Wednesday, August 8, 2018

On This Date in Minnesota History: August 8

August 8, 1924 – Mike Corpstein and N. B. Schmitz, who are doing some cement work at the Scheech Mill 5-1/2 miles northwest of Caledonia, discovered the head and body of Esther Midby, aged 6, who was drown in Beaver Creek more than two years ago. After the finding of the head, the mill pond was dragged and the rest of the body was brought to the surface.

Mrs. Midby, wife of Gunder Midby and four children, Esther; Lucille, aged 5; Genevieve, aged 2 and Arthur, aged 4 months, were all drowned in Beaver Creek on March 5, 1922, when attempting to ford a swollen creek, the sleigh they were in struck a rock and capsized, throwing them into the ice cold water. Mr. Midby and the driver of the sleigh, Robert Wisland, were the only survivors. The accident happened about ¾ of a mile above what is called the Messeral Place, where the regular creek is forded. At the time of the tragedy the creek was about 30 feet wide and the water about five feet deep.

Beaver Creek, Houston County, Minn.1

All the bodies were found, within a few days following the accident, except that of the oldest girl, Esther, and after a two weeks search it was given up by authorities, but not Mr. Midby, who continued his search for months.

The Daily Post and Record; “Body Found, Drowned Two Years Ago. Body of Esther Bidby (sic), Drowned In Beaver Creek With Other Members of Family Recovered”; Rochester, Minn.; Aug. 14, 1924; p. 2.


Five members of the Gunder Midby family of Sheldon, Houston County, Minn., met their death in the waters of East Beaver Creek. See March 5, 2018 blog.

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