Chicago Daily News 1897

The Chicago Daily News

July 9, 1897

The Rev. August Tolton, Roman Catholic Priest Is Dying at Mercy Hospital

Chicagoans Pass an Uncomfortable Night and Arise Only to Find the Conditions Worse Than Ever

All through the scorching morning the sun poured down its deadliest rays. The white pavements gave back the heat with redoubled fervor, and the lightest coats seemed unbearable to most persons, and they carried the irksome garments on their arms.

All night long the wretched inhabitants of the town had tried to sleep as best they could. The doorsteps were dotted with them, every window was populous, the roofs were crowded. With the morning came only more heat, more suffering. Had a shower of rain descended during the morning hours many would have rushed into the falling water and danced for joy as the big drops soaked and spattered.

August Tolton, pastor of St. Monica’s Colored Roman Catholic Church at 30th and Dearborn Streets, lies in a dying condition at Mercy Hospital, a victim of the intense heat.

The Rev. Tolton was struck down at 36th street and Ellis avenue, but a short distance from his home, which is at 448 36th Street. He was about to make several calls in his parish, and it was just before noon, when the heat was at its height. He was seen to reel and then he fell heavily to the sidewalk. Several pedestrians rushed to the assistance of the prostrate clergyman and removed him to a cool spot, where everything possible was done to relieve his condition until the arrival of the Stanton avenue police patrol, which was hastily summoned.

The police at once saw that the priest was in a critical condition and hurriedly removed him to Mercy Hospital.

Upon being examined at the hospital it was at once seen that Father Tolton was in a critical condition and every effort was made to save his life.

The priest is one of the foremost colored clergyman of the catholic church in this part of the country and is remarkably popular. He is 46 years old and has been identified with the church for many years.