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1890: UT-Frances Phillips Weds Thos. Lithgow, to Discover...
How a Polite Gentleman on a Train Won a Bride and $2000.
NEW YORK, January 2.-A special to the Herald from Denver says: A little over three months ago Mrs. M.C. Phillips, wife of a prominent and wealthy merchant of Salt Lake City, U.T., and her beautiful daughter, Frances, left for a visit to Washington, where Mrs. Phillips went for medical treatment.
After a short sojourn in the capital city they started home. They endeavored to secure a lower berth on a sleeper, but all were occupied. The conductor made the fact known that a handsome looking man, thirty-five years old, readily consented to give up his choice section to the ladies and take a lower berth.
This opened the avenue for an acquaintanceship and next day the stranger, who was Thomas Lithgow, made a deep impression on the mother and daughter. He concluded to accompany them to the City of Saints, and to while away the hours he regaled them with stories about the West Indies and his wealth.
He represented himself as a wealthy sugar king of San Domingo, and his money could only be counted by the hundreds of thousands.
On arriving at Salt Lake City he managed to ingratiate himself into the good will of Mr. Phillips, and was introduced into all the clubs and to the best people of the city. He also became engaged to Miss Phillips, and the couple were married after an acquaintance of two months.
Just a few hours before the wedding was to take place Lithgow went to his prospective father-in-law, saying his brokers in New York neglected to send him a remittance promptly and added that a loan of $2000 would be acceptable. Of course he got it.
After the marriage the couple came to Denver, where Lithgow stopped at the best hotel and spent money like a prince. On leaving here they went to New York. On their arrival there they put up at the Fifth Avenue Hotel, but he had his baggage sent to the St. James Hotel.
Meanwhile Phillips thought that he would make a tour of investigation on his own hook and see if his newly made relative was what he represented himself to be. He arrived in New York as soon as the young folks did and put up at the same hotel.
Lithgow said he was to meet his brokers in a few days in order to settle his financial business, making the excuse that his trunks might have been miscarried by the express- man an that they would probably arrived the next day.
Lithgow absented himself. He went to the St. James Hotel, broke opened his wife’s trunks, taking her valuables and then sent them to the Fifth Avenue Hotel, while he went to the Forty-second street station, getting aboard a New York Central train and leaving for Syracuse.
The first intimation his wife and her father had that he had abandoned them was a dispatch from Syracuse stating that he would explain all as soon as he saw her and wanted her to meet him in Chicago. He went on to Chicago and the wife and father-in-law returned to Denver.
Lithgow telegraphed to a friend here asking if his wife was in the city. The telegram was given to the Chief of Police, who handed it over to Mr. Phillips. The latter sent his son-in-law a decoy telegram, which brought him here last night, and he was arrested as soon as he stepped off the train.
He takes his arrest coolly and says matters will be right as soon as he can hear from friends in New York. He has been purchasing clerk for Thurber, the New York importing house.
Phillips declares that he will prosecute him to the fullest extent of the law.