Tiffin, OH Train Wreck, Jan 1887 - Terrible Smashup

TERRIBLE SMASH-UP ON THE BALTIMORE & OHIO ROAD.

TIFFIN, O., January 4. -- The fast train on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad, at an early hours this morning, collided with an East-bound freight near this city, wrecking both trains. Nineteen bodies have been taken from the wreck; more are injured. Three coaches are burned. Physicians have gone to the scene from here. The weather is very cold, the thermometer about 10 degrees below zero.

PARTICULARS OF THE DISASTER.
The fast train on the Baltimore & Ohio, which left New York about 9 o'clock yesterday for Chicago with five coaches and four sleepers, all well-filled with passengers, collided with an Eastern-bound freight seven miles east of this city, about 4 o'clock this morning. The fast train was about fifty minutes late and was running at the rate of sixty miles an hour. Passing Republic, a small station, like a flash, they rushed along to the curve one mile west of the town, when suddenly the engineer saw the freight train, under full headway within one hundred yards of him. He at once applied the brake, reversed his engine, but it did no good and the next instant

THE CRASH CAME telescoping the coaches and piling them up on each other. To add consternation to the horrible scene fire broke out in the smoking-car and soon spread to the other cars. Many were killed outright, while others, wedged in among the broken cars, were slowly consumed by the flames. The screams of the wounded and dying were heartrending, but no assistance could be given until a farmer, awakened by the crash, came and with other neighbors

WORKED LIKE HEROES to save the perishing. At this writing nineteen dead bodies have been recovered and they lie burned and disfigured in the snow beside the track. Help was sent from Republic and this city as soon as the news was received. It is a fearful sight and recalls the Ashtabula horror of the winter of 1877. It is impossible to give the names of the killed or wounded at this time. The cause of the disaster is as yet unknown.

IDENTIFYING THE DEAD.
The total number of passengers on the wrecked B. & O. train was sixty-five. Ten dead bodies have been taken out and three more are believed to be in the ruins. The names of the dead, as far as identified, are as follows:
A. C. BARTLEY, Washington.
WILLIAM FREDERICK, Washington.
Fireman of the express.
JOSEPH OSTERMAN and two sons of Martinsburg, W. Va.

ALL IN THE SMOKER KILLED.
MRS. OSTERMAN and two other children were saved. The smoker was entirely consumed and all passengers in it killed. All the mail and express matter was destroyed. The corner [sic] has gone from Tiffin to hold an inquest. There are about a dozen wounded, who have been taken to Republic, where they are being cared for by the citizens.

TIFFIN, O., January 5. -- The scene of the wreck on the Baltimore & Ohio is fast losing its horrible shape, and by noon to-day every vestige of the disaster will disappear. The track, which was torn up for twenty yards, has been replaced. The dismantled engines and broken cars have all been removed and traffic is again resumed. All that remains to tell the tale is a few charred timbers which are being covered to-day by the gentle snow, and the horrible burned trunks of nine bodies which were disfigured beyond recognition. These have been cared for by the undertaker at Republic and will be kept as long as possible, so that friends may identify them. Every piece of burnt clothing, keys and everything that was not utterly destroyed, has been gathered up to aid in the identification of the bodies. These will be held by the Coroner, who will immediately institute a through [sic] investigation. The responsibility of the accident is now placed upon the Freight Conductor, FLETCHER, who pulled out of a siding four miles west of Republic without orders, intending to make the siding at Republic for the passenger train. He missed his calculations just one mile, and the ashes of the unknown victims testify to his criminal carelessness. Telegrams from many points are constantly arriving making inquiries for friends supposed to be lost. Most of them are happily assured of the safety of their friends, but not a few are still in doubt.

The Rolla New Era Missouri 1887-01-08