Vintage Photo – Passenger Train Derails in Downtown Raleigh, 1961

Bought this one on eBay. Color slide of a train derailment in downtown Raleigh. Slide says April 1961. Don’t have additional details just yet. Hadn’t heard of such incident, in fact. (I’ve found notable ones in 1907, 1943, and 1979.) Will consult microfilm copies of the News & Observer and Raleigh Times at my next opportunity.

Picture was probably taken from the old Boylan Street bridge, the metal one that was closed in 1978. (See Library of Congress pictures of same.) In the upper-right corner of the picture is the old Martin Street Viaduct. That was probably demolished circa 1982, when the new Boylan Street bridge was built. (Read blog archives posting.)

The railroad is the Seaboard Air Line. The photographer is not known.

Click to enlarge the picture, plus a few closer views:

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  1. Your dates are correct April 8, 1961.
    E7A 3027 April 8, 1961 excessive speed caused the E7 and five cars of Hamlet-Richmond local no.4 to derail on the ten-degree curve approaching the Raleigh station. Eight crew members and four passengers were injured in the incident J. Parker Lee From the book “Through the Heart of the South” by Robert Wayne Johnson
    There is a pic of the cleanup of the wreck. My dad took me to see this!

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