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A Horrible Railway Accident

Paulding New Era
8 Nov 1883
Transcribed by: 

A Horrible Railway Accident.  On last Thursday morning news reached the town that a horrible railroad accident had occurred about two miles below Dallas in which Mr. John D. Butts, of Augusta, Ga, had lost his life. 

The facts, as we learn them, are about as follows; On the morning above mentioned two freight trains going north left Atlanta, and had by some means got a few minutes behind time when they arrived at Austell junction, about seventeen or eighteen miles below Dallas, and both trains left Austell running very fast in order to make up lost time by the time they arrived at Dallas.  The Conductor on the foremost train consulted his watch, and seeing that he had made up his lost time and was going to run into Dallas ahead of time slacked the speed of the train until eye witnesses say that a man could have easily jumped on or off of it, when the other train, which was following came thundering around a curve at a tremendous speed.  The engineer on the foremost train, probably through fright, instead of pulling open the throttle and pulling forward as rapidly as possible called for brakes, and Mr. John D. Butts was at his post between the caboose and the box car throwing on the brake when the hindmost train struck the caboose of the foremost shivering the rear end of the caboose into splinters and bursting the bumpers off of several of the box cars.  The caboose struck Mr. Butts with terrific force, mashing him between the two cars and hurling him several feet from the track killing him instantly. 

Mr. Butts was a young man about twenty-two years of age, unmarried, whose parents live in Augusta, and was said to be a very pious young man, and in every respect a perfect gentleman. 

He was brought to the depot at Dallas and Dr. W.C. Connally was summoned to dress his wounds and get him ready for being returned to his friends.  His remains were put on board the down passenger and sent to Augusta for interment.

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