Skull broken by Hemingray automobile


Publication: The Muncie Morning Star

Muncie, IN, United States



Seemingly Unavoidable Accident

Results in Lad's

Serious Injury.


Manufacturer's Machine

Running Slow, He Says.

In what was seemingly an unavoidable accident Daniel Skelly, 15 years old, son of Mrs. Catherine Skelly, a tailoress living at 825 East Jackson street, was seriously, but probably not fatally injured last night about 8 o'clock when he was run over by an automobile owned and driven by Ralph Hemingray, the glass manufacturer.

With his head badly cut and bruised and suffering a fracture of the skull, the lad was picked up by Mr. Hemingray and a hurried run was made to the Mix hospital where the child's injuries were dressed. At an early hour this morning the boy was resting comfortably and Dr. Mix said that at present he could not venture a positive opinion as to the outcome of the boy's injuries, although he said he thought that they would not prove fatal unless complications set in.

The accident occurred at the corner of Main and Madison streets. In the machine with Mr. Hemingray at the time of the accident were Mrs. Hemingray, a young nephew and a dressmaker employed by Mrs. Hemingray. The party had just left the Hemingray home a few minuted before the accident to take Mrs. Hemingray's dressmaker to her home on Kirby avenue.

Mr. Hemingray drove drove east on Main street to Vine and turned south to cut over to Kirby avenue but when he found Jackson torn up he was compelled to turn around and he came back to Main street. He was driving on the north side of Main street and just as he started to turn over to the right side upon Madison the Skelly boy, with James Scott and Wiley Spurgeon, came from the west on Main street on their bicycles. Young Skelly was riding on the south side of the street car track and the three lads were talking as they rode along.


Turned in the Same Direction.


When the Skelly lad saw the automobile turning across the street he turned his bicycle south on Madison street in the same direction the auto was going. The lad either fell from his wheel or he tried to turn in front of the automobile and he was caught beneath the machine. One of the boys said Skelly fell from his bicycle as he turned alongside the car. Mr. Hemingray stopped the car so quickly that one of the front wheels rested on the lad's head and it was necessary to push the car back off the boys body.

The boy did not lose consciousness and when the car was pushed off his head he tried to get up by himself. As he was lifted up by Mr. Hemingray and another man and placed in the automobile the lad said "I'm all right. I'm not hurt." The extent of the boy's injuries was not known until he was taken to the hospital. There it was found that his scalp was badly torn as the result of his head being crushed into the gravel; the skull was found to be fractured and the scalp bone in some places was worn smooth. The lad's face was also badly scratched and bruised but no bones were broken about the body and it is thought he is not internally injured.

Mr. and Mrs. Hemingray, both of whom expressed great sorrow over the accident, did everything possible for the injured lad and they remained at the hospital until assured that there was nothing further that they could do. They then went to the home of the boy's mother to extend what aid they could.


Says Accident Was Unavoidable.


"It seems that it was just an unavoidable accident," said Mr. Hemingray. "I know I could not have been running over eight miles an hour, if that. I had been having trouble with the engine on the car and I told Mrs. Hemingray that it was impossible for me to run on high speed. How this lad got got under the wheel I don't know. I know I stopped just as quickly as I could and I don't believe my car went five feet after we collided. I noticed the lad coming on the bicycle but I supposed he would go around me as I turned south down Madison street. All we can do is to hope that the little fellow spp will get well."

Mr. Hemingray is considered a careful driver.

In order to prevent tetanus or complications serum was administered to the lad last night. Young Skelly is employed at the Arthur Helm drug store on east Main street, and he was on his way back to the store from the postoffice, where he had been sent to buy some stamps, when the accident occurred.

Researcher notes: 
Supplemental information: 
Researcher:Bob Stahr
Date completed:September 8, 2009 by: Bob Stahr;