November 18, 1909
MOTHERLY HEART STILLED
WHEN "PEGGY" HEALY DIED.
AGED WEST BOTTOMS SQUATTER SPENT
MUCH OF HER LIFE IN WORK FOR
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.
Labels: Bank street, churches, death, flood, hospitals, ministers, Seniors, West bottoms, women
September 23, 1909
SLEPT IN WATER AND
LIVED ON GOAT MEAT.
KANSAS CITYANS MAROONED
NINE DAYS IN MEXICO.
Mr. and Mrs. Robert Miller and
Frank W. Hager Tell of Ad-
ventures in Great Monterrey
Flood and Hurricane.
Huddled with a score of Mexican refugees in a shack fourteen by sixteen feet for over thirty-one hours, while the wind blew with an average velocity of 100 miles an hour and the rain fell i n torrents, and standing during this time knee deep in water was the thrilling experience of Mrs. Robert Miller, a Kansas City bride of a few days on her honeymoon trip in the state of Tamaulipas, Mexico, during the recent hurricane and unprecedented floods there.
Mrs. Miller, who was Miss Anna Belle Schell, her husband, Robert Miller, and Frank W. Hager of Kansas City, who are interested in a big land grant, and John B. Demaras and Demosthenes Lapith of Kansas City, Kas., were the only white persons in that territory for several weeks. During nine days of that time the party, cut off by the floods from roads and communication with the outside world, killed goats and subsisted on goat flesh.
All reached Kansas City early yesterday morning, none the worse for their experience, and Mrs. Miller declares that she is ready to go again.
The party experienced delightful weather until they got well into Mexico. Then it began to rain. They began having trouble at Victoria in getting to Soto La Marina valley, their objective point, which is about eighteen miles from the Gulf of Mexico. they arrived at the village of Soto La Marina on August 27 after riding for some ten miles through water breast deep on the horses. The path was picked up by a native who several times had to swim with his horse.
RACE WITH FLOOD.
On their arrival at Soto La Marina it became apparent that the town would be flooded by the rapidly rising river. It was raining heavily and the only refuge was on the hills west of the town. It would have been impossible to have returned to Victoria, so Mr. Miller and his party joined the native refugees. A quantity of food was hastily gathered and as the water began to fill the streets the inhabitants abandoned the town. The trip to the hills, about fourteen miles, was accomplished with difficulty. Frequently the horses would splash into holes and all of the riders were soaked to the skin.
"When we arrived at the shack near the junction of the Palma and the Sota La Marina river, which is the location of a proposed townsite, the rain was coming down in torrents, and the word torrent means just what the dictionary says it does down there," said Mr. Hager, one of the members of the party. "There were several adobe huts and to these the Mexican refugees hastened for shelter. Some joined us in the shack, which was built of up-ended logs with the chinks plastered with mud and a thatched roof, tied down with the native cord, formed of pieces of stringy bark.
"The way the house was tied together is about the only thing that saved us from the merciless wind and rain that night. It began to blow up about 11 p. m.
WIND GAUGES BROKEN.
"Wind gauges at government stations broke after recording velocities of 124 miles an hour, and I believe that the wind traveled just a little faster where we were.
"There were a score of us in the shack. The water swept through from the hillside until we stood almost knee deep. We had no light nor fire. We had some tortillas which kept us alive. About 7 a. m. the wind died down and for half an hour there was a perfect calm.
"Suddenly with a shriek the wind turned from north to south and blew as strong or stronger from that direction. Of course there was no such thing as sleep. The natives prayed constantly and the women bemoaned their fate. We knew of course that we were in no immediate danger, but we were in constant fear of our little shelter being blown from off our heads. All that day and the next night the storm continued. About 6 a. m. the sun came out the greater part of our stay there.
DINED ON GOAT STEAK.
"When the storm abated we began to look for food. Someone espied some goats on a hillside. We gave chase and an hour later had a nice goat roasting on a spit. That meal was the best I had eaten for some time.
"We were on a slight knoll, and after the meal we started to look around. We were practically surrounded by water, except for one outlet around an almost impassible mountainside dense with tropical verdure. We could do nothing but wait for these waters to subside. We slept on the ground. Saddles were our pillows. For nine days we lived the lives of savages, subsisting almost entirely on goat meat. I thought at one time I liked goat meat, but I got enough to do me the rest of my life.
SLEPT IN THE WATER.
"We finally made the start South. Natives went ahead and with knives and axes cut a path along the mountainside. A forty-mile ride under those circumstances was not the most enjoyable pastime in the world. When we arrived at Paddua there was but one hotel there, and it had one room which had been left with a roof.
"This room, of course, went to the bride and the bridegroom. The rest of us made ourselves comfortable on cots with the blue sky overhead.
"About midnight I was awakened by the patter of rain drops on my face. I was sleepy and pulled the blanket over my head and slept until I found myself resting in several inches of water. The rain ceased an hour or so later and after dumping the water out of the cots we all went back to sleep. It was much easier from there on home, as we found good accommodations at Tampico.
THRIVED AND GREW FAT.
"One of the most remarkable things to us is the fact that although the five of us were wet to the skin for two weeks and slept out on the ground during the greater part of that time, not one of us felt any ill effects. We were chilly at times, it is true, but that wore off and not one of us caught the slightest cold or felt any inconvenience. I gained four pounds. Mr. Demaras gained eight pounds and the others in the party all put on some flesh.
Labels: flood, food, marriage, Mexico, weather
July 25, 1909
WABASH PASSENGER TRAIN SLIDES INTO THE RIVER.
FOUR KNOWN TO BE DEAD AND 30 INJURED.
Embankment Undermined by Missouri River, Near Orrick, and East Bound Train Slid Into the Water --- Trainmen Buried Under their Engine -- Passengers Reported Missing.
A washout made by the recent floods which had washed away practically all the support of the tracks, caused a part of Wabash train No. 4, out of Kansas City, to plunge into the Missouri river at Hull's Point, Mo., two miles east of Orrick about 10:15 o'clock last night. Orrick is thirty miles east of Kansas City.
Four are known to be dead and thirty-nine injured, some seriously.
The engine, baggage and express cars are in the river, almost entirely covered by water and the bodies of the engineer and fireman, a baggageman and a baby are buried in the wreckage.
The train consisting of engine and nine coaches left Kansas City for St. Louis at 9 o'clock last night in charge of Conductor W. M. Frye of St. Louis.
There were four sleepers on the train, one of them for Des Moines and according to Conductor Frye's story he carried sixty-eight passengers.BIG CONSIGNMENT OF MONEY.
In the baggage and express car was Harry Eckhert, Pacific express messenger, who had charge of between $30,000 and $40,000 consigned to St. Louis.
Immediately after the news of the wreck reached Kansas City a relief train was sent out and all of the injured were brought to Kansas City.
The train bearing the injured and other passengers arrived at the Union depot at 2:30 o'clock this morning. Seven ambulances with surgeons were in waiting and the injured were given temporary treatment in the main waiting room before being taken to the hospitals.
An hour after the wrecked passengers reached Kansas City, a new train was secured and the uninjured passengers were sent on to their destination.RIVER ATE BANK AWAY.
The train was running at 35 miles an hour when it reached the line of track, a quarter of a mile in extent, which had been undermined and washed away by the Missouri river. Into this space the train suddenly plunged, though passengers say that they felt the shock of the grinding brakes. At the point where the derailment occurred the track is practically straight and the river makes no perceptible curve.
The river had eaten its way fifty feet beyond the inmost rail so no vestige of track remained visible. When the engine struck the water it hurled itself forward carrying the baggage and mail car and sleeper with it. The baggage car crashed on top of the engine and the two were forced beneath the water, the engine being completely submerged and the baggage car standing on end in the water. The mail car overturned in the water and the clerks were forced to climb over the wreckage before they could get to safety. Every one of them was injured in some degree by the force of the shock.
The washout occurred after 6:30 o'clock, for at that time another Wabash passenger train, eastbound, went over the track in safety and no danger was noticed.DIED AT POST OF DUTY.
Engineer Flowers and Fireman Bond both went into the river with their engine and were drowned. It is thought that the escaping steam would have scalded them to death even had they not been held under the water by the weight of the engine. Baggageman Harry Eckert was caught in his car which sank to the bottom of the stream and he was drowned like a rat in a trap.
The death of little Donald King, the infant who was thrown from his father's arms into the river, was particularly sad. The child was but 2 years old and both parents were with him and his two little sisters, but little older than himself. Just before the train was precipitated into the river his father took him forward to the toilet room. When Mr. King got to the front of the coach the first shock came and he lurched heavily. The child was forced from his arms in some way and, it is thought, fell into the stream through one of the open windows. When the parents were seen at the Union depot last night they were both so dazed they could hardly give a coherent account of the accident.
Ten or twelve people who were only slightly injured left the train at the scene of the accident and went back to Orrick, Mo. Their names could not be learned this morning.BIG CROWD GATHERED.
News of the wreck was not long in reaching the depot and long before the relief train arrived the platform resembled the ward of a hospital. Along track No. 1 on which the train was scheduled to come in, was a long line of cots, while emergency surgeons in shirt sleeves strolled up and down or sat on the cots awaiting the arrival.
At about ten minutes past 2 o'clock there was a stir in the crowd of those waiting, the crowd having steadily increased as the news of the wreck filtered through the early morning air. A "flash" was received that the train had reached Randolph, just across the river, and would be at the station in ten minutes. Policemen showed up from apparently nowhere and took up their station along the track.
Ten minutes, twenty, thirty minutes passed and when shortly after the half-hour the train backed in. The crowd was so dense it was with difficulty the police made a passageway for the surgeons and stretchers.LONG LINE OF WHITE COTS.
Conductor Frye was the first man off the train. As soon as his lantern flashed its signal to the waiting hospital attendants, a line of white cots came into view, while the police had a difficult time keeping back the morbidly curious.
"A man in the sleeper is badly hurt," said Frye.
Men carried in a cot and because of the crowd it was necessary to pass the cot holding the injured man through a car window.
Others were carried or helped out by trainmen, hospital attendants and uninjured passengers, some bleeding and dazed, with temporary bandages wrapped about heads, arms and bodies.
Those who were able were left for the time being to shift for themselves, while surgeons bent over the cots of the more seriously injured to administer temporary relief.
Meanwhile uninjured passengers besieged Frye to know when they could "go on."
"Just as soon as we can get a train crew," was the invariable reply of the patient conductor.PASSENGERS AIDED DOCTORS.
Dr. Robert Sheetz and Dr. G. O. Moore of Orrick were the first physicians on the scene. They impressed those of the passengers who were able to assist them and gave temporary relief to most of the injured by the time the train reached Kansas City.
Miss Irene Dorton, 20, and Mrs. Sam Hackett, 40 years old, both of Orrick, were within a few miles of their home when the accident occurred. They had been visiting friends in Kansas City and were getting their luggage ready to get off the train when they were suddenly thrown out of their seats and across the aisle. Both lost consciousness and were revived by some of the passengers who were not as severely injured. They were attended by Drs. Sheet and Moore of Orrick.
"I can't tell you a thing about how the accident happened," said Miss Dorton, who was hurt the least. "I remember saying something to Mrs. Hackett about getting off the train, but that is all."ONE OF THE WORST INJURED.
Frank Gardner, 40 years old, of Mount Vernon, was one of the worst injured. His hand was gashed and his left arm was almost crushed off. He was in the forward car and was caught beneath the wreckage.
"Our escape from death was simply miraculous," said Miss Mamie Donnelly of Mexico, Mo. "I was holding my little niece, Mary, 6 years old, in my lap, when suddenly a feeling passed through me similar to that one feels when riding a chute the chutes, then came a terrible jar and Mary was thrown clear out of my arms and her little head struck the roof of the car. I caught her dress and she fell back on me. We were both scratched a little but outside of the jar were not hurt."BOTH OF THEM BRUISED.
Mr. and Mrs. C. F. Moore of Pueblo, Col, who were on their way to Huntsville, Mo., were both hurt. Mrs. Moore was badly bruised and cut and her back was sprained.
"We were in the chair car when the accident occurred," said Mr. Moore, "and we felt as if the earth just slipped out from beneath us. My wife was thrown against the side of the car and then into my arms. For a moment it felt as if we were to be engulfed and then all was still. Then came the cries for help. It seemed as if everyone was crying for help even though they were uninjured. Everyone was just panic stricken. I gathered my wife in my arms and we soon found ourselves outside the car. The scene was awful. The engine had bone beneath the river and was followed by several cars, we could not see how many. When I attended my wife's injuries I helped to look after the other passengers who were hurt."BRAKEMAN SWAM ASHORE.
Z. T. Finney, the brakeman, was on the head end of the deadhead sleeper and was pitched far out into the Missouri river when the embankment gave way beneath the train. He was half buried beneath coal from the tender and was cut and bruised. The water restored him to consciousness and he swam to shore.
"I was on the head end of the deadhead sleeper," said Brakeman Finey, "when the crash came. Just before we went into the water I felt the platform sort of sway and a sickening, falling sensation came over me. The next I remember I felt myself hurled over the top of the tender and then all was blank until I found myself swimming back to the train. The engine as it sank into the soft bank came to a sudden stop, and this jammed the cars together and threw me over the tender. That's how I happened to get hurt, although I am lucky that I was not carried beneath the cars."
Finney's injuries, while severe, are not serious.BABY LOST IN RIVER.
"I'll never forget this night as long as I live," said Miss Birdie Dugan of 2829 St. Louis avenue, St. Louis, who was on the wrecked train. "It was terrible to see the injured as they were brought into our car, and to think of the others lying in the river. A man in our car lost his baby right out of his arms, and it went into the river. The poor mother was just a little distance away. There was an awful crash as the car broke in two, and the roof came down and the sides came together and caught so many people so they could not move. Everybody worked to get them out before the other half of the car fell into the river. The accident occurred shortly after 10 o'clock. We left Kansas City at 9 o'clock, right on time."WOMAN DOCTOR AIDED.
Dr. Mary Turner Loahbeck of 2829 St. Louis avenue, St. Louis, Mo., was on the train, and assisted in aiding the injured. "About all that was possible for me to do was to bandage the cuts," the doctor said. "I had no bandages with me, but we secured twenty or thirty sheets from the sleeping cars, and tore them into bandages. I attended about twenty people myself. The people of Orrick, Mo., were very kind. They gave us dry underclothing for the persons who were wet, and offered us all the assistance they were able to render."
Had it not been for the fact that the Wabash train No. 9, being the passenger train from Boston, was delayed at Moberly an hour, it would have met the fate of its sister train. If the train No. 9 had been on scheduled time it would have reached the washout before No. 4. Train No. 9 was due in Kansas City at 9:45, but arrived at 2:40, just after the relief train got into Kansas City. No. 9 was detoured over the Missouri Pacific after having been held for three hours by the wreck.
Labels: accident, children, death, Des Moines, drowning, flood, Missouri river, railroad, St Louis
July 21, 1909
"ALTON" RESUMES SERVICE.
All C. & A. Trains Now Running
Over Their Own Tracks on
The popularity of the Chicago & Alton railroad was again demonstrated Tuesday morning by the number of people who appeared at the C. & A. downtown ticket office, following the announcement that all Alton trains were again running over their own lines.
Although the tracks at Glasgow suffered several bad washouts, the Alton completed their reconstruction with unusual promptness and were able to announce the restoration of their train service a full day ahead of their expectations.
For the convenience of their patrons who prefer a downtown depot, the C. & A. also recently began operating their "Red Hummer" train to and from Chicago daily through the Twenty-second and Grand avenue station.
Labels: Chicago, flood, Grand avenue, railroad, Twenty-second street
July 13, 1909
THINKS RIVERS ARE
AT HIGHEST STAGE.
FORECASTER CONNOR NOW
LOOKS FOR FALL.
At Topeka There Was Fall of 0.7
of Foot and at St. Joseph the
Missouri Is Stationary.
SKETCH OF THE JUNCTION OF THE KAW AND 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.
Labels: Eighth street, flood, Hickory street, Kaw river, Missouri river, Mulberry street, Ninth street, Santa Fe street, St.Joseph, stock yards, Topeka, weather, West bottoms
July 12, 1909
WILL SPEND SUMMER HERE.
Lady Somerset, Formerly of Kansas
City, and Mother, Arrive.
Lady Henry Somerset arrived home yesterday from Paris, France. Lady Somerset, when she left Kansas City for abroad, was Mrs. Adelaide De Mare, the widow of the Pepper building fire victim. while abroad she met Lord Henry Somerset, and they were married a few weeks ago.
Lady Somerset and her mother, Mrs. Craig Hunter, left Paris over a week ago for their home. They reached Chicago without mishap or delay, but from Chicago trouble beset them on account of high water. They should have reached Kansas City Saturday afternoon at 5 o'clock. High waters held their train for twenty-six hours, and when they finally reached their home, 1202 East Thirty-fourth street, Lady Somerset and her mother were decidedly fatigued.
Lady Henry Somerset stated last night that her husband's urgent business kept him in Paris. Lady Henry will spend the summer months with her parents in Kansas City.
Labels: England, flood, marriage, railroad, Thirty-fourth street
July 11, 1909
WAITS THREE DAYS AT DEPOT.
Little Osawatomie Girl's Train Is
Still Delayed by Floods.
At least one person at the Union depot has suffered a full share of grief and disappointment by the demoralized train service due to the floods in the Missouri valley, having waited three days to get to her destination.
Annie Davis, 8 years old, arrived in Kansas City from Osawatamie, Kas., last Thursday morning, on her way to Bangor, Kas. The Katy trains south into Oklahoma, on which line Bangor is situated, have been annulled and it is doubtful if the girl will be able to get to her destination within the next few days. She will be taken care of by one of the colored maids at the depot.
Labels: children, flood, railroad, Union depot
June 16, 1909
FLOOD STAGE HERE FRIDAY.
Missouri River 19 Feet Last Night,
and Still Rising.
The Missouri river will reach the flood stage here Friday. At the Hannibal bridge guage last night its depth was nineteen feet as an effect of melting mountain snows, and apparently there was more drift on the current here than at any time since the beginning of the freshet.
"I believe the water will rise at least three feet at Kansas City," said P. Connor, the local weather observer, last night. "At St. Joseph, Mo., it will at least go up two feet, or past the flood stage. Twenty-two feet, or one foot above the flood stage, is the worst I expect for Kansas City at present, although a heavy rain just now would cause a more or less disastrous flood. The Kaw river is holding its own, neither rising nor falling, and that is a good indication, but a heavy rain would alter its peaceful aspect.
"The Kaw was rising at Manhattan and going down at Topeka yesterday."
Labels: flood, Hannibal bridge, Missour river, Topeka, weather
April 26, 1909
HE'S PREPARED FOR A FLOOD.
Croatian Builds House to Float
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.
Labels: boats, Croatians, flood, immigrants, Missouri river, West bottoms
March 10, 1909
BLAMES ACT OF PROVIDENCE.
Barber Asphalt Company Still Inter-
poses Plea Touching Repairs.
Property owners on Eight street, between Santa Fe and Hickory, are going to have a conference with the attorney of the Barber Asphalt Paving company with a view to compromising with the company which has raised the point that the washing away of the asphalt in the flood of 1903 was "an act of God."
The company has all these years resisted restoration of the pavement, although it agreed to maintain it for ten years, always interposing when called upon to comply with its contract that it did not consider itself responsible for something over which it had no control.
The questions involved in the argument were thrashed out before the board of public works yesterday.
Labels: Eighth street, flood, Hickory street, public works, Santa Fe street
October 21, 1908
OLD SMALLPOX HOSPITAL
WILL BE DESTROYED BY FIRE.
Abandoned Structure Is Full of
Germs of Deadly Contagious
St. George's contagious disease hospital, located on the banks of the Missouri near the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul railroad bridge, is to be destroyed by fire by orders of the health and hospital board. It is a frame structure, and it is proposed to have the fire company stationed in the East Bottoms preside over the conflagration. The building was erected several years ago, and the board decided that it would never do to use the wreckage for building purposes again on account of fear of a spread of contagion. Hundreds of persons have been treated there for smallpox and other contagious diseases.
The floods of last spring overreached the banks, and moved the building off its foundations onto the land claimed by the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul Railroad company. Ever since then the hospital has been out of commission and the railroad company has been persistent in its demands that the structure be removed.
Reports current in the Eleventh ward, in which the old general hospital building and annexes are located, that smallpox patients are kept in the annexes are denied by W. P. Motley, a member of the health and hospital board.
"The stories have been traced down to employes who were discharged from the old hospital," said Mr. Motley last night. "We have been told that the previous administration kept smallpox patients in the annexes, but no such conditions have prevailed since the present board has been organized.
Mr. Motley was asked where the city would keep smallpox patients in the future. He replied that he could not answer the question, but that it would be taken up at the next meeting of the board.
A year or so ago, during the Beardsley administration, a movement was started to establish a contagious disease hospital on the grounds of the old hospital, but it was given up on account of protests from Eleventh ward residents.
Labels: East bottoms, flood, health, hospitals, railroad, smallpox
August 29, 1908
STATE OFFERS REWARD FOR
Deserter Is Believed to Have Mur-
dered George Pickle, Whose Body
Was Found in River.
Governor Joseph W. Folk yesterday offered a reward of $200 for the arrest and conviction of Ira Earl Hamilton, the deserter from the United States army, who is believed to have killed George W. Pickle in a swampy place near the mouth of the Blue river on June 20. The reward stands good for one year from the date.
On June 20, Pickle, who was only 17 years old, left his home at 1429 Summit street with Hamilton, 28 years old, ostensibly in a search of work. Five days later a body was found in the underbrush near the mouth of the Blue. Hamilton, who at that time was not suspected, was sent a few days later to see if he could identify the body. He reported that it was the body of a negro, 35 years old.
At the point where the body lay had been several feet of backwater during the flood. Trees and brush grew thick and neither the body nor the clothing could have floated away. Near there detectives found a piece of gas pipe about one foot long. It had been cut with a machine which crushed the ends together. The pipe was yesterday identified by a woman who lives at the home of Hamilton's aunt. She said she had often seen it among his tools. He is a constructural iron worker.
Hamilton was arrested shortly after the boy disappeared, but at that time Pickle's body had not been found. Hamilton was turned over to the military prison at Fort Leavenworth to serve time as a deserter. He succeeded in making his escape from there in less than a month. Prosecutor I. B. Kimbrell says he has a strong case against Hamilton.
Labels: Blue river, flood, Governor Folk, Leavenworth, military, murder, Prosecutor Kimbrell, Summit street
August 20, 1908
MEAT IS A LITTLE CHEAPER.
Retail Prices Have Declined as Much
as 3 Cents a Pound.
Retail meat prices are being quoted from 1/2 to 3 cents lower per pound than was the case a month ago. the reason for the slight decrease in price as given by the local retail butchers is that the wholesale markets have reduced their prices on meat stuffs, and that it is more profitable for them to reduce their own prices in proportion, inasmuch as more people will buy meat at cheaper prices.
The wholesalers give no particular reason for the decline in prices, saying that general circumstances make it possible to reduce the price of meat to the retailer a few cents a pound. The flood during the early part of the summer had a great deal to do with the large advance in the price of meats, which was maintained up until the last few days.
Steaks which cost the butcher 14 1/2 cents to 18 1/2 cents a pound are being sold by the retailers at 22 1/2 cents a pound. This is a decrease of from 4 1/2 to 7 1/2 cents per pound since last month. Rib roasts are selling from 15 to 17 cents a pound and cost the retailer anywhere from 14 to 17 cents a pound. Sugar-cured ham which costs the retailer 12 1/2 cents a pound is being sold for 17 cents, and pork, which ranges from 8 to 12 cents a pound at wholesale prices can be bought for 15 cents at many of the downtown markets.
Labels: butchers, flood, food, grocers, retailers
July 13, 1908
PATIENTS SLEEPING IN TENTS.
General Hospital Is Crowded to Point
The new general hospital is certainly a badly needed thing," said an officer at the hospital yesterday. "Look at the crowded condition of the place we are in now. On one side, not more than ten feet away from the walls of the hospital, is the city smallpox pest house, which was put here because the floods drove it out of the East Bottoms The situation of the pest house so close to the main building of the hospital has been a danger which is hard to overestimate.
"In the inclosed space in the middle of the building is the tent in which several patients from the female ward sleep nightly. These are not cases in which open air treatment has been recommended, but they must sleep out there because there is not room enough for them to sleep in the hospital.
"There is another tent on the north side of the building where male patients sleep out of doors for the same reason. The capacity of the hospital exclusive of these outgrowths is 185 patients.
"We expect to move into the new building in two weeks. It will accommodate 540 patients, and will be superior in every way to the building we are now occupying. To say that we welcome the approaching change with gladness is to speak mildly."
Labels: East bottoms, flood, general hospital, smallpox
July 5, 1908
WEDDED 2 DAYS;
FIRES BULLET INTO BRAIN IN
PRESENCE OF WIFE.
AFTER BIDDING HER GOODBYE.
NO REASON FOR JOS. P. THOMP-
SON'S ACT IS KNOWN.
Married Pearl A. O'Shea on July 2.
It Was a Mild Elopement, and
Her Parents Didn't Ap-
prove of Wedding.
One July 2 Joseph P. Thompson and Miss Pearl A. O'Shea took a trip to Leavenworth and were married by a justice of the peace.
Last night at 7 o'clock when the young wife entered her husband's room at 3102 East Twentieth street he said goodby to her and, pointing a pistol at his right temple, shot himself in the brain.
Thompson was a woodturner and worked for the American Sash and Door Company. He was 26 years old and had been in the city three years. A quiet young man, he never spoke much about himself to anyone, but there were rumors that he had once been married before.
For the last year, Thompson had boarded at the house of Mrs. Alma D'Avis, 3102 East Twentieth street, and it was there that he met the girl that afterward became his wife. Mrs. D'Avis has weak eyes, and requires the attention of a nurse. Her niece, Pearl O'Shea, was a nurse, so Mrs. D'Avis had her come and stay with her. That was two months ago. An attachment sprang up between the young people living in the same house, and the runaway marriage was the result.
After the marriage they told the girl's mother and he stepfather, John Reed, who lives at Twentieth an Harrison streets. The latter did not approve of the union at all. the girl was their only support, they said, and they had lost much of their property in the recent flood.
This is the only reason that the young man's friends can give for the suicide. Yesterday afternoon he came home, apparently in a normal frame of mind. He was not known as a drinking man, and was said to have no bad habits. He did not even own a revolver, so that he must have especially purchased the one he used.
Last night the young wife was hysterical with grief and had to have the care of physicians. The tragic ending of the short romance of her life affected her so seriously that the doctors fear for her mind.
Thompson came to this city three years ago from Hot Springs, Ark. He was a member of the lodge 73 of the West Side branch, W. O. W., and was well liked by all his associates. At no time did his actions give any trace of insanity.
Labels: boarding house, flood, Harrison street, Leavenworth, lodges, marriage, mental health, nurses, Suicide, Twentieth street
June 26, 1907
THEY SWAM TO PUT OUT A FIRE.
Firemen in East Bottoms Followed
Through Flood by Team.
When hose company No 20, Guinotte and Montgall avenues, responded to an alarm of fire from the Park grain elevator, East Lynne street and Nicholson avenue, at 8 o'clock last night, the firemen found the burning structure surrounded by at least five feet of water, surrounded by at least five feet of water. Near the elevator was a fire plug, just barely covered with water. The team followed them. The wagon floated and the horses seemed to pull it with ease while swimming. When the wagon reached a depth where the wheels touched the ground and the bed with the hose was above water the firemen reeled off a section and the hydrant man made the attachment. The line was crried into the elevator and the fire put out. When it was all over the men, horses and wagon went back the way they had come.
Labels: animals, Fire, flood, Guinotte avenue, Montgall avenue, swimming
June 17, 1908
MAKES TRIP BY ROAD
FASTER THAN TRAINS.
Captain Lawton's Journey to Topeka
in Studebaker a Hard Trip
Back from to Topeka by motor car, Captain Frank H. Lawton, in charge of the army's purchasing department in Kansas City, says he didn't believe the automobile could come through such a journey as he completed Monday afternoon. Most of the distance the mud was up to the hubs, but even where the roads were most impassable, the motor car forced a way under its own power.
The flood made Captain Lawton's trip imperative. A message from the war department on Saturday afternoon told him to go at once to Topeka, where stores bound for Fort Riley had been stopped by the high water. There was no chance to get a train, so Captain Lawton, thinking of the trip of the army car last winter, called up the Studebaker company and asked for a motor car. W. L. Walls, of the motor car department, was ready within an hour and the plow to Topeka was begun.
As nearly as possible, the route had been laid out on high ground, and but for this fact the journey would have been impossible. The motor car, leaving Kansas City at 4 o'clock Saturday afternoon, was run all night, with stops only for food, and reached Topeka at 1:30 Sunday afternoon. The distance by odometer was about 150 miles.
The car, returning, left Topeka Monday morning and got back in twelve hours, while it took a train fifteen hours to go the same distance, on account of the detours that had to be made. T. G. Sweeney drove on the return trip to Kansas City.
Labels: automobiles, flood, Fort Riley, military, Topeka
June 17, 1908
CONVENTION HALL IS A CAMP.
Several Families Make It Their Abid-
ing Place During Flood.
Cots, blankets and even the bare cement floor are the beds of refugees from the flood who are using Convention hall as a temporary home. Monday night 240 persons, thirty of them women, slept in the hall, and as many were there last night. But little space in the hall was taken up for storage of goods. Most of the persons there have few goods to store, and they either carry their belongings in a bundle on their backs or store them in the second story of their homes.
Most of the women there Monday night were from the East Bottoms. Yesterday they found that the water was not in their homes and returned. Fifty Greeks who were out of work on account of the high water left Convention hall yesterday afternoon for Chicago.
Labels: Chicago, Convention Hall, East bottoms, flood, immigrants
June 17, 1908
MISSOURI RISING UPSTREAM.
Continued Rains Delay Expected Fall
in Flood Waters.
OMAHA, June 16. -- There was no fall in the Missouri river for the past twenty-four hours, but the fact that it remained almost stationary encouraged the weather bureau to believe that no higher stage would be reached It stood at 18.3 this morning, the same as Monday morning. It is again raining in the Missouri valley.
ST. JOSEPH, MO., June 16 (Special.) -- The Missouri river at this point at 10 o'clock tonight is receding at the rate of one inch an hour and promises to keep it up tomorrow. The Platte and 102 rivers have shown a more rapid decline and will soon e beyond the danger point. A slight rain is falling tonight, but it is not expected to affect the river conditions. All trains out of this city, north and eastbound, can make schedule time.
LEAVENWORTH, KAS., June 16 (Special.) -- The Missouri river continues to rise at this point. Great logs are coming down and quantities of fine drift indicating rains above. The river rose about an inch today and is now nearly six miles from bank to bank here. Great slate piles at the coal mines are exploding and resemble volcanoes, owing to the sulphur which burns.
ATCHISON, KAS., June 16 (Special.) -- The continued rising of the Missouri river at this point is just beginning to be serious. The water has reached the stage where it is spreading over the fine Missouri bottom land. The river has risen three inches here in the past 24 hours and is still rising slowly.
JEFFERSON CITY, June 16 (Special.) -- It is believed that the worst of the flood will be over in this stretch of the Missouri by this time tomorrow. While the river was stationary for a time last night it began rising again and fully six inches has been added. The rate it came up today was about half an inch per hour. This morning a big body of back water come over the bank of Turkey creek, west of North Jefferson, and inundated many hundred acres of the bottom that escaped.
Labels: flood, Jefferson City, Leavenworth, Missouri river, Omaha, St.Joseph
June 16, 1908
FLOOD VIEWS DAMAGE TRADE.
Justin A. Runyan Appeals to Post
Card and Film Dealers.
Souvenir post cards and moving pictures showing the damage wrought by the flood are likely to do Kansas City a great deal of harm, in the opinion of Justin A. Runyan, secretary to the Manufacturers and Merchants' Association. Speaking about people sending out post cards having some scene representing the flooded district, Mr. Runyan said the harm could not be estimated.
"Many of these cards," Mr. Runyan said, "reached the hands of business men of other cities, and those men are likely to form wrong impressions of the city. Many people will believe the high water did more damage than is really the case.
"Merchants or manufacturers preparing to secure new locations might see one of these post cards and get the impression from the view shown that Kansas City is submerged each year. The cards," according to Mr. Runyan, "at the best, only give a faint idea of the flood and in most cases leave a false impression. Not only will the post cards be harmful, but moving picture scenes that are being made for purpose of sending out broadcast to be shown in different cities will cause great loss of trade and damage to the city generally."
One dealer located at Twelfth street and Grand avenue, who is having films for moving pictures made will be induced by Mr. Runyan, if possible, to give up the plan. Whether the dealers in moving picture films and the sellers of post cards can be made to see the harm their goods may accomplish is the question that is troubling the secretary of the association.
Labels: flood, moving pictures, organizations
June 15, 1908
WALKS A WIRE ON ONE LEG.
Novel Attraction Coming to Forest
Park Next Week.
The aerial act scheduled for Forest park did not go on yesterday, as the artists engaged for this act were unable to get to Kansas City on account of the flood. The management replaced this act with one equally as good, namely, the Long Brothers, premier acrobats and tumblers, La Wanda and Garrick pleased all who saw them in their ring contortion stunt and the Luken's bears game ther last performance in the evening. They leave today for St. Louis, where they will play a return engagement at Forest Park Highlands. The bears will be replaced by Roy Fortune, the world's premier one-legged wire walker. The couples' skating contest is popular. There are now entered over forty couples. A large crowd visited the park yesterday despite the threatening weather and the flood.
Labels: daredevils, flood, forest park, theater
June 14, 1908
ROBBER SHOOTS FLOOD VICTIM.
Fred Liggett Meets Double Disaster.
Condition is Serious.
Compelled to leave home on account of the flood, Fred Liggett, 3412 Guinotte avenue, and his brother-in-law, P. Donohue, have been sleeping in the Kemper elevator in the East bottoms. Last night at 11 o'clock the two men were on their way to the elevator when two strangers confronted them with drawn revolvers. Donahue ran when ordered to hold up his hands.
Fred Liggett fought the robbers and was shot in the groin. After the shooting the robbers went through Liggett's pockets, but did not get anything. The holdup occurred on the Chicago & Alton tracks one-half mile east of Heim's brewery. Liggett was taken to St. Joseph's hospital for medical aid. His condition is considered serious.
Labels: crime, flood, Guinotte avenue, railroad, violence
June 14, 1908
WEST BOTTOMS FLOODED.
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.
Labels: flood, Mulberry street, Ninth street, Union depot, weather, West bottoms
June 14, 1908
CROPS AND GARDENS DAMAGED.
Missouri River Towns in This Vicin-
ity Will Suffer Greatly.
Much damage is being done to the crops which are planted in the vicinity of the smaller towns along the course of the Missouri. The gardens along the Blue river are mostly safe as yet, but there is great anxiety felt for their safety during the next two or three days.
At Harlem and Coburg, many garden and berry fields have been planted in the bottoms and these have been a total loss. All along the course of the Missouri, from Kansas City to Liberty, the lowlands are under water to the depth of from two to six feet. Some corn fields and much wheat and smaller gardens are completely washed out by the flood.
At Northern Junction and Randolph, the chief loss is of small gardens. Randolph is higher than most of the other smaller towns along the river and but few houses have been flooded by the high water. The residents are making preparations for any emergency and will be able to meet the flood when it comes. Their experience in the flood of 1903 was a good lesson to them. The people in Randolph are quite hopeful, thinking that the river will not rise high enough this year to severely injure them.
Labels: Blue river, flood, Liberty, Missouri river
June 13, 1908
KINDNESS TO ANIMALS.
Chief Bowden Floats the "Humane Boat."
Chief of Police D. E. Bowden showed his kindness toward dumb animals by assigning one boat and its crew to rescue cats and dogs which were left behind by their ownders during the high water. Twenty-one dogs and thirty-seven cats in all were rescued by the "humane boat." They were found in all conceivable places, some on the tops of outhouses, others floating on drift wood, while several cats were taken from the branches of small trees in Shawnee park.
Labels: animals, boats, flood, Police Chief Bowden
June 13, 1908
WATER LEAVING STOCK YARDS.
If No Further Rise Comes They'll Be
Open Again Monday.
Flood water moved out of the stock yards all day yesterday, and the yard management and the commission men felt cheerful. The flood, as far as could be seen yesterday, did but little damage to the stock yards on the east side. While most of the pens were under water Thursday, by last night most of the water had receded and left but little sediment behind.
About three feet of water ran out of the yards during the day. There was some water in the basement offices in the Exchange building at the close of the day. If there is no further rise in the Kaw, the yards expect to be able to handle stock on the east, or main, side Monday. In the Texas division, in Armourdale, the situation is not so good, though everything there, too, it is hoped, will be straightened out inside of a week.
Labels: Armourdale, flood, Kaw river, stock yards, Texas
June 12, 1908
POLICE WILL PATROL
RIVER IN LAUNCHES.
Mounted Men Guard Flooded Whole-
sale District -- Peril of the
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.
Labels: boats, Captain Whitsett, children, East bottoms, flood, Grand avenue, Hannibal bridge, Harlem, Holmes street, immigrants, intercity viaduct, Mayor Crittenden, military, Mulberry street, Police Chief Ahern, West bottoms
June 11, 1908
LOSES HIS LIFE IN THE FLOOD.
James Fradora Falls From Front
Porch and Drowns.
James Fradora, aged aout 38 years, fell off his front porch into his front yard at 309 Kansas avenue yesterday evening about 6 o'clock and was drowned before help could reach him. He was sitting in a chair watching the flood, which surounded his house, when he tipped over backwards. It was thought he struck his head in falling and was rendered unconscious by the fall, for the water was not very deep and he could easily have waded out.
Labels: death, flood, Kansas avenue
June 11, 1908
HE'S A TEMPORARY ORPHAN.
Lee Rogers, 6 Years Old, Separated
From His Parents in the Flood.
Lee Rogers, 6 years old, is the first boy to lose both his parents in the present flood, and he is being cared for at the detention home until such time as his father and mother can be found. The Rogers lived in Armourdale until Monday. On that day when the flood threatened their home, Mrs. Rogers came to Kansas City, Mo., to find a new home, and the father went away to help buil dikes. The boy was left in the care of Mrs. Mary Dunbar, 567 North Fourth street, Armourdale, and she, too, had to make a hasty retreat to the Missouri side of the river as the waters began to rise. She brought the Rogers boy with her, and being unable to find his mother turned him over to the superintendent of the detention home last evening.
Labels: Armourdale, children, detention home, flood, orphans
June 10, 1908
SMALLPOX PATIENTS REMOVED.
St. George Hospital Now Stans in
Five Feet of Water.
High water invaded the grounds shrouding St. George's hospital, the city's pest house, located on the banks of the Missouri river near the bridge of the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul railroad, yesterday afternoon. When the outbuildings began to float Dr. George P. Pipkin,in charge of the hospital, became concerned for the thirteen patients in his charge, and telephoned to the city for ambulances. The sufferers were loaded into these and transferred to the ward for the insane at the general hospital, Insane patients were distributed in other parts of the building.
At a late our last night St. George's hospital, which is a frame structure, was still intact in about five feet of water.
Labels: doctors, flood, general hospital, mental health, railroad, smallpox
June 10, 1908
HARLEM PEOPLE HAVE
ABANDONED THEIR HOMES.
Missouri River Backed Into the Vil-
lage Through Breach in
Yesterday was the first exhibition day for the Missouri. The Big Muddy had been out of its banks north of the city for two days, working its way into Clay county in the form of a creek, that swelled at times to lakes. Yesterday morning found the river more than a mile wide near Parkville, with Parkville high and dry, but the incursion made on the Kansas side. Towards this city, however an due east of Kansas City, Kas., the Missouri had eaten its way till it was three times its normal width. Right north of the city Harlem stood safe till about noon yesterday, when back water began going into it. The Harlem shore is fairly high and it held back the Missouri even as late as dark last night, but east of the little town about three-quarters of a mile the shore line drops. The river got over this by 10 o'clock and began pouring into a swamp to the north. As this filled the water made its way back west, so that the Missouri was simultaneously traveling east and west within a few yards of both currents Harlem lay at the extreme western end of this swamp. The back water got to it by noon. Field glasses showed that the people were all moving out of the hamlet before the first water got to them. By 4 o'clock the water was entering the Harlem church. The church is on a little rise on the ground. East of Harlem half a mile was to be seen at dusk a white houseboat, apparently standing the in the middle of the Missouri. Its location marked the north bank of the Missouri river.
To the far east stands St. George's hospital, the "pest house." It was abandoned by all but Dr. J. H. Ashton and a cook four days ago. Four smallpox patients were spirited to some secluded spot and are being taken care of. Meantime there is a mile of water between the hospital and the mainland, although between the hospital and the river there is a high bank. The Missouri had gone over the south bank between Kansas City and the isolation hospital, cutting the hospital off. The two men in the plant say they are in no danger, as they have a boat and the current between the m and the mainland is not swift. They said last night that nothing in the way of bodies nor carcasses of cattle has been observed going down stream, though it has been constantly watched. No farm products have gone past, either, showing that the flood has not done much permanent damage so far.
Labels: churches, flood, Harlem, hospitals, Missouri river, Parkville
June 10, 1908
WOMEN WORK TO SAVE HOMES.
Side by Side With Men They Labor
at the Dikes.
A crumbling dike and the crest of the Kaw river rise only two hours distant was the condition at the Fifth street bridge, one mile west of the S. & S. Packing house, Armourdale, at 12 o'clock last night. Women as well as men joined in the unequal combat, wives holding burlap sacks while their husbands filled them with dirt for the levee. At 2 o'clock this morning the narrow bank, which was all that was between a city of 10,000 people and a repetition of the flood of 1904, was eighteen inches higher than the river level. It looked as though victory leaned toward the laborers.
Ever since the news of the unusual rise of the Kaw tributaries reached the drainage board, eight teams and about twenty men have been working without cessation on the dike at the Fifth street bridge. This is the weakest point in the river bank in Kansas City, Kas., and the place where it leaped through and inundated Armourdale and the West bottoms in 1903. The teams have done good work, according to the engineers, but the swift current burdened with timbers and debris of all descriptions, had eaten well into the new embankment yesterday, so extraordinary efforts had to be made t check it in advance of the volume of water expected to finish the rise last night.
At 8 o'clock the Kaw was washing above the flood line at the Fifth street dikes, and the drainage board especially interested in this point as the key to the situation, passed word around to the effect that the last few hours of the rise might bring in a close race with the river.
In a few minutes after the condition of the dikes became known, hundreds of people, men and women, were on their way to Fifth street, armed with shovels. At the Cudahy and Schwarzschild & Sulzberger plants they obtained a large quantity of gunny sacks and at 9 o'clock the threatened dikes swarmed with toilers.
Women stood in the moist and holding the sacks open while the men, digging rapidly, filled them and carried them to lay on the dike.
It was a busy scene. Lanterns held by boys glimmered in and out among the workers like so many fire-flies ans whips cracked as the teams of horses were trotted with the wheel scrapers.
"It's coming up! Look out for that low place near the bridge; it needs tending to right away!"
"Come on here, with another bag!"
"All right now, fill in boys, it's coming our way. We're eighteen inches ahead of high water!"
The above were some of the shouts heard as the work progressed, and showed the anxiety of the people to save their homes. So well was the dike builded that as the torrent rose until the elbow of the river bend punched into its sides, it stood the test and not a leak came through.
Among the workers at the bridge whose part was to systematize the work so as to make it effective, were members of the drainage board.
These men with coats off and sleeves rolled up, occasionally seized a shovel and worked with the rest.
Labels: Armourdale, flood, Kaw river
June 9, 1908
NO ALARM IN THE "PATCH."
But Squatters May Yet Have to Be
The Missouri river is over its banks east of the Armour packing house and many homes of Croatian laborers at the plat were half under water at midnight. Despite the sinister tidings of "more water from Manhattan," which was occasionally heralded about in the babel of nine different languages employed by the people of the "Patch," there seemed to be no serious intention among the squatters there to move last night, at least, and they viewed the water about their doorsteps apparently without alarm. In the flood of 1903 the "Patch" was entirely washed away with considerable loss of life. Since then it has built up to about 250 houses, many of which contain more than thirty peopl. Castle Garden, a brick flat nearby, rooms 400 Croatians. It is seventy-five feet long and fifty feet wide.
If the Kaw and Missouri rivers continue to rise this morning some of the squatters near the river banks may have to be rescued by boat.
Labels: Croatians, flood, immigrants, Kaw river, Missouri river
April 21, 1908
SAYS PAT M'GUIRE
WAS TWICE KILLED.
DROWNED AND THEN BURNED,
BUT LEFT AN ESTATE.
His Widow, Who Married Another
Between Pat's First and
Second Death, Wants the
Two tragedies are recalled by the petition filed in the probate court yesterday by C. W Prince, attorney for Mrs. Mary F. McGuire, calling upon William Moore, administrator of the estate of Patrick McGuire, to make a partial division of the estate.
On March 29, 1903, McGuire, then living under the name of Oscar W. Ramsey, was married to Mrs. Mary Cochran, a widow, the present petitioner. When the flood of May, 1903, came, McGuire, then known as Ramsey, went out to engage in rescue work. He never returned. The wife advertised for him in the daily papers, when such advertisements were printed free after the flood subsided, but could get no reply or trace of him. On June 30, 1904, she married John W. Ballard, a point tucker.
The Ballards lived happily for over two years, when, in October, 1906, the Chamber of Commerce building in Kansas City, Kas., burned. Mrs. Ramsey-Ballard read that Patrick McGuire was among the missing tenants of the building, and that Mrs. Donald Logan, a friend of his, had escaped. Mrs. Logan's description of McGuire, printed in the papers, tallied to the dot with the missing Ramsey's appearance. Mrs. Ballard also recalled that the husband, known to her as Ramsey, had roomed at Mrs. Logan's house before she met him, and that friends who came to visit, after her marriage, called for Pat McGuire. Putting two and two together, Mrs. Ballard decided that the McGuire who was burned in the fire was none other than her husband. She talked to Mrs. Logan, and saw among the effects of McGuire, saved from the fire, a handkerchief which she had given Ramsey, and into which she had embroidered the initials, "O. W. R."
She was then positive that her husband had not been drowned in the flood, but was burned to death. She went into mourning again. Her marriage to Ballard was, by effect of her discovery, annulled.
McGuire left an estate in Wyandotte worth something over $20,000. The probate court of Jackson county, at Mrs. Ramsey-Ballard-McGuire's request, took charge of it, and William Moore was appointed administrator in December, 1906.
A few weeks ago a Mrs. Patrick O'Neal of Chicago sent a representative to Kansas City to secure a share in the estate, claiming that she was a sister of McGuire. This claim she has proven to the satisfaction of the probate court.
McGuire's wife's petition of yesterday is to have the administrator divide the estate between herself and Mrs. O'Neal. Mrs. McGuire's attorney hopes to secure practically all of the property for her under a Missouri statute which provides that estates lying outside the state shall be administered according to the law of the state which they be, and a Kansas statute, which gives all of an estate to the widow, if there are no children.
Mrs. McGuire lives at 2812 Spruce avenue.
Labels: Chicago, death, Fire, flood, Kansas City Kas, probate, Spruce avenue
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Kansas City Stories
Early Kansas City, Missouri