White Horse, NJ Train Wreck, Sept 1857

FRIGHTFUL COLLISION
ON THE CAMDEN AND ATLANTIC RAILROAD.

THREE MEN KILLED.

A Number Wounded.

A most frightful and distressing collision took place a short distance below White Horse, about twelve miles from Camden, on the line of the Camden and Atlantic Railroad, on Saturday afternoon, at about 5 o'clock. The regular express train for Atlantic City, consisting of a baggage car and three passenger cars, started from Cooper's Point, N. J., at a quarter after 4 o'clock. The freight train for Camden, being made up of some six or seven freight and one passenger car, left Atlantic City at half-past twelve o'clock.
The express was running on time, and at about five o'clock, when a short distance below White House, and while rounding a curve, a freight train was discovered by the engineer, rapidly approaching the passenger cars. In consequence of the speed attained by the trains, and the shortness of the distance between them, a frightful collision was the result.
The express train was running at the rate of about 25 miles per hour, while the speed of the freight train is said not to have been so great.
Immediately on the occurrence of the collision, the baggage car of the express train was driven about half-way through the forward passenger car, thereby severely injuring the rear car, while the middle one was scarcely affected by the collision. The baggage and forward passenger cars were entirely demolished. A number of persons in the baggage car were more or less injured. The conductor of the express train, MR. WM. DONNELLY, who was in the baggage car at the time of the collision, was horribly mutilated, and expired in a very short time after the occurrence. The wife and child of MR. D., were aboard the car at the time, and the shrieks and screams of the wife were most agonizing. The deceased was about thirty-eight years of age, and resided at Cooper's Point, New Jersey. He was one of the most careful conductors on the road and was highly esteemed by the Company, as also by all who knew him. He leaves a wife and three children to mourn his untimely end. MR. WM. A. SINER, of Philadelphia, who was seated in the first passenger car, received severe internal injuries by the collision which resulted in his death. He together with the wounded were brought to Camden by a special express train dispatched by the Company.
On arriving, MR. SINER stepped from the cars, and walking with apparent ease to the ferry-boat, seated himself in the cabin. As the boat was about half way over the river, MR. SINER reached his hand to a friend seated beside him, and almost immediately expired, dying on the arms of MR. WILLIAM WALBERT of this city. The deceased was a married man and resided in Franklin street above Poplar. He was originally engaged in the brick-making business, but more recently was connected with the firm of McNOOLY, SINER and WALLACE, leather manufacturers. The deceased at the time of the occurrence was on a visit to Atlantic City, where his wife and her family had been sojourning for several months. The last words the deceased uttered were "My God! My God!" The family of MR. SINER arrived at Cooper's Point yesterday morning. His wife was not then aware of his decease, she having been informed of the accident but not of his death.
The fireman of the express train, MR. JOHN B. EDWARDS, was instantly killed by the collision. The deceased was a single man, about 23 years of age, and boarded at Cooper's Point, with MR. WM. MARSHALL, the acting superintendent of the road. He had been in the employ of the company but a short time.
In the excitement incidental to the occurrence, but little reliable information can be obtained in relation to those wounded by the accident. Hearsay information substantiates the opinion that many of the wounded have been moved to their homes by their friends, who as yet, have not been heard from. The following is a corected[sic] list of the killed and wounded as far as yet ascertained:
KILLED
WM. A. SINER, of Philadelphia.
WM. DONNELLY, of Cooper's Point, conductor of the express train.
JOHN B. EDWARDS, of Cooper's Point, fireman of the express train.
WOUNDED
GEO. A. RICHARDS, of Philadelphia, slightly injured.
RICHARD B. OSBOURNE, the engineer who built the road, badly injured.
JOHN H. OSBOURNE, of Philadelphia, slightly injured.
RICHARD FRAZER, a boy six years of age, a son of MR. FRAZER, of Philadelphia, Secretary and Treasurer of the road, slightly injured.
JAMES RUSSELL, of Philadelphia, Cashier of the Penn Township Bank, slightly injured in the right shoulder.
WM. G. LOWE, of Wilmington, injured in the right shoulder, so as to render amputation probably neccesary. Taken to the Pennsylvania Hospital.
The deceased has friends residing at the N. W. corner of Fourth and Spruce streets,
E. B. WOLF, of Philadelphia, leg broken.
JAMES GORDON, engineer of the express train, slightly scalded.
WM. MASEY, of Philadelphia, slightly injured, lying at Haddonfield.
WILLIAM S. SMITU (?), formerly member of Select Council, Philadelphia, slightly injured, lying at Haddonfield.
WILLIAM H. BAILEY, of Philadelphia, slightly injured, lying at Haddonfield.
SAMUEL RICHARDS, of Philadelphia, brother of the ex-President of the Company, slightly injured.
There were a number of prominent citizens on board of the express train, who escaped injury. Among these persons were MESSRS. CHAS. J. INGERSOLL, JOHN CLAYTON, STEPHEN COLWELL, CHARLES INGERSOLL, and JOHN BROADHEAD, President and Superintent [sic] of the company. He was most untiring in his energies to assist the wounded.
Upon the express train there were about 150 individuals, while on the freight train there were about 15 passengers. On this train no one was injured.

Philadelphia Press 1857-09-07

Search for more information on this disaster and other train wrecks, fires, accidents, etc. in historical newspapers in the Newspaper Archive. You just might find your ancestors in old newspaper articles. Search for your ancestors among the billions of names at ancestry.com Find death records, census images, immigration lists and genealogy other databases for your surnames. Use this Free trial to search for your ancestors. Start Your Family Tree It's FREE and easy. Start with yourself, your parents, grandparents and you're on your way to building your family history! Get Started Now and build your family tree at ancestry.com. It's Free!