NITRO WAGON EXPLOSION BLOWS MAN TO HEAVEN IN 1918

(11/13/2017)

Transcribed by Norma Knotts Shaffer from microfilm of the Calhoun Chronicle dated 1/31/1918.

Glycerine Wagon Explodes
One Man Instantly Killed

Charley O. Strain, a shooter for the Marietta Torpedo Company, was instantly killed here Wednesday afternoon when his nitro-glycerine wagon slipped in the icy road across Phillips Run from Frank Johnson's residence. Elmore Stump of Russett, who was helping Mr. Strain bring the wagon from the Fowler well, in the Russett fields, escaped, miraculously, with only a few bruises. The horses and wagon were blown to atoms.

The explosion was heard several miles from here and the concussion was felt at Cabot's factory.

Strain had been in town Wednesday morning when he called his employers to get their permission to bury the glycerine before returning with the wagon to Marietta, but his orders were to return to Marietta with the glycerine. He had gone to Russett Sunday to shoot the Fowler well, but the well was not ready. He had 35 quarts.

Upon starting to this place he procured Elmore Stump to come with him to check the wagon and they got along very well until ___________ place of the accident.

Before the Russett road intersects the Phillips Run Road it is very narrow and steep. The road was a solid stretch of ice, and when Strain and Stump came to that place they stopped to allow Stump to go back with his line and put it around a tree; before Stump reached the tree he heard the horses shuffling and when he looked around the team and wagon were going over the bank. The wagon turned over twice; when it first turned over Strain was thrown off, leaving him behind the wagon, after it had turned the second time, and when the explosion occurred, Stump dropped to the road as the wagon turned, leaving him hardly exposed to the concussion.

When the explosion was heard here several people rushed to scene of the accident. Strain was lying about where Stump had last seen him. Both legs were broken, his left side horribly mangled and his face was torn beyond recognition.

The remains were taken to the undertaking rooms of Ira N. Stump where they were prepared for burial. They were taken to Cairo Thursday where his wife was visiting.

The unfortunate man was between 35 and 45 years of age. Those who talked to him when he was here declare that he was a very affable and likable man. He was a member of the Ham_in K of P Lodge and of the Griffithsville I.O.O.F. He was married but had no children, we understand.


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