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Newark Daily Advocate
Ohio, U.S.A.
9 March 1889


Morrillton, Ark., March 7.
Circuit court convened here Monday with Judge Cunningham presiding. The murder of John M. Clayton, at Plummerville on Jan. 29 was the principal topic of the judge's charge to the jury. He was every severe in denouncing the crime and urged the jury to make every effort to discover the murderer and bring him to justice. The jury is composed of both Democrats and Republicans, and they have gone to work with earnestness, determined to ferret out the assassin of Clayton and the theft of the ballot box at Plummerville in November.

E.A. Mayo, the foreman of the grand jury, said to the Globe correspondent:

"We are determined to follow every thread of evidence we can secure about the killing of Clayton, and if possible hunt down the assassin. We are going to take time and do our duty to our country and to ourselves in this matter." Today the Sheriff received a letter which will go before the grand jury. It was addressed: "Mr. Sheriff, Plummerville, Conway county, Ark." It was in a white envelope addressed in a different handwriting from the letter. It was written in a cramped hand and on journal ruled paper. But half of the postmark was legible, and the upper part showed the letters "thwest city, Nov. 5." The reverse side of the envelope was stamped with the receiving stamp Plummerville. The following is a copy of the letter:

"Maysville, Ark., March 5, 1889.
Mr Sheriff - Sir, I am the man who killed John M. Clayton. I went to Plummerville to kill Powell Clayton. Powell Clayton had my father and brother killed when I was a child. I have been west for nineteen years and returned to Fort Smith just after the election expecting to meet Powell at Plummerville, but he did not, but will get him yet before I die. The _____ killed my father and brother. I don't blame any one in Arkansas, and I am a Republican.
Jack the Ripper No. 2."