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Newspaper Page Text
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when he heard speaking in the hall, t
The voices were so subdued he could
make out nothing, and almpst in
stantly a door closed, shutting them
off. He went out softly to investi
gate. Pausing at the minister's door
he heard low conversation -within.
As he paused to listen he heard
some one coming down the hall and
was obliged to go on, as no one in
the house knew the nature of his
business and for the present he did
not mean they should. Miss Remson
might be way off in her suspicions.
It was just possible he was shadow
ing a perfectly innocent man.
When the coast was again clear he
glided up to the minister's door.
Though the tones were low he heard
distinctly the words of the Episcopal
John had never felt quite so foiled
and foolish in the course of his de
tective career. Here he had been
taking a wild goose chase after an
innocent old gentleman who had ev
idently come out here at the solicita
tion of some friends to marry them,
and the dress suit case had probably
contained his cassock and prayer
book. The detective was leaving the
door in disgust when he noticed that
no light came through the keyhole
or under the door.
Why was this marriage ceremony
being performed in the dark?
The next instant he heard the
words: "I, Cecil, take thee, Stella "
John rapped loudly on the door.
The voices ceased. There was no
response. He knocked again still
louder. Then a man's voice asked:
"A friend! To warn!" said John.
The door was opened by the cler
gyman and carefully closed.
Dark as it was, he at once recog
nized the couple going through the
marriage service. They were Stella
Barker and Cecil Brent.
"Friend!" sneered the bridegroom.
"John Lawlor, you've only come here
to stop this ceremony, but you can't
do it .Now go I"
When his name was mentioned
John had noticed the look that came
into the clergyman's face, also the
nervous way his hand went to his
head. He was wearing a wig.
"I will go, but I shall have to trou
ble you to go with me," said John to
"I am at a loss to understand," he
said with dignity. Then seeing the
business end of a revolver looking to
ward him, he added resignedly:
"Very well. But Mr. Brent, as I could
not finish the ceremony, I will hand
you back your fee."
John was a bit too quick for Brent,
and snatched the money.
"One hundred and twenty dollars,"
he said. "Rather a jarge fee, Mr.
Brent, I'll have to ask you to come,
After John had handcuffed his two
men and safely locked them up pend
ing the departure of the next train,
he sought the frightened girl in the
"I will see that some one takes you
to the train," he said. "I've got two
of the slickest counterfeiters in the
business to look after."
"I haven't any money for the tick
et He has $600 of mine."
"No, he hasn't. Here it is." And
John passed her the notes.
"Oh, John!" she sobbed. "Forgive
me! I want you!"
"Not for just gratitude. There
must be time to think," he said.
Stella must have thought hard, for
in less than three months the wed
ding cards' were out
The man in the laundry who seals
up the rear buttonhole in the neck
band of the shirt might be employed
by the state department to close pos
TODAY IN ILLINOIS HISTORY
Feb. 24, 1841. Richland county
was formed; cut off of Clay and
Lawrence; named for a county in
Ohio; 93d county