November 5, 1920
Minneapolis, Minnesota
7-year-old Betty Jones dies from injuries a week after her Halloween costume ignited

Jones and a group of 25 other children visited a neighbor’s home for Halloween activities. Jones had a paper costume over her regular attire and, while the children played by casting shadows on the wall produced by candlelight, Jones’ costume caught fire. Though a quick-thinking adult threw a tub of water used to bob for apples, Jones was badly burned. She was hospitalized for six days before succumbing to her injuries.

“A feline of the ebony hue” indirectly caused the death of an 83-year-old man who attempted to kick the cat, missed, lost his balance, and broke his neck. Newspapers described the event as “black cat hoodoo.” The cat was not harmed.

Star Tribune [Minneapolis, Minnesota]. November 6, 1920

Betty Jones. Find a Grave. Accessed: November 5, 2019.
“Funeral of Betty Jones to Be Held Tomorrow.” The Minneapolis Sunday Tribune. November 7, 1920
“Child Dies of Burns Received in Playing at Halloween Party.” Star Tribune [Minneapolis, Minnesota]. November 6, 1920

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