21 P. 774 (Kan. 1889), Union Pac. Ry. Co. v. Springsteen

Citation:21 P. 774, 41 Kan. 724
Opinion Judge:HOLT, C.:
Party Name:THE UNION PACIFIC RAILWAY COMPANY v. J. W. SPRINGSTEEN, as Administrator of the estate of Harry E. Phillips, deceased
Attorney:A. L. Williams, and Chas. Monroe, for plaintiff in error. D. V. Sprague, for defendant in error.
Judge Panel:HOLT, C. All the Justices concurring.
Case Date:May 10, 1889
Court:Supreme Court of Kansas
 
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Page 774

21 P. 774 (Kan. 1889)

41 Kan. 724

THE UNION PACIFIC RAILWAY COMPANY

v.

J. W. SPRINGSTEEN, as Administrator of the estate of Harry E. Phillips, deceased

Supreme Court of Kansas

May 10, 1889

Error from Pottawatomie District Court.

THE opinion states the case.

Judgment reversed.

A. L. Williams, and Chas. Monroe, for plaintiff in error.

D. V. Sprague, for defendant in error.

HOLT, C. All the Justices concurring.

OPINION

Page 775

[41 Kan. 725] HOLT, C.:

Harry E. Phillips, deceased, was employed by the Kansas Pacific Railway Company as a switchman in its yards at Wamego, Kansas, and on the afternoon of the 6th day of June, 1886, while so employed, was killed. J. W. Springsteen, defendant in error, was duly appointed and qualified as his administrator, and as such brought this action against the company, and at the February term, 1887, of the Pottawatomie district court obtained a judgment for $ 6,000. The company is in this court as plaintiff in error.

The facts surrounding the death of Phillips are substantially these: The engineer and fireman of the switch engine, with Phillips, were moving a caboose from the main to a sidetrack, known as the "caboose track;" in order to do so the engine, facing west, pushed the caboose westward on the track on which it stood beyond where the caboose track joined with the main track; then by backing down toward the east, while in motion the caboose would be uncoupled from the engine, which passing down the main track faster than the caboose would pass the point where the caboose track was joined to it, when the switchman would open the switch and the caboose coming down more slowly would run in upon the caboose track. This was the usual method of running cabooses upon this side-track. On this afternoon, while the engine was backing down with the caboose attached to it, Phillips stepped in between the caboose and engine at the Ash-street crossing, for the purpose of uncoupling the caboose from the engine. (Ash street is a public street in the city of Wamego.) After he had pulled the coupling-pin and was stepping out from [41 Kan. 726] between the engine and caboose, his foot slipped in between the rail and the plank next to it on the crossing, and being unable to extricate it the caboose broke him down and crushed him under its wheels.

The plaintiff alleges in his...

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