|Confederate spy Belle Boyd|
The Monroe Journal newspaper in Monroeville, Ala., under the direction of publisher Q. Salter, published five editions 130 years ago during the month of July 1886. Those issues, which were dated July 2, July 9, July 16, July 23 and July 30, can be found on microfilm at the Monroe County Library in Monroeville, Ala. What follows are a few news highlights from those five editions. Enjoy.
JULY 2, 1886
Public Installation – There will be a public installation of officers of the Monroeville Lodge No. 153 on the Saturday before the third Sunday in July 1886 at 10 o’clock a.m. The Fraternity and public are invited to attend. – F.M. Jones, Sec’y.
We learn from the Evergreen Star that Sheriff Johnson of Santa Rosa County, Fla., who passed through town several days ago, accompanied by Deputy Sheriff Daw, in pursuit of one David McLane, who was implicated in the homicide of two men in that county, capture McLane near Jackson, Clarke County.
Masonic Notice – The Masonic Fraternity are invited to attend the funeral of Bro. Nathan Bell on the second Sunday of July at 10 o’clock a.m. from Masonic Hall at Monroeville.
Pineville – Our annual school exhibition came off last Friday, June the 18th, under the management of our efficient professor, Thomas Williams. It was a delightful occasion to everyone of the large in attendance. The patrons and all others were delighted with the school exercises.
Cadet T.M. Stevens of the State University is spending vacation at home.
We received the first watermelon of the season last week, for we gave as previously promised, one year’s subscription to The Journal. The melon was raised by Mr. Jasper Frye, one of our most successful farmers. The melon weighed about 20 pounds and was one of the nicest and most juicy we have yet sampled.
JULY 9, 1886
The baseball fever has taken possession of several of our Southern cities.
The Selma military companies are drilling preparatory to entering the grand encampment.
Selma has discarded gas and is now rejoicing over electric lights. Selma never was a very gassy town.
The Brewton Banner has just entered its fourth volume as a seven-column paper and otherwise improved to meet the demands of an appreciative public.
Revs. Sam Jones and Sam Small are attending the Sea Shore camp meeting at Biloxi, Miss. and many will go there to hear the matchless eloquence of the one and the startling truths proclaimed by the other.
JULY 16, 1886
Mr. E.D. Conover, one of our live merchants, is having a cellar excavated under his dining room.
Horace Hood of The Montgomery Dispatch is on a visit to his family.
Mr. S.N. Van Praag, the secretary of the Pensacola & Memphis Railroad, was in town this week and opened the subscription books to the capital stock of the road, and, we learn, obtained several subscribers.
The young men of Monroeville have organized a Young Mens Social Club.
An Old Story – We clip the following from The Montgomery Advertiser:
Bell’s Landing is in Monroe County. Some years ago, a story was told to the effect that Belle Boyd, the famous female Confederate soldier and spy, while passing down the Alabama River from Montgomery to Mobile, got off the steamboat at that point, which was latterly named Bell’s Landing for the woman soldier. Of course, it was an idle story.
Everybody knows who Belle Boyd was. She was a native of Virginia, and during the war between the states, she braved the dangers and hardships of war and became noted as a Confederate partisan and spy.
Belle Boyd was in some respects a heroine, strangely brave and reckless, but her name was never given to a landing on the Alabama River. The fact is, she never saw the Alabama River, that anybody knows of. Bell’s Landing took its name from a gentleman of that name who established it many years before the name of Belle Boyd became familiar throughout the country. Most of the landings on the river got their names in the same way, from the different men who established them.
County court convened last Monday morning, remaining in session until Tuesday evening.
Reunion of the 23rd Alabama Regiment – The surviving members of the 23rd Alabama Regiment are agitating the question of a reunion which will no doubt prove to be a grand and enjoyable occasion.
We are requested to say that views of all the members on the subject – their names and address are desired – and that the captains or senior officers of each company are requested to get up a roll of their companies and to ascertain near as possible who and how many will join in the movement.
Co. E will report to Capt. Graham at Bermuda, Ala.; Co. D to Lt. Beard, Evergreen, Ala.; Co. H to Capt. Selman, Powelton, Fla.; Co. K to Capt. Cobb, Suggsville, Ala. As soon as it can be known that a general willingness prevails, the proposition is to select one member from each company who will constitute a committee to select a time and place for the meeting.
A large concourse of people is expected to witness the Masonic procession and funeral of Mr. Nathan Bell from the Masonic Hall Sunday.
Commissioners court will convene next Monday.
Hon. N.A. Agee had the misfortune to lose a horse last Tuesday night. He drove the horse from Perdue Hill Monday to attend County court and during the day it became sick and died Tuesday night.
Capt. J.R. Cowan of Clarke County was on a visit to his brother, Rev. E.E. Cowan, this week.
Capt. T.A. Nettles was in town Monday.
The Picnic – At Hatter’s mill last Saturday, though not the success that had been anticipated, was a very pleasant affair. Want of space prevent our giving a more extended notice in this issue.
Pineville: Miss Carlie Cater opened a school at Fork church the first of July.
JULY 23, 1886
Steve Renfroe, ex-Sheriff of Sumter County, who recently escaped from Pratt Mines prison, was captured near Enterprise, Miss. a few days ago and carried back to Livingston and lodged in the jail from which he was taken by a mob and lynched.
Buena Vista – Cadet Travis Perryman, who has been attending Howard College, is spending vacation at home.
Mr. John I. Watson sent us a cucumber a few days ago measuring 18 inches in length, four inches in diameter and weighing 4-1/2 pounds. This is the largest we have seen.
They say that a post office money order office has been secured to Monroeville through the influence of our excellent congressman, Hon. James T. Jones.
Col. S.J. Cumming of Camden and Col. C.J. Torrey of Mobile were in attendance upon the chancery court yesterday.
They say that the ceremonies of the public installation of the Monroeville lodge last Saturday was very interesting.
Col. S.P. Gaillard of Mobile gave us a call Tuesday.
They say that there is a great deal of sickness in the country around Monroeville.
Mobile is to have a new daily, The Telegram, to appear about August 1. It will be conducted by a joint stock company with W.A. Battaile as president, W.B. Sorsby secretary and J. Baennnan treasurer. It will be issued every morning in the week.
JULY 30, 1886
Capt. John Quill will soon launch his fine new boat, the “Nettie,” upon the “majestic Alabama.”
The steamer “Jewel” gave an excursion from Montgomery to Point Clear on the 26th.
Lizzie Dorsey was accidentally drowned in Murder Creek, Escambia County, recently.
Greensboro boasts of a 12-fingered man by the name of Richard Coprich.
There are at present 693 patients under treatment in the insane asylum at Tuscaloosa.
Caterpillars have made their appearance in different portions of Butler County.
A railroad accident occurred recently on the Nashville & Eufaula Railroad in which five persons lost their lives.
Patsy Lee, a dusky damsel of Montgomery, tried to commit suicide with morphine last week.
The senior class at the State University this term consisted of 41 members of the average age of 19.
Old Mr. Burson of Pineville died Friday, the 23rd.
Commissioners Court will convene the second Monday in August.
The general election of state and county officers will take place Monday, the 2nd inst.
Mr. Geo Elg, the shoemaker, has been quite sick for several days.