Archive for Saturday, July 17, 2010

100 years ago: Laundry wagon collides with street car

July 17, 2010

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From the Lawrence Daily World for July 17, 1910:

“In a tug of war with a street car the odds are greatly in favor of the car, as W. B. Sweanger discovered this morning. In any event his laundry wagon which collided with a passing car this morning, was distributed over the street for a quarter of a block. Sweanger managed to leap from the delivery wagon before it was completely overturned, and escaped with a few bruises and a skinned arm, one of the horses was badly hurt and one side of the wagon was splintered into kindling.... A little Franklin County girl who is going blind from the effects of a gunshot, was at the Santa Fe depot this morning, on the way to Kansas City. The trip is made in the forlorn hope of preserving her eye sight. Two weeks ago a shot gun, supposedly unloaded, exploded in the hands of a brother of the little girl, and the charge of No. 4 shot entered her face and chest. Many of the shot penetrated deeply and have not been extracted, several of them entered the eye sockets, and her sight is failing.”

Comments

bearded_gnome 4 years, 9 months ago

Hey LJW! would you do a followup on this story. I would like to read whether her sight was restored. is anything known about her later life?

A little Franklin County girl who is going blind from the effects of a gunshot, was at the Santa Fe depot this morning, on the way to Kansas City. The trip is made in the forlorn hope of preserving her eye sight. Two weeks ago a shot gun, supposedly unloaded, exploded in the hands of a brother

Sarah St. John 4 years, 9 months ago

Hi Gnome!

As I go through the 1910 newspapers, I will keep alert for any follow-ups on this story.

Unfortunately, follow-up stories don't seem to have been very common 100 years ago. As I browse through the old newspapers, I am more and more impressed at the thoroughness of today's newspapers and websites. As readers, we're able to search for back-stories and follow-ups, and we usually find them. It was not uncommon in 1910 for a story to be put in as filler and then never addressed again.

When I do use a story that's a follow-up from one I used earlier, the online folks are nice about putting a link in the story for me so you can read the earlier one.

I can't remember there being much more about the girl in this story, except that she was 13 years old and lived in Franklin County, but I'll go back and check if her name was in there too.

Parenthetically, 1910 appears to have been a pretty dangerous time to be alive! Every time I check the Daily World from that time, there's someone falling down a well, or getting shot (accidentally or on purpose), or having a horse-drawn-buggy accident, or contracting "infantile paralysis," or something. However, it would have been an interesting time to be alive, too -- and I am glad I get the opportunity to visit the Lawrence of past years via the old newspapers.

Thanks for reading!

-- Sarah St. John

bearded_gnome 4 years, 9 months ago

Hi Sarah St.J thanks for your reply and a little more info.
yes, life 100-years ago was much harder than now. We have many stressors, but so many people do survive now who would have died then, myself included!
if you are interested in pursuing this for a story, I do know that many hospitals of that time kept a log of patients if somehow you can figure out the hospital where she was taken. many of the reputable doctors of the time kept journals/diaries or at least personal logs.

I posted the question because that is quite a serious and moving story.

many kids have been blinded because of fireworks, guns, chemicals, cleaners, and other accidents.

I don't get to read 100-years-ago as often as I wish but I do enjoy it very much. thanks

bearded_gnome 4 years, 9 months ago

p.s. Sarah St.J, at the thoroughness of today's newspapers and websites. As readers, we're able to search for back-stories and follow-ups, and we usually find them. It was not uncommon in 1910 for a story to be put in as filler and then never addressed again.

---yes, our computer tools are pretty cool. and in that day often "journalists" had little or no training or standard operating procedure.

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