Obit: Steele, Archie (1900 –1909)

Contact: Stan

Surnames: STEELE

----Source: CLARK COUNTY REPUBLICAN & PRESS (Neillsville, Wis.) 06/10/1909

Steele, Archie (7 Aug 1900 - 4 Jun 1909)

Friday forenoon this community was saddened by the sudden and somewhat mysterious death of little Archie Steele, who was found hanging by a rope in the barn at the home of his mother, Mrs. Minnie Steele in the third ward. Whether it was suicide or an accident May never be determined. At first it was taken for granted and widely rumored that the little fellow had taken his own life, because he had passed "on condition" at the close of the school year, but later known facts make it appear quite probable that it was simply an accident. The barn is a small building with shed roof. Across two of the rafters a cleat had been nailed; and to this cleat, a rope, a common cow-tie, had been fastened by one end, the rope hanging down. The lower end was tied in a single knot around the boy’s neck, and his feet nearly touched the floor. Nearly under the rope was a feed box upon which the boy must have stood when he tied the rope. The suicide theory was quite readily accepted until the fact became known that Archie, his brother and other boys had been in the habit of getting up on the feed box and swinging off on the rope, sometimes tying it around their bodies. This fact, together with others that it is not considered a serious thing to pass in school "on condition" that the boy did not seem to lay it seriously to heart, and taking a lunch in his had went to the barn to pay, a portion of the partially eaten lunch being found in the box beside him, all indicate that in some way, in attempting to adjust the rope he had fallen off the box and the rope had tightened on his neck, a small wire at the end of the rope preventing it from slipping through, as a single knot would likely have done. His brother Elmer found him within a few minutes, and cried for help. Aug. Schoengarth, hearing him call, ran across and took the boy down. A doctor was on the spot in a few minutes more, but life was extinct. The mother, who is a widow, is overwhelmed with grief, as are also the little brother and the sisters. Archie was a good little fellow. He was quiet and well behaved, and often liked to play quietly by himself.

Archie was born in the town of Lynn, Clark County, Aug. 7, 1900, and came to Neillsville when his mother moved here a few years ago. To the bereaved family is offered the sympathy of all, even the children seeming to realize the sadness that has been brought to this home. The funeral was held Sunday, Rev. H.A. Risser officiating.



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