Viedeen, Obituary/Death NoticePorter County obituaries and death notices . . . .


It was the Fate of Chas. Viedeen's Baby.
Sorrowful Story of Suffering Caused by Poverty and Misfortune.

Burned to death! Think of what those three words mean! Suppose it meant one of your loved ones. Then how would it sound to your ears? Poor Charley Viedeen knows the awful meaning of them full well now. Monday afternoon his little three year old child was burned to death. Viedeen is a poor man. He lives in the sand hills about four miles northwest of town, amid the most Godforesaken surroundings one can possibly imagine. The land looks as though the Almighty had run out of material there, and never intended it for human habitation. But in this day and age of wonderful prosperity (?) grim poverty has driven his victims to these preserves, and Misery reigns a king supreme.

Charles Viedeen is one of these subjects. On the day in question he was working for a neighbor, Mr. Chellburg, burning brush, and was assisted in the work by his wife. Necessity compelled them to leave their children at home alone, in charge of their oldest, a girl scarcely nine years. She was taking care of a babe 18 months old; the little victim, three years old; and a little boy five years old. About 4 o'clock this little mother went to the top of the sand hill back of the house, to see if her mother was coming, and in her absence, one of the children got hold of some matches. The five year old and the three year old toddled into the woodshed, and began playing with the new toys. They got a stone and began pounding the matches to hear them crack, and as a matter of course, they ignited. The clothes of the babe took fire and were a mass of flames before the child on the hill could get back. She heard its screams, and rushed to its assistance, but being unable to do anything, ran to Smith's, a near neighbor, and gave the alarm. Mrs. Smith at once responded, but when she got there the child was dying. Someone ran to tell the parents, and when they got there the little sufferer was lying on its little bed, made of a horse blanket, and a little feed in a bag, for a pillow, gasping its last. The poor father asked the child if it were going to Heaven. "Des, papa," was its reply, and then began showing him the cruel wounds. In a few moments after Death put an end to its suffering. The fire burned great holes in the flesh from head to foot, and must have caused awful pain.

On Tuesday the father went out to get a coffin. He was without a cent, and was fearful of asking for credit. He succeeded in borrowing $5 of a man who lives out there somewhere, and with it got a coffin. When a TRIBUNE reporter went out there Tuesday evening the family were all alone. The children were crying, the father and mother crazed with the calamity that had befallen them, and the little victim lay in a little hot room unwashed, and rapidly decomposing. The father said no one had done anything for him and he expected to be alone with his dead that night as he had been the night before. He told of his circumstances, not as a mendicant, but as a broken-hearted man. Neighbors were told of the situation, and Undertaker Lundberg went out early Wednesday morning and prepared the corpse for burial. The funeral was held Wednesday afternoon at three o'clock, and the remains buried in the Baillytown cemetery.

The TRIBUNE in this case, does not offer sympathy in behalf of the community. Such stuff may do for the rich; a helping hand with money in it and a kind word is what Charley Viedeen could better appreciate just now. Ye philanthropic samaritans, who are looking for God's suffering ones need go no farther than to some of the homes to be found among the sand hills of north Westchester.

Newspaper: The Tribune
Date of Publication: May 22, 1891
Volume Number: 8
Issue Number: 6
Page: 1
Column(s): 2

Key to Newspaper Publication Locations:
    Newspapers Published in Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana
                Chesterton Tribune
                The Tribune
                Westchester Tribune

    Newspapers Published in Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana
                Porter County Vidette
                Practical Observer
                Valparaiso Practical Observer
                Vidette and Republic
                Western Ranger

The obituaries and death notices appearing on this website have been transcribed exactly as they were originally published in the newspaper. Please note that we do not provide photocopies or digital scans of obituaries and death notices appearing on this website.

Obituary/death notice transcribed by Steven R. Shook


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