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October 22, 1909



Stopped Work on Essay With "And
Then I Prepared to Take Some
Rest" to Go on Errand to
Grocery for Mother.

While "running" an errand for his mother, Sidney Crawford, 16 years old, son of Mr. and Mrs. L. H. Crawford, 8247 East Twenty-eighth street, met death beneath the wheels of an Indiana avenue street car, between Twenty-eighth street and Victor avenue, at 4 o'clock yesterday afternoon. Mrs. Crawford had sent Sidney with an empty bottle to a grocery store for milk.

As the boy reached a point on Twenty-eighth street where he might cross directly over to the store, a southbound car obstructed his path for a moment. When it had passed Sidney ran quickly behind it, and encountered a northbound car.

The momentum of the car carried it about thirty feet before it could be stopped and the body could be extricated from beneath the rear trucks, where it was wedged tightly.

When it was disengaged by a wrecking crew thirty minutes after the accident, the half-pint milk bottle remained unbroken.

The boy was the oldest son of the Crawford family and a junior in Manual Training high school. In the library of the home yesterday afternoon he was writing an essay when his mother sent him on the fatal trip to the store. The title of the thesis was "A Halloween Prank."

As Sidney arose to go he bent over his paper and in a thin, boyish scribble added the sentence: "And then I prepared to take some rest." In less than five minutes a neighbor came running to the Crawford doorstep with news of the accident.

Mrs. Crawford was overcome with grief too acute for tears and medical attention was necessary. Mrs. August Nuss, 3233 East Twenty-eighth street, whose husband is a partner with Mr. Crawford in a trunk store at 425-27 West Sixth street, called the latter over the telephone.

The body of the boy was examined by Deputy Coroner Harry Czarlinsky immediately after the accident. An inquest will be held this afternoon. The motorman and conductor of the Indiana avenue street car which killed him were arrested by Patrolman Joseph Morris and taken to the county prosecutor's office but later were released on their personal bonds.

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July 7, 1909


Grizzled Veterans With Springfields
Patrol Dynamite District.

Two ancient negroes, A. L. Jones and Percy Williams, last night did sentry duty in front of the row of cottages on Highland avenue, between Twenty-seventh and Twenty-eighth streets. It was in this vicinity that a house was wrecked by dynamite early Monday morning after it had been let to negroes.

The negroes who mounted guard last night had both seen service in the civil war in the capacity of teamsters. They were armed with old regulation Springfield rifles. As they paced slowly up and down the plank sidewalk they swapped stories of war times, or kept step to "hay-foot! straw-foot!" according to a system said to have been employed by the drill masters of '61.

"Seems powerful lonely out here," said one of the sentinels, bringing his weapon to parade rest when accosted by a lone reporter in the twilight of a flickering arc lamp.

"When are you relieved?" was asked.

"Not until morning."

"Going to carry that heavy rifle around with you all the time?"

"Certainly; this is soldiering," was the answer.

No clues as to the dynamiting have been discovered by the police of No. 6 station.

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May 19, 1909


St. Mary's has 250 Beds, and Sev-
enty-Two of These Will
Be Free.

St. Mary's hospital at Twenty-eighth and Main streets was dedicated yesterday morning. Solemn high mass was celebrated by Rev. Father O. J. S. Hoog, vicar general of St. Louis. All of the Kansas City Catholic clergy, and about fifty priests from outside, participated. After mass a breakfast was served and addresses were made by Bishop Thomas F. Lillis, Mayor Thomas T. Crittenden, Jr., and Frank P Walsh. A public reception was held in the afternoon and at night.

The Sisters of St. Mary of St. Louis, which order maintains hospitals in St. Louis, St. Charles, Jefferson City and Chillicothe, launched the project for a similar institution here. The Sisters met with the energetic co-operation of Kansas City men and women in building the hospital.

Together with the grounds the building cost $150,000. It is four stories high and measures 222x76 feet. It contains 250 beds. Of these, seventy-two are free. The medical staff has not been chosen.

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May 4, 1909


But Broken Ankles Prevented John-
son Reaching His Mangy Pup.

The attention of many people who passed the new St. Mary's hospital at Twenty-eighth and Main streets yesterday was attracted to a small, mangy looking pup of the all-wool variety, who sat near the areaway leading into the boiler room. Occasionally the pup looked skyward and howled dismally. Sisters from the hospital were seen tempting the little watcher with pans of milk and other delectables, but he steadfastly refused to desert his post, and last night laid down with an eye on the areaway.

While looking for a place to sleep Saturday night, Gabriel Johnson, the owner of the faithful pup, fell down the areaway and broke both ankles. He was found Sunday and taken to the general hospital where the broken bones were set, but the dog did not see his master leave St. Mary's hospital as he was not taken through the areaway.

Johnson says he works for John Wolf, a quarryman of Centropolis. His condition was improved yesterday.

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September 21, 1908



"Judge" James Hunter, a settler in Westport since 1826 and one of the most familiar figures of the old town, died at the Harris house in Westport, where he had lived for twenty-five years, at 4 o'clock yesterday afternoon, at the age of 88 years old.

Born eighty-three years ago in Russellville, Ky., James Hunter, at the age of 1 year, came with his father, the Rev. James M. Hunter of the then Cumberland Presbyterian church, to where Westport now is, in 1826. There was but one house in the place, a cabin owned by Frederick Chouteau, which was hotel, general store, and, in fact, the whole settlement under one roof. Rev. Hunter started another store, where he had saddlery, general merchandise and notions, now the corner of Southwest boulevard and Penn street. At this time Kansas City was not in existence. Young Hunter later started in the saddlery business. He also became the owner of a tract of about eighty acres between Twenty-eighth, Thirty-third, Main and Holmes streets. this he afterwards disposed of very cheaply. At the age of 30 years he married Miss Eleanor Stevens of Cass county, Mo., but she lived only a year. They had no children.

About 1854 the great movement across the plains was at its highest point, and James Hunter and his younger brother, Thomas, went into the freighting business. Their long caravans of prairie schooners, drawn by oxen, toiled slowly across the dry plains from Westport to Santa Fe, hauling every sort of necessity for the settlers in the gold fields. The profit was brought back in the form of gold dust, and debts were paid with the dust in Westport, as well as in San Francisco. Both of the brothers made their headquarters in Santa Fe, but they were constantly on the move, and Westport saw them several times a year.

When the civil war broke out they had not time to mix in the quarrels of the North and South -- they were interested in the development of the Western country. They continued to run their business right through the war. Their name became known everywhere along the great trail, and they waxed wealthy.

The inception of the railway proved the ruin of their freight business. In 1871 James Hunter gave up the trade and moved from Santa Fe back to Westport, where he had lived ever since. He became a notary public and in 1886 was elected police judge of the town. Twenty-five years ago he registered at the Harris house, then the leading hotel in Westport, and retained a room there until his death.

Two brothers and a sister survive, Dr. D. W. Hunter of Dallas, Tex.; Thomas H. Hunter of 4013 Central street and Mrs. E. H. Huffaker of El Paso, Tex.

The funeral services will be at 10 o'clock Tuesday morning from the residence of Thomas H. Hunter. Burial will be in Union cemetery.

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August 15, 1908


Mrs. Alice Buerskens Felt She Was a
Burden to Her Husband.

With a small bunch of flowers in her left hand and a large revolver in the right, Mrs. Alice Buerskens shot herself in the right temple at 10 o'clock in her home, 1700 East Twenty-eighth street, yesterday morning after sh e had written a note to her husband, Henry Buerskens, a bartender, telling him she loved him too much to be a burden to him any longer. Alice Holmberg, 7 years old, who lives at 2705 Vine street, every day paid a visit to Mrs. Buerskens and when she called at the home yesterday Mrs. Buerskens sent her to the store to purchase stamps. While the child was away from the house Mrs. Buerskens shot herself.

She died instantly and was found lying on the bed by the Holmberg girl when she returned to the house from the store. Alice Holmberg immediately ran to her home, where she notified her mother, who in turn apprised No. 6 police station.

Carpenters employed on a new building across the street from the Buerskens home heard of the pistol shot, but paid no attention to it. The dead woman and her husband had recently moved to the Twenty-eighth street house, and the neighbors did not know their name.

The police found difficulty in securing the woman's name and it was several hours before the husband was notified of the suicide. The husband could not give any reason for the deed, and the note she left to explain her act was not clear. He said that his wife appeared to be in a happy mood when he left her in the morning to go to work. Before her marriage to Henry Buerskens she was Alice Beech and formerly a nurse in the city hospital and in the state hospital at Topeka, Kas. The coroner was notified and he had the body removed to Freeman & Marshall's undertaking rooms.

Mrs. Buerskens left the following note addressed to her husband:

"Dear Henry: You are not to blame for this -- I love you too much to burden you longer. Pray God to forgive me -- love to my own dear mother, father, brother and all my people -- sweetheart, don't you feel bad -- I am sorry I could not help you more -- love and kisses, Alice"

When seen last night, Mr. Buerskens said his wife had been ill for several years and of late had been worse than usual. They had no children and she was alone in the house the greater part of the time, and probably brooded over her illness. He said his wife had never complained of being tired of life and he had no idea she would kill herself.

Neighbors and friends who have known the woman for several years said she had been in the habit of taking opiates to relieve the pain she continually suffered. Mrs. Buerskens's parents reside in Topeka, Kas.

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June 25, 1908


Florence Myers Bitten on Face While
Playing at Her Home.

Florence, the 3-year-old daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Harry J. Myers, 3015 Cherry street, was bitten by a dog belonging to O. S. Bone of Roanoke, who formerly lived at the Elizabeth flats, Thirtieth and Cherry streets, while at play in the yard in front of her home yesterday afternoon about 2 o'clock. The dog is a black and tan mongrel and was captured at once. It is not believed to be affected by rabies. The little girl was bitten over the left eye, and Drs. J. W. Kyger and Fred Kyger were summoned at once to dress the wound.

After biting the little girl, the dog ran north to Twenty-eighth street, where he attacked another dog. Police were summoned after the dog's capture and requested to kill him, but stated that this could not be done without the owner's consent, unless the dog be affected by rabies.

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May 9, 1908


Returned to Smallpox Hospital After
a Jaunt About Town.

The two girls, Edna Sickler, 12, and Grace Kaufman, 13 years old, were returned to quarantine at St. George hospital near the Milwaukee bridge late last night. Edna Sickler was the first to arrive at 9 p. m., in company with her father, Edward Sickler. At 11:15 o'clock Grace Kaufman was taken back by the guard, Morris S. Sharp. Both girls escaped from quarantine where smallpox patients are confined and were gone thirty-four and thirty-six hours, respectively.

While the police were supposed to be looking for them a citizen who had seen their descriptions in Friday's Journal called up the smallpox hospital and told Dr. George P. Pipkin, in charge there, that he believed both girls were with the Kaufman girl's father at Twenty-ninth and Spruce streets.

The girls reported that they walked from the smallpox hospital to the end of the Fifth street line -- both had previously begged a nickel from their mothers -- and transferred until they had reached the vicinity of Twenty-ninth and Prospect. There, as if by prearrangement, they met Frank Kaufman, Grace's father. He took the girls with him to cut grass on Prospect avenue between Twenty-eighth and Twenty-ninth and took them home with him in the evening.

Dr. Pipkin said that Kaufman would be prosecuted for harboring a person with a contagious disease without reporting the fact. Kaufman told Sharp that the girls said they had been discharged.

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May 8, 1908





Edna Sickler and Grace Kaufman
Elude the Guards and Go Visit-
ing, No One Seems to
Know Where.

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.

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October 11, 1907


Remarkable Habit of Man for Whom
Police are Caring.

Patrolman Hall found a man sitting on the sidewalk at Twenty-eighth street and Wabash avenue late Wednesday night. He was very weak and incoherent and the policeman sent him to headquarters for "safe keeping."

When the "safe keepers" were released early yesterday morning this man, who gave the name of Calvin A. Miller, 40 years old, was still unable to take care of himself. Dr. W. L. Gist examined him,, and Miller said he had been chewing poke root.

"I gathered the herb myself," said Miller feebly, "and became so fond of it that it became a necessity. It has undermined my constitution so that I can not work any more."

Miller had been acting as janitor of the flats near where he was found, but the eating of poke root had so incapacitated him that he could not work. Although only 40 years old, he looks and acts like an aged, broken down man. Dr. Gist sent him to the general hospital for treatment.

"I have seen and heard of many persons who use drugs," said the doctor, "but this is the first case of a person being addicted to poke root that I ever heard of."

The pokeberry plant is a common herb, of the genus phytolacca. It is non-poisonous, possessing emetic and diuretic properties. The tincture made from the root is is extensively used in the treatment of disease. Poke root may be found in profusion in all parts of Jackson county.

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March 30, 1907


Crapshooters Operate Games on South
Terrace, It Is Charged.

Under the seal of secrecy two boys tipped off Judge McCune of the juvenile court yesterday afternoon the fact that a gang of crap-shooters is running a series of games in the neighborhood of Twenty-eighth and Terrace, victimizing the boys of that part of the city. The games are conducted with a great deal of care to avoid interruption by the police. The scheme is for the gamekeeper to carry under his arm a small piece of canvas, which he spreads as a table, while he appoints lookouts in all directions to warn him of the approach of the police. Whenever an alarm is given the dealer simply folds up his canvas and puts it in his pocket and there is no evidence left of his misdeeds.

According to the story told by the boys, on Sundays these lads play pretty heavily, sometimes as much as $15 going into the hands of the gamekeeper.

An effort will be made to break this practice up and arrests will undoubtedly be made as soon as sufficient evidence can be secured against the gamekeepers. The boys yesterday declared they were afraid to tell the names of the ringleaders, because threats of violence have been made against any boy who "peaches."

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