Caraquette Station, NB Train Off Trestle, Dec 1887



Moncton, N.B., Dec. 19. -- A fearful disaster occurred last night near Caraquette Station, on the northern division of the Intercolonial Railroad. It is reported that a train went through a bridge and that ten men were killed. No particulars have yet been received.

Later -- The disaster occurred at a point about forty miles from Bathurst, the capital of Gloucester County, one of the northern counties of the province. For several days the locality has been visited by tremendous snowstorms and the track was obstructed by enormous drifts. The east-bound accommodation train, filled with passengers, left Caraquette for Bathurst, having a snow-plow attached. As the train approached McIntosh's Cove a huge drift was discovered at the west end of the bridge. They detached the engine and plow from the rest of the train to plow into the drift, expecting that little trouble would be experienced in removing the obstruction. There were thirteen persons, who accompanied the driver of the engine on his trip.
The engineer pulled out the throttle and the engine dashed forward. Scarcely had the center of the bridge been reached when the plow left the rails, and both plow and engine plunged into the abyss below, crushing through the thin ice that covered the river, and burying themselves in the dark tide beneath. The water was not over six feet deep, but it was so covered with snow and ice that only the top of the engine was visible. Regardless of their lives, brave fishermen plunged into the river and worked for hours in the hopes of saving the lives of the unfortunates, but of the thirteen who started only five were saved. Eight poor fellows were buried beneath the engine. Their names are as follows:
Conductor DANIEL KEARNEY, aged 25, single.
MICHAEL LANNIGAN, engineer, of Bathurst, aged 31, married, and the father of four children.
FELIX BUSHIE, fireman, aged 24, single.
JOSEPH VIENNEAU, section man, married, and leaves a wife and three children.
JOHN PAULIN, brakeman, aged 30, leaves a family.
A. PINET, section man, aged 23, single.
JOHN CARNEY, section man, aged 30, married, and the father of five children.
FRANK MILLER, aged 30, single, a Bathurst passenger.
The five men rescued were all terribly bruised, but it is expected they will recover. Section Fireman DUNCAN PATTERSON, one of those who escaped, was imprisoned in the engine for several hours with the water covering him almost to the neck. He was almost exhausted when taken out and could not have survived much longer. Brakeman GORDON gained his freedom and his life by jumping through the window of the cab as the engine struck the water. His wrist was broken and his body bruised.
The accident is believed to have been caused by the breaking of one of the wheels under the snow-plow. The bridge is a substantial one, built of cedar piles, and it is not thought possible that it could have been the cause of the disaster. All the bodies had been recovered at noon today.

Logansport Journal Indiana 1887-12-20