Gene Notes

Some random and some not-so-random thoughts on family history.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Thriller Thursday - The Tragic Death of Rosina Paul Knost

This is a very tragic account of the death of Rosina Paul Knost. She was the wife of my great grand-uncle, Martin Knost (KaNost).

October 27, 1943

Tragic Death of Mrs. Rosina Knost at her home on Washington Street.  Result of Burns Sustained while disposing of leaves in the yard.

Funeral services for the late Mrs. Rosina Knost, 77, widow of the late Martin Knost, were conducted Sunday afternoon at the Gilberg and Hegemeier Funeral Home, by the Rev. J. C. Melchert and burial was made in the German Protestant Cemetery.  She is survived by two brothers and two sisters and many other relatives and friends.  The brothers are Jacob Paul, Lima, and Ed Paul of Botkins; the sisters are Mrs. Minnie Fritz, east of New Bremen, and Mrs. Ed. F. Milliette, Wapakoneta.

Mrs. Knost met a tragic death, Thursday last week, about the noon hour, the details of which have been learned only in a general manner.  She had been seen sweeping leaves in her back yard, and when neighbors next saw her she was sitting on the steps of her back port virtually enveloped in flames.  It is believed, as was her custom, she had lighted old newspapers while in the house preparatory to starting the pile of leaves outside, but on stepping on the porch a gust of wind caused the flames to ignite her clothes.

Mrs. Alinda Wiemeyer, a next-door neighbor, smelling what she thought was burning clothes, stepped outside and to her amazement found the lady with most of her clothes consumed and her body, face and hands burnt in a frightful manner.  Medical aid was at once summoned, and the unfortunate woman taken to the Sidney Memorial Hospital where death ensued at 6:30 in the evening.

A daughter of the late Jacob and Catherine Purpus Paul, the decedent spent a number of years of her life in the family of the late Mr. and Mrs. Herman Laut, the latter being a sister to her mother; since she was 13 years old she was considered virtually a member of the Laut family.  Since the death of her husband, Martin Knost, 21 years ago, she had resided alone in her dwelling on Washington Street where she led a quiet and peaceful life, a kind neighbor and respected citizen.

Besides her brothers and sisters Mrs Knost is survived by a number of cousins and an only uncle, the aged Theodore Purpus, New Bremen's oldest citizen.

Copyright 2010, ACK for Gene Notes


  1. Was this in Ohio? I didn't know there was a New Bremen in Ohio, but there can't be more than one Wapakoneta!

  2. Yes. The Knosts and Kettlers lived in New Bremen and the Meyers lived in Minster (sign for Anna Minster on I-75).

  3. What a sad scary death for this dear woman.

  4. Scary but sadly not uncommon. I've found so many instances of clothes catching fire as a cause of death. Tragic & so sad. What a terrible way to end a life.

  5. What an awful way to go. It reminds me to be careful around fire.