Friday, September 21, 2007

Returning From W.C.T.U. Contest, Two Women and Boy Leap From Moving Car

Here is something I found while looking for something else. This appeared in the Ypsilanti Daily Press of Saturday, December 4, 1909.

Two women were hurled into space Friday evening from the rear platform of the 9:45 Detroit, Jackson & Chicago railway (Interurban) in a mysterious accident of which no explanation has been offered, either by car officials of victims.

Returning from the gold and silver Medal contest held by the Women’s Christian Temperance Union at Denton, Mrs. Herbert Burrell, 33, her niece, Mabel, 20, and the latter’s brother, Ray, 17, were precipitated to the hard gravel road which runs parallel to the tracks, a distance of 25 feet from the roadbed. Mrs. Burrell today is suffering from a broken shoulder, other serious bruises and physicians in attendance cannot tell but what internal injuries, which they fear she has suffered, will prove fatal.

Mrs. Burrell’s niece, Mabel, is able to walk but is bandaged from head to foot. Her brother Ray is uninjured.

The cause of the accident? No one knows.

These facts can be gleaned however, from the maze of assertions made by those who witnessed the accident.

The car, which was under the charge of Motorman James McCormick and Conductor Jay Nelson, was proceeding at a fair rate of speed between Smith’s switch and Mrs. Burrell’s home, which is located about two and one half miles east of this city. As the car neared the Burrell farm, Mrs. Burrell, Mabel and Ray jumped from their seats and rushed to the rear platform. Ray jumped off uninjured.

The motorman, it is said had received no single to stop, and it is not understood why Mrs. Burrell leaped from the car. She was hurried to the roadside, and her shoulder broken, besides suffering sever bruises and possible internal injuries.

When Mable saw her aunt leap from thee moving car, she screamed and followed the lead of her relative. It was a miracle that she was not severely injured, in fact both of them not killed.

The car proceeded on its way for perhaps what would amount to two or three city blocks. A passenger, who had witnessed the sudden departure of the three passengers, recovered from the daze he was in, pulled the bell rope and rushed forward telling the conductor of the accident. The car was stopped and backed up. Mrs. Burrell was placed aboard the car and Miss Mabel assisted to a seat. The car stopped at the Burrell home and physicians were summoned.

When the unfortunate woman was placed in the car, her face and clothes were coveted with blood and it was feared that she was fatally injured.

The car was well filled with people returning from the contest at Denton and there were a number of passengers from Detroit, as the car was a through passenger.

The officials of the company could throw little light on the accident when questioned this morning, having but a meager account of the affair.

Miss Mabel and Ray Burrell are the children of Alfred J. Burrell, who with Herbert Burrell conducts the Burrell Bros. farm about two miles east of town. The families are well known in this section of the county, and Mrs. Burrell is an enthusiastic member of the Women’s Temperance Union.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Places to go

Is there a special place where you want to go? A place that is special because you have been there and want to go back? Or is it a place you have heard of, or read about, and want to see for yourself? There is a special place I want to go. I want to go to Hulbert, Michigan. Do not worry if you have never heard of Hulbert, Michigan, as it is a crossroad village in the Upper Peninsular. I have been there once, and want to go back.

It was back in the summer of 1984, when my father told me we were going on a trip. We had never done anything like this before, and would never do anything like this again. This was the year when my sister had died suddenly, and four years before my mother had died. It was also at this time my father began to feel the effects of the emphysema that would finally kill him twelve years later. There was a reason for the trip, but he was not likely to talk about that.

So a few days after the Heritage Festival we got in the car and headed north. We were at the Straits of Mackinac by early evening and settled into a motel. The next morning we visited Mackinac Island, and that afternoon toured the canal at the Sault Sainte Marie. I was slowly coming to realize that we were following the rout taken by my mother and father had taken on their honeymoon. This was confirmed the next day when we drove to Hulbert.

My parents had spent two nights of there honeymoon at Hulbert, bank in the 1940’s. Back then, the only way to see the Tahquamenon Falls was by ferry, and that was an all day journey. For years after, when they spoke of Hulbert they would talk of the man who ran the hotel, and owned the general store, the saloon and the post office. Then they would add that about all there was to Hulbert was the hotel, the general store, the saloon and the post office.

In silence we rode and pull in to park in front of the hotel in Hulbert. Looking around we saw there was the hotel, the general store and the post office and not much more. We entered the hotel and were greeted by a woman who seemed to be the manager. She told us the man who had owned the hotel years before had died ten years before and his wife was in a nursing home.

We stepped out of the hotel and my father stopped to stand and look around. I thought of suggesting we take a photo of the village but something inside me made me keep quit. I will never know what my father was thinking about as he stood there; he was not the kind of man to express himself that way. I wonder if he was remembering the time he spent there with my mother. Then, without a word, we got in the car and drove off.

I plan to go back to Hulbert someday, perhaps even stay at the hotel where my parents had spent time on their honeymoon. I want to go back, because it holds a special memory for me.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Neat House is Reopened

This story appared in the Ypsilanti Daily Press of Friday, June 7, 1907.

Oliver Westfall and son, Clarence, who have taken over the Neat house at the Michigan Central depot and will conduct it as a European hotel, gave a house-warming last night. The “boys” had such a good time that they haven’t got through telling about it yet. And there was a bunch of them there too. The place was packed. The invitations read that the “reception” would be held from 7:00 to 11 o’clock, and during that time there was a big crush.

The Westfalls had provided a bountiful and tasty luncheon. There was the choicest and largest roast of beef that could be bought and cooked. Then there was cold ham, radishes, green onions, pickles, biscuits, bread and cheese. A lay out of this character would naturally create a thirst, and there were liquids in profusion to quench it.

The Neat house had been closed for some time previous to the Westfalls taking it over. W. H. Lewis, a former proprietor, says it was a money maker for him. A good man will be engaged to conduct the dining room. The house has about 15 rooms.

New Archive Hours

The Ypsilanti City Archives have moved from the carrage house behind the Museum and into the basement of the Museum. The new space is an improvemtn over the old, and worth a visit. With the change of place there is also a change in times the Archives are open. The Archives are now open Tuesday thru Saturday from 2:00 to 5:00 PM. The Museum and Archives are closed even Monday and all major holidays.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Depot Town Ghost Tour

As you may have heard, I am planning to give a Ghost Tour of Depot Town on the weekend before Halloween. At this time I have three ghosts, two murders and the mystery of the tunnels. I hoe to scare up a few more ghosts and some other tales by the time of the tour. It should be fun.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Loss of a friend

A good friend died two yars ago on September 5, and I still miss him. He was a good and gentil man, who left us far too soon. At te time of his death, I posted something I wanted to share with others. I still wnat to share this with you, so I am posting it again.

52 Presents to give yourself

Walk instead of ride.
Give yourself a compliment
Keep a secret
Practice courage in one small way.
Warm a heart
Laugh at yourself
Enjoy silence
Walk to the nearest park.
Break a bad habit, if just for today.
Get to know the neighbor's dog or cat.
Hug someone.
Sing in the shower
List ten things you do well
Walk in the rain.
Pay a compliment.
Throw away something you don't like.
Watch a construction crew.
Waste a little time.
Curl up with some hot cocoa
Buy a ticket to a special event.
Return something you've borrowed
Think about droplets on rosebubs
Try to feel another person's hurt or joy.
Organize some small corner of your life.
pop popcorn
Turn off the TV and do something else.
Gather shells on the beach.
Feed the ducks
Pick up some travel brochures and dream
Smell one flower.
Sand a card to someone for no reason
Take an early morning walk.
Tell someone how much you appreciate him or her.
Look into the heart of a flower.
Look at old photos
Encourage a young person.
Follow an impulse
Visit someone close by.
Listen to the rain.
Acknowledge when you are wrong.
Volunteer time to something you care about.
Give yourself a present for under $1.
Eat breakfast with a friend.
Let someone do you a favor.
Reread a favorite book.
Allow yourself to make a mistake.
Watch the sun set.
Allow yourself to make another mistake.
Drop a quarter where some one will find it.
Surprise a child.
Plant a seed.
Watch the sun rise.

One last present to give yourself, and that is to enjoy.

John Dolbee Cuts Throat

The following story appeard in The Ypsilanti Record of Thursday, August 23, 1917.

Workmen on going to work Wednesday morning at Highland cemetery found John V. Dolbee, a former Ypsilanti man, laying across the grave of his wife, his throat cut and his wrists slashed with a razor, evidently with suicidal intent. Though almost lifeless, he was hurried t the University hospital at Ann Arbor where he was today reported still alive with some chance for recovery.

Despondency over the death of his wife three years ago, made more acute when his son Austin Jay, fell from the third story window of a Highland Park apartment house last Saturday and received injuries from which he died Sunday, is believed to be the cause of his effort to end his life

The son’s body was brought to Ypsilanti Tuesday and buried at Highland cemetery. The father attended the burial, and it is believed a despondent mood, went alone to the cemetery at night and at the grave of his wife sought to end his life

He used a razor, slashing his throat and severing his windpipe but fortunately failing to injure the jugular vein. He also slashed his wrists, and though weak and unconscious from loss of blood, there were signs of life in the morning.

At first view his discoverers thought he was dead, and officers were so informed. Coroner Burchfield of Ann Arbor was dispatched word and he drove to Ypsilanti. A physician was called immediately when the discovery was made that life was not extinct and he was at once taken to University hospital. There it was stated there was a chance for recovery. Recovering to speak, Mr. Dolbee declared it was his desire to die.

He is 56 years of age. He has a son, Dan Dolbee, a daughter Mrs. Dora Long, of Muskegon and another daughter, Mrs. Lutie Long, residing on the Ypsilanti-Ann Arbor road.

Mr. Dolbee is a carpenter by trade, residing for many years at 622 Prospect Street. He has in recent years been plying his trade in Detroit. The son, Austin Jay, was employed in Highland Park when he met with his fatal fall.