1893 - SIXTY-TWO ARE KILLED. FRIGHTFUL RESULT OF THE CYCLONE IN OKLAHOMA. PROPERTY DAMAGE INESTIMABLE.
ONE CYCLONE JOINS ANOTHER, AND WITH THEIR COMBINED STRENGTH THEY SWEEP DOWN UPON DEFENSELESS TOWNS AND LEAVE DEATH AND DESTRUCTION BEHIND.
Oklahoma City, April 27. - The half has not been told concerning the awful storm which swept this country. Two distinct cyclones, a terrific hail storm, and a waterspout combined to wreak awful destruction. It is reported that sixty-two human lives were sacrificed. It is positively known that forty were killed, while several were fatally and scores seriously injured. The damage to property is inestimable.
The names of the victims so far as known are:
NATHAN BANKS, wife and two children.
REV. JOHN CORLE.
MRS. WILLIAM MARONLEY and four daughters.
JOHN O'CONNOR, SR., wife and three young children.
JOHN PEARRY, eight in his family.
MRS. JOHN ROONEY.
The wounded who are in a serious condition are as follows:
NATHAN BANKS and children, badly crushed and will die.
MRS. HENRY CALBERT.
JOHN DOYLE, head crushed.
JOHN GILMER, back broken.
MRS. JOHN GILMER, internal hurts.
H. H. HALLIDAY, skull crushed.
CHARLES HARWELL, skull crushed.
GEORGE HUGHES, skull crushed.
MRS. WILLIAM KELTERIDGE and baby.
MRS. SNIDER, legs broken, internal injuries.
MRS. J. H. WILKINSON, crushed.
Orders for thirty-one coffins have been received here and at Norman and supplies have been telegraphed for from other points. The brunt of the storm was laid upon the prosperous little town of Norman, on the Santa Fe railroad, about twenty miles south of here. At that point thirty-one people were killed, dozens injured, and the town almost completely destroyed. Business is suspended and everybody able to render any assistance to the poor unfortunates or toward removing the dead bodies is out searching along the track of the cyclone. People are frenzied and can not give an estimate of their loss and know nothing except to care for the dead and injured.
The first signs of the impending danger were seen in a pall of black clouds overshadowing the northwest for miles around, while farther away to the west rushing across the horizon could be seen the cyclone. Men left their business places and hurried to their homes, where all who could quickly sought the cyclone caves. At 7:30 the monster from the west reached its antagonist in the northwest and with their combined strength swooped down on the town of Moore. Houses with precious lives were caught up and carried before the angry torrent, great trees were twisted, and barns, fences and everything in its path was laid low.
Passing along for eight miles it struck the town of Norman, where the damage was repeated, and then on to Downs and Keokuk Falls and through Pottawattamie county, where thousands of dollars worth of property was demolished. The house of J. O'CONNOR, near Moore, was destroyed and O'CONNOR and his wife and three children and five neighbors who had sought shelter in the building were crushed to death. The frame house of JOHN BANKS was torn to pieces and he was killed, while others of his family of six were badly injured, three of the children and MRS. BANKS fatally. The home of HENRY DYER was demolished. West of Norman eight houses were demolished and five people badly injured. East of the stricken town two men and two women were killed.
As soon as it was light enough the men got quickly to work and commenced the rescue. The poor victims, who had been imprisoned all night, were carefully carried to improvised hospitals, but few saved more than what they had on their backs. Help from neighboring towns soon arrived, and before nightfall something like comfort was provided. Everything, however, is in confusion, and it is impossible to gain a correct list of the casualties. In Payne county, fifty miles north and near the territory line, a waterspout struck about the same time as did the cyclone, and, although it is known that several houses were swept away, it is not known whether or not any lives were lost.
The Daily Review
April 28, 1893
Visit Norman, Oklahoma, USA
Discover the people who lived there, the places they visited and the stories they shared.