The Mystery of the Highball Mail

๐Ÿ“… Published on December 27, 2020

โ€œThe Mystery of the Highball Mailโ€

Written by Andrew Scolari
Edited by Craig Groshek
Thumbnail Art by Craig Groshek
Narrated by N/A

Copyright Statement: Unless explicitly stated, all stories published on CreepypastaStories.com are the property of (and under copyright to) their respective authors, and may not be narrated or performed, adapted to film, television or audio mediums, republished in a print or electronic book, reposted on any other website, blog, or online platform, or otherwise monetized without the express written consent of its author(s).

๐ŸŽง Available Audio Adaptations: None Available

โฐ ESTIMATED READING TIME โ€” 4 minutes

Rating: 9.57/10. From 7 votes.
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This is a story told to me by my dad about his dad, Julius Bentley, who worked as a conductor for the old Mid-Northern Railroad. My Grandpa was the conductor on a train called the Highball Mail back in the 1950s.ย  It was a train that ran from Union City to a place called Riverville. The train consisted of an FP7 diesel and two cars, a baggage/Railway Post Office car with three doors and five windows on each side, with the two narrow doors being the mail doors and the wider door in the back being used for express shipments. Specifically, any parcel that could fit in a mailbag, and a baggage/passenger combine car that had one section that could hold 32 passengers and a section that was for their luggage and was painted in the Mid-Northern Railroadโ€™s โ€œTri-Colorโ€ scheme, with silver being on top, yellow in the middle, and red on the bottom.

The train made one round trip daily Monday through Friday and was nonstop both ways. Whenever the Highball Mail needed to pick up or drop off mail and packages at stations between Union City and Riverville, it did so โ€œon the flyโ€, as it was called. As the train roared through the station, mail clerks would toss the mail bags out onto the platform. When mail needed to be picked up, the bags would be mounted on hooks attached to poles. As the train went by, one of the mail clerks would stick out this device called a โ€œCatcher armโ€ that would grab the mail bags and bring them inside.

One night back in early November 1957 my grandpa was late. My grandma, Edna waited and waited for him to come home.ย  Eventually, my grandma called the Union City Mid-Northern Station and asked if the Highball Mail had come in, but was told that it hadnโ€™t. Fearing the worst she called the President of the railroad, J.P Van Horne. From what Iโ€™m told, old Mr. Van Horne told my grandma not to worry, that her husband was alive and well and that his train had to make an unscheduled stop due to an incident on board, but didnโ€™t say what the incident was. Soon my grandpa came home worn out and deeply disturbed. My grandma had him sit down in his favorite chair while she fixed him a drink so he could tell her all about it. After he had his drink my grandpa loosened up a bit and told her the whole story.

โ€œIt had started out well enough. We left Union City right on time with a full load of passengers, mail and packages. When we got to Riverville we let the passengers off and the mail and express parcels were unloaded. Afterwards we handed the train over to the relay crew to have the train turned around and the engine refueled while the crew and I went on our lunch break. When we returned, we picked up the train in the Riverville yard and brought the Highball Mail into the station. I was dismayed when I saw that there was only one passenger to pick up. It was a Caucasian man in his early thirties with a black hat and overcoat and beat up looking suitcase who was overseeing the baggage handlers loading a coffin with a Railway Express Agency tag on it into the baggage/RPO car. The man boarded and took a seat. The man seemed to show no emotion and sat starring ahead. I gave the engineer the all-clear and soon we were on our way.โ€

โ€œWhen I came by to collect the manโ€™s ticket, he nearly jumped when asked for it. The man collected himself and handed me his ticket. We made small talk and I learned from the man that the coffin onboard contained his wife who had died of a mysterious illness and that he was accompanying her body back to Union City where her family lived as that was where she wished to be buried. Still, the man showed no emotion as he told me this. I gave him my condolences and went back to the conductorโ€™s compartment in back of the car. As I did I found it odd how emotionless the man was about his wife dying but I didnโ€™t think too much of it.โ€

โ€œBetween Willisburg and Hickory there is a tunnel that is two miles long. As soon as the train entered the tunnel from the Willisburg side the lights in the car went off. Not long after that I heard the man scream. I got my flashlight and made my way down the isle of the car. When I got there the man was dead. His eyes were wide in terror and it seemed as that his windpipe had been crushed. I waited till we were out of the tunnel to pull the emergency cord. When the train exited the tunnel the lights in the car came back on. I asked the four mail clerks if the lights had gone out in their car while we were in the tunnel, and they said they did, but that they came back on once the train exited the tunnel. I then told them about the dead man in combination car, and went back to the conductorโ€™s compartment to call ahead to the station master in Hickory about the situation and to send for the police and ambulance. I then told the engineer that heโ€™d need to make an unscheduled stop in Hickory, and then sent a message to the station master in Union City that the Highball Mail would be delayed due to an incident on board.โ€

โ€œWhen we got into Hickory, the police and ambulance men were waiting on the platform. As the ambulance men took the dead passenger away, the police questioned each member of the crew for nearly an hour before they let us continue on our trip to Union City. But thatโ€™s not the worst part.ย  Prior to our departure, the police opened the coffin. Inside, there was the corpse of an attractive young woman, but on her face was a gleeful, almost sinister smile.โ€

Rating: 9.57/10. From 7 votes.
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๐ŸŽง Available Audio Adaptations: None Available


Written by Andrew Scolari
Edited by Craig Groshek
Thumbnail Art by Craig Groshek
Narrated by N/A

๐Ÿ”” More stories from author: Andrew Scolari


Publisher's Notes: N/A

Author's Notes: N/A

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Copyright Statement: Unless explicitly stated, all stories published on CreepypastaStories.com are the property of (and under copyright to) their respective authors, and may not be narrated or performed, adapted to film, television or audio mediums, republished in a print or electronic book, reposted on any other website, blog, or online platform, or otherwise monetized without the express written consent of its author(s).

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