Unknown Man

Lewiston Morning Tribune
Thursday, Sept. 16, 1915

Man Is Unknown

Dead Body Found Lying by Track Near Reubens

Victim Of Accident

Apparently Crawled Fifteen Feet After Fatal Injury and Laid Down to Die.

The body of an unknown man, apparently a tramp, was found lying by the side of the railroad track, about a mile this side of Reubens, and just beyond the upper portal of tunnel 7 on the Camas Prairie road. He had evidently come to his death through injuries inflicted by a train, but just the manner of his injury, or the time when it was inflicted will probably remain a mystery.

The dead man was noted by the engineer of the passenger train from Grangeville on Wednesday morning, but it was felt best to leave the body undisturbed. The authorities were notified upon the train's arrival in Lewiston at 11 o'clock. Coroner Clyde Vassar, accompanied by Deputy Sheriff Welker in the afternoon went to the scene by auto. They found the dead body lying on the right side of the track and about fifteen feet distance, just above the upper portal of tunnel No. 7. The man was lying with his limbs composed, and his head resting on a gunny sack partially filled with crude cooking utensils, and cooked vegetables. He was a small man, past middle age, fifty or more years old, brown eyes, reddish complexion, red hair and beard. His clothing was poor and shabby. The right arm had been amputated half way to the elbow, evidently years ago. His right leg was broken, and there was a severe cut in the forehead, and the body was badly bruised. It was thought that the man had suffered from internal injuries.

In the center of the railroad track, opposite where the body was found was a pool of blood of considerable size. The coroner and sheriff believe that the man had been riding on the train, probably on the bumpers, and had fallen and been injured by the train passing over him, and that later reviving somewhat he had dragged himself and his bag of dunnage to the point where he died. There were no evidences of his having done so, so far as marks on the ground or spilled blood are concerned, but there seems no other way of accounting for the position of the body, unless he had died in the center of the track, and had been carried to the place where he was found.

There was no evidence of the man's identity on his person - no letters and only a few silver and copper pieces in the way of money. The body was taken to Reubens, and will be picked up by the train this morning, and brought here for burial. There were several people in Reubens who had seen the dead man at that place yesterday. No one was found there who had conversed with him.

The authorities are in some doubt as to how he came by his death. If he was in Reubens yesterday after the morning passenger train left, it would have been difficult for him to have caught a train there. It would have been possible for the man to have walked down the track in the afternoon, met the up train, ridden back on the trucks, and falling off been injured to his death. Hopes are entertained by the officers that his identity will be disclosed.

Lewiston Morning Tribune
Friday, Sept. 17, 1915

Unknown Man Buried.

The unknown man who was found on Wednesday near the upper portal of tunnel seven on the Camas Prairie road, was buried by Clyde Vassar on Thursday afternoon, still unidentified. Inquiries were made wherever possible to learn of some one who knew the man, but without success. The body was viewed by a number of parties who thought they might be able to clear up the mystery, but without success. The coroner decided that it was unnecessary to hold an inquest.

Contributed by Natalie Huntley

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