MAINE UNSOLVED

THE TRIM MURDERS

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The Trim Murders although long forgotten by most, peaked my interest enough to attempt to chronicle the murders; their aftermath and the trial.  Although I sarcastically point out the inept law officers; the Unruly Judge who flat out declared that Smith's friends and family were lying to defend him.  In other words viewer discretion is advised. 

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ITEM: The Trim Murders

Location: A little more south of Bangor, and little less north of Ellsworth.

Date: October 13, 1876

This next cold case is 3 times as disturbing and gruesome as the Sara Ware case, because it was 3 people that lost their lives. They convicted a man, this time around, purely on circumstantial evidence, but as I lay out the facts and the story, I’ll let you judge.

Mrs. Melissa Thayer had moved back to Bucksport after the death of her husband, with her 4 year old daughter. She had moved in with her 73 or 74 year old dad named Robert Trim. The year was 1876, so horse and wagon, or foot was the mode of travel of the day, it was a more peaceful time. She was in her early 30’s and intended to set up a modest school for her child and the neighborhood children in their large homestead.

It was a cool evening on October 13, 1876. The on-coming night was still not for some time, so she had decided to walk to the nearby post office, and drop off or send a letter. When she walked towards the neighbors, the Harriman’s stepdaughter Ada Snow came out and said, since Captain Smith was visiting his sister-in-law, he had married her mother‘s sister, so it would be okay if she walked with Mrs. Thayer to the post office. As one account has it, another has Ada Snow being escorted by Captain Smith to nearby neighbors the Phillips. On the way they meet up with Mrs. Thayer, and then Ada decides to go with her to the Post Office, so they all return back to the Harriman's.

Captain Smith and his wife had stayed in the Trim Homestead helping, Mr. Trim with yard work and chores, while he waited for his next ship to leave. He was a well known and trusted Captain having sailed the seven seas. When they received word of Mr. Trim’s daughter moving back, they had moved back into the Bucksport village, but he always came by and visited.

Captain Smith had walked out earlier in the day, gunning what we call hunting rabbits, partridge and squirrels. He had helped Mr. Trim unload a wagon full of shingles, for the renovations and then walked up to visit his sister-in-law.