Bio: Languisch, Aug., Edward, Meta (Fatal accident - 1911)


Contact: Ann Stevens


Surnames: Languisch, Cook, Sauerberg, Moravic, Eberhardt 

----Source:  Neillsville Times (Neillsville, Clark County, Wis.)  Oct 19, 1911 

Languisch, Aug. (Fatal accident - Oct 12, 1911)

Languisch, Edward (Fatal accident - Oct 12, 1911)

Languisch, Meta (Fatal accident - Oct 12, 1911)

Cook, Ruth C. (Fatal accident - Oct 12,1911) 

Four Killed By Train 

Thursday afternoon four lives were snuffed out at a grade crossing accident at Columbia.  The victims were Aug. Languisch and son, Edward, and daughter, Meta, and Ruth C. Cook, a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. S.J. Cook.  The accident occurred just east of Columbia about 4:30 in the afternoon.  Languisch drove the covered bus which transported the school children to and from the union district school at Columbia and when they left the school he had with him five children, his son and daughter, Ruth Cook, a son of Fred Sauerberg and a son of Aug. Moravic.  At the point where the road crosses the railroad track, the wagon road makes a sharp turn, after an open stretch of about a half mile from Columbia.  As Languisch made the turn it is evident that he first saw the approaching train, and from what the two survivors of the accident stated stated he had whipped up his team and attempted to drive across ahead of the train.  The train, which was an east bound through freight, was running at a very high rate of speed in order to make the grade which is quite heavy at this point.  Languisch’s team had just crossed the track when the train struck the bus.  The pilot of the engine struck the bus just at the rear of the driver’s seat, and the four occupants were instantly killed.  The Sauerberg and Moravic boys were in the back of the bus and saw their danger and jumped in time to escape death.  There was no escape for Languisch and the three little children and their lives were instantly crushed out.  The details of the death of the four are harrowing and the bodies of the victims of the accident were terribly bruised and maimed.  The train was stopped after running a considerable distance, and the bodies of the victims were picked up, and later brought to Neillsville and prepared for burial in the Eberhardt undertaking rooms. 

Languisch was a man of about 54 years of age.  His son was aged 11 years, his daughter 9 and Ruth Cook 10.  Languisch is survived by his wife and six children.  Mrs. Languisch has been of unsound mind and but recently returned from Mendota where she had been receiving treatment, and it is understood that the shock of the accident has unsettled her reason again. 

The first knowledge that Mr. and Mrs. Cook had of the death of their daughter was when they arrived at Columbia after starting out on a search for her, having become alarmed at her failure to come home. 

The funeral of the victims of the grade crossing was held Sunday and largely attended by a number of sorrowing and sympathizing friends and neighbors. 



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