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Archive for Sunday, March 3, 2013

100 years ago: North Lawrence couple dies at home from gas fumes

March 3, 2013

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From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for March 3, 1913:

  • "When Oscar Beeson didn't appear in the Union Pacific yards this morning to take his place on the fireman's side of the engine cab the others of the train crew waited for several minutes for him. But he didn't come. Henry Pringle, yard man for the Union Pacific, went to the Beeson home, 174 Locust street, almost opposite the engine house, to call him. But Death had preceded him. Unable to gain entrance after repeated knocking Pringle broke in a window and entered in that way. There he found Beeson lying on the floor, face downward and with his hands in his hair. He lay there where he had fallen evidently after making an effort to reach the door. Lying on her back on the bed Mrs. Beeson was breathing faintly. She died a few moments afterward without regaining consciousness. The room was filled with gas fumes and Coroner Jones fixed the cause of death as asphyxiation. A small gas stove in the room was burning brightly, the flue was choked and the fumes unable to escape up the chimney congested in the room and caused the tragedy which was enacted there.... Beeson was 28 years of age, he was fireman on the Leavenworth branch of the Union Pacific. A little less than a year ago he and his young wife came to Lawrence to make their home. Mrs. Beeson was a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Walbridge, who live in the Vinland neighborhood. The young couple had been married about a year and a half. They made many friends in North Lawrence and the news of the tragedy is quite a shock to them."
  • "This is supposed to be the best transportationed country on earth, and yet our troops were delayed seriously in reaching the [Mexican] border. The railroads were not prepared to carry them and there was delay all along the route. Our railroad facilities do very well in times of peace and quiet, but they are not elastic in times of stress."
  • "Sublette does not get to be the county seat of Haskell county. Santa Fe is to be the place because the weather was bad and not three-fifths of the voters turned out. Times are changed out there. In the good old days when things were done on a magnificent scale there would have been 1000 votes out of a possible 600 cast. Western Kansas is getting slow."

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