Chicago, IL Barnett House and Evangeline Hotel Fire - Swept by Fire


Six Lose Lives in Early Morning Blaze at Chicago.


From 15 to 20 Were Injured Jumping From Upper Floors of Four Story Building--One Hotel Was Gathering Place of City’s Army of Cripples.

United Press Telegram.

Chicago, March 9.---Six men lost their liver during the fire at the Barnette house, a 10 and 15 cent lodging place at Park and Houston streets, and the Salvation Army hotel, known as the Evangeline, adjoining it, this morning. Several others are in the hospital, four of whom will die. From 15 to 20 were injured in the fire and panic that followed. Two of the deaths were caused by jumping from the upper story of the four story building.

CARL WAGNER, aged 38,
J. OLSEN, aged 40.

ONE UNIDENTIFIED BODY, so badly burned that identification is impossible.


EDWARD WALLMAN, found after the fire with a broken leg.
EDWAR BRAGDEN, jumped, internally injured.
THOMAS MURPHY, bruised and burned.
WALTHEIN BAGENOFF, jumped from the third story, internally injured.

The Barnette house was known as a gathering place of all the cripples in Chicago. Of the 100 occupants, 50 were crippled, hunchbacks, one legged or one armed, who made their living by begging on the streets. Two of the dead were hunchbacks and seven of those that are in the hospital are cripples.

Mrs. Annie Anseller, who lived in the third floor of a flat adjoining the Barnette house, and in a delicate condition, so frightened, by the fire and panic that she gave birth to a child. Smoke and water drover her and four other women from the building. All became unconscious in the hall and were found by the firemen who carried them out. Mrs. Anseller was taken to the St. Lukes hospital where it is said she will die. The child will not live.

There were 115 lodgers in the Barnette house and 74 in the Salvation Army hotel. All the dead were in the Barnette house.

Nearly all of the dead were in bed and were suffocated, before they could get out of the rooms. When the firemen arrived the stairways in the building were jammed with frantic men and women trying to fight their way to the street. All of the upper stories were filled with dense smoke and men were dropping from every floor. The firemen stretched life nets and motioned for those who could be seen at the smoke-filled windows of the upper stories, to jump.

Five women, all unconscious, were carried from the third floor of the Salvation Army building. On the fourth floor landing two of a party of three firemen dropped, overcome by the smoke. Their companion pulled them to safety and others took up the fight to rescue the imprisoned lodgers.

Two men jumped from the fourth story. One was killed instantly when his body smashed through the life net set for him. Another climbed out of a window and held to the edge until the flames burned his hands and arms. Then he let go and dropped to the sidewalk. His skull was fractured by falling against a sign and he died before assistance could reach him.

At 10 o’clock the fire was under control and firemen in the buildings said they could see three bodies in the smouldering ruins. One of the women who became panic stricken by the fire, gave birth to a child. Both mother and child were taken to a hospital and it is not thought either will live.

The Daily Courier, Connellsville, PA 9 Mar 1912