Thursday, July 21, 2005

River Victim

This story was published by the Ypsilanti Daily Press on Friday, July 21, 1905.

Vernon Brott, the young son of Mrs. Carrie Brott, of Ellis street, (now Washtenaw Ave.) was drowned yesterday afternoon in the Huron River just beyond the Forest avenue bridge.

The boy in company with his younger brother and a number of other lads had gone bathing at the "cool spring," just above the railroad bridge. While Fred, the younger brother, was still on the bank the older boy entered the water, gooing to the center of the stream. A few minutes later the younger boy turned to look for his brother, but failed to find him. Thinking, however, that he was hiding from his companions the boys were not at once frightened. Later, on his continued disappearance, the older boys reported the matter to the Michigan Ladder Company, and as soon as possible the police officers went to the scene of the tragedy, where divers quickly volunteeed for the search and several boats each manned by tow men equipped with grappling hooks and pikes searched the river in the vicinity, while a large crowd gathered on the bank to watch the searchers.

In spite of the thoroughness of the search, however, it was not until 8:20 that the body was found in about ten feet of water, in the center of the river, probably about twenty feet from the point where he went down. The body was found by Edgar Paully, who once before found the body of a boy drowned in the Huron River.

The river bottem at this point is treacherous. For a short distance from the shore the land shelves out stright from the bank. At this point a child ca easily wade out on the river bottem. A little way from shor, however, the bank breaks down abruptly to a considerable depth, while a strong current flows through at this point.

The explanation of the accident is that Vernon suddenly stepped off this shelving potion and was caught by the swift running waters.

Vernon Brott was the eldest son of Mrs. Carrie Brott, of 811 Ellis street, and would have been 11 years old the 23d of next September. He was a general faorite with his playmates and a good student. In addition he had a very sweet voice frequently took part in the childern's exercises in the Methodist church and school.

The boy had been living with his father, but came to Ypsilanti to make his home with his mother last October. He has one brother, Fred, younger, and two sisters, Alberta and Eugenia, both older.


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