A meal of pancakes, into which arsenic had been accidentally mixed, caused the death yesterday morning of five members of the family of O.K. Meintz on a farm between Ashkum and Danforth. The arsenic was in a preparation used for preserving animal hides.
The pancakes were made by Mrs. Meintz, mother of four of the victims and grandmother of the fifth.
While mixing the batter for the cakes, she ran short of the prepared pancake flour and mixed in the contents of another sack containing the arsenical preparation, thinking it also to be the flour.
O.K. Meintz, the father, was taken somewhat ill while at the breakfast table and so did not eat any of the pancakes. Mrs. Meintz tasted the cakes after her sons had finished their breakfast and noticing the peculiar flavor, she ate none. She is in a hysterical condition as a result of her mistake.
The sons complained of feeling ill almost immediately after eating the poisoned cakes. They were taken with severe pains and physicians summoned from nearby villages were unable to save them. The first son died before noon and the last at dawn today.
The dead are Fred, 28 years old; Theodore, 26; Irving 21; Mino 21, and Clarence Meintz, the grandson, 7 years old. The Meintz family are prominent in the section where they live.
--Thawville Weekly Record. 2 February 1917.
ARSENIC CAUSED DEATH OF MEINTS BOYS
The poison which killed five members of the family of O.J. Meints near Danforth, was arsenic. Dr. A.J. Brown, who was one of the physicians in attendance at the time some of the victims of the poisoned pancakes died, received a report of the analysis made the state laboratory at Springfield, which definitely established this fact.
The report showed that the quantity of batter which was sent to Springfield contained arsenic in large quantities. About an ounce of the batter was collected at the time of the tragedy and sent to the state laboratories. The exact percentage of the arsenic was not given in the report, but it was stated as being very large.
--Paxton Record. 15 February 1917.