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Source: Summit County Beacon
Source type: newspaper
Document type: article
Document title: “Wonderful Scenes”
Author(s): anonymous
City of publication: Akron, Ohio
Date of publication: 19 September 1901
Volume number: none
Issue number: 23
Pagination: [2]

“Wonderful Scenes.” Summit County Beacon 19 Sept. 1901 n23: p. [2].
full text
McKinley funeral train (procession from Washington, DC, to Canton, OH); William McKinley (death: public response: Pennsylvania); William McKinley (mourning); William McKinley (death: public response: Johnstown, PA); William McKinley (death: public response: Pittsburgh, PA).
Named persons


Wonderful Scenes


They Were Interested All Along the Line.

     Pittsburg, Sept. 18.—The train ran more slowly after leaving Harrisburg after midnight and daylight was dawning as it arrived at Altoona, at the foot of the eastern slope of the Alleghenies. But through the semi-darkness the forms of many people could be seen strung along the track. Without the depot a vast throng, numbering 3,000 or 4,000 people, surged up to the train.
     Many must have been there all night and others had waited for hours as the train was originally scheduled to reach that point at 3:20 a. m. Extra engines were coupled on here and the train was pulled laboriously up the mountains. The morning was raw, foggy and cheerless. Mountaineers with axes on their shoulders came down from the steep slopes to pay their homage with uncovered heads. Passing the summit at Cresson, the descent began.
     Half the population of Johnstown, the first of the great steel manufacturing centers through which the train was now to pass on its way to the martyred president’s home, was at the track and a company of local militia stood drawn up at attention. Men, women and children all were there. Miners with lamps in their caps had rushed forth from the tunnels at the train’s approach and the steel mills along the Connemaugh river [sic] were emptied.

Their Deep Interest.

     These were men who felt that their prosperity was due to the system for which the dead statesman stood, and their loss seemed of a personal character. Four women with uplifted hands were noticed on their knees and handkerchiefs were at the lips of others; and from the smoke-covered city came the sound of the church bells clanging out the universal sorrow. The train slowed down that the people might better see the impressive spectacle at the rear of the train within the observation car, the elevated flag covered casket with its burden of flowers and the two grim armed sentries on guard at the head and foot and outside on the platform a soldier with his bayonetted [sic] gun and a sailor with drawn cutlass, both at salute. So rigid they stood they might have been carved out of stone. A little further on the train passed a string of coke ovens, the tenders at the mouths of the glowing furnaces with their hats in their hands.
     At Jeannette were 1,000 or more glass workers with their families.
     At Pitcairn the end of the railroad division, train crews and engines were changed and the railroad men were out in force.
     At Wilmerding the employes [sic] of the Westinghouse Air Brake company [sic] were at the track, and at East Pittsburg, where is located one of the largest electrical plants in the world, were several thousand people. The train had now practically entered the suburbs of Pittsburg, that city of brawn and muscle which has just passed through the convulsion of a great strike, and the industrial workers were strung along the track in solid lines.

Nearing Pittsburg.

     At Bessemer the huge stacks of the Carnegie steel plant were pouring forth dense volumes of smoke and flame, and under this black canopy the toilers gathered in dense throngs, standing mutely with uncovered heads. Just beyond the great mills of Braddock gave forth another multitude of grimy workmen, and to the left across the river where is located that other great hive of industry, Homestead, the wharves were lined with men and women.
     Entering Pittsburg a wonderfully impressive sight was presented. Along both sides of the track for miles were solid walls of humanity. In some places the people stood 20 deep, while the embankments were black with them. On the top of every freight car was a human hedge. The overhanging bridges bent beneath their burden. The roofs of houses were lined. All stood with uncovered heads while the bells of all the churches were tolling.



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