Geneva, IL Train - Auto Wreck, Jul 1912

Crushed by Train
Auto Party Killed by Fast C. & N. W. Train Near Geneva, ILL.
Track Hidden By Banks
Three Occupants Meet Instant Death and Another Succumbs Few Hours Later, After Being Removed To The Hospital

Aurora, Ill., July 4.-- When the eastbound Los Angeles Limited of the Chicago & Northwestern Railroad hit an automobile at Nelson’s Crossing Tuesday two miles west of Geneva, Ill., four persons, two of whom, a man and a woman, were beheaded, were killed.

The occupants were all wealthy residents of Granger, Ia. enjoying an automobile trip from their home to Chicago and return. They chugged directly in front of the train and were dashed to death before they hardly had time to know what struck them.

Following are the dead:
N.S. ANDERSON, Granger, Ia., forty-eight years old.
GEORGE HANLEY, Granger, Ia., forty years old.
JAMES HANLEY, forty-eight years old, Granger, Ia.
ANDERSON head of the Granger Elevator Company, had received an invitation from the HANLEY brothers, lumber dealers, to accompany them, with his wife, on an automobile trip to Chicago in their machine.

They had left Chicago on the return trip. The road on which they were driving runs parallel with the railroad tracks until it reaches a point two miles west of Geneva. Then it takes a straight turn over the tracks. GEORGE HANLEY was at the wheel and drove the automobile down onto the tracks directly in front of the Los Angeles Limited. Before they even had a chance to know that they were trapped the pilot of the locomotive, running fifty miles an hour, struck the automobile amidships. It was smashed to pieces. All in the car but JAMES HANLEY were trapped. He was dashed 75 feet through the air, landing in the ditch at the side of the track.

As soon as possible the engineer brought his train to a stop. To bodies of MR. and MRS. ANDERSON were lying close together in the gutter, 50 feet from the crossing. Both had been beheaded the tops of their heads crushed off when caught under the automobile. They had been dragged for many feet and their bodies rolled out into the ditch. The body of GEORGE HANLEY was found at the side of the tracks about 25 feet from the crossing. Both legs and his head were terribly mangled. When members of the train crew found JAMES HANLEY, he was still alive, but succumbed a few hours later in the Geneva Hospital.

Grand Rapids Tribune, Grand Rapids, WI 19 Jul 1912