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Strange Sleeping Suicide


The Fargo Forum reported on a strange suicide case baffling Fessenden authorities on this day in 1924. The case involved George Henry Richardson, Jr., the United States viceconsul to New Zealand. While travelling through North Dakota on the Soo Line train, Richardson decided to jump from the side of the train in an effort to end his life. Crewmembers restrained the man and sent him back to his room, but Richardson tried twice more to jump from the locomotive. Soo Line personnel then decided that the passenger would have to be removed and placed under the care of a physician. Richardson pleaded that he must have been drugged aboard the train, and claimed that he needed to travel to Washington, D.C. in order to take a civil-service examination. Despite the pleading, Richardson was left under the care of a physician in Fessenden, where, strangely enough, he passed away in his sleep. Authorities were left to wonder if the man’s death was actually a result of suicide or fate.


Fargo Forum and Daily Republican (Evening ed.). April 7, 1924: p. 1.

--Jayme L. Job