Search America's historic newspaper pages from 1789-1943 or use the U.S. Newspaper Directory to find information about American newspapers published between 1690-present. Chronicling America is sponsored jointly by the
National Endowment for the Humanities and the Library of Congress. external link Learn more
Image provided by: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Library, Urbana, IL
Newspaper Page Text
MYSTERY MAN OF ACADIA WHO WAS "GEROME" OF
IJifty Years Ago A Legless Man Was Marooned on the Coast of
' ' Nova Scotia by a Mysterious Ship For Fifty Years
the Man Spoke But Two Words.
Digby, Nova Scotia, May 13.
Acadia's legless man of mystery
died hene the other day and with
his passing, death sealed a mys
tery as hopeless of solution as the
mystery of the Man in the Iron
Two slender clues were all that
might help to solve this mystery.
- "Gerorrje;" "Trieste:"
"For over 59 years the only pos
sible source of other clues was the
legless man who uttered those
words, the first in August, 1861,
the'second some years later.
For over 50 years that man
Kept his silence. Saving these
two proper names, no word pass
ed his lips in all those years.
The legless man came from the
sea. He was marooned on the
beach here in 1861, landed from
an unknown ship that beat into
the harbor and sent a dory ashore,
then put promptly to sea again.
A few hours later, in a seques
tered inlet, fishermen found an
unconscious (man on the beach,
lying just above the tide line. A
bottle of water and a few ships
biscuits were found by his side.
The man's Tegs had been cut off
apparently only a short time
before. The flesh of the stumps
was still raw.
To all questions the stranger
asked him his name in Italian.
"Gerome," -was the reply.
Then the castaway lapsed into
silence. From that day till he
died, half a century later, he
spoke 'but once, and then only ta (
ejaculate "Trieste" when some
one surprised him with the ques
tion, "Where did you come
He accepted gratefully the food
and shelter that the Comeau fam
ily gave him. He chopped wood
for the household, wielding the
ax powerfully and with skill.
Though he came from' the sea.
there was nothing about him to
mark him certainly as a sailor.
The Acadians believed him to be
an Italian, but they did not know.
Always his eyes were bent sea
ward. Day after day he watched
the horizon. And when a strange
vessel hove in sight a faint flicker
of interest was kindled in his in
But a strange sail was the only,
thing under heaven that held any
interest for him. If he had any;
hope in life it was the sea that
And when at last he came to die
he passed as grimly as he had
lived. Not even in death was his
tongue loosed to tell anything
about the strange prank that fate
had played with his destiny.
There only remain questions
3vas silent till old Rudierlgo;mtiX