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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 287 pages of information about Bart Ridgeley.

“He wanted nothing, asked for nothing, rejected food, and refused shelter, and as often as taken in and cared for, he managed to escape, and wander away, feebly and helplessly, from human association and ministration.  He complained to himself that his great mother, Nature, had deserted him, a helpless child, to wander and perish in the wilderness.  He said he had gone after her, until weary, starving, and worn, he must lie down and die.  He had called after her until his voice had sunk to a wail; and he finally died of a child’s heart-broken sense of abandonment and desertion.

“He was found one day, nearly unconscious, with the tears frozen in his eyes, and on being cared for, wailed his life out in broken sobs.

“Let us not grieve that he has found rest.

“I am too sad to write of other things, and you will be melancholy over this for a month.

“CASE.”

CHAPTER XLV.

SOME THINGS PUT AT REST.

At the January term of the Court, the case of Ohio vs. Myers, came up; and the defendant failing on his motion to continue, the case was brought on for trial, and a jury was sworn.  His principal counsel was Bissell, of Painesville, a man of great native force and talent, and who in a desperate stand-up fight, had no superior at that time in Northern Ohio.  He expected to exclude the confession, on the ground that Myers had been induced to make it upon representations that it would be for his advantage to do so; and if this could be got out of the way, he was not without the hope of finding the other evidence of the State too weak to work a conviction.

The interest in the case had not abated, and a great throng of people were in attendance.

Hitchcock, with whom Henry Ridgeley was in company at the time of his death, then an able lawyer, was the prosecuting officer, aided by the younger Wilder, who had succeeded Henry as his partner.

Wilder was a young lawyer of great promise, and was the active man in the criminal cases.

He stated the case to the court and jury, saying among other things, that he would not only prove the larceny by ordinary evidence, but by the confession of the prisoner himself.  Bissell dropped his heavy brows, and remarked in his seat, “that he would have a good time doing that.”

Wilder called one of the officers who made the arrest, proved that fact, and then asked him the plump question, in a way to avoid a leading form, whether the prisoner made a confession?  Bissell objected, on the ground that before he could answer, the defendant had a right to know whether he was induced to make it, by any representations from the witness or others.

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