Snowstorm of 1854-55, Will County, Illinois
From: History of Will County, Illinois
By: August Maue
Historical Publishing Company
Topeka-Indianapolis 1928


Snowstorm - 1854-55. - During the Winter of 1854-55, occurred a great snowstorm, which is, no doubt, yet remembered by many. The train which left Joliet at noon on the 25th day of January, with 350 passengers, 22 of whom were members of the Illinois Legislature, was brought to a full stop when near Dwight. The weather had grown cold and the engines had frozen up, and they were utterly unable to proceed. They were held in this condition for six days and nights, during which it was excessively cold, and there was much discomfort, to use no stronger expression. It was several miles to timber, and the stock of fuel carried by the train was soon exhausted. The seats of the cars and also the second class cars were cut up for fuel. They had no provisions the first day excepting a few cans of oysters and a few boxes of crackers, which were in the freight car. Relief, to some extent, was brought in sleighs from the surrounding farmhouses and the nearest villages; and on the seventh day, an engine from Joliet succeeded in forcing its way through and bringing the shipwrecked train back to Joliet. Some of the Legislature, among them Messrs. Parks and Osgood, went forward from Dwight in sleighs.


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