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Brooklyn Union
April 6, 1871

The Loves of the Cousins.
"Not Wisely, but Too Well"  Mated but not Married  A Painful Case of Scandal.

   Of all spots on Long Island, Williamsburg is assuredly the most favorite 
region, in which the storms of sensation circulate. Scarcely a week passes 
without bringing to the surface some abnormal circumstance, to disturb the 
equanimity of the inhabitants of the Eastern District. But doubtless by 
this time the Burgh has so far advanced on "The even tenor of its way" that 
events, which elsewhere are regarded as indicating a convulsive state of 
society, are here dismissed with a few comments over the breakfast table.

   Mysterious disappearances, midnight murders, shocking suicides, Salt 
Lake proclivities, and girl-stabbers, are a few of the brilliant events 
which will light up the page of some future Gibbon, who bequeaths to 
posterity the history of the "Decline and Fall" of the Eastern adjunct of 
the City of Churches.

   It is now exactly seventeen years since Brooklyn incorporated this 
suburban neighbor, and yet is a deplorable fact that so long a period has 
not been sufficient to remove its primitive degeneracy. Until the 
Fifth-Warders abandon their little revenue peccadilloes, and the 
Williamsburgers look with more respect on the moral laws, it is scarcely 
necessary for Brooklyn to send out her missionary agencies into remote 
climes in order to find fresh fields of labor. It must be said, however, 
for the honor of a fast fading name, that the last sensation, which is to 
be placed to the credit of the Burg is one, which finds its counterpart in 
all places, and among all classes of society, and which forcibly illustrate 
the ancient proverb, that "the course of true love never runs smooth." The 
tale, which "hereby hangs," is somewhat romantic, and as it may serve as a 
salutary warning to those who trespass on the domains, over which the 
youthful god of the tender bow presides, it may not be out of place to 
inscribe it on the faithful tablet, which records the history of local event.

   To begin, therefore, at the beginning it may be said that Chas. JORDAN, 
about a quarter of a century ago, left the shores of Old England, and 
sailed to the Western Continent, to seek the fortune which fate denied him 
at home. In course of time he prospered and some years ago became a citizen 
of Williamsburg, where at the corner of Keap Street and Division Avenue, he 
established himself in a marble manufactory, and where he still 
successfully carries on that business. Mr. JORDAN married early, and sons 
and daughters grew up around him, among whom Christopher deserves special 
mention, as he was destined to be the hero of this tale. Christopher is at 
present about twenty years of age, somewhat delicately formed, and would 
not likely have ever become immortalized were it not for the kindness of 
this reportorial pen.

   Mr. JORDAN, senior, like most of his countrymen settled on these shores, 
often cast longing eyes toward his own home, and having means at his 
command, paid several visits to England. The good account of the land of 
his adoption, which he poured into the ears of his younger brother Alfred, 
a resident of London, had the effect of making the latter look longingly 
toward the West. Alfred was also married, and had a family consisting of 
two sons and a daughter named Emma, at present in her sixteenth year, and 
who figures as the heroine in the domestic drama.

   On the second of last July Alfred landed in New York, with all the 
members of his family, just in time to witness the grand National 
celebration. He was warmly welcomed by his brother Charles, and both 
families of the JORDANs made one harmonious household at the residence of 
the latter in Williamsburg. Meanwhile, Mrs. Charles JORDAN was on her way 
to England, where she was soon joined by her husband. During their absence 
"all went merry as a marriage bell," especially with the cousins, 
Christopher and Emma. The rushing heart of Christopher was irretrievably 
lost, from the moment that his eyes rested on his beautiful Cousin. He 
filled the imagination of the youthful maiden, with blissful visions of 
future happiness when heaven should smile on the union of their hands and 
hearts. He would soon be of age, and then he would build a castle by the 
Lake of Como, on one of his father's vacant lots, and there apostrophize 
his darling Emma. Could maiden's heart refuse to respond to such ardent 
love? The mutual sacred understood vows were pledged, and two hearts beat 
happy with youthful attachment.

   Mr. Charles JORDAN and his wife returned to their Williamsburg home in 
September, and all parties seemed to smile approvingly on the loving 
cousins. Alfred, having accumulated a few hundred dollars, purchased an 
adjoining lost from his brother, and with the assistance given him by his 
sister-in-law, built a neat little residence. His daughter, however, 
continued to reside with his brother's family. Up till the end of January 
last nothing had apparently occurred to ruffle the happiness of the JORDAN 
families: but on the last evening of that month Mrs. Charles JORDAN gave a 
surprise party to her friends, which proved the occasion of sowing the 
apple of discord, in a garden where all had hitherto been strewed with the 
flowers of love. Among the guests at the party was a young lady, with whom 
Christopher used to go to Sunday-School, and for whom he continued to 
cherish some deep regard. He took special pains to devote himself to her 
during the evening. This conduct on his part did not escape the observant 
eye of his fair cousin, who was considerably annoyed at his neglect. It 
does not seem, however, that any overpowering feeling of jealousy took 
possession of either of them, but other eyes were upon them  those of their 
mothers, who thereupon conceived a bitter hatred, which subsequent events 
has but intensified. Emma shortly afterwards withdraw her parental root, it 
having become painfully evident that the twain had loved "not wisely, but 
too well," and the poor girl confessed to her father that her ruin had been 
accomplished some months before. Young Jordan promised to make all the 
reparation in his power, and to marry the victim of his lust. His mother 
vehemently opposed this wise resolution, and swerved him from his righteous 
purpose. The girl's father laid the case before Justice VOORHIES, and had a 
warrant issued for the young man's arrest, who fled to Philadelphia in 
order to escape the exposure. He only remained eight days in the City of 
Brotherly Love, when he returned to his home, hoping that the threatening 
storm had blown by. He was, however, instantly arrested, and held on $500 
to answer the serious charge of seduction. The parties appeared in Court 
before Justice VOORHIES about three weeks ago, and the case was fully 
ventilated. Christopher acknowledge the charge, and expressed his 
willingness to marry Emma. The Justice was anxious to tie the matrimonial 
knot, but as the young man was anxious to have the matter worthily 
celebrated with religious ceremony, the Justice waived his right, and 
allowed them to depart after he had promised that he would lead his cousin 
on the following Sabbath to the hymeneal altar. Delay, however, in the case 
proved fatal. The youthful twain accompanied by several members of their 
respective families, repaired to the nearest Episcopal Church on the 
designated day. After the usual religious services of the day, the 
bridegroom-to-be had a short conversation with the minister, and made an 
arrangement to have the marriage ceremony performed at the minister's 
residence in the afternoon. The once-more disappointed Emma repaired to her 
room, and anxiously awaited the arrival of him who was to be the light of 
her life, but oh! for the perfidy of man! he has never since appeared to 
claim his bride. Blighted affections on Thursday last once more appealed to 
a legal tribunal, but in the absence of Justice VOORHIES, Justice EAMES who 
was present, postponed the hearing of the case till another occasion. It 
seems that a fresh apple of discord has been introduced into the families 
by Mr. Charles JORDAN, who has commenced a suit against his brother-in-law, 
for moneys advanced to him when he was in difficulties. And in this 
much-bemuddled state the case now rests.

   An attache of THE UNION visited the parties this morning, and the 
foregoing statement is the result of his conversation with both families. 
Mr. Charles JORDAN regretted deeply the painful nature of the case, but 
thought that his son would never marry the girl. Christopher was invisible 
to mortal eyes, and refused to subject himself to reportorial scrutiny. The 
residence of Alfred JORDAN is next door to his brothers, but is much more 
humble. The house is very small, and in an unfinished condition. In a low, 
unplastered room, on a small sofa, sat the young girl, her brother on one 
side, and a relative of the family on the other. Her father and mother were 
also present. She was engaged in sewing. Her appearance is quite 
prepossessing, and she is remarkably beautiful for one in her rank of life. 
Instead of the "flaxen curls" of England, ?ork clusters of raven, Spanish 
hair flow down her well-rounded neck, and her eyes are filled with 
expression, and brilliantly dark. She still loves her destroyer, and it is 
to be hoped that Justice VOORHIES will see that justice is done the almost 
child who is soon to become a mother.

   The JORDAN scandal case, the last blot on Williamsburg morals, and the 
full details of which were published in yesterday's issue, was made the 
subject of investigation before a local legal tribunal yesterday afternoon. 
The facts, which THE UNION alone presented to the public, were 
incontrovertible and plainly demonstrated that a grievous injury had been 
inflicted on a young and innocent girl. Yesterday, three weeks ago, the 
case was first laid before Justice VOORHIES; the parties appeared in court; 
and Christopher JORDAN pleaded guilty to the charges preferred against him, 
but was allowed to leave the Court, having promised in the most solemn 
manner that he would make his cousin Emma, who had fallen a victim to his 
lust, his legal wife on the following Sunday. This was the only 
satisfactory ending that the case could have had. Had Justice VOORHIES 
strongly urged the necessity of having the marriage speedily performed, and 
requested the pleasure of tying the matrimonial knot himself, as Justice 
WALSH or DOWLING would, under such circumstances, have been likely to do, 
it is more than probable that the cousins would then and there have become 
man and wife, and a life of happiness might have been before them. The 
Justice of the Eastern District proved his utter ignorance of human nature, 
and allowed an occasion of making a righteous coup d'etat slip from his grasp.

   The young man was, in the interval between Thursday and Sunday, given an 
opportunity of subjecting himself to the influence of female advice, which, 
under such circumstances, is generally wrong. His mother could not see what 
injury had been inflicted on one of her sex, and demonstrated the truth 
that woman shares with man inhumanity to one another. In fact, she poisoned 
his mind so with evil stories that he thereupon determined that the girl 
should never recome his wife.

   In order, however, to surround the affair with somewhat of romance, and, 
if possible still add to his guilt, he went through the farce of going to 
church on Sunday, but, of course, did not return a bridegroom.

   A most painful circumstance in this case is the fact that the girl's 
family are poor and without friends, while the young Lothario's family are 
very well-to-do, and are consequently surrounded by hosts of sympathizers, 
in the rotten state of Williamsburg. It is sad to reflect that in this 
advanced age, and after a thousand years of law-making, it is the weak that 
are generally crushed. From the impotent conclusion at which the Justices 
of the Eastern District yesterday arrived, it will be seen that the JORDAN 
case adds one more proof to the foregoing inhuman fact.

   At two o'clock yesterday afternoon, Justices VOORHIES and EAMES presided 
in the Williamsburg court. The JORDAN case was called, Christopher and Emma 
stood side by side before the legal luminaries. Their fathers were also in 
court, and a brother of the girls. It was a most pitiable domestic sight. 
There were a few interested spectators, but the general appearance of the 
court did not seem to indicate that anything unusual was going on. Whether 
this is creditable to the morals of the district or not is left for those 
who are better acquainted with the philosophy of police courts than the 
writer, to judge.

   Mr. Thomas BOWEN appeared as counsel for the defendant, but the 
plaintiff's attorney, Mr. DICKISON, showed a want of appreciation for his 
client's interests by not being on hand until the Justices had made up 
their minds in the matter. The investigation was hurried through with 
unbecoming haste, and altogether lasted only about five minutes. The 
defendant pleaded guilty to the charge of seduction, but was understood to 
deny that he had promised marriage. The young girl, under great excitement, 
and evidently recognizing her painful position, detailed the circumstances 
of her ruin. She was asked by the Judge, if the defendant had at the exact 
time, when her ruin took place, promised her marriage, to which she 
answered in the negative. Now, it must be said, in spite of the legal 
breadth of judicial vision, which justices in Brooklyn police courts are 
supposed to possess, that it is hard to see what end of justice that 
brilliant question could serve. It seemed, however, to be sufficiently 
important to decide the matter, for notwithstanding the protestations of 
the girl's father, and the stubborn fact that Justice VOORHIES was fully 
aware that a promise of marriage had been made both prior and subsequent to 
the occurrence, and that he himself was a witness to a solemn promise made 
before himself, and beneath the very shade of his own legal tribunal, the 
Justices decided that two dollars per week should be paid to the girl after 
the birth of her child, should it survive, by it, father, and that a fine a 
$25 should be imposed to cover legal expenses. In this manner has injured 
innocence been avenged on Holy Thursday in a city which boasts of its 
churches, schools, and high moral tone. The parties left the court, but 
with what different feelings! One to boast of his cheap triumph over his 
kinswoman's virtue, the other sick at heart to brood in shame and sorrow 
over her wrongs.

   Not only is the villain and his family not content with the injury, 
which they have already inflicted, but they are now determined to still 
further aggravate it by driving their victims into utter ruin. Proceedings 
have been begun which, if carried out, will deprive the girl and her family 
of their humble home, and even this morning three of the sisters of seducer 
passed the door of the poor girl and cast a look of scorn upon her. Few 
will envy their unholy triumph over their fallen sister.

   This morning the girl's father went to Rev. Mr. MATHEWS, the pastor of 
St. Matthew's Episcopal Church, for advice in his family troubles. The 
minister told him how much disappointed he was that the young people had 
not come to him to get married, as Christopher JORDAN had promised him that 
he would do so, and so certain was Mr. MATHEW that his services would be 
required, that he remained at home on the Monday following the Sunday on 
which the service was to have taken place, in order not to disappoint them. 
He advised the father not to have anything more to say to the scoundrel, as 
he thought the future happiness of his daughter would not be subserved by 
such an alliance. He further stated that it would be hard to fight for his 
rights in courts of law, unless he was able to command some political 
influence, which it is not necessary to state the poor Englishman is an 
entire stranger to. Aspersions have been freely cast upon the character of 
this suffering family, which from documents which were this morning shown 
to the writer of this article, are most unfounded. Previous to his arrival 
in this country, Mr. Alfred JORDAN and his family enjoyed a good reputation 
in London, where he lived for over twenty years.

   Since the decision rendered yesterday the poor girl has become very 
depressed in spirits. The lingering affection for her destroyer has turned 
to bitter hate, and she protests that she would not now, under any 
circumstances, become his wife. It is understood that the young man is 
worth several thousand dollars in his own right, and it is not unlikely 
that a higher legal tribunal, presided over by conscientious Judges, and 
with a jury of twelve honest men, would decide that virtue cannot be 
purchased at the low price of two dollars a week. If the cause of justice 
cannot be subserved by legal measures, from the state of mind in which the 
brother of the poor girl is plunged, it is not improbable that the 
destroyer of this family's peace and happiness will suffer from the revenge 
from which even more exalted seducers are not exempt.

Ed Guinness