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Jim Kershner’s this day in history

From our archives, 100 years ago

Mrs. Kimble, the landlady of a boarding house in Mullan, Idaho, was fed up with a miner named John A. McPherson.

She ordered him out of her house. He responded with fury, trying to beat her. She evaded him. But McPherson grabbed a container of wood alcohol and splashed it all over her clothes. She began to run, but McPherson succeeded in lighting a match and throwing it at her. Her clothes caught fire and she was seriously burned before she succeeded in dousing the flames.

Meanwhile, McPherson splashed oil around the house and was trying to set fire to it, even though Mrs. Kimble’s three children were asleep in the house.

Fortunately, the police and fire department arrived just in time.

Police arrested McPherson, and firemen were able to save the house before too much damage was done.

McPherson was in jail, and Mrs. Kimble was “resting well” and expected to recover.

Also on this date

(From the Associated Press)

1887: Punxsutawney, Pa., held its first Groundhog Day festival. … 1988: In a speech the broadcast television networks declined to carry live, President Ronald Reagan pressed his case for aid to the Nicaraguan Contras. … 1990: South Africa’s president, F.W. de Klerk, lifted a ban on the African National Congress and promised to free Nelson Mandela.

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