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19 February 2013

Terrific Explosion Followed by Death, in 6 Parts (a Tombstone Tuesday Crossover)

Photo by James Allen
Over at the Rose Hill Cemetery blog, I recently completed a series of posts about a horrific explosion in a Macon railroad yard. Two men, John McDonnell and Edmond Hodges, were killed instantly and rest in Rose Hill Cemetery. I shared all the details of the news article, believing the totality would be of great interest to many. Railroad yards were places of occupation for numerous ancestors in a myriad of families. Yet the danger of such, though well known then, I don't think is often remembered today. If you are interested in the subject matter, or any of the individuals mentioned below, please stop by and give it a read. The first post is linked above, and all posts in the series are linked below this first entry:

"TERRIFIC EXPLOSION FOLLOWED BY DEATH

An Awful Catastrophe at the Central Railroad Shops Here Yesterday Morning -- Engine was Blown to Atoms and Two Men were Instantly Killed, One More Died Soon After, and Three are Supposed to be Fatally Injured -- Six Others are Painfully Hurt -- Theories as to the Cause of the Explosion -- Harrowing Scenes when Loving Ones Gathered About the Yards.


The Telegraph's extra yesterday morning told in detail the story of the disaster at the Central of Georgia Railroad Company's shops, and more than one thousand people rushed for the extras as fast as they could be issued from the press.

The explosion was heard for more than seven miles in the country, and the havoc wrought was almost complete.

The dead are:
JOHN MCDONNELL, engine inspector, who was on top of the engine.
URIAH CORNELIUS, a negro who was in the cab assisting Mr. McDonnell.
E. W. HODGES, who was crossing the yard about 100 feet from the engine.

Injured:
J. I. O'NEAL, machinist, comminuted compound fracture right elbow; lacerated wound back of head; brain injury; will die.
R. L. WILLIS, blacksmith, scalded.
HENRY FOX, engine inspector, comminuted fracture both legs below knee; compound fracture right ankle; lacerated over symphis [sic] pubis; condition bad.
E. D. HAMBRICK, carpenter, lacerated wound of face and head.
W. M. WILSON, carpenter, fracture right rib; lung injury; serious.
J. M. MEADOWS, carpenter, lacerated wound right ear; contused right hip and knee; bruised all over.
PETER HAMMOCK, col., scalp wound; contusion of left hip, and right side of head.
WESLEY JOHNSON, colored, cut right side of face; right hip bruised; not serious.
PETER ADAMS, colored laborer, contusion of right shoulder.

All except R. L. Willis and Peter Adams are in hospital.

Mangled Remains.

The body of Mr. McDonnell was broken to pieces. The bone in each leg was broken in several places. The head was cut away so that only a small portion of the rear skull remains. The face was torn off and destroyed. Mr. McDonnell was at work on top of the engine, trying to adjust the pop valve, which had on the day before been found defective. The negro Cornelius was assisting him by firing the engine and getting up steam so the pop could be set to go off at 160 pounds pressure. It was necessary to get up that much steam in order to set the valve at that [?].

Cornelius was broken up as badly as Mr. McDonnell. His head was blown away and his ribs were broken. These two bodies were found nearly a hundred feet from the engine.

Mr. Hodges was crossing the yard in front of the engine and about 100 feet distant when the explosion occurred. He was not killed outright, but some huge object struck him in the side, breaking three ribs, and something else broke his leg. The wound in the side was fatal, and he died soon after being taken up from where he fell." [Macon Telegraph (Georgia), 3 January 1902, pg. 1 - Viewed online at GenealogyBank.]

Next up: "Where the Explosion Occurred" and "Location of the Injured Men."

All Posts in Series:
- Terrific Explosion Followed by Death
- I Cannot Live; You Cannot Do Anything for Me
- A Leg Bone was Found Just Over the Fence
- The Deceased Came to Their Death from the Explosion of an Engine Boiler
- Both Men were Blown Away, and Killed Instantly
- Who the Victims Are

15 February 2013

German & Zannie Died Just One Month Apart (This Time It's Personal)

Brownwood Cemetery in Sandersville, Washington County, Georgia is where a few of my cousins were laid to rest. Two of them were German Fields Womble and his wife Zannie Peavy Womble. They were united in marriage in the year 1913, and they both died in the year 1969 -- only one month apart. G. F. died the 30th of August, and Mrs. Zannie died the 30th of September. Here are their obituaries from the Augusta Chronicle (Georgia).

31 August 1969
Deaths and Funerals
G. F. Womble

SANMDERSVILLE, Ga. -- Funeral services for German Fields Womble, 79, of Sandersville, will be held at 3:30 p.m. Sunday at Sisters Baptist Church with the Rev. Milton and the Rev. Albert Stroup officiating.

Burial will be in Brownwood Cemetery.

Survivors include his widow, Mrs. Zannie Peavy Womble, two sons, Charles H. Womble, Boynton Beach, Fla., and Louie Womble, Sandersville; daughter, Mrs. Lola Daniel, Orlando, Fla.

He was a member of Sisters Baptist Church, the Hamilton Chapter of the Masonic Lodge and a retired civil service employee at Robins Air Force Base. He had lived in Sandersville all of his life.
1 October 1969 (Wednesday)
Deaths and Funerals
Mrs. Zannie Womble

SANDERSVILLE, Ga. -- Funeral services for Mrs. Zannie Peavy Womble, 77, of Sandersville, who died Tuesday, will be held at 4 p.m. today at Sisters Baptist Church.

...Burial will be in Brownwood Cemetery.

She had lived in Sandersville nearly all her life and was a member of Sisters Baptist Church.

Survivors include two sons, Louie Womble, Sandersville, and Charles H. Womble, Boynton Beach, Fla.; daughter, Mrs. Lola Daniel, Sandersville; three sisters, Mrs. Melinda Russell, Mrs. Clara Mae Horton and Mrs. Lena Holt, all of Macon.

Friends may call at Lang's Chapel until 3 p.m.

14 February 2013

Bells and Dotsons

From Blue Heights Baptist Church Cemetery at Mountain City, Rabun County, Georgia:

Ferber A. Bell (1879-1922) and Tobitha D. Bell (1883-1923)

I uncovered Tobitha's death certificate at FamilySearch.org. (Her first name was indexed as Tobeeka.) From this document I learned Mrs. Bell's cause of death was pulmonary tuberculosis, and I also learned the names of her parents. Tobitha was the daughter of Henry B. Dotson and Rebecca Speed, both being among those at rest in Blue Heights Baptist Church Cemetery.

H. B. Dotson (Oct 13, 1851 - Oct 23, 1920)
Rebecca Dotson (July 20, 1850 - Dec 6, 1918)
Photos © 2011-2013 S. Lincecum

07 February 2013

More Voltage than Used in Death Chairs (This Time It's Personal)

I recently signed up for Newspapers.com and was pleased with the number of results listed after my usual "test" search of LINCECUM. One of the first entries I read was an item about the death of my 4th cousin Lucullus B. Lincecum:

Newspapers.com Clipping
"BLOOD TRANSFUSIONS FAIL TO OFFSET VOLTS
Harlingen, Texas, Jan. 10 -- Two blood transfusions failed to save the life of L. B. Lincecum, 25, of San Benito, who died here at 2:30 this afternoon from the results of an electrical shock, from a 33,000-volt line.

The young man was employed by the Central Power and Light Company, and suffered the injury Dec. 29, near Sebastian, where he came in contact with a high line carrying more voltage than used in death chairs.

Lincecum was on the cross arm of a pole, and his head touched the line, while he held a wire going to the ground.

R. A. Ewing of the power department of the Central Power and Light Company, with which Lincecum was employed, gave a pint of blood in a transfusion this morning, and Scott Lincecum, brother of the deceased, who came here from West Columbia, gave blood in an effort to save his life." [The Weimar Mercury (Texas), 17 January 1930]

An item dated a week prior from the Brownsville Herald (Texas) under the headline of Shock Victim In Harlingen Better stated Lincecum was improving and would recover. But that was not to be. According to FindAGrave, L. B. Lincecum rests at Columbia Cemetery in Brazoria County, Texas. I have submitted a photo request -- fingers crossed.

Accident Details

Brownsville Herald (Texas)
30 December 1929, pg. 15
Electrician Badly Hurt at San Benito
(Special to The Herald)
SAN BENITO, Dec. 30 -- Cul Lincecum, 24, is in Valley hospital in a badly burned condition after having been shocked by a high tension wire at 10:30 Sunday morning. His condition is thought serious. He had not regained consciousness early today.

Lincecum was working on a pole near Sebastian when he accidentally touched the wire and was hurled to the earth, striking on his head. He was taken to the hospital by a Thompson ambulance.

He has worked here a year, having come here from Victoria. His father, L. G. Lincecum, West Columbia, drove to Harlingen with his daughter Lucille to see his son.
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