Pinkerton Report - Jan 29, 1891 - No. 2

Dublin Core


81/2 x 14"




MS020 1/15

Document Item Type Metadata


New York Jan 31, 91.
Jos. M. Ives Esq.
257 Main St
Danbury, Conn.


Our operative J.T. McM. further reports.

Thursday Jan 29, 91.
Today in Danbury.
After breakfast, I went down town and started out to investigate the fire said to have taken place on Wednesday night at the residence of William Turbush at 19 Henry st.
I met James Cosgrove, city reporter on Danbury News. I enquired of him how he got his information, he said the information came from Beckerle’s shop where Mr. Turnbush worked, and that so far as he knew the information was right. he had not been out to see if right or not.
I got into a hack and went out to vicinity of 19 Henry st. it was raining quite hard at the time[.]
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before going into house, I examined the house thoroughly, but did not see the least indication of any fire having been there. No 19 Henry st is a two story frame building, with front veranda, such as is quite common in Danbury. After failing to find any indications of fire, I met Mrs Turnbush[.] I asked her to show me where the fire was, that had been noticed in the News. She said, [“]No such fire ever took place, the entire thing was given out as a joke by my husband at the shop. The boys at the shop fool him quite a good deal, and he thought, that he would fool them, and that is how the whole thing came about. My husband did not see any fire, he was very foolish in telling the story. He is a mute and the boys try to have fun with him, and he thought he would have fun with them.[“]
Finding no truth in the reported fire I returned to the city, and again met James Cosgrove, and told him that the entire account was untrue, but told him not to say anything about it, but to let it go as it was, and not deny it.
I again went to Hawley’s Court to interview Gaylor, but was unsuccessful. I learned in Meekers store, that the boy was about some where, but just
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where was not known. I left word to have him come to the Hotel to see me, when he came around.
I met Pat McCarthy and instructed him to go to South end of town, and keep on the look out for the strange man. he told me that he went out the first thing this morning to vicinity of Highland ave and Henry st but could not hear of the stranger being out there.
After dinner I continued on the Geroge Roff matter. I cannot find that Miss Petitt ever went with this young man. She as a general rule, comes home with her father, who goes down to the store at about 8p.m. to meet her.
The Police are on the look out for this stranger. I do not know what end Capt Keating is working at now. I am satisfied that he has not obtained any information, he still keeps shadow on McNab, but has failed to get him identified as the strange man.
At 2.30 p.m. I sent dispatch to agency denying the report of fire, at 19 Henry st as was stated in “News” and New York papers.
While standing at telegraph office I was approached by a man who asked me to buy a ticket for the Ising Ball on Friday night. I bought the ticket but will no go, as on that night (tomorrow)
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It is thought by some, that if any fires are to be started, they will be started then, it being a good chance, as all the firemen will be at the Ball.
This afternoon I was informed by Mr Cosgrove, that the information of the Henry st fire came from John Ellwood, he working in the same shop with “Turnbush”.
I went out to residence of Ellwood on Balmforth ave, but John was not at home, but I could see him in the evening.
At 7.30 p.m. I went out to his house and learned that he was down town. I went to the Kohanza Club Rooms but he was not in there. I waited about half an hour for him, but he did not come.
I went to South st where I saw McCarty. He was watching for “Stranger” but had not seen him. I remained with him a short time, and then discontinued.

Yours Resp[]
Pinkerton Nat. Dect Agy
Robt. A. Pinkerton
Genl Supt Ediv.




Pinkerton, Robert A. (Robert Allan), 1848-1907. “Pinkerton Report - Jan 29, 1891 - No. 2.” Pinkerton Detective Agency Danbury Fires Investigation Collection, MS020. WCSU Archives, 9 July 2019. Accessed on the Web: 29 Jan. 2020.


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