Excerpts from The Morris Herald for July 14, 1876.
Since we last wrote, Verona has had to record its first birth and its first death. Some two weeks since, Jesse E__on (Edson??) was made the happy father of a fine boy, and our citizens, prompt to appreciate merit and enterprise in any form, presented the little stranger with a handsome dress and a baby’s crib, in recognition of his being the first child born in Verona. From birth to death is but a step, and we are under the painful necessity of noting the death of Miss Mary E. Leavens, aged 19 years, on July 4th. She was taken sick at Mrs. H. K. Avery’s, where she was also living at the time, with scarlet fever in its severest form, and lived barely a week after the onset of the disease. Although none of her relatives were near, she was attended with all the care and solicitude of a mother and sisters by Mrs. Avery and by Mrs. Edson, Mrs. Adrian Kinley, Miss Alice Richards and Miss Stella Kinley. We mention these names as a Roll of Honor – these ladies, laying aside their dread of contagion, ministered at the bedside of the sick and dying girl as though she was one of their own flesh and blood. Mr. Jeff Jones and other citizens are also deserving of great credit for attentions and kindnesses to the deceased. John Peterson has been dangerously ill, but his many friends are rejoiced to see him on his taps again at the store, as full of business as ever. John Knoche has erected a two story building just South of Avery & Peterson’s, in which he will move this week with a fine stock of boots and shoes, harnesses, saddles, etc. A bridge, with stone abutments, is building over “Thunder Creek”, just South of Verona, which will allow teams to cross that roaring torrent dry shod. The weather is – well you know how tis yourself. — John Carl The remains of Mrs. Albert Isham, of Francisville, Ind., were brought to this place on last Friday evening. Mrs. Isham was a former resident of this county. She died in the insane asylum at Indianapolis, to which she had been taken a week or ten days previous to her death, her mind having failed. Drowned – On Thursday afternoon of last week, Thomas Rann, who lived on section 17, in the town of Highland, was drowned, while in swimming. The particulars as we have them from Supervisor Ryan, are as follows: Rann with a hired man, was plowing in the field through which ran Johnny Run. The day was excessively hot and Rann proposed several times to his companion to go in swimming. His importunities were without avail, and finally, about five o’clock, Rann went into the stream alone. The hired man went on with his work had gone the length of the furrow, about 80 rods, and was returning when he heard Rann screaming. He dropped his plow and ran to the assistance of Rann, but too late, the unfortunate man had sunk and did not again rise to the surface. Rann was a very short, heavy built man, stood 5 feet 4 inches high and weighed 180 pounds; he could not swim but little, if at all. The heat had been intense, and in his condition at the time of entering the water he must have been taken with a cramp and carried down immediately. It could not have been five minutes from the time that he entered the stream until the hired man heard his cries for help and before assistance could reach him he was gone. The news of the affair rapidly spread throughout the neighborhood and in less than half an hour over one hundred persons were on hand, attempting to recover the body, which was done by means of a seine. The deceased was buried on Saturday. Mr. Rann had been a resident of the town of Highland for fifteen years, and stood very high in the estimation of his neighbors.