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title: 'The Day book. (Chicago, Ill.) 1911-1917, February 24, 1914, NOON EDITION, Image 10',
meta: 'News about Chronicling America - RSS Feed',
Image provided by: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Library, Urbana, IL
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er effort at decoration, just the poem
which declared that
"He'd hold her nozzle aginMhe bank
Till the last soul got ashore."
The end of the poetical Prairie
Belle, was the end of the Gem.. She
caught fire six miles up the .river.
Bill was in the pilot-house, niseves
on the poem which had. been his
dream and his inspiration, when cries
of terror followed the burst of flame.
Bill turned the boat towards shore.
The ancient sliip burned' with the ra-
RIVER PILOT HOLDS BURNING SHIP TO BANK
AND DIES, BUT SAVES PASSENGERS
New Orleans, La., Feb. 21. Write
the name of Bill Barre, river pilot, in
the list of brave souls.
Bill had ait ideal. And in living up
to that ideal died
The Gem was a little river packet.
Up and down the river, trip after trip
and year after year, Bill guided her.
Above the wheel in the pilot-house
was a little framed copy on Jim Blud
soe. Not a picture of a friend, no oth-
And if ever the Prairie Bell took
A thousand times he swore
He'd hold her nozzle agin' the
Till the last one got ashore.
Through the hot black breath of
'-, the burnin' boat
Jim Bludsoe's voice was heard,
And they all had trust in his cus-
And Taiowed he would keep his
And, sure's yoiire born, they all
got off ....
1 Afore the smokestack fell;"
And Bludsoe's ghost went up
In the smoke of the! Prairie
pidity of kindling. Panic-stricken pas
sengers leaped into the river. Bill, he
The prow of the Gem reached the
shore. The last "galoot" got ashore
all but Bill. He was too late and the
spirit of Jim Bludsoe reached down
over the dark waters of the Missis
sippi as they- closed' oyer Bill Barre.
The little frame.d poem in the pilot
house. baL become history. Bill Barre
died the .death of his. ideal.
"Thisls one of my ancestors," she
said," pausing before a portrait "He
fell at Waterloo. Have you any an
cestors?" He suddenly remembered an uncle
who had sole charge otjhe front of
a cinema show, and murmured, "Er
"Did he fall anywhere?"
"Not exactly; but I remember be
ing told how, clothed in full uniform,
but unarmed save for a light cane,