October 7, 1885: Rowdies Accost Train; Trainmen and Locals Save the Day


By Margaret Leidy Harner from her book One Day at a Time: A Social History of Boyertown, PA

October 7, 1885: A train on the Colebrookdale line was boarded near Boyertown by several drunken roughs who terrorized the passengers, insulted the men, frightened the women, and grappled the conductor by the throat, pushing him into a corner.

The train was then run at the mercy of the desperadoes until the trainmen, including the fireman on the engine, banded together and rescued the conductor. After a desperate and exciting struggle, the rowdies were driven off the train at New Berlinville.

The plot thickens: the miscreants waited for the conductor and brakeman to disembark and again attacked, but the villagers turned out en masse and drove them off.

Warrants were issued and the company will vigorously prosecute the case.

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