100 Years Ago in Bienville Parish – Gibsland Boy Rewarded for Preventing Two Train Wrecks

Harold Martin, a twelve-year-old “school boy” of Gibsland, loved to walk the rails of the Vicksburg, Shreveport and Pacific Railroad.  On two separate occasions, Harold found broken rails in the track.  He reported his findings to the management of the V.S. & P. “just in time to prevent serious accidents.”  Word of Harold’s good deeds reached the highest echelon of the company, who realized that Harold had probably saved the lives of the passengers and crews of two trains.   

On August 2, 1921, Edwin Ford, assistant to the president of the railroad, and J.C. Stamm, superintendent of the railroad, took the train to Gibsland with the intention of meeting Harold.  While there, Ford and Stamm presented Harold with a “handsomely engraved gold watch in return for his services.”  


  1. Bienville Democrat, August 11, 1921, p.1.
  2. The Alexandria Town Talk, August 10, 1921, p.8.

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