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July 31, 1909



Had Been Ill at Home About Ten
Days, but Fatal Termination
Was Not Expected by
P. D. Ridenour, Pioneer Kansas City Grocer.

Peter D. Ridenour, pioneer wholesale grocer of Kansas City, died suddenly of heart disease at 11:00 last night at his home, 1416 East Eighth street. He was 78 years old, and as the result of complications due to old age has been kept home from the store at 933 Mulberry street, in the West Bottoms, for over a week. His fatal illness is believed to have begun ten days ago when he first complained of shooting pains in the vicinity of his heart.

At his bedside when he died were his wife, Mrs. Sarah L. Ridenour and his son, Edward M. Ridenour. The family physician, Dr. Lester Hall, and Dr. R. T. Sloane, who had been called in, were in attendance, but neither believed death would result from the indisposition.


Besides the widow and the son, Mr. Ridenour is survived by three daughters, Mrs. Catherine Lester, Mrs. Alice Raymond and Miss Ethel Ridenour, all of this city, the last named living at home. Four brothers are living, T. M. Ridenour in Colorado, Irving W. in Richmond, Ind.; Elisha at Liberal, Mo., and Samuel Ridenour, who through the death of his brother will become president of the Ridenour Baker Grocery Company, lives at the Washington hotel.

Funeral arrangements have not been made.

Peter D. Ridenour was born May 5, 1831, on a farm of one half mile south of the village of College Corner, O. His parents were of Dutch extraction and pioneers of the state. The town received its name form its location in the northwest corner of the land donated to the Miami university. In 1837 his father bought a store in the town and in it for the next seven or eight years young Ridenour gleaned the knowledge of the grocery business so useful to him in after years.

At the age of 26, Mr. Ridenour married Miss Sarah Louise Beatty at Xenia, O., and moved to Lawrence, Kas. Part of the trip was made in boats because there was no railroad leading into Kansas City or in fact any other town in the vicinity of the Sunflower state.


With his brother, Samuel, who also had left the old home in Ohio to come West, Mr. Ridenour started a small grocery store at Lawrence taking as partners in the business Harlow W. Baker of that city and later his three brothers. This was in 1858.

By the death of Mr. Ridenour last night Samuel Ridenour became the sole survivor of the original Ridenour Baker Grocer Company. This firm was incorporated thirty-one years ago when having grown to dignified proportions it was moved from Lawrence to its present ho me on Mulberry street. Such has been its progress in Kansas City that it has been able to establish branch stores at several points. Both Peter and Samuel Ridenour grew wealthy. P. D. Ridenour's estate probably amounts to about $300,000.

Mr. Ridenour was known as a public spirited citizen. Three years ago he was vice president of the Commercial Club and was offered the presidency but he refused because of his advanced age. He maintained a large farm near Dallas, twelve miles from Kansas City, where he had intended to spend the remainder of his life.

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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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May 18, 1909


Two Refuse to Sign Deeds, and Pre-
vent $550,000 Merger of St.
Joseph Master Bakers.

ST. JOSEPH, MO., May 17. -- The wives of two master bakers assumed the role of real trust busters today, and refused to sign deeds for the merger of their properties into a bakers' combine.

The company was to have been capitalized at $550,000. There was to have been $200,000 in preferred stock, and the rest in common stock, and the properties were to have been bonded for $150,000.

Five plants were to have been run the same as they are now, and present owners were to have been managers of their respective plants. Each manager was to hold an office in the company.

Max Oschley and G. Coblenz of Kansas City, and H. T. Westerman of St. Louis, were the promoters. It all looked fine on paper, and the deal seemed in a fair way to go through. Then came an unexpected obstacle. The wives called a halt.

As one of them said:

"I don't propose that my husband shall work for anyone else. He is his own boss now, and he will stay so so long as I have anything to say about it."

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May 10, 1909


Budd Park Residents Looking for a
Vicious Miscreant.

Someone with an apparent grudge toward canines in general is operating close to Budd park. Fully a half dozen blooded and about a dozen non-descript dogs are dead from eating poisoned meat conveniently placed under the benches among the trees.

The poisoning began about a month ago when someone left a trail of "doctored" meat through the park. Strychnine was the drug used, according to a chemical test made at the instigation of Mrs. Mary Freeman, part owner of the Budd park greenhouses. The day following the appearance of the poisoned meat several dogs were found dead in the streets nearby and reports poured into central police station of valuable dogs that had died at the homes of people living in the vicinity of the park.

F. L. Snell, proprietor of the Snell grocery store, 5020 St. John avenue, lost a dog as did also Charles Horton of the Budd bakery. John Westmoreland, 115 Denver avenue, lost two Scotch collies. E. L. Kiley, manager of the Budd park greenhouses, lost a blooded bull terrier and a pedigreed Scotch terrier.

The work of the vandal created a good deal of excitement among the dog owners of that part of town and several men armed with revolvers voluntarily watched the park at night for over a week following the poisoning. Recently the vigilantes gave up their watch. The outrages began anew yesterday when a valuable Pomeranian Spitz belonging to Leonard Kinney of 4020 Morrell, and several common street curs were killed. It is probable a watch will be maintained at the park and vicinity tonight.

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April 14, 1909



"I Shot Him Because He Slapped
Me," One Witness Testified Ac-
cused Woman Said -- Mother
Overcome in Court.
Rose Peterson, On Trial for the Murder of Her Husband.

Facing a charge of murder in the second degree, Rose Peterson, 19 years old, was on trial before Judge Ralph Latshaw in the criminal court yesterday afternoon. Throughout the proceedings she did not once look at the twelve men who are to decide her fate. She is accused of killing her husband, Fred Peterson, on the night of December 22, by shooting him three times while the two were returning home from a dance.

The defendant was neatly gowned in a plain dress of black and wore a turban hat trimmed with black lace. A gold bracelet and two small rings were the only display of jewelry. With her left arm thrown over the back of a chair, Mrs. Peterson buried her face on her arm and sat in that position all afternoon. She constantly trembled and every now and then sobbed aloud when Frank M. Lowe, her attorney, mentioned the name of her husband.


Following I. B. Kimbrell, who in assisting the state in the prosecution, outlined what the state would attempt to prove. Mr. Lowe made a brief resume of what the defense would how in justification of the shooting. He said the defendant practically would be the only witness and would testify that she was induced to go to St. Joseph with Fred Peterson, who promised to marry her there, but that the ceremony was delayed for two months. The defense will endeavor to show that Rose Peterson, after her marriage, earned a living not only for herself, but supported her husband, and that he mistreated her; that he drew a knife and threatened to cut her on one occasion and continually threatened to inform her mother how they had lived in St. Joseph.

"If you do tell, you will never tell anything else," Attorney Lowe said the defendant would testify she replied.

Mrs. Sophia Peterson, mother of Fred Peterson, was the first witness for the state. Grief overcame her at the beginning of her examination.


"I can't stay here," she sobbed, attempting to leave the witness stand.

Judge Latshaw allowed her to retire until she could control her feelings. When she again took the stand she testified that Fred was 20 years old when he was killed, and 18 when he was married. She said she followed the couple to St. Joseph and that Rose, her daughter-in-law, begged her to assist them in being married and that she did so. Mrs. Peterson also told the jury of the young wife coming to her home the night she shot her husband.

"I've shot Fred and if you want to see him alive you will have to hurry," Mrs. Peterson said Rose told her.

The state introduced a letter written by Rose Peterson to her husband about a month before the shooting occurred. It read, in part:

"It is a good thing you ran today. I would have got you, anyhow, if so many people had not been standing around. You stay away from me. Don't you go any place I am. I won't call for you or go to your home or shop anymore. If you want me to go on in that case I will. Fred, go away from Kansas City and don't you come back. I am not afraid of you any more. I will get you if it is ten years. I am willing for my freedom as you are."


Frank Page, a motorman on a Jackson avenue car, testified that as his car passed the scene of the shooting he saw the body of Peterson. He stopped his car and with the conductor, R. E. Moore, went back. At first he testified he saw no one near, but later noticed the defendant climbing up to the sidewalk from the ditch at the side. She was not excited or crying, according to the witness. Asked what she said, he answered:

"She said, 'I shot him because he slapped me. There is the pistol.' She said his folks should be notified and told us where they lived."

"Oh Fred, don't die," the witness said Rose Peterson begged.

On cross-examination the witness admitted that in the preliminary hearing he testified that he had not heard her say her husband had slapped her. Other witnesses were Arthur Detalent, a tailor, who identified the clothes worn by Fred Peterson; Patrolman Patrick Coon, who arrested the defendant, and F. Frick, who was assistant prosecuting attorney at the time, and took the defendant's statement.

A witness for the state who failed to appear was Hal Jensen, a baker. He sent word that he had a batch of dough in process and could not leave it. Judge Latshaw refused to issue for him because he said he used that bread himself and did not want it ruined. The trial will be continued at 9 o'clock this morning.

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December 7, 1908


Overturned Bread Wagon Crushes
Life Out of Driver.

Israel Aaron, 23 years old, a driver for the Cohen baker of 1627 West Ninth street, was killed in Kansas City, Kas., yesterday forenoon in a peculiar manner. He was driving a bread wagon on Ferry street between Fifth street and Orville avenue, when one of the front wheels of his conveyance struck a pile of rock. Aaron was hurled violently to the pavement and a moment afterwards his horse swerved and the heavy wagon was turned over upon him. According to Coroner J. A. Davis, who viewed the body, death followed in less the than a minute from "squeezing."

The body was found to have sustained no contusions or broken bones, but the face was black where the blood had congregated as a result of the enormous weight of the freshly laden wagon.

Aaron was unmarried and lived with the Cohens at the bakery.

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September 30, 1908







Women and Children Hurled High in
Air When Crash Came -- Dam-
aged Car May Lead
to Detection.

No more heartless indifference to suffering and death has been exhibited in Kansas City than occurred last night, when a furiously driven big red touring automobile crashed into a light spring wagon on Broadway, near Hunter avenue, killing a girl of 14 years and badly injuring five other people, two women, two girls and a boy.

The impact of the collision was heard a block away.

When the motor car struck the wagon, tearing it to pieces, women and children, screaming with fright and pain, were hurled high into the air and fell in a heap on the hard curbing, with bits of splintered wood falling all about them. It is said the men in the motor car -- there were two -- looked at the death and suffering they had caused, laughed, turned on more speed and glided away into the enveloping darkness.


The accident occurred at 8:45 o'clock. Besides little Pearl, who was instantly killed, the other four occupants were seriously injured and at least one fatally so. In the spring wagon were Mrs. Jennie A. Bucher, her daughter Florence and Mrs. Frank Gochenour and and two children, Robert and Pearl.

Mrs. Bucher was driving the horse when the accident occurred. The two families are neighbors and often go driving together in the evening. Last night they started to go to Levanthal's bakery, 1819 Grand avenue. The horse was being driven north on Broadway and in order to avoid speeding automobiles Mr. Bucher was driving close into the curbing.

They had passed Hunter avenue and were proceeding at a slow trot when suddenly the front wheels of the wagon were struck by an automobile, and without any warning the women and children were thrown out. The wagon crashed the front part of the wagon against the curbing, leaving it in splinter. Mrs. Bucher and Mrs. Cochenour and Robert Gochenour were thrown up onto the parkway, falling on top of each other. Miss Florence Bucher fell beneath the rear wheel. Little Pearl Gochenour, who had been sitting on her mother's lap, fell beneath the seat of the wagon and the horse was knocked over on top of her, crushing her.


Frank Gochenour, the father of the dead child, is a stonemason and resides on Forty-seventh street between Holly and Mercer streets. Mrs. Bucher conducts a grocery store at 825 West Forty-seventh street and her husband, Henry Bucher, is a bartender at the Valerious cafe. Mrs. Bucher is 42 years old, Florence Bucher is 14, Mrs. Alice Gochenour is 37, Robert 14 and the little girl was only 10 years of age. Rober Bucher, 14 years old, had been visiting with Robert Wilson, Thirty-fourth street and Broadway, and was on his way home when he heard the noise the collision made and ran to where the crowd was quickly gathering. He was much affected when he learned that his mother and sister were injured.

As soon as Mr. Bucher heard of the accident, he hurried to the emergency hospital, but his wife was unconscious.

A few minutes after he arrived his two daughters who had stayed at home arrived. They said they had gone to Mr. Gochenour's house and told him of the accident. He was alone in the house with his 3-year-old baby girl and could not leave to go to the hospital. The Bucher girls said that Mr. Gochenour did not seem to realize that his little girl was dead.


J. D. Skinner, 3508 Baltimore avenue, did not see the accident, but did hear the crash and saw the disappearing automobile. He was on Hunter avenue at the time and running to the corner could see two men in the machine. He said it was running at a rate of forty-five miles an hour when it passed over Hunter avenue and possibly faster after the accident. Many women living in the vicinity came out of their houses in time to see the automobile flying down the road. Some of them said they heard the two men in the machine laugh.

When the police were searching the street around the spot where the wagon was demolished they found part of an automobile lamp and broken parts of glass of the light reflector. Sergeant James A. Jadwin of No. 5 police station telephoned a description of the auto and the men to eleven police stations, and the men in several districts were given the descriptions. Kansas City, Kas., police were also notified.

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August 17, 1908


When People Refuse to Eat It, It Is
Fed to Chickens and Horses.

It is estimated that 300,000 loaves of bread are baked every day in Kansas City. Probably 125,00 of these come from the bakers. A large percent of the bread baked each day becomes stale before it is sold, as the daily sales cannot be evenly distributed. However, hardly one crumb is wasted because of staleness.

Nearly all the local bakers sell one-day-old bread at half price and find a ready market for it among the thrifty and saving housewives. It is seldom that the bakers are not able to sell all of their bread, fresh or stale.

Now and then the larger bakeries find themselves overstocked with stale bread which they cannot sell. Do they haul it to the city dump and throw it away? No, indeed, they grind it up and peddle the crumbs among the chicken raisers. If the chicken fanciers fail to purchase all the bread feed, the bakers call for their stable boys and have them carry it to the barn, where it is fed to the horses. Other sources of consumption of stale bread are the hotels and restaurants, which use large quantities for dressing meat loaves and fowls.

The same use of stale bread is made in private homes as in the hotels. Families also use their stale bread in making puddings and in this way do away with the waste which would otherwise necessarily follow.

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April 3, 1908





Carried Sunday School Tract With
Little Girl's Name on It, but
the Owner Does Not
Know Her.

A young woman who was crushed by the wheels of a Belt Line engine last night at 7:30 o'clock, died tow and a half hours later at the city hospital, without being identified. The scene of the accident was where the Belt tracks are fifteen feet below street level, half way between Brooklyn and Park avenues. It is near Nineteenth street.

The woman was walking eastward and must have entered the cut three blocks west, at the street level.

To avoid the Santa Fe local No. 59, westbound, she stepped upon the other main track, and a Milwaukee engine, eastbound, struck her. Pilot Al Williams was riding to work on the engine but neither he nor the engineer, James Spencer, saw her, nor did the fireman But the flagman on the freight train did.

She lay by the track, her left arm almost severed at the shoulder, and with a contusion, possibly a fracture, on each side of her head. A broad leather cushion from the car was brought and she was carried to Eighteenth street and Brooklyn avenue to the office of Dr. I. E. Ruhl, who saw that she was dying. The police ambulance from No. 4 police station, in charge of Patrolman Smith Cook and Dr. C. V. Bates, arrived and she was taken to the general hospital.

She seemed conscious, but could not be induced to talk. The only article she carried was a Sunday school quarterly bearing the name of Loretta Kurster, 1509 East Eighteenth street.

Drs. R. C. Henderson and T. B. Clayton, who operated on the woman at the hospital. said she seemed bright and could use her vocal organs, but evidently was suffering from a skull fracture so such an extent that she did not really understand what was said to her.

Asked if she knew how she had been hurt, she replied, wonderingly, "Hurt? Why, I didn't know anything was the matter." But questions as to her identity she did not attempt to answer, and there was nothing about her person to disclose this, besides the booklet.

In the meantime it had been discovered that Loretta Kursler is a 12-year-old girl who was uninjured and busy in her mother's bakery at the address given in the book. She thought it might be a Sunday school teacher she had met at Central Baptist church, Miss Blanche Wade, but Miss Wade was found safe at her home. She at once, however, went to the hospital to see if she could identify the woman. The quarterly was found to be one pushed by the Christian denomination.

The Kursler child having recently become a pupil at the Forest Avenue Christian church, Miss Wade called Rev. J. L. Thompson of the Forest Avenue church for aid in identifying the woman. Loretta Kursler said her Christian Sunday school teacher was called Grace, but she did not know her last name. The minister accounted for every Sunday school worker by the name of Grace and everyone who teaches girls of that size. Then the chance of discovering before morning who the woman was seemed very slight.

Apparently the woman was 32 to 35 years of age. She was slightly above medium height, was fairly well fleshed, was brunette with abundance of dark hair, had delicate hands, blue-set earrings worn tight to the ear, and wore a tan jacket and a fur neck piece. No hat was taken with her to the hospital. Around her waist was fastened a package containing $8.70.

Dr. Ruhl, who first saw her, thinks it possible that the woman may have been demented, or if an employed woman may have been making a short cut home from work. In the latter case he would believe her hearing defective.

The Kursler family is at a loss to know how a Sunday school book bearing the little girl's name would come to be found in the possession of anyone not her teacher.

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September 12, 1907



Favors Sale of Staff of Life on Basis
of Sixteen Ounces Rather
Than on 5-cent

Alderman Zinn is preparing an ordinance to require the weight of loaves of bread to be marked conspicuously on them. There is an ordinance now in effect which says that where a weight is announced it must be accurate, but it does not compel any weight whatever to be stamped on the loaf.

"They tell me," said the alderman yesterday, "that bread is the only common necessity that is not properly protected. A 100-pound sack of flour will make 150 pounds of bread. This figures out that the average loaf of bread does not cost to exceed 2 1/2 cents. Bread is spot cash at the grocer's box, according to the flour dealers. According to this the baker makes a good profit and gets his money promptly, and he ought to give a good sized loaf. He ought to say on it what it weighs.

"The comparative size of a loaf does not indicate its comparative food value. By pumping in more yeast they can make a bigger loaf. It is the weight we want, and I am preparing to introduce an ordinance to make bakers put tags on their loaves stating the weight. We make the trades using yard sticks, liquid measures and scales all publish what they are delivering, and we ought to give the public the same benefit of a law applying to bakers. The man who orders a pound of meat knows that he gets it, and when he buys a pound of bread, or thinks he is buying a pound of bread, he ought to know that he gets it."

It was pointed out to the alderman that no one asks for a pound of bread.

"Then they ought to," he replied. "I am willing to admit that they do not ask for it, but I mean to insist that they think they are getting a pound loaf. As flour prices rise and fall, the value of the pound loaf will rise and fall. It will not make any trouble for the public to pay 4, 5, 6 or any other number of cents for a loaf. I know a big dry goods store that sells its loaves for 3 cents. We pay 8 cents for a quart of milk. Eight cents is not a unit coin.

"What I am driving at is something that will let the people know what they are getting. A quart of milk is a quart of milk and a pound of steak is a pound of steak; a loaf of bread may be anything from ten ounces to sixteen, as I understand they run. Maybe this will give the poor people more bread than they have been getting."

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June 1, 1907




Pledged Himself to Reveal the True
Cause for His Act When Ander-
son Is Released, but It Is
Not Believed He Will
Ever Tell.

Benjamin F. Barnes, who informed on Charles W. Anderson, the escaped convict, has removed his harness shop business to the Indian Territory. At 2845 Southwest boulevard his wife, with its former good patronage regained for her little bakery, is waiting with her infant and her 5-year-old son until the location of the new home is finally decided upon.

Barnes' goods were sent to Ada, I. T., where he has an uncle. This is near Sapulpa, and from Sapulpa Barnes had a long distance telephone talk with his wife before the goods were sent yesterday. She says they expect to locate somewhere in Texas and that the harness stock is to be stored at the uncle's only temporarily.

It was in Indian Territory that Barnes nineteen years ago committed the crime for which five years later was captured, and sent to the federal penitentiary, where he knew January, alias Anderson. Later both came to Kansas City. Barnes says that he found out Anderson caused him to lose a position with a saddlery concern about three years ago and had, after that, done things to injure his business on Southwest boulevard.

Against this is Anderson's alleged statement since returning to the penitentiary that Barnes made a practice of demanding sums of money from him. Barnes says that his business was profitable and that he did not need money.

After Anderson was returned to prison, Barnes announced that on his being set free he would exploit his motive for notifying Warden McClaughry. As Anderson will not be set free until July 19, and Barnes is already residing in a distant territory, Kansas City will probably be cheated out of this revelation.

While a notable change has taken place to the sentiments of the Southwest boulevard people on the Barnes-Anderson case, their gossip has developed some new observations. Men who at first were anxious to help tar and feather Barnes or drive him from the town, now agree that an injustice was done to him and that the wave of sympathy on the other shop was inexplicable in the light of the fact that most normal people do want the authorities to know the whereabouts of escaped convicts, whether good or bad.

Mrs. Barnes, the mother of a babe of 5 weeks when the sensation came, comes of an excellent family now living in St. Joseph, Mo. Two of her uncles held superintendents' positions with the Metropolitan Street Railway Company in the city for years, and are similarly engaged on other roads now. One of her own cousins in a practicing dentist of the city. The family, it is said, did not know Barnes was an ex-convict at the time of the young woman's marriage. Mrs. Barnes says they are leaving merely for business reasons and that all the neighbors were friendly and considerate with them.

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Special Report -- C. W. ANDERSON


Still Missing at Midnight.

Has B. F. Barnes, informant against Charles W. Anderson, the escaped convict, left the city, or made way with himself during a fit of remorse over his act? Mrs. Barnes, though greatly worried, believes her husband will return and satisfactorily account for his mysterious absence.

He disappeared from his place of business at 2845 Southwest boulevard yesterday morning, and at midnight last night had not been heard from by his family. Before leaving he told his wife that he was going "uptown." He added that he probably would not be home until late. He did not return for luncheon nor for dinner in the evening, and when he had not returned at midnight his wife began to feel some concern about him.

"I don't see what is keeping him," she repeated time and again as she paced the floor, now and then stopping to gaze longingly out the window. She carried her infant baby in her arms and spoke at times consolingly to her 6 -year-old boy.

"My husband never stayed away from home this way before," said Mrs. Barnes, "and for that reason I feel concerned about him now. This recent trouble has weighed heavily upon both of us, more so than most people, I think, suppose. My husband has been placed in the wrong light by the people, and the same conception as has been formed of his character has been taken of me. There are two sides to this matter, just as there are to most cases of this kind, but the impulsiveness of the people has caused them to take snap judgment on us for what has been done, with the result that we must suffer worse than really is our lot.

"There is an underlying reason for what my husband did, but what that reason is we will not discuss now. I am sorry for the whole thing, as is my husband, and though I have suffered -- God knows I have suffered -- I hold no resentment toward the public or Mr. Anderson. My sympathies fare with Mrs. Anderson and her baby, and for their sakes I hope the president will pardon him."

Mrs. Barnes is a neat appearing woman, a brunette, and comely, and of intelligent and refined appearance. She conducts a bakery and confectionery adjoining the harness store of her husband, and has been doing a profitable business. The family live in three rooms in the rear of the store. A woman friend of the family has been staying at the Barnes home during the past several days, and has assisted in taking care of the household.

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April 11, 1907


Baker Is Severely Burned and His
Building Damaged.

After lighting the gas in a bake oven and closing the damper at Bartlett's baker, 1817 West Thirty-ninth street, at 9 o'clock yesterday morning, Robert Ray, a baker, left the room for a time. When he returned shortly he shut off, as he thought, the burner he had just lighted and struck a match to light the burners in the oven. As he did so there was a streak of flame and an explosion. Though the ovens are in the basement, the concussion overturned furniture in the room above and blew out plate glass windows in the front of the building. The neighbors thought they were up against a miniature earthquake.

Ray was taken to the office of Dr. J. H. Ralston, 1800 West Thirty-ninth street, where his face and arms, both badly burned, were treated. He was later removed to his home at 2416 Holmes street.

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