N.D. MAN MEETS AN AWFUL DEATH
PETER BAKKE OF GRAND FORKS COUNTY VICTIM OF TRAGIC END AT WEDDING CELEBRATION.
Grand Forks, N.D., July 10.—The report has just reached Grand Forks of a terrible accident which occurred last Thursday in the extreme southwestern part of the county, on the Slinden farm.
A large company of friends and neighbors had gathered to celebrate the wedding of Martin H. Slinden and Miss Ragnhild Syverson, and for the occasion Peter Bakke, a young man 35 years of age, son of Ellef Bakke, had devised a cannon from a piece of a boiler flue. He had successfully fired it off once, and tried to repeat the operation, but it "hung fire," and thinking that it was not going to explode, he approached and bent directly over the improvised cannon, and at the same instant, without the slightest warning, the terrible explosion occurred. The cannon was blown to fragments, and the full charge struck the young man in the breast, inflicting a terrible wound, and lifting him bodily into the air. As he struck the ground he made a motion toward his heart with his right hand, then threw both arms outward, and was no more. Death was instantaneous. There were a great many who witnessed the terrible accident, and the sudden advent of death in the midst of rejoicing, filled all with sorrow and sadness, and cast a shroud of gloom over the happy wedding festivities. Mr. Bakke was the eldest of three sons and the mainstay and support of his parents, who were heart-broken over his untimely end. The deceased was widely known and esteemed, and a host of friends extend sympathy to the stricken parents and relatives in their great bereavement.
Williston Graphic, 7/15/1909