Shelby's Fourth Of July Tragedy - 1898

Richland Co., Ohio


Historical Information

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Shelby's Fourth Of July Tragedy, 1898

Source -- MANSFIELD SEMI-WEEKLY NEWS:  05 July 1898, Vol. 14, No. 56


Submitted by Amy





At 4:50 o'clock Monday afternoon the bridge on Main Street over the Blackfork, in Shelby, collapsed.  Between 500 and 600 people were on the bridge at the time and as a result of the accident five people are dead and over 200 injured.  Several of the injured are believed to be fatally hurt.  Of the 200 or more injured nearly half have suffered broken arms or legs or some equally serious injury.


CYRUS KUHN, of Shelby, well known.  Aged 60 years.  Crushed to Death.

FRANK KECKLER, of Shelby.  Aged 14 years.  Son of Milton Keckler.  Drowned.

ADA BLOODHART, of Shelby.  Aged 11 years.  Daughter of Jacob Bloodhart.  Head crushed and leg broken.

MRS. MANNAHAN, of Edison.  Aged 60 years.  Wife of David W. Mannahan.  Crushed and both legs deeply cut at the hips.

MRS. PATRICK BARKLOW, of Mansfield.  Aged 40 years.  Ankle broken and internal injuries.


WILL FISHER, of Mansfield.  Manager of city band.  Leg broken and ribs crushed.

ANDREW ELLAND, of Greenwich.  Aged 19 years.  Injured internally.

MISS LAURA CONRAD, of Mansfield.  Both legs broken.

ERNEST SOTZEN, of Galion.  Aged 12 years.  Internal injuries.

MISS JESSIE M'CULLY, of near Crestline.  Daughter of John M'Cully.  One leg fractured, dislocation of the other, and internal injuries.

SAMUEL GATES.  Ribs broken, internal injuries.

MRS. SAMUEL GATES.  Injured internally.

MISS FAYE MIDDLESWORTH, of Shiloh.  Thigh bone broken, other injuries.

MRS. W.A. SNYDER, of Shelby.  Chest crushed.

In addition to these there are more than 150 injured, the great majority of whom had broken arms or legs or crushed ribs.  Probably 20 doctors were present from Mansfield and other places nearby, but when it was 11 o'clock cases of injured people needing medical attention were still being reported at the mayor's office and doctors assigned.  It was the most horrible tragedy in the history of Richland County and the list of dead bids fair to be swelled to eight or ten before the end of the week.

The 08 July 1898 issue of the same paper included the following additional information regarding the Shelby tragedy ...

Plymouth ... The following persons from this place were hurt at Shelby the Fourth:  

  • Miss Kate Haulman, bone broken in ankle.

  • Dr. J.T. Gaskill, sprained ankle

  • Bessie Zeidler, collar bone broken

  • Jennie Monteith, limb injured, extent not known at present

  • Mrs. Charles McClinchey, right knee hurt and limb bruised badly

  • George Schringer, calf of leg and knee severely bruised

  • Base Wine, Bert Wine, and several others got just enough to give them graceful limps, and are not seriously hurt.

Ganges ... There were sad and and unexpected news reached here Monday evening (as well as in other localities) announcing that two of our young ladies, Misses Ada Zackman and Lula Russell) were victims of that terrible catastrophe at Shelby.  Miss Zackman has one leg fractured and other injuries were sustained.  She is in a precarious condition.  Miss Russell had her feet severely bruised by the falling debris.

Amoy ... We are sorry to mention the names of those who went down with the bridge, at Shelby, on the Fourth.  Three persons from this vicinity were on the ill-fated bridge.  They were:  Ursa Huss, cut about the face;  Miss Jennie Sheriff, badly bruised; and Miss Ada Zackman, leg broken.

A further account of this news story appeared in the 08 July 1898 issue of the Mansfield Semi-Weekly News.  The beginning of the article is the same as what appeared in the July 5th. issue, with the exception of a new name added to the LIST OF THE DEAD section.  The rest of the article was new information.  Here is the additional information:

LIST OF THE DEAD [new name listed]

MISS MAUDE GRETER, of Crestline, aged 20 years.  Known to be fatally injured from the first.  Died at her home early this morning according to telephone message.

DANGEROUSLY INJURED [new names added]

SAMUEL GATES.  Ribs broken, internal injuries.  Mrs. Gates also injured internally.

MRS. PATRICK BARKLOW, of Mansfield.  Aged 40 years.  Ankle broken and internal injuries.

MISS ANNA PUCHTA, of Mansfield.  Legs broken.

[new information from this point on]


Miss Dora Seanor, of Shelby, leg broken.
Mrs. Kate Kirkendall, of Rome, internal injuries.
Maude Wellman, of Wellington, ankle injured.
Lilly Russell, of Ganges, ankle sprained.
Miss Kate Haulman, of Plymouth, ankle sprained.
Lloyd Noble, of Shiloh, compound fracture of the left leg.
Miss Truxell, of Shiloh, leg broken.
Maggie Mills, of Mansfield, face crushed.
James Shaver, of Shelby, back injured.
Ida Steele, of North Baltimore, internal injuries.
John H. Wayne, leg broken and injured internally.
T.S. DeWalt, of Liberty Corners, leg broken.
John McMahon, of near Shelby, hip injured.
Mrs. Ada Sackman, of near Shelby, legs broken.
Edward Johnston, of near Shelby, leg and hand injured.
Mrs. G.S. Hager, of near Mansfield, internal injuries.
Ad Paste, Cookton, leg broken.
Lottie Troupe, of Greenwich, leg broken.
Roy Lewis, of Greenwich, leg broken.
Ed Arch, of Crestline, hip broken.
Jeff Leiter, of Galion, shoulder broken or dislocated.
William Weyland, leg broken.
David W. Mannahan, injured.
Earl Payne, of Shelby, ribs broken.
Charles Lee, face and leg badly bruised.
Rolla Mickey, leg broken.
Miss Bruce, leg injured.
W.E. Myers, of New Washington, leg broken.
Fred Sackett, of New London, ankle hurt.
Arthur Herrington, of New London, ankle hurt.
J.M. Garber, of Plymouth, injured - extent not known.
Miss Annie Dalton, of Crestline, knee cap split and leg fractured.
Fred Portner, of Plymouth, slightly hurt.
Mrs. Alberson, of near Plymouth, injured - extent not known yet
Mrs. Richland Packham, of Mansfield, bruised and shocked
Frank C. Shiffer, of Shelby, both legs cut and injured.
Jerry Nazor, of Shelby, ankle broken.
Isaac Bordner, of Shelby, bad flesh wounds.
Mrs. W.A. Snyder, of Shelby, chest hurt.
Steve Dillon, of Shelby, arm broken and leg injured.
Orvil Landis, three ribs broken and legs cut.
Will Burt, of near Shelby, injuries not known.
Orley See, of near Shelby, slightly injured.
Mrs. James Champion, of Shelby, shoulder crushed.
Miss Jennie Shafer, of Amoy, hurt.
Clarence Fish, of Shelby, cut and bruised.
Fred Ashwell, of Shelby, ankle broken.
Two children of Otto Myers, aged about 12 or 13 years, injured.  Place of residence unknown.
Dan Livelsperger, of Mansfield, ankle and legs hurt.
Mrs. Stephen Knapp, of Shelby, bruised.
Elmer Eby, of Mifflin, thigh hurt.
Stephen Knapp, injured - extent not known.
G.C. Calhoun, of near Shelby, head severely cut.
Ercy Huss, aged 12 years, son of John Huss, face cut.
Mrs. Louis Brucker, of Mansfield, ankle injured.
Thomas, 18-year-old son of John McMahon, of Crestline, hip and back injured.
Nina Smiley, of Shelby, aged 12 years, back and hip hurt.
Jessie McCully, daughter of John McCully, of near Crestline, leg fractured and dislocated.
Mrs. Paige of Plymouth, injured - extent not known.
Mrs. Maggie May, of Shelby, chest hurt.
Mrs. Grizzy Linn, of Shenandoah, both ankles hurt and injured internally.
Mrs. Amos Kirkpatrick, of Shelby, leg broken.
Mrs. George Hackett, of Shelby, arm broken.
Mrs. J. Armole, of Shelby, knee cap fractured.
Obediah Roberts, of Shelby, head cut.
Frank Shiffer, Jr., slightly injured.
Miss Bertha Bushey, left arm broken.
Mrs. Daniel Cooper and child, of near Shelby, injured - extent not known.
Miss Dickey, of Jackson Twp., slightly injured.
Herbert and Charles Swaney, and another boy, injured.
W.F. Mann, of New London, leg broken.  Child injured, not seriously.
John Shade, of Shelby, leg broken.
Mrs. Mell Hoak, of Shelby, arm broken.
Mrs. J. Gunsaullus, of Shelby, slightly injured.
Mrs. C.S. Shields, of Shelby, ankle broken.  Child hurt.
Mrs. William Hetrick, of Shelby, both legs reported broken.
Mayor T.J. Green, of Shelby, finger broken and body bruised.
Mary Amann, of Shelby, foot hurt.  Extent of injury not known.
Frank Singer, of Ruggles, leg broken.
Roy Lewis, of Greenwich, badly injured, but nature of wounds not known.
George Cox, of Mansfield, head and leg injured.
David H. Maine, leg injured and hip hurt.
Mrs. D. Roth, of Shelby, head hurt and body injured.
Charles Kerps, of West Point, leg broken.
Francis Van Wagoner, of Shelby, badly injured.
Russell Levering, of Mt. Vernon, head badly injured.
Will Fisher, manager of the City Band of Mansfield, injured about the ribs and bruised, but not serious.
Oscar Moorehead, injured.
Flora Hills, of North Auburn, cut and bruised badly.
Clara Hersheiser, of near Shelby, limbs injured.
Mrs. William Nye, of Mansfield, bruised and cut.
Taylor Beelman, of Chicago Junction, head and body cut.
Carl Derfler, of Chicago Junction, head and body cut.
Miss Ethel Bruce, of Tiro, leg broken.
Son of William Briner, of Shelby, knee and body cut.
W.H. Calhorn [sic.], of Ganges, head bruised and body cut.
Mrs. John Arnold, of Shelby, leg broken.
Infant son of Jeff Sonnanstine, injured.
Edward Johnston, Mansfield, ribs broken.
Mrs. Lester F. Walker, of Mansfield, right leg broken at ankle.
Hattie Shaub, of Mansfield, injured about the head.
Roy Nixon, of Mansfield, cap of right knee broken.
John Arnold, Mansfield, right arm broken.
Edwin Craig, of Mansfield, leg injured.
Marshall E.H. Hunter, of Shelby, injured.
E.T. Gantt and family, of Shelby, all injured.
William Wilson, of Shelby, injured under the water main.
Mrs. Frank Steele, of Shelby, arms and back hurt.
Charles Morris, of Galion, foot broken.
Mrs. Nick Boehm, of Shelby, knee broken and neck hurt.  Also her 8-year-old son hurt.
Elza Ferrin, of Shelby, leg badly hurt.
Mrs. Frank Cooper, of Shelby, face and body badly bruised.
Miss Eva Hall, of Shelby, hip bruised.
J.M. Ritter, of Mansfield, bruised.
Miss Polly Gipe, of Mansfield, chest and leg injured.
C.J. Johnson, of Mansfield, three ribs broken.

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