Friday, August 12, 2016

FRIDAY FINDS ~ Anna M. Bezner hit & killed by street car in Detroit - 1906

Finding something when you aren’t looking for it.  It surely happens to all of us.  That’s the case today with Anna M. Prediger Bezner.  Also known as Mary A. Bezner.

As I was researching the Vernor family for my last post, (you can read that post here) I was looking at the Hart family, since Frances Hart married Benjamin Vernor.  I was using to find articles about the couple.

In doing so, I also came across several articles and documents for the Bezner family that married into the Hart family.  Sadly one of those articles was about the death of Anna M. Bezner.

Anna “Mary” Prediger was born June 1861 in Indiana.  She married Frederick Bezner on 5 Dec 1878 in Jersey County, Illinois.

To the couple was born four children: Frederick O., born 1879, Emma A. (1880-1965), Irene, born 1893 and Florence, born 1896.  

Frederick Sr., was born in Germany in Jul 1850.  In the 1900 census he was working as a Florist.  In August 1901, Frederick died, leaving Anna a widow with at least two children at home.  I found Anna listed in a Detroit, Michigan City Directory in 1903, living at the same address as her daughter, Emma.  So, we know that after Frederick’s death Anna must have moved to Detroit.

BEZNER_Anna M_killed by street car_Detroit_Free_Press_Mon__Jun_18__1906_pg 5_annotated
Full page with article indicated by red arrow - Detroit Free Press, 18 Jun 1906, pg 5
Here's the cropped article

So, now both the parents are dead.  There are still two under age children – Irene who would have been 13 yrs. old and young Florence who was only 10 yrs. old.
There was a Coroner’s Inquest into the accident and I located the following articles about that inquest.

All articles were located on and are from the Detroit Free Press.

BEZNER_Mary_O_coroners_Inquest_23_Jun_1906_DetFreePress_pg_5 - Copy Copy of BEZNER_Mary_O_Jurors_no_show_for_inquest_24_Jun_1906_DetFreePress_pg_10_cropped BEZNER_Mary_Coroner__039_s_verdict_27_Jun_1906_DetFreePress_pg_6 - Copy

I was able to locate her death certificate.  On it she is listed as Anna M. Bezner, born 29 Jun 1861 in Indiana.  Her parents names & places of birth are given.  The informant was Fred Bezner of the same address as Anna in the 1903 directory.  I believe this was her son, who would have been 27 yrs. old at this time.  You can also see the cause of death “Shock killed by st car” and “Inquest Pending.”

BEZNER_Anna M aka Mary A_death cert_17 Jun 1906_DetroitWayneMichigan_annotated

Both Anna & her husband Frederick have headstones at Elmwood Cemetery in Detroit, Michigan.  I took pictures of those headstones during a visit back in 2009.  You can visit their memorials Frederick #76369064 and Anna aka Mary #76369088.  The memorials are managed by someone else and I’ve submitted family links and edits to the memorial manager.
BEZNER_Frederick  headstone
Photo taken by me in Sep 2009
BEZNER_Mary Anna headstone
Photo taken by me in Sep 2009

While Frederick and Mary Anna Bezner are not direct relations to me, I still found their story interesting.  And, once I find a story I like to follow it through.  I will continue the research and find out what became of the four children of Frederick and Anna Bezner. 

If you think you might be related to anyone mentioned in this blog post, please contact me.

Happy hunting,
Michigan Girl

Copyright ©  2010-2016   Diane Gould Hall

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I look forward to reading your comments. If you have any connection to the people mentioned in this blog, please let me know. I write about mine and my husband's ancestors and would welcome new information or meeting a new cousin or two. Thanks for visiting and come back soon.