Finger Prints Identify Man Killed By Train, 1925
THERE were no marks of identification on the mangled body of a man killed by a fast-moving freight, on May 24th, at Knapp's Station near Vancouver, Washington. There were no papers in the pockets and no marks on the clothing which would give a clue to his identity.
John Roberts, Superintendent of Identification, Clarke County, Washington, took the dead man's finger prints, looked them up in his own files and found them to correspond to the finger prints of Frank Bowen, a lumberman, who had been arrested in Vancouver on a charge of violation of the liquor laws.
Bowen had two close relatives living in Clarke County, but they had not even heard that a man was killed in a railroad accident, and if they had not been notified by Roberts, they would never
have known that Frank Bowen was dead. As it was, Bowen's father was notified the same day and was able to make arrangements for taking the body home.
This incident made such an impression on the mind of Roberts, the finger-print expert who made the identification, that he wants to start fingerprinting the residents of Clarke County right away. He has made the announcement that lie will gladly take and classify finger prints of anyone in that county, for future use, absolutely without charge.
1. "Namesless Dead Identified: Finger Prints Identify Man Killed By Train", Finger Print and Identification Magazine, Vol. 6, No. 7, January 1925, page 8.
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