"Woman Plunges To Death, Lured By Dizzy Height". 

"Crying "Save Me", Seattle Teacher Falls 800 Feet Head-long From Pinnacle Peak".

"Broken , Crushed Body Is Carried Four Miles".

"Miss Charlotte Hunt Is Victim of Tragedy of Final Y.M.C.A. Camping Party".

reads the headlines from the August 13, 1912 , The Tacoma Tribune, Tacoma,Washington.  

The article goes on to state " Crying "Save me", in a shriek that rang out far and wide over Paradise Valley, Miss Charlotte Hunt, school teacher of Seattle, plunged from a height near the Summit of Pinnacle peak on Mount Tacoma, yesterday forenoon and fell 800 feet to her death on the rocks below. She had stepped to the edge of the precipice to look out and the peculiar fascination of the height seemed to draw her on. Miss Hunt was a member of the Y.M.C.A. party of climbers that had all but concluded its 10 days' camp on the mountain". 

"In her fall, she first struck head-long on a jutting rock just below where she had stood, and this first blow probably was the fatal one. Her body then hurtled and bounded with increasing momentum, passing two men on the trail below and finally bringing up on the rocks 800 feet lower down in the valley". The party had just left the summit for the return, having mad a good climb, when the accident occurred. Unnerved by the tragedy, the girls of the party were well-nigh helpless in the face of the task of making the descent, but were calmed and quilted by the men and impressed with the necessity of making their own way in safety. Let down by the men  from crag to crag, they finally reached the bottom". 

"H. R. Carter, physical director of the Y.M.C.A. and leader of the party, accompanied by Frank Walton of the Tacoma Y.M.C.A.,  F.W. Hanawait of the University of Puget Sound and George Scott of Portland, made all possible haste to the foot of the steep, where they were joined by Walter Hart of Tacoma and W. A. Eller of Victoria, past whom Miss Hunt's body had hurtled in its flight.

They found the body lodged among the rocks. Nearly all of the bones were broken and the skull was split". 

"Improvising a litter from their alpenstocks and the wrist thongs with which they secured , the six men commenced the arduous trip over snow fields and cragged rock to the road four miles distant, carrying the body .  It took them three hours, Miss Hunt was a woman who weighed 180 pounds and the journey was exhaustive".  At the road the litter bearers were met by a large baggage automobile, provided by Manager, William Nish of Tacoma Baggage company, which took the body to camp and from there , with Frank Zellusky as driver , Mr. Carter and the body made the trip to Tacoma at frightful speed. completing the journey in three hours and a half .The body was taken to the Hoska-      Buckley-King  undertaking establishment and Miss Hunt's mother, Mrs. Atkinson of Tama, IA was notified by telegraph. So far as known, Miss Hunt had no relatives in this section of the country. She was about 30 years old. The coroner was notified and a written report prepared for the superintendent of parks". 

"Mr. Carter returned to the camp immediately this morning , having arrived only last night at midnight. The campers decided last night that they would remain and break camp Thursday morning, as they had planned".  "They were pretty much unnerved , said Mr. Carter, who himself appeared worn and haggard from the experience, "but they acted right nobly and last night decided to take the day for getting their baggage together and to come back Thursday. The boys acted like Trojans in getting the body that terrible trip over the rocks and snowfields. They expended every atom of energy that was in them. I cannot say too much for them". 

The party was the third Y.M.C.A. part of the season and the trip up Pinnacle peak was the last regular climb before the ascent of the summit was to have been attempted. Miss Hunt had made the climb across the Nisqually glacier and had seemed to enjoy it and the climb up Pinnacle peak was entirely successful. The fascination of the view from the heights seemed to draw her on as she stepped to the edge to look and before anyone could reach her, although she was in sight of the whole party, she was gone". 

"The members of the party had had a merry climb , Miss Hunt being one of the merrier. She had been in a particularly happy mood the night before. She had proved an entire success at climbing in the crossing of the Nisqually glacier, which was even more difficult than the Pinnacle peak climb. A number of girls of the party had made the trip before and it was not considered dangerous. Two of the Y.M.C.A. trips have been made previously this summer and on each occasion , just before the final ascent , in which the hardiest have climbed to the summit, large groups gave climbed to the top of Pinnacle peak. At the summit the members of the party had their pictures taken by Homer Blair, official photographer of the camp and all registered in the Y.M.C.A. book which had been      at the top". 

"It was after we had started back, said Mr. Carter , that Miss Hunt stepped on the brink of the precipice to look out and she must simply have been overpowered by the peculiar fascination of the height and have gone right on forward". She cried, "Save me", so that it could be heard everywhere around. It was without warning and was unavoidable. Miss Hunt who was a large woman, weighing about 180 pounds, simply lunged forward and there was no saving her. We had left camp at about 8 o'clock and all reached the top about 11:15 or so in top shape". 

"Miss Hunt had been a teacher in the West Seattle school for two years. She went to Seattle from Davenport IA, where she had taught since her graduation from the Iowa normal school at Cedar Falls, half a dozen years or so before. Miss Hunt's work was with the seventh grade and she was rated as a very successful teacher. Ambitious for improvement, she had spent the summer in the summer school of the University of Washington, working for the degree of Bachelor of Arts and several of the other campers were companions , who had been associated with her in the university , but there were none of them who knew the details of her family connections. Miss Hunt was an active religious worker and was connected with the West Seattle Congregational church, where she was a teacher in the Sunday school. She had been a member of the Y.M.C.A. in Iowa. Her residence was at 2884 California Avenue , West Seattle".     

In another follow up article on August 15, 1912 the head line reads above a photo reads


Y.M. C.A party near the top of Pinnacle peak, on the ascent. This photograph was taken half and hour before the accident. Mount Adams is seen in the distance. H. R. Carter, who rescued the body, is the man whose face can be seen at the lower right hand corner of the group of climbers. 

Suspense more awful than the announcement of the tragedy paralyzed the Y.M.C.A. camp at Paradise valley for hours Monday while the body of Miss Charlotte Hunt, borne in many places by Physical Director H. R. Carter alone, was being carried through the boulders and snowfields. 

Pinnacle peak is in full view from the Y.M.C.A. camp and the climbers as they scoot down the snow in the long slide at the foot of the final steep, can be readily seen outlined against the whiteness. Monday, however, according to members of the party, the climbers were so long in appearing again at the top of the snowfield, after they first came into view for the descent that something was known to be wrong. Then when they appeared at the top of the white incline and began marching slowly down instead of sliding, the suspense became such that is was almost a relief , when word was received telling definitely of Miss Hunt's tragic fall. 

Where the body lodged, it was accessible to  but one person, so that H. R. Carter, leading the rescue party, was compelled to go in alone and lift the body weighing 180 pounds to his own shoulders and carry it out. In other narrow places also, he was compelled to carry it by himself, doing work that his fellows report as heroic. Although he weighs no more than 175 pounds himself, Mr. Carter has had long experience in packing in Alaska and elsewhere, so that it is said he can "carry anything he can get on his back." 

The campers broke up their quarters at Paradise valley this morning and will arrive in Tacoma tonight.

Miss Hunt's father, who is now on his way from Iowa to take the body back with him, telegraphed from Omaha to General Secretary Harry Booth of the Y.M. C. A. that he would arrive in Tacoma on Saturday. 

August 16, 1912


Members of Party Caught in Snowstorm on Mountain Height 

Following their memorable mountain trip, pleasant until marred by the death of Miss Charlotte Hutn, who fell from Pinnacle peak, the members of the third and last Y.M.C.A. camping party of the year returned home last night on the Tacoma Eastern. 

Nine of the party climbed to the summit Tuesday, starting Monday night at midnight. They were overtaken on their return by a blinding snow storm, but had passed Gibraltar rock and were not exposed to danger. The nine who made the ascent were George T. Crockett, R. Lond, Carl Caddy, B.T. Longsno,

George R. Scott, O.L. Lance, Sam Barrett, S. W. Hanawait and W. R. Waterman. They were met below Muir on their return by 13 of the remaining Y.M. C. A.  campers. 

Although the tragedy cast a gloom about the camp, it was thought best to keep up the daily walks than to sit about the camp. The climbers to the summit were passed several times by the party of 10 under the guidance of R. H. Tuell, who ascended to the summit on the same day. 

August 17, 1912 


Elderly People Bereaved by Pinnacle Peak Accident Reach City 

The father and mother of Miss Charlote Hunt, who was killed by falling from Pinnacle peak last Monday, Mr. and Mrs. J. R. Atkinson of Tama Iowa, arrived in Tacoma last night to take the body back with them. 

After viewing the body they went to Seattle on the sorrowful mission of collecting Miss Hunt's belongings. Returning to Tacoma, they will start with the body Monday evening taking it to Jefferson, Iowa. Mr. Atkinson was Miss Hunt's stepfather. 

August 19, 1912 


Parents of Victim of Pinnacle Peak Accident in Seattle 

The body of Miss Charlotte Hunt , victim of the tragedy of Pinnacle Peak, will be taken East probably tomorrow by her parents , Mr. and Mrs. J. R. Atkinson, who are in Seattle today settling Miss Hunt's affairs and gathering her belongings. They are expected back in Tacoma probably tonight. It was originally expected that they would be back today. 

August 20, 1912


Father of Pinnacle Peak Victim Appreciates Western Sympathy 

Following a brief funeral service this afternoon, the body of Miss Charlotte Hunt, who was killed by a fall from Pinnacle peak a week ago, will start for the East late tonight, accompanied by Miss Hunt's parents,

Mr. and Mrs. J. R. Atkinson of Tama, Iowa. The body will be taken to the old home of the family at Jefferson, Iowa for burial. 

This morning's service was held at the Hoska-Buckley-King chapel. It was attended by a large group of Miss Hunt's church and school associates from Seattle and by several of the party which made the trip on which Miss Hunt met her death.  The service was conducted by the Rev. E. Tremay Dunstan , pastor of the West Seattle Congregational church , in which Miss Hunt was an efficient worker and Sunday school teacher. 

"Some day the Silver Cord Will Break" was sung as a duel by C. Barnes and E. B. King, and " Son of

My Soul, Thou Savior Dear", as a trio  by Mr. Barnes, Mr. King and W. B. Buckley. 

"I have had severe trials in my life before", said Mr. Atkinson , " but I never was anywhere that I met so much sympathy and hospitality among strangers. My every need has been anticipated".


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