Hazleton, IN Train Wreck, Mar 1897
PLUNGED INTO A RIVER
Terrible Wreck on the Evansville & Terre Haute Railroad.
NUMBER OF PEOPLE KILLED
Total Fatalities Not Known - Cars Telescope and Tumble Into the Water with Their Loads - All Thought to Be Dead - Conductor and Engineer Known to Have Met Death and Others Badly Injured - Small Washout the Cause of the Accident.
Princeton, Ind., March 10, - One of the worst railroad wrecks that has occurred in this vicinity for many years happened today at 3 o'clock to the limited south-bound over the Evansville & Terre Haute railroad one mile north of Hazleton.
The train was made up of an engine in charge of Engineer John K. McCutchoon and Joseph Bowman, fireman, a combination baggage and mail car, smoker, ladies' coach and one sleeper.
The engine went over the embankment, falling a distance of 15 feet into the water. The smoker was telescoped by the baggage car and the ladies' coach and sleeper remained on the track.
The engineer says he was running 25 miles an hour, and when he approached the washout saw nothing but a very small hole. The engine passed over it and went down the embankment. The dead are:
GEORGE A. SEERS, conductor.
JOSEPH BOWMAN, fireman.
Several passengers; names unknown.
The injured are:
JOHN K. MC CUTCHOON, engineer; bruised by jumping.
JOHN B. BANISS, brakeman, horribly mashed and otherwise bruised.
All the passengers in the smoker are supposed to have been killed. Four persons besides Conductor Seers were seen in the smoker as it broke loose, rolled down the embankment and floated off in the current.
HARRY J. HILL, the baggageman, was the only member of the train crew that escaped unhurt.
About 8 o'clock a large section of the levee broke, sending the baggage car and smoker down into the water and both subsequently floated away.
At 12 o'clock today the ladies' coach, which had been lying crosswise on the tracks, floated off.
The cars and engine cannot be taken out before the water goes down. Then the bodies of the unknown dead may be found, but the probability is that they will have been washed away.
The only passenger who went down in the wreck whose identity can be traced was a traveling man, representing W. B. Phillips of Fort Wayne, Ind. His grips, a pair of gloves and a card bearing the above information were found near the track.
W. H. HENDERSON, manager of Henderson Comedy Company, was in the wreck and sustained a broken leg.
It has just been learned that HERBERT ALLEN, a doorkeeper in the late Indiana legislature, was in the wreck and was probably killed. He lives at Evansville.
Idaho Statesman, Boise City, ID 11 Mar 1897
Transcribed by Loraine Jordan. Thank you, Loraine!