CHIFFLET, Mrs. Emil and infant

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CHIFFLET, Mrs. Emil [Marie] ( -1892), and her infant child were burned to death in a fire at Hotel Metropole. By 1910, her French husband, widower Emil F. Chifflet (c. 1854- ), was an inmate in a San Francisco Relief Home for Aged and Infirm. He was 56.

In the News~

July 5, 1892 [LAH]: “A fatal burning occurred yesterday morning at Santa Catalina Island, two lives being sacrificed by carelessness in handling coal oil. The wife of Emil Chifflet, chef of the Metropole, occupied a tent near the hotel grounds. She attempted to fill an oil stove without first blowing out the wick, despite her husband's warning when he left to go to work. The oil caught fire, and in her excitement she covered the burning liquid with her apron, and instantly her clothing was a mass of flame. She pushed the blazing stove against the side of the tent, and then rushed to the open air, arousing everybody in the neighborhood by her agonized screams. The hour being very early there were but few people on the streets, and the woman in her crazed condition reached the hotel entrance before anyone could stop her. Clerk Burns managed to seize her in the hallway and Judge Smith, of the Superior Court, snatched a portiere from the parlor doors, and after considerable difficulty smothered the flames. Drs. Boynton and Fowler were in instant attendance on the poor woman and remained with her almost constantly until death relieved her suffering, about 2 o'clock in the afternoon. Her babe of four months was taken from the blazing tent horribly burned, and died in a few hours. An inquest will be held and the bodies interred on the island.“

July 5, 1892 [SDU]: “Los Angeles, July 4. A frightful accident at Avalon, Catalina Island today. Mrs. Emil Chifflet, wife of the cook of the Hotel Metropole, and her four months old infant, were burned to death in the explosion of a gasoline stove. The accident was caused by carelessness in filling the stove without extinguishing the blaze.“

July 7, 1892 [LAH]: “Avalon, Santa Catalina, July 5. Coroner Weldon came over on the Hermosa yesterday to hold an inquest on the bodies of Marie Chifflet and her 4 months old babe, who died from burns received at yesterday's fire. A jury was summoned and after the verdict the remains were buried.“