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Downie, John died 1859


Posted By: Cheryl Locher Moonen (email)
Date: 7/18/2020 at 12:03:22

Clayton County Journal, Garnavillo, Iowa on Tuesday, June 14th, 1859

Fatal Accident

A man names John Downie, an Irishman, lost his life last week under the following circumstances:

He had been employed to dig a cistern for J. O. Crosby at his new home just east of town. He had dug the cistern to the depth of nine feet on Friday afternoon, when he attempted to climb out with the assistance of his shovel (a long handled one) and some steps cut in the wall. The shovel was placed upright and drove into the earth, and the ascent attempted, and when he was near the top, his hold in the steps gave way and he fell astride the shovel handle which was driven into him some nine inches, the thin over-all’s which
he wore offering but little impediment. He was unable to extricate himself from his painful position, and it was long before he could make himself heard by the man who was at his work on the roof of the house. At last he heard him and hastened to his relief, but was not able to lift him up as the shovel had been forced so far into the earth by his weight, but it was not until help could be obtained from town that he was
extricated. The shovel was then withdrawn and he was removed to his boarding house, where he lingered in the greatest agony until Saturday night at 10 o’clock, when he expired. His funeral took place on Sunday at the Catholic Church, of which society he was a member.

--- --- ---

The Journal, Garnavillo, Iowa, Tuesday, June 21, 1859

A Mistake
It appears that we were wrongly informed about the accident which happened to John Downie whose death we published last week. We stated that some time elapsed before he was rescued from the perilous situation on the top of the shovel handle no one being near him at the time of the accident.

This was a mistake; Mr. Barns and another man were near by and rendered immediate assistance - and instead of being impaled on the shovel handle, he was lying on the bottom of the cistern, and entirely detached from the shovel. In other respects our account of the accident was correct.


Clayton Obituaries maintained by Sharyl Ferrall.
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