Robert Kerneghen 1841-1913

Died falling off a roof

Extract from Illinois State Journal, August 1913:

Robert Kerneghen, veteran stone mason and fitter of the city [Springfield, Illinois], and layer of the
cornerstone of the state capitol [interesting story about that too], is dead at his residence, 217 West Jackson Street [modern map], as the result of a fall from a house roof. He was 72 years old.

Mr Kernegehen was engaged yesterday morning in painting a tin roof at the residence of W.R. McCoy, 211 West Jackson Street. About 10.30 o’clock he lost his footing and fell to a stone walk, a distance of eighteen feet below. He fell heavily upon his thighs, suffering internatl injuries from which he died at 2.15 o’clock in the afternoon. In the fall, his left wrist also was broken.

Members of the McCoy family and neighbors rushed to the injured man’s assistance immediately after the accident. He was removed to his home, two doors west of the house on which he was working, where he suffered terrible agony until his death.

The decedent was born at Keadybeg, Mount Norris, County Armagh, Ireland, July 20, 1841. He married Harriet Dickinson Sept 9, 1868, who survives him. He came to Springfield Sept 10, 1868, beginning work on the state house, the corner stone of which he laid Oct 4, 1886. He was in the employ of the old Culver Construction Company twenty-five years. He was well known, having taken an active part in building many of the largest buildings in the city, including the state house, the state armory, the Lincoln tomb and others. He was a member of Springfield Masonic Lodge No. 4.

The previous year, he had been injured while chasing a runaway horse!

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