Hyde Park, MA Train Wreck, Oct 1895 - Crushed in the Coaches


Many Passengers Injured in a Collision at Hyde Park, Mass.


A Lack of Proper Signals Said to be Responsible for the Accident---Members of a Wedding Party Among the Victims.

HYDE PARK, Mass., Oct. 24.---A tail-end collision, by which two persons were fatally hurt, three or four seriously injured, and some twenty others more or less bruised, occurred directly in front of the Hyde Park Station of the Providence Division of the New-York, New-Haven and Hartford Railroad, about 5:30 P. M. to-day.

The passenger train which leaves Sharon for Boston at 5:18 was a trifle late, and was standing at the Hyde Park Station taking on and discharging passengers, being directly on the time of the passenger train which left Providence for Boston at 4:15. The latter train came steaming down the line, and crashed into the stationary train. The engine of the Providence train was forced through nearly half the length of the rear car, which was well filled with passengers. Two persons---one a brakeman on the Sharon train, the other a woman---were found to be probably fatally hurt, being terribly injured about the head and body.

D. G. Willis of Roxbury and H. C. Merritt were the engineer and fireman, respectively, of the waiting train, while John Brumman was engineer of the express from Providence. At 9 o'clock to-night C. M. Austin, the brakeman reported as probably fatally injured, died, and his body was removed to an undertaking establishment.

A list of the injured follows:

BARNES, Mrs. Mary, address unknown; internal injuries.
BRAGG, A. W., 58 Clifford Street, Roxbury, internally injured, and head and face badly cut.
BURKE, Thomas J., Canterbury Street, Mount Hope; hand and head badly cut
BURNS, Mrs. James, Hyde Park; head and arms battered up
DONOVAN, Ella, 973 Harrison Avenue, Boston, nose and scalp badly cut
ESSLER, William, 41 Austin Street, Charlestown; head badly jammed and internal injuries
GERMAIN, Miss, a well-known singer of Cambridge; head and chest bruised
GRANNAN, Miss, Cambridge; internal injuries and leg broken
HOYT, B., Roxbury, head and chest injured
LOWELL, Mr., Crescent Avenue, Boston; injuries not stated
McGOWAN, Mrs. W. H., 75 White Street East Boston; spine and back badly injured
McGUIRE, Mrs. J. F., wounds on scalp
RINES, Roscoe, 55 Myrtle Street, Boston; head injured
ROSS, Mrs. William, Cambridge; severe internal injuries, probably fatal
WERST, Mrs., of Mount Hope; injured internally

When the crash came the scene was beyond description, the escaping steam and smoke covering everything with a dense cloud. In an instant the fire bells of Hyde Park were ringing, and a general alarm was given for help along the streets, to which nearly all the physicians responded. There were many lady passengers on the train, and their shrieks were agonizing in the extreme. The quick response of the Hyde Park firemen with crowbars and every available implement served to relieve the sad situation at once. The injured passengers were removed as fast as possible to the station, where their immediate wants were attended to by the physicians and nurses.

Brakeman Austin of the forward train was injured in an awful manner. Both legs were broken, his abdomen was pierced by iron bars, while he was jammed between the two rear cars in such a position that it was nearly half an hour before he could be extricated by the firemen. He was carried to the railroad station, but his injuries were so serious that he lived but a few hours.

Congressman Elijah A. Morse was a passenger on the Sharon train. He received some slight cuts on his fingers, but otherwise was uninjured. He occupied one of the rear seats in the train, and received a thorough shaking up, his escape from death being very narrow.

There was one peculiarly sad feature connected with the accident. A wedding had solemnized at the Church of the Most Precious Blood in the morning, the principals being H. Edward Ross of Cambridge and Miss Bresnahan of Hyde Park. The wedding party was returning to Boston, and had just entered the train, when their joy was turned to sorrow by the serious injury of two members of the party, Mrs. Ross, the mother of the groom, and Miss Germain. Fortunately, the newly wedded couple were just late enough entering the car to avoid injury in the terrible crash. Mr. and Mrs. J. F. McGuire were also a newly wedded pair, and their wedding trip was sadly marred by the injuries they both sustained.

So far as can be learned, no good reason could be given for the fatal occurrence. The first train being late, there should have been sent back a rear signal, which, it is claimed, was not done. Engineer Brumman claims that darkness prevailed to such a degree that he could not see the signals for any distance, and also that the could of steam obstructed his view. The tracks were cleared before 10 o'clock, and trains were running as usual.

The New York Times, New York, NY 25 Oct 1895