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Turning Back the Pages

•100 years ago - Sept. 1913•

Horse killed in Batesville

A most miraculous escape from instant death was experienced by Dennis Pratt of Bolton on Saturday evening near the tracks of the Hudson Valley Railroad Company’s trolley, just south of the Batesville crossing north of Lake George. The horse Pratt was driving was instantly killed and the wagon in which he was riding asleep was carried 100 feet with him in it, the wagon being demolished. Pratt was found beside the tracks still sitting in the detached wagon seat in which he was riding just before the horse and rig were struck. Pratt escaped with a cut over his left eye and bruises about his legs. The man, horse and wagon was on the company’s right of way at the time of the accident.

Pratt was on his way home and is claimed to have been in an intoxicated condition. He fell asleep in the open rig in which he was riding alone and when the horse got to the Hudson Valley tracks leading from the County Clerk’s office around Batesville, it followed the tracks. The animal hauled the unconscious load bumping over the ties to within 700 feet of the Batesville crossing when the Motorman William H. LaPoint and Conductor Ross Taylor struck it as they were going along at 40 miles a hour after they had left Warrensburgh.

Slowing down at a curve, LaPoint says he saw the horse, wagon and sleeping man coming up the tracks toward them and he applied the air and put on the reverse but going down a grade, he was unable to bring the car to a stop in time to avoid a collision. The front end of the car hit the horse and killed it instantly. The animal was thrown to the left of the track and the wagon was demolished.

Readers are welcome to contact Adirondack Journal correspondent Jean Hadden at jhadden1@nycap.rr.com or 623-2210.

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