Reuben Hemingray declared dead


Publication: The Muskogee Democrat

Muskogee, Indian Territory, United States
vol. 1, no. 296, p. 2, col. 3-4



(By Associated Press.)

Louisville, Feb. 15. An unique suit, and the first of its sort to be filed in many years, in local courts, was that of Lida B. Hemingray, praying that her husband be declared legally dead and that she be declared a single woman. The action does not ask a divorce; in fact it alleges that only the most affectionate relations existed between her husband and herself until his mysterious disapperance ten years ago, which has led her to the opinion that he met with a sudden death and to an effort to determine here status before the law.

The petition sets out the facts that in June, 1894, the plaintiff married Reuben P. Hemingray, and that their marriage was a happy one in every way and was marked by the deepness affection on both sides. On Sept. 23, 1895, 14 months after their marriage, the husband was called to Chicago on a business trip that was to last only a few days. He reached his destination, as attested by a letter to his wife, stating that he would complete his business and return shortly.

The days passed however, until anxiety led the wife to investigation which were fruitless.

The authorities were called upon; the police searched and the life-savers dragged the lake front in vain. It was if the earth had swallowed up Reuben P. Hemingray, and no trace of his existance has since come to the care of his family. After waiting for ten years, the wife has given up hope and in order to settle her legal status files the suit.

Mrs. Hemingray is a teacher in the Fourth ward public school and her husband was a son of Judge Hemingray, a former member of the Louisville bar.

Judge O'Neal, who represents Mrs. Hemingray, said: "The action is brought to settle the legal status only. The couple were happily married and their relations were more than ordinarily congenial. It is simply a distressing tragedy in life."

Researcher notes: 
Supplemental information: 
Researcher:Bob Stahr
Date completed:May 9, 2010 by: Bob Stahr;