Towns, LA, MS, AL Tornado Destruction, Apr 1908
CYCLONE SWEEPS THROUGH THREE STATES LEAVING TRAIL OF DEATH.
HOMES ARE WRECKED, AND CITIES SWEPT OUT OF EXISTENCE AND MEN, WOMEN AND CHILDREN ARE KILLED BY HUNDREDS.
A wind of cyclone proportions swept over portions of Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama late Friday, leaving a trail of death and injured. Tonight the number of killed is estimated at close to a hundred and the number of injured at over a hundred, with many portions of the afflicted districts to hear from.
Most of the dead are negroes. Perhaps a dozen white persons were caught in falling buildings and either fatally injured or so seriously disabled as to require medical attention.
To-night it is difficult to estimate the loss of life or the extent of the destruction of property, for there is little or no communication with the points where the wind and rain did its greatest damage.
In Louisiana, it is estimated that a score of small towns were destroyed or partially wrecked. These include: Amite City, Aroadia and Independence; Belle Grove, Melton, Lorman, Pine Ridge, Quitman, Landing, Purvis and Lumberton, Miss., reported seriously damaged by the storm.
In Alabama, Eldorado was the chief sufferer. This town is also known as Bergen. Four or more persons were killed. Fifty persons at the least were injured. One woman, a MRS. McCAULLA, died on the train to Birmingham. Two other members of this family were seriously injured. Bergen cars were blown from the railroad tracks and considerable other property destroyed. Reports also say the storm struck Albertville, Ala., late this afternoon and destroyed nearly the entire northern portion of the town. A cotton mill was blown down, the storm ranging northward, doing much destruction to life and property. An unconfirmed report from this section gives the death list as from thirty to thirty-five with scores of persons injured.
Winchester, Miss., a small town, is reported wiped out, though only two persons are known to have been killed. Natchez, Miss., reports sixty are known to be dead in the northern Louisiana storm. Hundreds of plantation cabins are reported destroyed in this section. Mobile reported nine dead in Hattiesburg, Miss., but this has not been confirmed.
TWENTY-FIVE OR FIFTY DEAD.
New Orleans, La., April 24. -- Amite, a small town in southeastern Louisiana, was almost entirely destroyed by a tornado to-day. The dead are estimated from twenty-five to fifty. The first details were brought to New Orleans tonight by train along with seventeen injured and the dead was placed at 50. Physicians who had been engaged in relief work at Amite asserted that this estimate was correct. Newspaper correspondents, however, assert that not more than a dozen were killed outright.
SAYS 50 OR 100 DEAD.
Birmingham, Ala., April 24. -- A brakeman, who passed through Dora, Ala., today just after the cyclone this afternoon, states the number of injured will run between fifty and one hundred and that several are known to be dead.
The storm appears to have made a long sweep from Walker county east to Albertville and points in north Alabama.
TORNADO ZONE HUNDREDS OF MILES WIDE.
New Orleans, La., April 24. -- Six tornadoes struck seven small towns today in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. The death roll of the whirlwinds, as reported over badly damaged wires up to nightfall, was at least twelve, with several fatally injured and about two hundred slightly injured.
The tornado travelled apparently in a zone hundreds of miles wide and proceeded from west to east. Beginning at the western end of this storm belt the towns struck were Lamaourin, Richland and Vidalia, La., Walls and Baxter, Miss., and Bergen and Albertville, Ala. In addition Shrevesport, Ala., experienced a storm of tornado intensity.
DEAD, 149; INJURED, 400.
New Orleans, La., April 24. -- At midnight the number of dead in to-day's tornado was reliably estimated at 149 and the injured at about 400. Of the dead, thirteen were known to be white and it was a certainty that with the possible exception of half a dozen, all the others were negroes.
DEATH LIST IS 225.
New Orleans, La., April 24. -- About thirty white persons and fifty negroes were killed by the tornado at Purvis, Miss.
This raises the total death list to about 225.
A TRAIL OF DEATH ACROSS NORTH ALABAMA.
MUCH LOSS OF LIFE AND ENORMOUS DAMAGE TO PROPERTY.
Birmingham, Ala., April 24. -- A tornado passed over north Alabama late today, leaving a trail of death. It appeared at first at Bergen, a small town in Walker county on the Frisco railroad, at 2:30 o'clock, and many were injured. It was next heard from at THOMAS' sawmill, near Warrior, where two were killed and five injured. Sweeping up Sand mountain it did the greatest damage at Albertville, where the northern half of the town was almost wiped out. Early reports say that thirty were killed at Albertville. The last heard from the storm was at Sylvania. In DeKalb county, the extreme northeastern section of the state. Six houses were blown down here and one woman badly hurt. The storm appears to have cut a path about 500 feet wide and traveled from Bergen to Sylvania, a distance of about 125 miles in a little more than an hour. The list of dead and injured as far as ascertained is as follows:
At Bergen, Dead:
Section Foreman MOORE, WIFE and DAUGHTER.
C. R. ADAMS.
Two members of CULLEY family; GRESHAM boy, badly hurt; ten in Hillman hospital.
(Birmingham names later.)
At Thomas Mill, Dead:
WILLIAM THOMAS, arms broken; MRS. REID, JIM REID.
At Sylvania, Injured:
A cyclone which struck Columbus, Miss., early today inflicted damage in the section around the Refuse cotton mill and the Columbus Comfort and Manufacturing company, amounting to about $60,000. Lightning this afternoon struck the home of S. C. JOHNSON, killing his father, G. J. JOHNSON, aged eighty.
C. S. BAKER and MRS. BAKER were seriously hurt in the morning storm, but there were no fatalities.
DEAD NUMBER 139, AND 230 INJURED.
ONE THOUSAND WRECKED HOMES STREW THE TORNADO'S WAKE.
New Orleans, La., April 24. -- One hundred and thirty-nine people are known to have been killed, 230 injured and probably a thousand houses were destroyed by a widespread eruption of tornadoes in Mississippi, Louisiana and Alabama Friday, while unconfirmed reports tell of the death of thirty others and the injuring of 125 at points for the present cut off from communication. A large majority of the victims were negroes. In all nearly twenty towns were struck by the storms, of which there seems to have been at least five, although it is impossible to say with certainty how many "twisters" were afield at the gruesome harvest. The following is a summary of the damage reported up to midnight Friday:
Amite City, La., Dead: 25 Injured: 65
Rural points in Louisiana, Dead: 31 Injured: Unknown.
Bergen, Ala., Dead: 31 Injured: 50.
Thomas Saw Mill, Ala., Dead: 2 Injured: 2.
Meridian, Miss., Dead: 2 Injured: 15.
Winchester, Miss., Dead: 3 Injured: Unknown.
Concordia Parish, La., and Adams and Jefferson county, Miss., Dead: 44 Injured: 100.
McClain, Miss., Dead: 8 Injured: Unknown.
Unconfirmed -- Albertville, Ala., 30 killed, 50 injured; Richland and Lamourie, La., 75 injured.
Fort Wayne Journal-Gazette Indiana 1908-04-25