Tag Archives: William Kirwan

1912 Wausau Lumberjacks

11 Dec

Before embarking on his career as a boxing promoter, Mique Malloy was a minor league manager and player.

Around midnight on September of 1912 Malloy and his Wausau Lumberjacks boarded the Southbound Chicago & Ashland Limited of the Chicago & Northwestern Railroad.

When the train was 50 miles from Green Bay a sudden rainstorm washed out a section of track causing the train to derail; according to The Milwaukee Sentinel:

“(The train) while running, at 30 miles an hour, on time at 2:25 AM, ran into a washout caused by a local cloudburst…the engine, mail, baggage and smoker (cars) tipped over.”

Six members of the train’s crew and one passenger were killed; dozens more were injured.

Southbound Chicago & Ashland Limited, September 2, 1912

Southbound Chicago & Ashland Limited, September 2, 1912

Wausau shortstop/outfielder JamesJimmy” Davey (misidentified as Glen or Glenn in nearly all contemporary accounts of the crash), was badly injured, and according to The Milwaukee Journal his arm needed to be amputated—the report turned out to be premature, Davey’s arm was saved,  but his career was over.  Davey who also had also played professional basketball with his hometown Troy (NY) Trojans in the Hudson River League returned home.

The other Wausau player who was seriously injured was pitcher William “Wild Bill” Kirwan, a native of Baltimore.  He had won 19 games the previous season with the Danville Speakers in the Three-I League.  Kirwan suffered a fractured skull and was transported to Chicago for treatment.  After recovering he attempted a comeback in 1913 with the Oshkosh Indians, but retired after a 2-6 start.

"Wild Bill" Kirwan, Oshkosh 1913

“Wild Bill” Kirwan, Oshkosh 1913

Mique Malloy suffered a variety of minor injuries in the wreck, but was able to return to Wausau as a player/manager in 1913, until a fractured ankle in June ended his career.

In 1913 the Chicago & Northwestern Railroad settled with the three players, Newspaper reports said Kirwan received $1000, Davie $600 and Malloy $586.

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