J. D. Cresswell

The Cartersville Express
Cartersville, Georgia
July 1, 1874, Page 2
Transcribed by:  

Letters of Administration.

Sam C. Caldwell on the estate of J. D. Cresswell, late of Bartow county.


Page 3:


The whole county was thrown into a fever of excitement, on Sunday morning last, by the news that Mr. Creswell had been murdered at his residence, the evening before, by a man named Staffin, a native of Denmark.  From Mr. S. C. Caldwell, brother-in-law to Mr. Creswell, we learn the following particulars, which were related to him by an eye witness—a negro boy seventeen years of age:

It seems that Creswell had employed Staffin to do some work upon a well, agreeing to pay him five dollars—one-half down, and the other at the end of the summer, provided the well did not run dry.  The work was done, and the first half was paid, according to agreement.  On the evening of the murder, and only a few days after the first payment, the man Staffin came to Mr. Creswell’s house, and demanded of him the balance of the money, which Mr. Creswell refused to pay.  Staffin said he was determined to have either the money or its equivalent in wheat.  Creswell expressed an equal determination not to pay, especially as the well exhibited signs of exhaustion.  Staffin then began swearing, when Creswell ordered him out of his yard.  He declined to move, when Creswell walked towards him, and probably gave him an accelerating push.  Staffin then moved toward the gate, doggedly, and swearing as he went.  Creswell followed along behind him, as any one would have done, to see that he left the premises.  Both passed through the gate, but Mr. Creswell, evidently satisfied at having expelled him from his yard, immediately turned to re-enter the gate.  Just as he was in the act of raising the latch, with his back to Staffin, the latter was seen to whirl round quickly and hurl a rock at Mr. Creswell, knocking him to the earth, and then advance upon him with a knife, which he plunged to the hilt through the centre of his breast-bone, severing the large artery which leads upward from the heart, and producing death in very few moments.  The murderer immediately fled, leaving the knife sticking in the wound.  The officers of the law doubtless will use every legitimate means to secure his arrest, when we hope to see him dealt with to its utmost extent.

Mr. Creswell’s remains were interred in his own garden, there to remain, we believe, until cool weather, when they will be taken up and removed to South Carolina, his former home.

We sincerely condole with the bereaved family, in this, their trying hour, and point them to that source whence cometh comfort and consolation to the afflicted who confide in him.

Since writing the above, we have learned of the capture of the murderer, in Texas valley, about eleven miles from Rome.  He was taken to the latter place and lodged in jail for the night, whence he was sent to this city today, under a strong guard.  His examination will take place tomorrow morning at ten o’clock.


July 8, 1874
Page 3.

CONRAD STAFFIN, charged with the murder of J. D. Cresswell, was carried before Justices Jolly and Smith. on Thursday, last and after introduction of testimony and argument of counsel, was duly committed to the jail of this county, to answer at the next term of the Superior Court.  Messrs. Fouche, Wofford and Milner for the State; Wofford and Wikle and A. P. Wofford for the defense.


July 15, 1874
Page 2.

Letters of Administration.

Sam. C. Caldwell on the estate of J. D. Cresswell, late of Bartow county.


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