George and Mary Taylor are listed in the 1908-1909 Webb City Directory as living at 128 N. Pennsylvania St. This photo of the home was donated to the WCAGS by Sara Easley McKibben.

Old News

From the 3rd floor
of the Webb City Public Library

Lessons learned while natural gas lines were installed in Webb City

Webb City Register, Sept. 2, 1905

The most exciting event of the day in this city, was a gas explosion on Daugherty Street, between Pennsylvania Avenue and Ball Street, this forenoon, where one of the gas line men, was employed in tapping the main line, to pipe Geo. Taylor’s residence. He had just drilled the hole in the line and reached up to secure a nut to place on the main line pipe, to await the men, who place the pipe into the residences and attach to the main line.

A small boy with the usual inquisitiveness of lads of his age, had been an interested spectator of the drilling and was very curious to know what the sizzling sound was he could hear coming from the hole in the pipe. In order to find out for himself, as the man turned his back to him for the nut, the youngster struck a match and threw it into the hole.

Instantly the flames shot up several feet in the air and with a roar that startled the young man nearly out of his wits. He took to his heels toward the Frisco depot and has not been seen or heard from since.

The fire burned one of the heavy posts of the Electric Railway company on the south side of the street. The men who had gathered there secured buckets and extinguished the flames before any serious damage was done. The flow of gas was shut off from headquarters but it burned some time before finally extinguished.

The young man of the inquisitive turn had perhaps learned a lesson. The gas workman was severely burned on one of his hands and his face was a little scorched, but it did not interfere with his duties the balance of the day.


This ad was placed in the Webb City Register in 1905.

Sentinel bound volumes are now in the Genealogy Room

The WCAGS has accepted ownership of the complete collection of bound volumes of the Webb City Sentinel, from 1983 (after the fire) until the final issue on Dec. 30, 2020.

Those issues can also be viewed on microfilm, along with much older issues.

Webb City Area Genealogical Society

WCAGS members staff the Genealogy Room on the third floor of the Webb City Public Library. Current hours are noon to 4 p.m. weekdays and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturdays. Meetings are held at 6 p.m. on the first Tuesday of each month in the Genealogy Room.

Everything you want to know about Jasper County Missouri Schools is available at a site compiled by Webb City Area Genealogical Society member Kathy Sidenstricker.