Details of Railway Accidents in the Ottawa Area



1897, January 21 - Canada Atlantic wayfreight derails at an open switch west of Barrys Bay, 3 killed, 1 injured.



Ottawa Journal  22 January 1897

Accident four miles above Barry's Bay.  Open switch.  Three killed one badly injured. Was found to be the fault of a teamster who drove a heavily laden sleigh over the switch and damaged it.

Ottawa Journal
27  January 1897

Barrys Bay wreck - inquest.  Suspicion of sabotage. Full account.
Two shantymen charged with displacing the switch, teamsters dragged their loads over the switch and displaced it - full account.

Ottawa Citizen 29 January 1897

The engine derailed in the recent accident on the O.A. & P.S. railway has arrived in Ottawa and is now in the company’s shops being repaired.  It is greatly damaged.  The front portion is all smashed, and, what was once the cabin is now a jumble of broken wood and twisted iron.  How Taylor managed to escape is a conundrum with those who have seen the engine.  It is thought he must have been thrown out the cabin window before the tender had crashed into the cabin. (see accident file)

Ottawa Citizen 1 February 1897

Mr. Donaldson of the O.A. & P.S. Ry., and Detective Hatton arrived in the city Saturday from Renfrew after completing arrangements for the prosecution of Charles Golgoleen and Peter Clement for moving the switch which caused the recent disaster at Barrys Bay.  It is said the men will admit having driven over the switch during the day of the accident, but as to whether they turned the switch or not in so doing they are unable to say.

Ottawa Citizen  22 May 1937

Three Men Killed Barry's Bay Wreck
The unusual record of immunlty from serious accident which the Ottawa. Arnprior and Parry Sound Railway had enjoyed since it opened for traffic, was broken on tne evening oi January 21, 1897 (just 40 years ago) by a casualty which occurred near Barry's Bay resulting in the death of three train hands and the injuryury of another.
Those who lost their lives were: Charles Hutchison. fireman: James Casselman. brakeman. and William Russell, in charge of the store car. The injured man was William Taylor, engineer, who was scalded about the face and hands.
The train was a wav freioht. in charge of Conductor Aris and Engineer Taylor. The train as it left Ottawa consisted of 27 laden cars, and was still a fairly heavy one when it reached Barry's Bay at 7.15 in the evening. Four miles above Barry's Bay was a short side track, known as O'Brien's siding. It was there the disaster occurred.
It appears that just as the siding was reached the engine jumped off the track. Two cars were standing on the siding. Into these the derailed engine crashed and was thrown into the ditch, falling upon her side. Several of the cars following were also derailed and overturned.


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Updated January 2021