Set forth below in alphabetical order are the abstracts of the testimony of the witnesses in the trial of Isaac Wyant for the murder of Ason Rusk. The articles from which these abstracts are taken are cited at the end of each witness's testimony. Photocopies of these articles can be found at the Law Practice of Abraham Lincoln. The numbers at the end of each citation are the document numbers by which you can look up the articles on the LPAL website. Better copies of these articles can be found at
[01] BANKMAN, ALLEN—I was at Carr’s twice while Wyant was sick there; Wyant was in fear of the Rusks; made it to go out on one occasion to see if they were not come; and he thought that they had come to kill him. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 10, 1857, LPAL doc. 131647.
[02] BARNET, ALVIN—Keep tavern at Clinton; Wyant was at my house two days before he shot Rusk; we were talking about the Marion difficulty; I told him unfortunately public opinion was against him; he said that ought not to be so, for both sides ought to be heard; this was when he came down to get a new trial against Rusk; Wyant was at my house on Wednesday, and came in that night and wanted a single room; Wyant made no threat in my presence.
Cross examined.—He made moaning at night that his fingers hurt him, his fingers that were cut off. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 14, 1857, LPAL doc. 131648.
[03] BROOK, WM. S.— I have lived in Illinois three years; I have known defendant since he was an infant; at the time of the difficulty between Wyant and Rusk at Marion, I went and employed an attorney for Wyant to attend to his lawsuit; the three Mr. Rusks and I, Mr. Shennaman, and we all started for home; Ason Rusk stopped in the road where they fork until we came up; Rusk said, “Oh, Wyant, I want a word with you;” Ason drawed his hat and vest and stepped forward, and Wyant said “don’t pitch in yet;” Rusk stepped back; Ason asked him “won’t you fight?” and I said, “No, G—d d—n you, I want nothing to do with you!” “the G—d d—n you,” said Ason, “I will blow you through,” and fired; Wyant hollowed; there was quite an excitement; had difficulty in getting the pistol away from him, but before they got it away from him Ason hollowed to Ike Shennaman to bring him that other pistol, that “G—d d—n them I will kill all of them;” old Mr. Rusk said “who would not shoot when he was coming on him with a bowie knife?” I told some man to examine him and see if he had a pistol; deceased and defendant were about 12 or 15 feet apart; I heard him express himself as being in great fear of Rusk’s killing him; went in the month of August to Indiana; I am a half-brother to defendant; two of our uncles are insane.
Mr. Swett shows a letter from Thorntown Ind., directed to the postmaster, and Brooks says he has seen the letter and knows Wyant has had it in his possession; I have heard Wyant talk of the contents of the letter; he (Wyant) supposed that Rusk sent the letter. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 10, 1857, LPAL doc. 131647.
[04] CARR, CLARK—have known Wyant ever since I was old enough to know anything; I went with defendant on the day of the difficulty at Marion; I and he and my father were walking on abreast, when Ason Rusk asked Wyant what he had threatened to whip him for out on the prairie; he made a demonstration to fight, and Wyant told him not to pitch in yet; Rusk said, “Won’t you fight me?” he said “No, I want nothing to do with you;” “then d—n you,” said Rusk, “I will blow you through;” and with this he shot the ball into Wyant’s arm; he then called Shennaman to bring the other pistol to him and he would kill every d—d one of them; I saw Wyant examined and saw no knife on or about him; I have heard Wyant since this occurrence complaining of a roaring in his head and have often seen him picking his head; he was always after this afraid of Rusk; I have known him to spring up in the bed as if he was frightened; would imagine that he could hear the Rusks coming to kill him, and would repeatedly go to the window and pull aside the blinds and look out for them; I never heard him contending that he could hear them about the house; I don’t’ recollect of his ever accusing me of having shot his arm off; I came one on one occasion and told Wyant that Rusks had shot at me four times on my way after some women to attend to a sick child; Wyant told me that the Rusks would kill all of us. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 10, 1857, LPAL doc. 131647.
[05] CARR, JOHN—Defendant is a brother-in-law of mine; I lived about one mile from Ason Rusk; nine miles from Clinton, DeWitt County; I have known the Rusk family four years; I was in Marion at the time Wyant got his arm shot; it was in the month of June, I think; Wyant asked me to go over with him to Marion; said he had got into a difficulty there; on our way home, at the forks of the road, I was walking along with defendant, talking; Rusk said “Ike, I want a word with you;” Rusk party took one fork of the road and our party took the other; I told defendant to come on; Rusk asked him what he had threatened to whip him for; he answered, for meddling about my brother’s land; defendant and deceased were about twenty feet apart; heard deceased say, “oh, G-d d—n you, stand back;” deceased shot; I saw the clothes fly up on Wyant’s arm; deceased called to Shennaman to bring him that other pistol and swore “by G-d I will kill every damned one of them;” I expected to see a general fight; the pistols were taken from deceased; at the time the pistols were being taken from deceased, Rusk’s father said, “gentlemen, who would not shoot when a man was making an attack on him with a bowie knife;” Mr. Brooks, defendant’s brother-in-law remarked, “gentlemen, examine him and see if he has any knife;” Mr. Denisen examined defendant but could find no knife on or about him; the ground around there was smooth as a floor; could have seen knife if dropped; took Wyant to hotel; arm amputated next day; Wyant was in great fear of Rusk, and Rusk’s friends coming to kill him; was in great fear; complained of a roaring in the head after his arm was taken off; defendant went to Indiana some time in August; complained much of and continually kept pecking at his head; picked at it all the time when no was talking to him; he (defendant) was taken to my house after he got his arm shot—three weeks after he got his arm shot; every night he appeared to be afraid that Rusk would kill him; said that he could see Rusk through the window, and would not let any light burn in the house at all; said he could hear Rusk coming through the growing corn, and was constantly talking about Rusk killing him; was more irritable after this shooting; on  one occasion he got so fearful that he said to me that I would let them come in here and kill him; I told him I would not, and took my gun down and laid it on the table to gratify him; he used to often get into such tantrums; was very different in his disposition; we never had any difficulty or fear of him previously, but my wife was very afraid of him after this; after he went to Indiana I never saw him until I heard that he had killed Rusk at Clinton.
John D. Rusk and my son Clark Carr, John Wyant and William S. Brooks, and myself were present at the shooting; Rusk party were about seventy-five or one hundred yards off; came running back; defendant had more than ordinary courage; as resolute a man as I ever saw; I always thought he had too much courage; never saw him afraid of anything before this difficulty; was in constant fear after this affair; afraid the Rusks would kill him; I have seen him since he has been in jail; I don’t recollect that I noticed any difference in his demeanor or state of mind after he was put in jail and before he was put in jail; Dr. Lemon, Mr. Minser and his lady, and others, often came to my house to see Wyant; often talked to defendant about Rusk intending to kill him; I have often told him that he would kill him; I could not make him believe but that Rusk was about there and would kill him; he would have the blinds put up at the windows every night; Wyant heard that the Rusk party had shot at my son; I think it was my son who told Wyant that they had shot at him about four times; Wyant made no reply that I recollect of.
Cross examined.—Defendant is between thirty and thirty-five years of age; has no family; had been living in the neighborhood but a few weeks when the difficulty occurred; defendant was there before the matter of the land was settled; what took us all to Marion was that Wyant and some other person had had a difficulty, and Wyant wanted us to go there with him; when the ball struck Wyant’s arm it was hanging down; ball struck below the elbow; heard before this affray Wyant threaten to whip Rusk if he did not let his brother alone with his land; heard him threaten to take his life after this affray. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 9, 1857, LPAL doc. 131646.
[06] CARR, MRS. (sister of prisoner:)—I stayed with Wyant two nights while at Marion; was there often in the daytime; complained of his head; observed him picking at his head; said that they had given him medicine enough to kill an elephant; complained of a roaring in his head; was afraid that Rusk would come and kill him; I never saw him sleep while at Marion; he would doze and jump up as if he was frightened; used to pick his head a great deal; he made his head sore picking his head; did it constantly when he was not eating or sleeping; never saw defendant from the time he went to Indiana in August until today; was always cautioning us to be on our guard; said Rusk would kill him and all the rest of us; asked me if the ball would glance off of the glass, or would it pass through; would sometimes charge Clark, my son, and sometimes myself, with having shot his arm off; threat3ene to kill me for having shot his arm off; drew his knife on me and I drew a chair on him and threatened to hit him on his sore arm; never threatened me before he was hurt; always kind to me before that time; would make me keep the curtains drawn at the windows, and kept quilts on the inside and boards on the outside to gratify him; it was hot weather and he would not leave the doors open for fear that Rusk would come and kill him; he kept the house so close during the hot weather that we could not stay in the house; we would take turns in attending to him, fanning him, &c.; I have an uncle who is insane; resembles Ike Wyant very much; am the sister of defendant and wife of John Carr, who has testified in this case; the fear of Rusk appeared to weigh heavily upon his mind; there was a borrowed pistol at our house and I sent it home for fear that Ike would get hold of it and hurt some of us; never saw him afraid of anything until after this occurrence; thought that nothing could scare him; I told him what Mr. Fuller had told me, to wit, that Rusk intended dot kill him when he shot him; appeared flighty; would commence telling something and then break off, and commence talking of something else; had his arm that was buried in the graveyard disinterred and brought to him; he complained often of his fingers hurting him; said his fingernails were dropping off &c.; when the arm was dug up the fingernails were found to be dropping off; I told defendant that the Rusks had shot at my son; he told me that some of us would be killed by them yet.
Cross examined.—My grandmother said the cause of my uncle’s insanity was that he got disappointed in getting a girl he had sparked. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 10, 1857, LPAL doc. 131647.
[07] CATLIN, WILLIAM D.—Was present at Clinton when Rusk was shot; saw Wyant come out of the Courthouse; heard him say that the d—d rascal had waylaid his father, and had shot his (prisoner’s) arm off, and now I have killed the d—d son of a b—; this was when Williams was taking the pistol from him. “The Trial of Isaac Wyant,” Weekly Pantagraph, April 15, 1857, LPAL doc. 53376.
[08] EDMUNSON, DR.—I did not see the man Rusk until after his death; I saw the body at the coroner’s inquest; I concur with Dr. Goodbrake in his description of the wounds, and am satisfied that Rusk came to his death from the gunshot wounds already described; pistols in Rusk’s coat had barrels from three to four inches long; they were old fashioned. The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 8, 1857, LPAL doc. 131645.
[09] FULLER, MR. –Was here yesterday when Mrs. Carr testified that I told her that Rusk told me that he tried to kill Wyant when he shot him at Marion; I told her no such thing; I never saw her but twice; once when I was on horseback; once when Mr. Swett was there. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 14, 1857, LPAL doc. 131648.
[10.1] GOODBRAKE, DR.—I am a practicing physician and surgeon; I heard the shooting , four distinct shots; McGraw came out of the court house and called me in; I met defendant coming out of the door; when I got into the office Rusk was lying on the floor with his head doubled under and his brains oozing out; I examined the body and found four wounds occasioned by balls; the head wound caused the death, though the shot in the side would have terminated fatally, but not so soon; head wound, ball entered above the left ear and plowed, I think, its way through the brain and lodged against the skull on the other side; I probed the wound with a flexible Gum Catheter.

Cross examined—There were four bullets struck; one in the head, one in the shoulder blade, one in the side, and one in the arm; I met Wyant at the court house door; was walking tolerably lively, and said something about shooting, but I don’t recollect what it was. The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 8, 1857, LPAL doc. 131645.
[10.2] GOODBRAKE, DR., recalled—Defendant lost his arm in July; it was amputated; thinks his arm was healed, i.e. his stump. The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 8, 1857, LPAL doc. 131645.
[10.3] GOODBRAKE, DR., recalled—Was present when arm was amputated; considerable chloroform was consumed; Dr. Lemon at Wyant’s request asked Dr. Warner to give chloroform; Wyant would refuse to take chloroform, and a great deal would be wasted; finally he took some and went to sleep, but waked up during the operation; a little more would then be given to him to keep him quiet; he would cry awhile and swear awhile, and he declared that his friends ought to have killed Rusk; that they were of no account; an ordinary dose of chloroform was given him; it is not singular for a man to complain of his lost arm; it is not singular to see a might flighty after his arm or limb is cut off, and he is sick; I would not consider it a sign of permanent insanity; more or less fever is consequent upon gunshot wounds and amputation; I have examined some books on the use of chloroform; I have never found a case of permanent insanity made by chloroform; some of the symptoms might be present in a sane mind; some of them are evidences of insanity’; haven’t seen much change in the man’ it impressed me that he was either a strange man or a crazy one; he was as much insane before the amputation as afterwards as it appeared to me. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 14, 1857, LPAL doc. 131648.
[11] HERALD, ELIKAM–I was about fifteen or twenty rods from where the Marion difficulty occurred; I heard a cry of murder, and when to them; John Wyant or Carr told me to search Wyant, when something was said by the Rusk party about a knife; to search Wyant and see if he had a knife; I did not do so; I saw no knife. “The Trial of Isaac Wyant,” Weekly Pantagraph, April 15, 1857, LPAL doc. 53376.
[12] HOOVER, DR.I saw prisoner at the Pike House in Bloomington since the shooting of Rusk; my attention was called to him by his peculiar appearance and manner; the muscles were twitching on his face, and he was picking at his head; he talked of this unfortunate affair rather connectedly; but on all other subjects he was rambling and disconnected; I have no doubt in my mind that Wyant was insane when I saw him; thought so at the time.
Cross examined.—Mr. Hogg met me on the street and told me that there was a man down at the Pike House making a speech in his own defense for murder; I went down there and saw him; was satisfied from his manner that he was insane; his appearance denoted it; don’t think he was feigning insanity. “The Trial of Isaac Wyant,” Weekly Pantagraph, April 15, 1857, LPAL doc. 53376.
[13] KIDDER, MR. __________:  I did know Ason Rusk while living; knew defendant; I saw Rusk in the Court House of DeWitt County in the County Clerk’s Office; I was in the office when Rusk came in; was in but a short time when Wyant came and opened the door and fired on Rusk; Rusk hollowed two or three times; Rusk fell on his knees; defendant shot again; I caught defendant and told him he could shoot no more there; shot three times; asked me if I took it up; I said no, but he could shoot no more there; there had been shooting enough; nothing passed between defendant and Rusk before the shooting.
[A diagram shown witness and explained; diagram of court house where shooting took place.]
Cross examined—I have lived in this State six years next May; came from Champaign County, O.; lived in Clinton when Rusk was shot; Mr. McGraw and others went into the office with me; McGraw and others went out leaving me in the office; five minutes after, Rusk came in and enquired for Esq. McGraw; the first thing I saw of the difficulty was the smoke of the pistol; Rusk had his side to defendant at the time defendant shot; said nothing after I took hold of him and pushed him around; defendant went out; shot three times; Rusk had two pistols; one of them in his side coat pocket and the other in hind coat pocket; happened about one or two o’clock; after dark that evening I saw the pistols; Rusk appeared to be from twenty to twenty five years of age; it was about five to seven feet from door to stove; on the third shot defendant advanced about one pace; had seen defendant before.
Direct examination again—All I know about his having two pistols at the time of the shooting, was, I saw them taken from Rusk’s coat the same evening; I had seen defendant once or twice before.
Cross examined again—Coroner took the pistols out of his pocket; the body of Rusk was left on the floor until after the coroner’s inquest; never saw Rusk before. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 8, 1857, LPAL doc. 131645.
[14] LEASURE, GREEN—I was present at the time of the Marion difficulty; saw Rusk throw off his coat and cap; the old man Rusk told Ason to hold on; saw him fire, then the Rusk party ran back to where Ason and Wyant were; I think there was no one nearer than forty yards when the shooting took place; I had been to the woods, and was coming along past the forks of the road when I saw a number of persons, two of whom were behind the others; and I saw Rusk throw off his hat and coat; Wyant advanced towards Rusk; they were about nine or ten feet apart; made motion to pull off his coat then, but did not do it; then the firing took place. “The Trial of Isaac Wyant,” Weekly Pantagraph, April 15, 1857, LPAL doc. 53376.
[15] LEMON, DR.— I am a Doctor; engaged for – years; lived in DeWitt County at the time of the difficulty; was sent for; arm fractured; wound below the elbow; saw the arm evening of same day, very shortly after the shooting; arm amputated 16 hours after wound. Drs. Warner, Goodbrake and myself present; chloroform administered; administered by Dr. – . Was two ounce bottle; none used afterwards until Mr. Swett came to see it; measured then how much had been used out of bottle; took longer time in administering it; thought it not good for anything; sent son to get bottle of ether; prisoner continued breathing the chloroform till son got back; made good many visits; four or five a day while in town, one or two a day after; Wyant had considerable of fever; complained of singing in his ears; pain and feverish excitement; bowels constipated; gave morphine; twitching of nerves; considerable uneasiness; considerable pain about stump; stump inflamed considerably before ligature was taken away; additional pain not satisfactorily accounted for; ringing in ears continued for some time; prisoner did not rest well at night; he seemed to apprehend trouble from the Rusks; that he would be killed; noticed a disposition to pick his head and clothes; books say injury produced from chloroform causes uneasiness about head, picking &c.; would have a tendency to injure a person with tendency of blood to head; had a prejudice against using it from its effects and from his temperament; it injures the brain; object is to produce insensibility; brain is regarded the seat of pain; when it injures the brain it destroys the mind; are some cases of permanent insanity from the use of it recorded; insanity one of the probable effects of injury from use of it; there was fever about his head; more head about his head than elsewhere; worse when bowels checked; sleeplessness continued while he was under his care; nothing seemed to suit him; ;occasionally got a good night’s sleep; one time he swore he had not had a good night’s sleep for two weeks ; when he left for Indiana I gave him some morphine to take along with him to make him sleep, also some Dover’s powders; he took morphine, a powder every six hours during the severity of the pain, with instructions to use them only when pain was intense; saw him in jail at Clinton after murder.
Cross examined.—Administered chloroform at time of amputation; did not examine bottle till after death of Rusk; for or five weeks after death; not much information drawn from books; inference is that anything producing insensibility affects brain; one case of insanity mentioned in books; don’t know what kind of insanity chloroform produces; did not hear prisoner make any threats against deceased; was about quarter of a mile from where shooting took place when heard shots and cry.
Re-examined.—Wyant manifested disposition to talk about difficulty with Rusk. [Dr. Lemon spoke in so low a tone that much of his testimony could not be heard.] “The Trial of Isaac Wyant,” Weekly Pantagraph, April 15, 1857, LPAL doc. 53376.
[16.1] LEWIS, ROBERT —Heard report of pistols or firearms; four reports; saw Wyant; Wyant said he had shot the man who murdered his arm; saw defendant after he was taken upstairs; did not see defendant vomit after he was taken upstairs; I have lived in Clinton six years. The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 8, 1857, LPAL doc. 131645.
[16.2] LEWIS, ROBERT—When he first came out of the courthouse he (Wyant) did not look strange; he looked strange when he begged  not to be taken into the room where Rusk was, but I did not think so when we saw him upstairs; I was but a few steps from Wyant when he was arrested. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 14, 1857, LPAL doc. 131648.
[17] MCFARLAND, DR.— Reside at Jacksonville; have charge of the State Hospital for the Insane; have been engaged in treating the insane 12 years; have been eight years in charge of the State Hospital in New Hampshire, at Concord; three years in this State; have heard the testimony adduced in the defense of this case; had occasion to experiment upon effect of use of chloroform upon mind; instituted some trials upon insane about ten years ago; am not certain but think it was ether instead of chloroform; used it upon extremely excited maniacs to no effect; then selected some cases where there was no fever, and a regular pulse, and talkativeness, with effect; up to time Wyant went to Indiana, in my opinion, he was insane; symptoms of that are change in character from courage to cowardice; charging his sister with wounding him, watchfulness and wakefulness, ringing noises in head; picking about the head is of more importance than would appear to ordinary men; the reason why I think so are, that in some cases maniacs relive the extreme excitement by loud noises or laughing; in others they may pick their heads of all the hair; picking the face or picking the hair is the most common evidence of insanity; they will sometimes bite or pick their nails or fingers to the quick; insanity is strongly hereditary; in Wyant’s case the probability of his inheriting it is great; there is a fair presumption of a pre-disposition to insanity in his case, from his resemblance to his relatives, who were insane; the fact of his vomiting of itself is no evidence, but connected with other things it is an evidence of insanity; I conceive it to be the natural tendency of chloroform to paralyze the brain; the secondary effect is to carry that paralyzation to a point beyond recovery, or fatally; the first effect of it is to blunt the sensation of feeling; I consider that it affected Wyant, from the amount inhaled and length of time inhaling; that he suffered from the protracted administration effected; peculiar temperament is more cause of greater or less effect than quantity; Wyant’s is what used to be called a sanguieo-nervous temperament; from all the evidence in this case I think there is a fair presumption that he was insane; insanity is sometimes successfully feigned, but not where there is an opportunity for experienced persons to witness the attempts at feigning; have no fears in this case that insanity has been feigned; there are reasonable grounds to believe from the evidence that he was insane when he killed Rusk; more cases of insanity occur of persons between the ages of twenty and forty than any other. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 14, 1857, LPAL doc. 131648.
[18.1] McGRAW, ESQUIRE—I knew Rusk three or four years; young man twenty-two or twenty-three years old; on the 12th day of October, when I was returning to my office (County Clerk’s Office) from dinner, I saw the defendant take hold of the knob of the door—open it—heard pistol report, and a scream—two shots more and a scream; defendant, as he came out, told me that he “had shot the d—d rascal that had shot his arm off.” After I had defendant arrested I gave the body and my office in charge of the coroner and went home, after calling on Dr. Goodbrake; did not return until next morning from my house.
Cross examined—Had not seen Rusk before on that day; saw Wyant the day before; coroner’s inquest was not held until next morning; I think Wyant had not been in town but a day or two before the occurrence; I am Clerk of the Count Court of DeWitt County. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 8, 1857, LPAL doc. 131645.
[18.2] McGRAW, ESQUIRE, recalled—I was about 40 feet or rather less from Wyant when arrested; I do not recollect that Wyant say anything about his father or anybody else’s father. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 14, 1857, LPAL doc. 131648.
[18.3] McGRAW, ESQ., recalled:–Just after the killing of Rusk, Wyant acted very strangely; he vomited, and I noticed him picking at his head. “The Trial of Isaac Wyant,” Weekly Pantagraph, April 15, 1857, LPAL doc. 53376.
[19] MR. WILLIAMSON, sworn says: I am Sheriff of Tazewell County and keeper of the jail; Wyant has been in my custody about 17 months; I have often got him medicine; Wyant could have made his escape on one or more occasions; but did not do so; the door of the jail was twice open when he could have made his escape and did not. “The Trial of Isaac Wyant,” Weekly Pantagraph, April 15, 1857, LPAL doc. 53376.
[20] NIXON, MR.—First saw Wyant three years ago in Marion; after the loss of his arm at Mr. Carr’s I heard him fret about the loss of his arm and said he craved revenge for his injury; said it was a d—d hard thing for a man to be waylaid and his arm shot off. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 14, 1857, LPAL doc. 131648.
[21] PARKER, ANDREW—Was near enough to see part of the fight at Marion; was 70 or 80 yards distant when trouble began; had been south; came in the lane; met some men; saw two men halt looking like trouble; Rusk threw his clothes off, and Wyant threw his coat up on his shoulder; old man Rusk ran ahead of us maneuvering; when Ason Rusk’s clothes were off he gave back, and Wyant followed with his [illegible].
Cross examined.—The same view was open to me [illegible]. Buck was nearer than myself; don’t know whether I saw any knife; the parties seemed to me that they were near together; four to six feet apart; I expected to see Ason Rusk run off; the parties were facing each other. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 14, 1857, LPAL doc. 131648.
[22] PARKS, DR.— Since 1847 have been practicing medicine in Illinois, California and Russia; been a surgeon in Russia at Simpheropel near Sebastopol; we used a combination of ether and chloroform; the purpose of the combination was to make the compound less dangerous; the probability is that chloroform would injure the min; symptoms of insanity mentioned by the physicians are evidences of insanity; don’t know a case where a male was rendered insane by the use of chloroform; females are more susceptible than males, and nervous men are more susceptible than those not so; I cannot mention one case of permanent insanity as the consequence of chloroform. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 14, 1857, LPAL doc. 131648.
[23] REEVES, DR.— I consider an ordinary dose of chloroform to be about a drachm by inhalation. “The Trial of Isaac Wyant,” Weekly Pantagraph, April 15, 1857, LPAL doc. 53376.
[24] ROSS, DR.—I have heard the testimony in this case, and from that testimony I am satisfied that Wyant was insane at the time of the commission of the offense; I think he is insane; man of strong passions more liable to become insane than an even tempered person; the tendency of chloroform is to affect the brain and nervous system; the object in giving it is to come as near killing a person as can be done without doing it; it is to prevent pain under surgical operation; it appears to have had a peculiar effect on him; instead of deadening his animal passions it had the effect to arouse and excite them; I think that picking of the head is often an accompaniment of insanity; all morbid feelings are evidence of insanity.
Cross Examined.—I have no doubt of his being insane since the shooting of the arm; my reasons are, his mistaking his sister for the perpetrator of the act of shooting his arm off, his morbidness of mind, his constant fear, picking of the head, and constipation of the bowels; these are the points upon which my judgment is made up. The strong point is his constant fear of being killed; his mistaking his sister is a point equally strong. The things at the time of the killing were, his vomiting, his refusing to go into the room where Wyant lay, and his having said that Rusk had waylaid his (Wyant’s) father, he being dead. It is a very difficult matter to judge insanity; the books lay down this; I know of no case of a male being made insane by chloroform, though it has occurred; I now agree with you that generally the cases of insanity from chloroform are females; the difference or cause why females are more subject to insanity from chloroform is that it is given to them at the time of parturities, when there is greater tendency to insanity; chloroform, if it tends to make a female insane, must have the tendency in a less degree in man on account of the less degree of nervous susceptibility. “The Trial of Isaac Wyant,” Weekly Pantagraph, April 15, 1857, LPAL doc. 53376.
[25] RUSK, JOHN D. (brother of Ason Rusk)— Was at Marion when the fight took place; as we were coming down the road, my brother said “Ike,” and Wyant said “say on,” and my brother asked him what he threatened to whip him for; Wyant said for coming to take him on the prairie; Wyant asked my brother if he wanted to fight; my brother said he’d fight him a fair fight; then my brother started to pull off his coat, &c.; then Wyant threw up his coat on his shoulder and advanced upon Rusk, when Rusk retreated a few steps and fired. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 14, 1857, LPAL doc. 131648.
[26] RUSK, MR. father of Rusk—Was in Marlon when first fight took place; both parties were ready to start home at same time; Ason stepped on; Wyant advanced to Rusk and Rusk said “stand back, stand back;” Wyant advancing upon him attempting to dirk him; when Ason was near the fence he fired; saw the knife plainly in Wyant’s hand.
Cross examined.—Was seventy or eighty steps distant when Ason stopped; I then returned about half way to where they were when they fought; after the shooting we kinder met; the fight occurred on the Clinton road; when the shot took place Ason and Wyant were so close that a man could not get between them; Ason said ‘I offered to fight him a fair fight, and he wouldn’t fight;” the knife that Wyant had was a long knife with a white handle; Wyant cut within six inches of Ason’s breast. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 14, 1857, LPAL doc. 131648.
[27] SHENNAMAN, ISAAC (brother-in-law to Rusk)—We went out of town together; Ason stopped having a dysentery; we were in advance; looked back and saw Rusk and Wyant on the road; Rusk said “Ike what did you threaten me for;” Wyant said “because you came out on the prairie to take me when I whipped Shennaman;” Wyant threw his coat up on his shoulder and said “do you want to fight?” and Ason Rusk said “I’ll fight you a fair fight;” Ason threw off his clothes, and then Wyant advanced upon Ason, and Ason said “stand back; stand back,” and fired; Wyant whipped me some time before; 8 weeks; whipped me good; slipped up behind me and hit me. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 14, 1857, LPAL doc. 131648.
[28] SPENCER, DR.—I am a physician; I had charge in Albany, two years, of the insane Hospital; and have had some experience with the insane; from the evidence I think Wyant was insane; think he may have inherited his insanity; think that the period of time in a man’s life at which he is most likely to become insane is between twenty and forty; a shock to his nervous system usually develops it; among the symptoms of the abuse of chloroform are pain or ringing in the head, listening to fancied noises, &c.; I have seen a case where this was the prominent trait of the insanity. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 14, 1857, LPAL doc. 131648.
[29] SWETT, LEONARD— Measured bottle which held chloroform; two and three eighths inches of chloroform had been used out of bottle; it was a pound bottle; thinks that was the quantity used for Wyant. “The Trial of Isaac Wyant,” Weekly Pantagraph, April 15, 1857, LPAL doc. 53376.
[30] TAYLOR, MR.—I was jailor after Wyant was in jail in Clinton. He was brought to me on the 12th and the court sat next week; I asked him if he wanted counsel on Monday or Tuesday; he said he was a stranger, and didn’t know anybody; I recommended Swett to him; Swett asked Dr. Lemon in jail in presence of Wyant if the use of chloroform would effect the brain; Dr. Lemon replied in some cases it did; afterwards on one occasion when I took food to Wyant he put on foolish actions; I told him he need not feign to be insane to me, and afterwards he did not; the acted then as usual. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 14, 1857, LPAL doc. 131648.
[31] THOMAS, MR.— My first acquaintance with Wyant commenced by my being constable, and a warrant came into my hands to arrest Wyant for the assault on Warrenburg; I complained; didn’t want to go at night; not knowing the road; consented to go if Shennaman and Ason Rusk would go with me; went to John Wyant’s and asked for Ike; John said he was there; Ike clapped his hands on my breast; asked me if I was the officer; I said yes; he said he would go away; they (Shennaman and Wyant) got to quarreling; Shennaman picked up an axe; Wyant picked up a piece of wood and made Shennaman lay down his axe, and picked it up himself and run Shennaman off; (laughter,) Want said if he (Ason Rusk) had come on this prairie to run his (Wyant’s) friends off, he couldn’t live; Wyant asked Ason to fight; Ason declined; I thought Wyant had a knife at that time. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 14, 1857, LPAL doc. 131648.
[32] WARNER, DR.— Was present when Wyant’s arm was taken off; was present but not participating; don’t think Wyant inhaled double ordinary dose; chloroform evaporates rapidly; suppose if kept in an ordinary manner would lose its strength. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 14, 1857, LPAL doc. 131648.
[33] WARRENBURG, GEORGE—A few days before the Marion trial Wyant came to my house and asked for John Warrenburg; asked John whether he had threatened him (Wyant;) John said he had, because he understood Clark Carr had threatened to send him (Wyant) to whip him (Warrenburg;) after this explanation Wyant said he and John had always been good friends and there was no reason why they should not be so still; three or four days after that he came into my field and struck me on the hand; when I started to run he hit me on the shoulder blade and beat my son, and my son ran off; beat the horses and they ran off; whereupon he got upon the fence and swore terribly; Marion trial took place next day after the beating; he had been to my house before; stayed all night; he had been in the country before; this time he had been in the country three weeks. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 14, 1857, LPAL doc. 131648.
[34] WARRENBURG, JOHN—Wyant wanted to know something about my threatening him; Clark Carr told Rusk that he’d make Wyant whip me. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 14, 1857, LPAL doc. 131648.
[35.1] WILLIAMSON, W.W. —I was not present when Rusk was shot; I heard the shooting and knew something was wrong; went in and Squire McGraw told me to arrest him, I did so; I told defendant that he had killed Rusk; “well,” said he, “if I have killed him, d—d his soul, that is just what I came here to do;” he had two pistols; one with six loads in it, and the other with two loads; pistols were revolvers; I gave these pistols into Bullocks’s hands to shoot them off; they were “Allen’s make of revolvers;” I saw Rusk before he died and saw him after he died; I think he had a ball in the right side of the head and in his side; I saw two places where the balls had taken effect.
Cross examined—I was in Taylor & Bell’s store, about fifty steps off; came immediately to the court house; Wyant was a few rods from the court house gate when I first saw him, with his pistol in his hand; I had a struggle with him to get the first pistol; he gave up the other; I took him up into the court room; when I had turned him around to take him into the court house, he begged of me for God’s sake not to take him where he could see the dead man, for he said that his friends would shoot his poor body all to pieces; defendant was examined that night.
[Diagram shown witness and explained to Jurors.] “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 8, 1857, LPAL doc. 131645.
[35.2] WILLIAMS[ON, W.W.] (Constable who arrested Wyant) recalled—Heard nothing said by Wyant of his father or anybody else’s father; when Wyant was taken upstairs, saw Wyant taking something out of a vial. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 14, 1857, LPAL doc. 131648.
[36] WINERT, MR.— I am a minister of the gospel; I formerly lived in Lafayette, Ind.;’ I knew Ike Wyant in Boone County, Indiana; I considered him a bold, fearless and undaunted man; a man of cheerful habits; kind; I have been intimate with him, traveled with him and slept with him; I have never seen a man more changed than Wyant isnow from what he was when I knew him in Indiana.
Cross examined.—At a camp meeting I saw Wyant exhibit extraordinary courage; I and the presiding elder were remonstrating with some liquor sellers on the ground; they threatened to knock me down; Wyant came and told them that if they did, it would be over his dead body; there was another difficulty there when he showed courage; a man and he had a fight, in which he (Wyant) was stabbed; Wyant got an axe and said he would kill him, &c.; the difficulty was about a game of cards; I slept with Wyant the night before. “The Trial of Isaac Wyant,” Weekly Pantagraph, April 15, 1857, LPAL doc. 53376.
[37.1] WYANT, JOHN—I have lived in the State three or four years; have been living in the neighborhood nearly all the time of John Carr, since I have been in the State; I was in Marion when the first difficulty occurred between defendant and Rusk; I went there to attend a trial; when we started to come home the sun was two or three hours high; when I got out at the forks of the road, about three hundred yards from the town, I was on horseback. Ason Rusk said Ike I want a word with you; Wyant turned and walked up to Rusk, as close as he could get; Rusk said “Ike, what did you threaten me for out on the prairie the other day;” Wyant said “I was excited then, and I am sorry for it;” Wyant told Rusk that he was a God d—d rascal and that he wanted nothing to do with him; Rusk said “is that all, then d—n you I’ll blow your d—d heart out of you;” Wyant hollered murder and that he had blown his arm off; Rusk hollered come here “Ike, come here and bring me that other pistol” (that was to Shennaman) “and I will kill every d—d one of them;” old man Rusk said that his son’s Scotch blood was gret; I don’t recollect of there being anything said about a knife until I told them to search Wyant and see if he had any knife; I saw no knife myself; Wyant stayed in Marion about two weeks after he was hurt; I was with him very little after the first week; stayed with him pretty much all the first week; he was in great fear while I was with him of Rusk’s coming and killing him; he would often talk to himself both night and day, and remarked on one occasion that the truck that they had given him had ruined his head; I can’t answer as to seeing any twitching of his muscles; I never was there at night after he was taken to Carr’s house; I never stayed more than fifteen minutes in the day time; when I would go to see him there; Wyant had been in the neighborhood from two to three weeks before the occurrence of the shooting. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 9, 1857, LPAL doc. 131646.
Examination of John Wyant continued—Cross examined:--Defendant is about thirty-four and a half years of age—his occupation has been mostly trafficking and trading; I saw Wyant at Marion before the difficulty; I saw him with a knife which he was then whittling with; can’t describe the knife; at the time of the difficulty I heard them saying “who would not shoot when a knife was drawn on him?” Immediately told them to search Wyant; never saw defendant scared before; believe that he would have fought a whole camp meeting of persons and heard a minister of the gospel in Indians say that on one occasion Wyant and another like him could have taken or whipped a whole camp meeting; I have an uncle who is insane. “The Trial of Wyant,” Daily Pantagraph, April 10, 1857, LPAL doc. 131647.
[37.2] WYANT, JOHN recalled—Wyant’s father died in Virginia seventeen or eighteen years ago. “The Trial of Isaac Wyant,” Weekly Pantagraph, April 15, 1857, LPAL doc. 53376.

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