A Tale: “Bear That Killed Man Blown to Pieces” — 1917

Values change. While searching for stories to post here, I frequently find reports of behavior that would outrage today’s sensibilities. Here’s an example published in Popular Mechanics in 1917.


A bear that had severely mauled a government teamster in Yellowstone National Park was blown to pieces by dynamite recently, while the teamster died of his injuries in the hospital at Mammoth Hot Springs.Screen Shot 2013-04-07 at 8.02.58 AM The man was asleep under a supply wagon in the park when he was attacked by the bear. Two companions drove the animal away, after serious injuries had been inflicted on their mate, and when the latter had been removed to the hospital they prepared a warm reception for the bear, knowing it would return. Dynamite, connected with a small electric battery, was placed under a bait of army bacon a short distance from the camp. When the bear came back under cover of darkness and nosed the bait, the mine was sprung and the dynamite did its work most effectively. Bruin disappeared in sections, and the unlucky teamster was avenged.


—  Text and illustration from “Bear That Killed Man Blown to Pieces,” Popular Mechanics, 27(4):561 (1917).

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