Yager, Edgar

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Whitehall Register October 16 1869


Full particulars from an eye witness... Walkerville, situated about seven miles southwest of here consists of three stores, a blacksmith shop and 7 or 8 dwelling houses. It is not a particularly attractive place in itself nor are its surroundings of such a character as to make it a desirable place of resort. Nevertheless a few people live there and a few people from the country round about go there to trade. The little hamlet has somehow achieved an accordingly bad reputation, whether deserved or otherwise we cannot say. A deed was perpetrated there on Tuesday evening which together with the circumstances surrounding it gives color to the theory that Walkervile is of evil repute because it is a bad place. There was to be a ball that evening over the post office. The young men of the neighborhood at about the hour of seven had collected in considerable numbers in the vicinity of the hall and the girls, arrayed in all the glory of their fancy fixings, were gathered in one of the houses waiting to be escorted by their several beaus to the festive assembly, and all was ready to go "merry as a marriage bell". Among those who had come to enjoy a pleasant evening, was one Edgar Yager, a nice pleasant fellow about 18 years old. He was standing by the gate which opened upon the path leading to the hall entrance. Probably, with the bashfulness of youth, he was waiting for some older girls, across the street, and wondering how many times he would get to dance with that particular damsel, the thought of whom made his heart thump so. Ten minutes later that light-hearted boy lay a bleeding corpse shot through the heart. Up to Yager standing there, came John Calvin Vinyard, a 16 year old boy, and his cousin John Wesley Vinyard. These 2 had been to White Hall during the day and had been drinking quite freely. Vinyard said to Yager in a threatening manner: "I understand you said Johnny Gowens was a better man the me." Yager replied, "I didn't say so I said I wouldn't be surprised if he was." The says Vinyard "your're a damned liar," "I'll shoot the --- out of you." About that time the cousin says "Go In." Yager repeated his former statement and tells Vineyard he doesn't want to have any trouble. The cousin says "Don't shoot John." but John does shoot, or attempts to, though merely snaps the cap without discharging the pistol. Yager then turned to go off, and had retreated some three steps, when Vinyard again pulled the trigger, this time with effect. Poor Yager reeled forward a pace or two, turned back for support, cluctched the gate by which he'd been standing, cried "murderer" and fell. He groaned heavily for a few moments and was dead, shot in the back. The boy-murderer walked off and disappeared without an effort on the part of anyone to arrest him. The corpse of the slain was taken across the way to the very house where the girls were gathered waiting for the summons "on with the dance." The Coroner H. P. Nash, Esq. was sent for, a jury summoned, and a corner's inquest, instead of a dance, was the entertainment of Walkerville that evening.

Submitted by Debra Vinyard Seaman