Henry Tapking, Injured Fan

This article is about Henry Tapking one of the spectators injured in the fatal accident of the final day of racing during the first auto meet at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. It was originally published in the August 22, 1909 Indianapolis Star. These races were conducted on Saturday, August 21, 1909.
 
Tapking was injured in the same accident where Homer Jolliff, James West and Claude Kellum were killed when the National Motor Vehicle Company racer of Charlie Merz crashed through a fence lining the track and mowed down spectators. Tapking survived the accident with injuries to one of his hands and an arm. He lived at 219 North New Jersey Street with his two sisters Anna and Sophia.
 
Tapking was the son of John S. Tapking, described as a "settler" of Indianapolis. The elder Tapking was 85 years old and had passed a way the previous April. Son Henry was 51 and had always lived in the same house. Unmarried he had lived with his father and sisters all his life. Tapking, who usually stayed at home, was encouraged to attend the Speedway races by Sophia. Later, when informed that her brother had been injured, Sophia, who stayed at home, was incredulous. She had stayed home that day to clean house. Unfamiliar with telephones she asked the person who informed her of the situation to place a call to the hospital to determine how badly Henry was injured.

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