On January 17, 1827, Joseph and Emma rode away from the Hale residence on a horse and the following evening were married by a judge in South Bainbridge.
Emma remembers, “I had no intention of marrying when I left home...[but] Preferring to marry him to any other man I knew, I consented.”
Emma and Joseph retreated to Palmyra to live with Joseph’s parents. Months later they returned to the Hale home to retrieve Emma’s belongings.
Isaac Hale was angered: “You have stolen my daughter and married her. I had much rather have followed her to the grave.”
In an attempt at reconciliation, Joseph promised Isaac he would give up the treasure seeking business.