February 5, 1910
SQUATTERS STAY IN JUNGLE.
Attempt to Oust From Bottoms Re-
sults in Non-Suit.
A patch of jungle 400 feet long by 300 feet deep, near the Star elevator in the East Bottoms, was a matter of dispute between a whole colony of squatters and the Kansas City Southern Railway Company in Judge Thomas's division of the circuit court yesterday. While many settlers of the place were involved, only one, Lewis Warner, was named in the petition. Warner had lived in his lean-to close to the Missouri river bank and on the alleged right-of-way of the railroad for many years.
In answer to the demand of the railroad that he move his effects to other shores, Warner stuck the closer to his home in the tall reeds and willows. He was of the staying kind, and then there were others just as deep in the mud as he was in the mire. He put it up to the road to move the entire colony.
But even the patience of a corporation can become exhausted. Cyrus Crane, lawyer for the Southern, served notice on Warner that he must move or stand trial, and then brought suit to oust him.
When the case was called Warner was there with his witnesses. The latter were mostly neighbors of the defendant and denizens of the tract claimed by the railroad. In the court room yesterday they answered to the names of "Dump Bill," "Silver Bill," "Sleepy Sue," Louis Lombardo and Mrs. Louisa Sarah Koffman.
Lombardo is the janitor at the city hall. He was one of the first witnesses for the company.
"I was once in the vicinity of the patch of ground where Warner lives," said he. "There I saw an old negro man come out of the willows with a basket of vegetables on his arm. I looked at where he came from and saw nothing but bullrushes and willows.
" 'Where did you get those vegetables?' I said to him, and he answered that he got them back in the bushes. I followed the trail he was on and came upon one, two, three houses with truck patches. I felt like Christopher Columbus."
"Did the Kansas City Southern get you your job at the city hall?" was asked of Lombardo by Attorney Crane in direct examination.
"No, I got it by making a speech on a beer keg for the Democratic party," the witness promptly replied, while the whole court room laughed.
Some of the older witnesses said they had been living at their present location since 1890. One of these was Mrs. Koffman, who described the flora of the acreted land in this way:
"It is covered with trees except where there is bushes and willows and that's about all over the place.
"How large are the trees?" was asked.
"Oh, of different sizes. Some of them are as large as a gallon pail, and others no bigger than a pint measure. I don't know how you can't describe them because there are some littler and some bigger than others."
Attorney Crane entered an involuntary non-suit in the case and it was dismissed.
Labels: circuit court, courtroom, East bottoms, Judges, Kansas City Southern, Lawsuit, Missouri river
February 3, 1910
SUDS MAKERS ON CARPET.
Police Board Investigates Heim De-
liveries in East Bottoms.
The Heim Brewing Company was called on yesterday to explain the presence of twenty-five cases of its beer in the house of a Belgian in the East Bottoms near the Milwaukee bridge. This with a large quantity of whisky and wine was found there Sunday, January 23, by police from No. 8 station. They were disguised as railroad men and reported that they had no trouble in getting whatever they wanted, the Belgian's wife waiting on them as bar maid.
"It is not unusual," said a driver for the brewery who delivers in that district, "for five or six cases of beer to be left at one Belgian home on Saturday, especially where they keep boarders. One Belgian will easily consume a whole case over Sunday. All sales are cash and many times one person will buy several cases saying they are for different parties who left the money with him because he lived near the road."
An agent for the brewery explained that if the sales had been made in any other part of the city but the East Bottoms it would have caused suspicion and an investigation.
"But who would suspect a bootlegging joint down among the Belgians?" he said. "We never thought of such a thing and therefore the sales caused no remark."
"But the driver who sold the beer is still in your employ, I see," insisted Commissioner Thomas R. Marks. "Does that show good faith with this board?"
"We do not think the driver is to blame," said the agent. "It was an everyday occurrence. And how is the company to blame?"
"Well," said Mr. Marks, "we have no right to try the driver. This board now is holding up two of the Heim licenses on account of sales made to the Buffalo Club, a lid-lifting organization, and I think when it holds up about three more next July you will keep an eye on where your beer goes when delivered to other than saloons."
Judge R. B. Middlebrook made no remark other than to say that the case would be taken under advisement and decided later.
Labels: alcohol, breweries, Commissioner Marks, East bottoms, immigrants, police board
January 31, 1910
HOW JUSTICE ROSS
MADE HIS FORTUNE.
DONOR OF MONEY TO MA-
HONEY CHILDREN WAS
ONCE A LAMPLIGHTER.
Formed Partnership With
John Mahoney Twenty-
Five Years Ago.
Justice Michael Ross, of Kansas City, who in the Wyandotte county, Kansas, probate court Saturday gave the children of his dead partner, John Maloney, $50,000, was born in Cincinnati, O., December 19, 1859. His father, Alexander Ross, came to Kansas City in 1866 to aid in the erection of the first gas plant the city had. In June a year later, the family followed him, coming from St. Louis by boat.
"The Missouri was full of boats in those days," said Justice Ross last night, "and was the principal means of navigation between here and St. Louis. Kansas City had a real wharf and it was a busy one."
Two brothers, William J. and James Ross, and a younger sister constituted the children at that time. James was drowned while swimming in the Missouri river in 1872.
"We attended a little frame public school down in the East Bottoms just opposite what was known as Mensing Island," said Justice Ross. "Later we went to Washington school which still stands at Independence avenue and Cherry street. A ward school education was as high as one could go in those days unless he went away, and that was all we received."
After the erection of the gas plant Justice Ross and his brother William secured positions as lamp lighters. It required them to get up at all hours of the night, according to the condition of the weather and the fullness of the moon, both to light and turn out the street lamps. After doing this work at night Justice Ross worked all day on an ice wagon for J. E. Sales. Later on he worked in the old Davis brick yard, which stood about where the Zenith mill now stands in the East Bottoms.
Justice Ross always had in view the day when he would go into business for himself -- be his own boss. With his savings and some help from his mother he started a little grocery and general store on the levee at First and Campbell streets in 1874. After a time his brother, William, was taken into partnership, but remained but a few years. The latter for several terms was a member of the city council.
BOUGHT OTHER STORES.
As the city began to grow away from the river, Justice Ross saw better opportunities and opened a grocery store at 1401-3 East Fifth street, at Lydia avenue, and later another at 1100-2 East Fifth street, at Troost avenue. These two stores were money makers and enabled him later to branch out along other lines.
In September, 1888, Justice Ross was married to Miss Bessie Egan. All of their children, seven boys and four girls, are living, the oldest daughter being away at school near Cincinnati, and the oldest boy at St. Mary's, Kas. Six of the nine children at home attend the Woodland school.
"I knew John Mahoney from the day he came here with the C. & A. railroad," Justice Ross said. "He was doing small jobs of grading in those days and his mother went with him over the country. They used to trade with us at the little store on the levee and when in town Mahoney and his mother stopped at our home."
It was almost twenty-five years ago that Mahoney and Ross went into partnership and the latter has been a silent partner ever since, Mahoney seeing to most of the details and looking after the work. Justice Ross also had other interests, such as tree planting, and planted the trees around the finest residences and along many of the prettiest boulevards. In speaking of some of the work done by himself and Mr. Mahoney, the justice said:
"We built all of the Southwest boulevard, also Fifteenth street, doing the grading work. Roanoke boulevard is another piece of our work, as was the ill-fated Cliff drive, where poor John and his wife met such a tragic fate. We did lots of work on the country roads in Jackson county and built almost all of the roads in Wyandotte county, besides many of the brick-paved streets.
LARGE CONTRACT WORK.
"We also did much work away from here, such as government work on the levee at New Orleans, county roads in Southern Indiana and railroad grading in Kansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska and Colorado. Mahoney was a man who made friends wherever he went. I just received a letter from Indiana asking if he and McGuire were the same men who were there asking for all particulars."
As Justice Ross's business ventures thrived he found it impossible to give the time required to his two grocery stores, and a few years ago he disposed of them. Previous to that, however, he had established the Missouri Carriage and Wagon works at 308-10 Broadway, which he still operates.
For many years he has been buying property and erecting modern flats thereon. He does not build flats to sell, but he keeps them for what they bring in. When Admiral boulevard was cut through at Virginia avenue, Justice Ross owned a big row of old flats immediately in the right of way. They are brick and their moving back was the biggest job of that kind ever done in this city. He made them modern and is erecting more flats near them.
The prettiest and most costly structure erected by Justice Ross is a flat building at Benton boulevard and St. John avenue, on a promontory overlooking the entire city. He owns forty or more pieces of improved property in the city.
In the fall of 1898 Michael Ross ran for justice of the peace on the Democratic ticket and was elected. Since then he has held the office for three terms, twelve years, winning each time with ease. He said last night, however, that he would not seek the office again. He intends to build a big home in the southern part of the city and he and Mrs. Ross will devote their time to their children. He now lives at 626 Troost avenue.
"John Mahoney almost decided to go to Jacksonville, Fla., with our party," said the Justice. "The ground was frozen and he could not work. But he was such a home-loving man he hated to leave his family, even for a day. I had a premonition when I left that something would happen. When I got the wire the first thing I thought of was his automobile. We did not get the particulars, however, until we got a paper at Memphis, and did not get full particulars and learn that McGuire was killed and the others hurt until we got The Journal at Paola, Kas.
Labels: business, Campbell street, East bottoms, grocers, history, Independence avenue, Justice Ross, New Orleans, politics, public works, real estate, schools, St Louis, Troost avenue, Utilities
August 10, 1909
PENNY ICE DISTRIBUTION
SAVES LIVES OF BABIES.
Ensign Heazlitt of Salvation Army
Tells of Good That Is Being
It was stated yesterday by Ensign Blanche Heazlitt of the Salvation Army, who has charge of the penny ice fund, that more than 400 poor families are now being supplied by that means. The ice distributed in two sections of the city is donated. In the East Bottoms it is donated by the Kansas City Breweries Company through the Heim brewery. In the West Bottoms the Interstate Ice Company gives five tons each day for distribution in that section.
"For the North End, the McClure flats, Warden court and for the homes of many needy intermediate families," said Ensign Heazlitt, "ice is purchased out of the penny ice fund. We are still able to give ten pounds for a penny, and on Saturday we allow them to purchase twenty pounds, as there is no delivery on Sunday.
"The ice so delivered is not to be cracked up and used in drinking water. There are babies at most of the homes and it is used to keep their milk cool and sweet and to preserve what little else perishable the family may have. At first many of the mothers were wasteful, not knowing how to preserve ice, but I made a trip through the penny ice district and taught the mothers how to keep it by means of plenty of old newspaper and sacks.
"Some of them have made rude ice boxes which enables them to keep the ice longer than before. By next year we hope to have depots distributed throughout the district where ice may be secured.
"I have often wished that the subscribers to the fund could have gone with me on my trip. They would be delighted to see the good their money is doing. We consider penny ice the best thing that has ever been done for the unfortunate of this city. Many of the mothers cannot speak English but they all show their gratitude in their worn, wan faces.
"The arrival of the penny ice wagon in a neighborhood is always greeted by the children, who shout, 'Penny ice, penny ice!'
"Next year we want to be able to start out the wagons in time to supply the unfortunate just as soon as warm weather arrives. There is no doubt that the distribution of ice has saved the lives of many helpless little ones this year."
Labels: breweries, charity, children, East bottoms, food, ice, immigrants, North end, Salvation Army, West bottoms, women
July 9, 1909
SAVED FROM DEATH
BY GIRL'S QUICK WIT.
ELECTRICIAN GRABBED JUST IN
TIME BY MARY JOHNSON.
Was Suspended From Guy Rope Over
Flood Waters of Missouri With
High Tension Current
Suspended over the waters of the Missouri river from a guy rope on the discharge pope of the new pump in the East Bottoms, while a high tension current coursed through his body, paralyzing him and burning his flesh, A. J. Winnie, an electrician, was saved from death yesterday afternoon by Miss Mary Johnson, who, at the risk of her own life, grabbed his body and broke the short circuit. She was severely shocked as was her brother, Dan Johnson, but between them they rescued the lineman without serious injury to either.
The accident occurred in the early part of the afternoon. Miss Johnson is a daughter of A. D. Johnson of 334 Olive street, the contractor who built the pumping station, and she has been greatly interested in seeing the big centrifugal pump work. With a friend, Mrs. J. Dixon, she visited the pumping house yesterday afternoon. Her brother, Dan, was awaiting them and rowed them to the pump house, which stands some distance in what is now part of the Missouri river. The pump had been turned over to the city Wednesday night but Mr. Johnson remained there to render any assistance that might be needed by J. Nepher, the city inspector, and A. J. Winnie, the electrician who was given charge of the plant.
CLIMBS ON DISCHARGE PIPE.
A test of the pump was favorably commented on by the women and when the big motor was stopped, Winnie worked at the incandescent lights about the room. The pump house is ten feet above the present height of the river and it was planned to place clusters of electric lights on river and shore sides of the building. These would be over openings in the building eight feet in width. To place the lamps on the river side, Winnie found it necessary to get on the roof. To reach that place he clambered out on the big discharge pipe and then with his left arm over the steel guy rope he threw his right arm over the conduit which centered the big opening in the pump house.
Miss Johnson was about to compliment him on his agility, when his body suddenly became rigid, his face took on a look of agony and smoke curled up from his right hand and arm. Miss Johnson had studied electricity. She realized that Winnie had formed a connection with a high tension current, and that it was shocking him to death, having completely paralyzed him so that he could not help himself.
Without a thought for her own safety, she leaned forward and grasped him about the body. Her brother Dan, who was standing a few feet away, grabbed at her at the same time and the current passed through the trio. The force of the hold which Miss Johnson took a Winnie was sufficient to break his grasp of the charged conduit, and he swung helpless from the guy rope.
HEROINE IS MODEST.
The shock which Miss Johnson and her brother received stunned them, but they quickly recovered and, taking hold of Winnie, helped him into the pumphouse.
Winnie was badly burned. It took some time before he recovered sufficiently to realize how he had been saved. The skin was burned from his right hand, and his left arm was seared in several places where the current had passed through his body to the guy rope from which he was suspended. Miss Johnson applied oils to his burns and Winnie announced after thanking her that he would remain on the "job" until his time was up in the evening.
It was not until an hour after the incident that Mr. Johnson or his sister realized how close to death Winnie had been or the risk Miss Johnson had taken when she grasped his swinging body.
Miss Johnson modestly disclaimed any special credit for her part in saving Winnie from death.
"I knew enough about electricity to realize that he was grounded, and the first thing I thought of was to break the connection. To do this I made a grab at him, but did not think that I would get the shock that I did. Brother Dan grabbed me at the same time, or perhaps I would have fallen in the river. As it was, we both received severe shocks, but they did not injure us."
Labels: accident, East bottoms, Missouri river, Olive street, women
October 24, 1908
WERE WRAPPED IN BEDDING.
East Bottoms People Appeared in
Court Without Clothing.
More destitute than any family which has been in the juvenile court for months, the Akes family from the East Bottoms appeared there yesterday. So scant was the clothing for the family that some of the members of it were wrapped up in quilts and old sweaters. They told the judge that there was four feet of water in their home at Michigan and Guinotte avenues. The case was one for the Helping Hand, where the Akes were taken so that they could be fitted out with clothing.
Labels: clothing, East bottoms, Guinotte avenue, Helping Hand, juvenile court, Michigan avenue
October 21, 1908
OLD SMALLPOX HOSPITAL
WILL BE DESTROYED BY FIRE.
Abandoned Structure Is Full of
Germs of Deadly Contagious
St. George's contagious disease hospital, located on the banks of the Missouri near the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul railroad bridge, is to be destroyed by fire by orders of the health and hospital board. It is a frame structure, and it is proposed to have the fire company stationed in the East Bottoms preside over the conflagration. The building was erected several years ago, and the board decided that it would never do to use the wreckage for building purposes again on account of fear of a spread of contagion. Hundreds of persons have been treated there for smallpox and other contagious diseases.
The floods of last spring overreached the banks, and moved the building off its foundations onto the land claimed by the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul Railroad company. Ever since then the hospital has been out of commission and the railroad company has been persistent in its demands that the structure be removed.
Reports current in the Eleventh ward, in which the old general hospital building and annexes are located, that smallpox patients are kept in the annexes are denied by W. P. Motley, a member of the health and hospital board.
"The stories have been traced down to employes who were discharged from the old hospital," said Mr. Motley last night. "We have been told that the previous administration kept smallpox patients in the annexes, but no such conditions have prevailed since the present board has been organized.
Mr. Motley was asked where the city would keep smallpox patients in the future. He replied that he could not answer the question, but that it would be taken up at the next meeting of the board.
A year or so ago, during the Beardsley administration, a movement was started to establish a contagious disease hospital on the grounds of the old hospital, but it was given up on account of protests from Eleventh ward residents.
Labels: East bottoms, flood, health, hospitals, railroad, smallpox
October 9, 1908
MADE BISCUITS OF ASBESTOS.
Peddler That Sold Mineral Flour to
Woman is Fined.
Mrs. Mary Ricks, an extremely corpulent woman who lives near the Missouri Pacific tracks in the East Bottoms, will buy no more flour from peddlers, no matter how good a bargain she may get. Her experience with asbestos as a substitute for flour is what taught her a lesson.
All summer long near her home cars of asbestos, white and flour-like, have been unloaded, but she paid no particular attention to it. So, two days ago, when J. L. Fletcher appeared at her door with a fifty-pound sack of "good flour," for which he asked only 50 cents, big Mary bit. Fletcher, who was fined $10 in municipal court yesterday, had previously filled the flour sack with white asbestos.
To Patrolman Frank Michaels, who arrested Fletcher, Mrs. Ricks told this story: "I didn't need no flour, no I didn't, but 'twuz so cheap that I bought it. Pretty soon some company come up and I was fixin' to make biscuits for dinner. I rolled out mah flour, put in mah soda, shortening and so forth.
"I didn't see much wrong 'till I mixed in th' buttermilk and started to knead mah dough. Well, that dough kept a-gettin' stickier and stickier, and heavier than lead. I couldn't get it off mah hands and it was caked under mah nails. I coulda knocked a horse down a block away with a ball of that stuff."
Mrs. Ricks said that she had great difficulty in removing the asbestos flour from her hands. She didn't notice her nails and the stuff dried under them. She said she had to "chizzle" the asbestos dough out.
Labels: con artist, East bottoms, food, police, railroad
July 20, 1908
EXPERT MALE ADVICE NEEDED.
Women Salvation Army Officers in
Quandary over Purchase of Horse.
The Salvation Army has purchased a new ice wagon at a cost of $150 and will buy a horse today. The officers at headquarters, most of whom are women, have been looking over horses for the past few days, but have been unable to agree what should be the good points of a steed necessary to draw an ice wagon. They will call in expert male advice today and purchase an animal.
The new wagon will be started Thursday and will make the trip in the East Bottoms, the North end and the McClure district. The old wagon will work in the West Bottoms, which have hitherto been without penny ice, although there has been a crying need for it.
Contributions to the fund amount to $640.77, and 200 families will be daily supplied with ice by the middle of the week. Seven dollars and forty-six cents is the sum of the receipts for the two weeks that the wagon has been running. That means almost four tons of ice distributed.
Labels: animals, East bottoms, ice, North end, Salvation Army, West bottoms
July 13, 1908
PATIENTS SLEEPING IN TENTS.
General Hospital Is Crowded to Point
The new general hospital is certainly a badly needed thing," said an officer at the hospital yesterday. "Look at the crowded condition of the place we are in now. On one side, not more than ten feet away from the walls of the hospital, is the city smallpox pest house, which was put here because the floods drove it out of the East Bottoms The situation of the pest house so close to the main building of the hospital has been a danger which is hard to overestimate.
"In the inclosed space in the middle of the building is the tent in which several patients from the female ward sleep nightly. These are not cases in which open air treatment has been recommended, but they must sleep out there because there is not room enough for them to sleep in the hospital.
"There is another tent on the north side of the building where male patients sleep out of doors for the same reason. The capacity of the hospital exclusive of these outgrowths is 185 patients.
"We expect to move into the new building in two weeks. It will accommodate 540 patients, and will be superior in every way to the building we are now occupying. To say that we welcome the approaching change with gladness is to speak mildly."
Labels: East bottoms, flood, general hospital, smallpox
June 17, 1908
CONVENTION HALL IS A CAMP.
Several Families Make It Their Abid-
ing Place During Flood.
Cots, blankets and even the bare cement floor are the beds of refugees from the flood who are using Convention hall as a temporary home. Monday night 240 persons, thirty of them women, slept in the hall, and as many were there last night. But little space in the hall was taken up for storage of goods. Most of the persons there have few goods to store, and they either carry their belongings in a bundle on their backs or store them in the second story of their homes.
Most of the women there Monday night were from the East Bottoms. Yesterday they found that the water was not in their homes and returned. Fifty Greeks who were out of work on account of the high water left Convention hall yesterday afternoon for Chicago.
Labels: Chicago, Convention Hall, East bottoms, flood, immigrants
June 12, 1908
POLICE WILL PATROL
RIVER IN LAUNCHES.
Mounted Men Guard Flooded Whole-
sale District -- Peril of the
Chief of Police Daniel Ahern and Captain Walter Whitsett yesterday afternoon drove through the flooded East and West bottoms. Complaint had been made that sightseers and others had been breaking into unprotected houses and stealing.
Last night mounted men were stationed all over the West bottoms with orders to patrol the flooded district carefully. If the water goes any higher police will be placed in launches to patrol. Now an officer on horseback can reach the most important part of the wholesale district.
It was also reported to the police that in the trees near Harlem many dead cattle, horses and hogs have become lodged. The citizens in that vicinity fear the result if the animals are left there after the flood goes down. Today police in motor boats will be sent over the river to dislodge any dead stock and see that it gets into the current.
Near the Kelly mills in the East bottoms twenty-five or thirty men are at work night and day watching to see that the water does not break through the dike formed by the embankment of the Kansas City Southern railway.
"That is really the key to the East bottoms," Captain Whitsett said. "If the water once gets through there it means lots more trouble, especially for truck gardens, Currents would be quickly formed and all of that loose rich soil would go down the river as it did in 1903."
Wednesday night and last night fifteen or twenty families, by special permission, slept on the hillsides below North Terrace park. In the day the people go down and watch their property.
William Mensing, 10 East Fourth street, called at police headquarters last night and offered five or six furnished rooms for the benefit of the flood sufferers. In 1903 Mensing had a rooming house at Fourth and Main streets. While his rooms could have been rented at good prices, Mensing gave up a dozen or more to poor families and even took two families into his home.
"These rooms I have are not for men who can hustle for themselves," he said last night. "As before, I prefer to let women and children occupy them."
Mayor Thomas T. Crittenden, Jr., chairman of the police board, informed the department yesterday that tents could be secured at the Third regiment. They are to be used for poor and needy families if the worst comes.
Today two gasoline launches will be placed in commission for use of the police. They will be expected to patrol the river below the Hannibal bridge and render aid to people on both sides of the river if the emergency calls for it.
The crowd on the Intercity viaduct last night -- most of the people were sightseers -- was so great that Captain Whitsett stationed four men under Sergeant Robert Greely at the entrance. Their business was to be on the lookout for crooks and to keep the people moving. Three patrolmen were placed at the Mulberry street pay station to keep order and see that no one used the "center rush" method to get through the crowd without paying.
Last night several police were patrolling the river bank from the foot of Grand avenue east. It had been reported that thieves had been breaking into wholesale houses through windows, loading their boats and landing further down the river
The police were asked last night to be on the lookout for Antonio Travesse, 6 years old, an Italian boy living at 410 Holmes street. His father, Carlos, greatly excited, reported the missing boy. He said that when last seen his baby was going toward the river.
Harlem could not be reached by telephone last night. In the afternoon it was said that the water there had flooded the only remaining stores. Last night's report from there was that the river was getting lower, and that most of the wise citizens over there, who had passed through the terrible 1903 flood, will save all of their household goods and stocks of merchandise. Some were moved to this city and some of the stocks are still there, very high up with the counters and shelves nailed down.
Labels: boats, Captain Whitsett, children, East bottoms, flood, Grand avenue, Hannibal bridge, Harlem, Holmes street, immigrants, intercity viaduct, Mayor Crittenden, military, Mulberry street, Police Chief Ahern, West bottoms
May 8, 1908
TWO GIRLS ESCAPE
FROM PEST HOUSE.
UNFUMIGATED, THEY ARE WAN-
DERING ABOUT THE STREETS.
POLICE LOOKING FOR THEM.
ONE GIRL IS 12 YEARS OLD, THE
OTHER IS 13.
Edna Sickler and Grace Kaufman
Elude the Guards and Go Visit-
ing, No One Seems to
If you should meet two girls, one 12 years old, light hair, blue eyes with a squint in her right eye, wearing a red calico dress and red coat, and the other 13 years old, dark hair, eyes and skin, and wearing a gray coat and dark skirt, it might be advisable, if you are not equipped with a fumigating apparatus, for you to climb a tree or jump in a well until they have passed.
Girls of this description took French leave of St. George's hospital in the East Bottoms yesterday about noon. The city's smallpox patients are quarantined there. The 12-year-old girl is named Edna Sickler. Her home is at 6415 East Fourteenth street and her mother and two small brothers, 3 and 7 years old, are still in quarantine. Grace Kaufman is the 13-year-old. Her home is at 2307 East Eighteenth street and her mother and a sister 11 years old are still at the hospital.
"The girls have been down here nine days," said Dr. George P. Pipkin, who has charge of the hospital. "Both of their cases were very light, but they are endangering the public as they left here wearing the same clothes in which they came and were not fumigated. I have given their descriptions to all the police stations and want them returned here at once."
With five other children the two girls were playing about the hospital grounds about 11 o'clock yesterday. Telling the other children that they were going up the river bank to gather flowers they disappeared. As that is a custom, nothing was thought of the incident until the girls failed to show up for dinner at 11:45 o'clock.
Fearing that some accident had happened them the mothers went in search but got no trace of them. Then the matter was reported to Dr. Pipkin who, with Morris S. Sharp, a guard, made a search in the immediate neighborhood. That, too, was fruitless. Sharp then took the wagon and drove toward town. From a man working near the Crescent elevator in the East bottoms he learned that the girls had passed there, seemingly in a great hurry to reach the Fifth street car line, just about noon. Then the matter was reported to the police.
From the mothers Dr. Pipkin learned that both girls had been given a nickel in the morning. They wanted to buy a candy at a little store nearby, they said. The doctor also learned that the girls had taken particular pains to wash up in the morning, and one of them complained that her dress was not clean.
Sharp came to the city and went to the girls' homes, but they had not shown up there. When he went to a flat near Twenty-eighth and Wabash avenue, where the Kaufman girl's father worked as janitor he was informed that Kaufman had been gone two days. Mr. and Mrs. Kaufman are separated. When informed that her husband had gone, sh said she feared that the girl was with him. The father and three sisters at the Sickler girl's home said they would inform Dr. Pipkin if Edna came home.
Men at the smallpox hospital are watched very closely, but it has never been deemed necessary to place a guard over children. They have always been given as much freedom as possible as it was known to be good for them. These two girls are the first to ever run away from the institution. The police believe the girls are still in the city and hope to land them back at the hospital today.
Labels: children, clothing, doctors, East bottoms, Eighteenth street, health, hospitals, smallpox, Twenty-eighth street, Wabash avenue
February 8, 1908
TO SAVE BOYS AND GIRLS.
Juvenile Association Determined to
Raise Fund of $10,000.
An active campaign is to be begun by the Juvenile Improvement Club to raise $10,000 for use in caring for neglected children in Kansas City. In this association are gathered all the workers for the juvenile criminal and homeless. The money will be spent to endow the Boys' hotel, a hotel for negro girls, boys clubs in the West, North and East bottoms, and to provide scholarships for boys who now have to stay out of school and work to support smaller children dependent upon them. The idea of the club is to get all varieties of juvenile reform and educational work under one management.
Judge McCune of the juvenile court is president of the club, the Rev. Daniel McGurk is vice president, Arthur L. Jelley is treasurer, and Dr. E. L. Mathias, chief probation officer is secretary. On the executive committee there are in addition to these men the Rev. Charles W. Moore of the Institutional church, Mayor H. M. Beardsley and H. J. Haskell. Subscriptions may be sent to Hughes Bryant, R. A. Long, Charles D. Mill, C. A. Young or C. V. Jones, who comprise the finance committee.
Labels: children, Dr Mathias, East bottoms, hotels, Institutional church, Judge McCune, North bottoms, organizations, R A Long, West bottoms
February 6, 1908
HE IS OFFICIAL VACCINATOR.
Dr. Frank A. Denslow Will Do This
Work for Board of Health.
At a meeting of the board of health yesterday it was decided that to be within the law it would be best to have no volunteer physicians in the city's vaccinating squad. One man, Dr. Frank A. Denslow, was appointed for that special work. Chief Clerk C. H. Cook will direct his movements.
Mr. Cook, with Victor Ringolsky, an inspector and an officer detailed by the chief will accompany Dr. Denslow on all of his tours. So many cases have been turning up within the last few days from "bunk" houses in the North End that several of them, from which cases have been taken, will be visited tonight.
"As soon as a case of smallpox arises in a house, be it public or private," said Mr. Cook, "the inmates of that house shall be vaccinated at once."
It is understood that if there is any refusal on the part of landlords to admit the vaccinating squad it has the power to immediately declare the building in quarantine and keep it so until all inmates are vaccinated and the premises thoroughly fumigated.
Eugene Benton, a negro who said he lived in the East Bottoms and worked in Armour's packing house, walked into the emergency hospital late last night and asked for "some medicine for a hurtin' in my neck." When examined it was discovered that Benton was suffering from smallpox. He was sent to St. George's hospital.
Labels: board of health, doctors, East bottoms, emergency hospital, health, North end, smallpox
February 1, 1908
PREVENT SMALLPOX SPREAD.
Seventy-Five Men at Salvation Army
Marshalled by C. H. Cook, chief clerk of the board of health, Drs. Paul Lux and H. A. Lane and R. A. Shiras went on another vacccinating tour last nigth. Only one place was visited on account of the inclement weather. That was the Salvation Army Citadel, at 1300 Walnut street, and it was selected on account of the fact that a virulent case of smallpox was discovered there yesterday morning.
Seventy-five men were found in the smoking room and sleeping apartments at the Citadel, and all were vaccinated. One old man said he would leave the city before he would "stand for the scratch." When Patrolman August Metsinger and Victor Ringolsky, an inspector started with him to the Walnut street station, however, he changed his mind quickly.
The number 13 played an important part with the man who had smallpox at the Citadel. The number of the building is 1300, the man had room 13, had been in the room 13 days and he "broke out" on Friday, January 31, which is 13 reversed. He was sent to the St. George hospital for treatment.
A man dressed like a prosperous mechanic appeared at the board of health late yesterday and asked to be examined. It was soon discovered that he was suffering from smallpox. He had arrived here on a Missouri Pacific train from Omaha, and was en route to Boston. He was at once transferred to St. George, Kansas City's smallpox hospital in the East Bottoms.
Labels: board of health, Boston, doctors, East bottoms, health, hospitals, Omaha, railroad, Salvation Army, smallpox, Walnut Street
December 8, 1907
KELLY DIED LAST NIGHT.
The Bullet Wound Received in an At-
tempted "Holdup" Proved Fatal.
William Kelly, highwayman, died in the general hospital shortly before midnight last night of a bullet would received while attempting to rob a party of Greeks Wednesday night, November 27, in a car in the East bottoms.
Kelly had several accomplices who stood outside while Kelly entered the car. Christ Fasos drew a revolver, but before he could use it Kelly shot him dead. A brother of Fasos shot Kelly, the bullet passing through his chest.
Kelly was married and lived at 202 Tullis court.
Labels: crime, East bottoms, general hospital, immigrants, murder
November 7, 1907
7 SALOON KILLINGS, 90 DAYS.
DENNIS O'KEEFE DREW A KNIFE AND
WAS SHOT TO DEATH.
The seventh saloon murder in Kansas City in three months was recorded yesterday morning. In that time more than fifty men have been beaten more or less seriously in "tough saloon" fights.
A fight was started shortly after 8 o'clock in Charles Merlino's saloon, 200 East Fifth street. Charles Craig, a foreman for the Depot Carriage and Baggage company, and Sherman Davis, a stableman, had quarreled, when Dennis O'Keefe, a saloon keeper from the East bottoms, who had no interest in either man, struck Davis, knocking him down.
Craig tried to save Davis and was attacked by O'Keefe, who knocked him down with a chair. Merlino, owner of the saloon, then interfered and tried to separate the struggling fighters. O'Keefe, Merlino says, drew a knife and started toward him. Merlino then pulled a revolver from his hip pocket and fired five shots at O'Keefe, three striking him near the heart. He died almost instantly.
Practically everything in the saloon outside the bar was turned over and broken. Craig and Davis were severely cut and bruised but not dangerously hurt. They and Merlino were arrested. Chief Ahern ordered the saloon closed at once.
"It's another case of 'tough saloon,' the chief said. "That quarrel could have been stopped by Merlino before it became so strong. When O'Keefe entered the saloon Merlino waited until he was nearly tearing the place to pieces before he interfered. The result was a killing."
Labels: East bottoms, murder, Police Chief Ahern, saloon
July 6, 1907
IN MEMORY OF THE FOURTH.
Police Court Windup of a "Safe and
When police court opened yesterday Judge Kyle asked that all persons who had spent the night in the holdover after being arrested for shooting big firecrackers or placing torpedoes on the car tracks, be brought out at once. Eight men and boys, who were unable to give bond, stepped forth. All were discharged.
"Now call all those up, arrested for the same offense," said the court, "but who were able to give bond."
Fifteen men, three boys and one negro woman crowded forward into the small space in front of the judge.
"I let all those other fellows go," Judge Kyle began, "because they had no money or friends to get them out. They had enough punishment by staying in that hot holdover all night. I think all of you deserve a light fine, however. How many are guilty?"
Every person but one raised a hand. That one, John Johnson, a negro, was made to stand aside while the court orated a little on the dangers of firearms, firecrackers and fighting. Then they were fined $2 each. Johnson, who had struck Patrolman C. E. McVay over the head with a baseball mask, was fined $3.
James Hederman, 19, a member of the "Fifth and Lydia" gang, thought he would have his Fourth celebration without expense when he frightened an East bottoms drug clerk into letting him have fireworks, but the good time cost him $5.
Labels: East bottoms, Fifth street, fireworks, Judge Kyle, Lydia avenue, police court
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Kansas City Stories
Early Kansas City, Missouri