Monday, November 24, 2014

Another little bit from our current research


Philandering Financier 

            Carrie Jones divorced Albert in March 1889, charging adultery. Evidence suggests that his adulterous life began as early as 1882. The Leighton, Pennsylvania, Carbon Advocate reported Jones’ visit to Edwin F. Luckenbach. Instead of his wife, he traveled with “Mrs. Hopper of New York” and “Mrs. Agene of New Jersey.”[1] Luckenbach (Oct. 11, 1842 – Mar. 3, 1912)) was a merchant in Mauch Chunk, Pennsylvania, combining a fresco painting business with a stationery, wall paper and paint store. He was a factor in local politics.[2] We don’t know why Jones visited him in mid-June 1882. But it seems improbable that a married Christian would travel from New York City to Mauch Chunk with two women but without his wife, especially so in an era when appearance mattered.

“Mrs. Agene” was most certainly Mrs. A. Agens of New Jersey, a Watch Tower adherent whose poetry was published in Zion’s Watch Tower. If he was sexually involved with Agens, we have an uncomfortable picture of Jones as a predator within the congregation.

Jones’ infidelities became public in the late 1880s through gossip and a law suit. By 1886 he was having significant money problems. He commissioned Ada L. Cone, an artist, “to make for him a crayon portrait of a woman.” He told her to send it to the Hoffman House where he rented a suit. Jones failed to pay and was sued by the Working Women’s Protective Union in Cone’s behalf. A newspaper report says that, “Mr. Jones wanted to compromise, and to give him an opportunity to do so the Justice at his request adjourned the case for one week.” He still failed to pay, and judgment was entered in Cone’s behalf.[3] The New York World, without naming Jones, described him as “a broker with an office in the Mills Building and sumptuous apartments at the Hoffman House. According the The World, “he defaulted and … left for parts unknown when an officer attempted to execute the judgment against him.”[4]



[1]               From the County Seat, The Leighton, Pennsylvania, Carbon Advocate, June 17, 1882.
[2]               J. W. Jordan: Historic Homes and Institutions of the Lehigh Valley, Lewis Publishing Co., New York, 1905, Volume 2, page 224.
[3]               Mr. Jones’ Friend’s Picture, The New York Sun, November 17, 1887.
[4]               Dead-Beats on the Rack: Where Workingwomen Get Redress for their Wrongs, The New York World, December 29, 1887.

2 comments:

roberto said...

"Jones traveled with Mrs. Hopper of New York and Mrs. Agene of New Jersey."
"It seems improbable that a married Christian would travel from New York City to Mauch Chunk with two women but without his wife, especially so in an era when appearance mattered."

I think it would be good to know how old were Mrs. Hopper and Mrs. Agene.
Furthermore, I wonder: was really an unseemly behaviour to travel with two women at that era? They were two women, not one.

roberto said...

What was Hoffman House?