Friday, May 23, 2014

Monday, May 23, 1864

Nancy wakened me this morning & told me that Col. Moore’s Regiment passed down just before daylight -- that the cars were thrown from the track near McClure’s and several killed and wounded.  The Colonel sent Clark Christopher for William requesting him to come down to the scene of the disorder immediately.  I saw Martha running down the road -- she has a brother & other friends there, and could only hope they were safe.  We afterwards learned that three were killed, a soldier named Stukey who lived above Marietta and two students, John H. McKim of Colville, and Alex. Nugget of Franklin Pa.  These young men had got on the train to go with the Regiment as far as Belpre.  Andrew Harvey of Barlow had his leg broken and a young Hildebrandt of Marietta was somewhat injured.
The engineer Pierce Morse was one of the best on the road -- I suppose no human skill could prevent the accident which resulted from the heavy rains causing the track to slip under the weight of the engine.  This track is to be abandoned & one adopted farther up the hill on better ground.  The tender & four or five cars were thrown off only one of which, & that the forward one, was smashed up.  This sad event has cast a shadow over every heart.  William spent the forenoon doing all he could.  Mr. Harvey, whose leg had been set by the surgeons of the regiment, Dr’s Beebe and Culver, suffered so much after they left with the soldiers, who marched down to Parkersburg; that William sent for Dr. Frank Hart who said that the ankle was dislocated & that there was a compound fracture of the bone.  Mr. Harvey was taken to Mrs. McClure’s & finally in the mail train which did not start much before twelve o’clock, to his home in Barlow.  The body of Mr. McKim was taken charge of by Mr. Charles D. Cook to be conveyed to Cobleville and the bodies of Nugget & Stukey were sent to Marietta by an extra train.
William went to Chillicothe.  Mrs. Dawes came down on the evening train.  Lee is said to be retreating from Spotsylvania.  Grant having made a successful flanking movement.  

Peggy's comments:
Mary Gates Dawes's nineteen year old brother, Charles Gates, was on the train and was injured in the derailment.  He had enlisted with the Hundred Day men in the 148th Ohio.  Though injured, he was unwilling to turn back and he proceeded with his regiment towards Harper's Ferry.

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