Jo-Ann Boepple: A glimpse into the news of October 1883

Published 2:41 pm Sunday, June 12, 2011

A few excerpts from the Edwardsburg Argus published in 1883 by Dr. John Sweetland, owner and editor:

boepple“Last Friday afternoon, (October 4, 1883, ) while the Jefferson Club and the Second Nine of this place were playing  baseball and while Bradley Sampson, 18 year old son of Horace and Olive Sampson of this place was at bat, and John Clark, pitcher for the Jefferson Club was throwing the ball, young Sampson was accidentally hit by the ball on the right side of the head, above the ear. The place of injury was a few lines posterior to the point of union between the frontal and temporal bones. He was knocked down, but unaided, regained his feet, took his place, hit the ball, ran to the third base when the inning was terminated, the Jefferson boys took to the bat and it was then noticed that he was seriously hurt. He was taken home in a buggy by Eugene Carmichael. He walked into the house unassisted, laid down on the bed and soon fell into a comatose condition, in which condition he remained until nearly midnight when he expired. He did not die from the concussion for he rallied from the shock, but doubtless died from pressure produced by entravasation of blood within the cranium.”

A further anonymous article was printed that said,” The statement that Sampson’s family were very much inclined to blame Clark, who was the innocent cause of Bradley’s death and that they had denied him access to their house, is emphatically denied by them. That statement is unkind as it is untrue, as no blame is attached to him by them or anyone else. The game itself is to blame; it cannot be played with safety, Quite a number have been killed and many maimed by it. A softer and safer ball should be used, or the game suppressed by legal enactments, if not some other means.”

That must be where batting helmets came from.

“R. G. May, R. D. May and family after  residents of nearly forty years on their farm have moved from their pleasant rural home to this village.”

This was located at the end of First Street and was latter occupied by Dr. Sweetland. Still visible today.

“Bear in mind that the next examination of teachers will be held in Cassopolis, on the last Friday of this month.”

Time to cram for exams.

“If anyone wishes to see the best windmills the winds of heaven ever managed, let them come to Edwardsburg and look toward Pleasant Lake. It was put up by the Globe Implement, Goshen, Ind.”

Globe Implement Co is listed in the Standard History of Elkhart County 1918. But where is the windmill? Long gone, I would suppose.

Two noteworthy ads: “Truitt House  Near C. & G.T. depot is the place where good accommodations can be secured at reasonable rates.  House new; good sleeping, dining and sample room.  Good barn and stables. Passengers conveyed to any part of the country cheaply and speedily. John M. Truitt, Proprietor Edwardsburg, Michigan.”

Possibly on Maple Street.

“Edwin Case, Furniture Dealer & Undertaker, Edwardsburg, Michigan. Repairing of all kinds done neatly and cheaply.”

Repairing of caskets?

That’s the news from October 1883.