May 23, 1902

On Wednesday evening of last week, as Mrs. Mamie Brockington and her daughter, Miss Virginia, were going to their home, they were attracted by a negro on the street, near the corner of Federal and Wharton. The assailant threw Mrs. Brockington down, but she fought nobly, and with the assistance of Miss Virginia, succeeded in driving away the assailant. The cries of the ladies engaged the attention of Mr. and Mrs. Clement Hart, who were about retiring. Mr. Hart raised the window, and it is supposed this incident frightened the would-be robber. He fled down Mulberry Street. Several of the citizens residing near the scene of the assault, visited Mrs. Brockington[i] later, or about the time she reached her home. The ladies were in a terrible state of excitement, as it was but natural they should be. The night was pretty, the moon shone brightly, and the deed occurred about 10.20 o’clock p. m. Considering the circumstances of the case, the affair was the boldest and most dastardly, that the criminal records of Milton produce. Mrs. Brockington is a widowed lady and a granddaughter of Captain J. C. Atkins, of this town. She with her daughter, are among the finest ladies that Milton can produce. On the same evening of the above-mentioned occurrence, and it is supposed to have been earlier, a Negro visited several homes of ladies who reside alone. Notably the home of Miss Lillian Cade, where he gained an entrance, but Miss Cade succeeded in getting him out; also the home of Mrs. Mollie Lingo, where he was recognized. On Thursday morning, when this matter became known, excitement ran high, investigation was on foot. The ladies were interviewed, and the fact developed that the assailant intruder was a stutterer. This relieved several colored men of suspicion, and Fred Groves was arrested and taken before Mrs. Brockington and the other ladies who identified him as their assailant. He was arraigned before Esquire Collins, and the fact of his being a stutterer, and the only colored one known around here, coupled with other facts elucidated at his examination, warranted Esquire Collins in committing him to jail. He was taken to Georgetown Thursday afternoon by Constable Marker, and lodged in Hotel de Hart. Detective Francis came to Milton on the Friday afternoon train to work up the case, but finding that the supposed culprit had been arrested and lodged in jail, he left town on Saturday morning.

An informant tells me that Mrs. Sallie A. Morris, living near town, has been weaving carpets for forty-nine years. That she has averaged twenty carpets of at least 25 yards each, each year, makes 500 yards of carpet a year, and 24,500 yards in forty-nine years. This is a Iarge amount of carpet to be woven by one woman.

Some of the merchants of town have inaugurated the practice of oiling the steps in front of their stores to keep people from sitting on them.

Captain Frank Lacey is at home, and his brother Mr. William Lacey, druggist, of Philadelphia, is visiting him.

The interior of the Ponder House is being renovated.

Mr. Samuel W. Vaughn, son of William S. Vaughn and Miss Mary E. Short, of near Georgetown, were married at the home of the bride on Wednesday evening of last week. The ceremony that made the couple man and wife was performed by Rev. W. S. H. Williams, of Georgetown.

Mr. William Lank, a former drug clerk with W. J. Starkey, has resigned his position with that pharmacist, and gone to Philadelphia to occupy a similar position. Will is a bright young man, and in a short time will, no doubt, be able to master the whole pharmacopeia.

Mr. Fred Welch is doing some painting for Captain H. P. Burton.

The M. E. Church is undergoing an internal overhauling in the lower corridors and lower rooms.

Strawberries have been selling during the past week at ten cents per quart.

Prof. W. H. Welch and Mr. Alfred Thomas, are making a specialty of cleaning and repairing church organs. We saw them last week coming from the rear part of the P. E. Church with a half dozen screw drives, some monkey wrenches, a jack screw, and other mechanical tools. They had been repairing the church organ. As their work in gratuitous, no church need cavil about employing them. Paul Welch says they are working for the Lord, and he cannot think of making any changes.

A triumvirate of Italians with harp and violins, made music in Milton last week. They were well dressed, and splendid players, as Italians usually are.

At the meeting of the Sussex County Bible Society, held in Lewes last Thursday, J. B. Welch, of Milton, was elected president; and Thomas J. Perry, of Coolspring, vice-president for Broadkiln Hundred.

W. W. Conwell, manager of the Depository of the Lewes National Bank, in this town, visited Philadelphia on Saturday, returning home on Monday.

Captain Charles Burris is visiting his family.

Excavating for drainage pipes”, and for other purposes, is being done around the bank of the Sussex Safe, Title, and Deposit Company, on Federal Street; under the supervision of Isaac W. Nailor.

The cool weather that has prevailed for many days, is a matter of comment by everyone we meet.

Captain John Fisher came home on Saturday evening and spent Sunday with his family, returning to his vessel on Monday.


[i] The actual spelling of the name is Brockinton, not Brockington. Mamie Wolfe Brockinton’s husband was Dr. William Brockinton from South Carolina; he died in 1895.