Subject: James R. Redhead
Source: St. Joseph Daily Herald, 21 June 1887, p. 4
The Herald is called upon this morning to chronicle one of the saddest accidents that ever occurred in Buchanan county. Two bright young men full of hope, joy and ambition, to-day lay cold in death surrounded by broken hearted relatives and friends.
Sunday afternoon James R. Redhead and Harry Anderson started for Lake Contrary to pass the day. The [sic] arrived there about 2 o'clock. At the Lake View house they obtained a boat and rowing out into the middle of the lake north of the hotel disrobed and went in swimming. Both were good swimmers and evidently were enjoying themselves greatly.
There is no positive evidence as to how the accident occurred, but from a careful sifting of the different stories told it is probable that Mr. Redhead in diving, struck a stone or snag with partially stunned him. Young Anderson, who was near the boat, grabbed him with his right hand and with the left reached for the gunwale of the skiff. The boat, however, was beyond his reach, and in attempting to save the life of his companion both were drowned.
People who witnessed the accident from the shore say that there was a violent struggle, and that they came to the surface no less than four times and then were seen no more until their lifeless bodies were brought out by a rescuing party.
Undertaker Heaton was telephoned for and responded immediately. The news spread like wild fire and the expressions of horror were heard on every hand. A hundred friends were soon on their way to the lake to assist in the sad duty of accompanying the remains of the unfortunate young men back to town.
James R. Rehead was a most popular young man. He was engaged as a book-keeper in the Rock Island freight office and was beloved by all of his associates. With his employers he was greatly respected. Mr. S. O. Brooks, speaking of the deceased yesterday, said: "I have never known a more faithful and efficient man. Upright, honest and always prompt to attend to his duties, he gained the admiration of his employers and the love and respect of his co-laborers. He was a man of happy temperament, always pleasant and obliging. The news of his sad end shocked me greatly. I have never been connected with a man or ever had a man in my employ that I respected more."
Mr. Redhead was born in Cincinnati in the year 1862, and was, therefore, 25 years of age. For a number of years his parents have resided in Atchison, and he came to this city in 1882, engaged as a billing clerk in the K.C. general offices. In 1885 he went to Kansas City in the employ of the same company, returning here a year later to accept a responsible position for the Rock Island. Last November he married a lovely and accomplished young lady, named Annie Hand, and furnished a home on Angelique street. To the young wife in her great bereavement, to the broken-hearted parents and three sisters The Herald extends its heartfelt sympathy.
The funeral will be held at 4 o'clock this afternoon from the residence of Mrs. E. J. Knapp, on Fifth street, near Angelique. The interment will take place at the Catholic cemetery. The deceased was a prominent Knight of Pythias, and below will be found orders to that society relative to attending the funeral.
The clerks and attaches of the various freight offices are cordially invited to attend the funerals of our deceased fellow workmen, Messrs. J. R. Redhead and W. H. Anderson, whose deaths occurred Sunday. For the funeral of Mr. Anderson meet at the Rock Island freight house at 9 o'clock a.m. For Mr. Redhead, meet at the same place at 2:30 o'clock. It is requested that the clerks of the various offices pay their respects by attending in a body.