Jersey City, NJ Grand Stand Collapses, Apr 1907



One boy was killed, another had his right leg broken and several persons received scratches and bruises when a grandstand on the St. John's baseball grounds, at Seeman Avenue and Larch Street, Jersey City, caved in yesterday afternoon.
The boy killed was RUSSEL NIELSON, of No. 270 Van Winkle Street. ALEXANDER POPPEWESKI, of No. 1012 Newark Avenue, had his leg broken.
The grandstand was constructed on Saturday afternoon. Work on it was rushed so that seating capacity would be in readiness for the game yesterday between the St. John's team and the Chatham team, of the Lackawanna League. It was estimated that three hundred persons could find seats in the grandstands. When the umpire called "Play Ball!" it looked as though between four hundred and five hundred persons were crowded into the small stand. The pitcher of the St. John's team had tossed four balls to the Chatham's batsman, when the grandstand was seen to slide forward toward first base. Then there came a crash and the stand caved in, the crowd tumbling in all directions.
At first it was thought that many persons had been killed. There was great excitement, and a small panic followed. The police of the 5th, 6th and 7th precincts were called to the scene, and ambulances were summoned from three hospitals. After many persons had scrambled out of the wreckage and others slightly injured were helped to resting places, two bodies, those of boys, lay apparently lifeless on the ground under the stand. One was the NIELSON boy. He was dead, apparently killed instantly. His neck was broken and his skull was fractured. The other was the POPPEWESKI boy. He was unconscious but soon revived. He was taken to the City Hospital.

New York Tribune New York 1907-04-29