Ottawa, IL Lightning Strikes Convent, June 1912


Bricks From Tower Thrown Distances of Half a Block--Wires Carry Lighting Into Homes.

Ottawa, Ill., June 15 - The cross on the convent in Ottawa was struck by lightning yesterday afternoon and the tower was badly damaged. Bricks were thrown for a distance of a half a block and fell on the tops of houses along Paul street. The bolt was a particularly severe one and was felt all over center Ottawa. Many people were seriously shocked and in some instances the lightning penetrated the houses on the electric light wires and was only stopped by the lightning arresters.

The bolt struck the metal cross on the top of the tower and then followed the tile roof to the corner of the tower and then spent itself in the air. There were no conductors to carry the lightning into the ground and there is no evidence in or out of the building that the bolt, continued downward. The north side of the tower was torn away completely and the other sides were more or less injured. In fear that the tower would collapse workmen were sent up into the tower to investigate and make temporary repairs. The tower is a frame construction with a veneer of brick. The cross was not injured although the evidence of discoloration where the lightning struck it are visible.

Electric light wires that passed by the convent carried the lightning into several homes in the neighborhood and quite a number of people were badly shocked. The fuses in different houses were burned out but no other damage than to the convent has been reported.

Morris Daily Herald. 1912-06-15