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St Charles, IA Tornado, Aug 1858

Terrific Tornado in Iowa.

We learn from the St. Charles, Floyd county, lows Intelligencer, that on the 21st ult., a terrific storm visited that city and vicinity, doing great damage. The rain fell in torrents, accompanied with thunder, lightning, hail, and a furious gale of wind. This state of things continued for about one hour. Houses were unroofed, fences prostrated, chimneys blown down, and nearly all small out-buildings were removed from their foundations if not destroyed. Several houses in the course of erection were demolished and several barnes[sic] blown down. The Intelligencer says:

To enumerate, we may say that in this village the tall and somewhat expensive flagstaff on the public square was blown down; the new two-story house of A. H. Bael, in progress of construction, was entirely demolished. Mr. Brainard's house was removed from its foundation; D. Davidson's house was completely unroofed, leaving three or four children abed in the chamber exposed to the elements; a log house, belonging to Dr. Palmer, and occupied by a widow woman and several children, was unroofed; the roof of Truman Gilbert's house, occupied by T. Simmonds, parted at the ridge and fell partially in; half of the roof to one side of J. Kelly's stables was thrown to the ground; Mr. Kelly's flouring mill, which was in full operation at the time. ceased to grind, so great was the shock of wind, when the gates were immediately shut down; one-half of the roof of the house occupied by Robert Frost, and owned by Dr. Palmer, was taken off; Wm. Ferguson's barn was demolished; various windows to stores and dwelling houses were blown in and broken, and signs and awnings were blown about indiscriminately. The damage to buildings, &c., in the village must amount to several thousand dollars; while that done to the growing crops and fences in this vicinity, must be beyond competation.

Chicago Press and Tribune, Chicago, IL 3 Aug 1858

article | by Dr. Radut