Chicago, IL Train Accident, May 1896

His Escape Only A Miracle.

Charles Martin Falls Between Cars of a Train and Still Lives.

In two minutes yesterday afternoon Charles Martin of Lansing, Mich., was transformed from a robust merry youth of 17 years to a trembling, nerve-shattered occupant of a hospital cot.

He was scarcely injured bodily, but he received a fright which may have serious results.

Martin came to Chicago, failed to find work, and was stranded. He resolved to call on friends in Wisconsin for help. He had no means to pay his fare and decided to steal a ride on a freight train. At 4:25 o’clock he attempted to swing on a rapidly moving car on the Chicago and Northern road at Wade Street.

He missed his footing and fell between two cars of the train. As he went down his clothing caught on the brake beam of the forward car and held him securely. The train sped on, and the boy was dragged over the rails and ties not three feet in front of the wheels of the car behind, which threatened to cut him in two if his clothing should give way.

Martin screamed for help, but his cries were drowned by the noise of the train. He endeavored to reach the truck with his hands, but failed, and hung there helpless, still crying for aid. At Bradley Street the train stopped for a crossing, and the crew heard the boy’s cries and dragged him from his perilous position. He was not badly injured, only a few minor bruises showing, but he was almost paralyzed from fright and was so weak he was unable to stand and had to be carried to the patrol wagon, which took him to the county hospital.

The Daily Inter Ocean, Chicago, IL 14 May 1896