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Laura A. Foster Sebree
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Birth: Jan. 18, 1879
Missouri, USA
Death: Aug. 10, 1907
Benton County
Missouri, USA

Laura Amanda Sebree was born in Missouri. Two known nicknames are known: "Dollie" and "Amma." On April 12, 1895 in Ava, Douglas County, Missouri, John S. Sebree married a very young Laura Amanda Foster. She was the daughter of Leonard G "Diek" and Amanda Melvina Short Foster. Laura's family lived in Cole Camp, Benton County, Missouri, so this is where they settled. By the time Laura was twenty-eight years old she had six children. They lived south of Cole Camp in what was then known as Raymond, MO. She had many children and died a mysterious death at the young age of 28. She was sitting out in a chair with her children around and fell over dead with a certain foam coming out of her mouth. One of the young children went and got the attention of neighbors. Her husband worked in Cole Camp and was notified to return home soon as his wife was gravely ill. She was dead when he arrived. A trial was even held as she was young and had not been ill. The judge ruled a natural death. Her husband was considerably older than her and died a few years later in 1910 near Ava, Missouri. Their young children were left to be raised by neighbors.

The following is an account of her death from an article in the Cole Camp Courier of Cole Camp, Missouri:


Mrs. John Sebree died suddenly at her Home.
Word was received here last Saturday morning that Mrs. John Sebree had died suddenly at her home at Raymond. Coroner Dillon was notified and being unable to come himself, instructed Justice Peter Holsten to hold an inquest. Justice Holsten went to Raymond in the afternoon and empanneled the following jury: W. W. Brummett, Louis England, Gerd Muller, R. M. Stratton, Dick White and H. F. Harms. After having viewed the body, they heard the following evidence, all witnesses with the exception of Dr. W. B. Jones, being neighbors of Mrs. Sebree.

John Sebree, the husband of the dead woman, testified as follows: "I saw my wife last, this morning between six and seven o'clock, when I left to go to Cole Camp. At the time, she appeared as well as usual. She never appeared to be in good health now as she has for several years. Nothing has been between us, and she appeared to be in as good humor when I left as ever. I can form no idea whatever as to how my wife came to her death. There was no trouble between us at all. After I had reached Cole Camp and had traded some, I got a telephone message that my wife was having fits and for me to come home and bring a doctor. I think is was about 10 o'clock. I could not find a doctor in town. Shortly after I got the first message I got another that she was dead. I went to the livery barn and got a team and came home as soon as I could. I found my wife dead".


Mrs. Clara Sweargin, a neighbor lady and the first one outside of the family to reach Mrs. Sebree said: "I saw Mrs. Sebree about nine o'clock and that was the last I saw her alive. She was standing in her back door talking and laughing. I could see nothing unusual. I went to the well for a bucket of water about ten o'clock and heard one of the children saying "Oh Mamma!" I ran and ask her what was the matter, and she said, "I don't know, Mamma fell out of her chair." When I got to her there were slobbers or something running out of her mouth. It was kind of bloody looking stuff. I thought she had a convulsion because she was so black in the face. I saw no one outside of the family about the house until I got to her. The family consists of Mr. and Mrs. Sebree and small children, the oldest a girl of twelve. The husband started to town this morning about seven o'clock. She fell from her chair about ten. She did not peak after I got to her and did not open her eyes. The little girl said she fell on her face, but she had turned over when I got to her. It was a nice, shady place out there and she had gone out there to do some sewing. She worked out in the timber with her husband, and I thought she was in pretty good health. I never knew of her having convulsions. After I saw she was going to die I called Mrs. Qualls and Mrs. White and they ran down. She only breathed two or three times after I got to her.


Mrs. White's testimony was about the same as Mrs. Swearingin's. She said she saw Mrs. Sebree alive for the last time about one o'clock Friday, when she went to work with Mr. Sebree. I have known Mrs. John Sebree for about ten years and did not think she was subject to convulsions. She noticed the froth, or liquid running from her mouth.

Mrs. Qualls testified that she had known Mrs. Sebree but two weeks. She saw her last alive about an hour before she died. She talked with her then and she said she seemed to be as well as usual. She was in a good humor and nothing seemed to be wrong with her. She knew of no suspicious circumstances surrounding the case.


Dr. Jones of Lincoln testified as follows: "I have examined the body as best I could, externally and I find no evidence whatever of any external violence. I could not find any odor of any drug about her mouth as is sometimes the case. There was a bloody liquid oozing from her mouth, but I could not say that was necessarily evidence of a drug being used. From all the evidence I have seen or heard I would conclude that she came to her death from natural consequences."


The verdict of the Coroner's jury was: "We, the jury, find that Mrs. John Sebree came to her death from natural consequences


The funeral occurred, Sunday, the interment being in the Williams cemetery. The funeral services were conducted by Rev. J. A. Sartin.

The deceased was a daughter of Mrs. Amanda Foster of this city, and was born in Williams Township Jan. 18, 1879, being aged 25 years, six months and 23 days at the time of her death. She leaves surviving besides her husband, five children, four daughters and one son, the oldest girl of twelve and youngest a two month old baby.

This is one of the saddest cases we have been called upon to chronicle for many a day. The bereaved husband and children and sorrowing mother and sisters have the sympathy of the entire community


After Laura's death, John left Cole Camp without a word and moved back to Ava,Douglas County, Missouri, leaving behind his children to be raised by people of the community. John only lived three more years after returning to Ava.
Family links: 
  John S Sebree (1841 - 1910)*
  Mandy Zola Sebree Wheatley (1895 - 1926)*
  Martha Francis Sebree Wehmeyer (1896 - 1943)*
  John Sebree (1899 - 1899)*
  William Ervin "Willie" Sebree (1903 - 1922)*
  Edna Sebree (1906 - 1908)*
  Idora S. Sebree Hays (1907 - 1961)*
*Calculated relationship
Union-Williams Cemetery
Cole Camp
Benton County
Missouri, USA
Plot: near the church building
Created by: Russell Smith
Record added: Nov 11, 2000
Find A Grave Memorial# 5094404
Laura A. <i>Foster</i> Sebree
Added by: Earleen L. Sebree Hensley
Laura A. <i>Foster</i> Sebree
Added by: Diana
Laura A. <i>Foster</i> Sebree
Added by: Diana
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Laura, here is flower I picked for you today. It's beauty does not equal yours. You are so lovely, I only wish I could understand why you were taken so young.
- Earleen L. Sebree Hensley
 Added: Jan. 20, 2007

- Adam Appel (inactive)
 Added: Jan. 10, 2006

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