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Melvina Couch


The Spalding County GAGenWeb Project


Jackson Argus - Week of January 28, 1897
Mrs. Melvina Couch  -  FOUND  DEAD

Mice Had Begun To Devour The Body

At four o'clock yesterday afternoon the dead body of Mrs. Melvina Couch was found in her bed in her residence on Solomon Street, the discovery being made by W. K. Howard. From the position of the body and the condition of it, and the testimony of the examining physician, she had been dead for some time - possibly since Monday night, and must have died while in a paroxysm of some sort - perhaps a coughing spell. The body was lying on its back with the right arm outside, the lower extended, and the left arm bent, with the hand raised. The mouth was slightly open; on her lower lip rats or mice had begun to eat into the face, but the disfigurement was slight.

Mrs. Couch had lived alone in the cottage since the death of her husband, within the sound of the bustle on Hill Street, and where hundreds passed daily. She was last seen alive by Mrs. J. Q. Boynton on Monday afternoon. It was rumored that some one saw her Tuesday morning, but the rumor could not be substantiated.

Coroner Williams empanelled a jury about 6 o'clock and examined a few witnesses only. W. K. Howard testified that he was passing and his attention was called to the house by someone who had been knocking at the door. He knocked several times and receiving no response, he went to a window and managed to see the bed and one hand and still failing  to attract her attention, he broke open a door and found her dead as described above.

Mrs. J. Q. Boynton testified to seeing her at home Monday afternoon and reading the Bible with her. She seemed in her usual spirits, indicated the chapter she wished read at her funeral, and the dress she was to be buried in.

Dr. T. E. Drewry testified that she had been dead more than twenty four hours - possibly since Monday night - and must have died in a paroxysm of some sort - possibly a coughing spell. That to his knowledge she had been suffering from the grip for the past ten days and that she told his father, Dr. N. B. Drewry, that she had a spell not long since at night, that prevented her from moving or calling for help.

In accordance with the testimony the jury brought in a verdict of "Death from natural causes."

A little daughter of Mrs. Boynton had a letter for Mrs. Couch on Tuesday. She knocked on the door repeatedly and finally put the letter under the door, where it was found yesterday. The little girl was sent back yesterday and her repeated efforts to make herself heard attracted the attention of neighbors, and Mr. Howard was called with the above results.

Mrs. Couch was about seventy two years of age. She had been married twice, the first time to a Mr. Crawford; the second time to Dr. Couch, who has been dead many years. She had been a resident of Griffin for perhaps forty years and was well known to nearly everybody. She had one son, the late James J. Couch, killed about ten years ago by J. E. Glenn on the sidewalk near the Odd Fellows building. Wrapped up, in her son, her darling boy whom she idolized, she never recovered from the shock of his death and constantly referred to him in conversation and a large picture of him hung near her bedside. She was supposed to be eccentric, perhaps she was to an extent but those who knew her best loved and honored her for her good traits of character. She was a member of the Methodist church and had been for years.

Some days ago she went to an undertaking establishment and selected the casket she wished to be buried in, and today she will be placed in it according to her wish.

Griffin News


File contributed by:
Don Bankston April 24, 2005, 10:14 am




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