June 1, 1908
As an outcome of several months of domestic troubles, Mrs. Mildred Settle, daughter of Richard L. Long, a prominent real estate dealer of Fort Worth, Tex., 18 years of age, committed suicide in her room at the Humbolt hotel at Twelfth and Locust streets yesterday afternoon by drinking carbolic acid. Mrs. Settle and her husband, Harry Settle, had been in Kansas City since Saturday at midnight, having come here to visit Mr Settle's parents, who live at 1308 Oak street. They went immediately to the Humbolt hotel, and nothing more was seen of them until late yesterday morning.
Settle appeared in the dining room of the hotel for breakfast at a late hour without his young wife. After his breakfast he went back to their room to see why she had not come down for breakfast. He found the door locked, and to his knocking he received no reply.
He called repeatedly, and she finally told him to leave her, as she wished nothing more from him. Surprised at this treatment, he began to plead with her, but the young wife would speak to him no more.
After urging a reconciliation for some time, he left the hotel and went to his mother's home. He enlisted her services, and together they went to the hotel, and stood outside of the door, first one pleading with the girl, and then the other. At last Mrs. Settle opened the door and let them in. Mrs. Settle then left the husband with his wife, and soon it appeared that all the trouble was over between them. They left the hotel together, and appeared in a happy frame of mind.
About noon they returned and went directly to their room. Mr. Settle left and went to his mother's home. As he passed out of sight his wife walked form the hotel to Hucke's drug store at Twelfth and Oak streets, where she purchased a vial of carbolic acid.
Soon she was seen running through the halls, out of doors and into her father-in-law's home. In the room she found her husband talking with his father and mother. She ran directly up to him, gasping out an almost inarticulate cry: "Oh Harry, Harry," and then fell to the floor at his feet.
The family physician was called and tried to revive the fast falling girl by administering vinegar. His treatment was without beneficial effect and her husbans sent in a call for the police ambulance. At the Walnut street station, the nearest one, the doctor had gone out for lunch, but the ambulance was sent nevertheless.
When it arrived at the house where the unconscious girl lay, she was hastily carried into the carriage and orders were given for a record drive to the emergency hospital, fourteen blocks away.
The girl was almost beyond medical aid before they had reached the hospital and died a few moments after having been taken in charge by the police surgeon.
Just before Mrs. Settle left the hotel she had opened her door and called to Mrs. A. D. Buyas, wife of the proprietor, asking her the date of the month. Remembering this incident, Mrs. Buyas went into the dead girl's room, expecting to find an explanatory note of some kind. As she passed through the door she noticed a leaf of charred paper in the center of the floor with a half burnt match beside it. She stooped to see if she could make out what was written on the sheet and succeeded in deciphering the last word, which was "dead."
Apparently Mrs. Settle had written a note telling of her suicidal intentions and at the last moment decided to leave it all to the imagination. Mr. Settle says that he was not greatly surprised at his wife's actions, for on the occasion of their last years' visit to Kansas City his wife had bought a bottle of laudanum and announced her intention of committing suicide. He says that he was able to persuade her not to do so at that time, but the threat had been ever ready with her since.
Mr. and Mrs. Settle had lived for two years on a ranch near Amarillo, Tex. While on the ranch his wife had developed a strange fascination, according to him, of breaking broncos. At the beginning of her riding she was thrown violently to the ground, sustaining a serious injury about the head. Her husband thinks that this fall caused her to become despondent and in constant ill health, which made her very irritable at times. This fact he believes caused her to magnify the family troubles, which have frequently arisen.
Harry Settle was well known in college football circles, having been a tackle on the University Medical school football team for three years, 1899-1901. At that time he was reputed to be one of the best tackles in the West. He is a brother of Mrs. E. J. Gump of 105 Spring street in this city.