Dover, OK Train Wreck, Sept 1906
Rock Island Disaster in Oklahoma ----- One Known to Be Dead.
Kingfisher, O. T. --- While it is believed that several lives were lost Thursday when two cars of Rock Island train No. 12, northbound, went into the Cimarron river at Dover, Oklahoma, because of the collapse of a bridge, no body has been recovered and the only person on the train positively known to have perished is HANK LITTLEFIELD, an employe [sic] of the Forepaugh-Sells circus, who was drowned.
The injured are:
GEORGE L. WRIGHT, Denver, badly bruised, head cut.
MRS. ROBINSON, Enid, Oklahoma, badly bruised.
C. W. BROWN, Comanche, arm wrenched.
MRS. W. E. SCHUSSER, Dallas, back slightly injured.
C. W. BAKER, Oklahoma City, arm dislocated.
Three-year-old child of MRS. KATE SELLS, Payne, Ohio, strangled from effects of water, can not live.
SIMON W. BYRON, fireman, shoulder dislocated, cut on head and neck.
Engineer ILES, cut on head.
W. H. SPITZ, Enid, arm sprained and fingers cut.
The injured are being cared for here.
The engine tender, baggage and mail car, smoker and day coach of passenger train No. 12, northbound, left the high bridge that spans the Cimarron river and plunged into the current flanked by treacherous quicksands.
The locomotive disappeared from sight almost immediately. The mail and baggage clerks escaped from their coaches and swam to the shore.
The accident was due to the defective condition of the bridge, which was swerved out of line by the pressure of driftwood carried down by the swollen stream.
Summit County Journal Colorado 1906-09-22
RESCUING PARTIES SEARCH AFTER THE DEAD.
Kingfisher, O.T. -- Sept. 20 -- (Special) -- Late arrivals from the scene of the Rock Island railroad wreck bring the report that the baggage car floated in the current for twelve miles, lodging against a wagon bridge, which soon went out with the pressure.
The water is still high but searching parties are out and reports are coming in from them. They report that four bodies were found about twelve miles down the river, one woman, a baby and two men. Efforts are being made to reach them, but without success. Their identity is unknown. It is now estimated that the loss of life will exceed twenty. Sheriff Love, who was one of the passengers in the smoker, says that he is positive that there were at least twenty men in the two compartments and only seven of those have reported as safe. The smoker is still under the surface of the water and with the water falling, as it now is, what bodies in the car can caught tomorrow.
Thousands of people are on the banks watching the proceedings and waiting patiently for the bodies that the dirty river is expected to yield up.
Men are at work clearing the wreckage away to make a search in the day coach for bodies. The smoker and the baggage car are still under water and it will be some time before a search of any kind can be made of these cars.
Many of the women and children, who were thrown into the water have developed symptoms of pneumonia and the physicians fear the results.
Baby SELLS, 3 years old, of Payne, O., died this morning.
MRS. ROBINSON, of Enid, O.T., is expected to die.
The Rock Island wrecking crews are on the scene, working to the center from both sides of the river, and the superintendent reports that train service will be renewed by Saturday.
When the train went off the bridge the baggage car, smoker and day coach broke loose, and, toppling off the wrecked bridge, swung down stream. Immediately the baggage car sank for an instant. The smoker half floated, with one end above water, the couplings between it and the day coach broke, and, submerged, it was carried down the river at least 400 yards. None of the persons escaped saw anyone leave the smoker. Four persons stood on the smoker when it was struck by the bridge. They were knocked into the water and rescued finally miles down the river, clinging to debris.
Muskegee Times Democrat Oklahoma 1906-09-20
The final death toll was eventually established at 4.
HARMON F. SELLS, aged 3, of Payne, Ohio.
W. L. DOUGLAS, porter on train.
FRANK GAMEL, a mail clerk.