Henry C. "Clay" BRISTOW

Girard Gazette (Thursday, 2 September 1897, page 1 column 4):

Clay Bristow Killed.

We copy the following, in its entirety, from the New Castle, Colorado, Herald, as the subject was well known in this part of Macoupin, especially so in North and South Otter townships, where he was reared to manhood, yet having a brother living there. With his father, Uncle "Pate" Bristow, he went to Nebraska, and as may have been noted by letters appearing in these columns, went to seek a fortune in Colorado. This is the result:

On Monday, August 9, George Baxter came into town from Canon creek with information that Clay Bristow while at work had been struck in the head by a tie as it was coming down the mountain side, and so severely hurt that it was probable he would not live until medical assistance could reach him. Dr. Dymenberg was at once driven to the scene of the accident and, though every haste was made in driving over a rough mountain road for a distance of over 12 miles, the victim of the accident was dead before the doctor could reach him. The body was brought to town that night and placed in care of Undertaker Dougan.

The story of the sad accident is about as follows: Clay was one of a party employed in getting out ties quite a distance up Canon creek. There were two runaways used to skid the ties down to the creek, and it was on the higher one that the accident happened. George Daxter started a tie down the hill, and whatever impelled Bristow to try to climb up the hill right in front of the descending tie will never be known. Baxter tried to warn him of his danger, but in vain. It seems that in its slide down the hill the tie made a jump and struck Bristow in the head, knocking him down and across two other pieces of timber. Those with him rushed to his side as soon as possible, and help was sent for to the neighbors further down the creek and to town for a physician. As has been stated before, Bristow had been dead about an hour when the doctor arrived, and all that could be done was to make an examination to learn the extent of the injuries. This was done as soon as the body was brought down from off the mountain. Two serious fractures of the skull were found. He lived between four and five hours after the accident, and died without regaining consciousness.

Mr. Bristow was a member of the Woodmen of the World, and held a policy on his life for the sum of $2,000. Grand Buttes camp took charge of the body and the funeral was held yesterday by that organization. Services held at the Congregational church by Rev. McRae, and a large number of Mr. Bristow's friends were present to render the last sad tribute of respect.

On arrival at Highland cemetery the beautiful and impressive ritualistic ceremony of the Woodmen was used, and all that was mortal of their departed Neighbor was consigned to the tomb, and the coffin covered with beautiful flowers.

The Woodmen of the World, in accordance with their custom, will place a beautiful monument over Mr. Bristow's grave and it will be formally dedicated with appropriate ceremonies early next June, when Woodmen memorial exercises are held all over the country.


All of us mourned the untimely death of Clay Bristow, and united their sorrow with that of his wife and children at his sudden taking away. Modest and unassuming as he was, he will be missed from among us. No prominent station or position was his, but his devotion and fidelity to the everyday duties of life and constant care and effort for those who were nearest and dearest to him was apparent in every act. His walk of life was lowly, but he fulfilled a high destiny, and his record will surely be that which we would all desire for ourselves.

While in health, strength and vigor Bristow did the best he could, and that is saying a great deal. Would that we all might live so that when our end comes our lives will show that we, too have not lived in vain.