The Murder of Harry E. ROSE in Helix, Oregon

Submitted by PHGS member, Susan ROCKWELL Austin


Born in Lyndon, Cattaraugus Co., NY September 06, 1885. Shot in his cigar store and pool room, Helix, Umatilla Co., OR, October 28, 1922.
Addressed to: Private M. C. Rose
Ward 1, Army and Navy Hospital
Hot Springs, Arkansas
Helix Oregon
October 11th 1916
My dear Brother --

Sorry to hear you have been having such a terrible time, but trust at this late date you are almost entirely recovered from the "Fever". Your card did not reach me until after I heard from Gig saying you were much better and expected to start home soon so I would not be surprised to hear that you are back in civilization at this date.

This has been an unusually hard season at the werehouse(sic) as good labor couldn't be had in siens(?), and it kept me awful busy to take care of the business at my station but from all reports from surrounding agents I was more fortunate than a great many others. Have just finished one station and am on my way to another for the same company, and expect to be there for 2 or 3 months then I don't know what I shall do or where I will go. Had been thinking some of going home, but don't know what in the world I would do after I got there, do you?

The weather is simply delightful now, although the nights are rather chilly. Suppose you have had a great experience, along with your suffering. You know I got a touch of malaria in Southern California last winter but was fortunate enough to get after it as soon as it got me, so I wasn't sick only about two weeks. But I was surely (a) sick boy for awhile. Trusting you are recovered, and making up for lost time. As Ever,
H. E. Rose Helix, Ore.

Helix Ore. Oct. 31 - 1922
My dear Mother and all
My dear ones at home

I do not know how to write this letter to you, I have been almost out of my head for the last three days, but am getting ahold(sic) of myself now. I have sent three telegrams home and not a reply yet of any kind.

Last Sat. night right after supper Harry and young Sim Clark got in a scuffling match. They have a round about once a week any way so that is a common occurance(sic) with them, but this time young Sim's got mad (because I call him young Sims dont think he is a little boy he is 19 years old and six feet tall and weighs 150 lbs. but a schoolboy yet) and after the wrestling match he called Harry a god dam son of a bitch and Harry slapped his face and threw him out of the place, he went and told his father, who is City Marshall L. D. Clark put there by the City dads out of pity for his family because it was so hard for them to get along and make both ends meet - Clark came in and Harry ordered him out and he went. Everything was quiet for about twenty minutes, Clark went home and got his gun and Billy club and came back. he walked right into the pool hall, (Harry was sitting down reading) walked right up to Harry and hit him on the side of the head with his billy club knocking him over and cutting his left ear almost loose, as soon as Harry got his barring(sic) he picked up a chair and threw it at Clark he followed the chair right up and clinched with Clark throwing him down, Clark called for help and some of the boys pulled or raised Harry off and when they did that Clark shot harry twice once in the hand and once in the chest he lived only a little while.

We burried(sic) Harry at ten o'clock today this morning. Harry has worlds of friends out West here and the feeling is running pretty high, they may linch(sic) Clark who is in the County jail before many hours days and I hope to God they do, he is charged with murder in the first degree, any way so it will just save the county a little money. I don't know something is not as it should be, Three death right in our own family since I have been out here less than three years, two have died in my arms almost, and little Dorothy Mae I was watching her when she took her last breath. I am beginning to think that I am being punished with sorrow for coming so far away from home I cant think of any more now, will write a letter when my head clears a little more.

The rest of us are all well but Hazel is about to loose her mind so much sorrow poor girl
Lots and Lots of love and Kisses
Lilly Lelamae + John V.


 Held for Murder in First Degree
Harry Rose of Helix Was Shot by Man Now Under Arrest for the Crime
Young Man Victim of Brutal Attack by Deputy Sheriff Whom He Had Ordered Out of His Store Following Quarrel -- Coroner's Jury Holds the Shooting Was Unjustifiable.

Harry Rose, whose death was mentioned last week, was murdered instead of killed in an accident, as seemed to be the case according to the telegram which gave the first news of his death to his parents, Mr. and Mrs. C. A. Rose of this place. A letter has since been received from the young man's brother John, who also resided at Helix, Ore., containing full details, also copies of the helix newspaper with an account of the crime and of the findings of the coroner's jury.

It appears the young man was shot by L. D. Clark, a deputy sheriff and town marshall of Helix, following a disagreement which resulted when Rose ordered Clark's young son out of his cigar store and poolroom. It seems that the boy had been very troublesome and disorderly and Rose had at length ejected him. His father appeared and quarreled with the propietor over this. Clark then went away and procured his revolver and club. Entering the store where Rose was reading his paper, without warning he hit the young man a blow on the head which mangled his ear. The latter was at first stunned, but recovered and clinched with Clark, and was soon on top of him on the floor, apparently getting the best of the fight. At this a bystander pulled Rose off from Clark, whereupon the marshall pulled his revolver and fired twice. A coroner's jury brought in a verdict to the effect that the shooting was unjustifiable. Clark is now in jail, charged with murder in the first degree.

Mr. Rose was very popular in Helix and much sympathy is felt for his family as well as great indignation at the brutal crime.Hand dated Oct. 22, 1922.

Unidentified Newspaper Clipping from the Scrapbook of Viola Emma Florance Rose

Athena, Umatilla County, Oregon, Friday, Novem...
Helix Marshall Held for Killing

L. D. Clark, Helix Marshall and deputy sheriff, is held as the result of a shooting in which he killed Harry Rose, cigar store man of Helix Saturday night. The Pendelton Tribune gives the following account, which is decidedly against the officer: "Harry Rose came to his death by a bullet fired from a .32 colt automatic by one L. D. Clark, and we as the coroner's jury find that the shooting was not justifiable." This tells the story of the coroner's inquest held at Helix Sunday. Clark is held without bond. The officer, who is over 50 years of age, is in a very nervous condition, and spent the day before he was arrested in the company of his wife and 11 children, at Helix. he did not testify at the inquest.

Feeling run(s) high in Helix against the officer and the inquest in which 20 witnesses testified did not favor the old officer. The most damaging evidence against Clark is that all witnesses who watched the fight and saw the fatal shot fired, testified that Clark never declared Rose under arrest, and that, in their opinion, the fight was purely a personal affair. Several farm hands who were eyewitnesses to the whole event, told of young Clark, a son of the marshal, coming intoose's cigar store and getting into and argument with the proprietor. The upshot being that Rose struck young Clark and at that moment, the marshal arrived at the store. Hot words were exchanged between to officer and proprietor, and then the marshal left. Although it was not proven that Clark went home to get his gun, he returned later to Rose's store and after a few words a fistic encounter ensued. Rose used a chair on Clark's head, and Clark broke his billy club over Rose's left ear, the testimony showed. When Rose got the best of Clark and straddled him on the floor Clark fired two shots, the first striking Rose in the hand and breast, and the second going into the floor. Rose was immediately rushed to his home where he died before medical help could be secured.

Several witnesses were asked if Rose was under the influence of intoxicating liquor, and none of them declared that he was. Practically all the witnesses were farm hands who were about the Rose store and barber shop adjoining. Sim Clark, son of the man held, testified to his altercation with Rose but admitted that before Rose hit him, that he had called Rose a vile name.

Rose was 37 years of age, and leaves a wife and one small daughter. Funeral services were held at Helix Monday.

Daily East Oregonian, Pendelton, Oregon Monday Evening, Octo...
Helix Marshal Made No Attempt To Arrest Rose
Witnesses Of Shooting Fail to State That Attempt Was Made to Arrest Victim
Shots Fired During Fight Between Rose and Clark; Funeral Services Tomorrow

... witnesses who saw L. D. Clark, ... sheriff and town marshal of ... shot and kill Harry E. Rose in .. ter's cigar store at Helix Saturday, not one testified at the in- ... held in Helix today that Clark made any attempt to arrest Rose. ... shooting done with a .32 colt revolver occurred after an argument between Rose and Sim Clark, aged 18. ...Clarks 12 children. Rose ... young Clark from the store, ... state after which the elder .... and remonstrated with ... struggle ensued between the .. eye-witnesses, and Clark was .. to the floor on his right side, ... on top. A bystander testified .. after a request from .. lifted Rose so that the weight .. body was removed from Clark. ... marshal then with his left hand, of the safety from his revolver, which he took it in his right hand fired it at close range, the bullet entered Rose's left ... the second penetrated hi... After gasping, "I'm shot,..." Rose was taken to his home and died soon after.

... is popular in Helix and be- ... od antagonism toward Clark, ... was brought to Pendelton... and returned to Helix today for ... He was nor t placed under ... Rose, who was 37 years of age, is survived by his widow and two years old daughter, Clara Belle. Another daughter, Dorothy Mae, aged two, was killed last year when she was run over by an automobile. Rose's relative are from New York.

Funeral services will be held in Helix at 10 a. m. tomorrow.

Daily East Oregonian, Pendelton, Oregon, Tuesday Evening, October 31, 1922
Helix Marshall Held When Jury Finds His Act Not Justifiable

L. D. Clark, deputy sheriff and town marshall of Helix is in jail as a result of the killing of Harry E. Rose of Helix Saturday evening. The jury brought in a verdict yesterday afternoon to the effect that Rose came to his death as a result of gunshot wounds inflicted by a gun in the hands of Clark and that the shooting was not justifiable. No complaint against Clark had been filed yet this afternoon, but an information is expected to be presented within a short time.

The finding of the jury was made following the hearing of testimony of 20 witnesses in the inquest. No witnesses testified either that the officer attempted to put Rose under arrest, or that booze figured in any way in the trouble leading to the shooting. The members of the jury to which the testimony was presented consisted of Harvey Brown, J. S. Norvell, M. D. Smith, C. F. Kennedy, Frank Herman and John Anderson. All of the jurors except Mr. Kennedy are Helix men. He lives in Pendelton.

Funeral services for the deceased were held this morning. Besides the widow and a little daughter, the relatives who survive are his mother and father, Mr. and Mrs. C. A. Rose of Cuba, N. Y: four sisters, all of Cuba, Genevieve, Mrs. C. J. Neil, Marian and Irene; three brothers, Ernest Rose, Rochester, N. Y. , John V. Rose, Helix, and Myrtal Rose of Dundee, N. Y.

Mr. Rose was a member of the Knights of Pythias, Masons' and Elks and was also prominent in the activities of the Commercial club of Helix. He was in railroad work before going to Helix several years ago. He had been in the cigar store and pool room business for several years before his death.

Besides Coroner J. T. Brown, R. I. Keaton and C. Z. Randall, respecting the state's cause, and Wm. H. Peterson of the legal firm of Peterson, Bishop and Clark and A. C. McIntyre, Helix attorney, representing the defendant participated in the inquest. One conflict in testimony developed in the hearing when the stories told by A. R. Zumwalt and John Heberlein conflicted.

Heberlein was the man who pulled Rose up so that his weight was very nearly removed from the body of Clark just before the fatal shots were fired, he told the jury. He said he was touched on the arm by Zumwalt, who told him to let Rose alone so that the two men could "have it out," or words to that effect. "What did you say to Zumwalt then?" one of the attorneys asked. "I told him to go to hell," Heberlein replied. Zumwalt when he was recalled to the stand said that he made the remark, but his testimony was to the effect that he made this request of Heberlein after the shots were fired. Heberlein insisted that the words were spoken before the shots were fired. To substantiate his claim he told the jury that he started to run as son as Clark started to fire and that Zumwalt did not talk to him afterward. Heberlein led Rose to the front end of the cigar store, he said, after Rose had been shot. He said there were three shots fired. Testimony at this point conflicted, some of the witnesses stating that they heard two shots, while others thought there were three.

The list of witnesses that were examined were A. R. Zumwalt, Henry Merrill, Gale Alapack, Percy Kelly, Bay Pierce, Julius Nelson, Jack Rose, brother of the deceased, Willard Griffin, Sims Clark, son of the defendant who had the first trouble with Rose and called him a name when he was ejected from the store, Walter E. Clark, nephew of the defendant, C. E. Randall, Dr. J. P. .... the only man in the store who did not run during the shooting, ... Dollarhide, George ..., Fred Gerard, John Kupers, Lorin O'Gera, .. ... and Elbert .. ....

Nov. 1, 1922
Manslaughter Charge Brought Against Clark

A charge of manslaughter was proffered against L. D. Clark, deputy sheriff and marshall of Helix, this afternoon in the court of Justice Joe H. Parkes for the alleged killing of Harry E. Rose. The information against the man was proffered by District Attorney R. I. Keaton, shortly before 2 o'clock this afternoon.

If you have anything of genealogical or historical interest to add to this site, or if you are interested in becoming a member of the Painted Hills Genealogy Society, please contact us at:
Painted Hills

This page is maintained by the PHGS
Last Update February 2, 2020