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Jules "Joseph DeRoche" Deroche
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Birth: unknown
Death: Jan., 1881
Mono County
California, USA

The story goes that on 14 Jan 1881 at Miners Union Hall in Bodie there was a dance, were Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Treloar were attending. DeRoach made advances on Thomas' wife which, of course her husband did not like and made it clear to De Roach. DeRoach angry laid in wait for Treloar to leave the dance hall and ambushed him, shooting him once at point blank range, killing him instantly. DeRoach escaped, caught, escaped again, caught again and jailed.

The town was outraged at the murder of Thomas Treloar and withing 48 hours some 200 men (dubbed the Bodie 601) were in place outside the Bodie Jail. About 4 or so went in to get DeRoach and string him up, the plan was succesful. The mob took DeRoach to the exact place that he had killed Treloar and hung him.

(The above was posted by Eileen)

The following research notes are from Sue Silver:

Note: This man's name was JULES DEROCHE, as per his voter registration and naturalization. Joseph DeRoche is the name the people of Bodie and Aurora may have referred to him as./ss

Bodie Daily Free Press, 1/15/1881, p. 3: This article provides the report of the murder and of the Coroner’s inquest into the death of Thomas Treloar. (See also the Free Press of 1/16/1881, p. 2 and p. 3. Also the Free Press of 1/18/1881, p. 2 and p. 3.

Sacramento Daily Union, 1/15/1881:

Assassination at Bodie – Escape of the Murderer.

Bodie, January 14th. – About 2 o’clock this morning, Thomas Treloar, a miner, was assassinated by a Frenchman named Joseph Deroche. Treloar’s wife was attending a ball, and he had ordered her not to dance with Deroche. She did so, however, to his great annoyance. At the hour mentioned the two men met, and Deroche shot Treloar through the head, the ball entering just below the left ear. Crowds gathered, and the murderer was arrested. At this moment Treloar’s wife came along in company with a gentleman and his own wife. Deroche shouted, “Mrs. Treloar, I have killed your husband!” He was taken to jail, but upon a pretext that the Vigilantes intended to hang him before morning, Deputy Sheriff Joseph Farnsworth took the prisoner to his own boarding-house handcuffed. During the night Deroche mysteriously disappeared while Farnsworth was asleep. There is great indignation over the murder of Treloar and Deroche’s escape, and there is talk of the lynching of Farnsworth. Deroche has a wife and three children in Chicago. He has been acquainted with Mrs. Treloar in the East and there is believed to have been criminal intimacy between them, and that that was the cause of Treloar’s jealousy. The latter came here from the Comstock.

Sacramento Daily Union, 1/18/1881:

Joseph Daroche, who murdered Thomas H. Treloar at Bodie, was captured Sunday, taken to the scene of his crime by a Vigilance Committee, and hanged.

Sacramento Daily Union, 1/18/1881 (Tuesday):

Judge Lynch at Bodie – Economical Trial and Punishment of a Murder.

Bodie, January 17th. – The capture of Joseph Daroche, the murderer of Thomas H. Treloar at a wood ranch six miles from Bodie, Sunday morning, caused great excitement here. Throughout the day there was a strong disposition manifested to lynch him immediately upon his arrival. Several speeches were made by leading citizens, some in favor and others against lynching. It was finally agreed to allow him a preliminary examination before Justice Newman, and the day was exhausted in taking testimony, which was substantially the same as that adduced before the Coroner’s inquest, and which left no doubt of the prisoner’s guilt. A Vigilance Committee, known as “The Bodie Six Hundred and One,” was organized after dark, and about 1 o’clock this morning Daroche was taken from jail and conveyed to the scene of Friday morning’s murder, and hung exactly over the spot where it occurred. Fully 500 men witnessed the execution. No one is dissatisfied with the result of the affair except the gamblers and saloon men. Farnsworth, who allowed Daroche to escape, fled to Carson, where he has been arrested, and he is now on his way back. A demand has been made by the Free Press for a complete reorganization of the police force, and unless the demand is complied with there is liable to be further trouble.

Bodie Daily Free Press, 1/18/1881, p. 3:

DaRoche’s Funeral.

Yesterday the body of DaRoche remained in the plain box which received it under the gallows frame. A large number of people viewed the remains, but not a single friend offered to take charge of them. The ropes were left on him a portion of the day, but they were subsequently cut off and distributed about as relics. As he has no property convertible into coin the expense of the burial will fall on the county. It is a rare instance when a man lives in a place for years and at his death no friend volunteers to see that his remains are properly buried. The remains will be buried this afternoon at 3:30 (end of sentence is cut off).

Homer Mining Index, 1/22/1881:

The Hanging of Da Roche.

Last Monday morning the Bodie Vigilantes took Da Roche out of jail and hung him to a wheelwright's gallows on the very spot where he murdered Treloar. The Free Press printed an extended report of everything connected with the search, Lynch trial and hanging, "regardless of fear or favor." From it we take the following: When Webber's blacksmith shop was reached the crowd halted. In front of this place was a huge gallows frame used for raising wagons. "Move it to the spot where the murder was committed," was the order, and it was picked up and carried tot he corner of Maine and Lowe streets. When it was placed on the ground the prisoner was led under it. The prisoner remained passive, occasionally turning his eyes upward. The rope placed around his neck was a small one. It was three minutes before everything was ready. He was asked if he had anything to say. The reply was: "Nothing, only O God." "Pull him," was the order, and in a twinkling the body rose three feet from the ground. Half an hour after, Dr. Deal pronounced life extinct.

Esmeralda Herald (Aurora), 1/22/1881: (excerpt; the full article gives the story of Daroche’s arrest after he escaped and the first half of his trial before it was interrupted by the vigilante committee/ss)

Neck-Tie Party. Capture and Execution of Daroche. Particulars of His Flight and Arrest – What He says of the Tragedy – His Half Completed Trial and His Sudden Taking Off – Particulars of the Execution – An Awful Sight.

[From the Bodie Free Press]

…When the corner (of Main and Lowe/ss) was reached the heavy gallows (moved from Weber’s blacksmith shop/ss) was placed upon the ground, and the prisoner led under it. The prisoner’s demeanor still remained passive, and his hands, which were encased in irons, were clasped. His eyes occasionally were turned upward and his lips were seen to move once or twice. On each end of the frame were windlasses and large ropes attached. The rope placed around the prisoner’s neck was a small one and when the knot was made it rested against the left ear. This did not suit DaRoche particularly, and he changed its position so that it was more in the rear. DaRoche was asked by the leader if he had anything to say. He replied: “No; nothing.” In a moment he was again asked the same question. The reply this time was: “I have nothing to say, only O God.”

“Pull him,” was the order, and in a twinkling the body arose three feet from the ground. A second after the body was elevated a sudden twitch of the legs was observed, but, with that exception, not a muscle moved while the body hung to the crossbeam. His death took place without a particle of pain. The face was placid, and the eyes closed, and never were reopened. After a lapse of two or three minutes a voice, sharp and clear, was heard in the background: “I will give $100 if twenty men connected with this affair will publish their names in the paper to-morrow morning.” The voice was immediately recognized as that of a leading attorney, and a yell went up from the crowd. “Give him the rope,” “Put him out,” and similar sentences drowned out the man and his voice. His retreat was as dignified as the exigencies of the case would admit of.

While the body was still hanging a paper was pinned on his breast bearing the following inscription: “All others take warning. Let no one cut him down. Bodie 601.” Owing to the darkness it could not be read distinctly, and frequently during the next few minutes some one would step forward, light a match and read it. At the expiration of 30 minutes the man was pronounced dead. The body was cut down and taken charge of by the Coroner.

De Roche’s Written Statement.

The story is a very long one, written in French. The sum and substance of it is that Treloar and himself met at the place of the killing and that in a scuffle which ensued Treloar shot himself.

Bodie has again settled down to its usual groove of tranquility, and the great war of excitement of the first of the week has entirely died out.

(Note: Nothing in this article from the Free Press noted how or where Daroche was buried. In that the Coroner took charge of the remains, one might suppose he was buried as an indigent in whatever place the County provided for such burials at Bodie.)

Reno Evening Gazette, 5/29/1914 (from Old Nevada Pioneer in Carson News):

How Justice was Meted Out By the “601” in Olden Days. (Extract)

The body of DeRoche swung upon the rope until a little after six o’clock in the morning, when several men, headed by Attorney “Dick” Maner, cut down the corpse. The remains were taken to the Kelly & Carder undertaking establishment, where they were placed in a rude casket and buried the following day in the Chinese graveyard. Hundreds of people visited the undertaking establishment where the body of DeRoche lay after the hanging. The rope was culled and placed in the open coffin upon his breast, and many cut off pieces of the rope as they passed the coffin and saved them as souvenirs.

Bodie Bonanza (Loose, 1979, pp. 170-171): names him as Joseph De Roche, a French Canadian

Gunfighters, Highwaymen, and Vigilantes (McGrath, 1984; p. 234-238): (full account of the murder of Treloar and the hanging of Daroche)

Esmeralda Herald (Aurora), 3/16/1878:

Wood Ranch Located. – W. H. Lester, Jules DeRoche, and James Meehan have located 100 acres for a wood ranch four miles from Aurora on the Carson road, and within sight of the Five-mile House. This ranch adjoins another prior location made by E. Watmore, alias Watty, P. B. Foster and others.

1879 Mono County Great Register of Voters: Jules Daroche, 48 yrs, b. Canada, Carpenter, Residence-Bodie, Naturalized-1868, Chicago City, Ill, Registered-4/15/1879
Note: "Buried in Bodie's Outcast Cemetery on the lower slope of Cemetery Hill
Boot Hill Cemetery
Mono County
California, USA
Maintained by: Sue
Originally Created by: Eileen
Record added: Mar 17, 2013
Find A Grave Memorial# 106848370


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