Wickenburg, AZ Broken Axle Causes Wreck, Nov 1921


The Toll of a Broken Axle.

The Dead:
WILLIAM MATTHIE, Winslow, superintendent Albuquerque division, Santa Fe coast lines.
H. C. STOREY, Prescott, assistant superintendent of that division.
JOHN A. JAEGER, Prescott, assistant engineer of the division.
W. H. OLIVER, Los Angeles, engineer of the grand division, Santa Fe coast lines; both legs broken; died en route to Phoenix.
W. S. BOWMAN, Wickenburg, track-master for lines south of Prescott.
The Injured:
J. E. McNEIL, Los Angeles, general track inspector, Santa Fe coast lines; shoulder broken.
T. D. KINNIE, Winslow, assistant division engineer, Albuquerque division; broken right arm.
W. F. MARTENS, Prescott, assistant general foreman; right leg broken.
ROY STEVENSON, Prescott, chauffeur of official car; right arm injured.
R. C. KLINE, Winslow, division engineer; bruised and shaken.

(From Wednesday's Daily:)
Prescott was horrified yesterday afternoon at the news of the foretold tragedy near Wickenburg. A report of the accident was made by officials at the local Santa Fe offices to the Journal-Miner immediately upon the arrival by telegraph of details sufficient to base the facts.
At first it was believed that Assistant Engineer JACK JAEGER had escaped the accident as it was believed he had left the official car at Congress Junction and aimed to return to Prescott by train. This belief was strengthened by the delay in any report from the scene of the wreck about the finding of MR. JAEGER'S body, which was only discovered later at some distance from the track.
ROY CHAMBERS was believed to have been in the crash, as he rode the car into Prescott, but had left it here, the point where the trackage under his care ends, and had been replaced by BOWMAN, who was one of the victims.
The Santa Fe offices gladly gave the Journal-Miner facts relative to the wreck, and it was possible to give quick and accurate information to the many who called this office.
The official car carrying the ten persons either killed or injured when the wreck occurred about 2:30, left this city at 8:45 southbound on a regular trip of inspection. The car is the usual gasoline motored track-equipped machine and is said to have been capable of developing a speed in excess of 60 miles an hour.
The fact there were no witnesses to the wreck made it impossible to ascertain the speed with which the car was traveling when the accident occurred. The cause of the crash was attributed at the Santa Fe offices to a broken axle or frame, and it was understood the car had whirled through the air several times before crashing to the ground burying some of the party under it.
At or near Congress Junction the official car passed a south-bound extra stock train. The accident took place three miles north of Wickenburg and at a spot almost exactly on the line between Yavapai and Maricopa Counties.
The stock train reached the scene of the accident a short time after it had happened, and the crew stopped to investigate. The train was then rushed into Wickenburg and broken up, the engine and caboose being coupled together to make up a special. A doctor and party were sent out from Wickenburg and quickly took both dead and injured to that place, whence they were rushed to Phoenix in the caboose of the abandoned stock train.
At Prescott, preparations had been made for rushing physicians and others to the scene. Some relatives of the dead and injured men were gathered by Joe Metz and others of the Santa Fe force and taken to the southbound train at 4 o'clock.
Dr. H. T. Southworth, the company physician here, was called as was Lester Ruffner, C. H. McLane in his capacity as coroner was at the 4 o'clock train en route to the scene of the accident when word was received that the bodies had been taken to Phoenix, outside the county, and so, did not go to take official charge.
Mrs. J. A. Jaeger, widow of JACK JAEGER, was at a matinee at the Elks Theater when word was received of the wreck. Mrs. Jaeger was not at that time told of the death of her husband, as that fact had not been verified. She was taken to her home at 130 South Pleasant Street, where it was said the shock of the partial news had resulted in her complete prostration.
It is told of Mrs. Jaeger that she had always dreaded the motor car trips of her husband and never felt at ease while he was engaged in his inspection trips with that vehicle. She realized by intuition, it was said, that the news of her husband's death was but delayed.
Mrs. Margaret Storey McNeil, eldest daughter of Mrs. Storey, was taken to the offices of the road soon after receipt of the first flash of the accident and there learned the dreadful news.

Weekly Journal-Miner Prescott Arizona 1921-11-30