From the Richmond Whig, 9/26/1865, p. 1, c. 3
LOVE AND CRIME – A WOMAN SHOOTS A MAN BECAUSE UNFAITHFUL TO HER – HE IS DANGEROUSLY WOUNDED. – Between eleven and twelve o’clock on Friday night, persons who happened to be abroad at that hour, were attracted by the report of a pistol shot, coming from the direction of the up-stair restaurant, Franklin street, nearly opposite Metropolitan Hall. Those who first arrived on the spot, among them Messrs. Rogers & Fleming, of the Eureka Saloon, policeman James Jones, Twelfth United States Infantry, and others, found a woman perambulating the side-walk in a state of frenzy, pistol in hand, and her victim a few feet distant, bleeding from a pistol shot wound in the left side, just below the fifth rib. Policeman Jones arrested the woman, and the wounded man was taken to the office of Dr. Cabell, under the Exchange Hotel, who examined, probed and dressed his wound, but did not succeed in extracting the ball.
From what we could learn of the particulars, it appears that Mrs. Isabella Ould, an English woman, is the proprietess of the saloon at the above place, and has conducted the business since the evacuation of the city. A young man named R. H. Meade, aged about thirty-three years, was a friend of hers, and about two months since they became intimate, he remaining about the place, superintending the business of the saloon. A promise of marriage existed between the parties, as alleged by one of them. Meade, at the same time was paying attention to a young lady of Manchester, (whose name we suppress) and was to have been married to-day. He was about leaving the saloon on Friday night for the purpose of paying her a visit, when he was confronted by Mrs. Ould, who charged him with being unfaithful to his vows, and high words passed. She says she tried to dissuade him from going, and to remain in the house; but he wouldn’t, and started out; she following him, taking from her drawer a small six-shooter. He descended the steps and was going down the street, when she overtook him. She begged him to return with her and give up his intended visit to the lady in Manchester, reminding him of his promise to her. Meade disregarded her entreaties and turned to depart from her. – Maddened, she raised the pistol, and having some skill in its use, fired one barrel at him, the ball taking effect in the left side, below the fifth rib. The ball, which was very small, about the size of a pea, is supposed to have entered the kidneys. – It is said that Mrs. Ould raised the pistol, and was about to fire the second shot, when Meade exclaimed, “Oh! Is, don’t shoot at me any more,” and turned about to pick up a brick to throw at her, when the police came up and arrested both. One brick was thrown, it is believed by Meade, and Mrs. Ould received a blow above the eye, not disabling her, however. After being taken into custody the woman calmed down a little and gave up the pistol. She seemed to be laboring under the most intense mental agony at what she had done; said if she had only shot herself instead of her “dear Bob” it would have been all right; shoe would have died willingly.
After being arrested, Mrs. Ould asked permission to be taken into her house for the purpose of changing her dress, and locking up – permission was granted. While being conducted to the cage, she asked to be taken into the doctors office where Meade was lying, under the hands of the surgeon. At the sight of him, she grew frantic with grief, threw herself upon his form, hugging and kissing him, and giving vent to great lamentations. “Oh Bob, Bob, what did I do it for – oh, can you forgive me. I asked, I begged, I prayed to you on my knees to save me from ruin, and you would not. Oh had I killed myself instead of you.” The wounded man was very weak, and trembling violently, he replied, “Well, you say I have ruined you, and now you have tried to kill me; here, take all my money and this watch.” “No, no, Bob, I don’t want your money,” and she, weeping bitterly, drew forth a roll of bills, and a watch and pressed them upon him, putting the bills and watch in his pockets, saying, “Oh Bob, take them for my sake; I will be dead before you are.”
Meade said he forgave her all, and the two clasped with much weeping and a general heartburst. Mrs. Ould was then taken off to the cage where she passed the night, weeping, beating her breasts, and lamenting that she had not killed herself with the pistol before being arrested. Saturday morning she was arraigned before Col. McEntee, Provost Judge. It was here we, by permission of the Judge, obtained an interview with the unfortunate woman.
Mrs. Ould is good looking, of an amiable, pleasing countenance and about thirty years of age. She says she has been living in Richmond seven years, having come direct from London, England. She met Meade about three years ago, and an intimacy sprang up between them. She loved him oh how she loved him, and thought her love was reciprocated. She heard he was going to see this young girl in Manchester some time ago. Some of the girl’s relatives told her so when he (Meade) was away at Alexandria, Virginia, where he lived. They (Mrs. Ould and Meade) were engaged to be married. He had taken a solemn Bible oath on it, in the sight of God, and now that she heard he was going to break it, it nearly broke her heart. She had all her wedding clothing ready, and some of them were presents from him.
Here Mrs. Ould had a violent fit of hysterical weeping, and sobbed, and moaned as though her heart was really breaking. Suddenly she asked, “Oh, my dear sir, cannot you tell me whether he is much hurt? Tell me what the doctors say. – Don’t deceive me. Oh had I only killed myself.” She was told that the doctors did not regard the wound as fatal; that Meade was much easier that morning. She clasped her hands, and raising her eyes, seemed to invoke a blessing upon him, saying, “What, what was the matter with me. Oh, why didn’t I shoot myself.” They, having calmed down, she resumed the narration of the shooting.
“Bob went out; I knew where he was going; he couldn’t deceive me. I followed him; I took hold of his arm quietly, and told him not to go; I reminded him of his vows to me; but he wouldn’t hear me, and jerked away from me, saying, “Let me go, Is; it will be all right.” Then my brain went round and round, and without knowing what I did, I took the pistol out of my apron pocket, and shot him.
Again Mrs. Ould went off into tears. When calm again, she resumed –
He didn’t fall when the shot struck him, but turned round, and seeing me, exclaimed, “Oh! Is., don’t shoot me any more.” I didn’t want to shoot him any more, but wanted to shoot myself, but couldn’t get the pistol cocked. Then, he turned about, and picked up a brick to throw at me. – Then the police came and arrested me. I didn’t try to shoot the policeman, nor anybody else but myself. Oh! had I only killed myself I wouldn’t mind it now.
Policeman Jones said that when he seized the woman she was completely frenzied; didn’t think she knew what she was about. A private watchman had hold of her pistol arm when he came up. She gave up the pistol readily.
About 11 o’clock Saturday morning, Meade was removed from Mrs. Ould’s house to the house of his intended father-in-law, in Manchester. When the fact of his removal was communicated to Mrs. Ould, it gave her great grief, because there she could not go to see him. She would like to wait upon him night and day, just to show him that she was sorry for what she had done.
Mr. Marmaduke Johnson was sent for and retained by Mrs. Ould as her counsel. The condition of Meade precluding any immediate examination, it was proposed to bail the accused for one month, or till such time that Meade might recover sufficiently to appear.
The Provost Judge demanded bail in the sum of one thousand dollars, which was not given up to the time the court closed. She was committed to Castle Thunder and one of the private apartments appropriated to her use.