Peninsula Enterprise, April 10, 1886


Farmers -- Farmers' organizations

The announcement is made through our columns, by request, that the Fruit Growers of the county will meet at Onancock, on Saturday, the 17th inst., at 2 o'clock p.m., for purposes of effecting an organization, looking to the protection and advancement of their interests. The meeting announced for last court-day was not held, owing to the fact that a local option meeting was being held at the time set apart for it, and it was too late to do so after its adjournment.


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

Gilbert Cottman, captain of schooner Martha Freeman of Crisfield, Md., with Henry Smith, Robert Thomas, William Parker, Henry Britman, Frank Brown, Martin Miller, Wm. Smith and John Druert, crew, indicted for a felony, were put on trial for unlawful dredging. -- Cottman elected to be tried alone. -- Upon issue being joined, his Honor instructed the jury that whatever might have been the intention of the Legislature the Act did not prohibit dredging in Tangier sound, except, probably, on Johnson's, California, Thoroughfare and Fox's Island rocks. The court so instructing the jury as to the law, the Commonwealth's attorney asked leave to enter a nol. pros. as to all, which was granted. Immediately an information was laid against them as non-residents taking oysters in Virginia waters, when all were tried together. Cottman was found guilty, and a fine of $500, the specific punishment in such a case adjudged. The others were found not guilty.


Infrastructure -- Commercial - Real estate

Browne, Jacob & Co., have sold the farm, Concord, situated on Occahonnock creek, Northampton county, to northern parties, for five thousand dollars.


Infrastructure -- Public : SchoolsMoral -- Vandalism

The school house near Bayview, Northampton, was burned on last Saturday. -- It was the work, it is supposed, of an incendiary.


Farmers -- Farmers' organizations

The Red Bank Farmers' Association will meet in their hall at Marionville, Northampton, on Wednesday, April 14th inst., at 7 1-2 p.m.


Moral -- Alcohol

Mr. T. C. Kellam, chairman, authorizes the announcement that "the members of local option county executive committee will meet at Accomac C. H., next Tuesday, the 13th day of April, at 11 a.m."


Transportation -- Water - Channel and harbor dredging

The committee on rivers and harbors of U. S. Congress has reported favorably a bill appropriating $25,000 for improving by dredging and otherwise the inland waterway from Chincoteague to a point near Lewes, Del.


Watermen -- Personal injuryMoral -- Alcohol

Hugh Larkin, a hand on schooner Kirkman, which plies between Pungoteague creek and Baltimore, according to advices received, was drowned this week while intoxicated. He attempted to board the vessel and fell overboard. He was a native of Baltimore.


Infrastructure -- Commercial - MillineriesWomen -- Work - Outside the home

Mrs. B. B. Mears and Miss Maggie Carmine, will open a handsome millinery and dress-making establishment at Keller station on the 19th inst. Their advertisement will appear in our next issue.


Infrastructure -- Public - Government : Life-saving service

The sloop Wm. T. Sherman, belonging to Capt. Bunting of Chincoteague, was dismasted off Wachapreague on 8th inst., but prompt assistance being rendered by Capt. Savage and crew of Life Saving Service and Capt. Browne LeCato, she was relieved without further serious damage.


Moral -- Alcohol

Petitions from Atlantic signed by 247 voters, Metompkin signed by 369 voters, and Pungoteague by 389 voters, asking Judge Garrison to order an election under the Local Option Act in their respective districts, were presented this week. An order for special election in each on Saturday, the 15th of May, was entered.


Forests -- Forest products - Lumber

Messrs. S. K. Martin and Wm. T. Mason will open soon a lumber and brick yard at Hoffman's wharf, under the firm name of S. K. Martin & Co. Sash, doors, blinds, carriage materials, &c., will also help to make up their "stock in trade." Both of the members of the firm are enterprising, entirely reliable and thorough business men, and we bespeak for them a liberal patronage.


Architecture -- Jails

An attempt was made on Tuesday night by the prisoners in jail to break out. They had torn an iron bar about ten feet long loose, and with it pried up flooring and a large piece of sheet iron from the ceiling. Our vigilant keeper of the jail, Mr. T. H. Kellam, detected the effort, and upon reporting the matter to the court, an armed guard was ordered to supplement iron bars. It seems our jail is as The Marvin Safe Co.'s agent said it was, a mere shell.


Sea -- Fish factoriesFields -- FertilizerSea -- Shellfish - Oystering : SeasideSea -- Shellfish - Oystering : SeedLaborers -- FisheriesLaborers -- WagesSea -- Shellfish - Oystering : PricesSea -- Shellfish - Oystering : MarketsTransportation -- Water - WrecksSea -- WreckingInfrastructure -- Public - Government : Life-saving serviceTransportation -- Water - Freight


It is reported, that Maltby & Co., of Norfolk, will soon establish a porpoise oil factory here.

Captain John W. Bunting, our enterprising manufacturer of oil fish guano, &c., has recently delivered 100 tons of dry fish scrap at $28 per ton, to the Fidelity Manufacturing Co., Philadelphia, Pa.

The Chincoteague Fish and Guano Co., sold their factories, boats, &c., as advertised on Wednesday, March 31st, the stockholders being the purchasers at about $4,000.

Two-thirds of our citizens engaged in the oyster business, are at present "down the bay" catching oysters for plants and for sale, and are making from $25 to $100 per month.

Our shippers of oysters report northern markets good -- primes selling at $3 to $4 per barrel, and culls at $2 to $2.50.

The Bingham house, Philadelphia, is supplied with oysters planted at Thomas' Cove by Capt. John W. Bunting, at $5 per barrel.

The sloop Julia A. Roe, commanded by Capt. Geo. W. Marshall, belonging to A. W. Miller & Co., Baltimore, was wrecked on Chincoteague bar, on 3rd inst. Her cargo consisted of 1300 bushels of oysters, and she was on her way from Deals Island, Md., to Morris river, N.J. The value of boat and cargo is estimated at $2,700. The wreck was sold in front of Atlantic hotel last Monday for $36. C. E. Babbitt and son being the purchasers. The crew of the lost boat were rescued by Capt. Whealton and son of the Life Saving Service. Capt. Tracy and crew, also, of Assateague, were on hand and rendered effective service. The sea never ran higher at the time the rescue was made, and too much cannot be said in praise of the gallant services of the Life Saving crews.

Sloop Rebecca J., owned by E. A. Jeffries, Chincoteague, heretofore reported a total loss at Wachapreague inlet, has been gotten up by Capt. E. J. Foote without any material damage to her.


Transportation -- Railroad - Stations and sidingsInfrastructure -- Utilities - Telegraph


Supt. Dunne can't be aroused to the need of a telegraph office at our [Painter] station -- and the development of our place is therefore materially impeded.

The hum of the car wheel has become so constant as to be annoying. We are happy to see the Road doing so well.


Sea -- Finfish - Catch : Shad and herringSea -- Finfish - Methods : Purse and other nets


Shad is very plentiful with us. Capt. Thos. W. Marshall caught 29 in his gill-nets, last Monday.

Northampton County.

Infrastructure -- Commercial - Real estate

Real estate transfers for the month of March, 1886:

H. B. Stewart and ux to T. W. Jones, 6 29-100 acres near Wardtown; $620.

Peter J. Carter and ux to John T. Spady, 1/2 acre at Sunny Side; $300.

Ewell Warren to T. S. Warren, 2 acres at Cheapside; $100.

G. S. Kendall, special commissioner, to Julius F. Parsons, 174 acres near Capeville; $2,505.

A. F. Cobb and als. to John T. Bolton, 933 acres, part of Mockon Island; $400.

John Willis to Grace Weeks, 1 acre near Cheapside; $50.

John P. L. Hopkins to Wm. A. Kirkland, 400 15-100 acres; $10,000.

H. B. Stewart to J. R. Warrington, 20 acres near Hadlock, $300.

Thos. M. Scott to Margaret C. Read, lot at Eastville station.

Diversity of Crops.

Farmers -- Innovation

DEAR EDITOR: -- It can be truly said of your paper that the older it gets the better it is. This fact is not less gratifying to some of your friends than to yourself. If it could be said of farmers that the longer they plant the more successful they become, much would be said to substantiate the position so well taken in Mr. T. G. Elliott's letter, showing that "variety is the spice of life" even in that cornfield.

It may not be disagreeable to some of your patrons to hear how it is farmed here, for the world over, different localities pursue different customs with a puritanical tenacity that often runs things away. Southern Maryland proper, composed of the counties of St. Mary's, Calvert and Charles is far different in material wealth and prosperity from what it once was -- a beautifully undulating country emerging from a confusion of waters at Point Lookout -- cradled in luxury for over two centuries -- embosomed by the Chesapeake Bay and Potomac River -- a land of many natural resources dwindled into insignificance, dwarfed in prosperity for no reason more apparent than a want of "diversity of crops" amongst its planters. The same kind of planting done here for centuries is followed now. Tobacco, wheat, corn, then, the same now. The lands have been so exhausted by a continual extraction of the same properties from the soil that it is with some difficulty that most planters obtain a livelihood. Lands capable of producing any of the cereals, fruits or vegetables of this latitude can be purchased for about one half their real value. Lands that now will scarcely sprout fall wheat and dead tobacco plants from sheer exhaustion, would in a few years, in the hands of Jersey truckers, blush with the beauty of mellow production. I am offering for sale several farms convenient for shipping four times per week to Baltimore and Washington -- lands susceptible of any improvement, but what an E. Shoreman would call "poisoned" to wheat and tobacco, as for instance some Accomac lands to oats. If the planters here could be induced to try a variety of crops, the avocation of husbandry would necessarily prove highly remunerative to any region that has the geographical advantages and natural resources that this has.

But it must be remembered that the Eastern Shore, in fact, all that part of the great alluvial plan including Jersey, Delaware, and extending south along the coast, possesses in a great degree characteristics better adapted to truck farming than any other part of this continent, hence it seems sensible to me that in every locality of said plane all truckers ought to speculate some [illegible] best adapted to their immediate locality, and most lucrative to them in the long run. Then concentrate all efforts. It seems to be a wise provision of Providence that every locality has its leader in produce, one locality peas, another sweet potatoes, another peaches, another cabbage, another wheat, another corn, and so on through the long list of the fruits of the earth. -- Hence it would seem expedient and indeed essentially prerequisite to success for all planters to follow up their local leaders with carefully selected crops of what might be termed secondary or reserved crops. There is great power in reserved force. -- Napoleon's handful of carefully selected men, to be used only in time of emergency, sounded the war whoop of victory on many a European battlefield where the rout of the French soldiers would have been complete, had it not been for the reserved corps to back up their leader in time of need.

I mean by reserve force in farming such crops as in the judgment of the planter are most lucrative and best adapted to his lands, and most likely to bear him out successfully in case of the failure of his leader. It does seem to me that in this way the planter of cotton, rice, pea, the strawberry, the sweet potato, the peach, in fact all kinds of planters might each in his respective locality ward off those fatal pecuniary collapses, so detrimental to the success of the best element of our country -- our sturdy yeomanry. -- G. G. Joynes, St. Jerome's Creek, Md.

Our County Jail.

Architecture -- Jails

Mr. Editor: I ask space in your columns that the earnest attention of the Board of Supervisors may be called to the county jail. It is a shame to us -- a foul blot on our boasted civilization and humanity -- a cruel wrong to those imprisoned there that the rich county of Accomac should permit her prisoners, whether confined for safe keeping or punishment to be housed in such a filthy hole. In a recent report made to the Judge of our county court by three gentleman thoroughly qualified to form a correct opinion this language is used: "We found the front room overcrowded with seven inmates." "This is unavoidable under existing arrangements, because the back room is used exclusively to keep the buckets and vessels necessary for water-closet purposes. The stench emanating from this room mingled with the strong odor of carbolic acid, (indispensable for its disinfectant effects), is almost intolerable." This is strong language -- and as true as holy writ. It is declared that a room 15ft. 3 in. by 17 ft. and 9 ft 6 in. pitch is overcrowded with seven inmates, that the back-room 12 ft. by 16 ft. and 9 feet pitch " is used exclusively" "for water-closet purposes" and "the stench emanating from there***is almost intolerable." Yet for many weeks these rooms have been filled -- having at one time 21 inmates -- and averaging 19. I can bear testimony to the "intolerable stench" -- a stench so profound "all the perfumes of Araby could not sweeten" it. And among this crowd of prisoners were sick men who were compelled to inhale the noxious vapors from the bodies of filthy companions -- the foul and fetid air produced by overcrowding and the "intolerable stench" referred to and the only ventilation is by two windows 2ft. 4 in. x 8 ft. 4 in. and two others 1 ft. 4 in. x 2 ft. 14 in. in size. Add to all this a soil within the jail wall which has so absorbed the dejections of prisoners for decades that the very grass is thoroughly impregnated with all the foul odor it contains. And more -- in the rear of the jail, within the jail wall, is a pool enough to poison the whole village. Then to add to the comfort of the wretches confined there "all manner of creeping things" cover the floors -- walls -- beds -- everything. I wish I could say bedsteads, but the comfort of even a canvass cot is not had by the prisoners. In a land whose people boast of their humanity -- who are proud of their reputation for good morals -- charity -- honest purpose -- intelligence, it is hard to believe such a state of affairs can exist. Yet, it is absolutely true in every detail.

The committee referred to made certain recommendations and the Board of Supervisors approved them. So far as they go they are good -- but their limit is too narrow. Whatever is done now under these recommendations will be thrown away -- and for the reason that the entire jail must inevitably be rebuilt, altered and strengthened. The agent of the Marvin Safe Co., declared not long since it was but a shell that any ordinary burglar could easily break through. Of course everybody hooted at the idea. But, only a few days ago an attempt was made to break out and the ease with which the untutored workers progressed showed that the four feet of brick wall would offer a poor resistance; and our strong jail has, by order of the Judge to be supplemented by armed guards. So then, it is to be hoped that the Board of Supervisors will begin at the very foundation a work which shall while offering entire security afford something like decent comfort. The soil within the wall should be removed -- and the means for health and cleanliness suggested by the committee should be carried out further than they recommend. Mr. G. Welly Coard measured for me the fall from the base of the jail wall to the drain below and found it to be 9 feet. The distance from the jail wall to the drain is about 200 feet, which gives a fall of more than one foot in 23 feet for drainage: and if supplemented by the fall from a height of four feet through a pipe 28 feet long to the base of the wall an impetus would be given ample to keep the pipe clean. If the pipe should not go to the drain it should go outside the wall into a deep covered pit. The necessity for "something to be done" made by the late attempt to break jail must, I take it, induce speedy action by the Board and when that something is done, every possible consideration demands that it shall be thoroughly and effectively done. If experience teaches the "new-old" court house points to a man in every respect thoroughly fitted to plan and execute the work to be done -- G. Welly Coard, whose inborn genius evolved from naked, scarred walls the neat work named.

I am moved to this communication, Mr. Editor, by the facts related, with which by my professional connection with the jail for years, I am entirely familiar. In all that I have said I disclaim any reflection upon the Board of Supervisors -- nor do I mean to condemn the keeper of the jail; as now arranged -- and continually full -- the jail cannot be kept decent by any man. As a matter of great public interest, I call attention to it -- and express the hope that speedy action may be had.

G. T. Scarburgh, M.D.

Diversity of Crops.

Farmers -- Innovation

MR. EDITOR -- I beg the indulgence of yourself and readers for this the last of my series of letters on the "diversity of crops." Sweet and Irish potatoes, kale, spinach, cabbage and turnips have been duly considered, as the most certain crops to give just returns for honest labor. It can be shown also, that the musk melon can be grown with profit in poor land by hill manuring, and that no farmer can afford to dispense with the planting of onions; from one to five acres, according to the extent of his agricultural operations. I have felt a delicacy in naming too many kinds of crops for fear some of my friends taking umbrage, might say "we have been farming too long to be taught what to plant by one who does not plant as much as even as a hull of corn." It may be presumption in the writer to attempt to advise those who have had so much more experience, but if we can get them out of the ruts, in which they have been so long moving and enable them to better their condition we do not care for their criticisms. That our theory is correct, that it is to the advantage of our farmers to have a variety of crops and to learn to utilize everything grown on the farm we verily believe, if they would keep themselves out of debt and prosper. A case in point which came to the attention of the writer has its lesson which could be learned with profit, as follows: A neighbor who was in need of 50 lbs of flour, complained that times were hard, money was scarce and he had nothing on the farm to sell. He was asked if he had any turnip greens -- said that he had, but they were worth nothing. At the suggestion of your writer he cut two barrels, sent them to Philadelphia, realized $1.50, bought his flour and went home out of debt, for the flour at least.

We don't know in fact what we have to sell and what will pay us, until we look around the farm, ship what we have, and if it does not bring us a revenue which is satisfactory, then try something else. But farm products having been heretofore considered, we wish in this publication to call the attention of our farmers more particularly to "small fruit culture -- such as the strawberry, blackberry and the grape, and especially the latter, as in my opinion, the most likely to give to our farmers the most happy returns for their labors. The grape has a pedigree, as old as written history, indeed we might add as old as traditional history. We can turn scarcely to a page of the Bible that involves the need at that particular time of nourishment or stimulants that the grape is not the first to meet the wants of hunger or thirst. In more modern times grape culture has been a source of national wealth. For instance France, that has exported her wine products beyond the range of figures to enumerate and Spain which has for centuries supplied the world with raisins owe the stability of their finance to their grape industry.

California, too, in our own country has made rapid strides in the grape industry, and thereby added to her material wealth millions of dollars. Her wine products in fact are now competing with the best French marks, and as a source of revenue can hardly be overestimated.

The great grape fields of what is knows as "the upper river section" of New York State shows the value too of the grape industry. There they count the production not by the pound but by the ton, which sells for from 5 to 20 cents per pound.

They are being grown too with great profit in Ohio and have been for years. John Wentworth, the author of the best works on grape culture, who died some years ago worth several millions of dollars made the great bulk of his fortune from grapes. In no part of our country in fact has grape culture been a failure, when it has received proper attention and farmers of the Eastern Shore, should certainly, in view, of the decided advantages that they have of soil and climate, engage extensively in the growth of grapes as a means of profit, and if proper attention be given to their vineyards, and a failure should be the result, it will be the first case in the history of mankind of a similar nature.

Careful cultivation and hybrydization have done wonders for all fruits. We boast here in this county but one case where by these methods improved fruit has resulted. We mean in the case of the Hyslop strawberry. In this production Mr. Hyslop has been a benefactor -- and his berry will no doubt attain a wide celebrity. In other fruits -- and in vegetables -- there is a wide field for experiment, and I urge upon our farmers that they experiment freely -- letting failure only gird them to renewed effort. Thanking you for the space you have given me in your valuable paper on diversity of crops, I am

Respectfully, &c.,


Mappsburg, Mar. 30, 1886.


Transportation -- Water - Aids to navigationTransportation -- Water - Channel and harbor dredging

Among the items of the River and Harbor appropriation bill we find $25,000 is named to "improve dredging, and otherwise, the inland waterway from Chincoteague bay, Virginia, to Delaware Bay at or near Lewes, Delaware, to be used from Chincoteague Bay to Indian River Bay." The recent wreck of the schooner Julia A. Roe, loaded with oysters, proves the necessity for not only the dredging, but that the "otherwise" is very needful also. The captain of this schooner, Capt. George W. Marshall, states that the buoys are out of position and we call the attention of the Inspector to the statement. We greatly fear the sum proposed is insufficient. The very life of Chincoteague depends upon an open harbor -- and an easy and safe waterway to the ocean -- without it the island will be absolutely paralyzed. We regret Onancock Creek is not among the water courses named for improvement -- and while we urge with emphasis the necessity for Chincoteague's appropriation, we insistently call upon Mr. Croxton to tack on an amendment for the benefit of this waterway -- and beg the aid of Baltimore's representative's in the matter.


Infrastructure -- Public - Government : Lighthouse serviceNatural resources -- Shoreline migration

Office of the Light-House Engineer, Fifth District, Baltimore, Md., March 10, 1886.

Sealed proposals will be received at this office until 12 o'clock, m., of Saturday, the 3rd day of April, 1886, for furnishing the material and labor of all kinds necessary for building a jetty and wall of logs and stone, or of brush and stone, at Cape Charles Light Station, Virginia. Amount available, about $14,000. Specifications, forms of proposal, and other information may be obtained on application to this office, where maps of the locality may be seen. The right is reserved to reject any or all bids, and to waive any defects.

James F. Gregory, Captain of Engineers, U.S.A., Light-House Engineer, Fifth District.

Peninsula Enterprise
Accomac Court House
April 10, 1886