1916 holdup a footnote in history of Rider

Andrew J. Rider and several others were involved in an incident in October 1916 that left one dead and the others with gunshot wounds. Rider was President of Trenton Business College in 1865, now Rider University.

Rider’s original Cranberry King, Andrew J. Rider, was injured in a bandit holdup in 1916 that left his daughter wounded and his brother murdered.

On Oct. 5, 1916, Rider’s daughter, Elsie R. Smathers, drove through a group of 12 masked bandits who shot at the vehicle, injuring Smathers, Rider and several others. Rider’s brother, whose name was reported as either Perry, Henry or Harry, was killed.
James M. Ridgely, a passenger in the car, fired rounds from a revolver, killing one of the men.

The holdup was believed to have been planned by Italian robbers who worked in cranberry bogs near Hammonton, N.J.

Rider, the president of the New Jersey Cranberry Growers’ Association at the time, was allegedly carrying up to $4,000 during the attack.

Nineteen-year-old Millie Demarco, referred to by The New York Times as the “Cranberry King Bandit,” was held along with three other men for the attack.

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