Saturday, July 22, 2017

On This Date in Minnesota History: July 22

July 22, 1902 – A crowd of 50 men stood idly by this morning and listened helplessly to the cries of little Max Beach, the 4-year-old son of Leslie G. Beach, as he was burning to death in the attic of his Minneapolis home. Not a man made an effort to save him. An aunt of the child attempted to go into the attic, but was driven back by the flames. The child at this time was in the front of the building near a window within easy access from the roof of the porch.

Max Beach

The child went into the attic to play at 6:30 this morning and shortly afterward his grandmother heard him crying. At the same time the neighbors saw smoke issuing from the roof. An alarm was turned in, but before the department reached the scene, the flames had reached the child ad his cries had ceased. The body was rescued later but it was burned beyond recognition.

The child’s mother died nearly four years ago and he has been living with his grandparents. His father, who is a bicycle repairer, is at present in the woods near Duluth and cannot be reached by telegraph.

Coroner Williams was notified and investigated the matter. He decided that death was purely accidental. The remains were taken to the morgue and will be shipped to Nashua, Iowa, for interment.

The Minneapolis Journal; “A Boy Burns; Crowd Gapes. Not a Man Tried to Rescue Little Max Beach. Prisoned in a Burning Attic He Meets Agonizing Death.”; July 22, 1902; p. 1.

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