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Gruesome death in Columbia, PA

The iron mill at Columbia, PA, circa 1930


One of the most interesting things about old newspapers is the way in which they describe fatal accidents.  Today's newspaper stories are bland and watered-down compared to stories from yesteryear.  This article is one such example, from the Fulton County Times, September 1, 1910:

Scott Hamaker, superintendent of the pipemill of the Susquehanna Iron and Steel company, met a horrible death in the mill at Columbia, Pa., last week.

The protruding key of a knuckle on a belt caught the tail of his coat, and he was drawn on to the belt and carried to a shaft which was making 1200 revolutions a minute.  Hamaker's body was whirled around this.  Three feet away was an iron trough, and with every revolution his legs struck it, both members being hammered off, piece by piece, clear up to the hips.  His feet later were picked up thirty feet away.

Below was another shaft, against which his arms and thighs hit with each revolution.  Every bone in his body was broken.  He lived twenty minutes after being taken to a hospital.  He was forty five years old, and leaves a wife and two children.

Buried at Mount Bethel Cemetery, Lancaster Co.


(view original newspaper article here)

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