July 18, 1879
May, daughter of Mr.and Mrs. J.B. Peabody, of Chicago, was drowned Saturday morning between the hours of 6 and 7 o'clock, in the cistern of her grandfather, Mr. Orrin Cowles. The circumstances connected with the sad and terrible affair are as follows: Little May and her brother came to the city two days before with their aunt, Miss Anna A. Cowles with a view of spending the summer with their mother's family in Fulton. On the morning of her death, May, soon after getting up went out to play, and was not missed by the family until breakfast was ready, when her absence began to excite apprehension and search was made for her. The cistern stands in a darkened shed near the house, and its top had been left open for ventilation. It is supposed the child had entered the shed to play with some kittens that had their bed there, and, not seeing the cistern fell into it. It is not known how long the body remained in the water, but when taken out life was extinct. Drs. Griswold, Seeley and McCoy were hastily summoned, and exhausted their skill in effort to resuscitate but in vain. Mr. and Mrs. Peabody were telegraphed for at once, and reached Fulton, Saturday afternoon. On Monday morning religious services were held at the house, Rev. Mr. Wells, officiating, immediately after which, the parents returned to Chicago with the remains of their child. Little May was nearly eight years old and a child of striking beauty and sweetest disposition.