October 20, 2017
This is “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.
Today’s story is about a mother, her three children and a puppy, who narrowly escaped their deaths. The mother’s name was Mrs. Theodore Zook. She lived in Junction City with her three children. One day they embarked on an excursion to gather nuts from a tree. This was in October of 1894. The three boys had a small wagon with them in which they had placed their coats, shoes and a picnic for their outing. There was a small dog – or large pup, which was also included on the trip. They went down the Union Pacific track and started across the railroad bridge that crossed the Republican River. About halfway over the trestle, they were startled to discover a fast moving express train that was within a few feet of them. The train was so close that it was impossible for them to reach the end of the bridge. Mrs. Zook, in her excitement, grabbed the pup instead of one of the children and threw herself and the pup down on the ties outside of the rail. The children did the same. The wagon was abandoned in the middle of the bridge and soon there were shoes and dinner buckets flying through the air. The engineer stopped the train as soon as possible. He was amazed and very thankful to discover that none of the Zook family had been seriously injured.
It is always wise to be very cautious at railroad crossings and anywhere there might be a train coming down the tracks.
And… that’s today’s story on “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society.