has an unexceptionable character and we indignantly deny that they could be the tools in the hands of any set of men, as intimated. What then, have they done to incur the onslaught which "Justice" has made upon them? Simply their duty and nothing more. For months before they acted upon the Courthouse question, our needs for a new one were thoroughly discussed by the citizens of the county and with rare exceptions was disapproved of by any of the citizens of the county. Recognizing the necessity for a new Courthouse, having as we believe they thought and as we do now the support of most of the citizens, they acted in accordance with the power, and in the only way they could, vested in them by the statute of law of Virginia.

Another wall goes up from our unknown writer, who would have you believe that he is the embodiment of all justice, so unjust that no one is likely to be fooled by him. He complains that the Harry White land should have been designated as the place on the railroad by the Board of Supervisors. Suppose the point had not been designated, would not every owner of real estate on the line of the railroad for several miles along it had the right to expect that his land would be selected as the site for the new Courthouse? -- Guided by that hope and the consequent enhanced value of their land if selected as the site, would not many have voted for a removal of the Courthouse, who prefer for it to remain where it is unless it should be placed upon their land? With such a selfish interest to prompt them and in turn to influence their friends, could a fair expression of the wishes of many people have been attained? The objection made by "Justice" to the Harry White land shows his inconsistency in another matter about which, he discourses so eloquently to wit, that the Courthouse should be centrally located. The Board of Supervisors by actual measurement having ascertained the Harry White land as the most central point of the county what has "Justice" to say to this? That he does not believe it, of course, the central point to him and those who think like him could not be other than that point on the railroad nearest their own house door. But it is impossible with our limited space to notice all the inconsistencies, of "Justice" in the article in question.

But will it not occur to our readers as a little strange that so enthusiastic a mover of the Courthouse as Justice, does not enumerate the many advantages which will accrue to us by the removal of it?

Is it not strange still that he does not even attempt to refute the reasons given by us in a previous article why the Courthouse should remain where it is? One little idea only seemed to occur to him of the advantages of a Courthouse site on the railroad but so small that it had almost escaped our notice to wit: that everybody would have such a nice time going to Court by rail.

In reading it we could not but help thinking that the millennium was near, such was the joy and freedom from care depicted, which a ride to court by rail would give our citizens of all classes, doctors, laborers, merchants, gentlemen of leisure, everybody, until it occurred to us that we would have to pay for the privilege, that the cars would not always be found waiting for us, that the Judge would not always be accommodating enough to adjourn court to suit our convenience, that a free lunch would not always be provided for us if we got left by the cars, and then the vision of beauty and glory which "Justice" had created, faded, ah! so sadly. The same cost and inconvenience which dissipated our vision occurs to everyone who has given it a moments thought and he will tell you if questioned about it, that he would prefer to go to court on his own team or even hire one for the purpose. With the views we entertain of the matter in question, of course we cannot do otherwise than advise the voters to cast their votes for the Courthouse to remain where it now is, and we do not believe with "Justice" and the thought is unworthy of him "that the Supervisors will speedily erect a palace that will send a chill through the taxpayers soul and empty pockets." On the contrary, we believe in view of the unsettled condition of the finances of Virginia that no Courthouse will be built at all -- in fact, two of the candidates for the office of Supervisor have promised to do all in their power to have the order for a new Courthouse rescinded.

The only danger of the palatial structure being erected for a Courthouse, that we can see, is to vote for it to be built on the railroad and by the election of men as Supervisors, who entertain such visionary schemes as "Justice" does that a Courthouse on the railroad is the "fountain from which all blessings flow."


Architecture -- Courthouses

VIRGINIA: -- At a meeting of the Board of supervisors for the county of Accomack, April 13th, 1885.

Ordered that in accordance with the Act of the General Assembly of Virginia approved Nov. 18th, 1884 entitled "an Act to permit the qualified voters of the county of Accomac to vote upon the proposition of a change of location of the County Seat," the qualified voters of this county be permitted on the "fourth Thursday in May next," to vote upon the proposition aforesaid; that those favoring said change of location shall deposit in a ballot box prepared specially for that purpose a ballot on which shall be printed or written or partly printed and partly written, the words "For removing the County Seat from its present location to the lands owned by the heirs of Harry White, deceased at a point where the New York, Philadelphia & Norfolk Railroad passes;" and that those opposed to said change of location, shall deposit in said ballot box a ballot on which shall be printed or written, or partly printed and partly written the words "Against removing the County Seat from its present location at the village of Drummondtown." And it is further ordered that the clerk of this Board do make all necessary arrangements for holding the election aforesaid, including preparing ballot boxes, ballots and poll books. And it is further ordered that this order be inserted in the newspapers of this county and remain therein till after the said election shall have been held as aforesaid.

A Copy. Test. Wm. H. B. CUSTIS, C. B. S.

Peninsula Enterprise
Accomac Court House
May 9, 1885