East St. Louis, MO Train And Wagon Wreck, Sep 1871


A terrible accident occurred at the crossing of the St. Louis and Vandalla Railroad and Collinsville plank road, two miles from East St. Louis. A party of picnickers, composed of sixteen grown people and several children, left the city in a large furniture wagon to spend the day in Illinois. When at the crossing of the railroad track at the point named, they were struck by the excursion train going to Highland. Three of the inmates of the wagon were killed outright, two mortally and four or five severely wounded.
At the point where the accident occurred there is a clear view of the railroad track for a mile to the west and some four miles to the east; but it appears that none of the party saw or heard the approaching train, although the engineer blew the whistle and rung the bell. This is accounted for by the fact that the wind was high and the whole party singing. The horses were the first to discover the danger, as they stepped from the track. They became frightened. One sprang forward, while the other hung back, and between them the wagon came to a dead halt. Just at this moment the engine struck. One horse was torn nearly to pieces. The wagon was broken to splinters. The train was stopped and all possible assistance rendered to the wounded. Vehicles were procured and the dead and injured carried to the city, and conveyed to their homes or to hospitals. No blame is attached to the railroad employes as everything was done that could be to avert the disaster.

Indiana Progress Pennsylvania 1871-09-28