Obit: Gress, Anthony (1858 - 1902)

Contact: Stan
Surnames: GRESS SCHERER

----Source: CLARK COUNTY REPUBLICAN & PRESS (Neillsville, Wis.) 05/29/1902

Gress, Anthony (1858 - 23 MAY 1902)

Friday evening the community was again shocked by the news of another drowning accident at the ferry crossing nearly the same spot where B.E. Luethe met his death less than three weeks before. Anthony Gress, who lives in the Pine Valley, Clark County side of the river, was attempting to cross from the city with Nick Scherer, a boy of about sixteen years of age, who assisted in running the little ferry boat back and forth across the river. The waster was very high and made it difficult to handle the boat. It swung around broadside to the current, the water began to break over and the boat soon filled. Mr. Gress and the boy both took hold of the rope and would have drawn themselves safe across, had not along struck the boat pulling the rope loose at one end. They were pulled into the water but still clung to the rope till another large log swept down, striking them and dragging them from the rope. The Scherer boy swam to shore, but Mr. Gress, who could not swim, continued to sink and rise till he went down to rise no more. His son Willie Gress, who stood on the Pine Valley side, saw the accident and immediately jumped into a row boat and went to the rescue. His boat became entangled in the dangling rope, was overturned, and the son barely escaped with his life by swimming ashore. A search was at once begun and has continued by several parties, but up to the present writing no trace of the body has been found. This sad accident following so closely on the death of Mr. Luethe at the same place, has cast a gloom over the whole community.

(Follow on in June 12, 1902 Rep & Press) Since the death of Mr. Gress by drowning in Black River May 23, 1902, some interesting facts regarding his life have come to us. He was born at Hanover Center, Ind. in 1858. In 1860 he came with his parents to Milwaukee and later to New Ulm, Minn. While his father was serving as a Union Soldier the Minnesota Indian massacre broke out in 1863 and the father returned with the forces sent to subdue the Indians. The little boy Anthony had been captured by the Indians, the rest of the family escaping with the refugees. The father found his little son in charge of a squaw in one of the wigwams. The brightness and activity of the child, having induced the savages to spare his life. For twenty-eight years the father and son, who lived in Milwaukee and the mother and two daughters living in Minnesota, were separated, not having found one another after the Indian massacre. After years the father and mother, believing each other dead, had each married again. The almost accidental discovery of the father and son by one of the daughters is a story of romantic interest. In 1880 Anthony Gress married Miss J. Lattin and they moved to Neillsville, where he followed the occupation of house mover. In 1893 they moved to Minneapolis for a time, where Mr. Gress had a position as street car conductor and inspector. Later they came back to Neillsville, and Mr. Gress since followed house moving and farming. He was a man of cheerful and buoyant disposition and had many friends. He leaves a wife and two sons, Sherman and Willie, the latter adopted. He was a consistent Christian, having been a member of the M.E. Church for 11 years.

 

 


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