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November 30, 1909



Suggests 10th to 31st, Troost to
Montgall as Desirable Location,
But Learns It Is
Too Late.

The park board was told yesterday by Dr. M. H. Key, a negro, that there are 35,000 negroes already in Kansas city, and that in a few more years they will number at least 100,000. He said that the proper housing of the race was becoming a serious problem. It is his opinion that the only district left for them to locate in is between Troost, Montgall, Tenth and Thirty-first.

"The negroes are being driven from the West bottoms by the invasion of railroads; from the North end by Jews and Italians, and from other districts by the progress of industry and improvement," said the doctor.


The purpose of Dr. Key's explanation was to protest against the condemnation of land occupied by negroes in the vicinity of Twenty-sixth and Spring Valley park for the extension of the Paseo. He feared that their property would be practically confiscated, and that they would not be sufficiently recompensed to find abodes elsewhere.

The members of the board assured Dr. Key that the valuations of the negroes' property would be protected, and that he had come too late with his objections, as both the board and council had approved the proceedings.up to the north park district..

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November 19, 1909


Mrs. Healy to Be Interred in a Man-
ner Befitting Her Worth.

"I always had friends," Mrs. Margaret Healy used to say, "Sure, haven't I always been friendly?"

Death as a charity patient in St. Joseph's hospital did not rob Mrs. Healy of friends. Yesterday a funeral was arranged for her that would have satisfied her most exacting wish. The "lay sister" of the West bottoms, whose personal services and sacrifices among her poor neighbors made her of note, is to be laid to rest today by the side of little George Traynor, an orphan whom she took into her care when his parents died, in St. Mary's cemetery.

Father Dalton is to celebrate high mass at the Church of the Annunciation, Linwood and Benton boulevards, at 9 o'clock. Many persons who lived near Mrs. Healy and who since have seen better fortune than she, will attend the services as a mark of respect for her useful life.

Men who knew her and her endless charities will act as pallbearers. Mrs. Ellen Hughes, who cared for Mrs. Healy the last six years of her life, and several men who were adopted as boys by her, will be the mourners. The pallbearers will be: John Kelly, Robert E. Donnely, John Doherty, Bryan Cunningham, John Coffey, Patrick O'Rourke.

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November 18, 1909



A motherly old heart was stilled last night when Margaret Healy died in St. Joseph's hospital. She was a charity patient and left no money with which to bury herself. But in life that thought never troubled her.

"I always have friends," she used to say. "Sure, haven't I always been friendly?"

And she had been. Her friendship for all that was human was shown in her adoption of a parentless family of boys and raising the two youngest from her scanty earnings as charwoman and washwoman. It was shown, too, in her working half the night doing washing and household work for neighbors, when the mothers of families were ill, in the many acts of kindness when the stork visited neighbors or when death crossed their thresholds.

A simple, artless old woman she was, who passed her last days in the companionship of a woman who befriended her and gave her shelter. No one who knew her ever heard her moan at fate. She was as full of laughter at 75 years of age as many women in their teens, with the same keen enjoyment of life and interest in the small things of the town and her neighborhood.

Mrs. Healy was about 78 years old. She came to Kansas City several years after the war. She was twice married. Her second husband, John Healy died a year after their marriage. Never in her life had the income of her family been more than $10 a week, but she saw only rosy prisms. Her first husband was a laborer. So was the second. But there always was a bit of meat and bread for the hungry to be found in the family larder and a bit of heart left for the weak and sometimes the undeserving.

Until the flood of 1903, Mrs. Healy was a "squatter" in a shell of a home near the Loose-Wiles factory at Eighth and Santa Fe streets.

She and Mr. Healy were married in the Church of the Annunciation by Father Dalton. They lived in several places in the West Bottoms. Years after his death, Mrs. Healy became one of the great colony of "squatters," whose huts were scattered on unused ground from the Armour packing plant to the West bluffs. Mrs. Healy was known from one end of the bottoms to the other.

Mrs. Healy's home in the West bottoms was destroyed in the flood of 1903. She was forced to leave and found a home with Mrs. Ellen Hughes, a widow, at 630 Bank street, a mere lane down upon which the rear of huge factory buildings on Broadway frown. She lived with Mrs. Hughes until seven weeks ago, when Mrs. Hughes found her in her room unconscious and ill. She was taken to St. Joseph's hospital.

"Mrs. Healy was very happy here," Mrs. Hughes said last night. "We two lone women became great chums. She was great company. We used to go to 5 o'clock mass Sundays and sometimes we would walk up the hill again to the chapel at St. Joseph for high mass. I went to call her one Sunday and she didn't answer. Her door was locked, but she had left the window open. I crawled in and found her. She had fallen in a wood box.

"All the Irish knew Mrs. Healy; the McGowans, the Burnetts, the Moores, the Walshes, the Pendergasts, all of them. She'll never lack decent burying. From the time she came into my house dripping to the arms with flood water, she never lacked friends and I know she won't lack them now."

In younger days, Mrs. Healy was called "Peggy," a nickname usually given only to Irish girls of vivacious temperament. She looked on her deathbed little like that stout, buxom "Peggy" Healy that the West Bottoms knew at St. Joseph's, but the still, warn face wears the calm of good deeds done. She will rest in Mount St. Mary's cemetery at the side of her adopted son, George Traynor. The funeral arrangements are still to be made.

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October 7, 1909



Will Gives $25,000 to Provident As-
sociation and Contains Other
Charitable Bequests,


To the Humane Society of Kansas City, Mo., I give, grant, devise and bequeath in trust forever lots 1 and 2 in clock 43 of Turner & Co.'s addition to Kansas City, Mo., the proceeds of the rental thereof to be used by said Humane Society in the entertainment of children in Swope park, near Kansas City, annually, forever.

To Park College, situated in Platte county, Missouri, I give lots 15 and 16 in block 3, West Kansas addition No 2 to Kansas city, Mo.

To the Women's Christian association I give the sum of $10,000.

To the Young Women's Christian Association of Kansas City, Mo., I give the sum of $10,000.

To the Young Men's Christian Association of Kansas City, Mo., I give $10,000.

To the Provident Association of Kansas City, Mo., I give the sum of $25,000 to be known as the "Swope Fund," and to be used for the benefit of the poor and needy of Kansas City, Mo.

Before the body of Colonel Thomas H. Swope was removed from the family home in Independence, Mo., yesterday afternoon to be brought to this city to lie in state in the rotunda of the public library building, J. G. Paxton, an attorney who had possession of the philanthropist's will, gave out the public bequests mentioned therein. They are enumerated above.

"It was thought befitting," he said, "that bequests made to public institutions and to charity should be published before the funeral. The complete will, enumerating private as well as public bequests, will be filed for probate Saturday."

The lots left to the Humane society are situated at the southeast corner of Union avenue and Mulberry street in the West Bottoms. The corner lot is occupied by the Union Avenue Bank of Commerce. Good rentals are secured from the two buildings of the property.

"The bequest of Colonel Swope to the Humane Society is not a surprise to me," said E. R. Weeks, president of the society last night. "Colonel Swope had a life membership in the society and for several years has been its first vice president. He has been identified with the work for more than twenty-five years and was our closest friend.


"Several years ago Colonel Swope sent for me to come to his office. When I arrived he told me that he intended to remember the society in his will which he intended writing himself. At his suggestion I wrote that portion of his will which he later copied. That is why it is no surprise. There is a provision regarding this bequest to the effect that the society may sell this property at any time it deem necessary or advisable."

The property left to Park college, Parkville, Mo., also is situated in the West Bottoms and is said to pay a good annual rental.

The Women's Christian Association, to which Colonel Swope left $10,000, has charge of hte management and maintenance of the Gillis Orphan's Home and the Armour Memorial Home for Aged Couples, Twenty-third street and Tracy avenue. Colonel Swope gave the land on which the orphanage is built. It is a large tract and later Mrs. F. B. Armour built the home for aged couples which bears her name. Sometimes it is known as the Margaret Klock home, named for Mrs. Armour's sister.

"We had hoped that we might be remembered in a small way," said Mrs. P. D. Ridenhour, acting president of the Women's Christian Association, when informed of the $10,000 bequest. "But this comes to us as a most pleasant surprise, and I might say that it comes at a time when we need it most. We had not expected anything so handsome as our benefactor has given us and to express our thanks would be the smallest way in which we can show our gratitude. In honor of his memory we will endeavor to do the greatest good with what he has left us.


"Have you heard of the $10,000 left the Y. W. C. A. by Colonel Swope?" a young woman at the association rooms was asked over the telephone last night.

"Humph," she replied quickly, "he gave us $50,000."

"But this is over and above the $50,000," she was informed. "This is a bequest in his will."

"Oh, goody, gracious, goodness, isn't that just scrumptiously grand," she cried, dropping the telephone to fairly scream the glad news to other young women present. "Won't we have a dandy home, now, God bless him."

At that moment someone began a song of praise in honor of the welcome news. The telephone was forgotten.

"This certainly comes to us as a glad surprise," said Miss Nettie E. Trimble, secretary for the Y. W. C. A.

"Colonel Swope was so good to us when we were struggling for our new building that we had no idea of getting a bequest from his will. Years ago when the building of a home for the Y. W. C. A. was mentioned, he said he wanted to have a part in it. While committees were out working he sent us $25,000 unsolicited. Toward the close, when it looked as if we would not reach the $300,000 mark by the time set, he sent for me and asked how much we lacked. When told that we needed $22,000 to complete the figure he promptly gave us $25,000, making a total of $50,000 which he gave toward our new home.


"As we have plenty of money to complete our home it is possible that Colonel Swope's bequest of $10,000 will be made a nucleus for an endowment fund to carry on industrial and Bible work. The industrial department never has been self sustaining and teachers for both have to be hired and paid. That the name of Colonel Swope will forever remain dear to the members of the Y. W. C. A. goes without saying."

Henry M. Beardsley, president of the Y. M. C. A. was out of the city and James. B. Welsh, a member of the board of directors, was notified of the bequest of $10,000 to that association.

"Good, good," he cried, "that comes to us at a time when we need it most. We have been in pretty hard straits to complete our new building and this most gracious gift will put us on our feet under full sail. The association, no doubt, will take appropriate action when notified officially of the bequest. I will sleep better tonight and so will many others."

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August 27, 1909


Jeremiah Enright Had Prominent
Part in School and Official Life.

An educator, who has part in the memories of two generations of Kansas Cityans, passed in death yesterday afternoon of Jeremiah Enright of 516 Belmont avenue. Mr. Enright had lived in this city forty-two years and throughout his life played a promintent part in school and official circles here.

Mr. Enright was 66 years old. He was born in Ireland. Soon after he came to Kansas City in 1867, he began teaching in the parochial schools and many of the more prominent business and professional men of the West, who lived their earlier days in the West Bottoms, had Mr. Enright as their teacher. He was the first instructor in the parochial school of Annunciation parish when the Rev. Father William J. Dalton, at that time ordained only a short while, took up ministerial duties in the West Bottoms. The church and school grew fast. Afterwards, Mr. Enright taught in the parochial school attached to the cathedral. His earnestness as a teacher andt eh personal interest he took in his pupils were marked characteristics. He became a teacher in the public schools several months after teaching in Independence, to where he rode on horseback each school day. His promotion in the public school was rapid and he served as principal of the Humboldt and Woodland schools.

In official life, Mr. Enright was city clerk in the administration of Mayor R. H. Hunt and for eight years was a deputy recorder. After leaving the latter position, he took up the examination of titles. In recent yeras, he had served as an assistant probationary officer. Mr. Enright lived on a tract of land which he bought when only a cow track led to it from Main street.

Mr. Enright married in 1868 Miss Katherine O'Grady of St. Louis. She and six children survive him. The children are John P., Joseph J., Edmund J., Katie, Margaret and Josephine Enright. The funeral will be tomorrow morning at 9:30 from St. John's church.

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August 10, 1909


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."

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July 26, 1909


Clean Up's and Better Lighting
Fatal to Police Excitement.

So many years ago that the oldest member of the police department scarcely remembers it, No. 2 police station in the West Bottoms was a busy point and the number of arrests there for a single night ranged from five to forty-five. Now it is a back number and the happy patrolman walking beats in the No. 2 district has a snap equal to that of being a line man for the Marconi system. This is the result of a forgotten clean-up in the early '90s. Such a clean-up is now relegating No. 4 district to an unimportant one in the city.

Captain Thomas Flahive, lately removed to No. 5 station in Westport, used to book all the way from five to twenty-five "drunks" and "vag" at the Walnut street holdover, and Lieutenant C. DeWitt Stone on his advent there promised to increase the average so that no safe limit could be ascribed to it.

"But now there is a slump in crime there," Stone said last night. "We still make arrests but they are invariably tame ones and the time is about here when there will be practically none at all. Drag nets and the brilliant lighting of McGee street, formerly as wicked as any place in the North End, has wrought a change for the better, fatal to the excitement attendant on being an officer."

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July 13, 1909



At Topeka There Was Fall of 0.7
of Foot and at St. Joseph the
Missouri Is Stationary.
Streets Flooded.
Junction of the Kaw and the Missouri Rivers, Looking Toward Kansas City, Missouri

With a rise of over half a foot in the Missouri river yesterday, Forecaster Connor of the local weather bureau predicted a maximum stage of about 27.2 for this morning, which he believes from the information to hand will be the crest. Mr. Connor bases this prediction o n the assumption that there will be no more rains in the Kaw and Missouri river valleys.

The rise in the Missouri yesterday was rapid until 3 p. m. Since that hour it has remained stationary. This was taken by the observer to indicate that the mass of water due to recent rains had crested, and that now only the rise of the day before at Topeka and St. Joseph is to be felt here. At Topeka there was a fall of .7 of a foot during the day, while at St. Joseph the river was stationary.

The heavy rains at St. Joseph yesterday held the river up at that point, but the forecaster does not think they will influence the river there to any appreciable extent, and that by the evening it will show a good fall. The volume of water in the Missouri and Kaw rivers which must pass Kansas City, he asserts, will keep the river at a high stage for several days at least, although there is a possibility of a fall by this evening.

The West Bottoms are beginning to feel the flood now in earnest. The seepwater and sewage, together with the storm waters yesterday morning gave several sections of that district the appearance for awhile, at least, of being flooded by the river. In the "wettest block" several of the floors were under water for a couple of hours and many o f the business men and merchants in that neighborhood are ready to move if the water should go much higher.

Back water from the sewers yesterday covered sections of Mulberry, Hickory and Santa Fe street between Eighth and Ninth streets. Cellars in this district were all flooded.

The Cypress yards in the packing house district is a big lake. There are from two inches to several feet of water all over the railroad yards. Yesterday the Missouri Pacific had to run through eight inches of water at one place to get trains out from the Morris Packing Company plant. The railroad men say that they will run their trains until the water rises to such a height that the fires in the locomotives will be extinguished.

At the Exchange building at the stock yards several pumps were used to keep the basement free from water which started to come in Sunday night. Several of the cattle pens are flooded so they cannot be used and the Morris plant is almost surrounded by water. It is believed that at the present rate the water will be up to the sidewalks at the Morris plant this morning. It would take six feet more, however, to stop operations at this plant.

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April 26, 1909


Croatian Builds House to Float
or Stand.

If there is a flood in the West Bottoms this year one householder there at least will be prepared to resist it.

He is one of the Croatians squatting on the "made" land near the Missouri river bank and his handiwork can be plainly seen from the street cars crossing the intercity viaduct. It consists of a crude but large houseboat resting upon piles six feet high driven firmly into the ground. The bottom of the boat is not fastened to the posts, so if a flood comes it will float clear but will be retained in the vicinity by means of an anchor and a stout rope.

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January 29, 1908


Kansas City Boy Re-Enlists -- Is Now
First Class Quartermaster.

One of the youngest first class quartermasters in the United States naval service is J. I. Freese, a Kansas City, Kas., boy, who re-enlisted for the second time in the navy recruiting station in the federal building yesterday and was temporarily detailed for clerical work here. Freese is 21 years old, but has now reached about the top rung of a sailorman's ambition. In fact, an enlisted man has reached about the limit of his eligibility when he is a quartermaster of the first class and has little more to hope for in times of peace.

The naval experiences of Freese appear large for a boy of his years, but in talking of them he does not let you forget for instant that he joined the jack tars in 1902 instead of yesterday. He was set at that time to do a year at Newport. Then he took a training cruise on board the Essex and was transferred to the Maine for a three-months journey in Southern Europe.

When Rear Admiral Robley D. Evans was ordered to make a Pacific fleet out of the Atlantic fleet, Freese was a quartermaster on board the Connecticut. At San Francisco he was changed to the Maine again, and the Maine and Alabama were detached and sent around the world ahead of the fleet, touching at Honolulu, Guam, Colombo and Port Said. Last November the two ships arrived home at Portsmouth, N. H., where Freese was mustered out of service.

"I like the navy and I am going to stick to it," said the young quartermaster yesterday. "It's the only life for me, although there is lots of grind and hard work attached to the job."

B. J. Freese, the boy's father, is a railroad foreman of the West Bottoms, living on North Fourth street, Kansas City, Kas.

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January 8, 1909



Calendar Is Thirteen Days Behind.
Kansas City Colonies of the
Two Nations Make

Christmas day was observed yesterday by the Servians and Greeks of Kansas City thirteen days later than the American and English Christmas. The day was made a holiday and none of the Greeks and Servians in the Kansas City colonies in the North End and West Bottoms failed to observe the day in some manner. Gifts were exchanged and there was general feasting and merrymaking.

Christmas means the same to the Greeks and Servians as it does to other people, namely the celebration of the birth of Christ, but the calendar used by them is thirteen days behind the calendar in general use. There is one great difference between the manner in which the people observe the day. No gifts are given or expected by anyone not an immediate family member. Friends do not give presents in token of their friendship.

Santa Claus is called "Callkagary," and he is supposed to be a tall man of dark complexion with merry black eyes, who visits all the little children on the night or during the week before Christmas day. He doesn't live at the North pole, but inhabits the clouds.


The Greeks, there are about 1,000 of them in a colony around Fifth street and Broadway, gave up the entire day yesterday to revelry and fun. There were no particular ceremonies, the colony has no church, but the men gathered in groups in halls and saloons, while the women and children visited each other.

New Year's day is really the day for gifts by the Greeks, but Christmas day does not lack any of its charm because of that. New Year's day will be one week from yesterday, the first of January, according to the Greek calendar. The Christmas season among the Greeks and Servians is supposed to last during three days, but the colony here will not make today and tomorrow festive days.

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November 12, 1908


Kansas City, Kas., Police Believe He
Was Killed for Betrayal.

Inspector of Detectives John Quinn and Captain U. G. Snyder of the Kansas City, Kas., police department are convinced that the killing of Michael Grogas near the Swift packing house last Thursday night resulted from his betrayal of some secret Croatian or Polish order. They say they have given up on the theory that a woman had anything to do with it or that robbery was the motive, and here is the argument with which they back up this conclusion:

Two weeks before the murder Grogas lived in rooming house No. 6, Patch, and was an eye-witness to a double stabbing there. When the officers appeared at the place, much contrary to the custom of denizens of this congested portion of the Weest Bottoms, he told them everything, and the right party evidently was arrested. Although both of the men hurt were in a serious condition from three deep thrusts each, they would not do as much as Grogas did under the most rigid sweating, and remained silent as to the identity of their assailant.

The police officials in Kansas City, Kas., have long suspected a secret defensive organization among the foreigners in the Patch. They are now convinced that Grogas lost his life because he gave up a fellow member of the society to the officers.

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November 7, 1908


Body of Employe of Swift Packing
House Found Beside Union
Pacific Tracks.

While on his way home from work at the Swift packing house at 6:30 o'clock Thursday night, Michael Gragos, a sheep butcher, was mysteriously murdered. The assassins escaped after firing two shots, one of which penetrated his skull. The other struck his right cheek bone and inflicted only a flesh wound. As money was on the body when found by workmen at the Swift plant yesterday morning, the motive of the killing is unknown.

A few minutes after Gragos quit the Swift plant Thursday evening Erb Martin, a watchman, heard two calls to halt, followed by four shots in quick succession. He seized a lantern and hurried towards the place where the cries and the shots came from, but found nothing and gave up the search. About midnight, George Gragos, father of Michael, came to the plant looking for his son, and another unsuccessful search was instituted.

When the body was found it was lying close beside the switch of the Union Pacific Railway Company. Close by were the tracks of a woman and a man. On the coat tails of the corpse was a v-shaped mud mark that might have been made by a small and pointed shoe, probably that of a woman. None of the pockets were rifled, and there was no other hint as to the identity of the assassins.

Gragos lived with his father at 128 North First street in the West Bottoms. He was 23 years old and an Austrian. He had lived in this country only about four years.

Detective John Quinn and Robert McKnight of the Kansas City, Kas., police department were assigned to the case. They will work on the theory that it was revenge that actuated the killing.

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October 29, 1908


Brave and Efficient Officer, and Had
Been in City's Service
Many Years.

After an illness of more than two months, William James Morley, captain at No. 5 police station, died yesterday afternoon about 5 o'clock. He had been for twenty-two years one of the most efficient members of the police force of the city. He was 57 years old.

Captain Morley was born in Ireland, but emigrated to this country at the age of 18 years. He became a railroad man and soon rose to the position of assistant yardmaster at Binghampton, N. Y. It was there that he married and then moved to Kansas City, coming in at the same time that the C. B. & Q railway did, thirty-two years ago.

He was made yardmaster, a position which he held for ten years. At the end of that time he gave up his position to become a policeman, and was assigned to the Central police station. He was a brave and capable officer and made a number of good captures. At the end of ten years' service as a patrolman he was made a sergeant and stationed at No. 4 station. Seven years ago, as a reward for faithful service, he was made a lieutenant in charge of the desk at the Walnut street station. There he remained until September, 1907, when he was made captain and placed at the Westport station.

Captain Morley was wounded in the service fo the city once, that being during a fight in the West Bottoms, in which he was accidentally shot in the left shoulder by a brother officer while trying to arrest a burglar.

Captain Morley was singularly fortunate in his business ventures. Many years ago he bought a strip of land in the West Bottoms, which the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul railway bought from him at an increased price. He also invested in other real estate, and he invariably made a handsome profit on every transaction. Hhis fortune is estimated at $15,000. At the time of his death he owned some business property on Grand avenue and several houses, besides farming land.

Captain Morley's private life was happy. He lived many years in the ho use where he died at 3418 Broadway, an old-fashioned frame house set far back in the yard. Besides his wife his family consisted of five children. Katherine is now in Binghampton, N. Y.; Mrs. P. E. Fagan loves in Kansas City. Louis C. is a steamfitter; John is a farmer in Jackson county and William J. Morely, Jr., is a miner in Ely, Nev. Two grandchildren also survive. Captain Morley was a devout Catholic and a member of the Annunciation parish. He belonged to the order of Heptosophs.

"I worked with Captain Morley for fifteen years," siad Captain Thomas P. Flahive last night, "and I always found him honest, fearless and efficient as well as considerate and kind hearted. The police force of Kansas City has lost one of its finest and truest men."

The funeral services will be held Friday morning at the home, but the exact time has not been determined. Catholic rites will be used.

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August 18, 1908


Was Suspected of Having Shot a Po-
liceman -- Chief Ahern and Cap-
tain Snow Were Present.

Policemen old in the city service recall but one negro lynching in recent Kansas City history. There has been mob violence threatened here, but only once was a man's life taken by citizens. A mob hanged a negro of the name of Harrington April 3, 1882, and the police still insist that the man was wrongly accused of murder.

Old-time policemen who figured in the affair were Daniel Ahern, now chief of police; Frank Snow, now captain of police in charge of police court property; Con. O'Hare, Patrick Jones, and five others. The monument erected by the people as a tribute to policemen who fell in discharge of duty -- on the west side of city hall -- bears Jones's name and the date of his death. His name is the second on the long list. He was the victim of a negro's bullets in St. Louis avenue, and another negro was lynched for the crime.

Patrolman Jones lived in the West Bottoms. On the night of his death he had been relieved from duty and had started home to supper. As he turned into St. Louis avenue he met Tony Grant, a negro of bad reputation, carrying a sack.

Jones at once suspected the negro of theft and asked him what he had in the sack. The negro declined to tell and the patrolman placed him under arrest. The sack contained a firkin of butter which the negro had stolen from a grocery. As Jones leaned over to examine the contents of the sack he was shot and killed. The bullet came from behind the policeman and no one saw the shot fired. Tony Grant, believed to be the guilty negro, fled.

Here's where Harrington came into the limelight. Sitting in front of John Monohan's boarding house at Ninth and Hickory streets, he heard the shots and ran toward the body of the policeman. Police a few minutes later arrested him on complaint of white citizens who had also been attracted by the pistol shot..

Harrington, the police maintain, was innocent, but he was hanged an hour later from the Fifth street car bridge. Daniel Ahern, then a patrolman at the West Bottoms station, was assigned with a squad of six officers to take Harrington to police headquarters and started on foot around the bluff to the North End.

A crowd of excited citizens followed the negro and his police escort and soon the officers saw they had made a mistake in starting with the prisoner. It was too late to turn back and they entered the bridge. At the same time a crowd from the North End entered the bridge from the north and the police found themselves, with the negro prisoner, hemmed in. They pleaded with the mob, but were thrust aside. A noose was slipped over Harrington's head and he was thrown over the bridge rail.

Captain Frank Snow and Con O'Hare ran through the crowd and jumped off the end of the bridge, intending to cut down the negro and possibly save him.

As Snow leaned toward the rope a man on the bridge above leaned low over the rail and sent a bullet into the top of Harrington's head. The mob dispersed and the police remember the incident as the only illegal hanging in the history of Kansas City. Tony Grant was never captured and most of those who had a hand in the affair, with the exception of Ahern and Snow, are dead.

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July 23, 1908



They Had Forwarded as Much as
$300,000 Through the Concern,
None of Which Reached
People at Home.

Affidavits showing that foreign residents of the West Bottoms had entrusted $300,000 and lost it in the Croatian bank, operated by Frank Zotti & Co. of New York, were sent yesterday morning to the district attorney thre by Father M. D. Krmpotic of St. John's Croatian Catholic church, Fourth street and Barnett avenue, Kansas City, Kas.

The Frank Zotti & Co. bankers handled money for the Croatians and other Austrian peoples in the United States who had friends in the old country to whom they regularly remitted at the week ends. When the company closed doors last week, it is alleged that the books showed no instance where the money had been remitted further than the bank. The total deficit amounted to over $1,000,000, affecting many thousand Croatians all over the country, a it is a comon custom with them to send part of their weekly wages to Austria.

"I am representing my countrymen to the best of my ability in this very important matter," said Father Krmpotic last evening. "Some of them are, of course, very ignorant of our banking system and when they received letters from the old co untry telling of hte failure to receive needed money, they thought the remitance had been lost somehow in the mails, and never distrusted the bank.

"I know many Croatians here who are out as much as $4,000. Not only are they suffering from the loss of this money, but relatives in Austria, who were in very bad circumstances, are still suferring. Many of them plunged deeply in debt, thinking the money would finally reach them in a budget accompanied by an apology from a mail clerk somewhere along the route."

Father Krmpotic is teacher, doctor and interpreter as well as Catholic priest to his countrymen in the West Bottoms. He is highly respected by them in his diverse capacities.

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July 20, 1908


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.

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June 23, 1908


Is to Be Built by Park Board on
Highest Point.

When Penn Valley park is completed, a castle is to be built on the crest of the hill east of the present lake, overlooking Twenty-sixth street, the Union depot and the West bottoms. It will be the highest elevation in the city park system. George E. Kessler, park landscape engineer, is now planning the structure.

J. C. Ford, 201 New England Life building, yesterday asked the board to consider his suggestion that a building to cost not less than $5,000 be erected on the high elevation. He wanted the building to have a restaurant and a roof garden with a flag polie above to distinguish it. It was after hearing Mr. Ford's suggestion that the members of the board let out the secret that just about such a structure is to be built and that the plans are now being made for it.

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June 14, 1908


Wholesale Dealers Moving to Third
Floors -- Are Taking No Chances.

Every man in the West bottoms who had a place to take his goods was moving them yesterday, whether he transported them up town or just to the second floor. No one was taking chances. The Harbison & Modica Implement Co., near the Union depot, carried heavy plows and other farm tools up to the third floor of their building, moving their offices to the second floor.

"We're taking no chances this time," said R. A. Niccolls, a sales manager. "We'll be able to do our office business if the employes have to be carried to the building in boats."

Many implement houses were pumping the water out of their basements in the morning, but most of them gave up at noon and let the water run in. One house had a gasoline engine pumping for eight hours, and still the water didn't seem to go down. Investigation revealed the fact that as fast as the water was pumped out it ran around the corner and through a crack in the pavement back to the cellar. In front of one place was tied a large boat for the transportation of the employes to dry land at the end of the day's work.

At the Union depot all preparations have been made for high water. The baggage can be carried to the second floor in a very short time.

E. J. Sanford, president of the depot company, is not frightened. "I don't see how the water can reach us," he said yesterday. "The weather men tell us that we'll be wet tomorrow, and we're all ready to receive the water when it comes, but I really do not expect any water to reach the floor of the depot."

The water was rising rapidly in the bottoms and at the corner of Ninth and Mulberry streets late yesterday afternoon a close observer could see it creeping slowly up the sidewalks.

The Armour plant is preparing for more high water by building dikes two feet high around the buildings. The doors in the walls have been cemented and it will take a rise of from four to six feet to put the plant out of business.

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June 12, 1908


Mounted Men Guard Flooded Whole-
sale District -- Peril of the
East Bottoms.

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.

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June 3, 1908


Relatives Hold Body of Man Killed
in an Explosion.

The bursting of a plug in an ammonia carboy in the refrigerator of the Fowler packing plant in the West bottoms at 10 o'clock yesterday forenoon, caused the death of J. E. Baldwin, 33 years old, foreman in the employ of the company. Part of the plug struck Baldwin on the forehead, crushing in the skull. He was taken at once to his home, 862 Orville avenue, Kansas City, Kas., in the police ambulance, but died a few minutes after having arrived there.

Relatives of the deceased yesterday refused to let the body be moved to the undertaker until it could be examined by Coroner A. J. Davis. They said he had met with a similar accident once before and that he had laid in a death-like stupor for hours and was believed to be dead, but finally came to his senses.

Baldwin was single and lived with his parents The cause of the accident is unknown, but it is the ought atmospheric conditions may have had something to do with it.

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June 1, 1908



Experimental Line Ran From Main
Street to West Bottoms -- Hard
Time to Find a

The first telephone in Missouri was built with fence wire, with knobs from dresser drawers for insulators on the housetops over which the line ran, and that Kansas City's first telephone was of much the same construction, running from Main street to a coal office in the West bottoms, is told in the reminiscences of a pioneer, written for "Public Service," a telephone publication, by E. A. Woelk. Mr. Woelk operated the first line built in Kansas City, and aided in capitalizing a corporation to sell the stock of this half mile of wire. The company became the second Bell Telephone Company in the West, the first one of the name having been operated from St. Louis to the old fair grounds in the suburbs, and was the nucleus of the present great Missouri and Kansas Telephone Company.

Passing though St. Louis with his family on a trip to Europe, Mr. Woelk, then living in Springfield, Mo., heard of a new "fake" out at the fair grounds, and went out. He found men talking over a fence wire. That was in 1877. When he returned from Europe Mr. Woelk was still thinking of the "fake," and disposed of his other business, that he might become an agent in the West for the Eastern corporation, having "wagon tracks" for sale. The wagon tracks turned out to be of value, and Mr. Woelk built a line over the housetops from James Kirby's saloon to Jim Straughton's livery stable, in Springfield. They city council made him take down the line, because citizens heard vile language vibrating from the wire by night, and gossiping ladies believed they easily heard all the doings at Kirby's by listening to the "buzzing" of the wire above the housetops. Here is Mr. Woelk's story of how the first line was built in Kansas City:

About July 1, 1878, I received a telegram from Boston to go to Kansas City and take with me a half dozen telephones and some insulated wire and two magneto bells, to meet Mr. Madden for the purpose of demonstrating the new invention which was to elevate the telephone from a mere toy to an instrument of great commercial value.

I met Mr. Madden, who brought with him in his hand satchel two wooden boxes -- the Blake transmitter. While Mr. Madden was busying himself among bank directors and presidents and railroad magnates with the object of the organizing of a telephone company I set out to find a place to demonstrate the new telephone. A short time prior to this the Western Union Telegraph Company, the only wire-using company in Kansas City in those days, had started to build an exchange.

My difficulties here began when I found that this new instrument, the transmitter, required a battery. Nothing of that kind could be bought in Kansas City then. I went to the Western Union people to borrow two cells of crowfoot battery, but as soon as the telegraph operator discovered that it was to be used for a telephone -- the instrument which he thought would drive him out of business -- I was refused.

I set out to find a chinaware store, and bought two crocks and two flower pots to go inside of these; next I went to a drug store for the blue vitrol and some sulphate of zinc, and then to a tinshop for some zinc, and soon rigged up a battery. In the meantime Mr. Madden had secured the keys to a store, on one of the main streets, which was newly plastered and vacant. Remembering the M. M. Buck line in St. Louis, I found an old telegraph line running from near the store to a coal office in the bottoms, about one-half mile distant. I borrowed this line and equipped it with a magneto bell and telephones, including the transmitter, at the coal office, and at the store end with a call bell and about a half a dozen receivers, the transmitter being located in the rear of the store and the receivers about forty feet distant in front.

About 3 o'clock in the afternoon the prospective shareholders assembled and Mr. Madden began to demonstrate. It was suggested that I go to the coal office and speak to Mr. Madden at the store. This, for some reason, the visitors did not approve of and sent one of their own men down to make the test. A call was made and Mr. Madden spoke to the coal office in an ordinary tone of voice and the reply came promptly while the visitors alternately listened with the receivers. The transmitter was then adjusted very sensitively and I would speak in a whisper which could not be heard at the front of the store but was promptly answered by the representative of the prospective investors.

It was then and there agreed to meet at the hotel after supper, and it was then and there that the second Bell Telephone Company was organized in the Middle West, St. Louis having the first. The capital was $10,000, and out of this organization grew the existing Missouri and Kansas Telephone Company.

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February 8, 1908


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.

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February 13, 1908





Other Children Became Ill, but Were
Revived -- Package Purported
to Come From "Girls
of S. & S."
Miss Ruth Miller, Who Ate Poisoned Bonbons.
Victim of Poisoned Bonbons Sent Her Sister Through the Mail.

"Sweets to Ella Miller, From girls of S. & S."

This was the labol on a box of cheap bonbons sent through the mail to the oldest daughter of Charles Miller, 634 Cheyenne avenue, Armourdale, at noon yesterday. The postmarks were blurred and the stamp of the postoffice where the box had been mailed had evidently been turned around purposely, as it was brought into contact with the wrapper. The police believe the sender told the postal clerk that the candy was intended for a valentine. What it really contained was poisoned bonbons, and as a result of eating two of them Ruth Miller, the youngest daughter of Charles and Melinda Miller, died in agony less than ten minutes after the box was received at the home. All four of the Miller children were affected by the poison in the candy, which is supposed to have been strychnine, but none except the little girl suffered more than temporary distress, which an application of home remedies relieved.


Ella, 14 years old, to whom the candy was sent, has worked in the canning department of the Schwarzchild & Sulzberger packing house up to a month ago, when she was withdrawn by her parents so that she might attend school. She said last night that as far as she knows she has no enemies among the girls at the packing house. She never has had a sweetheart and her parents seldom allow her to go far from the home unless accompanied by some relative or friend. They considered her too young to keep company with young men and also that she has never indicated any desire to receive boy or men callers.

This statement was borne out by the little girl last night.

"I never had any lover and I don't want one," she said, the tears trickling between her fingers as she held her hands to her eyes. Her little frame shook with sobs at the memory of the tragedy and she was bordering on hysteria.

"I don't see how any of the girls at the packing house could ever have had anything against me. I never did anything against them. I don't believe they had a hand in the crime. It is too horrible. The girls in the canning department where I worked were good to me, and always asked my mother who worked in my place after I left how I was getting along every morning as she came in to work. No, I am sure it was not the packing house girls. I can not imagine who could have sent them, but I know it was not my old friends there."


As far as the police are concerned, the tragic death of little Ruth Miller is a complete mystery, while it represents one of the most mystifying crimes in the criminal history of the city.

Immediately after the postman arrived at the Miller home at 12 o'clock noon, Ella discovered the package near the front door on the veranda. All the children are small and crowded around their oldest sister as she opened it to receive their share of the treat. They each took at least two of the bonbons. None except Ruth ate one. As soon as the candy touched the mouth, according to the surviving children, a bitter taste was noticed by them and their tongues became puckery, as though they had touched a powerful astringent. Ella, who had tasted her piece of candy first, got a cup of water and rinsed out her mouth and those of the others.

Ruth did not complain of the bitter taste but a moment afterwards began to scream, and fled from the ho use in the direction of the home of George Gause, 628 Cheyenne avenue, a neighbor. While the mother of the Miller children was away from home it had been the custom of Gause and his wife to care for the children.

Mrs. Miller was away from home at noon yesterday visiting a brother of her husband in the West bottoms near South James street. Gause had been apprised of the mother's absence and when he heard Ruth scream ran out at once from the house, thinking, he says, that she had fallen and hurt herself. When he reached the back porch of his house he saw little Ruth throw up her hands and fall to the ground.


"What's the matter, Ruth?" he called, as he ran to her assistance. At this juncture Ella, who had followed the little girl from the house, called out that all of them had been poisoned. Gause sent for a doctor. Ruth did not live over five minutes after the doctor arrived.

Both Miller and his wife were not at home and were not apprised of the death of their little daughter until nearly an hour later, it being necessary to send a special messenger in both cases. The Miller family was prostrated with grief last night.

Miller could not name any enemies likely to take such a cruel revenge on his family. He said he lived in Toad-a-Loup, Armourdale, a year or two ago, and then moved to Greystone Heights, Kansas City, Kas., hwere he lived in perfect peace with his neighbors up to a month ago. Both Miller and his wife have a reputation for being agreeable neighbors and loving in their treatment of their neighbors. Girls working in the canning department of the S. & S. packing house said yesterday they had never known a little girl they liked better than they did Ella Miller. Mrs. Miller was also popular with them.


Chief of Police Bowden was at a loss to account for the crime. He said it was without parallel in the city for brutality, considering the extreme youth of the intended victim. He said the matter was one for both the United States postal authorities and the local police to look into. City Detectives Quinn and McKnight were assigned by the chief to the case. Others will be assigned to the task this morning.

An analysis of the poisoned candies made by Coroner A. J. Davis of Wyandotte county after 6 o'clock yesterday evening disclosed a white powder inserted with the chocolate covering the bonbons.

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January 20, 1908


Memory of Mysterious City Hospital
Patient Slowly Returning.

The man who was taken to the general hospital the day after Christmas unable to talk or use his fingers to write, and yet showed normal intelligence and a constant desire to talk has partly regained the use of his vocal organs. But it developes that his memory is incomplete on such important points as his own nameand the town where he belongs. His first name, he thinks, is John and his town, he believes, is forty miles north of Joplin on the Kansas City Southern railway. His employment, he says, has been railroad work under a cousin of his, Mack Adams, who is a grading sub-contractor on the Kansas City Southern. So far the man Adams cannot be located.

J. S. Stevenson, a Bentonville, Ark., newspaper man who as in the city last week, talked with the man on learning that he had spoken of Bentonville. The patient recognized the names of several Bentonville people andto these the hospital authorities are going to send photographs for possible identification.

Other statements so far secured from him are that he has not worked for four months, that he came to Kansas City on a pass, being told he could get medical treatment here, and that he at one time had a partial paralysis, of one side. The hospital authorities surmise that he has a growth on t he brain due to blood poisoning. By this minds are sometimes so affected. The man was picked up unconscious in the West bottoms.

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April 18, 1907


From Sedalia a Deserted Mother
Walks Here With It.

A tired and worn little woman carrying a baby was picked up by the police in the bottoms about 9:30 o'clock last night. She was wandering about aimlessly. When she was taken to police headquarters later she gave the name of Mrs. Mabel Henderson and stated that she had walked all the way from Sedalia, Mo., and had carried the baby, 15-months old. At the station it clutched at its mother's dress and held tightly to her baby with its little hands.

"My baby is blind," the mother said in explanation, "and he is afraid to be away from me. The noise is new to him and he is frightened.

"My husband, John Henderson, left me three months ago," went on the worn little mother who is herself blind in one eye. "Then I had a hard time, as no one would take me in with baby, and I had no place to leave him. I took in washing, though, and got along. Then I thought I could do better in Sedalia, and I saved money and went there. That was a month and a half ago, but it's just the same. Nobody wants a woman with a blind baby and me half blind, too. It's pretty hard, I'll tell you.

"Last Monday at sunup I left there. A man gave me a quarter as I was leaving the town. I saved that to buy something for Robert Earl. That's my boy's name. I have walked all the way and carried him, too.

"The 25 cents was all the money I had to live on. I bought crackers and cakes for baby with that. I walked as early in the morning as I could to as late as I could stand it. Yes, I'm pretty tired now, but not much hungry."

Mrs. Henderson reached here about 9 o'clock last night, having covered eighty-five miles, the distance from Kansas City to Sedalia. When she reached headquarters she was given a ticket and sent to the Helping Hand Institute for the night. She says that she has two brothers-in-law, Claarence and "Cal" Graves, in the city somewhere. The police will try and find them for her.

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April 1, 1907


After Escape From Detention Home
Takes Team to Aid in Flight.

A sentence of four years in the reform school did not seem to affect the criminal ardor of Perry Brock, for after escaping from the detention home Saturday, where he was waiting to be sent to Boonville, he stole a team of horses and wagon belonging to S. G. Davis, a farmer west of Quindaro, about noon yesterday and three hours later was arrested in the West bottoms. He admitted the theft to Captain Ennis at No. 2 police station. The farmer says he will prosecute.

Brock was sentenced to the reform school last Friday by Judge McCune, of the juvenile court, for stealing chickens in Englewood and Mount Washington. When but 10 years old, he kidnaped a 3-year-old child in the south part of the city and locked him in a closet of a vacant house where he was found three days later by prospective tenants of the place.

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March 4, 1907


Mrs. Brobecker and Children Were
Hemmed In by Smoke and Flame

With hook and ladder appliances, Fireman James Redmond and Thomas Scanlon rescued a family from a burning building in the West bottoms yesterday morning at 3:30 o'clock. Sam Brobecker's saloon, 1719 West Ninth street, caught fire. His family lived upstairs. He went down to investigate before smoke had filled the upstairs to the point of suffocation. His wife, a son and a daughter were driven to the windows, from which they were taken. The loss on the building was only $25 and on the contents $50.

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