[APG Public List] Hester Laughlin Pfister and Possible Drug Abuse

Craig Kilby persisto at live.com
Tue Mar 2 20:32:32 MST 2010


Yes, this is a most fascinating family story. Bonnie Kohler wrote to me off list suggesing drug abuse. This rang a loud bell for the following reason:

The father of the 2nd (and much younger) wife (Ora Brownfield) of Judge Henry D. Laughlin was, well, a drug dealer. Legal in those days. It is through him (Dr. Brownfield) that the judge met Ora.  Dr. Brownfield (my great-grandfather, of whom I know but little) was, according to St. Louis city directories, engaged in the pharmaceutical business (i.e. drugs) and was apparentlly officing with and funded by the Judge Henry Laughlin until the late 1890s.

The conclusion, albeit specultive for now, is that Dr. Brownfield was dispensing what would now be illegal drugs (morphine, cocaine) and I think this may have had something to do with the subsequent extremely erratic behavior of not only Hester, but her father and brothers as well (I do not know enough yet about Aunt Ora, but I would not be at all surprised if she too did not have a bad drug habit.)

Oddly enough, I had never thought about these connections until the helpful answers from this wonderful lists. Someone at some time may have said this better than I am about to, but I'll say it my own words here:  AT SOME POINT, ALL THE DOTS DO CONNECT.

Craig K

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