7 A. 105 (Md. 1886), Philadelphia, W. & B.R. Co. v. Hogeland

Citation:7 A. 105, 66 Md. 149
Opinion Judge:ALVEY, C.J.
Attorney:John J. Donaldson and William J. Jones, for appellant. Albert Constable, for appellee.
Case Date:December 10, 1886
Court:Court of Appeals of Maryland

Page 105

7 A. 105 (Md. 1886)

66 Md. 149




Court of Appeals of Maryland

December 10, 1886

Appeal from circuit court, Kent county.

Action for damages for negligence. Judgment for plaintiff. Defendant appeals.

John J. Donaldson and William J. Jones, for appellant.

Albert Constable, for appellee.


This is an action brought by the appellee, the plaintiff below, against the appellant, the defendant, to recover for injuries received in consequence of the alleged negligence of the defendant in the management of its railroad train. The injury was received at a crossing of a country highway, and while the plaintiff was being conveyed over the railroad tracks at such crossing, by a collision of the defendant's train with the vehicle in which the plaintiff was riding. It appears that on the morning of the thirteenth of August, 1884, the plaintiff, by invitation of her brother-in-law Joseph Richardson, left her home, in a small one-horse covered wagon or carriage, for the purpose of going to the town of Elkton, and which horse and vehicle had been hired by Richardson, and were under his exclusive control and direction; the plaintiff being a mere passenger by invitation, Richardson himself being the driver. They proceeded on their way, and for a part of the distance between the house of the plaintiff and the crossing at which the accident occurred, known as the "Red-mill Crossing," the railroad, running in the same general direction of the highway, could be seen, but at other parts it could not; and, in nearing the crossing, according to the testimony of Richardson, who testified as a witness for the plaintiff, he kept a careful lookout for approaching trains, but saw none, nor did he hear the sound of any whistle or bell; but, just in the act of his crossing the tracks of the railroad, a train reached the crossing from the direction of Baltimore, and the result was a collision, and the infliction upon the plaintiff of a severe and most distressing injury.

As, by the prayers in the case, the legal sufficiency of the evidence on the part of the plaintiff to entitle her to have the case submitted to the jury was made a question to the court, it may be well to state that portion of Richardson's testimony which describes the accident, and the manner of its occurrence, in the terms in which it is set out in the bill of exceptions. That witness

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testified that plaintiff rode on the left side, and the witness on the right side, of the carriage, on the same seat; that the curtain behind was up, and also the two front side curtains, but the two back side curtains were down; that the witness was driving, and passed along the public county road in a direction nearly parallel to defendant's railroad, until they reached Cameron's house, near the Red-mill crossing; that the railroad, which is distant several hundred yards from the county road, was obscured in many places by bushes and trees and cuts. Coming up from the mill by Cameron's house, witness was looking out for a ballast train that he knew had been the day before working on the railroad; that at Cameron's yard, a point about four or five hundred feet from the Red-mill crossing, witness stopped the carriage, and looked out behind, to see if he could see or hear a train, but saw or heard nothing; that further on he looked out again from the back of the carriage, but saw or heard no train; that further on still he looked out when going up the grade to the crossing, but saw or heard nothing of the train; that, when on the south-bound track, he heard the rumbling of car-wheels, looked, and saw the train upon him; that he drew the horse around, facing towards Elkton, in what is called the 'six-foot way' between the tracks, and, the horse moving forward, drew the carriage in a line parallel with the north-bound track; that, as the engine passed, it sounded the whistle, which frightened the horse, which was restless and excited, so that he turned at right angles with the track, and the carriage was immediately struck, and plaintiff and witness were thrown through the air; that it was all done in an instant; that, if the engine had not whistled and frightened the horse, no accident would have occurred, as the horse, though nervous and excited, was under control; that he looked out four times for the train before reaching the crossing; the first time was on the hill near Cameron's yards; then he stopped the horse, and took a good look, but saw nothing...

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