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Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Porter County Railroad Wrecks and Accidents

Construction of railroads in Northwest Indiana began in 1837 after the Buffalo & Mississippi Railroad received a charter from the Indiana State Legislature in February 1835 to construct a railroad along the southern shore of Lake Michigan. After surveying an appropriate route, which largely followed a well worn Indian trail, the Buffalo & Mississippi Railroad began to grade some land around Michigan City, LaPorte, Indiana, for the laying of track. The Panic of 1837, however, ignited a major financial crisis that lasted well into the mid-1840s. The resulting depression put a brake on all railroad construction in the area, as well as across the United States.

Incidentally, Daniel Webster, a statesman who later became a United States Senator and Secretary of State, reportedly turned the first shovel full of railroad grade dirt at Michigan City on July 4, 1837, while on a tour of frontier country. Earlier that same day, Webster had visited Porter County's first platted community, City West, which was located approximately where the pavilion parking lot is now situated at the Indiana Dunes State Park.

The construction of a railroad through Porter County, Indiana, began in 1851 by the Michigan Southern & Northern Indiana Railroad. By May 1852, the company had laid 15¼ miles of track through the county. On May 22, 1852, the first train traveled through Porter County from Toledo, Ohio, to Chicago.


Much of this first track was laid on the Buffalo & Mississippi Railroad's chartered right-of-way. The track traveled through the southern section of Pine Township, then ventured west to Porter and Baillytown, and continued northwesterly through the northern section of Portage Township before entering Lake County. As a result of mergers and acquisitions, this first rail line was owned and operated by the Lake Shore & Northern Indiana Railroad (1852-1855), Northern Indiana & Michigan Southern Railroad (1855-1869), Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway (1869-1915), New York Central Railroad (1915-1968), Penn Central Transportation Company (1968-1976), Consolidated Rail Corporation (1976-1999), and Norfolk Southern Railway (1999-).

Other early railroads traversing Porter County included:

  • 1852 - Michigan Central Railroad, 17 miles of track
  • 1858 - Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne & Chicago Railway, 4½ miles of track
  • 1865 - Pittsburgh, Cincinnati & St. Louis Railroad, 15½ miles of track
  • 1874 - Baltimore & Ohio Railroad, 16½ miles of track
  • 1874 - Chicago & Lake Huron Railroad, 7¾ miles of track

The construction of railroads in the 1800s was vital to town and regional development. If the distance was not prohibitive, then it was not uncommon for an entire community to uproot and move adjacent to a railroad that had bypassed their village.

Townspeople would also raise funds to attract a railroad through their community. Some citizens would give their land away to the railroad or sell it at a highly discounted rate knowing that their other real estate holdings nearby would substantially increase in value with the construction of a railroad. Citizens would also petition their town boards to purchase stock in railroads so as to entice the companies to install tracks and infrastructure, such as depots, repair shops, and sidings, in their town.


Newspaper item concerning the construction of the
Michigan Southern Railway through the northern
portion of Porter County, Indiana.
Source: Plymouth Pilot, November 12, 1851.

In June 1880, the the citizens of Valparaiso and surrounding area petitioned their town board to purchase $20,000 in stock in the Joliet & Valparaiso Railway Company. Before an investment decision could be reached, however, this railroad project was abandoned.

If the railroad bypassed a community, then citizens of that community would often petition the railroad company to stop at the next nearest village. For instance, the following article was published in the May 25, 1855, issue of the Practical Observer, a Valparaiso newspaper, whereby the residents of Valparaiso, who had no local train service at that time, requested that trains stop for them at Calumet Station (Chesterton):

Railroad Meeting.
At a meeting of the principal citizens of Valparaiso, held according to previous notice, at the Court House, on May 23d, 1855, T. A. E. Campbell, Esq., was called to the Chair, and G. Z. Salyer and Wm. C. Talcott appointed secretaries.

The object of the meeting was explained by the Chair to be to take measures to make known to the Superintendent of M. S. & N. I. Railroad the inconvenience and damage suffered by the citizens of this town and county by the trains on said road not stopping at Calumet Station, and endeavoring to induce him to make such a change as to have all passenger trains stop at Calumet Station when there are passengers to get on or off.

On motion, the following gentlemen were appoint a committee to prepare an appropriate Address on the subject, to be sent to the Superintendent of said road, to-wit: T. A. E. Campbell, Wm. C. Talcott, J. Dunning, M. M. Fassett, Dr. R. A. Cameron, T. Freeman, T. Windle, A. R. Gould, and S. Carr.
Within a few days of this meeting, the railroad was stopping to take on passengers at Calumet Station. For six years, goods and people were hauled between Calumet Station and Valparaiso over rather crude roads.

So crude were the roads that the Porter County Commissioners granted the Valparaiso & Michigan City Plank Road Company the right "to construct a plank road from Valparaiso to Michigan City on, over or across any or all state or county roads which they may desire." The plank road company commenced construction in Valparaiso, closely following the route of Old State Road 49 northward through and past present day Chesterton, and then east to Michigan City. Nearly all the road was planked between Valparaiso and Chesterton, with a toll station located near Flint Lake. Very little roadbed was planked between Chesterton and Michigan City, however, most likely since travelers could catch a train in Chesterton to travel to Michigan City.

The construction of the Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne & Chicago Railway though Valparaiso in 1858 partly remedied the travel inconvenience for Valparaiso businessmen and citizens. Many residents of Valparaiso would still catch the stagecoach to Calumet Station even after the establishment of the railroad through their village due to better railroad schedules and connections that were offered by the train service there.


Scrip currency issued by Molby Carr. Carr operated a stagecoach
between Valparaiso and Calumet (now Chesterton). Since
currency was scarce during the Civil War, many businessmen
would issue scrip that could be used for goods and services.
Source: Collection of Steven R. Shook.

Goodspeed and Blanchard write in their 1882 history of Porter County the following concerning the enthusiasm generated by the proposed construction of a railroad through the community of Valparaiso:
In July, 1852, there was great excitement among the citizens of Valparaiso, and indeed throughout the whole county, in response to the report that the "Ohio and Indiana Railroad Company" had out its surveyors, and the line of the projected road was sure to pass across the county. The prospect of connection by telegraph with the outer world was very encouraging, especially to the editor of the Observer who endeavored by notices in his paper to excite the citizens to the pitch of substantial help to the railway and telegraphic enterprise. When the projection of the road through Valparaiso became a certainty, that little town could scarcely contain itself, but indulged in bonfires, bell-ringing, drum-playing, gun-shooting, and general noisy, public rejoicing.
While railroads certainly generated plenty of anticipation, exhilaration, and joy due to their propensity to spur economic development, they, at times, were also the source of great misery when disasters occurred on the tracks. Citizens of Porter County have not been immune to witnessing the terrible consequences of railroad wrecks.

Given the significant miles of track laid in Porter County, numerous train wrecks have taken place within its boundaries. In particular, four of these wrecks, accounting for at least 119 deaths and 244 injuries, have been noted in numerous publications concerning train disasters as being some of the worst to have taken place in the United States. These include: Boone Grove-Kouts wreck of 1887, Woodville wreck of 1906, Shadyside wreck of 1909, and Porter wreck of 1921.

The enumeration and description of Porter County train wrecks that follows does not include collisions with vehicles (e.g., automobiles, trucks, buses, carriages, wagons, farm equipment). Nor does it include the very large number of cases of individuals that were killed or injured while walking on the railroad tracks within county boundaries.

Wrecks are ordered by date of occurrence. Descriptions of the wrecks have been developed through the use of various published accounts. Note that many newspaper accounts of the same wreck often conflicted with one another, leading to discrepancies as to the cause of the wreck and the casualty count. Thus, what is presented here should not be considered a definitive list and description of Porter County railroad wrecks.

It is likely that several Porter County train wrecks have been inadvertently omitted from this list. Please use the comment section at the end of this post if you have corrections and/or additional information to share.


[Last Updated: May 7, 2019]

1855
April or July 13 - Baillytown (Westchester Township)
Killed: 1
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A passenger train operating on the Michigan Southern & Northern Indiana Railroad from Michigan City, LaPorte County, Indiana, to Chicago derails at a poorly installed track near Baillytown. The rails began to spread too far apart as the train traveled over them causing a passenger car to violently jerk and derail. One person, Hubert Williamson, was thrown against an obstruction and killed as a result of the derailment. Reportedly, Williamson was owner of Green's Tavern at Tremont in Porter County. A Native American named Spotted Buck had entered Williamson's tavern and began helping himself to alcohol behind the bar. Angry, Williamson struck Spotted Buck in the head with a fireplace poker and the Indian dropped dead. Spotted Buck's death was soon discovered and Williamson, who was already known by the county sheriff for other misdemeanors, made an attempt to escape the area. Williamson boarded the westbound train at Tremont, but the train derailed near Baillytown. A newspaper article published in the July 11, 1957, issue of The Vidette-Messenger mentions this train wreck. The article reads in part: "Somehow, in one of those cases of co-incidences, the train struck an ill-made bit of track at the vicinity of Baillytown. The rails spread, the train was derailed with an emphatic jerk, and the only person injured was the fugitive, Hubert Williamson, who was thrown against an obstruction and killed.... Thomas G. Lytle was the sheriff in 1855, Ruel Starr was one of the commissioners, and Sylvester Smith was the auditor. The county records of that year show a remuneration to John Lunberg [Lundberg] for coffin and burial of a man named Williamson, killed in a train wreck at Baillytown. The burial was apparently in a cemetery at Baillytown, and a Rev. French, officiated." A nearby railroad construction crew placed the passenger car back onto the track, spiked the rail back into place, and the train departed one-half hour late toward its terminal destination of Chicago. This accident reportedly took place on a Friday the 13th. In 1855, the months of April and July had a Friday the 13th, hence the date listed above. Note that the John Lundberg mentioned in the quote above was an undertaker and furniture dealer from Chesterton, serving the community for several decades. However, Lundberg did not move to Chesterton until 1866; prior to 1866, he was living with his widowed mother in Chicago. Thus, the quoted story may be entirely false.

1881
March 14 - Baillytown (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Two freight trains traveling on the Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway collided near Baillytown. The two locomotives and several railcars were telescoped. The collision was the result of the dispatcher giving orders to one freight train crew, but not to the other train's crew.

1882
December 29 - Washington Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: The third section of three-section Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne & Chicago Railway freight train No. 62 collided with the rear of the section section at near Winslow Siding in Washington Township. The caboose and three freight cars of the second section derailed. The wreck was attributed to fog. No deaths or injuries resulted from the collision.

1883
February 7 - Baillytown (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A freight train operating on the Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway collides with the rear of another freight train at Baillytown, smashing its caboose. No deaths or injuries resulted from this collision.

1884
May 28 - Valparaiso (Center Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Eighteen freight cars of train No. 77 on the Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne & Chicago Railway derailed at Valparaiso. No deaths or injuries resulted from this wreck.

December 19 - Center Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 1 (possibly more)
Synopsis: At about 10:00 am the engine on the Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne & Chicago Railway express train No. 3 derailed at the crossover of the Grand Trunk Railway track near County Road 250 West approximately two miles northwest of Valparaiso. The engine, operated by Oliver Hebert, broke away from the passenger cars and went into a ditch and turned over on its side. One newspaper report of the incident states that "The accident was a fortunate one, in that no one was seriously injured."

1885
March 17 - Washington Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: The No. 78 eastbound freight train on the Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne & Chicago Railway derailed at 2:00 pm at the Winslow Siding, a shipping point for grain and milk. A broken rail caused twenty freight cars hauling lard, shelled corn, flour, and whisky to leave the track. Reports of the wreck estimated losses not to exceed $8,000 and that the derailed freight cars could be repaired. No deaths or injuries resulted from this wreck.

September 10 - New Burdick (Pine Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A passenger train on the Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway derailed near New Burdick, approximately one mile southeast of Burdick. A flange on one of the front wheels of the locomotive broke resulting in three coaches being ditched off the tracks. No deaths or injuries resulted from this wreck. Traffic on the line was delayed for more than four hours as wrecking crews removed the debris and repaired the track.

1887
October 11 - Between Boone Grove and Kouts (Boone Township)
Killed: 11
Injured: 20
Synopsis: A heavy refrigerator freight train carrying dressed meat collided into the rear of a passenger train on the Chicago & Atlantic Railroad at a water tank next to Sandy Hook Ditch in Section 2 of Boone Township, located about two and one-half miles southeast of Boone Grove. The Chicago & Atlantic passenger train No. 12 had left the Polk Street Depot in Chicago at 7:45 pm consisting of the locomotive, tender, and five railcars, the two rear cars being sleeper cars. Soon after departing, the engineer found that an eccentric strap on the locomotive had broken. The eccentric strap affixes to the rotating axle of the drive wheels and converts rotary motion into linear reciprocating motion. Given the situation, the engineer continued the journey by working only one side of the locomotive's drive, which drastically reduced the train's speed. Upon reaching Boone Grove, the passenger train was more than two hours behind schedule. The engineer continued past Boone Grove to the fill the locomotive with water at the tank between Boone Grove and Kouts. A red semaphore lamp was activated about one-half mile behind the train as a warning to any potential oncoming train that a train was ahead standing idle on the track. Engineer Dorsey, operating a freight train behind the now idle passenger train, failed to see the red semaphore lamp and was traveling at full steam. Just prior to ramming into the rear of the passenger train, Engineer Dorsey and his fireman detected the faintly burning lamps affixed to the passenger train's rear sleeper car. Sensing disaster, the engineer and fireman leaped from their locomotive's cab prior to impact. The force of the impact was apparently quite incredible. It was reported that the freight train engine plunged nearly through the rear Pullman sleeper car. The rear sleeper car telescoped into the sleeper car ahead of it and the next three passenger cars were splintered to pieces. The upper works of the freight engine were torn away, and its tender was thrown across the track. All of the freight train railcars derailed and "piled up for twenty rods about the prairie were hundreds of pounds of meat." Coals in the stove heaters on the passenger train soon ignited upholstery, and within five minutes the entire passenger train was ablaze. Witnesses reported that several trapped passengers, some only slightly injured, wailed and screamed as the fire overtook them, rescuers unable to assist them due to enmeshed nature of the wreckage and the intensity of the flames. Local farmers and the train crews attempted to extinguish the flames using buckets and water from the nearby tower. First-hand accounts of this disaster published in newspapers nationwide are heartrending to read. The injured were taken to the Kouts Hotel on the east side of Main Street for treatment by local physicians, all but one suffering head injuries. Local farmers prepared rough pine boxes and placed the remains of the 11 killed in them and delivered them to Kouts for a coroner's inquest.

1888
July 4 - Valparaiso (Center Township)
Killed: 1
Injured: 1
Synopsis: A Grand Trunk Railway freight train collided with several horses on the track and ten freight cars were derailed. Brakeman Stephen Burl was killed in the wreck, while the fireman on the train lost his arm.

November 14 - Kouts (Pleasant Township)
Killed: 1
Injured: 24
Synopsis: A Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Chicago & St. Louis Railroad work train collided with numerous cattle on the track near Kouts causing the caboose, located in the center of the train and containing twenty-five men, to derail and roll down an embankment and turn completely over. All twenty-five men were injured, nine seriously. One of the men died shortly after being pulled from the wreckage.

1889
October 23 - Washington Township
Killed: 1
Injured: 1
Synopsis: A crown sheet on the engine of a freight train traveling at full speed between Valparaiso and Haskell, in LaPorte County, exploded. The engine's fireman, John Hadden, was hurled over the engine's tender and against the first railcar. Hadden then fell to the tracks and was cut to pieces. The engineer, Thomas Callahan, was scalded "in a horrible manner."

November 16 - Kouts (Pleasant Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A passenger train traveling on the Chicago & Atlantic Railway rammed into a Wabash Railroad freight train traveling on the tracks of the Chicago & Erie Railroad where the two tracks cross one another in Kouts. The locomotive of the passenger train was severely damaged, as were several railcars. Though the passengers were badly shaken, no deaths or serious injuries were reported.

December 6 - Dune Park (Portage Township)
Killed: 1
Injured: 2
Synopsis: A westbound New York Central Railroad limited express passenger train, traveling over the Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railroad, wrecked at Dune Park at about 8:00 pm. During this time period, Dune Park was a major sand shipping station owned and operated by the Knickerbocker Ice Company; most of the sand was sent to Chicago for construction projects. The passenger train came across a misplaced switch, which caused it to travel to an adjacent sidetrack. The engineer of the passenger train immediately reversed the locomotive's engine and set the brakes, but he was unable to stop the train before it collided at forty miles per hour with several empty sand cars The train consisted of the locomotive, tender, one baggage car, a chair car, two coach cars, and two sleeper cars. The new locomotive, which had just entered service, was thrown across the main track and destroyed, and the three cars behind the locomotive were splintered to pieces. George "Tug" Wilson, the fireman on the locomotive, died approximately two hours after the collision. A flying timber had completely amputated Wilson's left arm, while another large wooden splinter lodged into his mouth. The engineer, Augustus "Gus" M. Bickel, and the conductor, a C. C. Harris, were injured. Brakeman Jack Dempsey, working with a sand train crew, was blamed for the accident. When ending the work day, the sand train crew was returning to Chesterton. Dempsey was told by his foreman to close the switch and lock it. It is believed that in his rush to return with his crew to Chesterton that Dempsey mistakenly locked the switch in the open position. Furthermore, the switch light was not burning, thereby providing no notice of the switch position to the crew on the New York Central passenger train.

1890
January 11 - Wheeler (Union Township)
Killed: 2
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Henry Reimers, a section hand on the New York, Chicago & St. Louis Railroad (Nickel Plate Road), and his brother Martin Reimers, a section hand for the Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne & Chicago Railway, decided to travel to Hobart, Lake County, Indiana, using a velocipede that was located at the depot at Wheeler. While traveling westbound on the tracks of the Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne & Chicago Railway, the brothers ran into an eastbound gravel train just west of Wheeler that was traveling in reverse at about thirty miles per hour. The train consisted of the locomotive and a coach for the crew; lights had been placed upon the tender to warn those on the track of the train's approach. As the train was entering Wheeler, another train passed through on the Nickel Plate Road, which is believed to have distracted the brothers. When the velocipede was hit by the gravel train, the collision caused the wheels of the locomotive and tender to leave the track. The bodies of the Reimers brothers were terribly mangled, Henry's head being decapitated.


An example of a velocipede being used at Kouts. Brothers
Henry and Martin Reimers were killed while riding a similar
velocipede when they collided with a train on the tracks of the
Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne & Chicago Railway immediately west of Wheeler.
Source: Collection of Steven R. Shook.

1892
March 11 - Kouts (Pleasant Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Eastbound freight train No. 84 derailed approximately two to three miles west of Kouts on the Chicago & Erie Railroad after breaking an axle on a heavily loaded railcar. The crew of the freight train lightened the load on the disabled railcar and pulled it along the tracks to the nearest siding located at Kouts. The accident delayed freight and passenger service by three hours. No deaths or injuries were reported for this wreck.

March 14 - Dune Park (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: At 2:00 am, the No. 71 freight train exited the sidetrack of the Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway just west of the Dune Park depot heading eastbound and was hit by another eastbound freight train traveling about 30 miles per hour. Train No. 71 was hit about midway of the train, which resulted in the destruction of six railcars; the locomotive of the other train was derailed and severely damaged. No deaths or injuries resulted from the collision.

March 18 - Woodville (Liberty Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: An express passenger train traveling on the tracks of the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad derailed at Woodville. Passengers were reportedly "badly shaken," but no deaths or serious injuries resulted from the derailment.

June 26 - Valparaiso (Center Township)
Killed: 1
Injured: 13
Synopsis: The celebrated Keystone passenger train, traveling eastbound on the Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne & Chicago Railway, derailed just west of the Joliet Road bridge at 12:08 pm while traveling at sixty miles per hour. The locomotive was thrown across the track a complete wreck, while the coaches, a United States mail car, baggage car, smoking car, day coach dining car, and three sleeper cars were badly smashed up and scattered along the track and down a steep embankment. The cause of the derailment was believed to have been a faulty bridle on a switch, which resulted in the signal showing that the switch was closed when instead it was open. Fireman Charles Miller was instantly killed in the wreck, while thirteen other crew and passengers were injured.

December 2 - Kouts (Pleasant Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Freight train No. 79 traveling on the Chicago & Erie Railroad collided head-on with another freight train traveling in the opposite direction at 7:35 am. Crews from each train believed that they had the right-of-way to proceed. However, dense fog is believed to have obscured the signal for one of the trains. The engineers of both trains were able to reverse their engines and set their brakes, but the trains could not avert a collision. Damage was light, smashing the pilots on both engines. No deaths or injuries resulted from this collision.

1893
April 20 - Hebron (Boone Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Five railcars of freight train No. 87 traveling on the Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Chicago & St. Louis Railroad derailed due to a spreading of the rails. The rails were spread as a result of heavy rains that caused the railbed to partially wash away. No deaths or injuries resulted from the accident.

October 13 - Kouts (Pleasant Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: The second section of freight train No. 82 operating on the Chicago & Erie Railroad ran into the rear end of the first section near Kouts at 2:00 am. The engine of the second section was severely damaged, while the caboose of the first section was demolished upon impact. The track at the site of the collision was also torn up. The accident was attributed to dense fog. No crew members on either train were killed or injured.

1895
March - Center Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: An eastbound express passenger train on the New York, Chicago, & St. Louis Railroad (Nickel Plate Road) collided with several railway ties that had been intentionally piled onto the track just west of Valparaiso. The engineer of the train could not stop in time to avoid a collision and the train dragged the ties for a distance of six hundred feet. Special Detective J. C. Horton of the railroad company arrested Henry Heck of Chicago who later admitted placing the ties on the track because he was intoxicated. However, more than one pair of footprints were found at the scene, leading investigators to believe that a derailment was intended so as to be able to rob the passengers of the train. Though the train did not derail, the engine had to be lifted in order to remove the ties from underneath it. Newspaper reports of this incident do not provide the exact date of its occurrence, but it likely took place during the second week of March.

April 28 - Kouts (Pleasant Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: The locomotive and twelve railcars of freight train No. 77 traveling on the Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Chicago & St. Louis Railroad derailed at Kouts at 4:30 am. Engineer Kloenne failed to observe that the interlocking switch was closed against his freight train. As a result, the train hit the derail switch. Five of the twelve wrecked railcars were entirely destroyed. Two of the railcars were hauling window glass, which broke into small pieces. No deaths or injuries resulted from this accident.

1896
January 21 - Valparaiso (Center Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 1
Synopsis: Two freight trains collided near the Valparaiso depot of the New York, Chicago, & St. Louis Railroad (Nickel Plate Road) at about 2:30 pm. Local freight train No. 33 was unloading goods at the depot when a westbound through freight train No. 39 came around a bend in the track and struck the rear of the stationary train. The locomotive and three freight cars of the westbound train were destroyed, while nine freight cars were either destroyed or heavily damaged on the idle train. A fireman on the westbound train named Blackburn experienced a broken arm when he leapt from the westbound locomotive.

February 1 - Crocker (Liberty Township)
Killed: 1
Injured: 1
Synopsis: An Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway (E.J. & E.) train left Porter at about 12:00 am heading westbound. The locomotive was running backward and pulling a light train. At Crocker, the tracks of the E.J. & E. and the Wabash Railroad cross one another at grade level. The rule at the time of the incident was that trains of the Wabash Railroad were to always give right-of-way to trains traveling on the E.J. & E. The E.J.& E. train was traveling at full steam with no lights. The towerman at the Crocker crossing saw a train approaching on the Wabash Railroad and signaled this train to proceed, unaware of the approaching E.J. & E. train. Thus, the switch on the E.J. & E. was changed to the open position, activating the derail mechanism, and causing the train on that track to derail as it approached the crossing. The engineer on the E.J. & E. train died from injuries sustained when the locomotive flipped bottom side up. The fireman on the E.J. & E. also sustained injuries when he leaped from locomotive just prior to the wreck.

August 14 - Chesterton (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 1
Synopsis: A Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway sand train departed eastbound from Dune Park to the scene of a major train wreck at Otis, LaPorte County, Indiana. When the sand train entered Burdick, it broke into two. Immediately, a telegram was sent from Burdick to Chesterton in the attempt to warn train crews at Chesterton that a "wild train" was headed in their direction. At approximately 5:00 am, the crew of a livestock train in Chesterton jumped to safety just as the twenty railcars of the broken sand train rolled into town at forty miles per hour. The livestock train's locomotive and eight livestock cars were demolished in the collision with the sand train, killing twenty head of cattle. No train crew members were killed or injured in the wreck. However, trainmaster J. D. Brannon sprained his ankle while assisting in aid efforts after the wreck. Due to the wreck at Otis, trains were occupying every sidetrack of the Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway, Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway, and Michigan Central Railroad from Chesterton and Porter westward to Crocker.

September 4 - Babcock (Liberty Township)
Killed: 1
Injured: 2
Synopsis: A westbound freight train on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad derailed on the grade east of the milk station at Babcock between 8:00 and 9:00 pm. The cause of the accident was the breaking of an axle of one of the railcars near the middle of the train. Sixteen of the railcars derailed, but the engineer of the train did not notice anything was wrong until his train reached the next station at McCool. Most of the upturned railcars were hauling coal. Three men stealing a ride were found in one upturned railcar; two with slight injuries were rescued by the conductor, while the dead body of the third man was not found until forty-four hours later. The derailed railcars were so badly wrecked that they were disposed by burning at Babcock.

1897
February 4 - Hebron (Boone Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 3
Synopsis: The coupling between two railcars on a freight train entering Hebron broke separating the train into two sections. The two sections soon crashed into one another wrecking several of the railcars. Engineer Pierce Richason sustained injuries, as did Brakeman Kahler (leg bone fracture) and Brakeman Drake (broken nose).

1898
November 25 - Between Chesterton and Burdick (Jackson or Westchester Township)
Killed: 3
Injured: 1
Synopsis: During the evening of November 24, a group of ten residents from the community of Burdick attended the Independent Order Of Foresters' Thanksgiving Ball in Chesterton. The group departed Chesterton at 3:30 am on November 25 using two handcars that were placed on the Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway's tracks. Riders on the front handcar were R. C. Hobb, Louis Kressel, Albert Miller, Edith Sabinsky, Mary Sabinsky, and William Sabinsky. Riding the rear handcar were August Fausch, William Kemper, Henry Reynolds, and George Sabinsky. Considerable noise was being created by the handcars and their merry riders as they made their way home to Burdick. The eastbound Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway train No. 44, referred to as the fast newspaper train, soon came bearing down upon the handcars. August Fausch yelled for everyone to jump just as the train demolished both handcars. Killed were William Kemper, William Sabinsky, and ten year old Edith Sabinsky. Mary Sabinsky, age twelve, suffered critical injuries with a broken elbow, inured neck and spine, and two broken ribs. Fausch was a section boss for the railroad in the immediate area and knew that the railroad company's policy was that handcars were not to be used on the tracks except on railroad business.

1899
February 26 - Center Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: The first section of westbound Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne & Chicago Railway freight train No. 73 experienced a burst air hose that caused a decoupling and derailment of four railcars near Valparaiso. No injuries or deaths resulted from this wreck.

May 16 - Valparaiso (Center Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: An engine derailed on Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne & Chicago Railway in Valparaiso resulting in "slight damage." No report of deaths or injuries resulting from this accident was provided in newspaper coverage of the incident.

November 22 - McCool (Portage Township)
Killed: 3
Injured: 4
Synopsis: A westbound passenger train on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad, consisting of two locomotives and twelve coaches, rammed into the rear of a westbound milk train that was backing eastward at about 7:00 am. The collision occurred slightly west of where present day State Road 149 crosses over the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad (now owned by CSX Transportation) on property then owned by August Bernhard Hoeckelberg. Upon impact, one passenger train locomotive plunged down one side of a twenty-five foot embankment and the second locomotive plunged down the other side; four mail and express cars were heavily damaged. None of the passenger cars derailed and no passengers were injured. The passenger train engineer on the first locomotive, Harry Bradford, was instantly killed, and the engineer of the second locomotive, E. Sarber, and Fireman John Stine, soon died from injuries they sustained from the crash. Four other crew members of the passenger train were injured. A flagman was blamed for causing the collision by mistaking the call of another train for his own. An eastbound freight train had sidetracked at McCool for passage of the passenger train. The westbound freight train was heading to McCool to sidetrack for the passenger train. When passing the Barney Hoeckelberg farm, the westbound freight train broke in two and the forward end arrived at McCool. Crew on the rear end of the broken freight train sent out a flagman to warn the oncoming passenger train. When the front end of the freight train arrived at McCool, it reversed to connect again with the rear portion at Hoeckelberg's farm. At about the same time, the eastbound freight train at McCool called in its flagman with its steam whistle. The flagman on the rear portion of the broken freight train mistook the signal as his own train's and ventured back to his train. Thus, there was no warning signal to alert the passenger train as it approached the backing freight train at McCool.

1900
February 17 - Porter (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway pick-up engine was transferring railcars on the Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway (E.J. & E.) rail line to the Indiana Harbor Belt Railroad about one mile west of the Porter Depot and had one railcar attached to the front of it. When near the switch at this location the pick-up engine came to a standstill and a Belt Railroad freight train soon crashed into it. Several railcars were badly damaged with one having to be burned on the tracks to remove it quickly from the rail line. No injuries or deaths resulted from this accident.

March 4 - Morris (Jackson Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 1
Synopsis: The Wabash Railroad's westbound No. 5 Wabash Limited derailed in the morning approximately three miles northwest of Westville at Morris near present day County Road 475 East. The area was experiencing flooding and during the evening water spilling over the line had frozen and damaged the track. The locomotive derailed and ran along the ties before it turned over and blocked the line for the entire day. Engineer B. H. "Big Jeff" Jeffries was severely injured and nearly bled to death but prompt medical attention saved his life.

June 12 - Liberty Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A freight train traveling on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad around 3:00 am derailed between Woodville and Babcock in Liberty Township due to the breaking of a wheel. Eleven railcars filled with merchandise were wrecked and piled into a ditch along the rail line. In addition, nearly one mile of track was torn up. Traffic on the line was delayed for twelves hours and was rerouted over the nearby Wabash Railroad. No injuries or death resulted despite the severity of the wreck.

June 29 - Jackson Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: The straps connecting the drivers on the locomotive of a westbound Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway passenger train broke while the train was running at a high rate of speed a few miles east of Burdick in Jackson Township. The straps (essentially iron bars) dropped to the ground and caught on crossties, raising the locomotive approximately a foot off the ground. Engineer Watson and Fireman Hull were able to control their locomotive and bring it to a halt with no deaths or injuries resulting from the derailment. The tracks were torn up for a considerable distance.

July 18 - Chesterton (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway train composed of railcars loaded with plows derailed at the station in Chesterton due to a broken switch. Twenty railcars came off the track and blockaded the rail line for three hours. The railcars were backed to Chesterton from LaPorte, LaPorte County, Indiana, to be turned around on the Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway tracks. No deaths or injuries were reported in newspaper coverage of this derailment.

July 30 - Jackson Township
Killed: 0
Injured:0
Synopsis: A Wabash Railroad freight train wrecked four miles northwest of Westville, Laporte County, Indiana, in Jackson Township. A wooden bridge spanning a small creek had burned out and, as a result, the train ran into the creek. Two flatcars loaded with lumber were burned and the remainder of the train was badly damaged. It is believed the location of this accident took place in the SE¼ of the SE¼ of the SE¼ of Section 11 about one-quarter mile north of County Road 650 East. The engineer and fireman leaped from the train just prior to the accident, which likely saved their lives. No deaths or injuries were reported for this accident.

August 20 - McCool (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Several railcars derailed on a Baltimore & Ohio Railroad freight train where the company's tracks cross the Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway line at McCool. Traffic on both lines was blocked for nearly ten hours while the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad's wrecking crew from South Chicago cleared the tracks. No deaths or injuries were reported for this accident.

August 27 - Porter (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Two railcars of an Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway freight train derailed while crossing a switch at Porter, resulting in them standing on end. No deaths or injuries were reported for this accident.

September 11 - Portage Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: The westbound No. 8 passenger train on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad struck the roof of a box car that had blown off a railcar standing on a sidetrack just prior to 11:00 am. The locomotive, mail car, baggage car, and a combination car were wrecked in the accident. The wind from the Calumet marsh was reported to be extremely strong, which resulted in the roof being blown off the box car. It took the entire day to clear the tracks of the wreckage. No deaths or injuries were reported for this accident.

1901
February 11 - Crisman (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: During the morning of February 11, a Michigan Central Railway train was switching onto a sidetrack near the community store; fifteen coal cars were standing on the sidetrack. A brakeman applied the brakes on the approaching train, but they did not work and the train collided with the coal cars. The first coal car was thrown from the track and wrecked. A wrecking crew arrived in the afternoon to remove the wreckage from the track and burned the wrecked coal car. No deaths or injuries were reported for this accident.

February 15 - Crocker (Liberty Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Scant information is known about this wreck. A short notice appeared in February 22, 1901, issue of The Chesterton Tribune stating that "The Wabash [Railroad] detoured trains via B. & O. Friday on account of a wreck at Crocker."

June 13 - Babcock (Liberty Township)
Killed: 1
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A broken wheel on a Baltimore & Ohio Railroad freight train resulted in a derailment one mile east of Babcock in Liberty Township. The broken wheel caused a freight car to derail leading to another seventeen freight cars to pile up; all of these cars were completely destroyed. It took more than sixteen hours to clear the tracks. One individual, a "boy tramp," was reported to have suffered a head injury as a result of this wreck and later died.

August 25 - Burdick (Jackson Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 1
At 3:00 am, seventeen railcars of a westbound Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway freight train were demolished at Burdick when the engineer stopped his train. The suddenness of the braking caused the air brakes to fail, which resulted in them closing down on the wheels. The brake failure led the train to separate into two sections since some railcars were not equipped with air brakes. The two sections collided with one another with terrific force causing considerable wreckage. The line was blocked for several hours until the demolished railcars were removed from the tracks. Josiah C. Teeters was asleep in a cattle car he was tending; Teeters was responsible for livestock being moved from Buffalo, Erie County, New York, to Chicago. Teeters' car was wrecked into kindling and the cattle within it were cut to pieces no heavier than fifty pounds. Teeters was discovered lying on the bank of the railroad's right-of-way; he had no broken bones and exhibited only a few scratches. His spinal column, however, was injured and he would later file a damages lawsuit against the railway company. A trial in 1904, it was shown that Teeters was a professor at an industrial college and earning $1,800 a year in income. The jury awarded Teeters $10,000 in damages, equivalent to more than $275,000 in 2018, concluding that the sudden stop by the engineer was reckless. The Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway would appeal the judgment.

September 23 - Chesterton (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: The No. 73 freight train on the Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway was running in two sections. The engineer of the second section stopped too quickly as he pulled his train into Chesterton, which resulted in one of the railcars breaking into two halves. The railcars on each side of the broken railcar rose into the air and "one of them came within the proverbial hair of falling on the cab of the engine pulling the first section of No. 73" that was idling on the adjacent second track. The incident is believed to have occurred due to the use of light engines being used to pull very heavy railcars. Reports indicate that the wreckage was cleared away quickly and that no deaths or injuries resulted from the wreck.

1902
January 12 - Washington Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 3
A Pennsylvania Railroad milk train wrecked near Winslow's Siding, located approximately four miles east of Valparaiso in Washington Township. The milk train regularly traveled a route between Valparaiso and Wanatah, backing its way to Wanatah and returning to Valparaiso while picking up milk at milk stations along the way. Twenty-five minutes before the milk train departed Valparaiso, a freight train left the station heading eastbound during a raging blizzard. The freight train stalled near Winslow's Siding; a flagman was sent from the freight train to warn oncoming rail traffic of the stalled train on the tracks. However, no torpedoes were placed on the tracks. Railroad torpedoes are small devices that attach to the rail that when run over by a train cause a very loud explosion to warn the train's engineer of danger ahead. Charles Gogan, engineer of the milk train, was running his engine at a good speed and did not see the stalled freight train's flagman because his train was running backwards and blizzard-like weather was persisting in the area. The milk train collided with the stalled freight train and Engineer Gogan was thrown through his cab window and pinned in wreckage for more than one hour until rescued. The milk train's fireman, George Wager, and brakeman, John Barnard Kelty, were also injured in the wreck.

April 1 to 5 - Suman (Jackson Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A collision on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad took place at the Suman station resulting in four freight cars being thrown from the tracks. Newspaper coverage does not provide an exact date, nor does it indicate any deaths or injuries resulting from the wreck.

May 11 - Chesterton (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: The first section of westbound No. 75, a Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway freight train, pulled into the Chesterton station at 8:50 pm and stopped just east of the water spout to take on water. Approximately thirty seconds after the engine had stopped the train was hit from the rear and seven freight cars were destroyed. The freight train had decoupled prior to entering Chesterton due to air being applied for braking, and when the engine stopped to take on water the broken half trailing it caught up and collided with the front half. Two freight cars of coal and one freight car each of barrel staves, pumps, rails, and tin were wrecked. An empty refrigerated freight car was also destroyed by the collision. Chesterton resident and businessman Nathan Demass purchased the coal. Wrecking crews took a day to clear the wreck and debris. Newspaper reports indicate that no injuries or deaths resulted from the mishap.

August 25 - Burdick (Jackson Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A gang of section men on Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway had a derailed handcar on the tracks at Burdick. The men attempted to remove the handcar from the tracks when a freight train was approaching but were unsuccessful in doing so. The engineer of the freight train, in an effort to avoid striking the section workers, stopped his train so suddenly that several railcars derailed and piled up on the track. Ironically, another wreck occurred at nearly the same location exactly one year previous. No death or injuries were reported for this incident.

September 29 - Burdick (Jackson Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 1
Synopsis: A passenger train traveling westbound in the Wabash Railroad collided head-on with an eastbound freight train near Burdick at 9:50 am. At the time of the collision the freight train had come to a standstill and the crew of the passenger train was breaking to avoid a wreck. Crews from both trains jumped from their engines and escaped with minor injuries. The baggage and smoking cars of the passenger train telescoped; remarkably, only a single passenger, a woman with a sprained ankle, was injured in the wreck. The locomotive of the freight train was pushed back into a refrigerator car and the tender derailed and fell down the embankment. The cause of the collision was a misunderstanding of orders. No deaths were reported for this accident.

November 11 - Woodville (Liberty Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: The first section of a two-section freight train on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad experienced a burst air hose at Woodville causing the train to stop very suddenly. The second section of the freight train collided with the rear of the stalled first section resulting in the piling up of thirteen cars of coal and coke. The cause of the wreck was ultimately attributed to the second section of the freight train following too close to the first section. No deaths or injuries were reported for this accident.

December 16 - Kouts (Pleasant Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A westbound freight train ran into the derail mechanism on the Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Chicago & St. Louis Railroad at Kouts. The locomotive and twelve railcars were damaged. No deaths or injuries were reported for this accident.

1903
March 6 to 12 - Liberty Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A short news item appears in the March 13, 1903, issue of The Chesterton Tribune stating "They had quite a wreck on the B. & O. between Woodville and Babcock. A freight car jumped the track and tore up the track for some distance." Additional details have not been uncovered concerning this wreck and it assumed that no deaths or injuries resulted from the derailment.

May 17 - Chesterton (Westchester Township)
Killed: 1
Injured: 2
Synopsis: Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway freight train No. 62 consisting of 41 railcars loaded with dairy products and merchandise departed Chesterton headed eastbound at 12:25 am on Sunday, May 17. A soon as No. 62 cleared the switch east of Chesterton, engine No. 157, referred to as a "pusher engine," departed eastbound behind the freight train. Pusher engines were used to provide assistance to freight trains that had to proceed over an incline between Chesterton and LaPorte County. Both engines were traveling at a speed of approximately 30 to 35 miles per hour. A pin connecting the engine and railcars on the freight train failed, resulting in the train breaking apart about two miles east of Chesterton. A a result of the break in the train, the air brakes were automatically applied to the freight cars and the runaway railcars stopped almost instantly. Meanwhile, the pusher engine continued eastbound unaware of the stalled freight cars in front of it. Brakeman Roy Tucker was in the caboose of the freight train and observed the pusher engine bearing down on the stalled freight cars and he jumped from the caboose to avoid the collision. On the pusher engine were Engineer Jack Diehl, Conductor Murray, and Butler Shaner. All three of these men miraculously escaped serious injury when their engine collided into the caboose of the freight train. The caboose was completely crushed. Also on the pusher engine was Walter Jacob Hollar; however, Hollar was riding on the front of the engine unbeknownst to Engineer Diehl. Hollar, age 22, was a resident of Burdick and was riding home on the front of the pusher engine after having spent an evening in Chesterton. Hollar was a telegraph operator for the railway at Burdick. Hollar was found alive by Engineer Diehl hanging over the pilot beam of the pusher engine with his foot held fast between the wrecked caboose and engine. Hollar died before the two cars could be pulled apart from one another to release him. A wrecking crew arrived from Chicago and pushed the remains of the caboose down the embankment and burned it.

July 4 - Woodville (Liberty Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Sixteen loaded railcars on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad derailed one mile west of Woodville during the afternoon of July 4 blocking the rail line for several hours until the wreck was cleared from the tracks. Losses from the derailment, mostly machinery, were reported to be over $40,000. There were no reports of deaths or injuries resulting from this wreck.

August 15 - Chesterton (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway freight train consisting of 85 railcars, with a pusher engine behind providing assistance, had its air system break one mile east of Chesterton. The break caused the freight train to come to an immediate and sudden stop, which resulted in twelve railcars being crushed into kindling wood. Two railcars immediately behind the lead engine collapsed, and another eight railcars about thirty-five cars behind the lead engine were crushed. Approximately forty to fifty hobos were riding the freight train when the wreck occurred, but none were killed or injured. No crew were killed or injured. The rail line was blocked for about six hours until cleared at nine o'clock that night.

September 13 - Chesterton (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A slow westbound Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway freight train was entering Chesterton from the east, while an eastbound passenger train was passing it at 60 miles per hour on the opposite track. As the passenger train got to a point about halfway along the freight train that latter broke into two causing five freight cars to pile up across both set of tracks before the passenger train had even crossed the caboose of the freight train. A major wreck resulting in numerous deaths and injuries would have likely occurred had the derailment of the freight cars taken place a few seconds earlier. The tracks were blocked for several hours and traffic on the rail line was diverted. No injuries or deaths were reported for this wreck. The September 18, 1903, issue of The Chesterton Tribune remarks: "These small freight wrecks occur so frequently along this part of the line that it would not be surprising if a fast train would some day be shoved sidewise into the ditch by just such an accident."

September 14 - Dune Park (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: At 9:00 pm a Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway sand train with seven loaded and fourteen empty railcars crossed the main tracks at Dune Park. A westbound freight train traveling at 35 miles per hour, loaded with coal, iron, and one railcar of tar paper, was approaching the crossing of the main line with the sand train rails The sand train had nearly crossed the main line when the westbound freight train collided into the rear end of it. The crew members of both trains jumped and saved their lives. The collision resulted in tearing up over 1,000 feet of track, reducing numerous railcars to kindling, demolished the freight engine, and jackknifed the freight train's boiler and tender cars. A temporary rail line was laid so that trains traveling the main line could go around the wreckage. Wrecking crews took more than three days to clear the wreckage and repair the tracks. The September 18, 1903, issue of The Chesterton Tribune stated that "The result of the smash up can be better imagined than described. It seems almost a miracle that no lives were lost, when the wreck is seen." While no deaths resulted from this wreck, it is possible that there were a few injuries caused by crew members leaping from their trains.

September 28 - Crocker (Liberty Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A Wabash Railroad freight train hauling fifteen railcars of gravel derailed just east of Crocker when the train broke in two and the air hoses automatically applied the brakes. The kinetic energy of the railcars caused them pile up and derail, burying them into the rail ballast. The rail line was blocked for fifteen hours until the rail cars could be removed and the track repaired. No injuries or death were reported for this wreck.

October 18 - Hebron (Boone Township)
Killed: 2
Injured: 1
Synopsis: Head-on collision between two trains traveling on the Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Chicago & St. Louis Railroad took place at 6:15 am approximately one-half mile east of the town of Hebron. The New York-to-Chicago No. 1 Panhandle passenger train was traveling in two sections. Charles Truman was the engineer of the second section of this passenger train and had the right-of-way. Ira Ford, the engineer of an eastbound freight train, had taken to a siding to wait for the passenger train to pass. After the first section of the westbound passenger train passed, Engineer Ford pulled out of the siding having forgotten that the second section of the passenger train had yet to pass. Both trains were running under a full head of steam, resulting in a spectacular collision. All the crewman, except Engineer Truman, leaped from their trains prior to the impact. Truman was discovered in the wreck with a broken leg and bruised face. Chester Stanley, a tramp riding on one of the freight trains, was also injured. Both of the injured men were taken to Logansport, Cass County, Indiana, for treatment of their injuries. Both died the following day. Engineer Ford sustained severe injuries to both of his legs as a result of leaping from his locomotive. Some accounts of this collision state that a second tramp was instantly killed by flying pieces of wreckage and that he was never identified, his remains laid to rest in the Hebron Cemetery. Research concerning this collision has been unable to verify the casualty of this second tramp. Note that the date of this wreck has been widely published as having taken place on October 23, 1903; this date is incorrect, the wreck took place on October 18, 1903.


Photograph of Pennsylvania Railroad train wreck
east of Hebron on October 18, 1903. Photograph
taken by C. H. Hathaway of Hebron. Locomotive on
right is an E2 Atlantic, while the other locomotive
appears to be a 2-8-0.
Source: Collection of Steven R. Shook.

1904
February 22 - McCool (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A broken rail east of McCool on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad resulted in the derailment of sixteen railcars. Eight of these derailed railcars were transporting livestock, while the other eight were transporting general merchandise. It was reported that most livestock were killed in the accident and the tracks were strewn with goods in all directions. No injuries or death resulted from the wreck.

May 6 - Furnessville (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Defective trucks on a water railcar attached to the engine of passenger train No. 6 on the Pere Marquette Railway resulted in a derailment at Furnessville. Reports indicate that the train was traveling at a "fair rate of speed, but by the prompt application of the air brakes, prevented damage further than tearing up a few lengths of track." The passenger train consisted of an engine, water railcar, three passenger cars, a smoker car, and a day coach. Despite the large number of passengers on the train, no injuries or deaths resulted from the derailment.

October 11 - Dune Park (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 5+
Synopsis: Eastbound passenger train No. 7 on the Pere Marquette Railway crashed into a Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway sand train while traveling at a rate of sixty miles per hour. The accident was attributed to a brakeman on the sand train, which was standing at the west end of sidetrack switch waiting for the Pere Marquette train to pass. When the Pere Marquette train was within three cars lengths of the of the end of the switch, the brakeman at the switch turned it. Opening the switch resulted in the passenger train entering the occupied sidetrack. The collision was reported as being "terrific" and "not a wheel was left standing under a P. M. passenger coach." Remarkably, no deaths resulted from the collision. Four men employed by the Pere Marquette Railway and one man employed by the Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway were seriously injured. The most serious injury was an arm broken in two places. Several passengers were also reportedly inured in the wreck.

December 3 - Chesterton (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A brakeman on a Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway freight train set the air brake too quickly causing several gondola railcars to derail and block the westbound tracks for several hours. The incident took place east of present day Jackson Street in Chesterton. No deaths or injuries resulted from the wreck.

December 4 - Chesterton (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A minor wreck occurred on the Pere Marquette Railway near its water tank in Chesterton whereby a couple of railcars tipped over into a ditch. It was reported that a "carload of stoves and several cars of merchandise were badly battered up." The wreck was minor enough that a wrecking car was not needed to get the track into repair. No injuries or death were reported for this accident and the cause for the wreck was "not known."

1905
January 26 - Valparaiso (Center Township)
Killed: 0
Injured:0
Synopsis: A westbound Grand Trunk Railway freight train pulled into its Valparaiso rail yard and stood idle on the north track. A second freight train was following this train about five minutes behind. The brakeman of the idle train was sent back to provide a warning signal to the engineer of the second train. The warning was not heeded and the second train collided with the rear of the idle train at 5:45 am. The engine of the second train was thrown into the air and landed diagonally across the two tracks. The train crews jumped prior to the collision, saving their lives. The colliding engine jumped into the air when it struck and plunged diagonally across the tracks, landing in a ditch. Six freight cars were reduced to kindling wood. A third engine, standing on the south track was knocked off its tracks, and disabled. After the collision the debris caught fire. Before the railway company could get the flames under control, several cars were burned. While the brakeman said he made frantic efforts to signal the engineer, the engineer says he saw no signals.

February 12 - Willowcreek (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 8
Synopsis: A Baltimore & Ohio Railroad train collided with a Michigan Central Railroad wrecking train at the grade level Willowcreek crossing of the two railroads. The interlocking signal tower at Willowcreek had been destroyed by fire several weeks prior to this wreck. Thus, all trains were required to stop at this crossing until signaled by the crossing gatekeeper to proceed. The wrecking train, consisting of four cars, had been dispatched to Ivanhoe, three miles east of Hammond, Lake County, Indiana, where an engine had derailed. The wrecking train had stopped at the Willowcreek crossing as required and was given a clear signal to proceed westward. Engineer C. A. Gifford of the wrecking train soon observed that a Baltimore & Ohio Railroad freight train was bearing down at the crossing, and accordingly immediately increased throttle in an effort to get his wrecking train clear of the crossing. He was unsuccessful. The freight train collided with the tool car that was just ahead of the caboose of the wrecking train. The tool car was demolished and the caboose was thrown over on its side; the wrecking crew, conductor, and rear brakeman were tossed out of the caboose. The engine of the Baltimore & Ohio freight train traveled about sixty feet beyond the crossing where it ended up facing in the opposite direction across the adjacent Wabash Railroad tracks. Eight men on the Michigan Central wrecking train were injured, the most seriously injured man was Conductor A. S. Hill, who sustained a fractured elbow, a broken rib, and numerous bruises. The wrecking train, with reinforcement workers from Michigan City, remained at the site of the collision to make repairs to the track. Note that the site of this collision was commonly referred to as Joy's Run during the last three decades of the 1800s.

February 18 - McCool (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 2
Synopsis: At 8:30 am, a freight train on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad was standing idle on the track at McCool while the engine was being used to rearrange some railcars on the siding. Meanwhile, an express freight train came along and crashed into the caboose of the standing freight train. The caboose was reduced to kindling, while another eight railcars of the idle freight train were heavily damaged and destroyed by a subsequent fire. The engineer and fireman on the express freight train were injured and taken to Garrett, DeKalb County, Indiana, for treatment.

March 11 - McCool (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 4
Synopsis: During the early morning hours a Baltimore & Ohio Railroad freight train passed over the derail at McCool resulting in ten railcars and their freight being either damaged or destroyed by fire. Four members of the train's crew were injured and taken to nearby Indiana Harbor in Lake County for medical treatment. A steam derrick wrecking machine was used to clear the debris from the tracks.

March 16 - Westchester Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 2
Synopsis: At 8:55 pm the crown sheet blew out on the Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway's engine No. 5754, which was pulling a freight train eastbound approximately two miles west of Chesterton. The head brakeman and fireman aboard the engine were seriously injured when they were scalded by boiling water and steam. A double header eastbound train then approached from behind and pushed the disabled freight train into the Chesterton siding. A pusher train transported the disabled engine to Elkhart for repairs.

March 16 - Boone Grove (Porter Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: One railcar of a Chicago & Erie Railroad freight train derailed at Boone Grove when a journal bearing broke on one of its trucks. Traffic on the rail line was blocked for about four hours. No deaths or injuries resulted from this incident.

March 27 - McCool (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Engine No. 2014 derailed on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad tracks at McCool. A steam crane was required to place the engine back onto the tracks. No injuries or deaths were reported for this incident.

April 1 - Westchester Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A collision took place during the evening on the Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway between Crocker and Chesterton. Little was published concerning the collision, but it was reported that no injuries or deaths resulted from the collision.

April 24 - Wheeler (Union Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 1
Synopsis: A Pennsylvania Railroad freight train broke into two. The front end of the train stopped at the station in Wheeler and the broken rear end of the train struck it. A railcar hauling sawdust and the caboose were slightly damaged as a result of the collision. A brakeman sustained injuries about his head and legs. No deaths were reported as a consequence of this accident.

May 7 - Crisman (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A Michigan Central Railroad freight train's air hose broke causing railcars to derail and block the tracks. No death or injuries resulted from the wreck.

May 15 - Willowcreek (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A wreck occurred at Willowcreek on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad. A wreck on the Michigan Central Railroad took place at the same location on the same day. Little information about this wreck was published other than to state that nobody was injured.

May 15 - Willowcreek (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A wreck occurred at Willowcreek on the Michigan Central Railroad. A wreck on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad took place at the same location on the same day. Little information about this wreck was published other than to state that nobody was injured.

July 10 - Pleasant Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A freight train traveling on the Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Chicago & St. Louis Railroad experienced a burst air hose resulting in the derailment of eight railcars approximately two miles east of Kouts and one mile west of the railroad's siding at Grasmere. The line was blockaded for several hours. It was reported that no deaths or injuries resulted from this wreck.

July 29 - Crocker (Liberty Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Six freight cars were derailed when the track spread apart as the Wabash Railroad was delivering railcars to the Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway. A wrecking crew removed the wreck from the tracks. No deaths or injuries were reported for this accident.

September 18 - Jackson Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A westbound freight train on the Wabash Railroad wrecked just west of the siding referred to as Morris in Jackson Township at approximately 7:00 am. The wreck was caused by a broken wheel on a freight car, which resulted in ten railcars of coal and one railcar of iron to be derailed and spread across the track. Traffic on the rail line was delayed for several hours. No deaths or injuries resulted from the derailment.

November 26 - McCool (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: "Quite a wreck" occurred on the Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway on the morning of November 26 at McCool. Only a few sentences concerning the wreck were mentioned in area newspapers. It was reported that no deaths or injuries resulted from the wreck, but that "the track and cars were torn up considerably."

December 1 - Suman (Jackson Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 5
Synopsis: An eastbound passenger train being pulled by two engines collided head-on with a freight train on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad at Suman. The engineers on the passenger train were increasing speed as they traveled up a slight grade; a sharp curve in the track and heavy timber blocked the approaching freight train from their view. Blame for the crash was placed on a misinterpretation of orders. The freight train was supposed to have taken a siding at McCool in Portage Township. Four employees on the passenger train and one passenger were injured in the collision, all suffered from rather serious internal injuries. A news item published in The Chesterton Tribune stated "Hayes, E., engineer passenger train, Garrett, Ind., leg crushed, internal injuries; will die." In fact, Edward Elsworth Hayes survived the accident and would pass away in 1951. Railway clerk Edwin L. Wisler brought suit against the railroad for damages in the amount of $5,000 in the Elkhart Circuit Court in November 1907. Wisler claimed the damages resulted from the injuries he sustained in this wreck; specifically, he claimed "to have been thrown against a table and his left side, back, spine, left should and left kidney injured" and that he continued to suffer from his injuries.

1906
January 2 - Chesterton (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A Michigan Central Railroad freight train backing up on a sidetrack near present day Eighteenth Street in Chesterton ran into a stopblock and telescoped several freight cars. No deaths or injuries resulted from this accident. Removal of the wreckage took nearly four hours to complete.

January 6 - Willowcreek (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 2
Synopsis: A Wabash Railroad freight train hauling 80 freight cars at full speed hit the derail at the Willowcreek crossing resulting in the engine and seven refrigerator cars being destroyed. The derail had been sent against the train and the engineer apparently had not seen it. When the wrecked engine was examined it was found that the throttle was wide open. Two crew members of the train were injured; the engineer lost a finger and the fireman was bruised about his face. A wrecking crew took approximately one hour to clear the tracks. No deaths resulted from this wreck.

February 10 - New Burdick (Pine Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 2
Synopsis: A freight train on the Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway was following orders to sidetrack at Burdick to allow for an eastbound passenger train, the Lake Shore Limited, to pass. The locomotive of the freight train, however, did not entirely clear the main line and the passenger train, traveling at a high rate of speed, side-swiped the freight train's locomotive at 7:00 pm. Both trains' locomotives were lifted from the track. The passenger train, after traveling more than 4,000 feet, came to rest with the train's locomotive and seven of its passenger cars derailed over the track embankment. The engineer of the passenger train, J. R. Valance, suffered broken legs and internal injuries, while the engineer of the freight train, W. H. Brady, was also seriously injured. Amazingly, no passengers were reported to have been injured in the accident. The total costs of damage to the locomotives, passenger cars, road bed, and disarranged schedules was estimated to exceed $50,000. Another injury, indirectly related to this accident, occurred when Charles Dettman fell from a flatcar at LaPorte while his switching crew was preparing to attend to the wreck at New Burdick; he cut his head badly and fractured a rib in the fall. Later investigation by Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway management determined that the engineer and brakeman of the freight train and the station agent at Burdick permitted the freight train to cross the main track in front of the passenger train, which had the right-of-way, for the purpose of taking on water; these three individuals were fired from the company.

February 16 - McCool (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: The night shift switch operator for the Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway (E.J. & E.) and Baltimore & Ohio Railroad incorrectly manipulated the switch levers in the interlocking tower at McCool while intoxicated. The engine and three freight cars on a Baltimore & Ohio freight train derailed as a result of the error. Soon after this wreck took place, three cars on an E.J. & E. freight train derailed at the same location at about midnight. No deaths or injuries resulted from either derailment. The switch operator, Thomas Bascom, was arrested by a Porter County deputy sheriff the following morning and taken to jail at Valparaiso to await trail. One newspaper account states that when asked why he incorrectly set the switch levers, Best replied "Just for fun." Justice Dille held a hearing on February 22 and bound Bascom over to the Porter Circuit Court for trial. At trial on March 16, 1906, Bascom was found guilty and given indeterminate sentence of two to fourteen years in the Jeffersonville reformatory. A motion requesting a new trial was declined by the judge.

February 16 - Wheeler (Union Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 2
Synopsis: A fast westbound freight train on New York, Chicago, & St. Louis Railroad (Nickel Plate Road) collided with the rear of another westbound freight train that was standing at the Wheeler Station at about 3:00 am. The locomotive, caboose, and six freight cars of the fast train caught fire and were destroyed along with a quantity of merchandise. The locomotive on the idle freight train was demolished. Ten head of cattle were killed as a consequence of the collision. Though no deaths resulted from the wreck, Engineer Logan and Conductor Denbrow of the idling freight train were slightly injured. A wrecking crew from Chicago cleared the tracks by noon. Losses from this wreck were estimated to at $50,000.

April 6 - Wheeler (Union Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A wheel flange on Chicago-bound "boomer" coal train No. 39 operating on the New York, Chicago, & St. Louis Railroad (Nickel Plate Road) failed. The broken wheel flange caused five railcars to derail as the train approached Wheeler. No deaths or injuries resulted from this accident.

September 22 - McCool (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A freight train wrecked during the evening of September 22 resulting in the derailment of six railcars. Reports indicate that no deaths or injuries resulted from the accident.

September 24 - Boone Grove (Porter Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Several railcars derailed on an eastbound Chicago & Erie Railroad freight train at Boone Grove. Newspaper reports covering the wreck make no mention of deaths or injuries.

August 13 - Chesterton (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Two freight cars derailed when a Michigan Central Railroad freight train was entering a sidetrack at Porter in order to get out of the way of an oncoming passenger train. A steam crane from Michigan City was used to lift the cars back onto the track. The wreck resulted in little damage, and no injuries or deaths.

August 29 - Porter (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 1
Synopsis: Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway (E.J. & E.) freight train No. 18 arrived in Porter at 7:15 am when the caboose and rear wheels of the last railcar left the tracks. The railcar that left the track road the ties until it struck a switch and went back onto the tracks. Workers were able to place the caboose back on the tracks after about three hours of effort. Conductor James Avery was injured in the accident having suffered a dislocated knee and scratched shoulders. The accident resulted in no deaths.

October 24 - Boone Grove (Porter Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A derailment occurred on the Chicago & Erie Railroad at Boone Grove. Newspaper accounts provide little detail about the accident other than it delayed service on the line for about one hour. It is presumed that no deaths or injuries resulted from the wreck.

November 12 - Union Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A broken railcar flange on a New York, Chicago, & St. Louis Railroad (Nickel Plate Road) freight train resulted in a minor wreck between Wheeler and Hobart. No deaths or injuries resulted from the accident.

November 12 - Woodville (Liberty Township)
Killed: 44 to 61 (some estimates state 100+)
Injured: 77 (33 critical, 44 slightly)
Synopsis: This has been the most deadly train wreck in Porter County history. The disaster involved a head-on collision on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad between eastbound freight train No. 98 and westbound passenger train No. 47 approximately five to six hundred feet west of the Woodville milk station. The freight train crew was unaware that the westbound passenger train was running in two sections. While stopped at a siding at Babcock in Liberty Township, the first section of the passenger train passed the idling freight train at the Babcock siding. The freight train then proceeded from the Babcock siding onto the mainline during a blinding snowstorm. The engineer and brakeman of the freight train were confused by signals at McCool in Portage Township and at Babcock, while the engineer of the first section of the passenger train also failed to properly signal the freight train of the presence of an oncoming second section. A coroner's inquest investigating the disaster found that the engineer of the first section of the passenger train and the conductor and head brakeman of the freight train were the direct cause of the accident. The official death toll was placed between fifty-five and sixty-one, almost entirely represented by immigrants from Bohemia, Croatia, Hungary, Lithuania, Poland, Russia, and Serbia. Many remains were not recovered since they were completely incinerated by flames that consumed several of the passenger cars immediately after the collision. Numerous newspapers actively covering this disaster reported that more than fifty passengers could not be accounted for in the rescue and recovery efforts. Given that many children and infants were riding free with their parents and had no tickets issued to them, some estimates of the death toll exceed one hundred. Detailed information concerning the Woodville wreck can be found on this blog post.


Photograph of the locomotive and debris at
the site of the Woodville train wreck.
Source: Chicago Daily Tribune, November 18, 1906.

Composite sample of newspaper headlines
concerning the wreck on the Baltimore & Ohio
Railroad at Woodville on November 12, 1906.

November 21 - Jackson Township or Westchester Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A freight train wrecked on the Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway east of Chesterton at 9:30 am. Very little information about this accident was reported and it is assumed that no injuries or death resulted from the wreck.

1907
January 4 - Burdick (Jackson Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: At about 5:30 am a Lake Shore and Michigan Southern Railway freight train stopped about two miles east of Chesterton on account of an overheated axle bearing. The flagman of the freight train could not proceed quickly enough to warn an oncoming pusher engine that his train had stopped on the tracks. As a result, the pusher engine rammed into the rear of the freight train demolishing the caboose and two freight cars of merchandise. The pusher engine was also badly damaged. No injuries or death resulted from this wreck.

January 21 - Liberty Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Limited No. 6 wrecked between Babcock and Woodville at Esserman Crossing (County Road 50 West) when the locomotive's tender climbed the rails and derailed several cars. Traffic was delayed for ten hours while the wreck was cleared. No injuries or deaths resulted from this accident.

March 20 - Pine Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway freight train wrecked during the morning hours east of Burdick. Eight railcars piled up and blocked the tracks for four hours. No injuries or deaths resulted from this accident.

June 20 to July 3 (exact date unknown) - Portage Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 7
Synopsis: Seven men were injured when an Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway (E.J. & E.) freight train's caboose derailed approximately two and one-half miles southwest of McCool. It was alleged that the train's engineer was traveling too fast and that the caboose upturned as a result. Reports indicate that "The men were thrown from the sides to ceiling and loose articles with broken glass, causing some very bad wounds." The injured men were taken to Porter and treated by a physician there. The caboose was uprighted onto the tracks by a wrecking crew and taken to Joilet, Will County, Illinois for repair. There were no reports of deaths resulting from this wreck.

July 24 - Babcock (Liberty Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A westbound Baltimore & Ohio Railroad freight train traveling at a high rate of speed and hauling coke for steel processing broke in two parts at Babcock. The grade being downshill at this location resulted in the rear portion of the train to crash into the fore portion; the force of the collision resulted in twenty-four gondolia cars, loaded with coke, to derail and turn over into the ditch along the tracks. The rails and roadbed were torn up for a considerable distance. The tracks were blocked for several hours as a wrecking crew salvaged the cars and repaired the roadbed and tracks. No injuries or deaths resulted from the wreck.

July 30 - McCool (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: The air brakes of an eastbound Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway freight train were set too suddenly near the pumping station at McCool resulting in one railcar being crushed and a blockade of the tracks until cleared by a wrecking crew. No injuries or deaths resulted from this incident.

August 9 - Chesterton (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 4
Synopsis: At about 7:40 am the air system broke on an eastbound Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway freight train about one-half mile east of Chesterton resulting in four empty railcars being thrown off the rails and onto the westbound tracks. Meanwhile, a westbound Twentieth Century Limited passenger train (No. 25), unaware of the wrecked freight train, plowed through the four railcars, derailing four of its own six railcars. Two passengers, R. R. Golden and Martin F. Lawrence, suffered slight cuts, James Downey, engineer, experienced bruises and scratches, while Charles Schultz, conductor, was slightly injured. Remarkably, none of the thirty-nine passengers or crew members of either train were killed. The wreck was cleared and debris that could not be removed was burned at the site of the wreck.

September 23 - Dune Park (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 4
Synopsis: Two trains, presumably sand trains, collided headon at a switch on the temporary tracks of Paul & Henry. The collision heavily damaged railcars and tore up the track. No injuries or deaths resulted from this incident as the the crew members of both trains were able to jump to safety prior to the collision.

October 3 - Willowcreek (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: The switchman operating the switch where the tracks of the Michigan Central Railroad and Baltimore & Ohio Railroad cross gave right-of-way to the Michigan Central tracks. A B. & O. train hit the switch and ran off the rails overturning the engine; the coaches of the B. & O. train remained on the the tracks. The engineer and fireman were able to escape injury by leaping from their locomotive. No deaths or injuries resulted from this accident.

October 10, 11, or 12 - Dune Park (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 1
Synopsis: Engine No. 5487 collided with the rear of engine No. 5755 of the Indiana Harbor Railroad due to a switch being inadvertantly left in the open position. The collision resulted in wrecking engine No. 5755 and injuring a brakeman. No deaths resulted from the collision.

November 9 - Porter (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Three railcars on a westbound Michigan Central Railroad freight train derailed as a result of a broken truck on one of the railcars. The westbound tracks were blocked for two to three hours to allow clearing and repair of the tracks by the wrecking crew. Damage was slight and no injuries or deaths resulted from this accident.

November 10 - Willowcreek (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A Baltimore & Ohio Railroad wreck occurred west of Willowcreek derailing several railcars and tearing up a considerable amount of track. A newspaper item concerning the wreck states that "No one was seriously hurt," which suggests that there may have been some injuries associated with this accident.

November 19 - Dune Park (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway freight train wrecked at Dune Park blockading the main tracks for several hours. There were no reports of injuries or deaths resulting from this accident.

1908
January 18 - Center Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A freight engine on the Pennsylvania Railroad tipped over on its side after running over the derail where the tracks of the Pennsylvania Railroad and Grand Trunk Railway cross one another in the northeast quarter of Section 16 of Center Township. No deaths or injuries are believed to have resulted from this wreck.

February 1 - Porter (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Two freight railcars on the Pere Marquette Railway derailed in the Porter yards and completely blocked the tracks for several hours. No death of injuries were reported for this wreck.

March 11 - Porter (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 3 (?)
Synopsis: A Pere Marquette Railway engine ran into a refrigerator car at the site where the tracks of the Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway, Michigan Central Railroad, and Pere Marquette Railway converge. The collision threw the refrigerator car partly across the main tracks of the Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway. Shortly after this wreck the westbound Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway passenger train No. 23, traveling at fifty miles per hour, collided with the refrigerator car. The passenger train continued forward for another 150 yards before it ceased travel; the "crash was sufficient to throw every car into a jumbled mass." According to an account of the incident, "The accident was due to the negligence on the part of the Pere Marquette engine crew that had been switching cars over to the Elgin, Joliet and Eastern over the Lake Shore Y at Porter. After the Pere Marquette engine had passed over to the Elgin, Joliet and Eastern track a Lake Shore westbound train pulled down upon the passing track with which the Y connects and stopped at the crossing of the Michigan Central, just east of the tower. The Pere Marquette engine returning from the Elgin, Joliet and Eastern yards over the Y track did not see the freight train on the passing track and bunted into the side of the freight with considerable force. Two cars, the refrigerator car and a gondola, were derailed, the refrigerator car being swung clear around until one end protruded slightly over the westbound main track.... The passenger engine was completely dismantled and the Pere Marquette engine was badly wrecked about the pilot." Remarkably, there were no deaths resulting from this wreck and only a few minor injuries. The fireman and a couple of passengers on the passenger train suffered scratches about their face.

April 16 - Baillytown (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A broken air hose on a westbound Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway freight train resulted in five railcars jumping the track at the line's bridge spanning the Little Calumet River; the derailment demolished these railcars. It took several hours for wrecking crews from Englewood, Cook County, Illinois, and Elkart, Elkhart County, Indiana, to remove debris and repair the tracks. No injuries or deaths were reported to have occurred due to this wreck.

April 22 - Dune Park (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A minor freight train wreck took place on the Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway and caused "but slight inconvience to the passenger service" on the line. Few particulars concerning this wreck were published. It is believed that no injuries or deaths resulted from the accident.

May 30 - Coburg (Washington Township)
Killed: 1
Injured: 0
Synopsis: The engineer of passenger train No. 6, engine No. 1475 headed eastbound on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad was instantly killed at approximately 6:45 pm when making an effort to see if his engine was operating satisfactory. Engineer David Douglas Smith had adjusted the wedges at the train's drive wheel while in Chicago. As the passenger train approached Coburg, Smith remarked to the train's fireman, Frank Beinke, that he "wondered if those wedges were working all right." Smith got down from his box and walked along the gangway to the fireman's side of the engine and grasped the handles, leaned forward, and peered toward the drive wheels. At the instant that Smith peered down, Beinke heard a commotion behind him and, glancing around, saw Smith knocked from the train. The emergency brakes were applied and fireman Beinke informed the trainmaster, T. W. Barrett, that Smith had been struck by the Coburg switchstand. Barrett, conductor William Coble, and brakeman Clemens alighted from the train to search for Smith body and found his lifeless body approximately forty car lengths in the rear of the train. The body was placed on a stretcher and taken to the baggage car where it was transferred to Garrett, DeKalb County, Indiana. DeKalb County Coroner W. W. Swarts found that Smith's skull had been crushed and that his shoulder and arm were broken; the death was declared to be an accident.

September 14 - Chesterton (Westchester Township)
Killed: 1
Injured: 37
Synopsis: A eastbound Lake Erie & Western Railroad excursion train traveling from Chicago to Indianapolis collided with a Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway theatre train at 12:55 am in Chesterton. The excursion train was pulling out from a siding at Chesterton where it had waited for a freight train to safely pass. As the last coach on the excursion train crossed over the tracks Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway, a suburban train known as the Theatre Dummy, struck the rear of the Indianapolis-bound coach. The cause of the collision was dense fog and smoke that had settled over the area for an extended number of miles. The engineer on the Lake Shore & Michigan Southern train, H. E. Stockwell, was unable to see the block signal, which had been activated when the Indianapolis-bound excursion train backed into the siding. Thus, the crew of Lake Shore & Michigan Southern train believed that they had a clear signal to proceed at usual speed and quickly came upon the excursion train's last coach, containing 50 passengers, crossing its path. The rear coach of the excursion train was completely demolished, and the two coaches in front of it were heavily damaged. Esther Hecox, a passenger sitting at the rear of the last coach of the Lake Erie & Western's train, was pinned between two walls of the smashed coach; she was rescued but very shortly afterward passed away from her injuries. At least 37 other passengers on the Lake Erie & Western train suffered injuries, mostly cuts, internal injuries, and bruising from the crushing nature of the collision. Local physicians R. H. Axe, Joseph Von Osinski, and Charles O. Wiltfong were immediately on the scene treating the crash victims. The Club Cigar Store, located on the south side of present day Broadway Avenue, served as a triage center. According to an account of the collision published in The Chesterton Tribune, "The scene at the Club Cigar store was such as to nauseate the most vigorous person. Billiard tables were converted into operating tables and the floor was strewn with the wounded." No passengers or crew on the Chicago-bound Lake Shore & Michigan Southern train suffered injuries, and the locomotive sustained very light damage.


The Club Cigar Store, the brick building in the center of this postcard
image, served as a triage center for victims of the September 14,
1908, wreck of the Lake Erie & Western Railroad excursion train.
Source: Collection of Steven R. Shook.

Interior view of the Club Cigar Store, which served as a triage center
for victims of the September 14, 1908, wreck of the
Lake Erie & Western Railroad excursion train.
Source: Collection of Steven R. Shook.

1909
March 4 - Center Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: The westbound Pennsylvania Railroad No. 9 passenger train derailed at its crossing over the Grand Trunk Railway tracks approximately two miles northwest of Valparaiso near County Road 250 West. The wreck was caused when the tower operator signaled the engineer of the train to slow and then signaled that the track was clear when it was not. The engine and baggage car derailed while all other railcars remained on the track. Traffic on the railroad was delayed several hours. No injuries or deaths resulted from the accident.

June 19 - Dune Park (Westchester Township)
Killed: 12
Injured: 41
Synopsis: The eastbound Chicago, Lake Shore & South Bend Railway train No. 59, near the Shadyside Crossing at Dune Park, overran a crossing point of the track and caused a head-on collision with westbound train No. 58. The collision occurred at a point where the tracks curved and a number of small hills were believed to have completely obscured the view of the trains' motormen. Passengers on the eastbound train were returning home from the Cobe Cup automobile race in Crown Point, Lake County, Indiana. Responsibility for the accident was placed upon the motorman who was killed, who reportedly disobeyed orders. Ironically, the general manager of the Chicago, Lake Shore & South Bend Railway was in the cab with the motorman and was also aware of the orders. Detailed information concerning the Shadyside Crossing wreck can be found in this blog post.


Head-on collision of eastbound train No. 59 and westbound
train No. 58 on the Chicago, Lake Shore & South Bend Railway
near the Shadyside Crossing at Baillytown on June 19, 1909.
Source: Collection of Steven R. Shook.

1910
July 2 - Kouts (Pleasant Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: The second section of the No. 80 express freight train derailed near Kouts throwing several railcars into the ditch and across the mainline tracks of the Chicago & Erie Railroad. No death or injuries resulted from the accident.

September 3 - Valparaiso (Center Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 2
Synopsis: A westbound freight train on the Grand Trunk Railway pulled up to the Calumet Avenue grade crossing and the locomotive was uncoupled from the train so that it could proceed past the crossing to take on water. At 3:30 pm a Valparaiso & Northern Railway interurban car approached the crossing and Motorman John Arnold brought the car to a stop. Interurban Conductor James Willis Wickersham determined the crossing was clear, but he did not place any flagging at the crossing to warn other trains. Meanwhile, the Grand Trunk Railway locomotive was entering the crossing; its engineer was unable to view the interurban car from the seat in his cab. The locomotive struck the interurban car spinning it completely around, detaching its rear truck, and pulling the body partly off its frame. A wrecking crew placed the damaged interurban car on a flatbed railcar and it was transported for repairs. Nine passengers were riding on the interurban car at the time of the wreck and two were injured. The Valparaiso & Northern Railway filed a lawsuit against the Grand Trunk Railway for $3,000 in damages. The Valparaiso & Northern Railway had just started operations about two weeks before this incident with two passenger cars. The wreck resulted in the interurban company operating only one car for several weeks until the damages on the second car were repaired and the car was put back into service. Wickersham would later die in a horrendous interurban wreck about eight miles west of the LaPorte on January 1, 1916.

1912
March 13 - McCool (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured:0
Synopsis: Engine No. 4039 on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad derailed near the tower located at McCool. The derailment resulted in little damage.

March 19 - Porter (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A loaded freight car on the Pere Marquette Railway derailed at the crossing of the Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway in Porter. The railcar tore out the interlock wiring and the crossing's signal apparatus. Westbound passenger trains were delayed at the Pere Marquette depot while the car was removed from the crossing. No deaths or injuries resulted from the wreck.

July 2 - Valparaiso (Center Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 3
Synopsis: A tower operator at the crossing of the Grand Trunk Railway and the New York, Chicago & St. Louis Railroad, mistakenly threw open a switch as Nickel Plate passenger train No. 2 was approaching. Traveling at forty miles per hour, the locomotive and baggage car of the Nickel Plate train derailed at 1:00 pm, with the locomotive turning over onto its side. The fireman and brakeman jumped from the train when they saw that the signal changed. Engineer Frank Telley remained with the locomotive, however, and was able to reduce the speed of the train before it struck the derail mechanism. Three crew members were injured, but there were no deaths as a result of this derailment. Engineer Telley was scalded by the release of steam from the damaged locomotive. Fireman F. A. Tew and Brakeman Earl Harper were badly bruised. This accident occurred near present day County Road 250 West, south of Indiana State Road 130.

July 16 - Furnessville (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 20
Synopsis: The westbound Pere Marquette Railway passenger train No. 4 departed Michigan City, LaPorte County, Indiana, at 3:19 pm. As the train passed Fuller's Crossing south of Furnessville, a loose board at the crossing got drawn under the wheels of the forward trucks on the first coach causing three coaches, a dining car, a baggage car, and the locomotive to roll down a five foot embankment. Over two hundred passengers were on the westbound train. It was estimated that about twenty passenger and train crew members were injured. Engineer William Davidson suffered serious injuries after being buried under coal from the upturned tender. Ironically, local resident Claude Williams had traveled over Fuller's Crossing just prior to the accident and noticed the loose plank. The Chesterton Tribune states in its coverage of the derailment that had Mr. Williams thrown the "loose plank that he noticed there into the ditch, he would have saved the railroad company in the neighborhood of $100,000, averted a wreck that placed two hundred lives in danger and saved the life of one man, and he would have laid himself liable to arrest and prosecution for destroying railroad property in addition. As it was he looked the plank over, noted its condition and drove on...." Though this newspaper coverage implies that one man died, there is no evidence that this was the case.

1915
November 26 - Morris (Jackson Township)
Killed: 2
Injured: 2
Synopsis: The No. 95 westbound freight train on the Wabash Railroad was operating as two sections. The first section, pulled by engine No. 2081 and consisting of nine empty and eighteen loaded freight cars and a caboose, passed through Westville, LaPorte County, Indiana at 3:50 am. Twelve minutes later the second section of the freight train, pulled by engine No 2036 and consisting of twenty-seven loaded freight cars and a caboose, passed through Westville. An investigation led to the conclusion that the second section of the train was operating too fast or that the lead section was operating too slow. Regardless, at 4:10 am the second section rammed into the rear of the first section approximately three miles east of Chesterton in Jackson Township near the Morris Siding. The engine of the second section, operated by Engineer Gould, telescoped through the caboose of the first section and destroyed several other railcars. The second engine and twelve railcars came off the tracks. Brakeman Benjamin H. Carr and Conductor Howard Sylvester Little were riding in the caboose of the first section at the time of the wreck and were killed instantly. Little died due strangulation caused by wreckage that was pressured against his neck. Carr, age twenty-five years, died as a result of a broken neck; his remains were discovered buried in water and mud under the engine tender. A newspaper report states that "His [Carr's] neck, arms and one leg were broken, the other leg having been cut off and carried fifty feet away from the body." The injured included engineer N. F. Gould, who suffered a broken arm and serious shoulder bruising, and the badly bruised Harry Beard, a fireman.


Newspaper headline concerning the November 26, 1915,
fatal wreck on the Wabash Railroad in Jackson Township.
Source: The Chesterton Tribune, December 2, 1915.

1917
March 14 - Woodville (Liberty Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Baltimore & Ohio Railroad freight train No. 94, heading eastbound from Chicago, derailed a short distance west of Woodville due to a broken rail. Five loaded stock cars were overturned resulting in the death of twenty-five cattle. Other cattle escaped from the wreck and had to be rounded up. Six other cars, as well as the locomotive, remained upright. The line remained closed overnight and traffic routed through Valparaiso on the Grand Trunk Railway. No injuries or deaths resulted from this wreck.

March 22 - Babcock (Liberty Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A freight car of lumber was wrecked on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad at Babcock when it was bumped too forcibly during switching. The force of the bump caused the freight car's trucks to be completed removed from it. A wrecking crew lifted the remains of the freight car and placed it into a ditch where it was burned. The displaced lumber was loaded onto another freight car. No injuries or deaths resulted from this accident.

April 1 - Porter (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A Pere Marquette Railway freight train traveling west bound at ten miles per hour cleared the Lake Shore & Michigan South Railway tracks just west of the Porter depot when a brake beam failed. Men at the depot witnessed the accident and frantically waved down the engineer. One railcar loaded with hardwood lumber derailed and turned ninety degree across the tracks. A total of ten railcars derailed and three sets of tracks were badly torn up. All the railcars that derailed were either hauling barrels of oil or lumber. No injuries or deaths resulted from the accident.

October 31 - Valparaiso (Center Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A broken wheel on railcar hauling anthracite coal of a westbound freight train on the New York, Chicago, & St. Louis Railroad (Nickel Plate Road) resulted in the car being completely overturned a few feet west of the Valparaiso station. No injuries or deaths resulted from the accident.

December 14 - Kouts (Pleasant Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 1
Synopsis: A freight train ran into the rear of another freight train standing idle on the Erie Railroad tracks near Kouts. B F. Doudna, of the idle freight train, attempted to flag the oncoming freight train as it approached his train. Owing to a blinding snowstorm and heavy fog at the time, Doudna's flagging signal could not be seen. The caboose, a railcar packed with oranges, and another railcar filled with meat were demolished on the idle freight train. The citizens of Kouts were provided with an early Christmas treat of oranges, as they were strewn along the tracks for several hundred feet. One of the crew members in the caboose was slightly injured from the impact.

December 15 - McCool (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 10
Synopsis: Interurban car No. 402 traveling westbound toward Gary, Lake County, Indiana, on the Valparaiso & Northern crashed head-on into car No. 403 heading eastbound at McCool. Cor No. 403 had experienced locomotion problems near Garyton, which caused a slight delay. Meanwhile, car No. 402 could not make it to the siding quick enough to avoid the collision. The front ends of both interurban cars were badly damaged as a result of the wreck. While no deaths resulted from the collision, ten men were injured, including three men employed by the rail line.

1918
January 26 - Valparaiso (Center Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Interurban car No. 404 on the Gary & Valparaiso Railway derailed between Vale Park and Wolf's Corners (along the east side of present day Calumet Avenue between Glendale Boulevard and Vale Park Road). Snow drifts caused the car to become stuck twice; in an effort to break through the snow the car was derailed. No deaths of injuries resulted from the accident.

May 30 - Valparaiso (Center Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A switch that was inadvertently left open caused the derailment of the eastbound No. 4 express train's locomotive, tender, and two railcars on the Grand Trunk Railway immediately west of the Washington Street crossing in Valparaiso. It was believed that the switch was left open by a freight crew that had previously traveled across the line. No injuries resulted from this derailment.


Derailment of Express Train No. 4 on the Grand
Trunk Railway immediately west of the Washington
Street crossing in Valparaiso on May 30, 1918.
Source: Collection of Steven R. Shook.

Derailment of Express Train No. 4 on the Grand
Trunk Railway immediately west of the Washington
Street crossing in Valparaiso on May 30, 1918.
Source: Collection of Steven R. Shook.

1919
June 23 - Liberty Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 1
Synopsis: Interurban passenger car No. 101 of the Gary & Valparaiso Railroad Company operated by motorman John Mooker collided with a repair car at 10:00 am along a curve near the northwest corner of Wauhob Lake. The repair car was traveling to a switch to allow the passenger car the right-of-way when its pantograph came off the overhead electric line causing a brief stall. As the repair car started back up, it came around a turn at the Wauhob Lake milk stand and collided with the passenger car; neither motorman could see the other's car due to the configuration of the curve, which was located immediately south of County Road 700 North. The front of each car was crushed like "an egg shell" and the top of the cars were pushed back. Motorman Mooker leaped from his car when he saw that a collision was going to occur and injured his back when he landed on the ground. The motorman on the repair car ran to the back of his car and avoided injury. A witness to the accident, Dick Proseus, stated that the passenger car rose two feet in the air when the cars collided and then came back down to rest on the rails. There were no riders on the passenger car other than Motorman Mooker.

1921
February 27 - Porter (Westchester Township)
Killed: 37
Injured: 100+
Synopsis: New York Central Railroad No. 151, known as the Interstate Express, rams directly into passenger coach of Michigan Central Railroad No. 20, known as the Canadian. The engineer and fireman on the Michigan Central train disregarded stop signals, passing a point where the New York Central and Michigan Central tracks crossed at grade level. A total of thirty-five passengers were killed, as well as the engineer and fireman on the New York Central locomotive. More information concerning this wreck is available in another post on this blog. George E. Neeley, in his book Valparaiso: A Pictorial History, declares that this particular wreck was the deadliest in Porter County history. That statement is incorrect, the Woodville wreck of 1906 was the deadliest rail disaster in county history.


Collision of the Michigan Central Railroad's Interstate Express
passenger train with the New York Central Railroad's
Canadian passenger train at Porter on February 27, 1921.
Source: Collection of Steven R. Shook.


Collision of the Michigan Central Railroad's Interstate Express
passenger train with the New York Central Railroad's
Canadian passenger train at Porter on February 27, 1921.
Source: Collection of Steven R. Shook.

Composite sample of newspaper headlines concerning the collision
of the Michigan Central Railroad's Interstate Express
passenger train with the New York Central Railroad's
Canadian passenger train at Porter on February 27, 1921.

1922
July 5 - Dune Park (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 76
Synopsis: Pere Marquette Railway passenger train No. 6, heading westbound, collided with a New York Central Railroad "pusher" locomotive near Dune Park in Westchester Township at about 9:00 pm on July 5, 1922. The passenger train was inadvertently transferred from the main line to a siding as a result of a switch being left open. The passenger train was estimated to be traveling at sixty miles per hour when it took to the siding. Engineer Roost realized his train had been switched to the siding and immediately applied his train's brakes. At the time of the collision the passenger train had slowed to twenty-five miles per hour. An African American man, a chef on the Pere Marquette passenger train, was terribly scalded by an large overturned kettle of soup; newspaper articles covering the collision speculated that this man would likely die as a result of his burns. Besides the scalding of the chef, another seventy-five individuals on the train were injured. Both locomotives were knocked off the tracks and badly damaged. Blame for the wreck was placed on Engineer Roost for disregarding two signals indicating that the siding switch was open.


Newspaper item concerning collision between Pere
Marquette passenger train and New York
Central locomotive near Dune Park.
Source: The Belvidere Daily Republican, July 6, 1922.

August 5 - Dune Park (Portage Township)
Killed: 1
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Forty year old Joseph Sullic of South Chicago, a member of a wrecking crew working to place a derailed engine back onto the track of the New York Central Railroad at Dune Park, was struck by a fast train as he stepped onto an adjacent track.

1923
August 27 - Suman (Jackson Township)
Killed: 1
Injured: 4
Synopsis: A washout of the railbed on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad tracks approximately one-half mile east of Suman caused by heavy rainfall resulted in the westbound six-car No. 13 express train, traveling at fifty miles per hour, to derail. The locomotive and its tender overturned off the track and the tracks were torn up for a considerable distance. It was reported that the sound of the wreck, the "crashing roar of breaking wood and steel," could be heard from miles away. Damages resulting from the wreck were estimated at $100,000. Engineer George Novinger was killed in the accident when he was crushed and scalded between the ground and upturned engine.


Derailment of Express Train No. 13 on the Baltimore &
Ohio Railroad at Suman on August 27, 1923.
Source: Collection of Steven R. Shook.

Derailment of Express Train No. 13 on the Baltimore &
Ohio Railroad at Suman on August 27, 1923.
Source: Collection of Steven R. Shook.

Derailment of Express Train No. 13 on the Baltimore &
Ohio Railroad at Suman on August 27, 1923.
Source: Collection of Steven R. Shook.

1927
October 23 - Tremont (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A passenger train traveling westbound on the Chicago, Lake Shore & South Bend Railway crashed into the rear of a freight train at 9:00 pm about three miles east of Tremont. Heavy fog prevented the engineer from seeing the signal lights of the freight train, which was slowly traveling eastward. The caboose and two freight cars were completely demolished. The engineer spotted the oncoming freight train and ran into the smoking car just prior to impact. No injuries resulted from this collision.

1928
October 23 - Sedley (Union Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A freight car on the Grand Trunk Railway derailed across County Road 475 West blocking the roadway for more than two hours. Little information exists concerning this wreck and it is unknown whether injuries resulted from the accident.

1936
November 22 - Burns Ditch (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: At 5:30 am, a Wabash Railroad freight train jumped the tracks on the Burns Ditch trestle, paralleling U.S. Route 20, in Portage township derailing sixteen boxcars. The wreck tore up more than one mile of track. The derailment was attributed to barrels of soda ash shifting from side to side in a boxcar near the center of the train. The barrels created sufficient momentum to roll the boxcar to its side and pull others off the tracks. Numerous police were called to the scene to prevent looting of merchandise contained in several of the derailed boxcars. Goods included clothing, hats, shoes, baby carriages, and furniture. Two tank cars filled with gasoline also derailed. No injuries are believed to have resulted from this wreck.

1938
January 13 - Liberty Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A freight train traveling on the Wabash Railroad derailed at 2:30 am between Crocker and Chesterton in Liberty Township. A total of nineteen railcars were strewn along the tracks; only two railcars remained on the tracks. The wreck was attributed to a split rail caused by cold weather. Indiana State Police assisted the railroad in guarding the wrecked railcars from looters. Reports indicate that no injuries resulted from this wreck.

September 9 - Dune Park (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A freight train operating on the Outer Belt Line of the New York Central Railroad derailed near Dune Park. Twenty-six freight cars left the track and several hundred feet of rail was torn up. The cause of the wreck was believed to have been due to either a defective rail or spreading rails. Numerous railcars contained livestock and agricultural goods, such as oranges, and about one hundred and fifty head of cattle were killed in the derailment. Total loss was estimated to be approximately $40,000. None of the crew members of the freight train were killed or injured in the wreck.

1939
January 31 - Center Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A Grand Trunk Railway freight train derailed at the Pennsylvania Railroad crossover about two miles northwest of Valparaiso near County Road 250 West. Two freight cars and the caboose left the tracks. No injuries or deaths were reported to have resulted from the wreck.

1941
April 26 - Chesterton (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A New York Central Railroad freight train derailed in downtown Chesterton and slid on its side for some distance before coming to rest just short of the Calumet Road crossing. The locomotive fell on its side and several freight cars were destroyed. The train was hauling hogs and cattle; the hog car was immediately behind the locomotive and its derailment resulted in killing forty hogs. The crew of the train escaped injury by jumping from train as the derailment was taking place. The engineer of the locomotive, Harvey Barnhart, believed that his train was running on the mainline. Instead, the train was traveling on a sidetrack and hit a closed switch that resulted in the derailment.




Onlookers at the site of the April 26, 1941, derailment
of the New York Central Railroad freight train
derailment at the Calumet Road crossing> in Chesterton.
Source: Westchester Public Library,
Images of America: Westchester Township. [see p. 77]

May 5 - Center Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 1
Synopsis: Two engines of an eastbound Pennsylvania Railroad passenger train derailed at the Grand Trunk Railway crossover at 1:00 am approximately two miles northwest of Valparaiso near County Road 250 West. The cause of the wreck was due to a switch that had "popped open" when the engine of the passenger train passed over it. No deaths resulted from the wreck, but engineer William H. Carrier suffered bruises about his arms, legs, and head when he leaped from the cab of the engine. Engineer Carrier was transported to Porter Memorial Hospital in Valparaiso for treatment of his injuries.

1942
December 2 - Porter (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 2
Synopsis: An axle snaps on the fourth passenger coach of the eight coach Wolverine Flyer traveling eastbound on the tracks of the Michigan Central Railroad. The broken axle caused the railcar to drop to the tracks and derail, while the other coaches were leaning over at a forty-five degree angle. Two passengers were injured, a man with a fractured shoulder and woman suffering from shock.

1946
March 28 - Liberty Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A westbound drag freight, designated Extra No. 2802 West, on the Wabash Railroad derailed at 6:48 am one-half mile east of Indiana State Road 49. The wreck was one of the most significant to occur in the Wabash Railroad's Fourth District. A total of forty-one cars hauling coal, corn, oil, and sand derailed. A tank car topped the mass of derailed cars. The engine and twenty cars at the rear of the train remained on the track. Cause for the wreck was initially believed to be due to a broken rail. However, engineer Scotty Brandon was ultimately cited for causing the wreck by exceeding the speed limit at that point by two miles per hour. Wrecking crews labored at removing cars and repairing track till midnight on September 30. No deaths or injuries resulted from this derailment.

1953
September 14 - Valparaiso (Center Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A caboose at the Pennsylvania Railroad yards was moved toward the turntable and when its brakes failed. Consequently, the caboose continued traveling until it toppled into the well of the turntable. A wrecking train was used to lift the caboose back onto the rails. No injuries or deaths resulted from this accident.


Pennsylvania Railroad caboose in turntable pit at Valparaiso.
Source: The Vidette-Messenger, September 15, 1953.

1954
August 6 - Center Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A wreck of a westbound Grand Trunk Railway freight train took place at 12:35 am at the New York, Chicago & St. Louis Railroad (Nickel Plate Road) crossover about two miles northwest of Valparaiso near County Road 250 West. A broken wheel or a broken truck on one of the railcars was believed to have caused the wreck. A total of fifty-six freight cars of the ninety-one car train cleared the crossing when a broken wheel or truck on the only unloaded freight car broke loose and was dragged past the Nickel Plate crossover. This railcar then struck the switch tower and "bounced" back into the right-of-way, which resulted in the derailment of twenty-one additional freight cars. Some of the freight cars telescoped into one another. The cars were filled with general merchandise, paper, and asbestos. A wrecking crew cleared the tracks in about seven hours. No deaths or injuries were reported for this accident.

1956
March 6 - Chesterton (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Four railcars derailed at 11:58 am on a westbound one hundred car freight train operating on the tracks of the New York Central Railroad. The freight train blocked the Calumet Road crossing for about seventy-five minutes. No deaths or injuries were sustained in this wreck.

1957
February 15 - Kouts (Pleasant Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A wheel came off a freight train railcar derailing several of the railcars on the Pennsylvania Railroad. No deaths or injuries resulted from this derailment.

June 23 - Valparaiso (Center Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A single Grand Trunk Railway freight car derailed near the Roosevelt Road crossing in Valparaiso at 5:00 pm as a result of a worn journal bearing on an axle of the car. The derailed freight car, hauling limestone, was the thirty-second car of the one hundred and fourteen car freight train; the derailed freight car did not turn over.

1960
September 1 - McCool (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: An empty boxcar on a Baltimore & Ohio Railroad freight train derailed near McCool when a worn journal bearing failed on the axle of the car. A farmer noticed the flaming truck on the boxcar and alerted the tower at McCool, which signaled the train to stop. A work crew installed new trucks under the boxcar and placed it back on the track. No injuries or deaths were reported for this accident.

1963
October 1 - Chesterton (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: During the evening hours, five railcars on a one hundred and twenty-four car freight train on the tracks of the New York Central Railroad derailed. The drawbar between the 44th and 45th railcars broke and dropped down onto the track, which tore up a trestle and track for a considerable distance. Two of the five railcars that derailed tumbled into Coffee Creek, just east of Calumet Road. A passenger train leaving Chesterton very soon after the freight train derailed hit one of the derailed cars. The passenger train received some slight damage, but no deaths or injuries resulted from this wreck.

1965
January 29 - Wheeler (Union Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: A single boxcar on a seventy-seven car Grand Trunk Western Railroad freight train derailed at 9:50 am approximately 450 feet east of the Wheeler Road crossing (County Road 475 West) due to a worn out journal bearing on an axle. The journal bearing completely broke dropping the freight car loaded with automobile parts off its support frame. No deaths or injuries were sustained in this wreck.

April 28 - Chesterton (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Three diesel locomotives derailed at 7:00 am on the tracks of the New York Central Railroad between 15th Street and Waverly Road. No deaths or injuries were sustained in this wreck.

May 21 - Portage (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Twenty freight cars on a westbound New York Central Railroad train jumped the track at 2:05 am approximately one mile east of Willowcreek Road. It is believed that no injuries or deaths resulted from this wreck.

1966
April 5 - Porter (Westchester Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Three railcars on a Michigan Central Railroad freight train derailed at 6:30 am while the train was crossing the New York Central Railroads tracks. No deaths or injuries resulted from this wreck.

1970
January 1 - Center Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: An eastbound twenty-seven car Penn Central Railroad freight train derailed east of County Road 250 West about two miles northwest of Valparaiso. Two boxcars of produce were destroyed by fire. The cause of the wreck was believed to have been due to a broken axle on the truck of a boxcar. No deaths or injuries resulted from this wreck.

1973
February 24 - Valparaiso (Center Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: The seventieth car on a ninety-five car Penn Central Railroad freight train derailed near US Route 30 west of Indiana State Road 49. No deaths or injuries resulted from this wreck.

July 1 - Pleasant Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Fourteen freight cars of a Penn Central Railroad freight train derailed at 6:00 pm near the County Road 600 East crossing south of Indiana State Road 8 approximately four miles east of Kouts. No deaths or injuries resulted from this wreck.

1975
July 31 - Liberty Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Fifty-one cars on a one hundred and thirty-five car Baltimore & Ohio Railroad freight train derailed between County Road 50 West and Meridian Road two miles south of Chesterton. The train was traveling at about 60 miles per hour when the accident took place. Most of the derailed freight cars and tank cars were empty. No deaths or injuries resulted from this wreck.

1976
May 13 - Portage (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Twelve railcars and the caboose of a one hundred and seven car Conrail freight train derailed at 8:54 pm at the Willowcreek Road crossing. After the derailment, the train continued westward for quite some distance tearing up the tracks in its wake. About 250 residents of Portage were evacuated from their homes for approximately an hour due to leakage from a tank car owned by Allied Chemical Company that was hauling acid. Though the leak resulted in a strong odor, it was determined that the acid and fumes were not dangerous. No deaths or injuries resulted from this wreck.

1998
April 19 - Suman (Jackson Township) and McCool (Portage Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Ten railcars of an eighty car CSX Transportation freight train derailed at a fatigued stretch of track near County Road 350 East at 8:15 pm. No death or injuries resulted from the derailment. The following day, a boxcar filled with lead sulfate was righted and placed back upon the rails at the wreck site. The boxcar was then pulled by cable down the tracks a short distance using a bulldozer so that other railcars could be lifted back onto the track. The cable came off the boxcar and it began to roll westward along the slight downhill grade. A locomotive was sent after the runaway boxcar, sounding its horn at roadway intersections while traveling at speeds up to thirty miles per hour. The boxcar traveled west a total of seven miles when it then crashed into a train that was stopped just west of Indiana State Road 149 at 4:45 am. No injuries resulted from this secondary accident.

June 18 - Portage (Portage Township)
Killed: 3
Injured: 5
Synopsis: At approximately 4:31 am, a Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation District (NICTD) two car passenger train No. 102, traveling westbound, collided with the second trailer of a tractor-trailer hauling steel coils from a crossing located within the boundaries of National Steel Corporation's Midwest Steel facility. Upon colliding, the second trailer broke loose from the first trailer and was dragged along the tracks by the NICTD passenger train. The single chain securing the nineteen ton steel coil on the second trailer failed and the steel coil entered the passenger train (car 11) at the front bulkhead and partially traveled into the passenger compartment of the railcar. Thee individuals on the passenger train, including the NICTD employee, were killed; two were killed instantly and the third passed away forty-three minutes after the accident while still pinned under the steel coil. Names of those killed in the accident were Gary G. Berndt, William John McCombs, and Glen Walker. Five other passengers suffered minor injuries and were treated and released the same day of the accident. The National Transportation Safety Board determined that the probable cause of the accident "was ineffective action by Federal, State, and private agencies to permanently resolve safety problems at the Midwest Steel grade crossing, which they knew to be a hazardous crossing."




Damage to car 11 of Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation
District westbound train No. 102 after colliding with a
tractor-trailer hauling steel coils at Portage.
Source: National Transportation Safety Board, 1999.



Nineteen-ton steel coil lodged in the passenger
compartment of Northern Indiana Commuter District
train No. 102 after collision with tractor-trailer at Portage.
Source: National Transportation Safety Board, 1999.

2003
February 20 - Wheeler (Union Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Twenty-six railcars of a one hundred and twenty-two car Canadian Pacific Railway train derailed in Union Township one-quarter mile west of County Road 475 West. Some derailed cars struck two other railcars containing hazardous material that were standing on an adjacent track. All of the derailed cars remained upright. No deaths or injuries resulted from the incident, but three-quarters of a mile of track were torn up.

2007
June 27 - Liberty Township
Killed: 0
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Four railcars of an eastbound one hundred and fourteen car freight train on the CSX Transportation tracks derailed at approximately 8:30 am about one hundred feet east of the County Road 50 West viaduct, located north of County Road 900 North. No deaths or injuries resulted from the derailment.

2010
June 16 - Suman (Jackson Township)
Killed: 1
Injured: 0
Synopsis: Fourteen railcars derail on an eastbound CSX Transportation freight train composed of forty-two railcars at 4:00 pm. While there were no death or injuries as a result of the derailment, Michael Bowling, of Dyer, Lake County, Indiana, was killed on June 17 when a crane fell on him while he was overseeing the clearing of the tracks of railcars and shipping containers.




The June 17, 2010, toppled crane incident that resulted
in the accidental death of one worker at the site of the
CSX Transportation derailment at Suman.
Source: Jon L. Hendricks, The Times.

2012
January 6 - Coburg (Jackson Township and Washington Township)
Killed: 0
Injured: 2
Synopsis: At 1:18 pm on January 6, 2012, CSX Transportation freight train Q39506 collided with the rear of standing westbound CSX Transportation freight train K68303 between Suman and Coburg. After the crew of train Q39506 had escaped their locomotive, which had derailed onto its side, a third train, westbound CSX Transportation freight train Q16105, struck the derailed locomotive. Seven railcars derailed from train K68303, two locomotives and six railcars derailed from train Q39506, and three locomotives and twelve railcars derailed from Q16105. Diesel fuel from the derailed locomotives ignited resulting in a fire. Total damage from this collision of three trains was approximately $5 million. The National Transportation Safety Board determined that the probable cause of the accident was "a failure of the crew of train Q39506 to maintain vigilant attention to wayside signals, communicate effectively, avoid distractions from prohibited text messaging, and comply with the speed restrictions required by the railroad signal system. Contributing to the accident was the lack of a positive control system that would have stopped the train and prevented the collision regardless of the crew's inaction."




Site of January 6, 2012, CSX Transportation collision
and derailment. Jackson Township is to the right of
the roadway and Washington Township is to the left.
Source: National Transportation Safety Board, 2013.



View of derailed CSX Transportation train Q16105 locomotives.
Source: National Transportation Safety Board, 2013.



View of video take from CSX Transportation train Q16105
lead locomotive as it approached the first collision.
Source: National Transportation Safety Board, 2013.

Note that this blog post will be periodically updated as additional historical Porter County train wreck information is discovered. Please contact me if you have additional information to share.


Source Material

Book and Reports
Anonymous. 1990. A Quarter Past One: 125th Anniversary, Kouts, Indiana. Kouts, Indiana: Star Printing. 100 p. [see p. 14]

Aldrich, Mark. 2006. Death Rode the Rails: American Railroad Accidents and Safety, 1828-1965. Baltimore, Maryland: The Johns Hopkins University Press. 480 p. [see p. 403]

Baird, Victor A. 2013. Railroading on the Wabash Fourth District. Fort Wayne, Indiana: Erstwhile Publications. 314 p. [see pp. 71, 125, 126, 130-131, 137, 138]

Bibel, George D. 2012. Train Wrecks: The Forensics of Rail Disasters. Baltimore, Maryland: The Johns Hopkins University Press. 368 p. [see p. 310]

Bullard, Thomas R., and William M. Shapotkin. 2004. Faster than the Limiteds: The Story of the Chicago-New York Electric Air Line Railroad and Its Transformation into Gary Railways. Bulletin 137. Chicago, Illinois: Central Electric Railfans' Association. 280 p. [see pp. 114, 115]

Haine, Edgar A. 1994. Railroad Wrecks. New York, New York: Cornwall Books. 235 p. [see pp. 96-97]

Goodspeed, Weston A., and Charles Blanchard. 1882. Counties of Lake and Porter, Indiana: Historical and Biographical. Chicago, Illinois: F. A. Battey & Company. 771 p. [see p. 58]

Hardesty, A.G. 1876. Illustrated Historical Atlas of Porter County, Indiana. Valparaiso, Indiana: A.G. Hardesty. 90 p. [see p. 31]

History Committee. 1990. Charter Centennial: Hebron, Indiana, 1890-1990. Hebron, Indiana: Star Printing. 120 p. [see pp. 3-4]

McLellan, Dave, and Bill Warrick. 1989. The Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway. Polo, Illinois: Transportation Trails. 208 p. [see pp. 65, 125]

Meints, Graydon M. 2011. Indiana Railroad Lines. Bloomington, Indiana: Indiana University Press. 402 p.

National Transportation Safety Board. 1999. Collision of Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation District Train 102 with a Tractor-Trailer, Portage, Indiana, June 18, 1998. NTSB/RAR-99/03. Washington, D.C.: National Transportation Safety Board. 76 p.

Neeley, George E. 1989. Valparaiso: A Pictorial History. St. Louis, Missouri: G. Bradley Publishing, Inc. 200 p. [see p. 42]

The Lewis Publishing Company. 1912. History of Porter County, Indiana: A Narrative Account of its Historical Progress, its People and its Principal Interests. Volume 1. Chicago, Illinois: The Lewis Publishing Company. 357 p. [see pp. 54-57 and 334-336]

National Transportation Safety Board. 2013. Railroad Accident Brief, Accident No. DCA-12-FR-002. NTSB/RAB-13/03. Washington, D.C.: National Transportation Safety Board. 18 p.

Railroad Commission of Indiana. 1907. Second Annual Report of the Railroad Commission of Indiana. Indianapolis, Indiana: William B. Buford. 553 p. [see pp. 191-196]

Shaw, Robert B. 1978. A History of Railroad Accidents, Safety Precautions and Operating Practices. Kirkwood, New York: Vail-Ballou Press, Inc. 473 p. [see pp. 106-108 and 462]

Westchester Public Library. 1999. Images of America: Westchester Township. Charleston, South Carolina: Arcadia Publishing. 124 p. [see pp. 73 and 77]


Periodicals
Anonymous. 1887. The Kouts Disaster -- The Coroner's Verdict. The Railway Review 27(43):619.

Anonymous. 1921. Disastrous Collision Wreck at Porter, Indiana. Railway Review 10(68):347-349.

Anonymous. 1921. Obituaries. The Railway Clerk 20(4):188.

Anonymous. 1921. Railroads Cause Many Fatalities: More Than One Thousand Persons Killed in Wrecks or by Trains Last Year. The Spectator: A Weekly Review of Insurance 106(1):3-4.

Anonymous. 1921. Safety First: The Porter (Ind.) Wreck - Michigan Central Engine Crew Must Have a Square Deal. Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen and Enginemen's Magazine 70(6):19-20.

Anonymous. 1921. Unusual Accident Happens on Interlocking: New York Central Train Ploughs Through Coach of Michigan Central Train, Resulting in Many Fatalities. Railway Signal Engineer 14(1):88-90.

Anonymous. 1968. Photo Section. Trains: The Magazine of Railroading 28(5):36-37.

Meints, Graydon M. 2000. Race to Chicago. Railroad History 183:6-29.

Stonex, Wilber L. 1912. An Old Indiana Railroad Charter: The Buffalo & Mississippi Railroad Company. The Indiana Quarterly Magazine of History 8(2):51-65.


Newspapers (listed by date of publication)
Plymouth Pilot, Plymouth, Marshall County, Indiana; November 12, 1851; Volume 1, Number43, Page 2, Column 2. Column titled "Michigan Southern Railroad."

Practical Observer, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; August 2, 1852; Volume 4, Number 1, Page 2, Column 2. Column titled "Extension of the Ohio & Indiana Railroad Westward"

Practical Observer, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; May 25, 1855; Volume 3, Number 22, Page 3, Column 1. Column titled "Railroad Meeting."

Practical Observer, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; May 29, 1855; Volume 3, Number 23, Page 2, Column 1. Column titled "All Right Again at Calumet."

Port Huron Daily Times, Port Huron, St. Clair County, Michigan; March 15, 1881; Volume 9, Number 301, Page 1, Column 5. Column titled "Telegraph Items."

The Fort Wayne Daily News, Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana; December 29, 1882; Page 3, Column 2. Column titled "Happenings."

Daily Elkhart Review, Elkhart, Elkhart County, Indiana; February 8, 1883; Page 3, Columns 1-2. Column titled "Local Brevities."

The Fort Wayne Daily News, Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana; May 29, 1884; Page 1, Column 5.

The Daily Gazette, Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana; March 18, 1885; Volume 11, Number 65, Page 6, Column 5. Column titled "A Double Header."

The South Bend Daily Tribune, South Bend, St. Joseph County, Indiana; September 11, 1885; Volume 23, Number 3805, Page 4, Column 3. Column titled “A Passenger Train Derailed.”

The Chicago Tribune, Chicago, Cook County, Illinois; October 12, 1887; Volume 47, Page 1, Columns 1-2. Column titled "An Unknown Number Die. Terrible Railroad Accident Near Kouts, Ind."

The Indianapolis Journal, Indianapolis, Marion County, Illinois; October 12, 1887; Page 1, Columns 4-6 and Page 2, Column 1. Column titled "Mangled and Burned."

Newark Daily Advocate, Newark, Licking County, Ohio; October 12, 1887; Volume 17, Number 76, Page 1, Column 1-2. Column titled "Did Not See the Signal. Frightful Railroad Wreck Near Kout's, Indiana."

Wichita Eagle, Wichita, Sedgwick County, Kansas; October 12, 1887; Volume 7, Number 125, Page 1, Columns 3-5. Column titled "A Railroad Horror. A Fast Express on the Chicago & Atlantic railroad, Near Koutts, Ind."

The Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; October 13, 1887; Volume 4, Number 27, Page 1, Columns 3-4. Column titled "The Kouts Horror."

Edinburg Courier, Edinburg, Bartholomew County, Indiana; July 5, 1888; Volume 14, Number 1, Page 2, Column 4. Column titled "Indiana News Notes."

The Daily Democrat, Huntington, Huntington County, Indiana; November 15, 1888; Volume 3, Number 195, Page 1, Column 64. Column titled "Indiana News Notes."

The Evening Republican, Columbus, Bartholomew County, Indiana; November 16, 1888; Page 1, Column 3. Column titled "Derailed By Cattle."

The Bremen Enquirer, Bremen, Marshall County, Indiana; November 24, 1888; Volume 4, Number 2, Page 4, Column 1.

The Times-Democrat, New Orleans, Louisiana; October 25, 1889; Page 2, Column 3. Column titled "A Horrible Accident."

The Daily Democrat, Logansport, Cass County, Indiana; November 18, 1889; Volume 4, Number 198, Page 4, Column 4. Column titled "Telegraphic Breveties."

The Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; December 12, 1889; Volume 6, Number 35, Page 1, Columns 4-5. Column titled "Wrecked by Carelessness. The New York Limited Express Runs Into an Open Switch at Dune Park."

The Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; January 16, 1890; Volume 6, Number 40, Page 1, Column 2. Column titled "A Horrible Accident. Two Men Mangled by a Fort Wayne Work-train Near Wheeler."

The Daily Democrat, Huntington, Huntington County, Indiana; March 11, 1892; Volume 6, Number 294, Page 2, Column 4. Column titled "Slight Wrecks on the C. & E. Little Damage Done, But Trains Greatly Delayed."

Logansport Daily Pharos, Logansport, Cass County, Indiana; March 18, 1892; Volume 17, Number 263, Page 1, Column 6. Column titled "Wrecked, But No One Hurt."

The Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; March 18, 1892; Volume 8, Number 49, Page 5, Column 2. Column titled "Talk of the Town."

The Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; March 18, 1892; Volume 18, Number 49, Page 5, Column 4. Column titled "About the County."

The Fort Wayne Sentinel, Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana; March 21, 1892; Page 3, Column 3. Column titled "Affairs of the Rail."

Logansport Daily Pharos, Logansport, Cass County, Indiana; June 27, 1892; Volume 17, Number 279, Page 1, Column 3. Column titled "Jumped To His Death."

The Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; July 1, 1892; Volume 9, Number 12, Page 1, Columns 5-6. Column titled "Rushed to Its Doom. The Pennsylvania Limited Wrecked at Valparaiso."

Logansport Daily Reporter, Logansport, Cass County, Indiana; December 2, 1892; Volume 7, Number 53, Page 3, Column 5. Column titled "Head End Collision. Two Pan Handle Trains Meet in a Heavy Fog. Narrow Escape from a Bad Accident at Kouts."

Logansport Daily Reporter, Logansport, Cass County, Indiana; April 20, 1893; Volume 8, Number 17, Page 4, Column 3. Column titled "At Full Speed."

Logansport Daily Reporter, Logansport, Cass County, Indiana; October 13, 1893; Volume 9, Number 11, Page 5, Column 5. Column titled "Railroad News."

The Waterloo Press, Waterloo, DeKalb County, Indiana; March 14, 1895; Volume 37, Number 30, Page 2, Column 1. Column titled "Dastardly Deed."

Logansport Reporter, Logansport, Cass County, Indiana; April 29, 1895; Volume 12, Number 25, Page 5, Column 2. Column titled "Bad Wreck at Kouts."

The Daily Journal, Logansport, Cass County, Indiana; April 30, 1895; Volume 20, Number 102, Page 5, Column 3. Column titled "Wreck at Kouts."

The Daily Journal, Logansport, Cass County, Indiana; May 2, 1895; Volume 20, Number 104, Page 16, Column 4. Column titled "Rail Roads."

The Fort Wayne Gazette, Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana; January 22, 1896; Volume 34, Number 19, Page 14, Column 3. Column titled "Freight Collision."

The Fort Wayne News, Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana; January 22, 1896; Volume 22, Page 1, Column 5. Column titled "A Rear End Smashup."

The Elwood Free Press, Elwood, Madison County, Indiana; January 24, 1896; Volume 12, Number 27, Page 4, Column 1. Column titled "State News."

Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; February 7, 1896; Volume 12, Number 43, Page 1, Column 5. Column titled "Wreck at Crocker. One Man Fatally Injured, and the Train Wrecked."

The Westchester Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; August 15, 1896; Volume 8, Number 18, Page 1, Columns 3-4. Column titled "Wreck at Chesterton. Runaway Sand Train Crashes Into a Freight Standing at Chesterton Friday Morning."

The Indianapolis News, Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana; August 18, 1896; Volume 27, Number 219, Page 2, Column 3. Column titled "Twelve Head of Cattle Crushed."

The Westchester Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; August 22, 1896; Volume 8, Number 19, Page 5, Column 3. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Logansport Journal, Logansport, Cass County, Indiana; February 5, 1897; Volume 22, Number 31, Page 24, Column 3. Column titled "Wreck on the Panhandle at Hebron Last Night."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; December 3, 1898; Volume 15, Number 34, Page 4, Columns 3-4. Column titled "The Sad Story of the Terrible Collision Between a Fast Newspaper Train and Two Handcars Loaded with Pleasure Seekers."

The Fort Wayne Sentinel, Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana; February 27, 1899; Page 3, Column 3. Column titled "Two Unimportant Accidents."

The Fort Wayne News, Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana; May 16, 1899; Volume 25, Page 8, Column 43. Column titled "Railroad Notes."

The Fort Wayne News, Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana; November 22, 1899; Volume 26, Page 1, Column 6. Column titled "A Bad Wreck."

The Fort Wayne News, Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana; November 23, 1899; Volume 26, Page 1, Column 3. Column titled "Two Men Are Killed."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; November 23, 1899; Volume 16, Number 33, Page 1, Column 4. Column titled "A Flagman's Mistake. Sends a Double Header Passenger Train Down a 25 Foot Embankment Near McCool, on the B. & O."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; February 24, 1900; Volume 16, Number 46, Page 5, Column 5. Column titled "Lake Shore Wreck."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; March 10, 1900; Volume 16, Number 48, Page 5, Column 4. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; June 15, 1900; Volume 17, Number 10, Page 5, Column 3. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; June 15, 1900; Volume 17, Number 10, Page 5, Column 5. Column titled "McCool."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; June 15, 1900; Volume 17, Number 10, Page 5, Column 5. Column titled "Crisman."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; July 6, 1900; Volume 17, Number 13, Page 1, Column 7. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; July 20, 1900; Volume 17, Number 15, Page 5, Column 5. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; August 3, 1900; Volume 17, Number 17, Page 5, Column 5. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; August 3, 1900; Volume 17, Number 17, Page 8, Column 1. Column titled "About the County. McCool."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; August 24, 1900; Volume 17, Number 20, Page 8, Column 2. Column titled "McCool."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; August 31, 1900; Volume 17, Number 21, Page 4, Column 6. Column titled "Porter Pointers."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; September 14, 1900; Volume 17, Number 23, Page 1, Column 5. Column titled "McCool."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; September 14, 1900; Volume 17, Number 23, Page 5, Column 5. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; February 15, 1901; Volume 17, Number 45, Page 4, Column 3. Column titled "Crisman."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; February 22, 1901; Volume 17, Number 46, Page 5, Column 7. Column titled "McCool."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; June 21, 1901; Volume 18, Number 11, Page 4, Column 2. Column titled "McCool."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; June 21, 1901; Volume 18, Number 11, Page 5, Column 5. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; August 30, 1901; Volume 18, Number 21, Page 4, Column 3. Column titled "Porter Pointers."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; August 30, 1901; Volume 18, Number 21, Page 5, Column 4. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Argos Reflector, Argos, Marshall County, Indiana; September 5, 1901; Volume 21, Number 5, Page 3, Column 2. Column titled "Record of Week. Indiana Incidents Tersely Told. Freight Wreck at Burdick."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; September 5, 1901; Volume 18, Number 22, Page 5, Column 4. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; September 27, 1901; Volume 18, Number 25, Page 5, Column 5. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; January 17, 1902; Volume 18, Number 41, Page 5, Column 5. Column titled "Valparaiso."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; April 11, 1902; Volume 19, Number 1, Page 5, Column 6. Column titled "Thelma."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; May 16, 1902; Volume 19, Number 6, Page 4, Column 5. Column titled "Porter Pointers."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; May 16, 1902, Volume 19, Number 6, Page 5, Column 4. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; August 29, 1902; Volume 19, Number 21, Page 5, Column 6. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; October 3, 1902; Volume 19, Number 26, Page 5, Column 7. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Garrett Weekly Clipper, Garrett, DeKalb County, Indiana; November 13, 1902; Volume 18, Number 4, Page 5, Column 3. Column titled "Local and Personal."

The Daily News-Democrat, Huntington, Huntington County, Indiana; December 16, 1902; Volume 6, Number 221, Page 3, Column 4. Column titled "About Town."

Huntington Weekly Herald, Huntington, Huntington County, Indiana; December 19, 1902; Volume 54, Number 25, Page 3, Column 2. Column titled "Railway Items."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; March 13, 1903; Volume 19, Number 49, Page 4, Column 4. Column titled "Babcock."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; May 22, 1903; Volume 20, Number 7, Page 1, Column 3. Column titled "Rear End Collision. Lake Shore Adds Another Victim to its List of Fatalities."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; May 29, 1903; Volume 20, Number 5, Page 5, Column 6. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; July 10, 1903; Volume 20, Number 14, Page 1, Column 6. Column titled "McCool."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; July 10, 1903; Volume 20, Number 14, Page 4, Column 4. Column titled "Woodville."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; July 10, 1903; Volume 20, Number 14, Page 5, Column 5. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; August 28, 1903; Volume 20, Number 21, Page 5, Column 6. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; September 18, 1903; Volume 20, Number 24, Page 1, Column 7. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; September 18, 1903; Volume 20, Number 24, Page 5, Column 7. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; October 2, 1903; Volume 20, Number 26, Page 5, Column 7. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; October 2, 1903; Volume 20, Number 26, Page 5, Column 7. Column titled "Crocker."

The Garrett Weekly Clipper, Garrett, DeKalb County, Indiana; October 8, 1903; Volume 18, Number 51, Page 5, Column 4. Column titled "Local and Personal."

The Daily News-Democrat, Huntington, Huntington County, Indiana; October 19, 1903; Volume 7, Number 172, Page 1, Column 1. Column titled "Killed in a Wreck. Charles Truman, of Logansport, Dead."

The Indianapolis Journal, Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana; October 19, 1903; Volume 53, Number 292, Page 2, Column 5. Column titled "Two Hurt in Collision. Engineer and Tramp Victims of Wreck Near Hebron."

The Indianapolis Morning Star, Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana; October 19, 1903; Volume 1, Number 136, Page 5, Column 4. Column titled "Three Injured in Crash of Trains. Second Section of Panhandle Passenger Collides with a Freight."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; October 23, 1903; Volume 20, Number 29, Page 5, Column 5. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; February 26, 1904; Volume 20, Number 47, Page 1, Column 5. Column titled "Porter Pointers."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; April 22, 1904; Volume 21, Number 3, Page 1, Column 7. Column titled "Big Damage Suit is Appealed."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; May 13, 1904; Volume 21, Number 6, Page 1, Column 6. Column titled "Porter Pointers."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; October 14, 1904; Volume 21, Number 28, Page 1, Column 7. Column titled "Wrecked at Dune Park."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; December 8, 1904; Volume 21, Number 36, Page 5, Column 4. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; December 8, 1904; Volume 21, Number 36, Page 5, Column 7. Column titled "Chesterton Chips."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; February 2, 1905; Volume 21, Number 44, Page 4, Column 1. Column titled "County Seat News."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; February 16, 1905; Volume 21, Number 46, Page 1, Columns 3-4. Column titled "Three Wrecks in 12 Hours. Michigan Central Railroad Has More Than Its Share of Troubles."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; February 23, 1905; Volume 21, Number 47, Page 5, Column 5. Column titled "Local News of the Week."

The Waterloo Press, Waterloo, County, Indiana; February 23, 1905; Volume 47, Number 28, Page 2, Column 1. Column titled "Wreck at McCool."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; March 16, 1905; Volume 21, Number 50, Page 8, Column 4. Column titled "McCool."

Daily News-Democrat, Huntington, Huntington County, Indiana; March 16, 1905; Volume 8, Number 297, Page 1, Column 5. Column titled "Erie Trains are Delayed by Wreck."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; March 23, 1905; Volume 21, Number 51, Page 5, Column 6. Column titled "Local News of the Week."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; March 30, 1905; Volume 21, Number 52, Page 1, Column 3. Column titled "McCool."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; April 6, 1905; Volume 22, Number 1, Page 4, Column 4. Column titled "McCool."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; April 6, 1905; Volume 22, Number 1, Page 4, Column 4. Column titled "Crocker."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; April 27, 1905; Volume 22, Number 4, Page 4, Column 4. Column titled "Wheeler."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; May 11, 1905; Volume 22, Number 6, Page 4, Column 3. Column titled "Porter Pointers."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; May 18, 1905; Volume 22, Number 7, Page 8, Column 4. Column titled "Hobart."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; July 13, 1905; Volume 22, Number 15, Page 8, Column 3. Column titled "Kouts."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; August 3, 1905; Volume 22, Number 18, Page 8, Column 5. Column titled "Crocker."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; September 21, 1905; Volume 22, Number 25, Page 5, Column 6. Column titled "Local News of the Week."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; November 30, 1905; Volume 22, Number 35, Page 8, Column 3. Column titled "McCool."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; December 7, 1905; Volume 22, Number 36, Page 1, Column 8. Column titled "Bad Wreck at Suman."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; January 4, 1906; Volume 22, Number 40, Page 4, Column 2. Column titled "Porter Pointers."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; January 11, 1906; Volume 22, Number 41, Page 4, Column 4. Column titled "Wreck at Willow Creek."

The Indianapolis News, Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana; February 12, 1906; Volume 37, Number 58, Page 4, Column 3. Column titled "Two Engineers Hurt. Lake Shore Limited Side-Swipes a Freight Train."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; February 15, 1906; Volume 22, Number 46, Page 1, Column 5. Column titled "Flyer is Wrecked. Lake Shore Limited Collides with Freight Train."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; February 15, 1906; Volume 22, Number 46, Page 4, Column 5. Column titled "Local News of the Week."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; February 22, 1906; Volume 22, Number 47, Page 1, Column 5. Column titled "Railway Operator in Jail."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; February 22, 1906; Volume 22, Number 47, Page 5, Column 5. Column titled "Local News of the Week."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; February 22, 1906; Volume 22, Number 47, Page 8, Columns 3-4. Column titled "McCool."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; February 22, 1906; Volume 22, Number 47, Page 8, Column 5. Column titled "Wheeler."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; March 1, 1906; Volume 22, Number 48, Page 5, Column 7. Column titled "Local News of the Week."

The Fort Wayne Journal-Gazette, Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana; April 7, 1906; Page 3, Column 1. Column titled "Traffic Delayed By Freight Wreck."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; April 12, 1906; Volume 23, Number 2, Page 5, Column 7. Column titled "Local News of the Week."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; May 31, 1906; Volume 23, Number 9, Page 5, Column 5. Column titled "Anniversary of a Railroad."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; August 16, 1906; Volume 23, Number 20, Page 5, Column 6. Column titled "Porter Pointers."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; August 30, 1906; Volume 23, Number 22, Page 4, Column 4. Column titled "Porter Pointers."

Daily News-Democrat, Huntington, Huntington County, Indiana; September 25, 1906; Volume 10, Number 151, Page 3, Column 4. Column titled "Wreck at Boone Grove."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; September 27, 1906; Volume 23, Number 26, Page 8, Column 3. Column titled "McCool."

The Lake County Times, Hammond, Lake County, Indiana; October 25, 1906; Volume 1, Number 109, Page 6, Column 2. Column titled "Railroad Notes."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; November 15, 1906; Volume 23, Number 33, Page 1, Columns 3-4. Column titled "Woodville's Awful Horror Shocks the Entire Country."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; November 15, 1906; Volume 23, Number 33, Page 1, Columns 4-5. Column titled "A Head-On Collision on the B. & O. Railway Destroys a Passenger Train Filled with Immigrants."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; November 15, ; Volume 23, Number 33, Page 2, Columns 5-6. Column titled "Fifty Immigrants Killed in Wreck."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; November 15, ; Volume 23, Number 33, Page 8, Column 3. Column titled "Hobart."

Chicago Daily Tribune, Chicago, Cook County, Illinois; November 18, 1906; Section III, Page 8. Full page advertisement for the Electric Signagraph and Semaphore Company.

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; November 22, 1906; Volume 23, Number 34, Page 2, Column 4. Column titled "Wreck Victims Number 59."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; November 22, 1906; Volume 23, Number 34, Page 4, Column 4. Column titled "Engineer Ganauer Held. Breaks Down and Weeps Like a Child When Coroner Carson Announces His Decision."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; November 22, 1906; Volume 23, Number 34, Page 5, Column 5. Column titled "Local News of the Week."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; January 10, 1907; Volume 23, Number 41, Page 5, Column 5. Column titled "Local News of the Week."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; January 10, 1907; Volume 23, Number 41, Page 8, Column 3. Column titled "Burdick."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; January 24, 1907; Volume 23, Number 43, Page 8, Column 4. Column titled "Woodville."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; March 21, 1907; Volume 23, Number 51, Page 5, Column 6. Column titled "Local News of the Week."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; July 4, 1907; Volume 24, Number 14, Page 8, Column 2. Column titled "McCool."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; August 1, 1907; Volume 24, Number 18, Page 5, Column 6. Column titled "Local News of the Week."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; August 1, 1907; Volume 24, Number 18, Page 8, Column 4. Column titled "McCool."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; August 1, 1907; Volume 24, Number 18, Page 8, Column 4. Column titled "Freight Wreck on B. & O. Track."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; August 15, 1907; Volume 24, Number 20, Page 1, Column 4. Column titled "Conductor Shultz Talk. Tell of His Experience in the Big Wreck."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; August 15, 1907; Volume 24, Number 20, Page 1, Column 5. Column titled "A Lucky Wreck. Twentieth Century Limited Plow Through Four Freight Cars. And Does No Kill a Single Passenger or an Employe."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; August 15, 1907; Volume 24, Number 20, Page 2, Column 3. Column titled "Ploughed Through Car."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; September 26, 1907; Volume 24, Number 26, Page 8, Column 1. Column titled "Dune Park."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; October 10, 1907; Volume 24, Number 28, Page 3, Column 6. Column titled "Local News of the Week."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; October 17, 1907; Volume 24, Number 29, Page 4, Column 3. Column titled "Dune Park."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; November 14, 1907; Volume 24, Number 33, Page 4, Column 2. Column titled "Crisman."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; November 14, 1907; Volume 24, Number 33, Page 5, Column 5.

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; November 14, 1907; Volume 24, Number 33, Page 8, Column 1. Column titled "Porter Pointers."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; November 21, 1907; Volume 24, Number 34, Page 3, Column 4. Column titled "Chesterton Items."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; January 23, 1908; Volume 24, Number 43, Page 5, Column 6. Column titled "Wheeler."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; February 6, 1908; Volume 24, Number 45, Page 8, Column 2. Column titled "Porter Department."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; March 12, 1908; Volume 24, Number 50, Page 3, Columns 5-6. Column titled "Lake Shore Passenger Train Crashes Through Heavy Box Car."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; April 23, 1908; Volume 25, Number 3, Page 1, Column 2. Column titled "A Bad Freight Wreck."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; April 23, 1908; Volume 25, Number 3, Page 7, Column 5. Column titled "Chesterton Items."

The Garrett Weekly Clipper, Garrett, DeKalb County, Indiana; June 4, 1908; Volume 23, Number 32, Page 1 , Column 1 and Page 8, Columns 4-5. Column titled "Head Crushed. And Instant Death Came to David D. Smith."

The Indianapolis Star, Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana; September 15, 1908; Volume 6, Number 102, Page 1, Columns 4-6. Column titled "Victims of Indianapolis Excursion Wreck at Chesterton."

The Indianapolis Star, Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana; September 15, 1908; Volume 6, Number 102, Page 1, Column 4. Column titled "Wreck Victims Here. Some Come Home Injured."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; September 17, 1908; Volume 25, Number 25, Page 1, Columns 5-6 and Page 2, Columns 3-4. Column titled "One is Killed and Thirty-four Injured in Lake Shore Wreck."

Marion Weekly Star, Marion, Marion County, Ohio; September 19, 1908; Volume 24, Number 18, Page 1, Column 7. Column titled "Two are Killed and Many Hurt. Theater Train Crashes into Rear of an Excursion."

The Plymouth Tribune, Plymouth, Marshall County, Indiana; June 24, 1909; Volume 8, Number 38, Page 2, Column 1. Column titled "Ten Lives Crushed Out."

Daily News-Democrat, Huntington, Huntington County, Indiana; December 28, 1910; Volume 14, Number 232, Page 1, Column 4. Column titled "Fast Erie Freight in Wreck Near Kouts."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; March 21, 1912; Volume 28, Number 52, Page 2, Column 1. Column titled "News of the County. McCool."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; March 21, 1912; Volume 28, Number 52, Page 3, Column 2. Column titled "Porter Department."

The Fort Wayne News, Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana; July 2, 1912; Volume 39, Page 1, Column 3. Column titled "Nickel Plate, Train Number 2 Overturned Near Valparaiso at 1 O'clock."

The Fort Wayne News, Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana; July 3, 1912; Volume 39, Page 5, Column 1. Column titled "Mistake of Operator Causes Wreck."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; July 18, 1912, Volume 29, Number 17, Page 1, Columns 4-5 and Page 6, Column 6. Column titled "Bad Wreck on Pere Marquette. West Bound Train No. 4, Goes in Ditch South of Furnessville."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; December 2, 1915, Volume 37, Number 37, Page 1, Column 6. Column titled "Trainmen Killed in Collision. Two Sections of a Wabash Freight Train Have Rear End Collision East of Chesterton."

The Porter County Vidette, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; March 21, 1917; Page 2, Column 7. Column titled "Freight Wreck on B. & O. Last Night."

The Porter County Vidette, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; March 28, 1917; Page 2, Column 7. Column titled "B. & O. Has Small Wreck at Babcock."

The Porter County Vidette, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; April 4, 1917; Page 6, Column 4. Column titled "Local Squibbs and Personals."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; April 5, 1917; Volume 34, Number 3, Page 5, Column 4. Column titled "Chesterton Locals."

The Porter County Vidette, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; October 31, 1917; Page 1, Column 6. Column titled "Coal Car Wrecked on Nickel Plate."

Fort Wayne Daily News, Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana; December 18, 1917; Volume 43, Page 15, Column 2. Column titled "Huntington News."

The Porter County Vidette, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; December 19, 1917; Page 1, Column 4. Column titled "Supply of Oranges Results from Wreck."

The Porter County Vidette, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; December 19, 1917; Page 7, Column 7. Column titled "Several Injured on Interurban."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; June 26, 1919; Volume 36, Number 15, Page 7, Column 4. Column titled "Collision on Interurban Last Monday Morning."

The Indianapolis Star, Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana; February 28, 1921; Volume 18, Number 268; Page 1, Columns 7-8 and Page 3, Column 1. Column titled "28 Die in Wreck at Porter. Passenger Trains Collide; 100 Injured; Enginemen Held for Ignoring Signal."

The Belvidere Daily Republican, Belvidere, Boone County, Illinois; July 6, 1922. Volume 30, Page 1, Column 1. Column titled "76 Victims in Smash-Up on Marquette."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; July 13, 1922; Volume 39, Number 18, Page 1, Column 4. Column titled "Twenty Injured When P.M. Trains Hits Pusher."

The Muncie Sunday Star, Muncie, Delaware County, Indiana; August 6, 1922; Volume 46, Number 100, Page 2, Column 5. Column titled "Train Kills Member of Wrecking Crew."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; August 27, 1923; Volume 40, Number 25, Page 1, Column 8. Column titled "Engineer Killed in Wreck Caused by Washout."

The Times, East Chicago, Lake County, Indiana; August 27, 1923; Volume 17, Number 59, Page 1, Column 5. Column titled "Engineer Killed in Washout. Locomotive and Tender and New York-Chicago Flyer Leave the Rails."

The Chesterton Tribune, Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana; October 27, 1927; Volume 44, Number 33, Page 1, Column 4. Column titled "South Shore Trains Crash in Thick Fog."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; January 26, 1928; Volume 1, Page 2, Column 5. Column titled "Ten Years Ago."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; February 24, 1928; Volume 1, Page 6, Column 8. Column titled "Porter Roads Still Under Snow Tie-Up."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; March 4, 1929; Volume 2, Page 7, Column 5. Column titled "Do You Remember the Day?"

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; March 13, 1930; Volume 3, Page 1, Columns 2-7 and Page 11, Columns 5-7. Column titled "Porter County Train Wrecks Have Killed Over 100; Injured 75," by Al Collier.

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; November 22, 1936; Volume 10, Page 1, Columns 4-5. Column titled "16 Freight Cars Derailed on Trestle Over Burns Ditch."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; January 13, 1938; Volume 11, Page 1, Column 8. Column titled "Train Wreck Near Crocker."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; September 10, 1938; Volume 12, Page 1, Column 4. Column titled "150 Cattle Killed in County Train Wreck."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; September 12, 1938; Volume 12, Page 1, Column 2. Column titled "Estimate R. R. Loss $40,000."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; February 3, 1939; Volume 12, Page 4, Column 6. Column titled "Report Mishap on Grand Trunk."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; April 28, 1941; Volume 14, Page 1, Column 3. Column titled "$15,000 Loss in Chesterton Train Wreck."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; May 5, 1941; Volume 14, Page 1, Column 1. Column titled "Two Engines Jump Tracks."

The Hammond Times, Hammond, Lake County, Indiana; December 2, 1942; Volume 37, Number 142, Page 1, Column 5. Column titled "Man, Woman Hurt in Wreck. Broken Axel Is Cause of Derailment."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; March 29, 1946; Volume 19, Page 1, Column 2. Column titled "Clear Wreckage Of Forty Cars On Wabash Line."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; September 15, 1953; Volume 27, Number 61, Page 1, Columns 2-4. Column titled "Pennsy Caboose Arrives At 'End of the Line.'"

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; August 6, 1954; Volume 28, Number 28, Page 1, Columns 3-6 and Page 6, Column 2. Column titled "22 Freight Cars Pile Up West of Valparaiso In Spectacular Grand Trunk R. R. Accident," by Rollie Bernhart.

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; March 6, 1956; Volume 29, Number 207, Page 1, Column 5. Column titled "Four NYC Freight Cars Jump Tracks."

The Hammond Times, Hammond, Lake County, Indiana; February 17, 1957; Volume 51, Number 205, Page 3, Column 4. Column titled "Wreck at Kouts."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; June 24, 1957; Volume 30, Number 299, Page 1, Column 1. Column titled "Grand Trunk Car Is Derailed, But Agent Can't Talk."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; July 11, 1957; Volume 31, Number 6, Page 1, Column 1 and Page 6, Column 1. Column titled "New Train is Delayed in County."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; September 2, 1960; Volume 34, Number 52, Page 6, Column 3. Column titled "Freight Car Is Derailed Near McCool On B&O."

The Greenfield Daily Reporter, Greenfield, Hancock County, Indiana; October 2, 1963; Volume 55, Number 135, Page 1, Column 4. Column titled "NYC Freight Jumps Track at Chesterton."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; January 30, 1965; Volume 38, Number 175, Page 1, Columns 2-3. Column titled "Oddity: 1-Car Derailment."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; April 28, 1965; Volume 38, Number 200, Page 1, Column 6. Column titled "NYC Diesels Derailed Today at Chesterton."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; May 21, 1965; Volume 38, Number 220, Page 6, Column 4. Column titled "20 Freight Cars Derailed East of Willowcreek Road."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; November 3, 1965; Volume 39, Number 103, Page 1, Column 3 and Page 6, Column 2. Column titled "Tells of 1921 Train Wreck in Porter."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; April 5, 1966; Volume 39, Number 231, Page 6, Column 8. Column titled "Train Derailment Ties Up Traffic."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; January 2, 1970; Volume 42, Number 152, Page 1, Columns 1-4. Column titled "No Train Delays."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; January 5, 1970; Volume 42, Number 154, Page 1, Columns 4-5. Column titled "4 Hurt In Derailment."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; February 26, 1973; Volume 46, Number 199, Section 2, Page 1, Column 4. Column titled "Single PC Car Derailed."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; July 2, 1973; Volume 46, Number 306, Page 1, Columns 3-6. Column titled "Derailment Near Kouts."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; August 1, 1975; Volume 49, Number 23, Page 1, Columns 3-6. Column titled "Derail Damage High."

The Vidette-Messenger, Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana; May 14, 1976; Volume 49, Number 265, Page 1, Columns 1-4. Column titled "250 Return To Homes After Train Derailment."

The Times, Munster, Lake County, Indiana; February 21, 1993. Column titled "122-Car Train Derails in Union Township," by Elizabeth Eaken.

The Times, Munster, Lake County, Illinois; April 21, 1998. Column titled "A Case of the Boxcar Willies," by Ken Kosky.

The Times, Munster, Lake County, Indiana; October 30, 1998; Column titled "The Haunting of Hebron. Angry Hobo and Prissy Lady Said to be Among Spirits in Town," by John Reed.

The Times, Munster, Lake County, Indiana; October 9, 2003. Column titled "South Shore Case Settled," by Bob Kasarda.

The Post-Tribune, Gary, Lake County, Indiana; June 28, 2007. Column titled "Four Train Cars Derail Near Bridge in Liberty Township."

The Times, Munster, Lake County, Indiana; June 18, 2010. Column titled "Dyer Man Killed in Train Derailment Cleanup," by Brian Williams and John Scheibel.


© 2016 Steven R. Shook. All Rights Reserved.

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