|This page contains information and pictures on the railroads
that served and were so important to the town of Schuylkill
Haven. The railroads were economically influential from the
late nineteenth century until their collective demise by the
1970s. The trolley system will also be featured.
|Top row, left to right: Reading freight train at the Union Street crossing in 1957. Note the signal tower at the right. Reading Company freight station in 1958,
directly across the tracks from the passenger station. The "J" office in the Schuylkill Haven yards in the 1950s.
Bottom row, left to right: A diesel pulling cars through the Schuylkill Haven yards in 1953. A Reading steam engine passes through the Schuylkill
Haven-Cressona yard in 1951. Note the bridge to the car shops in the background. At right, diesels pull into Schuylkill Haven at the William Street crossing in
|This engine, at right, was
receiving service in the
shops at Schuylkill Haven in
1926. The engine is now
part of the collection of the
Franklin Institute in
At right, is an early image at
the Mine Hill Crossing.
|All color photos above were reproduced through the
kindness of the late Bruce Kantner of Cressona.
|LAST UPDATED: FEBRUARY 18
|This image captures the construction of the Lehigh Valley Railroad
trestle at Connors Crossing in 1890. Zoom in and note the men
working on the iron pier in the foreground. In May of 1890 the
Pottsville Republican offered the following:
|Preparations are almost completed for the putting up of the Lehigh's
big new iron bridge which will cover the turnpike, the Pennsylvania,
the canal, the flat, and the Reading at Schuylkill Haven. The iron
work is being received and will be unloaded from the Pennsylvania
tracks by means of large derricks, three of which are already in
position. The turnpike is being widened just west of the arch at
Warner's old lock, to make room for a bridge pier. All the work is
being pushed to complete the bridge as rapidly as possible.
Several days the later the paper reported: Twenty one car loads of
iron for the Lehigh's new bridge have already been received at
Schuylkill Haven and this is just a "sample" invoice.
|Pottsville Republican December 3,1891
COAL STORAGE CHUTES
The Philadelphia and Reading Coal and Iron Company have erected and are using coal storage chutes below Schuylkill Haven. Considerable of the unloading of
coal is done at night and to make it more convenient and to afford plenty of light and facility for the performance of the work, the company proposes erecting an
entire new electric light plant for that purpose. The machinery and fixtures are now under construction and will in the near future be in full operation. The storage
house is located about one mile below the Schuylkill Haven borough line and are about four to five hundred yards in length. The day and night employees have to
walk this mile, very frequently in the dark, and it has been suggested that the whole distance from Schuylkill Haven to the storage chutes should be lighted which
would no doubt be an immense benefit to the crews on trains who have to wait along the line. In conversation with an officer of the company he stated that for the
present only a sufficient number of lamps would be erected to throw sufficient light around the coal chutes.
|Pottsville Republican February 9, 1894
At about 7:58 o'clock last evening the jig house at the Philadelphia and Reading Company Coal Storage Yard at Schuylkill Haven was completely destroyed by fire
and the coal stored near by, 6000 tons in one pile, was only saved by the hard work of the men employed by the company and neighbors. The jig house is a
complete wreck and all the breaker machinery, including the engines and the 50 arc light electric machine, was ruined. The loss will reach $30,000.
By 8:05 the flames had burst through the siding and the interior was a mass of flames. Crowds of people began to gather from Schuylkill Haven and Landing ville
shortly after and above the roar of the flames could be heard the shouts of men who were endeavoring to confine the fire and prevent it's spread to the trestle
and immense piles of coal that lay along the mountainside within a few yards of the building.
At 8:10, amid a shower of sparks that resembled some gigantic pyrotechnic display and rose straight up in a column high above the surrounding hills, the roof fell
with a crash distinctly heard a mile away.
As soon as the fire was discovered H. B. Zulick, the superintendent of the yards sent word to Pottsville, and from that time until they left on a special, General
Superintendent Luther was kept posted on the progress of the flames. His first thought was for the coal stored in the yard and he sent word that every effort
should be made to prevent it from catching. The yards have a capacity of 200,000 tons, but they have been shipping from that point recently and there are only
about 100,000 tons in stock. Of this all but a pile of 6000 tons was at a safe distance from the fire. This small pile was less then twenty five yards from the jig house
and if the shipping wharf had burned this coal would have been a total loss.
Supt. Zulick and his men, with the assistance of the people living in the vicinity, worked hard. They could not save the jig house so they turned their attention to
the office, the boiler house, the wharf and the coal pile. They had large pumps there that supplied better streams then fire engines, but the hose gave out and this
left them helpless with the fire eating its way toward the coal. Mr. Luther was notified of this and he immediately sent word for the Humane steamer. A special train
was prepared and Chief Engineer John Bushar ordered out the Good Intent instead of the Humane. This engine was promptly placed on board of a flat car
together with a lot of hose. About twenty five members of the company went down, the train had a passenger coach and General Superintendent Luther was
accompanied by Master Mechanic Mulhoff, Repair Shop Foremen Hoopes, Boss Machinist Frank Leib, Electrician John Sterner, Inspector Edward Cake and
The train left shortly after 10 o'clock and on it's arrival in Landingville, the closest station, it was found that the people had succeeded in getting the fire under
control and there was no more danger. The special returned home at 12:30 o'clock.
The jig house is located nearer Landingville then Schuylkill Haven. It is on the west side of the railroad against the hill. Here the coal is screened and washed
before it is sent to market. The coal is stored here to relieve the shipping points and the markets. The works were very complete and at night the building and
yards were well lighted by a splendid Thompson-Houston plant. This plant like all the rest of the machinery is destroyed.
The origin of the fire is a mystery but it is possible that a defective electric light wire caused it. The yard employs thirty men. It is more then likely that the jig house
will be rebuilt as soon as possible as this is an important shipping point.
There was great excitement in the central portion of Pottsville when the word of the fire reached town and the steamer was ordered out and hundreds of men
hurried to Union Street to see the apparatus off and see the special pull out of the yards. Everybody was interested and wanted to help the company save its
|A TROLLEY RIDE THROUGH SCHUYLKILL HAVEN
|The trolley enters town on Willow Street passing homes lining
the way. Note the passing siding on the left.
|This series of eleven images below shows the line of
travel through Schuylkill Haven.
|The trolley turns south onto Dock Street
|The trolley continues on Dock Street past the ice cream parlor.
|Continuing on Dock Street, it passes the Christ Lutheran Church.
|The tracks turn west from Dock Street onto Main Street
through the business district.
|The tracks now turn left from Main Street onto St. John
Street moving south.
|The tracks as seen coming from Main Street as they approach
|The trolley begins the slight grade up St. John Street from the
Union Street intersection.
|The trolley continues past the Methodist church on St. John
Street as it nears the crest of the grade.
|The tracks now descend toward the intersection of Williams
|The trolley now travels around the bend onto Liberty Street after
which it will exit Schuylkill Haven and proceed to Adamsdale.
|The trolley rounds the turn at the intersection at Adamsdale.
|THE DEMISE OF THE PENNSY STATION
These three pictures taken in April 1968 capture the end of the Pennsy Railroad station on
Pennsylvania Avenue. The station was located on the high ground where the Senior Citizen
building now stands.
|These images show the
Pennsy station in it's
|The images above are pictures of
the Lehigh Valley Railroad trestle
which existed at Connor's Crossing
on the edge of town. Portions of
the stonework still exist.
|This pictures captures the employees at
the Reading Car Shops in Schuylkill Haven
circa 1900. My great grandfather, Dorie
Nagle, is one of these hard working men.
Perhaps one of your ancestors is here too.
|This set of five pictures
depicts the last days of the
Pennsylvania Railroad arch
that crossed Dock Street at
the intersection of Haven
|This set of twelve pictures was taken in June 1964. They show the remains of the once massive coal storage yards located just
southeast of Schuylkill Haven.
|Two aerial shots of unknown
date show the Reading
Railroad yards at the northern
edge of Schuylkill Haven
towards Cressona with the
Alcoa plant on the right.
|The four images below
show the removal of the
bridge that spanned
Route 61 (Centre
Avenue) at the northern
end of town.
|Pottsville Republican of March 22, 1906
HE MET DEATH IN THE ENGINE CAB
Two engines sideswiping each other at the Mine Hill crossing at Cressona last night resulted in the death of William Stauffer, engineer on the storage yard engine
No. 718 which was running on the main line. Uninjured and the engineer and fireman of the engine on the Mine Hill road also escaped without injury. When taken
from the cab of his engine, Stauffer was unconscious and was removed to his home on Chestnut Street in Cressona, where he died about two o'clock this
morning. The main line and the Mine Hill tracks meet at the crossing where the accident occurred and about 8:30 last night the two engines came along at the
usual rate of speed and were unable to stop when the danger was noticed. The cab on the engineer's side of the main line engine was crushed in like an egg
shell and valves broken permitting the steam to pour in volumes into the cab. Stauffer was caught in the wreckage and badly injured, his leg being crushed and
he being rendered unconscious. With difficulty he was taken from the bath of scalding steam. The scalding he received was the cause of his death. Had he lived
it would have been necessary to amputate the leg.
Deceased was 48 years of age and is survived by a wife and two sons, William and Henry. He was a member of the Masons, the Odd Fellows and the Jr. O.U.A.M.
and one of the best engineers in the employ of the Reading Company. Mr. Stauffer was very highly respected and esteemed by Cressona people.
|Pottsville Republican of June 18, 1923
PENNSY BRIDGE BURNED DOWN
Fire believed to have been started by engine sparks completely destroyed the bridge over the deep cut a quarter of a mile east of Schuylkill Haven on Sunday at
noon, tying up automobile traffic on the short cut to the State road. The bridge which was almost forty years old and spanned the Pennsylvania Railroad collapsed
after the fire and for several hours blocked traffic on the Pennsy. The Schuylkill Haven fire department responded to a call for aid but the fire had reached such
proportions before it was discovered that the department could do little or nothing to prevent its destruction.
|New articles just added:
Concerns raised by the Miners Journal in 1843that a monopoly between
the railroad and coal companies might be created, a strike by the men at
the shops in 1913 and concern over its closure in 1926.
Also added is a great, detailed description of the new Reading freight
station in 1914.
|Pottsville Republican of June 22, 1888
Fatal Collision on the Pennsy
A terrible and fatal collision occurred on the P. S. V. Railroad directly in front of the Schuylkill Haven freight depot this morning at three o'clock. It appears that
freight train number 674 bound for Philadelphia, Lew Seiders engineer, had orders to take the siding there and allow an empty coal train for Pottsville to pass. It
was necessary to unload two consignments of freight at the depot and this was done. The engineer was at work under the engine and one of the brakemen had
run for the switch when the coal train was heard coming around the sharp curve at Spring Garden. It is presumed that a brakeman had been sent to guard the
track, but this will be brought out positively at the coroner's inquest. The fireman called for the engineer to get from under as he did not think the approaching
train could be stopped. He did so and after blowing down brakes to warn the trainmen running to destruction the men took refuge behind the freight depot.
Some of the people living nearby assert that the train was going thirty miles an hour when it rounded the bend, at any rate the engineer, fireman and the
passenger stuck to it, not having time to alight, or from a sense of duty. The crash was terrible, two locomotives locked in deadly embrace and then as if tired of
the battle rebounded at least fifty feet , the empty coal cars coming over the top of the coal engine and blocking up the space between the two iron monsters.
The awful crash over the groans of the wounded resounded in the early morning air, and the work of rescuing them from the ruins was begun.
John D. Smith, the engineer, twenty five years, was killed. It was 6:30 o'clock this morning before his remains were taken from beneath the fourteen trucks piled
on them, his left leg was broken, his right eye gashed, his feet scalded, but death was probably caused by a heavy squeeze of the breast; he leaves a widow and
children who reside on South Street in Philadelphia. Deceased was engineer of the "Dinkey" here for four months when the Pennsy first opened. He boarded at
Mrs. Van Horn's South Coal Street, and was universally liked. He belonged to Pottsville Council, Number 17, Order of Chosen Friends, in which his life was insured
for $2000, and also to the Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen, who will give $1500 to his heirs. Deceased was tall, of fine physique, dark complexion and dark
mustache. Mr. Smith was a favorite with everyone who knew him and his death causes much sorrow.
On the engine was Frank Hirshey, a young man about 28 years old, an ornamental painter, whose home was in Philadelphia. He was a friend of Smith's and rode up
on the engine in order to see the county. Being sickly, his intention was to spend six weeks in Pottsville for the benefit of his health. Arrangements had been
made for his reception at Mrs. Van Horn's. He lived but a short time. His lower limbs were broken in several places.
Charles H. McHenry, or Ettinger, the fireman, was badly scalded from the feet up to his armpits. He was taken to the County Almshouse, as better facilities for
treatment were afforded there. Dr. James Carpenter was down this morning and has hopes for his recovery. He was a hostler at the Mount Carbon station and
boarded at Mrs. Frank Gibbons at the Mansion House. This was his first trip. He is a young man, probably twenty three years of age and has lots of friends who
hope for his entire recovery. William Martin and George Kirk, both of town were brakemen on the ill fated train and sustained severe bruises. Deputy Coroner Dr.
Palm empaneled a jury and is investigating the accident. Undertaker Robert Waldron went to Schuylkill Haven this morning early and brought both bodies to his
Railroad Street establishment, from whence they were shipped this afternoon to Philadelphia.
The wreck was not cleared away until noon, and not a main line coal, freight or passenger train arrived or left Pottsville since last night. Both engines were
complete wrecks and at least fifteen coal and freight cars were piled about promiscuously. The coroner's jury will endeavor to put the blame where it belongs. It
is best therefore to withhold judgement until they speak.
A later report regarding McHenry as beyond doubt. His home is in Reading and he will be ready to move there tomorrow. When found he was pinned to the
ground by a car truck which rested upon his breast. It is stated that he was not scalded as severely as first reported. The testimony of both crews was taken by
jury. William Bossler was conductor of the freight train. It appears from the evidence that the freight train was ordered to enter the siding then and allow the
other train to pass. The coal train had orders to "meet and pass" the local there.
William Martin, Joseph Martin hostler for C. M. Atkins who was front brakeman on the train gave very intelligent evidence before the jury. He was sitting on the
left or foreman's side of the engine. Engineer Smith was standing and Hirshey, the passenger, was sitting to the rear of Smith on the same side. The fireman was
standing on the tender with a hook in his hand puddling the fire. As they rounded the curve Martin saw the headlight of the other engine and looking over to
Smith saw him make an effort to reverse which apparently failed as the reverse lever again flew ahead and the locomotive made a fresh spurt just as it struck the
freight engine. Martin saw no more of the engineer after that. He felt the cab go to pieces about him and he went over the left side of the engine with it. One of
the fragments struck him on the bridge of the nose breaking a small bone. He lit on his feet and ran just in time to escape the piling cars which landed exactly
where he did. He helped to recover the bodies and afterwards reported his injury to Dr. Dechert who attended to it. He was about town today receiving the
congratulations of friends on his narrow escape.
The testimony of the freight crew show that it was the fireman who ran ahead to turn the switch and also that no one had been sent ahead to flag approaching
trains. The men except the rear brakeman were hard at work unloading material. The tracks were cleared at one o'clock.
|This photo taken on November 9, 1912 shows work being
done on the trolley tracks in Schuylkill Haven on Willow
|When one thinks of railroads in Schuylkill Haven, the Reading Railroad is most prominent. Officially called the Philadelphia and Reading
Railroad, it had a passenger station, freight station, yards and shops located in town. Below are some images of its presence.
|The two pictures above at left show the car shops located in the northern area of town. The center two images are of the rail yards located along the edge of
the Island area. At right are two views of the passenger station on Main Street.
|At left is the original passenger station on Main Street. Two bridges of the Reading Railroad in town were the stone arch bridge near Main Street and the Red
Bridge behind the Liberty Street area.
|Pottsville Republican of February 24, 1923
PINE GROVE BUS HIT BY ENGINE AT SCHUYLKILL HAVEN, ONE KILLED, TWO HURT
Clyde Mars, aged 17, of Pine Grove, was killed and Roy Shollenberger, Pine Grove mail carrier, and Curtis Moyer, driver of the Pine Grove bus, were injured and
burned shortly after ten o'clock Friday night when a fast freight train struck the Pine Grove bus at the intersection of the railroad and Union Street, Schuylkill
Haven. The crossing watchman at this crossing of the P and R is off duty after seven o'clock and there is a slight hill leading to the railroad. It is necessary for
autoists to get up speed to make the grade and there is no view of the railroad until the tracks have practically been reached. Schuylkill Haven residents have
been trying to have this crossing better protected for several years as a number of accidents have happened at this point.
Moyer, the driver of the bus, says that he did not see the freight approaching, as his view of the racks was obscured until he was right in the middle of them. He
says that he knew nothing until the train hit him and then the gas tank exploded. He received a bad cut over the left eye and body bruises and was taken to the
office of Dr. Lenker where his injuries were dressed and then removed to his home in Pine Grove. He is a son of Edward Moyer, of Pine Grove, who has been
making his home with Mrs. Daniel Phillips, of Schuylkill Haven, a sister, for several months.
The fact that Moyer turned the bus to one side saved him from death as the engine pushed it aside instead of it being thrown underneath, in which case it would
have been ground to pieces before the engineer was able to stop. The engine struck the bus almost squarely in the center and the car, a Dodge equipped to carry
fourteen passengers, was hurled against the side of a loaded freight car near the crossing. Moyer and Shollenberger were thrown clear of the wreckage by the
impact but they were caught by the flames which burst from the machine as the gasoline tank blew up.
The blaze spread to the freight car which was loaded with autos and it was necessary to call out the fire department to prevent the flames from spreading to the
depot and starting a conflagration. The freight train consignment of autos for Harrison Berger, Schuylkill Haven, and the cars were badly damaged by the fire in
the freight car. The exact amount of damage to the freight is not yet known.
James Knarr, a railroader of Schuylkill Haven, who was standing on the corner waiting to catch a train, said the accident happened so quickly that it was all over
before he knew what had occurred. Charles Guertler, the engineer, said that the first he knew of the auto was when he saw a light flash. He immediately applied
the brakes, but felt the engine strike the bus a minute later. He got off his train and went to see what had happened and found Moyer, the driver, on the engine.
He and his crew helped him down, but were unable to get any information from him as to whether there were others on the bus.
They went to search and could find only Shollenberger, who was removed to the home of George Schaeffer for treatment. Shollenberger was burned about the
face and neck and also sustained injury to his leg. He was taken to the Pottsville Hospital for treatment while Moyer who was not so badly injured was removed to
his home in Pine Grove. The presence of a third man on the bus was learned after they had been taken away and a search was started for him. As soon as the fire
department had extinguished the flames an examination of the car was started and Mars' body was found underneath. He was found under the right mudguard of
the blazing bus. He had evidently been eating an apple when the accident occurred as the apple was tightly clutched in one hand. One leg and an arm were
practically burned off and he was horribly burned about the body. He was taken first into the P and R depot and then removed to Bittle's undertaking
Dr. Santee gave out the crew of the train as Charles Guertler, engineman, Francis Heffner, fireman, George Kanes, conductor, John Mease, brakeman and Frank
Benseman, flagman. James Cantwell of Pottsville, proprietor of the bus line put on another bus on Saturday morning and is maintaining his schedule. The bus
which was struck was a wreck.
Word was received from Pine Grove shortly after midnight that Mars, a seventeen year old orphan who was living with W. H. Daubert, his guardian appointed at
the death of his parents, went along with Moyer for a ride. He had asked Mr. Daubert if he could go along with Moyer on the bus but Mr. Daubert refused to let
him go, but when he went out, he met Shollenberger who was of his own age and the two went off with the driver, thinking they would be back shortly. He is
survived by two sisters, Mrs. Charles Sweigert, of Pine Grove, and Mrs. Argall Sweigert of Cressona.
|Pottsville Republican of January 7, 1915
SCHUYLKILL HAVEN MAN CUT IN TWAIN
Failure to put a blue signal on the track in front or behind the car on which he was working as required by law, Francis Emerick of Schuylkill Haven, aged forty five
years, was cut in twain at the Pennsylvania railroad yards in Mount Carbon on Sunday morning shortly before nine o'clock. He died in five minutes. Emerick was
behind the car and the shifting engine threw two cars against the car under which Emerick was working and he was pinned beneath the front wheels which went
over him. Working with him was Charles Dress, also of Schuylkill Haven, and Dress went away for a simplex tube and while he was gone the accident occurred.
The car under which Emerick met his death was shopped for having a defective lock pin. Emerick, a car inspector and general handy man, considered one of the
most valuable men at the yard, noticed the marks of defects and started to work in repairing the car. Emerick is a widower and has two married sons, one living in
Schuylkill Haven and the other in Tamaqua. Yardmaster C. R. Hughes conducted an investigation and the coroner will hold an inquest within a few days.
|Pottsville Republican of May 30, 1899
SCHUYLKILL HAVEN SHOPS FINISHED
The Schuylkill Haven Philadelphia and Reading car shops were finished on Monday and turned over to the company. The tracks are now being ballasted by
Supervisor J. E. Turk. The shops are located on the old Schuylkill Navigation landing, which allows plenty of room for repairs and new work. Three thousand cars
are to be equipped with air as soon as the shops are underway, which in itself is considerable of a job. It is expected that work will commence here in a couple of
weeks. David Runkle will be the foreman. He holds the same position now at the old shops.
|Pottsville Republican of July 3, 1899
A FLAG RAISING - Old Glory Hoisted Over the New P & R Shops at Schuylkill Haven
The citizens of Schuylkill Haven and Cressona and their vicinities have additional cause to celebrate at the anniversary of our nation. The new P & R shops
recently erected were formally dedicated this afternoon at three o'clock. One of the exercises upon that occasion was the unfurling of Old Glory to the breeze
above the buildings. Speeches were made by C. E. Berger, Dr. Daniel Dechert, Dr. Charles Lenker, A. A. Hesser, superintendent of the Mine Hill Division of the
Reading and Isaac Paxson, another official of that company. The Schuylkill Haven band was present to render music appropriate to the occasion. The many
patriotic sentiments expressed by the speakers and the patriotic strains of the band were vociferously applauded. But when the folds of the emblem of the free
were unfurled and its beautiful colors, which signify so much, were displayed, the cheers of the assembled throng filled the air. The exercises were given under
the auspices of the employees of the Reading headed by David Runkle and C. V. B. Deibert, foremen. Prominent officials of the company were present to witness
the ceremonies. Refreshments were subsequently served.
This shop is a structure covering an area 400 by 30 feet. It is of frame and is two stories high. Work was begun on the excavations early last spring and the work
of erection was rapidly pushed to a completion. Here repairs will be made to cars and engines in the future. The shops will give employment to hundreds of men
in their several departments. It is located at a point near the Mine Hill crossing and runs parallel with the main line. Everything is now completed and its early
operation is expected.
|Pottsville Republican of May 1, 1899
HORRIBLY MANGLED - Unknown Man Cut to Pieces by a Pennsy Near Seven Stars
A horrible accident occurred on the Pennsylvania Railroad early this morning by which an unknown man was killed instantly and his body mangled in a most
horrible manner, by being struck by a freight train that was booming along at a lively rate. The body was strewn along the track and presented a sickening sight.
The pieces of body were gathered and taken to the county almshouse at Schuylkill Haven. In the man's vest pocket was found a note with the name "Stykes of
Shamokin" written on it. Deputy Coroner C. A. Veith has taken charge of the remains and will hold an inquest tomorrow afternoon.
The unfortunate man was run over by the local freight that leaves Mount Carbon yards at 2:50 but she was over a half hour late. A portion of the remains were
carried on the track from the Seven Stars to the Lehigh Bridge. A letter was found in the pocket addressed "Dear Father", and signed, Nerva Sietz, 1014
Washington Street, Shamokin. The deceased had stiff gray hair, small eyes and small features. Deputy Coroner L. W. Brown, of Cressona, empanelled a jury,
reviewed the body and ordered the remains sent to the almshouse, where the inquest was finished this afternoon. Yardmaster Deissinger sent a message to
Shamokin asking for information.
|Pottsville Republican of July 11, 1895
ONE MAN KILLED - And Two Probably Fatally Injured at Schuylkill Haven
Daniel Dailey, aged sixty years, was instantly killed, Frank Schwartz, aged sixty, had two legs crushed and George Berger, aged forty five years, had one leg
mangled by an accident at the P & R railroad shops, Schuylkill Haven this afternoon at three o'clock. They were putting in a draw dead when a draft of cars, being
pushed on another track, jumped the track, striking the car upon which the men were working, with the above result.
|Pottsville Republican of December 1, 1919
KILLED AT LANDINGVILLE STORAGE YARDS
Adam Burkert, a highly esteemed and well known resident of Schuylkill Haven, was instantly killed this morning at the Landingville storage yards of the P and R
Company. How the accident occurred is not definitely known, but it is thought that Mr. Burkert attempted to board a draft of moving cars, fell under the wheels
and was crushed to death. He was foreman at the yards and his lifeless body was found by other workmen.
Mr. Burkert was respected by all who knew him. He was a consistent member of Grace U. E. Church, having been treasurer of both the church and Sunday
school. He lived on Saint John Street and was sixty five years of age. He had three sons and one grandson, in the recent war, one son Isaac, having been killed
in France. His wife died a number of years ago. He is survived by the following children: Mrs. Frank Batdorf, Reading, Mrs. George Downs, Philadelphia, Mrs.
Harry Becker, Mrs. Ralph Jacoby, Charles, Harry, Frederick, Warren and Miss Eva, all of Schuylkill Haven. He had been in the employ of the P & R Company for
|Pottsville Republican of May 7, 1919
BOY KILLED IN COSTLY WRECK AT SCHUYLKILL HAVEN
A boy, about fourteen years of age, believed to be from Virginia, and who had come to Saint Clair for the purpose of seeing the coal regions, was killed when a
disastrous wreck occurred Wednesday evening about five o'clock below the Williams Street crossing in Schuylkill Haven. Engine 1605, with a Port Richmond crew
on it, coming from Saint Clair with a loaded train of sixty five cars for Bridgeport, while rounding the curve below the crossing, burst a wheel on one car, derailing
the car and eleven or so other cars behind it, scattering them all over the railroad. The ties on the north and southbound tracks were torn up for a considerable
distance. A number of the loaded cars were thrown bodily on the opposite track and dumped the contents of the cars on the railroad.
The boy who was riding on the train between the cars was caught and badly mangled. The body had the appearance of being crushed and he must have been
killed instantly when the cars left the rails. There was nothing found upon the body that would lead to his identity, nothing but a small Sunday school paper, with
large letters, "Jesus Saves". Coroner G. H. Moore of town was summoned to view the remains of the boy and O. A. Bittle, undertaker, removed it to his
establishment on Main Street. The boy seemed to be a stranger in this part of the country and it is said that some of the railroad men asked him where he was
going when he was discovered riding on the train. He gave the name of his home somewhere in Maryland.
The Reading and Mahanoy Railroad wreck crews were called to the scene of the accident, but the work of clearing the tracks was very slow and difficult on
account of the position some of the cars were strewn into. The big steam derricks broke several heavy chains trying to throw the cars from one track to the other
making it very dangerous to be in close proximity of the wreck.
The Pottsville express trains came up the line as far as the wreck and transferred their passengers to a train waiting for them at Williams street crossing. The 9:34
passenger train also came up the line as far as the wreck and transferred their passengers, having Company H on board. While the transfer of Company H was
being made, and the Pottsville boys were marching up the street, they were instantly recognized by the large crowd of people looking at the wreck and a general
rush was made for the boys to shake hands with them and give them a royal welcome, but the time was limited. They were entrained and on their way to Pottsville
in a few minutes after leaving the local station. Both tracks being blocked by the wreck, the midnight trains, called "The Buffaloes" had to be detoured and got
around by way of Little Schuylkill and Tamaqua to get to Pottsville.
|Pottsville Republican of February 14, 1916
PETITION FOR OLD EMPLOYEES
Preparations are being made in Schuylkill Haven to have a petition issued in that town to ask Superintendent Keffer, of the Reading Company, to provide work for
the old employees at the car shops and also to have some work for those at work at the present time there who are in poor circumstances. It is said that there are
a number of men now employed at the car shops who have large families depending on them, and even though they were to secure work at the Saint Clair shops,
where the largest part of the work on repairing cars is to be done hereafter, their salaries would be comparatively small after the car fare and other expenses
were deducted. It is expected that the petition will be issued some time during the early part of the week, and every merchant and resident of that town for any
length of time will be asked to sign the petition.
The merchants and general public in Schuylkill Haven and Cressona understand the conditions as explained to Superintendent Keffer, that there is not the proper
equipment at the Schuylkill Haven car shops for the repairing of steel cars and as the greatest number of the cars are now steel, it is admitted that the only thing
left for the company to do is to move a part of the work to the Saint Clair shops. But it is asked that those employed for so long a time at the Schuylkill Haven
shops and known as veteran employees be given some work there, and that the company establish as large a plant there as they can possibly do under the
conditions. A great deal of sympathy is expressed for the residents of Schuylkill Haven who were employed at the shops. It is a hard blow for many of them who
know no other trade. Many, some years ago, purchased their own homes in that town and have been for years and are at the present time paying off amounts
each month in an effort to a clear title in a few years. The car shops, when they are on full working time, are a great boon to the town and the cutting off of even
part of the shops will be a severe jolt to Schuylkill Haven.
|Pottsville Republican of February 19, 1914
WATCHMAN SMOTHERED BY GAS IN SCHUYLKILL HAVEN BOX
Chief Burgess Terrence Goulden, of Mount Carbon, employed as an extra crossing watchman by the P and R Railroad Company, was found dead in the watch box
at the Main Street crossing in Schuylkill Haven at 5:50 o'clock Thursday morning by Watchman Petery of Connors Crossing, who happened to be passing at the
time on his way home and was attracted by the smell of gas apparently coming from the watch box. Opening the door, he saw watchman Goulden in a lifeless
condition, not responding to the efforts made to arouse him. The day watchman, also an extra man, arriving at this time, Watchman Petery turned the body over to
him and going to the office of ex-Burgess Hartman, nearby gave the alarm Coroner Moore, who lives in Schuylkill Haven, was notified and quickly responded at
the same time as Dr. Lessig. The small structure is about eight feet square and the same height.
Investigation led to a statement that gas entered the watch box from beneath the floor and that it came from a break in the gas main which was discovered only
Wednesday, and the belief of some at Schuylkill Haven, Thursday morning was that the gas worked its way underground to the watch box with the fatal result to
the watchman, while a few adhere to the stove coal gas theory. Not only that but it is said the gas was responsible for the illness of the two regular crossing
watchmen, both of whom are off duty. The coroner fixed upon Friday evening as a time for an inquest, after selecting a jury and he determined to hold an autopsy
for the purpose of ascertaining whether death was due to natural causes.
Terrence Goulden was about thirty five years of age, and had been a railroader for some years before he was caught in a storm and cripples by the freezing of his
feet. He was unmarried and an agreeable, popular man, who had many friends. He made his home with his sisters, Miss Annie and Miss Catherine Goulden, of 948
South Centre Street, Mount Carbon, in the Goulden homestead, where their parents, the late John and Annie Goulden lived for many years. The father was a
railroad engineer for years. The body was brought to Pottsville on the passenger train and was taken in charge at the Reading station by undertaker Heiken who
removed it to the home of the Misses Goulden, from where the funeral will take place with requiem high mass in saint Patrick's church, Terrence having been a
member of that congregation and the Holy Name Society.
Those who adhere to the theory that death was caused by illuminating gas say that when the old hotel building which stood at the southwest corner of the
crossing was torn down to make way for the new coal yard, one of the gas pipes was plugged after being cut and that this plug probably became loosened through
the hammering of constantly passing trains and that the gas in escaping found an entrance into the watch box, the flow probably increasing as the plug became
more and more loosened.
Wednesday evening was the first shift that Goulden worked. The other two watchmen, one by day and the other by night, were taken off on Wednesday and
Goulden was sent to take the place of the night man. It took the call boy several hours to locate Goulden and it was only a short time before regular working time
that he was located. In the last election in the borough of Mount Carbon, Goulden was elected Chief Burgess. A brother John met death through a railroad
accident on the P and R several years ago.
Coroner Moore went to the Heiken morgue, to which place the body had been taken instead of to his late home and that of his sisters in Mount Carbon. The
coroner and Dr. J. A. Lessig of Schuylkill Haven, examined the body and according to outward indications, Goulden had been a robust healthy man aside from the
fact that he had lost both feet some years ago in the manner described. Dr. Lessig performed an autopsy on the body and will submit his report at the inquest to
be held at the coroners Schuylkill Haven office on Friday evening.
At the inquest, the evidence of Petery, the man who found the body, that of G. W. Kramer, the extra crossing watchman, who was one of the first to see the body,
he having arrived at the crossing shortly before six o'clock to relieve Goulden, the night watchman, and the testimony of a man named Bittle, Raymond McKeon,
Frank Heim, William Brennan, Ralph Mayberry and Edward Kear, all of whom were among the first to arrive on the scene, will be heard along with that of Dr. Lessig
and the stories of other witnesses who may clear up the mystery of the alleged gas leak.
Dr. Moore, on opening the watch box door to enter at 6:30 o'clock, detected the odor of what he believed to be illuminating gas, and others noticed the same
scent. The body of Goulden was seated on a chair and his hands were gloved as if he was ready to leave the box on the approach of a train or locomotive. There
was vomit on the floor and on one shoulder of his coat indicating that he suffered from nausea. The body of the victim was taken home after the autopsy. A sister
and another relative had gone to Schuylkill Haven on receiving the sad news of his death and they accompanied the body on the way to Pottsville and until it was
turned over to the undertaker.
|Pottsville Republican of October 29, 1921
GIRL, RUN OVER BY TRAIN, GETS UP RUNS AWAY
A little girl from Berne Street, Schuylkill Haven, daughter of W. Webber, crossed the P and R tracks after a coal train had passed stepping directly in front of the
Mine Hill passenger train. She was knocked down and the engine and two cars passed over her. A number of men, who were loitering at the P and R depot, and
who had turned their eyes away from the sight, then hurried to pick her up and to their amazement the child jumped up and ran away unhurt. At the time her name
could not even be gotten as she sped across the bridge toward her home. Railroad men say her escape was miraculous.
|Pottsville Republican of September 12, 1925
MAN FELL FROM BRIDGE - At Schuylkill Haven - Had Tried to Enter Almshouse
A man giving his name as J. Hoke from Minersville, sustained a broken hip and broken cheek bone and a number of minor injuries when he jumped or fell from the
high Lehigh Railway Embankment at the Garfield Avenue arch at Schuylkill Haven. He rolled down the embankment and off the arch, dropping twenty five feet to
the street. He had been to the Almshouse to gain admission, having no home, but did not have the necessary commitment papers and so was refused admission.
He then walked in on the railroad to Schuylkill Haven. He seemed greatly discouraged and wished to die.
|Pottsville Republican of April 23, 1915
TROLLEY AND AUTO COLLIDE
On Thursday evening, the nine o'clock car leaving Schuylkill Haven, in charge of Motorman Thomas McGovern struck an auto and was damaged. The handles
were torn off of the car so that another car was secured when Pottsville was reached. The auto which was also badly damaged but not enough to stop or injure
the engine, was kept straight on its path. The conductor could not get a glimpse of the number as the driver started out again as his auto slid away from the car
after striking it. The accident delayed this car almost half an hour.
|Pottsville Republican of April 15, 1938
FIND THREE TOTS ON ENGINE PILOT
Just after the P and R shuttle passenger train which plies between Pottsville and Port Clinton, pulled out of Schuylkill Haven early last evening, it was discovered
that three children ranging in age from two to four years of age were on the pilot of the engine. It was the train Number 96 due here at 7:09. The children
clambered to their dangerous perch just before the train left the Union Street crossing. The engineer saw them in time and brought the train to a standstill. The
youngsters scampered away. Their identity was not learned. The train was in charge of Conductor George M. Stephenson and Engineer George Steck of this city.
|The Call of April 15, 1927
HAVEN YOUTH BADLY HURT
When his head was caught between the flywheel and the brake on the elevator at the Landingville Storage Yard, on Thursday afternoon, Joseph Kehoe, a popular
young man of Schuylkill Haven, was severely injured, an X-ray showing that he had a fracture at the base of the skull. Kehoe is employed inside the building at the
yards and was operating the elevator. The rope broke and although the machinery automatically stopped, the weight of the coal was sufficient to cause it to run
back and Kehoe was caught. His condition is serious but it is expected that he will recover, his condition on Friday being good. He makes his home with an aunt
and uncle, Mr. and Mrs. Heidenway, of Dock Street, Schuylkill Haven. About a year ago, his father Joseph Kehoe Sr., had his foot crushed while performing his
duties as a brakeman on the shop crew and had to have his toes amputated. He is just at present preparing to return to work, his injury having now healed
|This page is structured by grouping all pictures and articles by railroad. The Reading Railroad is first including the storage yards
south of town. The Pennsylvania Railroad and Lehigh Valley Railroads then follow. Trolley pictures and news is then presented as it
related to Schuylkill Haven.
|The Philadelphia and Reading Railroad operated a large coal storage yard just south of Schuylkill Haven near Landingville. Today
the remnants of the yard can be seen if one looks closely. The history of that operation follows in pictures and articles.
|READING RAILROAD STORAGE YARDS
|Tragedy was no stranger on the Pennsy...
|MORE TROLLEY IMAGES IN TOWN
|Pottsville Union Traction Co’s double truck open car nick named “The Highball” by the local patrons,
photographed just past the dam breast at Adamsdale Park where the track crossed the road on the way
to Orwigsburg. The car body was acquired second-hand from an Indiana company and mounted on
trucks removed from a closed car during the summer season. It was quite unique because it did not
have the usual narrow running boards that could be folded up when running. This car had a ridged
upper running board with railing and a center lower step. On both sides. Normally the right side in the
direction of operation is folded down (for loading) and the left hand side folded up to prevent boarding.
On this car, both sides are rigid and this creates a “wide” car. It effectively limited the car to a rural
run with minimal vehicular street traffic. It was used mostly between Sch. Haven and Orwigsburg
during the summer season when Adamsdale Park was open.
|At left, work crews are shown clearing snow from the
trolley tracks at the corner of Main and Dock Streets.
At right, a snow sweeper and workers are shown in
front of Saint James Episcopal Church on Dock Street
at Paxson Avenue. Both pictures are circa 1920 and
were taken by John A. Moser, the East Penn's claim
agent in Schuylkill Haven.
|A streetcar navigates through the snow on Dock Street as it
approaches the intersection with Coal Street. The steeple of
Christ Lutheran Church is visible on the left. This streetcar
was one of the East Penn’s newest cars, acquired in 1921.
This would be the big snowstorm of 1925. This photo is also
by John A. Mower.
|The four photos above were kindly provided by Lewis Hoy, descendant of Schuylkill Haven's entrepreneur, P. T. Hoy.
|This early image at left
shows a crew unloading
coal from a railroad car at
the coal storage yard on
the Schuylkill Mountain .
|At right a view from a coal
storage pile showing the
yard office to the left and
scale house to the right
with Sculp’s Hill in the
|Pottsville Republican of June 22, 1921
SCHUYLKILL HAVEN BROTHERHOOD CASE AGAIN GOES ON TRIAL
The most important case of the week was called shortly before noon Wednesday, when the Brotherhood case of Schuylkill Haven, in which Jeremiah Casey and
Daniel Reilly are charged with conspiring to reverse the returns of the election of that lodge, was called. The case was started last term but met an early end
when objections were raised to statements made by the attorney for the Commonwealth.
The men on trial were tellers at the election and they are charged with reversing the returns, it being alleged that a 17-11 vote out of 28 was completely turned
around. Over a score of witnesses have been subpoenaed in the case to testify in the proceedings both during and after the election.
The first break in the vote as returned came when Howard C. Herman swore he voted for Wolfe, making the eleventh vote. The return of the vote by the tellers
showed ten for Wolfe. He stated he spelt the name "Wolf". The defense offered to show there was a slate and that the voting was done prior to the treasurership
and that his man was defeated. John Honicker, who made the first objection to the vote, swore he voted for Wolfe. Mr. Honicker testified he was in the room
when the voting was going on. He said the secretary announced the vote 10-18 in favor of Monaghan.
Charles Blacker stated he voted for Wolfe. "I vote it Wolfe", he answered in reply to a query. Blacker stated the ballots were still on the altar when he left. Mr.
Blacker also stated that he did not hear Reilly say anything. He stated he kept tally of votes as the record was kept. It was produced in court. It was objected to
being offered and the court sustained the objection. Mr. Blacker also testified regarding the same incident of Casey laying the one ballot aside as related by Mr.
Connors. Raymond Carl, the next witness, stated he voted for Wolfe.
Maurice Connors, president of the Brotherhood, who presided at the meeting in question, testified that he appointed Casey and Reilly tellers and that Casey took
the ballots out of the box and read a name off, Reilly later verifying the count. W. A. Wolfe was M. J. Monaghan's opponent for the office of treasurer and it was on
this office that the claim was made the shifting was done.
Another member in the room at the time, Earl Delker, testified that he kept a tally of the votes as they were called off in his note book, but that he did not have the
note book with him. He testified that he saw Casey lay one ballot aside because he could not read the name and that after the balance of the votes were counted,
he picked the ballot up and with little hesitation called it off for Monaghan. Both Connors and Delker testified that the ballots which were laid on the altar during
the count were later thrown in the waste basket.
At the opening of court this afternoon, Mr. Knittle, after announcing that the Commonwealth was unable to produce the ballots asked leave to offer secondary
evidence by offering the evidence of the members. The defense objected on the grounds that no attempt was made to follow the ballots further than the waste
basket. The court overruled the objection at this time without prejudice, announcing that it would suggest that the disposition of the waste basket be shown. The
defense argued that this should be shown first, but the court announced it would not lay down the rule.
Roy Jones, the witness on the stand, stated he did not remember who he voted for. Mr. Jones also denied hearing Reilly remarking, "Well count them if you want
to", when objection was made to the vote. Earl Delker was asked how he voted. Delker swore he voted for Wolfe. He wrote the name "Wolfe" on the ballot. He
also stated he voted for Mr. Kelly. He was on your slate, wasn't he, asked the defense. I had no slate replied Delker.
Hulet, outside guard, also voted Wolfe. Hulet was asked to write the name on a slip which he did. Louis Delker swore he voted "Wolfe. It was the sixth vote for
Wolfe sworn to. Delker stated there were two candidate for each office, president, secretary, treasure and three or four physicians. He testified he saw the
ballots on the altar the last he saw them.
Charles M. Chattin stated he voted for Wolfe. He testified he did not remember the tally on the president and secretary vote but that he kept one which he had at
home. He said he did not remember whether the vote for president was 20-8 or not. He said he thought that vice president was 19-9. He also stated he believed
the secretary vote was 17-11. Chattin also testified he did not promise to vote for Wolfe before the election. I did not know who the candidates were until I got to
the meeting, Mr. Chattin stated. Clarence J. Beaver, the next witness, testified he voted for Wolfe.
|Pottsville Republican of June 23, 1921
BROTHERHOOD CASE READY FOR THE JURY
The taking of testimony in the conspiracy case brought against the tellers of the Schuylkill Haven lodge of the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen was practically
completed when the court adjourned at noon and it was finished at 3:30 o'clock when it went to the jury. The efforts of the counsel for the defense to have the
indictment quashed were denied by the court at the opening of the morning session and the testimony of the defendants and number of the character witnesses
was then taken.
Charging that no evidence had been produced to show that Reilly and Casey had an agreement to defraud Wolfe of the election, the attorneys for the defense
applied for the quashing of the bill. Mr. Burke arguing for the quashing of the bill, claimed that no unlawful conspiracy had been shown or any prearrangement or
conference disclosed. The bill charging the offense, however, charged the men with conspiracy between themselves and other diverse persons unknown. The
court also inquired if Casey called off the names incorrectly what was Reilly's duty. We will concede, said Mr. Burke, that it was Reilly's duty to call attention to a
mistake but that in itself is no evidence of conspiracy. You claim, said the court, that the Commonwealth must prove prearrangement. Yes, replied Mr. Burke. I
will permit you to argue that point, said the court, but I do not feel that is the law. The court overruled the motion to quash.
The Commonwealth closed its taking of testimony on Thursday morning after hearing testimony from George W. Zeh, in charge of the K of M rooms here, to the
effect that the waste basket used by the organizations were emptied each Friday afternoon and that the probabilities were that the ballots used at the election
were thrown into the general garbage can.
Zeh's testimony followed that of eighteen witnesses who were called in support of the contention that Walter A. Wolfe had received eighteen votes at the election
instead of Monaghan, who was declared elected, precipitating the legal fight. Roy Jones, the first witness called, testified that he did not remember how he voted
but when the poll had been completed on Wednesday evening, seventeen men had sworn they had voted for Wolfe. They were examined in detail regarding the
vote. The list of witnesses who stated they voted for Wolfe were Harry C. Schrodding, William Huy, John L. Geiger, Michael Zelinsky, John W. Hoy, George E.
Sheriff, in addition to the eleven brought out in Wednesday's testimony as published by the "Republican". Dr. James C. Gray, of Cressona, was the first witness
called for the defense. He testified as to the good character of Mr. Casey.
William Berger, Justice John Springer, Walter Grieff, George Berger, David Bittle, Constable Frank Reiger were called on Mr. Casey's behalf. Mr Reiger denied
ever knowing of a brawl in which Casey was stabbed. Mr. Moyer, with whom Casey had worked a score of years ago, Albert Sterner and Elmer Butz completed
Casey's character witnesses. John Cantwell, of Port Carbon, was the first witness called on Reilly's behalf. Robert Jones, Edward Dewitt, Thomas Collins, George
Schumacher and M. P. McLaughlin were called for on Reilly's behalf.
Jeremiah Casey then took the stand. He stated he started to work on the railroad in 1901. He stated he got to the meeting at two o'clock in the afternoon. The
meeting was for the annual election of officers and Maurice Connors presided. When we came to the election of officers, myself and Daniel Reilly were selected
as tellers, the announcement occurring in open meeting. The first officer elected was president. The nominations were made all at one time. Casey denied there
was any arrangement for the appointment of Reilly and himself as tellers. I had not spoken to Reilly for a year declared Casey. I distributed the blank ballots and
then I collected them. I read them off and handed them to Reilly. We got the slips from the treasurer's desk. Some of the members had their own. The men wrote
the names of the men they voted for on the slip and put them in the hat. This was the method used from 1907 and the election was conducted in the usual way.
Reilly denied any arrangement to be appointed as teller. Did you have any arrangement with Casey as to how the ballots were to be read and counted, asked Mr.
Burke. No, replied Mr. Reilly. Reilly denied having any conference or talk with Casey prior to the meeting. It was almost a year since I had been there stated
Reilly. We had no conference before we were appointed. On cross examination Reilly admitted Honicker had alleged the election was wrong and that he had
seen Connors send him away. Yet you saw those ballots put away and in the waste basket and didn't make any effort to preserve them. No sir. You knew the
ballots were right, didn't you, asked the defense. I did replied Reilly. No one else tried to get them out, did they? No sir. Mr. Honicker was recalled and asked
who nominated Kelly for secretary. I don't remember stated Mr. Honicker. Who nominated Jones? I do not know.
Earl Delker was recalled and he stated he nominated Mr. Kelly. He stated he did not know who nominated Jones. He said he heard the result on Jones and Kelly,
which was announced 17-11. Was there any protest about that election? No sir, replied Delker.
|Pottsville Republican of June 24, 1921
FRONT PAGE TOP HEADLINE:
JUROR APPROACHED IN RAILROAD BROTHERHOOD CASE, COURT IS TOLD
NOT GUILTY VERDICT IS ANNOUNCED
The jury returned a verdict of not guilty but pay the costs. The jury was out less then a quarter of an hour, the second time after having reported to the court
efforts to approach a juryman. The jury in the case in which Daniel Reilly and Jeremiah Casey are charged with conspiracy to deprive Walter A. Wolfe of the
election as treasurer in the Schuylkill Haven lodge of the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen threw a bombshell into court room number three this morning when
they sent a communication to the court stating "we are unable to come to a verdict on the grounds of a member of the jury being approached" and we ask the
court to give us legal advice on the matter.
Arthur Roman, juror number six after the jury had been brought into court and informed that it was the duty of the jurors to tell all they know of the matter,
providing it did not have anything to do with influencing their verdict, took the witness stand and swore that Frank Chywski of Saint Clair had approached him on
Wednesday evening at his place of business and endeavored to talk to him about the case, but that he refused to have anything to say to him, finally walking
The court ordered the communication of the jury and the testimony of Roman put on the record and then instructed the jury to return to their room. Attorneys for
the defense after the jury left the room objected to the placing of the communication from the jury on the record alleging that they did not have the proper
opportunity to examine it before it was read in open court. I did not mean that you should have, replied the court. The defense then moved for the withdrawal of a
juror and the continuance of the case. This the court refused to do reciting the decision in the Fifth Ward murder case in Philadelphia, where testimony regarding
embracery had been taken during the trial of the case and in which the Supreme and Superior courts upheld the procedure.
Hereafter declared the court, in every case of this kind that comes up we will proceed publicly and openly. The jury went out at 3:30 Thursday afternoon and
reports at the courthouse this morning were that they had a stormy session of it at frequent intervals during the night. The jury when it came in was somewhat
bedraggled and the court informed the members of the jury that he had received a communication. Passing the paper over to the foreman, Thomas Bevan,
through Mr. Burke the court asked Mr. Bevan if he had written it. Mr. Bevan replied that he had. Mark it as an exhibit ordered the court. The court then
proceeded to read the communication.
We do not want any names mentioned the court cautioned the jury in the preliminary questions. Mr. Bevan informed the court that the matter was one that did not
involve any coercion of the jury as far as the evidence or the legal advice was concerned and then the court announced that if anyone spoke to anybody
regarding this case it is your duty under your oaths to rise in your place and take the stand and tell what you know.
Arthur Roman then took the stand and was sworn. Did anyone speak to you regarding the case, asked the court. Yes replied Roman, on Wednesday night. Was
that after you had been sworn, asked the court. Yes, replied Roman. A man came into my place of business and said that he understood that I was on the case but
he said nothing further. Later another man came in to me and said, I understand you are on such and such a case. I understand you are a juror. I replied yes,
stated Roman, and then he attempted to talk to me about it. He said, I want to speak to you about it, but I replied, "nothing doing". He then attempted to speak to
me again but I walked away from him to the other end of the room and then he went out. There was nothing said further. Who was the man, asked the court.
Frank Chywski, replied Roman. Spell it, instructed the court and Roman did so.
The jury was then instructed that it was their duty to reach a verdict if they could do so without having the incident prejudice their minds and they retired to their
room. The discussion over the withdrawal of the juror and the placing of the communication on the record then occurred.
|This membership card is for the Brotherhood of
Railroad Trainmen issued in 1918. It belonged to
Adam Omlor, a member of the Schuylkill Haven
Lodge. It was this lodge that was involved in the
court case mentioned above.
|Saving the Coal
|The Fire Extinguished
|Pottsville Republican of November 27, 1920
FATALLY HURT IN COLLISION
Harry Dietrich, aged fifty years, residing near Black Horse, was fatally hurt in a collision Tuesday evening at Schuylkill Haven. Dietrich, who was driving his truck
home collided with one of the new safety trolley cars and as a result of the collision, had his skull fractured, several bones broken and received other injuries
about the body and several internal injuries. He was rendered unconscious and was rushed to the local hospital after being attended by Dr. Heim of Schuylkill
Dietrich, according to Motorman Oscar Bicht, who was in charge of the safety car, came along the trolley tracks with his truck, Bicht seeing him some distance
away. Bicht figuring he would see the light of the trolley and he sounded the trolley bell, believing it would get Dietrich to cross over. Seeing that Dietrich was
making no move to get out of the tracks, Bicht applied the emergency, the safety device working perfectly and the trolley was stopped entirely when the truck
collided with it. Bicht, seeing that the accident was unavoidable, and that a crash was certain, jumped back from his place in the front and just missed being
struck by flying glass and a part of the broken truck which was hurled through the window.
The machine was badly wrecked and Dietrich was picked up unconscious and carried to the home of George Shirey on Dock Street. The accident occurred near
Berger's Mill at Berger and Dock Streets. When it was seen that the man was so severely injured he was ordered to the hospital, the physicians giving up hope of
saving his life. The accident occurred about 6:15 o'clock.
|The Call of March 19, 1892
A FATAL ACCIDENT
On Saturday evening, while Harry Freiler, a P and R brakeman, was standing on the tender of engine Number 838 which was shifting at the Schuylkill Haven
storage yard, he lost his footing and fell across the track, the tender passing over his body and killing him almost instantly. He was a former Minersvillian and
boarded with his wife at Samuel Reber's of Cressona. On Sunday morning Deputy Coroner Dr. H. G. Weist empanelled a jury who rendered a verdict of accidental
death, with no blame attached to anyone.
|The Call of November 22, 1929
INJURIES FATAL TO MAN STRUCK BY TROLLEY
Theodore Heffner, a seventeen year old man of Schuylkill Haven, sustained injuries Saturday afternoon when struck by a trolley car near Connor, which caused his
death Sunday morning in the Good Samaritan Hospital, Pottsville, at eight thirty o'clock. Heffner with his chum, Arthur Fenstermacher, was walking along the
trolley road toward Schuylkill Haven. Evidently neither heard the approach of a trolley bound for Schuylkill Haven and in charge of Motorman Meyers, until too
late. The accident occurred a short distance above the Lehigh Valley railroad bridge and their forms were not visible to the motorman at any great distance. As
soon as he saw the two men, he blew the whistle. Fenstermacher stepped aside and though the car grazed him, he was not injured. Heffner was thrown under
the car and before it could be stopped, it had passed over his body. As soon as the car could be stopped, the motorman and passengers ran back a short
distance and found the injured man. An automobile was stopped and the man rushed to the hospital. It was, however, at once seen that he had been so critically
injured that his recovery was not looked for.
In addition to having cuts and bruises about his entire body, due to probably having been rolled along on the sills by the car, he had suffered the more serious
injuries of two fingers and part of the right hand having been severed, the right leg severed above the knee and the left leg broken at the ankle, with the bones
protruding through the flesh. The young man's chest was crushed and there were several deep holes in his head and deep cuts on his face. The unfortunate
man with his companion had been returning from a short hunt for squirrels. Heffner had been hunting Saturday morning and upon returning at noon told his
mother he knew where he could get some squirrels and that he was going for them Saturday evening . Saturday afternoon, he attended the high school football
game. Returning home shortly before five o'clock to his home he took his gun. About three quarters of an hour after he had left the home, the gun was returned
by a friend with the blunt statement to his mother that her son had been killed.
Theodore was one of five boys and six girls of a family that resided in Schuylkill Haven about eighteen months. He had been employed by the Reider Shoe
Factory. He was but seventeen years of age. He was born in LaSalle County, Illinois. The family resided in Cressona for four years and prior to occupied a farm
for several years near Rock. Besides the father, who is in the West, these brothers and sisters, in addition to the mother, survive: Raymond of Chicago, Lee of
Schuylkill Haven Frank at home, William of Panther Valley, Mrs. Guy Pflueger of Pottsville, Stella of Panther Valley, Mrs. William Kramer of Pine Grove, Grace,
Florence and Irene. The funeral took place Thursday afternoon from the late home on Margaretta Street. Services were conducted by Reverend E. H. Smoll. D. M.
Bittle was the funeral director.
|The Call of July 4, 1913
CROSSING WATCHMAN SAVES CHILD
George W. Freehafer, P and R crossing watchman at Williams Street, Friday morning of last week proved himself a hero, when at the risk of losing his own life, he
saved that of a six year old girl. The escape from being ground to death beneath the wheels of the swiftly moving northbound passenger train, due here at 10:53
a. m. was miraculous. Katie Bowen, daughter of Samuel Bowen, on her way to her home on Market Street, from the home of her aunt Mrs. William Deibler, was
compelled to wait several minutes at the Williams Street crossing until a southbound coal train passed. As the caboose passed, the girl stepped out and not
hearing the approaching passenger train, stepped directly in its path. Watchman Freehafer, who was on the east side of the crossing, guarding the northbound
track, having seen the child waiting on the other side of the track, was on the alert and just as she stepped on the northbound tracks he made a leap, grabbed her
and leaped to safety just as the train dashed by. The escape was a narrow one and the several witnesses to the scene closed their eyes and turned their heads
away expecting the engine had struck them both and passed over them, so close was the escape.
The crossing gates were down at the time but the child walked up the tracks between the southbound tracks and a side track to the crossing and was inside the
gates. While standing waiting for the coal train to pass, Daniel Deibert, fireman at the Union Knitting Mills, realized the possible danger of her position and warned
her not to attempt to cross. Heedless of the warning, however, the child attempted to cross and had it not been for the presence of mind of Mr. Freehafer, would
surely have lost her life. Watchman Freehafer has but one arm and his great act of bravery, being thus handicapped, is therefore worthy of unusual comment and
notice. His many friends are bestowing on him their hearty thanks for his brave act. It is possible a movement will begin to bring his act to the notice of the
Carnegie Hero Committee that he may be properly awarded a medal for the same. The father and immediate relatives of the child are more than thankful to Mr.
Freehafer for saving the life of the child at the risk of losing his own.
|The Call of August 8, 1913
LOCAL WOMAN RESCUES CHILD
Another narrow escape from being killed on the P and R railroad tracks here, by a timely rescue, occurred this week a short distance south of Union Street at the
alley next to the John Kauterman residence. The timely rescue was made by Mrs. Moyer, nee Ella Huling, of Saint John Street. The rescued was Harry, the two
year old son of Mr. and Mrs. William Schumacher, residing on the same street. The child in anticipation of meeting a relative who was to arrive on the next train
wandered away from his home unnoticed by his mother. Just about the time the 11:26 passenger train from Philadelphia was due, Mrs. Moyer noticed the child
standing on the railroad tracks. She immediately hurried to the scene. Upon her arrival the train was within about one hundred yards of the child, who unmindful
of the approaching danger clapped his hands and shouted that his grandmother was coming. Mrs. Moyer, without a thought for her own safety, rushed to the
child and picking him up jumped to one side just as the train dashed by. The escape of both the rescuer and the rescued from being ground to death was very
close. Mrs. Moyer, following her brave act was in a very nervous condition but has recovered and is receiving the congratulations and thanks of many persons
for her brave deed.
|The Call of March 1, 1929
UNION STREET TO BE GUARDED AT NIGHT
It is learned from reliable authority that the Reading Company will shortly provide a greater means and method of protection to the public at the Union Street
crossing in Schuylkill Haven. The additional protection will be in the form of a crossing watchman who will be on duty until 11:45 o’clock in the evening. At this
time and for the last few years the crossing watchman’s day ended at 7:45 in the evening. The presence of a crossing watchman to operate the crossing gates will
provide a much needed protection for this particular crossing which has come to be traveled almost as much as the Main Street crossing.
Following the accident of several weeks ago when two young folks were struck by Number Nine at the crossing, the Civic Club of Schuylkill Haven took up the
matter with both the Reading Company and the Public Service Commission of the Commonwealth. From F. M. Falck, General Manager of the Reading, has been
received a communication to the effect that after carefully investigating conditions, it is found that there is little travel over this crossing after midnight. That the
rearrangement of the schedule for the crossing watchman whereby a man will be on duty until quarter to twelve will, with the present flash lights, provide what is
believed to be sufficient protection. From John P. Dohney, Chief of Bureau, Bureau of Accidents, Public Service Commission. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, has
also been received a communication by the Civic Club setting forth the same facts and advising of the decision of the Reading Company in this regard. Inquiry
reveals the fact that, while no arrangements have been made up to this time for the increased schedule of crossing watchman attendance, it is quite likely the
new schedule will become effective shortly. shortly.
|The Call of May 14, 1920
HIS INJURIES PROVE FATAL
Lewis Bittle, a well known and almost life long resident of Schuylkill Haven, died at the Pottsville Hospital Wednesday evening about 11:30 o’clock from injuries
sustained in some unknown manner Monday evening. He had evidently been struck by a coal train which went through town about eleven o’clock at a lively clip.
His body was found between the southbound track and the siding at the Union Knitting Mills by the crew of the shifting engine about 11:30. It was noticed his
forehead was crushed in and his left ear torn from the head. Body bruises and contusions had also been sustained. He was rushed to the Pottsville Hospital on a
special engine and caboose. An operation was performed to save his life but he never regained consciousness. Deceased was about sixty five years of age. He
had in former years been a prosperous farmer. Two brothers, Washington and Jacob of town, survive. The funeral will take place on Monday morning at ten o’
clock at the Bittle Brothers morgue. Interment will be made in the Union Cemetery. Both will be strictly private. Reverend Leinbach will officiate.
|The Call of June 11, 1920
KILLED AT MINE HILL CROSSING
Returning from a shopping trip to Pottsville, Miss Maida Schweigert of Cressona was struck by Number eight on the Reading road Saturday afternoon, at the Mine
Hill Crossing bridge. The train is due here at 1:59. Just how the accident occurred will never be definitely determined but it is thought the unfortunate woman did
not realize the train was so close to the track which she was walking. The engineer as soon as she was noticed applied the air with such force that the train came
to an almost immediate stop and passengers were thrown from their seats. The engine struck the woman and hurled her into the Schuylkill River below. She was
picked up and hurried to the local P and R station, where she died within forty five minutes of the accident and before the arrival of the hospital ambulance. The
back of her head was crushed and there were bruises about her face and forehead. When the body was taken from the river, in her hand was found the handle of
her pocketbook but the pocketbook containing about thirty dollars was gone. Her hat was found on one of the abutments of the bridge. The woman was carrying
a basket containing provisions. Of the provisions, only two cans of milk were found.
Deceased was well known in Cressona and esteemed. She was the daughter of Josiah Schweigert. With her father and brothers and sisters, she resided on
Railroad Street and managed the home. She was thirty one years of age. Her death is the third in her family to occur in a tragic manner. Her mother while on her
way to church fourteen years ago was overcome by the heat and died on the door step of a friend. Her brother in law was killed on the railroad several years ago.
She was a member of United Brethren Church, Cressona. Besides her father, these brothers and sisters survive: William, Murval, Arval, and Earl of Cressona;
Charles of Pine Grove; Harry of Reading; Mrs. Charles Gehrig, Mrs. Ida Stichter, Mrs. Minnie Kramer, Miss Daisy at home and Mrs. Edward Kauterman of Schuylkill
Haven. The funeral took place Wednesday morning.
|The Call of June 16, 1916
HERO MEDAL RECEIVED BY GEORGE FREHAFER
The first Carnegie hero medal to be received in Schuylkill Haven was received on Saturday afternoon last by George W. Frehafer. Mr. Frehafer prizes the medal
very highly, not because of the monetary value, but the incidents leading to the procuring of the same and the fact that it represents the saving of a human life.
The medal is of bronze, about four inches in diameter. It is carefully packed in a moracro leather case lined with plush. On the one side is the likeness of the
founder of the fund, Andrew Carnegie. Around the upper border is engraved, “Carnegie Hero Fund, established April 15, 1904.” On the opposite side is a map of
the United States, with three separate seals. A miniature plate bears the following inscription, “Presented to George Frehafer who saved Katie A. Bowen from
being killed by a train, Schuylkill Haven, Pa., June 27, 1913.” On the border on this side are the words, “Greater love hath no man then this that a man lay down his
life for his friends.” Mr. Frehafer is displaying the medal to his numerous friends and will place the same in the window of the Stine drug store tomorrow where it
may be viewed.
*A subsequent article revealed a $500 prize also accompanied the medal.
|The Call of August 27, 1920
THIRTY SIX ARRESTED FOR TRESPASS
Thirty six residents of Schuylkill Haven were on Wednesday served with a notice by Officer Duffy of the Reading Company with a warrant charging them with
trespass and theft of coal belonging to the Reading Company. Each one of the persons served was required to appear at the office of Squire C. A. Moyer, pay for
the quantity of coal taken and the costs in the case. It is understood that a car of egg coal in a south bound train was dumped a short distance below the Casket
Factory on Tuesday. Residents of that section of town were soon appraised of the fact and men, women and children made for the scene and helped themselves.
The coal was taken home in baskets, boxes, bags, express wagons and automobiles. In some way or other the company authorities were put next to the affair and
in a comparatively short time Squire was handed a list of thirty six persons on whom warrants were sworn. Officer Duffy, it is understood, visited each one of the
persons named and appraised them of the facts and that they would have to pay for the coal taken. He was given access to their cellars and coal sheds and noted
down the quantity of coal. He reported that individual families had gathered from one half to four tons of the coal. The car held about fifty tons. Fifteen tons
remained on the tracks when the officer arrived and surprised a large number of persons who were busily engaged in carrying it off.
|The Call of October 30, 1903
COLLISION AND RUNAWAY
Saturday morning at about 10:30 o’clock, Trolley Car Number One in charge of Motorman Robinson going down Main Street collided with Saul and Zang’s box
wagon, the collision being caused by the horse suddenly shying at the car and backing the front end of the wagon directly in front of the car. The front running
gear of the wagon was smashed and the vehicle was thrown against the curb in front of Dr. Dechert’s office. Dr. Dechert’s team of handsome sorrels was standing
in front of the office and the crash frightened them and they ran away. They were stopped at the Union Knitting Mill after having completely demolished the buggy
to which they had been hitched. The only one hurt was Walter Dress, driver for Saul and Zang, who pluckily stuck to his post and did all he could to control his
horse. In the collision he was thrown from his seat and wedged between the horse and the car and was painfully squeezed but was able to resume work at once.
|The Call of October 2, 1903
DEATH’S HARVEST – John Paul Killed at Storage Yard
A distressing accident occurred about six o’clock Tuesday afternoon at the P and R storage yards below town, which resulted in the death of John Paul of
Schuylkill Haven and the serious injury of Lewis Miller of Landingville, both carpenters who were employed at the yards making some repairs. Recently extensive
improvements have been made to the storage yards and a trestling had been built over the chutes. Paul, Miller and two other carpenters (who escaped
uninjured) were at work on this trestling when a rush of coal occurred which knocked the block from under the trestling which had not yet been permanently
secured and both Paul and Miller were thrown down into the chutes and crushed by the fall and by the rush of coal and falling timbers. Miller was removed to his
home while Paul was taken to the Pottsville Hospital. It was found that his skull had been fractured in two places, a compound one at the base and a simple
fracture on the right side above the ear. His right arm was fractured in three places and his left leg was also broken. No hope was entertained for his recovery
and he remained unconscious until death resulted at two o’clock Wednesday morning. The deceased was twenty eight years of age, resided on Centre Avenue,
and is survived by a wife and three children. The funeral took place this morning. Services were held at the house last evening by Reverend Edwin H. Smoll. The
funeral proceeded at eight o’clock this morning to the Mahantongo Valley where interment was made. made.
|The Call of May 28, 1920
KILLED AT STORAGE YARDS
Saturday morning the news of the sudden death of William I. Yeich of Schuylkill Haven shocked his numerous friends about town. The young man, seventeen
years of age, son of Mr. and Mrs. William Yeich of Fairmount, was well and favorably known to many persons. The accident occurred shortly before ten o’clock and
his death was the result of his forethought for the safety of his fellow workmen. He was employed as a loader and as an empty car came along he boarded it and
began to tighten the brakes in order to prevent its bumping into other cars further down the line and possibly trapping and injuring other workmen. Standing
upon the brake platform he was thrown to the inside of the car with great force when the car struck other cars. The side of his face and skull were crushed in by
the impact and it is believed death was instantaneous. Dr. Rodgers of Pottsville was summoned as was also Dr. Rutter of town. He was dead when medical
assistance arrived. Deceased would have been eighteen years of age on the coming ninth of September. He was born in Schuylkill Haven and spent his entire
life here. He was employed at the storage yards for about two years. He was a member of the P. O. S. of A. of town and the Independent Americans of
Friedensburg. He was a member of the Saint John’s Reformed church and Sunday School. Besides his grief stricken parents, these brothers and sisters survive:
Harry of Cressona, Miriam, Norman, Ada, Oscar and Mildred of Schuylkill Haven. Haven.
|The Call of November 16, 1917
WIFE’S DREAM SOON CAME TRUE
When Mrs. Fred Fitch of Canal Street bid her husband goodbye on last Saturday afternoon about 3:30 o’clock, little did she realize that her horrible dream of the
night previous was to come true. During Friday night, Mrs. Fitch dreamed that her husband had figured in a railroad accident and had been killed. She could see
in her vision, men picking up the remains of her husband and carrying them gently to a side. She imagined that she had seen her husband’s crew coming from a
trip from down the main line but her husband was not one of the members of the crew Saturday morning. Mrs. Fitch told her husband of her dream and likewise
members of her family. Saturday before he left home to go to work, she warned him to be careful, that her dream of a few hours earlier might not come true. Early
Sunday, Mrs. Fitch was awakened by the crew caller of the Reading Railroad and informed that her husband had met with an accident that resulted in his death.
Fred Fitch was a member of the crew that took engine Number 1736 and eighty two loaded coal cars down the main line late Saturday afternoon. The crew was in
charge of conductor Leddy of Saint Clair and Engineer M. L. Smith of town. Two other Schuylkill Haven residents were also members of the crew, John Ripkee and
Homer Raudenbush. Fitch was a flagman and was alone in the caboose at the time of the accident. His lifeless remains were discovered by the members of a
north bound coal train crew but a few minutes following the accident. This crew in turn notified his own crew and that was the first knowledge of the accident.
Engineer Smith gave the “Call” the following version of the accident. “My train was traveling along at a fair rate of speed when at a point south of the Phoenixville
tunnel, I discovered the red board against me. I applied my brakes gradually and then brought my train to a dead stop. This stop was made within about ten cars
length. When I again attempted to start my train, I found that it had parted about fifteen cars from the caboose. It was when the other members of the crew had
gone back to couple up the train that we were informed for the first time that my flagman had been killed. Apparently he had come out of the caboose to get a
drink of water. When the cars came together he must have been knocked from the front end of the caboose. The caboose passed over his body almost severing
it near the hips. He never knew what happened after the wheels passed over his body. The body was found about ten cars length from the caboose with every
spark of life extinct.” Mr. Smith also stated that a number of people are endeavoring to hold him accountable for the accident but he was in no wise to blame
being nearly three quarters of a mile away. The death of Mr. Fitch is the fourth to occur in the immediate family within the last eight months; an uncle Jere Sowers
of Auburn, a railroader, having been one of the four relatives. Adam Warner, another uncle, resident of Schuylkill Haven, is in the Miner’s Hospital as the result of
a railroad accident some few weeks ago. Fred Fitch was thirty three years and one month of age. He was born and reared in Auburn and for a time was employed
by the Auburn Seamless Tube Works. About seventeen years ago he came to Schuylkill Haven. Seven or more years ago he was united in marriage to Miss
Minnie E. Miller, of town, who with two children, Mildred aged six years and Laverne aged sixteen months, are among the survivors. He was an only child and
surviving besides his immediate family is his mother, Mrs. George Krammer, of Union Street, town. The mother is critically ill and under the care of a physician
since the death of the son. He was a member of the Junior Mechanics and the Brotherhood of Railway Trainmen. His funeral took place Wednesday afternoon.
O. A. Bittle had charge.
|The Call of January 21, 1916
INJURED AT P AND R CAR SHOPS
Mr. Daniel Frehafer of High Street was badly injured at the P and R car shops Friday afternoon, several minutes before quitting work for the day. He was struck
and run over by the shifting engine and had his legs so badly mangled that amputation was necessary at the Pottsville Hospital Friday evening. The left leg was
amputated above the knee and the right leg amputated at the ankle. His condition is as well as may be expected under the circumstances. His many friends were
very sorry to hear of his accident and express their best wishes for his recovery. Mr. Frehafer was a contract painter at the shops. He had about finished work
and was walking to the paint shop to place his ladder or step. It was necessary to walk along or on the board walk which passes the main track through the shop
yards. He did not notice the approach of the shifting engine with a car in front and a car in the rear. Nearby employees noticing the instant danger shouted to
him. The warning came too late and though it appears he noticed the car directly in front of him, he could not leap aside in time to avoid being struck. He had
sufficient presence of mind to make an effort to get out of the way. In being struck by the car and in moving aside, he stumbled over another step or paint ladder
standing near by. In the mix up he fell to the flooring and the wheels of the first truck passed over his legs diagonally. He was rushed to the Pottsville Hospital on
the north bound passenger train due here at 4:20 p.m. The operation was performed shortly after his admittance. Mr. Frehafer has been employed at the car
shops for the past fourteen years and has never suffered with a serious accident. He however had several minor accidents but nothing of the nature of the
present one. Prior to his employment at the shops he railroaded for some twenty years, being employed by the Pennsylvania Company and by the P and R
Company on its most dangerous branch, the Frackville line. Tuesday of this week was Mr. Frehafer’s fifty fifth birthday and in strange and sad contrast to the
celebration of former birthdays, this one was celebrated in the hospital under particular unfortunate circumstances.
|The Call of October 2, 1903
DEATH’S HARVEST – Jeremiah Graeff on Railroad
A very sad accident occurred on the P and R Railroad this side of Landingville late Wednesday night. At six o’clock Thursday morning a P and R coal train crew
north bound found the unconscious body of Jeremiah Graeff of town lying alongside the track. They picked him up, secured a cot from the coal storage yard upon
which he was placed and taken to the Pottsville Hospital where he died. Graeff called on friends at Landingville Wednesday evening and is thought that he
missed the last car and started to walk up the railroad when he must have been struck by a north bound train and lay unconscious and bleeding along the track
until Thursday morning. Graeff was aged nineteen years, nine months and three days and was a son of Clinton and Hannah Graeff. He was a reliable young man,
very popular with his large circle of friends and employed as a cutter in the Landingville shoe factory. He was a member of Webster Camp Junior O. U. A. M. The
funeral will take place on Sunday at 1:30 with services at the house by Reverend D. F. Kostenbader. Interment at Union Cemetery with D. M. Wagner as funeral
|The Call of February 23, 1912
TROLLEY CAR JUMPS TRACK
The 4:30 p. m. trolley car last Saturday afternoon, jumping the track on Dock Street near the McWilliams’ store and crashing into the yard of the McWilliams home
and coming within four and one half feet of plunging down an embankment, was due cause for considerable excitement and a good topic for conversation
Saturday night. That the accident was another one of those miraculous ones is due to the fact that the McWilliams home is surrounded with a number of shade
trees, two of them however being sacrificed in the accident as well as a heavy pole of the American Union Telephone Company. The trees and pole were broken
off by the impact of the car. One tree was hurled quite a distance. The impact of the car was so great that it crossed the pavement after striking the trees and ran
into the yard and came within a few feet of dropping over a twenty five foot embankment. The car was Number 30 in charge of Motorman Kane and Conductor
Doolan. It was late in leaving the Hotel Grand for Pottsville and a desperate effort was being made to make up for lost time as passengers on the car emphatically
stated the car was run at a high rate of speed over Dock Street. Either a bad rail or a stone on the track at the curve near the store caused the front trucks to
leave the track, the rear trucks followed. Motorman Kane stuck to his post of duty and applied the brakes. A sudden lurch and flying glass announced to the well
filled car that an accident had occurred. Several passengers were tossed about. Motorman Kane had his foot injured by having it caught beneath the controller.
Drs. Moore and Heim dressed the injury. The front end of the car was somewhat damaged. Within less then an hour after the accident, the car had been pulled on
the track again and the street cleared for traffic. traffic.
|The Call of February 24, 1911
GOOD ROADS CAR WILL BE IN TOWN MARCH 10 AT 3:40 P. M.
Train Will Be On Siding at Pennsylvania Station – Interesting Lecture and Demonstrations Will Be Given
The Good Roads Educational special train will, consisting of one postal car, two coaches and two flat cars, will be in Schuylkill Haven, Friday, March 10th, on the
siding at the Pennsylvania Railroad Station. The train will arrive here at 3:40 p. m. An interesting and instructive lecture will be given in one of the cars on good
roads, their construction and methods of keeping them in good condition and many other important items connected with good roads. The lecture will be free.
Following the lecture the people attending will be given an opportunity to view the exhibits and models of different kinds of roads and demonstrations will be
given of the various kinds of road machinery. The train will leave for Pottsville at 5:50 p. m. A lecture will be given in Pottsville also. The two flat cars in the
special train are loaded with good roads machinery. One car contains models of various kinds of roads, etc. One coach is fitted up for lecture purposes and the
other coach is furnished for persons accompanying the train. Considerable interest has already been aroused in the good roads special train and it is quite likely
many of our citizens will avail themselves of this opportunity to become better informed on the subject of good roads. A tour of the state is being made by the
Good Roads Educational Society with this special train and Schuylkill Haven is real fortunate in securing one of the lectures.
|The Call of September 24, 1909
On Monday, the Pennsylvania Railroad Wilkes Barre Flyer, southbound which goes through town daily at about 11:30 o’clock, had a narrow escape from being
wrecked at Connors. Just as the train struck the big curve on top of the thirty foot high embankment at Connors which leads to Schuylkill Haven station, the pony
wheels of the engine left the track. The train doesn’t stop at Schuylkill Haven and consequently was going at a very high rate of speed. Engineer J. Wells
immediately applied the brakes and brought his train to a stop in a distance of about double its length. Passengers were badly shaken up by the sudden stop, but
no one was injured and the engineer’s prompt action saved the train from being wrecked. The Mount Carbon wreck crew was called and after few hours work
placed the engine on the track again and the train proceeded. The northbound accommodation and northbound Wilkes Barre flyer were delayed by the accident.
|The Call of November 3, 1911
NARROW ESCAPE OF AUTO PARTY - Local Folks Almost Run Down at P. & R. Crossing
TOP OF MACHINE TORN BY GATES
A serious accident was narrowly averted at the Main Street P. and R. Railroad crossing last evening about seven o’clock. The automobile of Jacob Berger of
Spring Garden containing Jacob Berger, Mrs. Arthur Gerber and daughter, Miss Laura Berger, Ruth and Carl Loy, with Mr. Arthur Gerber at the wheel was coming
up Main Street. Just as the machine reached the crossing, a southbound light engine with caboose started from the “J” office at a rapid rate of speed. Watchman
Lord rapidly opened the gates just as the machine reached the tracks, the result was the supporting pole attached to the gates caught the top of the machine and
ripped it from front to rear. Mr. Gerber at a glance saw the approaching danger and realized the fact that if he would stop to prevent the top of the machine being
torn he would be run down by the engine, put on speed and shot across the tracks just as the engine went by. Bystanders say it was a very narrow escape and
many turned their head away expecting to see the entire party run down.
|The Call of August 12, 1893
DEATH AT MINE HILL
George Hartzle, a car runner on the Mine Hill branch, while performing his duties on the heavy side opposite the car shops, was caught between the cars, fell
upon the rail and the car wheels passed over him. His right hip was terribly crushed and the entrails protruded. His legs were also badly mangled. His fellow
workmen gathered up his body and laid it upon a stretcher and in a short time life was extinct. They carried the remains to Undertaker Ziegenfus, who took charge
of them and prepared them for burial. Deputy Coroner Dr. D. Dechert empanelled a jury who viewed the remains and heard the witnesses on Tuesday and
Wednesday evenings. They rendered a verdict of accidental death and exonerated the company and its employees from all blame.
The deceased was about thirty four years of age and leaves a wife and four children, his mother, Mrs. Joseph Hartzle of Pottsville; two sisters, Mrs. William Hoover
of Cressona and Miss Katie Hartzle of Pottsville, and four brothers, Joseph and Charles of Pottsville, and Jacob and Frank of Ringtown. He was a member of the P.
O. S. of A. and was identified with one of the Pottsville camps. He was a member of the Rainbow Hose Company and had been a member of Company H, 4th
Regiment, National Guard of Pennsylvania, but retired some time ago on account of his hearing. His brother James was killed in the York Farm Colliery disaster in
July of 1892. His funeral took place on Friday afternoon. The funeral services were conducted in the Saint John’s Reformed Church, of which the deceased was a
member. Reverend Mishler, formerly pastor of the German Reformed Church, of Pottsville, conducted the services. services.
|The Call of November 22, 1912
STRUCK BY A PASSING TRAIN – Mrs. Lucian Reber of Cressona Had a Narrow Escape – Side Stepped in Front of Engine
Mrs. Lucian Reber, of Cressona, had a narrow escape from being run over and killed by a coal train at the main Street P and R crossing in this town, Wednesday
afternoon about four o’clock. She was struck by a north bound coal train and thrown to the ground but several inches from the tracks. Her escape from being
ground to death was miraculous. Outside of a number of body bruises she suffers no other injuries. It appears Mrs. Reber, in company with a Mrs. Charles
Kantner, both of Cressona, after completing an afternoons shopping in this town commenced to walk to their homes in Cressona. By reason of the fact that a train
going south had the crossing blocked, they could not cross over the railroad tracks to follow the usual footpath running parallel to the railroad and used by
pedestrians quite frequently. Mrs. Reber and Mrs. Kantner followed the path along the north bound track but had gone but several yards from the Main Street
pavement when a north bound train happened along. On account of the noise made by the south bound train the approach of the north bound train was not
notice even though the engineer blew his whistle. Mrs. Reber was struck on the hip by the bumper on the engine and thrown aside the tracks, striking the back
of her head against one of the railroad ties when she fell with terrific force. She was rendered unconscious by the contact. Bystanders quickly came to her
assistance and she was removed to the P and R station and later to her home in Cressona via the 4:20 train. Dr. A. H. Detweiler was summoned and made her
comfortable as possible. Her chief injuries consist of severe bruises to the head, back and hip. She also suffers considerably from shock.
The engine which struck Mrs. Reber was in charge of Albert Berger of town as engineer and M. L. Smith of town as fireman. Mr. Berger states that had Mrs. Reber
continued in the same path she would not have been touched by his engine, but when the train was about four feet away from the ladies, Mrs. Reber sort of side
stepped and before the train could be stopped she had been struck and thrown to the ground. The accident caused considerable excitement about town and
rumors to the effect that two persons had been killed were quickly circulated about town. Fortunately however, the rumors were incorrect. Mrs. Reber is the wife
of Lucian Reber, a well known engineer on the Mine Hill Road. She is the mother-in-law to David Bittle, one of the clerks in Doutrich and Company’s local store
and who assisted in making her comfortable until the arrival of the physician. Mrs. Reber is well known here and her many friends hope for her speedy recovery.r
|The Call of March 19, 1926
CRESSONA MAN IS SMOTHERED TO DEATH
George Ebert, employed for many years as a brakeman in the local yards, met with an accident at about 11:30 p.m. on Monday, for which he paid with his life.
Taking a car of coal that was being weighed over the scales down into the classification yard the brakes refused to hold. Fearing the impact he ran back to about
the middle of the car and as is customary in such cases jump as the cars collide to escape the shock. As the cars came together the sudden jar snapped a door
arm off the door directly under him. The opening of the door allowed the coal to escape and drew him down. His plight was immediately discovered and other
yard men came to his rescue and it was seen that the body was entirely covered. Shovels were secured in an endeavor to shovel him out, but the position of the
body was such that the recovery was a slow and tedious one. After about a half hour of hard work he was gotten out but upon examination it was found that life
was extinct. Death was caused by suffocation. The body was removed to his late home on Pottsville Street by Undertaker William E. Berger. Besides his widow,
nee Reber, he is survived by the following children: Frederick and Theodore at home, Lewis and George and Mrs. Angst of this borough and Albert of Schuylkill
Haven. Deceased was a member of Grace U. B. Church and the Railroad Trainmen, having achieved the 68th milestone of life. Funeral services will be held on
|The Call of October 29, 1926
RAILS SPREAD AND WRECK ENGINE HERE
The spreading of rails on a not solid a road bed, on one of the sidings of the Reading Company, a short distance above the J Office, Sunday morning about a
quarter to nine, caused the engine to leave the rails and the cars to buckle in such a way that traffic was tied up over an hour. The heavy engine, Number 1659,
cut deeply into the sills and twisted the track in bad shape. The application of the emergency buckled several of the empty cars and tore out several draw heads
in the train. All crossings were blocked for about an hour and this happening, just at the time people were on their way to Sunday School, resulted in attendance
in many of the schools being cut down considerably. A number of persons, after waiting a long time at the Main Street crossing, took the old short cut through the
Greenawald Coal Yards and underneath the railroad bridge. By reason of the train crossing the northbound track over the southbound track, all north and south
bound trains were delayed until the cars could be moved, which was an hour or more. The conductor of the crew was Joseph Maberry. Art Trout was the
flagman. The engineer was William Becker of Reading. Conductor Maberry was somewhat bruised about the face in being struck by a piece of the sand pipe that
was broken off from the engine. He was standing on the front of the engine as the train was pulling in over the side track. The Reading wrecking crew arrived
about 11:50 and immediately set to work despite the rain. By three o’clock they had the engine righted upon a rebuilt section of track. There was quite a crowd
that watched the wreckers at work.
|The Call of October 8, 1926
INJURIES TO WILLIAM SATTIZAHN FATAL
William Sattizahn, of Willow Street, died of injuries Friday afternoon, October 1st at four
o’clock at the Pottsville Hospital where he had been a patient since Tuesday afternoon
of this same week. His death was due to the very compound fracture of the skull
sustained Tuesday afternoon about 1:30 when he fell from a car near the storage yards.
The operation was performed Wednesday afternoon and it was after his failure to
respond to the operation that hopes for his recovery were given up. He never gained
consciousness from the time of the accident. Deceased was a well known railroader
having been on the road for thirty five or more years. For the last several years he was
a brakeman on the shifting crew at the Mine Hill Yards. He was born in Pine Grove and
was a resident of this town for the past thirty five years. He was a member of the Saint
Matthew’s Lutheran Church. Fraternally he was connected with the Sons of America of
Summit Station and the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen. Besides the wife, the
following children survive: Harry Sattizahn, Mrs. Roy Koch, Mrs. Austin Hoffman, William
and Bright Sattizahn of Schuylkill Haven and Ralph at home. Two sisters and one
brother also survive: Mrs. William Reber of Pine Grove and Mrs. Albert Hain of Pine
Grove. The funeral took place on Monday afternoon at two o’clock. There were many
friends and relatives in attendance at the services, all of which were conducted by
Reverend Sutcliffe at the late home. D. M. Bittle was the funeral director. The bearers
were: Edward Maberry, Ed Lynch, Daniel Phillips, A. M. High, Norman Eifert and George
Mullen. There were very beautiful flowers presented. presented.
|The Call of September 26, 1896
FELL THIRTY FEET
About nine o’clock on Wednesday morning the people of town were horrified by the announcement that several men were killed at the Philadelphia and Reading
shops, but upon investigation it was found that six men were injured. The men were engaged in the construction of the new blacksmith shop and were working
inside near the roof. Suddenly the support on which they were standing gave way precipitating them to the ground, a distance of about thirty feet. James Dewald,
a resident of Summer Valley, fell on his face and had it terribly lacerated. John Flammer received a contusion on his right leg. The others fortunately only
received slight injuries
|The Call of September 1, 1916
DIED OF INJURIES RECEIVED NEAR CONNOR
Henry Kramer, aged fifty seven, a deaf and dumb person, who for years was employed by Terrance Clark at Connor’s, was struck Friday afternoon by a Lehigh
Valley coal train and died from the injuries sustained an hour following the accident. “The Dummy”, as he was more familiarly known and called had been
instructed to do some work near the railroad on the farm of Mr. Clark. He took with him a pail or kettle with water in it. In order that it would keep cool and fresh
the man placed the same in a crevice near a spring in the cut above Connor’s on the Lehigh Valley Railroad. It was while he was going to the cut for the pail of
water that the coal train bore down upon him. Failing to hear the shrieks of the whistle and although the train was going at a slow rate, he was struck and hurled
against the rocks at the side of the mountain. The body rebounding fell along the tracks and before the train could be stopped the wheels had severed his right
arm. His skull was crushed, his left leg fractured and his back crushed besides probable internal injuries. Dr. James Gray of Cressona was summoned and made
the victim as comfortable as possible. The man was unconscious from the time of the accident and died before he could be moved to the hospital. The funeral
was held Sunday afternoon from the residence of Mr. Clark.
|The Call of July 15, 1890
DIED FROM HIS INJURIES
The man named Smith who was struck with the column of the bridge while being hoisted into position yesterday, died this morning at the house of Mr. Butler in
Schuylkill Haven, where he had been boarding. It is not known where he came from or where his home is. He came to work on the bridge about three weeks ago
accompanied by a companion, who left the place about three days after. Deputy Coroner Dr. Weist summoned a jury who viewed the remains and adjourned to
meet tonight at six o’clock to hear testimony. A collection was taken up to defray the expenses of his funeral and he will be interred in one of the cemeteries of
|The Call of September 30, 1908
BRAKEMAN’S BODY CUT IN HALF
James Lynch, a P and R brakeman employed on the Mine Hill Division, was instantly killed this morning at the Mine Hill crossing by being run over with a car, his
body being cut in two. He was a resident of Cressona, thirty five years of age, and is survived by a wife. His train was being assorted by the crossing and he was
lying under a car fixing the air coupling when the train started out. His body was across the rails and the wheels passed over his abdomen. The remains were
wrapped up and conveyed to an undertaking establishment at Schuylkill Haven and prepared for burial before being removed to his home. Deceased was
formerly a miner residing at Mount Laffee before he accepted a position on the railroad and removed to Cressona. He was well known and liked. liked.
|The Call of January 24, 1891
INSTANTLY KILLED ON THE RAIL
Jeremiah Werner, a married man living at Port Clinton and employed as conductor on the Philadelphia and Reading main line, was instantly killed last evening at
Connor’s Crossing by being run over by his own engine. When his train reached the above named place it was stopped and he and his crew began the shifting of
cars at that point. The unfortunate man had occasion to cross in front of the engine which was running tank first when his right foot caught in a frog. In vain he
tried to extricate himself. He shouted for the engineer to stop but his cries were not heard. In an instant the tank was on him and passed over his body, crushing
and mangling him in a horrible manner. The engineer, Anderson, knew nothing of the accident until the tank of the engine had gone over the conductor’s body.
Mr. Werner was thirty years of age and leaves a wife and two children and was considered a good railroader. M. F. Pflueger, W. F. Stitzer, D. H. Auchenbach, A. H.
Kline, D. D. Coldren and Edward Kauffman constituted the jury empanelled by Deputy Coroner Weist, who viewed the body and after hearing the testimony of the
crew rendered the following verdict: “Jerry Werner, of Port Clinton, met his death by being caught in a ‘frog’ by the right foot while making a ‘cut’ in shifting at or
near Cressona station on the line of the Philadelphia and Reading Railroad. No blame is attached to the crew of Engine Number 112. 112.”
|The Call of March 15, 1912
STRUCK BY ENGINE
Daniel G. Womer of Cressona, the well known telegraph operator at Mine Hill crossing had a very narrow escape from death Tuesday afternoon. In going out of
the office to issue orders to north bound Engine 101, with Superintendent Keefer and a number of other P and R officials, he misjudged the speed of a south
bound train which overtook him in his effort to recross the tracks. He was struck by the engine and hurled to the side narrowly escaping being run over. Mr.
Womer was assisted to the office and later removed to his home. His condition at this writing was serious, the engine having struck him on the back, neath the
shoulder blade and it was feared by the attending physician, Dr. C. Lenker, that he was injured about the lungs and ribs. Mr. Womer is well known in town and his
friends were grieved to learn of the accident.
|The Call of April 19, 1912
A foreigner by the name of Peter Fancanno, residing with Paul Bazar of Railroad Street, Cressona became mentally unbalanced Sunday morning and attempted
suicide by throwing himself against the south bound 10:55 Mine Hill train. Early in the morning his actions aroused the suspicions of the neighbors. A crowd
gathered round about his home and were at a loss to know what action to take in the matter. Upon hearing the passenger train approaching he broke away from
the crowd, ran towards the train an threw himself against it. Instead of being pulled in under the wheels he was knocked to one side. Outside of several body
bruises, he escaped injury. The bystanders however took him into custody. Constable Hartz summoned the ambulance from the Almshouse and he was taken to
that institution. It is said worriment over the separation from his wife, who is at present in his native country, caused him to lose his mind.
|The Call of January 26,1917
GIRLS HAD NARROW ESCAPE ON RAILROAD
Miss Margaret James, of West Columbia Street, and Miss Eva Wessner, of town, both had very narrow escapes from being either killed or seriously injured
Monday noon on the P and R railroad a short distance south of the Union Street crossing. Miss James and Miss Wessner, both employed at the Union Knitting
Mills, were walking north along the southbound track toward town where they intended to do some shopping during their lunch hour. A coal train was going north
on the northbound track at the time. On account of the high wind both girls had their heads lowered and with arms linked were unaware of the approach of a coal
train on the southbound track. The engineer of the southbound coal train whistled a number of times and persons residing in the neighborhood stated the
whistling was so pronounced that their attention was attracted to it. Several employees of the Thomas Knitting Mill noticed the girls and the approaching train and
whistled ad shouted a warning. Evidently the girls did not hear the southbound train on account of the noise made by the train going north, as they continued on.
The engine struck the Wessner girl on the arm and threw both across the track, but luckily on the shifting track instead of the southbound track on which the train
was approaching. The James girl struck the track with her head and sustained a bruised forehead. The Wessner girl sustained a number of body bruises. Both
girls suffered from shock. Reports to the effect that they sustained internal injuries, fractured skulls, broken ribs, etc. are incorrect. i
|The Call of July 5, 1901
TROLLEY CAR JUMPS TRACK
The passengers on the open trolley car, which left this place at 3:30 o'clock last Saturday night, met with an experience that was attended with quite a little
excitement and a good shaking up. After rounding the corner at Dock Street, the car usually gains considerable speed in going down the grade out that street.
On the curve at Saint Matthew's Lutheran Church, the car jumped the track and went crashing toward the pavement, its progress only being stopped as the
wheels struck the curbs of the sidewalk. A big iron lamp post in its path had been snapped off like a pipe stem. Luckily no one was injured, the only damage
resulting being a crushed in front of the car and the broken lamp post. Traffic was delayed about an hour owing to the occurrence. The accident was caused by a
stone on the track.
|The Call of July 19, 1901
CLOSE CALL FOR LIFE
John Stewart of Pottsville, a coal train fireman on the Pennsylvania Railroad, on Tuesday met with an accident at the local station that might have caused him
serious injury or cost his life. Stewart was riding on the engine of the passenger train due here at 5:22 p. m. and as the train entered the station he leaped from
the engine to the truck standing on the platform near the tracks. The surface of the truck is lined with iron strips and these, made slippery by the rain, caused his
feet to fly out from under him as he landed. He fell backward and struck his head heavily, rendering him partially insensible. At the same time the truck, given an
impetus by his body, stated forward toward the rails with the man in his dazed and helpless condition on it. The truck was caught by the baggage car and dragged
but a short distance when the train came to a halt. One wheel of the truck had already left the platform and but a few feet further and it would have pitched over
and the man would have been thrown under the wheels of the train. It was a most narrow escape. The unfortunate man was placed aboard the train and taken to
the Pottsville Hospital.
|The Pottsville Republican of July 24, 1933
WOMAN KILLED BY THE FLYER
Miss Audrey Sidler, aged nineteen years, of Schuylkill Haven, was instantly killed Sunday evening shortly before six o’clock when she was struck by the
Philadelphia flyer of the Reading Company near Connor’s Crossing. She was enroute from Cressona and was attempting a short cut along the railroad tracks and
became confused at the approach of the train. The body was placed aboard the train and brought to the station here following which it was turned over to
Undertaker Hall. Later Undertaker Bittle of Schuylkill Haven took charge of the remains. One leg was severed and the other crushed and her body badly bruised.
The train struck her and then threw her a distance. The family moved to Schuylkill Haven from Catawissa five years ago, and for a time her father, Hilbert, was
employed at the Cressona Shops. She was a member of the U. B. Church and leaves to survive her parents Mr. and Mrs. Hilbert Sidler and these brothers and
sisters: Robert, James, Mary, Jane, Corliss, Medra and Louise all at home; Mrs. Margaret Diehl of Schuylkill Haven and Mrs. Geraldine Hartman of Catawissa. The
funeral will be held from the family home at the convenience of the family on Wednesday with interment in Catawissa.
|The Pottsville Republican of December 29, 1909
RUN DOWN ON RAIL FATALLY HURT
Charles F. Heisler was run down about fifty yards north of the P and R station at Schuylkill Haven last night and died shortly after midnight at the Pottsville
Hospital. Deceased was thirty two years of age, single and resided with his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Christian L. Heisler, of Hornung Street in Jalappa. The
unconscious form was found about 1:30 p. m. lying on the tracks by call boy Connelly who happened that way. Assistance was speedily secured and the young man
was brought to the Pottsville Hospital without delay, where it was found that the right leg had been severed near the hip and the left leg near the knee. His
fingers were also badly crushed. While being removed from the track to the station he regained consciousness long enough to give his name and address and
although his relatives were notified, he died at the hospital before they arrived. Deceased was employed at the steel mill and the family are unable to account for
his presence in Schuylkill Haven. It is believed, however, that he was endeavoring to board a freight or coal train for home when he was thrown under the train
and killed. To survive he leaves his father and mother, who was Anna B. Nettlinger of Pottsville, two sisters, Mrs. Benjamin Knowles and Mrs. John Kogel of
Pottsville and two brothers, John of Philadelphia and Christian of Pottsville.
|The Call of October 20, 1916
TROLLEY HITS AND DEMOLISHES AUTO TRUCK
Occupants Have a Narrow Escape From Fatal Injury on Dock Street Thursday Afternoon
Trolley car number 23 in charge of motorman Thomas McGovern of town and conductor Oscar Bight bound for Pottsville, struck and demolished the Vim auto truck
of groceryman Harry Schumacher shortly after two o'clock Thursday afternoon. The machine was completely demolished or so badly damaged that it is practically
worthless. The occupants of the car, Christ Schumacher and lewis Goas and Charles, the young son of Mr. Christ Schumacher had miraculous escapes from being
fatally injured. As it was they received several cuts about the face and head from flying glass of the windshield which was splintered. The Schumacher lad was
the most seriously injured. He sustained a deep cut over the left center of his forehead, about one half inch from the eye, a deep cut on the head and several
other cuts about the face. Although he did considerable screaming immediately following he crash, he soon regained his nerve and certainly was a brave little
soldier. He was taken to the store of Clinton Confehr. Dr. Detweiler was soon on the scene and the youngster immediately stood up and stated he wasn't hurt,
that he didn't feel anything, despite the fact that considerable blood was dropping down over his eyebrow into his eye. Mr. Christ Schumacher received a cut on
the right cheek and Lewis Goas a smaller cut on the forehead. The doctor hustled all three patients into his machine, took them to his office and dressed their
The accident occurred on Dock Street at the private alley aside of the George Raush residence. The auto was in charge of Christ Schumacher and had just come
out of the alley and was about to turn in Dock. Th machine must have been almost squarely on the tracks as the marks show it was struck in the middle and thrown
to the side. The top or box of the auto was thrown about twenty feet and the chassis struck a nearby telephone pole. The wheels were broken, the steering
wheel twisted, the running boards splintered, the top of the car broken and a sorry sight. The contents of the machine were badly mixed and destroyed. The
wreck was removed late Thursday afternoon. The driver of the automobile states that he did not see or hear the trolley coming and the motorman of the trolley
makes the same statement. The crash could be heard for a square and the screams of the youngster son attracted quite a crowd.
|The Call of November 23, 1900
MIRACULOUS ESCAPE FROM DEATH
George W. Berkheiser, an employee at the Pennsylvania Railroad station, this place, had a remarkably narrow escape with his life last Tuesday morning. Mr.
Berkheiser usually transacts the business with the baggage masters on the passenger trains arriving at that depot. The early morning southbound passenger
trains on the Pennsy and at the Lehigh Valley are due at this depot twenty minutes apart, the former approaching the station on the nearer track, while the latter is
due later on the track farthest from the station platform. Mr. Berkheiser was under the impression that the Pennsylvania train had arrived and departed and that
the train then approaching through the darkness was the Lehigh on the outer track. Without further satisfying himself, not even looking in the direction of the
approaching train, which happened to be the Pennsy, he stepped from the platform directly in its path. He was struck by the engine pilot with great force and
tossed through the air, landing heavily some distance away. He received no serious injury, but his escape from such, even death, was most miraculous. A wound
on the scalp and a bruised leg were the only injuries received that required attention.
|The Call of December 21, 1900
AGED MAN FOUND DEAD - JAMES B. MCGEOY OF BERNE STREET, THIS PLACE THE VICTIM
Death Supposed to Have Resulted From a Fall From the Pennsylvania Railroad Arch at Connor's Crossing
The lifeless and bruised body of James B. McGeoy, one of the oldest residents of this place, was found at six o'clock this morning on the roadway beneath the
Pennsylvania Railroad arch near Connor's Crossing. The body was discovered by butcher D. F. Hoy, of this place, who immediately sent for Constable Butz. A
careful examination of the body failed to show any marks that might have resulted from foul play and it is generally supposed that Mr. McGeoy was walking along
the railroad tracks above the arch when he stumbled and fell or was hit by a locomotive and thrown to the hard roadway below, a distance of about twenty feet.
His face was badly bruised and his right hand fractured. When found he was lying on his face with his hand beneath his body and his injuries, it would naturally be
supposed, resulted from the fall. The remains were given in charge of undertaker Charles Wagner, who removed them to the unfortunate man's home on Berne
Street. An inquest was held over the remains this morning, the coroner's jury rendering a verdict of accidental death. Mr. McGeoy left his home yesterday
morning at ten o'clock stating that he was going to Pottsville to purchase Christmas goods. He was reported to have been seen there shortly before eleven
o'clock last night. How he got to the scene of his death is unknown and that he should have been to Pottsville and returned without any packages cannot be
Mr. McGeoy was born in Longfort County, Ireland, sixty five years ago and emigrated to this country, coming directly to Schuylkill Haven in 1848. He got a situation
at oiling cars for the Reading Company and was subsequently employed in other positions by the company up to eight years ago, when with a large number of
men, he was retired on account of old age. Since then he has lived a retired life. He was a gentleman of fine moral character and was held in high esteem by all
ho knew him. He is survived by three sons and two daughters as follows: Mrs. John Coho of this place and James, Joseph, Charles and Katie at home. Mr. Barney
McGeoy, probably the oldest resident in the town, is a brother. The arrangements for the funeral had not been made at the time of going to press.
|The Call of September 27, 1901
STRUCK BY AN ENGINE - Jacob K. Reed Meets Tragic Death on Tuesday Evening
Was Returning From Work When Accident Occurred - Steeped in Front of Train - Death Was Instantaneous
Jacob K. Reed, a well known citizen of this place, was struck by a locomotive near the Mine Hill Crossing, on the P and R Railway, at a few minutes past five o'clock
Tuesday evening and instantly killed. Mr. Reed, who operated a stone quarry at Beckville, was on his way home from that place when he met his tragic death.
Near the bridge at the Mine Hill Crossing he left the path along the siding and started to walk between the siding and northbound tracks. He had just reached a
point about half the length of two gondola cars standing on the siding, when the workmen's train, are more familiarly known as the "bug car", came along at a high
rate of speed. Mr. Reed, it is supposed, did not want to remain between the gondolas and the train as it rushed by and made a quick but fatal move to cross the
tracks. He was struck by the engine and thrown with tremendous force against the gondolas. His body escaped the wheels. The accident was witnessed by a
number of the employees at the crossing, among whom was the unfortunate man's son, Daniel Reed. Both shoes flew from the victim's feet high into the air when
he was it. He was found lying between the main track and siding and life was ended, death having been instantaneous. An examination showed that the face and
chest were crushed and his neck, jaw and two arms were broken. His whole body bore bruises. Witnesses state that Mr. Reed must have seen the engine as he
was facing in that direction as it approached and the engineer had sounded a warning blast. Deputy Coroner Peter Stanton held an inquest and death was found
to have been the result of the injuries stated above. The remains were taken to E. Ziegenfus's undertaking establishment and next morning removed to his late
home at the corner of Columbia and Berne Streets.
Deceased was a resident of this place for the past thirty four years, having moved here from Berks County. He was born at Landingville and was a son of the late
George W. and Kate Reed. He was seventy one years old. He was a wheelwright by trade, but abandoned that long ago. For the past twenty years he operated
his stone quarry at Beckville during which time, until his fatal accident, he had made the trip safely to and from his home. He was a member of Grace United
Evangelical Church and was a faithful worshipper there. His wife died in February 1899. He leaves four sons and one daughter as follows: Cornelius F., Daniel W.
and John Reed and Mrs. William Becker of this place and George Reed of Pottsville. The funeral will be held from the late home on Sunday afternoon at 1:30
o'clock after which the cortege will proceed to Grace United Evangelical Church where further services will be conducted by the pastor, Reverend S. S. Chubb.
Interment will be made in Union Cemetery.
|The Call of January 9, 1903
TROLLEY CAR WRECK -
Plunged Down a Twelve Foot Embankment on to the
P and R Railway and Blocked One Track For 8 1/2 Hours
Car Number 84 of the Pottsville Union Traction Company, on the Orwigsburg Division, in charge of Motorman Lapp and Conductor Berger, came to grief on the last
trip to Orwigsburg Sunday night. The car left Schuylkill Haven just a few moments before twelve o'clock midnight, almost a half hour late, going down the steep
incline of Saint John Street, from Market to Liberty, the car got beyond control and at the junction of Saint John and Liberty Streets, it left the track, crashed
through the guard rail and plunged head foremost down the steep twelve foot embankment on to the north bound track of the P and R Railway. Motorman Lapp
saved himself by jumping. There were two passengers, George Portz and John Holly, both of Pottsville, with Conductor Thomas Berger in the car at the time. All
three were badly bruised and when they attempted to make their exit found it was impossible to open the doors. Fearing that they might be run down by a
passenger train while imprisoned in the derailed car, they kicked the glass out of the windows and made their escape.
The P and R wreck crew was immediately summoned and found the trolley car such a difficult subject to deal with that the blockade was not lifted from the north
bound track until 8:30 Monday morning. Th wrecked trolley car was pulled down off the bank, the trucks were pulled from under her and she was skidded up on
the rails to William Street, where she was dumped in the street an the truck and other wreckage were piled along side her. It took the trolley company's wreck
crew the balance of the day to drag the car and truck up the hill, place it on the tracks and tow it to the Palo Alto power house for repairs. The front end of the car
was stove in, panels on both sides were smashed, the roof was ripped open, every pane of glass was broken and all the wiring and trolley, light and motor
connections were torn to pieces. It was a very badly wrecked car.
|The Call of November 29, 1901
WAS IT SUICIDE? - Trolley Car Killed a Turkey That Would Have Made a Feast
Last Saturday morning about 6:30 o'clock, just as electric car Number 40, in charge of Motorman Dentzer and Conductor Tucker, swung onto Willow Street on its
way to town, a big turkey gobbler ran onto the track and was struck and killed. The bird was a fine one and would have admirably suited as the piece de resistance
at a Thanksgiving Day feast. The car crew and passengers are wondering if the turkey preferred death on the rail to a momentary experience with the keen edge
of an axe and committed suicide.
|The Call of October 25, 1901
INSTANTLY KILLED - George Baumgarten Struck By a Locomotive on Sunday
Unfortunate Man Was Deaf Mute and Failing to Hear Oncoming Train Was Suddenly Ushered Into Eternity
George Baumgarten, an inmate of the County Home, at this place, met a most sudden and tragic death last Sunday afternoon about 2:30 o'clock. Baumgarten, who
was deaf and dumb, had left the Almshouse for a walk into the country, very unwisely choosing the Lehigh Valley railroad tracks. He had proceeded to a point in
the cut beyond Spring Garden Junction when a special train from Pottsville to Bethlehem came along. He was walking slowly down the track with his back to the
rapidly approaching train and the engineer blew a warning blast. As the engine came closer the whistle sounded another warning, but without any effect on the
man in the path of death ahead. The engineer shut off steam and applied the air brakes but the train could not be stopped in time to avoid the accident. He was
struck and instantly killed, being thrown upon the rails. Very few trains pas over this road on Sunday and the unfortunate man took no precautions to save himself
from a surprise of this kind.
Immediately after the accident, Deputy Coroner H. Y. Hartman empanelled a jury who rendered a verdict of accidental death in accordance with the facts above
given. The crew of the train were exonerated from all blame. Mr. Baumgarten was admitted to the County Home on August 1, 1896, from Ashland, and was an
inmate of the stone building. He was sixty two years of age. The remains were claimed by a brother and sister residing at Ashland and were on Tuesday morning
taken to the place of interment.
|The Call of January 2, 1903
A HEAD ON COLLISION - A Very Costly Smash Upon The Pennsy on Saturday
Two Engines and a Lot of Freight Cars Badly Used Up - Both Crews Escape Injury By Jumping
A big smashup, the result of a head on collision of two freight trains on the Pennsylvania Railroad near Adamsdale on Saturday gave the curious something to look
at and something to talk about and cost the company a considerable sum of money. The wreck occurred about 7:30 Saturday morning, when a local freight was
shifting some cars on the upper end of the Adamsdale siding at Peale's farm. The engine was pulling out onto the main track when the fast freight hove in sight,
coming at the rate of about thirty miles an hour. Brakes were whistled for and the air was put on, but before the train could be slackened to any perceptible extent
the two engines came together with a crash. In the meantime, however, the local engine had reversed, which was responsible for the fact that both trains were
not broken to pieces.
When the engines whistled for brakes, the train hands, after doing what they could to avert the accident, jumped to the ground and all of them escaped
uninjured. Both engines were so badly smashed up that they had to be sent to Altoona shops for repairs. Several cars were smashed to kindling wood while a
number had their ends stove in. The Mount Carbon and Reading wreck crews labored until the middle of the afternoon before the road was sufficiently cleared
for the passage of trains. In the meantime, passengers were transferred around the wreck and several through cars, of Adams express matter that had to be
hurried to its destination, were sent down attached to P and R trains.
|The Call of October 18, 1901
REMARKABLE NERVE DISPLAYED BY ENGINEER FULLERTON AFTER LOSING HIS FOOT - Fell From His Engine in the Darkness Near Town and
Narrowly Escaped Being Ground to Death Under the Wheels
George Fullerton of Connor's Crossing, a P and R coal train engineer, had his left foot crushed in an accident about five o'clock on Sunday morning that makes his
escape from death very remarkable. While the train was moving southward at a slow speed at a point between Warner's old boat yard and the Red Bridge, a short
distance below this place, Mr. Fullerton climbed out on the foot board to oil the air pump on the fireman's side of the locomotive. While thus engaged his lamp
blew out and in the darkness he made a misstep and fell on the rails in front of the moving train. He was confused as to his bearings by the fall and did not know
in which direction to scramble for safety. The engine struck and rolled him along for some distance before he was pushed aside. His left foot unluckily was
caught under the wheels and crushed. His escape from death was miraculous. Mr. Fullerton by his cries attracted the attention of his fireman, Peter Peiffer, who
brought the train to a standstill. The injured man, unaided climbed to the cab and directing the fireman to uncouple the engine, ran it with his own hand up to
Connor's Crossing. Here he was placed on a stretcher and carried to his home nearby. Mrs. Fullerton, on opening the door and beholding her husband on a
stretcher, was greatly shocked at the sight and screamed frantically, whereupon he jumped up and dashing into the house after his wife, informed her as to the
extent of his injuries.
Dr. James C. Gray of Cressona was summoned, and assisted by his brother, Dr. John M. Gray of Port Carbon, the greater part of the injured member was
amputated. After an improvised operating table had been arranged, Mr. Fullerton, to the astonishment of the physicians, jumped unaided from his bed on it and
underwent the operation. After the physicians had performed their work, to the still greater surprise of those present, he coolly go down from the operating board
and went back to bed. His remarkable display of nerve from the time of the accident has been surprising and is much commented on. At latest accounts, Mr.
Fullerton is getting along very nicely.
|The Call of June 20, 1902
INJURED IN A COLLISION
Fireman Jere Huling of P and R shifter Number 1279 had his collar bone broken, leg injured and was badly shaken up in a head on collision on Monday morning,
near Mine Hill crossing, between his engine and engine Number 511 drawing a supply train bound for Landingville storage yards where a force of special police is
located. Huling was on the tank and the force of the collision threw him violently against the firebox. He is resting comfortably. The damage to the locomotives
will be covered by $75. Several years ago Mr. Huling in a similar accident, had a piece taken out of the calf of one of his legs and skin grafting had to be resorted
to, to induce the injured member to heal.
|At left the trolley heads
south from Pottsville at
Connor's Crossing. Note
the early cars and the
Lehigh Valley Railroad
trestle on the right of the
picture. The trolley photo
at right shows Saint John
Street looking south from
|The Call of February 3, 1905
FOUND A SKELETON
A number of repairmen who are widening the cut near the coal storage yard, found a skeleton of a man who had been buried there. The coffin had almost entirely
rotted away, although some parts of it still remained. The skeleton was complete and probably that of a young man, as the teeth were all there and were perfect.
An old stone farm house used to stand along the Schuylkill Canal, directly opposite where the skeleton was found and it is believed the body was interred in a
private cemetery, as in the olden times a little plot was often set aside on a homestead farm as a family burying ground. Several repairmen drew nails from the
coffin and are keeping them as relics.
|The Call of February 17, 1905
SUNDAY MORNING WRECK
A bad smashup occurred on the P and R near the Main Street crossing at 4:30 o’clock Sunday morning. A loaded coal train was pulling out from the side track at
the “J” office when another came down the main line from Palo Alto, smashing into it and crushing one car at the crossover and pushing another down to the Main
Street crossing, where it was thrown over to the north bound track and scattering its contents over the street. Quite a number of cars were sideswiped and had
to be shopped and one locomotive was badly damaged. Frozen air brakes was given as the cause. The Reading wreckers aided the local crew to clear the tracks.
|The Call of November 19, 1892
SAD DEATH OF HARRY MILLER
Harry Miller, the ten year old boy of Piercion Miller, met with a fatal accident last Friday. He was on his way from the Gas and Water Company’s works and was
walking along the railroad in company of another boy carrying his fathers overcoat. His companion boarded the coal train but he ran along side of the train and
slipped and fell. In some way or other his legs got under the wheels and they were crushed so badly that amputation was necessary in order the boy’s life might
be saved. Dr. Lenker and Dr. Cummings performed the operation. The boy lived through it but the shock was too great and he died a few minutes afterward. His
funeral took place on Tuesday afternoon. The church was crowded with young and old folks who were desirous of paying their last respects to the dead.
Reverend P. C. Croll of Lebanon, formerly pastor of this charge, conducted the services. Interment was in Union Cemetery. Undertaker Ziegenfuse had charge of
the funeral. The pall bearers were John Koch, Milton Knarr, James Hill and William reed. The floral tributes were very fine. A wreath was given by Miss Margaret
Morgan’s school which the deceased attended. Another wreath was given by the Lutheran Sunday School. A white lily and bouquet of roses was given by John
Yereston of Harrisburg, a relative of the family and a sheaf of wheat was given by Miss Hattie McCormick. McCormick.
|The Call of November 25, 1893
IRVIN D. SAYLOR KILLED
Irvin D. Saylor, son of Mr. and Mrs. Charles P. Saylor, met with a sad death on Thursday evening, November 16th. In company with a friend he attempted to board
the caboose of a coal train at the Reading depot. In some mysterious manner he was hurled against the safety gates or a switch signal and had his face crushed
and bruised beyond recognition. He was picked up and carried to the station but lived only a short time after the accident. He was conveyed to his late home with
his parents on Union Street. Undertaker Ziegenfus took charge of the remains and prepared them for burial. The funeral took place on Sunday afternoon. A large
concourse of friends and relatives gathered at the Saylor residence on Union Street, to pay their last tribute and respect to their companion and friend. The
funeral cortege proceeded to the Trinity Mission Evangelical Church where the sermon was preached by Reverend C. D. Drecher. After the services they
proceeded to the Union Cemetery where the remains were laid to res. A large number of the employees of the Tilt Silk Mill at Pottsville, where the deceased had
been employed, attended the funeral in body. Friends were present from Orwigsburg, Hamburg Landingville and Cressona. The floral ovations were a pillow, a
wreath and several bouquets. His companions from town presented a beautiful robe. The pall bearers were Charles Brobst, Reno Helms, Amos Sterner, Charles
Mellot, Charles Sausser and Harry Becker. Irvin was born in Schuylkill Haven and was twenty years old. He attended our public schools and for some time
previous to his death was employed at the Tilt Silk Mill at Pottsville. Mr. Harris, superintendent of that establishment, said of him in a letter to his father:"He was a
good, honest and reliable boy and I had hoped would become a good man." We have known Irvin to be a young man of good moral habits and a favorite among his
companions. His death was a shock to the community and hundreds of his friends turned out at the funeral to do homage to the dead. He leaves his parents, two
brothers, and seven sisters to mourn his untimely death. The family have the sympathy of the community in their sore affliction.
|The Call of July 13, 1895
FRIGHTFULLY MANGLED - The P and R Shops of Town Scene of a Horrible Accident
While in the act of placing a draw bar into a car at the Philadelphia and Reading car shops, Daniel Dailey, aged sixty eight years of Connor's Crossing, was instantly
killed. George Berger aged forty years of town, had one hip hurt and was injured internally, and Frank Schwartz, aged fifty five of town, had both legs fractured.
The men were at work between two large coal cars which were on a side track. Almost opposite to the two cars they jumped the track and ran into the cars which
the men were repairing. Daniel Dailey, who was kneeling down, had his head crushed into a frightful shape. His cheek bones were forced almost together and his
skull crushed. The head was smashed so badly that the face was not recognizable. It is supposed that his head was caught between the bumpers of the cars.
Frank Schwartz and George Berger were thrown under the wheels of the cars and injured as described in this article. Each of the men has a family. The accident
caused quite an excitement in town. Early last evening Berger was reported as dead but it was found to be only a rumor.
|The Call of June 7, 1901
LADS AWFUL EXPERIENCE
The high bridge of the Lehigh Valley Railroad at this place has on several occasions been the scene of some tragic event but none more startling then that which
occurred there shortly before noon last Saturday. Lester, son of Mr. and Mrs. Edward Beck, and Elwin, son of Mr. and Mrs. Frank Bubeck, both of this place,
started to cross this high structure in search of birch on the mountains on the other side. They had gotten to the middle of the bridge, which is nearly one
hundred feet high at that point, when the local freight rounded the curve. It was impossible to stop the train in time and the engineer blew a warning blast. By
great presence of mind each boy dropped to the edge of the trestle and swung a leg over a four by four inch binder which runs along the edge of the sills to keep
them in place. They leaned back as far as possible as the train rushed by and thus saved their lives but the close proximity of their heads to the wheels can be
imagined when it is stated that the oil boxes of the cars grazed the lads heads. The train stopped a short distance beyond and the crew rushed back to rescue the
brave lads from their perilous position. They were very faint from their awful experience and had to be carried on the train to the opposite side of the bridge. It is
needless to say the lads discontinued their search for birch and made a dash for home. The story seems almost incredulous but is stated to be authentic by
reliable and responsible parties who were near the scene at the time.
|The Call of September 14, 1900
IMPROVEMENTS AT THE STORAGE YARDS
The P and R Coal and Iron Company have a large force of workmen engaged in making extensive improvements at their storage yards between this place and
Landingville. New partitions which require a large amount of lumber and labor are being erected between the bins and six new water tanks, used for purifying the
water for the boilers, are also being constructed. Two new dwelling houses are being erected on the premises and will be occupied by employees at the yards.
Other small but needed improvements are being made. There is not much dumping or loading of coal at present.
|The Call of August 10, 1900
ACCIDENT AT THE STORAGE YARDS
Daniel Longlow, residing on Canal Street this place, an employee at the coal; storage yards,had a narrow escape from death on Wednesday afternoon while at
work. He had gone up the slope to roll a heavy log down and had started one when a second followed and rolled upon him. Luckily he was at the end of the log
which knocked him down and passed over his legs only, badly bruising and spraining them. He was unconscious up to the time he was placed upon the engine
which brought him to the Williams Street crossing, from which place he was carried to his home, where he is now confined to bed. Dr. C. Lenker was summoned
and rendered the necessary medical attention.
|The Call of December 25, 1897
KILLED AT THE SHUTES – A Railroader Meets His Death Between the Cars
All the happiness of the Christmas holidays was driven out of the home of Charles Kirkpatrick, when the intelligence was received on Wednesday night, that the
husband and father, who had gone to work but a short time before, now lay cold in death, snatched away almost in a twinkling of an eye, without a chance of
bidding farewell to those he loved, while performing his usual duties. Mr. Kirkpatrick was employed as a brakeman on the engine known as the shute engine
used at the storage yard. On Wednesday night at about ten o’clock, while in the act of catching cars, he was caught between the bumpers and instantly killed. The
body was taken on board the engine and conveyed to the P and R depot where it was given in charge of Undertaker Wagner, who prepared the body for burial,
after which it was taken to the home of the sorrowing family. He was thirty eight years of age and has been a resident of Haven Street, Spring Garden for a
number of years. In his death the community loses an exemplary and respected citizen and the company of one of its most faithful and efficient employees. He
leaves a wife and family of six children to mourn his untimely death. The funeral will take place on Monday afternoon from his late residence on Haven Street,
after which services will be held at Saint Matthew’s Lutheran Church. Interment will be made in Union Cemetery. He was a member of the Rainbow Hose
Company, which organization will attend the funeral in a body. body.
|The Call of January 25, 1901
MET WITH UNFORTUNATE EVENING
Harry A. Reber, residing on Main Street this borough, was the victim of a very unfortunate accident at Cressona on Tuesday morning at 3:30 o'clock. Mr. Reber is a
brakeman on a coal train on the P and R road and while engaged in fixing a leak in the air pipe between the second and third cars to the rear of the engine, the
train, without any signal from the engineer, started to move backward. Mr. Reber had his left hand resting on the bumpers at the time and the middle and third
fingers were caught and held there while the whole train was pushed back a distance of about twenty feet, he being compelled to keep pace with the cars as they
moved along. The tremendous pressure against the fingers crushed them into a horrible mass. Dr. W. Gray was summoned and at first it was thought amputation
would be necessary. A more thorough examination showed hat the bones of one finger only were broken. Mr. Reber is getting along as nicely as can be
expected but of course will be unable to work for some time.
|The Call of July 21, 1900
KILLED ON THE RAILROAD
Michael Angelo Costanzo, a laborer on the repair force of the Philadelphia and Reading Railroad, was instantly killed while at work on Tuesday afternoon, a short
distance below this place. The accident occurred north of McCormick's bridge. Costanzo had gotten out of the way of an approaching south bound coal train and
was walking up the north bound track in an unconcerned manner. Owing to the noise of the passing coal train he did not hear the approach of the passenger
train due at this station at 1:07 o'clock, which came rushing along and struck him. The bumper of the engine caught him, hurled his body in the air and over a
steep embankment forty feet high. His body landed on a pile of stones and when picked up every bone in his body was broken and his brains were oozing out of a
whole in his skull. The remains were taken to Pottsville on the same train that struck him and were later removed to his boarding place at Fishbach. The
unfortunate man was twenty seven years of age and was a carpenter by trade, but being unable to speak English he was unsuccessful in securing employment at
his occupation and got work on the railroad. He is survived by his wife and two children, whom he left in Italy four months ago. ago.
|The Call of January 1, 1898
STRUCK BY AN ENGINE
Miss Bertha Clemens, who is living with the family of Cornelius Becker on High Street, was severely injured by being tossed out of a carriage at the Union Street
crossing, by a light P and R engine on Sunday night. She had spent the day with her parents at Pinegrove and was on her way home from that place, accompanied
by Aaron Detweiler, when the accident occurred. The view was obstructed by a number of freight cars and the engine came upon them unexpectedly. The
carriage was mashed into splinters and the occupants tossed a distance of twenty feet. The young lady was taken to a nearby residence and later to the home of
Mr. Becker. She remained in an unconscious state until Monday noon and for a time her life was despaired of. Her condition at the present time is much better.
Mr. Detweiler escaped with a few painful bruises.
|The Call of January 18, 1901
SUIT AGAINST P AND R COMPANY FOR DAMAGES
The case of Miss Bertha Clemens of this place against the Philadelphia and reading Railway Company was called for January 15th at Philadelphia, but was not
heard, it being deferred to a later date. The case originated from injuries alleged to have been received by Miss Clemens by being struck by a locomotive on
Sunday evening, December 26th, 1897. On that evening between nine and ten o'clock, while returning from a drive in company of Aaron B. Detweiler, the carriage
was struck by a south bound locomotive drawing only a caboose at the Union Street crossing, this place. Miss Clemens was pitched into the air and landed on her
head some distance away. When picked up she was unconscious and continued in that state for some time. She was removed to the Pottsville Hospital where she
was given treatment for a number of weeks. Mr. Detweiler also received slight injuries. The carriage was completely wrecked. It is stated that cars, which
completely hid a view of the tracks, were standing on the siding and that no watchman was stationed at the crossing.
|The next two articles are related. A woman is struck by a Reading train and sues for damages three years later...
|The Call of October 23, 1897
DEATH ON THE RAILS – Two of Our Railroaders Lose Their Lives on the Railroad During the Week
a brakeman and it is supposed that he slipped while in the act of putting on the brakes. As he was wearing a new pair of shoes this may account for his falling
from the train. The young man had been working on the railroad but a short time and this was his first week on the main line. He was about twenty four years of
age and unmarried. The parents and John B. Garrigan, a well known young man of town, was instantly killed early Sunday morning near Port Kennedy. He was
family who survive have the sympathy of the community in this loss of a member of their household. His funeral took place on Wednesday morning. The young
man was very popular as was shown by the vast concourse of relatives and friends in attendance. High mass was celebrated in Saint Ambrose Church and
interment was made in Saint Ambrose Cemetery.
Bernard S. Carr Sr., the second victim, was killed on Wednesday morning about two o’clock, by the Buffalo express a short distance above Auburn. He was a
flagman on Engine 877, running between Cressona and Reading, and it is supposed that while in the rear of his train guarding track, he sat on the rail of the north
bound track and fell asleep, having had several shifts without any rest. He was about fifty two years of age and leaves a wife and large family to mourn his loss.
He had just been transferred from the yard engine at Cressona to this crew, this being his third trip on this run. He was well known as a reliable and trustworthy
railroader, and was held in high esteem by both his employers and his fellow employees. employees.
|The Call of November 20, 1897
KILLED ON THE RAILROADS
Willie Cavanaugh, a lad about fourteen years of age, with a companion, was riding a coal train on Friday afternoon and as is the result in so many cases, had both
legs crushed beneath the wheels near Connor’s Crossing. He was taken to his home in Pottsville where he lingered until about midnight when he passed away.
The funeral took place Monday morning. Mass was celebrated by Reverend F. J. McGovern at Saint Patrick’s Catholic Church. The pupils of the school which he
attended were present in a body. body.
|This striking image
shows, what was at
the time, the new
station at Schuylkill
very much as it
does today as our
|The Call of July 19, 1901
TROLLEY CAR AFFECTED BLOCK SIGNAL
The discovery was recently made that the trolley cars in town affected the block signal on the P and R Railway near the depot. The change of the boards without
any train making its appearance was repeatedly noticed and watched until the strange workings of the signal were associated with the running of the cars. When
there was no train in the block, with the start of the trolley car at the corner of Main and Saint John Streets the boards in the signal would be turned to white from
red and green. When the car was stopped at the Saint Peter Street crossing, the boards would return to their original colors, but immediately when the car started
they would again change to white. Expert electricians of the company were called to examine the peculiar performance of the signals and it is believed they have
discovered and remedied the trouble, which it is said, was caused by escaping current from the trolley passing through the ground and disturbing or effecting the
magnets in the signals.
|The Call of June 21, 1901
LIGHTNING STRIKES TROLLEY CAR
During the storm on Wednesday evening the trolley car from Pottsville due at this place at six o'clock, filled with passengers, was struck by a bolt of lightning near
the turnout. The car caught fire at both ends and for a time the greatest excitement prevailed. Some of the passengers were badly frightened and jumping from
the car ran into the street. A North Ward merchant, who was aboard the car at the time had his ankle slightly injured. The car was badly damaged.
|The Call of August 8, 1902
Edward Gehrig, an employee at the P and R storage yards met with a severe accident Friday. He was stepping over some rapidly moving belts at the building in
which the coal is cleaned and had a block and tackle over his left shoulder, when the hook of the tackle caught in the belt and in an instant he was thrown against
a heavy railing, which gave way and he fell to the wharf twenty feet below. His head and back were seriously injured and several ribs were broken. He was
removed to his home here and at this writing is well on the way to recovery.
|The Call of September 23, 1899
DEATH OF SAMUEL REPPHARD
The terrible accident that happened to Samuel Repphard last Monday night occasioned universal sadness and sorrow, more so on account of his being a dutiful
son and principal support of a widowed mother. He was employed at the storage yard, unloading coal cars, when by a jar from another car bumping into the one
he was on, threw him off and he fell across the tracks and before he could recover, the wheels passed over both legs above the knees completely severing them
from the body. He was taken to the Pottsville Hospital but from loss of blood and the severe shock, he died during the night. His funeral will take place Saturday
at 1:30 p. m. from the residence of his sister, Mrs. Clarence Sterner of Haven Street. After interment the funeral sermon will be preached by Reverend Mutch of
the United Brethren Church in Saint Matthew's Lutheran Church on Dock Street.
|The Call of September 20, 1901
CAR SHOP EMPLOYEE DISCHARGED FOR ALLEGED OFFENSIVE REMARKS
Morris Schneck, of Cressona, employed at the local P and R car shops, was discharged from the service of the company on Monday, because it is alleged, he
made remarks concerning the assassination of President McKinley that were of a very offensive character. It appears however, that only one of the bystanders
asserts that Mr. Schneck uttered the words attributed to him. Other workmen, including the foreman of the department in which Schneck worked, say that what he
did say was of an entirely different tone. That he would have uttered the offensive words would appear strange from the fact that he is a stalwart Republican and
twice voted for McKinley. David Runkle, foreman of the shops, stated in an interview that nobody but himself and the company knows the reason for Mr.
Schneck's discharge. However, the general supposition is that he was discharged for the alleged offensive remarks.
|The Call of March 4, 1899
ANDY SCHWILK ASSAULTED
Andrew Schwilk, so well known by every citizen of town and particularly liked by the traveling public over the Reading Railroad as an accommodating and self
sacrificing official at the depot as night watchman, was attacked by two men supposed to be tramps last Saturday and by one of them knocked down. Had any
parties been near to assist Andy, they would have been captured and taught a lesson, but they escaped by running up the railroad and were lost sight of near the
Mine Hill crossing. Andy recognize his assailant however, and fully described him to the police. On Thursday Mr. David Jenkins, a prominent Coal and Iron
policeman, brought before Squire Goas the supposed assailant. His name was James McNeill and he hails from Port Carbon where he lives with his mother and
works at Eagle Hill Colliery. As soon as Mr. Schwilk saw him at the Squire's office, he said, "That's the man who struck me." McNeill plead not guilty and in default
of bail was put up in Fort Levan to await trial at court.
|The Call of March 18, 1899
IT WAS SUCH A FRIENDLY LAUGH
John McNeill pleaded guilty to assault and battery yesterday before Judge Bechtel. Andrew Schwilk, night watchman at the P & R station was the prosecutor and
when he took the stand to state the fact sin the case he created considerable had warned a crowd of intruders away from the station. In answer to Mr. Whalen's
questions, he said, referring to McNeill, "He laughed in my face and it was such a friendly laugh that I did not think He was going to strike me. The next thing he
knocked me down and loosened my teeth. He didn't strike me but once. That was enough." For his friendly laugh and other things, Judge Bechtel sentenced
McNeill to pay the costs, a five dollar fine and serve four months.
|The next two articles relate the story of an assault on a Reading Railroad employee and the subsequent legal proceedings....
|The Call of March 9, 1906
LEG CUT OFF
Last Friday night, Thomas Carr of Schuylkill Haven, a brakeman employed by the P and R Company, had his left leg cut off weeks, was in the act of uncoupling one
car from another. He was leaning out over the side of a large "battleship" as the cars are termed, when an oncoming train on the west track knocked him beneath
the wheels of his own train. A car passed over his leg just below the knee, horribly mangling it. He was picked up in a semi unconscious condition. Dr. Frank
McWilliams was summoned, who dressed the injury temporarily and accompanied the injured man to the Pottsville Hospital on a special train. The injured leg had
to be amputated. Carr is nineteen years of age and is a son of Mr. and Mrs. John Carr. His father is a well known railroader.
|The Call of March 16, 1906
A NARROW ESCAPE
Englebert Geiger, one of our oldest citizens, had a narrow escape from a horrible death on Monday morning. Mr. Geiger was on his way up town and when he
reached the Main Street P and R crossing, the gates were down to let the "Flyer" pass. Thinking he could get by before the train, Mr. Geiger went around the
gates and was just in the act of stepping across the rails when the train came along and one of the cylinders of the big locomotive struck him and threw him clear
of the tracks. Landlord John Binckley and John Zulick, who were eyewitnesses to the accident rushed to Mr. Geiger's assistance. They picked him up and found
him uninjured. He was somewhat dazed but recovered in a moment and went on his way.
|The Call of March 23, 1906
FATAL ACCIDENT AT MINE HILL
By the collision at Mine Hill crossing of Storage Yard Engine Number 93 going south and an empty coal train bound north about 8:30 o'clock last evening, Engineer
William Stauffer of the storage yard engine was fatally injured and both locomotives were badly dismantled. The collision occurred at a frog which threw the two
engines together so that they sideswiped each other. Mr. Stauffer's engine was struck on the right side and the cab was completely torn off. Mr. Stauffer was
crushed in the wreckage and badly scalded from steam from a broken pipe. He also inhaled steam. The within a couple of hours time. Immediately after the wreck
Dr. Frank McWilliams of town and Dr. James C. Gray of Cressona were summoned. Dr. McWilliams arrived first and administered temporary relief to Engineer
Stauffer and Dr. Gray came shortly afternoon a special car and removed the injured man to his home at Cressona where he died at two o'clock this morning,
having never regained consciousness. Mr. Stauffer was forty eight years of age and is survived by his wife and two sons, Harry who is employed at the P. and R.
Cressona office and William, a telegraph operator at West Woods.
|The Call of June 1, 1906
SUIT TO RECOVER BENEFITS
The suit in which Francis Binckley of Schuylkill Haven seeks to recover $1000 in damages
from the P. & R.
Railway Company for the death of his son, John D., who
was fatally injured on the Mine Hill Railroad at Schuylkill 1893, while in the performance of
his duties as brakeman was tried in Court this week before Judge Marr. The suit is to
recover the amount the deceased was entitled to as a member of the Relief Association,
and which the company refused to pay on the alleged drink when injured. This the plaintiff
denies. Honorable C. N. Brumm, G. W. Gise and W. F. Shepherd represented the plaintiff
and John F. Whalen the defendant.
|The Call of September 28, 1906
BINCKLEY CASE CONTINUES
The case of Francis Binckley against the P. & R. Relief Association
and in which a disagreement was rendered some months ago is again
on trial in court, a new trial having been granted. The case is to
recover $600 with interest, a death claim with interest making the total
|The following articles involve an accident on the
Reading Railroad and the subsequent legal wrangling...
|The Call of March 8, 1907
THREE FATALITIES IN ONE WEEK
There were three fatalities on the railroads in this vicinity last week, Harry Zimmerman of Dormers, a P. & R. brakeman fell from his train beneath the wheels and
was ground to pieces at Mine Hill crossing. Anthony Wrda, an Italian employed at the storage yard, was struck and killed near the Union Knitting Mills, W. P.
Richards, of Pottsville, a Pennsy fireman, got off his train to go back with a flag at a point opposite Connor's and was struck by the flyer and killed.
|The Call of April 10, 1903
ENLARGING STORAGE YARD
An Italian padrone last week took three hundred of his countrymen down to the coal storage yard below town where they started the work of enlarging that plant.
The yard's capacity is to be more than doubled and when completed will hold a million tons of coal in storage. During the slack coal selling season this summer
the P and R Company intends to fill the yard to its utmost capacity. It is said that it will hereafter be the policy of the coal companies to keep all their storage yards
filled and to use the stock only in case of strike or emergency.
|The Call of June 12, 1903
A NARROW ESCAPE
Will Riley, water boy at the coal storage yards, had a narrow escape from serious injury the other day. He was working along the trestle work on the dump carrying
two buckets of water attached to a yoke, when he slipped between the ties and was only saved from a drop of about seventy feet by the yoke, which caught on the
ties. He hung in midair until help arrived but suffered no inconvenience from the experience except a thorough dunking, the contents of the buckets having
drenched him to the skin.
|The Call of September 30, 1904
LEG CRUSHED BY COAL CARS
Stephen Cole of Landingville, who is employed at the P and R storage yards, had his leg badly crushed below the knee Wednesday afternoon, which necessitated
its amputation. He was riding to Schuylkill Haven on a trip of empty cars and when in front of the P and R station he slipped in getting off and fell with his one leg
across the rail. Before he could withdraw the limb it was caught by the wheels and badly crushed. Harry Coldren, who has charge of the freight house, saw the
man fall and rushed to his assistance and dragged him from the track. An engine which had come up from Reading on a trial trip was pressed into service and the
injured man was taken to the Pottsville Hospital. Dr. Harry Dechert temporarily dressed the injury before the man was taken to Pottsville.
|The Call of September 28, 1906
BOTH LEGS CUT OFF
A runaway draft of cars at the storage yard on Tuesday afternoon crashed into the yard engine, made a bad wreck, and injured two men; R. W. Wertz of Cressona,
the fireman, and John Confehr of town, a brakeman. So great was the force of the collision that the locomotive was lifted up onto the tender and was badly
wrecked, while some of the runaway cars were reduced to kindling wood. Fireman Wertz was sitting on the tank of the engine and was caught in the wreckage
and had both legs practically twisted off. A relief train went down from here bearing Dr. C. Lenker and Reverend D. M. Moser. Fireman Wertz was removed to
Pottsville Hospital and brakeman Confehr to his home here and was taken charge by Dr. Lessig. His injuries consist of a cut on the head, bruised shoulder and
|The Call of January 25, 1907
LIFE CRUSHED OUT
William Martin, aged twenty one years, was instantly killed Wednesday morning at the storage yards of the P. and R. Company by being squeezed between cars.
Deceased was a resident of Danville. He boarded at Cressona. The body was removed to the rooms of Undertaker McHenry and was later shipped to the home of
his parents in Danville. Deputy Coroner Gray held an inquest and the jury formed a verdict in accordance with the facts.
|The Call of April 10, 1903
KILLED BY PENNSY "FLYER"
Antonio Tutz, an Italian employed as a track repairer on the Pennsylvania Railroad, was instantly killed by the Pennsylvania Railroad "flyer" Saturday afternoon.
The man was at work and owing to the high wind did not hear the train until it was close upon him. He was struck by the engine and killed instantly. He just lived
below town and was about forty years old. Dr. Dechert, the deputy coroner, empanelled the following jury which rendered a verdict of accidental death: C. W.
Horning, G. H. Alspach, Samuel Siegfried, B. W. Farley, John Mourie and Ellis Nyce.
|The Call of July 14, 1905
LOST HIS FOOT
Robert Reber, six year old son of Robert Reber of Spring Garden, had his right foot taken off by the freight train at the Pennsy station Tuesday afternoon. The
afternoon freight going north was on the siding to allow the 5:22 p. m. accommodation train from Philadelphia to go by. After the passenger train had gone, the
freight pulled out and young Reber and his companions ran along side of the train tagging the cars. Reber tripped over a switch lever, fell headlong to the
ground and rolled to one side throwing his right leg over the rail where it was instantly crushed beneath the wheels of the rapidly moving train. The train was
stopped and Dr. J. A. Lessig was summoned. He dressed the lads injuries and sent him on the freight train to the Pottsville Hospital where the leg was amputated
below the knee.
|The Call of June 15, 1906
The Orwigsburg trolley car which left Schuylkill Haven at eleven o'clock Monday morning jumped the track at the school house about a mile below town.
Motorman Sowers, who had charge of the car, had his arm broken in two places and was later whose name could not be learned, a commercial traveler, was
thrown off the car into the Schuylkill River and escaped with a complete drenching. The scene of the accident is on a curve at the foot of a steep incline and it is
later removed to the Pottsville Hospital. Conductor Quinn had his back injured but declined to go to the hospital. A Traffic on the Orwigsburg line was at a
standstill for the balance of the day, owing principally to the fact that one of the passenger whose name could not be learned, a commercial traveler, was thrown
off the car into the Schuylkill River and Schuylkill Haven to Pottsville cars picked a switch at Seven Stars turnout and had to be replaced on the tracks before the
wreck crew could get down to the submerged car. In the meantime the other Orwigsburg car had to run between Schuylkill Haven and Seven Stars where
passengers to and from Pottsville were transferred.
|The Call of April 18, 1913
NARROWLY ESCAPED BEING CRUSHED
John Devan,of Schuylkill Haven, employed at the P and R car shops had a narrow escape from being crushed to death Friday afternoon. Mr. Devan was at work
neath a heavy wooden car which was supported by stilts. He happened to be the only workman of the gang that was neath the car. While at work Mr. Devan had
sort of a premonition or idea that he had better get from under the car, he paid no attention to the same and continued his work. Again he received a sort of
definite reason why he did so. Hardly had he crawled from neath the heavy car when a crash that could be heard for some distance, the car dropped to the
platform. Fellow employees and foremen for a while turned pale and stood aghast, others hurried from the scene, all being of the opinion Mr. Devan was crushed
to death under the car. The suspense was terrible and just as one of the men was about to make an investigation, Mr. Devan walked around the car from the
other side to which he had crawled but a moment before and dispelled the fears of his fellow workmen. Several employees were so wrought up over the
occurrence that it was with difficulty they continued at their work. As might be expected, Mr. Devan having such a close call from death was also badly scared and
he discontinued for the day.
|The Call of May 9, 1913
HAD NARROW ESCAPE
Monday morning about 11:45 o'clock two children of a foreign family residing on "Goat Hill' returning from school had a narrow escape from being run down with
the 11:26 south bound passenger train. The children walked along the north bound tracks for a distance of about eighty feet and stepping across the tracks as
the north bound P and R train passed them when they were on the railroad bridge, stepped directly in the path of the south bound train. The engineer blew a
sharp blast, applied his brakes and turned his head away expecting that he would hit them. Bystanders attracted by the sharp and sudden blast of the engine
looked in the direction of the train and shuddered as they saw the narrow escape the children had from being ground to pieces. The escape certainly was a
|The Call of May 16, 1913
KILLED ON THE RAIL
Clarence Irwing, better known as "Patsy", a young man twenty one years of age, was instantly killed at Mine Hill crossing, early Thursday morning, by stepping in
front of Engine 890 on which he was working. His neck was broken and he was Pottsville, from which place it was taken to his home in Newton. "Patsy's" stay in
Cressona was short. He came here last summer as a pitcher on the Tiger's baseball team and later secured a position on the railroad and then made his home
here. His bosom friend, William Leininger, with whom he came here last year, was one of the first men to arrive on the scene of the accident. He saw a lamp fly
and immediately knew that something was wrong and later discovered that his friend was the victim of the sad accident. The funeral services will be held at
Newton on Sunday. A special train will be run from here, the crew of which are all men who offered their services. A sad part of the accident was the fact that he
was to have been tried out on the Athletic baseball team of the American League on the twenty sixth of this month, to which time he was anxiously looking forward.
The news of the sad accident spread about the town like wild fire and many were the expressions of sorrow made by his innumerable friends here. He was known
to everyone in town and was highly esteemed. Besides the parents several sisters survive. The accident occurred in one of those unlooked for and
unpreventable ways. Irwing was walking along the track while a train was passing on the opposite track. He failed to hear the approach of his own engine until
too late to reach a place of safety. The picture of the deceased given here is taken from a picture of the Cressona ball team of last year on which he was an
invaluable member. On account of the late date it was impossible to have the same properly enlarged. W. Leininger, whose picture is also shown to the left of
Manager William Grover, who occupies the center, was the close friend of Irwing, he secured him a berth on the Cressona team and a position in our town. He
was also an eyewitness to the terrible accident.
|The Call of July 31, 1914
AUTO STRUCK BY TROLLEY
Monday morning an automobile owned by a Pottsville party was struck by the 10:30 trolley as it rounded the curve at the corner of Main and Dock Streets. The
driver of the machine was too close to the track and when the rear end of the car swung around the curve it smashed into the running board and mud guard of
the machine, damaging it to quite some extent. The machine was a brand new seven passenger car. Either the driver of the car was on the wrong hand side of the
street or the motorman, as is very often the case, did not sound the alarm until at the curve.
|The Call of August 21, 1914
TROLLEY INJURES TOWN MAN
Wednesday evening after alighting from the five o'clock car, corner of Main and Saint John streets, Frank Reed of Union Street began to walk alongside of the car
on his way towards Saint John Street. The car started and in rounding the curve the rear end swung around and struck Mr. Reed. He was thrown to the bricked
street and fell upon his dinner can. As the car swung, the step went over him pinning him upon the dinner pail. He was picked up and taken to his home. He is
unable to go to work.
|The Call of September 15, 1916
AUTO AND TROLLEY COLLIDE
An auto owned by Thomas Stauffer of Friedensburg and a trolley car in charge of motorman Thomas McGovern and conductor Oscar Bicht, figured in a collision
yesterday morning at Hoy's corner. The auto occupied by Mrs. Stauffer, Miss Stauffer and Miss Mae Berger attempted to pass between the car and a telephone
pole while both were in motion. Any other car but a Ford car would have been crushed beyond repair, but after the trolley was backed, the "little Ford ran along",
although the body and fenders were badly damaged. The occupants of the auto, although badly scared, escaped injury. They were coming from Friedensburg and
intended on leaving the car here while they went to the Reading Fair. The car was taken to Bittler's garage for repairs.
|The Call of June 11, 1915
WOMAN FALLS FROM LEHIGH VALLEY RAILROAD BRIDGE
This morning about eleven o'clock, an unknown woman fell or jumped from the Lehigh Valley Railroad bridge near Connor's Crossing to the state road below, a
distance of over one hundred feet. She fell directly in front of the auto truck of Guy Payne of Pottsville, enroute to Pottsville on the state road. The body was
placed in the truck and brought to Schuylkill Haven. Dr. A. H. Detweiler made a hasty examination and advised her immediate removal to the Pottsville Hospital.
Her condition was such that it was thought she would hardly be alive when the institution was reached.
The woman was attired in black and appeared to be of foreign nationality. Passengers on the trolley leaving Schuylkill Haven at 10:30 noticed the woman on the
bridge and remarked it was a very dangerous place for her. Reports from the hospital shortly before going to press were to the effect that very slight hopes were
entertained for her recovery. She states her name is Anne Schwenck. She suffers from profound shock, severe fractures of the right arm and right leg and
internal injuries. Later reports are to the effect that the woman is Miss Anne Geschwindt of Garfield Avenue. Her relatives while they at this writing had not
viewed the body, they feel sure from the description given and from the fact that she is missing from her home, that it is she.
|The Call of August 20, 1915
TRAIN STRIKES AUTO OF MRS. RALPH DEIBERT
The Lehigh Valley train due in Schuylkill Haven at 11:30, while backing from the Lehigh tracks to the Pennsylvania tracks near the Almshouse, on the road to
Orwigsburg, struck the auto of Mrs. Ralph Deibert this morning. A serious and fatal accident was averted by the narrowest margin. The machine was struck by the
step of the lead passenger coach and had it been making a fair rate of speed the occupants of the machine would surely been killed or injured. The train pushed
aside the machine but badly damaged it, breaking the two front wheels, the windshield, the springs, top and hood. It is almost a complete wreck.
The accident was witnessed by Mr. Lewis Hoy who was approaching the crossing but hearing the alarm of the air whistle stopped his truck thinking the train was
close at hand. Just as he brought his truck to a stop Mrs. Deibert, who evidently failed to hear the whistle, passed him and just as the machine reached the tracks
the rear of the train came around the curve. Before she could cross the rear of the train had caused the above damage, Mrs. Deibert and the occupants of the
machine suffered considerably from shock.
|The Call of July 21, 1916
CRESSONA GIRL ASSAULTED
A girl by the name of Sticher, residing at Cressona, was the victim of an attempted criminal assault on Wednesday evening last. The attempted assault occurred
but a short distance above the "J" office in town. According to the reports, the girl had been to Pottsville and came to Schuylkill Haven on the jitney arriving here
shortly before eleven o'clock. She started to walk up the railroad and when near the above mentioned spot was accosted by the man who sprang out from the
side of a car and caught hold of her. Miss Sticher put up a brave fight and succeeded in tearing herself away from the man. Calling at the top of her voice she ran
across the bridge to the Main Street crossing.
Her cries of "murder, tramps", were heard as far as Saint Peter Street. Men rushed from saloons and private homes to answer the appeal for help. The girl was
found in a highly nervous condition and hardly able to make known her adventure. Her hair was disarranged and her clothing torn. Search was made for the man
but he had carefully covered his tracks and disappeared. Several bystanders volunteered to accompany the girl home which they did.
|The Call of July 17, 1914
"FLYER" KILLS ASSISTANT FOREMAN
John Bojack, a foreigner residing on "Goat Hill" was killed Thursday morning just above the Mine Hill crossing. A work gang was operating on this section of
track. Upon the approach of the "flyer", the men left the track. One of the men left a jack sticking in under the track. Bojack noticing it endeavored to get it out
before the train reached the point, but misjudging the speed with which the train was approaching could not get out of the way in time. The train hit the jack and
the jack in turn struck Bojack a terrific blow of the back of the head crushing in the entire upper portion of his skull. He was hurried to his home on the hill nearby
and Dr. Heim summoned. Upon the arrival of the physician he pronounced life extinct, death having occurred almost immediately after being struck.
Bojack was an unusual character. He was a most esteemed citizen being enabled to talk English very fluently. He was a valuable employee of the P and R
Company and considered and held in high honor by his fellow countrymen not only in this town but in the surrounding towns. He was of a quiet disposition, law
abiding and when his fellow countrymen occasionally became boisterous or unruly, his influence over them almost immediately pacified them. His sudden death
has caused great sorrow among his fellow workmen and the residents of "Goat Hill". Members of the gang in which he worked discontinued their labors upon
learning of his death and it is probable they will refrain from work until after his burial. Besides the grief stricken widow, six children, three boys and three girls
|The Call of January 16, 1914
ARRESTED FOR LOAFING
That the Philadelphia and Reading will insist that the continual loafing and loitering at the local station must be stopped was very forcibly demonstrated upon a
number of the town's young men last Saturday afternoon. Five were taken in tow by Officer Butz upon complaint of the P and R officials and placed in the borough
coop. They were compelled to remain in the coop for several hours or until Officer Duffy of the P and R company arrived in town to make or bring the charges.
The hearing was held before squire C. A. Moyer Saturday evening. The boys were paid and made to pay the cost. Total amount paid by each one was three
dollars. A fair warning is issued by the P and R company that all persons hereafter caught loitering or loafing in or about the local station will be dealt with
according to the law.
|The Call of January 16, 1914
HAD NARROW ESCAPE FROM DEATH
Edward Eiler, conductor of a main line P and R freight, had a narrow escape from being ground to pieces by his own train the latter part of last week. In an attempt
to jump on the engine of his train his foot slipped on the step and he fell heavily to the side of the tracks,missing falling neath the train by the narrowest margin.
He sustained a badly wrenched back, a torn ligament in his leg and a number of body bruises. He continued in his work until "down the road" a good distance
when he consulted a physician who advised his immediate removal to his home. His condition is much improved.
|The Call of April 2, 1909
ORPHAN STRUCK BY TRAIN
John Martin, an orphan boy aged about sixteen years, was run over by a shifting engine at the "J" office late Saturday afternoon and had the bones and flesh of
his right foot crushed and splintered. The lad recently accepted a position with William Ball at his Main Street meat market and was very well liked by his employer
and patrons. About four o'clock Haven. At the "J" office he attempted to board the shifter to ride part way to his home and missing his step his foot landed on the
rail and in a moment was crushed to a shapeless mass at the instep. The lad was removed to Pottsville Hospital where the injured limb was amputated above the
|The Call of February 9, 1917
CAR OF DYNAMITE IN WRECK
A slight wreck occurred Tuesday morning about three o'clock on the Mine Hill Railroad, about midway between Cressona and Mine Hill crossing. An engine,
running tank first, with a caboose attached, ran into a number of cars that had been thrown on the main track by a shifter. Fortunately no one was injured as
several of the crew riding in the caboose jumped before it was reduced to kindling wood in the crash. It is said that in the train of cars that was run into, was a
car loaded with dynamite, more than sufficient to blow up the entire town of Cressona. The wreck car from Palo Alto was brought down and by noon the wreck was
cleared away. The cause of the accident is unknown.
|The Call of February 9, 1917
KILLED AT MINE HILL CROSSING
Injuries received during the severe storm of Monday morning, proved fatal for Tony Zingo of town, less then a half hour following the accident. Tony, with a
number of his fellow countrymen, were at work at about 6:30 o'clock cleaning the switches of snow at Mine Hill crossing. His cap was pulled down over his ears
and he did not hear the approach of a shifting engine. He was struck and knocked down, his body falling face downward on the outside of the rails and his legs
between the rails. The wheels of the engine passed over him, severing both legs at the ankle, then rolling the body and again passing over both legs between
the knee and the hip. He was discovered by his fellow countrymen and carried to one of the offices. No time was lost placing him on a stretcher and then in a
caboose and he was rushed to the Pottsville Hospital. The ambulance was at the Pottsville station awaiting the arrival of the injured man but when he was about
to be removed, the ambulance physician discovered that he was dead.
The body was then brought back to Schuylkill Haven and taken in charge by O. A. Bittle. At the morgue it was washed and prepared for burial before being taken
to his home in the West Ward. Zingo has been a resident of Schuylkill Haven for the past fifteen years or more. For a time he was employed at the Reading shops
but sometime ago accepted a position as track walker under William Breininger. He leaves to survive a widow and five children, in town, and one sister living in
Hazleton. The widow is about to become a mother and it is feared that the shock of her husband's death may result seriously with her. Zingo was well known
about the town and well liked by both his own nationality and others.
|The Call of February 22, 1918
TICKET AGENT STOPS RUNAWAY GIRL
Ticket agent Howard W. Stager played the part of a Sherlock Holmes on Sunday night. He was given a meager description of a sixteen year old high school girl of
Williamstown, said to be Anna Ralph and who was supposed to be headed this way and was on her way to Philadelphia. When the Mine Hill passenger train pulled
into the local station, Mr. Stager accosted the young lady and called her by name. He invited her into the ticket office where he made her believe that she was
being watched by an officer and she should make no attempt to escape. The girl burst into tears, until her relatives at Williamstown were communicated with.
Upon her promise to return home, the girl was taken to the Holmhurst where she remained until Monday morning and then boarded the first train for
Williamstown. It is said that the girl left home on account of a family misunderstanding.
|The Call of June 29, 1917
FRACTURED FOOT TO SAVE LIFE
Fracturing his foot to save his life, was the experience of William H. Hoover of Hegins, who for sometime past has been a resident of Schuylkill Haven, stopping at
the Columbia Hotel. Hoover is employed at the storage yard. This week he was at work on a high trestle when he accidentally fell and landed in a chute. Feet first
he was going rapidly down the chute to an opening that would have allowed him to drop a distance of nearly fifty feet to rocks below. With presence of mind, he
placed his foot against a cross piece just at the opening and saved himself from the fall. The sudden stop resulted in the fracturing of his foot at the ankle. He
was brought to town where a local physician dressed the injury when he was removed to his home.
|The Call of January 26, 1917
TROLLEY AND GROCERY TEAM COLLIDE
The 8:30 trolley bound for Orwigsburg struck the green grocery team of W. J. Fisher near the Baker Ice Plant on Friday morning. Both Mr. Fisher and his driver
were thrown out, the horse injured and the wagon badly damaged. The milk team driven by Lester Bowen, being in the vicinity of the accident, took fright and ran
away and was not caught until it reached Fairmount. Several fences were knocked down by the Bowen team and a number of other collisions with teams and
pedestrians narrowly averted in the mad dash of the Bowen horse. Lester Bowen was badly injured and had to be removed to his home. It was thought he was
|The Call of October 10, 1919
Several of the painters of the gang at work on the Lehigh Valley bridge received their discharge the fore part of the week. It appears that during the absence of
the boss and several of the other workmen at the Allentown Fair, the remaining members held quite a regular "Midnight Frolic" one afternoon. The names of
several girls from the heart of town are mentioned being present with scant attire about them, doing more than the jazz dance. The men demanded pay for the
time thus spent and when refused became abusive. An official from Easton was notified of the conditions and the fore part of the week ordered the discharge of
several of the men.
|The Call of October 29, 1920
SKULL CRACKED IN AUTO CRASH
Harry Dietrich, a well known farmer residing south of Friedensburg sustained a cracked skull and broken ribs on Tuesday evening when his auto truck was struck
by the six o'clock trolley car out of Schuylkill Haven. The accident occurred in front of the residence of George Rauch on Dock Street. Whether Mr. Dietrich
sustained the injury by being hurled to the bricked street or being struck by the flying pieces of trolley and auto truck has not been determined. The crash was
heard for squares. The man was picked up in an unconscious condition and taken into the home of Mrs. Shirley. Several physicians were summoned and upon
their arrival administered to his injuries. He was taken to the Pottsville Hospital. An operation was performed Wednesday. At this writing his condition was very
much improved and it is not thought the injuries will prove fatal. Oscar Bicht was the motorman on the trolley. The truck was in the center of the tracks and
windshield and top of the truck, which was a closed one, were broken. That the motorman escaped injury was remarkable as a long pointed piece of the top of the
truck crashed through the front window and into the car proper in an exact line with his head.
|The Call of October 22, 1920
TROLLEY STRUCK AUTO
Another one of the expected half hour accidents at the corner of Dock and Main Streets occurred Tuesday afternoon about four o'clock when a north bound
trolley car struck the Ford Coupe driven by Miss Horn and occupied by her mother, both of Pottsville. That that accident did not result more seriously was due to
the quick action of the driver, Miss Horn. The car struck the left fender with such force as to throw the car against the tree on the Detweiler property on Main
Street. The car mounted the pavement and only by a quick turn did the auto miss striking the pole on the Reed property with terrific force. One of the fenders
was broken and the steering gear put out of commission. The driver of the car claimed the motorman had not given any kind of a signal of his approach.
|The Call of September 24, 1920
TROLLEY CAR HIT FARMERS HORSE THIS MORNING
The 10:50 trolley going south on Main Street this morning struck the horse and wagon of Peter M. Reed, the well known Reedsville farmer, with such force that the
horse was thrown on to the pavement and doorway of the W. H. Finner grocery store. The wheels of the wagon were badly sprained and the box of the wagon
split apart. The horse was bruised about the hind legs sufficiently to probably make it unfit for service in the vicinity of trolley cars. Mr. Reed was uninjured.
Bystanders who witnessed the accident state the car was moving at a rapid rate, entirely too rapidly for safety. The motorman claims the brakes of the car would
not hold. He used a considerable amount of sand but to no avail and the car struck the wagon a smashing blow which was heard for several squares. We have
been expecting a larger number and more serious accidents on our Main street in connection with the trolley cars and flagrant violations of traffic laws by
trolleymen and autoists as well. One of these days we surely will have a fatal accident to report and then probably our local authorities will wake up and enforce
the traffic laws.
|The Call of July 9, 1920
MAIN STREET COVERED WITH FRUIT
There was a grinding noise and then a smash and Main Street in front of the Dechert property was covered with watermelons, cantaloupes and potatoes, Friday
afternoon about three o'clock. It resulted from the three o'clock south bound trolley in charge of Motorman Quinn and Conductor Butz colliding with a five ton
auto truck filled to the top. The auto was proceeding north. The driver had not reckoned with the limb of a tree which it is understood came in contact with the
top of the machine and prevented the driver from pulling far enough to the side. The trolley tore the rear portion of the top of the truck from its fastenings and
scattered the best part of the load in the street. Neither Messrs. C. Waugh and Frank Waugh of Philadelphia, the drivers, were injured. The truck was
transporting thirty nine barrels of potatoes, four hundred watermelons, and twenty five cases of cantaloupes from Jesse Pitt, Commission Merchant in
Philadelphia to Merchant Sylvester of Pottsville. They left the city Thursday evening at six o'clock and had not met with an accident until four miles from their
destination. However, the men had twice lost their way on account of detours. They in some way got over in Lebanon and after Lebanon again lost their way.
Portion of the fruit was taken to Pottsville on the big truck, it not having been damaged to any great extent. The balance was placed in the Faust truck and taken
to Pottsville. A number of melons that were split open found welcoming hands and watering mouths of youngsters who soon gathered.
|The Call of May 28, 1920
TROLLEY STRUCK TEAM
Friday the horse of Mrs. William Wildermuth residing on a farm above Killian's Dam became unmanageable on Dock Street and refused to stop when ordered to do
so. The horse turned to the side to avoid walking into an auto standing near the Bubeck store. Just as it turned toward the trolley tracks, the trolley happened by
and struck the wagon and threw the horse to one side. The animal dashed down the street and turned down Berger Street. Here it struck the porch of the homes
of this street and almost tore them loose. It came to a stop none the less the worse for its experience.
|The Call of September 12, 1919
ATTEMPT MADE TO BURN CAR SHOPS
A bold and brazen attempt was made to set fire to the P. and R. car repair shops at this place on Monday evening. Had the incipient blaze not been discovered in
time, there is reason to believe a disastrous event might have resulted. Night watchman Oswald in making his rounds in the vicinity of the oil house around 8:30
o'clock noticed a glare through the windows of this particular department. Upon closer investigation he discovered a blaze in the middle of the floor. Quickly
summoning the engine crew and the other shop men, the blaze was extinguished. While in the act of doing so, two men in the oil house at the time made their
escape. The watchmen not being armed could do nothing to prevent their escape. The Philadelphia and Reading Coal and Iron Police were promptly notified and
remained all night on the clues furnished but up to this writing had yet to land their men. One of the men is said to have worn a light suit and an overcoat, the
other a brown suit and a cap. The north bound train crew reported having passed two men in the vicinity of the Red Bridge, answering this description, on the run
towards Landingville and officers have been busy for the past two days chasing down leads. Company officers and police in nearby cities have also been notified
to be on the lookout for the men answering this description. The fire was discovered in the packing department of the oil house. The announcement of the
attempt to fire the industry that gives employment to near three hundred men, struck terror and fear into the hearts of everyone as it recalled to mind the
disastrous fire at these shops the latter part of November 1910. People on the past Tuesday remarked that they worried if the fire bugs on Monday night had
succeeded in their object of destroying this industry the company may not have rebuilt the same and Schuylkill Haven would have lost one of its most valuable
|The Call of September 12, 1919
FOUR REAL HOBOES ARRESTED
P. and R. C. and I. Officer McDonald took into camp four hoboes on Wednesday morning that for real specimens of the tramp type no vaudeville artist in all his
ridiculous makeup ever had anything on them. One was a negro and the other three were white men. Outside of being dirty with unshaven faces and disheveled
and long hair, their clothing was a mess. One of the men had no shirt and we doubt if any had any underclothing. Shoes were in very bad shape and their
trousers just about hung together. They certainly were rough looking characters. They were taken from a boxcar standing along the railroad in the West Ward.
One of them stated that they were circus hands and had gotten into a mixup and were fired. They were on their way to Philadelphia. They were taken to Pottsville
and lodged in jail.
|The Call of January 2, 1920
NINE STITCHES FOR HIS EAR
Nine stitches were required to fasten the lobe of Charles Graeff's ear to the remaining portion and nine more stitches were required to close a wound back of the
ear. The wounds were sustained when he was struck by pieces of glass from a whiskey bottle thrown in a row of some sailors on "Number Nine" arriving here last
Wednesday evening. The affair took place below Reading. When Reading was reached the sailors were placed under arrest. Graeff was sent to a considered on
duty at the time. He had not taken any part in the mixup but got the worst end of the same anyway. anyway.
|The Call of January 30, 1920
MANY ATTEND P. & R. VETERANS BANQUET
Quite a number of Schuylkill Haven men attended the twelfth annual banquet and entertainment of the Veteran Employees Association of the Philadelphia and
Reading Company in Philadelphia on Saturday. The event was held in the Scottish Rite Hall. There were between 1200 and 1300 members present together with a
number of guests, officials of the company. During the year, thirty one members of the Association departed this life.
Following the business session, the banquet was served. The menu was as follows: Grapefruit, Pickles, Olives, Mock Turtle Soup, Sweet Bread Cutlet, Peas, Filet
of Beef, Brown Sauce, Glace Sweet Potatoes, Browned Potatoes, Cold Sliced Ham, Potato salad, Ice Cream and Ices, Fancy Cakes, Rolls and Butter, Coffee, Cigars
The program under the personal direction of Frank Donnelly was as follows: Overture, Berg Orchestra, Novel entertainers, MacCarton and Morrone, Fun and
Melody, Three Harmony Boys, Broadway Stars, Frances Hains and Company, Comedy and Talking, Carson and Willard. Among those known to have been present
from town were Frank Reed, William Heim, George Fullerton, Elmer Hartranft, Thomas Goas, Samuel Shoener, Charles Deibler, John Confehr, Frank Eiler, Joseph
Borda, Zachariah Snyder, Fred Jacoby, B. F. Oswald, Jacob Shadel, Daniel Womer, Milton Deibert, Charles Becker, Clarence Snyder, David Runkle, Gideon Nyce,
Charles Reichert, Mr. Burns, John Coller, Albert Brommer.
|The Call of July 18, 1919
FORMER TOWN MAN KILLED
Irwin S. Reber, aged thirty nine, formerly of Schuylkill Haven, recently of Pottsville, met death on the railroad near Mine Hill crossing under such circumstances
early Saturday morning, that it is thought he met with foul play. His body, the both legs having been severed, was found lying along the tracks shortly after one
o'clock by a Schuylkill Haven crew, a short distance above the Mine Hill crossing. He was brought to Schuylkill Haven and placed on the Buffalo and taken to the
Pottsville Hospital. He died about two hours later.
To the authorities at the hospital he stated he had been thrown under a train. His words were, "Two bums threw me under the train." Search of his clothing and
body revealed the fact that a large sum of money which it was known he had information that could be gotten from him was the above statement. An investigation
is underway but up to this time, no trace of the men alleged to have attacked him has been learned. It is known he attended the block party in town Friday
evening and after having lunch at Cafe Kauffman, spent some time at the Main Street crossing talking with the watchman and some friends. He left the crossing
between midnight and one o'clock and began walking up the railroad.
Deceased was born in Cressona. He resided in this place for a number of years. He also lived at Allentown and Jersey City. He resided in Pottsville since last
October. He was unmarried. He was connected with a number of fraternal organizations and was well known about town. He was employed at the Saint Clair
shops. Besides his mother, Mrs. Amanda Reber of Berne Street, these brothers and sisters survive: Howard of Main Street, Schuylkill Haven; Morris, Bright,
Foster and Lincoln, the latter two being in the service, now in France, Miss Mabel Reber and Mrs. George Roeder of town and Mrs. Albert Fessler of Leesport also
survive. The funeral took place Tuesday from the home of his brother, Howard on Main Street. Services were conducted by the Reverend E. G. Leinbach. The
bearers were his three brothers and brother in law, namely Howard, Morris and Bright Reber and George Roeder. C. G. Wagner was the funeral director. di
|The Call of September 5, 1919
MOTHER INJURED SAVING SON
Mrs. Emma May Sharp, while walking along the railroad towards the
station accompanied by her son Wilbur to catch the 6:42 p. m. train
south, was run over by train Number 215 in charge of Engineman
Slattery and conductor A. O. Wilson. It appears that when they saw
the passenger train coming, the son ran across the tracks and the
mother in trying to get him out of harm's way, was herself caught and
dragged under the train. Engineman Slattery sounded the shrill
whistle and applied the brakes but although making a good stop, the
engine and the two coaches ran over the unfortunate woman. She
was picked up and placed in a cabin car attached to Engine 956 and
taken to the Pottsville Hospital. She sustained a cut above her left
eye and her two legs were cut off below the knees. Mrs. Sharp was
keeping house for Roy Delong for several years
|The Call of September 12, 1919
MET WITH FATAL ACCIDENT
As the result of being struck and run over by a passenger train at this place on Wednesday
evening of last week, Mrs. Emma Mae Sharp, of Reading, died at the Pottsville Hospital on
Saturday. She and her four year old son Wilbur were on their way to visit relatives
youngster seeing the train approaching, became frightened and made his way toward the
tracks. The frightened and made his way toward the tracks. The mother succeeded in
getting her son to safety but was caught by the train herself. Both her legs were caught by
the train herself. Both her legs were by the train herself. Both her legs were mangled
below the knees and they were amputated at below the knees and they were amputated at
the Pottsville Hospital, shortly after her arrival there. Pottsville Hospital, shortly after her
arrival there. She she sustained several body bruises. Mrs. Sharp, who sustained several
body bruises. Mrs. Sharp, who was twenty six years of age, was the wife of Elmer twenty six
years of age, was the wife of Elmer Sharp, a Sharp, a returned soldier of the war, who lost a
leg in returned soldier of the war, who lost a leg in the service. Mrs. Sharp leaves two
children who make their home with her mother. She was employed as housekeeper at the
home of Roy Delong of Schuylkill Street. The body of Mrs. Sharp was shipped to Reading
where funeral services were held. The burial was made in Birdsboro cemetery.
|These two articles appeared in consecutive issues of
the Call reporting a woman saving her son on the
railroad only to die of her own injuries soon after....
|The Call of February 11, 1921
CRESSONA MAN KILLED ON RAILROAD
The remains of Charles Erb were laid to rest in Cressona Cemetery on Wednesday afternoon from his late residence on Pottsville Street. Deceased met his death
on Saturday evening when a switch lever hit him on the side of the head killing him instantly. He started work on the railroad in 1894 as a brakeman on the Mine
Hill. A few days after starting his services he was assigned to Mine Hill crossing where he lost a hand, being caught between the couplings, this being during the
time when patent drawheads were unknown and three linkers were used. He was afterwards assigned to yard services and for many years was a brakeman on the
local scale crew, his duty being to operate the ram car. After weighing one draft of cars he accompanied the engine to pull another draft. after giving them a start
they moved over the crossing and the unfortunate brakeman jumped off his car to turn the switch. He then gave the signal to come back but when he failed to
jump on the ram the crew investigated and found him lying in a pool of water beside the switch. Dr. Gray was hastily summoned and found the man beyond human
aid, the top of his head having been crushed.
Dr. G. O. O. Santee was summoned and upon going over the scene, allowed the body to be removed to his home. Deceased was forty eight years of age and is
survived by his widow Nora, nee Umbenhaur, and one daughter, Hazel at home, and the following brothers and sisters: John of Cressona, Mrs. B. Baird of Florida,
Mrs. Fred Seigert, Los Angeles, California, Mrs. John Aschenbach of Philadelphia and Mrs. Fred Winn of Pottsville. His mother, Mrs. Kate Erb also survives,
making her home at present with a daughter in Florida. She sent a message stating it was impossible for her to be here in time for the funeral. Funeral services
were all conducted at the home of the deceased by Reverend E. Roy Corman of Saint Mark's Reformed Church of which he was a member. Members of the
following organizations with which deceased was affiliated were present at the funeral. The Order of Independent Americans, Herndon Lodge Number 550, I. O. O.
F., Royal Order of Moose and Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen. Many pretty floral tributes were received from relatives and friends, also P. and R. Veteran
Employees Association and fellow employees. Members of these organizations served as pall bearers. O. A. Bittle had charge.
|Engine number 918 in
front of the "J" office,
located in the Reading
rail yard in Schuylkill
|This image shows the official envelope for correspondence for the Mine Hill and
Schuylkill Haven Railroad Company. As can be seen, it was headquartered in the
Franklin Institute Building in Philadelphia.
|The Call of April 4, 1924
GIRL HAS NARROW ESCAPE AT RAILROAD CROSSING
Miss Ruth Schumacher of Canal Street had what is considered an escape from serious injury and possible death of the narrowest margin on Friday morning last.
Shortly before seven o'clock she was struck by a south bound train at the Union Street crossing. Her body luckily was pushed and twirled away from the tracks in
such a manner that she maintained an upright position and outside of a bruised hand and arm, a badly torn coat and shock, escaped more serious injury. The
crossing gates were down while a north bound train was passing but as is sometimes the custom by reason of the width of the crossing and a number of tracks,
pedestrians sometimes stand inside the gates. As the end of the train passed over the crossing Miss Schumacher stepped forward not noticing the approach of
the south bound train. The result as above.
|The Call of September 11, 1925
ATTEMPTED SUICIDE BY JUMPING FROM BRIDGE
A man sustained several injuries this morning about ten o'clock by jumping from the Lehigh Railroad embankment at a point where it crosses Garfield Avenue.
The man suffered a broken hip, a broken cheek bone and several holes in his head together with body bruises. He was picked up and was conscious and freely
told that he was driven to his deed by force of circumstances. Not having a home or financial means of support he sought a home at the county institution. He
could not gain admittance and therefore decided to end his life. The unfortunate man evidently thought to jump clear of the embankment and land in the street
below, a distance of fifty or sixty feet. Instead of that he plunged into the embankment, rolled to the edge of the arch and from that point dropped to the street, a
distance of twenty feet.
|The Call of June 1, 1923
AUTOS AND TROLLEY IN SMASHUP
Two autos, an Oldsmobile and a Maxwell, with a trolley, figured in a smashup on Main Street Thursday afternoon. It was caused by the driver of the Maxwell Coupe
misjudging the distance between an Oldsmobile parked in front of the Gipe store and a trolley coming down Main Street. The driver thought he could pass on the
space between the parked machine and the passing trolley, a thing which can be done in most every town and city. The Main Street however is too narrow. The
trolley pushed the Maxwell into the Olds and both were damaged, the latter suffering the most damage. Both cars were owned by out of town persons.
|The Call of October 23, 1925
BOY HAD NARROW ESCAPE WHEN HIT BY FREIGHT
Francis, the seven year old son of Mr. and Mrs. Charles Becker of Parkway, had a narrow escape from probable death or serious injury Saturday. He was struck by
Number 80 freight, south bound, which was shifting at the time at the Union Street crossing. His heel was badly crushed and he sustained a painful laceration of
the nose, in that the skin was scraped off completely, also scraped from the forehead. The child was taken to the office of Dr. Rutter where the injuries were
dressed. He was later taken to the Pottsville Hospital. The accident happened about 1:30 o'clock and in a peculiar way. The crossing was blocked by several cars
of freight while a car of slag was cut from the train and dropped on the siding. The car is said to have shunted the cars that were standing on the crossing and
caught and knocked the boy down just as he was crossing at a point north of the crossing. The express wagon that the boy was using was smashed to splinters
and bystanders thought surely the wheels crossed over his body.
|The Call of September 24, 1926
FIRE AT CAR SHOPS CAUSES SCARE
The siren alarm Tuesday evening about 11:20 brought all fire companies and many individual persons to the North Ward. Fire had been discovered in the cribbing
at the landing near the Reading car shops. When discovered the flames were leaping several feet high. With the use of several of the large fire extinguishers of
the company the fire was extinguished but not before the Rainbow Hose Company had arrived on the scene and were about ready to pump from the Dock and
throw water on the fire. It is believed the fire was caused by fishermen who almost daily fish along the banks of the old Dock and by someone perhaps having
allowed a lighted cigarette butt to fall into the cribbing.
|The Call of January 21, 1927
MAIL CARRIER HAD NARROW ESCAPE
Agnew Fisher, employed as a mail carrier from the railway station to the post office had a narrow escape from injury and possible death Thursday afternoon. His
presence of mind saved him. The accident was that of train Number 10, due to leave here at 4:37, south bound, striking and crushing one of the railway mail trucks
piled high with mail sacks. A part of the station platform had been blocked out by a north bound freight train which was cut near the southern end of the station.
Fisher, before Number 10 pulled into the station began to pull the heavy mail truck diagonally across the north bound tracks intending to place it in position along
the south bound tracks. It was struck by the engine and carried down between the engine and the standing freight. Mail sacks were scattered about but none
were damaged. Fisher jumped from the tongue of the mail truck just in time to avoid being struck.
|The Call of April 13, 1928
AUTOIST HAD NARROW ESCAPE
An autoist by the name of Shoener had a narrow escape from probable fatal injuries on Friday afternoon on the Main Street crossing of the Reading Railroad that
was not a matter of inches, but according to bystanders, a matter of a fraction of an inch. The crossing gates were up at the time to permit the passing of the fire
trucks responding to a brush fire on East Main Street. One truck had passed over and the other was expected at any moment. It was for this reason that the
watchman at the crossing had permitted the gates to remain up. A coal train was thundering down the yard and the watchman was vainly flagging the train. Not
until the "J" office was reached did the engineer notice the flagman. He blew the whistle for brakes but the train, having a speed of perhaps twenty five or thirty
miles an hour came on. Just as the engine reached the crossing, the autoist did likewise. People screamed and turned but the autoist and train missed
connection by a fraction of less than an inch, it is said. The train was not stopped until the engine had passed over the William Street crossing.
|The Call of April 22, 1927
INJURY FATAL TO 20 YEAR OLD BOY
The injuries sustained at the Storage Yards Thursday afternoon last proved fatal to Joseph Kehoe, death ensuing at the Pottsville Hospital Saturday evening
fifteen minutes before the midnight hour. Mr. Kehoe had his head crushed causing a severe concussion of the brain. An xray examination taken of the injured
lad Friday showed the seriousness of the accident. Saturday, however, he showed signs of improvement and took nourishment but in the evening there was a
turn for the worse and he passed away before relatives, hastily summoned, arrived. Deceased was twenty years of age. He was born in Cressona but lived in
Schuylkill Haven the greater part of his life. When two weeks of age, Mr. and Mrs. James McKeone had taken him and given him a home until he was twelve years
of age. Since that time he made his home with his uncle and aunt, Mr. and Mrs. Daniel Heidenweg. Besides his father, one brother, Daniel Kehoe survives.
The funeral took place Wednesday morning and was largely attended. Father Horn was the celebrant of the mass while Father Caine and Father Higgins were
Deacon and Subdeacon. Mr. Michael Robinson of Pottsville sang several appropriate solos during the services. The bearers were Thomas, Joseph, James and
Lawrence McKeone, John Dalton and Francis Kehoe. Floral offerings were presented by the following: Mr. and Mrs. Daniel Heidenweg, Mr. Joseph Kehoe, Saint
Ambrose Catholic Club, Gus Menas, Harry Fox, Mr. Swalm and employees, P. R. R. Minstrel Men, Mrs. Agnes Fox and family, Mr. and Mrs. Edward Tray and family,
Boys at Bresslers, Daley and Dalton family, Storage Yards, Pride of the Nation Circle.
|The Call of April 22, 1927
JURY SAYS JOSEPH KEHOE DIED OF ACCIDENT
The inquest to inquire into the death of Joseph Kehoe of Schuylkill Haven was held in the town hall Thursday evening. The verdict was that he died on April 16th
of injuries caused by an accident in the Storage Yards on April 14th. The jurors were H. E. Oswald, James Schucker, H. A. Goas, Earl Sherer, William Bittle and
Charles Bittle. Evidence was introduced from a number of witnesses, most of whom were employees at the storage yards. The unfortunate young man was in the
act of assisting placing a heavy rope on a wheel or large five foot pulley. From this wheel or pulley other machinery in the plant was operated.
The foreman of the yards, J. M. Guldin, who has been employed by the company at this plant for the past thirty two years explained the mechanism as above
given. James Corcoran and James Lusky, two men who were with Kehoe at the time, stated they were in the act of guiding the heavy rope around the wheel.
Kehoe probably tried to look down into the lower floors through the space in the platform in which the wheel operates. His head must have come in contact with a
spoke of the wheel and he was pinned fast to the guard around the wheel. In the meantime men below were pulling on the heavy rope to get it around the wheel.
William Collins, Edward Kupko, Harry Sowers, Clayton Phillips all testified they were below and were pulling on the rope. They heard someone cry out that Kehoe
was caught and stopped. They ran up the steps to the platform and by that time they had released the boy and were bringing him down.
|The Call of August 26, 1927
AUTO TRUCK AND TROLLEY COLLIDE
The auto delivery truck of H. A. Yost and a Pottsville trolley came together Monday at 12:30 at the corner of Paxson Avenue and Dock Street with a resounding
crash that could be heard for a square away. The trolley was proceeding towards Pottsville. The truck was coming out of Paxson Avenue. The driver, Mr. Wetzel,
was thrown to the bricked street and close to the wheels of the trolley. A positive application of the brakes, it was said by witnesses, prevented a possible
decapitation, with a deep gash down his forehead to the eye and a number of several body bruises. He was taken to the office of Dr. Lessig where three stitches
were required to close the wound which bled profusely. The truck was damaged to some extent and was removed by the Hawkins wrecker.
|Pottsville Republican of December 24, 1884
ROBBING READING RAILROAD CARS - DETECTED IN THE ACT - SHOOTING AND ARREST
The P. & R. station and depots at Schuylkill Haven are separated by about fifty yards and the freight sidings extend over This makes it a most difficult place to
watch because the valuable contents of these cars are a tempting bait for the The P. & R. station and depots at Schuylkill Haven are separated by about fifty yards
and the freight sidings extend over burglars and housebreakers. A careful and wide awake servant can perform the arduous duties. Such a person the one
hundred yards, which are always full of freight cars coming in the night , freight for this place and the Mine Hill Road. company have employed in the present
watchman, Mr. Edward Riebsamen, whose courageous defense of the company's property last night deserves a reward. During the night while Mr. Riebsamen
was on his tour of inspection and examination of the cars he found a car broken up, but its contents were not the object of the burglars search. Continuing
further he thought he would drop into the crossing watch box and watch for the return of the thieves. In attempting to open it he found the lock broken and felt
someone pushing inside, which gave way directly, he entered, lit his bullseye lantern and discovered them to be strangers, he ordered them out and marched
them to the depot but while he was unlocking the door to let them in, they started to run in different directions. Following one, he ordered him to stop. Not
receiving a reply, he shot when the thief returned the fire, thus four shots were exchanged, one only hit the mark which fortunately was in the right leg of Mr.
Riebsamen. As the latter's revolver did not work properly, he made a successful effort to capture the thief and safely locked him on the depot building. This
morning the prisoner was arraigned and committed to jail. Dr. Lenker probed for the ball in Mr. Riebsamen's leg but could not locate it. He says it will not injure
the leg any. The prisoner gives his name as Joseph Schreiner, a drover for William Weisinger. His mother lives in Tamaqua and her name is Mrs. Layer, having
married a second husband.
|Pottsville Republican of January 2, 1885
The one armed companion of Schreiner, the freight car robber who shot the watchman at the Schuylkill Haven station on the night of December 23rd, was arrested
by Marshal Heisler and his assistant Boone at Pottstown and brought here this morning to have a hearing before the squire. In default of $500 bail he was
committed to jail. His name is John Winch the broken open freight car.
|Pottsville Republican of March 29, 1909
HAD FOOT CUT OFF - John Martin Met With Accident at Schuylkill Haven Boarding Shifter
While attempting to jump on the front of Engine 768, used as a shifter around the Mine Hill crossing, John Martin, aged eighteen years, lost his footing and fell, the
wheels of the engine passing over his right foot severing it between the heel and ankle. He was discovered by the conductor of th engine, John Deiter, who
immediately stopped the P. & R. passenger train Number 95 passing Schuylkill Haven at 4:21 and had him removed to the Pottsville Hospital, where it was found
necessary to amputate the member above the ankle. The unfortunate young man had lived in Schuylkill Haven but a short time, making his home with his uncle,
Thomas Martin of Connor's Crossing. He was on his way to his home from work at Ball's meat market and attempted to board the engine going in his direction.
Both his parents are dead and his one sister, aged fifteen years, recently came on here from New York state to make his home with his uncle.
|Pottsville Republican of January 25, 1929
CROSSING WATCHMAN RESCUES LAD FROM PATH OF TRAIN
Frank Benseman, crossing watchman at the Union Street crossing, is receiving commendation for his brave rescue of a little fellow last Thursday afternoon from
in front of the Reading northbound express arriving here at one o'clock. The little fellow rescued was a son of Clarence Zechman who with his sled had passed
under the gates which were down. He had not noticed the approach of the train being intent on the good fun he was to have in sledding on Union Street. The
watchman called to him to remain on the west side of the tracks but he continued on. Benseman realizing that the child would surely be struck and killed, ran
toward him, picked him up and whisked him from the rails just as the freight train passed the spot.
|The Call of February 18, 1910
ONE KILLED - FIVE HURT
While thawing coal at the storage yard last Saturday morning, Clinton Graeff of town and a gang of five foreigners were caught under a fall of coal. One laborer
was smothered to death. Graeff was so badly crushed and bruised that he had to be sent to Pottsville Hospital and the other laborers were more or less injured.
Drs. Heim, Lenker and Detweiler of town were summoned to the storage yard and ministered to the injured and D. M. Wagner was called upon to take charge of the
man who lost his life. Mr. Graeff is improving.
|Pottsville Republican of February 12, 1910
SIX BURIED UNDER A RUSH OF 1,000 TONS OF COAL, ONE DEAD
One man was killed and five others injured in a slide of coal at the P. & R. Landingville storage yard at 9:30 o'clock this morning. One of the injured men is in the
Pottsville Hospital in a serious condition while the four others whose injuries are not so serious were taken to their homes. The dead man is Samuel Pisco, aged
about thirty five years, married and residing in one of the company's houses at the storage yard.
Seriously injured, Clinton Graeff of Schuylkill Haven, aged about sixty years, was taken to the hospital. The four other men, all foreigners, escaped with minor
bruises. The accident happened in bin number eight, which was filled with pea coal. Graeff had charge of the men who were engaged in taking the coal out of the
bin by means of a chute and hot water. Owing to the extreme cold weather of the past month or more, the coal had become frozen to the depth of nearly twenty
feet. The men had undermined the bin and had directed the stream of hot water to the top, when without warning the roof came down completely burying the six
men under nearly 1,000 tons of coal. The accident was witnessed by another gang of men who were working in the next bin. They immediately sounded the alarm
and in a very short time Superintendent T. J. Cleary had every available man around the plant working to extricate the men.
While the men were being sought for, word was telephoned to Schuylkill Haven for physicians and Doctors A. H. Detweiler, C. Lenker and L. W. Heim hurried to the
station where they were placed aboard the Black Diamond and taken to the scene of the accident. Graeff was the first to be taken out. He was unconscious and
badly bruised about the head and face. It was thought he was injured internally. The remainder of the men with the exception of Pisco, who was killed, were
found lying near one another. The body of Pisco was found nearly fifteen feet away from the other men. It was removed to the home. It is not known whether he
was smothered to death or crushed.
Graeff, after being placed on a stretcher, was taken onto the Black Diamond and accompanied by doctors Lenker and Detweiler, the run to Pottsville was made in
record time. They arrived here shortly after ten o'clock and were met by the ambulance. The accident cast a gloom over the other men, some of whom were
forced to quit work. This is the first serious accident to occur at this storage yard in a number of months. Graeff, the most seriously injured of any of the men, had
been employed at the storage yard ever since it has been operated. He was considered a careful man and was a trusted employee. He is married, residing on
Market Street, Schuylkill Haven and is the father of a large family. The other men injured are all single.
|Pottsville Republican of February 4, 1886
ACCIDENT AT SCHUYLKILL HAVEN
John McCord, an employee of the P. & R. was severely injured at about ten o'clock this morning near the Schuylkill Haven depot. His foot slipped while in the act
of coupling coal cars and his leg was caught between the bumpers of a high and low car and fearfully squeezed. Dr. Lenker was immediately summoned to attend
to his injuries. Station agent Kline at once dispatched Conductor Wernert with a special car to convey Mr. McCord to his home at Port Carbon, where he was
comfortably cared for within thirty minutes from the time he was hurt.
|Pottsville Republican of November 16, 1886
ACCIDENT BELOW CONNOR'S CROSSING
Last evening shortly before seven o'clock below Connor's Crossing, a colored man by the name of Alexander Holland, hailing from Port Clinton, was struck by
Number 57 freight train and hurled against a pile of railroad iron piled up beside the road, breaking his leg below the knee, also receiving an ugly gash on the
head. The unfortunate man was picked up by some of the Mine Hill men who were working at the crossing. They conveyed him to the dispatcher's office where
every attention that could possibly be done to ease his suffering was done. Dispatcher Simon had Dr. Dechert on hand promptly to attend the case. A special
engine and car conveyed the man to Port Clinton accompanied by Dr. Dechert and several employees of the Mine Hill road. It appears the man was walking on the
down track from Pottsville and stepped over onto the up track to get out of the way of Number 68 freight train which was passing down, not noticing Number 57
freight which was coming up, hence he was struck. The injured man is about thirty years of age and single, being one of the bachelor brothers at Port Clinton,
where they are keeping Bachelor's Hall. The chances are he will recover.
|Pottsville Republican of February 3, 1887
HURT AT SCHUYLKILL HAVEN
Samuel Ritzel, a young man about twenty eight years of age and brakeman on Number 69 freight, had his arm and wrist badly hurt while coupling the caboose to
the train at Schuylkill Haven this morning about nine o'clock. His injuries were dressed at Coxe's drug store by Dr. Piper, who accompanied him to his home in
Palo Alto. Drs. John T. and James S. Carpenter were summoned and upon consultation with Dr. Piper at his home on West Savory Street, it was decided to
amputate the arm three inches below the elbow which was done by Dr. Carpenter.
|Pottsville Republican of March 29, 1887
COLLISION ON THE P. & R.
What might have been a serious accident occurred on the Mine Hill road between Cressona and Mine Hill crossing at four a.m. today. The scale engine with
caboose attached in which the car catchers were being taken home collided with a coal train coming up. The result was as heretofore been repeatedly
demonstrated that it is an impossibility for two engines to pass each other on the same track without resulting disastrously. When it is done without any injury to
human beings there is little sympathy felt for the damages occasioned to machinery. In this case however, one person was seriously hurt while others had a
narrow escape. When taken into consideration that there are three dispatchers and four telegraph operators located between the points, there is no question
but what this accident is the result of some gross negligences.
|Pottsville Republican of July 24, 1885
ACCIDENT AT SCHUYLKILL HAVEN
Frederick Hess, aged about sixty five years, for many years in the employ of the P. & R. Company at their Schuylkill Haven shops, this morning met with a painful
accident, the result of which can not be foretold. He was caught between two cars and sustained a fracture of several ribs, two of which were torn from the breast
bone. It is feared he has also received internal injuries. He is an old and respected citizen of the town.
|Pottsville Republican of August 10, 1888
HE HAS OUR SYMPATHY
A lumber clerk and two law students went to Schuylkill Haven the other evening to attend the sociable of the school of methods. So taken up were they with the
intellectual enjoyment inseparable from conversation with the fairest and brightest of the teachers that they missed the nine o'clock train. They took the P. & R.
station agent into their confidence brightest of goodness of his heart, suggested the twelve o'clock Reading freight as a means out of their difficulty. So anxious
were they to get aboard the train that they went below the station. Two got on alright but the third, a law student, chose the center of a coal car (the most
dangerous part) to make the attempt and hung for some time between heaven and earth before he could be induced to cease kicking. About the site of the old
Mount Carbon rolling mill, an idea struck one of the party. He said the A lumber clerk and two law students went to Schuylkill Haven the other evening to attend
the sociable of the school of methods. So taken up were they with the intellectual enjoyment inseparable from conversation with the fairest and brightest of the
teachers that they missed the nine o'clock train. They took theP. & R. station agent into their confidence brightest of the thought he would alight in bird style. He
jumped in bird style but the alighting was different. His face, hands, wrists, knees and toes were bruised and scratched.
|Pottsville Republican of September 21, 1888
A P. & R. coal train brakeman named Prosser charged Fireman William Daubert with having reported him for sleeping on duty. Daubert denied the charge. At
Schuylkill Haven Prosser attacked Daubert on the tank of the engine and it is further alleged Prosser threw lumps of coal, iron links and pins at the engine cab and
broke four or five windows. Engineer Christman then interfered when Prosser savagely attacked him and so furiously that the engineer says he was compelled, in
self defense, to knock him down with a hammer. Prosser bled freely but continued full of fight until the train reached Auburn. Then Prosser telegraphed ahead
that he had been assaulted and demanded an arrest. Prosser, it is alleged, then continued his throwing of missiles at the fireman until the train reached
Mohrsville, refusing to say even when threatened with death by those whom he assaulted. When they reached Reading, special officers were summoned and
Prosser was discharged. The train was then guarded until out of danger.
|Pottsville Republican of December 13, 1888
CRUSHED BETWEEN CARS
At three o'clock yesterday afternoon at Mine Hill crossing in Schuylkill Haven, Philip Mengle met his death almost instantly while coupling cars. A run of disabled
cars was being made to the repair shops, when the train parted between two cars, one of which had a bumper on and the other had none. In attempting to
recouple them, Mengle was caught and squeezed so terribly, that death ensued in a few minutes after the occurrence. Deceased was aged about twenty five
years, was married to the daughter of the unfortunate man Rubrecht, who met his death on the railroad but a short time ago and was well respected by all who
knew him. He leaves a wife and three children, the youngest being an infant of one week. Deputy Coroner Palm summoned a jury and held an inquest which
found a verdict of accidental death, no blame attaching to anybody. The jury consisted of l. J. Thomas, A. Felix, Charles Keller, L. B. Beckley, Levi Kissinger and
Daniel Fisher. Deceased was a member of Camp 47, P. O. S. of A. who will have charge of the funeral.
|Pottsville Republican of August 17, 1889
MULES ON THE RAILROAD TRACK
Harry Weisner of Schuylkill Haven, has been pasturing some mules on the farm of E. B. Peale below that town. Last night they escaped through an open gate and
started up the Pennsylvania Railroad track. They were overtaken by the freight that comes up about 11:00, two of them were struck by the engine, one had a front
and hind leg cut off, which necessitated his being shot, the other was badly hurt about the hips. The rest of the mules were driven down a bank forty feet high
onto the Bowen premises. Mr. Weisner had just sold the mules that were hurt for $275.
|Pottsville Republican of December 11, 1889
A DANGEROUS ARCH
The Schuylkill Haven Record says: The arch across Garfield Avenue, recently finished by the contractors on the new road, is said to be cracking, thus making it a
very dangerous passageway. The arch is constructed of brown mountain stone and was finished two or three months ago but the mortar could not have become
properly set, owing to the wet weather, which kept it moist. At this point there is a fill of about forty feet or more for which purpose many tons of dirt have been
hauled and dumped upon the arch. The great weight has proven too much for it and there are several cracks in the roof of the arch. The archway thus becomes
dangerous for persons to use as a passage way and the contractors will be called to account for it. If the arch must be rebuilt it will cost a large amount of money
and not only incur a great loss to the contractors but will also put back the work of construction. It is understood the work will be examined by experts at once so
as to avoid all possible danger from caving in.
|Pottsville Republican of August 16, 1889
THRILLING STRUGGLE OF A CONDUCTOR
last night while bringing the accommodation from Philadelphia that arrives here at 9:30 o'clock. A crowd of men got aboard at Schuylkill Haven and among them J.
Kane of Mount Carbon. He and Conductor Moyer, so the story goes, had some Harry Moyer of Reading, one of the most genial of the P. & R. main line passenger
conductors, met with a thrilling experience dispute about the fare and the train was stopped. Kane refused to get off and in the struggle that ensued it is said he
first tried to dash Moyer out one window and then out of another across the way. The glass in both windows was broken. Moyer, who is a big strapping fellow,
then caught Kane by the throat and held him between two seats but a friend of Kane pulled Moyer off. Then another desperate struggle began and Moyer was
dashed against the rear door with such force that the glass was broken. The conductor called for assistance several times but none of the train hands
responded. Officer Wartman of Reading was this morning sent after Kane, who is a powerful, athletic young man. Ordinarily he is well behaved and just what
prompted him in this case will appear in the hearing.
|Pottsville Republican of March 19, 1907
THREE MEN IN BUGGY RUN DOWN BY ENGINE
A very serious railroad accident, which may result in the loss of one or more lives, took place shortly after noon today at Connor's Crossing near Schuylkill Haven,
when a team from the Schuylkill Haven Gas and Water Company was struck by a P and R train and the occupants of the wagon seriously injured. They are James
Bowen, of Schuylkill Haven, back badly injured and at first believed to have been broken, but later surgeons were hopeful that the injury was not so serious.
Charles Kline, of Cressona, badly cut but should recover and William Krommes , of Cressona, who has severe internal injuries. The wagon was demolished and the
horse was killed instantly. They were returning to the gas house after making repairs at the pumping station. An attentive watchmen guards the crossing and it is
unknown how the wagon entered the tracks. They were on the crossing when a south bound freight train struck the wagon and hurled it forward, throwing the
men a considerable distance. The three were semi conscious and bleeding severely. Krommes was removed to his home and the other two were removed to
Pottsville. Bowen later died at the hospital of his injuries.
|Pottsville Republican of November 16, 1907
BREAKING CHAIN COST HIS LIFE
By the breaking of a chain on a big steel B & O battleship, Joseph Burns, aged about 23 years, was instantly killed at eight twenty o'clock this morning at the
Landingville storage yards. He was on the car as a draft was being run onto the dump at that place and was tightening the brake when the chain snapped. He lost
his hold by the sudden release of the brake and fell directly under the car, which ran down the grade, cutting off the top of his head, also the right hand and
breaking his left leg near the hip and his right arm near the shoulder. Death was instantaneous. Deceased was employed as a brakeman by the P & R Company
and resided in Schuylkill Haven at the home of his father, James Burns. He was a well known young man, being popular in that town and among the railroad men
with whom he came in contact. He was a member of the Foresters, the A.O.H. and also the Brotherhood of Trainmen. The body was removed to the Wagner
undertaking parlors and prepared for burial there before being sent to his sorrowing home.
|The Pottsville Republican of September 20, 1909
PENNSYLVANIA FLYER HAD NARROW ESCAPE
The Pennsylvania Railroad Wilkes Barre Flyer, south bound, which left Pottsville at 10:25 this morning had a narrow escape from being wrecked at Connors. Just
as the train struck the big curve at Connors which leads to the Schuylkill Haven station on the top of a very high embankment, the pony wheels of the engine left
the track. The train doesn't stop at Schuylkill Haven and consequently was going at a very high rate of speed. Engineer J. Wells immediately applied the brakes
and brought his train to a stop in a distance about double its length. Passengers were badly shaken up by the sudden stop but no one was injured and the
engineer's prompt actions saved the train from being wrecked. The Mount carbon wreck crew was called for and a few hours work placed the engine on the track
again. It occurred where the railroad crosses over the wagon road. The track is about twenty five or thirty feet above the wagon road. The train was in charge of
Conductor J. H. Burnapt. The cause of the accident was due to the breaking of the flange on one of the pony wheels.
|Pottsville Republican of October 17, 1932
Unknown Man Killed in Fall, Man Whirls, Then Falls Down Embankment
at Connors to Schuylkill Haven Pike, Pebble Punctured Brain
Suddenly whirling about as he walked along the Pennsylvania Railroad tracks at Connors, then falling or jumping down the side of the embankment, an
unidentified man was fatally injured about three o'clock Sunday afternoon. Witnesses of the accident said they saw the man walking along the tracks from
Schuylkill Haven towards Pottsville. Just a short distance above the junction of the Schuylkill Haven pike with the road to Cressona, the man was seen to spin
about and then roll down the bank to his death. His fall ended on the old macadam Schuylkill Haven pike and he was almost instantly killed. Witnesses said they
believed the man suffered a spell.
Undertaker Berger, Cressona, was summoned to the scene of the accident, and the body was later removed to the D. M. Bittle morgue, where it may be viewed.
The man was about sixty years of age, five feet eight inches tall, weighed about 110 pounds and had a dark moustache. He had no teeth and coal black hair. He
wore a blue coat and trousers with white pin stripe, light brown necktie, brown fedora hat, boy scout shoes and black stockings and a light shirt with collar
attached. In the hat band the name of the maker or dealer, "Mark Cohen, Long Island" was found.
Patrolman Walters of the State Highway Patrol is investigating the case. A pair of eyeglasses, with telephone wire used as ear pieces and a watch chain were
found on his person. A description was sent over the police teletype, but no response received. Numerous callers at the morgue failed to identify the man. An
examination of the body disclosed the man had died of a puncture wound of the brain, caused by a pebble on which he landed and which penetrated through his
hat and drove the piece of cloth torn from the hat into his brain.
**The next day the man was identified as Frank Eustace, Eleventh and Race Streets Pottsville, a well known baseball player who was apparently planning to get a
train in Schuylkill Haven to visit his ill father in New York but returned toward Pottsville instead.
|Pottsville Republican of September 20, 1932
TRACKS TORN UP TO SCHUYLKILL HAVEN
All tracks and overhead equipment of the trolley company between Pottsville and Schuylkill Haven has been removed. The work of tearing up rails, wires, etc. was
completed late Monday. The tracks were torn up from Centre Avenue in Schuylkill Haven to a point near the arch at Mount Carbon.
|The end of an era....
|Pottsville Republican of February 25, 1890
THE ERECTION OF THE COAL CHUTES STOPPED
The work on the large and extensive coal chutes in the course of erection in Mine Hill Gap has been stopped. Nearly one hundred men had been employed on
them the last three or four weeks and considerable headway had been made. Here roads had been graded into them, coal banks leveled and hollows filled. The
men were thunderstruck when the order came, "Stop all the work on the chutes." On inquiry it was learned that the company has not given up the idea of erecting
these coal receptacles but have concluded to build them at a point on which surveyors are now at work, below Schuylkill Haven, so what is Mine Hill Gap's loss is
Schuylkill Haven's gain. The reason, which is a good one, is by building them at that point the coal that comes over the two planes can be dumped in the chutes;
whereas, if built where first intended, only the coal that came from the Gordon Plane could be deposited in them.
|Pottsville Republican of April 5, 1890
THE SCHUYLKILL HAVEN STORAGE BINS
At a point about a mile and a half below Schuylkill Haven, a few yards south of what is known as the Black Bridge, on the P. & R., is where the railroad track that
leads to the new coal pockets starts and runs parallel with and west of the main line, at a grade of a foot and a half to the hundred feet, for a distance of thirty one
hundred feet, when at this point there will be a tail track five hundred feet on the level. From here the road will run back again on the hillside toward Schuylkill
Haven, a distance of five hundred feet, and another tail track will run on a level northerly five hundred feet more beyond. From the beginning of this tail track, the
road again goes south and continues to ascend the mountain on the same grade for two thousand feet, to the beginning of the yard or trestling work. This trestle
will be eighteen hundred feet long with an average height of thirty feet above the ground. Beyond this point, or at the end of the yard, there is still another tail
track five hundred feet long to be used for storing cars before dumping. No better idea can be formed of the course of the track necessary to reach the trestling
than to look at the letter "Z" and imagine a five hundred foot continuation at each junction point. The lower end of the "Z" represents the start from the main line
and the rest shows the grade and reverse track necessary to attain the elevation above the pockets to the dumping track. The pockets or wharves are to begin at
the northern end of the upper tail track and run parallel to it extending for eighteen hundred feet. The loading track will be built between this tail track and the
wharves and will extend to Landingville a mile and a half below the chutes and connect there with the main line. The perpendicular height from where the coal is
dumped into the chutes to the loading track will be seventy feet. The storage bins proper will be 230 feet wide and 1800 feet long and will hold about 250,000 tons
"Few people," said one of the officials, "have any concept of the immense amount of work being done here. In fact I don't believe there ever was another
enterprise attempted in the county where such a compact large body of men and animals were used at the one time to forward its completion." And such we fully
believe to be the case for we were informed that four different classes of workmen under their distinctive department heads were engaged in the work, including
as it does nearly four hundred men all told, representing engineers, railroad laborers, timber men and breaker builders. Here you see the engineers still staking
on, next you come across gangs excavating for the railroad track and everywhere the noise and bustle of those engaged in clearing away the timber and the
underbrush, whilst carpenters are busy shaping timber. None are in the other's way, each tends to his business and all are kept busy, busy, busy. The timber
after being cut is snaked down to the main line where it is loaded and sent to the collieries. The space cleared from a distance looks like an immense cemetery,
the stumps of the trees resembling tombstones. When completed a view of the chutes will be had from the main line trains and will be a sight worth traveling to
see, as it will have the appearance of a series of big grain elevators.
Mr. John R. Hoffman, division engineer of the P. & R., has chief charge of the improvements while the detail work and engineering are looked after by his
gentlemanly, efficient and confident assistant, John H. Strauch, who has also been aided from time to time by Assistant Engineer George Brooke. William
McAdams of town, has the contract of building the road and has about 275 men and forty head of cattle employed, whilst Robert McAdams, S. R. Dougherty, John
Maloney and Nick Madara each have charge of a gang of Hungarians and Italians. Frank J. Kavanaugh is timekeeper and Danny Christian has charge of the
commissary. Frank J. Alber is boss of the blacksmith shop and shoes the horses, sharpens the picks and draws out the axes, all with his one hand, whilst it is
surprising to see the work he turns out in the shape of hammers, pinchers and the like. Profiting by the experience obtained from the smaller concerns at
Mahanoy City and Shamokin, the Schuylkill Haven pockets will be nearly perfect as far as human agency can make them and will be models of workmanship and
ingenuity. Everything will be done to facilitate the handling of the coal and from the dropping of the car bottoms on top of the trestling to the opening of the gates
at the foot of the pockets the coal will travel by gravity, thus avoiding the costly rehandling and loading necessary at other storage points.
The idea of these storage pockets is to prevent the sacrifice of unsalable sizes. Generally these are chestnut, egg and stove. Ordinarily in summer the largest
and smallest sizes can be sold as fast as mined to furnaces but the household sizes must be either sold at ruination prices or stored and this latter the Reading
proposes doing, so that this year their collieries will work steadier than is usual and those sizes that can't be sold as fast as mined will be stored. To do this
requires immense capital as well as confidence in the ultimate outcome, but among the benefits arising from this action will be steadier work for the mines, work
when others are idle and a pretty uniform price the year round because of the Reading's ability to flood or starve the market at any time with anthracite fuel, which
advantage will again enable the Reading to lord it over the other corporations as King Coal the same as in days gone by instead of being at the mercy of others.
|Pottsville Republican of April 18, 1890
THE WORK ON THE COAL CHUTES
The work on the coal pockets below Schuylkill Haven is being pushed as rapidly as possible. It is the intention of the company to push the work in order that the
surplus coal, for which there is no demand, may be stored away. It is expected that in the course of a month, work will be so far advanced on the operation that
coal may be deposited in the chutes. Just as soon as the work on the pockets has advanced to that stage, all the collieries operated by the P. & R. will commence
work. There is a demand for furnace and pea coal but for other sizes the market remains inactive. Any reports that such and such collieries will start up before
those pockets are finished are not to be relied on. The company is doing all in their power to get these pockets ready in order that their miners may be able to get
to work on steady time.
|Pottsville Republican of April 22, 1890
Daniel Zimmerman, living in Schuylkill Haven, was seriously hurt this morning by a tree falling on him while at work at the coal chutes clearing below that place. He
was in the act of looking which way he should fell the tree he was at work on and did not notice that another chopper had cut through and was descending at the
time. He is about sixty years of age and at last accounts was in a critical condition.
|Pottsville Republican of April 29, 1890
WORK PROGRESSING RAPIDLY
Work at the coal chutes is progressing rapidly and from the hills at the southern end of Schuylkill Haven a good view of the roadway for the different tracks is
easily obtainable. The past four Sabbaths, drilling and blasting has been vigorously prosecuted. The scene on a week day is very lively. On a bright day when the
sun shines on the hillside where they work, the gleam from the long rows of flashing shovels raised when throwing out the dirt presents a pleasing sight. It is a
busy time at the bend in the river, so the folks say.
|The following series of articles describes how the mammoth coal storage yards south of
Schuylkill Haven, part of the Reading Railroad Company, came to fruition beginning in early 1890..........
|Pottsville Republican of November 3, 1885
TERRIBLE ACCIDENT - A FIVE TON ROCK FALLS AT POOR FARM CUT
The Narrow Escape of a Laborer From Instant Death at the Cut of the P. S. V. Railroad at Schuylkill Haven
About five o'clock last evening at the poor farm cut, there occurred another of those terrible accidents that are becoming so frequent on the line of the P. S. V.
While a number of Italians were working in the area loading dirt, a large boulder, wall above the men; and falling, struck one of the laborers on the back, knocking
him against the rocks. The stone fell over him, one end resting on the bottom of the cut, the other leaning against the side. Five of his comrades immediately ran
to his assistance and attempted to release him but finding their united efforts totally unavailing, they secured About five o'clock last evening at the poor farm cut,
there occurred another of those terrible accidents that are becoming assistance and succeeded in liberating him. He was removed to the shanty situated near
the southern end of the cut and so frequent on the line of the P. S. V. While a number of Italians were working in the area loading dirt, a large boulder, a physician
was summoned. Dr. Lenker of Schuylkill Haven at once responded. The man was so badly hurt as to preclude all possibility of an examination. He was given
something to quiet him and induce sleep and when the "Republican" all possibility of an examination. He was given something to quiet him and induce sleep and
when the "Republican" reporter saw him, was apparently sleeping.
Dr. Lenker intends making an examination tomorrow morning. The injured man's associates fear that he is hurt internally. Some of the employees who reside in
the immediate neighborhood claim that it was purely accidental and exonerate all parties from blame. Some of the Italians say that the blasts loosened the rock;
that the men warned the boss and proposed that he send a couple of them with pry bars to knock it down, but he thinking it perfectly safe replied that there was
no danger and was himself not far away when it fell. They also reported that the boss was chased off by the infuriated workmen soon after the occurrence. The
sides of this cut are almost perpendicular and owing to the splintered condition of the shale are liable at any time to cave in or fall off, requiring constant attention
to prevent accidents. The wonder is not that he was hurt but that more accidents do not occur.
|Pottsville Republican of February 10, 1886
ANOTHER ITALIAN LAID LOW
At the deep cut near Schuylkill Haven, on the section of Drake, Stratton and Company, an Italian was yesterday fatally crushed by the falling of rock and was
conveyed to the Almshouse where he died soon afterwards. Deputy Coroner Dr. Dechert summoned a jury with Mr. Peter Stanton as foreman, who after a half
day's time taking evidence, rendered a verdict of accidental death.
|Pottsville Republican of April 1, 1886
P. S. V. DEPOTS
Bids for the erection of depots for the Pennsylvania Schuylkill Valley Railroad Company at Schuylkill Haven and Auburn will be opened today at the office of the
company. The plans and specifications for these structures have been examined and found to be in keeping with all the work done by the great Pennsylvania
Company along all their lines. The depot at Schuylkill Haven will be a two story red brick, black mortar pointed structure of handsome architectural design,
spacious in dimensions and substantial in construction. The specifications for the high cellar calls for the best stone and brick masonry and perfect drainage and
ventilation. The main floor will be divided into two large waiting rooms, for ladies and gentlemen respectively, a baggage room and toilet rooms for the different
sexes and a cozy ticket office and staircase between the waiting rooms. The rooms are to be wainscoted with chestnut five feet four inches high, the floor of
clear yellow pine, the window casings of white pine, doors of chestnut hung on butt hinges all to be of the best workmanship and all the window screens to be of
double rolled wrought iron. The second story will be fitted up in first class style for dwelling purposes and the roof will be of slate. The specifications call for the
best of material even to the minutest details of the building and for first class workmanship all around, form the foundation to the finishing in painting and
glassing. From the drawings which were shown us by Chief Engineer Brendlinger and from the minute demands of the specifications, we feel inclined to
congratulate our Schuylkill Haven neighbors upon the promised early construction of the most commodious and stylish passenger depot in Schuylkill County.
|Pottsville Republican of September 23, 1886
THE P. S. V. ROAD
The railroad crossing over the Schuylkill Haven - Landingville river road at Brown's, is bound to be famous. It has figured in two suits in court, has been a bone of
contention between North Manheim Township and the Pennsylvania Schuylkill Valley Railroad for a year now and now to show its enterprise crops out n another
way. Last Saturday evening it was the scene of an accident. One of the engines used on the P. S. V. was returning from near Auburn, the train consisting of three
gondolas which were pushed ahead of the engine and were occupied by some of the workmen. Landingville was passed, just this side, between the two points
where the P. S. V. crossed the township road. The P. S. V. had laid a side track. The train came spinning along and almost reached the crossing when some of the
men on the front car jumped up and ran back. The front car left the track bumping along on the sills for about a hundred feet and cutting great gashes in the
wood. Just as it left the track the pin was drawn so it ran further than the second which was stopped before it got far. The forward trucks of the front car were
turned around so that the wheels stood at right angles to their former positions. The engine and third car remained on the rails and after some time the second
car was also drawn on, but number one stayed where it was over Sunday. They claimed that the engine which had used it last had not properly cleared the switch
and it was the sight of the half moved switch board that gave them the alarm in time to retreat. Several persons report narrow escapes in driving over this place.
One says he was nearly run over the other morning by the workmen's train. On Tuesday a passenger coach was drawn over this end of the road. It came up from
Hamburg. Great quantities of coal dirt are hauled down the line, sometimes as high as fifteen cars at a time and several trains daily. It is being used as track
ballast near Auburn.
|Pottsville Republican of November 14, 1892
TERRIFIC EXPLOSION! Another Reading Locomotive Blown Up FIVE OLD RAILROADERS KILLED
Another Fatally Injured-Gathering Up The Mutilated Remains-Sketch of The Victims -A Big Loss Entailed Upon The Company-Details of The Occurrence
It is our sad duty today to chronicle another explosion of a locomotive of the Philadelphia and Reading Railroad Company, which occurred this morning near
Connor's Crossing, about three miles south of this place in which five strong, able bodied men were blown into eternity and one seriously if not fatally scalded.
The ill fated engine was known as one of the L class and was Number 563.
The killed are the following:
Henry C. Allison of Palo Alto, aged 44 years, married leaving a widow and a married daughter, engineer of the ill fated engine.
Charles J. C. Mackey of Port Carbon, aged 28 years, married, leaving a widow and one small child, fireman of the ill fated engine.
Charles H. Kendrick of Port Carbon, aged 32 years, married leaving a widow and four small children, conductor.
William Cowhey of mount Carbon, aged 59 years, married leaving a widow and twelve children, engineer of locomotive Number 73.
William H. Moyer of Palo Alto, aged 26 years, married, leaving a widow and two small children, fireman of engine Number 73.
The injured man is Michael Dobbins of Mount Carbon, single, badly scalded and Unconscious.
The ill fated engine with a long draught of empty cars and manned by Engineer Allison and Fireman Mackey were on their way from Port Richmond to Palo Alto an
after arriving near the overhead bridge of the Lehigh and Schuylkill Valley Railroad, a short distance this side of Connor's Crossing, the locomotive exploded with
the above horrifying results. It is difficult, yes impossible, at this time, if it ever can be done, to give the true cause of this very disastrous explosion. Michael
Dobbins, the only surviving witness up to noon, lay suffering and unconscious at the residence of his parents at Pinedale or East Mount Carbon. The attending
physician regards his condition so critical that he has placed his patient under chloroform to alleviate his sufferings and has refused any to see him excepting
those in attendance upon him.
Persons who were in close proximity, however, say that the train stood still at the time because the engine had run out of steam. The blower had been put on to
accelerate her steaming up and it was during this process that the boiler exploded. Dobbins alighted prior thereto and evidently it was to this cause that he
escaped being hurled into the future, as were the rest of his more unfortunate companions. Cowhey and his fireman Moyer had just returned from a trip to
Reading for which place they left about ten o'clock yesterday morning. They had, shortly prior to the accident, taken their engine, Number 73, and placed it into
the roundhouse at Cressona. After their return trip and as was their custom, they went to the office at Schuylkill Haven to board the first engine north bound so
that they could ride to their respective homes, which they however never reached alive. Their bodies, with the other victims, now lie cold in death, with the
bereaved widows and orphans gathered about their biers, whose only support and heads of families have gone forever. The scene is heartrending.
THE VICTIMS Henry C. Allison, the engineer of Number 563, was a native of Panther Valley, a short distance west of Cressona, where he was born about forty four
years ago. He early went to railroading and was one of the most careful of the many engineers in the employ of the company. He was a Union soldier during the
Rebellion and was a member of Gowen Post Number 23, G. A. R. and Seneca Tribe Number 41, I. O. R. M. He leaves a widow and a married daughter, the wife of
Bert Nimbleton, to mourn his loss. His only son was buried a little over a week ago. His funeral will take place Thursday afternoon from his late residence, 606
Bacon Street, Palo Alto.
Charles J. C. Mackey, fireman, resided at Port Carbon. He was about 28 years of age and leaves a widow and one small child. He was a prominent and active
member of the following organizations: W. C. Number 134, P. O. S. of A.; Grand Commandery, Number 36 P. O . S. of A.; Golden Rule Castle, Knights of Pythias;
Schuylkill Lodge, I. O. O. F. Number 27 and the Port Carbon Band. He was the efficient secretary of the latter organization.
Charles H. Kendrick was also a resident of Port Carbon and was about 32 years of age. He too, leaves a widow and four small children to mourn his loss. He was
the conductor of the ill fated train.
William Cowhey resided at Mount Carbon and was in his 59th year. He was twice married. Four grown up children from the first union survive him. His second
wife he leaves a widow with eight small children ranging from fourteen years to an infant of but a few months old to mourn his sad death. The deceased was a
soldier on the Union side in the late Rebellion and he was a prominent member of Gowen Post Number 23, G. A. R.
William H. Moyer is a native of Summit Station on the S. & S. Railroad where he was born about 26 years ago. He engaged as a railroader about five years ago and
removed to Palo Alto about three years after accepting the employment as fireman. He leaves a widow and two small boys, aged four years and nineteen months
respectively. His funeral will take place on Wednesday. Interment will be made at the Summer Mountain Cemetery. He was a member of the Summit Station Lodge
of the I. O. O. F.
THE SCENE OF THE EXPLOSION The explosion occurred immediately under the overhead bridge of the L. and S. V. Railroad. The engine Number 563 was of the L
class, which are used to draw freight. Although she was running north the force was so great that she was lifted completely from her frame and turned southward
in the opposite direction. Everything about her has been shivered to pieces and she was, to use a railroader's term, "turned completely inside out". The railroad
track for a short distance was also torn up. It is truly wonderful when the wrecked condition of the engine is taken into consideration, that the bodies of the
victims were not more badly mutilated. Excepting Cowhey and Moyer, whose bodies and faces were somewhat battered, the others were not so badly mangled or
THE CORONER AT THE SCENE At four o'clock this morning, Deputy Coroner Dr. H. G. Weist of Schuylkill Haven, was aroused and immediately summoned a jury. The
Coroner, B. C. Guldin also appeared as early as possible and they with the jury viewed the scene of the accident. No testimony will be taken for a day or so to
await the condition of the injured man, Michael Dobbins. The jury consists of Messrs. Hock, Fry, Greisinger, Jones, Brown and Brennan. The steam crane which is
used to remove debris and other material in the event of a collision or any other accident on the railroad was broken a few days ago and the wreck crew was
therefore very much hampered in removing the wreck. The wreckers under Yardmaster William Sabold worked very faithfully notwithstanding their great
A THEORY The Reading Railroad has been very unfortunate during the past year with the number of explosions of locomotives which have occurred. One old
railroader this morning assigned the following as the prime cause why these engines have exploded. He said in substance the crews are compelled to run their
engines at a very high pressure to draw the very heavy trains which are put behind them for the past year. To keep up the great pressure of steam and the
quantity used the fires are forced and the exteriors of the boilers are burned out and something must give way.
|Pottsville Republican of November 15, 1892
CLEARING THE WRECK! Around the Scene of the Locomotive Explosion
AWAITING DOBBINS' RECOVERY The Inquest Will Not Be Held Until He Is Able To Testify - His Condition Improving Slightly - Particulars Coming Out
John Day, well preserved man of over seventy years of age, who ran an engine for over thirty years and has worked on the railroad ever since 1862, was the
watchman on duty Sunday night where the engine exploded on the Reading Railroad at Connor's Crossing, a small station three miles south of here, whereby five
men were killed outright and one was very probably fatally scalded. Day says it was 12:15 when Engine 563 pulled up and stopped just south of his watchbox,
where the wagon road between Cressona and Schuylkill Haven crosses the railroad, and sorted out a long string of cars onto the sidetrack. Owing to difficulty
experienced in getting out some bent coupling pins, they laid there fully twenty minutes, after which they started north again for Palo Alto with the balance of the
train but they had trouble starting and they made very poor headway and he judges that they had allowed the steam to run down. They made several starts and
stops before they could get by his place and when they had gone beyond it a little over a hundred yards, they stopped again, and immediately thereafter the
He was half stunned himself and greatly bewildered and when he was starting to go up to the head of the train, brakeman Dobbins came running to him with his
clothes all afire and crying to him to help him extinguish the fire on his person. Day aided Dobbins in tearing off the burning clothes, after which at his request he
gave Dobbins some water with which he washed the dirt out of his eyes and from his face and hands. Dobbins said to him, " They are all killed. Oh, see if you can
help Harry Allison." By this time men came running up from the Mine Hill Junction dispatcher's office and the Schuylkill Haven railroad yards and after sending out
flagmen to stop all trains, search was made for the victims of the catastrophe. Cowhey and Moyer were found on the south bound track just above his watch box
where they had dropped after being blown against a wall of rock several hundred feet high. Engineer Allison and his fireman, Mackey, were found underneath the
engine and Kendricks, the conductor of the ill fated crew was blown several hundred yards into a field to the east of the tracks. Before the accident the engine
was headed north and by the force of the explosion it was turned upside down, the tracks on top and heading to the south, virtually making a back somersault to
the east of the track. The cylinder head and front of engine were a hundred feet still further south.
The explosion occurred directly beneath the long iron bridge of the Lehigh Valley and Schuylkill Railroad which crosses the Pennsylvania Railroad, turnpike, canal,
the junction railroad river, valley and Reading tracks at a height of about fifty feet. This bridge was not injured in the least. The bodies of the victims were
gathered together and taken into Day's watchbox and after being viewed by the coroner were sent to their late homes. The faces of all but one were
unrecognizable and their identity was disclosed by the clothing and bodily appearances alone. At six o'clock last evening all evidences of the wreck had been
cleared away excepting the frame of the immense boiler and firebox which was lying along side the track. Company officials were early on the ground and
thoroughly examined the cause of the accident and this was made plain late yesterday afternoon when they loaded up the crown sheet and sent it to Palo Alto.
On the crown sheet is unmistakable evidence that the explosion was caused by low water as the iron is badly burned to a deep blue color and the marks show just
how high the water was. Friends and all railroad men, after seeing this, acknowledge that there was no other cause. It is thought that in the excitement in trying
to get the bent coupling pins out and shorten the delay on the siding as much as possible, that unintentionally the water was allowed to get low. Day says that
Dobbins told him that when the engine stopped at Allison's request, he had got down on the task to get a bucket of water with which to extinguish a fire that had
started on the jacket and that Allison had just started his pumps.
|Pottsville Republican of October 20, 1891
A TRAMP RUN OVER
James Stoudt, who gave his residence as Reading, and who attempted to board a moving train at Schuylkill Haven last evening, fell along side of the moving train
and had his leg so badly mangled that it was thought at the time it would have to be amputated. He was taken to the Almshouse and from reports the leg will be
saved. The unfortunate man claims to be respectably connected in Reading.
|Pottsville Republican of January 28, 1892
WRECK ON THE P. S. V.
An early morning freight train coming to Pottsville ran into the rear end of another train at the switches below the bridge at Schuylkill Haven, wrecking several
cars, the engine, and throwing the tender from the track and strewing freight and cars in every direction. One employee, whose name we were unable to learn, ad
his hand mashed. The wreck was so serious that the 6:15 a. m. passenger train did not leave until 8:15 for Philadelphia and points down the road. All up trains
were late in consequence. The engineer of the up train was to go on the siding below the bridge but never saw the preceding train until he struck the caboose,
notwithstanding the rear brakeman was back to flag the up train. The second brakeman had his two arms broken and otherwise badly bruised. He was taken to
his home in Phoenixville.
|Pottsville Republican of November 9, 1891
CONNOR BRIDGE AFIRE - The Long Trestling Narrowly Escapes Danger
THE THREE BRAVE YOUNG GIRLS! They Make a Timely Discovery While a Sunday Stroll
Yesterday afternoon Miss Kate, daughter of William Beck of Beckville, in company with two Sunday Pottsville lady guests, Misses Annie Detner and Lizzie Kohler,
started out for a walk, crossing the Schuylkill to the east side and as they arrived at the point where the Pennsy runs under the east end of the long trestle from
Connors they discovered the woodwork above to be on fire and getting under good headway. The brave young ladies preserving their presence of mind
undertook to smother the flames by throwing dirt and sand upon them. They soon recognized the futility of combating the destroying element in this manner,
when Miss Beck exercised her sprinter agility in another direction. She ran to the home of Daniel Reichert and gave the alarm. That gentleman soon formed
himself into a bucket brigade and with a pail of water in each hand hastened to the scene and by a judicious disposition of Schuylkill water was successful in
outening the fire and preventing the threatened destruction to a large portion of this very extensive structure.
The young ladies state that the Lizard Creek train from Mauch Chunk had passed under the bridge but a few minutes earlier in full view and that the probabilities
are that a spark from the locomotive of that train fell upon the tinder like woodwork of the trestle and originated the fire. As the bridge is not used on Sunday, the
Lehigh Company keep no watchman on duty on that day. It was certainly a close call and the young ladies no doubt prevented considerable damage to the
structure by their timely discovery and the company owe to them more than passing recognition, while as a "fire company", our old friend, Daniel Reichert, should
receive a liberal contribution with which to keep his old fire apparatus in repair and running order.
|Pottsville Republican of March 10, 1892
Amos Freeman, a conductor of a coal train on the long road was found unconscious under the cars near Schuylkill Haven this morning, badly squeezed. He must
have been in the act of coupling cars when he fell under. He was taken to his home. A correspondent sends us the following account: Mr. Freeman was knocked
off a gondola loaded with stone at Mine Hill crossing at 7:15 and was rolled and doubled under the oil boxes. He was taken out unconscious but came to in half an
hour. His chances for recovery are doubtful. He has a wife and two children. Mr. Freeman was well liked by everyone. Mr. F. J. Simon was on hand and saw that
the injured man was well taken care of.
|Pottsville Republican of March 31, 1892
WRECK AT SCHUYLKILL HAVEN
As P. & R. freight train Number 60, which leaves Cressona about 11:30 a. m. was pulling off a siding above Mine Hill crossing this forenoon, the tracks spread and
several cars containing car were wrecked and contents partly destroyed. The wreckers were soon on the spot and in a short time the tracks were cleared away.
The disabled train did not get away until late in the evening. The crew all escaped uninjured.
|Pottsville Republican of July 16, 1892
NOT A HOAX AS REPORTED
The report or rumor going around that a P. & R. employee at Schuylkill Haven, who had a leg amputated, complained of great pain in the injured foot caused by a
bunion, so much so that he could not rest, also that it was finally determined to take a look at the mangled foot and have it disinterred. This was done and the
bunion was found resting tightly against the sides of the box. The foot was rearranged and the moment this was done the man was relieved. This report or rumor
is not a hoax but it is really true and is verified by one of our oldest citizens, William Roan, who himself lost a limb, which was buried in a tight box, and it was not
until the limb was disinterred and loosely arranged that he could rest. Mr. Roan names others who experienced the same uneasiness. Among the unfortunates
who lost a limb on the railroad located here are: William Roan, George A. Schaeffer, Colonel Irving W. Tyson, Henry Hagner, Abraham Saylor, Andrew Schwilk,
Squire Patrick O'Brien, Thomas Gordon and Levi Minnig.
|The Call of August 11, 1905
STRUCK BY A TRAIN - Wally Bernheiser Returning From an Errand of Mercy Meets Death
Wally Bernheiser, aged thirty two years, employed as farmer for William Becker on the Long Run Road about a mile from Schuylkill Haven, was killed by train
Number 11, the Buffalo, southbound at one o'clock Wednesday morning at the Union Street crossing. Bernheiser was returning from Pottsville with his employer's
team, having taken Mr. Becker and the latter's ten year old son Howard to the Pottsville Hospital where the lad underwent an operation for appendicitis. The boy
died and Mr. Becker remained with the body and sent Bernheiser home. Dr. Cleaver, the lad's physician, who had gone to the hospital with him, returned home
with Bernheiser in his own conveyance, but going through Schuylkill Haven got some distance ahead and drove out to the Becker farm where he awaited
Bernheiser, in the meantime, in driving over the Union Street crossing of the P. & R. was struck by the train. His carriage was completely wrecked and he was so
badly injured that he died soon after the accident. The horse he was driving was not injured but the collision stripped him of harness and carriage and he ran in
mad fright to the Becker farm. The appearance of the horse without carriage or driver alarmed Dr. Cleaver, who drove back to town to endeavor to find
Andrew Schwilk, night watchman at the passenger station, heard a crash as the train approached and asked Engineer Joe Sprenger if he had struck anything but
the latter said he had not. Mr. Schwilk told him of the crash he had heard and Mr. Sprenger got down and examined his engine, fearing that something might have
broken about the machinery. Finding everything alright, the train proceeded.
After the train had gone, Mr. Schwilk and Morris Saylor, yardmaster at Cressona, made an investigation and found the wrecked carriage and the body of
Bernheiser. Bernheiser was still alive and they removed him to the station and telephoned for the Pottsville Hospital ambulance. The ambulance got as far as
Mount Carbon where it was blocked by a coal train. In the meantime Bernheiser died and word was sent to the hospital to recall the ambulance.
Dr. Daniel Dechert, Deputy Coroner, empanelled the following jury to inquire into the cause of Bernheiser's death: Floyd Keever, Preston Souder, Milton Quinter,
Adam Mayberry, R. S. Underwood and C. S. Goas. They viewed the body after which it was taken in charge by the man's relatives. Mr. Becker and family were
almost completely prostrated by the death of their son and the terrible ending of the life of their farmer, whom they thought of very highly and considered as one
of the family. Mr. Becker is foreman of Meck and Keever's Mill. The jury rendered a verdict of accidental death and censured the P. & R. Company for not
maintaining a proper guard at the Main Street and Union Street crossings. George W. Gise, Esquire, who represented the unfortunate man's relatives was
present at the inquest and questioned the witnesses.
|Pottsville Republican of March 14, 1892
HARRY FREILER KILLED
On Saturday evening between the hours of seven and eight o'clock. Harry Freiler, formerly of this town, was killed at the coal storage at Landingville. He was in
the act of coupling when he was caught between the tank of the engine and the car, squeezing him in a fearful manner that death was instantaneous. He was a
son of the late Jacob Freiler, barber, and was twenty six years old. Last October, he was married to Miss Kate Gehring of Frackville. They boarded at Cressona.
He was, until a year ago, employed at the Laubenstein screen works at Minersville, when he took a position on the P. & R. Railroad as a brakeman. He will be
buried at the latter place.
|The Call of March 20, 1903
CRUSHED TO DEATH
Milton Kline, aged twenty two years, while unloading cars at the storage yard Tuesday evening, was knocked beneath the wheels by the cars bumping and was
instantly killed. His remains were removed by D. M. Wagner's undertaking establishment and prepared for burial after which they were taken to the home of his
mother, Mrs. Oliver Emerich of Berne Street. He was a most exemplary young man. He was a P. & R. deputy during the strike. A brother was similarly killed
several years ago. Deputy Coroner Dechert empanelled a jury who rendered a verdict of accidental death. Kline was a member of Webster Council Junior
O. U. A. M. The funeral took place Saturday afternoon.
|The Call of August 11, 1905
WRECK IN THE STORAGE YARD
A wreck at the coal storage yard resulted in the smashing of two cars and the steam chest of the locomotive. A draft of empty cars was being brought down from
the dump and the yard engine shifting on the track which led to the old trestle work was going to make a flying shift. It hit the empties just as they reached the
frog and two cars went down over the bank. Conductor Kinsley saved his life by jumping.
|Pottsville Republican of May 5, 1892
SAD ACCIDENT AT SCHUYLKILL HAVEN
Silas Farrady, an inmate at the Schuylkill County Almshouse, was given leave to visit Pottsville yesterday, and on his return walked down the Pennsylvania Railroad
tracks. When he reached the arch at Spring Garden, Schuylkill Haven, he lost his balance and fell to the street below, a distance of about twenty feet, expiring a
few hours later. Farraday was sixty years old, and for the last five years was an inmate at the almshouse. He was formerly a resident of Pottsville and was noted
as a pugilist. Failing eyesight was the cause of the sad accident. Deputy Coroner Weist of Schuylkill Haven and a jury held a post mortem inquest at noon and
returned a verdict of accidental death. If the body is not claimed by tomorrow morning it will be sent to Philadelphia for dissection.
|Pottsville Republican of February 15, 1894
KILLED AT SCHUYLKILL HAVEN
Daniel Mulholland, a Brakeman on the P. & R. Squeezed By Cars
Daniel Mulholland, a resident of the West Ward, Schuylkill Haven, aged thirty eight years, employed as a brakeman on the shifting engine at the car shops at that
place, while coupling cars this morning about eight o'clock was squeezed so badly that he died shortly after its occurrence. Mr. Mulholland was a carpenter at the
car shops but he came under the suspension about a month ago and had been employed as brakeman only three weeks before he met with the accident this
morning that cost him his life. The deceased served one term in the National Guard of Pennsylvania, having been a member of Company F, Fourth Regiment of
Pottsville, when Captain E. D. Smith commanded the company. He received his discharge when his term expired but had intended to reenlist but for some cause
never did so. He was also a member of the Emerland Society of Schuylkill Haven for many years. He was a man of commanding presence, being tall, and had many
warm friends in civil and military life. His comrades in Pottsville greatly regret his untimely death and all speak of him in generous terms.
He was married to Elizabeth, daughter of Mrs. Catharine and the late Peter Meyer of 414 West Arch Street in Pottsville, whom the deceased leaves to survive him
with two sons. The relatives in Pottsville were unaware of the sad accident until after the arrival of the eleven o'clock train on the P. & R., when Joseph Meyer, his
brother in law broke the news to his family. Deputy Coroner Henry G. Weist summoned a jury and held an inquest on the remains.
|The picture at left shows the "J" tower in
the yard at Schuylkill Haven and the
photo at the right shows the crossing
guard shed, although the exact location
in town is not known.
|Pottsville Republican of December 9, 1893
BENEFIT ENTERTAINMENT - SURGICAL SKILL
The boys around town, as they might be called, invariably turn up about the right time and do the proper act. Now about two months ago, Jere Huling, a conductor
on the Mine Hill branch, had one of his legs caught under a car wheel, stripping it of the skin from the ankle to near the hip and badly bruising the foot. Under the
skillful treatment of Dr. Lenker, the limb is now nearly healed, but entirely devoid of skin on nearly half the surface of the limb. With doctor bills to pay and a family
to support, without any income, is distressing enough, so the boys are going to give an entertainment on next Wednesday, the thirteenth, with the proceeds to go
to the invalid. It is hoped that every reader of this will purchase at least one ticket. There are already six hundred disposed of and the performance will consist of
minstrelsy, sparring matches, and clog dancing. The next act will take place by the same performers a week later and is decidedly of a more serious nature. Jere
Huling's leg skin must be obtained somewhere. The boys are now ready to go on with this act also and when Dr. Lenker says the word, their arms will be bared
and unflinchingly he will be offered all he needs. Don't you ever sit in judgment upon your neighbor for you can't see the heart within him. him.
|Pottsville Republican of February 17, 1894
TRUE FACTS RELATING TO THE OPERATION ON JERE HULING'S LEG
There have been several accounts of the skin grafting operation that was performed at the Miner's Hospital, Thursday on Jere Huling, who was injured on the
Reading Railroad some months ago. None of these accounts have had the facts. Huling had the skin and flesh stripped off one of his legs to the bone and the
wound could not heal. Dr. Lenker sent him to the hospital and made arrangements to have this operation performed.
Five of Huling's friends, F. A. Binckley, Ellis Reed, John Bowen, Lewis Bitzer and Frank Rheam, agreed to stand the pain and give to Huling as much of their skin
and flesh as was needed to perform the operation. It was a noble offer and there was only one condition put in it and that was that the Reading Company should
supply them with a pass to and from Ashland. As they were not employees, the company refused this request. This meanness on the part of the company
however, was not allowed to interfere with the operation and the men were taken to Gordon on an engine. From there they were driven to the hospital by the
Honorable D. D. Phillips.
The operation was performed by Dr. J. C. Biddle, superintendent of the hospital, assisted by Dr. Lenker of Schuylkill Haven. Between 260 and 270 pieces of skin
were transferred from the bodies of these men to Huling's leg. Binckley stood the operation for between 70 and 80 grafts, Reed for 65, Bowen for 65, Bitzer for 60
and Rheam fainted after four had been taken from him. The operation was very successfully performed. All the men are being congratulated on the way they
served their friend and Morris Saylor is also deserving of credit for the active part he took in helping to arrange this matter.
|Pottsville Republican of January 7, 1918
SCHUYLKILL HAVEN MAN CUT IN TWAIN
Failing to put a blue signal on the track in front or behind the car on which he was working as required by law, Francis Emerick of Schuylkill Haven, aged sixty five
years, was cut in twain at the P. R. R. yards in Mount Carbon on Sunday morning. He died in five minutes. Emerick was behind the car and the shifting engine
threw two cars against this car under which Emerick was working and he was pinned beneath the front wheels which went over him. Working with him was
Charles Dress, also of Schuylkill Haven and Dress went away for a simplex tube and while he was gone the accident occurred. The car under which Emerick met
his death was shopped for having a defective lock pin. Emerick, a car inspector and general handy man, who was considered one of the most valuable men at the
yard, noticed the marks of defects and started to work in repairing the car. Emerick is a widower and has two married sons, one living in Schuylkill Haven and the
other in Tamaqua. Yardmaster C. B. Hughes conducted an investigation and the coroner will hold an inquest within a few days.
|Pottsville Republican of January 10, 1918
EMERICK DEATH ACCIDENTAL - Victim Is To Blame For His Own Death For Failure To Put Up Signal
The coroner's inquest into the death of Francis Emerick of Schuylkill Haven, who met death when he was repairing at car at the P. R. R. yards on Sunday morning
last, rendered a verdict of death by being crushed beneath the wheels of a car, which he was repairing and that death was accidental, Emerick failing to put up the
blue flag as required by the rules of the company, to protect men working on or about any cars. The crew was exonerated as well as the railroad company.
Charles Dress, who worked with Emerick on the day of the fatality, I. L. Dougherty, the engineer, John J. Brehoney, the conductor, W. F. Miller, the brakeman, C. E.
Staller, gang leader, F. E. Lindermuth, a carpenter and W. J. Bimmer, foreman car inspector, Yardmaster Hughes and Chief of P. R. R. Police Meiswinkle were the
witnesses. Evidence showed that neither Dress nor Emerick observed the flag rule as required in the book of rules. Coroner Moore and Coroner Dirschel
conducted the inquest.
|Pottsville Republican of November 30, 1910
HUGE SCHUYLKILL HAVEN CAR SHOP FIRE CAUSED EXCITEMENT
The largest fire in the history of Schuylkill Haven occurred last evening when the greater part of the car shops located there went up in smoke causing a loss
estimated at nearly one half million dollars. That the entire structure was not destroyed was due to the work of the Schuylkill Haven firemen with their chemical
engine. Six times the main structure was on fire and each time the firemen at the risk of their lives went between the burning buildings and there fought back the
flames, thus not only saving the main building but also keeping over four hundred men from Cressona and Schuylkill Haven from being thrown out of
The flames were discovered shortly after 7:30 o'clock by the night watchman Dewald. About the time they were discovered by him, the members of the shifting
crew at Mine Hill Crossing noticed them and sounded an alarm by blowing the engine whistle. This alarm was followed several seconds later by the shop whistle.
The later whistle was heard over the entire towns of Cressona and Schuylkill Haven and caused the companies to respond. Watchman Dewald had passed the
blacksmith shop just fifteen minutes before the flames burst out. He had walked to the oil house and carpenter shop and was on his way back to the upper end of
the yard, when the shop went up like so much powder. It was only a question of a few seconds before the flames communicated to the carpenter shop adjoining,
all the buildings being of wood. From the carpenter shop, the flames then communicated to the engine house and then to the warehouse and storage
department. The main shops are situated directly across from the blacksmith, only the stretch of a boardwalk, ten feet wide, separating the two buildings. With
the destruction of the machine shop and the carpenter shop went all the expensive machinery and the tools belonging to th employees. In the storage
department were forty carloads of seasoned timber of all descriptions. This was all destroyed.
After the fire companies of Schuylkill Haven had been fighting the fire for the best part of an hour, it was seen that the flames were gaining headway every minute
and word was sent from the trainmaster's office at Cressona to police headquarters asking for assistance. The word was communicated to the proper officials and
the American and Humane steamers and the American chemical were ordered down. The American chemical left here at 8:20 o'clock and was on the scene of the
fire in exactly one half hour. The two steamers arrived in Schuylkill Haven shortly after nine o'clock, but it was fully an hour later before the trucks were unloaded
and run along side the banks of the old dock. After the steamers started work, great progress was made in fighting the flames. The chemical engine worked from
the one end and the two steamers from the handicapped the firemen, driving the smoke and sparks into their eyes and faces. It was impossible for the firemen to
work more than ten or fifteen minutes at a time. They were then relieved and others took their places. This was continued until early this morning.
Shortly after three o'clock the American chemical was ordered home as it was noticed by the officials that the two steamers had the situation well in hand and that
it would only be a question of a few more hours before the fire would be declared extinguished. Shortly after midnight the hose companies sent to Pottsville for
more hoses, gum boots and coats. These were collected and taken to the local Reading station, where Engine Number 101 was in waiting with an extra car. The
material was loaded aboard and reached the men shortly after one o'clock.
Engine Number 101 containing Superintendent Keifer and a number of officials from Reading arrived at the scene of the fire at about ten o'clock having come from
Reading. They immediately consulted with Assistant Teammaster Satterlee and Superintendent David Runkle of the shops. All of the employees of the shops who
could possibly be communicated with were ordered to give all the assistance possible to the steamers. These men assisted in unloading the two steamers and
helping pull them to the side of the dock. Superintendent Keifer remained with the men until early morning when he was summoned to Reading on important
business. Superintendent Runkle stayed on the scene all night and rendered valuable assistance to the men in fighting the flames.
An estimate made of the number of those who were attracted to the fire puts the figure at nearly four thousand men, women and children. From eight o'clock until
late into the night every car out of Pottsville carried a hundred or more people. Nearly the entire population of Cressona and Schuylkill Haven was on hand and
watched the Pottsville firemen do their work.
The Schuylkill Haven car shops were erected over fifteen years ago and cover nearly an acre and a half of ground. These shops were formerly located along the
tracks in the west ward of town. At the first it was seen that they were too small to accomplish the necessary work and the new shops were ordered built.
Employment is given to 450 men. In order to keep this number, it is necessary to maintain a payroll of over 500 men. Many live in Schuylkill Haven and throughout
the southern end of the county. A large number come by train daily from Pottsville and local districts. The majority of these men will be thrown out of employment
for the time being. A question was raised with the Schuylkill Haven bosses whether or not the shops will be rebuilt. A "Republican" man asked that direct
question to Superintendent Keifer last evening. He said the final decision would be by President Baer but he could see no reason why the shops would not be
rebuilt. The Schuylkill Haven shops of the Reading are the third plant on the important Reading system and is surpassed only by those at Wayne Junction and at
Reading. A great deal of new work has been done at the Schuylkill Haven shops.
Some of the reasons advanced why the Schuylkill Haven shops will be rebuilt are that it has long been acknowledged that the Schuylkill Haven plant was operated
at a less percentage of cost than any other where repair work was done by the Reading, anywhere, this is partly of the fact that there are no labor unions at
Schuylkill Haven and also because of the ability to get plenty of hands in the fall and winter, when work is rushed, and in the summer, when railroad work is slack,
many of those hands work about the farms and other summer work, so that the arrangement has always been a mutually satisfactory one to both employer and
employees. The Schuylkill Haven shops were located at the junction of the Mine Hill Division at the Main Line and were situated on the site of the old canal
landings, much of the plant being erected on new made land and on platforms resting on pilings driven into the water and gradually filled up with debris and
rubbish until the foundation became permanent. The Reading Company is under great obligation to the railroaders and citizens of Schuylkill Haven, who did such
gallant work to prevent the spread of the flames, many of these men injuring their health and damaging their clothing in fighting the fire and it would be no more
than right for the officials of the Reading Company to at once institute close inquiry to ascertain those who assisted in fighting the fire and then make some cash
remuneration that will in part pay their employees and volunteer firemen for the damages they sustained in laboring for the preservation of the Reading's property.
Someone high up in authority in the Reading blundered terrifically in not seeing to it that there were proper fire fighting facilities at the shops. There was plenty
of water all around in the old canal basins but there were no permanent engine pumping attachments to elevate the water up in time of emergencies and had it
not been for the bucket brigade work of the employees and citizens, the flames would have cleaned up everything in that vicinity and entailed another $100,000
loss on the Reading Company. The only hose connection they had was attached to a fire plug that was located on the Schuylkill Haven water mains, the force in
this main not being sufficient to lift the water five feet in the air. One of the ludicrous events of the fire was the efforts to extinguish the flames on an electric
light pole, which necessitated a fireman climbing the pole to the top because there was no force of water. By all means, there should have been plenty of
pumping capacity with an elevated storage tank, which in this instance, would have saved the Reading Company many thousands of dollars. Proper fire fighting
apparatus and an elevated tank or two of water would have stopped last night's fire in its infancy, but for the sake of two or three thousand dollars worth of
preventive measures, the Reading Company now loses fully one hundred thousand dollars besides experiencing months of annoyance and such other loss to the
company and citizens until a new car shop plant is put in operation.
Hundreds of homes in the town were threatened by the large number of sparks that were carried by the high winds. Some of the blazing embers, nearly a foot in
length, were carried for a distance of a mile or more. Some landed by the barn of the almshouse and others on the roofs of homes closer by. All night long the
owners of homes were on the roofs of houses with buckets of water and Babcock extinguishers. The rains of yesterday morning had dampened the roofs and this
fact alone prevented a great loss in the town.
Considerable time was lost by the firemen, due to the fact that the suction hose brought along by them, fifteen feet, was not long enough to reach from the top of
the bank to the water's edge. It was then found necessary to run the cars containing the steamers up near the trolley station at Connor and there unload them.
Planks were then laid and in this manner the steamers were run within several feet of the water. By doing this the two steamers were enabled to work, where
otherwise it would have been necessary to join the two sections of suction hose and allow only the one engine to do the pumping.
The reflection of the flames were seen in saint Clair and many inquiries were made regarding the fire. So plainly could it be seen from Centre Street, that many
were under the impression that the fire was at Hillside and when the American chemical dashed down Centre Street, hundreds followed for several squares. All
the cigar stores and moving picture shows were emptied in quick order.
As usual the water pressure in the town was low. All the firemen could get from the plugs situated in close proximity to the shops was a stream not more than ten
feet in length and only an inch or two in diameter. It was necessary in the fore part of the evening for the firemen to lay on their backs and hold the hose in order
to get anywhere near the fire. Others constructed sheet iron barriers in front of them and thus prevented the smoke and heat from entering their eyes.
The house used for the manufacturing of air and the boiler house were both destroyed together with the machinery. This will constitute the most serious loss to
the company. Inside the boiler house were all the engines used in the manufacturing of the air, which was not only pumped to all sections of the shops but also to
the shops located on the other side of Mine Hill Crossing where all the cars are tested before being sent out on the road.
When word was sent to Pottsville that the fire was of such large proportion, twelve members of the State Police were sent to the scene to render any assistance
asked of them. Their services were not needed as the large crowd was an orderly one and did not interfere with the work of the firemen.
After pumping streams of water on the fire all night and until a late hour this morning, the officials of the Reading Company thought that the fire was about
extinguished and ordered the Pottsville steamers to return home. The trucks were then loaded and arrived safe in Pottsville shortly after three o'clock this
morning. They were taken to their respective houses and cleaned.
By the hardest kind of work, the office of Superintendent Runkle and all the records were saved from destruction, although a number of the latter were water
soaked. These records and the time made by the men have been kept at Schuylkill Haven for the past twenty years and their loss would have meant much to the
After midnight an order was sent to Pottsville for hot coffee and sandwiches for the firemen. They were gotten together and taken to the Reading passenger
station, where an engine and a passenger car were waiting to take the same to Schuylkill Haven. This move on the part of the company was appreciated by the
men as the night was a hard one and some of the men had left Pottsville without their suppers. Others of the men had worked all day and went to Schuylkill Haven
and worked all night without a moment's rest.
Early this morning the water supply was shut off from the town and consequently from the shops. At ten o'clock the fire broke out anew where the storage house
was located and it was necessary to telephone to the water company to again turn on the water. Later in the afternoon the situation was reported well in hand and
no further difficulty expected. The officials of the company are still on the scene and will remain until all traces of the fire are extinguished.
The burning of the Reading car shops at Schuylkill Haven brings up to mind the history of that location and a few little references here will, no doubt, prove
interesting reading to the old citizens, and as well, educational to the young people. Previous to 1870 the whole section east of the Reading's main line tracks, at
the junction of the Mine Hill Division, was occupied by the Schuylkill Navigation Company, with immense wharves from which the coal was unloaded from the cars
into canal boats and thence shipped down the Schuylkill Canal to the seaboard. This was the only means of shipping the coal out of the anthracite region
previous to the building of the Reading Railroad. There were branch railroads such as Mine Hill, the Girard Plane and the Mount Carbon Company's in existence
but the Reading main line had not been built. In the old days, the coal from the Shamokin section was shipped by way of the Gordon planes and Cressona to the
coal wharves at Schuylkill Haven. This was also done with the coal from the west end. The coal from Mahanoy Valley was lifted over the Mahanoy Plane and
brought down the mountain to Port Carbon and Palo Alto and shipped by canal boats there. Coal from the immediate vicinity of Pottsville, such as the York Farm
and the western boundary of Pottsville, was taken down Market Street to coal landings located where the Pennsylvania freight station now stands at Norwegian
and Railroad Streets. This was also the case with the coal from Jalappa and Mount Laffee. What is now the Reading freight yard was the site once of a branch of
the Schuylkill Navigation Company's canal and where the Reading Company's passenger station is now located was the old Gough Hotel, a great headquarters of
the boating people. In the latter part of the 1850s, the Reading Company opened its line to Mount Carbon where there were also extensive canal boat landings
and afterwards the Reading line was opened to Pottsville, with the passenger station at what is now the freight station.
In 1870 the Reading Company, after years of endeavor, secured control of the Schuylkill Navigation Company and the process of dismantling the various canal
shipping points, which had been going on for some years, was then pushed with vigor and in 1875, the last one to be in operation, at Schuylkill Haven, was
abandoned. Since then coal has been shipped by canal boat only from Port Clinton.
Sometime after 1875, the Reading Company out up a little car repair plant on the old canal landing site east of the Mine Hill Junction at Schuylkill Haven and this
plant has been gradually increased until it has become one of great importance to the Reading system, employing hundreds of hands and doing a great volume of
work. While the Reading Company has smaller car repair shops at Cressona, Palo Alto, Saint Clair, Tamaqua, Shamokin, etc., yet these are used for immediate light
repair to avoid the necessity of unloading cars and to do repair work that is discovered after the cars have been loaded or in transit. The work at the Schuylkill
Haven plant, however, has been of a general all around nature and the plant has been a wonderfully busy point. About fifteen years ago the Reading Company
decided to greatly enlarge the Schuylkill Haven plant and since then big improvements have been constantly underway and about ten years ago in addition to the
general run of repair buildings, an immense new car building plant was erected; some of this new portion of the plant was saved from last night's conflagration,
which, fortunately was confined to the smaller outbuildings and the main carpenter shop, the blacksmith shop and the warehouse as above described. With this
nucleus left, the Reading Company can go ahead and do much of their wood repair work but for the iron work, new buildings must be erected and of course a new
supply of material of all kinds secured.
|Starts in Blacksmith Shop
|Aid Asked From Pottsville
|Officials On the Scene
|Thousands View the Fire
|Erected Fifteen Years Ago
|Why The Shops Will Be Rebuilt
|No Preparation For Fire
|Hundreds of Homes Threatened
|Firemen Short of Suction Hose
|Flames Seen in Saint Clair
|Water Pressure Low
|Air House and Boiler Shop Gone
|State Police on Scene
|Steamers Return Home
|Office and Records Safe
|Coffee and Sandwiches Served
|Fire Breaks Out Anew
|HISTORY OF REPAIR SHOPS
Formerly Site of Great Canal Activity - An Important Plant
|Pottsville Republican of December 1, 1910
REBUILD CAR SHOPS AT ONCE; TO BE BIGGER AND MODERN
Orders were received at Schuylkill Haven last evening to start work immediately and clean up the debris of the fire of Tuesday evening. The order also stated,
that as soon as the ground is cleared, a force of carpenters and masons will be sent to Schuylkill Haven from all points along the Reading system and will assist
the carpenters at Schuylkill Haven in the erection of new shops. While no definite plans have as yet been formulated, it is the opinion of some of the officials of
the shops that the new ones will be modern in every particular and a great credit to the town. They will cover more ground and consequently give employment to
more men. During the time that the new shops are being erected, not one of the employees will be required to lose a day. All men who are not employed in
repairing cars on the landing and at the general yard will be put to work in clearing up the old lumber and iron work that remains from the fire. This is certainly
welcome news for our neighboring borough and assures the town of still greater prosperity.
|Pottsville Republican of January 14, 1903
SMOTHERED TO DEATH - Edward Merkel Buried Alive Under Many Tons of Coal
Edward Merkel, son of Henry G. Merkel of Cressona, and employed at the P. & R. coal chutes at that place, on Wednesday fell into the buckwheat coal pocket while
the pocket was being filled and was buried beneath the coal and smothered to death. This weather the coal packs tightly and freezes and when drawn off at the
wicket, the frozen coal forms an arch in the pocket and then refuses to run. It is believed Merkel met with his fatal mishap while trying to loosen the coal.
He was seen alive at one o'clock. Being missed half an hour later, search was instituted resulting in the finding of his dead body in the coal pocket, the contents
of which had to be drawn off to secure the remains. Dr. G. O. O. Santee was called and made every effort to resuscitate him. Deputy Coroner Gray empanelled the
following jury which returned a verdict in accordance with the facts, no blame being attached to anyone: Wallace Bartlett, Joseph Hornberger, Clayton Wagner,
George Reiger, William T. Gilbert and Charles Eiler. The unfortunate man was about thirty years of age and is survived by his widow and a little child.
|Here is another view of the
COMPLIMENTS OF BRAD KNAPP
|These two photos are taken
atop the Lehigh Valley trestle
in 1953 before it was
dismantled. At left, the view is
westward toward Cressona
and at right the view is
eastward toward Schuylkill
COMPLIMENTS OF LEWIS HOY
|The Call of February 28, 1930
LANDINGVILLE MAN FOUND DEAD AT WORK
Mahlon Schaeffer of Landingville, was found lifeless on top of a coal car at the storage yards, near Landingville, Saturday morning about three o'clock. He had
been at work with other men at the yards and had been assigned to a particular task. When he did not return within a short time, search was made for him and it
was feared he had fallen underneath cars, therefore, the search for some time was confined to the ground. Later his body was discovered on top of a coal car.
Efforts at resuscitation failed. Deputy Coroner R. W. Lenker of Schuylkill Haven pronounced death had been due to heart attack. The deceased was thirty eight
years of age. He was born in Landingville and resided there all his life. He was a member of the Faith Reformed Church.
Besides the widow, who was Miss Amy Eiler of Schuylkill Haven, one son survives. These brothers and sisters also survive: Theodore and Samuel Schaeffer of
Schuylkill Haven; Mrs. Michael Gaffney of Landingville; Mrs. George Moyer of Port Carbon and Mrs. Rose Rudloff of Orwigsburg. The funeral which took place
Tuesday afternoon was largely attended.
|The Call of May 4, 1934
FELL FIFTY FEET TO HIS DEATH
Harvey Barger, aged fifty five years, a carpenter at the P. & R. C. & I. storage yards near Landingville, was instantly killed on Saturday afternoon at 1:45 o'clock
when he slipped and fell down an elevator shaft, a distance of fifty feet. His skull and right leg were badly fractured and he also sustained minor injuries.
Deceased also operated a fruit stand and filling station on a farm which he owned just beyond Long Run Hotel on the Schuylkill Haven-Pine Grove Pike. To
survive, he leaves his wife and a daughter, Miss Ora at home. His funeral took place from his late home on Wednesday morning, with services at the house at ten
o'clock by the Reverend C. A. Steigerwalt. Interment was in Saint John's Reformed Cemetery in Friedensburg.
|The Call of May 25, 1934
JURY SAYS DEATH MIGHT HAVE BEEN PREVENTED
At the inquest held in the town hall on Friday evening last, conducted by Deputy Coroner Dr. R. W. Lenker, into the death of Harvey Barger, who was killed at the P.
& R. C. & I. storage yard on April 28th, negligence of insufficient safety for the employee was brought out. The principal witnesses at the inquest were: John
Devan, Edward Kupko, and Landis Shuey of Schuylkill Haven. Devan and Kupko were working with Barger on the "plane" in the breaker repairing and renewing
planking on which the chutes rested. Barger was working several feet below them using a bar to guide a large chute which was being raised, so as to permit the
replacing of the worn out planking. Just before the unfortunate man fell, according to statements of these two workmen, a chute which was being raised jammed
on the planking, Barger called to the men to stop raising it. Shortly thereafter, they noticed that Barger had disappeared and upon making an investigation, found
his body at the foot of the elevator shaft about fifty five feet below. These men stated that because of the position in which they were working, they did not have a
clear view of the victim, who was working several feet below. They did not see him fall or hear him give any outcry either before or after falling.
Landis Shuey was working in the breaker house several tracks away from the point where Mr. Barger landed in the fall through the elevator shaft. He stated he
picked up the man who seemed to be breathing at the time, but expired almost immediately. The next and last witness called was Roy F. Trout of Schuylkill Haven,
Superintendent of the storage yards. He testified he was not in the building at the time of the accident. He told of the general construction work that was taking
place at the time of the accident. He also stated that planks had been laid over the elevator shaft openings about fifteen feet below the point where the three
men were working. He also stated there were two planks over the forty inch wide opening, through which the body of Mr. Barger passed on its way to the bottom
of the shaft. He stated safety rules are enforced and inspection of safety devices are made at frequent intervals.
The jury was composed of: Howard M. Deibert, Paul S. Christman, Edward L. Burkert, Howard M. Betz, E. Bright Pflueger and Clarence W. Schaeffer, brought in the
following verdict: - "That Harvey Barger came to his death as the result of a fall from the plane on which he was working in the breaker in the storage yard. We
feel that the death might have been prevented if the shaft through which the man fell had been protected by an additional plank."
|Click on the link at right to view a nice collection of local pictures of the Lehigh Valley Railroad.
|The Call of March 29, 1935
MOTORIST AND FREIGHT TRAIN IN COLLISION HERE
Monday noon, the noon day freight on the Lehigh Valley Railroad, collided with an automobile driven by Mrs. Nat Tuckerman of Pottsville, at a point where the
railroad crosses the Orwigsburg-Schuylkill Haven Pike, near the County Almshouse. The automobile was somewhat damaged. Mrs. Tuckerman, who was the only
occupant of the car, escaped with slight body bruises but suffered somewhat from shock. The automobile was being driven north or in the direction of Pottsville.
The accident occurred about 12:15 o'clock. The engine and three cars and cabin was crossing over on the spur track from the Pennsylvania Railroad tracks to the
Lehigh Valley Railroad track. It is believed that the motorist did not notice the approach of the train or hear the whistle. She had crossed over the tracks in front
of the engine and when over the tracks, swerved the car over to the left with the result that the left front wheel of the automobile struck the left front end of the
engine. There is but one train each week day that crosses over this connecting track and that is at noon, when this combination passenger and freight train
operating from Lizard Creek Junction to Pottsville, crosses from the Lehigh Valley tracks and backs into the freight station along the Pennsylvania tracks, where
the freight is loaded or unloaded. The train is usually, and for the past several years, pulled by gas-electric engine. However, on Monday, by reason of the
gas-electric train being shopped for repairs, one of the big and powerful steam engines of the Lehigh Company was being used.
|The Call of May 17, 1935
MET DEATH IN FALL FROM BRIDGE
Augustus Doerflinger of Schuylkill Haven met death in a horrible manner on Sunday afternoon about two o'clock, when he either fell or plunged from the Lehigh
Valley Railroad bridge near Connor's Crossing. He struck his head against the post of the guard rail along the old highway at this point. He suffered a compound
fracture of the skull and death was instantaneous.
The news of the accident quickly spread about Schuylkill Haven and in a few minutes time, there had gathered a large crowd of persons. Police Chief Deibert was
summoned and he in turn called Coroner Prescott. Attendants at the Schuylkill Motors Company car lot nearby witnessed the tragedy, having noticed the man
walking along the bridge. They reported that suddenly they noticed he stopped near the edge and it appeared he lost his balance. He regained it only to lose it
again and the men were horrified to see the body plunging toward the earth. The bridge is at least 125 feet high at the point where the accident occurred. The
deceased was thirty two years of age. He had been a resident of Schuylkill Haven for some time. He had been employed at the Berkshire Knitting Mills in
Reading, before moving to Schuylkill Haven. He had been a patient at the Berks County Hospital and later at the Schuylkill County Hospital, where treatment was
given for the effects of a sunstroke he sustained several years ago. While living in Schuylkill Haven, he had on a number of occasions caused much worry and
concern on the part of his family. To survive, he leaves his widow, Mary Haessler of Pottsville; two sons, Billy and Junior aged ten and eight, respectively. His
mother and a sister, Miss Christine, all of Schuylkill Haven survive.
|The Call of January 10, 1936
KILLED IN JUMP FROM HIGH BRIDGE
Ira Batdorf, a well known man of Schuylkill Haven, ended his life Saturday morning about ten o'clock by leaping from the Lehigh Valley Railroad bridge, a short
distance outside the borough limits. Death is believed to have been instantaneous from internal hemorrhages. The right arm and right leg were broken and on
the forehead was a deep cut or bruise. Batdorf, for the past four years had not been in the best of health, although about town daily. Friends had noticed him
walking toward the railroad but thought nothing serious of the matter. Four motorists passing near the bridge at the time were witnesses to the tragedy, namely:
Henry Hummel and John Thompson, both of Schuylkill Haven, who noticed Batdorf standing on the edge of the long span as if preparing to make a leap from it.
Miss Celia Gillespie of Mahanoy City and Miss Helen Kissinger of Pine Grove saw the body hurtling through the air. The man dropped on the concrete highway
which is crossed by the railway bridge. Dr. R. W. Lenker, Deputy Coroner, was summoned and he released the body to undertaker D. M. Bittle.
Mr. Batdorf was born and reared in Schuylkill Haven. He had been regularly employed at the car shops up until four or five years ago, at which time he suffered a
severe attack of illness. He had never quite fully recovered his health and frequently seemed to be sullen and depressed. The deceased was forty five years of
age and is survived by his wife and one daughter, Dora of Detroit. Also his father, Isaac Batdorf of Reading; two brothers Merritt and Robert, both of Schuylkill
Haven and two sisters, Mrs. Robert Reese of Schuylkill Haven and Mrs. Charles Kleiberstein of Tremont. The funeral took place on Wednesday afternoon from the
D. M. Bittle funeral home. Reverend E. S. Noll had charge of the service with interment in Cressona.
|The Call of July 26, 1946
NINE YEAR OLD BOY KILLED BY LEHIGH VALLEY TRAIN
Charles Harold Krammes, nine year old son of Mr. and Mrs. Calvin Krammes of 119 Haven Street, was killed this morning at 10:40 o'clock at the Garfield Avenue
arch by a northbound Lehigh Valley train. He was hit and thrown ten feet into the bushes. He suffered a fractured skull and a broken left leg. He and two other
children were playing there and only two of the children were able to get across the tracks. The crew was composed of Claude D. Moyer, conductor, William D.
Kemmerer, engineer, Clifford J. E. Grotz, fireman, all of Lehighton, Fred A. Maingold of Lehighton and Charles Miller of Lebanon, trainmen. Dr. T. C. Rutter, Deputy
Coroner, released the body to the Geschwindt funeral home. Charles Reinhart investigated the accident.
The boy was born in Schuylkill Haven on August 18, 1936. His mother was the former Helen Riegel, a former Orwigsburg resident. Besides his parents he is
survived by a twelve year old brother Calvin Thomas, Jr., his paternal grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Arthur D. Krammes and his maternal grandfather, Thomas Riegel
of Schuylkill Haven. He attended Saint John's Evangelical and Reformed Sunday School in Schuylkill Haven. His funeral will be held Monday afternoon from his
late residence and burial will be made in Schuylkill Memorial Park.
|The Pottsville Republican of June 9, 1952
SAVED FROM EIGHTY FOOT TRESTLE, WISHES HE WERE DEAD
A Schuylkill County Home inmate who gave thousands of people a thrill Saturday afternoon when he hung head down from the eight foot Lehigh Valley Railroad
trestle at Connor's Crossing, was recovering from his experience in the Pottsville Hospital today. George Morrison, 55, was left with his right leg temporarily
paralyzed, hospital officials say, but otherwise is in good condition. Morrison lost his footing as he walked along the trestle near its eastern end. A strong wind
was blowing and it apparently blew his falling body against the steel framework. His right ankle caught after he had dropped about fifteen feet below the roadbed
and there he hung, swinging like a pendulum forty feet above the Pennsy Railroad tracks, which along with Highway 122 pass under the trestle.
Guy Hoy, attendant at the Earl Stoyer used car lot first saw the body hanging, but paid little attention to it for a time thinking it was a dummy that had been rigged
up by Schuylkill Haven boys. "They are always playing there and doing tricks," Hoy said. He watched for a while and then walked toward the spot and took a closer
look. He saw it was a man and telephoned Schuylkill Haven state police and the Rainbow Hose Company of Schuylkill Haven. This was about two o'clock or about
twenty minutes after Hoy first noticed the body. Four members of the hose company, Robert and Kimber Fenstermacher, Art Sterner and William Nevils put up
ladders and quickly climbed to the trapped man. When they reached him he was unconscious and appeared to be dead. A rope was tied about his waist and
within five minutes he was lowered to the roadbed. He showed first signs of life as he was being lowered.
Morrison was placed aboard the Schuylkill Haven community ambulance driven by Charles Lechner and taken to Pottsville Hospital where he revived quickly.
Three members of the state police force who responded to the call had extreme difficulty keeping traffic moving as thousands watched the rescue. William
Powell, steward at the County Home, said Morrison had been an inmate there since 1930. He is a former resident of Pottsville. When questioned by a reporter at
the hospital today and asked if he was scared, Morrison said, "I wish I were dead. It would be better." He could not say what he was doing on the trestle or how
the mishap happened.
|The Call of May 16, 1930
MAY ABANDON TROLLEY LINE TO ORWIGSBURG
Within a very short time, operation of trolley cars to Orwigsburg from Schuylkill Haven will be a thing of the past. They are to be supplanted by the operation of
buses, which will follow a route from Saint John Street, to Liberty Street, to Adamsdale, and then to Orwigsburg via the state route. Application is to be made to
the boroughs of Schuylkill Haven and Orwigsburg by the East Penn Company to grant permission for the procedure. Of course, the Public Service Commission in
Harrisburg will have the final decision in the matter but unless serious objection is raised by either borough, the Commission will, no doubt, grant the request.
The date for the hearing before the Commission has been fixed for Wednesday the 28th. The company pleads that the passenger traffic has declined on this
branch of its system to such an extent that it is not possible to obtain sufficient revenue to meet the ordinary operating expenses. The company also claims that if
the service to Orwigsburg from Schuylkill Haven is to be continued, heavy expenditures will be necessary for repairs. Not only does the company plan to
discontinue the service, but to remove its tracks and sills. In this connection, it is a question of whether the borough of Schuylkill Haven will insist on the removal
of the car tracks from Saint John Street and Liberty Street or whether it will permit the same to remain as has been done in other towns where car lines have been
abandoned and as a result the presence of the unused car tracks are always a serious danger to traffic. As there will be no regular meeting of the town council
before the particular date fixed for a hearing, there may possibly be a special meeting called to determine this fact.
|The Call of August 14, 1932
TROLLEY COMPANY ASKS PERMISSION TO DISCONTINUE SERVICE
Trolley service from Schuylkill Haven to Pottsville may be discontinued in the very near future. The matter is dependent entirely upon the Public Service
Commission of the Commonwealth, before whom a petition was presented this week by the East Penn Company asking permission to discontinue the trolley
transportation service. Town Council of Schuylkill Haven, at a special meeting Tuesday evening, approved the petition to discontinue the service. At the same
time, council approved a petition of the East Penn Company, which is also to be filed with the Public Service Commission, to obtain temporary permission to
operate a bus service between Schuylkill Haven and Pottsville, also Schuylkill Haven, Orwigsburg and Cressona.
Both petitions are the outgrowth of efforts of the borough and state highway departments to obtain definite action in order that the improvements or resurfacing
of the bricked streets can be started before the cold weather sets in. The petition to discontinue the trolley service sets forth facts regarding the decline of
patronage and the inability to continue to operate without increasing monthly deficits. It is also stated that no prospects are in sight for an increase in patronage
sufficient to make operation of the trolley system a paying proposition.
The petition asking for permission to operate a bus service is merely a request for temporary permission to do so until the Public Service Commission arrives at a
decision regarding the petition presented by the East Penn Company for this same purpose. At this time there was also presented a petition from the Schuster
Taxi Company to also operate a bus system. In the petition for bus service upon a temporary basis, no mention is made of the rate to be charged but it is assumed
the rate will be the same as is proposed in the original petition asking for a permanent certificate to operate, namely fifteen cents.
The route would enter Schuylkill Haven on Center Avenue, down Dock Street, Main Street, saint John to Liberty Street and through the borough limits to
Adamsdale and return via the same route. An alternate route will be from Schuylkill Haven to Cressona, via Saint John Street to Parkway, Columbia Street, Berne
Street and Schuylkill Street to Cressona and return via the same route. If a petition to discontinue the trolley service is discontinued, the company will
immediately remove all lines. Also all poles with the electric light department of the borough does not wish to retain to carry the borough lines. It was reported at
the council meeting that the material for the resurfacing of the paved streets has been ordered and as soon as the trolley service is discontinued the state will be
ready to start the work within three days. Property owners along Main and Dock Streets are urged to immediately look into the matter of having water and gas
lines renewed before the state begins work.
|The Call of August 26, 1932
TROLLEY SERVICE DISCONTINUED
Tuesday evening, trolley service between Pottsville and Schuylkill Haven was discontinued, no doubt for all time, and now we have motor bus service between
Schuylkill Haven and Pottsville. The last car for passenger service left Schuylkill Haven on Tuesday evening or rather Wednesday morning at 12:02 a. m. and with
whistle tied down, the abandonment of the line was heralded to a community, for most part, sound in slumber. Only a few persons watched its progress along the
line. Several local folks were included in the last passengers who made the trip to Pottsville, returning by auto. They were Herbert Sausser, Claude Sausser, and
F. H. Minnig. Others on the last car were Lester Shelley, Miss Jennie Zimmerman and Miss Rebecca Frick, all of Pottsville. Mr. Carl Wilson rode as far as Willow
and Dock Streets. Passengers on the last car from Pottsville to Schuylkill Haven included Messrs. H. C. Wilson, Herbert Sausser, Jake Shadel and Mr. Knarr.
The bulletin posted at The Call office on Tuesday morning, announcing the discontinuing of the service, was a surprise to the general public and to even the
operators of the trolleys. Permission was granted by the Public Service Commission on Tuesday, not only to discontinue the trolley service, but also granted
permission to the East Penn Company to operate upon a temporary permit, motor buses. The hearing, set for a later date, upon several applications for
certificates to operate motor buses will, no doubt, consume considerable time and the outcome will be awaited with interest. In the meantime, bus service by the
East Penn Company, to Pottsville, is provided on a half hour basis on brand new buses of a seating capacity of twenty nine passengers.
The discontinuance of the trolley service was hastened considerably by the State Highway Department by reason of the desire to proceed with the resurfacing of
the state route, covering portions of Main and Dock Streets and along which the trolleys were operated. The work will be started at once. During the week, the
borough electric light department men were busy changing over wires and street lights from poles of the East Penn Company to poles of the borough. This will
permit the removal of a considerable number of poles on Dock, Main and saint John Streets, and also the removal of a network of overhead wires. The
discontinuance of the trolley line to Schuylkill Haven is the third line abandoned by the company since midnight, June 30th. The two other divisions were
Yorkville and Minersville. From a total of fifty miles of trackage, extending from Mauch Chunk on the north to Orwigsburg on the south, there is left but nine miles
of trolley road in the county, namely between Pottsville, Saint Clair, Port Carbon, Palo Alto and New Philadelphia.
Trolley service to Schuylkill haven began on October 10th, 1897, through permission granted the Pottsville and Reading Railway Company by the borough of
Schuylkill Haven, by its adopting an ordinance, dated January 13th, 1897. This ordinance, among other things, granted the company the right to construct an
electric railway from Coal Street to Dock Street, to Main street, to Saint John Street, to William Street, to saint Peter Street, to Liberty Street, to Canal Street, to
Columbia Street, to Berne Street to the borough line. Also from Coal Street to Centre Avenue and on a street west to Dock Street, between Coal Street and Centre
Avenue, also an alley between Union Street and Market Street from Saint John to Canal Street. One of the stipulations in the franchise was that the said railway
Company should never charge more than a single fare of five cents between any two points on its line in the borough. Another stipulation was that cars should
not be operated at more than eight miles an hour through the borough. This ordinance was signed by Daniel Sharadin, as president of the town council and by C.
A. Moyer, borough secretary. It was approved by Willis Bryant, chief burgess. Another ordinance adopted by the borough council on June 7th, 1898, granted
permission to the Schuylkill Haven and Orwigsburg Street Railway Company to operate from Schuylkill Haven to Orwigsburg from Saint John Street. It was signed
by Joseph N. Meyers, president of council and C. A. Moyer, the borough secretary. It was approved by George E. Bast, chief burgess.
As the last car for Schuylkill Haven left Pottsville, Tuesday evening, one of the first passengers, when a school boy, and who later for a number of years, was
motorman on the Schuylkill Haven line, was among those who watched it go down Center Street. The person was none other than Roy Palsgrove. Fares on the
Schuylkill Haven to Pottsville line were first a nickel than later were raised to six cents, then to ten cents, twelve cents and at last to fifteen cents. School children
were given free rides upon the opening of the line on October 4th and 5th. First paid passengers were carried on October 11th. On Sunday, October 17th, 1897,
four thousand passengers traveled on the trolley line between Schuylkill Haven and Pottsville. Passenger service had been started the previous Monday,
October 11th. The end of the line was at the siding on Saint John Street until the Orwigsburg line was put into service which was on July 28th, 1898. Tom Archer
was one of the first motormen and John Tindle one of the first conductors operating on this line. They were on duty for the transportation of the school children.
During the opening week of the trolley service, Schuylkill Haven lost one of its then prominent and one of its best known merchants, William Rudy, the shoe dealer
of Main Street.
|The Call of August 26, 1932
TROLLEY TRACKS ARE UNDER COVER
Trolley tracks in Schuylkill Haven, used as late as Tuesday midnight, were under cover of road building material by Thursday morning, at least for some distance on
Main Street. Within a week to ten days they will be buried beneath two to three inches of Amesite road building material for the full length of Dock Street and on
Main Street. This, by reason of the street resurfacing work that was begun on Thursday morning and was the principal reason for speeding the abandonment of
trolley service to Schuylkill Haven. The prompt start of the resurfacing work by the State Highway Department resulted in quite a bit of scurrying on the part of
individual property owners for permits to open the streets and have water and gas services renewed. Thirty four permits were issued by the Burgess for this
work on Main and Dock Streets. The borough's air compressor was used until midnight on Thursday for cutting through the brick and concrete subfoundation to
accommodate latecomers for permits. Men worked late in the night digging ditches. Main and Dock Streets were aglow with extra lights and red lanterns where
men were busy digging the ditches and where red lights guarded half started or half completed work. The last permit was issued on Thursday afternoon, the State
department refusing to grant any additional time because the work, having been started, it is the intention to rush it through.
Thursday morning men were put to work placing the Amesite filling in a number of holes. The entire stretch of street to be resurfaced will first be treated in this
manner, all the depressions being first filled up. The borough road roller with the borough's operator, has been engaged by the State for the purpose of rolling
out the material. It is placed on the street in cold form and resembles a thick mixture of small sized trap rock and tar. It hardens within several hours time and is
expected to last for years. Schuylkill Haven men are being given employment on the operation and in order that a good portion of the unemployment may have
work, six men will be hired for three day periods. A large number may be taken on later. The first day about ten were put to work. Men who have registered with
the local relief committee, Charles Graeff, chairman, are being given first consideration. About one hundred and fifty men have registered for this work.
|The Call of July 25, 1930
MINE HILL CROSSING OFFICE IS CLOSED BY THE COMPANY
In line with its policy of retrenchment at this time, the Reading Company has closed the office at Mine Hill Crossing, thus dispensing with the services of three
yardmasters at that point: Harry Stauffer, the first trick yardmaster at that point, has been appointed third trick yardmaster at Cressona. The yardmasters at
Cressona under the new arrangement will have to direct the traffic at Mine Hill Crossing. The three operators at that point have been assigned to other duties
some time ago. Thomas Boussum, third trick yardmaster at Mine Hill Crossing has been appointed an extra yardmaster at Cressona.
|The Call of August 29, 1930
SIXTY READING COMPANY MEN LAID OFF
The latter part of last week between fifty and sixty employees of the Reading Company were given notices that their services were no longer required. Twenty
men at the Schuylkill Haven shops were laid off, while Saint Clair shops lost thirty one men, the Cressona force was reduced by five and the force at the Schuylkill
Haven freight house was reduced by one. Curtailment of expenses was assigned as the reason for the sudden out in the working force and was a big surprise,
not only to the workmen but to the general public. This because it was understood that with the expected resumption of heavy shipments of coal from the mines,
all efforts would be made to put the rolling stock into first class condition.
Employees who had as high as forty three years of service with the company were summarily dismissed without any comeback. Men who were up in years and
would, in a short time, have been placed on the retiree rolls, were also included in the recent reduction of the company and this has gone toward shattering some
of the high hope maintained for a revival of more prosperous conditions in this locality. The men laid off are finding it difficult to procure employment elsewhere.
A number of men have been able to get back to their positions by claiming others off, basing claim on priority or greater length of service. The cut in number of
employees as affecting this locality is similar to that now being experienced by many other communities, where the company has carried out its drastic course of
reducing working forces on the entire system in all branches of the service.
In addition to a company layoff of the men, most of whom, at the shops, were classed as laborers, the system of demoting is also being carried into effect with its
accompanying reduction of wages or rates per hour for those affected by the demoting policy. There is some hope that quite a number of the men who have
received notices that their services are no longer required will be put back to work soon again and they have been given to understand, in some instances, that
their suspension is only temporary and more in the nature of a "furlough". There have been so frequently rumors concerning the abandonment of the car shops
at Schuylkill Haven by the company. They have in many cases proven unfounded. The latest rumor now going the rounds is that the original intention if the
officials recently had been to abandon the local car shops entirely, but that they were persuaded to cut the force instead of closing the shops.
|The Call of September 19, 1930
DERAILED CAR TEARS UP YARD TRACK
A derailed car, Monday evening, about eight o'clock, badly tore up the extra track on the heavy side of the yards of the Reading at this place. Several poles of the
electric light lines were also torn down and the wires torn and twisted, putting the entire light service of the yard for the night out of commission. It was the last
car on a string that was being pulled from the yard by the night freight. The car, being derailed, bumped along the rails for quite a distance until a point near the
railroad bridge. Here the trucks on the car broke away from it, the air line was severed and the train came to a stop. Trainmen were greatly surprised to find the
amount of damage that had been caused. The car not only ripped the sills on the heavy track but the foot path along the track was also ripped up. Some idea of
the distance the car was off the track may be gained when it is learned that the poles knocked down were on the far side of the foot path is two to three feet in
width. The northbound track near the railroad bridge was blocked and for the evening, northbound traffic was routed through the yards over the southbound
|The Call of December 5, 1930
CLUNG TO SIDE OF TRAIN TO AUBURN
Joe Fleming of Paxson Avenue had a number of his friends badly worried for several hours Wednesday evening because of his actions. Just as the seven thirty
eight pulled out of the station, Joe decided to go along. He leaped upon the steps of the rear coach. His friends, however, noticed the car being a pullman, the
doors had been closed tight. As the train gained momentum and went down the tracks they noticed the figure clinging to the side of the car. Ticket agent Edward
McCord was notified and he wired to the first stop in Auburn. At Auburn, Fleming could not be found and it was naturally assumed that he had fallen from the train
and perhaps killed. A fatal accident was surely thought to have occurred as the passenger train passed a northbound coal train. This meant that the space
between the two trains was very small and with a man hanging on the outside of the doors, the space still less. It was felt that surely he had been brushed off and
killed. Friends set out from Schuylkill Haven to walk down the railroad but they could not find him. A light engine was ordered sent down from Cressona and
proceeding slowly, kept a sharp lookout for the body. About two miles north of Auburn, they found him walking back uninjured and surprised that his actions had
caused any uneasiness.
|The Call of July 31, 1931
CAR SHOPS WILL BE CLOSED TODAY
One hundred seventy three men of Schuylkill Haven, Cressona, and vicinity will, commencing today, July 31st, be out of regular employment with the Reading
Company. This by reason of the closing down of the car shops at Schuylkill Haven and the abandonment of the engine house and the coal weighing scale and
equipment at Cressona. The monthly payroll saving for the Reading Company will be between $16,000 and $17,000. Of more importance, however, will be the fact
that this sum will be the wage reduction for and the amount of money heretofore available to almost two hundred men. In many instances, the closing down of
these industries will mean the cutting off of the only source of revenue many families have had for many years. With the blowing of the deep toned car shop
whistle this afternoon, Friday, the Schuylkill Haven Car Shops, as a Schuylkill Haven industry and the principal agency of manual labor for men for the past sixty or
seventy years will it is believed, close forever. And the blowing of the eleven o'clock whistle at the Cressona Engine House and weigh Scale, Friday evening, at
the end of the shift, will mark the closing down of the principal industry in the past sixty years for Cressona. All of the men will be given nine month furloughs.
They must return all company property such as tools and equipment. Their monthly passes must also be surrendered today.
From the Schuylkill Haven Car Shops, only two of the regular employees will be transferred, namely, Superintendent J. H. Yoder and Chief Clerk Runkle. Both will
be sent to Saint Clair. Three watchmen will be maintained at the shops. From the weigh scale and engine house at Cressona, only a few men will be retained on
the company's rolls by being given employment either at Reading or Saint Clair. Whether or not additional employees will, at a later date, be given employment at
Saint Clair, to which point all work heretofore done at Schuylkill Haven and Cressona will be transferred, is not known. Both the local shops and Cressona engine
house and weigh scales will be closed indefinitely according to notices posted. Wednesday, officials of the company visited these places and broke the news and
ordered notices posted. Conferences have been held in reading and in Philadelphia for the past several weeks at which time every phase of the matter, it is
believed , was gone over carefully. The decision to close down the local shops and the Cressona workings came only after a considerable amount of controversy
as it is known that not all of the company executives favored such course of action.
The closing down of the above plants is said to be in line with the company's policy to save money wherever possible. Recently, not nearly as large an amount of
coal as heretofore was handled over the Mine Hill road. This because most of the collieries in the west end have been closed and others put on greatly curtailed
production. Very little coal has been sent down the Mine Hill line for some time and the number of employees at this plant had been cut and recut until only thirty
were in service or part time service at the weigh scales. At the Cressona engine house, fifty to sixty men were employed on three shifts. This entire force of men
has been furloughed and the work of repairing of engines or turning them will be done at Saint Clair or Reading. A peculiar thing in connection with the
company's so called policy of "saving money" is the fact that by reason of the equipment at Cressona an engine can be turned there in nineteen hours, whereas at
Saint Clair the time required is twenty six hours. Another surprising feature about the abandonment of the workings at Cressona is the fact that only three years
ago the company built, at a cost of between $400,000 and $425,000, a new engine house and equipped it with the very latest and most complete machinery for
handling engines, including a one hundred foot electric turntable, an electric ash handling plant and a coal dock of two hundred ton capacity. The engine house
is of a size sufficient to handle six of the large type engines.
In addition to the engine house equipment the latest type of machinery to accurately and quickly weigh coal was placed at the scale house and all buildings
rebuilt. This work was started in the fall of 1926 and the men moved into the new workings in the fall of 1928. And now it is all to be junked in order to experiment,
it is believed, upon a theoretical idea of being enabled to handle all this class of work at Saint Clair at a greater saving of money to the company. The subject of
moving Cressona engine house and the Schuylkill Haven Car Shop work to Saint Clair was figured out and tried in 1919 and 1924. When the company decided to
erect an engine house at Cressona at a cost of close to a half million dollars, the Cressona people felt assured that the company had decided to forego the
removing of the work to some other point. Under the new order just issued, not only the Cressona engine house will be closed but the coal that will be brought
from the mines in this territory will be taken to Saint Clair with Mallet engines and weighed and classified at that point. Cressona engines will drop their trains at
Cressona and take their engines to Saint Clair for inspection from which point all runs will start hereafter. The train crews will report on and off at Mine Hill
Crossing where the Cressona crew board will be kept.
The Schuylkill Haven Car Shops have for years been operated at considerably less than capacity. About ninety men have been employed there lately. The working
schedule has been repeatedly cut and the last cut placed the operation upon a two and three day basis, with one half the men operating two days one week and
three days the next week. Whether or not any of the men employed at the Schuylkill Haven Car Shops will be given employment at Saint Clair is uncertain. It is
believed that a certain number will be given such employment. A certain period of time will be necessary for an adjustment to be made before additional men will
be put into service. And in taking on men at Saint Clair it is more than likely the company will pick out the younger employees. Cressona crews employed at the
weigh scale and in dropping of the cars will be transferred to Saint Clair, so that it is assumed thirty men at least of the one hundred seventy three will be given
employment. Mr. John Betz employed at the Cressona office, will be transferred to Reading. A number of other of the clerks and officials will be transferred
either to Reading or Saint Clair.
|The Call of August 7, 1931
COMPANY SAYS SUSPENSION TEMPORARY
Monday morning at ten o'clock, Mr. V. B. Fisher, General Superintendent of the Reading and Mr. I. T. Tyson, Superintendent of the Reading, met with a committee
of the Chamber of Commerce of Schuylkill Haven and a committee from Cressona, in the private car of the first named in the railroad yards at Schuylkill haven.
The subject of discussion and the purpose of the conference was in relation to the closing of the car shops at Schuylkill Haven and the engine house and weigh
scales at Cressona. The General Superintendent assured the committee that the closing down of these units was made necessary to curtail expenses and that he
hoped the suspension would be but temporary. Asked how long the suspension would be effective, the General Superintendent stated it was difficult to answer
that question. Mr. Fisher intimated that men heretofore employed at Cressona and Schuylkill Haven would, no doubt, be required at Saint Clair, but gave no
intimation of how many. Seniority rights, of course, would prevail, he stated.
The outcome of the conference produced nothing definite insofar as bringing about a resumption of the units here and at Cressona which were closed down, nor
was it expected that this could be accomplished. The conference lasted a half hour. Regret was, of course, expressed that a temporary suspension order was
made necessary on the part of the company. Appreciation of the consideration in many ways that has been given the company by both communities was also
commented upon by the officials. Reference was made to the fact that Schuylkill Haven is no harder hit and perhaps not as hard hit as other communities where
the company has been required to curtail its operations. The suspension order was several times referred to as being a positive necessity and being in line with
the forced policy of the company brought about by numerous conditions. The officials expressed the willingness to confer with representatives of the two towns
at any time such conference was desired.
Tuesday evening, fifty or more businessmen of Schuylkill Haven and Cressona gathered in the Town Hall at Schuylkill Haven. The report of the conference with
the officials was made by President Felix of the Chamber of Commerce. John Gray, President of the Merchant's Association, had charge of the meeting. The
subject was discussed pro and con for quite some time and a committee appointed to draft a resolution. This resolution was presented in the form of an urgent
request that resumption at the Cressona Engine House and Weigh Scales and Schuylkill Haven Car Shops, be made at the earliest possible date. It was adopted
and a copy ordered addressed to the company. While all sorts of rumors have been afloat during the week as to procedure by the company, there has been little
of a definite nature developing other than that the coal is being taken to saint Clair where it is weighed, classified and shipped through Schuylkill Haven.
Increased number of hours, it is thought, have been worked by the engine house and weigh scale at Saint Clair but as yet there has been no general call for
employees now entirely out of work.
As yet there has been no indication of removal of equipment from any of the Cressona units or the local car shops. The workings are merely down with no one at
work other than several clerks. Call boys taken off the fore part of the week were again put into service after a very short period without their services. Railroad
men and former employees declare the company cannot save any great amount of money by the present arrangement of taking coal that must be brought down
the Mine Hill system, up to Saint Clair for weighing and classifying and again bringing it down in order to ship it to market. Greater hope seems to be held out for a
resumption of the works at Cressona in the near future than for the Schuylkill Haven Car Shops. For it is felt that with a resumption early in fall of the collieries on
the Mine Hill system, there will result such a complete tie up and mix up that the weigh scale and engine house at Cressona will stand a very good chance of again
being operated. Needless to say, the principal topic for discussion in both towns during the week has been the suspension order. The men without employment
are stunned and find it impossible to procure employment elsewhere, just at the immediate present. A fact is also beginning to be realized and that is that little
can be done to force the issue or compel the company to rescind its orders. Hope alone can be entertained for a resumption and during the week this hope has
had little effect in relieving the depressing spirit that is manifest on all sides.
Thus far only a very small number of transfers are reported. However, it is confidentially believed that another week will see additional transfers made from the
men now out of employment and perhaps an additional number of men put to work at Saint Clair. Altogether contrary to the statement made and the expectation
created for Schuylkill Haven shop men to be given employment at Saint Clair, comes the action of the company during the week of demoting six men employed at
Saint Clair car shops and the laying off indefinitely of fifteen car repairers and laborers. Of the men demoted, two were from Schuylkill Haven, one from Cressona,
two from Port Carbon and one from Pottsville. Of the men laid off, several were from Schuylkill Haven and several from Cressona.
|This image at left,
shows the interior of
passenger station in
|The Call of March 14, 1930
13,000 TONS OF COAL STORED IN SCHUYLKILL HAVEN
Just at this time and for the past five weeks, there has been stored in Schuylkill Haven coal sufficient to supply every home, counting eighteen hundred homes, in
Schuylkill haven with at least 722 tons. On the five reserve tracks of the Reading Company, in the yards at this place, there have been stored on each track for
weeks, from thirty five to forty cars of the large sizes of coal, namely, chestnut and egg. As many of the cars are of sixty to seventy tons capacity, and taking an
average of sixty five tons to a car, we find the total amount stored as a full thirteen thousand tons. As this coal has been stored here for quite some time and
demand for the large sized coal is very light now, and as there will be hardly much demand for this size of coal this season, some idea of the general hard coal
situation can be determined by conditions actually existing as borne out by the presence of this amount of coal stored at this place.
|The Call of February 27, 1931
PENNSYLVANIA RAILROAD STARTS WORK ON NEW BRIDGE
Building operations for the Pennsylvania Railroad bridge over Centre Avenue will be actively started very shortly. Thursday morning the work of erecting an
office on the site was started. Actual excavations, it was expected, would be started Saturday or early the coming week or just as soon as the steam shovel and
other excavating equipment arrives on the scene. The contracting company is the James McGraw Company of Philadelphia, which company recently completed
the Memorial Bridge at Harrisburg. The company also built the Market Street bridge, the 47 arch railroad bridge at Harrisburg, recently. Several years ago this
construction company was engaged by the Reading Railroad on the moving of the river and building of a new roadbed at Port Clinton.
Mr. William Cullinane of Philadelphia will be the superintendent in charge of the Schuylkill Haven work. Already many men have applied for work but cannot be
taken on as it is understood only a very small number of men can at any time be used on this particular job. The superintendent announces that no detour of
motor traffic will be required, although it will be to the motorists interest to proceed with caution along the scene of the operation. The first work to be taken up
will be that of building a spur track at the point where the iron bridge will be located. For this purpose, both the excavating of the hill and some fill will be
required. The new bridge will be several hundred yards above the location of the present underpass. It may be completed within three months time. Trains over
this section will have to be operated at a very slow speed and it may be necessary to use two engines to pull the coal and freight trains in order to gain sufficient
speed to pass through the cut outside of town.
|The Call of May 22, 1931
PENNSYLVANIA RAILROAD BRIDGE SOON TO BE FINISHED
Splendid progress is being made on the Pennsylvania Railroad bridge over Centre Avenue by Superintendent William Cullinane and his force of men. During the
week the steel girders were set in place and the steel road bed bolted to the same. There are four girders used to span the highway. On the southeast side will
be found a girder 18' 6" and on the northeast side one of the large girders, size 113' 6". On the southwest side is a 54' girder and on the northwest side is a 113' 6"
girder. The larger girders weigh approximately seventy tons each. Tuesday, the two largest of the girders were placed. For this purpose the Mount Carbon and
Reading wrecking crews brought their derricks to the scene. A special side track had been built for the purpose and upon these the steam derrick cars were
placed. This was done in order not to interfere with the operation of trains. The work of placing the two larger girders was begun Tuesday morning and
completed at 1:30 in the afternoon. It was completed without a hitch of any kind. As soon as the steel roadbed had been set and attached to the girders, the track
will be moved onto it and the new work made use of. The placing of forms for the southeast wing wall will then be started, it being impossible to build this wall
because of the close proximity of the embankment. It is expected the work on the underpass will be completed within five weeks time. Between thirty and thirty
five men are employed at this operation.
|The Call of October 21, 1932
FELL TO HIS DEATH NEAR SCHUYLKILL HAVEN
Frank Eustace of Pottsville met death Sunday afternoon about three o'clock when he fell from the Pennsylvania Railroad embankment a short distance above the
highway intersection at Connor's. It is believed the top of his head struck squarely on a stone projecting from the side of the embankment or in the roadbed of
the old highway from Schuylkill Haven to Pottsville. A fractured skull evidently resulted and death was almost instantaneous. The deceased at one time was one
of the best known professional baseball players. He
played on teams in the West and in the New England states. For a number of years he played with the Reading team and was a member of the Pottsville team in
the Atlantic League days, 1908-1909. He was a third baseman, an excellent place batter, also unusually accurate and sure at bunting. He was a dangerous man
when on base. He was noted for playing the game in a scientific manner. He came to Pottsville thirty five years ago and for a time was employed at the Eastern
Steel Mill. He was fifty nine years of age. He is survived by his wife in Pottsville and his father of New York. Two sisters also survive in New York.
A number of persons in the vicinity of Connor's noticed the man as he fell and rolled down the railroad embankment which is about twenty feet above the
highway. Identification could not at first be made, as the man had nothing in the pockets of his clothing to give away any clue as to his whereabouts. The rumor
first circulated about town Sunday and Monday, was to the effect that the man had fallen from the high Lehigh Valley Railroad bridge nearby. D. M. Bittle, local
undertaker, took charge of the body which was later claimed by his relatives, after having read the description of his person and clothing in the newspapers.
|The Call of August 25, 1939
BOYS ROB LOCAL PENNSYLVANIA RAILROAD STATION WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON
The passenger station of the Pennsylvania Railroad Company at Schuylkill Haven was robbed Wednesday afternoon by four boys of Pottsville, who were arrested
shortly after the robbery. The boys were Vernon Jones, fifteen, Edward Petroff, fourteen, Frank Kubashinsky, fifteen and Robert Bowers, sixteen, all of Pottsville.
Police Chief Deibert of Schuylkill Haven was called as soon as the robbery was discovered. He sent Officer Bubeck to the scene and the Pennsylvania Railroad
notified. Lieutenant Snyder of the Pennsylvania Railroad Police force was also called. Clues were picked up and traced and soon the four were under arrest.
They confessed to the robbery. Only a part of the amount stolen, $21.05, was recovered.A hearing was given before Squire Singer of the first named three,
because they were of the juvenile age, Thursday morning. They were committed to the detention house. A hearing was given Bowers later and he was
committed. The boys are old offenders, several of them being on parole at this time for being implicated in other robberies in Pottsville and surrounding towns.
The robbery took place on Wednesday afternoon between 1:30 and 3:30 o'clock. The boys used a key found on the private porch of Station Master Fisher to open
the outside door to the private part of the station building. Having gained entrance, they unlocked the door leading from the private hallway into the station. A
twelve inch piece of iron was used to smash the glass on the ticket window. This broken, they reached inside the office, turned back the dead latch and walked
into the office. The money was in the drawer and easily taken. Following the theft, the office door was locked again, the dead latch being sprung. All other doors
were locked too. However, the key to the outside door was taken along but the door itself was not locked. The discovery of the missing key, when Mr. Fisher
desired to enter his home, led to the immediate discovery of the theft. At the time of the theft, Station Master Fisher was out of town. His wife was doing some
writing at the desk in the office at the freight house. The desk, however, is so located in the office that a view of the station is not possible. And, although there
usually are a number of boys about the freight house, playing baseball, none noticed the boys at work at the station.
|The Call of January 20, 1933
SECTION HANDS HAD NARROW ESCAPE
Because they were pretty good jumpers, ten or a dozen members of the repair crew or section gang of this district and employed by the Reading Company,
probably owe their lives. And even at that, they had a pretty narrow escape Tuesday afternoon about 3:30 o'clock, from being run down by number seventy five
freight, due in Schuylkill Haven at 3:20 o'clock. Just as the train rounded the curve a short distance south of the William Street crossing, the engineman saw
ahead of him and on the same track, the section gang operating their hand propelled truck. The shrill whistle of the engine sent the men jumping to safety in the
nick of time and in a second the truck was crushed to kindling wood and the heavy steel portions of it had torn up the south bound sills for some distance. The
engine was not derailed although traveling at a good rate of speed at the time.
|The Call of July 28, 1933
TOWN GIRL KILLED BY FLYER SUNDAY EVENING
Audrey Sidler, aged twenty three, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Hilbert Sidler of East Main Street in Schuylkill Haven, was almost instantly killed Sunday evening,
shortly after six o'clock, being struck by the Reading Flyer near Connor's Crossing. The girl was walking along the north bound tracks between the crossing at
Connor and the bridge which crosses the Schuylkill River a short distance south of this point. Whether or not she failed to hear the approach of the train or had
been stricken and fell upon the tracks is not known. It is believed, however, that she failed to hear the approach of the train, otherwise the body would have
been mangled to a greater extent than it was. Examination showed the back of the head to have been crushed, right arm broken, left foot almost severed, cuts in
the face, the right limb and bruises about the body. It is believed a fractured skull was the cause of death. The body was taken to Pottsville on the train and
turned over to undertaker D. M. Bittle. The deceased had been visiting friends in the vicinity of the accident and had last been seen alive shortly after five thirty
o'clock. The Flyer is due in Schuylkill Haven at six o'clock. The shrieking of the engine's whistle for an unusual length of time attracted the attention of many
people in Schuylkill Haven who felt an accident of some kind had occurred. The impact of the engine with the girl's body was sufficient to split open the case of
the woman's wrist watch, which was found later near the tracks.
|The Call of February 23, 1934
BAD WRECK OF EXPRESS NARROWLY AVERTED HERE WEDNESDAY
What might have been a serious wreck or at least derailment of several coaches of Number Eight, south bound Reading Company Express, due here at 2:12, was
averted by the narrowest margin, Wednesday afternoon, by the engineer being able to bring the train to a stop about midway between the Mine Hill Crossing and
the Reading passenger station here. When the train was stopped, the Pullman coach Eloise, the last car on the train, had straddled both the north and the south
bound tracks. The part of the rear truck remained on the south bound tracks and a part of it was off the track entirely. The front truck of this coach was on the
north bound track and the coach was pulled in this position from the Mine Hill crossing, several hundred yards, down through the railroad yard, before the train
was stopped. The steel coach preceding the Pullman, when the train was brought to a stop, was in an exactly opposite position. The rear truck was on the north
bound tracks while the front truck remained on the south bound track. Both cars formed a V shaped letter and presented an odd appearance. There seemed to
be little evidence of damage having been done to the cars themselves and there was not any great amount of damage done to the railroad bed, sills or tracks.
This because of the fact that the both cars remained on the tracks until almost at the point where they were brought to a stop, when the rear truck of the last
coach left the rails.
There were three passengers in the Pullman coach and they were subjected to a rather abrupt jostling from one side to the other when the front part of the car
swung from the left to the right. One of the passengers is said to have sustained injuries to his shoulder. In the day coach ahead, there was a larger number of
passengers, none of whom were injured, but all more or less shaken up as the rear of this car suddenly swung from right to left. The cause of the accident is said
to have been a broken rod on the switch at the Mine Hill Crossing. This, it is said, permitted the switch to change position after a portion of the train had passed
over it and shunted the rear truck of the next to the last coach on the train, to the left or north bound track. The weight of the heavy Pullman in the rear held it
down and was said by railroad men to, perhaps, avoided a complete derailment and possible toppling over of both cars. Quite a large number of persons quickly
gathered at the scene. Both north and south bound traffic was blocked for some time. Bystanders were treated to a rather novel sight when the work of clearing
the tracks was begun. It was that of the day coach being pulled down the yard to the switch on the railroad bridge, with the fore truck riding on the south bound
rails and the rear truck riding on the north bound tracks, thus occupying two sets of tracks.
|The Call of January 18, 1935
DIED AS A RESULT OF HAVING BOTH LEGS SEVERED
Nick Bojack of North Berne Street in Schuylkill Haven died shortly before nine o'clock this morning as the result of having both legs cut off while at work on the
Reading Company roadway crew near the Mine Hill Crossing. He was in the act of tightening bolts in the tracks and it is believed, by reason of the strong wind, did
not hear the approach of the engine Number 916, known better as the yard engine. The engine came out of a side track that leads into the car shop yard. The man
was knocked down and the wheels went over both legs. The jump and jar of the engine as it left the tracks attracted the attention of his fellow workmen nearby
and they ran to his side. His brother Michael, was among the other workmen nearby. A stretcher was procured and the man brought to the railroad station here
and Dr. Mengel summoned. The man died within five minutes and was dead when the physician arrived. One leg was severed near the hip while the other leg
was cut off below the knee. After Coroner Lenker had viewed the body, he released it to the undertaker, J. M. Zerbey, who removed the body to his undertaking
parlors in a hospital ambulance shortly after the accident occurred. The deceased man was about twenty nine years of age. He had been employed on the
roadway repair crew for a number of years. He was unmarried and made his home with his sister, Mrs. John Casey of 280 North Berne Street. Twenty years ago
his father was killed almost at the same place, near the Mine Hill Crossing by a passenger train.
The deceased is survived by two brothers and two sisters: Michael and Peter Bojack, Mrs. John Casey and Mrs. Edward Zimmerman. The family has resided in this
section for quite a number of years. The deceased young man was of sturdy build, of a jovial disposition and a good workman. He was on the repair crew for
about nine years.
|At right, this view
of the Reading
shops was taken
in 1925. The
detail is great
and this may be
the best view of
the shops I have
|The two views of the
Reading Railroad coal
storage yards south of
Schuylkill Haven were
taken in 1925. Both are
very detailed and give a
great perspective on the
|This series of nineteen photos was taken in August 1937 during
reconstruction work on the Reading Railroad bridge in Schuylkill Haven.
|Preliminary scaffolding and forming for northbound main looking
|Center floor completed with more preliminary forming looking north.
|Steel reinforcing prior to pouring floor for the north bound main
|Fill under the south bound track looking west.
|Completed north bound track showing stringers used to suspend
form work prior to curing.
|Completed north bound track section looking north.
|Southwest view of form work at north end of the north bound track.
|South end of north bound track at completion looking north.
|Completed north bound track bed.
|Form work completion on north bound track looking south.
|Form work on the north bound track.
|Completed floor of the north bound main looking south.
|Completed floor on the north bound main looking north.
|North river east bank view of arches and new floor.
|View from east bank of river shows original
arches and new concrete floor.
|River bank view at north end of bridge showing arches at south end.
|The Call of November 1, 1935
THE "J" OFFICE, OLD LANDMARK WAS RECENTLY DESTROYED
About two weeks ago, a small frame building alongside the tracks of the Reading Railroad, above the bridge near Main Street, Schuylkill Haven, was completely
demolished. A string of cars being pushed out of a track by the yard engine jumped the track as a result of a derailer switch not having been opened. Several
cars crashed into this small building and reduced it almost to kindling wood. The occurrence was called a small mishap or wreck. Traffic was not tied up for any
length of time by reason of the derailment and no great amount of damage was done. The building destroyed was the "J" office. However, few persons, perhaps
realized that with the destruction of this small building, the "J" office, went memories and associations connected with the operation of the P. & R. Railroad of
many years. The "J" office was a landmark, so to speak, in Schuylkill Haven. It had been continuously in use and of importance up until about two and one half to
three years ago when it was completely abandoned and had been merely used as a storage house. It is part of the history of Schuylkill Haven that the Reading
Company opened for traffic through Schuylkill Haven in 1842 and that on May 18th, 1847, a telegraph office was established in the town with Henry Voute as the
first operator. The establishment of this telegraph office was within three years of the first telegraph office being established in America. It is believed that this
particular telegraph office was established in the building known as the "J" office, which at one time was located very close to the southern end of the old station
building on Main Street.
In addition to the office for many years being used for the receiving and dispatching of all telegrams, not only for railroad business but also for local individuals,
business firms and manufacturers, it was the point from which were issued the orders directing trains through and around the long and at one time busy railroad
at this point, as well as through the extensive yards above Mine Hill crossing. To this office would be sent the name of the crews to be called out for service. To
this office also came the news when local men were killed or injured in railroad accidents or wrecks. With the falling off of the movement of coal over this road,
the office was turned into a one man office on 1908. It heretofore had been operated for a full twenty four hours per day. About three years ago, the office was
closed entirely and some of the business carried on through the Yardmaster at Mine Hill Crossing.
Some of the operators at the "J" office were: Henry Voute, Albert Stager (father of Mr. Howard Stager who has been an operator for forty years), Lewis Graeff,
Samuel Reed, Pierce Coldren, George Strauch, Hiram Kirlin, Norman Lessig, Daniel Garrighan, Daniel Womer, Charles Hughes, Bert Green and Joseph and Edward
|The Call of December 27, 1935
HAD NARROW ESCAPE IN CROSSING ACCIDENT
Saturday evening, Harry W. Kemmerling and a party from Summit Station had a narrow escape from serious injury and perhaps possible death when their
automobile was struck by train Number seven on the Union Street crossing. Fortunately, the train was moving at a very slow speed to make the station stop, a
short distance above the crossing. The right bumper of the engine struck the right rear fender of the machine. It turned it completely around and pushed it into
the iron fence surrounding the D. D. Coldren property. The machine remained upright and was little damaged. Other occupants of the car with Mr. Kemmerling
were: Mary and Carrie Fidler, also of Summit Station. These passengers suffered only from shock and superficial cuts. They were treated by Dr. Heim.
This particular grade crossing is guarded by a watchman in daytime and up until seven o'clock in the evening. The watchman had just left his post of duty a short
time before the train arrived. Red flashing signals warn passengers of the approach of a train at this crossing. Mr. Kemmerling could not state definitely whether
these signals were in operation or not.
|The Call of July 9, 1937
START REBUILDING OF RAILROAD BRIDGE
Tuesday, work of rebuilding the Reading Company Railroad bridge over the Schuylkill River, a short distance north of the Main Street crossing, was started. Irwin
C. Young, President of Young Brothers Incorporated, contractors and engineers of Philadelphia, was on the scene,Wednesday, directing operations and checking
up with his foremen and engineers for getting a good start on the work. The job consists of or will consist of putting a new concrete deck on the present bridge.
The present stone topping of the archways is being removed. The old archways, still in splendid condition will remain. There is to be no change to the foundation
whatsoever as it is still in fine condition. New sidewalks will be built along the bridge replacing the old, somewhat dangerous wooden walks. The walks were
made dangerous, to those not used to using this bridge, by reason of parts of the switch rods extending over and above the walk. However, those persons used
to using the bridge as a shortcut to Cressona, Caldwell street or the West Ward, could and did cross this bridge in the blackest of nights and in all sorts of
weather, without even stubbing a toe. In addition to the new concrete walks that are to be built on the bridge, there will be a new and good looking iron pipe
fence that will replace the former iron fence and I beam base upon which the fence was erected. A notice to the public is issued to the effect that for the present,
pedestrians will be required to use the west side of the bridge entirely. The entire east side will be out of service, there being but one track in use. Speed of all
trains will be cut down very considerably and some delay will also be occasioned, all trains by reason of this fact and the necessity of all northbound traffic now
being required to first be switched to the southbound track. As may be expected, crossings in town may be blocked more often and for longer periods of time
than they usually are by reason of the fact that speed of trains is reduced and by reason of switching operations for the yards and through traffic.
The new bridge will be the same width as the present bridge. There will be no additional tracks added thereon. The heavy hand hewn stone making up the
foundation over the arches were removed by a steam derrick of the railroad company. The stone can be put to good use by the company at some other building
or at some future operation. Building operations at the bridge will surely attract many of the older residents of town. Memories will be stirred of happenings of
various sorts and of events that may historically connect this bridge with the life of the community.
The bridge must have been built about 1840 as the Reading Railroad was opened for traffic through Schuylkill Haven in 1842. Millions and millions of tons of coal
have been hauled over it and thousands of passengers have safely been carried across it. There have been occasional minor accidents such as cars jumping the
track or sideswipes. If we remember correctly, several persons have been injured by having been caught underneath the wheels of moving trains on the bridge.
Years and years ago, the bridge was the scene of many a bloody encounter between the "Irish Flatters" and the "Towners". Many boats passed underneath this
bridge. Pedestrians also passed underneath it through the archway nearest Main Street. Entrance to this archway or "subway" of years ago, was made at the rear
corner of the First National Bank, the guard lock and old lock house long ago having been torn down and covered over with flower gardens. This archway was a
mighty fine convenience to pedestrians, for when Main Street was blocked by a train, this "subway" afforded a quick solution to the problem of being compelled to
Rebuilding operations on the bridge will be so prosecuted that the northbound track will first be set down on the new concrete deck. The west side track will next
be placed on the new concrete deck. It is expected the bridge will be entirely reconditioned by the first of November. Twenty men are now employed on the
|The Call of June 9, 1939
FIRE AT SHOPS KEEPS FIREMEN THREE HOURS
Members of the Schuylkill Hose Company of Schuylkill Haven, with two trucks and headed by Fire Chief Claude Sausser, battled flames at the abandoned Reading
Company Car Shops in Schuylkill Haven for several hours on Tuesday afternoon, unknown to the general public. The summons came from the Reading Company
shortly after the noon hour. A still alarm was sounded at the Schuylkill Hose house and firemen in the vicinity responded. Water had to be pumped from the old
"Dock" adjoining the "Landing" and the car shop buildings. It was not until three thirty the same afternoon that the fire was considered extinguished. For weeks,
the wooden sills from the numerous lines of tracks round and about the shops, that have been torn out, have been destroyed by burning them. It is believed a
smoldering fire ate into the banks of fill in which there was much inflammable material. The fire was eating its way toward the main shop building when the
company officials thought best to call the firemen. The abandoned shop building is well filled with lumber owned by the Bubser Lumber Company. A considerable
amount of lumber is also stored in the yards. All of the tracks and sills at the shops have been removed. Men were at this work for the past several weeks. The
Standard Oil Company of America will shortly lease this property and place thereon a large tank station with a large storage capacity.
|The Call of August 23, 1940
TIMELY DISCOVERY OF BROKEN RAIL
The timely discovery of a broken outer rail on the southbound track of the Reading Company at Union Street crossing by watchman Frank Benseman, probably
averted an accident. The rail, one of the heavy sixty six foot long rails had the top part split from the lower
section of the rail for at least two feet. The two were held together and in place by the ground in which the rails are embedded on the
crossing proper. Had the break occurred on the rails other than where they cross a crossing, it would likely have broken completely off the rail itself. The
discovery was made shortly after southbound train Number 2 at seven o'clock in the morning passed over the same. The roadway department was immediately
notified and went to work. When train Number 2 leaving here at 11:26 o'clock left the station, orders were given to proceed extremely slow as the broken rail was
still in place. The new rail had been placed and the job finished by 2:30 o'clock in the afternoon.
|The Call of June 6, 1941
FREIGHT CAR JUMPS RAIL NEAR STATION
A derailed freight car on the Reading tracks just north of the Schuylkill Haven station delayed trains traveling to Pottsville for over an hour on Tuesday morning.
The cause of the accident is not known. The freight car was crossing a switch on the banks of the Schuylkill River when for some unknown reason the back
trucks, instead of following the front truck, went on another track. Before the train could be halted, the car jumped the tracks. A trainman riding on top of the car,
thinking it was going to upset, jumped from the car over the Schuylkill River. He was fortunate in receiving only slight bruises and abrasions.
|The Call of June 18, 1943
LIGHTNING HITS OLD CAR SHOPS
The car shops in the borough were considerably damaged yesterday afternoon about four o'clock during the storm when lightning struck the building. The
lightning traveled through the building and immediately the place filled with smoke and flames shot through the roof at three or four places. The Schuylkill,
Liberty and Rainbow Hose Companies responded and at 5:15 o'clock the fire was under control. The fire companies remained at the scene until about seven
|The Call of January 28, 1944
SPECTACULAR FIRE LATE SATURDAY NIGHT DESTROYS BREAKER AT CAR SHOPS
Equipment Installed Last Week Worth $12,000; Endangers Lumber, Oil Plant
Fire of undetermined origin completely destroyed the newly erected coal washery in the carpenter shops of the old Reading Car Shops, near Connor's Crossing
late Saturday night about 11:30 o'clock. The washery was owned by McKinley E. Hoover of Pottsville Street in Cressona and Harvey Ritter of Schuylkill Haven. This
is the second time within several months that Mr. Hoover suffered a loss by fire. The Sherman Breaker of Pottsville, of which he was the owner, was destroyed by
flames several months ago.
The fire was discovered by Aaron Bernet of Schuylkill Haven, a guard at the Alcoa plant, who thinking sills were burning close to the building turned in the alarm to
Clause A. Sausser, fire chief. In a short time the entire building was ablaze and a general alarm was sounded and the three companies of town and the Cressona
firemen responded. The fire companies dropped their pumpers to the edge of the docks where at one time boats loaded for trips to tidewater. Holes were cut
through ten inch ice and with a thousand feet of hose in use, the men worked all night to put out the fire and to save the main car shop building now occupied by
the Bubser Lumber Company as a storage place for lumber. The large storage tanks of the Standard Oil Company are close by and were in danger. The main
building was filled with smoke at one time and was in danger of bursting into flames which could have caused the storage fuel and oil easily to have been
destroyed. By the time the trucks were called and started for the scene of the fire, the flames were visible from every part of town. Fortunately there was no
breeze blowing and the flames shot hundreds of feet into the air with sparks being carried still higher. The stillness of the night undoubtedly saved the adjoining
old car shops filled with lumber and the gas and oil storage plant of the Standard Oil Company nearby.
The coal preparation plant was in one of the buildings which formerly housed the Schuylkill Haven car shops of the Reading Company. It was about thirty by
seventy feet, one story high and constructed with heavy timber. There had been no heat in the building on Saturday. It was equipped for the cleaning of river
coal with modern machinery. It was planned to bring the silt up from the river and send it to the plant in conveyors to be cleaned and have the coal separated and
removed for shipment. The plant, consisting of concentrating and separating tables and all needed equipment and machinery including a new sawmill which had
been set up during the past week is a total loss due to the terrific heat which grew greater when the metal roof collapsed on top of the blazing mass.
The collapse of the building and the covering of the fire by the metal roof made extinguishing the fire difficult. Firemen remained until four o'clock in the morning
and the remains continued to smolder throughout the rest of the day. Through the heroic work of the firemen, a two hundred gallon drum of gasoline was saved
from destruction by the constant play of water on it. Drums of oil went up in flames. The loss of the machinery was estimated at $12,000 which is practically
covered with insurance. The value of the building is $1500.
|The Call of April 11, 1947
MARVIN GAUSS HIT BY TRAIN, STILL IN CRITICAL CONDITION
Marvin Gauss, 38, of 5 Maple Street in Cressona, is a patient in the Good Samaritan Hospital suffering with a possible fracture at the base of the skull as the result
of a grade crossing accident last Friday at 7:30 p. m. Mr. Gauss was operating an empty coal truck driving east to Union Street and attempted to pass through the
Union Street crossing as the first section of passenger train Number 97 came north towards the Schuylkill Haven station at Main Street. The truck was hit in the
center, raised from the ground and carried by the engine until it was brought to a stop in front of the station about two hundred yards away. He was picked from
the cab of the shattered truck, given first aid by Dr. L. D. Heim and taken to the hospital in the Claude A. Lord ambulance.
The train which hit the truck was one of two sections and was traveling about ten minutes ahead of the second section. The second section was flagged before it
reached the Main Street crossing. The wrecking trucks of Harvey Moyer were called and pulled the demolished truck from the engine "cowcatcher." The
locomotive was slightly damaged and was temporarily repaired before it proceeded to Pottsville. Traffic was tied up on the railroad for more than a half hour while
the truck was being removed.
The crossing is normally protected by gates and a watchman but he goes off duty at seven in the evening. Both the Reading Company and witnesses agreed that
the crossing's flashing red lights were in operation at the time of the accident. Eyewitnesses who were standing near the crossing said the truck was tossed into
the air several feet but settled back on the front of the engine after tearing off the crossing gate. The condition of Mr. Gauss is reported to be improved,
although he is not entirely conscious at all times.
|The Call of July 18, 1947
BOROUGH WANTS CROSSING WATCHMEN
Borough Council expressed dislike for the railroad crossing precautions proposed by the Reading Company to Chief Burgess William J. Harner when he brought
the matter to the attention of the local governing body on Monday night at Town Hall. The plan of the Reading Company is to erect a central control tower at Union
Street to control the gates at all three crossings, Main, Union and Williams Streets. The gates will be half gates, covering the street only on the right side in front
Most of the members entered into the discussion. It was pointed out that the operator in the control tower could not get a good enough view of oncoming traffic
either on Main or Williams Streets to operate the gates in a safe manner. The group was unanimous in its opinion that the best safety measure for these three
crossings is to have a watchman on duty at each one, with Union and Williams Street watchmen on duty until eleven o'clock at night. The only train after that is the
"Buffalo" early in the morning when there is practically no traffic on these two streets. At the present time Main Street has a watchman twenty four hours a day,
while the watchman at Union and Williams Streets is on duty from seven in the morning until seven at night. The most dangerous time is around 7:30 in the
evening when two trains pass within a few minutes of each other. It happens occasionally that either one is slow or fast and they pass in Schuylkill Haven. There
have been several close calls when motorists waiting at Union Street for a train at the station, pullout as soon as the train passes the gates, only to see the other
oncoming train bearing down upon them from the other track. The present blinker system works when switches are closed in the shifting yards and also back at
Manbeck's. During the day, when a watchman is on duty at Union Street, motorists become accustomed to going across the tracks while the gates are up and no
train is approaching. These same motorists, not giving thought to the absence of a watchman after seven o'clock, may find themselves going across the tracks
with the lights blinking as they do during the day.
|Looking south on the mainline towards the station.
|Looking north toward the yards from the west side of the bridge.
|Spring installation on southbound main.
|The Call of August 22, 1947
PETER BRINICH FALLS UNDER COAL CAR
Peter Brinich of the Eves apartments on Saint Peter Street is in critical condition in the Good Samaritan Hospital where he was rushed in the ambulance after he
had fallen under a moving coal car and had his two legs and an arm severed. The accident occurred about 2:15 p. m. this afternoon. At 3:00 the hospital reported
that he was living and that the doctors were working on him. Brinich is employed by the Lobh Coal Company at the end of Parkway and was said to be attempting
to break a moving coal car when he fell beneath the wheels of the car. The wheels passed over his body, cutting off one leg at the hip and severing the other one
at the ankle. An arm was badly mangled. The injured man has been in the employ of the Lobh Coal Company for several years. He is married and has one child,
|The Call of October 24, 1947
TRAIN HITS AUTO AT UNION STREET
The dangerous intersection at Union Street, without a watchman at night time, was the scene of another train accident on Sunday night about 7:30 and two hours
later a second car barely cleared the tracks in front of an approaching train at the same crossing. Fred V. Knecht, editor of "The Call" and his two children, Anne,
six and Dennis, four, narrowly escaped when they jumped from their automobile, which had stalled on the tracks shortly before the Pottsville bound Reading
Company passenger train crashed into the front end of the car. Shortly after nine o'clock, another car driven by an unknown person, barely missed being hit by
the Number 9 train coming down from Pottsville, as the car passed over the tracks a split second before the train roared past.
The Knecht car, which had stalled upon approaching the crossing and then drifted onto the tracks when an attempt was made to start it, was hit on the fender and
the bumper by the train. Damage estimated at $300 consists of smashed fenders, bumper, grill and radiator and a twisted hood.
|The Call of December 19, 1947
AUTO OF CHARLES WAGNER STRUCK BY BACKING COAL TRAIN
For the third time in nine months, the Union Street railroad crossing, without a watchman at night time, was the scene of an auto train crash but fortunately the
lone occupant of the car escaped injury. Charles G. Wagner, funeral director on Hoover Street, narrowly escaped death Wednesday night at 9:30 when his car was
hit by a pullup coal train backing down the tracks. The car, a 1940 Oldsmobile, was hit directly in the center on the right side and pushed along the tracks for about
fifty feet before the train came to a stop. The car on the left side was jammed against a switch and the right side was so badly smashed that Mr. Wagner could not
get out of the car. He had to be pulled through one of the windows. The flagman on the train had only a few minutes to run down the tracks and flag train Number
9. Mr. Wagner, who is 75 years old, was uninjured except for a slight abrasion on his left wrist. He is suffering from shock. Mr. Wagner was on his way home from
the casket factory where he works as a watchman. At Saint John Street he turned onto Union and approached the tracks. Police stated it was reported that the
lights were blinking and Mr. Wagner stopped and looked for a train. Not hearing a whistle or seeing train lights, he started across the tracks. Suddenly the back
end of the shifting train loomed in front of him and struck the car directly in the middle. The car remained upright as it was pushed along the tracks. Damage is
estimated at between $600 and $800. Flagman Joseph Leddy of Saint Clair claims he tooted the air whistle and as soon as the crash occurred, he applied the
emergency brakes. The Harvey B. Moyer wrecker removed the damaged car but Number 9 train to Pottsville was delayed for 27 minutes before the tracks were
cleared. On Thursday morning the wrecked car was taken to the Earl Stoyer garage.
Involved in the other two accidents were Marvin Gaus of Cressona, whose coal truck was hit Good Friday night and Fred V. Knecht, whose car was hit October 19.
Mr. Gaus was seriously injured and spent a long time in the hospital before being able to return to work. Editor Knecht and his two children jumped from the car
just before it was hit.
|The Call of December 19, 1947
READING OFFICIALS DISCUSS CHANGE IN SAFETY MEASURES
Three train and auto accidents at the Union Street crossing within nine months have aroused the people of town over the need of more adequate safety measures
at this and the William Street crossing after six o'clock in the evening. The three accidents occurred after the watchmen go off duty at these two crossings, two
being involved with the 7:30 train and the other at 9:30.
Immediately after the accident involving Charles Wagner on Wednesday night, Chief Burgess William Harner called W. S. Sloatman, superintendent of the
Shamokin Division of the Reading Company and Mr. Sloatman agreed to come up to Schuylkill Haven to take up the matter of safety at the crossings. At 12:15 this
afternoon, Burgess Harner, George Gray and Fred V. Knecht met with Mr. Sloatman and H. F. Smith, Chief Engineer of the Shamokin Division. The two Reading
Company officials agreed that the present system did not give adequate protection and explained the plan the company has for insuring safety. The plan is to
have half gates at all three crossings, operated by a watchman in a tower erected at Union Street. The control man will have a panel in front of him giving the
layout of the track which by means of small lights shows him the progress of approaching trains. The gates at the three crossings will operate independently of
each other. Along with the half gates will be blinker lights, open at the back as to be visible from both ends. These lights will begin blinking several seconds
before the gates descend. Because the control tower operator mans the gates, there will be no blinking of lights when trains are shifting and no using the tracks
at the crossings. It was pointed out to Mr. Sloatman that the plans had been given to Borough Council for their consideration but that the governing body of the
community did not think such safety devices would serve adequately at the crossings.
The Reading Company officials closed the discussion by stating that they would send to the chief burgess pictures of the new type gates and tower and
informative literature explaining their operation. When this information arrives, the Chamber of Commerce and Borough Council will consider whether or not the
manually controlled gates from a central tower will insure safety at the crossings. The Reading Company has all material ready to submit the plan to the Public
Utilities Commission and make application for permission to install the new gates. The estimated cost of the installation is $20,000.
|The Call of December 17, 1948
FRIEDENSBURG MAN HAS LUCKY ESCAPE AS TRAIN HITS CAR
Charles F. Brown of Friedensburg miraculously escaped serious injury early Saturday morning when the new "Schuylkill" train totally demolished his automobile at
the Union Street crossing. Brown, returning home to his Friedensburg home from his work on the night shift at Alpha Mill, drove onto the crossing as the 12:20 a.
m. train was approaching the station. The impact knocked off his shoes and threw him out of the car. The engine hit the front end of the automobile, threw it
against the traffic gate standard and a railroad crossing sign, and then caught the back end and crumpled the entire body of the car as it was wedged between the
train and the posts. Brown who is fifty three was alone in the car at the time. He does not know how or through which door he was thrown from the car. He
escaped from the crash with an abrasion on the forehead and slight bruises on the legs. A hearing aid he was wearing at the time, as well as one of his shoes,
was not found in the wreckage. Tires, lights and parts of the fenders and bumpers were found far up the track and underneath the train after it had pulled out.
A call was placed for the community ambulance. When it arrived, Brown, who only complained of being cold, entered the ambulance to get warm and remained
there until after the car had been removed and a report made by the Reading Company representatives. It was claimed that the blinker lights were in operation at
the time. Brown's car was totally demolished and the new "Schuylkill," involved in its first accident had its engine and first two cars slightly damaged. Daniel Scott
of Cressona was engineer of the train.
The wrecker of Harvey B. Moyer had to remove the wedged in car before the train could continue to its destination in Pottsville. It was held up twenty five
minutes by the accident. Brown was later taken to the office of Dr. N. Albert Fegley and after an examination was removed to his Friedensburg home. Mr. Brown
is the father of Mrs. Robert Roeder, wife of the well known general store proprietor at Friedensburg.
This accident was the fourth at the Union Street crossing in less than two years. On Good Friday night, 1947, Norman Goss of Cressona was seriously injured
when his truck was hit by the 7:30 evening train. Fred V. Knecht was hit by the 7:30 train and a few months later, a car driven by Charles Wagner was hit by a
shifting engine around 8:30 in the evening. All four persons involved in the accidents were well acquainted with the crossing and used it frequently. At the time
of the first three accidents, the crossing watchman went off duty at 6:oo p. m. Several months ago, the crossing watchman was retained until 11:00 p. m. At the
time of the four accidents, there was no watchman on duty but the blinking lights were working.
|The Call of January 31, 1949
HALF GATES WITH PEDESTRIAN GATES WILL PROTECT RAILROAD CROSSINGS
Electrically operated crossing gates, controlled from a tower at Union Street, will be installed at the three streets in Schuylkill Haven which cross the tracks of the
Reading Railroad. Approval was given by the Public Utilities Commission to the plan submitted by the Reading Company, provided pedestrian sidewalk gate arms
be installed at the Main and Union Street crossings. The original plan called for the half gates to be installed at the three crossings. Because these half gates
would protect only the right hand side of the crossing and would afford no safety precaution for the pedestrians on the left hand side of the highway, objections
were presented by local groups when the hearing was held in Pottsville by the PUC. The strongest protest was made by the PTA and the Woman's Club, supported
by the men's civic clubs. The order approving the installation of the new type gates was signed by John Siggins Jr., chairman of the PUC. Expense of installing
the new equipment, making relocation charges, reimbursing property owners and maintaining the control for twenty four hours will be borne by the Reading
Company. The estimated cost of the new type gates is $28,263. The gates and the flashing light warning signals must be installed by November 30, 1949 according
to the order.
At the present time only the Main Street crossing has twenty four hour watchman protection. At Union Street the watchman operates the gates from 6:00 a. m. until
10:00 p. m. and at Union Street a watchman is on duty from 6:00 a. m. until 6:00 p. m. Each of the crossings has automatic blinker lights but because of the frequent
use of the track by shifting trains, the lights are blinking when the crossings are not being used. During the day, motorists are accustomed to going across the
tracks when the lights are blinking and the watchman has the gates up. At night time, however, with no watchman on duty, the gates remain up when trains
approach the crossings at Union Street and William Street. Four accidents occurred at the Union Street crossing in less than two years' time and in all four cases
the drivers of the vehicles involved were frequent users of the crossing.
Following the first two accidents, protests were made to the Reading Company about inadequate protection at the crossings. The railroad company proposed the
half gates operated by one man at the central control tower. When no action was forthcoming, and another accident occurred, the local organizations again
protested and asked that a watchman be put on twenty four hour duty at Union Street. The watch at Union Street which had been from six to six was lengthened to
ten in the evening. The fourth accident occurred at 12:30 a. m., involving the new "Schuylkill" train.
It is believed the new type gates will provide adequate protection for both motorists and pedestrians. Under the new system, the operator in the control tower
will observe the approach of trains by a panel of lights that show him the location of the approaching train. He can operate the gates at the three crossings
individually. Before the gate is lowered, the blinker lights will begin operating. Motorists and pedestrians will know that when the lights blink, a train is
approaching the crossing and the gates will be lowered. Half gates, extending over only one half the highway will be used for motorists on the right hand side
upon which the cars normally drive. If a motorist should get on the tracks as the gates are being lowered, he will be able to drive right through as the gate for
approaching traffic on the other side of the track will operate on the other side of the street, leaving his side open. The pedestrian gates will be located on both
sides of the street and both sides of the track so that a barrier will be placed at each sidewalk railroad crossing. If motorists and pedestrians heed the warning
lights, which operate only when trains approach the crossing, and not when trains are shifting farther up the track, and wait until the gates are raised before
attempting to cross the tracks, crossing accidents should be avoided.
|The Call of October 24, 1952
FREIGHT TRACKS WILL BE REMOVED
The Public Utility Commission has approved the application of Reading Company for permission to remove a track connecting with a main line in Schuylkill Haven
and a track in front of the Schuylkill Haven freight station. The PUC granted the request when no protests were entered and all concerned agreed to the removal
at a meeting of PUC, Reading Company, Schuylkill Haven borough and highway department officials in Schuylkill Haven on September 24. The railroad said it would
remove rails and ties and resurface the Main Street crossing at its own expense. The track to be removed connects with the main line for east bound traffic at the
Main Street crossing. Its removal, the railroad said, will reduce the manner of switching movements across Main Street. The PUC approval order directs that the
work be completed on or before April 30, 1953. Elimination of the track will create no change in present crossing devices.
|The Call of May 22, 1958
RAILROAD EXPRESS TO END HERE
The railway express agency at Schuylkill Haven is threatened with closing unless strong enough protest is voiced to the Public Utilities Commission within thirty
days. The Reading Company this morning posted notice of its intention to discontinue the railway express at Schuylkill Haven. If this is done, the express will be
handled through the Pottsville agency. According to Charles Deibler, employed in the local office, this will mean delivery in Schuylkill Haven, instead of being
made in the morning, will be delayed until the afternoon or the next day. It will also mean the discontinuance of five jobs in Schuylkill Haven. Presently employed
are Joseph Dowd, agent; Charles Deibler and W. P. Strouse, clerks and freight handlers; A, F, McGovern, clerk and John Casey, freight handler. Thirty days are
allowed for the filing of protests. The protests should be made to the Public Utilities Commission in Harrisburg with a copy to be sent to Hugh Graef,
superintendent of mail express, South Broad and Poinier Streets in Newark, New Jersey. The local express shipments are delivered by Edward H. Shollenberger's
|The Call of March 5, 1959
RAILWAY EXPRESS OFFICE TO REMAIN IN SCHUYLKILL HAVEN
The Railway Express will continue to serve this area from its office in Schuylkill Haven. Notification was received by Attorney Howard G. Stutzman that the Public
Utilities Commission had rejected the petition of the Railway Express Agency to discontinue its Schuylkill Haven office and handle the service through the
Pottsville headquarters. Numerous protests were filed by local groups and individuals and these people appeared at the PUC hearing conducted in Pottsville last
July on the petition. The agency claimed that declining receipts made it necessary as an economy move to consolidate the offices. At the hearing it was shown
that the decline in receipts had been small and could possibly have been caused by the current recession. Appearing and testifying at the hearing were Dr. Paul
S. Christman of the school district and Rotary Club, Moe Fisher of the Argo Mills, and Aaron "Doc" Bernet of Earl Stoyers. Prior to the hearing most of the town
businesses and industries as well as individual citizens wrote to the PUC to protest the closing of the local Railway Express office.
|Pottsville Republican of March 19, 1926
Just after realizing a life's ambition to be a railroader, Frank J. Heim, 44, of Schuylkill Haven, met his death on duty on Thursday night on
his run between Philadelphia and Rutherford. He was found on the top of a box car, fatally injured, having been struck as the train
passed under a bridge, and died before he reached a hospital.
Since a boy, Heim's ambition had been to become a railroader, and though he worked at various other occupations, he always had his
aim before him and was working toward this end. For a number of years he was employed at the Doutrich's store in Pottsville where his
he applied for a position on the railroad and was told if he underwent a slight surgical cheerful and likeable disposition made him a
favorite with the patrons. About ten weeks ago operation, he could pass a physical examination and be entered in the service. He was
operated upon and six weeks ago passed the examination and entered the passenger service, his run being between Philadelphia and
Rutherford. Thursday night however he was on a freight train.
Thursday afternoon, his father, I. B. Heim of Schuylkill Haven, celebrated his 69th birthday and Frank and his family were at the father's
home for the celebration, which was a doubly happy one, for it also marked the attaining of the son's ambition and there was much
rejoicing. Frank left for Philadelphia at two o'clock and his train had just started out when the accident happened. He had started toward
the engine and evidently did not notice the approach to the bridge and was struck as he was on the boxcar. He was still alive when
found but died a few minutes later. His new uniform arrived at his home this morning and he will be buried in it. Heim was very popular
in church and fraternal circles. He was a Past Master in Page Lodge F. and A. M., a member of Carroll Lodge of Odd Fellows and of the
Royal Arcanium. He was a member of Saint Matthew's Lutheran Church and of the church council and took an active part in church work.
Surviving are his wife, who was Miss Mamie Kirkpatrick, and three daughters; Alva wife of William Yoder of Schuylkill Haven, Edith and
Ruth at home. His father and one brother, Harvey R. Heim of Schuylkill Haven survive.
|The Call of December 12, 1901
STRUCK BY A TROLLEY CAR
The trolley car arriving here at 5:30 o'clock Monday evening, struck Shoemaker's grocery delivery team, standing in front of Raush's house in Spring Garden. The
driver, a son of Mr. Shoemaker, says he was in the rear of the wagon sorting the groceries when the car came along. The horse became frightened and plunged
toward the track when the car struck it. The wagon was upset, contents spilled out and the horse was thrown against a barbed wire fence. He was badly cut and
bruised. The driver escaped unhurt.
|The Call of May 13, 1904
TROLLEY CAR SMASHED
The trolley from Pottsville, arriving in town a few minutes before one o'clock on Tuesday afternoon, collided on Main Street with one of the big lumber teams of
Reichley Brothers. The steps on one side of the car were knocked off, the window panes beneath the platform were broken and the woodwork was damaged. The
wagon, which was pulled by six mules and was loaded with heavy chestnut poles, was not damaged in the least. The car was able to run with its own power back
to the power house, where another car was substituted. Motorman Eiler and Conductor Tindle had charge of the car.
|The Call of April 28, 1900
WORKMAN AT CAR SHOPS INJURED
Charles C. Snayberger, an employee at the P and R car shops, was a victim of an accident on Tuesday morning that will keep him from work for several weeks. Mr.
Snayberger was assisting in getting a body bolster from a pile when the pile upset and he was struck by one of the heavy timbers, knocking him down. The injured
man was removed to the Spring Garden House, at which place he boards, and Dr. Lessig was summoned. Upon examination it was found the unfortunate man's
injuries consisted of a spilt right ankle and a badly bruised left ankle which caused considerable pain. Mr. Snayberger came to this place from Molino.
|The Call of December 20, 1901
NARROW ESCAPE FROM DEATH
Irvin Hummel, of this place, an employee at the P and R coal storage yards at Landingville, had a narrow escape from being killed on Monday evening. Mr.
Hummel, who had been unfortunate in the past to lose one of his arms, alighted from the storage yard train, which was moving slowly at the Williams Street
crossing into the southbound track. In some manner he tripped and fell striking his head against the rail, which rendered him unconscious. Several men rushed
and pulled him off the track just in time to save him from being crushed beneath the wheels of a rapidly moving train. Mr. Hummel's injuries from the fall are not
serious and he has recovered.
|The Call of August 2, 1913
INJURED BY FALL FROM CAR
John Peiffley of Schuylkill Haven, who is employed at the local shops, fell from the 6:30 Schuylkill Haven car at Spring Garden on Wednesday evening, and was
severely injured. He had intended to go off at the turn of Spring Garden and for that reason was getting down on the steps of the car ready to go. He made a
misstep and went headlong across the narrow street. Conductor Tucker and several other workmen who were on the back of the car rushed to his assistance.
He was taken into the Brown Hotel where a physician was called to attend him. It is not thought that he has sustained any broken bones.
|Miners Journal of September 30, 1881
A MIDNIGHT ROBBER CAUGHT
Christian Frederick Scheck, employed as a laborer by the Reading Railroad Company at Schuylkill Haven, was lodged in jail Wednesday on a charge of larceny. It
appears that for some time the railroad officials at that point have been missing articles of merchandise, which were generally taken from the cars. Scheck was
suspected. A watch was placed upon him. On Tuesday he took a bag of feed from a car and placed it on another until he could get an opportunity of carrying it
away. He returned at midnight for it. It was gone. The watchman had found it and removed it to a more secure place than an open car. Scheck's movements were
noted by a police officer. He was followed to his house. A search warrant was obtained. On the strength of this the house was searched. In it were found two
barrels and six quarter sacks of flour, a bag of feed and a number of keys, such as would open box cars. Scheck was arrested, taken before Justice Helms and by
him committed to jail.
|Miners Journal of February 24, 1882
HUNGARIANS IN TROUBLE
Six Hungarians walked into the depot at Schuylkill Haven on Friday morning and there had a short consultation. Five of them gave money to one of their number,
the biggest man in the party, and he walked up to the ticket office to purchase tickets. It was discovered before he boarded the Harrisburg train, that he had
bought only four tickets. He intended to leave the two youngest members of the party behind. They naturally objected and finally the fellow bought tickets. When
he had done so, the train for Harrisburg had gone. The tickets were returned and the money was refunded. Three of the party obtained their money back. The
two before mentioned, mere boys, didn't. The big fellow coolly walked off with it. One of the boys began to cry. One of the big Hungarians' cronies taunted him
about his womanish display. A crowd had gathered about the men. The sympathies of the crowd were with the boys. One of the crowd, an official by the way,
winked at one of the boys in an unofficial way, and by signs, advised him to whale his tormentor. The advice was taken so suddenly that before he could
appreciate the situation, the assailed one was lying on his back with the assailant's right hand inserted in his neck handkerchief. Had the crowd not interfered the
boy would have choked his tormentor to death. As it was he was black in the face before the boy released him. The boys didn't get their money back. The party
left town during the day.
|Tragedy on the railroad was a frequent occurrence......
|Miners Journal of May 28, 1866
TERRIBLE ACCIDENT AT SCHUYLKILL HAVEN - DEATH OF AN ESTIMABLE CITIZEN
We are pained to learn that Mr. Charles S. Leader, dispatcher at Schuylkill Haven for the Reading Railroad Company was instantly killed yesterday morning about
one o'clock. It seems that Mr. Leader in the discharge of his duties, was standing on the track opposite his office, counting cars, when he was struck by a roping
engine, knocked down, run over and killed. The wheels passed diagonally over the upper part of the body, almost severing the neck. The accident took place
when the night was dark. The engineer did not know that it had happened and the body was not discovered until three o'clock, when it was found lying across the
track a short distance from the dispatcher's office, it having been dragged about forty yards by the engine. At the time of his death, Mr. Leader was about forty six
years of age. He leaves a wife and one child.
Schuylkill Haven contained no more estimable citizen than Charles S. Leader. For twenty years he resided there and for many years was in the employ of the
Reading Railroad Company in various positions. He was a brave soldier of the Mexican war and commanded a company for state defense during the Rebellion.
His sudden and melancholy death has cast a gloom upon our sister borough. The remains of Mr. Leader will be interred with Masonic ceremonies tomorrow
afternoon at one o'clock. The members of the Masonic fraternity in general and of the lodges in the vicinity in particular, are respectfully invited to meet at the
room of Page Lodge, Number 270, Schuylkill Haven, at noon tomorrow. A train leaves here at noon tomorrow, which will enable Pottsville brethren to attend
|Miners Journal of November 7, 1868
KILLED ON THE READING RAILROAD
On Thursday afternoon last between four and five o'clock, while a car was being roped upon a siding at the crossing above Schuylkill Haven, a lad named John
Stanton, about thirteen years of age, got upon it for a ride. He slipped and fell on the track, a flange of one of the wheels cutting off the back of his head and one
of his arms, killing him instantly. He was a son of John Stanton, deceased, and lived on the Flat near Schuylkill Haven. Jumping on and off of railroad cars when
they are in motion is an exceedingly dangerous practice and this occurrence should prove a warning to persons never to attempt it under any circumstances.
|Miners Journal of February 13, 1869
Yesterday morning as the accommodation train from Tremont was moving out from Schuylkill Haven, Mr. Joseph R. Weber, in attempting to get on said train,
almost lost his life. Not observing the morning mail coming down on the inside track, he in the heat of excitement to make the train, created a great sensation at
the depot, and it was almost a miracle that his life was spared. Too much caution can not be observed at that station and it would be well if the conductor of the
Tremont train would lay over until the other train had left the depot, as it would be but a moment's loss of time and the danger of loss of life would be avoided.
|Miners Journal of March 8, 1878
An accident of a frightful and fatal character occurred at Schuylkill Haven on Wednesday evening. During the evening a lecture was delivered at Metamora Hall by
Chaplain Beckley, who drew a very large audience. Among his listeners were Mrs. Weidman and Mrs. Williams, who were compelled to cross the railroad track at a
point near the iron bridge, which crosses the Schuylkill River. At this point two trains occupied the track but between them was sufficient space to enable a
person to walk through without touching either train. Mrs. Williams passed over to the other side in safety but Mrs. Weidman was rather slower in her movements
as she was burdened with a sack of flour that she had purchased from the mill but a short time previously. Just as the unfortunate woman reached the middle of
the track, the one train of cars closed in upon the other and caught as in a vise the body of Mrs. Weidman, who was literally crushed to death. A single scream
notified Mrs. Williams of the terrible fate of her companion and an alarm was immediately given. A shifting engine was at once brought into requisition and the
body of the dead woman removed from its unnatural position. The right arm was found to be almost severed from the body which was crushed in a horrible
manner. An inquest was held yesterday and a verdict of accidental death returned.
|Miners Journal of March 19, 1880
HOW JOHN WHITE WAS KILLED
It appears from the testimony of eyewitnesses that John White, the unfortunate young man who was killed by the express train from Philadelphia on Wednesday
night, between Cressona crossing and Schuylkill Haven, was not endeavoring to board the train, nor was
he cut in two. He and his two companions jumped off a southbound coal train at the point mentioned above and were walking down the other track when the fast
line came along, and although the others succeeded in escaping, young White was struck, thrown under the moving cars, shockingly mangled and instantly killed.
The accident was not discovered by anyone on the express train but on reaching Pottsville, a boot and marks of blood were found on one of the platforms. One of
the train hands went to the telegraph office for the purpose of telegraphing along the line and at that moment a dispatch was received stating where the accident
occurred and who was killed. The coroner's jury rendered a verdict in accordance with the facts and exonerated the train hands from blame.
|Miners Journal of June 17, 1881
JUST MISSED BEING KILLED
A boy about twelve years of age, a son of Perry Watts of Wheeler Street, this place, met with a serious accident on Tuesday afternoon near Schuylkill Haven. He
jumped on a down train as it was passing a furnace and rode as far as Schuylkill Haven. There he boarded an up train of empty coal cars. The train stopped in
answer to a danger signal and then started suddenly. Watts lost his hold and fell. He first struck the bumpers of the car and was thrown off, striking the sills upon
his head. He fell heavily and then rolled over and over. One of his legs was broken. His head was badly cut and he was covered with bruises. His escape from
death was very narrow. He was brought to Pottsville by the Harrisburg train and carried home. It is a common practice for boys to jump on coal trains at this point
and ride down the road for a few miles, and that more accidents do not occur is a matter of surprise to those who are aware how common and dangerous this
|Miners Journal of April 1, 1881
A THRILLING SITUATION
The passengers on the Philadelphia train which arrived here at 1:05 p. m. witnessed an accident on the road, a short distance below Schuylkill Haven, which threw
the train hands into a fever of excitement and for the space of a few seconds caused the engineer to turn his head from the scene. As the train neared the
crossing below Schuylkill Haven, a heavy wagon drawn by three mules, was noticed making its way across the track. Two of the mules were harnessed to the pole,
the third acted as leader. A boy rode one of the pole mules. The leader had reached the track before the boy noticed the approaching train. His attention was
attracted by the shrill signal of "down brakes." He put on the brakes also and tried to pull the lead mule off the track. The mule had evidently made up his mind to
cross, even if he ran the chance of throwing the train off the track. The engineer and the rest of the trainmen gave the boy up for lost as they noted his
unsuccessful efforts to pull the mule back. He kept his seat and up to the last moment before the train struck his leader, kept pulling on the rein. The lead mule
was struck broadside by the pilot and thrown a distance of twenty five feet. The shock was so sudden and tremendous that the connection between the leader
and the pole mules was broken as if composed of paper. As the train swept by the cars almost grazed the heads of the team, and the boy could have touched the
passengers with his outstretched hand. It was a close shave. The train was stopped and many of the passengers went back to find out how the boy survived. He
was found gazing at the dead body of his leader. As the passengers congratulated him upon his escape from a frightful death, he showed his appreciation of the
situation with the remark, "He was my best mule."
|Miners Journal of December 2, 1881
A BRAKEMAN KILLED
Reuben Bretz died at a very early hour, shortly after midnight, Wednesday morning at Schuylkill Haven, from the effects of an accident which occurred on Tuesday
night. He had been a brakeman on the Reading road for many years and had been in the employ of the company for nearly twenty years. He was about forty years
of age, married and the father of four children, two of whom are married. In attempting to board a loaded coal car, for the purpose of stopping a train in process of
weighing, he slipped and fell under the wheels. One of his legs was almost severed. The wheels passed over the thigh close to the body. An inquest was held
on the body yesterday by Deputy Coroner Theodore F. Leader. A jury composed of Dr. Dechert, J. E. Kantner, Samuel Hower, Jacob Semar, D. H. Albright and Jacob
Renk returned a verdict of accidental death.
|Miners Journal of November 10, 1882
A TRAGIC ACCIDENT
A railroader met with a frightful death at Schuylkill Haven yesterday. The unfortunate man was Charles Rodgers, a brother of the High Constable of this borough.
Rodgers was watchman at the railroad crossing. He was on duty when the early train passed yesterday morning. He noticed a man named Bittle driving towards
the crossing. He signalled him to stop and then stepped back upon the track just occupied by the passing train. Just as he did so he was struck by the
locomotive of a material train which was following the passenger train. He was knocked down and run over. His body was frightfully mangled. Death must have
been instantaneous. Rodgers was over fifty years of age and leaves a wife and several children.
|Miners Journal of July 10, 1885
A TERRIBLE ACCIDENT
A number of Italians were engaged Sunday afternoon in blasting at the cut near Schuylkill Haven, on the line of the new road, on the Drake and Stratton section.
They had prepared a blast and retired from the spot to await the shot. The blast not going off as soon as they expected, the three men went back to see what was
the matter. The blast went off just as they got to the spot. One of the Italians had both his hands blown off, and was otherwise injured. Another had one of his
arms badly shattered and the third was injured about the head. Two of the men are very seriously hurt and it is a question whether they will recover.
|The Call of February 8, 1918
PASSENGERS HAD THRILLING TIME
Schuylkill Haven and Cressona passengers, leaving Pottsville on Tuesday evening on the local trolley road, had a thrilling experience and very few realized what a
narrow escape they had from death or serious injury. An extra car, preceding the regular 5:30 o'clock car out of pottsville was traveling at a fair rate of speed
when on the center of the bridge at Cape Horn, the motor casing suddenly dropped to the track. The motorman brought the car to a sudden stop, giving the
passengers a bad shake up, but preventing the car from mounting the rails and plunging into the Schuylkill river thirty feet below. It will be recalled that three
years ago, a car plunged down the embankment at this point. Passengers faced the fact of crawling across the bridge on their hands and knees when the first car
was pulled back a sufficient distance to allow the north bound car to cross the bridge.
|The Call of July 12, 1918
LESS TROLLEY STOPS AFTER MONDAY
After Monday, July 15th, there will be fewer trolley stops in Schuylkill Haven, likewise throughout the entire county and state. When "The Call" went to press, the
officials of the Eastern Pennsylvania Railway Company were busy making out their list of stops in each town through which their lines pass. These stops will be
announced next week. It is the intention to have but one stop in each 1300 feet. This would mean that a car coming from Pottsville enroute to Orwigsburg would
probably make the first stop at Brown's corner in Spring Garden. The next stop would be at Broadway, the third stop at "The Call" office, the fourth stop at Hotel
Grand and the fifth stop at Williams Street. This would do away with the stops at Coal Street, Berger Street, Paxson Avenue, saint Peter Street and Market Street.
Fewer stops are made necessary on account of a government ruling to conserve fuel and power.
|Miners Journal of January 18, 1851
On Friday evening of last week, says the "Map", the coupling of a coal train from this place, became loose near Schuylkill Haven and left part of the train behind.
The brakesman, however, succeeded in stopping them. Scarcely was this accomplished before a large rock rolled from the hillside upon the track and the
express engine was seen coming at its usual rate, and the engineer unaware of the danger. The brakesman left his cars, and running down the track, was
fortunate enough by means of his signal lamp, to arrest the train just on the verge of ruin.
|Miners Journal of September 22, 1855
We are desirous of calling the attention of the Reading Railroad Company, to the very dangerous crossing of the track of that company at Schuylkill Haven. There
appears to be a degree of carelessness on the part of the watchman at that point, exceedingly reprehensible, as it endangers hourly, the lives and property of
persons who have occasion to pass that point with vehicles. Only last week, a horse and carriage came near being annihilated at that station, in consequence of
no signal being given to notify persons that a train was approaching. The horse had just got his forefeet upon the track when the locomotive neared him. The
whistle was then blown; steam permitted to escape with a loud noise and the affrighted animal reared and backed in a dangerous manner. The train passed
rapidly, just grazing the whole concern.
What aggravated the case somewhat, was the fact that no disposition appeared to be manifested by persons connected with the company, either to avoid the
collision, which appeared inevitable or assist the driver of the vehicle. We have experienced similar treatment at that crossing and think it the duty of the proper
officers, as complaints are made by the citizens of Schuylkill Haven, of the carelessness evinced at this crossing, to effect some reform in the matter. It is
impossible for a person driving a vehicle across the track there, while approaching, to see what is coming, the view being obstructed by the bridge and
neighboring houses. We think an efficient signal man should be stationed there continually. It is a dangerous place and a number of accidents have already
happened there. The habit too, of blowing off steam while passing that crossing, should not be permitted by the company. It has a tendency to frighten horses.
We notice this crossing particularly, as there is a degree of carelessness tolerated there which is highly culpable, and which may yet result in a fearful accident.
We hope the proper officers of the company will attend to this matter and thereby add to the reputation of their generally admirably managed road.
|Miners Journal of March 27, 1858
At Schuylkill Haven this week, Charles A. Brobst, painter, in the employ of the Reading Railroad Company, in ten hours lettered one hundred and fifty coal cars,
painting fourteen letters on each car. Total of two thousand and one hundred letters. Each letter was two inches of plain block and executed with a pencil,
discarding the use of stencils. This is indeed a feat which would puzzle many painters to equal.
|Miners Journal of May 10, 1851
A Mr. Royer, a resident of West Branch Valley, crossing the railroad above Schuylkill Haven on Monday last, going into town, was struck by the down freight train
and fatally injured. The "Map" says he was an old man and almost deaf. The car ran over his leg a little below the knee and crushed it off or nearly so, and also
threw him with great violence against the other track so as to cut his head severely. Little hope was then entertained of his recovery and his death has been
|Miners Journal of August 30, 1851
A man named Feltman was run over by a car on the Mine Hill Road on Tuesday last, and one leg and one foot so much injured that amputation of the limb was
afterwards found necessary. He has since died. Mr. Feltman was one of the most steady and careful men, we learn, on the road. At the time of the accident, he
with others had stepped off the track, when the engine was seen coming. Feltman was standing somewhat apart from the rest, apparently occupied with his own
thoughts. Someone called to him as the engine came near, when he immediately stepped back on the track and his feet crushed under the train.
|Miners Journal of August 22, 1857
DEATH ON THE READING RAILROAD
On Saturday last, Thomas Victory, while it is thought in an intoxicated condition, laid down on the track of the Reading Railroad near Schuylkill Haven. He was run
over by a train and cut in tow. He leaves a wife and a family. He had attended the Democratic delegate election on that day.
|Miners Journal of May 17, 1862
On Friday night of last week, the seventeenth, John L. Brannon, an employee on the Mine Hill and Schuylkill Haven Railroad, was run over by a train of cars while
lying on the track of the Reading Railroad near the stone bridge above Schuylkill Haven and was instantly killed. His body was terribly mangled. He leaves a wife
and two children. Brannon was a soldier of the Mexican War and was in the three months service of the present war.
|Miners Journal of February 27, 1847
STEALING RAILROAD IRON
A correspondent writing from Schuylkill Haven, complains that the boys in that neighborhood, are in the habit of pilfering flat railroad iron, which they sell to
certain persons in town. Our correspondent says that the names of those who purchase the stolen iron are known and he threatens to make them public, unless
they cease to encourage the juvenile rascals. It is certainly very indiscreet to purchase such articles from boys, as the presumption is always very strong that
they could not have come by them honestly.
|Miners Journal of January 15, 1853
SCHUYLKILL HAVEN AFFAIRS
As we are without a paper in our town, and no correspondent of your paper, little or nothing from our place in the shape of news is found in your columns. As a
country paper containing general information, it is no more than right that the passing events of one of the most important towns in the county should be noticed
in it. The public improvements going on in and around this place are quite extensive, of which we will speak more in detail in future. The large and extensive
depot about being built by the Mine Hill Railroad Company, is advancing towards completion, the fine weather during the winter season giving them every
opportunity to have it finished early in the coming summer. It is 150 feet square, large enough to contain all the locomotives that may be used by the company for
the next several years, notwithstanding the increased number it will require to carry on their already extensive and rapidly increasing business. Last week, the
rafters of the building, which are on the Howe Truss principle, were loosened in order to replace one of them in a perpendicular position, the whole of them losing
their perpendicular position, gave way and fell to the ground, carrying with them several men employed at work. One of the men escaped with slight injury, two
others were badly hurt, one seriously, having several of his ribs and one arm broken, besides very severe contusions of the whole body; but the attending
physicians, Drs. Liggett and Royer, think that he will recover. The men are from Wilmington, Delaware. The accident is not owing to the principle upon which the
arch is constructed but from loosening the rafters and suffering them to loose their perpendicular position. Some fifteen to twenty hands are busily engaged in
constructing new ones, which will soon be placed upon the building and the roof on.
|Miners Journal of February 19, 1848
On Friday evening last, an accident occurred to the freight train on the Reading Railroad, a short distance above Schuylkill Haven. The axle of the locomotive
broke and threw the engine and some of the cars off the track, the former of which went rolling down the bank some fifteen to twenty feet. There were seven or
eight persons on the engine at the time, of whom four were so severely bruised and scalded, that they survived but a few hours. Two are still laboring under their
wounds, but are expected to recover, and another, the engineer, escaped unhurt. The engineer had sometime previously been discharged from the service of
the company on account of a similar accident to which he was a party, and having again been employed, this was his first trip over the road in his new
engagement! The names of the persons killed are John Loeser of Reading, an engineer on the road and a brother to Captain Loeser, now in Mexico, John
Mattison, Timothy Shane and John Johnson. Henry Christian, though severely injured, is said to be a fair way to recovery.
The frequent occurrence of accidents of this character is truly alarming. The company have made every effort to avoid them by laying down rules for the
government of the engineers, but it would appear that little respect is entertained for them by those officers. For example, they are positively prohibited from
running at any considerable speed while passing each other with trains, and especially when passing the passenger trains. Yet everyone knows that this rule is
not observed. We have frequently been alarmed in passing over the road, at the extraordinary speed with which coal trains pass by, for if the least accident
should at such time happen then, incalculable would be the mischief! The life of every passenger would be in peril and paced far beyond reparation by any means
accessible to the railroad company and its agents.
|These three maps come from the Reading Company Historical and Technical Society archives. The two on the left show the layout of the Reading Railroad
trackage and buildings from Columbia Street into the large yard on the Island. The one on the right is the blueprint for the freight station that was at Main Street.
|This bridge looks very much the
same today, with minor cosmetic
changes since its 1840
installment. Unlike the covered
bridge at Columbia Street, this
bridge withstood the great flood of
1850 when the lower dam at
Tumbling Run burst sending
massive amounts of water and
debris against it.
|This series of
pictures appeared in
the February, 1950
edition of the
Magazine. This was
a direct result of the
accidents at grade
Schuylkill Haven, as
evidenced by articles
|Miners Journal of March 30, 1844
ENGINE HOUSE AT SCHUYLKILL HAVEN
The engine house now building at Schuylkill Haven by the Philadelphia and Reading Railroad Company is a tremendous affair. It is built circular and is topped off
in the shape of a dome, about sixty feet high, of immense dimensions. We have not been informed (whether correctly or not we are not prepared to say, not
knowing its dimensions) that when finished it will be the largest dome in the United States. It is certainly a curiosity in this quarter of the country.
|Miners Journal of April 27, 1844
SCHUYLKILL HAVEN ENGINE HOUSE
This large, capacious, and rather unique building, constructed by the Philadelphia and Reading Railroad Company, is now nearly completed. As it has already
attracted considerable curiosity, we have procured the following description of the building which we publish for the benefit of our readers.
The building is circular, 126 feet in diameter. The stone work is 16 feet high, capped with a plain and neat cornice. From this, the roof, which is spherical, rises 64
feet high, to the base of a cupola or lanthorn. In the roof immediately above the cornice are sixteen windows with plain and massy pilastres and Grecian consols,
supporting a pediment head. The cupola is 25 feet in diameter, the vertical part of which has 32 openings, with blinds for ventilation, above a strong projecting
cornice. The roof is a segment of a sphere, 12 feet high, crowned with a base and sub base from which rises the spire, based with a beautiful device of scrolls,
supporting a ball three feet in diameter. Above the ball is a locomotive nine feet long for a vane.
The interior has a pivot 40 feet in diameter which is worked by gearing and is capable of holding 16 engines, the tracks for them radiating from center to wall.
There is a range of eight columns, 32 feet from the outside wall, these columns form a circle in the center of the building, which extends to the cupola, the first
ceiling is 16 feet, sufficient to admit the locomotives. From the top of columns to the foot of cupola, the ceiling is spherical; above the level ceiling there are eight
rooms, 32 by 34 feet, to be used for workshops. The framing of the roof, which is to be covered with a composition of tar and other ingredients, is entirely a new
design in spherical architecture.
The dome stands fourth in size to any on record in the known world. The largest is the Pantheon at Rome which is 145 feet in diameter. The next in size is the
Church of Saint Maria del Piose at Florence, which is 139 feet. Saint Peter's at Rome is the same size as the last, and the engine house at Schuylkill Haven ranks
next in size. Saint Sophia at Constantinople is 115 feet in diameter and Saint Paul's in London is 112 feet. The design of the building was furnished by R. B.
Osborne, esquire, the talented and gentlemanly engineer in the employ of the company. The carpenter work was executed by our friends, Messrs. Joseph
George of Mount Carbon and Bernard Reilly of Pottsville, which reflects great credit upon their mechanical skill and integrity.
|Miners Journal of November 24, 1869
DANGEROUS RAILROAD CROSSING
From our Schuylkill Haven correspondent: A few words about our railroad crossing, for it is well known that this is a dangerous place, as no crossing in the county
is more freely used by tradesmen, farmers and others. As far as my knowledge extends, the first accident must yet be recorded as having occurred here, and this
is to the credit of old Michael, the watchman, who is ever vigilant and true, and has many times saved both man and beast from total destruction. This man
Michael, has outlived three other watchmen, also stationed here, which plainly proves that he is able to bear the troubles and exposures of the position, he
having become hardened to all its duties. One dollar a day is all the compensation allowed him and I trust the railroad officials will interest themselves in Michael,
so that the company may double his salary, thereby rewarding faithful service and making him a happier man.
|The Call of August 29, 1913
FREIGHT HOUSE CONTRACT LET
The contract for the construction of the new Philadelphia and Reading freight station was, the fore part of the week let to P. J. Campion of Mahanoy City. The
contract calls for the commencement of immediate operations and the completion of the job not later than February 1, 1914. It is quite probable the contractor will
begin work on Tuesday, September 2, at least the materials and necessary tools will arrive in town on or about that date.
Schuylkill Haven, from the plans and specifications, is going to have a freight house, freight platform and shedding that will be amply adequate in every respect. It
will answer all demands likely to be made and to fill all requirements of the public. It will be easy accessible to teams and very convenient in every respect. The
freight station proper will be two stories high, of concrete, steel and brick construction. It will be located fifty feet from the Main Street curb line. It will be 196
feet long. The offices will be on the Main Street end and will be 40 by 25 feet. All the office force will be stationed in the freight office instead of the office at the
station as at present. This will eliminate the annoyance of patrons crossing the tracks to secure information which should be obtainable at the freight station. The
second story of the freight house will be for the storage of records, etc.
At the Union Street end of the freight house, there will be a covered transfer shed 109 feet in length and 25 feet wide. There will be a six foot covered platform
along the entire length of the freight house on the track side. The roof on the shed on the track side is to extend over the track so that freight will not become
wet in loading or unloading. There will be a 27 foot driveway from Main Street to Union Street, passing in the rear of the freight station and shedding. The shed
along the entire length will also have an extension roof on the wagon side which will completely cover wagons while they are being loaded or unloaded.
The present freight house track will be torn out and the freight house built up against the present third track. There will be a concrete retaining wall built on the
outside of the present stone wall. On top of it will be a five foot panel concrete fence. The freight house will have rolling steel shutters, front and back, for
almost the entire length. There will be no platform at the rear of the freight house. This will make it possible for teamsters to drive up or back up against the
freight house proper to load or unload freight. As yet the yard for the delivery of car load freight has not been decided upon. This matter is giving the officials
considerable annoyance as it is a very difficult decision to solve. This matter is to be taken up within the next several weeks when the company officials will visit
the town and go over the ground and investigate the matter fully. The Schucker coal chutes will be moved from their present location to the site of the old hotel.
There will be seven coal pockets, fifteen feet each. The chutes and part of the new building are to be built first and at the same time. After this the old freight
house will be razed and the balance of the new freight building erected.
|The Call of January 30, 1914
RUSHING FREIGHT HOUSE
Work on the completion of the P & R freight house at this place is being rushed will all possible haste. A score or more of mechanics are on the job. The freight
house is already in condition to house freight. The steel sliding doors will be hung before the end of this week. The work on the erection of the office building,
which will adjoin the freight house proper, has been commenced. It will, however, take several months before work on the two buildings is entirely completed.
|The Call of October 26, 1900
KILLED BY A TROLLEY CAR - William Ebert of Cressona Had His Life Crushed Out at Seven Stars Late on Tuesday Afternoon
Shortly after five o'clock on Tuesday afternoon, William Ebert of Cressona, was instantly killed on the tracks of the Pottsville Traction Company at Seven Stars,
about two miles north of this place. Ebert, who was under the influence of liquor, was walking along the tracks and just as car number 46, William Allen, motorman,
and Charles Tucker, Conductor, which left Schuylkill Haven at five o'clock and was moving at an ordinary rate of speed, was but a few yards from the man he
stepped on the tracks. It was impossible to stop the car, which knocked him down and passed over his body, which when picked up was lifeless, death having
been instantaneous. No portion of his body rested on the rails, but his neck was found to have been broken and several bad gashes on the head and a large one
on the neck, which severed the main artery, showed how death resulted. The machinery under the car hangs very low and evidently caught him and caused the
fatal injuries. The unfortunate man was 22 years of age and was a resident of Cressona, where he was employed as a repairman on the Mine Hill Division of the
P & R Railway. He was unmarried. An aged mother and several brothers and sisters survive. At the coroner's inquest held on Wednesday morning the traction
company and its employees were exonerated from all blame for the accident.
|Pottsville Republican of July 13, 1913
CAUGHT BY CAR, BOY LOSES LEG
With his frail left leg severed above the knee and his fingers of his right hand crushed by the cruel car wheels, ten year old Johnny Minuti was picked up by his
father Albano Minuti on one of the sidings of the Reading Railway between Mine Hill Crossing and Schuylkill haven about 7:30 Friday evening and the father
tenderly held the little fellow in his arms while the railroaders gave him first aid to stay the flow of blood. Dr. Gillette was summoned and gave the boy temporary
treatment at the company office after which the child was removed to the Pottsville Hospital on a special "lokie" arriving at ten o'clock. There the surgeons
postponed any operation until the boy should recover from the shock and gain strength. The father was picking coal on the railroad at the time of the accident
and the boy loitering near the father was crawling beneath the cars when a yard locomotive, Number 917, moved the train and the little fellow's leg and hand were
caught by the car wheel with the result stated. Much sympathy is expressed for the little lad and his parents and the railroaders did all in their power to alleviate
his suffering. The Minutis live in the West Ward of Schuylkill Haven, near the scene of the accident.
|Miners Journal of August 27, 1913
THREE HELD FOR BEATING WORKMAN
When Edward Lengel, employed at the Reading Railway's repair shops in Schuylkill Haven, was on his way home night before last, after he had worked his shift, he
was beset upon and beaten into insensibility. He later lodged complaint before Squire C. A. Moyer of that town, accusing John Suders, Edward Lukin and Arthur
Sterner with being his assailants. A warrant was sworn out and placed in the hands of Officer Butz of that town, who arrested the three accused and they were
brought before the justice who held each of them under $300 for their appearance at court. The assault was made upon Lengel on Dock Street between the
Lutheran Church and Ehly's Bakery. There had been a strike on at this repair shop among others of the company at othertowns and the assault is alleged to have
been made to intimidate those who are at work.
|The Call of January 5, 1917
CRESSONA MAN SAVES FOUR
Prompt action and heroic measures on the part of Frank Mengle, a Reading Railroad conductor on the Mine Hill branch and residing in Cressona, is responsible
for the saving of the life of a six year old child on Tremont on Sunday last. Mengle was guarding a crossing while other members of his crew were doing some
shifting. Suddenly Mengle's attention was attracted by a child on a sled coming down a steep incline and heading directly for the moving wheels of the train.
Bracing himself on the slippery ice, Mengle awaited the approach of the sled with its innocent victim. He attempted to grab the sled but was unsuccessful and still
keeping his hand down, succeeded in getting a hold on the clothing of the child. With a severe jerk he pulled the child from the sled. The sled continued on and
under the wheels of the train where it was crushed to bits.
This feat of Mengle was witnessed by several other members of the crew. It was the fourth person he had saved from injury or death at the same spot within a
period of three weeks. The first time, three boys, one upon the other came down the same hill. Mengle attempted to first grab the sled and being unsuccessful,
attempted to catch hold of the clothing of one of the occupants. He was successful in this as the sled was moving very swiftly. About to close his eyes on what
appeared a certain fatal accident, Mengle made the third determined effort and caught the shoe of the under boy. Although pulled from his feet, he held on and
finally succeeded in pulling the three boys from the sled. As in the former case, the sled was demolished while the train crew looked on unable to render any
assistance. Mr. Mengle was warmly congratulated on his rescues by his fellow crew members. They do not hesitate in saying that only for him all four persons
would certainly have met instant death. The accident on Sunday last partially unnerved Mr. Mengle for the time being, as the thought of being compelled to
witness the crushing out of the innocent life of a child was more than he was able to stand.
His rescue of the four persons will probably go down among the great list of unheralded and unrecognized railroad rescues. However, The Call considers the
rescue of too great importance to go by without some comment being made. We feel sure that the mother of the child is thankful beyond words of expression and
that the railroad company is proud of the fact that they have in their employ a man possessing the good commonsense and judgement evidenced by Mr. Mengle.
"Greater love hath no man than this, that he would lay down his life for another."
|The Call of August 27, 1959
FRACTURED SKULL CAUSED DEATH OF ELMER WILDERMUTH
Elmer "Huss" Wildermuth, 70, of 25 River Street, Cressona, was found dead in the Schuylkill River at the Mine Hill railroad Crossing, north of Schuylkill Haven,
about 6:30 Tuesday morning. An autopsy was performed Tuesday afternoon at the Pottsville Hospital and death was attributed to a depressed fracture of the skull.
Mr. Wildermuth had been employed as a brakeman and flagman by the Reading Railroad for over 45 years. Dr. Joseph Matonis was summoned to the scene and
he in turn notified Deputy Coroner Conrad Koch who ordered the body removed to the Pottsville Hospital. Mr. Koch is continuing his investigation.
A son of Levi and Emma Luckenbill Wildermuth, the deceased was a native of Auburn but had lived in Cressona for over fifty years. In his youth he was a member
of the Cressona Tigers baseball team. Mr. Wildermuth was a member of Bethany Evangelical Congregational Church and the Independent Order of Americans and
the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen. Surviving is his wife, the former Florence Schaeffer; a son, Kenneth Bruce, Cressona; a stepsister, Mrs. Edna Lutz, reading
and a grandson. Funeral services will be held Saturday afternoon from the Bast and Detwiler Funeral Home with burial in the Cressona Cemetery. Reverend
Clyde E. Huber, pastor of Bethany Church will officiate. A viewing will be held Friday evening at the funeral home.
|The Call of July 19, 1901
THAT AWFUL STENCH - Trolley Rides Between This Place and Pottsville Lose Their Charm Amid the Vile Odors From the Phosphate Works
Trolley rides these hot summer evenings form a most pleasant diversion. After a hard day's work or confinement in factory or office they serve not only as an
enjoyable pastime, but also as a most healthful and invigorating indulgence. Our people find the ride from this place to Orwigsburg a delightful trip. The ride
from here to Pottsville, through the valley walled in by high, densely wooded mountains, is exquisitely picturesque and is seldom excelled or surpassed
anywhere. The Pottsville people are fortunate in having the choice of quite a number of grand rides, but judging from the large crowds carried, the ride to
Schuylkill Haven is preferred by a great many. However, this ride has one distracting feature. The pleasure of the trip is greatly marred by a most horrible stench
permeating the atmosphere for a considerable area in the vicinity of the trolley turnout. The almost unbearable odor arises from the phosphate works on the
nearby hillside. Not only is a passing whiff received, but the passengers, thus rendered uncomfortable, are compelled to endure the foul smell for quite a
distance. Seldom does a car escape it, and all passengers are similarly distressingly affected while passing through the offensive, invisible cloud. Only on cool,
damp evenings is the smell not noticed. The Traction Company should give the matter their immediate attention and endeavor to have the works removed or
operations there discontinued during the summer months at least. The public health is also endangered and the matter should engage the prompt and careful
consideration of the health authorities.
|The Call of March 22, 1901
SCHUYLKILL HAVEN LADY'S SUIT FOR DAMAGES
Miss Jennie Holton, residing on Quince Street, this borough, through her counsel, M. M. Burke, on Tuesday filed a suit for damages against the Pottsville Union
Traction Company. Miss Holton sustained injuries in a trolley accident at Seven Stars, between this place and Pottsville, last July. Two cars, Pottsville bound,
were running very close to each other, when the front one stopped suddenly and the rear car, on which Miss Holton was a passenger, crashed into the other.
Miss Holton was thrown on the floor by the unexpected heavy jar and was injured.
|The Call of July 19, 1901
A foreigner whose name could not be learned, while passing through this place on the 11:53 train on the Pennsy on Tuesday morning, saw two of his fellow
countrymen standing on the station platform and got off the train to have a little chat with them. The trio became so absorbed in their conversation that none
noticed the train as it pulled out until some distance away. "John" ran after the rapidly moving train but could not overtake it. To add to his misfortune he failed to
observe the end of the platform and tumbled in a heap on the ground, striking a switch as he landed. He did not complain of any injuries but his appearance
clearly showed that he suffered pain. He could not make himself understood to Mr. Brensinger, the agent, and a search failed to reveal a railroad ticket. The
conductor had evidently retained this, showing the man's destination was no farther than Reading. Shortly afterward, Mr. Brensinger went to dinner and when he
returned the three Italians had disappeared and have not been seen thereabouts since.
|The Call of May 7, 1892
A TERRIBLE FALL
Shortly before six o'clock in the evening Wednesday, an old man fell from the Pennsylvania Railroad arch which crosses Dock Street, striking the ground thirty
feet below on the right side of his face with terrible force. A physician was soon summoned who found that the man was seriously if not fatally injured. He was
conveyed to the Almshouse which had been his destination and put under attendance. The man was partially blind and was unable to see in what dangerous
quarters he was. He died a few hours later.
|The Call of September 7, 1900
ACCIDENT AT THE STORAGE YARDS
Paul Heebner, an employee at the storage yards, fell from a high partition at that place while at work on Tuesday morning and received a severe gash in the face
and had his leg badly injured. The unfortunate man had only started in that morning and had been at work but a few hours when the accident occurred. He was
removed to his home in Pottsville where he received the necessary medical attention. He was employed at the Otto colliery prior to working at the storage yards.
|The Call of May 5, 1900
BARBER BUTZ SERIOUSLY HURT
While returning from a fishing trip on Thursday evening, Howard Butz, the popular barber of this place, was struck by a P & R engine and seriously injured. Mr.
Butz had spent the day fishing at Auburn and boarded a coal train for the return home. At Bowen and Reed's Mill he alighted from the train but failed to observe
an approaching engine, which struck and threw him to the side of the tracks. When picked up, he was unconscious. Drs. J. A. Lessig and G. A. Moore were
summoned and upon examination found a large cut above the right eye and a fracture of the frontal bone over the orbit. His side and back were badly bruised
and there was a big cut on his leg. He was removed to the P & R waiting room but was later taken to his parents home in Spring Garden.
|The Call of April 21, 1900
ACCIDENT AT THE CAR SHOPS
Charles V. B. Deibert of this place, foreman in the light repair shops of the Philadelphia and Reading Railroad, met with an accident while at work on Monday
afternoon. Mr. Deibert was at work between two cars, one of which was jacked up, when the latter car was suddenly thrown against the former, catching him
between the two. His left arm was broken at the elbow but he fortunately escaped more serious injury. Dr. Dechert rendered the unfortunate man all the medical
|The Call of April 14, 1900
Mr. Frank Hirleman, married, residing on Spring Garden Street, this place, met with a serious accident on Wednesday afternoon, which will incapacitate him from
work for some time. Mr. Hirleman is a brakeman on the Mine Hill Railroad and it was in the discharge of his duties connected with the same that the sad mishap
befell him. The crew was engaged in shifting at the Ellsworth breaker and Mr. Hirleman was hanging to the side of the car when he was caught by an unobserved
switch and thrown heavily against the side of the rapidly moving train, from which he was pitched down a ten foot embankment. When picked up he was
unconscious and upon examination it was found he was internally injured and had sustained a contusion of the ankle. He was brought to this place and is now
confined to bed at his home with Dr. Lessig attending him.
|The Call of January 7, 1927
FORCE AT SHOPS IS CUT IN HALF
A New Year's greeting that was somewhat unexpected and to say the least, anything but pleasant, was that handed out by the Reading Company to its shop
employees at this place, the latter part of last week. It came in the form of an announcement that quite a number of the men would no longer be required. The
facts are simply these. The company instead of carrying 217 men on the payroll for the local car shops will, under the new rule, carry but 116 men. When the 217
men were on the payroll, there were at least 120 men employed daily. One half were on three days a week and one half on another three day period. Under the
order recently issued the 116 men will be employed for the full week period of five and one half days.
The selection or choice of the men who were to be retained and the men whose services were no longer required was made upon a strict seniority rights plan as
effecting each and every branch of the car shop service. Men who are no longer required at the local shops of course have the privilege of making application
for work at Saint Clair or Reading shops, but it is understood few men have been taken on at either of these shops lately.
The new plan, while it throws quite a few men out of work, it also gives about an equal number of men full employment per week instead of half time. Many of the
men who are now laid off will seek employment elsewhere. This they hesitated doing before, as they had lived in hopes of things brightening up at the local shop
and that they would be put on full time.
|The Call of May 23, 1902
ALMOST A WRECK
A P and R freight train south bound on Monday, narrowly escaped being wrecked. The train parted while running at high speed just this side of Connor's and the
two sections came together with a crash. Just as the train parted, passenger train Number 33 was slowing down for the stop at Connor's. Five tramps stealing a
ride on the rear section of the freight train were thrown off and one was painfully hurt.
|These eleven images are from the wreck at William Street crossing in May of 1919, corresponding to the previous story. Click on each thumbnail for a more
detailed view of the picture.
|The Call of February 14, 1930
WOULD LOWER GRADE AT UNDERPASS
At the preliminary hearing before the Public Service Commission at Harrisburg on Tuesday, in the matter of the underpass at Centre Avenue in Schuylkill Haven,
one of the suggestions to overcome the danger at that point made, was that of lowering the grade of the highway. The suggestion came from the engineer for the
Pennsylvania Railroad Company, Mr. Pugh, who suggested the lowering of the highway two feet at the underpass, which would then provide greater clearance at
the edges or sides of the highway. He suggested that the curves at either side of the arch be made more sweeping, by a radius of 150 feet. Upon cross
examination, Mr. Pugh admitted the grade of the highway would have to be dropped at least four feet to provide the proper clearance in the arch and along its
sides. It was also pointed out to Mr. Pugh that even with the lowering of the highway, the width of the said highway at this point would be but 18 feet, while other
portions of it are 30 feet. The cost of the changes per Mr. Pugh's plan are estimated at $25,000.
Representatives of the State Highway Department submitted the plan as announced in these columns months ago, as having been practically determined upon at
a conference held on the site. The plan is to cut the underpass at a point north of the present one and to build it in such a way that the road would be free of
curves. This route would cut through the Oscar Sterner property and would also require pavements of properties of other residents on the west side of Centre
Avenue. The road is to be 30 feet wide with five foot shoulders and concrete walks of ten feet on either side. Cost of the underpass was estimated at $75,000;
road work and approaches, $28,000; shifting trolley tracks, $1,485 and property damages to the amount of $39,650 for a total cost of $144,135. Other plans
submitted which do not eliminate the dangerous curve would cost $95,000 and $99,000. The railroad bridge which would be required would have a vertical
clearance of fourteen feet and capable of supporting 170 tons.
Properties which would suffer damage by the straightening of the curve at Centre Avenue for a distance on the south side of the present underpass would be
those of Ray Sterner, Clyde Dunkle, Charles Kantner, I. H. Becker and Carl Loy. Engineers for the State Highway Department, for the County of Schuylkill and
representatives of the Motor Club of Schuylkill County testified before the Commission that they considered the plan as submitted by the State Highway
Department to be the most feasible and the best, even though it would be considerably the most costly. Permission was granted Engineer Pugh to submit new
plans and detailed estimates on the proposition submitted by him for the Pennsylvania Railroad Company. The borough of Schuylkill Haven was represented by
Solicitor Vincent Dalton, while the township of North Manheim was represented by Attorney J. Harry Filbert
|Miners Journal of July 25, 1840
MINE HILL AND SCHUYLKILL HAVEN RAILROAD
This enterprising company is engaging on laying down a new iron
track, which judging from the weight and size of the rails, the road,
when completed, in point of durability, will not be inferior to any
railroad in the country. The company is in a prosperous condition
and the road bids fair to be one of the most productive in the country.
|Miners Journal of June 25, 1842
As the passenger train was returning to Pottsville from Philadelphia on Thursday morning last, and when arrived at a short distance from Schuylkill Haven, a horse
attached to a sled, being frightened by the locomotive, became perfectly frantic and springing down a bank thirty feet high, lodged himself immediately between
the first and second passenger cars. The cars which passed over him were all thrown off the track and dragged nearly a hundred yards before they were stopped,
thus breaking one of the front wheels of the second car and the two front wheels of the third, a portion of the iron works of each car was also broken. Strange to
relate, not a soul was injured although a number of passengers were in each car at the time of the accident. The locomotive and the first car remained on the
track and the conductor who was in front knew nothing of the occurrence until the cars were thrown off the tracks. This will account for the stopping of the train.
|Miners Journal of September 3, 1842
Mr. Henry A. Oudinot, formerly a resident of this place, and well known to many of our citizens, was shockingly crushed by the cars at Schuylkill Haven on Thursday
last causing his immediate death. Mr. Oudinot had visited that place for the purpose of renting a house, intending to remove there shortly with his family. Having
completed his arrangements and wishing to return to Reading upon the next train, he stationed himself upon the bridge whilst it was passing. Thinking himself
perfectly secure he made no effort to extricate himself and being caught between the train and the bridge, was so mangled that he died almost instantly. Mr.
Oudinot has left a wife and fourteen children depending upon him for support to mourn his loss.
|Miners Journal of August 16, 1845
MINE HILL AND SCHUYLKILL HAVEN RAILROAD OF SCHUYLKILL COUNTY
This road extends from Schuylkill haven to the Broad Mountain a distance of ten miles. It has three branches, one of which extends up the West West Branch of
the Schuylkill a distance of four and one half miles, another up Muddy Branch three miles and another up Wolf Creek about two miles, making a total length of the
road at present nineteen and one half miles. The Company was incorporated by an act passed on March 24th of 1828. The construction of the road was
commenced in 1829 and it was opened for public use in 1831. Since that time the transportation over it has amounted to 2,220,965 tons.
The capital authorized by the charter and its supplements is $400,000. The only indebtedness of the Company is the mortgage originally held by the Bank of the
United States for $50,000 now reduced to $25,000. All the other mortgages and debt of the Company having been paid in full and the one above referred to is in
the course of gradual extinguishment.
The road and its laterals are constructed with heavy iron T rails the whole distance with trifling exceptions and with a double track. On the descending track for
the whole extent of road and on both tracks below the junction of the West and West-West branches of the Schuylkill, the rails are of an average weight of about
sixty pounds to the yard and on the ascending track above the junction about thirty six pounds to the yard. These iron rails are secured by cast iron chairs, bolted
or screwed into wooden sleepers resting on mud sills and placed at distances of three feet apart. No steam power has been used on this road.
In addition to the above the Company have during the present 1845 season extended the Muddy Branch lateral one mile with a double track and have determined
to extend a lateral into the Swatara coal region about eight miles, which will be commenced as soon as the company have fixed on the most eligible route.
The superstructure of the road as originally constructed was a wooden rail with flat iron bar. The whole of the wooden rail with light flat bar was superseded,
partly by a T rail which has since given way to one of greater weight. During the present season about three miles of the road have been relaid and an extension
made of one mile. The whole cost of the road as at present constructed is $393,881.10 plus real estate, the collector's house, of $2,296.23 for a total of $396,177.33.
The alterations of the superstructure of the road as above stated prevent the wear and tear of it from being estimated with anything like precision. This is
decidedly one of the most prosperous railroad companies in the United States. The dividends have exceeded twelve percent per annum during which time its
length has been considerably extended and nearly the whole route relaid with heavy iron rails out of the profits of the company. The stock is now quoted at $80
for $50 paid. Last year 334,000 tons of coal were transported over the road and this year the quantity will exceed 450,000 tons.
|The Call of August 28, 1930
WORK STARTED ON ROAD AT UNDERPASS LAST FRIDAY
The latter part of last week, the contractor began operations on the building of the short section of new highway between Centre Avenue and Connor's. Good
progress has indeed been made up to this time. A considerable amount of the excavating of the hill near the Sterner house has been made. The excavated
material is being placed in the field along the trolley line. It is being rolled in as it is placed. Before placing any of the excavated material in the field, it was first
necessary to remove every bit of the tall grass of the pond portion of the field. The grass was also dug off the banks near the Sterner property before any part of
it was excavated. The specifications for the road required that this be done.
About thirty five men are employed on this operation, most of them being Schuylkill Haven men. Tenants in the two frame buildings on Centre Avenue that will be
razed, have not as yet received notice to vacate. The Oscar Sterner property is now in its new and permanent position, having been moved about twelve feet
southwest and twelve feet toward the old highway. The foundation of concrete blocks adds to the appearance of the home. The building was moved without any
damage other than the ceiling in the kitchen cracking a little. One way traffic is necessitated because of the operations and it is believed that the operation can
be completed without the necessity of any detour whatsoever.
While the high grass in the pond along the highway was being removed prior to depositing of the excavated material, an unusually large number of snakes were
disturbed. There were killings wholesale and many of the snakes were of good size. Some delay may be experienced in the building of the road for two particular
reasons. One is that there seems to be some controversy between the trolley company and the county and the township as to what amount of money is to be paid
the company for moving their tracks more to the west. In order to provide an easy curve to the underpass, it will be necessary to have the tracks moved. Another
cause for possible delay is the fact that as yet no orders seem to have been issued for the razing of the two frame houses on the east side of Centre Avenue and
the occupants have not as yet received notice to vacate. These houses will have to be moved in order to make possible the building of the private road to the
Bryant Estate farms on the hill. The new highway itself will require some portion of the retaining wall in the front of the properties. The rate of wage paid for labor
is thirty cents. Rates for operators of the machinery are somewhat higher.
Friday last, while the tall grass was being cleaned out of the level, the workmen had quite an exciting time, as 47 snakes were dispatched and on Saturday another
four. Among them were a good sized copperhead and a black snake. The others were garter and water snakes. Most of the snakes were of good size.
Monday morning, H. D. Felix, President of the local Chamber of Commerce and Mayor Scott, interviewed the superintendent on the job in reference to employment
of men from this town. As a result, local and Cressona men, willing to work at the wage offered, were given employment. Only such number of men in the
organization of the contractor, to operate the steam roller, scrapers, etc., were retained by the contractor and preference given local men in all other jobs. The
Chamber of Commerce felt that in as much as a considerable amount of damages will have to be paid by the Schuylkill Haven borough in connection with the new
route for this highway, local taxpayers ought to be given first preference in employment. Thursday the work of cutting down the dangerous hump at the junction of
the old highway with the new concrete highway at Connor was started. Motorists at night should exercise caution in driving along the old highway on the
Pottsville side of the old arch and at the intersection at Connor.
|The Call of July 20, 1941
$19,000 LOSS OF SURPLUS FOOD IN PENNSY STATION FIRE
An early morning fire Saturday gutted the interior of the Pennsylvania freight station and destroyed $19,000 in surplus flour and oatmeal stored there. The
building, located along the Pennsylvania railroad tracks between Pennsylvania Avenue and Haven Street, had been used to store surplus food by the Schuylkill
County Institutional District. A fireman at the Rainbow Hose Company reported a carload of surplus food had been unloaded at the building Thursday. Flour and
oatmeal were included in this shipment.
Destroyed in the fire were 3,049 bailers of flour, fifty pounds to a bailer, resulting in a loss of $17,002.64 and 556 cases of oatmeal, twelve three pound packages to
a case, resulting in a loss of $2,004.60. Firemen were called to the scene by a box alarm pulled at Haven and Dock Streets at 7:45 a. m. At the time the alarm was
sounded the building was a mass of smoke. Firemen from the three companies answered the call and battled the blaze for nearly an hour. Two lines, one of the
Rainbow's and one of the Schuylkill's were left hooked up in case the fire should break out again and the Rainbow Company stayed at the scene in case of a new
outbreak. The four sides of the structure were left charred by the fire and the inside gutted, John Fenstermacher, assistant fire chief, reported. Carl Feger, the
other assistant fire chief, also directed the firemen in fighting the blaze.
|The Call of July 10, 1903
A NARROW ESCAPE
A little girl's presence of mind in the time of danger saved both herself and her brother. Olive and Michael Shadle, aged eight and five years respectively,
children of Mr. and Mrs. Jacob Shadle of Spring Garden, were sent on an errand by their mother. Instead of going through the Pennsy arch, they climbed the
steep embankment of the railroad and were crossing the track just as the Pennsylvania "flyer" rounded the curve. The engineer blew his whistle and the little
girl, though badly frightened, dragged her brother off the track just in time.
|The Call of August 28, 1903
William Lindermuth of Canal Street, an employee of the Philadelphia and Reading car shops, was seriously injured while at work Monday. He was working at the
drawhead of a car when the gang on the car next to his started their car and lost control of it. Lindermuth did not hear it come and was caught between the
drawhead of his car and the end sill of the other. When the cars were parted he fell to the ground badly injured. He was taken to his home on the shop engine
and Dr. G. H. Moore summoned to attend to his injuries. He has a broken breastbone and three broken ribs and is injured internally. He is a son of Mr. and Mrs.
Jacob Lindermuth and is married.
|The Call of April 29, 1904
Herman Bashore, employed in the Philadelphia and Reading car shops, was badly injured while at work Monday. Just before six o'clock he attempted to crawl
between a draft of cars when the shop engine backed into them and a wheel passed over part of his leg. He fainted from the pain and some fellow workmen drew
him from beneath the wheels with great difficulty just in time to save him from being killed outright. He was taken to his home on Centre Avenue and Dr. Lenker
summoned to dress the injury. The leg is broken and badly crushed.
|The Call of June 10, 1904
TROLLEY POLE FALLS INTO STREET
Rotted away at the base, the trolley guy pole in front of Saint Matthew's Lutheran Church was unable to stand the strain and as the 5:30 car was coming into town
the other evening, the pull of the trolley broke off the pole and it dropped across the pavement. Fortunately no one was near at the time of the mishap. The
trolley men had quite a time disengaging the wires from the pole and putting them up out of harm's way, the deadly current with which the wire was charged
making it a very delicate matter to handle.
|The Call of June 7, 1907
TROLLEY COMPANY COMPLETES REPAIRS
The trolley company has about completed repairs on its road between here and Pottsville and the cars make good time. Repairs will soon be completed through
town and the service will be still more improved. Considering all things, the public is pretty well satisfied with the service but it still has a kick coming and we are
sure that if the matter is presented to headquarters, the remedy will be speedily forthcoming, as the present management of the road appears disposed to do
everything within reason to accommodate the public. The subject we refer to is the stopping of cars at street crossings so that people may board them and leave
them on the crossings and not in the mud. We believe a rule was recently promulgated by the trolley management requiring motormen to stop at the crossings,
but the rule is more honored in the breach than in the observance. The most flagrant disregard is at the corner of Main and Dock Streets where the car stops on
the crossing only about once in a hundred times. When a conductor on a car was expostulated with the other day his reply was, "we have orders not to stop on
curves." This should not prevent cars going to Pottsville stopping at the crossing as the car is clear of the curve by the time the rear platform reaches the
crossing and cars coming into town can stop with the front platform on the crossing and passengers may alight from that platform. If this were made the rule
passengers would understand it and would appreciate the convenience. Another trolley conductor when asked why his car did not stop at the crossing replied,
"your Town Council gave orders that cars must not stop on crossings." The writer happened to be at the council meeting when this matter was brought up and
begs to say that the trolley people are laboring under a misapprehension. Under the former management the Pottsville car frequently waited at the corner of Main
and Saint John Streets anywhere from ten minutes to half an hour for the Orwigsburg car. It was the practice of the Pottsville car crews to stop with one platform
of the car completely blocking the crossing from P. T. Hoy's to Hotel Grand. Town Council requested the trolley company not to block the crossings. This matter of
accommodating the traveling public is important and it should be taken up by Town Council or the Municipal League and presented before the trolley management
and we feel confident that the patrons of the road will have no further kick coming on this score.
|The Call of February 2, 1906
Milton Schweigert and Milton Schnerring of Pottsville and Clayton Freeman of Mount Carbon were patched up at Bensinger's Drug Store on Saturday night by Dr.
Lenker and Druggist Bensinger. The boys looked as if they had been in a fracas with a windmill. Schweigert had his face badly scratched and bruised and a cut
three inches long and into the bone above his right eye. Schnerring besides face lacerations had a deep cut almost the entire length of his nose and Freeman's
left leg was so badly strained that he could hardly walk. All three boys were sent to the Pottsville Hospital. They said they had jumped from a moving trolley car
and had become tangled up with each other.
|The Call of May 27, 1910
NO TRESPASSING ON THE RAILROAD
The campaign against trespassing inaugurated by the Pennsylvania and other railroads last fall, is being vigorously prosecuted by the Schuylkill Division of the
Pennsylvania Railroad and the local railroad authorities are putting forth the most diligent efforts to completely stamp out the practice. The statistics of mortality
and injury of trespassers during recent years is appalling, 47,416 people having lost their lives while trespassing on the railroads of the United States in the past
ten years while more than 50,000 trespassers were injured. Aside from the danger of life and limb there are other menacing aspects of this practice; boys
possessed of the wanderlust have found a comparatively easy means of escape from home by walking the railroad tracks and riding freight trains, and the
agricultural sections of the country have been menaced by the presence of large numbers of tramps who use this means of travel. All these casualties and many
of the accompanying evils might be saved by a rigid enforcement of the law against trespassing, which in European countries has greatly reduced the practice.
It is not only tramps who are killed or injured while trespassing, but also large numbers of working men their wives and children, who use the railroad tracks as
thoroughfares. And for all these reasons it is hoped that the cost of imprisonment will not deter the local courts from punishing those who are brought before
them by the railroad officers for breaking the law. So determined is the Pennsylvania Railroad to break up the trespassing that under the date of May 13, 1910, a
notice was issued by Mr. A. V. Moss, Superintendent of the Schuylkill Division, reading as follows:"Commencing at once, employees while not on duty must not
trespass on the Company's tracks or right of way and employees going to and from work must, wherever possible, use the public highways."
The Company's officers have been instructed to arrest all persons found trespassing on the Company's tracks or right of way, whether employees not in the
discharge of their duty or other persons, and during the past week large numbers of them have been taken before the magistrates in the various towns of the
Schuylkill Valley and have been fined or imprisoned. This work will go on until the railroad and the community are rid of this nuisance. No one found trespassing
will be spared by the railroad officers and the magistrate who cooperates with them by inflicting the punishment prescribed by the law upon the guilty is
performing a civic duty which can not but result in the saving of life and limb of citizens and their children, as well as those of the less valuable class represented
by the tramp. The community too will benefit by the material reduction of the tramp evil that will result from these efforts.
|The Call of September 20, 1901
WRECK AT CAPE HORN
On Wednesday morning, a coal train on the Philadelphia and Reading Railroad parted at Mount Carbon, which was not discovered by the engineer. The signals at
the Seven Stars were against the train, which was brought to a halt. The rear end came along and crashed into the forward section, knocking five big gondolas
crosswise over the main tracks and blocking traffic for several hours. Tons of coal were scattered in all directions. The Reading and Schuylkill Haven wrecking
crews cleared the wreck away. Meanwhile all passengers were transferred.
|The Call of February 28, 1902
P & R NEW STATION - Handsome Accommodations Provided for Patrons of the Road
One of the Most Artistic and Best Appointed Stations on the Entire Reading System
The handsome new passenger station of the Philadelphia and Reading Company is now ready for occupancy and may be handed over to the company tomorrow.
This station represents an outlay of about $15,000. The contract was let last summer to Horace I. Moyer of Pottsville, who had as his bondsman our townsman
Captain W. F. Stitzer and Daniel L. Esterley, the well known Pottsville hardware merchant. The disappearance last fall of Mr. Moyer threw the contract on the hands
of the bondsmen and the borough and substantial workmanship of the new station shows with what fidelity they have performed their trust.
The new station stands back about thirty feet from the tracks and 100 feet from Main Street. It is one story in height and constructed of Pottsville conglomerate
rock with trimmings of Indiana limestone and its broad roof, which also forms a shed over the wide platform that encircles the edifice, is covered with slate and
trimmed with terra cotta. The station is 40 by 100 feet in size and is divided up into a waiting room, ticket office, baggage room, express room and toilet rooms. It
is supplied with combination fixtures for the use of both gas and electric light for illuminating purposes. Heat is supplied to all parts of the building by direct and
indirect steam radiation and the indirect radiation in connection with an exhaust flue ensures thorough ventilation at all times.
The main point of interest is the waiting room, 28 by 40 feet in size, and which is located in about the middle of the structure with broad entrances at front and rear
and ample passages to the baggage, express and toilet rooms. The waiting room is handsomely furnished in quartered oak, hand finished. The room is
wainscoted to a height of five feet in paneled oak and on three sides are handsome oak seats. The walls and ceiling are of sand finish painted cream color and
the ceiling is further embellished by quartered oak ornamental beam work. The light fixtures are gas and electric combination and are of brass in highly
ornamental design. A drinking fountain, supplied with ice water from a refrigerating apparatus in the cellar, is conveniently located. At the south end of the room
is a spacious stone fireplace of Pottsville conglomerate rock.
On the side of the waiting room that faces the tracks is located the ticket office, 12 by 18 feet in size, and finished to correspond with the waiting room and having
quartered oak furniture. One large brass barred window gives easy access to the ticket seller. Conveniently placed in the ticket office are the switches which
control the electric lights throughout the building. In the ticket office will be located the local office of the Philadelphia, Reading and Pottsville and the Western
Union Telegraph Companies. South of the waiting room is the ladies' toilet room consisting of an ante room, lavatory and closets. The finish corresponds with the
waiting room. The partitions between the closets, lavatory and ante room are of slate with oak doors and nickel trimmings. The washstand in the lavatory is a
special make and pattern and the plumbing is all open, all metal work being heavily nickel plated. The closets are of the latest improved low flush tank pattern and
were also made specially. The floor is tiled with hexagonal tiles and the wainscoting is of white enameled brick. Ample daylight is afforded by large moulded glass
windows, while gas and electrical fixtures insure illumination at night.
Leading north from the waiting room is a broad corridor and the first apartment reached is the gentlemen's toilet room, with appointments to correspond with the
ladies' room. The closets, however, are of the high flush tank pattern and urinals are provided with automatic flushing apparatus. The corridor terminates in the
baggage room, which is floored with cement and sealed with Georgia pine. A door connects with the express room which is similarly built. Both rooms are 13 by
16 feet in size and they have sliding doors at front and back to facilitate the handling of express and baggage. Access to the cellar is gained through the baggage
room. Here is located the steam heating plant and the indirect radiators which supply the ventilating system as well as heat, also the refrigerating apparatus that
insures a consistent supply of fresh cold water at the drinking fountain in the waiting room. From the station to Main Street, a distance of 100 feet, a slate roofed
shedding has yet to be built and the platform beneath this will be of cement. This cannot be finished until settled weather is assured. The entire station yard will
be enclosed, on the rear, or east side, by a tight board fence and there will be ample driveways to reach all parts of the station by carriage or team.
The subcontractors on the station were as follows: after Mr. Moyer's disappearance S. C. Aregood of Pottsville took entire charge as foreman and took the
woodwork contract. The woodwork was done by the Saylor Planing Mill and Lumber Company of Pottsville; the stone, masonry and cement work by Miller Brothers
of Pottsville; slate roofing by William Boltz of Pottsville; tiling by American Tile Company of Reading; painting, varnishing and finishing by Israel Kline of Schuylkill
Haven; plumbing, steam heating, gas fitting and draining by Joseph Myers of Schuylkill Haven. It will be noticed that two of the most important contracts were
captured by our town people. The station reflects much credit on Alex F. Smith of Reading, the architect who designed it, and his superintendent of construction,
J. H. Barrows. The old station has been sold to Reverend John E. Reber of Philadelphia and as soon as it is vacated, Contractor Daniel Phillips of town will tear it
down and use the material in the construction of a house in town for Reverend Reber.
|Miners Journal of March 11, 1843
THE SCHUYLKILL HAVEN MONOPOLY
We noticed in our paper last week, that an application had been made to the Pennsylvania Legislature for the incorporation of a Schuylkill Haven Coal Company,
and stamped it at once as a hoax, scarcely dreaming that any sensible man would ask for such an act, knowing the hard earned experience of this region in
matters of that kind. We have since ascertained the true character of this application, which is for a Schuylkill Haven Screening and Depositing Company, with
power to make certain indefinite improvements, and to construct some five or six miles of railway. The applicant for this curious act of incorporation is Dr. Fitch,
well known to this region as one of the main speculators in that magnificent bubble, the North American Coal Company. This last scheme is devised, doubtlessly,
for the purpose f enhancing in value a strip of property which th doctor owns at the junction of the Mine Hill and Schuylkill Haven Railroad, with the Philadelphia
and Reading Railroad, and which, by aid of the legislature, might be converted from a comparatively worthless flat into saleable lots.
Now, although we have no objections to seeing the doctor become a rich man, yet, we shall always oppose any scheme for that purpose that will affect or interfere
with the individual enterprise of this region. Everything the partition asks for can be accomplished, if needed, by individuals alone; but as far as we have made
enquiry into the practicability of the scheme proposed, it has been derided as entirely useless and unnecessary. The coal operators on the Mine Hill and
Schuylkill Haven Railroad neither desire or need anything of the kind, and if such a law is passed, it will be for the special and private benefit of Dr. Fitch and for
The best guide to influence legislative action in regard to incorporations, is to review the history of former acts of its kind. Before acting hastily upon question of
this nature, let them carefully consider the progress of the different coal companies which they already have chartered in this region, without a single exception
they are all bankrupt and when under full headway, their effect has always been to interfere with and crowd out the individual enterprise of this district. We have
suffered sufficiently from monopolies of this kind and shall always strenuously oppose incorporations of a similar nature. Having never asked the Legislature for
any assistance in our business operations of facilities, we shall always beg of them to forego any interference with us and to let us alone, for in that consists the
security and safety of our trade. At the present day, it appears to us that whenever a man's fortunes fail or become dilapidated, he turns to the Legislature for the
enactment of a law which by weakening others may reinvigorate him. The scheme, generally resorted to, is that of applying for acts of incorporation; and even if it
were for the building of a pig sty, enough signers to the petition could be procured. It is time such a course be frowned down and effectually stopped, for it is not
only an indignity to the people but also a rank insult to their representatives.
|The Call of June 20, 1913
P & R SHOP MEN GO ON STRIKE - 250 Car Repairers Quit Monday A. M. - Want Discharged Men Reinstated
Monday morning about 250 car repairers employed at the local P & R car shops quit work and left the premises of the company. On the same day similar action was
taken by the men at the car shops at Tamaqua, Shamokin, reading, Saint Clair, New Berry and Palo Alto. The majority of men who quit work are members of the
International Association of Car Workers. The so called strike is the outcome of the company's refusal to reinstate several officers of this association who were
recently dismissed from the service at Rutherford and at Reading. The company claims the men were dismissed on a matter of discipline and the car workers
association claim the reason given was to reduce the force.
During the week, a number of meetings of the association have been held in the Euclid Theatre. A number of new members have joined the local branch almost
daily. It is said a determined effort will be made by the National Association to have the men who were discharged reinstated, and it is also intimated that further
demands of certain prices for several different kinds of work which the men are required to do, will be placed before the company before the end of the week.
Wednesday the men drew their monthly pay checks at the office of the company but were not allowed to loiter about. Several State Police have been stationed
about the yards and shops of the company and allow no trespassing. Thursday the following notice was posted by the company at the local shops. A similar
notice was posted at the Saint Clair and Palo Alto shops. The notice reads: "The men who are off without permission at the Schuylkill Haven shops will be paid for
the amount due them for the month of June on Wednesday, June 25th at about 3:30 P. M."
The situation here is very quiet. The men who are off duty have conducted themselves in a quiet manner and have caused no disturbance of any kind. The best
of feeling seems to exist and no outbreak of any serious nature is anticipated. Those of the head of the local branch of the Car Workers Association feel confident
that the company will reinstate the men recently discharged, otherwise the men now out here and the men at the shops named above will refuse to return to work.
|The Call of August 28, 1914
THE NEW P & R FREIGHT HOUSE
With the completion of the new Reading freight station at this place and its occupancy several weeks ago, Schuylkill Haven has been placed in the fore in
possessing both the prettiest, largest and most convenient passenger station and freight station on the entire main line of the Philadelphia and reading Railway
Company's system. Local manufacturers, merchants, businessmen and drayagemen are more than pleased with the new freight station, not only on account of its
size, but the general construction and layout, all of which make for convenience and greatly facilitates the handling of freight, both the unloading and loading of
the same. The new freight station is of the newest design and of the most modern construction. Its appearance tends to greatly enhance the particular section
of the town in which it is situated. It consists of an office building, warehouse and shedding.
THE OFFICE BUILDING The office, a two story brick building, is of fire proof construction, forty feet in length and eighteen feet in width. It is situated fifty feet
from Main Street. A lawn, forty by eighteen feet, in front of the building adds much to its general appearance. Designs in flower plants will be worked out next
year for the lawn by the company's gardener. The interior woodwork is all of long leaf yellow pine finished in natural color. The floors are of specially selected
hard wood. The first floor is used as the office building and is fitted with all new furniture, flat top writing desks, chairs and filing cabinets, of a finish to harmonize
with the general color scheme of the office proper. The public portion of the office is separated from the space allotted to the clerks by railing. The agent has his
own private office. A fire proof and burglar proof six by ten vault has been built on the first floor. The second floor of the office building will be used as a record
room. It is fitted with filing cabinets and cases. The office will be heated with a hot water heating apparatus and lighted with electricity. It, together with the
warehouse and the entire length of the shedding, is equipped with both electric fixtures and the Baxter gas lighting system.
ALL FREIGHT BUSINESS AT OFFICE Hereafter all matters pertaining to the freight business will be handled or transacted at the freight office. Entrance to the
same is effected from Main Street on a concrete walk along the lawn. The entire force of employees formerly at the passenger station, with the exception of the
ticket agent and operator, will be on the freight house side. At the present writing, the freight station is connected with the Union Phone. The Bell Phone will
also be installed shortly.
THE WAREHOUSE PROPER Adjoining the office building is the warehouse proper. Its dimensions are 160 feet in length and 24 feet in width. It is of steel frame
work on a concrete foundation. The roof of the office, warehouse and shedding is of slag construction and therefore absolutely fireproof. The warehouse is
fitted with rolling steel shutters along its entire width which can be raised and lowered with ease. The steel framework and rolling shutters are finished in dark
green. The entire warehouse can, by raising the shutters, be thrown into a complete open shedding and freight can be taken directly from the cars, across the
freight platform to the teams on the opposite side of the platform. A transfer such as this can be effected without the slightest chance of getting wet in case of
rain, as a seven foot extension roof has been built on both sides of the warehouse.
THREE PLATFORM SCALES Three large platform scales have been built in the warehouse platform. The building of these platform scales at three different parts
of the platform alone adds much to the convenience of handling the freight. Ample fire protection is afforded in the fire equipment of the warehouse which
consists of two fire plugs and a large quantity of fabric hose.
THE OPEN FREIGHT SHEDDING Adjoining the warehouse is the open shedding of steel frames on a concrete foundation. It is 110 feet in length and 24 feet in
width. It is under roof and with the warehouse gives a platform space of 270 feet in length and 24 feet in width, completely covered. The open shedding is cut off
from the warehouse proper by an 18 inch firewall. The platform space being 270 feet in length provides the same length of space where teams can load and
unload freight. The extension roof as described above, is built along th entire length, making it possible for teamsters to drive along the side or back up to the
platform and be under cover of shedding. The lower end of the open shedding is for receiving and the closed or warehouse end is for freight delivery.
THE OLD VERSUS THE NEW In comparison to the old freight station building which did service for many years, the convenience to teamsters can be readily
appreciated when we consider that at the old freight station but two teams could be accommodated at the freight platform at one time. At the new freight station,
27 teams can be accommodated with ease. At the old freight station, the length of shedding totaled eighty feet. The new freight station has a total freight
shedding under roof of 270 feet, almost four times as much. The enclosed and fully protected storage floor space at the new freight station is fully five times that
of the old freight station. On the track side of the new freight station seven freight cars can be accommodated at one time. At the old freight station not more
than three cars could be accommodated. At the old freight station it will be remembered, especially by teamsters and those who had occasion to handle freight,
that there was no extension roof either on the track or the team side of the platform.
A CONVENIENT DRIVEWAY Another feature worthy of comment at the new freight station is the driveway which runs along the entire length of the freight station,
from Main to Union Street. Both approaches from Main and Union Streets are on almost even grade of level. At the old station the approach from Main Street
was on a very decided grade on a curve which made ascent and descent with a load rather dangerous. The approach at the Union Street end of the old freight
station was not only difficult but perilous. The new driveway is of concrete foundation of 28 feet in width. The grade of the driveway is a very moderate one. A
concrete retaining wall has been built along the entire length of the driveway. The concrete is what is styled exposed concrete and is hammered to give it the
appearance of stone. Schuylkill Haven has the honor of being the first town on the Reading system where a concrete wall such as this was built by the company.
It is a wonderful piece of work and makes a pretty dignified and pretty appearance.
FOR CAR LOAD DELIVERY At the end of the open shedding a stock loading device has been constructed. Arrangements are now being made for a car load
delivery yard and the same will be completed within the next thirty days.
WORK WAS BEGUN SEPTEMBER 1ST The work of construction of the new freight station was begun in September of 1913. The work was so arranged so that at no
one time during the construction of the new freight station or the tearing down of the old freight station, was the handling of the freight seriously interfered with.
The new station was completed about August 15, 1914. The final inspection will be made by the company's engineer and the Reading officials the coming
Monday. There is hardly any doubt as to its acceptance by the company as it has been occupied by the company for the past several weeks.
LOCAL MAN DUE MUCH CREDIT The General Contractor was P. J. Campion of Mahanoy City. H. A. Becker of Schuylkill Haven was the superintendent and it is to
him that much credit is due for the satisfactory completion of the work in the short period of time. The electrical, plumbing and steam heating work was installed
by Mr. Lay of Mahanoy City.
TWENTY ONE TONS STEEL GIRDERS Twenty one tons of steel girders and frames were used in the construction of these buildings. Twenty five car loads of ashes
were used in filling up to proper grade around the station.
TEN CAR LOADS OF CEMENT Some idea can be gained of the amount of concrete work in the concrete retaining wall along the driveway and the concrete
foundations when it is considered that ten car loads, or 5500 bags of cement were required for this particular work, making a total of 1375 cubic yards of concrete.
The freight station in addition to being adequate to meet the most exacting demands made upon it in the matter of freight accommodation for the next ten to
twenty five years, is thoroughly modern and up to date in all its fittings and appointments. The Schuylkill Haven freight station is the latest in freight station
construction. Over 550 feet of twelve inch terra cotta drain pipe have been placed. A private cesspool has been provided for on the grounds.
INCREASED FREIGHT BUSINESS The amount of freight handled by the P & R Company at the local station has within the past year increased with leaps and
bounds. There has really been an increase of over 100% in the amount of freight business in the past two years. This increase in percentage is steadily
increasing and with the now excellent facilities for handling freight and the increased space, it is believed the increase in freight handled by this company will
about double itself within a very short time. On the average there are six to eight cars of package freight sent out daily. There are received on the average of
eight to fifteen cars of incoming package freight daily. Schuylkill Haven holds the reputation of being one of the largest shipping stations of package freight along
the entire Reading system. Four men are constantly required to handle the freight and are employed on the freight platform.
LOCAL AGENT DUE CREDIT The official force that will now be found at the freight station are Mr. W. B. Johnson, the local agent, to whom considerable credit must
be given for securing the town the handsome and commodious freight station. It is through Mr. Johnson's persistent and untiring efforts that the officials of the
company were finally induced to let a contract for a new freight station and to order its prompt completion. Mr. H. W. Day of Orwigsburg, in the capacity of freight
clerk, will be located at the freight station. Mr. James Boyle as warehouseman and Messrs. Huey Martin, Charles Deibler and Edward Zimmerman as freight
handlers will also be on the job at the freight station.
OTHER COMPANY IMPROVEMENTS With the occupancy of the freight station of the site once occupied by the coal chutes of James Schucker, it was necessary for
the company to secure another plot of ground. Accordingly the company transferred the coal yards to the other side of Main Street. Considerable expense was
necessitated by this change as the Garret property had to be torn down and a number of other changes made. In connection with the construction of the freight
station, a modern concrete and steel coal chutes were constructed. This work was begun and finished prior to the work of constructing the main portion of the
freight station. A high board fence neatly painted in the company's colors screens the coal chutes from public view thereby being a great improvement over the
old shedding built around the chutes and generally covered by large advertisements of out of town merchants. It was necessary to put in a third track across
Main Street to provide for the placing of cars on the coal chute siding. The building of the coal chutes in the present site was conducive of another pleasing
improvement to the traveling public, namely the pavement. The company put down a brick pavement, thus continuing the line if pavements on that side of the
street and at the particular point taking the place of an encroachment upon the street which had existed for years to the inconvenience of the public.
|The Call of March 19, 1926
LOCAL CAR SHOPS TO REMAIN IN OPERATION
The car shops of the Reading Company are, for the present at least, to remain in Schuylkill Haven and they are also to remain in operation. This information was
gained by the committee representing local interests that interviewed officials of the Reading Company on Friday morning. The interview was asked for by the
Schuylkill Haven Committee in an effort to have some men given employment at the car shops and to learn whether there was any truth in the rumor that the force
of men at the Schuylkill Haven shops is to be gradually cut down and the shops finally abandoned.
The committee was graciously received by Mr. I. A. Seiders, Superintendent of Motive Power of the Reading Company. The entire situation was gone over carefully
and from statements made by Mr. Seiders, the terrible black clouds which had begun to gather over the town, by reason of dame rumor having been at work at full
pressure, were dispelled. The situation in a general way is such that there need be no reason for alarm. While the company gives no assurance that the shops
will remain in Schuylkill Haven indefinitely, so far as the official program of the company is concerned at this time, there is nothing on it to the effect that the shops
will be taken away. Further assurance of the shop being kept in operation is the statement which appears to be most feasible, namely, that as long as the Mine Hill
road is operated, or mined coal hauled over this road, the shops at this place will have cars to repair.
That the Mine Hill road will be operated and coal hauled over it for many years to come is more than probable. There is hardly any question about it. The amount
at these shops is therefore entirely dependent on the number of cars of coal that are hauled over this road, either at the present time or in the future. It was
stated to the committee that the minimum percentage of cars that requires repair is five plus. That at the present time less than one half of the minimum number
of cars are in need of repairs. In other words just about one half of the ordinary or average number of cars in operation that need repairs, are at present in need
of shop repairs. This then most certainly results in the fact that the company would have use for less than one half of its force of employees at any of its repair
shops on the system.
Saint Clair shops are conceded to be the best equipped to handle repairs and because of its particular advantage in being situated at the end of the line, the most
of the repair work will be sent to Saint Clair. It was stated that at the present time, 253 Schuylkill Haven men were employed at the Saint Clair shops. Asked as to
whether the men now employed at the Schuylkill Haven shops would be given work at Saint Clair, Mr. Seiders was most emphatic in stating they would be. Asked
as to forfeiting their seniority rights, Mr. Seiders also stated, all seniority rights would or could be retained by Schuylkill Haven men who, at present employed at
the Schuylkill Haven car shops, wish to accept positions at the Saint Clair car shops. The question of continuance of the operation of the Miner's Train between
Saint Clair and Schuylkill Haven was taken up by the committee. It was stated that this train would continue to operate as heretofore.