Thursday, May 29, 2008

Burning grease causes bad fire

This story appeared in the Ypsilanti Daily Press of Friday, May 29, 1908.

Jas. Clark’s bakery at 428 Huron street was damaged to the extent of about $1,500 this morning by fire.

Geo. Renton, the baker, was making doughnuts, when the grease caught fire. In attempting to put the fire out, the kettle containing several gallons of boiling grease was tipped over. The burning grease spread rapidly, and in a minute the whole room was ablaze. The fire department responded promptly and soon had the fire under control.

Several hundred loaves of bread were burned and the over damaged. The loss in partially covered by insurance.

Work of repair has already been started, and Mr. Clark hopes to be doing business again on Monday.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Limit in a near collision

This story was published by The Ypsilanti Daily Press on Wednesday, May 27, 1908.

But for the courage and presence of mind of Motorman Jacob Schaible, an accident almost identical as to the circumstances to the Denton wreck, would have occurred to the Detroit limited on the Detroit, Jackson & Chicago railway near Addison switch at 3 o’clock Tuesday afternoon. This is the limited on which Motorman Isa Fay, of Jackson, and nine other persons lost their lives in a head on collision.

Arriving at Addison, Schaible alighted and stood by the block light until a Michigan avenue car pulled in. The motorman of the city car gave the limited “the block.” That is he switched the block light, indicating that the single track leading father into Detroit was clear.

Schaible turned on “the juice” and his car was just getting nicely under way when another interurban car, apparently traveling at 25 miles an hour, swung around the curve just ahead.

For one moment the motorman, frightened, stepped back, although his hands didn’t leave the controller and the air brake. Perhaps the thought of Fay’s fate—both feet ground off and instantly crushed to death as he remained at his post vainly trying to avert a collision—flashed through his mind. A second later he had thrown the reverse, brought his car to a standstill and was then speeding backward.

And none too soon! He had but cleared the switch when the onrushing local swept into it. Considering the rate at which the local interurban took the switch it had been running at a high rate, or its motorman didn’t appreciate the grave danger and hadn’t applied his brakes sharply.

Men seated in the front of the smoking compartment were aware of the near head on collision. Some grew suddenly pale and remained motionless and speechless in their seats from fright. Others called, “Look out for a collision,” jumped to their feet and prepared to leap from the door. Some of them personally thanked the motorman for “saving their lives,” as they styled it.

“The city man gave me the block,” was the only comment he made.

An official of the road says the block light was working badly, and the trammer had “flag” orders. They were warned to be on the lookout for approaching cars.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Fire razes building on Hammond farm

This story was carried by The Daily Ypsilanti Press on Saturday, May 18, 1918.

The house and large barns on what has been known as the Hammond farm or Larchfield Hall, on South Huron Street road, were destroyed by fire at about noon today.

The fire is believed to have originated in the large west barn in which was a quantity of baled hay and although strenuous efforts were made by neighbors, wind carried the fire to the other buildings. The Oliver family lived upon the farm.

The city fire company was called and responded but there was little that they could do because of the headway made by the flames before they could arrive.

The only building saved was a tenant house. The destroyed residence was one of the most beautiful in this vicinity and during the time the Hammond family lived there was a scene of many social funtions.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Midnight fire arouses family

Accidentally overturning a lamp with a pitcher in the rear of the attic which he used as a wash room, Zina Buck, a roomer and owner, stated a fire last midnight which burned C. S. Maddux and family out of their home at 605 Pearl Street. The oil flashed, caught in inflamable material, exploded a can containing a few quarts of oil, and within a few minutes the entire upper part of the house and roof was in flames.

Miss Grace Maddux, the only member of the family up, notified the fire deparment by phone, and its prompt arrival alone prevented the house being totally destroyed.

Mrs. Maddux, who in in poor health, fainted but her daughters carried her to the home of S. B. Mereness where the family found shelter for the rest of the night. Mrs. Maddux suffers from nervous shock, but is improved today

Part of the roof and the upper part of the house are badly damaged. Mr. Buck's loss and that of Mr. Maddux are fully covered by insurance. All the winter clothing of the Maddux family, which was stored in the attic, and the bedding and furniture on the second floor, was totally destroyed. The carpets and furniture on the first floor are badly damaged by water and smoke.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Henry Johnson dies suddenly

This story appeared in The Ypsilanti Daily Press of Saturday, May 9, 1908.

While he was conversing with Oscar R. Westfall, in his room in the boarding house at 40 Huron street at 7 o’clock last night, Henry Johnson, for a number of years prominent as a local business man, gasped and suddenly died. He expired without a word of warning.

Mr. Johnson had lived at Westfall’s for the last 12 years. He complained of feeling unwell this week but was able to be up and out almost daily.

“I asked him what he would have for supper,” said Mr. Westfall. “He said he had placed his order.”

“I suppose you will be going out now and have a visit with the boys’ he said to me. I told him I would not be away longer than to visit the meat marker: ‘I’m glad of that’ he added. It’s lonesome for me. I wish you would stay and visit until you are ready to go to bed.’

“We were chatting when he threw up his hand, gasped and expired.”

Mr. Johnson was born in Pontiac, March 6, 1857. He was best know in Ypsilanti as manager of the Rubber Tipped Dress Stay Co. in which were interested a number of local capitalists. He had the entire confidence of his associates and he made the business a success until changes in style of women’s dress killed the demand for stays. His factory was in the Curtis block in the quarters now occupied by the Daily Press.

Mr. Johnson was separated from his wife. They had no children. Mrs. Frank Johnson, widow of his only brother, living in Ann Arbor, made arrangements for the funeral. The body will remain at J. E. Moore’s undertaking rooms until Monday when a service will be held in the Presbyterian Church at Stony Creek at 2 p. m. The body will be interred beside those of his brother and mother.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

First gold star at Normal is for E. D. Stanberry

This story appeared in The Daily Ypsilanti Press of Monday, May 6, 1918.

The Normal Service flag has received its first gold star, and the man for whose memory it stands is truly worthy of pure gold. Elwood D. Stanberry, of the Normal College (now Eastern Michigan University) class of 1915, who entered the aviation camp for officers at Champaign, Ill., last summer and who went in September to the training camp at Oxford, England, is reported as ‘died by accident’ in Saturday’s casualty list. He was 21 years old.

Mr. Stanberry’s home was in Deerfield, but, following Supt. A. A. Riddering from Deerfield to Dundee he graduated from the Dundee high school in the same class as Merlin Kopka of this city, who is himself now on his way to France. Mr. Stanberry earned his way through the Normal College, taking three years for his course, and after graduation remained in the city as supervisor of the city playgrounds in 1915.

While in college he was prominent in oratory and debate, in athletics, more particularly in gymnasium work, and in many campus activities. He was born leader of men and a man of high character. He was a member of the Kappa Phi Alpha fraternity. On finishing here, he became director of physical education at Highland Park high school, and his family moved to Highland Park to be with him, which is why the casualty list credits him to that place.

Last October, after arriving at Oxford, he wrote home a letter showing how keenly he appreciated the opportunity of being in historic Oxford, and speaking warmly of the many colleges and churches he had been privileged to visit. He was in excellent health and looking forward eagerly to getting into active fighting. He sent many beautiful pictures of historic buildings to friends here, and only a few weeks ago sent a translation of a book by a German military officer giving the extreme militaristic view of the war from the German viewpoint to Prof. Roberts. He had annotated the book liberally, and wrote that Germany had suppressed it. He wrote that the soldiers over there did not fear death, that it was all in a day’s work; and that, although his eyes had been troubling him, he should keep on with his flying—he had gone over to France—he had gone over to France—unless forbidden to do so on account of his eyes. It is possible that this many account for the accident that caused his death.

A sad coincidence marked the death of Elwood D. Stanberry in a hospital in England. On the day he died, his elder brother, a veteran of the Spanish-American war, was buried at Jackson. The father, now childless, is a veteran of the Civil War. Elwood Stanberry was a fellow student at the aviation camp at Champaign, Ill., of Lietuts. G. O. Middleditch and C. A. Pudrith of Detroit, who were also, killed in a flying accident at Lincoln, England, last month, the same field where young Stanberry was fatally injured.