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Thursday, Nov. 20, 1934

November 26, 2011
By HOWARD RILEY (hjriley@adelphia.net) , Adirondack Daily Enterprise

The Post-Standard, published in Syracuse, enjoyed a pretty big circulation in this area many years ago. On each side of the logo on page 1 in quite large type read, "Lake Placid - Saranac Lake - Malone - Old Forge," and the front page also carried news of Tupper Lake.

This copy of the newspaper is still around because the lead story was about a murder in Vermontville 77 years ago. For years after the murder, people used to drive down the Oregon Plains Road to look up the trail where the young girl's body was found. We drove down there with our mom and dad, all eight of us jammed into our big black Buick, just to look at the site from the road.

I have written about this murder before, as did my chum Bill McLaughlin who was a friend of George Tellstone, who may have been the victim's brother. Here are excerpts about picking the jury with some background about the indictment of the accused. I also recall that he was convicted of the crime.

"MALONE - Five of the 12 jurors who will decide the fate of Thomas Frederick Showers, 27, Syracuse CCC (Civilian Conservation Corps, employing 300,000 young men) truck driver on trial for the first degree murder of Cleo Tellstone, 14-year-old Vermontville girl, last June 23, had been selected when court adjourned at 6 o'clock Monday night. (Memory tells me she was grabbed shortly after getting off the school bus.)

"The five jurors seated in the order of their selection were James Tuggey, 35, Constable farmer; Charles Keefe, 41, Fort Covington farmer; Edward English, 35, Chateaugay farmer; Bernard O. Roulston, 66, Chateaugay farmer and Robert Brady, Malone farmer, age not given.

"District Attorney, H. W. Main conducted the prosecution and Richard P. Byrne of Syracuse was defense attorney, assisted by E. N. Lawrence of Chateaugay as local counsel.

"The accused youth entered a court room packed to capacity with the 136 prospective jurors and witness, in the custody of Turnkey Clarence E. Dumas. He was neatly dressed in a brown suit. He chewed gum most of the afternoon. Altho somewhat pale he seemed outwardly as unperturbed as any in the room.

"Showers were indicted by the grand jury in October on two counts charging murder in the first degree, the first count alleging premeditation and the second during the commission of a crime."

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Tupper Lake

"Sealed bids for the transportation of school pupils from the Chemical Row route on McLaughlin Avenue to the Cedar Street School at the junction will be received by the Board of Education up until Friday it has been announced by J. H. Littlefield, board secretary.

"The bidder is expected to draw the pupils to school in the morning and return them to their homes along LeBouf Street and McCarthy and McLaughlin Avenues in the afternoon."

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"An indoor carnival sponsored by the St. John Baptist Society is being held this week at the St. John's Hall on Park Street. The event is under the supervision of society president, Octave Frechette; treasurer, Clarence Potvin and secretary, Oscar Jackson. The games and booths were well patronized by the 300 people who found their way into the hall during the evening.

"Members of the French-speaking L'Union St. Jean Baptiste are cooperating in the work of putting it over."

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Saranac Lake

"Officer Edmund Duprey and Sgt. James Coughlin of the local police force, president and vice-president of the Saranac Lake Police Protective association attended the annual banquet of the St. Lawrence County organization.

"Over 175 members attended and Officer Duprey spoke briefly about the local association which was organized here only a few months ago."

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"The annual Thanksgiving dinner under the auspices of the Brighton-Harrietstown grange will take place Thanksgiving day, November 29, in the Grange Hall, with dinner being served from 1 to 4 o'clock. The dinner is open to the general public and annually attracts a large attendance from surrounding regions."

"Ken Hathaway, Elizabethtown, is crowned king of Adirondack deerslayers for the 1934 season. He bases his claim for the honor on the 246-pound buck he entered in the Trudeau memorial big buck contest, which ended Saturday. Unlike previous seasons, only seven deer were entered in the contest."

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"Any local resident with a dash of theatricalism in his makeup, will have the opportunity to display it here Wednesday night when the Pontiac theater will hold, for the first time in its history, a genuine Hollywood premier - with all the glitter and trappings which accompany such an event.

"Alton B. Anderson, theater manager said the array of talent witnessed by him will cause Saranac lake theater goers a big surprise Wednesday night."

 
 

 

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