"...we should pass over all biographies of 'the good and the great,' while we search carefully the slight records of wretches who died in prison, in Bedlam, or upon the gallows."
~Edgar Allan Poe

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Newspaper Clipping of the Day

A while back, I posted a story about an English family whose peace was disturbed by a "Watcher." Here is a similar, but arguably even weirder story out of Nebraska. It comes from the "Fayette County Leader" for July 12, 1917:

Monday afternoon Ossian's marshal and mayor and A.F. Dessel were summoned to the Anton Mecker home, three miles south of town. On arriving there they were told that some one had entered the house on the previous Saturday, while the family were in the garden, and took Mr. Becker's watch chain, his daughter Edith's necklace, and some money, all of which, including $1.00 were found later within ten rods of the house. A ham was also stolen from the cellar, it is believed. The incident was discussed by the family and nothing more was said about it until Sunday morning, when one of the children picked up a scrap of paper in the yard, in which was wrapped $1.00, and on the paper was written the following:

"I will be in your cellar some other day. So I leave $1.00."

Monday morning another note was found, on which was written:

"Did you take that $1.00? If so, bring it back inside of an hour or I will be in your house and show you."

Following the finding of the first note on Monday morning, Mr. Becker's boy shot two woodpeckers, and a little later the following note was found:

"I heard you shoot. I will face you soon."

The finding of this note frightened the family and they rang up the mayor's office, who with marshal and A.F. Dessel, motored to the farm. On leaving the farm this note was found:

"Heard you ring and I'll be gone for today."

The next read as follows:

"I seen all you did. The mayor is gone. I'll face you in ten minutes."

The fifth note read:

"You needn't watch for me. I come tonight."

The sixth note read as follows:

"I will be at the Fred Gerleman home tonight, so you needn't sit up. I'll show him if he is going to stick up to you. I'll stick his house on fire tonight and make him pay $1.00."

Fred Gerleman is a neighbor of Mr. Becker's and was active in Mr. Becker's behalf. The finding of the note naturally caused him a great anxiety, and it is needless to say that Fred did not sleep any that night. The house was not burned.

No other writings have since been found. The mystery remains to be solved, and this afternoon Sheriff Ellingson was called out. What his opinion is we do not know.

The matter has become serious and has caused Mrs. Becker to become ill. Both the Becker and Gerleman families are very much excited over the matter.

This is the only article I have been able to find about this story, so I cannot say if it was ever resolved.


  1. Replies
    1. It's pretty fascinating to realize that the recent New Jersey "Watcher" was nothing terribly unique. I just wish I could have found more about this one...

  2. The worst of it is the speed by which the notes arrived. Too bad it doesn't say where they were left. If a family member were responsible, you'd think there would be more detail. Scary.

  3. So interesting! Thanks for sharing this one with us.


Comments are moderated. The author of this blog reserves the right to delete remarks from spammers, trolls, idiots, lunatics, jerks, and anyone who happens to annoy me on days when I've gotten out of bed the wrong way. Which is usually any day ending with a "y."