Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Descendants of Hiram Walker Descend Into Madness and Self-Murder

Long Island Sunday Press, March 24, 1935
Whether or not Henry J. Herbert was a successful inventor didn't figure into Fate's plans as it kept dealing him serious life blows. Born a descendant of the Hiram Walker family of distillers in Canada his life seemed to be going fine until the 1920s when his wife committed suicide.

His daughter Marion Walker Herbert followed in her mother's spiral of self-immolation by attempting suicide by jumping into the Detroit River upon being released from Henry Ford Hospital after a nervous breakdown. Eight years later she completed the task by stabbing herself in the throat with a butcher knife at a rest home in Newton, Massachusetts.

Somewhere along the line Henry Herbert went insane and was sent to Eloise. While I haven't been able to find out his final fate his earlier years included inventions for automobile wheels and mirror/brush fobs. The fob shown below is a patent from 1908 submitted by Herbert for an alligator skin replica mirror or brush back.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Henry Ford Visits Eloise

The Knickerbocker News, February 23, 1942
Somewhere there's a photograph of Henry Ford at Eloise visiting two of the eight children of then Ford Motor Company worker Walter Bardell. As the story relays, Bardell was living in a flooded basement (it was later called a "dugout cave") with the children when the state apparently stepped in and removed some or all of them to Eloise. Henry Ford read about it in the newspaper and made an unexpected visit to the hospital. There he promised that the children would be taken care and a house was provided for the family at $20 a month rent. 

Except that Bardell claimed the company raised the rent to $80 a month a few years later and he couldn't afford it and stopped making payments. Ford Motor Co. filed eviction papers after the death of Mr. Ford and won a judgement against Bardell claiming that there was no record of the agreement. A fairly shameful act let alone a publicity nightmare. Needless to say Bardell was the party relegated to obscurity.

The Pittsburgh Press, January 9, 1948

Monday, July 18, 2016

Negroes, Nords & Henry Harrell

The Pittsburgh Courier, September 4, 1937 (enlarge)
While the main concern of the article posted above is of the discrepancies in reporting of crimes involving "negroes", as opposed to Nordics (insert laughter), mine is centralized in Henry Harrell, supposed maniac escapee from Eloise.

It seems that Henry Harrell, apparently a black man, attacked a white widow doing maid services in a house in Detroit in September of 1937 after escaping from Eloise a few weeks earlier, smashing her with a blunt instrument which caused a slight skull depression.

Despite the woman only catching a glimpse of the purported attacker police clearly identified Harrell as the culprit and that they would likely pin a dozen or more further attacks on him. This article contends that the Hearst publication (presumably The Detroit Times) was complicit in the racism

As you can see, not much has changed with race relations in America and the media still sensationalizes the matter for their own benefit despite the deleterious effects. Which is ironic because if they would objectively report on the graft and criminality within our federal government then many of these social issues would likely dissipate. But we all know that the government controls the media through their elitist benefactors and truth and reason are all but dead in mainstream America.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Yours Very Truly, T. K. Gruber

The Owosso Argus-Press, May 6, 1936
If the Irish Sweepstakes sounds like a scam that's because it was. Nonetheless, reported Eloise patient John O'Leary won it. Except that he wasn't actually a patient there. At least according to Dr. T. K. Gruber, superintendent of the facility, who would know better than anybody, that he wasn't. So Gruber contacted the Owosso Argus-Press to correct the matter stating that O'Leary resided in the Maybury Sanitarium.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Psychology Club Plans Eloise Trip

The Michigan Daily, December 16, 1949

Friday, July 15, 2016

The Iron Lung at Eloise

North Towanda Evening News, February 3, 1944 (enlarge)
Although the iron lung was closely associated with the treatment of Polio I've been unable to ascertain just what ailed Anthony Rojeski. Whatever it was that paralyzed him didn't prevent those who loved him from sustaining his life after the doctors at Eloise had apparently given up hope for his recovery.

His wife and six friends took shifts administering food via an eyedropper and apparently monitoring the machine. Which appears to be the Both Respirator type of iron lung from the newspaper photo. If this death record is his, and it seems to be, then he hung on for another 6 years.

Monday, July 11, 2016

The Freaks of an Insane Man

The Detroit Free Press, June 23, 1881
Did they mean shrieks of an insane man? Who knows. Even the name Gummele is obscure though there was a Michigan Justice bearing that name as well so it seems legitimate.

Of the few other Google results his name brings up is a curious entry in The Manuscripts of the Corporation of Bridgnorth:

"20d. for bryngyng up and downe of the gummele-stalle (the cucking stoole)."

Which makes an accounting for the payments made by the English borough for services rendered and other expenses accrued in 1550. An interesting aside that has nothing to do with our story.


But if you're curious a cucking stool was a chair used for punishment of women, scolds and tradesmen in Great Britain and vicinity for hundreds of years up until the 1800s.

As for John Gummele: he was rendered lame by jumping off a train. Insanity seemed to have worsened his plight. Which led him to Woodward Avenue between Michigan and State at 1 in the morning in June of 1881 screaming bloody murder. Patrolman Whisson ran to aid the man thinking the worst. Instead he found the pitifully crazed man rendered helpless by both body and mind. Off to the county house with another subject.