New York Times, “Seduction, Abortion, and Death in Chicago,” August 8, 1857

    Source citation
    “Seduction, Abortion, and Death in Chicago,” New York Times, August 8, 1857, p. 5: 5.
    Original source
    Chicago (IL) Times
    Newspaper: Publication
    New York Daily Times
    Newspaper: Headline
    Seduction, Abortion, and Death in Chicago
    Newspaper: Page(s)
    Newspaper: Column
    Date Certainty
    Meghan Fralinger, Dickinson College
    Transcription date
    The following text is presented here in complete form, as it originally appeared in print.  Spelling and typographical errors have been preserved as in the original. 


    From the Chicago Times, Aug. 2.

    Some of the particulars of a dark and wicked transaction, which has recently taken place in this city, have been revealed to us through the medium of legal investigations which are now in progress. It appears that the death of a young woman has been caused by an attempt made upon her to produce abortion, and that parties who have occupied respectable positions in the community are implicated in the dreadful crime.

    On Wednesday, July 22, a young Norwegian woman whose name was given as REGNAT PETERSON, but which is sad was REGNAT LAWSON, was brought to this city from some place in the country, (probably Bureau County) about 120 miles distant. What her condition was when she arrived here does not yet appear, but not far from the date referred to she was taken to a boarding house, on State street, in very ill health, where the person who came with her desired to have her taken care of until she got better. On the same day, the woman who attended her discovered that she was in a very dangerous condition, and the woman of the house sent for Coroner HANSOM, (supposing him to be the health officer,) and desired him to look to the case. Mr. HANSOM told her to get a physician. Dr. BEVANS was then sent for, and on visiting the woman discovered at once that an abortion had been produced. The woman, with great apparent candor, stated to the Doctor that she had lived with a man named TEMPLEM in Crillicothe, Bureau County; that by him she had become enceinte; that he proposed to her the destruction of the evidence of their intercourse by procuring abortion; that at first she refused, but finally consented, and was brought to Chicago for that purpose; that the operation was performed upon her by Dr. SWANSEY, (of some place in Bureau County,) after which she was taken to the house in State street as stated above. She remained there for several days, nobody visiting her except Dr. BEVAN, who was endeavoring to save her life. On Thursday night last she was removed from that house to the Bull’s Head tavern, where she died on the following Friday morning. The Coroner was then informed of the fact, and he proceeded at once to the place where the body lay, and where preparations for the burial were then making. TEMPLE was arrested, and is now in jail. We understand that Dr. SWANSEY has also been arrested, and is probably by this time in the city.

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