hinkey's bad hurt

Yale's Game Captain Injured Worse than Was Supposed.

New York Herald, December 3, 1893 - John Greenway scrapbook

There is a basis of truth in the story current yesterday that Capt. Frank Hinkey, of the Yale football team, was badly injured in the game Thanksgiving Day.  The truth is a story that shows what a determined, courageous young man he is.

Those who were at the game will remember how he was hit.  Blake, of Princeton, had the ball and was running with it.  Hinkey made for him full speed to tackle him.  Both men were running with their heads down.  Hinkey thought that by running still lower he could slip in under Blake and tackle him about the waist.  But Blake lowered his head just as Hinkey dived for him.  Their heads came together with the force of their double speed.  Blake's forehead smashed into Hinkey's face just above the bridge of his nose.  Hinkey reeled backward and fell flat upon his back.  As he fell he cut his right ear so deeply that the upper part of it was nearly torn off.  He lay unconscious and was borne off the field.  Josh Hartwell, captain of the Yale's team in 1890, was leaning over him sprinkling his face, when he came around.

1893 photo of Frank Hinkey.  Note the blood stains along the right upper shoulder and chest.  These are from this injury.

"How do you feel, old man?" said he, as Hinkey's dazed eyes opened.  "Take me home," Hinkey muttered.  "Take me away".

And he groaned and closed his eyes again.  Hartwell continued to rub him and again he came around.  "Come on, Frank." said he.  "I'm going to take you away.  You've got enough".

Hinkey staggered to his feet and looked around without any intelligence in his eyes.  "Take me away?"  he asked.  "Let the game go on without me?  Not a chance.  I'm going to play it out."

And he pushed the detaining hands aside and walked out of the club-house.  The fresh air revived him a bit and he walked steadier with every step.  "Which is the Yale goal?" he asked.  The players pointed it out to him, and he looked at it, but did not seem to see it.  "All right," he said.  "Come on.  I'm ready."  And he led the way onto the field.

Every time there was a pause in the game he looked as if he were going to drop.  But he didn't.  His head was aching as if it would burst open, and his eyes were so unsteady that he could not see far or clearly.  But he played his end as if nothing were the matter with him.  Everytime he tackled a man his head swam and he had the noise in his ears a drowning man hears when he sinks.  Whenever he closed his eyes his head whirled and he had to open them again to keep from falling.  But he played on to the end and played well, so well that not the keenest observer suspected the truth that came out afterwards.

When the game was done he was led into the clubhouse almost unconscious.  They put him in a carriage and took him to the hotel and got him into bed.  Then Manager Ed Holter, of the Yale team, set out for a surgeon to sew up his ear.  After a long search he got Dr. Elliott.  It was a nasty cut and had been aggravated by the repeated slipping of the badge during the game.  Hinkey lay on the bed all the time,  with his eyes closed and his face horribly pale and worn.  If he had not groaned now and then they would have thought him unconscious. Holder and several of his college friends sat with him all night.  He talked rationally enough, what little he did say, but his words were very few.  Several times, when they asked him, he spoke of the terrible pain, that was tearing his head open.  Towards morning this pain abated somewhat and Hinkey sat up.

"You will stay in bed here for a day or two at least.." said Holter.  "No," Hinkey said, "I'm going back to New Haven this afternoon.  I've got to look after those freshmen to get them into shape for their game with the Harvard freshmen."

And so he did, on the 2 o'clock train, although none of his friends thought he wold be able to get down to the carriage that was to take him to the station.  He did not faint, but set his teeth and even managed to smile good-bye to them at the train.  No wonder Princeton is joyful over its victory over such men as Capt. Hinkey.