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February 2, 1910


Frank Smoot, 15, Crushed Under
Overturned Delivery Van --
Had Premonition of
Frank Smoot, Who Was Killed Under a Delivery Van.

Frank Smoot, 15 years old, delivery boy for the John Taylor Dry Goods Company, was instantly killed at 7:20 o'clock last night when a new twenty-four horsepower delivery wagon in which he was riding struck a pile of bricks on Baltimore avenue between Thirty-eighth and Thirty-ninth streets and turned over, crushing him.

Frank Limpus, who was driving, works for the company which sold the car and was teaching a man to drive it.

They were just finished making deliveries and were returning when the accident happened. Limpus and J. J. Emmert, who had charge of the deliveries, were on the seat and young Smoot was seated on Emmert's lap.

"We were going north on Baltimore about six or seven miles an hour," said Limpus. "It was rather dark and we did not see the pile of bricks until we were almost upon them. I tried to pull away from them, but did not have time and our right front wheel hit with a crash. The bricks were piled about seven feet high and when the car, which weighs about 3,500 pounds, struck them the corner of the pile was torn away. The force of the collision did not stop us and the wheels on the right side ran up onto the pile until the car was overbalanced and turned over. The three of us were thrown out, young Smoot falling beneath the heavy car, the weight of which crushed his life out, almost instantly.

"It all happened so quickly that we did not realize he was hurt until Emmert and I had picked ourselves up. I saw that the boy was caught under the car and tried to remove him, but was not able to lift the car off him. A crowd of people came up and several men helped me lift the car and we pulled him out."

Dr. Harry Czarlinsky, deputy coroner, had the body removed to the Freeman & Marshall undertaking rooms.

The victim of the accident was the only son of Mr. and Mrs. Thomas J. Smoot, 19 East Thirty-first street. Mrs. Smoot was at home preparing supper for her son when she was informed of his death.

"I knew something would happen," she said. "He did not want to go to work this morning. He is not used to automobiles and does not like to be around them. Just before he left for work he said to me, "Mamma, I expect John Taylor's will be getting air ships before long and deliver the packages with a long rope down the chimneys."

Mr. Taylor was notified of the accident and called at the undertaking rooms last night.

The dead boy had had been working for the dry goods company for the past year. He was born in Chicago, but was brought to Kansas City when he was six months old. The father of the boy runs a dress goods sample room at 406 East Eleventh street. Besides the parents, two little sisters, Addie and Edna, survive.

No one responsible for the bricks being piled in the street could be located last night, but several persons who live in the immediate neighborhood of the accident assert that no warning lights were placed.

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January 11, 1910



Arrested as They Disem-
barked From Train From
Excelsior Springs.
Marie  Horton, Suspected of Being Henrietta Von Etten.
Reed's Companion and for a While Believed to Be Roberta De Janon.

While the Kansas City police were arresting a man and a woman suspected of being Ferdinand Cohen and Roberta De Janon, respectively waiter and heiress, ho eloped from Philadelphia more than one week ago, the real Cohen and De Janon were being taken into custody in Chicago.

The Kansas City suspects were arrested by plain clothes officers from Central station as they alighted from a train from Excelsior Springs at the Union depot yesterday afternoon. Information leading to the arrest was given to Captain Walter Whitsett of the Central police district by R. E. Mackey of the Pickwick apartments at Excelsior Springs by long distance telephone. Patrtolmen John Torpey and T. H. Gillespie were awaiting them at the depot.

They were taken to police headquarters and examined by Captain Walter Whitsett. The man gave his name as H. J. Reed, and address as Chicago. He said he had been for some time in the gas fixture business with offices in the Holland building in that city. On his person was found $1,200 in currency, and letters addressed to H. J. Reed and H. J. Ross. He said he was not married to the woman in whose company he was arrested. He said he had known her for eight years. He refused to make any other statement.

H. J. Reed, of Chicago or Salt Lake City.
Arrested Under Suspicion That He Might Be Ferdinand Cohen.

Men from the Pinkerton detective agency who have been working on the De Janon elopement case declare that Reed resembles the missing waiter, Ferdinand Cohen, in almost every respect, and asked that he be held until information could be secured from their Philadelphia office.


Reed's companion, although visibly worried over the fact that she was detained, was willing to talk. She said she was Marie Horton of Detroit, Mick., but after cross-questioning declared taht her real name is Henriette von Etten. According to her story she was born in Vienna, Austria, and was married in that country to a man who was at one time connected with the foreign embassy at Washington, D. C. She left her husband and went to the Pacific coast eight years ago, where she met Reed, who, she stated, was at that time conducting a place in Seattle, Wash. She says Reed is suing his Seattle wife for divorce. In March, 1909, she went to Detroit, where she conducted a rooming house. She came to Kansas City two weeks ago and met Reed. They lived in a hotel on Baltimore avenue until they went to Excelsior Springs. They intended going on to Salt Lake City.

Two big trunks, a dress suit case, a valise and a handbag were brought from the baggage room at the Union depot by the police officers. The contents were emptied and examined, but no further indenifying evidence was obtained.

Pinkerton men and the police were soon convinced the woman is not Roberta De Janon. The eloping girl is only 17 years old, while the woman at present in custody appears to be 25. Marie Horton has several false teeth, while Miss De Janon has none.


The man and woman had spent Thursday night at the Elms hotel. They registered as H. J. Reed and wife of Chicago, and rented rooms Friday in the Pickwick apartments, saying they would remain a month. They kept close to their room during their stay. Considerable wine was delivered to the rooms. The woman was in Kansas City Saturday.

They gave no reason for leaving here hurriedly. When asked by another guests of the apartments to show credentials as to who he was the man exhibted papers from Salt Lake City and Tacoma, Wash., but had nothing to show he was from Chicago.

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July 26, 1909


Dale Gardner Just Strolling Around
When He Found Rig.

"Strolling around" was the reason given by Dale Gardner to the police yesterday for being up at 2 o'clock a. m. At Thirteenth street and Baltimore avenue his eyes fell upon a horse and buggy. The buggy did not belong to him but he got in and drove around the city. Later he invited three companions to drive with him. Eylar Brothers, to whom the horse and buggy belonged, missed it and made a report to the police.

Patrolmen Thomas Eads and Edward Matteson arrested Gardner and his friends at Sixth and May streets just as the sun was rising.

All were charged with disturbing the peace, and their bonds fixed at $26.

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July 2, 1909


Chemical Solution Was Used to Ex-
tinguish Flames After the Lad
Was Burned.
Ralph Townsend, Probably Fatally Burned in Explosion.

Ralph Townsend, 6 years old, the son of Charles Townsend, 1028 Ella avenue, Kansas City, Kas., was probably fatally burned yesterday afternoon by an explosion of gasoline. The flames enveloped the child's body from his head to his feet, and were extinguished by the use of a chemical solution. An automobile belonging to H. M. Stonebraker, 3928 Baltimore avenue, Kansas City, Mo., was pressed into service and the boy was hurried to Bethany hospital, where he was treated by Dr. W. H. Smith. He was later removed to his home, where at a late hour last night his condition was said to be critical.

The burning of the child was the result of a peculiar accident. The firemen had responded to an alarm from a grocery store at 356 North Tenth street, and Orlando Lind, assistant chief, had entered the building. A gallon can of gasoline was burning near a large tank filled with gasoline. The assistant chief, with a wet sack in his hand, fought his way to the tank and shut off the flow of gasoline. He picked up the small can and attempted to carry it to the street, but just as he reached the outside door a ball was melted from the can and it dropped to the floor. An explosion followed and the flames shot through the screen door. The Townsend boy, with several companions, was standing not far from the door on the sidewalk. The boy's clothing became ignited and he ran screaming across the street, the wind causing the flames to burn fiercely. All attempts to extinguish the fire were futile until the chemical solution, carried by the fire company, was used. The boy's mother and father were burned about the hands in an effort to save the child.

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June 27, 1909


Breakfast and Evening Dinner Add-
ed to the Service.

So complete has been the response of the Kansas City public to the novel and very delightful service provided by the new Orient Inn at Tenth and Baltimore that the Kroger brothers have added morning and evening service. This will start tomorrow and will be conducted a la carte or in full restaurant style, as distinguished from self-service, which prevails at noon. The hours for breakfast will be 6 to 10 o'clock, the popular noon-day luncheon 11 to 3, and supper or evening dinner will be served in family style from 5 until 8.

The new Orient Inn is located in the Orient building at Tenth and Baltimore avenue. It is the largest eating establishment in Kansas City, in fact west of New York, and the deliciousness of its foods and novelty of its service have created a delightful impression among the business and society people of this community. In addition to the new features mentioned, a spacious smoking room, very elegantly equipped, will also be opened for the convenience of the gentlemen guests of the house.

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June 17, 1909


Special Officer Flourished Gun and
Marks Placates Man Whose Feel-
ing Had Been Outraged.

Charging that one of Bryant Cromer's special policemen stopped him near the Dwight building last night and thrust a revolver in his face, ordering him to hold up his hands, C. Owens of the Baltimore hotel demanded an apology from Police Commissioner Thomas R. Marks, last night. It was forthcoming.

According to Mr. Owens, he was walking slowly down Baltimore avenue in front of the Dwight building when a man stepped from the shadow and held a revolver in his face. Mr. Owens said that the man, whom he afterwards recognized, ordered him to halt and throw up his hands. "It's an outrage, Mr. Marks, and I demand an apology," he said. "That man had no right to draw a gun on me. He had been doing it all night. I have witnesses to prove what I say. I demand an apology."

Mr. Marks tried to explain the matter in a satisfactory way, shielding the special policeman, but finally was forced to apologize in order to save further trouble.

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June 10, 1909


Kansas City Automobile Club Gives
300 Children Rides in Big
Touring Cars.

Over the boulevards of Kansas City, in forty-five big touring cars, sped 300 little orphans yesterday afternoon. They were being given their third annual outing by the Kansas City Automobile Club, and enjoyed the ride to the utmost. Every car was laden with children carrying flags and each one wearing a shiny, happy face.

The cars, filled with children, met at Baltimore avenue, on Armour boulevard. From there they proceeded in line through the Northeast drives, thence south to Swope park. The line of cars was so long that after the pilot car had left the park the last of the procession was just entering the park driveway. From Swope park the machines took the Rockhill park road back to the starting point on Armour, and then to the different homes.

The third annual outing was under the management of Harry Fowler, chairman of the committee in charge of the event. From the Perry home there were 120 children taken on the ride, from the St. Joseph's home 125, and fifty from the Gillis home.

It was 6 o'clock before the children had been returned to the homes.

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June 8, 1909


Claud Brooks to Be Hanged for
Murder June 30.

No preparations have been made at the county jail for the execution of Claud Brooks, who is to be hanged June 30 for the murder of Sidney Herndon, owner of the Navarro flats, Twelfth and Baltimore. Brooks will not be put into the condemned men's cell until June 10. It is customary to grant men sentenced to execution an reprieve of sixty days, and this may be done in the case of Brooks.

The condemned man spends most of his time praying.

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June 6, 1909



Every Man His Own Waiter, but
There's Greater Variety and
Better Food Than Is
Had Elsewhere.

In the opening of the "Orient Inn," a new form of restaurant in the Orient building, Tenth and Baltimore avenue, a St. Louis man is giving actual demonstration in Kansas City of the reason for the much-talked-of "Drew question." The Orient Inn is an innovation. Incidentally it is the best of its kind to be found anywhere, and the business acumen which chose Kansas City as the site for an eating house planned on such magnificent proportions gives attestation of the spirit of progress which flourishes here.

Everyone who lunches at the Orient Inn becomes his or her own waiter. As you enter the door, you are given a silver tray and a coupon check. You take for yourself knife, fork and spoon, also a napkin, and then wander along at will, viewing the tempting displays of cold meats, salads, crisp pies, delicious jellies, fruits, vegetables. Everything is shown in glass cabinets or showcases. There is no spurring of jaded brain to choose from a bewildering bill-of-fare. You SEE the food. It looks delicious. the prices are low, and when you have taken what you want, the fair attendant who presides at that particular counter asks for your purchase slip and clips off a coupon.

The Orient Inn will seat comfortably 500 people, and one may elect to sit almost anywhere. There are fetching little stalls all along the side walls, divided one from another by green curtains and lighted by individual electrollers.

The new Orient Inn is the largest eating establishment in Kansas City -- in fact, in any city west of New York. Its two main dining rooms occupy the entire lower floors of the Orient railway building and the Shubert theater. In addition there is a spacious ante-chamber to be known as the "gentlemen's smoking room."

A special "rest room" has been provided for the ladies, containing easy chairs, desks and other conveniences.

The Orient Inn is owned and operated by the Orient Catering Company, with which the two brothers, John and George Kroger, are most actively connected. John Kroger, president and general manager, has been prominently identified with the restaurant business in Chicago, and for the past two years has operated the Pierce Lunch room and the Victoria Lunch of St. Louis. In coming to Kansas City, Mr. Kroger felt that he was bringing an establishment so radically different and far in advance of anything yet done here that it would meet with instant recognition and approval. That this is true is evidenced by the fact that Kansas City's most prominent business men are already regular patrons of "The Inn.," and professional people and women who find it necessary to lunch down town are enthusiastic in their description of it as "the most delightful place in Kansas City in which to eat."

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March 17, 1909


Women, Thinly Garbed and Some in
Night Gowns, Rush for Safety
When Alarm Is Given.

Nearly 200 guests of the Hotel Cosby, Ninth street and Baltimore avenue, were routed out of bed at 2 o'clock this (Wednesday) morning by an alarm of fire, which started in the basement of the Linsay Light Company, 113 West Ninth street.

Men half dressed, women with only cloaks over them and a few frightened ones garbed in their flimsy night gowns, rushed to the street entrances of the hotel at the first clang of fire bells.

At 2:30 this morning the hotel seemed to be in no great danger, although the firemen were still fighting the flames.

Everyone was ordered out of the building when the first alarm of fire was given, and there was a a scampering in the rooms and halls that finally resulted in a stampede.

Members of nearly all the theatrical companies playing in Kansas City this week are among the guests at the Cosby, but the major portion of the register is composed of out-of-town merchants and transients.

Many women, after the first fright, began to "pack up" their prized wearing apparel and cherished souvenirs, but at an early hour this morning it was not thought that anything will be damaged in the hotel section of the block.

The cause of the fire is not known. William Ofkelh, a cook in Joe Ziegler's saloon, 109 West Ninth street, discovered the fire and turned in the alarm.

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March 11, 1909


Workman in Manhole Injured in an
Unusual Accident.

An automobile caused one of the most unusual accidents ever recorded in Kansas City, or any other city. The car was passing over an open manhole at Twelfth and Baltimore, where workmen were repairing a leaky gas main, when a spark from the machine caused the explosion of the gases issuing from the chamber.

There was a flash and a dull roar, and W. A. Thompson, 402 Main street, who was working in the hole, came staggering to the opening, his hair and eyebrows badly singed and his face and hands severely burned. Suffering intense pain, Thompson was carried into a nearby drug store for treatment and was later taken to emergency hospital.

The automobile that caused the explosion was not damaged.

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March 3, 1909


Orear-Leslie Company Will Erect One
on Baltimore Avenue.

The Orear-Leslie Investment Company yesterday took out a building permit to erect a ten-story office building at 1010 Baltimore avenue. It is to be built of steel-re-enforced with concrete and brick. The building is to cost $150,000 and to be completed by December 1, 1909.

A new ice plant is to be built by the Interstate Ice Company at 712-18 West Twenty-fifth street and is to be constructed of brick and stone. Connected with the ice plant will be the stables, and the two will be combined in one building to be erected. A permit was taken out yesterday to erect the building. The contract price was given as $15,000.

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February 1, 1909


Johnny Will Take On All Comers
This Week.

Johnny Kling has bought a new set of ivory billiard balls and is practicing daily. Kling will play all comers this week, offering odds of 100 to 80, and promising a $10 gold piece to the man who can beat him.

Tonight he takes on William Freeman, a local expert, and tomorrow he will play "Rube" Waddell. Waddell is a fair player and has been playing steadily. These games will be played at 1102 Baltimore avenue, but in the latter part of this week the games will be held in Kling's new hall at 1016 Walnut street. The games will start at 8 p. m.

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December 16, 1908


Business Building May Be Erected
West of Shubert Theater.

On Baltimore avenue between Tenth and Eleventh streets, just south of the Dwight building, Leo N. Leslie and others will erect a ten-story fireproof building. Work will be started by the last of December. The building will be constructed at a cost of $150,000 and will be of cut stone for the first two floors and the remainder will be brick. It is contemplated to have completed the building by July 1, 1909.

It is the plan of the builders to so construct the building as to rent entire floors. The frontage will be thirty-seven, with a depth of 175 feet.

Nonresident capitalists are seeking to bargain with W. A. Rule on his own behalf and Mr. Leslie's for the erection of a large business building just west of the Shubert theater. Mr. Rule said yesterday that it was almost a certainty that the building would be erected, though as to exact nature he was not sure. It had been circulated among real estate and architectural circles that the building would be a hotel. This Mr. Rule positively denied. All of the capital, about $150,000, invested would be foreign and would bring in more revenue to Kansas City.

Martin Lehman stated yesterday that he had not settled upon any plans submitted for the new theater which the Orpheum Company will erect on the lot recently purchased at Eleventh and Central streets. It was given out that a theater to cost $350,000 would be erected there and work would be started upon it as soon as the plans were finally selected. At the present it is not the plan of the Orpheum to have any office space in the theater, but devote the whole building to the operation of the stage and seating of the audience.

"Taking it all in all," said Mr. Leslie yesterday afternoon, "it begins to look like the West Side is far from dead. Within the past three weeks movements have been started which tend to improve the site wonderfully. That district will remain important as long as Kansas City exists. It is just at the edge of the wholesale district and at the edge of the retail district. We consider it a very profitable holding and will do our best to keep its value up."

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December 11, 1908


Sherman Short, an Evangelist, Ap-
pears at Headquarters and Tells
How the Trouble Began.

Ever since the riot of fanatics Tuesday afternoon the police have been searching for the man who, greatly excited, ran into the station just after George M. Holt and told his story and cried, "Some of you had better come out here and see to these people. There are a lot of men and women over there on the corner, crazy as loons and all have guns. Even the children have guns. Somebody will be killed, sure. Hurry.

It was just at that juncture that Sergeant Patrick Clark said to A. O. Dalbow, "shortstop" at headquarters, "Go out there, 'Dol,' and see what's the matter." With a smile on his face Dalbow followed the excited man out of the door. Three minutes later he staggered into the door of the emergency hospital, fell on the steps as his revolver dropped from his nerveless grasp. He spoke but once and died. Then followed the bloody fight in which Michael Mullane lost his life and Sergeant Clark was so dangerously wounded.

Yesterday afternoon the much sought for man walked calmly into headquarters and announced that he had been a witness of the affair from its beginning at the Poor Man's mission, 309 Main street. John W. Hogan, an assistant prosecutor, was at the station and he took the man's statement.


The witness, who is an evangelist, gave the name of Sherman Short. His home is now near Clarence, Mo., but he once lived here. His statement follows:

Tuesday afternoon I happened to be at Fifth and Main streets. There I saw Mrs. Sharp and Pratt's children holding a street meeting. She seemed frantic about something, fanatical, in fact. I heard her say, "If any one can convince us that we are not right we'd like to have them do it for we are awfully in earnest."

Then Mrs. Sharp said something about adjourning to the mission where the prophet would speak. I was interested and wanted to see this man spoken of as a prophet so I went on ahead, knowing where the mission was she had spoken of. When I got there I introduced myself to the prophet, who proved to be Sharp. He was talking to J. C. Creighton, who ran the mission.

When he began to talk to me he said, "My earthly name is Sharp. I am King David in the spirit -- the Lord of the vineyard. The spirit of King David is in me. Should it prove that I am the Lord of the vineyard I am going to reorganize things on this old earth."

Just then the woman and children came in. The children spoke to a man standing by the stove -- Pratt I learned later -- called him "Pa" and said "the Humane officer is after us." Right then Mr. Holt came to the door and addressing Sharp said, "Are you the father of these children?" He said, "I am," and Mr. Holt asked why they were not in school and added, "You'll have to keep these children off the streets anyway."


Sharp then began another harangue about being King David, the lord of the vineyard. Mr. Holt paid little attention to him but said, "If you don't properly care for these children we will have to do it." While Mr. Holt was talking Mr. Pratt and his children stuck their tongues out at him and called him names, at the same time saying "Amen" to everything Sharp would say.

Holt showed Sharp his star, at which the fanatic said, "I don't pay attention to such as that. God's got no policemen, no jails, no officers." Then Sharp began to curse in the vilest language at Mr. Holt, shoved him towards the door and said he'd fix him for that. There was some excitement in there and I did not see him strike Mr. Holt. I heard him declare that he'd preach right in front of the station and no one could stop him.

When Mr. Holt had gone Sharp took out a big knife and gun, flourished them and said, "Come on children; we'll show 'em what we'll do." The women and larger girls drew guns as they went out the door and marched toward police headquarters. He announced that he would hold a meeting with the children right in front of the station and would not be stopped either.


Mr. Short then told of the riot, saying that Pratt was the first man to fire a shot. His account differs little from that of other eye witnesses. Short said he had known J. C. Creighton and wife, who conducted the Poor Man's mission for eight years. Eight years ago, he said, he was in a meeting at Fourteenth and Baltimore which Creighton was conducting. "The night I speak of Creighton went into a trance, or appeared to do so, and scared a whole lot of people. He was taken to police headquarters and treated. He has always been a visionary man."

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December 5, 1908


Daniel Curtin, Worth $50,000, Re-
cently Married and Then

Declared insane by the probate court more than two weeks ago, possessed of an estate valued at $50,000, Daniel Curtin has disappeared from his home at 3719 Main street. With him is his wife and perhaps a young man who has been looking after his needs.

Virgil K. Tuggle, assistant cashier of the New Engalnd National bank, is Curtin's guardian. He was appointed November 17, when Curtin, who was a Union Pacific conductor, was declared insane. Mr. Tuggle reported that $44,000 of the estate was in bonds, mortgages and the like, and that the house at 3719 Main street, also owned by Curtin, was worth $6,000.

What the guardian did not know, however, was that Curtin, who for years had lived in a room which he rented from Mrs. Laura Stuber on Baltimore avenue almost opposite the hotel of the same name, and married Mrs. Stuber about two months ago in Independence. He bought the Main street home about four years ago. Mrs. Stuber took up the duties of housekeeper in the new home. The wife objected strongly when Mr. Tuggle tried to take charge of all the property. Curtin grew worse and worse, so the guardian, who had employed a young doctor to be constantly at Curtin's side, asked the probate court for an order to send the ex-conductor to a private sanitarium in the neighborhood of St. Louis. When officers of the court went to the home on Main street to take Curtin away, they were told that both he and his wife were gone. It was said they had gone to Chicago.

Notice of their flight has been telegraphed to various cities, in the hope that Curtin may be found. Meanwhile steps are to be taken, so the attorney for some of Curtin's relatives says, in an attempt to have the marriage annulled, on the ground the Curtin, at the time of the ceremony, was not in full possession of his mental faculties.

CHICAGO, Dec. 4. -- (Special.) The Chicago police this afternoon received telephone and telegraph requests from Chief of Police Daniel Ahern of Kansas City, asking the arrest of Dan Curtin of Kansas City. The telegram stated that Curtin was insane, and was supposed to be stopping at the Stratford hotel, and the police have been unable to locate them. The detectives learned, however, in a round-about way, that Curtin was supposed to be at the Southern hotel in St. Louis, and the Kansas City chief has been notified to this effect.

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November 3, 1908


Name of This Gloomy Little Canon
Changed by Council.

The name of one of Kansas City's pioneer streets, Wall, was last night changed to Baltimore by an ordinance fathered by Akderman W. A. Bunker. Wall street, which begins at Sixth, runs into Baltimore at Ninth and, on account of the two streets having different names, has been a source of annoyance to strangers. Old settlers remember the time when the street was known as Ann. The council of that time sought a more metropolitan name, and Wall street was selected.

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October 30. 1908


Long Lines for "Ben Hur" and War-
field Seats.

When the hour of 9 o'clock arrived yesterday morning and the ticket sellers at the Willis Wood and Shubert opened their windows for the "Ben Hur" and David Warfield engagements next week, a long line of eager theatergoers stretched away from the box office at each theater. At the Willis Wood the line reached from the box office to the corner of Eleventh and Baltimore and thence to the stage door on Eleventh street. All through the morning the line remained unbroken and the advance sale for "Ben Hur ranked well with any which had preceded it. When the fact that two attractions of such magnitude are coming the same week is taken into consideration, the double sale broke all records. Down at the Shubert there was a line of Warfield enthusiasts reaching from the box office to the corner of Tenth and Baltimore and thence to the alley on Baltimore.

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September 30, 1908







Women and Children Hurled High in
Air When Crash Came -- Dam-
aged Car May Lead
to Detection.

No more heartless indifference to suffering and death has been exhibited in Kansas City than occurred last night, when a furiously driven big red touring automobile crashed into a light spring wagon on Broadway, near Hunter avenue, killing a girl of 14 years and badly injuring five other people, two women, two girls and a boy.

The impact of the collision was heard a block away.

When the motor car struck the wagon, tearing it to pieces, women and children, screaming with fright and pain, were hurled high into the air and fell in a heap on the hard curbing, with bits of splintered wood falling all about them. It is said the men in the motor car -- there were two -- looked at the death and suffering they had caused, laughed, turned on more speed and glided away into the enveloping darkness.


The accident occurred at 8:45 o'clock. Besides little Pearl, who was instantly killed, the other four occupants were seriously injured and at least one fatally so. In the spring wagon were Mrs. Jennie A. Bucher, her daughter Florence and Mrs. Frank Gochenour and and two children, Robert and Pearl.

Mrs. Bucher was driving the horse when the accident occurred. The two families are neighbors and often go driving together in the evening. Last night they started to go to Levanthal's bakery, 1819 Grand avenue. The horse was being driven north on Broadway and in order to avoid speeding automobiles Mr. Bucher was driving close into the curbing.

They had passed Hunter avenue and were proceeding at a slow trot when suddenly the front wheels of the wagon were struck by an automobile, and without any warning the women and children were thrown out. The wagon crashed the front part of the wagon against the curbing, leaving it in splinter. Mrs. Bucher and Mrs. Cochenour and Robert Gochenour were thrown up onto the parkway, falling on top of each other. Miss Florence Bucher fell beneath the rear wheel. Little Pearl Gochenour, who had been sitting on her mother's lap, fell beneath the seat of the wagon and the horse was knocked over on top of her, crushing her.


Frank Gochenour, the father of the dead child, is a stonemason and resides on Forty-seventh street between Holly and Mercer streets. Mrs. Bucher conducts a grocery store at 825 West Forty-seventh street and her husband, Henry Bucher, is a bartender at the Valerious cafe. Mrs. Bucher is 42 years old, Florence Bucher is 14, Mrs. Alice Gochenour is 37, Robert 14 and the little girl was only 10 years of age. Rober Bucher, 14 years old, had been visiting with Robert Wilson, Thirty-fourth street and Broadway, and was on his way home when he heard the noise the collision made and ran to where the crowd was quickly gathering. He was much affected when he learned that his mother and sister were injured.

As soon as Mr. Bucher heard of the accident, he hurried to the emergency hospital, but his wife was unconscious.

A few minutes after he arrived his two daughters who had stayed at home arrived. They said they had gone to Mr. Gochenour's house and told him of the accident. He was alone in the house with his 3-year-old baby girl and could not leave to go to the hospital. The Bucher girls said that Mr. Gochenour did not seem to realize that his little girl was dead.


J. D. Skinner, 3508 Baltimore avenue, did not see the accident, but did hear the crash and saw the disappearing automobile. He was on Hunter avenue at the time and running to the corner could see two men in the machine. He said it was running at a rate of forty-five miles an hour when it passed over Hunter avenue and possibly faster after the accident. Many women living in the vicinity came out of their houses in time to see the automobile flying down the road. Some of them said they heard the two men in the machine laugh.

When the police were searching the street around the spot where the wagon was demolished they found part of an automobile lamp and broken parts of glass of the light reflector. Sergeant James A. Jadwin of No. 5 police station telephoned a description of the auto and the men to eleven police stations, and the men in several districts were given the descriptions. Kansas City, Kas., police were also notified.

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September 17, 1908


Said a Written Complaint Received
by Police Board.

A combination of howling dogs, rolling beer kegs and talking men has been annoying residents in the vicinity of Fifteenth street and Baltimore avenue so much of late that complaint was made by two members of the police board yesterday. The complaint was written on post cards and somewhat unique.

"You ought to send someone around here to shoot them howling dogs," it began. "They talk loud and curse all the time and roll beer kegs down the street late in the night. Such men ought to be arrested."

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September 15, 1908


Business Men Make Plans From Bal-
timore to McGee.

If the plans of the men representing the business houses on Eleventh street, between McGee street and Baltimore avenue, materialize, Eleveth street within those limits will be the mo st artistically lighted street in Kansas City. A committee of six of these business men met at the Hotel Baltimore last night and discussed the plans. They will meet again next Monday at 12:15 o'clock at the Hotel Baltimore when plans and bids will be submitted.

There being an absence of poles on Eleventh street, a different plan from that which obtains in other districts is necessitated. The committee is unanimous in the belief that there must be a uniformity in the lighting of htis street, and that the lights must be artistic. From the discussion last night it is probable that a combined light and pole will be secured at a cost of not less than $50 each. It is estimated that there should be no fewer than three lights on each side of the street.

These men were in the conference last night: C. C. Peters of Emery, Bird, Thayer & Co.,; H. C. Lambert, president of the German-American bank; D. M. Bone, secretary of the Business Mens's League; C. M. Boley, John D. Howe, secretary and treasurer of the Robert Keith Furniture Company, and J. W. Wagner.

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September 14, 1908


Miss Okajima Entertained Members
of the Y. W. C. A. Yesterday.

Many Japanese and English songs were sung by Miss Okajima, a young woman from Japan, at the Y. W. C. A. rooms on Baltimore avenue yesterday afternoon. Miss Okajima sang for almost an hour and then to the group of admiring young women around her she told stories of Japanese life and of the curious customs observed in her country.

That Japan has taken rapid steps forward by enlightenment and Christianity within the last ten years was championed by the young woman most sturdily, and it is her opinion that a great deal of such advancement comes from the United States. She says that her government is apt to look upon ours as a model and that Japan holds this country in high esteem.

Those who heard Miss Okajima sing declared that she had a remarkably sweet voice with a great range of tone. Some of the renditions were from the old music masters and extremely difficult. The young woman received several years of vocal training in her own country and has come to America to pursue her studies.

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May 31, 1908



Came Here With Honors of Gradua-
tion Fresh Upon Him and Began
His Eventful Career.

Since it has been charged that, through the influence of Alderman Mickey O'Hearn, the police force in Kansas City has been governed "in a quiet way" ever since Governor Joseph W. Folk's "rigid investigation" nearly one year ago, it might be interesting who Mickey O'Hearn is.

When signed to a legal paper the alderman's name is Michael J. O'Hearn, but to "the boys" he has for years been known as plain "Mickey." Mickey was born in St. Louis, Mo., and lived there until about 25 years old. In St Louis he learned the horseshoeing trade three years ago the present alderman opened another place, at 1205 Walnut streets, where he is still. He then put trade under the private tutelage of that smooth politician, Edward Butler. From Butler it is said that Mickey probably got his first lessons in how to use a copper when you need him; also how to put the kibosh on a cop that you can't use.

It was about twenty years ago when O'Hearn first landed in Kansas City with the intention of making it his home. While he was a horseshoer by trade, and an expert at the business, it is said that he worked at his trade but a short time. Mickey soon found that in those days when the town was "wide open" there were too many soft things floating about for a man of his talents to waste his energies on labor.

When he left his trade Mickey worked at many places as bartender and that gave him an opportunity to "meet the boys." It was not long before he was identified with some of the biggest crap games in town. He is known to have dealt craps on Missouri avenue near Main, and later on Main street, between Ninth and Tenth streets. It beat hanging onto the hind leg of a Missouri mule all hollow.


Mickey O'Hearn was, and still is, a man to be feared when in his cups. The horseshoeing trade gave him solid bone and tough sinew, and he at one time had the reputation of striking the hardest blow with his fist of any man in Kansas City.

"Whenever he hit a guy it meant the hospital or the Morgue," said a close friend yesterday. "But Mickey always would take the part of the under dog. If he came along the street and saw a big guy cleanin' a little one, that fight had to stop or Mickey would take a hand and put the big one to sleep. I never knew him to start a fight on his own accord, except on election day, when lots of fellows are apt to get too fresh."

In the breast of Alderman Mickey O'Hearn is said to beat a kindly heart if touched in the right place. He is said to be charitable and ready with his money if he can relieve suffering. Being a man who has affiliated a great deal with the sporting fraternity, he, like the many others of that ilk, is superstitious. It is said of him that he will not pass an aged organ grinder, especially a woman, without giving a coin. Again it is said that when he "feels lucky" and intends to take a chance at cards, dice or the races, he will walk blocks to rub a hump-backed man or a bald-headed negro. "It gives me luck," they say.

Many years ago Mickey ran the Pike's Peak saloon at Twelfth street and Baltimore avenue. In the day s of the wine room agitation by the board of police commissioners the place was closed. After that he is said to have been interested in a road house at Thirtieth street and Southwest boulevard. That house was closed by many previous boards and by the present one as a disorderly place. O'Hearn then tended bar for Robert Murdock at 1128 Walnut street, and was there several years. When Murdock died, O'Hearn ran the place in his own name, but was said to have belonged to the estate. The board of police commissioners refused to give Mickey another license, giving as the reason that it as not going to allow another saloon at that place. When he was out, however, the place was opened by George Schuri, who is there now.


The saloon business suited Mickey's fancy, so his next venture was a saloon on the southwest corner of Twelfth and McGee streets, in partnership with Jack O'Flaherty, a brother-in-law, by the way, of the present chief of police, Daniel Ahern.

When Mayor Thomas T. Crittenden, Jr., was inducted into office, Mickey succeeded in landing the job of superintendent of the workhouse for his brother, Paddy, and the job of matron for Mrs. Paddy O'Hearn. He is also said to have placed some of his most valuable lieutenants with Paddy as guards at the works.

While the reputation of Alderman Mickey O'Hearn would not have admitted him to membership at the recent Presbyterian general assembly, it an be said in his favor that he has never been arrested in Kansas City or charged with a serious offense. He has always been a "friend" to the police, especially those who handle the police.

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February 20, 1908


Neither Hayes Nor O'Donnell, Shot
By Him, May Die.

J. D. Cosby, proprietor of the Cosby hotel, Ninth and Baltimore avenue, was arraigned before Judge Festus O Miller yesterday afternoon, charged with felonious assault. Two informations were filed against Cosby, one for shooting J. F. O'Donnell and the other for shooting J. P. Hayes. He was released for $1000 bond in the O'Donnell case and $2,000 in the Hayes case, and his preliminary hearing is set for Tuesday next.

At St. Joseph's hospital last night it was said that O'Donnell was considered completely out of danger, and that Hayes was doing much better. Both bullets remained in Hayes's chest. An X-ray photograph will be taken today in an effort to locate them. If Hayes does not contract pneumonia from his injuries his chances for recovery are said to be good.

William Murray, the clerk who was cut several times about the head and face and bruised on the body in a tussle with one of the men, was released from the emergency hospital yesterday. He had been held for investigation since Monday night. Murray fell down the stairs and through a glass door.

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February 19, 1908



After Giving Him Liquor, Murderer
Says They Induced Him to
Sign Confession -- Case
to Jury Today.

Denying that he ever made a confession to police that he murdered Sidney Herndon in the Navarro flats, Twelfth street and Baltimore avenue, on January 12, and claiming that he signed a confession fixed up by the police when he was intoxicated and under fear, due to threats made by the officers, Claude Brooks, negro, was on trial for the murder of Herndon or knew anything of the killing until he was placed in the county jail and the confession was in the hands of the prosecuting attorney. He denied ever owning the hammer which lay on the table in the courtroom, and which was the weapon used to kill Herndon, and also disputed all of the testimony of witnesses who claimed they saw him in the Nararro building the night of the tragedy.

Brooks claimed that while on the train, detectives who arrested him at his father's home and brought him back to Kansas City threatened to take him off the train at a bridge crossing the Missouri River and "string him up" if he did not "come through" and tell about killing Herndon. He also stated that the officers gave him whisksey in Sheffield and before they reached that place, and that he was in an intoxicated condition at the time the statement, said to be his confession, was made and signed by him.
Inspector of Detectives Ryan testified that he gave Brooks one drink of whiskey, which Brooks asked for, but that he did not have any other liquor, and no threats were made. He stated that Brooks made the confession of his own free will, and seemed perfectly willing to tell of the murder at the time of his arrest. Assistant Prosecuting Attorney John W. Hogan, testified to obtaining the confession, and stated that no one threatened Brooks. Other officers were put on the stand and bore out the statements of inspector Ryan.
The most damaging testimony against Brooks was that of Amel Jones, a negro boy, who said he saw Brooks hiding in the Navarro building late the night of the murder, and that he had a paper in his hand, which is described in Brooks's confession as containing the hammer in which he killed Herndon. Robert Webb, a negro at whose house Brooks lived, identified the hammer as exactly similar to the one he saw in Brooks's room. Charles Herndon, brother of the murdered man; Burtner Jones, negro elevator boy; Dr. O. H. Parker, deputy coroner, and others gave testimony.
The case was not finished last night, although most of the testimony, including the confession of Brooks, the night of his arrest, was introduced. It will be continued today and will probably go to the jury by noon.

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February 18, 1908





Wounded Men Had Gone Back to Ho-
tel to Apologize for a Row Ear-
lier in the Evening -- Shot
From Behind.

As a result of a quarrel in the Cosby hotel, West Ninth street and Baltimore avenue, at 8 o'clock last night, James P. Hayes, agent of the Traders' Dispatch, and John F. O'Donnell, cigar manufacturer, are in a dangerous condition in St. Joseph's hospital from bullet wounds in their bodis, and J. D. Cosby, owner of the hotel, who shot the men, is in the city jail and will probably answer to a charge of murder, in case the men may die. Hayes cannot recover, according to the attending physician, but O'Donnell's chances are even.

While Cosby is making an appeal to the police that he shot O'Donnell and Hayes in self-defense, the evidence shows that both men where shot in the back as they were retreating from the hotel. Cosby was not assaulted in any way or een mixed up in the quarrel until he grabbed a revolver and began shooting. The police arrested Cosby and his brothe, Wiliam Cosby; his clerk, William Murray, and a negro porter, Moses Butcher. They will be held until police make a thorough investigation.

The shooting was the result of a quarrel between Hayes, O'Donnell and William Murray, because the former two asked to see a friend of the name of A. Drake from Salt Lake City, U., who was staying at the hotel. Hayes and O'Donnell went to the hotel about 8 o'clock and inquired for Drake and H. L. Davis, who was registered from Hutchinson, Kas. Murray informed them that their friends had left. Hayes then made a remark which led Murray, the clerk, to believe Hayes was doubting his word and Murray struck him in the face. A fist fight followed in which Hayes, O'Donnell, Murray, and Cosby, brother of the proprietor, were implicated. Hayes used a bell and a bottle to defend himself with and Murray's head was badly cut as a result.
Hayes and O'Donnell managed to get out of the hotel and went to the Senate saloon, where they talked with several men about the fight. They stated that the clerk was in the wrong and that they ol defended themselves until they could get out of the place. Hayes then proposed to O'Donnell that they go back to the hotel and apologize for the wrong they had done and try to make the matter right with the proprietor They then went to the hotel and as they reached the top of the stairs J. D. Cosby called upon Clerk Murray, his brother and others to keep Hayes and O'Donnell in the place until he could summon the police and have them arrested.

Hayes and O'Donnell tried to escape from the hotel and Murray and Williaim Cosby again attacked them. While the men were engaged in a fight J. D. Cosby, the proprietor, came from behind the counter with a revolver in his hand and shot Hayes twice through the back as he was running down the stairs. J. D. Cosby was not assaulted and had no hand in the row except to do the shooting, according to statements of Hayes and O'Donnell and others who were there at the time of the shooting.

Hayes and O'Donnell fell when they were shot and the former lay in an unconscious condition at the top of the stairs, while O'Donnell managed to crawl into a nearby saloon and ask for help. Some one at the hotel telephoned for the police and Hayes and O'Donnell were taken immediately to St. Joseph's hospital They were in a critical condition and at midnight last night it was stated that Hayes could not survive. There were two bullet holes in his back near the right shoulder blade. The bullets had not ben located. He was in a semi-conscious condition up to midnight and was unable to recogize relatives and friends who were permitted to see him. There was one bullet in O'Donnell's shoulder which passed through his body, coming out just above the heart. It was found in his clothing and it was stated by physicians at the hospital last night that O'Donnell may recover.
Detectives R. E. Truman, J. W. Farrell, Joseph Halvey and James Ratery last night arrested J. D. Cosby, William Cosby, Moses Butcher, colored, and William Murray, together with a few guests at the hotel. The men whose names are mentioned will be held for investigation.

Asistant Prosecuting Attorney Riehl took a statement from J D. Cosby last night regarding the shooting, in which Cosby claimed self-defense. His story of the shooting is as follows:

"These two men, whom I do not now, came to the hotel and started a row with Murray and my brother (meaning William Cosby). They injured Murray and then went down out of the hotel. Later they came back, and I thought that they intended to start another row. I ordered the men in the hotel not to let these two men out of the place, as I wished to call the police and have them arrested. Then they started another row with Murray and my brother. I took a revolver I had in my hand and went to assist my brother. I grabbed hold of one and he struck at me. Then I shot him. I then shot the other man when he tried to strike me with something he had his hand. I did it in self-defense and to help my brother and Murray."

Cosby made another statement in which he said that he did not know that he had shot more than one man, but held to the story of self-defense.

The statements of all the other eye witnesses to the tragedy discredit that of Cosby. Willilam Cosby, his brother, said Cosby shot Hayes in the back when the latter was wrestling with Murray and then leaned over the railing of the stairway and shot O'Donnel as the later was descending the stairway. He also stated that he asked his brother not to shoot, but he would not listen. J. J. Carter of Garden City, Kas., and R. C. Rawlings of Chanute, Kas., made statements to the police which were about the same as that of William Cosby.


Mrs. Hayes, wife of the wound man who will probably die, called at the hosptial about 11 o'clock last night to see her husband. She was almost prostrated with grief when told of the affair and was overcome when she saw the condition of her husband. A sister and friends of Hayes also called to see him. Hayes has a baby daughter and lives at 2904 East Thirty-third street. He is about 30 years old. He is the agent for the Traders' Dispatch with offices in the board of trade.

O'Donnell is unmarried and lived at the Century hotel. He is proprietor of the J. F. O'Donnell Cigar Comany at 1801 Grand avenue. He is about 32 years of age.

It is claimed that this is not the first time that Crosby has been in shooting srapes of this kind. He is claimed to have had trouble with Joe Zigler, a saloon keeper near the Cosby hotel, in which he used a revolver but did not do any shooting.

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February 18, 1908


One Negro Is Killed Over Question,
Which is Still Undecided.

A negro killing over which is the best hotel in Kansas City, occurred at about 5:20 o'clock yesterday afternoon at the room of Jack Talbot, 1217 Baltimore avenue. Clarance Weil, who was killed, left after a first quarrel and came back armed with a .32 caliber revolver.

Jack Talbot was in bed. He got up and struggled with Weil, who was threatening to shoot him. As they struggled the pistol, still in its owner's hand, was discharged into his own head, as Talbot at that moment had pushed Weil's hand to a position that made this possible.

Talbot gave himself up and spent the night at police headquarters.

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January 26, 1908


Object of the Organization Is to
Afford Refuge to Friendless
and Inexperienced
Working Girls.

After many months of enforced idleness, the Girls' Home Association, an organization for maintaining for young women a good boarding place at a moderate price, has resumed work. In a beautiful new home that fairly shies with fresh paper and paint, the association opened its doors last week to receive all who come. The home, which is located at 612-614 West Eleventh street, was bought several months ago. It was known then as the "Endicott," and was an old-fashioned three-story brick residence. It was so old-fashioned, in fact, that many a woman would have been discouraged in the attempt to make it modern and comfortable. Mrs. John W. Wagner, the president of the association, realized the possibilities of the quaint home, and after three months of untiring effort she has succeeded in making it a most attractive place.

"And the house, with its furniture, amounting to $12,000, is all paid for," Mrs. Wagner exclaimed enthusiastically as she displayed the comforts of the home.. "We can accommodate fifty girls now and more if necessary, for we are never to turn away any girl who wants to come. We are going to find a place for them all somehow. As soon as we begin to turn away, the great object of the home has failed."

The last home of the association was at 1432 Baltimore avenue. This house, which was owned by the association, was left thirty feet "in the air" when Baltimore avenue was graded and it was necessary to vacate. Thirty girls were living in the home at that time.


The present home, since it has been modernized, will prove much more cheerful than the old. On ground floor the partitions on one side of the house have been torn out to make a long living room, which extends the entire length of the house.. This room has been decorated in shades of dull blue. In one end is a fireplace with cozy corners on either side. A huge window seat with the coverings and pillows in dull blue burlap occupies the other. Several good water colors hang on the walls and pretty soft blue sanitary rugs cover the floors.

On the opposite side of the hall from the living room are the long dining rooms and kitchens, all as complete as the most fastidious housekeeper could desire. It is in this kitchen that the members of the board of the association will teach the young women how to cook. The cooking school is to be open every afternoon and any young woman may attend. Ultimately, too, the home wants to teach these girls how to become mistresses of their own homes. The two upper floors of the home are all sleeping rooms, have pretty sanitary rugs, a dresser, a bed and washstand and comfortable chairs. Each room has a large closet. Mrs. Wagner and her corps of assistants have taken a great deal of care in making the home sanitary. Everything in it is washable. A great deal of care was expended, too, in the selection of the decorations, and rugs and papers harmonize beautifully.

Every girl in the house will pay $3.75 a week for her board. Provision has also been made for the young women out of work. Two dormitory rooms have been set aside for them. They will be taken care of by the association until positions can be found for them and they are able to pay their own way. The home is only for girls of small means, and when it is found that the young woman is earning more than $10 or $12 a week she will be persuaded to go somewhere else.

The Girls' Home Association was originally founded to help the young women who come into the city from the surrounding country and villages in quest of employment, without friends and many with little or no means and with but small appreciation of their own helplessness. This will be one of the great works of the present home and in all of the depots in the city neatly framed little signs will be put up bearing the name of the house and the location. "Instructions on Cooking Every Afternoon"; "An Attractive Home for Young Women of Limited Means"; "Girls Out of Employment Temporarily Cared For," are the inducements held out to the new arrivals. A house mother will superintend the care of the home and it is expected that the girls will co-operate with her in everything. Only good behavior is required of the young women, for there are no house rules.

The Girls' Home Association is to be self-supporting as far as possible, but an income of $60 a month has been subscribed by a number of business men to met the monthly deficit.

The first home for working girls was opened in 1901 in a leased house at 805 Forest avenue. Fifteen girls lived there. The girls organized a club called the Hybho Club." They got the name by taking the first letters of the words, "Help yourselves by helping others." In June, 1902, the club bought the property at 1432 Baltimore avenue, and in August the "Girls' Home Association was formally incorporated.

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December 5, 1908





This Is Belief of Officers Who Worked
on Case -- Explosion Took Place
When Janitor Closed a
Closet Door.

Mystery which is baffling the entire police and detective forces of Kansas City and the local members of the Pinkerton Detective agency surrounds an explosion in the basement of the First National Bank building, Tenth street and Baltimore avenue, at noon yesterday, which wrecked the basement of the institution and endangered the lives of employes and officers of the bank, as well as pedestrians on the street outside.

The Infernal Machine That Exploded in the First National Bank Building.
Such As Might Have Caused the Explosion.

That an infernal machine, probably a bomb made of dynamite or nitro-glycerin, caused the explosion, and was set there by an enemy of the bank or a crank, who may have lost money through the failure of financial institutions during the financial stringency, is the belief of nearly every expert or officer who worked on the case yesterday. Another belief is that it may have been a crank who had money in the First National bank and had failed to obtain as much as he wanted during the panic who used this as a means of getting revenge. The officials of the bank are unaware of any person who might be an enemy of the institution and do a thing of this kind.

Damage to Windows Across the Street

The explosion was so terrific that it was felt by persons in the offices of the bank building, the New York Life building and the Shubert theater building. A cloud of smoke rose through the windows and up the elevator shaft, which smelled like that of dynamite or nitro-glycerin. Glass in the skylight of the bank building, which is fully 200 feet from the place of the explosion, was shattered. Had not the building been strongly built it would have been blown into a mass of ruins, according to expert builders and architects who made an investigation. They say the structure is absolutely safe, and that the only damage was to the basement, which will not in their estimation exceed $3,000.

As it is only a portion of the basement was wrecked. Two walls, made of tiling marble and concrete, were blown down. One of these walls was 12x18 feet, and the other was 20x18 feet, both being 18 inches thick. An iron beam supporting the ceiling, which is about nine inches wide and two inches thick, was bent and the door casing, which is made of iron, was warped out of shape. A hole two feet in diameter was blown in the wall directly back of the point of explosion, and there is a hole in the concrete floor about four inches deep.

In Wrecked Cellar of Bank.

There was a row of closets made out of marble, and a wash sink of the same material, in the room, and these were broken into fine pieces. The lockers for employes' clothing, which are made of sheet steel, were bent out of shape and tipped over. There were int eh adjoining room. The iron bars on the windows of the basement were blown across Baltimore avenue and wrecked the windows of the Robert Stone Investment Company. The sewer pipes and water pipes were blown into fragments near where the explosion took place.


At the time of the explosion there were about 250 people in the bank. Elbert Ward, a negro porter, was nearest the scene of the explosion. He was closing the door of the toilet room when the explosion took place and probably the door saved his life. He was rendered unconscious and lay partly covered with a pile of debris when he was found by Logan Wilson, a mail clerk in the bank, who helped Ward get to the upper floor. Ward was taken to a hospital. He was very seriously cut about the head and body, a piece of iron was found in his leg and it had severed an artery. He will probably die.

Ward, the porter, is the only one of the injured who is considered in a serious condition. Most of the others were considerable distances from the explosion and their injuries will not prove serious unless some of the pieces of broken tile or glass are embedded in their flesh. The other injured are:

R. H. Klapmeyer, bank clerk, cut on the head by flying pieces of tile or glass.

Charles Grant, a pedestrian on Baltimore avenue, bruised by flying iron.

George Evans of the Evans-Smith Drug Company, who was walking on the opposite side of Baltimore avenue from the bank, cut on the head by flying pieces of tile.

Val Jean Brightwell, clerk, cut on head and fa ce by flying pieces of tiling.

J. D. Wilson, an employe of Bell, Egolf & Co., in the United States and Mexican Trust Company building, cut on face by flying glass.

Joseph Patch, carpenter, living at 1315 Lydia avenue, cut by glass. Not serious. Patch was taken to the emergency hospital, where his wounds were dressed. He was in a dazed condition and told the police that he had been shot.

R. M. Cole, knocked senseless by concussion. On sidewalk.

Jay Donaldson, pedestrian on Baltimore avenue, cut on head.

As soon as the explosion took place the fire department and police headquarters were notified and the patrons of the bank were hurried out of the building, the police working on the theory at that time that persons in the building were responsible for the explosion, which may have been true, although no one was arrested at the time in connection with the case. The street was soon crowded with curious people, including depositors of the bank, and a score of police were employed to watch the building.


There are several theories about the origin of the explosion, all of which are that it was probably caused by an infernal machine and the explosive used was no doubt dynamite. One theory is that the bomb was taken into the basement by an outsider, which, according to President E. F. Swinney, would be an easy matter on account of the new clerks working in the bank since the increase of business caused by the failure of the National Bank of Commerce, and was placed there with the intention of blowing up the cash fault. That when the stranger got to cellar he became confused because of the winding stairway leading to it and made a mistake in the location of the vault, thinking it directly above where the machine exploded. He is supposed to have thought that an iron door in the wall directly above the spot where the explosion took place, might have a connection with the vault, which led him to believe that to be the location of the money chest of Kansas City's largest bank.


Surroundings of the scene of the explosion lead officers working on the case to believe this theory and also to point out the operation of the person supposed to have placed the bomb. It is believed the bomb was made of a piece of water pipe, about two inches in diameter and eight inches long; that it contained dynamite which was packed in gun cotton; that the bomb was sealed at each end with some kind of material, such as sealing wax, and at one end was placed a quantity of nitro-glycerin. This bomb could have been placed under the water sink in the toilet room where the explosion took place, and attached to the door in such a way that when the door was moved by some one entering or going out, the infernal machine exploded.

Remains of What Probably Was a Bomb.

The broken pieces of such a piece of pipe were found in the room next to the scene of the explosion. They had been blown through the wall. They were badly shattered, but the fact that they showed no signs of having been connected with other pipe previous to the explosion leads the police to believe that they were used in making the bomb.


President E. F. Swinney of the First National bank, and Detectives Dave Oldham and Edward Boyle, who are working on the case, believe it was an explosion of natural gas or sewer gas, but experts who examined the surroundings say this is impossible.

Walter M. Cross, city chemist and an expert on explosives, was asked to examine the bank after the explosion. His statement was that gas could not have caused it because the effect of the explosion was too concentrated; that if it had been caused by gas the whole wall behind would have been pushed out, and not a small hole blown, as it was. He also said that the explosion was too violent to have been caused by gas. He says he believes the explosion was caused by dynamite or nitro-glycerine.

Fire Warden Trickett said: "I am able to arrive at no other conclusion but that the explosion in the First National bank was from dynamite. I made a close examination of premises and the room in which the explosion occurred. There is no gas connection about the building so the explosion could not have been from escaping gas."


Detectives working on the case reported last night that the explosion was caused by natural or sewer gas. Detective Oldham, ho claims to have done some work with a mine drill, gave this as his theory, as did also Boyle, who was formerly a plumber, despite the statement of City Chemist Cross. John Hayes, ex-chief of police, believes it was a bomb set for the purpose of wrecking the institution.

Joseph Patch, a carpenter who was injured and was supposed to have been on the opposite side of Baltimore avenue when the explosion occurred, was arrested last night and taken to the police station, where he was questioned by Assistant Prosecution Attorney Hogan. Ward, the injured negro janitor, also made a statement to Hogan.

Patch, who it was first thought might have had some connection with the affair, because of his story about being shot, and also the fact that he is a union carpenter and the unions have had trouble with the builders of the different bank buildings, was closely questioned by Hogan. Patch has a long police record, most of which was family trouble, but he was released late last night because his testimony led the police to believe that he was not in any way connected with the explosion. His wife was also detained at the police station for a time last night, but she gave no evidence against her husband that would lead the police to believe that he was connected with the affair.

While the gas theory is believed by officers they were ordered to continue working on the case last night, and members of the Pinkerton detective agency also put on the case by the bank. No more arrests had been made at a late hour last night.

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December 18, 1907


Front of Fifteenth Street Building
Falls, but No One is Hurt.

The northwest quarter of a two-story brick flat at Fifteenth and Baltimore collapsed yesterday morning at 4:30. The building sits up on a high embankment which has ben made exceedingly dangerous on account of the grading which has been necessary in cutting Fifteenth street through to Baltimore avenue.

The foreman of the grading gang had ordered the building braced with wooden supports. This was done, but the sleet and snow of yesterday morning caused the props to slip. With the statys gone or useless the outer wall of the building fell into the street.

The house was occupied by two families at the time of the accident. Mrs. Lulu Kelley and her family lived on the ground floor and Charles O'Day lived upstairs with his wife and two children. O'Day and his wife had left their two children in charge of Mrs. O'Day's sisters while they themselves spent the night with a relative who was ill.

When the people in the flat were awakened by the shock of the collapse, they ran out into the back yard in their night clothes, and despite the snow and cold, did not dare return into the house until they had been satisfied that there was no further danger of collapse.

When the police arrived and found that no one was injured, they called in the fire deparment to inspect the part of the building which remained standing. The occupants were told that they might stay the rest of the night in the rear rooms of the house in safety. At the break of dawn they had all of their household goods packed and ready to move.

W. H. Hawkins, a building inspector, says that he had notified the tenants of the flat two weeks ago that their home was in a dangerous condition. He said the building would have to be torn down.

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