Friday, July 14, 2017

Causes of Death of Children

Rose R. is once again working on obituaries for the various cemeteries.  Recently she compiled those for Price and Tewalt cemetery in Russell Township. 

The researchers who read these obituaries are moved by the fact that so many babies and small children died before modern medicine.  As I read the death records of these tiny souls on our website for Centerville cemetery,  I see causes of death……. diphtheria, tuberculosis, pneumonia, appendicitis, cholera, whooping cough, and one particularly interesting one….According to Dr. Dailey’s notes on the death record:   "Infant Bennett died one day after being born of prolonged labor; Death was caused by severe burns because the nurse held the baby too near the fire to warm it."

But not all children died of disease. Some died of accidents. Life was hard.

From the Salina Kansas Daily Republican October 8, 1891 Yesterday evening Earl Crews, son of a wealthy farmer in Lawrence County, Illinois, while hunting with the Winchester rifle passed the field where his father's hired man was drilling wheat. He got onto the drill. They had driven but a few feet when the gun slid down and was discharged. The ball struck him in the forehead and passed through the brain, producing instant death. The funeral of little Earl occurred Wednesday afternoon. The funeral was largely attended; his school of which E. Barton was the teacher, closed for the funeral. Schoolmates and cousins of the deceased acted as pallbearers. 

 Another child lies who lies at Centerville in an unmarked grave  was Mary Vea Rowe, who died of ptomaine poisoning from eating ice cream that was not pure.  She was 14.