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Carpenter, Susanna 'Susan' Conroy (1868-1923)


Posted By: Debbie Greenfield (email)
Date: 11/21/2023 at 17:44:53

The Webster City Daily News
Webster City, Iowa
Wednesday, November 21, 1923

Mrs. Joseph Carpenter Loses Life in Shocking Accident

Meets Death Beneath Wheels of Northwestern Passenger Train Yesterday afternoon at 4 O'clock - Bank Street Crossing - Car's Other Occupants Not Injured.

The automobile has again taken its toll from the community in the fifth fatal accident to occur near this city within the past few weeks, when Mrs. Joseph B. Carpenter, fifty-five years old, residing on a farm five and a half miles east of Woolstock, was instantly killed yesterday afternoon at 4 o'clock at the Bank street crossing of the Chicago & Northwestern railroad, when the Ford car in which she was riding, collided with the afternoon passenger train going south.

There were several eye-witnesses to the accident and no two of them exactly agree as to the manner in which it happened. The main facts are these: Mr. and Mrs. Carpenter and daughter, Mabel, eighteen years of age, and granddaughter Dorothy Woodruff, five years of age, had been shopping in the business district of this city and were on their way to the east side to see their daughter, Mrs. Ralph Woodruff, the mother of an infant born yesterday morning. Another daughter, Mrs. Marion Weedman, who lives at the Carpenter home, was also at the Woodruff home and they were to take her home with them. Mr. Carpenter was driving the Ford touring car, which had the side curtains on it, going east on Bank, his wife was seated with him in front, and the daughter and granddaughter were in the rear seat. When they were about fifty feet from the railroad crossing, Mrs. Carpenter saw the approaching train and screamed. Her husband evidently tried to set the brakes and in his frenzy must have also thrown the car into reverse, killing the engine. No power on earth would have stopped the car at that distance from collision with the train. The engine struck the car just in front of the driver's seat, and lifting it partially onto the cow-catcher, carried it south thru the cattle guards, for a distance of perhaps three rods and set the car down, right side up, by the side of the tracks, where the train was stoped.

Whether Mrs. Carpenter became hysterical and jumped out of the car or whether she was partially thrown thru the opened door, will never be known, probably. But she was in some manner precipitated out directly on the tracks in front of the engine and decapitated. The horrible tragedy occurred within the space of two or three minutes and no occupant of the car is able to tell just what did happen. Miss Carpenter was thrown partially out of the car and one vertebrae dislocated beside several cuts and bruises received on her body. The others in the car were practically uninjured.

An inquest will be held by Coroner Arch Foster, at the Foster undertaking establishment this afternoon at 4 o'clock, at which time the train crew of No. 6, the Des Moines passenger train, will be present.

Mrs. Carpenter was fifty-five years of age. All her life she had been a resident of the Woolstock neighborhood where she was well known and had a wide circle of friends. The family and intimate friends are nearly prostrated at the shocking manner in which Mrs. Carpenter met her death. Besides her husband she leaves the following children: Mrs. Ralph Woodruff, of this city; Mrs. Marion Weedman, who lives at home with her parents; Howard, Mabel, Ross and Lila. There are also two sisters - Mrs. J.N. Jones of Woolstock and Mrs. E.A. Capsel, of Clarion. One brother, John Conroy, of Woolstock, also survives and three half-brothers, Messrs. Frank, Charles and James O'Connor, living north of this city.

[According to Find A Grave # 92042180 - Cass Center Cemetery, Webster City, Iowa - she was the daughter of Andrew Conroy and Sarah Richardson Conroy O'Connor, she married Joseph Carpenter 10 March 1891 in Clarion, Wright Co., Iowa]


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