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December 21, 1909


Cecil Killey, 10 Years Old, Spent It
at Drug Store Raffles.

Money given him by his grandmother to buy schoolbooks Cecil Killey, age 10 years, of 4016 Central avenue, spent on drug store raffles. The boy was taken into juvenile court yesterday to explain.

"All the boys do it," explained the youngster. "Sometimes there are as many as thirty in a drug store at one time. It costs ten cents a chance. If you win you get a box of candy."

"You are too young to gamble this way," said Judge E. E. Porterfield. "The next time you are brought into this court you will be sent to the McCune Farm.

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December 14, 1909


Collision on Thorp Hill, Kansas City,
Kas., Fatal to Harry Wollen-
berg, 14 Years Old.

The first coasting accident of the season in Kansas City, Kas., occurred lsat night when Harry Wollenberg, the 14-year-old son of Martin E. Wollenberg of 1137 Locust street in that city, was struck and fatally injured by a loaded bob sled on the long steep Thorp street hill. Harry was coasting down Thorp street, north from Central avenue, and is supposed to have been struck by a sled coming down the same street, south from Grandview. He was picked up by some of the coasters and taken to a house nearby.

Dr. H. P. Clark of 1215 Central avenue was called and found that the boy had received severe internal injuries. Emergency treatment was given and the boy taken to Bethany hospital in a police ambulance, where Dr. Clark and Dr. C. M. Stemen performed an operation. All efforts to save the boy's life proved fruitless, however, and he died at 12:10 o'clock this morning. The body was taken to the undertaking rooms of Joseph Butler.

The accident occurred about 9:30 o'clock, but it was nearly two and one-half hours later when the ambulance reached the hospital. The delay was caused by the icy condition of the streets. Dr. Clark and Patrolman Thomas Shay, who were with the ambulance, were forced to hold the rear wheels to prevent the vehicle from skidding and turning over.

At the hospital the boy said he did not know who ran into him, and inquiry at the scene of the accident did not divulge this information. Harry Wollenberg was in the Seventh A Grade at the Prescott school. His father, Martin Wollenberg, is employed in the tank room at the Swift Packing Company's plant. He has four other children.

The street where the boy was injured was covered with coasters last night. The hill on Thorp street affords one the longest and steepest slides in the city.

Immediately after the accident to the Wollenberg boy, Sergeant P. H. Peterson ordered his men to stop all coasting on hills if the coasters would not content themselves with coasting in one direction. Last winter several young people were badly injured in the northern part of the city in a collision between two bob sleds which were going in opposite directions.

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August 17, 1909


Chief and Assistant Pleased With
Auto Hose Cart Test.

The trail run of the automobile hose wagon from fire headquarters on Central between Tenth and Eleventh streets the other afternoon, produced a favorable impression on those who were witnesses, especially on the older fire fighters who have traveled on horse drawn vehicles for many years. John C. Egner, chief, and Alex Henderson, assistant chief, are among the advocates of the new craft.

The spin was taken for four blocks and the average speed generated by a 45-horse power engine was forty miles an hour. The jangling of a large bell near the chauffeur kept the streets free from wagons and pedestrians all the way.

"I am quite as enthusiastic as Chief Egner over the new hose cart," said Assistant Chief Henderson after the trail. "Kansas City must sooner or later adopt the new system. In my opinion one automobile wagon could do the work of three hose companies using horses.

"At present it takes four lines of hose to operate the water tower and thus four companies are employed. From this afternoon's test I infer that one automobile of say 75-horse power could carry 2,000 feet of hose, four lines for the tower and one single line.

"Because it is infinitely faster than a team hose wagon the new rig must ultimately supplant the present system. The secret of successful fire fighting lies in reaching the blaze in its incipiency and before it has taken hold all over the building."

The wagon weighed 5,500 pounds and was 500 pounds lighter than the team hose wagon. Besides the hose it was supplied with a single ladder, a twenty-four foot extension ladder, openers, axes and an eighty-gallon chemical tank. The wheels appeared solid from the fact that the space between the steel spokes was filed with sheet steel. The tires were solid rubber. The machine has six cylinders and is guaranteed to be unbreakable in the sense that it will survive intact the ordinary accidents of the road.

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April 21, 1909


OF GIVING UP $10,000.

Note Demanding Money Was Sent
to a Wealthy Farmer From Den-
ver -- Believed to Be the
Work of a Crank.

J. B. Markey, whose children live at 1303 West Thirty-ninth street, but who spends most of the time on his big farm in Harrison county, treats as a joke the "Black Hand" letter sent him from Denver, demanding $10,000 under pain of death.

It was last Friday when Mr. Markey received the letter, postmarked at Denver. At that time he was on his farm near Gilman City, Mo., and the missive had been forwarded to him from Kansas City. Laughingly he handed the letter to his friends and then forgot about it.

Being advised, however, to send the letter to Denver authorities, Mr. Markey did so, and since yesterday morning nothing more had been heard of it. Then it developed that the lives of his children were being weighed against the $10,000.

The letter was poorly written and demanded that the $10,000 be apportioned in designated bills, to be delivered at a certain address on Wellton avenue, in Denver, within thirty days of the date of the letter. No mention was made of the three children. Certain reports, however, have frightened the children, who are ignorant of the exact demands made upon their father.

Yesterday morning W. F. Farren, 3136 Central avenue, a nephew of Mr. Markey, read the letter in a morning paper, and hastened to the Markey home to break the news to the family. Some friends had preceded him and had talked with Miss Markey over the telephone. Though he assured the children that no harm whatever attended them, their fears were not fully dispelled. Last night Miss Markey refused to discuss the matter.

Speaking of the letter, Mr. Farren said:

"It is doubtless the work of some crank who knows that Mr. Markey has some money, and thinks that he can be bluffed into giving it up. Mr. Markey has not the slightest fear of harm resulting form the affair, and treats it only as a joke.

"Mr. Markey has no intention of complying with the demand. He pays less attention to the affair than do his friends."

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January 30, 1909


They Infest Certain Streets and Con-
tinually Annoy People.

Beggars infest certain streets in Kansas City near the business districts and annoy people passing along those thoroughfares, especially at night. Along the streets where they ply their trade a policeman is rarely ever seen. Along Central avenue, between Ninth and Tenth street, and along Eleventh street from Broadway to Wyandotte, there are from six to eight beggars stationed every night.

They are a prosperous looking set of hoboes, too. Some of them are able-bodied, healthy, well-dressed young men, who evidently seek the cover of night to beg for dimes.

"Just a dime, please, to get a cheap bed," is their plea. One fellow has a story to tell about being on the way to his home in Iowa and was robbed of all his money. Now he is forced to ask assistance. He has been working the same street for three weeks. He dresses well, too, so he must be prospering.

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September 27, 1908


$500 Has Accumulated, but Mary
Carpenter Refuses to Touch It.

Although Mrs. Mary Carpenter of 902 Central avenue, Kansas City, Kas., is entitled to a pension of $12 a month as the widow of a civil war veteran, she has steadfastly refused to sign the vouchers sent her by the national government. Mrs. Carpenter's husband has been dead four years and since that time pension vouchers have accumulated until now she has over $500 owed her by the government.

Yesterday morning Judge Van B. Prather, probate judge of Wyandotte county, appointed the Banking Trust Company of Kansas City, Kas., guardian of the pension money now in the company's vaults and of future payments. Mrs. Carpenter is employed as a cook in a Kansas City, Kas., restaurant, and refuses to give a reason for not taking the money which is coming to her.

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June 13, 1908


Ten Men Are Caught Retailing
Liquor in Flood District.

Ten men were arrested yesterday afternoon for trying to swell the height of the flood with "wet goods." About 12 o'clock in the afternoon an express wagon drove up to police headquarters and unloaded ten cases of beer, the result of a raid made by Officer Bert Walters on a place at 276 Central avenue. William Ryan, Philip O'Connor, T. McLane and Frank Hagenbach were the names the arrested men gave.

Chief of Police Bowden arrested four men that were peddling whisky in Armourdale. A jug of whisky, several bottles and a number of glasses were confiscated. Roy Kidwell, L. J. Kidwell, Frank Mercer and Nelson Benson were the men arrested. Two drivers of the Kansas City Breweries Company were arrested by the chief as they came from the Argentine bridge. He sent them to police headquarters, where they were released as soon as it was learned the cases contained empty bottles and not full ones.

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March 18, 1908


Robert W. Smyth Meets Death While
Returning From Wake.

Robert W. Smyth of 208 South Fourteenth street, Kansas City, Kas., brother of City License Inspector J. E. Smyth fell and broke his neck last night shortly before 10 o'clock while walking along South Eighteenth street. He had attended the wake of a friend in that neighborhood, and was on his way home when he met death.

The place where Mr. Smyth fell and received fatal injuries was within about twenty feet of where Isaac Malott, the Grandview grocer, was murdered by robbers about five months ago. He had been drinking, according to the statements of several persons who had been with him just a short time before he left for home. Dr. John A. Mitchell, who lives at 1803 Central avenue, only a short distance form where the accident occurred, was one of the first person s to reach the body. When he arrived Smyth was dying. Dr. Mitchell stated last night that there was no doubt that the man's neck was broken in the fall. Coroner Davis will hold a n autopsy this morning at Butler's undertaking rooms, where the body was removed.

Friends of Smyth believe that he was assaulted by highwaymen. There is a great gash on the dead man's forehead, and those who examined the ground where the body was found declare there are evidences of a struggle.

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March 13, 1908





One Lad Escapes From a Boys' Refuge
in St. Louis and Comes Here
to Tell His Terrible

At 10 o'clock yesterday morning three boys walked into the emergency hospital. They were runaways from the House of Refuge, an Industrial home at Osage and Virginia avenues, St. Louis. At Olivette, Mo., they were chased by a bull dog and ran through a bed of lime. Their legs were badly burned.

The boys gave the name of Albert Hopper, 14; Charles Reynolds, 17, and Cyrne Enge, 16 years old. After Dr. Julius Frischer had bound up the lads' burned limbs Hopper told a story which alarmed the doctor. The three boys were taken before Captain Whitsett, where Hopper said that he had come all the way from St. Louis to tell his story to the police. He told it again

Based on the boy's statement Dr. George W. Fraker, who formerly had offices at 1209 Grand avenue, but is now located at 703 Central avenue, Kansas City, Kas., was immediately arrested by Detective James M. Orford. He is being held for investigation. Last night John W. Hogan, an assistant prosecutor, took the statements of Hopper and other boys here who have lived with Fraker. Hogan said that this morning an information charging a nameless crime would be filed against Dr. Fraker in the criminal court if the case did not go to the grand jury direct.

Twenty-five months ago Hopper, who is an orphan, said he was in an orphans' home run by the Children's Home Finding Society at Margaretta and Newstead avenues, St. Louis. From there he was sent to Dr. Fraker at 1209 Grand avenue. He remained here with the doctor three months and one month in Excelsior Springs, Mo., the doctor's old home. Hopper's statement, which is horrible in details, tells of frequent instances when he was made to submit to most unnatural abuses. He said he was often beaten with a rubber hose when he refused to submit.


"I came all the way here," said Hopper, "to put Dr Fraker where he belongs. After I had been with Dr. Fraker four months, we were in Excelsior Springs. One day I threatened to tell on him. I was badly beaten and the next day sent to the House of Refuge in St. Louis. I went alone and was glad to go. I told the assistant superintendent my story, but he paid no attention to me. After being there a year and nine months, I determined to run away and come here, and tell it to the police. The other boys only came along as my friends. We escaped through a coal hole last Sunday morning."

Following the arrest of Dr. Fraker, Harry Elleman, 14 years old, was taken from Dr. Fraker's office at 703 Central avenue by Detective Mansel of Kansas City, Kas., and questioned. Mansell telephoned Detective Orford and he went and got young Elleman. This boy also made a statement to Hogan accusing Fraker. His statement was almost exactly the same as that made by Hopper.

Elleman has lived with Fraker since August, 1906, with the exception of the last five months, when he was living with his mother, Mrs. Ora Nordquist, at 1903 North Tenth street, Kansas City, Kas. Five days ago his relatives moved to the country and Harry returned to the doctor. While living on this side with the doctor, Elleman went by the name of Harry Fraker at the Humboldt school.


While living with Dr. Fraker at 1209 Grand avenue Cyril O'Neal, a young Englishman, 19 years old, died in September under suspicious circumstances. Dr. Fraker signed the death certificate as "acute Bright's disease," with typhoid fever as a contributory cause. An autopsy held by Coroner Thompson proved that O'Neal died of septic poisoning. The dead boy's brother, Claud O'Neal, is said to be still living with Fraker.

Frakers apparent philanthropy in caring for O'Neal, whom he met up with as a stranger in Put-in-Bay, O., caused much comment. He cared for him constantly all the time he was ill and paid for cablegrams to his people in England. When O'Neal went to live with the doctor Elleman was sent home.

Robert McBride, 17 years old, another boy now living with Dr. Fraker at 703 Central avenue, Kansas City, Kas., called at police headquarters last night to see the doctor Just at that time the other boys were making their statements concerning Fraker's treatment of them. McBride was not allowed to see Fraker, but was detained and caused to make a statement. Little was gained from him.


There has not been a time in the last twenty years, it is said, that Dr. Fraker has not had from one to two young boys living with him. Fraker created a big sensation fourteen years ago by mysteriously disappearing. He had something less than $100,000 life insurance at the time. He, a boy who was living with him, and an old negro went fishing on the Missouri river. An embankment apparently fell and the doctor with it. There was a deep eddy at that point where the water had undermined the bank. The negro and the boy told of hearing the "big splash" and later, when they ran to the scene, seeing only Dr. Fraker's hat floating away in the stiff current.

Several months afterwards detectives located Dr. Fraker living in an isolated lumber camp in the pine forests of the Northwest. He was arrested and returned home, where attempts were made by some of the insurance companies which had paid death claims on his life, to prosecute him. As it could not be proved that Fraker had in any way benefited by the ruse or received any of the money, nothing came of it.

Hopper and Elleman were detained at police headquarters last night. Assistant Prosecutor Hogan said that they, with other witnesses, would be taken before the grand jury today.

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January 1, 1908


One on West Twelfth Street and Two
in Kansas City, Kas.

The first victim of the New Year's celebration this morning was Gilbert Cons, a grocery clerk who lives at 800 West Twelfth street. Just at the stroke of 12 Cons and several of his friends went out into their front yard and began firing off pistols. Cons was standing near one of his companions watching him reload a .22-caliber revolver, when in the excitement the pistol was accidentally discharged. The bullet entered Cons's neck just above the Adam's apple. He was taken to the emergency hospital, where he was operated upon by Dr. John Hynds. The bullet missed the young man's jugular vein by only a hair's breadth, lodging in the throat about two inches under the skin. Dr. Hynds said that the would would not prove fatal.

Kansas City, Kas., celebrators ushered in the New Year with firearms loaded with leaden bullets. This fact caused two accidents, one of which may mean the amputation of the right leg of E. E. Leffel, 8 Central avenue. Leffel was standing on the street in front of his home when he was struck by a bullet which entered his thigh and passed down his leg to the ankle. The bullet was removed at No. 2 police station. It was discharged from a rifle, and was of .44-caliber.

J. W. Greer, 89 North Eighth street, was struck in the right ankle by a bullet of the same caliber and, it is thought, from the same gun which fired the bullet that wounded Leffel. Greer was standing in his doorway listening to the noise which ushered 1908 into existence. He was also treated at No. 2 police station.

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July 14, 1907


Blood Poisoning Develops From
Injury on Boy's Leg.

Tom Ryan, a 10-year-old boy, died yesterday at St. Margaret's hospital of blood poisoning, thought to have been caused from injuries from a firecracker. A few days after the Fourth he complained of a little sore on his leg where he was hit by a piece of firecracker, but at the time little attention was paid to it, as it was not thought to be of a serious nature. The injury continued to grow worse, and three days ago he was taken to the hospital, where he died yesterday in great agony.

The boy lived at 115 Central avenue, Kansas City, Kas.

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July 4, 1907


Firecracker Thrown in Manhole Near

A firecracker thrown into a sewer manhole near the Simpson block on Central avenue, Kansas City, Kas., cauased an explosion of the sewer gas last night. With a resounding boom the lid of the manhole was thrown high into the air and the asphalt for a rod around was damaged.

Although pieces of cement sidewalk and iron from the lid were widely thrown by the explosion, there was comparatively little damage.

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June 2, 1907


At Detention Home Until a Farmer
Will Adopt Him.

Visitors in the Detention home at 6 o'clock last evening heard the voice of a calf bawling from the second floor. It was a nervous noise to come from the inside of such a building and Superintendent C. H. Chapman was questioned.

"Oh, that's just Bert Willsie," Chapman said. "He makes all kinds of noises. He bawls like a calf when he wants something to eat.

"He is a genius at imitating voices of animals and birds and would make good on the stage. He can imitate anything from a bullfrog to a pig under a gate. He woke up everybody in the house the other morning and we would have all sworn it was a redbird singing."

"The best thing Bert ever pulled off since he has been in here, though," put in Dr. E. L. Mathias, "was the morning when he imitated an alarm clock at 4 a. m. Mr. Chapman wanted to spank him for that."

The animal voiced boy lives at 1406 Central. He is being held at the home until a good place for him can be found in the country. He ought to make a hit with the farmer boys.

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May 29, 1907


Kansas City, Kas., Barber Who Had
a Vision at Police Station.

T. J. Shelton, 807 Cherry street, a barber with a shop at 1 1/2 Central avenue, Kansas City, Kas., walked into police headquarters early Monday morning and asked to be "detained" for a time.

"It's a good bed and the long rest is what I need," he said.

When Shelton was placed in the matron's room he immediately went into using an imaginary phone in the corner of his cell.

"It's a wireless phone," he told Dr. W. L. Gist. ""Handy things, aren't they? Wouldn't be without one."

Later Shelton called Mrs. Joan Moran, the matron, and handing her a quarter said: "I wish you'd send a meal up on the elevator there to my nurse. She's up there and hasn't had anything to eat for some time."

Shelton pointed carelessly out into space as he spoke of "the elevator there." An order was made to send him to the general hospital yesterday. In the afternoon he appeared better, however, and made many promised regarding his future conduct, so Dr. Gist allowed him to be taken in charge by a friend.

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April 21, 1907


Dropped From and Upper Window on
a Woman's Head.

Mrs. Mary Toman, of 725 Lyons avenue, Kansas City, Kas., was standing on the sidewalk in front of the Simpson building, Seventh street and Central avenue, Kansas City, Kas., at 8 o'clock last night talking with another woman. A quart bottle of milk which had been placed in the window in one of the living apartments on the second floor of the building to keep cool fell, striking Mrs. Toman on the head, fracturing her skull. She was knocked down and rendered unconscious. A physician was hastily summoned and had the woman removed to her home, which is only a short distance from the scene of the accident. Mrs. Toman is a widow and has several small children. Her husband was found dead several years ago under the Central avenue viaduct.

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April 7, 1907


Wounds of Clarance Logan Cauterized
at Emergency Hospital.

While running along the street in the vicinity of Eleventh and Central yesterday, Clarence Logan, 10 years old, living at 800 Penn street, was attacked and bitten on the right hand by a vicious dog. The boy was taken at once to the emergency hospital in the city hall, where Dr. W. L Gist cauterized the wound. The dog, a mongrel, ran away.

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