Peculiar Case Before the District Court of Northern Norfolk County.
Libelous Statements Were Posted in Norwood Not Long Ago.
DEDHAM Jan 6-—A peculiar case came up in the civil session of the district court of northern Norfolk this morning.
Mrs. Mary Duncan of Norwood. sues Ms. Mabel Hill of Sharon, formerly of Norwood for slander under the following conditions:
Certain statements were posted in several places in Norwood reflecting on the character of Miss Hill, who in the company of an officer went to Mrs. Duncan’s house and asked her if she wrote the statements. Mrs. Duncan denied the allegations and sued Miss Hill on the ground that she has been slandered by Mrs. Hill asking her the question, alleging that Mia Hill had accused her by saying that the thought she had done it and could think of no one else who would be likely to do so.
Miss Hill contends that she merely asked Mrs. Duncan if she had done it, and did not accuse her of doing it.
Arthur Clark of Dedham appeared for Mrs. Duncan and Louis Gates of Sharon for Miss Hill.
Mrs. Mary Duncan, the plaintiff, and first witness. said they lived on Washington st. Norwood, and had five living children. She said that Mabel Hill came to her house with Mr. Schuster on Oct 24, 1902.
“I met them at my doorway. Anna, Henry, and my daughter were present. Miss Hill spoke to me and asked me If I posted the letter about her. I answered that I did not and Miss Hill said she had received a nasty letter, and said she thought I sent it.
“I said I did not. Mr. Schuster showed me the bill and I read part of It. I then spoke to Mr. Schuster and told him why Miss Hill had amused me. I first knew Miss Hill In June. She roomed at my house for nine months. She left because I made her. She told me things about my husband. When she left we were on good terms.
“Later I met Miss Hill and had a conversation with her. As a result, there was a feeling between us. As a result of Miss Hill’s accusation, I had to have a doctor. A number of people of Norwood spoke to me about being accused of posting the bills.” Two little girls, Anna Henry and Hannah Duncan testified to the conversation between Mrs. Duncan, Miss Hill, and Mr. Schuster. Mrs. Mabel Hill, the defendant, said she lived in Sharon at the present time. She said:
“I lived In Norwood for a while. From January to June 1901 I lived at Mrs. Day’s and after leaving her I lived at Mrs. Duncan’s to April 26, 1902. I left Mrs. Duncan’s because of something Mrs. Duncan said to me about her husband.
On October 24 I went to Mrs. Duncan with officer Schuster and asked her if she had posted the bills about me. Mrs. Duncan answered that she did not. There was nothing said about a nasty letter.
“On the cross-examination Miss Hill denied that she had accused Mrs. Duncan of posting the bill, saying that she had only asked Mrs. Duncan If she had done it.
John Schuster, a police officer of Norwood, in his testimony corroborated the statement of Miss Hill in everything except her talk with Mrs. Duncan, which he did not hear.
Judge Grover reserved his decision.