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Obituaries   >   New Jersey   >   January 29,   1896

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Mrs. Louisa Madison Instantaneously Killed on Front Street on Saturday Night-Suits for Damages Likely to be Brought.

Last Saturday night Mrs. Louisa Madison, wife of Alexander Madison, was killed on Front street by coming in contact with an electric wire. The woman was standing on the sidewalk talking to her husband and two friends, and stepped aside to allow another woman to pass. In doing this her head touched a copper wire, which was wound around a telegraph pole and she fell dead.

Mr. and Mrs. Madison lived on the Jehu P. Cooper farm in Middletown township. They had come to Red Bank early on Saturday night. Mrs. Madison came downtown to do some shopping, and Mr. Madison attended a meeting of the choir of Calvary Baptist church, of which he is a member. The choir practiced the music for the services in the church the following day, and at the close of the meeting Mr. Madison went down town to meet his wife and take her home. He had joined her and they were walking up Front street, on the south side, when they met Theodore Johnson and his wife. This was in front of William Woods's house. They stopped to talk, and while they were grouped on the sidewalk another woman came along. Mr. Johnson and his wife stepped toward the fence and Mr. Madison and his wife stepped toward the road in order to clear the sidewalk. Mr. Madison did not think his wife was far enough to one side and he told her to move further out. She took another step and her forehead touched the wire. There was a sudden splutter of sparks and Mrs. Madison, with a cry of "O, Lord!" sank to the ground.

Mrs. Johnson screamed and a crowd quickly gathered. Mr. Madison picked up the body and carried it to Nivison's boarding house, which was near by. Dr. Marsden and Dr. Curtis were sent for, and they pronounced the woman dead. The only mark on her body was a long scar across the temple, where it had touched the wire.

It was afterward learned that the wire which caused her death was a copper telephone wire. It had been found dangling in the street broken, a day or two before, and had been picked up and wound around a telegraph pole to get it out of the way. It crossed the electric light wires, and it is thought that the scraping of the crossed wires by the wind wore off the insulation of the electric light wire. As soon as the electric light works were started up the copper telephone wire became charged.

Coroner John I. Sickles of Navesink was notified and he impaneled a jury of six men to hold the inquest on the body. The jurors are David S. Allen, Wm. C. Conover, Wyckoff Pope, Joseph Perrine, Frank Chandler and Pearson Hendrickson. The inquest will be held on Saturday.

Coroner Sickles found great difficulty in getting a physician to make a postmortem examination of the body. Some time ago the board of freeholders cut down the bills of physicians for autopsies which had been made, and they fixed the price which they would pay for such work in the future. The price fixed is much less than the doctors say the work is worth. None of the doctors would undertake to make the autopsy, and even when Mr. Sickles offered to guarantee payment of the examination, the physicians refused to do the work. Some of doctors who were seen by REGISTER young men stated that while the money would unquestionably be paid if guaranteed by Mr. Sickles personally, still they did not care to be held up to the public as charging exorbitantly for their services, as would be the case when their bills went up before the board of freeholders; and has had been done in the past when their bills for similar work had been cut down.

When Mr. Sickles found it would be impossible for him to get any of the doctors of this locality to perform the service under these conditions, he telephoned to Judge Conover for advice and instructions. Judge Conover notified Mr. Sickles that an autopsy should be performed, and that the bill would be paid. With this declaration on the part of Judge Conover the objections of the physicians were removed and the autopsy was held. The result of the postmortem will be made public at the inquest on Saturday. The funeral was held this afternoon at Calvary Baptist church and was attended by a large number of people.

It is stated that Alexander Madison, the husband of Mrs. Madison, will bring suit for damages, and that lawyers have already been retained by him and by the electric light and telephone companies to defend the suit.


One Death was Caused by Apoplexy and the Other by Heart Disease-Parker was a Veteran who Served in the Civil War.

James Costigan of Colt's Neck, son of Calvin Costigan, died very suddenly at his home near Colt's Neck last Friday night. He lived with this father. On Friday night, a little before nine o'clock, his father went upstairs to bed. It was the custom of father and son to retire together. The son was sitting on the lounge when his father went upstairs, and was in apparently as good health as ever. Fifteen minutes after Mr. Costigan went upstairs he went down to the living room to learn why his son had not gone to bed. He found James lying on the floor, unable to speak or move. He gave no signs of life, and Mr. Costigan went to the neighbors for help. Mrs. William Desmond returned to the house with him and Dr. K. J. Woodward was sent for. The physician stated that heart disease was the cause of death.

Deputy Coroner George Freeman of Englishtown was sent for, and at his request a post-mortem examination of the body was made. The heart was removed and was found to be more than double the usual size, and was almost entirely enveloped in fat.

The young man was stabbed near the heart in a street fight some time ago, and many people thought that this was in a measure the cause of death.

The funeral was held on Monday and the body was buried in the Catholic cemetery at Freehold. The pall-bearers were Thomas Cullen, John Cullen, James Desmond and Henry Carney.

Charles Parker was found dead in his home at South Eatontown last Friday morning by Ella Richardson and Mrs. Emma D. Rice. Mr. Parker was a veteran of the late war and was a member of the Grand Army. He drew a pension of $12 per month. He was subject to apoplectic fits and it is thought this was the cause of his death. He was born in Red Bank and was 59 years old. The body was buried in the White Ridge cemetery. Mr. Parker is supposed to have been dead at least 24 yours when the body was found.

Mrs. Lucy DuBois Parmly.

On the 15th of January there passed away a life so modest, so unassuming that some may not have realized what lay beneath the quiet exterior. And so it seems most fitting that we should at this time call to remembrance those traits of character that made her what she was.

Lucy DuBois, for 41 years the wife of Dr. Ehrick Parmly of Oceanic, New Jersey, was born in 1832 in Montbeliard, Doubs, in the east of France, a region where her ancestors lived for four hundred years.

She received a thorough and practical training, which, added to her natural strength of will and executive ability fitted her for the position at the head of a large household, which she filled during the greater part of her life. In this position she labored with a faithfulness and devotion to duty that never flagged and that might well be an example and an inspiration to others.

Absolutely free from self-consciousness and self-seeking, reticent with the reserve of strong natures, she was known intimately to but few, but those nearest and dearest to her can testify to the quiet depth and unswerving fidelity of her affections. These found expression more naturally in deeds rather than in words; her unselfishness and thought fullness for others were remarkable, though she would have been the last to acknowledge that they were in any way unusual. So marked were these characteristics that almost to the last day of her life, even when the hand of death was heavy upon her, she was planning for the comfort of those about her.

She was distinguished for sincerity and strength of purpose, and was intolerant of shams and hypocrisies. She disregarded forms, and sought in everything only the essential.

Of a deeply religious nature, she desired always the spiritual good of those she loved. This thought was uppermost even in her ministrations among the poor, performed so quietly and without ostentation that few realized their extent. Though not connected with any charitable society, she worked much among the poor and needy, giving not only material aid, but sympathy and wise council.

As daughter, wife and mother, she was most exemplary. She found in the circle of home all she needed for the employment of her faculties of heart and mind. Yet there are many not bound to her by ties of blood who can say, "I never had a kinder friend than she."

Her interest in others did not fall when she was stricken with a mortal illness; it rather increased; and those who saw her in the last few weeks of her life must have been struck by the peculiar gentleness and sweetness of her demeanor. A friend, speaking of her at this time, said she could not but think that in her was realized the promise, "At eventide there shall be light."

Her courage and resignation never failed; during a most trying illness not a word of complaint ever passed her lips; her fortitude might have been called stoicism did we not know it was the fruit of an absolute trust in God.

She is gone, but she has left to those who love her a precious heritage in the memory of a well-spent life; and of her it may truly be said, "Her works praise her in the gates. M. A. Oceanic, N. J., January 22d, 1896 OBITUARY

James Edward Green.

Capt. James Edward Green of Keyport died very suddenly on Tuesday afternoon of last week. His health had not been robust for some time, but he was in a fair state of health. On Monday he had moved into a new house which he had just built, and during the evening he had talked of work to be done in fixing up the yard and lawn as soon as spring opened. The next day he rose as usual, and seemed in his ordinary health. Shortly after dinner, as he was talking with Joseph Hines, a neighbor, about proposed improvements to the place, he was seized with a spasm and died in a few minutes.

Captain Green was born at Manasquan in 1844. For many years he was the captain of a coasting schooner, and he was master of the schooner Gracie D. Chambers at the time of his death. He was 52 years old. He married Miss Ella Kelsey of Keyport 21 years ago. She survives him, but he leaves no children.

Annie H. Wallace.

Miss Annie H. Wallace, daughter of Richard Wallace of Keyport, died of consumption on Friday, January 17th, Death was caused by hasty consumption. She had been confined to her bed only three weeks. She is the third of Mr. Wallace's children who have died within less than two years. Miss Wallace was 20 years old and was to have been married next spring.

Mrs. Mary Hastings.

Mrs. Mary Hastings, president of the Memorial hospital at Long Branch, died at Monmouth Beach on Sunday. She was the widow of Hugh J. Hastings, former owner of the New York COMMERCIAL ADVERTISER. She was the largest contributor to the Memorial hospital and the hospital was founded as a memorial to her late husband. She leaves a large estate.

Hannah T. Suydam

Hannah T. Suydam, widow of John W. Suydam, died at Matawan last Wednesday from spinal paralysis, aged 62 years. She had been sick about three weeks. She leaves four sons and two daughters.

Miss Julia Paul.

Miss Julia Paul, who had been an invalid for a great many years, died at her home on Riverside avenue last Wednesday night, aged 48 years. She was a daughter of the late Miflin Paul of Seabright.

Mrs. Catharine Sampson.

Mrs. Catharine Sampson of Trenton, a former resident of Long Branch, died very suddenly on Saturday, January 18th. She was holding her infant grandchild in her arms when she suddenly expired.

Stephen Johnson.

Stephen Johnson died at Long Branch on Tuesday of last week of bowel consumption. A widow and one daughter survive him. He was 65 years old.

Henry Holsnagel.

Henry Holznagel, father of Henry and William Holznagel and of Mrs. Poling of Keyport, died at the latter's home on Saturday, January 18th.


  • CLEVENGER-At Seaside, on Sunday, January 19th, Eliza A., daughter of Daniel Clevenger, aged 7 years.

  • COX - AT Cliffwood, on Sunday, January 19th, Mrs. Mattie Cox, aged 42 years.

  • COSTIGAN - At Colt's Neck, on Friday, January 24th, James Costigan, aged 27 years, 4 months and 23 days.

  • DeCAMP - At Seaside, on Monday, January 20th, Lewis H. DeCamp, aged 60 years.

  • DECKER - At Keyport, on Wednesday, January 22d, Ralph, infant son of Harry Decker.

  • GREEN - At Keyport, on Tuesday, January 21st, James Edward Green, aged 52 years.

  • HOLZNAGE - AT Keyport, on Saturday, January 18th, Henry Holznagel.

  • HALL - At Spring Lake, on Saturday, January 18th, Mrs. Edward Hall.

  • JOHNSON - At Long Branch, on Tuesday, January 21st, Stephen Johnson, aged 65 years.

  • MURPHY - At Bradley Beach, on Monday, January 20th, Mrs. Emma Murphy.

  • MADISON - At Red Bank, on Saturday, January 25ty, Louisa, wife of Alexander Madison, aged 24 years.

  • PAUL - At Red Bank, on Wednesday, January 22d, Miss Julia Paul, aged 48 years.

  • PERAGO - Near Hazlet, on Tuesday, January 21st, Mrs. Delia Perego, aged 87 years and 6 months.

  • SHIELDS - At Freehold, on Tuesday, January 21st, Mrs. Delia Perego, aged 87 years and 6 months.

  • SAMPSON - At Trenton, on Saturday, January 18th, Mrs. Catharine Sampson, formerly of Long Branch.

  • SUYDAM - At Matawan, on Wednesday, January 22d, Mrs. Hannah T. Suydam, aged 62 years and 7 months.

  • WIGGINS - At Keyport, on Saturday, January 18th, the infant daughter of Charles Wiggins.

  • WALLACE - At Keyport, on Friday, January 17th, Annie H., daughter of Richard Wallace, aged 20 years and 2 months.

    Source: Red Bank Register, January 29, 1896

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