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Columbiana, Ohio Train Wreck

March 29, 1884

A Train Wreck and Explosion.

PITTSBURG, Pennsylvania, March 20.
-- The Chicago limited express, coming East, ran into a landslide near Columbiana, Ohio, this morning at 4 o'clock, and was wrecked.

The train consisted of an engine, three passenger coaches, a baggage and mail car, and a sleeper. Upon reaching Franklin hill the engine left the track, plunging down the embankment thirty feet below. The baggage car and smoker followed, and were badly wrecked.

To add to the horror, almost before the passengers could realize what had happened, the boiler of the engine burst with a report that was heard for miles. The baggage car which was lying near the engine, was blown to pieces, and the dead and mangled bodies of the engineer and fireman were found four hundred yards away.

The official reports to the Pennsylvania Company say the limited express was coming down Franklin grade, three miles east of Salem, Ohio, at the rate of forty miles an hour, when the engine struck an obstruction and went over the embankment.
The entire train left the rails, but only the baggage car and smoker were upset. When the engine overturned and the boiler exploded, JAMES RICHARDS, the engineer, and CHARLES RHODES, fireman, were blown several hundred yards and instantly killed. The baggage master, named BEISEL, and a brakeman named LANDIS, were slightly injured. Six passengers were painfully hurt, but none dangerously. The other passengers were badly shaken up, but they were uninjured. A train was sent out from here immediately, and the passengers were transferred. The following is a list of those killed and injured in the accident: Engineer JAMES RICHARDS and Fireman CHARLES RHODES, killed; J. H. McKNIGHT, of Fort Shaw, Montana, scalp wound; J. B. VIETS, New York, hand cut; WILLIAM FULLER, Chicago, nose and face cut; H. J. DOUGLASS, Fort Yates, Dakota, scalp wound; RICHARD ARTER, porter, scalp wound; R. BRUNSWICK, eye and hand cut; C. N. BEISEL, nose and left leg broken.
No cause can be assigned for the accident, but the opinion expressed that an obstruction was maliciously placed on the tracks.

The is the first serious accident that has happened to the New York & Chicago limited express since it commenced, nearly three years ago.

Aspen Weekly Times Colorado 1884-03-29

Submitted & transcribed by Stu Beitler  Thank you, Stu!


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