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Last year, I posted this entry about Hurrell Burris Tackett, the only son of Willie Burris and John Thomas Tackett.

In that entry, I talked about how Willie, whose older sister was John Tackett's first wife, was living with Ora and John in the 1910 census. At the time, I said I thought Willie may have been in the household due to some illness Ora had that prevented her from taking care of her three children. And then I said...

I can imagine that Willie was a comfort and provided sorely needed help for for her brother-in-law, caring for her nieces and nephew during her sister's illness and after her death.

At the time, I had no idea how true those words were, albeit not in the way I meant.
Ora's death was noted in at least two newspapers of the time - the Arkansas Gazette in Little Rock, where she died, and her hometown newspaper, the Russellville Courier Democrat.

There must have been a rush on the Gazette reporter's deadline, because he (yes, in 1910 reporters were male in Little Rock) butchered almost all the names.
 photo Arkansas Gazette 26 May 1910 Ora Burris Tackett.jpg

MOTHER A SUICIDE

After Sending Child From House On Pretext, Mrs. Orra B. Hackett Swallows Dose of Carbolic Acid

After sending her daughter Rheva, nine years old, and Miss Willie Burris, a young woman boarder, to the rear yard with instructions to feed the chickens, Mrs. Orra B. Hackett, 28 years old, wife of J. B. Hackett, 111 West Twentieth street, swallowed the contents of an ounce phial of carbolic acid yesterday afternoon.

The daughter, returning to the house a few minutes later, found her mother lying on a bed, with the fumes of carbolic acid in the room. Mrs. Hackett was unconscious and the bottle was lying at her side. The frightened girl ran screaming to the home of Mrs. T. S. Isch, 1920 Main street, saying that her mother was dying.

Dr. M. D. McLean was hastily summoned, and he worked with the woman in an effort to save her life, but she died within an hour after swallowing the acid.
Gave No Hint of Intentions.

Mrs. Hackett bought the acid at the drug store of C. N. Miller, 2301 Arch street. She told her daughter that she intended to use the poison on her chickens. She gave no hint of her intentions to end her life. Despondency, due to ill health, is supposed to have been the cause.

Mrs. Hackett's husband was down [t]own at the time his wife took the fatal dose. He was frantic with grief last night over the surprising tragedy in his home.

An inquest was held last night and a coroner's jury returned a verdict that death was due to carbolic acid poisoning, self administered. The body will be sent to Russellville this morning for burial.

Source: Arkansas Gazette, 26 May 1910
What's wrong with the Gazette article...
She was Ora B. Tackett.
He was John T. Tackett.
Their daughter was Reba Tackett.
Excerpting from the Courier Democrat, published 2 Jun 1910, with a note referring to the original appearing in Thursday's daily, on 26 May 1910.
...sent her child and a young lady boarding with them to feed the chickens yesterday afternoon...Mrs. Tackett has been in ill health for some time and despondency due to bad health is supposed to have been the cause.
What's wrong with both articles?

This was John Thomas Tackett's story. He didn't want anyone to know that his 28 year old wife committed suicide because he was messing around with her 17 year old sister. I looked for "Errata" in the Gazette for the rest of the month, and never found it. Being J. B. Hackett was just all right with him. Likewise that everyone thought there was an unrelated boarder in the house, instead of his underaged sister-in-law.

His daughter, Reba, had an entirely different one, as told to her granddaughter.

I received an email from that granddaughter five months ago.
I am the granddaughter of Reba Mae Burris Tackett Otto from Russellville, AR.

She was the daughter of Ora Burris who according to my grandmother died when her father fell in love w/her sister Willie. She took my grandmother to the store in a wagon. Grandmother went into the store and asked for carbolic acid from the store keeper. Even then, an adult was supposed to sign for it but Ora called out from the wagon that it was okay that grandmother purchase it. Ora and grandmother went home and Ora went to her bedroom and took the acid and grandmother said that she still could hear her mother's cries. Willie's Mom said to come back home and after a brief period, Willie married John Thomas and they had Hurrell...

...Grandmother said that when her father and Willie married, Orval did not like Willie b/c of what happened to his Mom and Willie's part in it and so his father sent him packing w/a mule from the farm. Orval married and he and his wife lived in Spearsville, LA until their death.
Note: Orval Tackett was 14 years old at the time of his father's remarriage to his aunt.
What I don't understand is why Susan Rebecca Dalrymple Burris - Ora and Willie's mother - went along with John Thomas Tackett's version of events. They were well known enough in Russellville that everyone there would have known that Willie had been living with Ora and hubby for a while.

I think it's probably a good thing daddy William Matthew Burris was already dead. Otherwise, Willie might have gotten the hiding of her life when she was summoned home, and well...

John Thomas Tackett's life probably wouldn't have been worth living.
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