Submitted by: Susan Langheld
Death Notices from Newspaper in Cleveland, TN
1909-1911(from microfilm)



Maiden Lady, Despondent Because of Ill

Health, Ended Her Troubles Tuesday

Morning, Using a Pistol—Death

Was Instantaneous

Shortly before 10 O’clock Tuesday morning, Cleveland was startled by a report that a maiden lady had committed suicide at her home in North Cleveland on the Greogetown pike, just off Ocoee Street. The report proved true and the woman who had taken her own life was Miss Hattie Thompson, aged 50, formerly of Greenville, Indiana. Miss Thompson resided with her mother, who is much advanced in life. A 32-caliber pistol was used. Ill health is supposed to have been the cause of the terrible deed. Miss Thompson and her mother had come south but recently in search of better health. The deceased lady had frequently developed her ill health and had, it is said, threatened to take her life before she and her mother came here. No later than Tuesday morning she told Dr. R. O. Kibler, who about a week ago was called to treat the lady’s maladies, that she "would rather be on grave yard bill than here." Meaning sick in bed. Dr. Kibler tried to soothe her troubled mental condition and get her mind at rest, but it seemed there was no way to do this and hence forth the awful deed of Tuesday.A good many years ago the Thompsons lived in a manufacturing town in Hancock County, Ohio and the father of the dead woman, fearing a ruff element there, bought the revolver and taught her how to use it. This weapon had been in the possession of the family fourteen years and with this very instrument of death, the taking off was accomplished. Miss Thompson had concealed it under her pillow and this (Tuesday) morning watched when her aged mother, Mrs. Claudia Thompson, should be out of the room, for an opportunity came about 9:40 o’clock and the sick woman fired but one shot, that one into her right ear. Death was instantaneously. The crack of the pistol attracted the mother’s attention and she ran back to the sick room. Realizing the terrible deed, she went to the front porch and attracted the attention of Mrs. William Smalling, their next door neighbor, who was the first after the mother on the bloody scene. Other neighbors were quickly on the scene and were horrified at the ghastly sight they found. Telegrams were at once sent to relatives in Ohio and Indiana giving the facts of the death. At noon it was stated at the residence that the mother was too weak to make the long trip back North with the body and that burial would be made here. Deceased belonged to an excellent family, being related to the Van Zauns, formerly of Georgetown pike, and a cousin of F.A. Hibbens of the Ora neighborhood. (The Journal & Banner Cleveland, TN June 22, 1909)