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  • Location: Mason City, Iowa
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Mason City Globe-Gazette (Newspaper) - January 7, 1950, Mason City, Iowa NORTH IOWAS DAILY PAPER FOR THE HOME MASON CITY GLOBEGAZETTE THE NEWSPAPER THAT MAKES ALL NORTH IOWANS NEIGHBORS VOL LVI Associated Press and United Press Full Lease Wires Five Cents a Copy MASON CITY IOWA SATURDAY JANUARY 7 1950 HOME EDITION liUUTl Tliis Paper Consists of Two One No 77 FIR Coroner Says Death Toll Certain to Climb t 37 in Davenport Blaze 31 Persons Are Hur Study Appeal by Lucas for Coal Action Illinois Senator Wants Truman to Restore Production Washington JP President Truman Saturday weighed an appeal from his top senate aide for swift action to restore full coal production Senate Democratic Leader Lucas of Illinois carried that plea to the white house Friday and got a promise that Mr Truman would review the situation Satur day Mr Trumans position has been that the partial strike has not created a national emergency which would warrant use of his emergency powers under the Taft Hartley law Asks Repeal The president a critic of that law again asked congress this week to repeal it Lucas saying the 3day week has caused a serious coal crisis car ried complaints from Illinois con stituents direct to the white house In a statement later he said he had asked John R Steelman Mr Trumans assistant to lose ho time in laying all the facts at his command before the president of the United States Lucas said Steelman promised to review the whole situation with Mr Truman Saturday Considers Injunction NLRB Counsel Robert N Den ham is presently considering seeking a court injunction against the UMW on the basis of unfair labor practices filed against the union by the coal operators Denham Friday asked the U S court of appeals here to enforce a yearold NLRB order prohibit ing Lewis from seeking an illegal union shop contract Bonus Check Mailing to Be Delayed Des Moines will be another short delay in the mail ing of bonus checks beginning 3ome time next week the bonus board said Saturday Claims ready for check writing will run the board out of money until funds from sale of aiock of in bonds come in The additional funds are ex pected late in January After the checks are written and mailed to pay claims already ap proved the board will continue as jsual except no more checks will be mailed until the additional funds are available A previous short delay in mail ing checks followed sale of the 2nd block of bonds The situation is the result of the bonus law It makes it impossible to sell each subsequent block of bonds until the board is in need of money The boards cumulative statis tical report for the end of this week showed Claims received 246592 Claims completely processed 188889 calling for or an average of Checks mailed177820 Highest claims number on checks mailed 236412 Dies of Injuries After Car Wreck Sioux City Consi dine 22 Sioux City who suffered a severe laceration on the head and skull and a skull fracture in a 2 car collision here New Years eve died Saturday at a hospital He had been unconscious since the accident and underwent extensive surgery Thursday night Police said the car driven by him was in collision with one driven by Merritt Hoelker 21 Sioux City Hoelker suffered lacer ations on the face and knees and a back injury He also was taken to the hospital He was dismissed from the hospital Thursday COASTING MISHAP FATAL De Soto Reynold Town send 15 son of Mr and Mrs Ed Townsend of De Soto died Friday night of injuries suffered in a coasting accident The boy was sliding down a steep hill at De Soto when his sled was in volved in a collision with a bob sled Flood Waters Rise to New Danger Point By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Flood waters rose to new danger points in the midwest and ice storms crippled parts of middle Dixie Saturday as property and crop damage from this weeks weather soared into the millions The floods and ice storms in flicted severe hardship on thou sands Hundreds were made tem porarily homeless Other thou sands were without heat Business was disrupted Travel was im peded Scores of highways were under water or iceblocked There have been several deaths attributed to stoims or the floods Uncounted livestock in the flood areas have been lost or are in danger Cold weather this week caused millions of dollars damage to crops in southern California and Ari zona but a breakin the abnorm ally severe cold was expected Meanwhile as a sheet of ice en veloped wide areas and icy wa ters surged over farm lands and invaded communities most of the eastern and southern states en joyed summerlike weather Temp eratures climbed to record marks Memphis was locked in the worst ice storm to hit the Mis sissippi river town of 350000 in 17 years Rainswollen streams spilled out over thousands of acres of low lands in parts of Illinois Indiana and Missouri Floods also were reported in middle Tennessee and northeast Mississippi but were re garded as not serious Many schools throughout the been closed Policeman Tells of Fire at Hospital Editors note Patrolman Richard Fee of the Davenport police force was one of the heroes at Saturdays Mercy hos pital fire Here is his Davenport was one of the first to reach the hospital when we got the alarm Flames were shooting out of the windows on the 2nd and 3rd floors and I could see more fire on the roof of the building As the firemen put a ladder up I grabbed an axe and climbed to the top of one of them I chopped at the anchor bolts holding the bars across one of the windows I thought those bars never would give way Finally the bars dropped to the ground and I smashed the pane with the helve of the axe Unforgettable Sight I saw a sight I guess I never will forget Silhouetted against the flames were a group of pa tients They werent screaming and didnt seem excited much They just looked bewildered Sort of like animals who had some thing new happening to them and didnt know just what to do The flames were all around them by then But thank God they were docile and followed my orders willingly I climbed in and took several by the hand and led them to the window Firemen and other officers helped them down the ladder while I went as far as possible into the building to get more Altogether I guess I found about a half dozen patients and got them out that window I didnt have time to keep count Flames Hot Those flames were hot I could feel them searing my uniform and my skin as I ducked among them I was a little afraid the floors might give way but didnt have much chance to think about it Most of the patients I saw were older people We managed to throw blankets around some of them but for most the weather was so cold that they were going from one hell to another as they got out of the building When they got outside they just stood round and looked at each other sort of unbelieving as though they just couldnt under stand that anything like this could happen to them This was the worst thing Ive ever seen in the time Ive been with the force I hope I never see anything like it again Await Truman Approval of Atlantic Pact Defense Plan Washington Sat urday awaited President Trumans approval of a new Atlantic pact defense plan as the signal to start a full in arms roll ing to western Europe within a month The official nod from the white all that is needed now to make avail able the full amount appropriated by congress last summer to re arm Americas European allies Only has gone into the arms program thus far pend ing final action on the defense plan This master blueprint against communist aggression was ap proved unanimously Friday by the j2nation North Atlantic council Secretary of State Acheson repre senting the United States presided over the meeting The other 11 governments were represented by their top diplomats here The only other hitch in the way is the signing of arms aid agree ments with 8 of the governments which are to receive American military help All of these except Britain have agreed on the terms proposed by the United States and arc ready to sign Britain only recently received the assurance it had asked that 1 it will be allowed to shp Britishmade arms to areas where it has commitments and 2 eco nomic recovery will have prior ity over the mutual aid provisions of the military agreements British officials are expected to sign up for the arms aid next week Drop 2 Trains From Schedule The C N W railway in Ma son City reported that trains Nos 11 and 16 operating between Belle Plaine Iowa and Sanborn Minn will be dropped from the schedule effective Jan 8 in compliance with the curtailment of trains made necessary by the cur rent coal shortage No 11 is the northbound train which has been due to leave Ma son City at a m and No 16 is the return southbound train due to leave here at 8 p m Dairy State Solons Plan Excise Rider for Oleo Measure Washington Dairy state senators got together Saturday on a plan to try to hang repeal of most wartime excise taxes on to the bill to repeal oleomargarine levies They agreed at a strategy con ference to attach an excise repeal rider to a substitute measure of fered by Senators Wiley RWis and Gillette DIowa for the house approved oleomargarine tax repeal bill The substitute now is being debated by the senate and the dairy states move wil comeMonday The WileyGillette bill would repeal the present one quarter o1 a cent a pound tax on uncolorec oleomargarine and the 10 cent tax on the product when it is colorec yellow but ban yellow oleomar garine from interstate commerce FIRE DESTROYS MENTAL above is a general view of a fire which destroyed the womens mental ward at Mercy hospital Davenport early Saturday SURVIVES HOSPITAL and nurses are shown administering oxygen to Mary Ruth Finnert after she was rescued from the mental ward at Mercy hospital which was destroyed by fire early Saturday Weather Report FORECAST Mason City Clear Saturday night with a low of 5 below Fair Sun day with a high of 12 to 15 Iowa Mostly fair and colder Sat urday night Sunday generally fair not so cold west portion Low Saturday night zero to lo cally 10 below north and zero to 5 above south Minnesota Slowly increasing cloudiness colder southeast por tion Saturday night Sunday cloudy occasional light snow north and not so cold west and north portions Low Saturday night 25 to 30 below north and 5 below extreme south high Sunday 5 below north 5 to 10 above south IN MASON CITY GlobeGazette weather statistics for the 24 hours ending at 8 a m Saturday Maximum 25 Minimum 9 At 8 a m 3 YEAR AGO Maximum Minimum Sfl 30 Student From Korea Admits Killing Friend Dubuque UR A 36yearold Korean student at the University of Dubuque signed a statement Saturday admitting he slashed the throat of a fellow Korean student apparently because he felt both were dishonored after an argu ment over a check Police Chief Joseph H Strub said he planned to file a murder charge Saturday against Duk Sang Choi Seoul Korea Chun Kenn Oh 24 also of Seoul V SAME Black flat meant raffia death In il hours bled to death Friday shortly after he was cut with a straightedge razor in the dormitory room he shared with a university basket ball player Bryan Cannon 20 Dixon 111 Strub said Duk wrote in Eng lish and signed a brief statement admitting he cut Chuns throat Duk does not speak English as well as he writes it Strub said but earlier he told police through an interpreter that he had accused Chun of forging an endorsement and cashing a check which a benevolent woman in Wiscon sin had sent Duk An investigation convinced him Chun had not cashed the check Duk said but when he went to talk to Chun Friday he was un able to persuade him he had changed his mind County Attorney Francis Beck er said Duk therefore felt that they both were dishonored and both should die Strub said Duk told him he had planned to kill himself also but that the razor broke BECOMES CANDIDATE Des Moines G Odden Lake Mills republican asked the secretary of state Friday for nom ination papers as a candidate for the Iowa house of representatives from Winncbago county V Barred Windows Block Patients Path to Safety Davenport women were knownto have perished early Saturday in a fire at a mental hospital and the coroner said the toll undoubtedly would climb to 37 Nearly 10 hours after the fire started Coroner C H Wildman said the bodies of 32 women had been recovered The remainder of the 37 supposed victims he said un doubtedly were in the debris The sister superior of the hospital said 31 other patients had been treated for burns or injuries accounting for the 65 women and 3 men known to have been in the building The path to safety for many of the patients was blocked by barred windows Except for a nurses aide all the dead and missing were patients They were asleep in the 3story St Elizabeths ward building of Mercy hospital when the flames broke out at 2 a m The fire was brought under control in a 4hour battle The flames spread rapidly through the 60yearold brick structure one of 4 buildings com prising this eastern Iowa citys largest hospital Screams of the trapped women spread the alarm Aid Sent Aid was sent at once from the nearby 5story main Mercy hos pital building and 14 fire com panies came immediately As the flames swept upward the scene became one of horror The women patients many of them in firm of both body and mind beat against the barred windows and screamed their terror Some fainted away into the smoke and flame A whiterobed Sister of Mercy nun stood outside the blazing building weeping bitterly Her arms held blankets which firemen took to cover bodies as they were removed Catholic chaplains moved shadowlike about their splumn duties as the flames out lined their figured Some of the rescued fought to return to the burning ward In the tragic illogic of catastrophe they Fire Is Biggest Tragedy Since June 1918 Davenport hospital fire here early Saturday Iowas greatest disaster since June 29 1918 On that date 39 persons were killed in the collapseand burn ing of the Ruff Drug company at Sioux City wanted to go back for little things picture their shoes a coat There were heroic rescues Fire men hacked away window bars while flames licked at their lad ders A policeman called for hose lines to drench him with water Then he disappeared through a window into the smoke and flame He returned with a woman in his arms 3 Men Escape The 3 men patients escaped 2 by leaping from an unbarred win dow The survivors were being treated in the main Mercy hospital building Fire Chief Lester Schick said the fire apparently started in a 2nd flopr room on the east side of the building Sister Mary Annunziata the hospital superior told a reporter it was possible someone had been smoking a cigaret and dropped it on some inflammable material Hours after the fire was ex tinguished firemen worked at carrying out melted iron beds stillflaming mattresses and other smouldering debris Bodies were removed in white rubbersheeted bags The hospital is administered by the Sisters of Mercy a Catholic order It was established in 1868 by persons of all creeds Temporary Morcrue A temporary morgue was set up in a room at Mercy hospital A force of nurses set about the task of establishing identifications See Picture Story of Fire on Back Page Many of the bodies were burned beyond recognition Flames from the burning build ing reddened the sky over this Mississippi river city Police of ficers held back the crowds which pressed against their lines Some of the survivors were stretcher cases Two of the women rescued had been in the burning building for about 4 hours Suffering severe burns they were said to be in critical condition Only one of them was immediately identified Mary Ruth Finnerty of Benton St Ottumwa Iowa Hospital attendants said all the survivors were calm Some went to sleep in the lobby of the main hospital building Others sat quietly with expressions of horror on their faces 25 or 30 Removed In all firemen said that 25 or 30 persons were removed from the blazing ward From the south section of the structure firemen lowered the forms of 6 patients down aerial ladders then it was learned only 2 of them were alive Hospital officials estimated the loss at A force of 107 firemen fought the blaze on the hospital grounds located 2 niles from the business district of this Mississippi river city of 70000 population The total included a group of volunteers in corporated as the 2nd alarmers and volunteers from suburban Green Acres and Bettendorf Fourteen of Davenports 17 fire companies responded to the alarm The 3story brick building was 60 years old and intended primar ily to house women patients Fire men could not say immediately what caused the fire which nurses said was discovered on the first flood It spread rapidly and trapped many patients in their rooms The flames did not spread to 4 other hospital buildings Fair Cold Weather Due Des Moines fair but cold weather is in the offing for the weekend in Iowa the weather bureau said Saturday Minimum temperatures Sunday morning can be expected to be zero to 10 above in the north and zero to 5 above in the south No new snow was forecast The minimum reading for the state Saturday morning was 9 below zero at Mason City Spen cer had 3 below for the only other subzero reading reported Charles City had a low of one above and Fort Dodge 2 above Fridays high for the state was 33 at Lamoni No precipitation was reported in the state for the 24 hours ended early Saturday ;