Four generations of RICHARDSONs 1917

Four generations of RICHARDSONs 1917
William Richardson, Alice Josephine Richardson Dakin, Robert Worthington Richardson, Harry Bogart Richardson

Friday, August 26, 2011

John CARLSON vs Eric HELSTEN: Eric's testimony along with Mrs Helsten, son William and Dr St John

The box where Eric HELSTEN stored his important papers (including this document).
The "footprint" of the box is 11" by 5".

If you have been following the story of the deposition in this case, you know that we have a pencil copy of the depositions but don't actually know what the suit was or how it was resolved. The writing is VERY light, the handwriting inconsistent (sometimes abbreviated or close to scribble) and the paper fragile and so it is very hard to read.  This might have been a "scratch copy" and then recopied in ink for the court.  What you have below is the rest of the testimony after three of us have tried to transcribe the document (this is the best we can decipher!).  Why Eric HELSTEN even had this copy is another puzzle.

Reading this does not answer the question as to what the suit was about or how it was resolved.  It DOES give some real personalities to Eric and Mary HELSTEN and to John CARLSON.

Evidence taken Sept. 8th
Before Reynolds Justice
Deposition from John Carlson
                          Eric A. Helsten
     It was 1858, he came at my house.  He was a small boy came along and inquired for me.  He had been sent up by someone from New York.  He wanted to stay with me, my wife.  He came….of everything.  I did not make any bargain with him.  I made a bargain with him to give him his board and clothes.  I would finish him with way to go back to Sweden.  His father and mother were dead.  It appeared to me that he had been sent here to avoid when he came said was 15.  He called himself a year older than he was.  I clothed him right off – gave him clothes.  The first night we had a clean shirt put on him.  We had a good deal of trouble with him for the first year  he wet the bed.  He was a small poor boy.  I …. ….  Pictures have this clothes.  He runs.  He did not understand the English language.  I taught him many things and spelling and reading  I always avoided speaking Swedish  to him on this  I took special pains to try to learn him the language.  I thought I could give him better instruction myself as before.  He was well to understand English.  He start tell about the time he stolen himself.  One fault I had against him he sometimes would tell some wrong stories, always tell the truth anytime.  I did not consider no labor than over than his board and clothes.  I kept him at work as before as he could work as you can go.  I favored him because he was lame.  The first I ever heard of his leg hurt was my boy says John liked to get killed the other day  I got a story from both round and on Sunday he was hurt when he came to the top.  William went down the hill to hunt him  John said he was not hurt.  I spoke up said it is a great wonder you did not get killed did not you.  He use ax.  He said he had to let it go.  I got the story from both of them.  After that I forbid both of the boys to slide down hill.  Many evenings I find John sliding down hill.  I took the sled away from him and sent him into the house.  I think it was 6 weeks after that I heard him complain of his foot.  I did not believe at the time he got his foot out of joint and kept it concealed so long.  I asked him if he was hurt and he always denied it.  I went with him over to Dr. St. Johns office.  I went to Dr. St. John’s Office and he never owned up to Dr. that it was hurt,  to my knowledge, how it happened, Dr. was going to examine his foot.  John would not let him touch it.  Pulled it back.  He did not seem to know what it was.  His foot was swollen pretty bad.  John used up that linament and I told him to go and get more.  He went and got more and after that the doctor saw the foot inflamed and the swelling was down.  He said that foot is out of joint.  Run and get a supporter an Spig (some type of screw)  he wear our shirts   This spig was made and put on the boot and fixed for him.  John wore it and after awhile he broke it and I had another one made.  Dr. St. John said he must wear it.  I had another spig put on a new boot for him.  He did not like to wear it  But summer came on and he would rather go barefooted.  He went off but came back again.  I did not know what to think of it.  He always denied being hurt again.  I had seen before that his foot was hurt.  That has always been big influence.  I estimated it at about six weeks when he went off the wall  at this time   If I have know that his ankle was out of join I should have him in doctor right off.
Cross- examination
     He went to work as usual during this time.  I asked him many times if he was hurt.  He did what he could.  He went away the latter part of summer.
He grew very fast when he came.
William Helsten
     Son of Mr. Helsten
     When he went out out over of all of it.  That week on Saturday I think it was sometime after that he began.  I did not notice it that week nor the next.  I guess he did not (tan –maybe)  I don’t remember whether I did or not
Cross examination
     I am 14  I think it was 7 or eight.  I have heard father speak of it.  I think it was in the ….  One foot on each side  I did not see him go lame.  I could not tell whether he was the same as before.
Mrs. Mary Helsten
     He was a poor school boy and I take him  he was a little boy came in.  I want you to go home  ..shall freeze to death.  Said I we we will put up same as before.  I clothed him  I …. The same before run as you do us the same  Then says I intended to do well by him  I could not understand a word as before  Well says I wonder that he was not killed.  I did not notice that he was lame for sometime as before.  John would not let him touch it  we thought it was a swelling, as before then, as before you came
Dr. St. John
     I think its first time.  He came with an ankle badly swelled.  He was very hesitantly to how as this was.  He did not.  I inquired to know the cause of the trouble.  After I think Mr. Helsten told me what William said about him going over the wall.  Have the same as before.  He did not admit that very absolutely  I continue the same as before.  I think it could have been straightened with the support.  Boys sometimes as before you can make the worked as before.  I considered the injury.  I don’t know as this was anything said about this.
He might have the ….
Cross examination
     Ex. A. (Eric A. Helsten)?
     I thought it might be much nothing, but I don’t think be.  I don’t know when he might have done work.  He says he could not do a full days work.  He might have done some work.
Mr. Helsten
     He did not work while he was sick.  I kept him comfortable.
     I think is about 2 years ago he said his hip was out of joint.  He said Dr. ought to have seen it.  He said I always say no   I knew I didn’t   know as you will give me any the….
Know as the same as before

My next post will be Chris's summary of what she has learned from reading this document -- the first thing that has given her any information on her great grandfather John CARLSON when he came to the US.

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