Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Wenlock Free, motorman of Salt Lake City

In the 1970s, Grandma Rachel Wheeler Free and my mother, Myrtle Joy Wadsworth Free, wrote stories about Grandma Rachel, her mother, Rachel Talmage Wheeler, and Grandpa Wen. Here is one of the stories:

When Wenlock Free was about 19 years old he was a motorman/conductor [they changed off] in Salt Lake City on a street car. Several times there was a small child on or near the track, and he stopped the car and took the child to the mother warning her if she didn't keep him away from the track he could be killed. But one evening when he was passing by the child was again on the track. He had just lit the lamp and hung it in front of the car. This time he had a large double reduction Westin house car, and it was loaded with people going home from work. When he saw the child he threw on the brake and stepped over on the head and grabbed the child, but the sudden stop threw people out of their seats and those that were standing out onto the road. Of course, some were very angry. But when they understood why he had done it they complimented him on having the presence of mind to act so quickly. And they called the company and told them about it and they praised him. He said if he had had the smaller cars that he usually drove he couldn't have stopped so quickly and the child would have been killed.

We have a pictures of Wen Free as a motorman that will be in the history.

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