Forty Years Ago. Wednesday, April 19, 1871
Carlinville was thrown into much excitement on Sunday evening over the fact that Joseph Christian [sic] had been murdered at his home four miles southwest of town. The main facts about the killing seemed to be that on Sunday morning Mr. Christian had discovered a horse in his wheat field. The animal belonged to a man by the name of Greenwalt to whom he had rented a portion of his land. He drove the horse off and down to the house of Greenwalt and Carver. Here words ensued which led to an attack upon Christian by the two men. In the fight which ensued Christian was struck on the head with an ax wielded by Greenwalt. After receiving the fatal wound he walked to his home and for a time was rational. Shortly afterward he became unconscious and died about two o'clock in the afternoon. Constable Kiefer and others from Carlinville went to the home of Greenwalt and found him with some others playing cards. They professed to know nothing about Christian being injured. Greenwalt and Carver were brought to this city and lodged in jail. They employed Messrs. Walker and Palmer to defend them.