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The Infamous Black Bird Southern Oregon History, Revised


James D. Fay
JAMES D. FAY,
Attorney and Counselor at Law,
Corvallis, Oregon.

    Will practice in all the courts of the state, and attend promptly to all business entrusted to his care.
Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, September 17, 1859, page 1


    Fay, who is running the Reporter, over the livery stable of Clugage & Drum, claims to be a brother of "Old Virginny." You saucy-brandy-face blackguard, you are no relation whatever of "Old Virginny." You never saw the Old Dominion. A few years ago you boasted of having been born and raised in Charleston, the cradle of secession and treason, and you drank lots of cocktails and toasts to the success of South Carolina and Jeff Davis, but since Charleston has fallen into the possession of the Union forces you desire to hail from Virginia. You may bray about coming from "Ole Virginny" until doomsday, but no one will believe it. Every contraband in town knows you are either from the bogs of Ireland or from the mosquito swamps of South Carolina.

Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, April 1, 1865, page 2



    James D. Fay, Democratic candidate for Congress, says:
    I believe in the right of secession as a divine right.
    James K. Kelly, Democratic candidate for Governor, says:
    If United States bonds are not taxed, I will never vote to pay the interest of the public debt, by G-d.
    James O'Meara, Democratic candidate for State Printer, says:
    If the people get a chance, they will extinguish the whole corrupt public debt in thirty days without any tax.
    M. H. Abbott, editor of the Oregon Herald, and a Democratic leader in Oregon, said in 1861:
    We consider the Union dissolved, never to be reunited.
    In 1862 James D. Fay said:
    I demand that the South be allowed to go in peace.

    In 1864 James O'Meara said that he would not take an oath to support the Constitution of the United States because he would not commit perjury.
    In 1861 James K. Kelly declared that the Union never could be saved by war.
    These are a few little incidents in the political career of prominent Oregon Democrats.
Oregonian, Portland, May 4, 1866, page 1


A Vote for James D. Fay.
    A vote now for James D. Fay is a vote in favor of abandoning the fruits of the late victory over disunionism, secession and treason to the traitors themselves.
    A vote for James D. Fay is a vote ratifying his treasonable declaration that "THE RIGHT OF SECESSION IS A DIVINE RIGHT."
    A vote for James D. Fay is a vote saying as he said that the late war on the part of the North was "AN UNHOLY CRUSADE AGAINST THE NATURAL RIGHT OF SECESSION."
    A vote for James D. Fay is a vote declaring as he declared that the Union soldiers who carried on the war for the Union were "THIEVES AND MURDERERS."
    A vote for James D. Fay is a vote declaring as he and the Democratic Party declared that the war was a "FAILURE."
    A vote for James D. Fay is a vote in favor of admitting into Congress any unrepentant rebel who may present himself with a certificate of election, without regard to what he may have done to destroy the Union, or what he may be in favor of doing hereafter.
    A vote for James D. Fay is a vote, practically, in praise of the men who opposed coercion who were in favor of letting the rebellious states "go in peace," and who sympathized with and assisted the rebels in every possible way.
    A vote for James D. Fay is a vote ratifying the infamous Copperhead record [of] the last five years.
Oregonian, Portland, May 8, 1866, page 2


Negro Equality.
CORVALLIS, May 28, 1866.
    EDITOR OREGONIAN:--Men living here say that when Fay lived here he lived and ate with negro Sam, the barber, and men have gone in to get shaved and Sam would get up and shave them and leave Fay at the table.
A. A.
    The writer of the above is a responsible citizen of Corvallis. The partner and associate of the negro Sam is the man who is leading the Democratic howl about "Negro Equality."
Morning Oregonian, Portland, June 1, 1866, page 2



Thrown Away.
    The Auburn Stars and Stripes, speaking of one J. D. Fay, the Democratic candidate for Congress from Oregon, warns the Democracy not to vote for him. "Your votes will be thrown away on that chap," says the Auburn paper. "He would not get a seat in Congress, if elected. He ought to be set to dressing stone in the Oregon penitentiary, and get a little moral principle drilled into him before being permitted to run at large among the wild Democrats of that state." And all this merely because Mr. Fay, in a recent public speech, expressed the sound Democratic sentiment--"This war is an unholy crusade against the right of secession."
San Francisco Chronicle, July 4, 1866, page 4


    REVIVAL.--It is reported that Mr. P. D. Hull, of Jacksonville, a practical printer, has purchased a controlling interest in the press and material of the late Reveille, and will resume the publication of a Democratic journal at that place under the editorial control of Hon. J. D. Fay. We hope this is true. Mr. Fay is probably more thoroughly identified with the policy and interests of the Democracy of Oregon than any other man in the state, and his well-known ability cannot fail to make the enterprise a success. The first number will be issued sometime in June or July, when all "policy men" and time-servers had better stand from under.
Polk County Times, Dallas, May 1, 1869, page 2


    NO LAWYERS.--Jas. D. Fay left for Salem yesterday to prepare for the Supreme Court. Next week all the rest will follow and we will enjoy a short season of peace.

Oregon Sentinel,
Jacksonville, August 28, 1869, page 2



    J. D. Fay will deliver the oration at the Fourth at Jacksonville.
"Oregon," Oregonian, Portland, June 12, 1869, page 2


    Messrs. Beekman and Fay are putting up a handsome fence between their residences.
"Improvements," Democratic Times, Jun 10, 1871, page 3



    Hon. James D. Fay is finishing up his labors on the State Land Commission, of which he is a member. The duties incumbent thereon occupy a great portion of his time and necessitate his almost constant presence at Sacramento. He has an office on California Street, above Montgomery.
"Southern Oregonians in San Francisco," Democratic Times, July 14, 1877, page 2


    In the course of time the numerous reports that had reached the settlements regarding the "Great Sunken Lake," and its lonely island crater on which the foot of man had never trod, had so excited that love of adventure and exploration which is ever present in the colonizing and energetic races, and particularly in evidence in frontier life, that in July, 1869, a party was formed in Jacksonville consisting of J. B. Coats, James D. Fay, Miss Annie Fay, David Linn and family, Miss Fannie Ralls, James M. Sutton and family, and John Sutton, under the leadership of James M. Sutton. They left Jacksonville on July 27, via the Rogue River road, and on reaching its junction with the road to Fort Klamath, blazed and opened a wagon road to the rim of the lake, where they were joined by Col. J. E. Ross, Lieut. S. B. Thoburn and Mr. Ish. They had brought with them a wooden boat, knocked-down, which they put together at the lake, and with infinite labor and care to protect it from the rocks they succeeded in lowering it to the water, and on August 4, in this frail craft J. B. Coats, James D. Fay, David Linn, James M. Sutton and Lieut S. B. Thoburn visited Wizard Island, which was, with appropriate ceremonies, so christened by James M. Sutton. They were thus the first human beings to set foot on its virgin soil, and climbing its steep slopes they entered the tiny crater, which is such a duplicate in miniature of the great caldera which contains the lake itself.
W. W. Gorman, "The Discovery and Early History of Crater Lake,"
Mazama, October 1897, pages 150-161


    STATE SENATOR FAY.--Hon. James D. Fay manifests a disposition to "go after" the interlopers and canting hypocrites in the Democratic ranks who pretend to be better than they are, and always deny their principles up to the very hour of success and then rush in to claim all the spoils. Fay never denies his principles. He was an avowed secessionist when such time-servers as Ben. Harding, Thayer, Ben. Hayden, Joe Smith, Col. Kelly, and all that crew, were either "howling radicals" or afraid to open their mouths, and when Bush and Nesmith wanted to hang Gen. Joe Lane for treason. And he boldly advocated repudiation when others were afraid to say a word. Fay seems to remember these things, and has, perhaps, not forgotten Nesmith's elegant remark about a "rat-terrier and ring-tailed monkey." Hence, we are not surprised at the course of the News, Fay's organ, which pronounces Joe Lane "the noblest Roman of them all." It also copies with evident gusto a heavy dig from Mosher's and Lane's Roseburg organ at the Democrat, characterizing the arguments of that paper before election against repudiation as "contemptible assaults upon Mr. Fay."
Oregon State Journal, Salem, June 25, 1870, page 2


The Captive Fay.
    It was Joseph Rodman Drake, poor fellow, who immortalized himself, and proved that American poets possess ideality, by composing the beautiful poem, "The Captive Fay." The attempted enterprise of the Salem Clique to capture the indomitable Fay of Jacksonville, cannot possibly equal in romance or ideality the wonderful fancy of Drake, but it may be counted among the ideal enterprises of the nineteenth century. The effort is certainly to take possession of Fay, and lead him, nolens volens, into the bosom of that Democratic elysium, the Salem Ring. The impudence of the thing is only to be reconciled by faith in the old adage, slightly transposed, that "misery makes strange bedfellows," reading instead that such a result follows a decided Democratic success.
    O'Meara can speak of Democratic maneuvers of the past with a positive knowledge that is most refreshing. The time goes not far back when he claimed and received consideration from that party, and was one of its champions. The Bulletin, therefore, speaks by the card, and our notice the other day that the business manager is fitting up a suite of rooms for Hon. J. D. Fay calls forth some interesting facts worth knowing, and which we take pleasure in offering our readers. The Bulletin says:
    "With all these fresh honors and grand attentions now being paid to Mr. Fay, we cannot avoid a retrospective view of the Ring members in connection with that very gentleman during the past eight or nine years. In the session of the Oregon Legislature of 1862, Mr. Fay was the only Democratic member in either House. In his place in the lower House, though entirely alone, and without even one partisan supporter or friendly colleague to second any motion, he fought the most gallant fight during the whole session that was ever witnessed in a deliberative body. Notwithstanding it was in high war times, and Salem was the citadel of the war party, and angry strife, hot blood and dark threatenings against any who thought and spoke as did Mr. Mr. Fay were continually encountered, he never weakened in his dauntless spirit, never faltered in the hottest struggle, never failed in his heroic performance of duty in vindication of his party. He was ever on the alert, untiring, indomitable. And, though alone in the Legislature, he gave the Republicans much trouble in passing some of their extreme party measures, and prevented them from passing others still more extreme.
    In Salem, in those days, dwelt the chiefs of the Ring. They had fine houses, ample means, and could dispense hospitality as they chose. Mr. Fay was a stranger in the city, the only member of the Democratic Party upon whom hospitality could have been bestowed, and bravest among the brave spirits of the whole state had he proved himself himself in fighting the battles from whence sprung the victories and spoils which the chiefs of the Ring now enjoy. But during all these dark and threatening days, when the encouraging grasp of friendly hand, when the cheering word of a true supporting friend, when the kindly glance or the approving look of a devoted party brother, and when the proffer of hospitality from any who felt sympathy with the cause for which he battled, or evinced approbation of his gallant behavior would have given him joy and pride, and swelled his manly heart with emotions which only the fearless champion who contends against overwhelming odds can know or appreciate---then in those days of roughest fortune and gloomiest outlook, not one token of as much as recognition did Mr. James D. Fay receive from any of the chiefs of the Salem Ring, who now seek to oppress him with the bounties which they have to bestow.
    Another incident we remember: In 1866, this same James D. Fay and Mr. Joseph S. Smith were competitors before the Democratic State Convention held in this city for the nomination to Congress. The Marion County delegation was led by Gen. John F. Miller, a wealthy citizen of Salem, partner in the woolen factory with, and the devoted partisan friend of, Mr. Smith. After a hard struggle in convention Mr. Fay received the nomination. The next morning Gen. Miller remarked to us that had Mr. Smith been nominated, he (Miller) would have gone over to Ladd & Tilton's bank and drawn $10,000 to spend in the campaign, but now not one cent would he give.
    The Marion delegation returned to Salem, and several of them refused to vote the ticket on the day of election. Not one of them actually worked in behalf of Fay; one or two of them professed to support him, but really they injured him by the quiet apathy with which they studiously prosecuted the campaign. Mr. Smith canvassed a portion of the sate, but only for Mr. Smith for U.S. Senator--not for Mr. Fay for Congress. Not one word did he ever utter in any way of his studied speeches in behalf of Mr. Fay. Mr. Grover preserved the same apathetic course toward Mr. Fay. And even Mr. Watkins smothered his accustomed fire and reckless zeal to that campaign, and Mr. Fay was abundantly scratched in the ranks of the Salem Ring faction all over the state.
    It must be particularly gratifying to Mr. Fay that he has at least won his way into the good graces of these chiefs of the Ring, who had so long rewarded his unconquered and enthusiastic Democracy by galling slights, open contumely, and deliberately figuring to defeat his election to Congress. He must feel commingled joy and gratitude in learning that Mr. Watkins is fitting up a suite of rooms for him in Salem--where, as the lone Democratic member of 1862 he was not honored by so much as one poor nod of recognition by the chiefs of the Ring who now so handsomely cater to his comforts and stand ready to furnish him even luxuries.
Weekly Oregon Statesman, Salem, September 9, 1870, page 1


MORE SUPPRESSIONS BY THE "ORGAN."
(From the Bulletin of November 1.)
    In yesterday's Bulletin we instanced the unblushing knavery of the Herald in having mutilated the legislative reports in order to withhold from its readers the condemnation of the State Printer, Thos. Patterson, the business man and part owner of that paper, by the Democratic Legislature lately in session, for the "gross frauds" and plundering of the State Treasury committed by the State Printer. We have another instance now to record.
    Just after the election of Colonel Kelly as United States Senator, the Herald published a most malicious attack upon the President of the Senate, Hon. James D. Fay. The publication was so unprovoked, wanton and infamous that Mr. Fay demanded an investigation of the charges and a vindication of his fair name at the hands of the body over which he presided. A committee was accordingly appointed, and the chairman of that committee, Senator Brown, of Baker County, was one of the most bigoted Senators in behalf of the Herald. In giving in to the report he admitted that he had not devoted the time or application to the case which ought to have been given, yet the report completely vindicated Mr. Fay. In the Herald's report of the proceedings in the senate, after giving a colored version of Mr. Brown's remarks, in its own interest, it says:
    "Messrs. Cornelius and Hendershott introduced resolutions exonerating Mr. Fay from any charges preferred against him.
    "Mr. Cochran called for the ayes and nays on the motion to adopt the resolution."
    Now, we will present the action of the Senate as properly reported, thus:
    "Mr. Hendershott offered a substitute, which was accepted, as follows:
    "Resolved, That the charges preferred against James D. Fay, a Senator on the floor, through the columns of the Oregon Herald, were in our opinion base and slanderous, and beneath the dignity of any respectable newspaper."
    And, besides this stinging rebuke and just condemnation of its course, President Fay made the following remarks:
    "Mr. Fay said he had been slandered by the Herald because he came here in the interest of his section, and determined to do what he could to secure it railroad facilities. The editorials of that paper were the heaviest load he had to pack during that political campaign. The Senator proceeded at length to defend himself against the attacks of the Herald. He said the first assault on his reputation came from the organ of the Democratic Party--the paper of the State Printer, who would not have been State Printer but for the votes he held and cast in the Albany convention. He denounced the charge as cowardly and mean, and said the author of it had not even the manliness to say, when examined, that he meant him."
    The Herald suppresses Mr. Fay's remarks and Mr. Hendershott's substitute. Why? We may well judge. The rogue and simpleton who own that paper, and the poor tool who edits it, are determined that their own readers shall be kept in ignorance of the knavish and shameless robbery of the public purse by the State Printer, and also of the severe but merited condemnation which the Herald and the State Printer each received at the hands of leading Democrats in the Legislature. As they have been guilty of these suppressions in their paper, and inasmuch as the Senate Committee on Printing have proved upon Patterson "gross frauds," we may expect to see the Journals of each House mutilated and altered in every place where the State Printer wishes to keep from the people the condemnation of his own rascality, and the strong censure of the Herald for its willful falsehoods and base slanders. A pretty Democratic officer is the State Printer, to be convicted of robbing the State Treasury by his own party members! A fine state organ is the Herald, to be severely denounced by members of its own party in the Legislature! What an organ to have the cheek to prate about the fraud and corruption of any other party, or of any public officer!
Oregon State Journal, Salem, November 12, 1870, page 1


    Neither of the Jacksonville papers received yesterday contains a word in regard to the scandalous matter alleged by the Herald's correspondent against James D. Fay. Those papers are dated February 25th, and the letters to the Herald were dated a week earlier. The shooting affair took place on the 25th, but subsequent to the publication of the newspapers of that date. The whole scandalous and almost tragical transaction is still involved in mystery, so far as anyone here can judge of it, and we wait for further information before commenting upon it. We may say, however, that if there was really such a state of feeling at Jacksonville about it as the Herald's correspondent alleged, it is passing strange that neither of the papers of that town, for two successive issues after the development of the affair, have had one syllable to say in regard to it.
Oregonian, Portland, March 3, 1871, page 2



    SHOOTING AFFRAY.--The following is from Jacksonville, under date of Feb. 25:
    A shooting affray took place here today on the main street of this town, between Valentine S. Ralls and James D. Fay, in which neither of the parties received serious injury. It seems that Ralls approached Fay and accused him of the seduction of his daughter, and told him that one of them must die. Both drew pistols simultaneously, Ralls firing first, the ball striking the guard of Fay's pistol and preventing its use. Ralls fired three shots, one of which passed through the pocketbook in the breast pocket of Fay's coat, lodging against a rib, but doing no injury. After the shooting, Ralls mounted his horse quietly and rode home.
Weekly Enterprise, Oregon City, March 3, 1871, page 2



    SHOOTING AFFRAY.--Last Saturday, about noon, V. S. Ralls, an old resident of this county, stepped into H. Breitbarth's saloon, in this place, where James D. Fay was sitting, reading a newspaper, when a serious affray took place between the two men. When Ralls stepped in Fay's back was turned to the door and he was not aware of his presence, until Mr. Breitbarth accosted the former, calling him by name. Fay turned immediately, and also spoke to Ralls. He perceived a movement on the part of the latter as though he were trying to draw a pistol; he immediately drew his pistol, and while both pistols were presented almost muzzle to muzzle, Ralls fired, striking Fay's pistol and rendering it useless, the ball splitting in two, cutting his thumb and finger badly, and the two halves passing through the side of his coat, about three inches apart. One of the pieces struck a pocketbook he had in the breast pocket of his coat, passed through it and glanced off on a rib; the other piece did not seem to have much force and did no injury. Ralls then went out of the door, and Fay in the rear of the counter, in the saloon, after which Ralls fired three more shots, none of them taking effect. Fay's pistol was so damaged by the first shot of his antagonist that it was entirely useless, and he never fired a shot. Ralls then went across the street, mounted his horse, and rode home. He was arrested, last Thursday, and brought to town, but his examination was postponed until yesterday. He says Fay drew first. The difficulty grew out of the seduction of Rall's daughter, which he imputes to Fay. With charitable feelings for the unfortunate girl as well as for her more unfortunate parents, we omitted any mention in our last week's issue of her giving birth to an illegitimate child, on the 16th inst., under circumstances calculated to excite the utmost degree of compassion, but among the whys and wherefores of the affray we have just chronicled, we find it necessary to mention it now. It is truly lamentable that an occurrence of this nature has happened in our midst, yet in a case so full of contradictions, we esteem time the best arbiter and judge on whose head the blame should fall. Its decrees at last are sure and its punishments just.
Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, March 4, 1871, page 3


    AN ATTEMPTED MURDER.--
On Saturday last, while Senator Fay was seated in the Bella Union Saloon reading a newspaper, with his back to the door, V. S. Ralls entered, and without a word drew his pistol. Mr. Fay, happening to glance up, caught sight of the action, and springing to his feet had barely time to draw his revolver and present it when Ralls fired, the parties being about six feet apart. The ball from Ralls' pistol glanced along the ramrod of Mr. Fay's pistol, struck the end of the plate of the trigger guard, driving the plate back and disabling the weapon, the parties being so close together that the powder burnt Mr. Fay's fingers and face. The ball split on the end of the plate, a part going through Mr. Fay's coat, pocketbook and striking the second rib on the right side, inflicting a painful flesh wound; while the concussion of the blow on the pistol caused it to inflict painful wounds on the hands and fingers. Ralls, immediately upon firing, retreated to the street and fired two more shots into the saloon at Mr. Fay, who was virtually disarmed, happily, however, inflicting no other damage. A more deliberate attempt at murder was never perpetrated in this state. We understand the proper steps have been taken to bring the attempted murderer to justice.
Democratic Times, Jacksonville, March 4, 1871, page 2


Card from James D. Fay.
    JACKSONVILLE, March 4.--The following card from Senator Fay in relation to the Ralls difficulty appears in one of the local papers today:
    CARD.--In view of atrocious calumnities put afloat by interested persons in regard to my alleged connection with a woman lately in my employ, I deem it proper to state that I deny the charges alleged against me, and court a thorough legal investigation of the affair. I therefore ask a suspension of the public judgment until the case receives the investigation which I trust it will have before the courts, and as to the result of such investigation I have no apprehension.
    (Signed)        JAMES D. FAY.
    JACKSONVILLE, March 4.--V. S. Ralls and James D. Fay, the parties to the shooting affray of last Saturday, were bound over yesterday in the sum of two thousand dollars each, to keep the peace. Ralls was arrested on a charge of an attempt to kill, and gave bonds for his appearance at the next term of court.
Albany Register, March 11, 1871, page 2


The Jacksonville Affair.
    The Jacksonville papers of Saturday last have accounts of the shooting affray in that place between V. S. Ralls and J. D. Fay, with mention of the other and more revolting features of the affair. The Sentinel says:
    "Last Saturday, about noon, V. S. Ralls, an old resident of this county, stepped into H. Breitbarth's saloon, in this place, where James D. Fay was sitting, reading a newspaper, when a serious affray took place between the two men. When Ralls stepped in Fay's back was turned to the door and he was not aware of his presence until Mr. Breitbarth accosted the former, calling him by name. Fay turned immediately, and also spoke to Ralls. He perceived a movement on the part of the latter as though he were trying to draw a pistol; he immediately drew his pistol, and while both pistols were presented almost muzzle to muzzle, Ralls fired, striking Fay's pistol and rendering it useless, the ball splitting in two, cutting his thumb and finger badly, and the two halves passing through the side of his coat, about three inches apart. One of the pieces struck a pocketbook he had in the breast pocket of his coat, passed through it and glanced off on a rib; the other piece did not seem to have much force and did no injury. Ralls then went out of the door, and Fay in the rear of the counter, in the saloon, after which Ralls fired three more shots, none of them taking effect. Fay's pistol was so damaged by the first shot of his antagonist that it was entirely useless, and he never fired a shot. Ralls then went across the street, mounted his horse, and rode home. He was arrested, last Tuesday, and brought to town, but his examination was postponed until yesterday. He says Fay drew first. The difficulty grew out of the seduction of Rall's daughter, which he imputes to Fay. With charitable feelings for the unfortunate girl, as well as for her more unfortunate parents, we omitted any mention in our last week's issue of her giving birth to an illegitimate child, on the 16th inst., under circumstances calculated to excite the utmost degree of compassion, but among the whys and wherefores of the affray we have just chronicled, we find it necessary to mention it now. It is truly lamentable that an occurrence of this nature has happened in our midst, yet in a case so full of contradictions, we esteem time the best arbiter and judge on whose head the blame should fall. Its decrees at last are sure and its punishments just."
    The above is all the Sentinel has in regard to it. The version of the shooting affair given by the Times differs in some particulars from the above. We quote:
    "On Saturday last, while Senator Fay was seated in the Bella Union Saloon reading a newspaper, with his back to the door, V. S. Ralls entered, and without a word drew his pistol. Mr. Fay, happening to glance up, caught sight of the action, and springing to his feet had barely time to draw his revolver and present it when Ralls fired, the parties being about six feet apart. The ball from Ralls' pistol glanced along the ramrod of Mr. Fay's pistol, struck the end of the plate of the trigger guard, driving the plate back and disabling the weapon, the parties being so close together that the powder burnt Mr. Fay's fingers and face. The ball split on the end of the plate, a part going through Mr. Fay's coat, pocketbook and striking the second rib on the right side, inflicting a painful wound; while the concussion of the blow on the pistol caused it to inflict painful wounds on the hands and finger. Ralls, immediately on firing, retreated to the street and fired two more shots into the saloon, at Mr. Fay, who was virtually disarmed, happily, however, inflicting no other damage. A more deliberate attempt at murder was never perpetrated in this state. We understand the proper steps have been taken to bring the attempted murderer to justice."
    The Times in another place says that the account of the shooting affair telegraphed to Portland "was inexcusably false in several particulars. There was no remark made by Ralls in reference to seducing his daughter. That was manufactured from whole cloth." The same paper also makes this statement:
    "The Herald publishes several grossly false and scandalous letters in relation to the Fay-Ralls trouble. The infamous scoundrel, to whom public opinion points as the author of these letters, has been forced by public sentiment to leave his family and the town, just as those letters appeared here."
    We give the above as all the information yet obtained concerning the affair. Whether Fay can exculpate himself remains to be seen, but it would appear that public sentiment at Jacksonville is not so much against him as has been represented. The general drift of the statements in the Jacksonville papers is such as to indicate quite a different state of circumstances from that first reported.
Oregonian, Portland, March 11, 1871, page 2



    SHOOTING AFFRAY AT JACKSONVILLE, OREGON.--The Yreka Journal of March 8th has the annexed:
    Last Saturday a week ago, V. S. Ralls, an old resident of Jackson County, stepped in Breitbarth's saloon, where James D. Fay was. Fay, noticing Ralls drawing a pistol, drew his also, and while both pistols were presented, almost muzzle to muzzle, Ralls fired, striking Fay's pistol, rendering it useless, the ball splitting in two, cutting Fay's thumb and finger, and the two halves passing through the side of his coat. One of the pieces struck a pocketbook in his vest pocket, and glanced off on a rib; the other piece did not seem to have much force. Ralls fired three more shots, none of them taking effect. Fay's pistol being disabled, he was unable to use it. Ralls was arrested on the Thursday following, and bound over in the sum of $1,000 to appear at the next term of the circuit court. The difficulty grew out of the seduction of Ralls' daughter, which Ralls charges on Fay. The girl was employed at Fay's house, and was found missing one morning. A number of citizens made search for her in the vicinity, and found her in the woods near town, with an infant wrapped in her dress, and the girl almost chilled to death. Had she remained there overnight, she would certainly have died. Fay publishes a card in the Jacksonville Democratic Times of last Saturday, denying the charges alleged against him, and asks a suspension of public judgment until the case receives the investigation which he trusts it will have before the courts.
Sacramento Daily Union, March 13, 1871, page 3



The Ralls-Fay Affair.
From the Jacksonville Times.
    "The Herald publishes two letters from this place in reference to the sad affair which recently transpired here. The local papers here, unwilling to further wound the feelings of the family of the girl, and equally unwilling to make a statement in advance of a local investigation, which was expected to take place within a few days, refrained from mentioning the occurrence. But a miserable scoundrel who, while pretending sympathy for the unfortunate girl, in order to glut his personal and political animosity against Mr. Fay, parades her shame through the columns of the Herald, and uses her misfortune as the instrument of his private vengeance, and that paper descending to the level of the Mazeppa, or a like reason publishes these letters. The Mercury, Democrat and other "tenders" of the Herald, without waiting to hear both sides of the case, hasten to repeat the story of the lying coward who did not dare append his name to his communication. Upon the unsupported statement of an anonymous correspondent these papers have thrown themselves into ecstasies of virtuous indignation.
    "We are glad to notice that there are some newspapers in the state who, like ourselves, would denounce the crime in fitting terms if it were true, yet, with a spirit of fairness and justice, wish to hear from the other side before proceeding to denounce an individual unheard. We are happy to notice this spirit of candor among some portion of the press of the state. Mr. Fay has publicly denied the charge. He informed the father of the girl of his anxiety for a legal investigation, and offered to facilitate such investigation by all means in his power. From the fact that such investigation is expected to take place, and from a natural reluctance to publish abroad in the newspapers the domestic arrangements--even to refute the infamous slanders of his enemies--Mr. Fay has thus far refrained from publishing a defense, reserving the facts in his possession for the trial. He has not been afraid of a public uprising as the Herald's correspondent intimates, for not only is it not true that the whole community believed him guilty, but, on the contrary, that belief is confined to a few of his political and personal enemies, and the circumstances connecting Mr. Fay with the affair are so absurd and improbable that there are none of them who really believe it.
    "The Herald's correspondent carefully conceals the fact that it was Mr. Fay who sent the messenger to the house of the girl's father; that it was he who organized the search; that it was he who sent at his own expense for her mother; that no member of his family, nor in the community, suspected her condition, and that she disappeared without the knowledge of any person in Mr. Fay's house; that it was he who sent for medical assistance, and that it was to his own house he brought her when found; that his family and himself, as well as the community, were ignorant of her condition. He also conceals the fact that while still upon the hill, where Fay and every other man present cheerfully took off their coats and covered the girl to make her comfortable as possible while waiting for the carriage, the Herald's sympathetic correspondent was the only man who refused to lend his coat. He insinuates that Fay stood in danger of a mob, but he does not add that when his letter appeared here so great was his terror of personal violence that he would shirk out of town every morning early and remain all day, slinking back when darkness covered his advent, and kept this up for four days, and even at this writing does not dare show his cowardly face upon the streets except at rare intervals when the coast is clear.
    "In conclusion, we beg to assure Mr. Fay's many friends throughout the state that he is ready and anxious for the fullest and freest judicial investigation of this unfortunate affair. An infamous attempt has been made to blacken his good name by the slanders of cowardly scribblers, and the conspiracy of others to blackmail him. His life has been attempted in a most cowardly manner, and his political and personal enemies are enjoying a devilish carnival over what they fondly hope is the ruin of his reputation, but he is confident, and so are his friends, that an investigation will not only develop his innocence, but [reveal] the most damnable blackmail conspiracy ever hatched in the state."
    To the above we append the following, which explains itself:
    "PORTLAND, March 9.--To James D. Fay: We are authorized by J. R. Neil to inform all whom it may concern that he was the author of the letters to the Herald alluded to in your dispatch of March 1st.
'T. PATTERSON & CO.
    "On the 1st of March I telegraphed to the proprietors of the Herald for the name of the author of the lying and scandalous letters from this place, in reference to myself and an unfortunate girl, who is being used as the tool of others, to gratify personal and political vengeance. After nine days deliberation the above answer is given. If the coward and liar whose name is given above were worthy of my notice he should not complain of a want of attention on my part. Our last interview proved his cowardice, his whole career proves his meanness, malignity and mendacity, and to the judgment of the public we leave him for the present.
"JAMES D. FAY."
Oregonian, Portland, March 18, 1871, page 2


The Fay-Ralls Affray.
    Below we publish a sworn statement from the daughter of Mr. Ralls, which will be found to corroborate the letters heretofore published. Mr. Ralls also publishes a long letter in which he charges the seduction of his daughter on Mr. Fay, but as we did not publish Mr. Fay's defense from the Times, we do not deem it just to publish his statement. The affidavit was published in the Herald of the 21st inst.:
STATE OF OREGON,
County of Jackson.
    I, Hannah A. Ralls, being duly sworn, depose and say that my name is Hannah A. Ralls; that my age is twenty-one years; that I have been working for James D. Fay, at his house in Jacksonville, most of my time during the past eighteen months; that about one year ago James D. Fay and I were engaged to be married; that we occupied rooms upstairs, with only a partition separating them. I, the deponent, further say that I was delivered of a child in Mr. Fay's stable, on the morning of the 16th of February, 1871; that said child was begotten by James D. Fay, in his own house, under promise of marriage. I further state that Mr. Fay knew my situation, and advised me to go home and have my mother give me medicine to destroy said child; that I was confined some two weeks before Mr. Fay or I either expected me to be. I also state that Mr. Fay saw me on my way to his stable, to be confined. I further state that Mr. Fay and I occupied the same bed the last time on Sunday night, February 12, 1871.
    I, Hannah A. Ralls, being duly sworn, depose and say that the statements set forth in the foregoing affidavit are true.
HANNAH A. RALLS.
    Sworn and subscribed to before me, this 8th day of March, A.D. 1871.
LA F. GALL, J.P.
Weekly Enterprise, Oregon City, March 31, 1871, page 2


Fun at Jacksonville.
    JACKSONVILLE, Nov. 21.--This morning about 8 o'clock two young women named Fanny and Hannah Ralls walked into the dining room of the United States Hotel, in this place, armed with cowhides, and administered an unmerciful castigation to a man named George Tribble, lately arrived from Crescent City. The girls accuse him of testifying falsely against the character of one of them before the grand jury, and the act was applauded by everyone present.
"By State Telegraph," Oregonian, Portland, November 22, 1871, page 1


    The grand jury of Jackson County ignored a bill against Hon. J. D. Fay for seduction. Thus ends a case which caused so much excitement last spring.
    The trial of V. S. Ralls, for shooting at James D. Fay in February last, was concluded in the circuit court on the 27th ult., having occupied nearly three days. After an absence of only half an hour the jury came into court with a verdict of "not guilty," which was received with continued applause by the crowd that occupied the courtroom.
"State News," Oregon City Enterprise, December 1, 1871, page 2


Southern Oregon.
    The Jacksonville Sentinel says: Miss Hannah Ralls, upon the trial of her father for assaulting J. D. Fay with a dangerous weapon, gave a full statement, under oath, of her seduction, her flight from the house, and her extreme suffering in the cold from early in the morning until found late in the afternoon. She gave her evidence slowly and calmly, without showing the least vindictiveness or anger. Her statement brought moisture to the eyes of many in the crowded courthouse, and carried conviction of the truthfulness of what she stated to every unprejudiced mind. This evidence was admitted for the purpose of showing what an overwhelming weight of mental suffering the defendant's mind must have been under upon hearing of the ruin of his family by the prosecuting witness.
Weekly Oregon Statesman, Salem, December 13, 1871, page 1


 THE FAY-RALLS CASE.
    The Jacksonville Times of Dec. 7th contains the following convincing leading article in regard to this somewhat noted case. We copy it entire:
    For nine months this county, and in fact the whole state, has been filled with monstrous rumors, misrepresentations and slander, charging upon Senator Fay the seduction of Hannah Ralls. When these charges were first made public the accused publicly denied it, and expressed his desire to submit it to a judicial investigation, in a card published in this paper. No circuit court convened from the time this charge was made until last month, and when the grand jury was impaneled the girl made her appearance before it, and preferred her charge, producing all the evidence she had. The gentlemen composing this body were Ben. Haymond of Rock Point, foreman; J. B Wrisley of Manzanita, John Grieves of Jacksonville precinct, K. Kubli of Applegate, A. C. Rockfellow of Ashland, L. G. Allen of Rogue River, and Wm. Haskins of Applegate. All of these gentlemen are well known, prominent and respectable citizens of the county, whose integrity and honor no one will seriously question. Messrs. Rockfellow, Grieves, Wrisley and Haskins are Mr. Fay's political enemies; with Messrs. Haymond and Haskins his personal relations are such that they do not speak. His relations with Messrs. Kubli, Wrisley and Allen are cordial; and his acquaintance with Messrs. Grieves and Rockfellow is most limited. All of these gentlemen have heard the grave charges preferred against Senator Fay for the past nine months and must be presumed to be more or less affected by them, but to their honor be it said, they refused to allow prejudice, political or personal rancor to swerve them in an investigation made under their oaths as grand jurors. After hearing the evidence of the girl and her witnesses, and an investigation lasting over two days, they refused to find a bill, which is something extraordinary, considering the outside pressure manufactured and the multitude of slanders put in circulation by the enemies of Fay, who were using the girl and her family as a means of destroying him, in the hope of political success upon the ruins of his reputation. The surprise abated, however, when the girl's story came to be related on the stand. On the trial of Ralls, she was introduced, not as a witness to prove the seduction as a fact, but to prove that she related her story to her father the night before the shooting took place, in order to show the effect upon his mind. She told her story and recited it as a lesson learned from a book and conned over beforehand, winding up by stating "this is what I told my father." She asserts that she "told her father." She asserts that she was at Fay's house on the 1st of February, 1870; that on the 2nd he made improper advances to her, which she repulsed, and he told her she was right. The next night he repeated his advances and promised her marriage. She again resisted him, but on the 5th he came to her bed and accomplished her seduction under promise of marriage. She was very particular in her statement of dates, and also in the statement that both of Fay's sisters were residing at his house at the time. These ladies were introduced for the purpose, we presume, of adding to the dramatic situation. The conversation detailed as taking place on the 1st of February took place, as she says, while these ladies were out calling. On the 2nd they were also out when the conversation took place. We stop here to remark that the whole history of seduction may safely be challenged for a case, such as this is represented to be, where a virtuous girl was seduced in the brief space of four days. She is approached on the 2nd, again on the 3rd, and yields on the 5th! It brings to mind the memorable saying of Caesar, "Veni, vidi, vici," and argues either that Fay was perfectly irresistible or the girl wonderfully complaisant.
    Now the truth is, Hanna Ralls was not at Fay's house either on the 1st, 2nd or 5th of February, 1870, she was actually in the employ of Mr. Max Muller of Jacksonville, who, with his wife, can verify this statement, as can also Mrs. Louis Horne, Hon. J. N. T. Miller and wife. Hannah Ralls did not come to reside at Fay's until about a week after his little son was taken sick of scarlet fever. A reference to the files of the Democratic News will show that the number for Saturday, February 12, 1870, Vol. 1, No. 42, contains the following:
    "ANOTHER.--Hon. James D. Fay's little son Jamie was taken with scarlet fever last Tuesday. His case is a severe one, though not as yet dangerous."
    Now this paragraph fixed the date of the boy's illness on the 8th of February. The ladies and gentlemen above mentioned will testify that Hannah Ralls was not residing at Fay's house at that time. Mr. and Mrs. J. N. T. Miller and Mrs. Horne frequently sat up with the child, and knew that neither she nor Mrs. J. D. Coughlin (Fay's sister) were residing there at that time. These witnesses are all unimpeachable, and the evidence afforded by the newspaper paragraph could not be manufactured. In the next place, Mrs. J. D. Coughlin, whom the girl states was living at Fay's house, did not come to Jacksonville till May 4, 1870. This can be verified by reference to the books of the stage office. Thus, there are two most important points of the girl's testimony fairly and squarely contradicted by disinterested witnesses. The circumstances under which she came to Fay's house were simply these: She came one day to see the child, after he had been sick about a week, and was asked to stop until the child got better, as the family and friends were all worn out with watching and attending him. This she agreed to do if her employer was willing. Mr. Fay saw Mr. Muller, and he agreed to let her come, under the circumstances. After the child got better, about the first of March, she went to Muller's and applied for her old situation and Fay also went to Muller and offered to return her to her first employer, but he had in the meantime employed a Chinaman, and she was refused. She then stayed at Fay's, chiefly because it was through his means that she was deprived of the place at Muller's. This application upon her part and his is totally inconsistent with the idea of her being under an engagement to marry Fay at that time. Then her statement as to his conduct when, as she alleges, she told him that the crisis had arrived (on the 15th of February, 1871--the day the child was born) that she went to his room-door and told him, and that "he sat up in his bed and laughed," is so monstrously improbable and so utterly preposterous that it will tax the credulity of her warmest friends and Fay's bitterest enemies to the very uttermost to believe it. That a man, situated as she alleges Fay was, with the victim of his seductive arts about to bring forth a bastard on his very hearthstone--with his social, professional and political reputation crumbling in ruins on his head, should laugh at the spectacle, is something extraordinary indeed. We fancy, with the rest of mankind, it would be a moment fraught with indescribable agony, instead of a time for laughter, and we imagine that the "counselor" who put up this little job drew too largely as well as too injudiciously on his fertile imagination, when he introduced this little incident.
    But, above all, her leaving a bed in the house of her alleged seducer, to bring forth her child in the hills, is the strongest point against her. She assigns no reason for it, and most probably had none, unless it be that she dared not face the family she had deceived for nine long months. The grand jury could not believe her improbable statement, nor can anyone else when confronted with the facts. Mr. Fay courted the investigation, and the action of the grand jury has amply vindicated his reputation from the malicious assaults of his slanderers. Of course we have no means of knowing how the vote stood, but rumor has it that so far from there being but three votes against the indictment, as the Sentinel basely and falsely insinuates, there was but one for it. This, under the circumstances, is a great triumph, after the bitter tide of persecution, slander and falsehood which this man has had to stem and fight since last February. His enemies promised themselves a victory by the aid of the congenial weapons of falsehood, perjury and misrepresentation, and have a defeat to acknowledge, which they own by seeking to cowardly beslime the grand jury. The gentlemen composing that body, it is highly probable, will survive the attack.
Daily Oregon Bulletin, Portland, December 14, 1871. Clipping in the Beekman Papers, Mss 916, box 15, Oregon Historical Society Research Library.


Mr. William M. Turner as a Telegrapher and as a Citizen.
    In an issue of the Jacksonville Times, its supposed editor, Mr. James D. Fay, gives vent to his spleen in an unwarrantable and unfounded attack upon the agent of the Western Union Telegraph in this place. The Times endeavors to throw discredit on the public telegrams sent by that person, in relation to the Ralls-Fay affair, and reflects in an infamous manner on his business integrity. We desire to show the public that every telegram sent was true, and to teach Mr. James D. Fay that the day has passed when he can ride roughshod over this community or any member thereof. Charge number one is that the telegrapher sent a public dispatch last spring in relation to the shooting affray; that was false, inasmuch as Ralls did not accuse Fay of the seduction of his daughter. The only inaccuracy was that Ralls did not accuse him when he shot, but it makes no difference, Ralls did accuse him, the victim accused him, and has sworn to it in open court, and notwithstanding the action of the last grand jury, he stands so accused, at this hour, before the people of this county, whether he be guilty or not. Charge number two is that there was no applause when the Misses Ralls publicly cowhided Tribble. Right here we assert and can prove that the dispatch in relation to that affair was strictly true--that the act met with the emphatic approval of nineteen-twentieths of our citizens, and public sentiment has decided that if the lash had fallen on the principal in that social drama, instead of on a worthless tool, now held on a charge of perjury, the applause would have been measurably greater. Charge number three is that Mr. Turner did not telegraph the ignoring of the charge of seduction against Fay. This is true, and we blame him for it. He should have done so, and added that the public were in a frenzy of shame and indignation at the failure of justice, owing to the fact that the grand jury were instructed that it required two witnesses to procure an indictment, and that a vigilance committee was openly talked of--not whispered about--for the purpose of satisfying justice; had he done this, he would have done his whole duty. Charge number four is that there was no noticeable applause when Ralls was acquitted. It is false; there was applause, marked and emphatic, from a crowd of fifty or sixty persons, those who kept silent being only the attaches of the court, and so much so that the judge's voice was nearly inaudible. The editor of the Times (the prosecuting witness) did not hear it, but today he feels it, and he knows that the telegram was strictly true. James D. Fay has not been treated unfairly, and on the contrary he willfully suppresses the fact that the telegraph agent went out of his way last spring and telegraphed his card of denial, when he was under no obligation to do so. We pronounce the whole tirade a groundless, infamous and useless attempt to rob a man of the means of supporting his family, by casting a slur on his business integrity. If James D. Fay has any charges to make against William M. Turner as a telegrapher, why does he not make them to the officers of the company, instead of through his now-disreputable organ? Why? Because he knows that he could not sustain them. Because he knows that Mr. Turner enjoys the entire confidence of this community and of his employers, and that no business firm or respectable citizen in this place would ask for his removal. The Times is so kind as to call the telegraphers attention to certain passages in the code. We are informed that the agent is quite familiar with them, and as legal business is dull, we would kindly ask its editor to familiarize himself with the following interesting paragraphs from the same volume, page 558, sec. 631.
    "If any person, under promise of marriage, shall seduce and have illicit connection with any unmarried female of previous chaste character, such person, upon conviction thereof, shall be punished by imprisonment in the penitentiary, not less than one, nor more than five years, or by imprisonment in the county jail, not less than three months, nor more than one year, or by fine not less than five hundred, nor more than one thousand dollars."
    Page 550, sec. 599.
    "Every person convicted of the crime of perjury, committed on the trail of, or proceedings in a criminal action for a crime punishable with death or imprisonment in the penitentiary not less than five, nor more than twenty years. Every person convicted of the crime of perjury, committed in any proceeding in a court of justice, other than such criminal action, shall be punished by imprisonment in the penitentiary, not less than three, nor more than ten years, and every person convicted of the crime of perjury, committed otherwise than in a proceeding before a court of justice, or convicted of the crime of subornation of perjury, however committed, shall be punished by imprisonment in the penitentiary, not less than two, nor more than five years."
    Now for Mr. Turner as a citizen. We know of only one man in Jackson County who makes any pretensions to purity; that is the editor of the Times. Mr. Turner makes none. Suppose his life prior to his coming among us had been idle and dissolute and abandoned. What of it? Suppose even that he had lain in the gutter. What of it? Every right-minded man or woman must admire the manhood and will of any man that raises him from degradation to the position of a useful and respected citizen. During six years' residence among us, no one can point a finger to a stain on his character, and we honestly think that if he thought that nine-tenths of the people of this town and valley believed him guilty of an infamous crime, and despised him for it, he would leave instantly, and not allow his name to be a stench in the public nostrils. Whatever Mr. Turner has done, there are some things he has not done. He has never lain drunk in the gutter of this town and shot, assassin-like, at the friendly hand that would have raised him up; he has never crowded himself--armed--into a public assemblage, and wantonly insulted one of the first ladies of the place, and he has never crossed the threshold of any man's home and left shame and sorrow and ruin behind him like the slime of a viper. Whatever he may have been the world takes him as it finds him--not as he was. There are few men who do not look back with regret to the errors of youth, but fewer that profit by the retrospect, and take a "new departure," as it is possible Mr. Turner has done, and although the doctrine is quite distasteful to his detractor, we advise him to try it. This controversy has been forced upon us--we have not sought it; so let the Times do its worst, and in the language of its friend, Giles Wells, "lay on Macduff."
Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, December 16, 1871, page 2


    Geo. Tribble, who was cowhided by the Misses Ralls, in Jacksonville, has been arrested for perjury and bound over in the sum of $500, at the instance of Miss Hannah Ralls, whom he is said to have slandered.
"Pacific Coasters," Albany Democrat, December 22, 1871, page 2


The Honorable (?) James D. Fay.
    Last week's Times asks us why we attack Senator Fay in defending another individual. Here is the reason. James D. Fay, the senator from this county, is the editor of the Times. It is he who speaks of the Honorable James D. Fay. It is he who beslobbers himself with maudlin praise through its filthy columns. It is he who slanders and vilifies decent men. It is he who sneaks behind its editorial chair and denounces the mother of his illegitimate child as a harlot and a perjured woman. Senator Fay thinks to evade public contempt by raising a hue and cry about another person, but Mr. Fay, we beg to assure you that the dodge won't win. It is not the telegrapher here, who did his duty, that is attracting attention, it is you that is being pilloried before the people of this state. You are charged with an infamous crime. How do you disprove it? By claiming that it is a "monstrous absurdity" that a man of Senator Fay's political, professional and social position should be guilty. What is your political position? In this county, with three hundred Democratic majority, you were elected by eleven votes. You went to Salem and you sold your party to the Republicans. You broke your pledges and helped to rob the settlers at Klamath Lake of their homes. You sold your friends in the Humboldt Branch R.R. Co. Have you any social position? Do you deserve any? Let us see. Call James T. Glenn, Jacob Ish, David Linn--men whose characters you dare not impeach. What do they say? They say that when you and V. S. Ralls were bound over, you, Senator Fay, held up your hand and pledged your sacred honor never to appear against Ralls, and if necessary that you would leave the county. How did you keep your word, Honorable Senator? By prosecuting Ralls with all the malignity of your vindictive nature. Call the next witness--Wm. Bybee answers. He is truth and uprightness itself. You confronted him with your usual impudence and asked him if he had ever said that he would not believe you under oath--Bybee replied that in regard to the charge of seduction he would not believe you on a stack of Bibles as high as the sky. Did you strike him? No! Did you shoot him? No, sir! You turned on your heels and sneaked off satisfied. You sat on the edge of a gutter in this town, verging on delirium tremens, Senator Fay, and when a friend would have raised you up, you drew your derringer and shot at him. You sneaked to the back window of a poor widow's house in this town--she gave you two minutes to leave; you only required one. You went to the house of another widow here at two o'clock in the morning with your lascivious advances, but you were baffled and lurked about her house till daylight drove you away.
    You used language at the German Festival to a lady such as any other man but you would be ashamed of. We congratulate you, Honorable Senator, on your social and political standing. How about the charge of seduction? Hannah Ralls makes oath before God that you seduced her under promise of marriage. The people of this county, irrespective of party or sex, believe her. How do you refute it? By your own denial and the evidence of a horse thief! How much is either worth? Senator Fay, clear your skirts of that damning accusation. Come out and tell the people what your intentions were when Thomas G. Reames saw you stealing along on the track of that unfortunate girl, who fortunately was not first found by you. Call your "personal friend" John B. Wrisley, grand juror. He says that he and five other grand jurors were willing to swear that they believed the child was yours. But fortunately you had a defender in the public prosecutor, who prevented an indictment. You know yourself that it is yours, and more proof than the word of such a man as you will be required to rebut the oath of your victim. Senator Fay, the honorable man, dares us to cowhide him. Brave man--that strikes and defames the mother of his child from the covert of an editorial sanctum--that is a woman's job! Hannah Ralls is man enough for you; although you did swear before the grand jury that you did not know whether she was a man or a woman. If she is too busy taking care of your child, call on her father. We would have raised you up, vile man, by silence and forbearance, but you would not be raised. Stay then where we place you before the people of this state, as a seducer, a slanderer, a public servant without scruple or honesty, a betrayer of his friends, a libertine, a citizen whose word is not worth a straw, a disgrace to journalism and to humanity, a loathsome thing without shame and a man without a spark of manhood. Wince if you will; cry persecution, slander, calumny, falsehood--anything--your tongue is no longer a scandal--but never think to escape the popular verdict of the people of this county, or take yourself down from the gibbet on which we have placed you. Could we paint black enough we would show you in your true colors; but go. We have done with you and leave you to the tortures of conscience, for bad as you are, with worse than the brand of Cain on you, and your face stamped with the hoof of sin, your looks show that there is a demon within you that gives you little rest.
Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, December 30, 1871, page 2


A Coward, Liar and a Villain.
    The nondescript which slinks around the editorial sanctum of the Democratic slander mill has again sent forth his feeble, dying moan, imploring the public to turn their attention from his crime-stained character, and see if they could not find something wrong in my official acts to engage their attention for a while, and thus give him a little rest. He has so far tacitly admitted the charges I made against him two weeks ago to be true. In last week's Times this bisulcous vituperator pours forth an amount of billingsgate sufficient to warrant the belief that he thinks he controls the whole stock on the market, and the persistency with which he bawls forth his wares would seem to qualify him for a first-rate vendor of charcoal, in which occupation the blackness of his complexion would beautifully harmonize with the blackness of his character and his dark deeds.
    He publishes from the county records a bill presented and certified to by me, for the expenses of a road survey from Bybee's ferry to Ft. Klamath, thence to Link River, and costing the county about five hundred dollars altogether, and if paid for at the rates allowed by the government for their land surveys would have cost the county twelve hundred dollars, but the principal item to which he takes exceptions, and to which he has devoted a column and a half to prove the enormity of the swindle, was the fact that I brought in a bill for 62½ cents a day per man for provisions furnished for the board of the men employed upon said survey, which the philanthropic commissioners cut down to 37½ cents per day, and which this dishonorable candle-holder Fay virtually says is too much food for a laboring man who works from ten to fifteen hours in a July sun.
    Yes, men of Jackson County, who earn your bread by the sweat of your brow, this man J. D. Fay, whom you elected to make your laws, would cut your rations down to nearly one-third prison fare. Yes, the culprits in our jail are allowed six dollars worth of board per week, yet this soft, white-handed, soft-headed Hon. (?) Senator considers three bits worth of board per day as too good and too much for a man that earns his bread by the sweat of his brow.
    We do not understand why this great reformer does not go after the County Commissioners for their extravagance in allowing the Sheriff six dollars per week for boarding the criminals in our jail, unless there is a sympathetic feeling between himself and all other villains, and perhaps, with an eye to the future, he does not want to see prison fare reduced.
    This living proof of Darwin's theory, that man sprang from a baboon, this thing in the image of man and with the instincts of a brute, imagines he can make and remake men; he also thinks he owns the original Democratic Party in this county, and in this opinion he is joined by a small ring of his strikers in and near town, who think that by his trickery and chicanery they can foist themselves upon the party and secure the county offices. They expect to go to Fay when they die, and they nightly pray in this style:
Now I lay me down to sleep,
Please J. D. Fay my soul to keep,
If I should die before I wake,
Please J. D. fay my soul to take.
    All good Democrats who did not subscribe to this change in the litany two years ago must repent and confess their past sins to this great high priest Fay, do penance and take back seats, and not be admitted to full communion for the next two years. All who do not subscribe to this programme are to be consigned to Fay's Democratic purgatory, there to remain until the candle-snuffers of this high priest Fay are paid enough to pray them out. All who do not champion this man Fay are alike subject to his maledictions, and he tries to turn every man out of his means of making a livelihood who does not worship this brazen serpent.
    Because Mr. Turner telegraphed some very unpleasant truths in his news dispatches about this man, he tried by every foul and false means to turn him out of his office, but failed most signally; then, as Mr. Turner and myself were associated together in a surveying contract, and because he knew that I dislike him as sincerely as Turner did, he started in on me with his vile falsehoods, but he has started in on the wrong man, as I don't propose to turn out as pliantly as man might suppose. I have many things in my favor which this man Fay never possessed and never will possess. I have brain and muscle, a trade and profession, and friends who I have never betrayed, and I expect to live here and make a comfortable living for myself and family for a long time to come, in spite of this man Fay and his minions. Yes, Mr. Fay, I laugh to scorn all your vile attempts to deprive me of the means of making a livelihood.
    This bovine specimen with his suspension canine phiz does not need any more showing up; we will therefore close with this little hymn:
Poor Jimmy Fay, you've had your day,
Your tricks are aus gespielt,
You jumped up a man the other day
And got your peepers peeled.
   
You stormed about the courthouse,
And made yourself an ass,
You run against an honest hand
And straightway went to grass.
   
The laboring man you would cut down
To three bits worth of food,
But for jailbirds' fare you do declare,
That a dollar is none too good.
   
You think you can make and remake men,
And your friends may think so maybe,
But your greatest effort in that line
Was one very small gal baby.
   
Now Jimmy go and bag your head,
And say your name ain't Fay,
And we'll put you in your little bed,
And there we'll let you stay.
Yours, occasionally,
    J. S. HOWARD.
Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, March 9, 1872, page 2


    One Geo. W. Tribble, who was supposed to have gone mysteriously dead in Jackson County last fall, has recently turned up as a marrying man in Missouri. Well, not much difference after all, and the mourners may as well keep their crepe on.
"State News," Weekly Oregon Statesman, Salem, April 3, 1872, page 2


    The Lafayette Courier is one of the best Democratic papers in this state. Is editor is a representative man in his party and, with his graceful yet trenchant pen wields an influence which distinguishes him at once as the terror of his enemies and the envy and admiration of his friends. Therefore when the Courier directs its attention to the demolition of any individual the friends of that individual, if he has any, ought in common prudence to stand from under, so that the inevitable blow will fall upon the doomed alone. The last issue of the Courier contains the political death warrant of James D. Fay. That unlucky gentleman is thereby driven from the ranks of the Democracy, and consigned to the outer darkness of the unfaithful. Aside, good friends, and let the convict pass! Henceforth he is a Republican, a conservative--anything in fact to which obloquy properly attaches, but never again a time-honored and unterrified Democrat.
Weekly Oregon Statesman, Salem, May 1, 1872, page 1
\

    T. B. Kent and Jas. A. Miller have purchased the Jacksonville Times, and Hon. J. D. Fay retires from its editorial tripod. The Times announces that it will support the nominee of the Baltimore Convention, whoever he may be. We extend our hand to the new engineers of the Times and wish them abundant fortune in their enterprise.
Albany Democrat, July 12, 1872, page 2


SALEM, OCT. 10.
    A personal rencontre occurred on the street in this city last night, and excited considerable interest. From what I can learn it appears that Eugene Semple, State Printer, and J. H. Lappens, Chief of Portland Police, met on the corner near the Chemeketa House, angry words followed, when Lappens struck Semple with his cane. The latter drew a pistol but being in too close quarters to shoot he used it as a club and knocked Lappens down with it. At this juncture Hon. J. D. Fay, President of the Senate, rushed into the arena and began striking Semple over the head with his cane. Semple gave Fay a blow which sent him to grass, and before hostilities could be resumed parties stepped forward and separated the belligerents. Many rumors are afloat as to the cause of this disgraceful affair, but as I can give no authentic information upon the subject I shall not attempt to repeat the idle rumors here. It is feared that the difficulty is not yet ended, as much bad blood has been engendered among the friends of both parties.--Mr. Semple has the unqualified sympathy of all disinterested parties, as the attack upon him is looked upon as having been unfair and unjustifiable.
M.V.B.
Albany Democrat, October 11, 1872, page 2


    COWARDLY ASSAULT.--We take following in relation to an affray which took place in Salem last Wednesday evening from the Mercury of yesterday: "Last evening between six and seven o'clock, a most dastardly attack was made upon Mr. Eugene Semple, State Printer. The affair occurred as follows, so far as we are able to obtain the facts: James D. Fay had some words with a gentleman from Portland of an unfriendly character, but they were separated by bystanders and each went his way. Shortly afterward some person went into the dining room of the Chemeketa Hotel and informed some persons seated at a table that a person outside was making use [of] language derogatory to the character of Mr. Fay. James H. Lappens, Chief of Police of Portland, immediately announced his determination to stop the mouth of the individual who was bold enough to say aught of Mr. Fay, and immediately started out of the hotel. On the opposite corner from the hotel, in front of the Magnolia Saloon, he met Mr. Semple, who had taken no part in the previous controversy [and] made some remark to him of which we are not informed, and struck him with his cane, forcing Mr. Semple into the saloon. Mr. S. had, however, apparently got the better of the Chief and would probably have given him more than he anticipated, when Fay and Trevitt, a resident of Wasco County, appeared and commenced an assault upon Mr. Semple. Semple then quit Lappens and went after Fay, but the odds were too much for him, and parties interfering ended the affair. There can be no doubt that the attack was prearranged, as the two accomplices of Lappens were inside the saloon almost immediately upon the attack, and used their weapons vigorously until prevented by bystanders."
    The only comment we shall make at present is that when men are compelled to descend to the degrading alternative of resorting to a cowardly attack upon a person--and that, too, with the odds of three to one--who may be opposed to them upon certain measures, it is evident that their projects must be in a desperate condition, and unworthy of the support of honorable men.
Oregon City Enterprise, October 11, 1872, page 3



    SHOOTING AFFRAY.--About three o'clock yesterday a serious shooting affray occurred in front of White & Martin's store. James D. Fay shot Horace Ish through the side of the head, and the latter is supposed to be mortally wounded. We abstain from attempting to give any particulars until the facts in the case can be reliably learned.
Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, March 8, 1873, page 3


Letter from Jacksonville.
Jacksonville, March 9, 1873.
To the Editor of the Oregonian:
    On Friday, the 7th inst., our city assumed the appearance of the good old days of '52-3, when revolvers, derringers, knives and twenty-dollar pieces were as plenty as redskins in the lava bed. The cause which produced his unusual display of weapons was an altercation between J. D. Fay and H. Ish. Not being an eyewitness to the bloody conflict, I am therefore compelled to accept the statements of others, although in many respects they conflict. It is the general opinion, however, that Ish became offended at some remarks made by Fay in court, reflecting upon the veracity of the Ish family. William Ish is a party to a suit now in court. H. Ish, meeting Fay on the pavement opposite White & Martin's store, approached him and spat in his face, at the same time drawing his knife. I shall now give Ish's statement: He says as soon as he spat in Fay's face, Fay stepped back, drew his pistol and asked what he meant. He still continued spitting, and Fay backing: He then came to the conclusion that Fay was not going to resent the insult, and was in the act of putting up his knife when Fay fired at him, the ball ranging too high and missed him. He then made for Fay, who was backing, and fell, but instantly raised his pistol and again fired, the ball passing between Ish's thumb and first finger and taking effect in the jaw, glancing downward and lodged in the neck, causing a dangerous wound, but [it] is not considered mortal. The ball has not yet been extracted, but quite a number of broken bones have. William Ish, who was standing some distance off, ran up and is charged with firing one shot at Fay, the ball striking a memorandum book and glancing off, demoralizing the book, but not doing any injury to Fay. Mr. H. Ish, upon receiving the shot in the jaw, fell across Fay, and they were instantly separated.
    The above is as near the facts as I can get at this time. I understand the matter will be investigated by the authorities, when the facts in the case will be fully developed.
Oregonian, Portland, March 12, 1873, page 2


    Jim Fay's pocketbook is an eminent life preserver. The Times tells us that an affray occurred in Jacksonville last Friday, between James D. Fay and Wm. K. Ish and Horace Ish, which resulted in the shooting of Horace Ish in the cheek by Fay, and the narrow escape of Fay from a bullet fired by Wm. K. Ish, which lodged in Fay's pocketbook, breaking the force of and diverting the ball, which would probably otherwise have pierced his heart. Ish is seriously, if not mortally, wounded.
Albany Democrat, March 14, 1873, page 2


    SHOOTING SCRAPE IN OREGON.--A shooting affray took place in Jacksonville, Oregon, on March 8th, between James D. Fay, William K. Ish and Horace Ish, resulting in the latter being dangerously wounded. Fay and Horace Ish had some trouble over a lawsuit, and, meeting in the street, the latter spit in the former's face, whereupon Fay drew his pistol and shot Ish twice, one ball taking effect in his head. William K. Ish then shot at Fay, the ball passing through a pocketbook in the latter' pocket, but doing him no injury.
Idaho World, Idaho City, March 20, 1873, page 2



    Mr. H. Ish, who was wounded in the jaw by J. D. Fay a few weeks ago, is doing well and will be out in a short time.
"Letter from Jacksonville,"
Oregonian, Portland, March 22, 1873, page 1


    Hon. James D. Fay, of Jackson County, will soon leave for San Francisco, where he intends taking up his permanent residence.
"Summary of State News Items," Oregon City Enterprise, November 28, 1873, page 2


    ON THE STUMP.--Hon. James D. Fay has taken the stump for Tilden and Hendricks in California, and is announced to speak in several principal points in that state. He is a first-class and effective speaker and will do good work for the Democratic cause.
Eugene City Guard, October 14, 1876, page 3


    ERRONEOUS.--The rumor that Hon. James D. Fay, of San Francisco, would remove to Salem for the practice of his profession turns out to be unfounded. From a card received by Judge Hanna we learn that he has formed a co-partnership with Eugene N. Deuprey and H. W. Kind, two prominent San Francisco attorneys, under the firm name of Fay, Deuprey & Kind, with office at 214 Sansome Street.
Democratic Times, Jacksonville, February 7, 1879, page 3


LAWYER J. D. FAY ON HIS MUSCLE.
    A lively pugilistic encounter took place in the city criminal court at San Francisco on the 21st ult. during the progress of the now-celebrated criminal case of Dr. W. F. Smith and Annie Carpenter. Numerous parties have been drawn into the case, including a number of parties well known in Oregon. On the above morning James D. Fay, the well-known attorney, until recently a resident of Southern Oregon, played a somewhat unexpected part in the case, which is thus described in the San Francisco Chronicle:
    As Mr. Levy, the prosecuting attorney, commenced his opening speech, James D. Fay entered the court room and, thinking all the chairs occupied, he asked the bailiff to procure him a seat, as he desired to hear the statement of the case. Just as the bailiff was about to get him one, Mr. Fay perceived a chair near Mr. Levy unoccupied, which he moved among those occupied by other attorneys and sat upon it. As Mr. Levy closed, Mr. Neilson came in. Going up to Mr. Fay, he said, "That is my chair and I want it."
    Mr. Fay--I am a lawyer and entitled to a seat here, and do not know of any private property in the chairs. If you want a seat, speak to the bailiff and he will procure you one.
    Mr. Neilson--Well, that is a very ungentlemanly proceeding.
    Mr. Fay (raising his forearm with the back of his hand outward)--Please repeat that sentence.
    Mr. Neilson--I say that is a very ungentlemanly proceeding.
    Mr. Fay imparted a swift and graceful motion to his arm, the back of his hand impinged with much vim on the full front of Mr. Neilson's face, and there was a resonant smack. There was a profound sensation in the court. Mr. Neilson looked astonished, Mr. Fay looked unconcerned, and the court said quietly:
    "Mr. Bailiff, you will see that nothing of that kind occurs again, and as soon as the matter can be inquired into, full inquiry will be made."
    The bailiff started for the scene of hostilities, and Neilson squared off at the impassive attorney. Fay instantly leaped to his feet, and before the bailiff could interpose made some very clever shoulder blows at the prosecuting witness, but which the latter artistically avoided by a hasty retreat over the corns of the front row of the jury's feet. Mr. Fay then reseated himself, and Mr. Neilson, with face flaming, seized his hat and started for the door. Mr. Levy said, "If your honor please, the prosecuting witness is about to leave the courtroom, and I would like to have this little matter inquired into right away, as he will be of great assistance to me." However, Neilson soon returned. His face still betokened that his feelings were not healed, but the indications and general supposition were that he had gone out that he himself might become so. Having secured a seat about midway between Mr. Levy and Mr. Fay, he said, apparently to the former, but so as to be heard by the latter, "Well, I went out and he dared not follow me." Fay stooped over to him and said, "I am ready to meet you at any time, night or day, in any place." Neilson suddenly changed his tactics and appealed to the prosecuting attorney for protection, alleging that Fay was trying to intimidate him. Then Mr. Fay again whispered to him the compliment in the short-syllabled Saxon language that he had not stated the fact, and left the courtroom.
Oregonian, Portland, April 1, 1879, page 3


JAMES D. FAY.
His Suicide at Coos Bay, Oregon, on Friday Morning.
    James Denis Fay, a well-known attorney of this city and a member of the law firm of Fay, Deuprey & Kind, killed himself at Marshfield, Coos Bay, Oregon, yesterday morning, for reasons which are at present unknown. He went to Coos Bay a few weeks ago to settle a claim of the widow of James Flannagan against the Coos Bay Coal Company, and to attend to other legal business for the firm, and had finished his work and expected to return to this city on the next steamer. Mr. Fay was a native of South Carolina, 42 years of age, and located in Jackson County, Oregon, in early days, where he studied law under the late Judge Thayer, living in Corvallis. He took a prominent part in politics and was Prosecuting Attorney of the First Judicial District, member of the Assembly, and State Senator from Jackson County. In 1866 he ran for Congress on the Democratic ticket, but was defeated. From 1870 to 1874 he was President of the Oregon State Senate, and in 1872 received the nomination for the United States Senate, and came within a very few votes of election. In 1874 he came to this city, where he resumed the practice of law, which he has actively engaged in ever since. He was Assistant District Attorney of this city and county under T. P. Ryan, and at one time was special attorney of the city for the collection of delinquent taxes and the prosecution of forfeited bonds. In the campaign of 1876 he assisted the Democracy by canvassing a portion of the state. He was, at the time of his death, a vice president of the United Bar Association of this city, a member of Spartan Lodge, No. 36, A.O.U.W., and also of Dorie Lodge, F. and A.M., which latter has telegraphed to the order at Coos Bay to take charge of the remains. In 1864 Mr. Fay married Gertrude, a daughter of Hon. Jesse Applegate of Yoncalla. She died about ten years ago, leaving a son, who is now with Mr. Applegate. It is probable that the remains will be interred in Jackson County. Mr. Fay leaves a large circle of friends in this city, with whom he was quite popular.
San Francisco Chronicle, May 31, 1879, page 2


THE LATE JAMES D. FAY.
    The statement that James D. Fay was unmarried is incorrect. He was twice married. His first wife was a daughter of Jesse Applegate. She died some years ago, leaving one child. His second wife, who survives him, was a Miss Rosa Young of Jacksonville. She is now at that place, having come with him to Empire City, and thence to Jacksonville. By the second marriage there is a daughter three years of age. It may also be stated that Fay did not read law with David Logan, as heretofore stated, but began with A. A. Skinner and completed with Judge Thayer at Corvallis.
    A gentleman, who has just arrived here from Empire City, gives us the following additional particulars concerning the tragic end of poor Fay: For several days before the rash and awful deed was committed, Mr. Fay had been drinking very hard. He was intoxicated the day before he shot himself, and had to be put to bed Thursday night in an almost helpless condition of inebriation. Friday morning he rose, dressed himself, and soon after went into the Star Saloon. After taking a drink, [he] sat down and picking up a paper began to read. There was nothing either in his manner or looks to excite particular attention. The proprietor, having occasion to step outside of the saloon, left Fay alone. He was leaning back in his chair at the time, reading, or pretending to read, the paper, with his feet resting on the iron fender which surrounded the stove. Only a few minutes elapsed after the proprietor stepped out, until he heard the sharp report of a pistol in the saloon. He ran in and was horrified to find Fay dead. He had not moved from the position he assumed when he proprietor went out. His feet still rested on the fender; his body rather thrown back; both hands were resting in his lap, and his head had fallen forward on his breast. A large hole was seen in the right temple, from which the  purple flood of life was seen flowing profusely. The weapon with which the fatal deed had been accomplished lay in his lap where it had fallen from his nerveless grasp as the deadly missile went crashing through his brains. Death must have resulted instantaneously. Fay seemed to be in full possession of all his faculties up to the moment when he was left alone, and the insane impulse must have taken instant and complete control of him, causing him to snatch the pistol from his pocket and in a second launch his soul into eternity.
Oregonian, Portland, June 4, 1879, page 3


DEATH OF JAMES D. FAY.
    Telegraphic intelligence of the tragic death of Mr. Fay was received here on Friday morning last, the particulars of which we glean from the Douglas Independent, which, however, should state that the rash act was committed at 7:30 a.m. on Friday:
   
EMPIRE CITY, May 30.--The people of this place were startled this morning by the report that James D. Fay had killed himself.  It soon became known that this was the sad fact, and a coroner's inquest over the body of the deceased resulted in the finding of the following verdict:
    We, the jury summoned to inquire into the cause of the death of Jas. D. Fay, do find that deceased came to his death by a pistol shot fired from a pistol held in his own hands.
    The facts developed by the evidence before the jury were that the night previous he had retired in company with L. F. Lane about 12 o'clock.  After that time he took two or three drinks, but not sufficient, as Mr. Lane testified, to produce delirium tremens.  Mr. Lane then left him, and Mr. Fay went to the Star saloon, and was sitting by the stove, reading a newspaper when Mr. E. W. Sprague and A. W. Sprague, his brother--keepers of the saloon--went out and left him sitting there.  They shortly afterwards heard the report of a pistol, and ran back to the saloon, where they found Mr. Fay still seated in the chair, with his head bent forward, the blood flowing freely from his head and his pistol lying in his lap.
    Dr. Mackey testified that death had resulted almost instantaneously with the shot.
    Mrs. Fay, with one child, was on a visit in this city with her parents, and the shock to her was most distressing.  The body was taken in charge by the Masons of Marshfield, Mr. Fay being a member of that fraternity, and interred with Masonic honors on Sunday last.
    Mr. Fay was a native of South Carolina, about 40 years of age, a man of extraordinary force of character and far more than average ability, which unfortunately was too often misdirected. He at one time was representative in the legislative assembly from this county, and was afterwards president of the senate, having been elected to that body also from this county. We would be the last to say an unkind word of the deceased. Let the grave that swallows up all human enmities--all earthly [illegible] faults and let us remember [illegible] that which was worthy and good of the dead.
Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, June 4, 1879, page 3


DEATH OF JAMES D. FAY.
Maddened by Strong Drink, He Shoots Himself Through the Head
with a Pistol while Sitting in a Saloon at Empire City.

    The startling news reached this city Saturday evening that Mr. James D. Fay, a gentleman whose name has been so prominently identified with the politics of Oregon for the past ten years, had committed suicide at Empire City, in Coos County, on Friday. Many were inclined to doubt the truth of the report, until a dispatch was received here which confirmed the sad intelligence.
    Under date of May 30th, the Douglas County Independent received the following dispatch from Empire City furnishing the particulars:
    The people of this place were startled this morning by the report that James D. Fay had killed himself. It soon became known that this was the sad fact, and a coroner's inquest over the body of the deceased resulted in the finding of the following verdict:
    "We, the jury summoned to inquire into the cause of the death of James D. Fay, do find that deceased came to his death by a wound inflicted by a pistol shot fired from a pistol held in his own hands."
    The facts developed by the testimony given before the jury were that the night previous he had retired in company with L. F. Lane, about 12 o'clock. After that time he took two or three drinks, but not sufficient, as Mr. Lane testified, to produce delirium tremens. Mr. Lane then left him, and Mr. Fay went to the Star Saloon, and was sitting by the stove reading a newspaper when Mr. E. W. Sprague and A. W. Sprague, his brother, keeper of the saloon, went out and left him sitting there. They shortly afterwards heard the report of a pistol and ran back to the saloon, where they found Mr. Fay still seated in the chair with head bent forward with the blood flowing freely from his head and his pistol lying in his lap. Dr. Mackey testified that death had resulted almost instantly with the shot. Mr. Fay came here from San Francisco and was attending to business he had in court. He had made many friends, and his sudden and tragic death has cast gloom over the entire community.
    James D. Fay is well known to the people of this state, he having in years past figured prominently in politics. He has resided in various portions of the state during the past twenty years. Mr. Fay was reared by Mr. Jefferies, formerly of Portland, but now at Astoria. He read law with the late David Logan. After being admitted to the bar, he removed to Corvallis and practiced his profession for several years. In 1861, Mr. Fay removed to Josephine County, where he was elected to the legislature in 1862. He was reelected in 1864, and in 1866 he was nominated in Portland as the Democratic candidate for Congress, and in 1868 he was elected from Jackson County to the state senate and was chosen president of that body for that year and 1872. About the year 1875 he removed to San Francisco where he has since resided. At the time of his death he was visiting Coos Bay on business. His exact age is not known, but he is supposed to have been about 43 years. Mr. Fay was unmarried.
    From the following dispatch to the Oregonian from San Francisco, it would seem that Fay's friends there doubt the truth of the report that he committed suicide and are inclined to credit a theory that he was murdered:
SAN FRANCISCO, May 31st.
    Regarding the recent supposed suicide of James D. Fay at Empire City, Ogn., the friends of [the] deceased in this city are loath to believe that he died by his own hand. They state that Mr. Fay had made some bitter enemies in Oregon by his participation in certain litigation and that some few years ago he was waylaid and nearly killed by two brothers named Ish, one of whom he shot and dangerously wounded. Since then threats have repeatedly been made against his life. A telegram has been sent requesting that the pistol be retained as evidence. The surroundings are so peculiar that it is proposed to institute a thorough examination.--Oregonian.
Lewiston Teller, Lewiston, Idaho, June 13, 1879, page 1



    Mrs. James D. Fay, wife of the noted politician who committed suicide at Empire City a few days since, is with friends in Jackson County. She accompanied her husband to this state from San Francisco and was visiting friends in Jackson County at the time the terrible deed was committed.
"Willamette Valley," Willamette Farmer, Salem, June 13, 1879, page 3


(From the Jacksonville Times.)
RESOLUTIONS OF RESPECT.
    The following resolutions on the death of Hon. James D. Fay, adopted by the members of the Jackson County Bar Association, were presented in the circuit court on Monday by Hon. A. C. Jones and ordered spread on the journal:
    Resolved, That it is with pain and sorrow that we learn that Hon. James D. Fay has departed this life.
    Resolved, That in view of his former long residence in our community, his connection with our Bar and the various positions he filled while an honored citizen of our state, we recognize in the deceased an able, devoted and learned lawyer and patriotic statesman.
    Resolved, That we feel that a sad breach has been made by the loss of one who so long filled a place at this Bar and whose professional standing was eminent throughout the state.
    Resolved, That we heartily tender our sympathy and condolence to his afflicted family and that a copy of these resolutions, under seal of this court, be transmitted to his bereaved widow.
    Resolved, That the Hon. Judge of the circuit court of this county be requested to direct the Clerk to place those resolutions upon the records of this court to [serve] as a permanent testimonial, and that the court be further requested to adjourn until Tuesday morning, June 10, 1879, in honor of the deceased.
    His honor granted the requests made by the Bar Association and the court adjourned until the following morning, though not before eloquent and fitting tributes had been paid to the memory of the deceased by Judge Hanna, and Messrs. Jones, Gazley, Autenreith, Kelsay and others.
States Rights Democrat, Albany, Oregon, June 20, 1879, page 2



    Henry C. Kind, law partner of the late James D. Fay, committed suicide in San Francisco on the 8th. Cause--squandered his wife's estate.
"Brief Mention," Eugene City Guard, August 16, 1879, page 3


    WITHOUT FOUNDATION.--The body of Miss Rosa Ralls was exhumed this week and an inquest held over her and the newborn babe.  Several days were consumed in the investigation, a thorough medical examination having also been made by Dr. Aiken, but mo trace could be found other than that mother and babe came to their death by natural causes.  The jury consisted of W. J. Plymale, M. Caton, A. M. Berry, M. Mensor, David Cronemiller and James Elliott, who returned the following verdict.
   We, the jury empaneled by the Coroner for the purpose of enquiring into the cause of the death of Rosa E. Ralls and her infant child, and a true verdict rendered according to law and evidence, find after a careful examination of the bodies of the deceased and each of  them, and after a patient and exhaustive hearing of the testimony of a number of witnesses, that while there was more or less conflict in the testimony, and some circumstances surrounding the case which were not fully explained to our satisfaction, yet we have been unable to develop in the case anything which would criminally implicate anyone in procuring the death of deceased or either of them, and we therefore find that Rosa E. Ralls and her infant child came to their death on the night of March 12th, 1884, from natural causes or causes other than criminal.
Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, March 29, 1884,  page 3


JAMES D. FAY.
    One of the leading lawyers in Southern Oregon for many years was Hon. James D. Fay. He was one of the picturesque characters of the early settlement of Southern Oregon. Our attention was attracted to him when a boy when he was the representative in the legislature from Jackson and Josephine counties, and afterwards when a senator from Jackson County. We had a boy's personal acquaintance with him that he probably did not recollect in after years.
    His was a nature that made warm friends and bitter enemies. We distinctly remember when he led a forlorn hope as a candidate for Congress. He was no hypocrite or dissimulator. A man of courage and determination, of a bright and social disposition, the temptations of this life seemed to require all his self-control to master. Open and frank in manner, his frailties were plainly in evidence, while the cautious man is able to conceal them. When Representative Rader, of Jackson County, died at Salem in 1870, during the session of the Legislature, from that dreaded and malignant disease, smallpox, it was difficult to find persons who would assist in his burial. We remember that James D. Fay was one of those who assisted in burying the body of his friend and fellow legislator. He was true in case of necessity when a friend was needed: Whatever faults he may have had they were greatly outnumbered and softened by the many good qualities which commended him to men who prefer honorable endeavor and a manly fighter to the skulking sneak who covers up his tracks and pretends friendship when nothing but malice and envy permeates his whole existence.
    It is with much pleasure we place this stone upon the cairn of one who fell untimely in life's battle.

Oregon Law School Journal, November 1902, page 50




Last revised April 14, 2019