Etc. -- John Henry Ryder's 1910 death
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A lightly edited transcription of a page 1 article published in the 27 Oct 1910 Simcoe Reformer. 


John Henry Ryder of Middleton
meets death at Delhi

All sorts of wild rumors circulated around Simcoe on Tuesday evening over the death of Mr. John Henry Ryder which occurred that afternoon at Delhi. 

The most serious being that he lost his life in a struggle with Chief McInally of Simcoe, in which he had been shoved down stairs, breaking his neck.

The real facts show that the death, while sad, was due entirely to an accident for which no one was at all to blame.

A trial of a rather salacious character was down for hearing before Squire Earl of Simcoe and Squire Whitside of Delhi.

A raid had been made some nights before at a house in Windham, alleged to be of a disorderly character. Three women and three men were gathered in.

Owing to the prominence of the men interested, the case attracted much attention and the crowd drawn to Delhi to hear the evidence would have filled the small room the magistrates proposed to use, three or four times over.

Needless to say it was packed when the time dame for the proceedings to open.

The magistrates, probably with wisdom, decided to take the evidence privately and ordered Chief McInally to clear the court.

Interviewed by the Reformer, Mr. McInally made the following statement:

"I had got the room fairly well cleared. Albert Wilbur remained in, but thinking he was a constable I was not bothering about him.

"The magistrates told me that I was to put him out and I asked him to go. 

"He caught me round the neck, I think in fun. We wrestled around some but finally I pulled away from him and he went out the door.

"I did not see the accident and can only say in regard to it what I was told by those who did.

"Mr. Ryder was down in the street and started to go up the stairs.  He was a magistrate and no doubt thought he would exercise his right to hear the case.

"He had gone up about five steps when he evidently saw Wilbur and others coming down.

"He turned, apparently with the intent to give them the right of way, when his foot must have slipped, for he fell, striking his head with great violence on the lowest step.

"He did not break his neck, but his skull was fractured badly and he died in about 20 minutes.

"I do not think he was pushed or in fact touched by anyone, it was an accident for which no one was to blame."

A jury was empanelled by Coroner Shenhan. The members viewed the body of deceased and adjourned.

Mr. Ryder was nearly 80 years of age, and old and well known resident, held in high esteem by the community.

Copyright 2017 John Cardiff