C. Lawrence

C. LAWRENCE GREGORIO was the born Christopher Lawrence Digregario in Pennsylvania in 1899 to John and Laura Digregorio. The family came to Camden when he was three years old, and eventually settled at 326 Sycamore Street in South Camden, where his father worked as a laborer. He was the oldest of at least seven children, and as the first-born son, his parents saw to it that he attended to his studies, and he graduated from Temple University in 1920. He appears to have shortened his name shortly after the January 1920 Census.

The abilities of C. Lawrence Gregorio were soon recognized, and by the time he was 24 years old he was working as Assistant Prosecutor for Camden County, and sitting on the Board of Directors of the Victory Trust, a bank founded and run by Antonio DiPaolo. He remained in the prosecutor's office until at least 1928.

By 1933 C. Laurence Gregorio had returned to private practice. He had moved to Westmont by 1936. He continued to practice law, maintaining an office on North 6th Street in Camden as late as 1959.

South Jersey: A History 1624-1924

C. LAWRENCE GREGORIO—A country whose Sons stand high on the lists of those who have achieved every line of human endeavor, frequently leading them all, is not only a land of genius, but a land where burns an unquenchable thirst for education. It is written on every page of her history that Italian parents are ready to make almost any sacrifice so that their Sons may have schooling and a chance to make good in time. From this motherland, with her rich endowment, came John Carl Gregorio and Laura Costino, when they were young. They met in America and here were married. C. Lawrence Gregorio is their son, born in Philadelphia on June 6, 1899, moving, when about three years old, to Camden.

His first school days were spent in St. Michael’s Parochial School, from which he passed to St. Joseph’s College. He secured his degree, LL.B. from Temple University, graduating in 1920. While studying law, he worked with the Victor Talking Machine Company. He began his professional career in the office of James Mercer Davis, where he remained for two years, until he had passed his bar examinations. In 1921, he moved into the offices of Liberman and Rubenstein, where he has been practicing ever since. Mr. Gregorio is a member of the New Jersey State and the Camden County Bar associations, solicitor for the Compatriot Building and Loan Association, and a member of the Advisory Board of the Victory Trust Company.

C. Lawrence Gregorio is a Democrat and under Prosecutor of Pleas Wescott, he is serving as assistant prosecuting attorney. Though he entered the Students’ Army Training Corps, he did not get into active service overseas. He was very active at hoe in the Liberty and Victory Loan drives, and was also a member of the winning team, composed entirely of Italians, and led by Mr. Di Paolo, president of the Victory Trust Company, which made the new Camden Community Hotel possible by obtaining subscriptions to the amount of $53,000. He also did efficient service for the Red Cross.

Mr. Gregorio is a member of Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church, and belongs to the Camden Council of the Knights of Columbus. He is also connected with the National Order of the Sons of Italy, Lodge Dante Alighieri. .

Philadelphia Inquirer * September 26, 1922

Simon Wilkinsky

Frank Ford Patterson Jr.

Harry Reeves

Irving Buckle

Leon Buckle

O. Glen Stackhouse

David Rankins

Frank S. Van Hart

George A. Frey

A.B. Sparks

Robert Irving

Victor King

George W. Tash

Benjamin S. Maloney

Isaac Albertson

T. Harry Rowland

J. Heulings Coles

Willard T. Gibbs

C. Lawrence Gregorio

John J. Tischner

Frank B. Hambleton

Frank J. Leonard

Dr. William H. Pratt

Mrs. Katherine Donges

Mrs. Mae Hawkins

Edward Kelleher

Albert Neutze

Louis Bantivoglio

J.H. Williams

John H. Carroll

John P. Shaw

Joseph B. Davis

William Frost

Patrick Carr

Alfred L. Sayers

William D. Brown

John Rogers

Charles E. Hill

Charles S. Wolverton

Samuel Edwards

John Dobbins

Lizzie P. Abbot

Edward L. Aument

Frederick Stanton

Walter J. Farrell

John B. Dean

S. Raymond Dobbs

Harry McCloskey

Herman Neissner

Francis Stratton

Clara K. Stamm

Morris Steppa

Thomas Heil

Albert Bardsley

Albert H. Starr

George A. Harkins

John McAlack

Richard Davies

Leo Harkins

William Smith

Joseph Wood

Camden Courier-Post * January 7, 1928

Old Doc Hyghcock Nabbed with Ancient Sedan, Gun

 “Doctor” Reyouque E.H.H. Hyghcock, whose underground “House of Terror” at 415 Liberty Street brought him much publicity and a prison cell two years ago, was arrested today in Collingswood. He was charged with having a loaded revolver in his possession and driving a motorcar without a license.

When the “doctor” was taken into custody he wore a high hat, a ministers frock coat and a pair of hip boots.  He was driving a box-car sedan of the vintage of  1861*. Collingswood police said the “Doc” told them he was a tourist on a tour but wasn’t going any place in particular.

Doc” was seen at 2:00 this morning by Earl Wilson, a motorcycle policeman. When Wilson saw the “seagoing hack” approaching at the high speed of 8 miles an hour- the best the sedan could do- he rubbed his eyes in amazement. The motor car chugged then stopped. “Doc” attired in his high hat and hip boots, stepped from behind the wheel. Smith came closer to investigate.

“The mummers’ parade was over last Monday,” the policeman said, “what did you represent?”

Shows Gold Tooth

Doc” smiled and showed his two rows of golden teeth, which glittered under the rays of a nearby arc light.

“I’m touring but I’m not going any place in particular,” “Doc” said. “I’m having a little trouble with the radiator.”

“Is that why you are wearing hip boots?” the policeman asked.

“Sure is,” “Doc” replied.

“Why are you wearing a high hat?”

“To keep my head from getting cold,” “Doc” answered.

The policeman looked into the “boxcar sedan” and found a loaded revolver. “Doc” said he carried the weapon for protection. Ten minutes later he was telling the desk sergeant at the Collingswood police station his name and address and other pertinent facts about himself.

Today he was arraigned before Recorder Bialy and at the suggestion of Assistant Prosecutor Gregorio, he was held without bail on the charge of carrying concealed deadly weapons. He was taken to the county jail pending an investigation by the county authorities.

Two years ago “Doc” had the limelight of publicity streamed upon him when police discovered the “voo doo doctor” had a number of underground rooms beneath his house and in his back yard. The yard was dug up by firemen and the rooms destroyed. Hyghcock, police said, was the head of a voodoo cult and the underground rooms, each measuring about five feet square were used in the ritual ceremonies. Hyghcock was arrested but was later released when the rooms were destroyed..

Camden Courier-Post - January 31, 1928


Camden Trenton Bureau

Trenton, Jan. 31- The name of Judge Samuel M. Shay, of the Camden County Court of Common Pleas, has been handed to Governor Moore as the choice of the Camden Democratic organization for prosecutor, succeeding Ethan Wescott.

The name was submitted to Governor Moore last night by a delegation of Camden Democrats, headed by Edward J. Kelleher.

That Governor Moore will send the nomination to the State Senate appears certain, and it not likely that any serious objection will be raised in that body, inasmuch as Judge Shay’s reputation is of the highest and he has been twice before confirmed for the judgeship by the Senate.  

Sees Drastic Changes

The choice of Judge Shay was a big surprise in state Democratic ranks, and started a flurry of speculation. If Judge Shay is appointed to the prosecutorship it will leave a vacancy on the bench of the Court of Common Pleas. Although the Camden Democrats are said to be a unit in supporting Shay and also on the other changes they contemplate, no definite word leaked out as to who will be Shay’s successor on the bench.

Judge Shay’s appointment as prosecutor, it was said by Camden Democrats who were here last night,  mean drastic changes to the personnel of the Camden Prosecutor’s office. One of the rumors in effect is that District Court Judge Frank F. Neutze will be elevated to the County judgeship and that Prosecutor Wescott will succeed Neutze. It is also rumored that Judge Shay’s present post may go to either former Judge William T. Boyle or former Judge William C. French. Both Boyle and French formerly held the county judgeship position.

Another rumor is that Samuel P. Orlando will be named first assistant prosecutor and that either Francis G. Homan or Lawrence Gregorio, the incumbent will be named second assistant prosecutor.

The names at former Police Judge John T. Cleary and Assistant Prosecutor Joseph A. Varbalow also figure in the rumor. Cleary has been mentioned as first assistant prosecutor several times.

Term is 5 Years

Judge Shay is now serving his second term as Judge. He was reappointed for a five-year tenure of office last March. The term of the prosecutor’s office also is five years.

The proposed changes are said to be steps toward a complete reorganization of the Democratic party In South Jersey.

State Senator Joseph H. Forsyth, whose ‘O. K.’ is necessary before the appointment of Judge  Shay could become official, under the “Senatorial courtesy rule” would not comment on the situation here today.

Interviewed in the Senate Chamber prior to the opening of today’s session, Senator Forsyth refused to admit that Governor Moore had sent for him last night and had discussed the appointment of Judge  Shay. Forsyth's answer, however, indicated that he had been in conference with the Governor on the subject last night.

“I have not made up my mind as to my attitude on the nomination of Judge Shay,” Senator Forsyth said. “I want to take up the matter with the Governor first. I do not think it would be proper to give my decision to the newspapers before I discuss the matter with the Governor.”

Headed by Assistant Prosecutor Lawrence Gregorio, County Detective Frank Cocchilaraley and Justice of the Peace Jack O’Grady, a delegation of Camden Democrats were scheduled to arrive in Trenton this afternoon for a conference with Governor Moore in the interest of Prosecutor Wescott.

O’Grady stated he will present letters from the Bricklayers and Iron­workers Unions urging the reappointment of Wescott. Cocchiaraley is heading a group of South Camden Italians who are also favoring the reappointment of Wescott. 


February 10, 1928

Andrew Wojtkowiak
William Michalak
C. Lawrence Gregorio
Judge Samuel M. Shay

Camden Courier-Post - April 23, 1928

C. Lawrence GregorioSamuel M. Shay - Joseph A. Varbalow
6th Ward Republican Club - Broadway
Charles "Chick" Hunt - "Polack Joe" Devon
William King - Walter Keown

Camden Courier-Post - October 20, 1931


Six meetings, three in the city and three in the county, will be conducted by Democrats tonight in the interest of A. Harry Moore, gubernatorial candidate, and local candidates on the Democratic ticket.

The meetings are:

Tenth Ward Democratic Club, Camden, 822 North Eighth Street, Firmin Michel Frank Connors, speakers.

Woodrow Wilson, Democratic Club, Atlantic and Louis Streets, Thomas Madden, speaker.

LFirst Ward Democratic Club, 315 North Second Street; former Assis­tant Prosecutor C. Lawrence Gregorio, and David Visor, speakers.

Haddon Heights A. Harry Moore Club, Station Avenue; Ralph Wescott, Haddonfield freeholder candidate, speaking.

A. Harry Moore Colored Club of Delaware Township; former Assistant Prosecutor Joseph Varbalow and Rev. Robert A. Jackson, speakers.

Bellmawr Democratic C1ub, At home of Harry L. Maloney, Democratic State Committeeman; Leon H. Rose and John Delaney, speakers.

Camden Courier-Post - October 21, 1931

Former Bridge Official in Speech Asks Baird Seven Questions

Directing questions at David Baird, Republican candidate for governor, Samuel T. French, former president of the New Jersey Bridge and Tunnel Commission, last night attacked the sincerity of Baird's campaign speeches.

French addressed more than 200 voters at the headquarters, of the Woodrow Wilson Democratic Club, Atlantic and Louis Streets, in appealing for suffrage in the interest of A. Harry Moore, Democratic gubernatorial candidate.

"In a campaign speech at. Plainfield on October 17," French said, "Baird pledged himself to quick relief of the tax burden. In view of past events, I do not know what has come over Mr. Baird; I do not know what has changed his heart. He was a director of Public Service and the controlling power of the legislature when the legislature passed a bill, which relieved the Public Service of keeping the roadways and street surfaces in good condition between the rails on eighteen inches of either side. This resulted in a saving of millions of dollars to Public Service and put the bill in the hands of the taxpayers. Yet, Mr. Baird says conditions must be changed by a change of the taxation system. Is that the way to change taxation- by increasing it for the citizens and lowering it for the corporations?

Asks Seven Questions

"If Camden County is where Mr. Baird derived inspiration for his Plainfield speech, I ask him to publicly answer these questions:

"First, what was the idea of buying the ground upon a portion of which is erected the county court house and city hall, when the city owned a plot of land much better lo­cated on which it would have been unnecessary to destroy property, which was paying into the city treasury annually approximately $70,000 in taxes?

"Secondly, why was it necessary to buy that whole tract of land and destroy all the tax producing property when the city only had use for less than 25 percent of it?

"Thirdly, from whom did the city purchase a large portion of this tract? Why was it necessary to build a city hall at the particular time? What was the total cost of the city hall and court house annex? And, of utmost importance, why was the contract price paid in full on or about December 1, 1930, when the work was only about 80 percent completed?

"Fourth, did Senator Baird approve of all the acts of the City Commission and the Board of Freeholders in the city's and county's activities in the purchase of all the land and the erection of the building?

"Fifth, if Mr. Baird's answer is 'yes,' to that question, then I ask him why were former Mayor Price and Commissioner T. Yorke Smith, dropped from the Republican ticket in the municipal election? If Mr. Baird's answer is 'no,' then I ask him why were not the entire five commissioners dropped from the Republican ticket at the last municipal election, instead of making Price and Smith the goats?

“Sixth, I ask Mr. Baird if he offered objection to the selection of the site or the expenditures in connection with the enterprise?

"Seventh. I ask the Republican candidate for governor, believing as he says he does in his Plainfield speech that the spending orgy must stop: What would have been the saving to the taxpayers of Camden city and county if the new city hall had been erected at the Civic Centre instead of its present location?"

Praises Moore's Record.

French lauded the record of A. Harry Moore, the Democratic candidate for governor, and charged the Republican state administration with "wanton expenditure and gross extravagance of the first water."

"Property will be led to the point of confiscation if the Republicans are allowed to continue their orgy of spending." French concluded, "and the only remedy in election of Moore with a Democratic legislature to support him."

Thomas Madden also spoke at the meeting.  

Democratic rallies were also  held last night in three wards of the city and in Ashland.

C. Lawrence Gregorio, former assistant prosecutor, and David L. Visor spoke at the First Ward Democratic Club, 315 North Second Street;  Firmin Michel and Frank Connors at the Tenth Ward A. Harry Moore Club, 822 North Eighth Street; Albert Melnik, Gene Mariano and John Crean, at the Ninth Ward Democratic Club, 543 Washington Street, and Isaac Eason, former assistant attorney general of the United States at the A. Harry Moore Club of Ashland, Burnt Mill Road. 

Camden Courier-Post - October 23, 1931


Democratic speakers, urging suffrage in the interest of A. Harry Moore, gubernatorial candidate, and the local Democratic ticket, will invade seven political clubs in the city ar.d county tonight.

County meetings, all at 8 p. m. and speakers are as follows:

First Ward Democratic Club, Gloucester, Mercer and Burlington streets, E. George Aaron, Firman Michel and Marie V. Kelly.

Pennsauken Colored A. Harry Moore Club, Magnolia and Scovel avenues, Merchantville, Dr. Clement T. Branch, Eugene Aumaitre and Albert Melnik.

Lindenwold A. Harry Moore Club, Garden Lake fire hall, C. Lawrence Gregorio, Leon Rose, Joseph Varbalow and Mrs. Florence Melnik.

Glendora A. Harry Moore Club, fire hall, Mrs. Bertha Shippen Irving, Gene Mariano, Samuel P. Orlando and John Crean.

Somerdale Democratic Club, fire hall, Mrs. Emma E. Hyland, Edward L. Canning, Thomas Madden and John Delaney.

Fifth Ward Democratic Club. Fifth and Pine Streets, Samuel T. French, Rev. Robert A. Jackson, David L. Visor and Sabba Verdiglione .

Eighth Ward Democratic Club, 509 Ferry Avenue, Isaac Eason, Francis Homan, Charles Degnan and Judge Frank F. Neutze.

Camden Courier-Post - October 29, 1931

Candidacy of Moore to Be Expounded at Meetings in City and Suburbs

The campaign foe A. Harry Moore, gubernatorial candidate, and local Democratic candidates, will be carried into six wards of the city and in seven communities or the county tonight.

All meetings and speakers are as follows:

Second Ward Democratic Club, 841 Market Sktreet; Eugene Aumetre, John Crean, Vincent Gallagher, Leon H. Rose and Charles Woods. 

Fourth Ward A. Harry Moore Club, 455 Berkley Street; Samuel T. French, Victor King, Thomas Madden, Leon H. Rose, Gene Mariano, Samuel P. Orlando and Rev. Robert H. Jackson.

Sixth Ward Democratic Club, Fourth and Walnut Street; Frank Connor, Albert Melnik and Thomas Madden.

Tenth Ward Democratic Club, Fifth and Vine Streets; Boyd Morrison, Joseph E. Nowrey, Charles Degnan and David L. Visor.

Seventh Ward A. Harry Moore Club, Seventh Street and Kaighn Avenue; Dr. Leroy Baxter, of Jersey City; Isaac Eason, Dr. Clement Branch, Rev. Robert H. Jackson, Mrs. Bertha Shippen Irving and Frank Suttill.

Eleventh Ward Democratic Club, 927 North Twenty-seventh street; Boyd Morrison, Firmin Michel, Victor King, Mrs. Bertha Shippen Irving.

Gloucester City Democratic Club, 308 Monmouth street; Boyd Morrison, Gene Mariano, Joseph Varbalow.

Magnolia A. Harry Moore Club, Evesham and Gloucester avenues; Firmin Michel, Edward L. Canning, John Delaney, Marie V. Kelley and Francis Homan.

Lindenwold Colored Voters' Club, Blackstone Hall, Lindenwold, Eugene Aumetre, William Williams and Oliver Bond.

Somerdale Club, Whelen home, Somerdale road and Oggs Avenue; Marie V. Kelly, David L. Visor and Mrs. Emma E. Hyland.

Somerdale Democratic Club, Leone Hall, Warwick Road and Helena Avenue; Samuel P. Orlando, Aaron Heine, Lawrence Gregorio and E. George Aaron.

East Haddonfield Democrat Club, Crescent and Berlin Road; Edward L. Canning, Albert Melnik and Judge Frank F. Neutze.

East Haddonfield Improvement Association, Batesville, Delaware Township; Ralph Wescott, Judge Frank F. Neutze and Mrs. Florence Melnik.

More than five speakers from North Jersey will appear at as many meetings as possible.

Camden Courier-Post - October 31, 1931


Rallies in the interest of A. Harry Moore, gubernatorial candidate, and local candidates on the Democratic ticket will be conducted tonight in Ashland and in three wards of the city.

The meetings and speakers are as follows;

Sixth Ward Democratic Club, Fourth and Walnut Streets; E. George Aaron, Samuel P. Orlando, Boyd E. Morrison, Charles Degnan and Sabba Verdiglione.

Third Ward A. Harry Moore Club, Third and Benson Streets: Samuel T. French, Orlando, Edward L. Canning, C. Lawrence Gregorio, Frank Homan and Anthon Ruffo, of Trenton.

Eleventh Ward A. Harry Moore Club, 927 North Twenty-seventh street: Aaron, Canning, Isaac Eason, Marie V. Kelly and Judge Frank F. Neutze.

Ashland Democratic Club, home of Ida May Heidrick, Burnt Mill road and Second Avenue: Thomas Madden, Leon H. Rose and Eugene Mariano,

Camden Courier-Post - February 2, 1933

Sentenced by Judge Shay After Pleading Guilty to Holdup Charge

Pleading guilty in criminal court to holding up two South Camden men last February, and to a gun toting charge Louis "Blackie" Battino, 23, of 805 South Fifth street, was sentenced to three to five years in state prison by Judge Samuel M. Shay yesterday.

Bottino, who was captured in a New York "love nest" on a fugitive warrant after he jumped a $5000 bail bond here, was first arrested by Detective Thomas Cheeseman on the night of the holdup. He was identified by Marvin Johnson, of 926 South Ninth Street, and Louis Puggsley, of 312 Benson Street, who said the man stuck a revolver in a car in which they were seated and robbed them of $28.

County Detective Fiore Troncone and New York detectives surprised Bottino in an apartment at Ninth Avenue and Fifty-fourth Street, New York, with a woman. Patsy Costagno, 23, of 2412 South Watts Street, Philadelphia, an alleged accomplice of Bottino, was sentenced April 19, 1932, to serve 13 years in jail on three indictments for participation in the crime and carrying concealed deadly weapons.

C. Lawrence Gregorio, counsel for Battino, pleaded for another chance for his client, pointing out the youth of the prisoner. Judge Shay, however, remained unmoved and imposed sentence.

Camden Courier-Post - June 6, 1933

Beaten Awning Maker Says $47, Not $4700, Was Taken From Pocket

Three men accused of kidnapping, beating and robbing Byron P. Cobb, 62, of 427 Benson Street, yesterday were held without bail for the grand jury by Police Judge Pancoast after they pleaded not guilty.

They gave their names as Premo Fioravanti, 20, of 435 Division Street; Anthony Scanavelli, 20, of 326 Division Street, and John Piliere, 19, of 1130 South Third Street.

Piliere also was sentenced to 15 days in jail in default of $100 tine when he pleaded guilty to operating an automobile without driver's or owner's licenses.

Cobb, who for many years operated an awning business at Fifth and Royden streets and through it became nicknamed "The Sun Doctor," first told the police he had been robbed of $4700 but yesterday said the amount was only $47.

Cobb was found in a semi-conscious condition lying on River Drive in Farnham Park early Sunday. The suspects, arrested later for a traffic violation, were identified by Cobb at police headquarters, the police said. They are charged with assault and battery, robbery and forcing Cobb into their· machine.

According to Cobb, he was so badly dazed after the attack he could not think clearly. He said he thought he had the $4700, which he drew from a bank to pay a mortgage, but later found it at home. He said he had only about $47.

After the suspects pleaded not guilty through their attorney, C. Lawrence Gregorio, no testimony was taken, but Detective George Zeitz, offered a statement made by Cobb shortly after he was revived.

It read:

"I left home at 8 p. m. Saturday and made three stops before I went to a place at Broadway and Liberty Street. I left there about an hour later and met this man (Fioravanti) at Broadway and Kaighn Avenue. He is the man who asked me to get in the car and told me he would take me home.

"Shortly after that I was hit and I don't remember any more.

"When I left home at 8 o'clock I had three $500 bills, two $100 bills and three $1000 bills in my vest pocket, loose. When I fell, I heard someone say; 'Get the money,' and Primo and another boy with a panama hat got the money from me. I don't remember any more until I was found by the officers." .  

Camden Courier-Post - June 26, 1933

Wife of Druggist Suing for Divorce Petitions Advisory Master

Mrs. Freda Brown, wife of Joseph E. Brown, druggist at Third and Market Streets, who is suing her for divorce, appeared before William J. Kraft, advisory master in chancery, yesterday and asked for maintenance for herself and their two children"

The hearing was adjourned until July 10 to give Brown's attorneys an opportunity to prove his claim that Mrs. Brown is employed in Philadelphia at $18 a week.

Brown has entered suit charging his wife with infidelity and naming Dr. Alexander Ellis, 37, of 513 Broadway, as co-respondent. However, suit is not actually on file yet as Brown's lawyers stated they have been unable to serve papers on Mrs. Brown.

Isaac Eason, attorney for Mrs. Brown appeared yesterday with a bill for maintenance. It set forth that, the Browns were married at Elkton, November 23, 1923, and that Brown deserted his wife. In the petition, Brown is accused of getting his wife out of their home by a pretext and then refusing to allow her to re-enter. Eason stated he knew nothing about a divorce suit;. as no papers have been served on Mrs. Brown.

C. Lawrence Gregorio and Grover C. Richman, counsel for Brown, stated that Mrs. Brown does not need maintenance as she has a job. Kraft asked if they could submit proof of this today, whereupon Richman asked for the adjournment, saying he could obtain such testimony by July 10.

 Mrs. Brown's address was given as 541 South Forty-seventh Street, Philadelphia. Their children, Gerald 8, and Dolores, 6, are in custody of their father.

Camden Courier-Post - August 16, 1933

Turmoil Caused as Judge Acts to End Vandalism in County

A court room crowded to the doors was thrown into a turmoil of excitement yesterday when five women became hysterical upon hearing Judge Samuel M. Shay impose prison terms on three men who pleaded guilty to vandalism in special session of criminal court.

Completely losing control of themselves, the women threw their pocketbooks, hats and gloves across the court room. Screaming at the top of their lungs, they were joined in the bedlam by small children they had brought to court with them.

All five women fainted and were carried from the court room by attendants. When they were revived they continued the disturbance In anterooms and corridors. The names of the women were not obtained by officials.

The jail sentences were meted out by Judge Shay as the opening shot in his campaign to stamp out vandalism in Camden county. The three men and their sentences are Elmer Baxendale, 32, of 1647 Forty-ninth Street, Pennsauken, two to three years in state prison; Thomas Henry, 32, of 1211 Bergen Avenue, 18 months, and John Schwab, 31, of 1739 Lexington Avenue, Pennsauken, 18 months.

Judge Shay sounded a warning that he will show no mercy to convicted vandals, who may, in the future, expect a sentence of 10 years.

The jurist was angered when information that one of the three defendants had pleaded not guilty, instead of guilty, as the judge had understood, and ordered him to trial immediately with the promise of 10 years if found guilty. After a conference with, counsel, the defendant, Schwab, let the guilty plea stand.

Prosecutor Clifford A. Baldwin told the court Baxendale had admitted the theft of plumbing and other fixtures from 13 houses in the vicinity of Forty-fourth street and Pleasant avenue, Pennsauken, and Forty-ninth street and Westfield Avenue, Pennsauken. Henry admitted to 10 robberies and Schwab to two, he added.

"The kind of stuff you fellows have been doing strikes at the very foundation of organized government said the court: "We can lock our automobiles and jewelry, but owners of unoccupied houses are at the mercy of men like you. I am not going to tolerate it."

He then pronounced sentence and the women, rising in their seats, began screaming. When some semblance of order was restored, C. Lawrence Gregorio, an attorney, addressed Judge Shay, saying: 

"You must have misunderstood my client, Schwab, he pleaded not guilty."

"All right," said the court, making no effort to hide its anger at the whole procedure, "if he does, we'll put him on trial now, right this minute. Prosecutor, go ahead and proceed with your case.             ,

"But I'm going to tell you this, Mr. Gregorio. If your client is found guilty, I'm going to sentence him to ten years in the state prison. Go ahead and put him on tria1." Gregorio, after conferring with Schwab, said the prisoner was satisfied to let the original sentence stand and he would plead guilty.

"You can broadcast to the city and county," the court then said, "that I have a way to break up this vandalism. I'm going to sentence convicted vandals to 10 years."

Camden Courier-Post - September 18, 1933


Dazedly Insists He Had No Intention of Shooting Sire
Slain Man Long Was Prominent Figure in Camden Politics

Jacob Schiller, 72, for 45 years a political figure here, is dead, shot by his own son.

The slayer, William Schillcr, 30, a former summer policeman now unemployed, was held over today to the grand jury on a charge of murder. He made no comment whatever during his police court hearing.

A few hours later, young Schiller's wife, Augusta, whom he lad also tried to shoot, was found wandering through the city street, in all hysterical condition.

She had written a note which police believed showed intent to 

commit suicide, and had staggered dazedly through the streets last night. Both in her note and in her incoherent statements to detectives she declared she was to blame for the tragedy.

She said her father-in-law had tried to save her and was killed in the attempt.

 The slaying occurred Saturday night at the elder Schiller's home, 2420 Carman Street. It climaxed an estrangement between young Schiller and his wife, with "Jake" Schiller attempting to reconcile the couple.

Mrs. William Schiller, who had had her husband arrested several months ago, said she believed he had become mentally deranged, but Police Judge Pancoast was informed that an alienist had examined young Schiller in July and pronounced him sane.

Couple Separated

Young Schiller had been living with his father at the Carman Street address, while Mrs. Schiller has been residing with her parents, Mr. and Mrs. John I. Green, 409 North Thirty-seventh Street. The cause of the estrangement has no been revealed by police, but it is stated that young Schiller refused to consent to a reconciliation.

"Jake" Schiller was a Republican worker in the Twelfth ward for years, and was at the time or his death inspector of city street lights.

Were Alone it Home

The father and son were at home 9.00 p. m. Saturday night and apparently were quarreling when the young Mrs. Schiller, her brother-in-law and sister, Mr. and Mrs. William Miller and another sister, Mrs. Lottie Bennehler, reached the house.

"Don't come in here," the older Schiller shouted as they started to enter the front sun parlor. But Miller did enter and said young Schiller was clutching a revolver in his right hand. He declared he closed in on his brother-in-law and tried to wrench the revolver from him. Two shots rang out and the father fell to the floor.

Patrolman Joseph Keefe was standing at Twenty-fifth and Federal Streets when two boys ran up and told him there was a shooting at Twenty-fifth and Carman Street. He ran to the scene and said he reached there in time to see young Schiller shooting up the street at his wife.

Keefe said Schiller ran into the house when he saw him. Aided by Miller, Keefe overpowered Schiller and placed an iron claw on his right hand after disarming him.

Jacob Schiller Jr., another son, learning of the shooting, went to his father's home and took him to Cooper Hospital in a passing automobile As he was being taken into the hospital he failed to recognize City Detective Robert Ashenfelter and died five minutes later.

Expresses No Regret

Police Sergeant John Potter joined Keefe and Miller and they took young Schiller to police headquarters.

Keefe said the son expressed no regret at shooting his father.

At about 5 a, m. today, Policeman Keefe was patrolling his "beat" when he passed the Schiller home on Carman Street. He noticed the front door was standing open, and he went inside to investigate.

The officer saw a note on a smoking stand. Picking it up, he read:

"Dear Everybody:

 "Please forgive me ... You have all been so wonderful ... But I couldn't go on to see you all suffer for what is my fault ... Lottie was right ... He killed his father because of insane love for me ... But he didn't. I killed Pop and now am sending Bibs to jail for my weakness.

 "Tell him I love him and ask my poor mother and dad to forgive me. I should have done this long ago and saved everyone all this suffering ... I love Billy and I know he loves me but I am afraid he has been turned against me. But I forgive him for all.


 "Gussie" is Mrs. Schiller.

Finds 'Gussie’ Hysterical

Keefe ran to Federal Street, but could not see Mrs. Schiller.

Meanwhile, Constable Dugan of the Twelfth Ward, saw Mrs. Schiller walking on Federal Street near the Cooper River. She was mumbling to herself and was in a hysterical condition, Dugan said.

Dugan telephoned police headquarters. City Detectives Rox Saponare and Maurice DeNicoli went out Federal Street and took her back with them to detective headquarters. There they sought to quiet her, but she continually sobbed.

"I want to take the blame- if I hadn't gone to Pop's home he would be living now."

"Pop wanted to save me," she said. "and he was shot. I can't eat or sleep. I think I'm going crazy."

Later, she was permitted to return to the home.

Young Schiller had been held in the city jail over the weekend. Today he was taken into police court. He wore no necktie and carried a raincoat over his arm. He was rep resented by counsel, C. Lawrence Gregorio, who said he had been retained "by friends" to act as attorney for the accused man.

City detective Benjamin Simon had signed the complaint in which he charged "on information received” that Schiller did feloniously and with malice aforethought shoot and kill his father.

The complaint was read to him and Gregorio told him not to say any thing, as Judge Pancoast would enter a plea of "not guilty" in his behalf. This was done by the court and Schiller was then held without bail pending grand jury action. He was taken to the county jail.

Declared Sane

After the hearing, Mrs. Etta C. Pfrommer, acting overseer of the poor, told Judge Pancoast that on July 26, Dr. Harry Jarrett, Broadway and Cherry Street, well known alienist, had examined young Schiller and declared him sane. The examination was made on the request of Mrs. Schiller in police court on the previous day. At that time young Schiller had been released by the court in the custody of his father.

County Detective Chief Lawrence T. Doran, who was among the first to question young Schiller Saturday night, said the man did not seem repentant over what he had done. He said Schiller did not give authorities much information. According to Doran, young Schiller declared he had objected frequently to his father that he did not want his wife to come to their home.

"It doesn't seem possible," said young Mrs. Schiller some hours after the tragedy. "It seems as though it was only a dream. I don't seem to remember anything.

"Poor Bill. He must have been crazy. He idolized his father. You can blame this all on the depression. He has been without work since they eliminated summer policemen two years ago. He has been worried as a result of being unable to obtain work. Just recently he started to drink.

"Bill intended to shoot me but his father tried to get the gun away from him and I believe it went off accidentally. Nothing could convince me that Bill would shoot his father in cold blood.

"I went to his father's home last night to try to effect a reconciliation with my husband. He had been drinking."

Registered as Sober

The police docket at headquarters shows Schiller registered as sober. The entry was not made until 2.15 a. m., and the shooting occurred shortly after 9.30 p.m.

Relatives said the father had attempted for months to patch up the marital difficulties of the couple.

Young Schiller had been living lately with his sister, Mrs. Bennehler, 2530 Bank Street and his wife with her parents at 409 North Thirty-seventh Street. He formerly lived at that address with his wife. He was appointed a summer policeman in 1929 and served until they were all dismissed two years ago.

Coroner Holl and Dr. Edward B. Rogers, county physician, yesterday performed an autopsy on the senior Schiller's body and ascertained that death was due to an internal hemorrhage caused by a bullet wound of the upper portion of the abdomen. They said a .32-callbre revolver had been used in the shooting.

Camden Lodge of Elks will hold services tomorrow night at the Schiller home, at which time the body will be on view. The funeral will be private on Wednesday with burial in Evergreen Cemetery.

Judge Pancoast last night recalled that young Schiller was arrested two months ago after he had kept his wife a prisoner on a lot all night. At that time "Jake," as he was affectionately known to his friends, tried to act as a mediator between his son and daughter-in-law.

The young Mrs. Schiller at that time told Pancoast she believed her husband was deranged and asked permission to have him examined by physicians she would name. Pancoast released young Schiller in the custody at his father. The police judge said the examination had apparently not been made as no commitment papers had been sent through his office.

Few political workers were better known that "Jake” Schiller. He was born in Philadelphia and was brought to Camden in early life by his parents, who conducted a saloon near Twenty-third and Federal Streets. East Camden was then the town of Stockton and the scene of Saturday night's shooting was a farm. Schiller recalled to friends that he drove cows through a pasture on which his house now stands.

 He was originally a Democrat but became a Republican through persuasion of the late U. S. Senator David Baird and remained a friend of the former leader for 40 years.

 Schiller had been melancholy over the death of his wife on February 13 last, friends said.

 When his son was arrested he remarked to Pancoast:  What is next?"

Figured In Shaw Case

None was more in the public eye 35 years ago in South Jersey than Schiller. It was the that he figured prominently in one phase of the locally celebrated Shaw murder trial.

It was during the second trial of Eli Shaw for the murder of his mother and grandmother, Mrs. Anna Shaw and Mrs. Emma Zane. They were found shot to death in September, 1897, in their bedroom of their home on Line Street near Third. Detective John Painter had found a revolver hidden in the chimney, one of several points in the circumstantial evidence that resulted in the indictment of Shaw. He was then a widely known young man about town and his arrest caused a big sensation. As time drew near for the trial feeling was intense, for there were adherents for and against the son and grandson, those arguments often grew bitter.

Henry Sidney Scovel, then one of the prominent criminal lawyers of Camden county, was retained to defend Shaw. Scovel was son of James Matlack Scovel, himself one of the leading barristers of this section. When the trial of Shaw was under way the city was astounded when it was charged Scovel had tampered with the jury. It was Schiller who made the charge.

The trial stopped abruptly. Scovel emphatically denied the story of Schiller and demanded vindication. An indictment for embracery was returned and at a trial, which had Camden on the tip toe of expectancy for days, it developed there was absolutely nothing to verify the charge, and Scovel was acquitted. He acted in two subsequent trials of Shaw, the second being a disagreement and the third acquittal for the son and grandson of the slain women.

Schiller, strangely enough, in later years became friendly with Scovel and when the latter was prosecutor from 1905 to 1912, "Jake," as he was familiarly known, was usually to be found in the office at the courthouse. Scovel was then a white haired man of flowery speech and impressive personality who let bygones be bygones.

Long Excise Inspector

For more than 20 years Schiller was inspector of the Excise Commission in Camden. It was during the days when the principal object of the inspector apparently was to keep the saloonmen in line. He was considered pretty good at that job, by no means an unimportant one from the organization viewpoint. It was also during that period the city had its troubles enforcing the Sunday liquor laws. There were those who considered they had enough pull to keep their back or side doors open on the Sabbath to let in their regular thirsty trade. Some succeeded in getting by, but "Jake" had his own troubles in keeping the boys straight and sometimes causing their arrest, although that was not frequent by any means.

His reign as inspector, too, was in the halcyon days of free lunch and schooner beers. Saloonmen themselves were against the lunch idea eventually since it meant too much of a financial burden. Jake kept tabs on the recalcitrants so that the liquor dealers knew who was obeying the order and who was "cutting corners" to get some extra trade.

Schiller was virtually raised with the saloon trade since his father was one of the old time German beer garden owners here, having had a place at Fourth and Line Streets. That was in the days when that section was largely populated by the German, English and Irish families lately come from the motherlands. When he was a boy, Schiller entered the U. S. Navy and served several years. When he came out he went to the old Town of Stockton, now East Camden, where he opened a saloon on Federal Street near Twenty-fourth. At that period, some 45 years ago, Stockton seethed with politics and it was just as natural for a young man to get into the game as it was for a duck to swim. Jake at that period was a Democrat and during the battle in the middle 90's when the West Jersey Traction and the Camden Horse Railway Company were fighting for the rail franchises in the town he was a candidate for council from the old Second Ward. The late Robert Lee was the Republican candidate and won out by the narrow margin of two votes. In later years Schiller became a Republican and was elected a constable.

Never Ran From Scrap

Throughout his career Schiller never quite forgot his training In the navy, particularly with reference to boxing or fighting at the drop of a hat. He was a scrapper in his early years and never ran from a fight. That was just as true in political battles, frequent then around the polls, as in purely personal matters. And Jake would battle for a friend just as readily as for any personal reason. He was usually in the thick of the political fracases of the years when it was the accepted thing to fight at the drop of a hat. But he also had lots of native wit which kept things interesting when he was a frequenter of the prosecutors' office during the Scovel and Wolverton regime's. In late years, with the approach of age, he had tempered his propensity to get into an argument and liked nothing more than to tell of “the good old days" when he helped the elder Baird in his organization battles.

He made his last political stand for leadership of the Twelfth Ward in 1926 when he supported the candidacy of Sergeant Ray Smith against Commissioner Clay W. Reesman for ward committeeman. Schiller was supporting Congressman Charles A. Wolverton and the late Senator Joseph H. Forsyth in a campaign against former Congressman Francis F. Patterson and State Senator Albert S. Woodruff.

Reesman won and among the first to visit the hospital after learning of the shooting was the city commissioner. Reesman was his latest chief as lights inspector as he was attached to the highway department. Commissioner Frank B. Hanna also visited the hospital.

"In all the years I have known him he has always been an enthusiastic and loyal friend with a good heart for everybody in trouble," Congressman Wolverton said when he learned of Schiller's death.

Schiller was also a familiar figure at the Elks Club, where he was an ardent card player. But after the death of his wife he gave up this pastime, contenting himself with watching the games. He was also a frequent visitor among old friends at the courthouse.

Camden Courier-Post - May 11, 1934
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Camden Courier-Post * February 15, 1938

Police Charge He Got One on Credit, Sold and Then Reclaimed It

One of the strangest gyp rackets discovered in Camden in recent years—a vacuum cleaner sales scheme—was believed broken up yesterday with arraignment of Leonard Hauser, 218 North Eighth street, before Police Judge Mariano. Hauser was arrested at his home by 
Patrolman John Ferry after an investigation by Frank Thompson, representative of a nationally-known vacuum cleaner company with offices at Sixth and Cooper streets.

Ferry testified Hauser paid $10 down on a cleaner for a certain trial period. Then, Ferry said, he represented himself as a salesman for the company and sold it to Mrs. Mary Kirby, 552 Bailey street, for $25, plus her old cleaner for a trade in.

Later, the cleaner mysteriously broke down. Hauser called and said he would take it back, Ferry testified, and bring a new one. He took the cleaner, said Ferry, but never was seen at the Kirby home again.

"If he had taken the broom," remarked City Prosecutor Cohen, "would you call it a clean sweep?"

Mariano said he had information that Hauser was "working a real racket and that a number of other North Camden residents had been similarly defrauded."

C. Lawrence Gregorio, defense counsel, waived a hearing and the suspect was held in $2000 bail for the Grand Jury.

Detective Edwin Mills said after the hearing that Hauser did not restrict his activities to vacuum cleaners.

William Shaw, of 1474 Broadway, i dentified Hauser, according to Mills, as the man who collected $5 from him for an electric toy which was to have been Shaw's little son's Christmas present.- The toy never arrived, Mills said Shaw told him.

Mrs. Emily C. Hedley, of Berlin, and Mrs. Howard Brown, of Williamstown, also identified Hauser as the "vacuum cleaner salesman" who duped them, Mills declared..