Blair County PAGenWeb


Blair County PAGenWeb





Blair County Newspaper Articles

News, obituaries, birth, marriage and death notices, by date.


Items from The Altoona Tribune, Altoona, Pa.,

Thursday, August 18, 1859




DISTRESSING ACCIDENT. - Woman and Child Burned - The Woman Since Dead - The Child Likely to Recover. - It is our painful duty to-day to record an accident, the details of which are sufficient to chill the blood in the veins of the stoutest, and cause all to turn with feelings of horror from the contemplation of a scene such as must have been presented to those who witnessed it. It appears that on Friday evening last, the wife of Mr. Wm. Hagerty, residing some 3 miles below this place, filled a lamp with burning fluid, which was said to be non-explosive, and after lighting it, set it on a table in a room, in which was her youngest child, and turned to go out. Immediately after setting down the lamp, it exploded and set fire to the clothes of the child. - This alarmed Mrs. Hagerty so much that her presence of mind forsook her, and instead of wrapping the child in her own clothes or attempting to smother the flames, she picked it up and ran out of the house, thus fanning the flames. As soon as she came out of the house she was observed by Mr. Barker, a neighbor, who immediately ran to her relief, and snatching the child from her, stripped off its clothes as speedily as possible, but not in time to save it from being shockingly burned. This done he proceeded to the relief of Mrs. Hagerty, whose clothes were in flames, but she refused to let him tear them off. After repeated attempts, however, he succeeded in divesting her of all which had taken fire, but she was so much burned that it was impossible for her to live. - A messenger was immediately despatched for a physician. Dr. Christy answered the call, and to him we are indebted for our information. - When he arrived, he found the woman out of her mind, doubtless from the pain she was then suffering. On examination he found that all the skin, from her neck to her knees, was entirely burned off, and that at her waist, where her skirts had been fastened, her abdomen was burned almost through. Her breasts were so much burned that it was almost impossible for the Dr. to dress them, and her hands and fingers were a perfect crisp. The Dr. immediately applied the usual remedies in such cases and administered opiates which served to ease her pain and restore her to sensibility. She lingered until Sunday morning last, when death put an end to her sufferings. The child, which is about two years old, was severely burned on the left side and thigh, but not so deeply as was its mother. The Dr. thinks that if inflammation can be kept down it will recover. At the time of the accident there was no person about the house except Mrs. Hagerty and the child, although we understand Mr. Hagerty has several children, some of whom are grown up.


DISTRESSING ACCIDENT. - William Pruner, a citizen of this place, lost his life on Friday of last week, by an accident so strangely sudden and frightful as to startle the whole community, causing a general silent pang of grief. He left home in the morning coach for Bald Eagle Furnace - left full of youth, bright hope and jubilant joy. Playfully bidding his wife "good-bye" as the stage rolled away, with the remark that he would not be back for two weeks, he took his last stage ride, thinking not, nor once dreaming of harm or ill. To make the sad and fatal reverse which awaited him, still more terrible by contrast, he was in an unusually humorous and pleasant mood all the way going out to his destination, and all the time preceding the accident - so much so, indeed, that it was remarked by his companions. Having despatched his business at Bald Eagle Furnace, his first thought was to walk back to town; but, seeing an acquaintance going by with a wagon-load of shingles, he engaged a seat for himself and two companions. He took a seat on the fore end of the load of shingles, with his feet hanging down, whilst his friends sat at the side. The wagon had not gone more than a hundred yards, when, moving slowly, and without any apparent or sensible jolt, the shingles on which he was sitting gave way; having no foothold, he fell to the ground, and, before he was observed by the driver, the front wheel passed over his body! One of his companions saw him fall, and immediately shouted to the driver, but not in time to have the wagon stopped. He was carried to a house near by; medical aid was procured, and every attention shown which kindness and inexpressible pity could suggest. But human aid was in vain. Death had already set his inevitable seal upon his brow; death glared? From his eye; friendship and affection softly pillowing and bolstering his return home could not save him; and when the darkness of evening began to gather, he was passing through "the valley of the shadow of death." His physical sufferings were necessarily beyond expression - beyond possible conception; made doubly acute, too, by the fact that he was fully sensible until within a short time of his dissolution. It's a kind of mournful solace to know that he bore his extreme sufferings with heroic fortitude, uttering no word of complaint or repining. The few words he spoke disclosed a distinct knowledge of his approaching death. His solicitude seemed to be not for himself; but the thought of his dear wife and infant child seemed to snap his very heart-strings. She mourned as only a young wife can mourn - with a deep, wild, despairing, inconsolable grief. - Tyrone Star.


PRESBYTERIAN COLONY. - We learn by the last Hollidaysburg Register that the project of a Presbyterian Colony, to locate somewhere in the West where a sufficient body of land can be had for its accommodation, has been started in that place, and is progressing in a most encouraging way. One hundred families, at least, are desired to join in the project. Fifty thousand acres of land, in a very desirable locality, it is understood can be obtained at Government price for a colony of this description. The project contemplates a joint stock fund to pay for the land, each subscriber to be entitled to the amount of his money in land. No settler is wanted who is not willing to adopt and practice judicious temperance principles. Mr. J. A. Crawford, of Hollidaysburg, is Corresponding Secretary.


The officious official at Altoona made but little capital by his impertinent interference with one of our City Fathers. Had he accepted the invitation to visit the delegation at the cars, he might have fared the worst for the handling which he would have met with there. - Pittsburgh True Press.


We re-publish the above for the purpose of "putting the saddle on the right horse," as, since the publication of our last paper, we have found out who the "officious official at Altoona" is, and also in what his "impertinent interference" with one of the "City Fathers" of Pittsburgh consisted. The facts are simply as follows: - It appears that a few of the "City Fathers" of Pittsburgh constituted themselves a committee to accompany the City Council of Cincinnati, on the occasion of their recent visit to this place. On the morning after their arrival here, the "City Father" of Pittsburgh, alluded to in the above extract, in company with a companion, stepped into a confectionary and notion store up street, to purchase some torpedoes. The proprietor of the establishment being sick, a lad of some 10 or 12 years old was in attendance. After selecting a quantity of the articles desired, the "City Father" of Pittsburgh attempted a violation of a law of the State by offering a foreign $1.00 bill (whether genuine or not the boy could not tell) in payment for the torpedoes. The boy hesitated to take the note, and while they were quibbling about it, our excellent Constable, Joe Ely, happened to step in, and upon learning the matter in dispute, warned the boy, as he was in duty bound to do, not to take the note. Thereupon the "City Father" of Pittsburgh pulled out the change and paid the boy, after which he addressed himself to Constable Ely, and (as we have been informed by a gentleman of undoubted veracity, who was present) delivered himself of a volley of invectives, such as might alone be heard at a club meeting of "Dead-Rabbits" or "Plug-Uglies." From this circumstance, the gentlemen referred to conceived the idea that these men - one of whom it since turns out is one of the "City Fathers" of Pittsburgh - were blacklegs, burglars, pick-pockets or members of some other profession of like character, and would bear watching, and accordingly suggested to Constable Ely that he had better keep an eye on them while they remained in town, which suggestion was duly acted upon and the maneuvers of the "City Father" of Pittsburgh and his companion duly overseen until they took their departure. As to the information thrown out that our Constable would have fared the worst for handling he would have met with had he accepted the invitation to visit the delegation at the cars, we have only to say that had an attempt been made to handle him, the "City Father" of Pittsburgh and his backers would have thereby obtained a fine opportunity to visit and inspect the interior workmanship of our "Lockup" at their leisure. If Pittsburgh has many such "City Fathers" we do not wonder that she has such a hopeful set of sons.


READ, YOUNG MEN. - Horace Mann, in speaking of the utility of libraries says: - "If one of a caravan, in crossing the Arabian desert, should accidently descry a fountain at a distance, in the broad waste, and stealing to it unperceived by the rest of the company, should slake his own thirst with its sweet waters, and then leave the stream to flow uselessly away, and to be absorbed and lost in the barren sands, without calling upon his companions to come and cool their parched lips with the delicious draught - with what epithet would men stigmatize the inhumanity of the deed? Let him, who, from the accident of birth or of circumstances, has tasted the satisfaction and the delights, and has experienced the utility of knowledge, but does nothing to confer upon his fellow beings the blessings which he has enjoyed, answer the question." We will take the opposite of this and add: Should this man inform his companions that he had found a spring of pure water, wide enough and deep enough to supply them with nourishment for the whole of the journey, and a number of the party would refuse to draw nigh to the spring and fill their pitchers, and would content themselves with begging or stealing a limited supply from those who had been more provident - with what epithet would men stigmatize such consummate folly? The cases are parallel. Let the man who drinks daily at the fountain of knowledge in the desert of life, not suffer its copious waters to flow wastefully away, without calling upon his fellow travelers in the journey to drink of a stream that is abundant for all; and let the traveler thus hailed, not be foolish enough to pass by the stream without stopping to partake thereof and securing a supply for future use. Application - let the members of the Altoona Mechanics' Library and Reading Room Association seek to add to their numbers, and let those who have not yet entered the Association embrace the first opportunity to have their names enrolled therein.


LADY FIREMEN. - Now don't imagine, ladies, that we intend you shall run 'wid der mersheen,' not at all; we merely wish to notice that a number of ladies in Harrisburgh have become contributing members of one of the Fire companies of that place, thereby providing a valuable auxiliary to the company; and we would suggest that such action of the part of the ladies of this place would soon bring about the proper equipment of the Fire company recently organized. Will the gentlemen accept of the ladies on such terms, and will the ladies join? Both, we think, will answer "I."


S. OF T. PIC NIC. - The members and Lady Visitors of Altoona Division, Sons of Temperance, will hold a pic nic in Beale's Woods, on the Branch Railroad, to-day (Thursday). The members of the Order and those privileged to attend, will meet at the Division room at 8 o'clock this morning and proceed from thence to the grove. Baskets of provisions, &c., will be left in charge of the committee, at the Division room, who will see to having them conveyed to the grove. We hope to see a full turnout.


S. S. PIC NICS. - The Baptist and Lutheran Schools each held pic nics within the last week, but as we were not present at either, we can not speak knowingly thereof. - We venture the assertion, however, that they were grand affairs, characteristic of Altoona.


DISCOVERY OF A CAVE. - We understand that a cave was discovered last week, on the ridge back of Chimney Rocks. Several young men of this place, attempted to explore it, but found the experiment rather dangerous. One or two of the party ventured down the opening, perpendicularly, by means of ropes, to the depth of forty or fifty feet, but could discover no side opening. They describe the bottom of the cave, or rather hole, as being about twelve feet in diameter, the sides being ornamented with beautiful stalactites - numerous specimens of which they brought with them. Another and more thorough exploration is talked of. We apprehend that it will prove to be no great shakes. - Standard.


GOOD TIMES. - The "good time coming," which has been so long delayed, we think is now at hand, at least as far as a fair supply of the necessaries of life and fair prices are concerned. Potatoes have lately come down from $1.50 to 80 cts. per bushel, and a strong probability that they will come down one-half more ere long. Flour has fallen $2 to 2.50 per bbl., and will likely fall $2 more. Apples are apples again, and not lumps of gold. Corn now commands 10 and 12 cts. per dozen, with a prospect of a future decline. Hurrah for the "good times." Printers can now live like other folks.


EXAMINATION OF TEACHERS. - The examination of teachers and applicants for the public schools of this place, came off in West Ward School House, on Saturday last. There were over twenty teachers present, most of whom passed muster in a creditable manner. The Directors met immediately after the close of the examinations to select teachers for the coming session, but we have not yet been furnished with a list of those selected. The schools are to open on the first Monday in September and continue open ten months.


LADIES' FAIR. - The Ladies' Fair for the benefit of St. Luke's Protestant Episcopal Church, is now open in the Library Room, and should be visited by everybody. We have not yet had time to visit it, but are informed that it is gotten up with much taste, and that the ladies are deserving of great praise and encouragement. - The supper noticed in our last to come off on Friday evening, has been changed to this (Thursday) evening. Tickets 50 cents.


A LUXURY. - Take a dozen or two of ears of corn, (the sweet varieties preferred,) husk, and, without boiling, grate off the grains. Stir into this about two tablespoonsful of flour for every dozen ears, and also an egg previously well beaten, and a little sale and very little sugar. If the corn be sweet, about two tablespoonsful to every dozen ears. Let the whole be well stirred, and baked in a greased tin pan, for an hour, in a hot oven. Then eat with fresh butter or cream.


DRAMATIC ASSOCIATION. - The Young Men's Dramatic Association, of this place, gave two Entertainments in Shultz's Hall, on Monday and Tuesday evenings last. This Association appears to have now become one of the fixed institutions of the place, and its repeated entertainments is an evidence that they are appreciated by the public and remunerative to the members.


U. J. JONES, ESQ. - We are pleased to learn that this gentleman has been offered and has accepted the post of assistant editor of the Lancaster Express. Such assistance as he will render cannot easily be secured. The Express must now increase its popularity.




Hollidaysburg, August 16th, 1859.
MESSRS. EDITORS: - The prevailing epidemic in this place for some days past, has been Camp-meeting fever. On Sabbath last your correspondent also became affected with it, and paid a visit to the one now in progress in the vicinity of Williamsburg.


We did not leave this place until late in the morning, consequently our arrival in Williamsburg was not until the morning services were over. In the afternoon, however, we wended our way towards the Camp Ground, which was between a half and three-quarters of a mile from town. We found on the ground between 30 and 40 tents, and quite a large assemblage of persons. The afternoon sermon was preached by Rev. Thomas Barnhart, of Williamsburg, and was a funeral discourse upon the death of Rev. Stevens, of Williamsburg. He was listened to with great attention. The evening sermon was preached by the Rev. Mellick, to a large congregation. The subject of his discourse was the certainty of a final judgment, and was discussed in an able and eloquent manner. After the sermon, those persons desiring prayer were invited to the altar. We hope that the effort that is now making way may be crowned with success and that many will be brought into the "marvelous light and liberty of the gospel."


In the death of Rev. Stevens, which occurred on last Saturday morning, the community of Williamsburg has lost one of its oldest and most respected members. He had been for a number of years past a resident of that place, where he was honored and beloved by all who came within the circle of his acquaintance. At the period of his death he was well advanced in years, being somewhat upwards of eighty years of age. During a long life of active and diligent labor in the cause of his Master, he walked at all times worthy of the profession which he had chosen. Of late years his increasing age prevented him from preaching the gospel to his fellow creatures, yet in all his trials and afflictions his faith in the promises of his God was strong and unwavering. His remains were interred in the Methodist Grave Yard on Sabbath, followed by a large concourse of friends and acquaintances.


Our visit to Williamsburg was of very short duration, consequently we cannot give a full description of the place. We will say, however, that during our stay, we were well satisfied that the people of Williamsburg are very hospitable and sociable - that its citizens are active and energetic, and that the town can boast of some very handsome young ladies. We trust we shall soon be permitted to visit there again. - Yours respectfully, H.




On the 10th inst., by the Rev. Mr. Bradley, Mr. Adam Shanefelter, of this place, to Miss Mary Elizabeth Clark, of Newry.


At the home of Mr. R. M. Martin, in Williamsburg, on the 14th inst., by Isaac Yingling, Esq., Mr. William G. Butts to Miss Sarah Ann Geiser, both of Catharine township.


On Tuesday, the 2d instant, at the residence of Col. W. K. Piper, in Ebensburg, by the Rev. D. Harbison, Col. W. K. Carr, of Wilmore, to Miss Mary R. Fletcher, formerly of Bedford.




On the 11th inst., at Eldorado Station, Mr. William Yohn, aged 75 years, 4 months and 11 days.


Altoona Tribune, Altoona, Pa., Thursday, August 18, 1859, page 3




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