Historic Pelham

Presenting the rich history of Pelham, NY in Westchester County: current historical research, descriptions of how to research Pelham history online and genealogy discussions of Pelham families.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Mystery "Touring Car" Crash on Pelhamdale Road in Pelham Manor in 1904

An odd and mysterious accident occurred on Pelhamdale Avenue in Pelham Manor in 1904.  A number of articles about the accident appeared in New York City newspapers.  One such article appeared in the November 18, 1904 issue of the New-York Daily Tribune.  The Pelham Manor police were less interested in the mystery than they were with getting the vehicle removed from the side of the roadway before it frightened the horses of the village. 

The text of the article appears below, followed by a citation to its source.



Wrecked Machine Is Abandoned -- Women Hurt in It.

There is mystery concerning the ownership of a big black, double-tonneau touring car which was found wrecked and abandoned in Pelhamdale-ave., in Pelham Manor, yesterday morning.  The car, which is a French machine worth about ten thousand dollars, is said to have contained six men and women on their way to the Travers Island home of the New-York Athletic Club.  It struck a willow tree at 2 o'clock yesterday morning, climbed half way up the tree and then fell over on its side.  Both of the big searchlights were knocked off, the front axle is bent out of shape, and there is not a quart of gasolene [sic] left in the tanks.

Two women of the party were so badly hurt that Dr. Washburn, of Pelham Manor, was sent for to dress their injuries.  Dr. Washburn says that he knows little about the accident except that a man muffed in a big fur coat got him out of bed at 2:20 o'clock and begged him to go with him to attend some women who, he said, had been thrown out of an automobile and hurt.  The physician found the women in a little signal house of the Harlem River Railroad station groaning with pain.  They told him that they feared that their legs were broken, but he found that they had suffered only from bruises.  Dr. Washburn dressed their injuries and returned home.  He says that the people seemed reticent about the accident and did not give him their names and addresses.

No one appeared to claim the automobile yesterday, and the Pelham Manor police are wondering what they had better do about it as they cannot leave it along the roadside without the danger of frightening horses.  The machine bears the number 9,114, New-York.  Beneath one of the cushions were found several cards of the Blossom Heath Inn, a roadhouse at Larchmont."

Source:  A Touring Car Mystery, New-York Daily Tribune, Nov. 18, 1904, p. 4, col. 4.

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