Kingstree, SC Freight Wreck, Nov 1913

Cars, Including His Side Door Sleeper, Piled High Above Platform

Special to The State.
Kingstree, Nov 18--Train No 212, a northbound through freight, was derailed exactly opposite the passenger and freight depot here this morning at 4 o'clock. The train was running about 20 miles per hour, and the momentum was so great that cars were piled up three deep and towered above the depot. The wreck was caused by the arch bar on the rear truck of the third car from the engine breaking, falling down and catching up a board on the railway crossing just south of the station, and before the derailed car left the track and the train could be stopped, 13 cars were derailed and piled up across the track and cotton platform. About 75 feet of the covering on the cotton platform was knocked down, and the car doing this damage was piled up on top of the wreckage. Five cars were completely demolished, and the contents, consisting of lumber, phosphate rock, shingles, building material and kaolin, was scattered promiscuously along the track for a distance of 100 yards. No estimate can be made just now as to damage to the freight, but the damage to the rolling stock approximates $3,000.
There was no loss of life and not a single injury, the crew being back in the cab.
The most thrilling experience in the whole wreck was related by a tramp who was riding in a car that was piled upon two others. When he awoke and crawled out, he could survey the whole town from his vantage point. Sedately picking a few splinters from his wool hat, he climbed down and called down dire fates upon a railroad system that would allow a gentlemen's rest to be thus disturbed.
Wrecking crews worked all day and the track was sufficiently cleared at 6 p.m. to permit the passing of trains. All traffic during the day was blocked and trains were detoured by Lanes and Sumter.
This wreck occurred exactly in the same spot as did the last big wreck here ten years ago.
Practically all business was suspended in Kingstree today and hundreds of people, including many from miles around, viewed the wrecking forces at work.
The State-- November 18, 1913