Horrible Death of Henry E. Hart's Infant Son, James
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
January 11, 1898

See note about the Hart family at the end of the newspapaer article.

An inquest was held Saturday on the body of Henry E. Hart’s infant son, James, Who was scalded Thursday evening so horribly that his death ensued at 3 o’clock Friday morning.

The child was being tossed in the air by 14 year-old Lizzie O’Toole, the nurse, in the kitchen of the Hart’s residence, 1352 Tamm avenues. The boiler on the range was steaming. The nurse stood the child on the lid and released her hold to see him stand alone. The boiler lid tilted and the child dropped into the bubbling contents feet first. When the child was recovered the lower part of the body had been parboiled.

Dr. Gratiot of Cheltenham, who was called in, was unable to do anything save alleviate its agony. The child was 21 month old. Its father was a district assessor.

The inquest was held during the afternoon at the residence by Deputy Coroner Lloyd.


[Note from 2003]. The article above was given me by members of the Hart family who were visiting Dogtown and sitting in front of the convent on Tamm looking rather lost. They asked me about a house that used to be there and I invited them in to look at my web site and see what we could find.

An interesting story unfolded: When the Henry Gratiot family gave a land grant to St. James to build a parish in 1860 the original deed disallowed St. James from using any of the property for anything other than church buildings. Sometime later the parish negotiated with the Gratiot family to have that restriction revoked and it was granted. Thus they parish had the land on the east side of Tamm from Wade Ave. to the end of the current school yard.

In 1891 the church burned to the ground. The parish had no money and in order to build a new church they sold two parcels of land. One was the parcel which is about where the current convent stands. The Hart family purchased that house and lived in it, as you see in the article above they were doing in 1898. The other, to the south of the convent, Mrs. Moore built her house.

Sometime before 1902 the Hart's moved out of the 1352 home, and moved to the west side of Tamm to the home that still stands just 5 houses from Wade Avenue.

When the Dominican nuns were coming to St. James in 1902 some non-parishioneer purchased the home at 1352 Tamm Ave. and donated it to the church for a home for the nuns.

You may see a 1912 photo of this Hart home and later St. James FIRST convent by clicking here.

This home remained the Dominican Convent until 1939 when it was torn down and the current building was built as a convent for the nuns. But the property was originally the Hart family home.


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Bob Corbett