Posted by Cathy Gowdy on Monday, July 09, 2012 at 06:04:38 :
Marin County Tocsin
Saturday, July 28, 1900
Murder of S.H. CHURCH
S.H. Church, one of the old residents of Tomales township, was murdered without provocation last Monday by C.J. King, an itinerant trader and piano tuner. After the event, the assassin made his way deliberately through an open and thickly populated country, until he reached the timber, where all traces of him was lost. There is small chance of his capture.
Mr. Church’s wound was necessarily fatal. He lingered long enough to adjust his worldly affairs and passed away a few hours after the fatal shot was fired. Deceased came to this county nearly 40 years ago and settled on the ranch where he has resided ever since. He was nearly 70 years of age and the father of a large family. Mr. Church was a skillful farmer, thrifty, enterprising, and prosperous. He was a man of far more than average intelligence and was in all respects a worthy and useful citizen. The gentleman was an old and valued friend of the editor of this paper, and is common with his acquaintances, we deplore his tragic end.
King’s description is as follows: about 40 years old, fair, thin features, very light colored eyes, heavy brown moustache, height about 5 feet 6 inches, and weighs 130 pounds. He wore a dark colored suit, white negligee shirt and derby hat. He owned a small tract of land near Skaggs Springs, but spent most of his time roaming over Sonoma County in Gypsy fashion, trading in horses and livestock generally, tuning pianos or doing anything that did not involve hard work. He had established the reputation of being a quarrelsome character by reason of various brawls with landowners, whose rights he was constantly invading.
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