Newspaper Articles on the Train Wreck
August 5, 1914
Probably 45 persons were killed and their bodies burned, most of them beyond recognition, when a motor car of the Missouri & North Arkansas railroad collided with passenger train No. 2, running as No. 56, a freight of the Kansas City Southern railroad, near Tipton Ford, thirteen miles south of Joplin, at 6 o’clock last night. At midnight thirty-eight bodies had been removed from the wreckage. There were at least seventy-five persons aboard the motor car, including the crew of three. One died aboard a relief train on its way to Jolin. None of the dead have been identified, so charred were the bodies when they were taken out. Twenty-four persons are said to have been taken out alive. Definite figures were not available last night. It is probably there are many others in the wrechage, according to Coroner Bigham of Neosho, to whose undertaking parlors thirty-eight bodies were taken. This would mean that there were more than seventy-five passengers aboard. All those who escaped were more or less injured. Among those missing and believed to be dead at midnight were:
T.O.Luscombe, No. 433 North Moffet Avenue, Joplin
F.D.Gathright, Navada, Mo Pullman, conductor M & N.A. traveling as passenger.
L.H.Crumbaugh, Neosho, general live stock agent Kansas City Southern.
Mrs. J. M. Harmon, Neosho
Mrs. Dora Harmon, daughter of Mrs. J.M.Harmon
Faye Harmon, daughter of Mrs. J.M.Harmon
Mrs. Loren McClarey, Carterville, MO.
Mrs. C.L. Eshleman, Dewey, Okla.
Misses Morgan, sisters, Neosho
Bert Johnson, Oklahoma
Herbert Ratliffe, Eureka Springs, Ark; motorman wresked car.
Frank Bradley, Eureka Springs, Ark; brakeman
S.A. Nichols, Harrison, Ark; conductor
Frank Hutchinson (negro), Neosho
Ernest Wright (negro), Joplin.
Somebody’s blunder caused the loss of fifty-six lives in a collision between a Missouri and North Arkansas motor car and a Kansas City Southern passenger train twelve miles south of Joplin at 6 o’clock last night, and the coroner of Newton County is today endeavoring to fix the resposibility for the tragedy. J. B. Sisk, conductor of the northbound passenger, says he received orders to pass the southbound motor car at Tipton Ford siding, then miles south of Joplin.
The motor car, he says, did not wait for the passenger at the designated spot, the result being a head-on collision in which widows and orphans were created in the passing of a moment, in which families were broken forever, in which wives and children were taken away from husbands and fathers, and in which almost thirty people were injured, some of them so seriously that they will carry marks of the disaster to their graves.
A Revised list of the known dead from Wednesday’s wreck at Tipton Ford of a motor car of the Missouri & North Arkansas railroad by a Kansas City Southern passenger train, running as a freight, declared due to a disregard of orders by the motor crew, sent the number to thirty-six yesterday. Only six of the bodies viewed by thousand in the morgue at Neosho yesterday were identified. The remainder were so badly burned by the flames that quickly engulfed the motor car after the collision that not a means of identification was abtainable. It is believed now that the total number who lost their lives in the wreck is more than fifty. Yesterday saw a constant stream of relatives and friends visiting the morgue, registering the names of relatives or friends they believed were aboard the motor car. They closely viewed the charred bodies, hoping to find something, that would lead to identity of the dead, but of the thirty-five placed in the Neosho morgue all but a scant half dozen were unclaimed. Following is a revised list of the known dead:
Louis Horn, Seligman, Mo.
Mrs. Alice Bradley, Lamar, MO.
John Patterson, banker, Rocky Comfort, Mo.
A.J. Gilmore, Sweetwater, MO.
Violet Gilmore, 7 years old, daughter of A.J. Gilmore
Perry Duncan, Fiarview, Mo.
Herbert Ratliff, Eureka Springs, Ark., engineer of motor car.
Mrs. Josie Harmon, Neosho
Ray Harmon, 13 years old, son of Mrs. Josie Harmon
Loyd Harmon, 8 years old, son of Mrs. Josie Harmon
Stella Harmon, 5 years old, daughter of Mrs. Josie Harmon.
Genevieve Lynch (negro), Neosho.
L.H. Grumbaugh, Neosho, general live stock agent for the Kansas City Southern.
Mrs. Alice Lindsey, Joplin
Horace Lindsey, Joplin
Elizabeth Jones (negro), Neosho
Hortense Jones (negro), daughter of Elizabeth Jones
Ozarks under cover Magazine gives peek at hidden history, attractions in region
By Melissa DeLoach Globe Staff Writer
NEOSHO, Mo. - Returning home after a day of picnicking, the 76 occupants aboard the Missouri & North Arkansas passenger train were halfway to their destination when the conductor failed to take the siding at Tipton Ford, and the train collided head-on with an oncoming train.
The impact pushed the 72-foot trolley - the 209 - back 300 feet, causing the fuel tanks to explode. At least 50 people perished in what was has been described as a "blazing crematorium."
Submitted by Susan Collard
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