Bullitt County History

Train Rams Work Car, Killing 5 L. & N. Men

Sections Hands Die Instantly In Accident
Mile South of Bardstown Junction in Bullitt

This article, shown in the images below, was found in the Museum picture files. It is mis-labeled as Dec 1957; but the wreck occurred on 15 Dec 1958 according to the death records of the five men who died. We transcribed part of it below.

Five Louisville and Nashville Railroad section hands were killed at 7:05 a.m. yesterday a mile south of Bardstown Junction when their gasoline-powered work car was rammed from the rear by a passenger train.

The dead:

John Ezra Brown, 64, the crew foreman from Shepherdsville; Lloyd L. Gray, 40; Emmett D. Cartwright, 44, and Arthur Lee Hinton, all of Lebanon Junction, and of Lebanon Junction, and Robert McCluskey, 39, Glasgow.

Bullitt County Coroner Walter S. Keith said the men died instantly. All suffered skull fractures and other injuries.

The Louisville-bound train, the Azalean, was operated by engineer W. O. Sweat, Lebanon Junction.

Train Going 70 Mph

Sweat said he jammed on the brakes when he saw the small curtained car on the tracks ahead of the train. But he was too close to avoid hitting it.

Railroad officials said the train was going about 70 miles an hour.

Bullitt County Deputy Sheriff Bob Roberts said the small car was knocked about 300 feet. Bodies of the five workmen were scattered along the frozen ground beside the tracks.

At the site of the accident, the tracks run along the top of a 10-foot embankment. The area is about seven miles north of Lebanon Junction and five miles south of Shepherdsville.

Train Was Late

W. R. Winkler, Louisville division superintendent for the railroad, said the five workmen were going from Lebanon Junction toward Shepherdsville.

"We just don't know why it happened," Winkler said.

The superintendent said the train, due at Union Station here at 7:25 a.m. yesterday, was about 20 minutes behind schedule when the accident occurred.

Some railroad officials said the work crew might have assumed the train had already passed on its way toward Louisville when they wheeled their car onto the tracks.

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The Bullitt County History Museum, a service of the Bullitt County Genealogical Society, is located in the county courthouse at 300 South Buckman Street (Highway 61) in Shepherdsville, Kentucky. The museum, along with its research room, is open 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday; and from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Thursday. Admission is free. The museum, as part of the Bullitt County Genealogical Society, is a 501(c)3 tax exempt organization and is classified as a 509(a)2 public charity. Contributions and bequests are deductible under section 2055, 2106, or 2522 of the Internal Revenue Code. Page last modified: 12 Sep 2020 . Page URL: bullittcountyhistory.org/bchistory/tw_dec1958.html