Stillman Valley, IL Train Wreck, Jun 1894

Chicago, June 19. -- Four men were badly injured and nine valuable horses killed outright in a wreck on the Chicago Great Western railroad at Stillman Valley at 11:30 Monday night. The wreck was caused by the breaking of a coupling, which caused the cars to leave the track and completely overturned three of them. A lamp in one of them soon set fire to the wreck. The names of the injured are:

John Riley, legs broken and body badly burned.

John Lahey, crushed shoulder

H. F. Christian, severely bruised.

Michael Woods, arm broken, spine hurt

Nine valuable horses belonging to William Roller and C. J. Kelly were killed outright, and seven others were so badly injured that they may have to be killed. The horses were from Hawthorne, and were on their way to Minneapolis.

The train left Chicago at 8 o'clock Monday night, in charge of the Conductor Thornton. As it was nearing the switch near Stillman Valley the draw bars of one of the Burton palace horse cars broke and, falling on the track, derailed five cars. Two of the cars were filled with horses, the other three being freight cars loaded with merchandise. A lantern in one of the Burton cars stet fire to the straw, and in a few minutes the entire car was in flames. The injured men were rescued with difficulty. The injured were taken to Stillman Valley and their injuries dressed. Riley was so badly burner that his recovery is doubtful.

The horses killed outright were valued at $10,000. the loss will be nearly doubled if it is found necessary to kill the others.

Later -- It is thought now that the injuries of none of the boys will prove fatal and none of the injured horses will have to be killed. Most of the horses in the car were owned by W. H. Roller, and eastern horseman, but none of his animals were particularly valuable. Probably the best horses in the car were Oakwood and Wightman owned by James Cushing.

The Weekly Herald Despatch, Decatur, IL 24 Jun 1894