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The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 7, 1864


Yesterday at eleven o'clock in the forenoon, Emanuel Lopus, barber, of room No. 23, Mead House, wrote to the idol of his soul that he loved her better than all else beside; that unto him the day was dark, the sun seemed swathed in shadows, when she was not by; that he was going to take the life that God had given him, and enclosed she would please find one lock of hair, the same being his. He then took a teaspoonful of laudanum in a gallon of gin, and lay down to die. That is one version of it. Another is, that he really took an honest dose of laudanum, and was really anxious to put his light out; so much so, indeed, that after Dr. Murphy had come, resolved to pump the poison from his stomach or pump his heart out in the attempt, and after he had comfortably succeeded in the first mentioned proposition, this desperate French barber rose up and tried to whip the surgeon for saving his life, and defeating his fearful purpose, and wasting his laudanum. Another version is, that he went to his friend Jullien, in the barber shop under the Mead House, and told him to smash into his trunk after he had breathed his last and shed his immortal soul, and take from it his professional soap, and his lather-brush and his razors, and keep them forever to remember him by, for he was going this time without reserve. This was a touching allusion to his repeated assertions, made at divers and sundry times during the past few years, that he was going off immediately and commit suicide. Jullien paid no attention to him, thinking he was only drunk, as usual, and that his better judgment would prompt him to substitute his regular gin at the last moment, instead of the deadlier poison. But on going to No. 23 an hour afterwards, he found the wretched Lopus in a heavy stupor, and all unconscious of the things of earth, and the junk-bottle and the laudanum phial on the bureau. We have endeavored to move the sympathy of the public in behalf of this poor Lopus, and we have done it from no selfish motive, and in no hope of reward, but only out of the commiseration we feel for one who has been suffering in solitude while the careless world around him was absorbed in the pursuit of life's foolish pleasures, heedless whether he lived or died. If we have succeeded - if we have caused one sympathetic tear to flow from the tender eye of pity, we desire no richer recompense. They took Lopus to the station-house yesterday afternoon, and from thence he was transferred to the French Hospital. We learn that he is getting along first-rate, now.

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