West Chicago, IL Excursion Train Wreck, July 1897

Section 4 of the Christian Endeavor special on the Northwestern Railroad was run into by section 5 at about 1 o'clock a.m. at West Chicago, thirty miles from Chicago. Three persons were killed and more than twenty injured. The killed were: MRS. R. SHIPMAN of Fond du Lac, Wis.; MRS. JOHN GOODING of Fond du Lac; and a tramp. The train was filled with excursionists going to the Christian Endeavor Convention. While the train was standing at the tank, section 5 came up behind and struck the rear of section 4 at full speed. The passengers, few of whom had gone to sleep, were crushed in the wreckage. In the two coaches, there were eighty persons. Mrs. SHIPMAN and Mrs. GOODING, the two passengers who were killed, were in the second sleeper. Mrs. SHIPMAN's daughters were found fast in the debris but refused to be taken out until their mother be helped. The daughters were not seriously hurt. Mrs. GOODING was crushed to death between the partitions of her berth. CHARLES COURTNEY, the engineer of section 5, was fatally injured.

The County Record
July 8, 1897
page 2