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The Murder of Charles Frysinger,
Friday February 25th, 1933 Celina Ohio


     CELINA, O, (U.P)  What was believed an old political rivalry culminated today in the critical wounding of a county Commissioner, serious wounding of a second commissioner and the suicide of the assailant.

     Bert Morrison, about 54, of near Celina, after interviewing the county commission, waited at the court house door and when the men walked forth he opened fire with a shotgun.

      Charles Frysinger, 60, Rockford, O., and Fred Goettemoeller, 55, both commissioners, fell. The men were struck in the head.  Frysinger for a time was believed dead and his recovery was considered doubtful.

     Morrison then drove a short distance from the public building, stopped his automobile and shot himself fatally through the head with a rifle.

     Fred Moeller, third member of the county commission, dodged away when Morrison fired, escaping injury Morrison fired a last shot at a window in which County Surveyor Ralph Wright appeared. A sealed letter was found in Morrison’s pocket. It was believed to contain reference to a quarrel between Morrsion and the commissioners, but the contents were not revealed by the sheriff. Morrsion, formerly was county surveyor. He is survived only by is widow. It was believed Morrison’s anger was directed at Surveyor Wright who defeated him in the Democratic primary in 1928. The commissioners were accompanied by a Mr. Williams, of Greenville, who, along with Moeller, dodged behind a court house pillar to escape the shotgun charge.

From the Norwalk Reflector-Herald, Norwalk, Ohio, Friday February 24, 1933. Page 1



Arical on merder


Wound Proves Fatal

Member of the Mercer County Board of Commissioners Succumbs to Bullet Wound in Head.

Charles R. Frysinger of near Rockford, member of the Board of Commissioners of Mercer county, died last evening, at a hospital in Celina, the result of a wound in the head inflicted by the late R. S. Morrison, former surveyor of Mercer county, who in an insane frenzy, fired two loads from a shotgun at the members of the Mercer County Board of Commissioners as they were leaving the court house, in Celina, about noon last Friday. One of the loads inflicted a serious wound on the upper part of Mr. Frysinger's head, one buckshot entering his brain and shot from one charge striking Commissioner Fred Goettemoeller glancingly on the side of the head, but not producing a serious  injury, Commissioner Daniel Moeller escaped Injury. Afterward Morrison committed suicide, at his home, by firing a rifle bullet into his head, with the end of the gun barrel in his mouth.

Commissioner Frysinger, following the shooting, was removed to the hospital, his left side being paralyzed, and an heroic effort was made to save his life but he gradually failed, his heart action becoming involved, with the result that he died. Mr. Frysinger was· aged 65 years and was widely known in Mercer, Van Wert and other counties of this part of Ohio. His direct, survivors are his wife, two sons, Homer and Lewis Frysinger, at home, one daughter, Mrs. Edward Fox, of Mendon, & sister, Mrs. Frances Chivington, of Rockford, and a neice, Mrs. Joseph Kregel, of Lima.  The funeral will be held Thursday  afternoon, at 2:00 o’clock, at the Methodist Episcopal Church, at Celina. The remains will be laid at rest in the Pleasant Grove cemetery, Northwest of Rockford.

From the Van Wert Daily Bulletin, Tuesday February 28, 1933, Page 2

Merder arical about Fryswinger 1933


Places named in the article: Mercer county Ohio located on the west edge of the state about ¾ of the way up, Celina is its county seat.  The population of the county in 2010 was 28,744, 97% white. Rockford Ohio is in the north west quadrant of Mercer county abut 12 miles north west of Celina, Van Wert County is the county just north of Mercer County , Norwalk Ohio where one of the newspapers was is on the other side of the state, Greenville where another man standing nearby was from is 32miles south of Celina.

Lewis S. Frysinger age 30 was appointed to serve out his father's term (Sandusky Star Journal Thursday, March 16, 1933)   My great grandfather, George Frysinger also served as a county commissioner of Mercer County a little earlier. He died  around 3/21/1924 and also was an Mercer County commissioner and staid active in civic affairs almost up to his deth.. (The (Celina Ohio) Standard, 3/21/1924) He was the brother of Charles Frysinger.

Background information including tidbits about Rolla N. Frysinger as Postmaster of Rockford can be found HERE.


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