Spike People: Train Disaster Memorial.

Spike People: Train Disaster Memorial

Field review by the editors.

Naperville, Illinois

On April 25, 1946, the worst disaster in the history of the Burlington Railroad took place on this spot when a speeding commuter train plowed into a stationary one. 45 people were killed; 125 were injured. The disaster effectively ended high-speed passenger rail travel in the U.S.

Spike People: Train Disaster Memorial.

In 2014 Naperville artist Paul Kuhn fashioned a memorial to the train wreck, "Tragedy to Triumph." It weighs over a ton, and is made of over ten miles of welding wire -- and 5,000 steel railroad spikes. The sculpture depicts a sailor and a worker from the city's Kroehler Furniture Factory -- which was next to the crash site -- helping an injured woman out of the wreckage, between two real sets of skewed, half-buried train wheels.

Spike People: Train Disaster Memorial

Address:
210 E. 4th Ave., Naperville, IL
Directions:
On the north side of E. 4th Ave., at the east end of the Naperville commuter train station platform.
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