The Columbia Democrat. (Bloomsburg, Pa.) 1837-1850, July 27, 1839, Image 1

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1 have sworn upon tlic Altar of God, eternal hostility to every form of Tyranny ovdr the Blind of Man." Thomas Jcilbrson. ' -
Yolninc 113. BLOOMSBJKG-, COMMBSA COSJOTY, FA. SATURDAY, JUXY 27, !S33. Number 1 15.
OrrosiTB St. Paul's Onuncii, Main-st.
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From Waldio's Circulating Library.
Some years ago there resided at Brussels
three young men, named Charles Daran
court, Theodore dc Valmont, and Ernest
de St. Maure, whose friendship for each
other was of so ardent a nalure.that they were
generally known by the title of The Insep
arable. The first link which bound these
youths together was the remarkable circum
stances of their having been all three born
on one day, and, being all of good families,
they had been constant play-fellows in child
lmod. had s'tudied at tho same academy as
cflinnl.hovs. and had become members of
the. same university in their more advanced
years. Through all these stages of their
existence, they had exhibited the same un
varying affection for one another,' and had
displayed great similarity in their taslc3,
'Onlinirs. and Pursuits. On reaching nian-
lmArt. Imwntfer. circumstances leiltliom
mVht havo keen expected, to adopt difier
entTcourses of life. Darancourt, the son of
.... nminnnt nhvsician. selected the profes
sion nf the law as the road to eminence an
v.anppltiriilitv 10 the world. St. Maure,
whose father was 'a nobleman of decayed
fortunes, chose the army as tno most suita
ble to his birth and pretentions. De Val
tnrint. on the other hand, preferred the cap
rivaling study of letters jnd the fine arts to
hn nnrsnit nf anv nos'uivc profession; and
the circumstances of his father, a retiied
colonel of engineers, enabled tho young
for the lime, at least, to indulge his
tastes in-this respect.
Ernest de St. Maure, at the period whence
this narrative takes its dale, had not yet
ininml the armv. but the imperial mandate
tCnr Brussels was then within the domin
ions of Nanoleonl was looked for daily
.mil Count do St. Maure and his lady were
isadlv nrenarinir their minds for parting with
their onlv and beloved son. At this timo
it wns that Charles Darancourt, who haii
been recently admitted a member of the
masonic fraternity, took an opportunity of
suggesting to young St. Mauro the proprie
ty of entering the samo society. Daran
court's counsel was founded on certian sto
ries told of soldiers having fallen into the
hands of the enemy, and having been sav
cd by discovering a brother-mason in some
of the captors. " Now, who knows," cried
the young barrister, with the ardor of friend
ship, "but you, St. Maure, may bo thrown
into a similar nituation, and may escape by
the like means V Though disposed to look
upon the mysteries of masonry as a useless
mummrrv. St. Mauro allowed himself to
bo persuaded by his friend, and promised
to undergo initiation at an early day. At
the same timo ho would consent only on
condition of Darancourt. himself acting as
tole initiator, which tho barrister, however
irregular the proceeding might be, professed
his willingness to undertake.
During tho Sunday immediately follow
ing the day on which this conversation look
place. Count de St. Manrc'n house va3
observed to be shut up bv the neighbors.
'None of the inmates, at least, wore seen lo
issue from it, though they had ever been re
markable for their punctuality in attendance
on the services of the church. Tho neig-
bors. however, merely concluded some of
th'cm to be ill. But about eight o'clock in
the evening Charles Darancourt and Theo
dore dn Valmont called, in order to spend
a social hour with ttie family. 1 heir repeat
ed knockings at tho door remaining unau
swercd. they at length alarmed the neigh
borhood. Tho door was burst opsn, and
til tho horror of Ihe spectators, four murder-
ed bodies were found in the various bed
rooms. Tho corpse, whoso throats were
thockinirlv cut. were those of the Count do
.81. Maurejns lady, and their servants.
was also found that a desk had been broken
open, and plundered of valuable jewels,
known to have been there. On this appal
ling, sight Darancourt, whoso friendship for
the family was well known, appeared at first
paralysed with grief. When he recovered
from h'is trance-like stupor, he rushed from
the house, exclaiming, ' My friend ! my
dear Ernest I Where is my poor friend?"
This exclamation called the minds of the
spectators, for the first time, to tho circum
stance of young St. Maure's absence. The
authorities were speedily called to tho spot,
and among other steps taken, a search was
instituted for Ernest de St. Maure. Dc
Vulmont, who retained much moro presence
of mind than Darancourt had exhibited, con
ducted in person tho search for Earnest.
But the whole of Brussels was examined
in vain, i he young man was to do seen
At the solemn investigation which took
place into the whole of this tragic affair,
circumstances .came oHt which tended
strongly to fix the guilt of parricide on the
missing youth. A penknue, marked with
his initials, was found near tho scone of
slaughter, covered witli blood. This, to
all appearanco was the instrument wan
which the murders had been committed.
Howards were offered for the apprehension
of young St. Maure, and in the estimation
of all men he was accounted a parricide,
until, on the sixth morning after tho mur
ders, a new turn was given to tho affair by
the discovery of the youth s body in a slag
nant well in the outskirts of the city. At
first, indeed, as no wound was seen on the
body, it was thought that he had added self
destruction to his other crimes; but on a
moro minute examination a small puncture
was detected on the breast, immediately
over the heart. This had well nigh bee
scratch. At the urgent entreaty of one sru
geon, however, the chest was thoroughly
laid open, when it was found tlratMhe heart
had been pierced Is lis centre by a sharp. in
strument of exceeding minuteness, in a di
rect line with tho external puncture. This
obviously had been o cause of death. As
limsi! t. ant 1 hen .have convevm his bodv
lo the well, it became apparent to' all that
Ernest do St. Maine also had fallen a vic
tim to the same conspiracy which had over
whelmed Ins parents. 1 his, at all events,
was strong presumption; and so satisfactory
did the discovery appear to the authorities
that they laid the son in the same grave with
his parents, thus clearing his memory, as
they could, from the dreadftd charge of be
ing a parricide. The arguments of Charles
Darancourt were chiefly instrumental in pro
etiring this justice for his departed friend.
The young advocate displayed in this cause
all tho warmth of sorrowing affection, and
all tho power of forensic genius
No further light was thrown on the fate
of tho St. Maurcs, until some weeks afle
the tragical event, several papers were
then discovered in an escritoire bv tho late
Count's brother, which throw a dark suspi
cion on one of the most intimate friends
tho deceased on Theodore de Valmont !
It appeared by these documents that Do
Valmont had fixed Ins allcctions on iMnuy
Duplets a beautiful young lady, who re
turned his passion, in spite of a long-stand
ing quarrel between their families. Ernest
de St. Maure and Charles Daiancourt had
been do Valiuoni's only confidants, and had
assisted him in procuring interviews will
the object of his affections. Being thus oc
casionallv brought into contact with the
young lady, Ernest do St. Maure had him
self been inspired wilh n deep and unhappy
passion lor Emily Duplcssis. lie had con
iesscd this to Darancourt, and had at the
samo timo declared his resolution to root i
out of his mind, and lo dio rather than in
jure Do Valmont. But the passion had not
been so easily otercomo, ami uc valmont
had at length become aware of the truth.
Tins ed to a series of letters between nun
and St, Maine, which letters were now ilis
covered, In some passages of these, D
Valmont reasoned wilh Ernest as with
brother on the subject of his misplaced pas
sion, while in others Theodore used Ian
gunge, that now boro a most unfortunate as
pect. " You know mo too well," said D
Vulmont in one letter, " not to feel convinc
ed, that, independently of all other motives
an innate sense of what is clue to my ow
honor would urgo me to inflict the most am
pie vongeance on the head of him who could
avail Himself ol mv unbounded coniiuenc
to estrange from me tho affections of my
adored Emily." These, and other passages
of the discovered correspondence, admitted
of an inference so unfavorable to Theodore
de Valmont, that the authorities, on havin
the letters laid before them, immediately
took him into custody. Various other cir
cumstanees of a disadvantageous nature
cams subsequently into view. It was re
menibered, by those who had been piessnt
Ithow comparatively little emotion had been
hown by T.on tho discovery of the murder-
bodies, while Darancourt had displayed
uch ajitatinc urief and horror. Besides,
De Valmont, it now appeared, had been met
and recognised near tho scene of guilt on
tho night of the murders. When asked to
explain where he had been, De Valmont
showed manifest confusion, and said he liadji
been visitins a lncnd,and positively rctuscu
to name that friend. And,moreover,a respec
ble female came forward, who averred that,
n the third or fourth day alter the tragedy,
he had washed a shirt for the prisoner, the
right sleeve of which wa3 clotted with
blood. The explanation which Do Val
mont gave of this circumstance was lame,
confused, and improbable. On these grounds
supicion, Theodore de Valmont was ap
pointed to lake his trial for tho murder of
the hit. Maures, though no one could oven
imagine a reason lor his having included
the parents in that revenge which Ernest a-
one seemed to have merited at his hands.
Charles Darancourt was unremitting in
is attempts to sustain his imprisoned friend
under the heavy affliction of such a charge
as this. To Darancourt, Theodore confided
the task of communioatiijg the intelligence
t this accusation to Emily Duplcssis. Tho
young lady was so dreadfully affected as to
ink into a violent lever, during the ravings
1 winch stie revealed to her parents the
fact of her having not only loved De Val
mont, but of her having been recently united
to him by a private marriage. I Ins infor
mation, which she did not gainsay on recov
ering partially from her illness, had the ef
fect of widening the circle implicated in
these dark transactions, since the parents of
Emily had the grief ol seeing her late bound
up with that of one on whom a charge res
ted of the most atrocious kind. Their pre
vious hostility lo the De Valmonts tho pa
rents might perhaps have readily got over;
but there was now deep disgrace attending
any connection with the very name of De
Valmonts. The discovery of the marriage
was therefore concealed.
The morning allotted for De Valmont's
trial arrived. The officers went to tlte cell
to remove him, but 16 1 life nlace. wns emn-
iy. l nu prisoner n.m iiuiiuriiuiicu iiim uuii,
and escaped by scaling the prison walls.
On the table lay a letter addressed to Mad
amoiselle Duplcssis, which was opeued by
the authorities, and lound to contain an am
mated and solemn assertion of the wi iter's
innocence. But, seeing circumstances to
bear against him, ho resolved (the letter
said) to take the only visible mode of sav
ing his life, in the hope of one day proving
his innocence; and until this was establish
ed, he never would return ho said to Brus
scls. An energetic search was made for
Theodore Dc Valmont, but it proved fruit
Thus was justice again baffled, at a time
when it had fixed in its own belief on the
true criminal. But Theodore's letter,
which was long and eloquetly pathetic,
made a deep impression in Ins favor on ma
ny persons, and, among others, on the pa
rents of his wife, Emily Duplcssis, or rath
er De Vahiiont. On conversing with their
daughter, they moreover learned that The
odore had been visiting Emily on the night
of the murders, and had hurt his right arm
in crossinc the garden wall of her father's
house. Not knowing that Emily in her
illness had revealed the marriage, De Val
mont would not bolray the secret, and hence
his confused answers were questioned, as
already mentioned. Knowing those things
Emily s parents longed for 1 heodore s re
turn which misht have now been compara
tively safe. But ho could not bo heard of
anywhere. The parents now consented to
an open acknowledgement of their daugh
tcr's marriage with tho absent Theodore
which consent lmiiy had stronc reasons
for entreating from them. "When Theodore
had been absent seven months his wife gave
birth to a son, for whom Charles Darancourt
stood sponsor at the font. Darancourt, on
iliu occasion, aftor pledging tho mother and
child, called on the guests present to ioiii
him in drinking " to the happy rolurn of
the absent father, and may his innocence
soon he established 1" Strange to say, this
wish seemed in some measure fulfilled, not
many days after its uilerance, in a manner
that deeply allected him who uttered it.
cart was stopped one night at the city bar
rier by one ol tho collectors of the impost!
No contraband goods were found in the cart
but, in the act of search, a small box fell
off, and was crushed by one of the wheels
Tho collector assisted in gathering up the
contents, and while doing so, picked up a
brilliant diamond brooch. Tho collector
had been once in tho service of tho Count
de St. Maure, and instantly recognized the
brooch, which was ol great value, as hav
ins belonged to that nobleman. The car
ter was taken into custody, and on examin
ation, staled that ho had been employed by
a gentleman to carry trunks and various ar
ticles o f furniture to a country-house about
a toils distant from Brussels. Being asked
tho gentleman's name, tho man readily gave
it as " Monsieur Darancourt, the younger,
residing in the Grand Square."
Charles Darancount was ere long, as his
friend De Valmont had been before him,
consigned lo a prison on the charge of mur
dering the St. Alauics. l ne strange iaie
which had thus caused suspicion to fall on
the very dearest friends of tho deceased,
made the case most remarkable in tho eyes
of all men. Charles Darancourt was
brouc ht fairlv to trial. .He defended him
self with equal calmness and ability decla
ring the brooch to have been given to mm
n a nrescnt bv the Count do St. Mauro.
On the other hand the collector proved that
the Count had ever seemed lo regard the
brooch as the most valuable of his family
ewels, and had once refused it, in the wit
. '. . i run
iipss's nearinff. to nis own buji. nmo
was on the very face of it improbability in
the notion that a man of small fortune like
Count should give away a jewel ot such
value as a meie friendly present. It was
further proved that Ernest de St. Maure had
been last seen entering the prisoner's house,
on the night befoio his disappearance ; and
bein" called forward to tell what they knew,
Charles Darancourt's three servants were
found to have been sent out of the way on
various errands, on the night in question.
A chain of presumptive evidence of this
nature was established against Darancourt,
and in despite of the talent with which he
defended himself he was condemned lo die
for the murder of St. Maurcs.
Charles Darancourt solemnly protested
his innocence, and continued to repeat the
assertion during the interval spent in await
in" the fulfilment of his sentence. The fa
tal day at length came and the prisoner was
,i nnt in he scatlo d 10 UIC an luiiuiiumuua
ito-iih in ihp nrpsnnr.o of assembled thou
sands, who looked on with strangily ruin-
clcd fee Migs of pity and satisiaction, caus
cd by the ambiguous and mysterious nature
nf the r.nse. The maiorilv of the specta-
their minds to believe
in the commission of such wholesale mur
der JJv one man.and that man an ingenious
ih tho suflcrers.
US r fcS' ft-fTim; of' ffielaw " rtiough It C0U1U
; . i.-.,i
nnt rr.mnvfi dodbt. wasinu 10 uu umiuabu.
WliP.u nil was roadv on the scallotu, ana
eternity immediately oeiorc mm, muro
, m i
Darancourt pulled from his uosom a auaiuu
packet, and to the priest in attend
ance, with directions that it should be given
nfier bis death to his father. Tho fatal cord
wno ?,l,n,ll In lip. flVPll. wllCll a loud SllOUt
arose from the populace, and the crowd was
c-ccn opening up to permit the passage of a
horseman, accompanied tv several muiuiuu.
" A respite 1" was the cry. The populace
already excited by this event were still
more so when they beheld the horseman
Rnrinrr to the scaffold, embrace the prisoner,
and then advance lo address themselves. It
was Theodore de Valmont 1 He spoke at
s irar. Innaih to tho multitude, telling them
that, on hearintrof Darancourt's condemna
tion, he had flown to Paris, and had detailed
the wholo circumstances to tho emperor,
who had been thus moved to grant a res
niie. "I knew mv own innocence," con
tinned Theodore, "and I could not doubt
that my beloved friend was equally innocent
as myself. Our intimacy wilh the unfor
tunate deceased has well nigh brought death
on both of us, for that intimacy is our sole
crime. The mystery which hangs over
this sad story heaven will clear up in its
good time." The shouts of the people
rose joyfully in tho air, for the words of De
Valmont carried conviction wun mem.
What were thefeciingof Charles Daran
courlon being thus snatched from the grave
Tip. retained all his calmncss.& merely utter
pel n fpu- broken sentences, expressive of
(ratification to heaven for his- liberation
from tho charge of being a murderer and
robber. Ilo then turned mildly to tho pries
and ieouested the restoration of the packet
Tho priest was about to comply, when one
of the attendant olhcers snaicneu iiom
iIih hnlv father's hands, declaring it to be
his dmv to retain and show it to his supe
riors. The prisoner quietly remonstrated
asrainst the seizure of papers relating only
In nrivato family affairs. But tho officer
was obstinate. Darancourt and Do Valmon
were then conveyed to prison, as the respite
nr.lprnil till thn cmneror's will should be
furthci known. On reaching the prison
Charles Darancourt immediaiely cominuni
fitful with his friends, and nrolcstcd anew
arrmnst the seizure of his papers. Tho au
thnrities did not lisieu to his request.
Well might Darancourt struggle for the re
possession of that fatal packet ! Believing
death inevitable, Darancourt had there made
a confession and what a confession I A
confession of five cool and deliberate mur
ders effected by him without an accomplice!
The following is an abstract of that paper's
contents : " Having formed a deep attach
ment lo Emily Duplcssis, Dziancourt had
resolved to cut off both, De Valmont and
Ernest de St. Maure, aB obstacles in his
way. Ernest lcll lirst into his power, inia
victim had come to the house of Darancourt
to be inilated into the mysteries ef mason
ry. Under tho pretence of performing
these, Darancourt contrived to bind the
voung man so that he could stir neither
hand nor foot, and then opened the victim's
dress, and thrust a knitting needle between
the ribs into the centro'of his heart! Ernest
de St. Maure died instantly, almost without
groan. Taking a key, by which tho de
ceased let himself into his own house at
nights, from Ernest's pockets, and also a
penknife, Darancourt then carried tho body
by a back road to a neighboring well, and
threw it in. He then hurried to tho Count
de St. Maine's house, let himself in, and
murdered the master of the house, his wife,
and his two domestics, while sleeping in
their beds. The principal motive of Dar
ancourt's entering the house was the desiro
lo gain possession of a bond for 5,000
francs which tho count had lent the young
lawyer to prosecute his studios. The mur
der of the servants, and, indeed, of the other
victims also, was committed lest they should
islurb him in the robbery ol the house, which
proved to be a temptation not to bo over
come when the murderer found the chanco
ii his power. Family jewels and to a con
siderable amount were the price of his
guilt. By leaving the penknife, Darancourt
hoped to throw suspicion on the son ol tuts
count; and this really turned out as he anti
cipated, though the unexpected opening of
the old well had subveitcd that-part of tho
expected issue. Darancourt had doomed
De Valmont to death at the nrst opponuni-
This fearlul revelation lrom trie mur
derer's own hand filled the minds of the
people of Brussels with the deepest horror.
Had the packet been returned to tne guiuy
Darancourt, mystery it seemed probable,
would have permanently hung over the fate
of tho St. Maures; for the accomplished
hypocrite, who had shed so much blood,
seemed to know naught of conscience or
Us slings. .When he was again taken 10
tho scaffold, it was amid the execrations ot
wretch -to eternity. His crimes had been
committed wilh as little remorse, and under
as unnatural circumstances, as any that ev
er disgraced the annals of mankind.
Theodore de Valmont was restored to
the arms of his beloved Emily, and
enjoyed as perfect happiness as ever
falls to human lot. In the close conceal
ment which he was compelled to prcservo
afer his flight, ho had not heard of tho ac
knowledgement of the marriage, otherwise
he would probably have braved all danger,
and returned earlier to Brussels. This nar
rative, as the Oriental Herald (from which,
wo derive the materials of this arliclo) in
forms us, is founded upon the facts which
really occurred.
Singular Anecdote. And here wo heard
a little anecdote, so pretty, so much in
your taste, that I would not, upon any ac
count, omit relating it to you :
About ten days ago, one of the farm
keeper's wivc3 was going home through
the wood, when sho saw a roebuck running
toward her with great speed. Thinking that
it was going to attack her with its horns,
she was considerably alarmed, but, at tho
distance of a few paces, tho animal stopped,
and disappeared among the bushes. Tho
woman recovered herself, and was proceed
ing on her way, when the roebuck appear
ed again ran toward her as before, and again
retreated, without doing her any harm. On
this being dune a third time, the woman
was induced to follow it till it led her to the
side of a deep ditch, in which she discover
ed a young roebuck tinablo to extricale it
self, and on the point of being smothered
in the water. The woman immediately en
deavoured to rescue it, during which the
other roebuck stood quietly, and as soon as
her exertions were successful, the two ani
mals galloped away together. -Life and
Correspondence of G. M. Lewis.
A Good Deed. Miss Sedgwick, in her
" Means and Ends," a book which evorv
one should read, montions as an illustratiou
of tho advantage of acquiring a legible hand
writing, that one winter, when an unusual
quantity of extra copying was required at
one of the departments government, Gen.
Jackson ordered the work to be given to
such needy women, as were competent to
executo improperly. This ant of judicious
charity carried joy to many a dcsolato
A woman who uniformly makes good
coffee and doe3 not scold even on a wash
ing day and would not bo ashamed to bo
seen before breanfast timo, will certainly
mako a good wife.
Giving to tho poor
lessons no man's