Saturday, August 4, 2018

Nodaway County Sheriff Henry J Toel

This picture, c.1884, if from the archives of the Nodaway County Historical Society. It is believed to be a gathering of Civil War Veterans, and that is very likely. It's interesting to note that two of Nodaway County's sheriffs and at least one deputy is shown.

Former Sheriff Henry J. Toel is second row, third from the left, and next to him, in profile,is his successor, Sheriff James Anderson. Far right, the tall gentleman with the cane and the thick mustaches is Sheriff Anderson's brother, Jack.

Sheriff Anderson and Deputy Anderson made a valiant attempt to fend off the mob that came to the rotary jail in Maryville with the intention of taking Charles Stephens, aka Omaha Charley, from his cell so that they might lynch him.

The first and only known gun battle to have occurred at the jail was related to this case. The mob of men were able to get the prisoner, finally, and took him to the Fourth Street Bridge not far from the jail, where they hung Omaha Charley, lifting and dropping his body a half dozen times to ensure he was dead.

You can read more about this case and others in Justice In Nodaway County: 1872-1931 by Don Nothstine and Susan Cronk.


Sheriff Toel was in office when Dr. Perry H. Talbott as assassinated by his sons, Charles and Albert Talbott, near the town of Arkoe, Missouri. Janet Hawley's book, The Murder of Dr. Talbott is an excellent compilation of newspaper articles related to the case. It is available through the Nodaway County Historical Society. The book, Died Innocent, by Don Nothstine, is a fictional story based upon the case. (

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

The Civil War Divided The County Too

Image may contain: textThe Civil War divided the county, just as it did the nation. No one felt that division more acutely than Sheriff Thomas Jefferson "Mac" McQuiddy who took office in 1860, was arrested by Union Soldiers around July 4, 1861 as a secessionist. His replacement was Thaddeus Koscusko [Koscuisko?] Beal, who would finish the rest of McQuiddy's two-year term, then enlist in the Union Army. Sheriff McQuiddy's son would later be arrested in Illinois, near the Missouri border, along with several other men and some 'pilfered' horses. Spoils of war?