In Loving Memory of Donald H. Zirkelbach August 10, 1911-November 16, 1997 (Many thanks to Donald's wife, for giving me permission to use Donalds picture on my website. I am indebted to her for sending me the above photo) Thanks Cleo
CITY OF EVANSVILLE EVANSVILLE, INDIANA
To Whom It May Concern:
On Saturday, September 7, 1935, Officer Pitts and I were instructed to report to Captain Lax of Steamer St. Paul at 7:00 p.m. in regard to going out with him on the Moonlight Trip to keep order. About 9:00 p.m. when we had all our passengers on board and getting ready to leave, Captain Lax who was on the bridge ordered Captain McGee to let go shore lines and to hoist stage up which was done, Captain McGee handling the stage fall on capstain. About the time the stage was hoisted, there was a young couple came running down the bank or wharf to get on boat, Captain Lax ordered McGee to lower down stage again low enough for this couple to step on, which was done and the stage was again hoisted up to its place. Before taking this fall line off of capstain there is about six deck hands takes hold of this fall where it comes down through schieve or pully at the mast and holds it with their weight till it is taken off of capstain and made fast to cavil close by. It was while doing this that the colored deck hands either let go or it slipped through their hands before McGee had it made fast to cavil, thus letting the stage fall about ten or twelve feet and causing the fall line to get wrapped around McGee's leg below the knee. As soon as we heard McGee holler to deck hands to pull down on fall to take the weight off of his leg, which they could not do, McGee then asked for some one to cut the line but the Captain said not to cut it. It was then quite a while that some colored fellow, I believe they called him Big Jim slipped down in the hull and cut the line. Officer Pitts and I then took charge of McGee and got busy and got a towel from some one and tied it around McGee's leg to stop the flow of blood. In the meantime they were trying to get the stage up on the boat. I asked the Captain to come down and when he did come down I told him if they didn't get Captain McGee off to a hospital he would bleed to death. The Captain then left the stage on shore and it took some time before they could get the boat up to the William's Wharf Boat and get McGee in the ambulance which was waiting there.