Tracking Down an Arsonist #general #usa


Jeff Marx
 

In July of 1893, the fur store of Henry Seide was totally destroyed by a fire of suspicious origin. One of the partners of the store, Joseph L. Harris, an immigrant from Poland who arrived in the US a short time after 1880, was said to have collected almost $200,000 in insurance money (worth over 5 million today). Wanted by the District Attorney, Harris closed up his expensive home at 833 President St. in Brooklyn, took his wife, Rose, and their 6 (?) children, and vanished in July of 1895, never to be seen again, though there were false sightings of him over the next few years in Illinois and Copenhagen. The only other info I have is that he owned a dry goods store at 62 Fifth Ave. in Brooklyn in 1889, and a fur store, R. Harris & Co., at 282 6th Ave. in New York in 1895.  Do some of you super sleuths want to take a crack at finding him? I am working on an academic article on Jews and arson – yes, there really were a few Jewish arsonists - and it would be of help to me to find out what happened to him. 

--
Jeff Marx
Researching ANSPACHER, AUGAPHEL, AUGENBLICK, BREAKSTONE, BREGSTEIN, CARLEBACH, HIEGENLICH, KUBELSKY, MARX


Sherri Bobish
 

Jeff,

A search for "Joseph L. Harris" and the word arson at Newspapers.com finds a Dec. 23, 1896 lengthy article in The Brooklyn Daily Eagle about his capture.

He was found in Monmouth, Ohio living under the name W.C. Lagrace.

There's lots of other interesting info about him, his wife and children.  If you give me your email address than I will email you the article from Newspapers.com

Good luck in your search,

Sherri Bobish

Searching:
RATOWSKY / CHAIMSON (Ariogala, Lith.); LEFFENFELD / FINK / KALTER (Daliowa & Jasliska, Pol.)
BOJDA / BLEIWEISS (Tarnow & Tarnobrzeg, Pol.); WALTZMAN / WALZMAN (Ustrzyki Dolne, Pol.)
LEVY (Tyrawa Woloska, Pol.); SOLON / SOLAN / SOKOLSKY (Grodek, Bialystok, Pol.)
BOBISH / BLUMENKRANZ / APPEL / WEINER / ROSENBERG (Vysoko-Litovsk, Brest, Biala Podlaska)


lisab5308@...
 

There is also an article about him in the NY Times.  I did the same search Sherri did.  I am attaching a copy below.

Lisa Bracco

Searching:  Glowatz, Glowacz, Myszne, Chodakiewicz (Nowogrod, Ostrolenka, Ostrow Mazowiecka--Poland)
Goldhammer, Bader, Beder (Kossow, Zablotow--Galicia, now Ukraine)
Kronberg, Charmatz, Weiser (Galati, Braila--Romania)


Jeff Marx
 

As I noted in my posting, Harris was supposedly spotted in Monmouth (Ill. or OH) and later in Copenhagen. Neither of the two men arrested were him. Sherri Bobish has, subsequently, found his wife and children living with his brother, Max, in 1910, but no sign of Joseph.
--
Jeff Marx
Researching ANSPACHER, AUGAPHEL, AUGENBLICK, BREAKSTONE, BREGSTEIN, CARLEBACH, HIEGENLICH, KUBELSKY, MARX


kosfiszer8@...
 

Louis Gordon was condemned for arson, and later pardoned by the Governor of New York, in 1895/96. I have researched him and you can find the trial daily reports in the NY Times and other newspapers of the time. Send me a private message if you are interested.

Angel Kosfiszer

Richardson, Texas


Cliff Karchmer
 

Sorry to use this method of responding; I could not find out how to get back to Jeff Marx.  I used to write about arson for Firehouse Magazine. My main article, Arson and the Mob, was really about predominately Jewish arsonists and related fraud schemers in Pittsburgh.  Please contact me Jeff and I will send you the article.  It was republished in the Congressional Record by Senator Charles Percy. 
 
Cliff Karchmer
Email:  ckarchmer@...