And now we begin the love story? of Frederick and May Roach.
From here on in, references to May will be about Mary Rutherford Roach, to avoid confusion!
May and Freddie are married in St. Joseph, MI on October 23, 1905, after an automobile trip there from Chicago.
Mary E. Roach sued Frederick Lyon Roach for divorce citing cruelty on September 28, 1906, less than a year from when they were first married. Friends and family of the Roaches said that there was nothing to the charges. Frederick said that the suit was a laugh. Mary Roach says that soon after her marriage to Freddie, he began to be abusive seeking to humiliate her especially in front of their friends. She tells about the time that they were driving from Chicago to Crown Point, IN when he stopped the car and was going to make her get out and walk before friends travelling with them intervened, also that he had hit her a few days later when they were entertaining friends. The last straw occurred on a train trip from New York to Chicago in the train dining car where they were eating dinner with Mary’s mother. Freddie became angry with the way that May was wearing her hair and hit her. She screamed and several people came to help her. She also asked for an injunction prohibiting Freddie from selling his real estate in Chicago and Florida and for disposing of any personal property.
On September 30, 1906 to prove her seriousness about the divorce, May locked Freddie out of their home. Freddie was giving a chicken dinner for a party of friends at a hotel in Chicago. He returned to his home to change into evening clothes and found the doors barred. He stood in the pouring rain for over 2 hours. He stood singing and pleading for May or her mother to let him in to get some dry clothes. All his begging fell on deaf ears. So, Freddie showed up to the dinner in clothing which if one of his employees had worn would have been cause for instant dismissal. He whined to his guests that he had over 2 dozen suits and all the accessories found in the chiffonier of a millionaire! He went home the following day and still was not allowed to go in the mansion.
But, three weeks later on October 20, 1906, May drops the divorce suit and reconciles with Freddie.
Divorce - Again!
April 26, 1908 Freddie sues for divorce. May counter sues charging habitual drunkenness.
This time Freddie locks May out of the house. Furious, in a Midnight Raid, May broke into Frederick’s house and stole $2,500 in household goods. Justice Julius Timke presided over the case.
At the end of the trial, May addressed Justice Timke, “Say, judge, can’t you give me my dogs?”
“Don’t worry about your dogs, I’ll see that they’re turned over to you.”, responded Freddie’s attorney Thomas Symmes. May had two Boston Terriers, Bridget and Terry.
“Oh, thank you ever so much”, gushed May.
Then her attorney, John Wayman, attached Justice Timke in a speech lasting over 30 minutes. accusing Justice Timke of his so-called illegal interference with Mary when she tried to have her property removed from her husband’s house. “You were the dupe were you not, of these men? You were a convenient sort of fall guy. You now say that you have no jurisdiction in this case. Didn’t you know it they?” Timke said nothing.
On July 9. 1908 May is awarded her divorce due to habitual drunkenness. She was awarded all her personal property, furniture, and pictures from their joint home, along with her dogs. Freddie tells the reporters as he leaves the trial that he is going to remarry his first wife May Magee.
Coming next… Marriage #2, Divorce #3 and 14 Affinities!