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Front page Sept. 3, 1915: Horrifying elevator accidents kills boy, 13, at Marine Bank

A young teen's tragic death not only made the front page 100 years ago, but was described in startlingly blunt terms.

"Marine bank" was the precursor to Marine Midland. The building in question was likely the headquarters located at 237 Main St., a 15+ floor building that opened in 1915.

"Boy's head is crushed in bank elevator shaft"

Frank Kubiack, 13 years old, of 18 Townsend street, was killed a few minutes after [illegible] this morning after he had stepped into one of the express elevators in the Marine bank building. The boy's head was crushed between the floor of the car and the wall of the elevator well. He was instantly killed. Statements have been made to the police and medical examiners that the car passed five floors of the building with the boy's body crushed between it and the wall.

Kubiack was accompanied by his sister Mary, 20 years old. Both were on the way to an office on one of the upper floors of the building. They were directed to an express car by a starter in the corridor of the building.

Dragged to floor

Several men and women had stepped into the car and Mary Kubiack passed in with her brother closely following her. At that moment the starting signal of the car sounded and the operator closed the door. Young Kubiack was just inside. As the car moved upwards, the boy was caught and dragged to the floor. The operator shut off power, but it was said the car was not stopped until the car had passed the fifth floor. Young Kubiack's head had been crushed against the steel walls of the elevator well.

Great excitement followed the killing of the lad. His sister became hysterical and was quieted with difficulty. She was attended by an ambulance surgeon from Emergency hospital.

Operator released

Traffic policemen from Main street attracted by the shouts from the corridor of the big office building at once took charge of the situation and began an investigation. To them the operator, Claud Weston, of 30 Malta place, declared himself blameless.

Medical examiner George B. Stocker also started an investigation of the fatality, and when the sister of the dead boy had declared her brother's life was ground out while the car was sliding upwards past five floors of the building, he ordered Operator Weston and Starter Frank Robinson taken to police headquarters, where they were later released. An inquest into [the] accident will be held Monday.

Click on the image below to view a larger version and see what else made the day's front page.

Sept 3 1915

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