Leicester Chronicle Saturday, January 14th 1899, p6
Accident on the Railway at Leicester
A shunter in the employ of the Midland Railway Company, named William Covill Taber, of Lytton-road, Clarendon Park, met with a serious accident at the Knighton Sidings, early on Wednesday morning. Taber, who had finished duty a few minutes before, and was just about to go home, missed his footing while alighting from an engine, which passed over his right leg, and badly mutilated it. He was immediately conveyed to the Midland Station on a special engine, and was taken thence to the Infirmary on a stretcher. It was found necessary to amputate the injured limb, and the poor fellow is doing as well as can be expected.
William Covill Taber was 24 when he lost his leg in this horrible accident. He had been married for less than two years to Florence Sarah Izzard, a woman from London. He was a country lad from Cambridgeshire, having moved to Leicester presumably to find work. Becoming disabled in late Victorian England was pretty grim – no state support was available except parish relief, and that usually meant the workhouse. Perhaps the Midland Railway Company offered compensation and support. They certainly continue to employ William, as in 1901 he was a railway porter and in 1911 a railway goods checker. I wonder whether he had a wooden leg? Regards, Elizabeth.