Levis, QB Excursion Trains Collide, July 1895
WRECK IN CANADA.
ONE SECTION OF AN EXCURSION TRAIN RUNS INTO THE OTHER.
THIRTEEN PERSONS WERE KILLED.
TWENTY-NINE OTHERS INJURED, SEVERAL OF WHOM MAY DIE -- THE UNFORTUNATE PEOPLE WERE PILGRIMS ON THEIR WAY TO THE FAMOUS CATHOLIC SHRINE AT ST. ANNE DE BEAUPRE.
Quebec, July 10. -- A terrible accident occurred on the Grand Trunk railway at Crags Road station about 14 miles west of Levis, at 3 o'clock yesterday morning, the result of which 13 persons were killed and 29 others more or less seriously injured, two of whom may die.
A large pilgrimage from Sherbrooke, Windsor Mills and Richmond had left the latter town about 10 o'clock Monday evening for the famous Catholic shrine of St. Anne de Beaupre. The train carrying the pilgrims was divided into two sections one running a few minutes behind the other. The first section reached Crags Road about 3 o'clock and stopped at the tank to take water. Due precautions were taken, and the semaphore was thrown to mark "danger" against the following train.
Only the trainmen were astir. The Pullman in the rear was wrapped in silence, and the sleepers all unconscious of the terrible fate that was rushing upon them. Suddenly the section, which had passed the semaphore at full speed, dashed into the rear Pullman of the first section. The engine buried itself in the sleeper and the latter plunged forward and partially telescoped the next can in front.
Every berth in the sleeper was filled and many of the occupants were killed as they slept. Others awoke to their horrible surrounding, maimed, bleeding and bruised, conscious of little else but the agony that racked them. It was a terrible scene. The cries and moans of the wounded and dying pierced the air, and on all sides, while as a canopy that served as a veil to the tragedy, the steam from the engine rose in clouds that blinded all observation for the time being.
The work of rescue was begun as soon as possible. When the blinding clouds of steam had subsided the trainmen and priests rallied the men together and the dead and injured were taken from the ruins of the engine, Pullman and first class coaches and cared for wherever temporary quarters could be found. The women of the party ministered as best they could to the wants of the maimed pilgrims. They tore off their underclothing
and made bandages for the gaping wounds and tried in the absence of surgeons to staunch the flow of blood and properly cleanse the hurts.
Word was sent to Montreal and orders from there were issued to send out a force of doctors from Quebec to attend to the wounded and a force of men to clear up the track. A special train from there reached here at an early hour in the morning and all the wounded that could be moved were placed on board a car and sent east to Levis where they are being cared for in the hospital.
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