Louise Agnes (Devlin) Mahaffey / Bunner

Female 1868 - 1906  (37 years)


Mahaffey, Louise

The Idaho Daily Statesman


Family in Destitute Circumstances, There Being Nothing to Eat But that Furnished by Neighbors and No Fuel But Stray Bits of Sagebrush - Youngest Child 18 Months Old.

Mrs. W. P. Mahaffey died at her home seven miles west of Boise yesterday afternoon under heart-rending circumstances. After many months of illness from that incurable malady, consumption, she passed away, leaving behind her a husband who has but lately met with an accident that cost him one of his eyes, and four growing boys, the youngest but 18 months of age.

Mr. Mahaffey had been working on the railroad, and on Thanksgiving Day had the misfortune to have an eye knocked out. For weeks he was was unable to work, and as soon as he was able to get out and do manual labor, his wife's condition was so serious that he was unable to leave home.

All winter, therefore, there has been no work done for the family, which was already poor, and when the neighbors reached the home after Mrs. Mahaffey's death, the practically helpless father and his four children were in destitute circumstances. Mr. Mahaffey's mother, who is crippled, adds to the mouths to be fed.

"I had never gone to the place," said J. E. Smeed, a neighbor, who reported the conditions to the sheriff's office after the woman had died, "until today, and I never realized that such destitution could exist. I had not the least idea there was a family in Ada county that was anything like in such a condition.

"There was absolutely nothing in the house to eat when I got there but a jar of fruit and a loaf of bread that had been sent in by some of the neighbors. As I understand it, Mrs. Mahaffey had been unable to take anything for weeks but milk and this had been furnished by one of the neighbors.

"The boys had apparently been sleeping in one corner of the little room on a bare straw tick. I don't know what they had over them; there were no covers in sight. I am told the family had been picking up sagebrush to burn, and that is a pretty unstable fuel in this cold weather, especially as practically all the sagebrush in this section has long been grubbed out."

The Mahaffey family has not been living in this section long. The mother had been ill from consumption for about 18 months, and for the last three weeks of her life was not able to leave her bed.

The youngest of her four boys is buy 18 months old, another son being 6 years old, another 10 or 11 and the oldest between 15 and 16. The neighbors are doing everything that is possible to relieve the wants of the family.

The Idaho Daily Statesman
Boise, Idaho
15 Mar 1906
p. 3


MAHAFFEY - The funeral of Mrs. Lucy Mahaffey was held yesterday morning at 11 o'clock from McMillan chapel, Rev. Cross of Meridian officiating at the services. Interment was in Joplin cemetery.

Idaho Daily Statesman
Boise, Idaho
17 Mar 1906
p. 5

Provided Courtesy of Sharon Douglass

Owner/SourceIdaho Daily Statesman
Date15 Mar 1906
Linked toLouise Agnes (Devlin) Mahaffey / Bunner

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