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Posted By: Karyn - volunteer
Date: 6/22/2022 at 17:26:35

"The Red Oak Sun"
Red Oak, Iowa, Friday, 2 November 1917

J. W. Noell, A Suicide.

Villisca Photographer, Who was a Principal Witness in Famous Slander Suit, and Constant Worker for
Solution of Villisca Murder Mystery, Found
Fatally shot on Depot Platform at Albia.


J. W. Noell, Villisca photographer, who was an important witness in the famous slander suit of F. F. Jones vs. J. N. Wilkerson, and who has been one of the most ardent workers for a solution of the Villisca murder mystery, died at a hospital in Albia yesterday (Thursday) morning about 10 o’clock from a bullet wound to his head.

The best information obtainable up to the time "The Sun" went to press indicated that his death was due to a self-inflicted wound. The coroner of Monroe county had ordered that an inquest to determine the cause of death be held, but the date had not been fixed up to 4 o’clock yesterday evening.

Mr. Noell left his home in Villisca about 11 o’clock Wednesday morning telling his wife he was gong to see John Montgomery at the latter’s home in the county. He did not return, and it was Thursday morning when she received word that he was in Albia fatally wounded. Mrs. A. H. Noell and Mrs. J. M. Noell, mother and wife, went to Albia on train No.6, but arrived there after he had passed away. He did not regain consciousness.

Although the time for securing information was short, and officials at Albia did not talk freely, "The Sun" has been able to gain the following facts by keeping in telephone communication with the Villisca and Albia newspapers and in interview with the dead man’s father, and his close friends.

Mr. Noell left home, as stated above and hired an automobile to which he went to visit John Montgomery. After a short stay there he was driven to Nodaway, where he took train No. 4. He was seen on the train with Jack Conway at Creston. He must have gone to Albia on either No. 2 or No. 12 Wednesday night.

About 7 o’clock yesterday (Thursday) morning, Homer Mason, an Albia drayman, found Mr. Noell lying on the west end of the platform at the freight depot, close to the building. He had a bullet wound in his head, a revolver lay on the platform nearby, and some papers and a pocketbook were picked up about 15 feet away. Some money and a watch in Mr. Noell’s pocket were not disturbed. He was unconscious and remained so until his death at the hospital at 10 o’clock. The revolver bullet had passed through his head and bedded itself in the wall of the freight depot.

After the inquest the body will be taken to Hamilton, Iowa, for burial. A. H. Noell, father of the dead man, was in Red Oak yesterday, and left last night for Albia. He said that J. W. Noell had telephoned to Red Oak Wednesday morning, saying he was coming here that afternoon.

J. W. Noell, was born in Oskaloosa, December 23, 1889, and had been a photographer in Villisca since July 1913. He is survived by his wife, who was formerly Miss May Sullivan, and by his parents. Deceased was well known in Red Oak, having been here much of the time during the various legal battles growing out of the murder investigation.

At the recent slander suit Noell was on of the principal witnesses. His testimony fortified a narrative of over hearing a conversation between whom he believed to be F. F. Jones, Albert Jones, Bert McCaull and another man. He told of hearing their conversation in the Jones implement shed and said they talked of “downing this thing,” of hiding Mansfield, getting Van Law to handle Vina Tompkins, and other matters which he thought had a bearing on the case.


Montgomery Obituaries maintained by Karyn Techau.
WebBBS 4.33 Genealogy Modification Package by WebJourneymen

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