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September 15, 1909


Friends Are Starting a Subscription
Fund for Edward Harris.

Men who knew Edward Harris, the blind newspaper vendor who stood each day at the Junction and who was injured by being run over by a team Monday afternoon, met at the Kensington Avenue Baptist church last night and arranged to take up a subscription to aid him in his time of trouble. Harris was seriously injured, and may be a cripple permanently. He has a wife and a daughter to care for.

Reverend A. E. Burch, pastor of the church, presided at the meeting. Many residents of Kansas City were familiar with Harris and bought papers from him.

The members of the committee in charge of the subscription for Harris are Rev. Mrs. Burch, A. C. Wright, S. A. Faires and M. A. Randall.

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July 9, 1909


But Fred Collins, a Baker, Is Now
Under a Surgeon's Care.

To ride a bicycle was the ambition of Fred Collins, a baker, 1526 1/2 Grand avenue, and yesterday afternoon he secured a wheel and went out on Kensington avenue near Independence avenue to experiment. He started at the top of a hill and when he reached the bottom the machine struck a telegraph post. Dr. E. D. Twyman of the emergency hospital was summoned and set a broken right clavicle.

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July 5, 1909



Alone, Clara Amberson and Her
Sister Fought a Losing Fight
With Murderer -- Girl Dies
After Four Hours.
Alfred Howard, Who Shot Miss Clara Amberson and Took His Own Life.

Miss Clara Amberson, who was shot in the right temple by Alfred Howard, a rejected suitor, in the dining room of her home, 735 Kensington avenue, just before midnight Saturday, died at 4:20 a. m. yesterday. She did not regain consciousness.

In an unlighted room, and deserted by the young men who escorted them home, and who fled when Howard appeared with his revolver, Miss Amberson, assisted by her sister, Mrs. Mamie Barringer, battled in vain with Howard for possession of the weapon. Finally throwing Miss Amberson to the floor, Howard jumped on her, and then, as Mrs. Barringer seized him about the neck, he pulled the trigger.

The bullet struck Miss Amberson just back of the right temple and she collapsed. Believing that he had killed her, Howard turned the weapon on himself and sent the second shot through his own brain, and fell lifeless beside her. Surrounded by her mother, sister and friends, sthe wounded girl passed away four hours later.

In the light of subsequent events, it is believed that Howard contemplated the murder and suicide Saturday afternoon. It is known that he saw the young women at Forest park in the evening in company with young men, when he had been denied the privilege of escorting them or even calling at their home, and it is believed that the sight of the girl who was all the world to him, encircled in the arms of another man on the dancing floor, maddened him.

Four years ago Alfred Howard, then 22 years old, came to Kansas City from Iola, Kas. He secured a position in a railroad freight office, and roomed and boarded with Mrs. Anna Amberson, mother of the girl he killed. Miss Amberson was then a child of 13.


They were together a great deal. Howard assisted her with her studies, and when she was graduated from high school last year he declared his love for her, and asked her to be his wife. This was objected to by her sister and her mother because of her youth.

Six months ago Howard left their house, and shortly afterward went to Hot Springs, Ark. In the meantime Miss Amberson entered a wholesale millinery establishment and was rapidly perfecting herself in that line when he returned three weeks ago.

Howard had been in poor health since his return, but this did not deter him from declaring his ardent love for the girl whom, he told his friends, no other could replace. Miss Amberson found many excuses for not making engagements. Thursday he called her on the telephone and to his several requests for an evening she replied that she had previous engagements.

Saturday evening he called at the Amberson home and asked Miss Amberson to accompany him to a park or that she spend the evening with him as she chose. Miss Amerson smilingly told him that she had an engagement for the evening and that she was sorry. During the conversation he showed the sisters the revolver which he later used. No thought of violence crossed the minds of either girl.


Miss Amberson and Mrs. Barringer were unaccompanied when they walked to Forest park, a short distance from their home. There they met several friends, among them Orville Remmick of 5212 Independence avenue, and Ed Doerefull of 4621 East Seventh street.

It is believed that Howard shadowed the sisters to the park. H e arrived at the Ambrose home shortly before 10 o'clock in the evening. The noise he made when he withdrew a screen from a window in the kitchen of the Amberson home and clambered in was heard by Mr. and Mrs. Joe Wharton, roomers on the second floor, but they ascribed it to a parrot. For almost two hours Howard lay in wait. He chose as his hiding place the bedroom of the sisters, which opens from the dining room to the north.

On their way home, Deorfull, who escorted Miss Amberson, and Remmick, who escorted Mrs. Barringer, suggested that they eat some ice cream. They stopped at the Forest Park pharmacy and chatted for a few moments with O. Chaney, the druggist.


It was warm and the young men carried their coats over their arms. When they arrived at the Amberson home, they conversed for a few moments on the porch just outside the dining room, when the suggestion that they get a drink of water was made. the quartet entered the dining room. Miss Amberson and Doerfull going to one window seat while Mr. Remmick took a chair. Mrs. Barringer went into the kitchen for the water, when suddenly Howard sprang out of the bedroom.

Holding a revolver which he pointed at Miss Amberson, he cried:

"Throw up your hands and don't scream!"

"It's Alf! Help!" cried Miss Amberson.

Doerfull was first to see the revolver and the first to get out of the room. He was closely followed by Remmick. Both left their coats and hats. The cry for help brought Mrs. Barringer back to the room. By this time Miss Amberson had grappled with Howard and had clutched the revolver. Then began the battle for possession of the weapon and the shooting.


Screaming for help, Mrs. Barringer, after the shooting, fled to the sidewalk. Neighbors hastened to the scene. Doctors declared Miss Amberson fatally wounded, and said that Howard's self-inflicted wound had caused instant death.

The police who searched his clothing found the note which he had evidently written some time during the evening in which he declared that "Mamie" (Mrs. Barringer) was the cause of the anticipated double tragedy, and asked that Miss Clara and he be buried side by side.


Ed Doerfull, the escort of Miss Amberson, told a reporter for The Journal last evening that he had never been frightened as badly in his life as he was when he looked at that shiny steel barrel and heard the command to throw up his hands.

"I didn't wait to learn any more about who the fellow with the revolver was," said Mr. Doerfull. "Mr. Remmick and I had escorted the girls home and stepped inside the house to get a drink of water. I was close to the door and when I heard the command to throw up my hands and I saw that shiny steel barrel of the revolver, I concluded that I had better play checkers and move.

"I did not stop to grab my coat or hat, but ran. I don't know how I got home, for I was badly frightened. I lay awake all night and got up around 6 o'clock and went over to Remmick's house to see if he got home all right.

"I did not know until then that anyone had been shot, as I was too far away from the house when the shots were fired to hear the noise of the reports.

"I don't know why I ran away and did not notify the police about the man with the gun, but I guess most anybody would act the same as I did if they looked into the business end of a revolver and were ordered to throw up their hands.


"I got my coat and hat this morning at the same time Mr. Remmick got his. We saw Miss Amberson's body then and we will probably go to the funeral together.

"I did not know the young lady very well, having only met her a few times at the park. I did not go back to the house today, as I had an engagement to go to a picnic at Swope park, and it was too late when I got back this evening."

Orville Remmick, who was with Doerfull when Howard entered the room with the revolver in hand, told his parents that he was taken by surprise, and that when he heard the command to throw up his hands and he saw the revolver, his first thought was for his personal safety. He said that he ran for the door and ran home.


Half a block away he heard the muffled reports, and when he got home he telephoned to the Amberson home and learned of the double tragedy. He feared for a while, he said, that his companion, Doerfull, had been shot. Remmick left his coat and hat at the Amberson home and called for them yesterday morning. He spent yesterday afternoon at Forest park and yesterday evening at Electrick park.

Miss Amberson was 17 years old. She was the youngest of three children. Besides her sister, Mrs. Barringer, and her mother, she leaves a brother, Will, who is in the navy. An effort was being made yesterday to notify him by wire and hold the funeral until his arrival, if possible. The Ambersons came to Kansas City from Salida, Col., six years ago.

Howard had been rooming for the last two weeks at the home of Mrs. Ellen Harper, at No. 801 Cypress avenue, just a block from the Amberson home. That he planned the murder and suicide is believed by Mrs. Harper, as his trunk was locked and contained all of the small articles which he kept about his room.

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July 4, 1909



After Killing Clara Amberson, He
Turned Revolver on Himself.
Left Note Blaming Others
for His Deed.

As Clara Amberson and her sister, Mrs. Mamie Barringer, accompanied by two young men, stepped into the doorway of the Barringer home at 735 Kensington avenue, shortly after midnight this morning, a shot was fired which fatally wounded Miss Amberson.

The shot was fired by Alfred Howard, sweetheart of Miss Amberson, an a jealous rage. Mrs. Barringer grappled with Howard, but he shook her off and placing the pistol at his right temple, shot himself. Death was instantaneous.

A note, written by Howard, was found in the dining room of the Kensington avenue home. It reads:

"Mamie was the cause. She caused Clara to turn against me and Clara wanted to be dead when I was gone. Bury us side by side. HOWARD."

The note would indicate that Howard had deliberately planned murder and suicide.

The police at first said it might be evidence of a suicide pact, but the theory was given slight credence.

Howard lived at 801 Cypress avenue. He was 27 years old. He formerly lived at the Amberson home on Kensington avenue.

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July 2, 1909


Skeleton Unearthed on the Old Judge
Shouse Farm.

While excavating for a basement in a house going up at 1611 Elmwood avenue at noon yesterday workmen unearthed the skeleton of a man. A few minutes after the original discovery Arthur Williams, a boy living at 1530 Elmwood, while prodding around in the basement for a stick found a rotten board of a box and several old-fashioned square nails.

Deputy Coroner Harry Czarlinsky ordered the bones taken to the Carroll-Davidson undertaking establishment, from whence they probably will be taken to the potter's field for burial.

"The basement is located on the old William Shouse farm, near where a house belonging to him was burned by bushwhackers during the fore part of the civil war," said E. M. Bradley, and employe of the Metropolitan Street Railway Company, who was born near the place in 1852, and has resided at Sixteenth street and Kensington avenue ever since.

"Mr. Shouse used to be county judge of Jackson county," continued Mr. Bradley. "He was a Southern man, but very outspoken against the bushwhackers. One day they raided and burned his place. It is just possible that some dark deed of the bushwhackers was covered up."

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June 26, 1909


John Fleming, 18, Missing Since
Monday, Returns.

John Fleming, the 18-year-old son of Mr. and Mrs. Fleming of 2404 Kensington avenue, who has been missing since last Monday, returned home last night at 8 o'clock, having walked the entire distance from Pleasant Hill, Mo.

He could not give a very connected account of his wanderings, saying that he thought his mind had been affected by the heat of the sun when he started out. He remembered that he had walked most of the way to Pleasant Hill. It was thought that he had some vague idea of visiting his aunt, who lives within nine miles of that town, but he did not arrive there. He was more lucid about the return trip.

Young Fleming was first sighted at Raytown, Mo., by friends of Mrs. Fleming, who telephoned to the mother. Others along the line of march also recognized him and telephoned to the home. A reunion was held last night at the home.

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July 13, 1908





Of Improper Advances Twoard Pa-
trolman's Wife -- Doctor's Wife
Goes to His Assistance.
Principals Arrested.

Telling him that he had insulted one woman too many, Duke Lee, a policeman of 4314 East Fifteenth street, calmly removed the glasses from the nose of Dr. Joseph H. Robinson, 4412 East Fifteenth street, at Fifteenth street and Kensington avenue, shortly before 7 o'clock last night, and felled him to the ground by a blow in the face. As the physician was regaining his feet he again was sent reeling by a terrific smash on the nose delivered by the sturdy patrolman.

Mrs. Robinson, who had witnessed the affair from an automobile belonging to her husband, ran to the doctor's assistance and grappled with Lee. Mrs. Robinson continued the attack until Lee had entered the hallway leading to his apartments, when she desisted only to render aid to her husband, who by that time had regained his feet.

The men were arrested by Policeman Henry Good on charges of disturbing the peace and taken to No. 6 police station in Dr. Robinson's automobile, from where they later were released after the men had posted bonds of $100 each for their appearance. No charge was preferred against Mrs. Robinson.

The trouble had its origin yesterday afternoon, when Mrs. Lee, who resides in apartments adjacent to the office of Dr. Robinson, confided to her husband that she had been grossly insulted by the physician. Removing his uniform, Lee went into the street in quest of the doctor, but not until some time later did he find him in front of his office tinkering with his automobile, in which was seated his wife, preparatory to starting the machine.


"You have insulted one woman too many," said Lee, immediately after which the first blow was delivered. During the ephfusion which followed, Dr. Robinson said nothing other than to invite Lee to accompany him to the station in his automobile, and even later he refused to make a statement.

The affair caused not a little excitement in the neighborhood because of Dr. Robinson figuring in a similar, but probably more serious occurrence on the night of July 6, when he was shot at several times by John Kellenborn, who held some grievance, fancied or otherwise, in which his wife figured against the doctor.

Policeman Lee has been employed by the police department for several years and always has been highly respected in the neighborhood in which he resides. He has been married but a short time, and during the day hours his young wife is alone in their home. Mrs. Lee declares that the proposal made to her was deliberate, and when Dr. Robinson realized that she had been sorely offended he made an effort to apologize and requested that nothing be said of it.

Lee is on the day shift and at the time of his seeking and fining Dr. Robinson was in citizen's apparel. He has expressed himself as being determined to prefer a charge against Dr. Robinson today.


When seen at his home last night Lee said he probably should not have been so rash. "But when I thought of that little girl, a girl who probably never heard an indecent word before in her life, I was unable to control myself," said he. "I looked for him, found him and gave him what I thought he deserved. I am willing to answer for it."

Dr. Robinson was not seen last night. Mrs. Robinson, however, said that she is not acquainted with the facts of the case as she and her husband had had no conversation regarding it. Mrs. Robinson said that when sifted down the allegations of Mrs. Lee probably will have little or no foundation. It is said to be the intention of Dr. Robinson to prefer charges against Lee today, and to bring the matter before the police board.

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April 19, 1907



Used Peculiar Instrument for Inflicting
Chastisement That Left Welts on Scholar's Arm--
Teachers Testified the Boy Was Unruly

The board of education intends to put a stop to violations of rules of the board regarding the administering of corporal punishment to pupils. A peculiarly flagrant case, according to the claims of several witnesses, came to the attention of the board last night. A. D. Zimmerman, who lives at Fifteenth and Kensington, and whose son, Mark Zimmerman, attends the Kensington school, was represented at the meeting of the board by Attorney J. G. Smith in his complaint against Principal Berry, whom Zimmerman accused of cruelly beating the boy.

It was testified to by witnesses at the hearing that Berry has an instrument of his own invention for whipping pupils. To a piece of broomstick a foot and a half or so long he has attached a leather strap about an inch wide and fifteen inches long.

It was brought out that the Zimmerman boy had a green leaf fastened to his tongue and was manipulating it so as to make a peculiarly strident noise, which angered the principal. The boy grew sulky and "sassed" the principal, according to the witnesses. For this offense he was whipped with the strap, and he claims that the principal struck him over the arm with the wooden handle. This the principal denies, but the boy showed welts which were still in evidence, thought the beating occurred a week ago.

The board decided that Berry should be severely reprimanded by the superintendent, as he had grossly violated the rule of the board that no pupil shall be subjected to corporal punishment without the consent of the parent or guardian of the pupil. The Zimmerman boy's teacher testified at the hearing that she had punished him on several occasions, but that the parents had not objected. She testified that the boy was somewhat unruly and resented the attempts of theirs to discipline him, though he was generally tractable so far as she was concerned. The board believes that many cases of violation of the rule regarding corporal punishment occur which never come to the board's attention, and will enforce the rule to the letter.

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