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WILLIAM HENRY FLOWERS

Marysville Daily Democrat - Wed 5/18/1892, p1 - Fatal Shooting Scrape - Love Leads to a Fearful Tragedy at Moonlight Dance - Henry Flowers, an Innocent Colored Man, Shot and Killed While Interfering - The picnic at Shelton's grove yesterday terminated in a tragedy between 11 and 12 o'clock last night, in which an innocent man was killed and two of the participants are seriously, if not fatally wounded. - The affair was a shooting scrape in which Jesse Foulk, William Lane and Lucien Danley were active participants. - The difficulty arose over May Lane, a young girl 16 years of age, who is well known in this city, and whose romantic career during the past year, has been a subject for more than one newspaper article. - Jesse Foulk, a boy not yet nineteen years of age, a delivery clerk for W. T. Ellis & Son, has, for some time, been desperately infatuated with the girl, and has been persistent in keeping her company, notwithstanding the repeated warnings of William Lane, the girl's father. - Possibly his last meeting with the girl occurred during the closing hours of the picnic last night.  They had been together but a short time when they repaired to the ice cream and refreshment stand and were seated at the table eating some bananas which the young man had purchased.  While they were thus engaged, the irate father, in company with a young man named Lucien Danley, a waiter in the Golden Eagle hotel, appeared from behind, each with a pistol in hand.  The father grasped his daughter by the shoulder with one hand and pointing a pistol at her head with the other, commanded her to go with him, and violently dragged her over the bench.  The moment the girl was grappled by her father, Danley presented a pistol at young Foulk's head, and told him not to move.  The young man did not obey the command and attempted to rise to his feet, and in an instant a general firing began. - When the girl saw her father bending over her with a pistol in his hand, she screamed for help, which met with a ready response from a young colored man named Henry Flowers, who was standing near.  In the midst of the fusilade Flowers rushed in and placed himself between the girl and her father, and a few seconds later he was lying on the ground with a mortal wound in his stomach. - After the firing had ceased it was found that young Foulk had received a pistol ball in the abdomen.  Lane had received two wounds, one in the right side and the other just beneath the left collar bone, which passed through to the shoulder. - Flowers was shot in the stomach, two inches above and four inches to the right of the navel.  He lived about one hour and a half after the shooting. - Excitement over the affair had not subsided to-day by any means and the unfortunate affair was the subject of conversation by groups of people who congregated on the street corners, throughout the day and all seemed to have ascertained the facts in a different light. - From J. W. Bradley, who lives near the picnic grounds, a Democrat reporter obtained this morning, the following statement:  For some time Miss Lane had been stopping with the family of Mr. Bradley and last evening Danley called at his home for the girl to accompany him to the picnic grounds.  Mrs. Bradley refused to let her go.  Presently Foulk called and the girl went with him.  About 11 o'clock Mr. Bradley saw her dancing with Danley; she asked him (Mr. Bradley) to finish the dance with her as her partner was sick.  He consented and Danley stepped from the platform and disappeared.  After the dance Mr. Bradley left the girl in charge of Foulk and the couple went immediately to the ice-cream table, where the shooting took place a few moments later.  He also saw Lane and Danley approach the couple from behind with pistols drawn. - Immediately after the shooting Danley disappeared, but was found in his bed with a companion after 1 o'clock this morning by Under-Sheriff Bevan.  He was arrested and taken to the county jail.  He admitted having participated in the shooting. - The three pistols used are in the possession of Sheriff Saul.  Three chambers of Lane's weapon are empty; two in Foulk's are discharged and one in Danley's. - It is the general opinion that Foulk's two shots took effect in Lane's body.  One ball from Lane's pistol killed Flowers, and Foulk was shot by Danley. - Lane was brought to the New Western Hotel, where Drs. Powell and E. E. Stone attended his wounds.  He is in a very critical condition, and the doctors believe he cannot live. - Foulk was taken to the United States hotel, where the same physicians attended him.  His wound is very dangerous, and his chances for recovery are not so promising as they were this morning.  The young man is a grandson of the late Dr. McDaniels, of this city. - Henry Flowers, the dead man, was born in Chico, and was 31 years of age.  He is a brother-in-law of J. D. Churchill of this city, with whom he has made his home during the past two years.  He has a stepmother living in Oroville.  The body has been laying in Coroner Bevan's undertaking rooms to-day, where it was viewed by a large crowd of people. - A few moments before his death he said he had been shot while trying to save the life of a girl, and it is possible that the shot which sealed his fate was really intended for the young lady. - Lane was at one time a well-known farmer in Linda township and is a half brother of H[blurred] and Frank Lane, proprietors of the Central stables, of this city. - Notes of the Affray - Public sentiment is rather bitter against Danley, whom it is said is also in love with the girl, and urged Lane to take the rash step which resulted so fatally. - An autopsy was held on the body of Flowers this forenoon by Drs. Stratton and Powell.  The ball passed through the intestines and was extracted from the spinal column in two fragments.  An inquest will be held Friday. - Drs. Powell and E. E. Stone extracted the ball from Lane's shoulder this morning, but the one which penetrated the liver has not been found. - The ball in young Foulk's body has not been removed, as the physicians thought it unsafe to probe very deep for it.  The young man is attended by his mother and sister. - A Democrat reporter, in company with Dr. Powell, visited the wounded men late this afternoon.  Lane is gradually sinking and it is thought he cannot recover.  Foulk is also failing and his condition is less favorable than it was at 8 o'clock this morning.  His recovery is doubtful.

Marysville Daily Democrat - Sat 5/21/1892, p1 - One Of The Victims - Inquest Held on the Body of William Flowers - Coroner Bevan held an inquest last evening on the body of William H. Flowers, the young colored man who was shot and killed at Shelton's grove Tuesday night. - The jury, consisting of S. E. Inlow, Joe Brown, M. T. Featherly, C. Gottwals, J. W. Greely, C. H. Cope, D. B. Lowrey and B. J. Kingdom, was summoned and viewed the remains yesterday before the funeral. - The following testimony was introduced: - County Physician Stratton was the first witness examined and testified that he had made an autopsy on the body of William Henry Flowers in this city and had found external marks of violence, in the shape of a gunshot wound.  Had found a ball imbedded in the right side of the spinal column.  The bullet was split in two pieces and imbedded in the spine.  The wound caused hemorrhage which was the immediate cause of death.  The bullet was delivered to District Attorney Forbes, who handed it to Coroner Bevan. - The two pieces were handed to Dr. Stratton and identified and afterwards handed to the jury for inspection. - T. P. Bennett testified that he was at the moonlight picnic.  After the shooting he saw William Henry Flowers lying on the ground and he seemed to be dying. - T. N. Hawkins next testified, and stated that he attended the picnic; was acquainted with William Henry Flowers in his lifetime and knew his parents, but did not know his age nor his place of nativity.  Was standing behind the ice cream stand where Jesse Foulk was sitting, but went away before the shooting.  Heard a woman calling out:  "For God's sake, save me."  He then returned and saw the girl on the ground.  Jesse Foulk, who was also on the ground, got up and fired at the two men opposite him.  Jesse told witness that he had been shot and pointed out to him with his finger the hole.  Jesse stood his ground, but the other two ran away.  He could identify Lane as one of the men, and thought he could identify the other man.  Flowers was lying on the ground after the shooting and said to witness:  "The waiter shot me." - J. C. Jenkins was the next witness, and stated that he was at the moonlight picnic, and knew William Henry Flowers in his lifetime.  He was sitting at the opposite side of the ice cream stand in front of Jesse Foulk and a young lady.  Heard Wilson, who was tending bar, say:  ""Don't do any shooting here," and then heard two shots.  Sat passively on the seat and did not get up until everything was over.  Saw two pistols in the air, but could not say who held them.  Heard the girl shout for help and cry out: "They are killing Jesse." - George W. Wilson testified that he had attended the moonlight picnic, and saw the commencement of the row.  Foulk and May Lane came up to the ice cream stand and had some bananas to eat.  Saw two men come up, one of whom he ascertained was Lane, who jerked the girl backwards.  The waiter pointed his pistol at Jesse Foulk's head, and told him not to move.  The young girl was screaming, and her father was pulling her back.  The waiter grabbed Foulk by the right arm and hit him over the head with a pistol.  Heard the click of a pistol, and went behind a tree and heard the shots, but stopped where he was as he thought it was the best thing he could do under the circumstances. Could see Flowers lying down after the shooting. - J. W. Bradley testified that he also was at Shelton's grove.  It was so dark that he could not see much of the shooting.  Heard a shot, and saw the girl stagger and picked her up and took her to the platform. - J. N. Williams also testified to attending the picnic, and having been at the ice cream stand when the shooting took place.  Saw a man raise a pistol up as if to strike some one, and soon saw a flash and heard a pistol report. - Had known William Henry Flowers, but not intimately; thought he was almost 28 years of age and had seen him that night after he was shot, but had not seen him in the row. - District Attorney Forbes then stated that he had no more evidence to introduce at the present time, and the jury retired and soon rendered the following verdict: - "We find that the name of the deceased was William Henry Flowers, born in Butte County, California, and aged 28 years, and that he came to his death on the night of May 17, 1892, at Shelton's Grove, Linda township, from the effects of a gunshot wound inflicted by a pistol in the hands of either William R. Lane or Lucien Danley (Dynelly)." - The jurors were then discharged from further attendance. - M. C. Barney watched the proceedings closely in behalf of Danley, the waiter, who is now in the county jail.

 

[also see Jesse Foulk]


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