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Various Towns, KS, NE Tornadoes, May 1879






St. Louis, May 31. -- An Atchison, Kas., dispatch says: A terrible rain sand wind storm visited Frankfort, Marshall county, Kas., at 6 o'clock last evening, and lasted over two hours. F. B. TAYLOR'S warehouse was torn to pieces, and several small houses, stores and stables were more or less damages. The house of MESSRS. FOX, CAESAR and VAUGHN, three miles from town, was blown down and the inmates considerably injured. They are now here receiving medical treatment. FOX'S house and contents were blown into the river.
A messenger just in from Irving says the storm at that point blew down 16 houses, killed 8 persons, wounded about 25, and that several are missing. The residences of JAMES WARDEN, MR. ARMSTRONG, J. WILLIAMS, MR. THOMPSON, and twelve others, names of owners not given, were totally demolished. The Presbyterian church, public school building and Irving elevator were completely destroyed. The east span of the railroad bridge crossing the Blue river, was blown down.
A committee with funds, provisions and lulmber left Atchison on the Central branch rails and this afternoon to supply the wants of the sufferers, and another committee in soliciting additional aid.

St. Louis, May 31. -- The Globe-Democrat's special from Independence, Mo., says: A cyclone struck the earth four miles from Lee's Summit, last evening, and tore a furrow through the country about one hundred yards wide and ten miles long, leveling everything in its track, and killing and wounding several persons. The direction of the storm was from southwest to northeast. Three miles east of Lee's Summit, the house of MR. WARREN was totally destroyed, two members of the family killed, and others severely wounded. Further on, on Fancy Creek, twelve miles north of Condrays, the Methodist church was entirely demolished, buildings torn down, cattle and horses killed and other property destroyed.

St. Louis, May 31. -- A dispatch from Atchison, Kas., says: A terrible storm of wind and rain passed over northern Kansas and southern Nebraska last evening. It extended through nearly the whole northern tier of counties in this state, but was most violent between Blue Rapids and Centennial stations on the Central Branch railroad, about thirty miles apart. The storm moved in a direction a little north of east, and passed into Nebraska through Richardson county. The town or Irving, ninety miles west of this place, was nearly destroyed. At that point the storm took on the character of a cyclone and leveled everything in its path. About forty buildings were destroyed, fifteen persons killed and thirty to forty wounded. Among the casualties are the following:
JOHN KEELEY, wife, father and son, killed.
W. J. WILLIAMS, killed.
MRS. BRECKMASTER and five children, killed.
JACOB SABERS and wife, fatally injured.
E. SHELDON, wife and sister, dangerously hurt and not expected to live.
MRS. W. C. BATES and two children badly hurt, one has since died.
MRS. GEO. MARTIN and several others more or less seriously wounded.
Among the buildings blown down are some churches, one a fine stone building, the public school, the grain elevator, railroad depot, the Wetmore Institute, and the residences of JOHN A. WARDEN, CHAS. PRESTON, W. H. SABENS, M. L. LEDY and MESSRS. ARMSTRONG, THOMPSON, SHELDON, BATES and WILLIAMS.
At Denison Mills, Neb., on the Atchison and Nebraska road, a Catholic church was totally demolished, as was also the store of MEAD, RILEY & Co. One lady was severely injured, and several residences more or less damaged.
Reports are meagre as yet, telegraphic communication west having been greatly interrupted.
The Daily Champion sent a reporter to Irving this foremoon on a special locomotive, and expects a fuller telegraphic report tonight.
The citizens of Atchison raised, this a.m., $4,200 in money for the relief of the sufferers, and a special train leaves here at midnight with supplies of medicine, blankets and clothing.
A dispatch from Manhattan, Kansas, says: The cyclone crossed Big Blue river at the mouth of Mill Creek last night, and uprooted trees, destroyed grain cribs, fences and crops. The two-story house of M. CONDRAY was unroofed and crushed the fifteen or more persons who were in it at the time. MRS. CONDRAY was somewhat injured and her sister-in-law, MRS. TATTLEOCK and child were killed.
An Atchison dispatch says: The storm west of this city was far more fatal in its effects than the dispatches sent early this morning indicated. The Champion has a special from Frankfort giving the following casualties there and in that vicinity:
JAMES DOWNS and wife killed.
JOHN HOWE, a boy of 13, killed.
MR. GROOVES was killed.
MISS GROOVES, a leg broken.
A child of MR. WAREFIELD was seriously injured.
MRS. VAUGHAN, badly injured.
JOHN VAUGHAN, severely injured.
MRS. A. S. FOX, right arm broken.
HENRY JOHNSON, mortally injured.
BEN FOX, severely injured.
MR. BOLTON, leg broken.
MILES KELLY and family, all badly injured.
The house of ALEX SCRAGGS was unroofed, and his wife's skull fractured. The houses of DR. DUNNINGTON and MR. UNDERWOOD were destroyed, but their families escaped unharmed. The residence of MR. HUTCHINS was torn to pieces, and the family badly hurt. The house of MR. HARRIS, near Blue Springs, was demolished. MR. HARRIS, his wife, and little girl were killed, and three other children mortally wounded. MR. HARRIS was lifted high up into the air, carried about 200 feet in the course the storm moved, and then dashed to the earth, while his wife and child were carried the same distance in an opposite direction. At this point the storm cloud burst, but came together again almost instantly with a terrific crash, bounded from the earth, came down again near the dwelling of MR. GORE, which it passed through, leaving its side walls standing. The funnel-shaped cloud then rose high in the air and disappeared in the northwest. The heaviest rain ever known in this section accompanied the tornado, actually deluging the country over which it passed.
At Irving, twelve persons were killed outright and forty-nine wounded, most of the latter severely. Many of them will die. A committee of citizens and physicians from this city arrived there this afternoon, and clothing has been forwarded from here to provide for the immediate necessities of the sufferers.
A special dispatch to the Champion from Concordia, states: The storm was extremely violent in the vicinity of Delphos, Ottawa county. Fifteen dead bodies were brought in from two square miles of territory. One man from Beloit was taken up in his wagon, thrown to the ground again and killed. Five persons were killed in one house near Delphos. Crops have been severely injured along the line of the storm. Reports from Scandia, Republic county, state that the storm was very severe in that section, but no casualties are yet reported.
A dispatch from the Associated Press reporter at Kansas City about the cyclone which devastated the eastern part of Jackson county, Mo., last night, has been received. Referring to the destruction of the house of MR. HARRIS, near Blue Springs, an account of which was reported from Independence, he says: MR. HARRIS, his wife and children were carried up into the air clear out of sight, and dropped in different places and directions from the site of the house they occupied, and varying in distance from 100 to 200 yards. MRS. HARRIS and one child were killed outright. MR. HARRIS died several hours after. One of the other children was found in a pool of water fifty yards from the house, with a large bunch of wet straw and grass wrapped around its head and shoulders so tightly that it could only be removed with great difficulty. The child was but slightly injured, his escape being attributed to the mysterious bandage around him. When last heard from the storm was traveling northeastwardly and had entered Lafayette county.

The Dubuque Herald Iowa 1879-06-01

article | by Dr. Radut