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A Jasper County Murder


Posted By: JCGS Volunteer
Date: 4/26/2019 at 11:14:30

Floyd Harvey, a nephew of N. C. Creede, founder of the town of Creede, Colorado, created a profound sensation by attempting to extort money from his millionaire uncle by charging him with complicity in a murder committed in Jasper county, Iowa, twenty years ago. Subsequently young Harvey died on a railway train while on his way home to Iowa under circumstances strongly indicating poison, self-administered. – Ex.
For the past two weeks the above item has appeared, in different forms, in all the daily newspapers, and many of the country newspapers of the United States. Last week we received a letter enclosing the clipping, on the back of which was written “the murdered man’s name was Hazelton.” For these reasons we have taken some pains to look the whole matter up, and for the purpose of refreshing the memories of the older citizens will give some of the details. The nephew of the millionaire Floyd Harvey belonged to a family that was raised by their grandfather, Mr. James Guthrie, who lived not far from Monroe, the father being dead. There were five boys and a girl in this family, one of the boys is Judge John Harvey at Leon, and another brother is the postmaster at the same town. Floyd, the nephew above spoken of, is a son of the postmaster. The sister married a Mr. R. Pfeiffer, and she is still living in the county. (And by the way she has been sent for by her brother “Crede,” who is now sick.) Wm. Harvey enlisted in Co. A. 17th Iowa Infantry at Monroe and went into the army, and during the war left the service, went to Colorado, where he finally made his find and is now many times a millionaire.
Now as to the murder of E. S. Hazelton. The body of the man was found on the street near the N. W. corner of the square, nearly in front of a saloon kept by W. H. L. King, on the morning of March 28, 1871. He was from the east, taught school in Malaka township, and boarded with D. D. Goodhue. Came to Newton after his school closed with considerable money (one of the witnesses putting it at from $200 to $400,) and seems to have put in his time in loafing about the saloons and drinking. He had, a couple of days before his death, been at Des Moines for the purpose of entering land on his soldier’s certificate but did not do so for some reasons. His most intimate companion seems to have been Chet Bradley, the two having been together in the army. He was last seen alive at 10 o’clock at night, before the morning he was found dead.
The record of the coroner’s inquest is a voluminous document, and was written by Thos. Chadwick. Hugh Rodgers was the coroner at the time. The inquest was commenced on the 28th of March and not concluded until the 1st of June. From the evidence given and from recollection of citizens here, none of the Harveys were here at the time of the murder, the millionaire uncle having enlisted sometime in the 60’s, and did not return here, so that either the correspondent from Rockville is mistaken as to the person murdered, or the nephew made his charge out of whole cloth, with which to blackmail his uncle. This nephew is said to have been slightly demented. At the coroner’s jury, on the body of Hazelton, the witnesses were Jas. R. Gentry, Dr. J. R. Gorrell, Thos. Vanatta, Dr. Jaboz Green, B. Manning, Sr., B. Manning, Jr., David Goodhue, Jas. D. Smith, D. D. Goodhue, W. H. L. King, Chet A. Bradley, Mrs. J. Hall, J. W. Becker, J. D. Davis, W. T. Connor, L. A. Hammer, H. Rollins, L. A. Walker, Martha Heckard, Wm. Downs, Fidelia Read and Tilla Broughard. Dr. Gorrell who made a post mortem examination, testified that deceased came to his death by a wound by an instrument, evidently the blade of a knife, entering the left ventricle of the heart; the verdict of the coroner’s jury is that he came to his death by the hands of some person or persons unknown to them. The event caused great excitement at the time of its occurrence.
Source: The Newton Journal; March 8, 1893, page 1
(Transcriber’s notes: N. C. Creede was Nicholas Creede. The town of Creede was incorporated on June 13, 1892.)


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