November 17, 1908
FALLS 10 STORIES
TO SURE DEATH.
MRS. E. A. CAULFIELD IS KILLED
IN COMMERCE BUILDING.
DOWN AN ELEVATOR
IS CRUSHED UPON CEMENT
FLOOR, 150 FEET BELOW.
Falls While Attempting to Board
Moving Elevator -- Clings a
Moment to Grating of
Shaft, Then Drops.
Mrs. Emma Frances Caufield, wife of Dr. E. A. Caufield, 3523 Wyoming street, St. Louis, was instantly killed at 1:30 o'clock yesterday afternoon by falling twelve floors through an elevator shaft in the Commerce building. As the unfortunate woman fell through the open door of the elevator shaft her fingers grasped at the iron grating, clutched it for a brief moment, then relaxed their hold and she fell to her death in the sub-basement, 150 feet below. When her husband and friends reached her she was dead, almost every bone in her body having been broken by the fall. Dr. W. A. Harroun, whose office is in the Commerce building ,was the first person to reach the body. He said that death had resulted instantly.
There were only two eye witnesses to the tragic occurrence -- Miss Frances Weatherby, a stenographer in the offices of the Rio Grande Valley Colony Company, who had accompanied Mrs. Caufield to the elevator, and Frank Marks, the elevator operator. The statements of these two witnesses as to the way in which the accident occurred differ materially.
Mrs. Caufield, in company with her husband, Dr. E. A. Caufield, had gone to the offices of a company on the tenth floor of the Commerce building, where they engaged in conversation with J. D. Cameron, the manager of the company. Mrs. Caufield suggested to the steographer, Miss Weatherby, that they go to the top floor of the building. The two women left the office together and walked down the corridor to the elevators.
BEFORE SHE ENTERED.
"I stepped up to the elevator, and pushed the button to signal them," said Miss Weatherby. "I saw the car coming up and I turned to see if Mrs. Caufield was following me. As I did so I observed that the adjoining elevator had stopped at that floor and Mrs. Caufield was in the act of entering it. One foot was on the floor and of the elevator and the other foot was still on the floor of the corridor. Before she could enter the cage the elevator appeared to start, for I saw her foot raise with it until her skirts were pulled up several inches. It seemed to me that she tried to step up into the elevator, but it moved up quickly and Mrs. Caufield was thrown over backward.
"As she fell into the open shaft she clutched at something, I think it was the iron grating, then she fell. The elevator quickly dropped to the level of the floor again, so that if she had been able to retain her hold on the grating she would have been knocked loose by the elevator anyway."
In relating her story to her employer, Mr. Cameron, about two hours after the accident, Mrs. Weatherby was in almost a total state of collapse.
"I can still see that poor woman as she clung to the grating just for an instant. I was too horrified to move. I just stood and looked, and then she let go and I ran to the office," she said.
"POOR L ITTLE GIRL."
Dr. Caulfield, when seen last night at his apartments in the Baltimore hotel, was unable to talk coherently.
"I cannot believe it; I cannot realize that she is dead," he moaned. "Just look," and reaching over he picked up a photograph of his wife. "Do you realize that only a few hours ago I was with her, alive, well and happy; and now to think -- poor girl, poor little girl."
Dr. Caulfield said that when his wife left the office in company with Miss Weatherby, he remained with his friend, Mr. Cameron.
"It seemed just a moment until I heard a scream, and Miss Weatherby staggered down the corridor crying that Mrs. Caulfield had fallen down the elevator shaft. When I reached the elevator the operator was walking up and down in front of the cage, and repeating over and over again 'I wasn't to blame. It wasn't my fault.' "
The alarm spread quickly through the building and W. B. Frost, manager of the building, immediately sent word to all the available doctors, so that within three minutes after the accident medical assistance was at hand. The coroner, Dr. George B. Thompson, was notified. He viewed the body and ordered it taken to Eylar Bros. undertaking establishment.
THE BOY'S STATEMENT.
The accident happened at an hour when many persons are away from their offices and practically no excitement was noticeable about the building. When seen at his office, Mr. Frost signified his willingness to help in any way in arriving at a solution as to how the accident occurred, and submitted this statement from the elevator boy, giving his version of the accident:
"I stopped at the tenth floor of the building and this woman, Mrs. Caulfield, stepped into the car. I noticed there was another woman standing in the corridor. As I shut the gate or got it almost shut, someone said, 'Wait a minute,' Then Mrs. Caulfield grabbed the door. I had started the elevator and was about four feet above the level of the floor when the lady fell from the cage. She fell kind of on her knees and then rolled over into the open shaft. She caught at the grating for just a second, then she let go and fell. I couldn't help her because I didn't dare drop the elevator down on her."
For some time after the accident the boy, who has been in the employ of the Commerce building for about three weeks, was hysterical. When seen last night he appeared to have regained his composure, but on advice of Mr. Frost he refused to tell his parents' name or give his address.
"The boy has made a complete statement to us as to the way this accident occurred, and this is the statement we have given to the newspapers," said Mr. Frost. To this statement the boy concurred.
DREADED DEATH BY FALLING.
The friends of Mrs. Caulfield say that she had a peculiar horror of the fate which overtook her. She was, according to the statement of her husband, a very careful woman in places of possible danger. Only a few moments before leaving the office she had expressed her horror of the accident which occurred in New York a few days ago which resulted in the death of Harvey Watterson
. To her friends she often said:
"What an awful fate it must be to die by falling a great distance."
"Mrs. Caulfield was the daughter of J. C. Hewett of St. Louis, and was well known in literary and social circles in that city. She leaves one child, 2 1/2 years old, who is with friends in Joplin, Mo.
The father and other relatives will arrive in this city this morning. Telegrams have been sent to the following persons: J. J. Hewett of St. Louis, a brother; Mrs. S. V. Bryden of St. Louis, J. H. Robertson of Des Moines and Mrs. Huntoon of Joplin.
An inquest will be held by the county coroner this afternoon.
Labels: accident, Commerce building, Coroner Thompson, death, Des Moines, doctors, elevators, Hotel Baltimore, hotels, St Louis, undertakers, visitors
November 1, 1908
DEAD IN A PULLMAN CAR.
Cloroform Saturated Handkerchief
on Face of Naval Seaman.
Bayard Thompson, 26 years old, a seaman, who recently received an honorable discharge from the United States cruiser Louisiana, was found dead in a Pullman car on a Santa Fe passenger train yesterday morning in the Union depot. A bottle of chloroform clasped in his hands and a saturated handkerchief across his face indicated suicide. Seventy-five dollars in money was found in his effects. He was on his way from San Francisco, Cal., to Greensboro, N. C., his old home.
Coroner George B. Thompson viewed the body yesterday afternoon. It lies at Carroll-Davidson's undertaking rooms awaiting word from Thompson's relatives.
Labels: Coroner Thompson, military, railroad, Suicide, undertakers
October 25, 1908
SHOT DOWN IN HIS SHOP BY
MOTIVE IS YET A MYSTERY.
BUT IT IS BELIEVED ROBBERY
Father and Son Had Finished Count-
ing Up and Dividing Day's
Receipts When They
At 10 o'clock last night Elle Bassin, 60 years old, and his son, Nathan, 30 years old, were sitting in their little frame shoe shop mending shoes. Without warning the door of the little frame building was pushed open.
"Throw up your hands," commanded a voice.
At the same moment a hand clasping a revolver was thrust into the room. The young man arose from his seat and fell forward on the floor with a bullet through his heart. After firing the shot the assassin fled.
"There were two men," said the father of the murdered man. "I could see their faces for an instant, but not long enough to recognize them. They were young men, probably 20 to 25 years old."
Bassin said this in German. He is of German Jewish extraction. He cannot speak English. The father lives at 213 Circle avenue and the son, who is married, lived at 2111 Mercier avenue. He leaves a widow and two children, Ida, 5 years old, and Samuel, 2 years old. There are four brothers. The father and the murdered man conducted the business in partnership.
ROBBERY THE MOTIVE.
Robbery is thought to have been the motive of the crime. The Bassins' place of business is a little frame shack, 8x10 feet, at 1221 West Twenty-fourth street, with one door and a window about four feet wide in front. Every night they took the money received during the day out of the drawer in front of the window where it was kept, counted it, and the young man put it in the pockets of his trousers. This process had just been finished a few minutes before the fatal shot was fired last night. The money in the drawer usually amounted to $7 or $8.
The police say that a very tough gang of young fellows infest the neighborhood where Bassin's shop is located, and the old man himself complained that they had bothered him by throwing stones and refuse against his shop. It is thought that, seeing the young shoemaker count the money taken in by the day's work, two men who were passing by planned to step in, hold the shosemakers up with their revolvers and rob them of the money. When the young man rose as though to make resistance, the robbers, being amateurs and therefore nervous, fired.
WOMAN SAW THE MEN RUN.
Mrs. Enoch Dawson, who lives at 1208 West Twenty-fourth street, heard the shot and looked out in time to see two men running east on Twenty-fourth street. She saw one of them turn north in an alley between Mercier avenue and Holly street. Patrolman Maruice Scanlon, who walks the beat where the shooting occurred, heard the shot and came running toward the place. As he crossed Twenty-fourth street at Holly, under the electric light, he saw the man run across the street and disappear in the alley. The patrolman did not give chase but hastened to the scene of the shooting.
Dr. E. C. Rieger, 1105 West Twenty-fourth street, was called and pronounced the man dead. He had died almost instantly, saying no word. Coroner George P. Thompson was notified and the body was taken to Eylar Bros. undertaking rooms.
So far as can be ascertained, Bassin had no enemies. He was a quiet man and a steady worker. He had lived in the neighborhood three years, and before entering into partnership with his father had worked in the shoe repairing department of the Jones Dry Goods company. No arrests have been made.
Labels: Coroner Thompson, doctors, Holly street, immigrants, Jews, Jones Dry Goods, murder, police, Twenty-fourth street, undertakers
September 30, 1908
HEART OF HUMAN FREAK
FOUND TO BE RUPTURED.
Henry J. Johnson, Who Died Sudden-
ly, Swallowed Glass and Ate
Nails and Tacks.
The inserting of steel hat pins in various portions of his body and eating broken glass while giving performances at state fairs and in museums caused the death of Henry J. Johnson of Erie, Pa. He was found dead in his room at 322 West Twelfth street yesterday. An autopsy held last night by Dr. George B. Thompson showed that death was due to rupture of the heart. It was found to be much enlarged, due probably to the nervous strain to which Johnson had subjected his system while making his performances. From newspaper clippings and cards found in his room it was learned that Johnson called himself the "Human Freak."
The man looks to be about 32 years of age, and aside from an enlarged heart, seemed to have suffered no other physical ailments. The description given of some of his performances is that he not only stuck hatpins through his arms, legs and neck, but that he chewed broken glass, bit nails in twain and swallowed tacks. No foreign substances were found in the stomach of the dead man at the inquest.
A. H. Sammitt, at whose house Johnson was found dead, stated last night that he knew little about the man. He arrived here about one week ago and stated that he came from Iola, Kas., where he had been with a country fair. He said that he was going to take a rest of three weeks before starting again on the road. His bill was paid and he kept to his room most of the time. The body was found by a maid when she went to clean the room.
Efforts will be made to locate relatives of Johnson at Erie, Pa.
Labels: Coroner Thompson, daredevils, death, newspapers, Twelfth street, visitors
September 5, 1908
HELPED AVENGE CUSTER.
J. C. McLain, Retired Soldier, Dies
Suddenly in His Room.
J. C. McLain, 64 years old, who for thirty-four years was a soldier in the United States army, died yesterday afternoon at his room in the home of F. H. Hendricks, 725 Forest avenue.
McLain's life was lonely. He never married and had never seen a marriage solemnized in his life. Enlisting in the army at the close of the civil war, his years were passed in a monotonous routine, which was varied occasionally by active service. He had seen most parts of the United States, including the island possessions.
The first active service he saw was in the Sioux uprising, when he was within thirty miles of Custer when the latter was killed and came to the scene of the slaughter the next day and assisted in avenging his death. During the Spanish was he served in Cuba and also in the Philippines in a cavalry regiment and saw some lively fighting, being wounded several times. After the war he was stationed in various islands of the Pacific archipelago, helping to pacify them.
Five years ago he retired form the army on full pay and had been living in different parts of the country since. For the past ten months he had lived at the Forest avenue address, doing his own housekeeping. His erect, soldierly bearing remained with him to the last. He never spoke much about himself, but read a great deal.
His death was sudden. Yesterday morning he complained of pains in his stomach and went downtown and purchased a bottle which he said contained medicine. A few hours later he was found dead in his room. Coroner George B. Thompson was notified and viewed the body last night. He will make a thorough investigation this morning. The body is at Stine's undertaking rooms. The only surviving relatives that his is known to have are a brother in Iowa and a sister who lives somewhere in Missouri.
Labels: Coroner Thompson, Custer, death, Forest avenue, history, undertakers, veterans
August 14, 1908
POISON ENDS LIFE
OF GIRL OF TWELVE.
FRIEND OF ANNA MAY WIL-
LIAMS A SUICIDE.
"ANNA WAS PERSECUTED," SAID
Then She Went to a Drug Store and
Purchased 10 Cents Worth of
Carbolic Acid as the Wil-
liams Girl Had Done.
Did the fact that Anna May Williams committed suicide prey upon the mind of 12-year-old Vivian Burden until she yesterday took her own young life by the same method -- carbolic acid? No other reason but mental suggestion has been ascribed as a cause for the girl's death by her family and the coroner.
Little Vivian had gone to the Woodland school with Anna May Williams, the 15-year-old girl who killed herself Tuesday afternoon at her home, 816 Euclid avenue. A discussion of the number of suicides, especially with carbolic acid, took place at the breakfast table in the Burden home yesterday. The death of Ana May Williams, Vivian's acquaintance, was, of course, discussed more than the rest.
"The girl was persecuted," she said "That's the way with step-papas, anyhow."
The child seemed much wrought up over the matter, but as she cooled down afterwards, little was tought of it.
NO TROUBLE TO GET ACID.
Yesterday afternoon Vivian left her house at 800 Lydia avenue, and went to the drug store of E. D. Francisco, Eighth street and Tracy avenue.
"I want 10 cents worth of carbolic acid," she said. "My mamma wants it to make roach poison."
The child, for she was nothing more, sallied when she said this, and seemed restless, as children do, to get away. "Before she left, however, she bought an ice cream soda and ate it at the counter. With the deadly poison clenched in her childish hands she went to the Bazaar, a store at the corner of Independence and Tracy avenues. There she took some time in selecting a pretty doll for her 5-year-old sister, Helen.
All of this took up about an hour, so that Vivian arrived back home about 3 p. m. Calling her little sister she gave her the doll, for which she had paid 35 cents and seemed delighted in the little one's pleasure when the doll was placed in her hands and she was told it was all hers.
No one suspected there was anything wrong with Vivian when she went upstairs to her room. Louise, 17, and Myrtle, 19 years old sisters of Vivian, were busy in the kitchen when Vivian ran in and said: "Call a doctor quick; I've taken some of mamma's roach poison." The sisters at first thought she was joking, but when they saw the condition of her lips and smelled the deadly carbolic acid they were thrown into consternation.
DOCTOR'S EFFORTS WERE IN VAIN.
Dr. Oliver F. Faires, who has an office over Francisco's drug store, was then summoned, and though he worked over the child until 5 o'clock, she died, having been long unconscious before the end came. Coroner George B. Thompson was summoned and sent the body to Newcomer's undertaking rooms.
Vivian Burden was the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. W. G. Burden. The father, a butcher, was not at home, being employed in Bartlesville, Ok. He was notified of his child's rash act and left for home last night.
"What cause can you assign for your daughter, Vivian, taking carbolic acid?" was asked of Mrs. Burden last night.
"I cannot believe the girl committed suicide because of any trouble either at home or with her playmates," the mother replied. "She was of a very happy and bright disposition and was never moody." Vivian regularly scanned the newspapers each day and was particularly interested in stories about suicides. The sad girl named Anna May Williams may have inspired her," the mother said, "as she constantly talked about the girl and the poor girl's sad life."
Labels: butchers, children, Coroner Thompson, doctors, druggists, Eighth street, Independence avenue, newspapers, retailers, Suicide, Tracy avenue
August 2, 1908
BOY DROWNS IN A BATHTUB.
George Lemon, Subject to Fits, Per-
ishes Before Help Arrives.
George Lemon, 17 years old, entered the barber shop of Joseph Sarp and James S. Caldwell, 2605 East Eighteenth street, last night about 9 o'clock and said he wanted to take a bath. R. M. Dodson, the negro porter, prepared the bath for him, filling the tub half full of lukewarm water. Lemon entered and was heard splashing around. Fifteen minutes later his body was heard to fall in the tub and those who rushed into the room found him lying in the water, dead.
Dr. N. McVey was called and he tried to resuscitate him, but without avail. The body was taken to Eylar Bros., undertakers, where Coroner George B. Thompson examined it and found the death was due to drowning. Lemon was subject to epileptic attacks, one of which probably caused him to fall in the tub. No inquest will be held.
The boy was a teamster and lived at 1704 Agnes avenue with his parents and brother.
Labels: Agnes avenue, barbers, Coroner Thompson, death, Eighteenth street, undertakers
July 20, 1908
HER FATHER COMES TODAY.
Coroner Finds Miss Cretia Blair Died
of Illegal Operation.
After an autopsy on the body of Miss Cretia Blair, a young woman who died suddenly at the residence of L. B. Walker, 512 Bellefontaine avenue, Sunday afternoon, Coroner George B. Thompson yesterday expressed the belief that her death had been caused by septic poison, super-induced by an operation. Whether this operation was illegally performed, however, will not be determined until after an examination by Dr. Frank J. Hall.
Dr. G. A. Blair, of Inland, Neb., the girl's father, will arrive here today to take charge of the body. Miss Blair, accompanied by her sister, came here from her Nebraska home two years ago.
"A dearer, sweeter girl never lived," said Mrs. Marie Warwick of 412 Whittier place, speaking of the dead young woman yesterday. Mrs. Walker, at whose home the girl died, said she had never seen her before she called to engage a room.
"I know no more about the girl than you do," she said. "She was brought here by another woman, and, as I had a room vacant, I let her have it."
Residents in the vicinity of the Walker home say that the family always has been highly respected and that nothing out of the ordinary has ever taken place at the house to their knowledge.
Labels: Bellefontaine, Coroner Thompson, death, doctors
June 8, 1908
MONEY IN BANK; STARVED.
End Comes to Woman Who Existed
on Crackers and Water.
After having lived on "crackers and water and the power of God" for a week, Miss Kate Thuey, found in a precarious condition in her room at 722 Campbell street, Saturday afternoon, died at the general hospital yesterday afternoon at 1 o'clock. Miss Thuey was in a dying condition when taken into the hospital and she steadily grew worse. Dr. G. B. Thompson, coroner, pronounced her death due to starvation and kidney trouble. In her stomach there was found a quantity of undigested crackers and nothing more.
Miss Thuey has two sisters living in this city, Mrs. John Owens, 2601 Independence avenue, and Mrs. Lucy Mahoney of Twenty-fifth street and Prospect avenue. These sisters had lost trace of her some years ago. At that time she began to appear dissatisfied with her home life and would have nothing to do with her family. After she let home she kept in communication with her sisters and family for a few months only . Mrs. Owens said she had done everything to find out her sister's whereabouts but was unable to.
The first they heard of her for five years was the account of her demented condition in yesterday's Journal. Mrs. Owens told the coroner that at all times her sister and herself had been anxious to help Miss Thuey, but that she consistently refused to accept any aid. It was said that she is supposed to have about $3,000 in a bank in Kansas city, that sum being her share of her father's estate. This has not been ascertained as a fact; the abject state of poverty in which the woman was found by the police would not substantiate the theory.
The sisters of Miss Thuey put forward the theory that in her demented state the woman had become a miser and was hording away her meager earnings.
Labels: Campbell street, Coroner Thompson, death, Independence avenue, Prospect avenue, The Journal, Twenty-fifth street
May 12, 1908
IN JEALOUS FIT.
SHE DIED IN HER AGED
STABBED ON PORCH
E. C. FLETCHER, THE MURDERER,
IS CAPTURED BY POLICE.
E. C. Fletcher, a teamster 37 years old, after being separated from his wife for one week, called at the home of her father, John Harlow, 630 West Eighth street, last night about 8:30 o'clock, ostensibly to talk over going to Oklahoma. In the house was a man named Edward Lewis, another teamster, who had gone to the house to see Harlow about putting him to work. Fletcher asked his wife to come down stairs to talk. When they reached the porch she was heard to scream for help. He had stabbed her just above the heart. She died an hour later.
Fletcher ran south to Ninth street, chased by a negro who had witnessed the act. He was seen at Ninth and Holmes streets a few minutes later, running east. The aged father ran to the porch and held his daughter in his arms until the police ambulance arrived. She sank so fast that Drs. J. P. Neal and R. A. Shiras deemed it necessary to give her a transfusion of salt solution at the emergency hospital to take the place of the blood she had lost. She did not regain consciousness and died without making a statement or even telling her name. The knife blade entered the left side just above the heart and is believed to have severed the aorta.
HE IS CAPTURED.
Detectives Keshlear and McGraw were on the scene soon after the murder and went to work on the case at once.
Patrolmen Holly Jarboe and J. P. Withrow, headquarters men, learned that Fletcher roomed at 211 West Fifth street and went there to watch for him. At 12:15 o'clock they were joined by Detectives Brice, Murphy, Boyle and Walsh. As they stood talking, Walsh exclaimed:
"Here he comes now," and ran toward a man who had just turned the corner. It was proved to be Fletcher. He surrendered without resistance.
Fletcher was taken to police headquarters and Bert Kimbrell, assistant prosecuting attorney, was sent for to take his statement. The murderer had been drinking and was not told that his wife was dead until he had finished his statement. He expressed hope that he had not hurt her.
"I don't know why I struck her. I love he so. I don't know what I was doing," was the sum of his declaration to Kimbrell.
The knife with which he killed his wife was found in his pocket. It was a common clasp knife, with a three-inch blade.
HE OFTEN BEAT HER.
Mrs. Emma Fletcher was 33 years old and a pretty woman. She had been married to Fletcher for seventeen years, but had no children. He was a drinking man, the father says, and often beat his wife and as often left her. Her mother died about the time of her marriage and she and Fletcher had always lived with Harlow.
"He left Emma the last time a week ago while we were living at Thirteenth and Summit streets," said Harlow. "We have often had to move on account of his treatment of her. Tuesday we moved to 630 West Eighth street. Ed Lewis came to see me tonight about getting me a job and we were all in the room on the second floor when Fletcher knocked at the door.
" 'What do you want?' Emma asked him.
" 'I just come to talk to you about going with me to Oklahoma,' Fletcher said. 'I've got the money to take you if you want to go.'
"Then he saw Lewis sitting there and his eyes flashed fire. He told Emma to get her shoes and come outside and talk the matter over. As she left I heard him say, 'I'd rather see you dead than with another man.' I heard them walk quietly down the stairs to the porch and then my daughter screamed. I just thought he had beaten her again as he had so often and ran to her side I could see he had been drinking."
"I WANT TO DIE, TOO."
While the father, grey and feeble, was telling his story to Captain Whitsett he did not know that his daughter was dead. HE would up his sad narrative with: "When I put her white face on my arm I thought she was dead, but I guess he's just cut her. Can any one tell me how she is?" he asked, looking from one to another.
"She is dead," Captain Whitsett informed him in a low tone.
"God be merciful," cried the old man, tottering backwards into a chair. "If she is dead, I want to die, too."
He found that her body had been taken to Freeman & Marshall's morgue and left for there, saying he wanted to be with her during the night.
OTHER TOWNS NOTIFIED.
Fletcher has been working for James Stanley, a contractor, who is building a church at 752 Sandusky avenue, Kansas City, Kas. Surrounding towns had also been telephoned to be on the lookout for him in case he should catch a train out. He was believed to be making for the Belt line tracks when last seen.
P. W. Widener, from whom Harlow rents at 630 West Eighth street, told the police that he had just entered his home about 8:30 p. m., when he heard a knock and saw Fletcher at his wife's door talking to her.
"I heard them go down stairs together," he said, "and almost immediately heard her scream. She was lying on the porch, stabbed, when I reached her. Fletcher was chased to Ninth street and lost sight of."
Widener related that when Harlow rented the rooms he said his son-in-law often raised "a little rumpus when drinking," but did not pay any attention to it. He said it had often caused him to move.
Fletcher has a brother, Arthur Fletcher, living somewhere in the city. Harlow has one more daughter, Mrs. Clara Coleman, who lives in the West bottoms in Kansas City, Kas., but he did not know where.
Coroner George B. Thompson said that an autopsy would be held today and an inquest later.
Labels: Captain Whitsett, Coroner Thompson, detectives, doctors, domestic violence, Eighth street, emergency hospital, Fifth street, Holly Jarboe, Holmes street, Inspector Boyle, marriage, murder, Ninth street, oklahoma, teamster, undertakers
March 30, 1908
OUT OF WORK, TOOK POISON.
Jacob Kohn, Sick and Discouraged,
Ends Life With Acid.
A man, believed to be Jacob Kohn, committed suicide in room fourteen at the Plaza hotel, Missouri avenue and Delaware street, Saturday night, and the body was found at 9 o'clock yesterday morning by Sara Ridgeway, the housekeeper. Coroner George B. Thompson says that during his term of office no other Jew has taken his own life in Kansas city and that the crime is almost unknown among men of Jewish belief
Kohn, in a farewell note, directed that the Jewish Society of Kansas City take charge of his remains. The society will bury the body, but it cannot be laid in a Jewish cemetery.
Kohn's farewell note, which he wrote just before drinking carbolic acid, as the pencil left on the table bears witness, reads:
"To whom it may concern -- This is my second attempt at suicide. I
think I shall succeed this time. I am in poor health, am unable to get
work and have no friends and no money. Give my body to the Jewish
Society. -- Jake Kohn."
Mrs. Ridgeway says that Kohn came to the hotel Saturday night late and registered as John Johnson. She had never seen him before. He paid for his room. Shortly before 9 o'clock yesterday morning when a maid was unable to get into the room to tidy it, Mrs. Ridgeway, who was called in, was informed from a man who had spent the night in room 15 adjoining, that he had heard the man in room 14 groaning and rolling around during the night. Upon that statement Mrs. Ridgeway called the police, who forced the door and found the body.
Coroner Thompson was notified and sent the body to Freeman and Marshall's morgue. Not a penny was found in the clothes. There was nothing to identify the man, excepting the signature on the note. In the pocket were cards from business houses and factories in many Kansas and Oklahoma towns. Kohn was evidently a laborer and had been in these towns looking for employment.
Labels: Coroner Thompson, hotels, Jews, laborer, oklahoma, poison, race, Suicide, undertakers
March 10, 1908
CHINAMAN DIED SUDDENLY.
Funeral Services Will Be Held an
Entire Week -- Burial Sunday.
Quong Sue, a Chinese laundryman, 31 years old, was found dead in his bed at 309 West Fifth street Sunday. Coroner Thompson held a post mortem yesterday at Carroll-Davidson's morgue, and found that death was due to a ruptured vessel. The Chinese colony will take a week to prepare for a fitting funeral. The ceremonies will end next Sunday at Union cemetery.
Labels: cemetery, Coroner Thompson, death, Fifth street, immigrants, undertakers
March 6, 1908
WELL, WHO KILLED THE DOG?
Perhaps His Loquacious Mistress Told
Him Her Troubles.
"I used to think that people would run out of freak grounds for asking criminal warrants," remarked Assistant Prosecutor Kimbrell yesterday, "but there is a new one every day. Today it is a woman who wants a man arrested for prescribing for her dog, when the man isn't a registered veterinary. She is very much excited, because the dog died. She--"
The telephone rang and Kimbrell answered:
"No, as I told you a while ago, we can't swear out a warrant for the man who doctored your dog, unless you can prove that he was not a registered veterinary. Yes, I know, you think he isn't, but you must be positive. The best thing for you is to bring a civil suit for damages, if you think he --"
Here Bert stopped five minutes to listen. He resumed:
"The dog died within three hours of when the man left? Well, I've known lots of people to die within three hours after a good doctor left them.
"You think he didn't diagnose the case correctly? Well, maybe he didn't. All doctors make mistakes, you know. What do you think was the matter with the dog? Pneumonia. And he said it was a fever? Well, maybe he was mistaken.
"Why don't you call in another doctor and have him hold a post mortem examination. That's the only way you can be sure what killed the dog. He might have swallowed a rat biscuit for all you know. What doctor will hold a post-mortem? Oh, any of them. Try your family physician. Oh, that's all right, no trouble at all. Goodby.
"I came near telling her to call Coroner Thompson to hold the autopsy," Kimbrell remarked, when he had hung up the receiver. "I'm glad I didn't, because Dr. Thompson would have been angry and then she would have blamed this office."
Labels: animals, Coroner Thompson, Prosecutor Kimbrell, telephone
February 19, 1908
AMBULANCES RACE FOR
A "DEAD" MAN.
Floater Taken From River
Turns Out to Be Alive.
A real "live" floater caused a neck and neck race along the river front yesterday afternoon between the emergency hospital ambulance and an undertaker's "dead wagon." The race attracted a great deal of attention and caused no end of excitement in the North End. The ambulance is painted gray and the dead wagon, of course, was black. It brought to mind the famous race between the "bob-tailed horse and the gray", but this time the "gray ambulance" won by a hame string.
The cause of the race was John Reich, 45 years old, a laborer of 1011 Cherry street. Reich was taken out of the river for dead. The emergency hospital was notified. Secretary Ebert called Coroner Thompson and the coroner detailed an undertaker to get the "dead man."
In about 20 minutes the telephone at the emergency rang again, and a trembling voice said, "Say feller, that floater ain't no floater 'tall. He's come to. That is, he's turned over onct. Better send the avalance and a doctor 'stead 'o the coroner."
It was then that the ambulance was dispatched and it was too late to call off the undertaker. That was the reason both vehicles met on the way to the river. The first one noticed of the other's presence. They were neck and neck on the river's sands and were "going some" to the east.
Undertakers have been known to race before and it may have been that this one thought a rival was after the body. The driver of the police amulance took up the race in a spirit of fun.
First one would forge ahead, then the other would come up fast and pass at a gallop. The police had the better team, however as it does nothing but run, and the driver was sport enough to win only by a hame string, when he could easily have outdistanced the dead wagon.
Lying on the bank, blue and cold, was Reich. When the undertaker's man saw the "floater" squirm and kick, he said things in "dead languages," reversed his team and slowly drove back home.
Reich was taken to the emergency hospital, where he was pumped out and artificial respiration used to get his lungs into working order. He was put to bed amid a bevy of hot water bottles and bags. In a couple of hours the "dead one" was in a condition to talk.
Reich recalled taking a drink a place down near the Winner piers. After that he said that he just "passed on" He did not know where he got into the water, how he got there, how long he was in, who got him out or where he was taken out.
"All I know is that I can't swim no more than a rock, and I got the derndest coldest duckin' a man ever got -- at least that I ever got. When I get out of this I'm goin' down there to look that ground -- or water -- over."
While Reich appears to be recuperating rapidly, Dr. W. L. Gist, who resuscitated him at the emergency hospital, said that the great danger now was pneumonia.
Labels: Cherry street, Coroner Thompson, Dr. Gist, emergency hospital, laborer, Missouri river, races, telephone, undertakers
January 28, 1908
WIFE WANTS PUGH'S MONEY.
But Finds That Suicide's Mother and
Brother Have It.
The suicide of W. A. Pugh at 721 East Eighth street, Saturday evening, threatens complications regarding the disposition made of his money and jewelry by the emergency hospital authorities. The brother, W. G. Pugh, went with the mother to the hospital and was given the $234 in money and diamonds amounting to several hundred more.
Yesterday the wife returned from Waterloo, Ia. She was told that W. G. Pugh had made affidavit that the suicide had never been married and had no wife, thereby obtaining the property. Dr. J. P. Neal, however, who was in charge of the hospital and after searching the body took charge of the valuables, said that W. G. Pugh gave no affidavit but only a receipt for the articles. Coroner Thompson, who, by virtue of his office, ordinarily takes charge of a victim's property, says that the custom is, where the emergency hospital people have searched a body before death, that he does not receive the property from them.
The wife insists that she and Pugh were married six years ago. She came direct from her train to Stine's morgue to view the body, and found the mother and brother present. The three conversed, the wife telling the others that she had written him she was coming back. It was later, at the emergency hospital, that she learned that his valuables had been turned over to his family.
Mrs. Pugh, before marriage, was employed in a restaurant and studied two years to be a trained nurse. W. G. Pugh, the brother, has remained single and lives with the mother at 3622 Independence avenue.
Labels: Coroner Thompson, Eighth street, emergency hospital, Independence avenue, nurses, probate, Suicide, undertakers
December 31, 1907
DOCTOR DIES IN DRUG STORE.
R. J. Gibbons Is Overcome by Heart
Failure While Going Home.
Heart disease probably was the cause of the collapse last night on a Troost car of Dr. R. J. Gibbons, resulting in his death almost as soon as he was removed from the car to the Wirthman drug store, Eighteenth street and Troost avenue.
Dr. Gibbons had for years conducted a school for the cure of stammering in the Missouri building. Early last evening he left his home at 1010 East Eleventh street to meet some patients who were expected at the railway station. At 9:30 o'clock he boarded the Troost car at Tenth and Wyandotte streets.
The conductor noticed that he was very pale. Probably he became partly unconscious soon, for he did not ring for the car to stop when he was near home, and yet nothing wrong was noticed about him till at Sixteenth street he bent his head forward and leaned on the back of a seat. Conductor Wade was alarmed and two blocks farther on he and the motorman removed the then unconscious man to the drug store.
Dr. Gibbons was still alive when taken into the store, but he gasped only a few times and was dead before any physician could reach him.
Coroner G. B. Thompson came and viewed the body. He thought heart failure was probably the cause of death, but will hold an autopsy this morning at Freeman & Marshall's morgue.
Dr. Gibbons came to Kansas City sixteen years ago from Kentucky and was 54 years old. Only a wife survives him.
Dr. Gibbon's success in curing stammering was considered by many physicians to be phenomenal. Many high in the profession sent patients to him. Difficult cases, it is said, were cured by him often in one session.
No funeral arrangements had been made.
Labels: Coroner Thompson, death, doctors, druggists, Eighteenth street, streetcar, Troost avenue, undertakers
November 16, 1907
BANKER SHOT AT MIDLAND.
WITH A BULLET J. B. THOMAS OF
ALBANY, MO., ENDED HIS LIFE.
Found in the Bath Room of His Apart-
ment of the Hotel Yesterday -- Well
Known as a Mason and to
J. B. Thomas, cashier of the Bank of Albany of Albany, Mo., committed suicide in the Midland hotel this morning by shooting himself through the right temple with a revolver. Mr. Thomas's body was found in a bathroom at 2:30 o'clock yesterday afternoon.
Coroner Thompson was called and said the man probably had been dead several hours. He ordered the body taken to the undertaking rooms of Freeman & Marshall.
"Mr. Thomas came here last night," T. B. Bishop, the clerk at the hotel said. "He went to his room at about 8:30 o'clock. This morning the maid found his door locked when she went to the apartment to arrange it. About 2 o'clock she went there again and received no response when she knocked.
"No response was made to repeated knockings and the carpenter forced the door open. Mr. Thomas was found dead in the bathroom."
Mr. Thomas was fully dressed. The revolver was still clutched in his right hand and contained one empty cartridge. On his left hand was a Masonic ring. Engraved inside was "J. B. Thomas, Consistory No. 2, From Nicholson."
He wore a gold watch and a chain with a Knight Templar charm attached. In his pockets was found $3 in change and a bunch of rings.
"I can conceive of no reason for his act," Judge Thomas Morrow, who is a close friend of Mr. Thomas, said yesterday. "He was one of the leading citizens of his town. He was a prominent Mason."
T. B. Bishop telephoned the Bank of Albany at once. The officers of the bank could give no reason for the act. Mr. Bishop told them the body would be placed in the care of the Kansas City Masons subject to advice from his relatives.
Mr. Thomas, who was apparently about 60 years old, was a Kentuckian by birth. He came to Missouri as a young man and at first was a village blacksmith. He was elected circuit clerk of Gentry county in 1876 and re-elected in 1880. He was made cashier of the Bank of Albany soon after he retired from office, and had held that position ever since. He was elected grand master of the Masonic order of the state about six years ago and his Masonic ring was the first identification when his body was found. Mr. Thomas accumulated considerable money and invested most of it in mining properties around Galena and Baxter, Kas.
He left one son, Claude Thomas, cashier of a bank in Gravity, Ia., and a daughter, Mrs. Dr. Stapleton at Ha Harpe, near Iola, Kas. His wife is living.
Mr. Thomas was a familiar figure at nearly all Democratic political gatherings of importance. He wore a heavy beard which in recent years has been changing from a dark brown to gray.
Labels: banking, blacksmiths, Coroner Thompson, hotels, Judges, Midland, politics, Suicide, undertakers
November 14, 1907
FELL DEAD IN A BARROOM.
Heart Disease the Probable Cause of
William Kunzweiller's Death.
William Kunzweiller, 45 years old, of 610 Cambridge avenue, dropped dead at 9:15 yesterday morning in the barroom of the Metropolitan hotel, 325 West Fifth street. Kunzweiller was a carpenter and contractor, and had lived in Kansas City twenty-six years. He was arranging to rent a room for a carpenter shop in the rear of the barroom when he died. A wife and two children survive him.
Dr. G. B. Thompson, county coroner, ordered the body removed to Foster & Smith's undertaking rooms. An autopsy is to be held this afternoon. Heart disease is thought to have been the cause of death.
Labels: Cambridge avenue, Coroner Thompson, death, Fifth street, hotels
October 3, 1907
KILLED BY TARGET RIFLE.
Edward Candlar, a Negro, Is Shot
While Cleaning a Gun.
An autopsy will be held on the body of Edward Candlar, a negro who was shot yesterday afternoon at his home at 554 Cherry street, today by Coroner George B. Thompson. Clarence E. Hill, who lives at the same address, and who admits being present when Candlar was killed, is being held by the police on request of John Hogan, an assistant prosecuting attorney.
Hill, a witness to the shooting, told the police Candlar was killed by the accidental discharge of a target rifle he was cleaning on the porch of his home. When the house was searched a loaded pistol was found under a dresser. Hogan stated last night that there were no powder burns on Candlar's clothing and that he does not believe the shot which killed him was self-directed.
Labels: Cherry street, Coroner Thompson, death, guns
September 23, 1907
DIED IN AN AMBULANCE.
John P. Johnston Attacked With a
Hemorrhage That Resulted Fatally.
"Boys, I'm bleeding to death," announced John P. Johnston, 35 years old, to a party of friends whom he approached at Twelfth and Highland last night. He was subject to hemorrhages from the lungs, and had just returned from a picnic held in the country. While his companions waited outside for him to return from the interior of the saloon, Twelfth and Highland, he was attacked with a hemorrhage. An ambulance was called, and in it Johnston was being conveyed to emergency hospital when he died.
Johnston lived at 1701 East Twelfth street, and was a member of the Eagles. Coroner Thompson sent the body to Raymond's morgue, Kansas City, Kas.
Labels: Coroner Thompson, death, Highland avenue, picnics, saloon, Twelfth street, undertakers
September 22, 1907
FATAL ENDING OF STABBING.
Benjamin Clay Dies from Knife
Wounds Inflicted by Jesse Walker.
Benjamin Clay, 30 years old, a bottler, living at 2443 Penn street, died yesterday morning at his home from a stab would in the left temple inflicted by Jesse Walker, 19 years old, who lives at 2436 Washington street, the night of September 11. Dr. George B. Thompson, coroner, performed an autopsy yesterday. Walker is being held at police headquarters. Statements were taken from both the young man and his father, Albert Walker, yesterday. Should Jesse Walker be tried on a charge of murder, it is probable self-defense will be his plea. In his statement he says that Clay attacked him in a saloon at Southwest boulevard and Penn street, grabbed him by the hair and beat him on the face. He broke away from Clay and ran into a side room with Clay pursuing him, and that Clay was reaching in his pocket, apparently to draw a knife. Walker pulled out a knife and stabbed him three times, twice in the body and once on the left temple. Walker then ran and Clay chased him a block.
Labels: Coroner Thompson, murder, Penn street, Southwest boulevard, Washington street
September 19, 1907
NERLING SHOT HIM
MACK ROGERS DEAD FROM SA-
LOON MAN'S PISTOL.
Mack Rogers, 50 years old, a carpenter, living at a rooming house on Osage avenue, in Armourdale, Kas., was shot and almost instantly killed about 11 o'clock last night by Bert Nerling, proprietor of a saloon at 1525 Main street. The shooting occurred in an alley back of Nerling's saloon, and was witnessed by George T. Maloy, of 3335 Charlotte, a friend of Nerling. It followed a free-for-all fight in a house at 1527 Main street. Nerling at once surrendered to the police.
It seems that Rogers got into a fight at 1527 Main street in which a number of persons were involved. In the course of the disturbance beer bottles and other missiles were hurled around promiscuously, some of them striking and breaking windows in the rear of Nerling's place. Someone, presumably a woman, fired two shots with a small pistol, at which Nerling armed himself with a revolver and went out to investigate. Maloy followed him to see what the trouble was all about.
FIRED AFTER BEING MOLESTED.
According to a statement made by Maloy, when Nerling stepped into the alley in the rear of his saloon he saw Rogers and others throwing bottles. He shouted to Rogers:
"What the hell are you doing, trying to smash up all my property?"
Rogers, it is said, immediately turned upon the saloon man and hurled a beer bottle at his head. Nerling drew his pistol and fired point blank at Rogers. Then he turned and went into the saloon. Rogers staggered some twenty or thirty feet and fell dead. A bullet from a 38-caliber pistol struck him full in the breast, almost directly over the heart.
Nerling was taken at once to the Walnut street police station, where he made a statement to Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Hogan and Police Captain Morley. Captain Morley ordered the arrest of all the people at 1527 Main street and those living in a rooming house over Nerling's saloon. Maloy made a statement to the prosecuting attorney which was substantially the same as that given by him to the police.
ROGERS WAS 50 YEARS OLD.
Coroner Thompson was notified and ordered the body removed to Eylar's morgue. An autopsy and inquest will be held this morning at 9 o'clock.
Rogers was nearly six feet tall and weighed 200 pounds.
The police this morning locked up a woman who goes by the name of Maud Nerling. She is said to occuply rooms over Nerlin's saloon, and the authorities believe she will prove a valuable witness.
Labels: Armourdale, Charlotte street, Coroner Thompson, Main street, murder, No 4 police station, rooming house, saloon, undertakers
August 21, 1907
D. F. COBB KILLED
MEETS DEATH IN FIDELITY
BUILDING ELEVATOR SHAFT.
FELL FROM FOURTH FLOOR
JANITOR AVERY HAD TRIED TO
OPERATE THE ELEVATOR.
Unfamiliarity With Its Mechanism
May Have Been Responsible for
Accident -- Brother Saw Dead
Body and Asked Who
DANIEL FOREST COBB, TEXAS LANDS
PROMOTER, KILLED LAST NIGHT IN
ELEVATOR SHAFT OF FIDELITY
Falling through the elevator shaft from the fourth floor of the Fidelity Trust building, Daniel Forest Cobb, president of the firm of Dan F. Cobb & Co., was instantly killed at 7:30 o'clock last night. The body was found at the bottom of the shaft in a badly bruised condition by Tom Avery, a janitor in the building, whose inexperience at handling elevators, it is alleged, was indirectly responsible for Mr. Cobb's death.
When announcement of the accident was conveyed to the bereaved family at their home, 3411 Troost avenue, little Cecil Cobb, the 10-year-old daughter, became frantic and rushed to an open window. She exclaimed she no longer cared to live. Opportunely Mr. Cobb's brother was present and restrained the girl from harming herself.
Mr. Cobb's offices were on the fourth floor of the Fidelity Trust building. He was one of the most extensive dealers in Northwest Texas lands in the country. Last night he was waiting in his office for a party of tourists he was to take to Texas today. The elevators had stopped running and the only employe remaining in the building was Tom Avery, a janitor. According to Avery, Mr. Cobb requested him to operate the elevator, as the regular operators had gone home and he was expecting some friends there soon from out of town.
HOW THE ACCIDENT HAPPENED.
Avery, who was the only witness, made the following statement to the coroner:
"Mr. Cobb rang the bell several times and finally I took the elevator up to the fourth floor, where his offices were. He said to me, 'Tom, you must be asleep! Why didn't you come up sooner.' "
I told him I was not an elevator man; that they had all gone home and that I was not supposed to operate the cars. He then said he was expecting some friends there and that he wanted me to get them to his office.
"Then I went back down to the first floor to my work. Shortly he began ringing the bell again, and I went up to the fourth floor. Not thoroughly understanding how to run an elevator I did not stop the car just at the landing, but went on up about four feet. When I came down the bottom of the car caught one of Mr. Cobb's feet, crushing it to the floor.
"He cried with pain and throwing up the reverse lever I quickly shot the car upward again, thinking it would release his foot. That was the last I saw of poor Mr. Cobb. He had fallen into the shaft and dropped to the bottom."
Avery is an elderly man, and his frame shook with grief while he related the sad details.
"God help me," he cried. "Mr. Cobb was such a good man and so kind to me. What can I do, what can I do. I thought I was trying to help him, but see what I have done."
The grief stricken janitor was led away by Henry C. Brent, vice-president of the Fidelity Trust Company, who was one of the first persons to reach the body after it had reached the bottom of the shaft. Mr. Brent spoke high words of Avery's services, telling Coroner Thompson that he had been a trusty employe of the company for many years.
SHOCK TO COBB'S BROTHER.
Walking cheerfully into the lobby of the building shortly after the coroner had arrived, enroute to Mr. Cobb's office, were Luther Cobb, a brother, who has offices in the Ridge building, and Jay M. Jackson, president of the Jackson Land Company, in the Gibralter building, a former business associate and close friend of the deceased. When they saw the dead body of a man lying on a stretcher near the elevator entrance Luther Cobb asked a newspaper reporter standing nearby the cause of the excitement and whose body was lying on the stretcher.
Not knowing that the man was a brother he told that Daniel F. Cobb, a real estate man with offices upstairs, had fallen through the elevator shaft and been killed.
The brother became colorless, gasped for breath, rushed to the remains and, throwing aside the covering, looked into the face of the dead man. He gave a shriek and fell into the arms of Mr. Jackson and nearly collapsed. Quickly recovering himself, the brother's first words were in the interest of the surviving members of the family.
"His poor wife and children; they will never be able to stand this awful blow. But I must tell them; no one else can do it but me."
BORE SAD NEWS TO FAMILY
Mr. Jackson's horse and buggy were outside the building and taking it the brother and Mr. Jackson drove quickly to the home of the bereaved family. They were met at the door by Mrs. Cobb and the three daughters, Cecil, 10, Doris, 8, and Louis, 6 years old, respectively. The news of the death of the husband and father was broken by Mr. Cobb. The wife and mother was stricken dumb for a moment and the eyes of the little children opened wide with a mixture of horror and unbelief.
"Yes, he was killed a few minutes ago," replied her uncle. Then he told them the details of the tragedy.
Mrs. Cobb became hysterical, the two smaller children seemed to fail to grasp the true meaning of the word death, but with a heart-rending cry of intense anguish Cecil darted up the stairway crying that she would also kill herself so she "could be in Heaven with her father." Luther Cobb reached the child just as she was about to plunge through the open window.
TOLD OVER THE TELEPHONE.
S. P. Cobb, a brother of the dead man, is a guest at the Midland hotel. With a party of friends he spent the evening at a theater and did not hear of the accident until he went to the desk for his room key. Several times the hotel clerk had sent a bellboy about the hotel calling for Mr. Cobb to answer urgent calls by telephone, but he could not be located.
It was nearly midnight when Mr. Cobb entered the hotel and went to the desk for his key. A yellow slip of paper bearing a telephone number was handed out with the key.
"Who could be calling for me at this time of night?" mused Mr. Cobb as he studied the slip.
"It's your brother's house," volunteered the clerk. "I fear they have some bad news there for you."
Mechanically the man took down the receiver. The telephone girls, the cashier, clerks and bellboys grouped about the desk watching, but none dared break the news to him.
The telephone girl gave Mr. Cobb immediate connection with his number and in an instant his face clouded then turned crimson.
"Which one?" he asked. Someone at the other end of the wire were telling him of his brother's death. There were two brothers at home and in good health when Mr. Cobb had departed for the theater.
Hanging up the receiver, Mr. Cobb beckoned to a friend and the two hastened to a carriage. He had received the message and was going to his brother's family.
LEFT $50,000 INSURANCE.
Daniel Forest Cobb was born 43 years ago in Owen county, Ky. After reaching manhood he went East and engaged in the brokerage business in New York and Philadelphia. Later he was sent to Topeka, where he held the position of state manager for the Equitable Life Assurance society. Six years ago he came to Kansas City and opened offices in the Fidelity Trust building. He dealed exclusively in Northwest Texas lands and was said to be one of the largest individual operators in the West. According to Jay M. Jackson, Mr. Cobb carried fully $50,000 in insurance, $2,500 of which was accident.
Mr. Cobb is survived by a father, who lives in Owen county, Ky., the widow, formerly Miss Ada Thompson of St. Louis; the three daughters, and two brothers, S. P. Cobb, of Wellington, Kas., and Luther Cobb, of Kansas City.
No funeral arrangements have been made at this time.
Labels: accident, buggy, children, Coroner Thompson, death, elevators, Texas, Topeka, Troost avenue
August 8, 1907
WAS IT A DECOY NOTE?
Police Do Not Believe Schreider
"To the coroner: --Kansas City, Mo.
"There is nothing to say why I did this deed. I simply committed suicide. Please notify my wife, Mrs. Mary Schreider at 3016 Belleview avenue, Kansas City, Mo. Everything in my pockets please turn over to my wife.
"P. S. : Reason for this deed known only to me and no one else."
The foregoing not was received by Coroner George B. Thompson in his mail yesterday morning. He at once made inquiry at 3016 Belleview avenue and found that Frank Schreider had been missing for three weeks. His body has not yet been located, however.
Yesterday afternoon a woman who said she was a sister-in-law of the missing Schreider called to say that she did not believe the man had taken his life. She said that "financial troubles" had caused Shreider to want many persons to believe him dead. The police have been searching for Schreider on account of those same "financial troubles." A check now in the possession of the Fitwell Clothing Company for $30 and other checks in Leavenworth, Kas., the police say, are a part of the "financial troubles."
Labels: Belleview avenue, Coroner Thompson, Leavenworth, missing, Suicide
July 26, 1907
FINDS CORPSE SITTING UP.
Laborer Shoots Himself Leaning
Against Freight House.
W. C. Hopke, on his way to work at the Interstate Ice Company at 5 o'clock yesterday morning, found the body of a dead man sitting upright against the north side of the Kansas City Southern freight house at Second and Wyandotte streets. The police ambulance was summoned and Dr. Ford B. Rogers found that the man had evidently shot himself. A bullet from a 45-caliber Colt's revolver had entered the right temple, come out at the left temple and imbedded itself in a wooden timber at the dead man's side. The revover was still clutched in the right hand.
Coroner George B. Thompson sent the body to Stine's morgue, where it has remained so far unidentified.
The dead man, who has the appearance of having been a laborer above the common class, appears to be between 47 and 50 years old. He is six feet tall and weighs probably 200 pounds. His complexion is dark, his hair and mustache and eyes are brown and the head is bald. He had only four teeth remaining in the upper jaw. He wore a blue shirt and dark clothes.
Labels: Coroner Thompson, ice, Kansas City Southern, laborer, Second street, Suicide, undertakers, Wyandotte street
July 7, 1907
HEADACHE SUFFERER DEAD.
Miner Retired at Night Showing No
Thomas J. Flynn, Fifty-third and Elmwood, worked all day Friday in the Brush creek coal mines, and when he retired said he felt as well as ever he had. At 4 o'clock yesterday morning his labored breathing attracted attention, and it was discovered that he was unconscious. Dr. F. L. Dod was called, but Flynn died an hour later.Dr. George B. Thompson
, coroner, held an augopsy at Freeman & Marshall's morgue in the afternoon and found death to have been due to paralysis of the heart. "I understand Flynn suffered greatly from headaches," said the coroner. "His death could have been caused by overdoses of acetanelid, phenacetine or anti-kamnia, all used as headache powders, but they are great heart depressents. His clothing and house will be searched for such drugs. The heart paralysis could also have been from the inhalation of fumes contained in dynamite smoke while blasting in the mines."
Labels: Coroner Thompson, death, doctors, Elmwood avenue, Fifty-third street, undertakers
May 11, 1907
RUINS YIELD BODY.
MISS WITTEBART MUST HAVE
BEEN OVERCOME BY SMOKE.
FLAMES HARDLY TOUCHED HER.
Only a Small Amount of
Debris Over The Girl
The body of Miss Aurora Wittebart, the second victim of the University building fire of Wednesday afternoon, was found by a squad of firemen at 3:20 o'clock yesterday afternoon. No active or systematic search could be made until the walls had been braced, insuring the safety of the searchers, but within half an hour after work could progress without hinderance the body was found and removed to Stine's morgue. In the squad of firemen working under the direction of Assistant Chief Henderson were Jack Evans, W. C. Pahlman, A. Van Dusen, Dick Ginn and Charles Brown, and these men performed the work of recovering the body and conveying it to the morgue, where it was ordered taken by Thompson.
The body was not badly burned. Only the head and hands showed the effects of the fire. A sever injury on the right side of the head lacerated the scalp and the face was somewhat disfigured. The body was lying at full length on its back in an easy and natural position when found under a shallow pile of debris about ten feet south of the hall line and about twenty feet west of the elevator shaft. This location indicates that Miss Wittebart, contrary to general belief, did not lose her life near the northwest corner of the building in the vicinity of the fire escape, but had evidently made her way almost to the middle of the building and probably fell overcome by the smoke and flames. When the fifth story floor fell in, she was carried down with the wreckage and only a small quantity of debris from the roof covered her.
HAIR NOT EVEN SCORCHED
The girl's hat and coat were not found when the body was discovered. There was no doubt about immediate identification. The green skirt and white shirtwaist were easily recognized, as was a string of amber beads about her throat and a small gold fililgree ring on the third finger of her left hand.
The abundant light hair of the dead girl was not even schorced and the clothing was not torn or disarranged.
Miss Wittebart's parents, who are staying at the Densmore hotel, and her fiance, George P. Jackson, of 910 Holmes street, were not permitted to see the body, immediately, thought it was with the utmost difficulty that the police and firemen were able to restrain Mr. Jackson.
The young man was on the verge of nervous collapse after the body had been taken to the morgue. He insisted upon seeing the body, but his friends, realizing the inadvisability of this, took him to the Densmore hotel, hoping by removing him from the scene they could do better toward quieting him. As the party walked toward the hotel a crowd of morbidly curious followed as far as the hotel office, and one woman followed directly into the room to which he was assigned there. She cooly took a seat and remained until requested to leave, which she did, but with decided reluctance. Last night his nervous condition had improved considerably, and it was said that he was standing the ordeal with more fortituude than he had displayed since he had learned of the death of Miss Wittebart.
The funeral of Miss Wittebart will be held at 3 o'clock tomorrow afternoon from St. Patrick's church, Eight and Cherry streets. The body will be taken to the home of a friend, Mrs. F. C. Schmidt, 3338 Prospect avenue, today, and from there will be taken to the church Sunday. On account of the nervous condition of theparents of the young woman and George Jackson, the young man to whom Miss Wittebart was engaged to wed, it was thought advisable to not have them view the body of the dead girl, and the casket will remain closed.
Burial will be in Mount Washington Cemetery.
Labels: Cherry street, Coroner Thompson, death, Eighth street, Holmes street
April 1, 1907
TRAIN KILLS FOUR.
TWO MEN AND THEIR WIVES
VICTIMS OF THE ALTON.
SPENT EASTER IN COUNTRY.
"Red Flyer" Crashed Into Vehicle
At Grade Crossing.
The Chicago & Alton's "Red Flyer" killed four people -- two men and two women at a grade-crossing on Fifteenth street at 4:50 yesterday afternoon. The dead are Mr. and Mrs. D. H. Monarch, of 1717 McGee street, and Mr. and Mrs. George Henry, whose home address is not known. The merry party were returning from a day's outing east of Kansas City, and were crossing the tracks of the Chicago & Alton in a light, double-seated spring wagon when the accident occurred. The place of the accident is about one and a quarter miles west of Independence.
The horses had cleared the track when the engine bore down upon n the vehicle, crushing it and tossing the occupants high in the air.
When the engineer stopped his train, after continuing several car lengths, the crew alighted and ran to the assistance of the injured, the two men and Mrs. Monarch were dead, and Mrs. Henry expired within a few minutes.
The team escaped uninjured.
The bodies were placed aboard the train and taken to the Union depot, where they were viewed by Coroner G. B. Thompson and removed to Stine's undertaking establishment.
The party had started out about 10 o'clock yesterday forenoon, and it was understood that they were going to Swope park to spend the day. However, it is presumed they changed their minds and drove to some point east of the city for several friends, among them Mr. and Mrs. A. W. Burtch, were to meet them at Swope park, and drove to that place, but did not find them.
How the party happened to drive upon the tracks in front of the train seems to be unexplainable to the friends of the two men. Mr. Monarch was driving and it is said that he has always been cautious about approaching cars. However, one of the horses that he was driving yesterday was a spirited animal, and for the first time was hitched double. There is a slight grade and it is presumed that the horses began to get anxious to get home were a little fractious and probably could not be stopped before they reached the tracks, after the sound of the approaching train was heard.
Though it was not supposed at first that any of the bodies had been run over, yet all of them were considerably mutilated and crushed. Mr. Monarch's injuries consisted of the top of his head being crushed, and the right leg broken above the ankle, while his wife's injuries consisted of both arms being crushed below the elbows and her chest crushed on the left side. Mr. Henry's head was crushed, his left foot cut off at the ankle, and the right leg was broken below the knee.
Mrs. Henry's left leg was mangled from the knee to the ankle, and the left arm was crushed up to the elbow.
The identity of the bodies were not established until a search of the clothing of the men at the undertaker's morgue was made, and a grocery receipt bearing D. H. Monarch's name and address was found in his clothing. A card bearing the name of George Henry was found on Mr. Henry's body. Inquiry was made at 1717 McGee street, and it was learned that Mr. Monarch lived at that number. It was also ascertained that he and his wife had gone out for an outing with Mr. and Mrs. Henry and several people who knew them called at the morgue and positively identified the quartette.
Mr. Monarch was employed as a solicitor by the C. F. Adams Installment Company, 1513 Grand avenue, and also conducted a rooming house where he lived and one at 1620 McGee street. George Henry worked as solicitor for the L. B. Price Mercantile Company, Fourteenth and Oak, a firm similar to that by which Mr. Monarch was employed.
Mr. Monarch was 30 years old, and his wife was about five years his senior. Both Mr. and Mrs. Henry were about 30 years old.
Labels: accident, animals, Coroner Thompson, death, Fourteenth street, Grand avenue, McGee street, Oak street, railroad, rooming house, Swope park, undertakers, Union depot
March 23, 1907
TO A BEAUTY DOCTOR AT 74.
Death of Mrs. N. R. Stripe Was
From Natural Causes
Dr. Frank Hall held an autopsy yesterday upon the body of Mrs. N. R. Stripe, of Parsons, Kas., who died here at the German hospital Thursday afternoon. After the body had been removed to Stone's morgue, Coroner George B. Thompson received a message from H. G. Stripe, a son in Parsons, notifying him that Mrs. Stripe had died of poisoning and demanding an autopsy and an inquest.
"We found death to have been due to natural causes," said Dr. Thompson last night. "It was plain to be seen that myocarditis, a form of heart disease, had caused her death."
Dr. Thompson said that a son from New York and A. M. Glick, a son-in-law, living here at 1012 East Twelfth street, were present at the autopsy and were satisfied with the result. Another son, the doctor said, suspected something wrong and asked that one of the prosecutors be present, as he feared an attempt would be made to "whitewash" someone.
"The woman is 74 years old," continued Dr. Thompson, "and she came here to be treated by a beauty doctor -- to have wrinkles removed. Some cosmetics had been given her to use on he face, and when she was taken ill about a week ago she became delirious and scratched the skin where the cosmetics had been used.
"That caused a skin eruption, and the children here became suspicious that the mother was being slowly poisoned. It would have been impossible, however, for poison to have had an effect that way. We talked with the doctor who treated her and are satisfied that everything was all right, so far as being poisoned is concerned."
Mrs. Stripe, after a short service, was buried in Elmwood cemetery at 4 o'clock yesterday afternoon. All of her children and the son-in-law are stage people.
Labels: cemetery, Coroner Thompson, death, doctors, German hospital, poison, Twelfth street
February 22, 1907
ENDS LIFE BEFORE MIRROR.
Girl Cashier Shoots Herself With
Her Father's Pistol.
Ada Veive Sieglar, with her 20th birthday this week, stood before her dresser mirror last night at her home, 4809 East Sixth street, with a revolver pressed to her temple, when her sister called upstairs to ask:
"Ada, are you getting ready?"
"Yes, getting ready," she replied, and then, the sister having closed a door, there followed the report of a pistol.
Mr. and Mrs. J. E. Holiday, boarders and long time friends of the family, were sitting in the living room just beneath the girls' chamber, Mrs. Holiday said:
"The gas globe has burst and must have struck Ada on the head," for they had heard the sound of her body falling.
In a moment Mr. Holiday had reached the girl's side. She was unconscious. A 32-caliber bullet had traversed her brain. She was lifted to the bed and died fifteen minutes later.
MISS ADA VEIVE SEIGLAR
No member of the household had the remotest idea when Ada left the dinner table a few minutes before, that she was even feeling despondent. On the contrary, she was cheerful and had joked pleasantly with Mr. Holiday about a long run which, in his business as an express messenger, had kept him from home for four days. Then she asked if the Coopers, friends of the family, were coming to spend the evening, and went upstairs, presumably to dress for the company.
That she left any message or note was denied by every member of the family present. At the Jones Dry Goods Company, where she was employed as cashier in the pattern department, she was known as a rather quiet girl who did not mingle much with other young people, though several months she has kept company with Robert E. Hamilton, a newspaper pressman. The death of the young woman's mother, which occurred last June, was suggested as having preyed upon her mind, but the family do not incline to the idea. Her father, J. T. Seiglar, had gone to call on a friend a few minutes before the tragedy. Two unmarried sisters, Ora and Grace, were in the kitchen at the time. The only other member of the family is Gus E. Seiglar, a brother, employed by an express company at the Union depot.
It was 10:45 o'clock and three hours after the shooting when the father came home to hear the first news of the tragedy. He is prominent in Masonic circles and the Eastern Star will assist in the funeral arrangements.
Coroner Thompson deputized D. W. Newcomer to view the body and remove it to his undertaking room.
Miss Seiglar had worked at the Jones dry goods store for about three months. The revolver that she shot herself with was her father's. She had taken it from a trunk in another room where the brother had kept it and another revolver of her own.
Labels: birthdays, Coroner Thompson, Jones Dry Goods, Sixth street, Suicide
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Kansas City Stories
Early Kansas City, Missouri