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James Arthur Young

  • Birth 1892
  • Death 20 Jul 1916 USA
  • Burial Hedrick, Keokuk County, Iowa, USA
  • Memorial ID 66174948

Keokuk County News
June 20, 1916

James Young Loses his Life in that Town

Peculiar Manner of His Death is Being Investigated by the Police in That City in Inquiry.

James Arthur Young, aged 24 years and living near Hedrick died at 2 o'clock this morning in a room at the McElroy hotel on south Market street. Young is believed, by the attending physician, to have died from a poison and according to his brief ante mortem statement it was given him in a bottle of beer by a man near a railroad depot a short time before. An inquest and post mortem are being held at the Daggett undertaking parlors this afternoon.

About 1 o'clock Young engaged a room at the McElroy from night Clerk Moran and after ordering some watermelon retired to the room on the second floor. About 2:40 o'clock Officer Al Lightner heard someone screaming as he passed through the alley between Main and Second streets along side the hotel. He made an investigation and found that the noise was coming from one of the rear rooms on the second floor of the building. He went into the office and found the screams had attracted the night help at the hotel and a physician had been called. Upon going to the room the officer found Sergeant Alex Johnson of the United States recruiting office with the man.

Sergeant Johnson lives just above the room in which Young was ill, and aroused by the man's screams and groans, had gone to his assistance. When he entered Young was having one convulsion after another and was suffering so much that he was not able to talk. The officer worked with him in an effort to produce relief but it was only temporary.

He told Sergeant Johnson his name and address and said that a fellow near the depot had given him a bottle of beer and had told him that he would get even with him. Johnson tried time and time again to get Young to tell him who had given him the beer, to which depot he was talking about but as soon as he had muttered a few words he would have another convulsion and scream for help.

By the time the physician and Officer Lightner arrived Young was having his last spasm. He lapsed into unconsciousness and died almost immediately.

This morning the army officer found a small vial lying in the alley at the rear of the hotel. It could have fallen in its place by being thrown at an angle from Young's room. The bottle was turned over to the coroner by the sergeant. Whether the man drank poison after he went to the room and threw the bottle out of the window or whether he was given it by another person are the questions which confront the officers. No signs of any poison having been in the room were seen.

Young was well known in Ottumwa and at Hedrick, near which place he has lived most of his life. He is survived by his father, Jas. S. Young and two sister, Mrs. Stella Ragan and Mrs. Elsie Harris, one brother, Henry and a half sister, Mrs. Jessie Adams. This summer Young had been employed at the home of his sister, Mrs. Ragan near Hedrick.

The funeral services over Mr. Young's body will be held Tuesday afternoon at 12:30 o'clock, Dagget's undertaking parlors. Rev. B. F. Patt, pastor of the First Baptist Church will be in charge and burial will take place in the Brooks cemetery near Hedrick—Monday's Ottumwa Courier.

Kneeling beside James Young, her sweetheart, who died from the result of drinking a glass of beer with strychnine in it, Miss Buelah Ellis, aged 20, of Ottumwa, swallowed a quantity of poison in an undertaking establishment Tuesday morning and is reported dying in a hospital.

Young, a business man of Hedrick, died at the hotel yesterday shortly after drinking a cold bottle of beer sent to his room by unknown persons. The beer contained strychnine.

He and Miss Ellis were to have been married Monday and the young woman grieved constantly since his death.

Calling at the undertaking establishment Miss Ellis asked to see the body of her sweetheart. She fell on her knees moaning, "Oh, I do want to go with him."

When an attendant found Miss Ellis she was unconscious from the effects of a drug which she had taken.

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  • Added: 26 Feb 2011
  • Find A Grave Memorial 66174948
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for James Arthur Young (1892–20 Jul 1916), Find A Grave Memorial no. 66174948, citing Brooks Cemetery, Hedrick, Keokuk County, Iowa, USA ; Maintained by InSearchOf (contributor 47282406) .