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"The passengers snowbound on the Missouri Pacific train between Eagle and Elmwood were released late Friday, but not through the clearing of the track," said the Lincoln Star of March 16, 1912. "A part of them secured a sleigh and horses and drove through to Lincoln, a distance of nineteen miles. The rest of them drove in relays to Alvo, where they caught a Rock Island passenger train and came to this city.

"The passengers, fifty-four in number, had been snowbound since Thursday morning. They managed to spend a fairly comfortable day Thursday, the train being well heated through the efforts of the crew. The conductor of a relief train, which had itself become stalled in the snow some distance away, scoured the country for provisions for the passengers and no real hardship was encountered. In fact most of them seemed to enjoy the unusual experience.

"The first to leave the train were three Lincoln men, John G. Maher, Ralph Langley and a Mr. Matthews. They secured a team and sleigh from a farmer whose home was not far distant from the snowbound train. Then they began a battle with the snowdrifts, some of which were from ten to twelve feet deep, according to Mr. Maher. The party left at 10 o'clock and did not reach Lincoln until 6 o'clock Friday evening. A good share of the way the men were forced to leave the sleigh and shovel their way through drifts.

"Shortly after their departure another party of seven, including W. J. Bryan, left in a large farm wagon for Alvo. With the aid of shovels and by dint of much labor this party reached Alvo, where they found that the Rock Island tracks were cleared to Lincoln, a snowplow having just passed through.

"The wagon returned to the snowbound Missouri Pacific train and the remainder of the passengers were taken to Alvo at various times during the day. The majority of them reached Lincoln shortly after 8 o'clock last night. The train is still stalled and there is little prospect of its being able to leave before Sunday. Of the passengers about fifteen were women. One woman and a small child were removed the first day, a relative coming after them in a sleigh."

(January 2005)



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