On the River
compiled and copyrighted by
Feb 4, 1917
ROBERT CARTER INSTANTLY
KILLED BY ESCAPING GAS
Well known local man killed by instantaneous asphyxiation at home.
ERNEST TILGNER, RUSHING TO AID THE STRICKEN MAN, RENDERED
UNCONSCIOUS, BUT LIFE IS SAVED BY PROMPT MEDICAL ACTION - PULMOTORS
FAIL TO REVIVE MR. CARTER.
Robert Carter, a well known and popular resident of this city met
instant death by accidental asphyxiation and Ernest W. Tilgner of
108 East Eighth street, narrowly escaped death by similar fate in an
effort to rescue Mr. Carter at the latter’s home at 106 East Eighth
street about 8:30 0’clock yesterday morning.
Dr. A. J. Oliver, who also responded to a call from Mrs. Carter, was
dazed by the escaping gas after he had entered the cellar. However,
he soon recovered from the effects of the gas and offered his
assistance to Mr. Tilgner and Mr. Carter after the latter had been
removed to the main floor of the home.
Upon discovering a gas leak at his residence, Mr. Carter proceeded
to the basement of the building with the intention of repairing the
damaged pipe. He started to disconnect the pipe in which a hole was
visible. As he removed the cap, it is said, the gas burst forth
directly into his face and he was rendered unconscious in a few
Soon after her husband had entered the basement of the home,
Mrs. Carter smelled the leaking gas and investigation followed. Mr.
Carter was found in an unconscious condition and the assistance of
neighbors was summoned. Mr. Tilgner who is employed as a salesman at
the Stein furniture store, rushed to the Carter home and immediately
entered the cellar. No sooner had he gained entrance to the
basement, however, than he, too, was overcome by the gas, prompt
medical attention saving his life after he had found his way from
With the escaping gas endangering the lives of those desirous of
rendering assistance, it was found necessary to open the basement
windows before the cellar could be entered. After this was done,
postmaster F. W. Eichoff, residing at 101 East Eighth street, Mrs.
Carter and others hurried to the cellar and there found Mr. Carter
in an unconscious condition. He was then removed to the upper
apartments of the home and pulmoters and doctors were rushed to the
scene. The use of the pulmoter for one hour and forty minutes,
however, failed to revive Mr. Carter. The statement of physicians
being that the sudden flow of gas into his lungs caused instant
death. Mr. Carter was employed for years as a chauffeur by P. M.
Musser and was recognized as one of the most skilled mechanics in
Mr. Carter was born in Rome N.Y., and was sixty-four years and
two months of age. He had resided here for twenty-five years, coming
to this city from Stillwater, Minn.
He was employed for a time as engineer on government boats on the
Mississippi and Ohio rivers and is said to have been one of the
oldest licensed engineers in this section of the country.
After ceasing work on the river he became chief engineer for the
Musser Lumber company of this city, later assuming duties of
chauffeur for P.M. Musser.
Mr. carter was one of nineteen past masters of the local
Masonic lodge to receive aprons at a meeting last week. The Masons,
it is stated will have charge of the funeral service, which are to
be held at the home at 2:30 o’clock tomorrow afternoon. Burial will
be made at Greenwood cemetery.
The deceased is survived by his wife, Mrs. Agnes Carter, three
daughters, Mrs. Charles Kemble and Mrs. R.U. Thompson of this city
and Mrs. Carter Harvey of New York City, and one sister, Miss Anna
H. Carter of Manila , Philippine Islands.
Company Not Blamed
Relatives of Mr. Carter today declared that they do not in any way
hold the Muscatine Lighting company responsible for the accident
which caused Mr. Carter’s demise. No defect in the gas equipment or
negligence on the part of the company, it is said, can be assigned
as the reason for Mr. Carter’s death. transcribed by Georgeann
Muscatine Journal Feb. 4, 1917
108 E. Eighth St.
March 1, 1903
Death of Captain Charles Chaplin
Old Resident of Muscatine goes to his reward
Muscatine citizens were surprised and saddened as they heard
from the pulpits of some of the churches that an old an respected
citizen, Charles Chaplin had passed away.
Yesterday morning at 6:30 as the beautiful Sabbath day was dawning,
his spirit took it’s flight. Charles Walter Chaplin was born in New
York July 18, 1815, where he remained until fifteen years of age. At
that time he came west to Illinois with governor Kinney, in whose
family he resided.
On December 8 he was married to Helen M. Sherman at Quincy, Ill.
Seven children were born to them, four of whom died in infancy. He
came to Muscatine with his family in 1850 and has since resided
On December 8, 1893, the golden wedding of Mr. and Mrs. Chaplin was
celebrated in the beautiful home of his daughter, Mrs. Cora Weed,
the “Eyrie”. Since then the wife and one daughter, Mrs. S.B. Cook,
have been called away, and yesterday the father joined them. Leaving
two children, Mrs. Cora Weed and Jos. B. Chaplin, the last of a once
Mr. Chaplin was formerly in the steamboat business, a steamboat
engineer, but for the last thirty years has been retired from all
business. As a business man he was a great lover of integrity and
honesty, in religion he was devoted, faithful, and a constant
attendant of the Congregational church, being a deacon of that
church for the past thirty years. He had a wonderful faith in the
simple truths of the bible-childlike in his convictions, yet heroic
in the courage of them. He was a great lover of spiritual hymns in
which he took great comfort. Often he was called the grand old man
because of his striking combination of gentleness and strength of
He will be laid to rest by the side of his beloved wife who passed
away several years ago. The funeral will be held from the home of
Mrs. C Weed. At 205 Cherry street at 2 o’clock tomorrow afternoon.
The inscription on the Chaplin family stone
Helen M. Chaplin
Charles W. Chaplin
Charles & Helen
Chaplin Home *
*The American house was a tavern. In 1852 before Capt Battelle
left for California. He sold the tavern to Captain Fry. Capt. Fry
died shortly afterward.