Tag Archives: train accident

January 29, 1969 — Railroad Crash Highway 29

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January 29, 1969 — Railroad Crash Highway 29

Ottawa Citizen 23 January 1969

Ottawa Citizen 22 January 1969 – HIghway 29 between Carleton Place and Almonte

CARLETON PLACE  Attempts to clear the $500,000 wreckage of 34 freight cars piled up at a level crossing near here Tuesday continued this morning under the threat of an explosion from two overturned propane gas tankers.

Provincial police kept guard over the area, about three miles north of here on Highway 29 at the CPR crossing, as about 50 men and two giant cranes hauled twisted box cars from the clogged line.

The highway remained closed to traffic today while other trains were rerouted.

The two tankers were not ruptured in the massive 3.30 p.m. derailment, but police kept hundreds of curious spectators well back from the scene in the event leaking gas might explode.

Both police and railway officials were astonished that there had been no injuries.

One of the first cars to derail left the tracks just before the level crossing and sliced across the highway only a few feet in front of a waiting school bus. Box  cars stacked up.

Other cars ripped up sections of the highway, railway lines and wooden ties as they piled up, and in some cases, landed on top of one another. One freight car landed with its steel wheels on top of a tanker.Two hydro poles were sliced through by other cars. The top section of some pole was left dangling over the line supported only by the high-voltage cables.Complete wheel assemblies of many cars were torn off as they piled into one another and lay strewn along the tracks among sections of line, twisted cars and splintered ties.

Ottawa Citizen 23 January 1969

Train Crash Theory – Wheel is Blamed

A crack which caused the leading wheel of either the fourth or fifth car to come off is believed to be to blame for the $500,000 freight train crash near Carleton Place yesterday.

It is known that at least eight rails between Almonte and the accident scene were broken.

This could have been caused by the faulty wheel running out of line and pounding against the rail as the east bound train headed for Carleton Place, said one railway employee.

The 60-car freight train left Chalk River several hours before. Its speed at the time of the accident was estimated to be about 45 m.p.h.

George G. Sayer, assistant superintendent for the Smiths Falls division of CPR, said work crews were concentrating their efforts to pulling cars away from the tracks and repairing breaks so regular traffic, which had been diverted to other lines, could again travel the main line.

Mr. Sayer said he hoped the two cranes, one brought in from Smiths Falls and the other from Sudbury, could pull the two tankers back on to the tracks and pull them away by sometime this afternoon.

One eye-witness, Bill Ritchie, 32, a Bell Telephone employee from Almonte, was driving north toward the level crossing when he saw the red signal lights begin flashing.

The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
23 Jan 1969, Thu  •  Page 10

“I saw the train swaying so I stopped about 500 feet from the tracks,” he said. “The next thing I saw were freight cars flying through the air like cardboard boxes in a high wind. It was terrifying.”

He said a couple of cars shot across the highway “while the others piled up on the north side like magazines thrown on the floor.”

“There was a hell of a crash and snow flying in the air. A lot landed on my truck so I jumped out and after a minute or two ran up to the tracks. I thought people would be hurt,” said Mr.Ritchie.

He said that by the time he got there, people from the locomotive, that had shot through the crossing pulling three cars and dragging a fourth without wheels, met him.

“One box car just missed the school bus, which luckily didn’t have any children aboard, and another cut into the hydro poles and the warning flashers,” said Mr. Richie.

“There was a ball of fire in the sky when one hydro pole was cut off,” said Mr. Ritchie, who added that he and a work-mate then flagged down cars until police arrive.

Almonte Gazette January 1969

The remains of five torn and twisted box cars stall lie scattered about at the scene of the spectacular train wreck which occurred at tile half-way crossing between Almonte and Carleton Place on Tuesday. Clean-up crews of the C.P.R. Mechanical Department estimates it will take another week to clear the area of the remaining debris. They are now in the process of burning out the wooden interiors of the boxcars, following which they will be cut up with torches and hauled away.

A broken wheel apparently spread the track at about eight foot intervals for the entire distance and trains have been on a go-slow order along that stretch since rail traffic was resumed the day following the accident. A telegraph pole beside the crossing which had the bottom portion sheared off leaving the top dangling on its wares has yet to be replaced. Traffic on Highway 29 was disrupted for several days while heavy cranes removed most of the 30 cars which left the rails during the pileup and had to be rerouted along the 8th line and the Appleton road. Marks are clearly visible where derailed box cars rolled across the highway adjacent to the crossing gouging deep ruts in the asphalt. Some are even evident several feet back of the white line on the south side of the track where vehicle traffic is required to stop. Occupants of a car and a Bell Telephone truck who witnessed the derailment from that location were fortunate they had stopped well short of the crossing

Related reading

Did You Know About These Local Train Wrecks?

James Fanning– Robert Nolan– Train Accident

When Trains Crash —Ashton Train Accident 1950

Clippings of The Old Perth Train Station

The Glen Tay Train Wrecks of Lanark County

The Tragic Tale of Harvey Boal

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The Tragic Tale of Harvey Boal

 - RAILWAY AND RESPONSIBLE Jury Blames C.P.R....

March 1912

Sometimes working for the railroad was not a good thing. The shocking accident that had happened in March of 1912 had greater interest for those who lived in Almonte than those who lived in the Ottawa area. Harvey Boal, son of William Boal (or Boale) ( mother Mary Jane Stanley of Almonte was held responsible for the train accident in Hull. The loss of life and injuries could never be minimized but, had Harvey been habitually careless or inattentive the citizens of Almonte would have understood, but he wasn’t.

In 1915 he had completed a telegraphy course with Mr. W. S. MacDowell and he was noted as being above average in ability. The rapidity in which he achieved promotions from Almonte to the CPR head office and then  sent out west was incredible for someone who was barely 21. He had not been married very long, and did not drink and attended church regularly. He was taking classes so he could rise to a position of  divisional superintendent rather than pound a key.

 - OOOOOO oooooo oooooo ooooo WARRANT ISSUED O O...

Sympathy was expressed for the consequences that this young lad was now going to face after working a 19 hour shift. Fear took over Harvey Boal and instead of waiting to be questioned, he ran way and a warrant was issued for his arrest. In the end he was not the only guilty one, and operator John Francis Cole was also dismissed for issuing the wrong orders. I tried to find out what happened to poor Harvey Boal but the trail went coal. There was another Havey Boal that died at age 41 in an elevator accident in the 1950s, but it was not the same chap.

Jiana Daren
The elder Harvey Boal was the brother of Stanley Boal who was the father of the younger’s Harvey Boal. The elder Boal died in Vancouver in 1967 :

 - "That the collision was caused through...

historicalnotes

Jiana Daren

The elder Harvey Boal was the brother of Stanley Boal who was the father of the younger’s Harvey Boal. The elder Boal died in Vancouver in 1967 :

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From the Chesterville Record –– Colin Churcher’s page

Five killed. Fifteeen Injured.
Work train let go ahead of time and crashed into local passenger train.
Ottawa March 8.  A train was let go this morning five minutes before it should have moved. The result was a splintering of wood, binding of iron and five people gave up their lives amid the cries of fifteen others injured.
The accident occurred on the Pontiac branch of the Canadian Pacific Railway within three miles of the Parliament buildings.
The Dead.
John Moyles, Undertaker, Quyon.
John Anderson, CPR Conductor, Ottawa.
John Darby, Duke Street, Hull.
Miss Kehoe, Quyon.
E.J. Taber, Contractor, Hull.
Details of injured not taken except Fred Cole, Engineer.
The morning train from Waltham, a little late, had reversed as usual on the Y near Hull, and was backing to reach the Union Station in Ottawa.  This is the way in which it enters the station each day.  A work train was being held at Hull until the passenger train had safely passed. In some incomprehensible way the work train was let go. At Tetraultville it met with a crash the rear of the backing passenger train.
The trains were moving in opposite directions at a fair speed.  The locomotive of the work train came into contact with the first class car.  It was new of strong construction and resisted the shock. The second class car just beyond it was not so strongly built and collapsed like a berry box between the squeeze of the two locomotives.  It was the weak spot and gave.
The result was terrible for those within and the car was half full.  Men and women were jammed with smashed seats. broken glass, fractured woodwork and twisted steel in a mass of dead and injured.  Rescue work was promptly started.  Ottawa was communicated with, doctors and nurses rushed to the spot and the injured quickly conveyed to Ottawa.
The passenger train was in the charge of Conductor John Anderson who was instantly killed apparently from a blow to the head.  The engineer was Joseph Murphy and his fireman Camille Lemieux.
The freight engine was in charge of engineer Cole and William Short, fireman, all of Ottawa.  Anderson was one of the best known conductors on the road.  The accident happened where is a sharp curve and deep cut and it was impossible for the crew of one train to see the other till too late.
Harvey Boal, operator at Hull, whose mistake in issuing an order for a clear track is said to be the direct cause of the disaster, has disappeared and detectives are searching for him.  He is a young man with a good record on the line.
Chesterville Record 3/21/1912  William Kennedy the sixth victim of the railway wreck on the Pontiac line near Hull died at the Water Street hospital at 4 o’clock this morning.
Chesterville Record  3/28/1912  The jury conducting the inquest on the victims of the fatal wreck on the CPR at Hull on March 8, returned a verdict Monday night practically exonerating Harvey Boal, the CPR telegrapher, for whose arrest a warrant has been issued and placing the blame on the CPR.

The official report gave two killed and 15 injured.

This accident was responsible for the installation of the Electric Token Block system between Ottawa West, Hull and Ottawa Union.  The Ottawa Citizen of 24 April 1912 explains:

Since the wreck of the Pontiac train at Hull last month, whereby five(sic) persons were killed and several injured, the C.P.R. has introduced a new block system between Hull and Ottawa which if it is strictly observed, will prevent a recurrence of the accident.
According to the rules of the present system a train cannot leave Hull or Ottawa before the conductor has obtained a staff which is locked and unlocked by an electrical arrangement.  Only by deliberately ignoring the system could another collision of two trains occur between Hull and Ottawa.  The Pontiac train still continues to back in from Hull to Broad Street station, but, by the new arrangement there is little or no danger of an accident.

 - BOAL HAS GOT AWAY TO STATES Drove to Russell...

 - , I He-then LETTER OF BOAL GOT v BY POLICE Hull...

 - ACKNOWLEDGES HIS GUILT. Operator Says He Was...

 - Said Boat Is Arrested. Toronto, March 19. A...

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( no date ) In the afternoon and evening of May 21st more than two hundred friends gathered at the home of Mr. and Mrs. R. M. Boal to honor them, on the occasion of their fiftieth wedding anniversary. Messages were received from the Prime Minister of Canada, the Hon. John Diefenbaker, the Premier of Ontario, the Hon. John F. Robarts, Mr. George Doucett, MP for Lanark and Mr. G. Gomme, MPP for Lanark. Mr. Boal the oldest son of Mr. and Mrs. William Boal was born near Pakenham. (Cedar Hill)

When a young man he, went West and homesteaded at Davidson, Sask. After a few years he returned and married Miss Letitia Foster of Ramsay. Their love for Lanark County proved to be strong, for after eight years at Deux Rivieres they returned to reside at Cedar Hill and later in Pakenham. During this time Mr. and Mrs. Boal took an active interest in Community affairs. Mrs. Boal has been a keen worker in her church and in the Women’s Institute. Mr. Boal served as Reeve of Pakenham Township for thirteen years and also as Warden of Lanark County. Among the remembrances received was a table with a vase containing fifty golden roses. The tea table was decorated with yellow roses, yellow tapers and centered with a three-tiered wedding cake. All arrangements for the celebration was by the courtesy of the Cedar Hill and Pakenham Branches of the Women’s Institute.

Another Harvey Boal in Almonte–

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Almonte Man Fatally Crushed by Heavy Door – (1958)–ALMONTE, August 28. – (Special) – Harvey Boal, 41, of Brae street, Almonte, was crushed to death Wednesday when a 6,000-pound door he was helping install in a bank vault, tipped and pinned him by the stomach against a wall. An employee of Howard Davey, local building contractor, Mr. Boal died in Ottawa Civic Hospital two hours, after the accident. Carman Denny and Alex Spinks were on one side of the seven-foot door and Mr. Boal was on the other side when it I slipped off the roller and pinned the victim against the wall. Twenty men were unable to move the door. He was freed half an hour later by jacks obtained at nearby service stations. Mr. Boal was conscious while pinned against the wall. Attended by Dr. 0. Schulte, he was removed to the Rosamond Memorial Hospital by Kerry-Scott Ambulance where he was given first aid and then taken to hospital in Ottawa. OPP Constable Ross McMartin investigated the accident. Born and educated in Ramsay Township, he was a son of Stanley Boal and the late Mabel Miller. He attended Almonte Presbyterian Church. Mr. Boalserved overseas with the Canadian Army during World War II. He was a member of the Almonte Legion. He is survived by his wife, the former Ellen Green whom he married in 1942. Also surviving are a son, Bill, 15; three sisters, Mrs. 0rville Abbott (Luella), of Brockville; Mrs. Clare Syme (Ione), of Ramsay township, and Mrs. Clarence McInerney (Jean) of Minden. Ont. The body is at the Kerry-Scott Funeral Home, Almonte.

ome and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read. Also check out The Tales of Carleton Place and The Tales of Almonte

James Fanning– Robert Nolan– Train Accident

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James Fanning– Robert Nolan– Train Accident

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Clipped from The Ottawa Citizen, 14 Jun 1907, Fri, Page 1-

 

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006178-87 (Lanark Co) James S. FANNING, 21, workman, Beckwith, Carleton Place s/o Robert & Ellen FANNING married Anna Mary RATHWELL, 22, Drummond, Beckwith d/o William & Anna RATHWELL wtn: William H. LEACH & Sarah RATHWELL both of Beckwith, 13 July 1887 at St. James Church in Franktown.

 

 

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Carleton Place Locomotive

 

 

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Jenn Nolan My Great-Great Uncle. His sister, my great grandmother, had to identify his remains. Cause of death was being crushed and he was scalded by the steam and water. He is buried at St.James cemetery Carleton Place. He was so badly scalded that the undertaker had to just lay his suit on his body. His casket was covered in flowers at the service.

 

Ray Paquette My father-in-law was an engineman (engineer) on the CPR and he often regaled me with tales of derailments. I remember him telling me that in times of derailment, they, the engineer and fireman, would stand in the cab of the engine waiting to determine which way the engine was going over on its side before jumping to safety in the opposite direction

 

Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  22 Sep 1899, Fri,  Page 5

 

 

 

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun andScreamin’ Mamas (USA)

Come and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read. Also check out The Tales of Carleton Place.

relatedreading

 

When Trains Crash —Ashton Train Accident 1950

Clippings of The Old Perth Train Station

The Glen Tay Train Wrecks of Lanark County

Did You Know About These Local Train Wrecks?

Tragedy and Suffering in Lanark County-Trains and Cellar Stairs

I was Born a Boxcar Child- Tales of the Railroad

The Lanark County “Carpetbaggers”–Lanark Electric Railway

The Titanic of a Railway Disaster — Dr. Allan McLellan of Carleton Place

What Happened on the CPR Railway Bridge?

Memories from Carleton Place–Llew Lloyd and Peter Iveson

Linda’s Dreadful Dark Tales – When Irish Eyes Aren’t Smiling — Our Haunted Heritage

So Which William Built the Carleton Place Railway Bridge?

The trial of W. H. S. Simpson the Railway Mail Clerk

55 years ago–One of the Most Tragic Accidents in the History of Almonte

The Kick and Push Town of Folger

Train Accident? Five Bucks and a Free Lunch in Carleton Place Should Settle it

The Men That Road the Rails

The Mystery Streets of Carleton Place– Where was the First Train Station?

Memories of When Rail was King- Carleton Place

 

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I have been writing about downtown Carleton Place Bridge Street for months and this is something I really want to do. Come join me in the Domino’s Parking lot- corner Lake Ave and Bridge, Carleton Place at 11 am Saturday September 16 (rain date September 17) for a free walkabout of Bridge Street. It’s history is way more than just stores. This walkabout is FREE BUT I will be carrying a pouch for donations to the Carleton Place Hospital as they have been so good to me. I don’t know if I will ever do another walking tour so come join me on something that has been on my bucket list since I began writing about Bridge Street. It’s always a good time–trust me.

Are You Ready to Visit the Open Doors?

 

When Trains Crash —Ashton Train Accident 1950

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When Trains Crash —Ashton Train Accident 1950
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Extract from an article by Duncan DuFresne Bytown Railway Society,, Branchline, January 1982, Pages 10-11-12.--Colin Church’s page

 

But Travie Short is remembered better for another story. Ironically train number 83’s return from Smiths Falls as an extra is involved, as is Fourth Class train number 89 3 another Ottawa West – Smiths Falls via Carleton Place job that also handled much of the CIP production from Gatineau. On the night of March 18, 1950, 83’s extra and 89 were to meet at Ashton, Ont,  The extra had a car to set out at Ashton anyway, on the business siding parallel to the passing track. The extra planned to pull their train into the passing track, cut off head end cars to the one they had to set out, pull out through the east end switch and then back into the business track. It was a bad night, a heavy March snow storm with very high winds was lashing the valley.  The extra pulled slowly into the passing track, 89 was west of Stittsville and eating away the time and distance over to Ashton. The crew of the extra had correctly left their headlight on as they were not “in the clear”. The story goes that the wind was whipping the smoke and exhaust, as well as the snow, around the extra’s front end. As westbound 89 got the extra’s headlight in sight the wind caused the smoke, steam and snow to obscure the light, then clear up, then obscure it again. In the cab of the onrushing 89 this was mistaken for a deliberate “highball” signal indicating (illegally) that the extra was “in the clear”. The hogger on 89 opened, up his throttle and roared past the east passing track switch not knowing that just ahead, obliterated by the flying snow, was the tail end of the Extra, still foul of the main line. Standing on the west switch was a ballast car of rock. The 2624 plowed into it, rolling over in the process, cars piled up in all directions. The little station on the south side of the main was demolished. When all motion had ceased, 89’s engine crew were dead and her head end brakeman, Tom Gilmer, had saved his life by jumping just before the collision. The dead fireman was George Hannam, – the engineer was Travie Short.

From an Ottawa paper 19 March 1950:

Like the Toys of an Angry Giant (with picture)

Smashed and tossed by the tremendous impact of tons of steel, the wreckage of CPR freight No. 83 lies scattered across the main transcontinental line at Ashton, 20 miles southwest of Ottawa.  The broken cars spew their cargo across the snow, the one in the right upper background spreading hundreds of cases of beer about.  Seven cars, the engine and the tender are spread around in much the same confusion as would result if a small boy in temper had upset his toy train.  The early morning collision Saturday of No. 83 with the rear end of an eastbound freight affected train schedules and connections from Montreal to Sudbury, while dispatchers rerouted freight and passenger to by-pass the smash-up in which two crewmen died and two others were injured.  The wreckage was cleared, 250 yards of ripped up track replaced and the line opened for traffic again late Saturday.  At either end of the torn right-of-way, the railway wreck-clearing cranes can be seen beginning the job of working their way to the centre of the pile-up.
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From Stittsville/Richmond Region EMC 22 March 2012

 

Collision of Freight Trains at Ashton on 18 Mar 1950

Ashton Ontario – March 18 was unseasonably warm this year, one day in an extended warm period that has seen most of the snow disappear from the landscape. But March 18 has not always been so lamb-like. Indeed, back in 1950, it was a March lion, with a blinding snow storm hitting the Stittsville and Goulbourn area.

And it was in this blinding snow storm that a fatal and tragic collision between two freight trains happened right at the Ashton train station. Two of the freight cars were thrown into the Ashton station, track was torn up for more than 200 yards, the area was littered with splintered ties and twisted steel rails, and, most tragic of all, two railway employees died.

This all happened about 1:15 a.m. on Saturday, 18 Mar 1950, with a blinding snowstorm taking place.

An extra eastbound freight train from Smiths Falls was pulling into the passing track at Ashton. At the time of the collision, its engine, tender, and several freight cars were already on the siding but the remainder of the freight train, some 15 cars, was still on the main line when a westbound freight train on that main line sliced into these freight cars.

The impact from the westbound engine slamming into these cars threw two of them against the Ashton station, after which the engine toppled end over end, tearing up track.

Two men on this westbound train died in the collision. One was the engineer who was found half buried in the snow while the other was the fireman who was found in the wreckage of the cab. Two others were injured.

 

 

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  07 Dec 1953, Mon,  Page 20

The contents of the damaged freight cars were scattered about the site. One had a cargo of beer while another had a load of ladies’ sample shoes, all for the same foot.

A later coroner’s jury, held in Carleton Place to look into the cause of the collision, did not declare any identifiable cause for the crash. However, confusion in the orders to the crews of these trains and poor visibility due to the snowstorm were both cited as contributing factors.

And the situation could have been even worse, and possibly more tragic, had it not been for quick action taken by Percy Illingsworth, the station agent at Stittsville, that night.

A westbound Montreal-to-Vancouver passenger train had left the Ottawa West station before news of the collision was received there. It was thus racing toward Stittsville and beyond that Ashton, with its operators unaware of the fright cars littering the track there.

Mr. Illingsworth, who had been notified by phone of the situation with regards to this approaching train, pulled some clothes over his pyjamas, grabbed a flashlight, and dashed through the snow drifts to reach the train track. Visibility was poor because of the heavy snow storm but when he saw the glimmer of the headlight of the approaching train through the swirling snow, he started signaling with his flashlight for the train to stop. Fortunately, the engineer on the train saw and understood the signal and the passenger train stopped. Had Mr. Illingsworth not taken his action or if his signal had not been seen, this passenger train would have roared into the Ashton station and its carnage with who knows what kind of disastrous and tragic results.

Percy Illingsworth served as the station agent at Stittsville for about 20 years, succeeding the famous A.G. Appleby who was termed “the governor” for his leadership in the community.

Craig Hobbs was the last station agent to serve at Stittsville, holding the position from 1962 to 1968. After that, the station was closed, the land sold, and the building was removed in 1969.

There were extensive tracking systems for the railway at both the Stittsville and Ashton stations. The station at Ashton was on the south side of the track, just west of the Goulbourn/Beckwith town line road. Indeed, the station platform extended to within a few feet of the townline road.

There were switches and a siding at the Ashton station as well as stock yards used by local farmers for when they shipped their cattle to market. In the early 1900’s, horses were frequently housed in these stock yards as farmers shipped them out west.

The Ashton station at harvest time also witnessed lineups of farmers with their teams of horses and wagons full of grain, waiting to deposit their loads in waiting freight cars.

The Ashton station handled both passenger and freight traffic and was as telegraph office as well.

The train was a vehicle for travel, not only by individuals and by students attending high school in Carleton Place, but also for groups such as Loyal Orange Lodge members travelling to special events. In 1872, for instance, just two years after the rail line was opened, members of the Stapleton Orange Lodge No. 471 west of Richmond travelled to the Ashton station in order to catch the train into Ottawa for a 12th of July celebration.

The 1981 book “Remembering Our Railway” by the late Grace Thompson of Stittsville, which outlines the history of the railroad in Stittsville and also Ashton, features a cover photo of the 1950 Ashton train wreck as published in the former Ottawa Journal on 20 Mar 1950. This book, which can be found in the reference section at the Stittsville branch of the Ottawa Public Library, remains the most authoritative published account not only of Stittsville’s railway history but also this tragic train crash at the Ashton station on 18 Mar 1950.

John Curry

 

 

historicalnotes

 

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  18 Mar 1950, Sat,  Page 1

 

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  22 Mar 1950, Wed,  Page 32

 

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun andScreamin’ Mamas (USA)

Come and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read. Also check out The Tales of Carleton Place.

 

relatedreading

Clippings of The Old Perth Train Station

The Glen Tay Train Wrecks of Lanark County

Did You Know About These Local Train Wrecks?

Tragedy and Suffering in Lanark County-Trains and Cellar Stairs

I was Born a Boxcar Child- Tales of the Railroad

The Lanark County “Carpetbaggers”–Lanark Electric Railway

The Titanic of a Railway Disaster — Dr. Allan McLellan of Carleton Place

What Happened on the CPR Railway Bridge?

Memories from Carleton Place–Llew Lloyd and Peter Iveson

Linda’s Dreadful Dark Tales – When Irish Eyes Aren’t Smiling — Our Haunted Heritage

So Which William Built the Carleton Place Railway Bridge?

The trial of W. H. S. Simpson the Railway Mail Clerk

55 years ago–One of the Most Tragic Accidents in the History of Almonte

The Kick and Push Town of Folger

Train Accident? Five Bucks and a Free Lunch in Carleton Place Should Settle it

The Men That Road the Rails

The Mystery Streets of Carleton Place– Where was the First Train Station?

Memories of When Rail was King- Carleton Place

 

Screenshot 2017-08-15 at 18.jpg

I have been writing about downtown Carleton Place Bridge Street for months and this is something I really want to do. Come join me in the Domino’s Parking lot- corner Lake Ave and Bridge, Carleton Place at 11 am Saturday September 16 (rain date September 17) for a free walkabout of Bridge Street. It’s history is way more than just stores. This walkabout is FREE BUT I will be carrying a pouch for donations to the Carleton Place Hospital as they have been so good to me. I don’t know if I will ever do another walking tour so come join me on something that has been on my bucket list since I began writing about Bridge Street. It’s always a good time–trust me.

Are You Ready to Visit the Open Doors?

 

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Remembering Ernest Donnelly– July 4 1951

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Remembering Ernest Donnelly– July 4 1951

 

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal04 Jul 1951, WedPage 1

 

Sometimes I can’t post these clippings alone on Facebook as they are hard to read. When I found this article this morning, I knew he needed to be remembered. In memory of.

 

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal04 Jul 1951, WedPage 1

 

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Come and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read. Also check out The Tales of Carleton Place.

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun and Screamin’ Mamas (USA)

 

relatedreading

So Which William Built the Carleton Place Railway Bridge?

What Happened on the CPR Railway Bridge?

Murder or Accident — Bates & Innes Flume

Early Newspapers- Accident of John Devlin

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Early Newspapers- Accident of John Devlin

 

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Newspaperman 1860

 

WARNING GRAPHIC!

September 2 1898-Almonte Gazette

 

Terrible Accident Occurred on the C.P.R. track here last Saturday night (August 28). John Devlin, the seventeen-year-old son of Mr. James Devlin, Carleton Place, in company with a couple of younger boys, was stealing a ride from the junction town to Almonte on what is known as the *“blind baggage” of the Winnipeg express, and while the train was speeding along opposite the Church street crossing, about two hundred yards from the station, young Devlin jumped off between the tracks and, according to some boys who were eyewitnesses, he bounded back with his head across the track.

A wheel passing over his head, smashing the skull and crushing the lower part of his face into a pulp. Death must have been instantaneous. The probability is that deceased never knew what happened him. A couple of his toes were also cut off. The face presented a horrible sight, and was totally unrecognizable. Some young men identified the unfortunate young man by his clothing. Coroner Burns was soon on the scene, and communicated with the relatives and the railway authorities with as little delay as possible, but the ‘body remained on the ground for some time before authority was given for its -removal, the decision in the interval being that no inquest was necessary.

Undertaker Donaldson then took the body to his “ morgue,” where it was dressed and coffined, after which, at the request of two brothers of deceased, he drove it to the home at Carleton Place, whence the funeral took place on Tuesday afternoon, to St. James’ church and cemetery, and was very largely attended.

The Herald says: “ Deceased was an employee in the Hawthorne woolen mill, a weaver, and was a steady and industrious young man. The parents and brothers and sisters have the sympathy of the whole town in their sudden and heavy bereavement. He was 17 year old.

devlin4

From 

St. James Anglican Cemetery – Block A-to-J,
230 – 8th Concession of Ramsay Twp, Carleton Place
Lanark County

 

Why would anyone publish anything this graphic?

Once upon a time, newspapers were a primary source of information. In the early 1800s, newspaper publishing bore little resemblance to the business it is today. Most newspapers had a small circulation, and were staffed by a very small number of workers. Division of labor in the newspaper publishing process – news gathering and reporting, editing, and printing–was uncommon, though it became more so as the period progressed. Even in the larger, urban newspapers, the owner of the paper would usually serve as the reporter and editor. Apprentices often assisted with printing and delivery.

Their principal function was not necessarily to inform, but to make money for the publisher, which they did by selling copies of the paper to readers and selling advertisements to businesses. Nineteenth century newspapers, unlike urban papers in our own multimedia universe, often carried very detailed coverage of a much broader range of activities – lengthy transcriptions of evidence given in court, for example, or the minute by minute happenings of a municipal council meeting, or an accident similar to the above newspaper article. The hunger for news and the lack of well-researched stories often meant that rumour and hearsay were published as fact. Then, as now, sensational stories helped sell newspapers, and checking the facts did not always take priority. So don’t believe everything you read in the newspapers:)

 

 

*blind baggage
:  a railway baggage, express, or postal car that has no door or opening at one end

 

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal11 Oct 1929, FriPage 22

 

relatedreading

When Newspapers Gossiped–David Kerr Innisville

Local Newspapers–Yellow Journalism

What Happens When Newspapers Finally Die and the Internet Reaches Capacity?

Dr.Preston Was in the House — The Case of the Severed Foot

55 years ago–One of the Most Tragic Accidents in the History of Almonte

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Sometimes we bypass those that have passed as the memories are too heart breaking. But, I feel it it important to remember those that left us too soon. Let us remember the McPhail family today.

 

May 16, 1961
Almonte
Ontario, Canada

ARTICLE
Three Ramsay People Die In Level Crossing Accident As Freight Train Strikes TruckOne of the most tragic level crossing accidents in the history of Almonte occurred about seven o’clock, Tuesday evening, when three people lost their lives as a west bound freight train plowed into the half-ton truck in which they were riding, at a point on the 10th line of Ramsay, some three miles from this town.Dead are Robert Timmins McPhail in his 62nd year; his son, Kenneth Oswald McPhail in his 28th year, and the latter’s wife, Georgette Alaine (Ottney) McPhail in her 28th year. The accident happened when the trio were returning to their farm home, and were passing over a crossing in the lane leading to the McPhail residence. It had been necessary for the truck to pass over a public crossing on the 10th line of Ramsay only a few hundred yards from the point where, they turned into their private roadway.Kenneth McPhail was an employee, of Simpson-Sears in Ottawa and commuted back and forth to work each day; his wife, the former Georgette Ottney was employed in the law office of Mr. C. J. Newton. Robert McPhail, a well known farmer, had come to town to drive them home for their evening meal. He picked up his daughter-in-law first and then proceeded to the corner of Ottawa and Martin Streets where his son was waiting for him. They drove, out Martin Street to the point where it reaches the town boundary and becomes the 10th line.Mr. McPhail was driving a new truck and as there was a high wind at that time, it is conjectured that the windows might have been closed. It is said he was slightly hard of hearing but it is difficult to figure why the young people, did not hear or see the approaching train because the crew said that the engineer blew loud blasts on his whistle, when he saw the truck was not going to stop. There is a good view of the track in both directions at this crossing.The freight train, pulled by two locomotives was a long one and while it had passed through Almonte only a few minutes before, it gained speed rapidly and was travelling at a fast rate when the accident occurred. It is said that the truck was carried on the front of the engine for a considerable distance before the engines and cars could be brought to a standstill. Dr. John King of Almonte was called to the scene as was Dr. A. A. Metcalfe, coroner for Lanark County. Constable Martin Brindle of the OPP, Perth, is investigating.

Mr. and Mrs. Kenneth McPhail left five young children, Kenneth aged 11, Ross 10, Harold 8, Frank 7 and Shelley 5.

Related Reading-

Linda’s Dreadful Dark Tales – When Irish Eyes Aren’t Smiling — Our Haunted Heritage

Come and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read.

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in Hometown News and now in The Townships Sun

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in Hometown News