Jacksonville, IL College Gymnasium Fire, Feb 1929

GIRL KILLED WHEN FIRE BREAKS UP COSTUME PARTY.

STUDENT IN ILLINOIS WOMEN'S COLLEGE JUMPS TO DEATH WHEN FIRE BREAKS OUT ON STAGE OF GYMNASIUM.

Jacksonville, Ill., Feb. 23. -- (AP) -- The stately minuet being danced at a Washington day program in the Illinois Women's college gymnasium last night turned in a frenzied rush for exits when fire broke out on the gymnasium stage.
MISS EUGENIA VANNORMAN of Jasper, Ind., was killed when she leaped from a second story window. MISS WINNIFRED WACKERLE, college matron, was burned, probably fatally. Fifteen others were burned or injured enough to require hospital attention, among them being MRS. CLARENCE P. McCLELLAND, wife of the college president. Her right leg was fractured when she jumped from a window.
Many of the twenty women in the gymnasium were petticoated, wore white wide skirt costumes of colonial days and were handicapped in making their escape. Several fainted and were carried out by friends.
President McClelland sitting in the balcony across arose at the first sign of fire and pleaded with the crowd to move to the exits slowly. His words had little effect, the students pushing and crowding frantically toward the doors.
Damage to the gymnasium was slight and except for the frenzied rush there need have been no dead or injured, fire officials said.

The Evening Tribune Albert Lea Minnesota 1929-02-23