The Daily Herald. CLINTON, IOWA.

Official Paper of City and County.


October 13, 1891

Joined In Holy Union.

Last night at 8 o’clock occurred the marriage of County Recorder F. J. McLaughlin to Miss Annie McCarthy, Rev. Father McLaughlin pronouncing the solemn service which joined two lives together for better or for worse. The ceremony took place at St. Mary’s cathedral, in the presence of several hundred friends of both of the young people. Miss Elia Kennedy and Mr. John Burke acted as bridesmaid and best man.

After the services at the church the wedding party gathered at the residence of the bride’s friends on Thirteenth avenue, where refreshments were served, and congratulations received until the 10:20 train, on which the happy couple left for a brief wedding tour, visiting at Sioux City, Omaha, and other places, before returning to their home in Clinton.

Both bride and groom are extensively known in this city where they have many friends who sincerely rejoice in their happiness.


NOTE:  These stories are a bit graphic!

Tuesday Evening, October 13, 1891

INSTANT DEATH. EDWARD FLYNN KILLED AT THE ELEVENTH AVENUE CROSSING. The Body Dragged Some Distance and Badly Mutilated - Probably Became Confused - Coroner’s Work.

A sad and distressing accident occurred about 9:15 o’clock this morning at the Eleventh avenue crossing of the railroad tracks. At that time Edward Flynn, an aged gentleman who resided on Eleventh avenue between Fourth and Fifth streets, was crossing the second track, going towards the east, when the C. & N.W. switch engine No. 581, in charge of Engineer Lew Matthews, bore down upon him, and before the calamity could be averted, the body was run over and badly cut and mutilated, death resulting instantly. The head, left arm, and both legs were cut off.

The remains were carefully laid upon a door and placed beside the tool house on the other side of the tracks, and were removed as quickly as possible to the undertaking establishment of O.S. Knowlton.


Just how the dreadful casualty came to pass cannot be told. The crossing at this point is very dangerous, as it is impossible to see up or down the tracks until directly on them. There were several engines doing work in this vicinity at the time, and the noise arising from all combined probably confused the old gentleman until he hardly knew which way to turn, and thus did not notice the one on the track on which he stood. This engine, No. 581, was switching the Sterling passenger onto the side track, and was running away from the three coaches, it is said, when it struck the unfortunate victim, and dragged him some 80 or 90 feet before finally passing over.


The widow of the dead man was immediately told of the accident, and with only a shawl over her head hastened at once to the place where the remains were lying beside the tracks. Her wailing and weeping were heartrending, and when, before she could be prevented, she raised the cover and gazed at the bloody head severed from the body of her dearly beloved husband, many a one turned aside that he might not look upon such a solemn and sad scene, which stirred to their depths the feelings of every one in the large crowd which had collected around.

The deceased was about 67 years of age, and had resided in Clinton for a long time, having been for 20 years a member of the R.C.T.A.S. society. Until within the last two weeks he had been employed at W.J. Young’s upper mill, when work became slack on account of low water in the river. Besides the widow, a family of four sons are left, all of whom are engaged in business in Chicago.

The funeral arrangements have not yet been definitely decided on.


Coroner Meyers was notified of the fatalty, and summoned a jury, composed of James Gilmore, Geo. Brenizer and J.M. Powers, who after viewing the remains, began hearing the evidence in Justice Brenizer’s office at half past 1 o’clock this afternoon.

Engineer Matthews in his testimony said that he did not see the man at all, and that the fireman was ringing the bell at the time. The engine could have been stopped within a distance of two rails length, but he ran on a short distance further to get off the body. The engine was backing at the time, and a switchman was on the front end, so of course could not see. A signal had been given him to back up. They were making a flying switch.

Fireman Fred Collins said about the same. The first he knew of the accident was on hearing a man shout. When the engine was stopped the body of the man was inside the track, and the head south of the rails.

A verdict will probably not be reached until late in the evening.

Wednesday Evening, October 14, 1891.

Verdict Not Yet Announced.

The verdict of the Coroner’s inquest in regard to the killing of the late James Flynn yesterday morning, has not yet been announced. It will be rendered this evening.

The funeral will be held to-morrow morning, leaving the house for St. Mary’s church about 8:30 o’clock.

The deceased had lived in Clinton for 23 years and was a charter member of the R.C.T.A.S. His four sons, who are policemen in Chicago, are in the city to attend the last ceremonies over the beloved parent, who was thus so suddenly called away.

Thursday Evening, October 15, 1891.

Should Have Had a Flagman.

The Coroner’s jury composed of James Gilmore, Geo. Brenizer and J.M. Powers, who held the inquest over the late James Flynn, returned a verdict late last evening to the effect,

That the deceased came to his death by being knocked down and run over by switch engine number 581, on track number two of the Chicago & Northwestern Railway, on Eleventh avenue crossing City of Clinton, he attempting to cross said tracks; and we find the company were negligent in not providing a flagman at said Eleventh avenue crossing.

The funeral of the unfortunate man was held from St. Mary’s church this morning at 9 o’clock attended by a large number of friends. The services were in charge of the R.C.T.A.S.

The Lyons Mirror.

Saturday, October 17, 1891.


James Flinn, at Clinton, while crossing a railroad track, Tuesday morning, was caught under a passing locomotive and killed. His body was horribly mangled and his head severed from the body. He was 67 years old. The Coroner’s jury found that the Northwestern Railway Company “were negligent in not providing a flagman at Eleventh avenue crossing.”

Submitted by: Barbara Theis



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