Idaho History Oct 13, 2019

Rocky Bar, Alturas (Elmore) County, Idaho

(part 4) Newspaper Clippings

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Rufus Lester


Rufus Lester Headstone 1854-1882 Rocky Bar, Idaho Cemetery
shared by Lana Walters

W.C. Tatro writes to the Statesman from Rocky Bar, that Rufus Lester an expressman between that place and Atlanta, was caught in a snow slide five miles out from the bar, on the 18th. Immediately on hearing of it by the carrier from Atlanta, a large force of men armed with shovels, started out on snowshoes in one of the worst kind of storms, and after a hard trip and a long night’s search, succeeded in finding him covered up about six feet deep. His remains were brought to Rocky Bar, where his wife, (formerly Mrs. Julian Hill), is stopping. Deceased was an old resident of the latter place, and a native of Kewamee, Illinois, where his parents are living. His age was 27 years.

shared by Danny Driesel
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Elmore Bulletin in Rocky Bar, Idaho on Aug 17, 1889

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[News Items]

A dense smoke still hovers over and around Rocky Bar.

The sound of the saw and the hammer resounds in this Rocky Bar land.

The people of Rocky Bar should not rest until we have better protection against fire.

Uncle Dick Tregaskis went up to Atlanta Tuesday with a big load of fruit and vegetables.

Large, luscious melons are coming in by teams daily and sell readily for 75 cents and one dollar.

The Rocky Bar public school will commence at the new school house next Monday morning.

Last Sabbath there was a large attendance of children at Sunday school. This fact speaks well for our young folks.

The new turbine wheel for Reesner’s mill has been put in pace, a new pen-stock erected, and many other improvements made, which causes Jake to exclaim “she’s a dandy, now.” Everything runs like clock-work.

The expense of the Constitutional Convention was $27,690.71.

During the year 1888 Idaho produced gold, silver and lead to the value of $8,290,000.

Pete Canavan, door-keeper of the Idaho Constitutional Convention, took a run over to Baker City and was robbed of $70 while asleep in Fannie Hall’s “bagnio.” This is bad for one of the leaders of the G. and m.g.o.p. [*Bagnio – typically a brothel or bath-house.]

The District Attorney of Logan, in a card, tells his people to pay no attention to the Alturas Assessor.

A Missouri man recently chopped down a large tree in which he found four wild cats, six squirrels, three coons, two ‘possums, two crows’ nests and a swarm of bees. Twenty-four rattlesnakes, two train robbers and the biggest liar in Missouri got away.
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source: page 3 Elmore Bulletin Aug 17, 1889
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Elmore Bulletin Saturday, April 25, 1891

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Born In Rocky Bar, Idaho

April 18, 1891, to the wife of J.W. Rowett a son. We are please to know that mother and child are getting along nicely. John is not an inveterate talker, but we’ll bet he keeps up a continuous thinking and all to the effect that is is now the best man in America.
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The Elmore mill is steadily dropping 20 stamps upon Vishnu ore and will next Monday let fall 10 more. Stopers are added as fast as room can be made for them, and it will not be many days before the full capacity of the mill (50 stamps) will be employed on Vishnu ore.

All is activity in the Elmore mine and development work is being pushed with greater vigor than ever.
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Anniversary Ball

The Odd Fellows of Rocky Bar will celebrate the seventy-second anniversary of the order by giving a grand ball Monday evening, the 27th of April. Music by the Rocky Bar Brass Band. Tickets, including supper at the Alturas Hotel, only $3.00. A general invitation is extended.

Committee of Arrangements – L.W. Hayhurst, Charles Hopkins, A. Stedman.

Reception Committee – Mr. and Mrs. J.T. Gilman, Mr. and Mrs. J.H. Tregonning, Mr. and Mrs. G.M. Payne, Mr. and Mrs. J.N. Hall, Mr. and Mrs. Chas. Hopkins.

Floor Managers – Gid Campbell, Hugh Riley, A. Stedman, P.M. Swann, G.W. Fletcher.

Grand march at 9 o’clock, sharp.
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Information Wanted.

A Boise gentleman has sent the Bulletin the following clipping from “Forest and Stream” and asks us if we can give him any information regarding the goats mentioned:

Captain Chas. E. Bendire, about the year 1876, in Idaho, between the towns of Rocky Bar and Atlanta, in Alturas county, heard of three tame white goats. These belonged to a German citizen of the former place, were allowed full liberty, and were often seen on the stage road between these two points. We have tried to obtain some detailed information about these specimens, but so far without success.

We have made inquiry of old-timers and can only learn that the above is true; that these goats were captured in the high mountains near Atlanta when quite young; that they were very gentle and domesticated to the extent that they visited the saloons and would take a drink with a relish when one of the “old boys” would “set ’em up,” and that they afforded sufficient milk for the use of the German family.

What became of them we can not learn, but the supposition is that, after the removal of their owner from this section, they returned to the high cliffs and joined the wild bands of mountain goats that are numerous above the clouds around Atlanta.

If any one can give the information above sought we will publish it with pleasure.

from the Elmore Bulletin., April 25,1891, Rocky Bar [h/t AHGP]
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Views, Rocky Bar, Idaho


Court House & Chinatown, destroyed by fire the next year. (1891) The view shows the town sitting below snow covered forested mountain peaks.

source: Idaho State Historical Society
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Elmore Bulletin. (Rocky Bar, Idaho) September 29, 1897

Gamblers May Gamble.

Boise, Ida., Sept. 25. – W.L. Boise, held to the district court on the charge of gambling at Lewiston, has been released. Judge Piper of the Second district has decided the anti-gambling law unconstitutional, under the supreme court decision in the fee law case. Judge Piper took the same grounds as Judge Stewart at Boise, that the irregularity in the passage of the bill was fatal.

The decision places this this district under the old license law and games will be started immediately.

from the Mike Fritz Collection:
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Rocky Bar Saloon

Picture is from Jacob’s Saloon. (Rocky Bar)

Elmore county was established February 7, 1889, with its county seat at Rocky Bar.

source: Elmore County (shared by Wayne Beebe)
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James McAtee Killed at Rocky Bar by a Falling Snowshed.

Thursday evening John Rowe Davey arrived in this place bringing the startling news that James McAtee was accidentally killed at the Bar about 1 o’clock on Wednesday, February 20, 1901.

Mr. McAtee and Oscar Schraft have for several years held a lease of the Vishnu mining ground and quartz mill. A snowshed covered the car-track leading from the tunnel to the mill. Returning to work treat their noon meal, along the shed they discovered that the stringers at a certain point were bent and likely to give way from the great weight of snow piled up on the lagging above.

They attempted to repair this particular weakness in the shed – Mr. McAtee placing his shoulder under the scantling and endeavoring to raise it while Mr. Schraft was to place an!other timber under it. Just then the frail support gave way precipitating probably a ton of snow upon these hardy sons of toil.

Mr. Seltraft was more fortunate than his companion and soon extricated himself from the debris and immediately commenced to uncover Mr. McAtee with all his might, at the same time calling lustily for help.

Young Davey, being nearby, responded to his call and they soon uncovered Mr. McAtee’s body, which was almost in a standing posture, but, sad to relate, life was gone and poor, big-hearted, industrious Jim McAtee’s labors were ended, and a then happy wife and three innocent little children at home fondly anticipating his return at the usual supper hour. Picture the sorrow and anguish of the poor wife upon being informed, as gently as possible, of her great loss for it can not be expressed in words.

The sudden death of Mr. McAtee cast a gloom over the good old town of Rocky Bar, because he was a good citizen, a kind husband, an indulgent father and a man highly respected by all acquaintances.

He was buried on the following Friday, almost the entire people of the camp attending the funeral.

We are told that the deceased has a brother residing at Park City, Utah. he was a brother-in-law of the wife of ex-sheriff James O’Neill of this place and Miss Katie Donnelly of Rocky Bar.

To his grief-stricken widow and little children, and all relatives the BULLETIN extends sincere condolence.

shared by Danny Driesel
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source: Elmore Bulletin. November 22, 1900, page 3
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source: Elmore Bulletin. September 19, 1901, page 3
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source: Elmore Bulletin. December 24, 1903, page 1
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source: Elmore Bulletin. June 30, 1904, page 1
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1904RockyBarJPMartinHeadlineDeath of J.P. Martin

Word reached here Tuesday evening from Rocky Bar that John P. Martin one of the pioneers of that famous camp, had been found dead on the floor of his kitchen on Sunday morning of last week. He had evidently been carried off in a very sudden manner – probably by a stroke of paralysis, about a year ago having been suddenly stricken from which he never entirely recovered. Preparations were in evidence for the morning’s meal of the following day, going to show that death must have come suddenly and, let us hope, painlessly.

Mr. Martin was one of the pioneers of Rocky Bar, having been a resident there for a quarter of a century or more. During the years 1889 and 1890 he was deputy assessor under Assessor and Collector Payne; was justice of the peace of Rocky Bar precinct several times and at the time of his death occupied the office. For many years he was custodian of the celebrated Pittsburg mining property at the Bar, the same being in his keeping at the time of his death. He was a Mason held in high esteem by members of the order here, and enjoyed the full confidence of his intimates and the esteem and respect of all men who knew him for the sterling character and sturdy honesty which were such prominent traits.

from the Elmore Bulletin. Mountain Home, Idaho October 13, 1904, page 1 (shared by Danny Driesel)
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1912RockyBarMcLeodheadlineVerdict of Guilty Returned by Jury

N. D. McLeod Found Guilty of Assault With Deadly Weapon. Sentence Deferred to Monday

N. D. McLeod was found guilty of assault with a deadly weapon and a charge of murder in the first degree, for the killing of George Guay on the night of October nineteenth at Rocky Bar, of which a full account was given a few weeks ago, was the result of the trial which has been held at the term of court just closed Friday.

The trial attracted considerable attention because of the prominence of both parties involved and a great many witnesses were summoned from Rocky Bar to testify in the case.

Sentence was deferred until Monday or Tuesday when the judge will again re-convene court. McLeod may appeal.

shared by Danny Driesel
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Matter of McLeod

Opinion of the Court – Stewart, J.

– Norman D. McLeod filed an original petition in this court for a writ of habeas corpus. The petition alleges his imprisonment and confinement and restraint, and that such imprisonment, detention and confinement are illegal for the following reasons: That the county attorney of Elmore county, on November 11, 1912, filed an information against the petitioner charging him with murder in the words and in the manner and form as follows: “That said Norman D. McLeod on or about the 19th day of October, 1912, at Rocky Bar, Idaho, and prior to the time of filing this information, did then and there willfully, unlawfully, feloniously and with malice aforethought, kill and murder one George Guay, a human being. All of which is contrary to the form and force of the statute in such cases made and provided and against the peace and dignity of the state of Idaho.”

And that thereafter, on November 22, 1912, while upon trial for said offense, the jury in said cause rendered a verdict of guilty of assault with a deadly weapon in the words and form as follows: “We, the jury, empanelled in the above-entitled cause find the defendant guilty of an assault with a deadly weapon.” That thereafter the judge of the district court of the fourth judicial district of the state of Idaho, Hon. C.O. Stockslager, pronounced sentence and entered up judgment against the petitioner, whereby be sentenced him to serve a term in the penitentiary of the state of Idaho from six months to two years.

The contention of the petitioner, and the grounds upon which the writ is demanded, is, that the district court had no authority or jurisdiction to try the defendant, the petitioner herein, for the reason that the crime of which he is charged was not shown by the information to have been committed within the county of Elmore, and that the jury did not have any right, power or authority to find a verdict against the defendant, petitioner herein, upon the information filed for the crime of assault with a deadly weapon, and that the judge of said court had no jurisdiction to pronounce sentence for the crime of assault with a deadly weapon under the information filed against him, for the reason that the crime of assault with a deadly weapon is not necessarily included in the charge of murder, and the information does not state facts sufficient to constitute the offense of assault with a deadly weapon.

A general demurrer was filed to this petition, based upon the ground that the petition did not state facts sufficient to entitle the petitioner to the release sought. The controlling question presented by this demurrer is, where an information is filed against a person, charging such person with murder in the language of the statute, the charging part of such information being in the following form, “that the said Norman D. McLeod, on or about the 19th day of October, 1912, at Rocky Bar, Idaho, and prior to the time of filing this information, did then and there willfully, unlawfully, feloniously and with malice aforethought, kill and murder one George Guay, a human being. All of which is contrary to the form and force of the statute in such cases made and provided, and against the peace and dignity of the state of Idaho,” was it within the power of the jury, and had the jury the authority under the statute to find the defendant guilty of “an assault with a deadly weapon”.

from pg 261-262 “Report of cases argued and determined in the Supreme Court of the State of Idaho: Volume 23” January 1, 1913 (Google books)
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Ambulance Service, 1918 Rocky Bar Idaho


shared by Leiana Rogers Knight‎

link to more Rocky Bar Photos Idaho State Historical Society

Link to Rocky Bar, Alturas (Elmore) County (part 1 general)
Link to Rocky Bar, Alturas (Elmore) County (part 2 mining)
Link to Rocky Bar, Alturas (Elmore) County (part 3 Transportation)
Link to Annie “Peg Leg” McIntyre Morrow (part 1)
Link to Annie “Peg Leg” McIntyre Morrow (part 2)
link to Alturas County, Idaho 1864 to 1895

page updated Aug 28, 2020