Fascinating True Stories From the Flip Side of History

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3-Year-Old Reckless Tricycle Driver

It was reported on January 25, 1961, that 3-year-old Eddie Jones was being sued for $50,000 (about $390,000 today) for reckless driving. His vehicle of choice? His tricycle.

Yes, you heard that correctly. It seems that Bertha Wolf, who was employed as a maid in the Jones’ household, was struck by the tricycle on August 26, 1960. She claimed that she had “suffered extensive injuries and mental anguish.”

The suit, filed by Bertha’s husband Homer Wolfe in federal court, claimed: “Little Eddie who was on his tricycle gathered a full head of steam and without any warning yell of any nature propelled his tricycle with great force into the body of Bertha Wolfe while her back was turned.”

The plaintiffs eventually reduced their claim to $30,565.65. When the plaintiffs failed to show up in court on November 27, 1961, the judge placed the case on indefinite hold.

On December 18, 1961, the case was settled out of court for $1,000, which is approximately $8,800 today.

Two Boys and a Tricycle
Two Boys and a Tricycle, circa 1900. Flickr image.
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