Rasselas, PA Railroad Accident, July 1883


Their Last Ride.

BRADFORD, Pa., July 2 -- An accident on the Rochester & Pittsburg Railroad occurred early this morning, at Rasselas, twenty-five miles southeast of this city. The first section of a coal train, to which was attached a passenger car, containing fifteen persons, broke in two on a heavy grade. Seven cars rushing back down the grade ran into the second section, smashing the cars to pieces, and killing six persons, including the conductor and brakeman and wounding the remainder.
The severed section consisting of seven heavily loaded coal cars and a passenger coach started down the grade, and while going at the frightful speed of eighty miles an hour, collided with the engine of an approaching coal train. The passenger car was well filled. The destruction of life is apalling. Thirteen have already died from their injuries. Others are fatally hurt. A relief train with three surgeons and a number of employees of the company, was dispatched to the scene at 5 o'clock this morning.

were brought to this city. As far as can be learned, the names are as follows:
S. N. TOLLES, aged 31, conductor, Bradford House; terribly mangled: died instantly.
DAVID FORD, Bradford; both legs broken; terribly injured.
M. DOWNS, brakeman; both feet cut off; died at 4 o'clock this afternoon.
GEORGE QUINN, Bradford; traveling salesman; died on the relief train.
ANGELO ODON, laborer; instantly killed.
W. T. DAVIS, Olean, Pa.; terrible gash on the head, supposed to be fatal.
L. D. McKEE, Bradford; leg broken, injured about the abdomen; died while being carried into his home.
ROBERT CLEMONS, Bradford; neck broken, body badly crushed; killed outright.
JAMES O'CONNELL, Alton, Pa., dangerously injured.
JAMES RAVELLA, Alton, badly hurt, probably will not recover.
MRS. W. H. McCURDY and baby, Bradford, slightly cut about the head and arms; child bruised.
JOHN COLLINS, Limestone, N. Y., badly hurt on the head.
J. BOSWAY, several ribs broken, severe contusions about the head.
J. COSMILLO, Italian, leg broken in two places.
R. COSMILLO, his brother, ribs stove in, condition critical.

"PAP" DOWNS, engineer of the second train was the only one hurt in his crew. He saw the second section approaching and and [sic] after reversing his engine, jumped, escaping with slight bruises.
The Coroner has impanelled a jury, who visited the scene of the wreck by a special train to-day. He will take testimony and render a verdict to-morrow. MRS. McCURDY, who was only slightly injured, has made a statement in which she says the conductor and both brakemen, who were in the car with her, were both asleep. It is not yet known to whom the blame is most attached.

Davenport Weekly Gazette Iowa 1883-07-04