Frank M. Ferris


Source: Adams County Press, September 11, 1897

Fatal Accident

A party of chicken hunters, consisting of Frank FERRIS of White Creek, T. F. GODDING, Burt CAMPBELL, Jack PURCELL, 
George CRANDALL and Jerry STOWERS of Kilbourn, camped at FERRIS' marsh in the southwest part of this town, early 
last Monday morning, and from that point started out to find game. They had with them Frank FERRIS' bird dog, a 
nervous, vigorous, eager animal, inclined to press the game too closely, and needing constant attention to prevent 
his flushing the coveys. The party worked northward about a mile and a half to a point about a quarter of a mile 
southwest of the windmill on Bingham's cattle ranch. Two years ago that section was burned over by a severe prairie 
fire, and since has grown up, thickly with tall weeds. The work of the dogs indicated that game was near. FERRIS 
and CAMPBELL were moving forward only a few feet apart. The former hurried a little to the front looking for a 
sight as to the whereabouts of his dog and calling to him. Both men were carrying their guns with the breech below 
the thigh, ready to be swung to the shoulder instantly at the rise of a bird. Both were looking forward. In this 
condition FERRIS' dog came up behind the men, running almost frantically. He struck CAMPBELL's gun almost the 
instant be became aware that the dog was near him, and with such force as to knock it entirely out of his hands. 
The gun swung partially around and as it fell, exploded. FERRIS was only about ten feet from the muzzle, and the 
entire charge passed through his left thigh, about six inches above the knee joint, shattering the thigh bone into 
splinters, severing the large artery and sciatic nerve. CAMPBELL sprang and caught in his arms his falling friend. 
The others of the party hurried to the assistance of the wounded man, who seemed the coolest headed of them all. 
As quickly as possible a compress was brought to bear over the artery and tightly bound there, the spurting blood 
stopped, after considerable loss, and the wounded one hurriedly brought to Friendship. On the way he lapsed into 
unconsciousness. He was taken to the Niles House where Dr. FREDRICK attended him. It was apparent on examination 
that speedy amputation of the limb was the only hope for saving the wounded man's life, and Dr. NICOLL of Kilbourn 
summoned by telephone to assist Dr. FREDRICK, and the summons was quickly responded to. In the meantime restoratives 
were administered, the Neighbors of Friendship Camp, M. W. A. hurried to the assistance of their injured brother, 
and all that medical skill and sympathetic, generous hearts and hands could do, was done to relieve, soothe, and 
render him as comfortable as possible.
Dr. NICOLL arrived about three o' clock having driven the distance in a little over three hours. The surgeons at 
once prepared for the work before them.  FERRIS was placed under the influence of an anaesthetic, and the amputation 
performed-to the untrained eyes of the assistants, at least, it seemed with masterly skill and touch.
After the operation FERRIS, somewhat slowly perhaps, revived and became conscious. His pulsations grew stronger. 
He called for water and drank it. He talked with the friends around him and exhibited much courage and fortitude. 
Thus two hours or more passed, and hope was rapidly rising in the hearts of those attending as well as of those 
who were outside waiting for the danger line to be passed and constantly inquiring as to how it fared with the 
sufferer. The end came quickly. FERRIS talked rationally for a few minutes, then his mind seemed to wander a 
little. An attendant turned to him and saw the death-shadow had fallen on the sufferer's face. A moment later 
life ceased.
Frank FERRIS was about 26 years of age, the only son of Mr. Smith FERRIS, of White Creek, and the only grandson 
of Mrs. Sally FERRIS. These three comprised the family, and Frank was almost idolized by his father and grandmother. 
He was a good boy, full of kindly sympathies, and a social favorite. On the father and aged grandmother the blow 
has fallen with unspeakable force, and friends as they meet, speak of their great sorrow, in that measured undertone 
that, more than words can convey, tells how all-pervading is the deep, tender sympathies that go out to them in the 
The funeral was at White Creek on Wednesday, Rev. A. C. MARDEN officiating. Many people from Friendship, Kilbourn 
and surrounding towns were present. The number was one of the largest that ever attended a funeral at White Creek. 

If you have information about other Adams County cemeteries or have obituaries to share, please let  Joan know about them so they can be added to these pages. 



Donated by Robert Schieber in 2007