This Day In History: 1874-01-28
In a very interesting legal case tried before Squire Christie at Hagerman’s Hotel in Mahwah involved a charge of trespassing. The case involved a child Peter Hopper, the ward of James Terwilliger of Saddle River. He had his gun taken away from him by Abram DeBaun while he was crossing DeBaun’s property. The boy was represented by lawyer DeBaun and the defense by H. Ryerson (of Ramsey?). The defense claim that it took place at another time than that listed in the declaration was declared out of order. The defendant was questioned at length by Ryerson but when Lawyer DeBaun asked him, in cross examination, “Did you take the gun away from the boy?” the defense objected. DeBaun “said by the Bible he had a right to judge him out of his own mouth.” DeBaun had earlier called Case Folly, George Ryerson and William Murray to prove damages for being deprived of the use of a gun and two of the erwilligers for the value of the gun. Both lawyers pled eloquently for their clients. Eventually the jury, consisting of Henry R. Wanamaker, James Stuart, Abram Christie, Peter Messenger, Andrew Hopper and David Stuart, rendered a verdict of $22 damages and $8 costs for the plaintiff.