Here is an account of the murder. Sounds like these were 2 bad guys.
Perry County Republican
Vol. XXV Perryville, Missouri 23 July 1914
Suspects of Menne Murder in Jail
Claude French and Jesse Javaux Arrested
Claud French and Jesse Javaux who are in jail in Perryville are suspected of being implicated in the murder of Ed. Menne, an account of which was given in the Republican last week.
These men were arrested in Thos. Chavaux’s saloon at Belgique last Thursday evening, by deputy sheriff, Ed. DeClerk, and marshall Buff, of Perryville, and were charged with petty larceny in stealing some oysters from Lawarence Layton’s store at Belgique.
Information obtained after the inquest held by Coroner Blaylock over the remains of Mr. Menne developed a strong suspicion of French and Javaux being implicated in the horrible affair at Anchor Landing.
County Attorney P.B. Hood and the coroner made a further investigation that confirmed and convinced them in the belief that French and Javaux were guilty. While there was no direct evidence, circumstances which linked into one another, pointed strongly to them.
Their arrest followed as stated above. French was placed in the county jail, and Javaux in the city jail so that they might not confer. Javaux was later removed to the court house detention cell.
The arrest, as is, usual in such cases, started all kinds of rumors, some with foundation and some without, so that any definite information is hard to get at.
It is pretty generally understood that since being placed in jail Javaux has made a partial confession to Mr. Hood in the presence of Ed DeClerk but these gentlemen refuse to talk, feeling that it is not best at this time to make public any information, as they are working on clues that they hope will strengthen the facts they already have and which might be blocked if made public at this time and we believe they are right in taking this view of the matter.
French and Javaux were at Belgique the evening of the murder and were seen to leave there and go to the woods where they had been camping out, and to come from there the next morning, but there is a good reason to believe that they were not at camp the whole of the night, and this view was strengthened by later developments.
Since the arrest of the two men it is said that a revolver, about $15 and some other articles have been found hid about the haunts of the men, but this the officials also refuse to confirm.
It is also stated that in his confession Javaux placed the blame of the killing on French while Javaux was on the outside of the building and that French fired the building, but this is not given here as authentic, as the official would not confirm the statement.
Javaux has been working for H. D. Duvall all summer, but French only appeared in the neighborhood a few weeks before the murder.
He and Javaux, who are cousins have been together a great deal, and other parties have joined them from time to time and this has led to the belief that others may have been implicated.
French is about 28 years old and bears a bad reputation, having been in several ugly scrapes in St. Louis. He is a brother of Clay French, who was sent to the reform school for slugging a tramp here some years ago.
Javaux is a younger man by several years, and has been in no trouble before. He is reported as having said that he would not have been in this but was under the influence of liquor at this time.
We understand that information charging French and Javaux with the murder of Menne will be filed this week, then will follow the preliminary trial unless waived by the parties.
The crime was a most brutal act combining, murder, arson and robbery, and every effort should be made to bring the guilty ones to justice and fixing their punishment in keeping with their crime, and this we are satisfied our officials are attempting to do.
John D-H note: this was transcribed on 6 December 2000 by Linda McCall from a microfilm copy of the original newspaper provided by Billie Mills of the Perry County Historical Society, P.O. Box 97, Perryville, MO 63775.
John D-H historical notes:
Edward Menne was born in Perry County, Missouri in February 1855. His father was born in Germany.
William “Jesse” Javaux was born 2 September 1879 in Perry County, Missouri. He would have been 36 years old at the time of the murder. His great grandfather Victor Javaux was born in France about 1789 and settled in Perry County.
Claude French was born August 1885 in Perry County, Missouri. He would have been about 40 years old at the time of the murder. His great-great grandfather Joseph French was born in Maryland and was one of the earliest settlers in Perry County.
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