The date on this photo was 1900 and based on the snow level it must be September or October. I did not previously have a record of a car “on the ground” as railroaders put it. I don’t have any records of anyone dying on this date by accident, so perhaps it was just an “Ooops”.
All that we know about this accident is from the Skagway Death Record which states that John Phillips, a White Pass worker was run over by the train and killed on this day, January 29, 1900. But Minter wrote that two Native American workers were killed that day and he only knew the name of Phillips.
Curiously, in February 1900 another worker, John McAllister was killed, also by falling below the wheels of the train near the White Pass summit and he is buried at Bennett Cemetery. There are also at least four other railroad workers buried at Bennett who died in the construction of the railroad between 1899 and 1900: Andrew Aidukewicz or Ajdukewicz, J. Cumberland, A. Kelly, and William Nelson. It is possible that William Nelson was the other Native American worker killed on January 29 1900 that Minter mentions since there were other Nelsons living in Skagway at the time who were Native. In all that makes at least 6 men who were killed around 1900 while working on the line, winter is a brutal time to be up at the pass.
Minter; Skagway Death Record
P.S. the three things missing from front of AB Hall in yesterday’s pic are:
1. the flagpole, 2. the hanging projecting sign, and 3. the bench.
Happy Birthday to Roy Gault born on May 28, in Vernon, Waukesha, Wisconsin. The Gault family moved to Skagway in the early 1900’s. The father of the clan, William worked for the railroad and died in 1905 of heart failure at 58 years old. His sons, Leland and Roy also worked for the railroad. Their sons and daughters also stayed on until their deaths here in Skagway some until the 1960’s.
Roy was the engineer on the White Pass accident in 1940 of Engine 70. Above is J.D. True’s picture of Roy and Jess Wallace by Engine 70 on her side near Mile 82. The accident was caused by an open stub switch. The engineer was Ray Gault, Conductor was Chris Larson, Fireman was Jess Wallace, and Brakeman was Mickey Mulvihill.
Censuses; World War 1 registration; J.D. True.
Another death due to a White Pass accident, this on March 18, 1918. Ed Barry had survived the 1917 accident that killed the McKenzies, but on this day, the rotary engine rolled at milepost 106 and killed him.
Ed was born on August 18, 1880 in California and had come to Skagway in 1899 from Tacoma to be a painter and later a WP&YR engineer.