Pikes Crossing, VT Auto Wreck, Aug 1905


Deputy Police Commissioner and Miss Willing in Auto Crash.


Train, Backing Into Them, Hurled from Track----Accident Occurred on a Tour in Vermont.

RUTLAND, Vt., Aug. 14.---Harris Lindsley, Third Deputy Police Commissioner of New York City, and his fiancée. Miss Evelyn P. Willing of Chicago, were killed at Pike's Crossing, near Bennington, this afternoon, when the automobile in which they were traveling from Manchester, Vt., to Williamstown, Mass., was struck by a train on the branch of the Rutland Railroad from North Bennington. Miss Willing and Mr. Lindsley were to have been married next week.

Ambrose Cramer of Chicago, the young nephew of Miss Willing, and J. Adamson, the chauffeur, were thrown out and badly bruised. They were taken to the hospital at the Bennington Soldiers' Home and were resting comfortably to-night.

The locomotive and one car were running backward to meet the flyer from Burlington at the Bennington Station. The shock of the collision threw both locomotive and car off the rails, the locomotive overturning and rolling ten or fifteen feet. The rails were torn up for 100 feet. The engineer and fireman jumped and were unhurt. The fifteen passengers also escaped injury.

The automobile was smashed to pieces and afterward destroyed by fire.

The accident occurred shortly after 4 o'clock this afternoon as the automobile was going up a steep grade leading over the crossing. Mr. Lindsley and Miss Willing occupied the back seat of the car, a big touring machine registered "1,041, City of Chicago."

There was a curve near the crossing. Adamson says he did not see the train until it was upon them. Engineer Sibley and Firemen Mangan say they did not see the auto in time to stop.

The locomotive tender struck the rear seat of the touring car. The automobile was thrown about sixty feet.

Lindsley, it was found, had been killed instantly, and Miss Willing lived but a few minutes. The bodies were taken to a Bennington undertaker's.

Miss Willing had spent her Summers in Manchester for several years. Her mother, a daughter of the late Judge Skinner, died in February, 1904, at Pasadena, Cal. Her father died about three years ago.

Miss Willing, with her two aunts, the Misses Skinner of Chicago, had been a guest at the Equinox House, Manchester, for two weeks, and left this forenoon for Williamstown.

The New York Times, New York, NY 15 Aug 1905



To-morrow He Will Be Buried Beside His Fiancêe's Grave.

The body of Deputy Police Commissioner Harris Lindsley, who was killed in an automobile accident in Vermont, on Monday, arrived in this city last night, and with military and police escort was taken from the Grand Central Station to the Twelfth Regiment Armory, at Columbus Avenue and Sixty-second Street.

Mr. Lindsley's remains were accompanied by his brother, Van Sinderen Lindsley. A crowd had gathered at the station.

The coffin, draped in the American flag, was borne from the car on the shoulders of three patrolmen and three non-commissioned officers of Company A, Twelfth Regiment, of which Mr. Lindsley was elected Captain a short time ago. Col. George R. Dyer and other officers of the regiment greeted Van Sinderen Lindsley. While the drum corps of the regiment played the casket was borne through the concourse between files of the company and policemen.

In the street the escort formed. This consisted of Company A., under command of Capt. R. M. Parker; twenty-five mounted men under Sergeant John M. Hefferon and forty men on foot under command of Sergeant Delany. Deputy Commissioner McAvoy accompanied the cortège as far as Fifth Avenue and Fifty-seventh Street.

Crowds thronged the sidewalks near the armory and sought admission after the body was placed in state. A guard of policemen and members of Company A formed about the remains. Many passed in review in the armory.

To-morrow morning the body will be taken back to the Grand Central Station, put on a train, and taken to Manchester, Vt. The interment will be there beside the remains of Miss Willing, in the Willing family plot.

Resolutions expressing sorrow at the death of the Deputy Commissioner and tendering the sympathy of the police to his family were adopted yesterday at a special meeting of the Police Inspectors and Captains at Police Headquarters.

The Executive Committee of the Hungarian-American Democratic Club, meeting at 80 William Street, also passed a resolution on the death of Mr. Lindsley, and appointed a committee, consisting of Edmund Galiauner, Philip J. Schick, Dr. Geza Bukki and Charles Gaspar, to represent the club at the funeral.

The New York Times, New York, NY 17 Aug 1905