Event Person Place

The Tragic Death of George Ellis

“During the excitement last Sunday morning when the alarms bells were ringing out their fire signals, George Ellis, son of Mr. LD Ellis1, living on Gallia street, jumped up in his class, at the Sixth Street ME Church Sunday School, and ran out and joined the crowd that surged along Sixth street. When the hose carriage of the No. 4’s came along he ran and caught the rope, but stumbled and fell, the hose carriage passing over his neck and arms. He was picked up immediately and taken to the drug store of Mr. Fisher, but death ensued almost instantly.”

“George Albert Ellis was a bright lad, nearly twelve years of age, the youngest child of his parents, and his untimely death is a sad affliction to them.”

“Active Fire Company No. 4 held a meeting and invited the different fire companies to attend the funeral with them. Pallbearers were elected by the No. 4’s and they defrayed all the expenses. The funeral sermon was preached by the Reverend Mr. Stanley, of the Sixth street ME Church, and the house was filled to its utmost capacity.”

The grave of George Albert Ellis at Greenlawn Cemetery in Portsmouth, Ohio.

“No blame is attached to the firemen for the unfortunate accident, Mr. Ellis, on the contrary, expressing his gratitude for the attention manifested by the firemen and citizens.”

“Only a little over a year ago the writer stood by the death-bed of a man in Pomeroy who was run over by the steam fire engine coming from a fire, and in conversation with some friends last Sunday morning, predicted a like occurrence here. The prediction proved true within half an hour of its utterance.”

“Is there no way to prevent boys from being foremost in pulling the engines and hose carriages of the fire department? Can there by no way of breaking up the fire signals rung out by boys? Boys lack the judgement to keep out of harm’s way, and men can certainly prevent it. Is there room for improvement in the management of these things? These are questions of everyday occurrence to our citizens, and we hope those having authority will take a hint.”2

  1. Lorenzo D Ellis
  2. Fatal Accident. (1872, March 2). Portsmouth Times, p. 3.