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Kings Station, OH Railroad Car Explosion, Jul 1890

Powder Explosion.

Thirteen Hundred Kegs Go Off Near Cincinnati.

SEVERAL MEN BLOWN TO ATOMS.

A Number of Others in the Vicinity of the Explosion Badly Injured Some of Whom are Fatally-An Enormous Destruction of Property-Railroad Travel Generally Delayed.

CHICAGO, July 16.-A special from Cincinnati, O., says a terrible explosion occurred late yesterday afternoon at King's Station, on the Little Miami railroad, twenty-nine miles east of Cincinnati. Ten or more persons killed, and over thirty seriously injured. Two empty freight cars were being switched onto a side track where a car containing 500 kegs of gunpowder was standing. As the cars struck there was an explosion, and immediately afterward another car containing 800 kegs of gunpowder exploded. WILLIAM FRAULEY, a brakeman in the employ of the Little Miami, was blown to atoms. Five other persons, supposed to be employes of the powder company, were killed.

The Kings Powder company and the Peters cartridge works have buildings on both sides of the river along the railroad. The explosion occurred on the south side and the destruction was enormous. A number of cottages occupied by workmen in the powder factory, and situated close to the track were shattered, and their inmates injured. Twelve or fifteen girls at work in the cartridge factory were crippled.

The railway station and freight house belonging to the Little Miami railroad, together with all the adjacent buildings, were set on fire and consumed. The track and ties of the railroad are fairly torn out of the ground and a great hole plowed in the earth. The Peters cartridge factory was burned to the ground. A relief train was dispatched from Cincinnati to the scene of the disaster and the work of rescue and relief was afforded as soon as possible. The work of searching for the missing and caring for the wounded is now progressing.

Newark Daily Advocate, Newark, OH 16 Jul 1890

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TERRIFIC EXPLOSION OF POWDER.

A CARTRIDGE FACTORY BURNED AND SIX PEOPLE KILLED.

CINCINNATI, Jul 1 -A terrible explosion occurred late this afternoon at King's powder mills, on the Little Miami railroad, twenty-nine miles east of this city. Six persons were killed and a dozen or more seriously injured. Two empty freight cars were being rolled on to the side track where a car containing five hundred kegs of gunpowder was standing. As the cars struck there was a terrific explosion, and immediately afterwards a car containing eight hundred kegs of gun powder exploded, making thirteen hundred kegs altogether. WM. FRAULY, a brakeman, in the service of the Little Miami, was standing on one of the empty cars when the explosion occurred. His body must have been blown to atoms, as no trace of it has yet been found. Five other persons, supposed to be employes of the powder company, were killed. The King Powder Company and the Peters Cartridge Works have works on both sides of the river along the railroad. The explosion occurred on the south side, and the destruction was enormous. There are a number of cottages occupied by the workmen in the powder factory and situated close to the track. These were shattered by the explosion and their inmates injured. Twelve or fifteen girls at work in the cartridge factory were crippled by the explosion. The military station, or freight house, belonging to the Little Miami railroad, together with all the adjacent buildings, were set on fire and totally consumed. The havoc wrought by the explosion of sixteen tons of powder is dreadful. The track and ties of the railroad are fairly torn out of the ground, and a great hole ploughed in the ground. The Peters cartridge factory was burned to the ground and nothing but a mass of smoldering ruins remains to mark the spot where the building stood. As soon as the news reached this city, about 5 o'clock, a relief train was dispatched to the scene of disaster, with SUPERINTENDENT PETERS and a large party of surgeons on board, and relief was afforded the sufferers as soon as possible. The work of searching for the missing and caring for the wounded is now progressing. As most of the girls who were injured, live at Morrow and South Lebanon, it is most probable that they will be taken to their homes in these places. It is hardly possible that any train will return from King's Mills earlier than 10 o'clock, and further particulars will be obtained then. The Peters cartridge factory was a large building, and fully supplied with a great amount of costly machinery, both for the manufacture of shells and the loading of shot gun ammunition, and a large force of employes was at work at the time that the explosion occurred. The news from King's Mills at 9 o'clcok to-night is that ten dead bodies have been taken from the ruins, and thirty are known to be wounded. Definite news is more likely to swell the list of casualties than to diminish it.

The Columbus Enquirer-Sun, Columbus, GA 16 Jul 1890

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article | by Dr. Radut