Marshfield, January 1907: From stolen bases to stolen goods
Star baseball player Ed McCormick arrested for theft
By Kris Leonhardt
Ed McCormick was a well-known figure in central Wisconsin and the greater Marshfield area in 1907. An adept athlete, he was noted for his abilities as an able catcher on the baseball field.
Though McCormick was a star ballplayer, he was also recognized as an unscrupulous individual that could not be trusted.
On a Thursday evening in early January 1907, officers were called to the Omaha House, owned by Fred Korth. Several rooms had been looted, and an inventory of the items revealed that several ladies’ furs, a fur coat, an overcoat, various ties, suspenders, and shirts were missing. In addition, the thief had secured a suitcase with which to carry his haul.
A man by the name of Roy Wilson had been identified as a suspect after receiving a tip from Wausau police. Wilson was also wanted on charges of lesser offenses in Wausau, Antigo, and Abbotsford.
The following day, Marshfield officers captured Wilson, who had hired a team from the Wicker stable livery and drove to Bakerville. He hid the stolen goods there and then went north. A local milkman found the suitcase of items near his farm and contacted the police.
Wilson was captured, and Wausau police were contacted. When the Wausau officers arrived to collect him, they realized that the Marshfield charges were more serious and left Wilson to Marshfield authorities.
Following the arrest, officers determined Wilson was McCormick, who also went by the nickname “Scotty.”
On Saturday McCormick was arraigned and pleaded not guilty to the charge of burglary. He was bound over to court for $1,000 and then taken to the Wood County Jail.
Due to his conniving nature, McCormick’s detainment was taken very seriously, and authorities kept a close eye on him to prevent his escape.
While in jail, facing three to eight years in prison for his crimes, McCormick claimed to be a deserter of the United States Army and encouraged his capturers to turn him over to federal authorities.
McCormick was later given two years to be served in Waupun for his charges in Marshfield. As his term there was completed, Wausau officers were waiting for him at the gate to hand him charges for his crimes in that city.