*John Howard/Elevator tragedy*
Greetings, steamboating colleagues,
Thanks, Jim, for one fascinating story/history of John Howard and colleagues above. This tragedy a far cry from perceived 'romance, whistles, bells, glamorous cotton packet' stories we often read/hear; yet it is important for the reality of the day. Accidents like this more common then than we realize today. In reading the above three times, I was reminded of the miraculous advances in medical care, surgery etc. today compared to then. I note both Howard and Hite were taken to "their homes" then and not directly to any hospital--such as they were. That usually the case as hospitals then were for where people went to die. Family members often the ones to care for the ill and injured then with disastrous financial issues with men and even women out of work then. Doctors made house calls when needed but little they could do beyond just giving the patient/victim time on their own to heal or death. No doubt the Howards had staff in the house to help. Internal injuries, severe orthopedic trauma were serious with no X-ray, orthopedic surgery with screws, plates etc. along with unheard of physical therapy, 'open' reduction to set, repair bones. Howard could have suffered pain and inability to walk well the rest of his life. Hite could have suffered internal injuries from the sudden hard fall being rough on internal organs--especially the kidneys. I can only wonder what the end of the case was for both with no mention of a law suit or insurance settlement. No, it was not a tender, loving period of history then and for many years. Great account and keep 'em coming, Jim.

R. Dale Flick
Summer: From the northern shores of mighty Lake Michigan.