Harrisville, WV Boat Accident, Dec 1934

Birth, Marriage & Death Records

CHILDREN DROWN AS BOAT CAPSIZES.

SISTERS, ALL UNDER 10 YEARS OF AGE, LOSE LIVES IN ICY WATERS OF HUGHES RIVER; MOTHER SEES TRAGEDY.

Harrisville, W. Va., Dec. 27. (AP) -- Hurled into the icy waters of the north fork of Hughes River when the rowboat in which they were riding overturned, four sisters, all under 10 years of age, drowned today.
The dead:
LAVERNA MASON, 8.
BETTY MASON, 7.
MARIE MASON, 5.
MAGGIE MASON, two years old, the only children of MR. and MRS. DEXTER MASON, of Petroleum, near Harrisville.
MRS. MASON saw her children drown. She was in the boat with the little girls which was being rowed by TEDDY CUNNINGHAM, 16, a student at Cairo high school and the son of Rev. and Mrs. J. F. Cunningham, of Petroleum.
MRS. MASON, the wife of a farmer and relief worker, was rescued from the river and is in critical condition. Young CUNNINGHAM also made his way to shore.
Ritchie county officers went to the scene shortly after the accident, and recovered the body of the youngest child, MAGGIE, near the mouth of Gillespie Run, where the boat overturned. The river at that point is 16 feet deep and about 50 feet across.
CUNNINGHAM told officers the boat struck a partly submerged log in midstream and upset. The river was swollen by heavy rains.
The girls and their mother apparently were being ferried across the river from their home, which is located near the river bank.
Officers continued jagging the river tonight for the bodies of the other children.

Bluefield Daily Telegraph West Virginia 1934-12-28