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Benton County, Iowa Obituaries
Vinton Review; August 28, 1919
YOUNG BOY IS ELECTROCUTED. Eleven Year Old Robert Black Received Fatal Shock on High Tension Power Line.
Robert Black

Climbing one of the steel poles of the high tension line of the Iowa Railway & Light Co., at his home in Shellsburg, Saturday, cost Robert William Black, the eleven year old son of Mr. and Mrs. Bert Black his life. He came in contact with the highly charged wire and was thrown twenty-five feet to the ground, alighting on his head. His head was badly crushed and he lived only three hours. There were deep burns on his body and it is thought that either the shock or the fall was sufficient to cause death. The accident happened about 10:30.

Robert, with a younger brother, had been working in the garden. One of poles of the high tension line stands in the garden at the Black home, and it had always been a tempation to the boys to climb it. After working a while they decided to climb the pole. Robert took the lead and had reached a height of about twenty-five feet when he received the shock which threw him from the pole. The younger brother was about half way up at the time.

Tom Kreader, who had been visiting Vinton for some time, was just getting off the train at Shellsburg, and witnessed the boy fall. He and several other men rushed to the scene and the boy was carried to the house and a physician called. The boy did not regain consciousness before he died.

Bert Black, father of the boy, is a carpenter and was working for Wheeler Bros., at Newhall. He was notified immediately and arrived home in about half an hour. Mrs. C. E. Donels and Clare, of this city, warm friends and former neighbors of the Black, were also notified, and arrived at the Black home about the same time as did the father.

Robert William Black was born in Des Moines in January 1908 and came to Shellsburg with his parents five years ago. He was possessed of a sunny disposition and was a prime favorite with his playmates. He was a faithfull attendant at the Presbyterian Sunday School. He is survived by his parents, an older sister, Naomi, and a younger brother and sister,Donald and Geraldine. The family has the deepest sympathy of all in the tragedy that has come into their home.

Funeral services were held the home Monday afternoon at 2:30 o'clock, conducted by Rev. Geo Lindsay, pastor of the Presbyterian church. The members of his class in Sunday school acted as pall bearers and flower carriers. Interment was in the Shellsburg Cemetery

{Submitter comment: Birth & death dates obtained by county death records.}

Submitted on 31-Aug-2010 by
Martha Long, Jimartlong@gmail.com

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