16 December 2009

Sort of Obit--James Henry Samis

I was reminded of this clipping from an 1899 Michigan newspaper. I don't have the exact date, but it was in June, and I am not sure if the clipping is from the Grand Rapids Herald or the Big Rapids newspaper notice. It concerns my Great-great-grandfather. I'll relate the family slant on the story at the end.

His Life Crushed Out
James Samis, Mecosta Farmer, Tried to Board a Freight.
Special to Grand Rapids Herald.
BIG RAPIDS Mich. June 10--James Samis, a farmer living seven miles north-east of Paris, in attempting to board a freight train at Paris yesterday, fell under the wheels and was fatally injured. His arm was amputated near the shoulder, but he did not survive the shock. (there's a surprise!) He was about 58 years old.

Ok, the family story was that he was trying to hop the train, on the way to Big Rapids to try to find a job, but instead fell under the train and died.

The picture above is of his family. I am trying to discover if it was taken at the time of the funeral. If so, the youngest daughter in white in front would have been just a little past her 9th birthday. Not sure.


  1. I'd like to make a comment on the related blog post Is He Or Isn't He over at The Newaygo County Cemetery Ladies but it appears that commenting is not turned on over there.

    I have some ideas as to whether the subject of that photo is dead or not.

  2. I am unable to change the comment settings. I will contact Sandy to see if we can get that set correctly.


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