Pueblo County, Colorado
George E. Gordon

Contributed by Karen Mitchell and Jean Griesan. Photo by Floyd Kelling.

George E. Gordon
George E. “Yankee” Gordon was a competent, sober, locomotive engineer who lost his life in a head-on collision between Denver & Rio Grande freight trains two miles east of the Parkdale station on August 7, 1885. Gordon and the conductor apparently misread orders received at Texas Creek regarding the passing of two sections of a westbound freight train. Known as fast runner, Gordon was speeding along at 15 miles per hour on a section of steep down-grade and a series of curves where there was barely room for the narrow gauge track. The collision wrecked three locomotives and ten cars. Gordon's locomotive jumped the track but remained upright. Gordon, who apparently feared death from scalding steam of the wrecked locomotive, jumped into the turbulent river. His body was recovered some distance downstream six days later. Gordon was a member of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers, Masonic, Odd Fellows and United Workmen lodges and had a total of $9,000 life insurance (a substantial amount at that time) for his widow and children.

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