Travels in the American Southwest
Palisade
GPS - N40 36.736 W116 11.880
2 miles west off SR278, 10 miles south of I-80
Road factor/Accessability - Paved
~404 miles from Las Vegas

The location of the Palisade train wreck of August 12, 1939. The Southern Pacific's train named City of San Francisco derailed killing 24 and injuring 121 of the 220 passengers and crew members. The cause of the wreck was attributed to sabotage however rumors persisted that the train was traveling at unsafe speeds prior to the accident. The sabotage theory was preferred by the railroad as the City of San Francisco was considered the art of safety engineering, but no suspect was ever apprehended nor was anyone ever charged..

Today, car skeletons and the remains of worker's cabins mark the site. The Humbolt river slowly flows past the ruins and trains still run along the east bank of the river.


 




The town was named Palisade for its location near the sheer rock cliffs to the east. They can be seen in the background below.

Despite the passage of over six decades, the Palisade train wreck is still cited today. A recent paper entitled "Impact Assessment Report on Nuclear Fuel and High-Level Radioactive Waste Through Eureka County, Nevada" utilized the train wreck of 1939 as an argument against housing a radioactive dumpsite at Yucca mountain.
 
 

Main | Trip Reports | E-mailGhosttowns