The History of Taylor County Chapter Three Hundred-Fourteen

1905 City Election

In the town election held on Tuesday, March 21,1905, George W. Lowther received 870 votes. J. Oscar Jaco received 715 votes, William H. Powell received 19 votes for the office of mayor. For council in the first ward Ernest F. Clark received 153 votes. Dr. John S. Whitescarver received 141 votes. For council in the second ward A.J. Wilkinson received 234 votes. Joseph J. Remlinger received 209 votes. For council in the third ward James W. Love received 298 votes. Thomas H. Jackson received 185 votes. For council in the fourth ward Dr. R. Dorsey Mackin received 216 votes. Ona C. Jefferys received 169 votes. For collector of taxes James F. Hickman received 714 votes. Fred C. Graham received 683 votes. Charles M. Roach received 212 votes. For president of the Board of Education Dr. Charles A. Sinsel received 658 votes. Henry M. Leps received 658 votes. For members of the Board of Education Horace C. Owen received 188 votes, William E. Pifer received 853 votes, C.F. Burke received 683 votes, Joseph B. Bradford received 888 votes. The vote for school bonds was ratified by a vote of 804 for and 343 against the bonds.

The vote on the question of saloon license was defeated by a vote of 688 against license and 641 for license.

Councilman George F. Green arose in the council and demanded a recount of the vote of Dr. Whitescarver in the first ward and the mayor appointed Councilman Love and Phillips as tellers to canvas the vote in the recount and named March 25th as the day of the recount and a guard consisting of Constable Holden and Police Officer Hawkins over the ballot boxes containing the return while being conveyed to the vaults of Merchants and Mechanics bank until they were to be returned to the office of the tax collector for the recount. When the result of the license for saloons was made known, the proprietors petitioned the council for a recount their petition reading: 

“To the Honorable Mayor and City Council of Grafton W.Va.,

You will please take notice that we desire a recount of the ballots cast at the election on the 1st day of March 1905, upon question of license, and as, property owners and those interested in the liquor business in this city. We demand the above request as a matter of right under the charter of the City of Grafton, West Virginia. Such funds as the council may demand to defray the expense of the recount will be met by the petitioners. Signed by all the saloon keepers of Grafton.” 

Fred C. Graham candidate for collector of taxes gave notice of his withdraw for a recount for this office. 

The mayor appointed Councilman Love and McCabe a committee to sit as a license court with the mayor as judge to pass on all applications for license in conformity with the new town charter regulating hotels, restaurants, pool and billiard halls, theaters, transfer vehicles, druggists and all other business operating under a town license. 

On March 5th the tellers appointed to canvas the recount reported the Dr. Whitescarver had gained 16 votes in the recount making the number of votes cast for him total 157. Ernest F. Clark lost 5 votes making his vote 148 and electing Dr. Whitescarver councilman in the first ward with majority of 9 votes. 

The members of Vincent’s band assisted by local talent represented the malo-drama on the stage of the Opera House March 2, 1905, entitled “Convict No. 311” to a very good house who turned out to encourage this popular musical organization of which the town folks were very proud and while none of the audience expected a performance such as they were accustomed to seeing, on the whole they were well satisfied and freely applauded the amateur actors in their efforts to amuse.

Vincent’s band and orchestra which replaced the famous William Hoskins organization after the death of the famous composer and director came into existence when Claude Vincent came from his home at Pruntytown and organized a band and orchestra in Grafton in 1903 among the young musicians in the town who were Charles E. Burke, Karl D. Byers, Matthias Cassel, Wesley Frazier, Ernest Heckert, Frank Martin, Leo Rasche, George Reed, Samuel Ridenour, Thomas Vincent, Clay Vincent. James Haislip. This aggregation of talent soon became known throughout this section for the excellence of their ability and filled many engagements for affairs at which music was required. Burke, Byers, Cassel, Martin, Reed, Haislip, Rasche, Ridenour with Henry Laban, Misses Mary Leeds and Louise Goudy formed the fine orchestra that was directed by Claude E. Vincent while services in the Opera House and many social functions in Grafton and elsewhere made this orchestra famous in this section. This organization remained together until the speaking stage was abandoned for moving pictures and then disbanded.


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