Camp Merritt, NJ Jitney Buses Collide On Base, Apr 1919

7 KILLED AS AUTOS CRASH AT MERRITT.

MAJOR, THREE PRIVATES, CIVILIAN, WOMAN, AND CHILD DEAD AFTER COLLISION AT CAMP.

MILITARY TAKES CHARGE.

GUARD PLACES AROUND SCENE OF JITNEY BUS ACCIDENT -- CHAUFFEURS ARE HELD.

Camp Merritt, N. J., April 25. -- Major STANLEY A. BALDWIN and Privates JEREMIAH SNEBBERS, ANTHONY HAUCK, and TIMOTHY MARNELL, whose commands were not made public, were killed tonight shortly before 10 o'clock, when two jitney buses collided within the reservation.
After the accident the guard took charge, and all information was refused.
Later reports said that seven deaths resulted from the accident, a woman, a civilian, and a five-year-old girl having been added to the list. The child, so it is reported, was almost decapitated. They were first reported as injured.
The woman, whose name is believed to be MRS. PAUL PECKING, is reported to have lived in Manhattan. She had been visiting at the camp and was on her way home when the collision took place. Officials at the camp would not say whether the child was the daughter of MRS. PECKING. The name of the man who died at the base hospital cannot be learned.
The bus, returning to the Fort Lee Ferry, contained about fifteen passengers, according to report. The one going in the opposite direction was well filled with soldiers returning to Camp Merritt. How these men escaped death or injury cannot be explained. Both buses are built to carry about thirty passengers.
LOUIS A. S. MARTIN of Englewood and JOSEPH ZENSLER of Teaneck, who were operating the buses at the time of the collision, were arraigned late tonight before Recorder MANN at Tenafly and held without bail for the action of the Grand Jury. Neither man was able to explain how the collision occurred.
The spot is comparatively level, though dark, and there is no curve, close by, to have hidden one of the cars from the driver of the other. As far as can be ascertained both machines were under control.

The New York Times New York 1919-04-26