Coapman, Edgar A.

Edgar Coapman, Jr owned the home at 73 Park Avenue from 1959 - 1990. These stories are about his father, Edgar A. Coapman, Sr., also of Brockport. 

Edgar A. Coapman's Dog
September 15, 1920

Coroner David H. Atwater demonstrates how he drags the Erie Canal for a body. He is responding to a report of a man throwing a kidnapped youth into the canal. 

(right) September 17, 1920, and Stone negative 4373(RMSC), which was printed in the Rochester Herald, September 15, 1920.

Mrs. Paul Bresia saw what she believed to be a man throwing a bound and gagged boy into the Erie Canal. The authorities took it seriously and dragged the canal. When he saw the September 15th newspaper story, Edgar A. Coapman came forward to report that he had thrown his dog, Whiskey, into the canal to give him a bath. In 1920 Edgar A. Coapman worked for E. J. Ellis & Co, 15 Scio Street, Rochester, distributors of Dodge Brothers commercial cars. He later owned a garage in Brockport, where he was the victim of a robbery in 1923 that ended in a fatal shooting in his Brockport garage. Mrs. Bresia is identified as Mrs. Paul Bresia in the Rochester Herald article, December 15, 1920, but as Mrs. Peter Bresia in the photograph caption.  

Edgar A. Coapman holds up his dog, Whiskey, to demonstrate how he threw the dog into the Erie Canal for a bath. The vehicle behind him belongs to his employer, E. J. Ellis & Co., 15 Scio Street, distributors of Dodge Brothers commercial cars. (left)

Morgue attendant Robert A. Stone and undertaker Michael J. Emma use the City Morgue's new boat to drag the Erie Canal for a boy's body. (right)

Edgar A. Coapman's Garage
December 19, 1923

Burglars removed the glass panel from the front door of Coapman's garage by removing the strips of wooden molding that held the glass in place. This photograph shows the front door with the glass panel in place. A show window beside the door shows automobile-related items for sale in the garage. (left)

Rochester Herald, December 19, 1923. 

A garage in Brockport, owned by Edgar A. Coapman, was burglarized in the summer of 1923. $1200 was stolen. After that, Coapman slept on an army cot in the garage. In December, 1923, the burglars returned. Coapman opened fire. Percy E. Back, 17, also known as Percy Hayes, was shot through the heart and instantly killed, apparently by his colleague Raymond Seymour who was returning Coapman's fire. Michael Zambito, 18, of 326 Jefferson Avenue, was shot to death by Coapman. 

Seymour and Anthony Labuo, 20, of 85 Litchfield Street, were arrested. Photographs of Zambito and Seymour appear in the newspaper article, but are not in the Stone Archive. They appear to be booking photographs supplied by the police. 

Coapman's Garage in Brockport still bears the signs for previous owners. E. A. Coapman's name appears only on a small sign set on the ground next to the front door. The stone main building is two stories tall, covered with ivy. Six tall narrow windows are lined up across the second story front facade. Other signs on the building read, "Chalmers and Maxwell, Frank E. Wilson", "Dodge Brothers Motor Vehicles, John Conley, Jr.", and "Hudson & Essex Authorized Service Station, A. Leiter, Sales Office, Hamlin, N.Y." The man standing outside the garage office may be Edgar A. Coapman. A covered area at the right shelters the gasoline pumps.  


The walls of the sales room in Coapman's Garage are hung with spare automobile parts and the shelves and showcases are full of goods for sale. According to the newspaper report, this room is where the burglars were shot. (right)

This photograph shows the army cot on which Edgar Coapman slept until the burglars returned. The cot is tucked into a narrow space, hidden away behind the service desk in the garage. (left)

This view of the salesroom in Coapman's Garage shows the service desk, shelves of supplies, and a tire machine at center front. According to the newspaper article, Zambito, one of the burglars, ran from behind the counter at the left after being shot and fell to the left of the tire machine. (right)

New York Times
December 19, 1923                    D&C December 20, 1923  

     date unknown

March 3, 1966