We find it interesting that the article does not mention that George's father was John E Shackford, who moved from New Hampshire to St Louis for many years where he made a lot of money from a venture into Louisiana and Portland canal stock before becoming the Doorkeeper and Sergeant At Arms of the US Senate between 1834-1837. He died in 1837 leaving a very large estate to the American Bible Society, other religious societies, a college, and his children.
The article mentions the birth location of George as Christian Shore, New Hampshire which differs from the birth location mentioned in George's death record which is listed as St Louis, Missouri. We can't find a birth record yet so are not sure where or when George was born.
We suspect that the article is incorrect in it's statement that George's mother Jane Smallcorn Shackford had not been living with three daughters in Philadelphia a year before 1854 as she had five daughters who were all married or deceased by 1845. We've approximated his birth as 1816 based on his age at death.
The article correctly states that George had been previously married and had lost a son aboard a ship. His wife was Martha E Robinson who died in 1845 his son David Robinson Shackford age 6 disappeared from the ship Lemuel Dyer on February 27, 1848--it was suspected that he had fallen off the ship. We have found verification that the ship Lemuel Dyer arrived in New Orleans on don't have any verification that Cornelia Grant was aboard that ship or that she traveled to St Louis with George but will see if we can find any records of .
As we mentioned in an earlier article, we feel very sorry for all the other George Shackford's who were living in 1854 when this and many other articles about this George were published.
From the National Police Gazette.
George R. Shackford, the Seducer of
We are enabled this week to present our
readers a likeness of Mr. George R. Shack-
ford, who has been dragged into an unenvia-
ble notoriety through his connection with the
noted Madame Restell, and his heartless con-
duct-to use the very mildest phrases-towards
Miss Cordelia A. Grant.
George R. Shackford, was born at Christian
Shore, in New Hampshire, and in his child-
hood was taken by this mother to St. Louis,
Missouri, where he resided until the period
of manhood. His mother is respectable and
wealthy, and for the last year has resided with
her three daughters in Philadelphia. Mr.
Shackford for some years was connected
with the Mississippi boats, one of which he
commanded. When in his capacity, on a
visit to New Hampshire he became acquaint-
ed with the family of Miss---------, who even-
tually became his wife. Much of his present
fortune was we understand, the marriage
portion of that lady, who died a few years af-
ter the marriage, leaving only one child, a
boy, who was drowned in the Mississippi riv-
About four years after the death of his
wife, Mr. Shackford paid a visit to Portland,
in Maine, when one day, unfortunately for
the lady, (whose name is connected with his
in these proceedings,) when she and several
girls of her own age, (not sixteen) were out
together on a pleasure party, the were met
by Mr. Shackford, who singled out Miss
Grant, and insisted upon paying her atten-
tions, despite the disinclination of her broth-
in-law to permit them from a stranger, and
also of the young lady's efforts to be free of
hi. However, he persisted, and eventually
obtained admission into the house of a sister
of Miss Grant's with whom she was living,
and an intimacy ensued, and after some time
he was successful in persuading her that
his best associations were bound up in her.
He promised marriage, but said family cir-
circumstances prevented his being married then.
Miss Grant being young and giddey, listened
to his honied softness with all the credulity
and curiosity of trusting sixteen. Shackford
finding he had gained an ascendancy over her
requested her to elope with him, but this she
would by no means assent to. But still she
listened and listened and verified the adage
that "she who deliberates is lost." She lis-
tened, and eventually consented to lave
her home with him, under the express prom-
ise that he would take her to his mother's
house in St. Louis, and marry er from
thence. Shackford had with him his little
The elopement was planned by Shackford
so that pursuit should be unavailing. The
moment appointed for leaving her home was
when a steamer then in the bay was about
departing on her voyage to New Orleans,
and by this steamer he had arranged to leave
with his victim A few moments before the
steamer departed, Miss Grant was at home.
When the gun for the steamer's departure
fired, Shackford, with Miss Grant and his
boy, were in a boat on the beach. The boat
left the shore and pulled in the wake of the
steamer, which paused a moment to take them
in, and Miss Grant was in the power of a
man without a heart, without one sympa-
thetic feeling of kindness, and the home of her
childhood and her innocence was left forev-
er; and she, trusting in his blighted work
saw not the horrors of the future. Her guar-
dian angle was sleeping on its post, or she
was unmindful of the promptings she receive-
During the voyage, a hint in the broad
letters of death was given. The child of Mr.
Shackford, by his wife fell overboard and
was drowned. He received the intelli-
gence unmoved, whilst she, to whom the child
had become endeared, grieved for him, and
vet, in the father's indifference did not per-
ceive a foreshadowing of the treatment des-
tained for her.
St. Louis was reached, and Miss Grant
was introduced to his mother and sister, by
Mr. Shackford, as a protege of his. Miss
Grant was schooled not to say the relation in
which they stood, and not then to a hint of the
promised marriage. The mother and sister
asked no questions, for, by some means, in
his mother's house, Mr. Shackford managed
to make his will absolute. After staying in
the family for two months, he (Shackford),
finding he could not there gratify his unhal-
lowed propensities without suspicion, left
pretending he was going to take his ward,
Cordelia, to school
She urged in vain upon him to redeem his
promise; and he repeated the promise, and
yet ruthlessly told her he would turn her into
the streets unless she made herself conforma-
ble to his desires. The unhappy girl un-
knowing life, unknowing of the ways of the
world-feeling herself by her own act cut off
from communication with her friends-with a
heavy heart found herself compelled to com-
ply with his exactions. After leaving his
mother's house, he and the lady lived togeth-
er as man and wife, and she became enciente.
It was then the second act of the horrors
The remainder of this sad story is pretty
"Arrived Yesterday," The Daily Crescent (New Orleans, Louisianna), 7 March 1848; digital images, Library of Congress Chronicling America (http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/ : accessed 16 July 2015).
"George R. Shackford, the Seducer of Miss Grant," The Evansville Daily Journal (Evansville, Ind), 16 March 1854; digital images, Library of Congress Chroniclling America (http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/ : accessed 16 July 2015)
"Madame Restell, The Abortionist," New-York Daily Tribune (New York, New York), 14 February 1854; digital images, Library of Congress Chronicling America (http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/ : accessed 5 September 2013).
New Hampshire "New Hampshire, Deaths and Burials, 1784-1949," index, FamilySearch (http://www.familysearch.org : accessed 3 September 2014), Margaret E. R. Shackford, d. 23 Jan 1845.
New Hampshire, New Hampshire, Marriage Records, 1637-1947, , George R Shackford m Margaret E Robinson, 14 May 1841; index and images, Family Search (http://familysearch.org : accessed 19 August 2013).
"New Jersey Deaths and Burials, 1720-1988," database, FamilySearch (http://www.familysearch.org : accessed 19 August 2013), George R Shackford.
"SUDDEN BEREAVEMENT," Troy Daily Whig (Troy, New York), 13 April 1848; digital images, Fulton History (http://fultonhistory.com/ : accessed 16 July 2015).