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January 13, 1910

WEE BABE PROVES MAGNET.

Tot Reunites Parents, Who Thought
They Couldn't Agree.

"It was 'Jimmy' who reunited us," said Mrs. Mary A. Judkins, of 2131 Madison street, who with her divorced husband went to the recorder's office yesterday to procure a marriage license.

It was about a year ago that the couple, newly married, decided they could not live together happily. Shortly before this a boy had been born to Mrs. Judkins. She named him "Jimmy." When the divorce was granted, Mrs. Judkins was given the custody of the babe. The father, however, was permitted to visit his child once a week. These weekly visits resulted in a reconciliation between Mr. and Mrs. Judkins and yesterday they decided to be remarried.

"We're going to try it over again," said Mrs. Judkins, and the husband smiled his approval.

No happier couple, if appearance counted, was ever granted a license to marry by the county recorder, declare the deputies in the marriage license department. Mr. and Mrs. Judkins hurried out of the court house to find a minister.

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December 27, 1909

WEDS A BOY OF SOME CLASS.

Justice Cannot Resist Temptation
as Miss Wade Starts Voyage.

It is said about the recorder's office at the county court house yesterday that there would be few marriage licenses issued, Christmas being over, and that the next rush would come on New Year's. Seventeen pairs took the step yesterday and most of them applied late in the afternoon.

When Charles A. Class, 24 years old, of Leeton, Mo., arrived with his fiancee, Miss Susie Wade, 21 years old of Pleasant Hill, Mo., the office was getting ready to close for the day. It's never too late there however, so a marriage license was issued.

Mr. Class and Miss Wade came with their duly appointed "seconds." Justice Festus O. Miller had to be sent for. When about to start the pair's life voyage he paused for a moment. He could not resist the temptation. "Miss Wade," he said solemnly, "you are about to wed a boy of some 'Class.' "

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October 12, 1909

WIDOW AFTER MINING STOCK.

Court Order Necessary for Her to
Get $7,260,500 Shares.

The county coroner has $7,260,500 in mining stock locked up in his vault. There are 72,605 shares in a Mexican mine with a par value of $100. They were found in the suit case of Thomas Stables, who was found dead September 24 in a bathroom at the Sexton hotel.

Mrs. Stables was in the city yesterday. She came all the way from Stables, La., her home, to get this stock. The coroner was powerless to act. A court order must be obtained by Mrs. Stables's attorneys before these securities can be given up. Meanwhile the county keeps millions in mining stock locked in the vaults at the court house.

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June 14, 1909

CAN'T BE MARRIED ON SUNDAY.

Young Couple From Smithville Com-
pelled to Postpone.

"It's a blame shame people can't be legally married on Sunday because it is a legal holiday," Mark Pate of Smithville, Mo., remarked to his sweetheart, Lovie Burge, as the two left police headquarters last night. The young people arrived in Kansas City from Smithville with the intention of being married.

A trip to the court house to secure the license revealed to the pair that trouble was ahead of them. Some one directed them to the county jail, but the deputy marshals pleaded ignorance as to marriage licenses and recommended police headquarters. Arm in arm the couple entered the station and inquired for a license.

"Bonds are the only legal papers we handle," Lieutenant M. E. Ryan informed them.

Then the officers became interested in the young people and by suing the telephone finally reached the county recorder, but he refused to issue a license on Sunday. A minister had been tentatively engaged to perform the ceremony by Holly Jarboe, desk sergeant, who later commanded the order.

The Smithvillians left the station discouraged, but said they would secure a license early in the morning. They came to Kansas City to avoid the "cut-ups" of their home town.

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May 14, 1909

JUDGE ROUTS CABBAGE MEN.

But Coal and Ice Men Were Heard
Near Court House.

It's "coal" and "ice" now for Judge Thomas of the circuit court. Max Berkman, who extolled the virtues of his cabbage on the Locust street side of the courthouse Wednesday and barely escaped a fine, must have passed the word along to the purveyors of other vegetables, for there were none yesterday to annoy the court.

In place of his kind, however, came the ice and coal calls. Evidently the hucksters mean for the judge to get a sample of the leather lungs of all divisions of their trade. The noise at times yesterday was almost deafening. There is a fine chance for ice and coal hucksters when the judge again sends out his sheriff.

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April 26, 1909

PAID $150 FOR FIRST
COUNTY COURT HOUSE.

DANIEL P. LEWIS BUILT IT OF
HEWN LOGS IN 1828.

Old Building, Now Weatherboarded,
Still Stands at Independence --
Negroes Then Had Their
Own Court.

While Kansas City is considering the erection of a skyscraper court house to take the place of the old building in the North End, it might be of interest to members of the county court to know what was the cost of the first court house to be erected in Jackson county. One can scarcely realize in the present day of a temple of justice being erected at the enormous expenditure of $150, but that was the price which the taxpayers were compelled to pay in 1828.

The old town of Independence, Mo., had grown into quite a village, surrounded by a fairly well settled and wealthy farming community. Justice was dispensed in that early time probably as expeditiously as at present. The need of a building or court house wherein trials and other court procedure could be transacted was decided to be a necessity.

NEGRO HEWED THE LOGS.

The county court entered into a contract with one Daniel P. Lewis. In the fall it was agreed that he was to receive $150 for building a courthouse. In the all of that year Sam Shephard, a negro, hewed logs for the new building. They were dragged by a yoke of oxen to the ground selected as the site for the court house. The lot was No. 57 in the old town, now on the north side of Maple avenue near the square in Independence. The building was only one story and contained one large room, which was used as a courtroom and meeting place for all public discussions and lectures. Later several small rooms for use as offices were added.

The building is still standing in Independence, and the hewn logs of which it was constructed have been weather boarded and the large courtroom divided into small rooms. It is now used as a private dwelling and Christian Ott of Independence is the proprietor. It is understood the proprietor has offered to donate the building to the County Fair Association if it will move it from the lot.

In connection with the negro, Sam Shephard, who cut the logs for the court house, there is a bit of local history. In Independence and the country in the immediate neighborhood the negroes maintained a form of self-government. Each year they gathered together in convention and selected their officers. A judge and a sheriff were the principal offices upon which their government was founded.

PUNISHED BY THEIR OWN RACE.

Recalcitrant negroes and those accused of thefts or other crimes not taken notice of by the white people came under the supervision of the blacks' control. An accused would be summoned to court by the sheriff and the judge selected the jury of negroes from those present. The sessions of the negro court were held in a livery barn or blacksmith shop. If the negro on trial was found guilty after the deliberations of the jury, the sheriff carried out the penalty. As he was vested with powerful muscles as well as the authority of a sheriff, the penalty, which was usually a number of lashes on the bare back, was memorable.

The first judge was Wilas Staples and Sam Shephard was the first sheriff. The latter died in Lawrence, Kas., several months ago.

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April 17, 1909

MOVE THE COURTHOUSE
UPTOWN, SAY LAWYERS.

BAR ASSOCIATION FAVORS IM-
MEDIATE ACTION IN MATTER.

Present Building Too Far North,
Yet Trend of Opinion Is That
New Structure Should Not Be
Too Far South, Either.

At the meeting of the executive committee of the Kansas City Bar Association at noon yesterday at the Baltimore hotel, it was resolved that the courthouse should be moved farther up town. Such a recommendation will be made to the association proper at its next gathering to take place at the Coates house May 2. One of the lawyers said last night: "The courthouse now is too far out of the way and we lawyers are a lazy lot."

Those who talked about the matter last night were not agreed as to just what is the matter with the present building, but they all thought a new one should be built sooner or later, some with the accent on "later." Nor were they all agreed as to the location of a new building, but none of them thought it ought to be south of Twelfth street. Some strange incongruities occurred in their opinions. One man thought there was too much waste space in the building at present and another that it would be a hopeless task to arrange it so there would be accommodations for all of its official occupants. That the building as it stands now is not a fireproof structure, seemed to be about the most robust reason advanced in favor of a move. No one thought the proposal to move into rented quarters up-town was a practical one.

TOO MUCH IDLE SPACE.

"I don't think we ought to be in a hurry about it," said C. W. German, former county counselor, "although it ought to be done some time. My chief reason for a new court house is that the present one is out of the way. There is twice as much space down there as is needed and the court rooms are all too big. With this in view, I suppose it could be remodeled. If a new one were built, I should think it ought to be somewhere east of Grand avenue, between Ninth and Twelfth streets. It should be near enough the car lines for the sake of convenience, but far enough away for the sake of quiet. We've only been in the present building about seventeen years, and that hardly seems to be very much of a tenure for such a building as that. It would probably be difficult to dispose of the present building, too.

W. D. Thomas, one of the executive committee of the bar association, thought some of the records in the present building were in danger of fire. "I don't believe any of the deeds and mortgages, or such valuable documents are in danger of fire, but some of the papers worth almost as much are exposed to the danger. All of the files in the circuit and probate courts are thus exposed, but the records proper are safely deposited in the vaults."

REARRANGEMENT DIFFICULT.

"Under the new law the various divisions of the courts have to occupy the court rooms in rotation, which makes it very inconvenient and disturbs the even routine of things. While I think the building is large enough, I am afraid that a satisfactory rearrangement would be difficult of accomplishment. If the building should burn down, however, I think it would mean an irreparable loss to the county.

"The location of a new building is not a matter of importance to me. I should think somewhere in the neighborhood of Tenth and Oak streets would be about right."

"It has always been a nuisance to lawyers to be obliged to go that far north," said J. J. Vineyard, president of the bar association. "No, I don't think the present building could be disposed of profitably, for that is the usual experience in trying to sell or rent abandoned public buildings, and the county would hardly come out even on that score. To rent quarters farther uptown would not receive my approval. I think a new building should be built at a more convenient location."

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January 4, 1909

BUSY YEAR FOR THE
CHARMING WIDOWS.

THEY MADE A GOOD RECORD IN
THE MARRIAGE MART.

From the Number Assuming the
Yoke, It Would Appear That the
Future Is Big With Prom-
ise of Prosperity.

In nearly one-tenth of the cases in which marriage licenses were issued at the Kansas City court house in 1908, the brides were women wearing the prefix of Mrs. Apparently they were well aware of the fact that this is leap year and that there will not be another year of privilege for women until 1912.

Another notable fact is that the last two months have been especially busy for the women who have been married before. During the twelve months 280 women have remarried, nearly a fourth of that number since November 1.

An abstract of the records of marriage license office in Kansas City, not counting Independence, where a separate office is maintained, shows the number of licenses granted during the year to be 2,930 for Jackson county. The latter portion of the year has shown a heavier marriage rate than the earlier part.

THE OUTLOOK IS GOOD.

This may be due to a variety of causes. No doubt the main influence was the coming of better times after the depression of last winter, when there were comparatively few marriages. Nothing, according to statisticians, has so speedy and marked an effect on the marriage rate as industrial depression.

An estimate of the divorces granted during the year shows the number to approximate 100, not counting Independence. Of course all people who were married here do not live here. But in order to bring an action for divorce it is necessary for the plaintiff to be a resident of Missouri. Therefore all the plaintiffs, at least for a time, lived in the state.

THOSE DANGEROUS WIDOWS.

The record of the married women would go to prove, however, as the old saying is, that a widow is dangerous. Including divorced women in the list of widows would make it seem that such applicants for second matrimony are more adept at making matches than novices.

Ever since Francis D. Ross became recorder of Jackson county two years ago, it has been the custom to state on the applications for marriage licenses whether the bride has been married before. There is more than a possibility, however, that a number of them believed the question impertinent, and stood on their constitutional rights, refusing to answer. Clerks in the recorder's office here say that a total of 280 cases of women who have remarried does not fully state the case, but that the number, had each told the truth, would have been considerably larger.

Even at the figure given the year has been a busy one for those seeking a second, third or fourth soulmate.

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November 24, 1908

JUDGE HENRY L. M'CUNE IS
ELECTED TO SCHOOL BOARD.

Will Fill the Unexpired Term of
Joseph L. Norman, Who
Becomes Secretary.

At a special meeting of the board of education, held yesterday here in the office of General Milton Moore, Judge Henry L. McCune was elected to fill the vacancy made by the resignation of Joseph L. Norman, who succeeded W. E. Benson as secretary. Judge McCune has accepted but he will have no voice in the meetings until his term as judge expires, January 11. He has expressed his willingness to be present at every meeting in an advisory capacity. Judge McCune will hold his position as member of the board until April, 1910, when the next regular city election takes place. He will fill the unexpired term of Mr. Norman.

"Kansas City has many men who would make good members of the board of education," Mr. Norman said yesterday, "and the board considered many names, but there was not a man who would work more untiringly than we know Judge McCune will work. In twenty-one years' experience on the board of education I have learned how much there is to do on our board and how vitally interested a man must be to perform all of the duties required of him. Judge McCune is just such an interested man."

"Do you approve of Zueblinism and the teaching of such propaganda in the public schools of Kansas City?" was asked of Judge McCune in his chambers in the court house yesterday afternoon.

"The board already has settled that question, and, as I presume I do not take office until after January 1 it is not proper for me to say anything at this time," said the judge with a smile. Judge McCune indicated by his manner that his stand upon the question, should it be put up to a board of which he is a member, would be guided by the same common sense which has characterized his work as judge.

The addition of Judge McCune to the board adds a member who has children in the public schools of Kansas City. He has a son in Westport high and a daughter in the Hyde Park grammar school.

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September 25, 1908

WHITE GIRL BECOMES
A CHINAMAN'S BRIDE.

PRETTY NETTIE SWISS IS NOW
MRS. JUNG LING.

She Became Acquainted With Her
Oriental Lover in Monnett, Mo.
Attended to Wedding De-
tails Herself.

Jung Ling, a pigtail Chinaman, aged 36 years, and Nettie Swiss, a not at all bad looking white girl, who gave her age as 23 years, were married by Justice of the Peace F. O. Miller at the court house at 1 o'clock yesterday afternoon. It is said to be the intention of the couple to make their home in St. Louis.

After the two, walking arm in arm, entered the recorder's office for the purpose of taking out the license, the girl acted as spokesman and made known the object of their visit. "We want to get a marriage license," she said.

The clerk at first was dubious as to their sincerity, but after asking the usual questions and receiving favorable replies, he realized that there was no alternative from granting the license. Before completing the document, however, the clerk, who seemed disinclined to issue the license, said: "If this man can't sign his name this paper cannot be issued."

"Well, he may not be able to write his name in full," said the bride-to-be, who seemingly had thoroughly rehearsed her part,"but he can make his mark just the same as any other person who can't write. Is there anything else?"

There evidently was not, as the license was forthcoming, and after having been turned over and the fee paid by the feminine end of the transaction, they asked that Justice Miller be summoned to perform the ceremony. The justice arrived within a brief period and a few minutes later the couple were man and wife.

Although a wedding in exclusive Chinese circles is an occasion accompanied by a great feast and several days of gayety, nothing of the kind had been prepared for Mr. and Mrs. Ling. The bridegroom's friends here are said to have objected bitterly to the course he was pursuing and refused him even a wedding dinner by the way of showing their displeasure.

When seen at the store of a friend, 127 West Sixth street, yesterday afternoon, the new Mrs. Ling sat on the side of a bunk with a genuine black trousered little Chinese lady. The two evidently had engaged in conversation pertaining to the wedding, but when the visitor made known the object of his call both became silent.

The proprietor of the store, Ling and several other Chinamen there at the time said they were insufficiantly acquainted with the English language to converse intelligently, and, therefore, asked to be excused. Mrs. Ling would say nothing.

Mr. and Mrs. Ling are said to have known each other for several years, both of them for some time lived at Monnett, Mo., and later at Joplin. Ling frequently has occasion to come here and this time he sent for his lady love. She arrived yesterday morning.

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June 26, 1908

DID SPOT PROVIDE THE FEAST?

Court House Clerks Believe They
Know About McClanahan's Fowls.

Every clerk in the circuit court of Jackson county dined on spring chicken at the home of David McClanahan in Independence last night. About the chickens which supplied the feast there was a veiled mystery, which added greatly to the sweetness of the meat. Arthur Kelly is positive he has found the solution to the mystery.

It runs this wise: About two months ago the county court secured two fox terriers for use in the basement of the court house. These dogs were warranted champion rat catchers, and they willingly lived up to their reputations. When the rats had become exhausted and the dogs had nothing more to do at the court house James Fernald, one of the clerks, spirited one of the dogs to his home. But the dog insisted on catching the neighbors' chickens, bringing them to the Fernald homestead and then and there killing them. Mr. Fernald, at his wife's earnest suggestion, brought the dog back to the court house.

Then it was that Dave McClanahan took the dog home. One week ago he told the clerks in the court house that he was planning a chicken dinner for them. Nice, fine, fat, spring chickens. Arthur Kelly smiled and kept still. He knew the story of Fernald, the dog and the chickens. Spike Henessy, champion chicken eater of the court house, began a starvation diet at once.

Yesterday morning Kelly and Fernald, guarding their secret well, called a meeting of the clerks and presented Dave McClanahan with a brand new dog collar. On the silver plate of the collar was inscribed these words: "To Spot, in recognition of his services." When McClanahan read the inscription he turned red in the face.

"Stung," whispered Kelly to Fernald; "that blush is the blush of guilt. Now for our dress suits that we may partake of the sweets."

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June 2, 1908

ELOPED FROM POOR
FARM TO BE MARRIED.

WILLIAM MEADS AND BRIDE DE-
FIED COUNTY COURT.

He is 66 and the Bride, Formerly
Mrs. Eliza Anderson, Is 76.
They'll Live in a
Candy Store.

Neither age nor circumstance can stand before the will of Dan Cupid. Among the twenty-one women in Kansas City who became brides yesterday, the earliest June bride of them allow as Mrs. William Thomas Meads, 76 years old, who, as Mrs. Eliza Anderson, eloped from the county poor farm with the groom in the early morning and was married at the court house at 10 o'clock by Justice Mike Ross. And among the twenty-one none is more happy or more thrilled with dreams of the future.

"The county court wouldn't let us marry at the farm," she explained last evening in the room at 727 Harrison street, which she and the groom rented for a week. "There is absolutely no sense in them not allowing us to get married, but since they wouldn't , we up and ran away. We were up at 5 o'clock, for it takes William a long time to get over the two miles to the station. The other women there bade me goodby last night.

"Now that we are here and married, we are ready to face the world again. We fled from it once. But William has saved his salary as librarian, and I have many friends in Kansas City. We are going to open a little confectionery store and live in a room in the back. We are certain that we can make a living and are never going back to the poor farm.

"They never treated William right out at the farm. He had charge of the library and had to be on his feet day and night to answer two telephones. And they only gave him $5 a month. He can make lots more than that in Kansas City."

The bride, who had been standing back of Meads's chair, here stopped her flow of talk to push her spectacles back on her forehead, stoop, put an arm around Meads's neck and kiss him on the brow. The old man petted her with his one able hand.

"She's a mighty good little woman," he put in. "Don't you dare to poke fun of her in your paper."

"No," interrupted the bride, straightening suddenly. "It is an outrage the way we have been treated. People seem to think our running away is a joke. I've just as much right to get married as I had fifty years ago. I'm an old settler in Kansas City. I have been here forty years. My husband died twenty years ago and I went to work for Bullene, Moore, Emery & Company. I was with them a long time until I got the asthma so that I couldn't work nor live in the city. So I went out to the farm where the air is pure. I know some of the finest people in Kansas City. Two members of the grand jury, who visited the home, recognized me and were astonished. I told them it is no disgrace to be on the poor farm. It's no crime to be poor, after one has worked hard for years and years, as I did. It's just inconvenient.

"William and I are going to start life all over again, aren't we, William?"

The groom gave a "yes" pat with his hand.

That is about all -- Oh, yes, there is the groom. William Meads is 66 years old and paralyzed on one side. He fought during the entire civil war under General Joseph Shelby. After the rebellion he was employed for fifteen years on a Kansas City evening newspaper During the latter part of the period he was foreman of the composing room. When he was stricken with paralysis he went to the poor farm. He has better use of his right arm and leg now than he had ten years ago, but his general health has been worn down by the passing of years. he did not attempt to rise from his chair either to greet or bid farewell to his visitor.

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March 13, 1908

IT FELT JUST LIKE SPRING.

One Boy Was Barefoot, Many Played
Marbles Yesterday.

With a temperature of 74 at 8 o'clock yesterday afternoon, the day took its place as the first burst of spring in Kansas City. The court house reporter was assigned to write a weather story and his observation included one boy walking barefoot on the court house lawn, many street urchins abandoning shinny clubs for marbles, quite few Italian grannies sitting in south doorsteps and the first game of horseshoes in Shelly park this year.

The forecast is for colder weather tomorrow.

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February 28, 1908

DARING COURTHOUSE ROBBERY.

Elevator Boy's Pocket Picked While
Going Up and Down.

James P. Cox, elevator boy at the courthouse, yesterday won the distinction of being the first elevator operator in Kansas City to suffer at the hands of a pickpocket. Cox's purse was taken from his hip pocket during the 9 o'clock rush. In it were two pawn tickets, a dime, several receipts and a meal ticket with three meals unpunched.

This is the most daring robbery about the courthouse since the theft of a spaniel pup from the basement of the county jail last August. The pup belonged to Sheriff Charles Baldwin and was being cared for by its mother, who was owned by County Marshal Al Heslip. The thief was never captured.

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February 9, 1908

HE SERENELY
DRINKS EGGNOGG.

With Friends to Help Him, Captain
Gregg Celebrates Birthday.

Captain W. H. Gregg, a deputy sheriff, who was met leaving the courthouse yesterday with a market basket full of eggs, on his way to his home at 1307 Michigan avenue, where last night he celebrated his 70th birthday, was asked how best a man might celebrate such an occasion.

"I have celebrated over fifty of them," he replied, "and it has been fifty years since I did anything which you might call having a good time. I haven't varied the programme in the past twenty years. It is this:

"I invite a dozen or so of my friends to the house and we play games, tell boyhood stories and drink eggnogg. We will play high five tonight. Those eggs I bought today for the eggnogg."

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October 20, 1907

THEY WERE SO VERY BASHFUL.

Professor and Student Didn't Want
to Be Seen Getting Married.

Cleo Claudius Duke, a young professor, and Bertha Chandler, a student in Monmouth college, Monmouth, Ill, came to Kansas City yesterday and were married in the courthouse by Judge George J. Dodd. The young couple, for the groom is but 26, and the birde 20, tried to keep the conclusion of their romance a secret and insisted that everyone, including the marriage license clerk, leave the recorder's office during the ceremony.

"These bashful people," mused Fred Chambers, chief deputy recorder, while he waited outside the door, "remind me of a bride who made us all move out one day last month to alow her to change her dress. She had purchased a new gown to be married in and brought it wht her in a suit case. Even the groom had to get out of the office while she put it on. And when she stod up to have the judge pronounce the ceremony the basting threads, which she had forgotten to pick out of the skirt, showed quite plainly."

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August 9, 1907

SAD FATE OF ANNA BACCHUS.

Her Tragic End Brings Woe to Court
Employes.

Anna Bacchus, the pet cat of County Clerk Samuel A. Boyer's office, and the champion mouser and ratter of the courthouse, was found unconscious by L. I. Duncan, deputy clerk, yesterday afternoon in a drawer in the office which he chanced to open. Anna had crawled into the drawer quietly sometime Wednesday and made herself a nest among the writing paper. The drawer had been closed by someone who did not notice the feline. She was still alive when Duncan found her and laid her on the sill of an open window. The clerks bathed her face in water and stroked her back, but she never regained consciousness. She died at 3:30 o'clock, half an hour later. The only relative in this city is a half brother who lives in the basement of the courthouse. She has had several children, but all of them have been drowned. Her husband, Thomas Bacchus, abandoned her last winter. She was 3 years old. The deputies in Boyer's office will take up a subscription to pay for her funeral. No flowers.

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