Friday night, December 7, 1893, occurred a disastrous wreck on the line of the Great Northern Railway at Edwall. Train No. 16 was standing at the water tank. Train No. 15, expecting a clear track, came along from the east and dashed into the standing train.
Engineer Joseph Shinski and Fireman Wallace were instantly killed. When one hundred yards away Shinski saw the train standing in his way and whistled for ‘down breaks.’ It was too late.
The two engines piled up and were thrown twenty feet from the track. Two oil cars were immediately behind the tender of No. 15. The oil caught fire and the wreck was soon in flames. Shinski’s body was found under the wreck.
The fire immediately surrounding him was extinguished and the body recovered, the upper part having been burned beyond recognition. Wallace’s body was not scorched by the flames. The oil tanks burst and the first consumed five cars.
Eye witnesses of this terrible accident say that when the oil cars took ire a terrible explosion followed, the flames shooting up nearly 200 feet. The blaze appeared to spread out over the sky, and for a few moments it appeared that the entire town was about to be enveloped by the consuming flames.
Fortunately, they spent themselves before reaching the ground. It was a lurid sight and resulted in the destruction of railroad property probably to exceed $50,000.
-From a local newspaper at the time (I apparently didn’t take a note on the exact source.)
‘There Were Dim Cries’
Camera: Spartus 35F Model 400 (c1948)
Film: Kodak Tri-X (x-1980s)
Process: HC-110; 1+200; 120min
Edwall, Lincoln, County, Washington