Turning Back the Pages

For two or three months before her death, Loveland lived with Hill openly at the Minerva home of William O’Donnell, who was a material witness at the trial. It is believed that she had an inclination to return to her family and the couple quarreled frequently. It was said that Hill had intimated several times that he would kill her if she left him. He was insanely jealous and this, the prosecution claimed, was the motive for the alleged crime.

O. Byron Brewster, Council, a young barrister, in summing up, made a stirring, forceful plea for his client. Judge Henry T. Kellogg gave a strictly impartial charge to the jury, submitting for their decision the one question of whether the death of Anna Loveland was brought about by her own hand or by the hand of Hill. Although there was a strong chain of circumstantial evidence against the accused man, no direct evidence had been produced by the prosecution. The accused man did not go on the stand in his own behalf. The jury evidently gave him the benefit of the doubt as they were bound to do. Hill betrayed little or no emotion when the jury gave its not guilty verdict, having been confident of acquittal throughout the trial.

Tim Hill’s early life

Timothy Hill was formerly a resident of Horicon and a heavy drinker who had for many years borne a bad reputation. People had a tendency to be afraid and to shy away from him. There was a persistent rumor that he had killed his wife during an argument when he hit her with a flat iron.

His many previous crimes were brought up at trial by former District Attorney Charles R. Patterson of Glens Falls. On Oct. 1, 1878 Hill first ran afoul of the law when he and George “Put” Hays stole two horses, worth $150, with “force and arms” from Jared Hays. Tim spent three months at the penitentiary in Albany for the crime.

Readers are welcome to contact Adirondack Journal correspondent Jean Hadden at jhadden1@nycap.rr.com or 623-2210.

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