Genevieve Hurley is referred to as "the darling of Jefferson County" in an article that was published in The Topeka Capital-Journal on September 11, 1997, in connection with a book then in the works that was to be about the tragedy that occurred at the T.A. Hurley farmhouse southeast of Meriden on May 14, 1923. Ironically, by then (September 11, 1997), the name Darling had already figured prominently in two post-tragedy accounts of the fire that destroyed the farmhouse, leaving three charred bodies in its wake, and the ensuing investigation into the fire and the events that may have immediately preceded it. What we do know for sure, as documented by a short story in the May 9, 1919, issue of The Meriden Ledger, is that Genevieve Hurley left the world (whenever she left the world) having written the lyrics to a lovely song, "When The Roses Bloom In May", the words for which can be found on the historical society's Facebook page. The song was copyrighted under Genevieve Hurley's name in 1919, and maybe one of these days those of us who don't play the piano or sing so well will be able to hear it performed somewhere here in Jefferson County. Just a thought.
Last night some of us were looking at the old pictures that Dave Taylor has at his Events Center. One of them is of a parade scene in Oskaloosa and looks back to the west from the corner on which the Presbyterian Church stands. A small structure that is visible on the southeast corner of the courthouse square was pointed out and it was said by someone that that structure was the original jail, the one that was before the old 2-story brick building on the east side of the square. But someone else was of the opinion that the structure was for a public well or cistern and said that there was a well or cistern on each of the four corners of the square. I recall seeing somewhere an old map or drawing that put the jail on the northeast corner of the courthouse square, meaning it was not going to be seen in this particular photograph because of the structures along the north side of Jefferson Street and the east side of Delaware Street. Jefferson Street being the main east-west thoroughfare through town, I wouldn't think the jail would have been located on either the southeast corner or the southwest corner of the square. What do you think we were looking at in that old photograph? Rick Nichols.