|HARTFORD CIRCUS FIRE|
The e-mail below was sent by Captain William Pond of the Hartford Fire Department to Chief Huertas. Apparently Pond took exception with several framed pictures of a victim of the Hartford Circus fire Eleanor Cook, known as Little Miss 1565 for years.
The best-known victim of the circus fire was a young blonde girl wearing a white dress. She is known only as "Little Miss 1565", named after the number assigned to her body at the city's makeshift morgue. Oddly well preserved even after her death, her face has become arguably the most familiar image of the fire.
Her true identity has been a topic of debate and frustration in the Hartford area since the fire occurred. She was buried without a name in Hartford's Northwood cemetery, where a victims' memorial also stands. Two police investigators, Sergeant's. Thomas Barber and Edward Lowe, photographed her and took fingerprints, footprints, and dental charts. Despite massive publicity and repeated displays of the famous photograph in nationwide magazines, she was never claimed. Barber and Lowe spent the rest of their lives trying to identify her. They decorated her grave with flowers each Christmas, Memorial Day, and July 6.. After their deaths, a local flower company continued to decorate the grave. In 1991, the body was declared to be that of Eleanor Emily Cook, despite the fact that her aunt and uncle had examined the body and it did not fit the description they provided. The Connecticut State Police forensics unit compared hair samples and determined they were probably from the same person. The body was exhumed in 1991 and buried next to her brother, Edward, who had also died in the fire. Apparently Captain Pond took exception with photos that were supposed to be used after the fire to identify victims, the photos had been posted inside engine 14 for their historic value since the house had been built. The historic value of the pictures is indisputable.
Despite the historic value, Pond for some reason felt he needed to destroy the pictures to bring peace to Cook's soul. According to his e-mail he took the pictures home and burned the pictures in his fireplace as he prayed for the "poor girls" soul. It is unknown as to what authority Pond felt he had to destroy property of the Hartford Fire Department, property of such historic value. This needs to be investigated thoroughly and appropriate action taken immediately.
Pictures or property of such a historic value that are destroyed have removed a part of Hartford's history that can never be replaced. This is inexcusable and probably criminal as well
From: "Pond, William"
Date:01/15/2015 8:25 PM (GMT-05:00)
To: "Huertas, Carlos M."
I received your voice mail and will respond to it in writing. When originally assigned to engine 14 in the summer of 1990 I objected to the naked deceased pictures of Eleanor Cook displayed in the hallway. I objected verbally to every house Captain through my career where my efforts proved fruitless. My first order of business as house Captain was to remove them from display.
I was afraid after retirement they would be placed back on the wall where this poor girls soul would never rest. I removed them today and at my home prayed for peace for Eleanor and burned them in my fireplace. I hope you understand and also the Cook family had no knowledge that there loved one was publicly displayed in this horrific manor.
Portions of this posting obtained through Wikipedia