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Jim Kershner’s this day in history

Sat., Aug. 4, 2012

From our archives, 100 years ago

Mrs. Viola Jacobson, a Snyder, Idaho, homesteader, received an award from the Spokane International Railway for saving a train and the lives of the passengers and crew.

During a summer windstorm, several giant trees fell across the tracks. Mrs. Jacobson went to a place called Rock Point, above the Moyie River, to signal the train to stop. But while she was there, several other trees fell on the track, forcing her to race up the track, “half-falling, scrambling, sustaining severe bruises and rents to her garments” in a mad dash to get past the trees before the oncoming train came around a bend.

She ran “straight into the face” of the locomotive, waving her straw hat frantically. The locomotive slammed on its brakes and ground to a halt “with its poking nose” right in front of her.

Without her efforts, the entire train would have plunged into the Moyie River.

The railroad gave her a “substantial” reward. Also, grateful train crews designated her ranch as a “flag stop.” Every day, they tossed her a present of some sort: a bag of ice, a bouquet or candy.

Also on this date

(From the Associated Press)

1944: Diarist Anne Frank, 15, was arrested with her sister, parents and others by the Gestapo after hiding for two years in a building in Amsterdam.

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