Prince William County Virginia Clerk’s Loose Papers



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By Mr. Hall:

Q. The end to the south, the broken end? Answer – That part of the tie-bar did not strike the track.

Q. Which part of the tie-bar did strike the track just north of Bristow? Answer – The part remaining on the journal box.

q. Do you mean the part going north – the front part? Answer – No, I mean the part that is missing.

Q. There is no evidence so far that, that piece of tie-bar struck the track? Answer – Then you assert that as a fact ---

Q. Interposing – There is no evidence before the court and jury. Answer – There was to my ample evidence that, that part of the tie-bar projecting down continually struck the track.

Q. When the tie-bar broke, as you assume that it did, in the middle of the column-bolt hole, what happened to it? Answer – It sprung up.

Q. The base of it sprung down. Answer – That end of it remaining on the journal box sprung down, and as the truck sprung upward of course the tie-bar was bound to get closer to the track all the time.

Q. When is it your theory that, that tie-bar was lost? Answer – When it tore the nuts off the journal box in the repeated striking of the track.

Q. This piece of tie-bar was what he found the column-bolt on? Answer – No; the tie-bar broke, and weakened the truck, and allowed to come low enough to strike the frog.

Q. Was the column-bolt nut the first thing to hit the track? Answer – No, sir.

Q. What was the first? Answer – The tie-bar.

Q. When did the tie-bar get knocked off, in your opinion? Answer – Somewhere up in the vicinity of the bridge, or further. There were scars all over the track up there along where it continued to strike.

Q. The bridge is further north of Bristow Station than the frog? Answer – Yes.

Q. Didn’t you say the column-bolt was knocked off north? Answer – Yes.

Q. You say the tie-bar knocked off after the column-bolt or before? Answer – The tie-bar was knocked off after the column bolt was knocked off.

Q. That is not contrary to what you said just a few moments ago. Answer – No, sir, not a bit in the world.

Q. I understood you to say that you thought that – by the way, did you ever examine those holes in these arch-bars? Answer – In the originals of models? Answer – No, sir.

Q. You didn’t examine them? Answer – No, sir.

Q. Did I understand you to say assuming those bolts to have been elongated about 1/8 of an inch by reason of loose box-bolts, that, that would have had no tendency to produce a shearing effect? Answer – I qualified my answer by saying not until the tie-bar was lost.

Q. Now, that is just what I want to get straight. You say with those box-bolts loose, there would be no shearing motion here until after this bottom strap was broken? Answer – With the box-bolt loose, how do you mean.

Q. I ask did you ever hear of a box-bolt working loose? Answer – Yes, sir.

Q. Now, with the box-bolts loose, and the bottom strap intact, would there be a shearing motion between the two arch-bars? Answer – Not as long as the tie-bar remained in place.

Q. That is your judgment? Answer – That is my judgment.

Q. But if the tie-bar broke first, there might be a shearing motion which would cut off the tops of the box bolts? Answer – I don’t doubt it.

Q. Have you ever had it to happen? Answer – No, sir.

Q. Have you ever seen it happen? Answer – No, sir.

Q. You never heard of it? Answer – No, sir.

Q. You never heard of an arch-bar breaking? Answer – Yes, sir.

Q. What is the cause of an arch-bar breaking usually? Answer – Usually in that style of truck a crack in the column bolt hole, or the arch-bar breaks at the column-bolt hole.

Q. There is no such thing as loose box-bolts causing a shearing of the box-bolts? Answer – I never heard of

it. As long as the tie-bar performs its function, and the bolts remain in place.

Q. Has the tie-bar any other function than to hold this box in place? Answer – No, It contributes a great

deal to the strength of the truck.

Q. It does not carry a pound of weight, does it? Answer – Yes.

Q. Where does the weight come? Answer – Under the springs.

Q. Does the arch-bar take the weight before it gets to the tie-bar? Answer – You asked if the arch-bar took the weight before it got to the tie bar?

Q. Yes. Answer – Suppose the tie-bar is too short?

Q. Suppose it is, what happens? Answer – Then the arch-bar does not take all the weight.

Q. You mean if it is a defective tie-bar? Answer – No.

Q. Is one too short defective, or not? Answer – No, I would not say so, no, sir, in the sense of the word you speak of a defect.

Q. What do you mean by a short tie-bar? Would it interfere with the truck at all? Answer – I don’t see that it would.

Q. You would just as soon have it too long as too short, or the same size? That is your judgment as a railroad man? Answer – No.

Q. What is the advantage of having them fit? Answer – Because that makes a mechanical job.

Q. When it is too short it takes some of the weight off the arch-bar? Answer – No I didn’t mean it; you put that question this way, that it performed no other function except to hold the journal box in vertical position.

Q. And that was your answer – Answer – No, I did not intend it to be my answer. I intend to convey that, that tie-bar is just as important part of the truck as any other. It has its function to perform, but not possibly as weighty one as the arch-bar, but with the proper length it gets its proper part of the shock.

Q. I asked you if it carried any weight? Answer – Yes, sir, it does.

Q. In the first instance you said it carried it when it is too short? Answer – You are twisting my answer.

Q. Mr. Briant, do you know what the rating of C&O car 25227 is in the official railway register? Ans. Yes.

Mr. Browning: What do you mean by rating?

Mr. Hall: It is a publication filed by the Interstate Commerce Commission.

The Court: I suppose that he is going to try to show that the car was overloaded.

Mr. Hall: I want to show that, that car was registered in the official railway register at 100,000

and it was subsequently stenciled by the C & O at 110,000 pounds, and was overloaded before this, and had the tendency to break down the equipment.



Mr. Browning: We object to anything going to show the overloading of the car before the time of

the accident. We don’t know anything about whether it was, or not. We object to it, and we object to anything about overloading to save the record, but not for the effect of it.



The Court: If they can show that this car had a certain capacity, and that they violated that rule by

overloading it, and if they can prove that, that contributed to the breaking of the arch-bar or tie-bar, that they would have a right to do it, just as I permitted you gentlemen to show the condition of the track. So far as the plaintiff is concerned, I don’t think that they have anything to do with it.



Mr. Browning: Your Honor will understand our objection goes to the whole line, just so the

record will show our exception.



The Court: Yes, sir.

Mr. Hall: You know what it is rated at in the railway register? Answer – I should correct my

answer. I know the car, and I know its capacity, but I don’t know from the railway register. Q. Do you know how much is the stencil capacity? Answer – Yes, sir. Q. How much is that? Answer – 110,000 pounds. Q. Do you recall the rating in the railway register, the official publication filed with the Interstate Commerce Commission, which is intended to show the rating of all the cars in your service? Answer – No, sir, I cannot say.



Mr. Browning: Now, if your Honor please, for the record we object of the introduction of this

book.


The Court: That is a book which is gotten out by the Interstate Commerce Commission, is it.

Mr. Hall: Yes, sir.

Mr. Mackey: We do not admit that, that book proves itself.

Mr. Hall: I hand you, Mr. Briant, a book entitled “I. C. C. R. E. R. No. 30, Volume 30, February

1915, No. 9 and ask you to look on page 139 of that register, and say whether or nor gondola steel cars 20810 to 25999 are not represented as 100,000 pounds capacity?



Mr. Browning: I would like to make my objection to the question. The examination in chief did

not adduce any such testimony as this, or along this line. Counsel is here warned that he makes the witness his own witness for the purpose in the manner in which he is examined.



The Court: I sustain that. I think on this point this gentleman becomes the witness of the Southern

Railway. Under my ruling, if you want to prove it, you can prove it by some other witness, or be bound by what the witness says.



Mr. Mackey: I want to say that it is a private publication printed by a printing company having no

relation to the United States government and the C & O Railroad or the Southern Railway. It has no status in evidence whatever. It is neither certified nor exemplified by any government official.



Mr. Browning: Another objection is that its source we know not of.

Mr. Hall: This witness has testified in his opinion the cause of this accident, and I think we can

test his credibility to show the cause of accident, and whether or not he is right or wrong. After having made that statement, I want to withdraw that question from this witness, and prove it by another witness



By Mr. Hall:

Q. Now, Mr. Browning, you have spoken about certain conditions of the Southern Railway track at the station grounds at Bristow, and to some extent south of it, as I understand your testimony; will you state whether or not you have made any complaint of the condition of that track to the Southern Railway? Answer – Before or after?

Q. Before, after, or at any time other time, of the condition of that particular track? Answer – We did afterwards.

Q. To whom? Answer – In our report to the Southern Railway as to the cause of the accident. I did not before. I had only been connected with the Richmond division about seven days.

Q. Now, let us get this a little closer. To whom, and at what time, did you make complaint to the Southern Railway of the condition of this track? Answer – I covered the question a great deal more closer than I should, What I referred to had referred to our report of the cause of the accident. Tat is all that was stated, so far as I know, to the Southern Railway as to these track conditions.

Q. In other words, in your investigation as to the accident you claimed to the Southern Railway that the condition of this track was partially responsible. Answer – Yes, sir.

Q. Did you, or any other representative of operating department, ever complain to the Southern Railway with a view to having this track fixed that you found defective? Answer – I did not. I don’t know what others did.

Q. You don’t know of any other? Answer – No, sir.



J. J. Ewing, another witness called on behalf of the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway Company, being duly sworn, testified as follows:
DIRECT EXAMINATION

By Mr. Browning:

Q. Mr. Ewing, what position do you occupy, if any? Answer – Mechanical engineer.

Q. Of what company? Answer – Chesapeake & Ohio.

Q. For how long have you held that position? Answer – About fifteen years.

Q. Mr. Ewing, of course that position makes you familiar with the equipment of trains of all kinds, does it not? Answer – Yes, sir.

Q. Mr. Ewing, what is the effect upon the truck of a freight train running over a track that is what, in railroad parlance, I have heard called choppy, with low joints and high centers? Answer – It would be the same effect as increasing the load on the truck. It is just the same as if you had added weight. It centers the blow. If there was any calculation for it, you would simply, instead of taking the actual load as figured out from scale load, you would add a certain percent for impact surging. That is done.

Q. Under those circumstances, which would break first, the tie-bar or the box-bolts – journal bolts? Answer The calculations show on this truck, and it is designed that the tie-bar would break first because it is loaded a little heavier, and, in fact, quite a little heavier per square inch. That is, the load on the truck applies a little heavier – not a little, but a good bit heavier on the tie-bar than on the box-bolt.

Q. Have you figured out the mathematical result of the strain upon the tie-bar and box-bolts, respectively? Answer – Yes, sir.

Q. Will you please state to the jury the proportionate strain upon each? Answer – The tension in the tie-bar is now, this is with the brakes applied; of course with the brakes applied, the tension is greater. It is 4082 pounds per square inch. Then in the box-bolt the shear in the Journal box bolt it is 3,000 pounds per square inch. You see there is practically 4,000 pounds per square inch in the tie-bar as against 3,000 pounds per square inch in the journal box bolt.

Mr. Mackey: Q. Is that a loaded or unloaded car? Answer – Loaded. That load does not take into

account the surge but the surge would add the same percent to both. If you figure the surge of the car at 20 or 50 percent to the stress or to the load, you would take 20 or 50 percent more load and carry your calculation through. So you see your proportion of the stress would be the same. These calculations., we might say, are standard.



Mr. Browning: Q. Now, you say that applies to a loaded car; state whether or not the same

relative percentage would apply to an unloaded or partially loaded. Answer – It would in proportion as it was loaded.

CROSS EXAMINATION

By Mr. Davies:

Q. Mr. Ewing, you were not at this place of accident? Answer – No, sir.

Q. And all of your evidence is really expert? Answer – Yes, sir.

Q. I understood you to state that the choppy track and low sloppy joints would cause the breaking of the tie-bar? Answer – Not necessarily cause the breaking, but it would add more stress or pull to that part.

Q. Now, can you state why it was that this one car out of that train of 21 cars, that this particular tie-bar broke, and none of the others did.? Answer – No, sir, I can’t say.

Q. Can you give the reason for it? Answer – No. Those things happen, thousands of them happen, and it is entirely unexplainable.

Q. I also understood you to say that the tension on the tie-bar was greater than on the arch-bar? Answer – No, greater than the shear on the box bolt. That is all per square inch now.

Q. Does the tie-bar carry any weight? Answer – It don’t carry any weight, vertical weight, but it carries the tension. The tie-bar is the tension.

Q. But it does not carry any weight? Answer – Its tension is caused by the weight carried by the truck. When you ask me the question as to whether it carries any weight, you mean carries any weight sideways like a beam to a bridge?

Q. I did not catch your question. Answer – Do you mean as if it was loaded sideways?

Q. No, sir. Does it carry any weight? What is the purpose of the tie-bar? Answer – To hold the journal box together.

Q. Is there any other purpose to it? Answer – No.

Q. The tie-bar does not carry the weight of the truck therefore, what does carry it? Answer – The bottom and top arch-bars are the principal members that carry the load.

Q. The bottom arch-bar? Answer – The bottom arch-bar is the tension, and carries the load that way, and the top arch-bar is in compression, and keeps the arch-bar from being pulled together.

Q. The arch-bar does nothing but holds the journal box in place? Answer – It holds the journal box from turning about the axle.

Q. Now, Mr. Ewing, if the nuts on the box-bolt were to become loose, what would be the effect? Answer – It would not have any particular effect unless the tie-bar worked off. Do you mean if the tie-bar worked off?

Q. Would there be a shearing motion between the arch-bars? Would it have a tendency to cut off the top of the box-bolt? Answer – I don’t see that it would. If the nuts are off – the nuts are on the bottom, you understand; if the nuts drop off the bottom of the box-bolts, t don’t affect it at the top.

Q. If it becomes loose, wouldn’t it give the bolt more play? Answer – Not necessarily. Their action is not a clamp action.

Q. Suppose the holes in the arch-bars were to become elongated or enlarged, would that have any effect on the box-bolts? Answer – I don’t see that it would. About all it would do, your holes would become a little large, and they would elongate or wear longways, which would not reduce the section crosswise.

Q. Would not it give the bolts play, and cause a shearing motion? Answer – You can take the truck and jack it up, and turn it upside down, and cause a little sliding in there, but your load is always one way, so that as long as there is any load on the arch-bar, one has to push one way and one the other.

Q. It would cause a sliding? Answer – No, because they would come up solid against the bolt and stay there.

Q. I understood you to say it would cause a sliding? Answer – If you could reverse the load.

Q. The top arch-bar pushes one way and the lower one the other? Answer – Yes, sir.

Q. In other words, the upper one would be pushing in one direction and the lower the other? Answer – Yes

Q. And working back and forward? Answer – No, They don’t get a reversal of load. As the axle turns over, the load is one way and the bending action changes.

Q. Isn’t there a spring on the car? Answer – Yes, sir.

Q. Doesn’t it cause upward and downward movement? Answer – Yes, sir.

Q. Doesn’t the motion of the train change the weight? Answer – You can’t conceive how the bars could change their tension to compression as against the bolt. They are always pressed this way (illustrating): the amount of it may change, but it is always in the same direction.

Q. There would be no difference whether the holes were larger or the bolts loose? Answer – You could have the holes slotted in there, and it would not affect it. You could have the holes slotted quarter of an inch, and if you bring them in contact – because you have not taken out the direction in which it would reduce the section or square inch.

Q. So, in your opinion, no matter how large the holes – Answer – I am talking of archways.

Q. Oblong? Answer – Yes, sir.

Q. How about the crosswise? Answer – If you take metal out of the part that acts to resist your loads –



Mr. Browning: There is no evidence here to base that on.
M. C. Selden, another witness called on behalf of the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway Company, being duly sworn, testified as follows:
By Mr. Browning:

Q. What position do you occupy with the C&O Railway, if any? Answer – Division engineer in charge of maintenance and track, bridges and buildings on the Richmond division.

Q. How long have you occupied that position? Answer - About four years.

Q. What previous positions, if any, have you occupied with the C & O. Answer – I have been in the service fourteen years as assistant foreman.

Q. Of what? Answer – Of track on yard; resident engineer on construction, and supervisor of track.

Q. Mr. Selden, have you examined the track of the Southern Railway Company from the point where a collision occurred February 23, 1915, to a point say quarter of a mile south of Bristow Station? Answer – Yes, sir, I have examined the track, on March 3, 1915, from a point a quarter of a mile south of Bristow to the point of accident.



Mr. Hall: I wish the record to show the same objection to Mr. Seldon’s testimony as was made to

Mr. Meredith’s testimony on yesterday,



The Court: I over-rule the objection.

Note: Exception is noted by counsel of Southern Railway Company.

The Court: Q. Are you in position to say whether there has been any change in the condition of

the track between the 23rd of February and the day that you view it? Was the physical condition of the track such as you could undertake to say whether it had been changed? Answer – I don’t understand. Q. Could you tell, by looking at the track, whether it had been changed from the 23rd of February, the date of the accident, up to the time you saw it – whether the track was in the same condition? Answer – I could tell whether the track had been worked any. Q. Then it was in the same condition as it was on the 23rd of February? Answer – I didn’t see it on the 23rd of February. Q. Could you tell whether in two weeks there had been any change in that track? Answer – Yes, sir, I think so. Q. If there had been any change in the track, you could tell by looking at it as was made to Mr. Meredith’s testimony on yesterday.



The Court: I over-rule the objection.

Note: Exception is noted by counsel of Southern Railway Company.

The Court: Q. Are you in position to say whether there has been any change in the condition of

the track between the 23rd of February and the day that you viewed it? Was the physical condition of the track such as you could undertake whether it had been changed? Answer – I don’t understand. Q. Could you tell, by looking at the track, whether it had been changed from the 23rd of February, the date of the accident, up to the time you saw it- whether the track was in the same condition? Answer – I could tell whether the track had been worked any. Q. Then it was in the same condition as it was on the 23rd of February? Answer – I didn’t see it on the 23rd of February. Q. Could you tell whether in two weeks there had been any change in that track? Answer – Yes, sir, I think so. Q. If there had been any change in the track, you could tell by looking at it. Answer – Yes, sir. Q. Was there any change in the track for two weeks previous to the time you looked at it? Answer – South of Bristow there was not.



The Court: I over-rule the objection. And you gentlemen except.

Note: The exception is noted on behalf of the Southern Railway Company.

Mr. Browning: Q. Mr. Selden, please explain to the jury what condition that track was in? I will

ask you first from Bristow Station to a point ¼ mile south of Bristow Station? Answer – The rail was very good. The ties were sound and in good condition, but the surface and line were not good. There were low joints, low centers, and some ties were swinging – a good many ties were swinging. In fact, in going over we measured in some instance the ties where the ends were off the roadbed, swinging as much as three quarters of an inch. While I did not consider the track was in a dangerous condition, it was in a rough condition. Q. Now, north of Bristow Station, what was occurring when you were there, if anything? Answer – North of Bristow Station, that is between Bristow Station and the point of the accident ---



Mr. Keith: We object to that.

Mr. Browning: We wanted to show that a part of it had not been changed and the part that was

not changed I want to interrogate him on.



Mr. Keith: We want to object on the ground of showing a change.

Mr. Browning: I want to say that this is not for the purpose of showing a change, but as to the

condition of which was not changed.




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