Abilene, KS Flood, May 1903


Water in Principle Streets was Four Feet Deep.

Abilene, Kas., May 29. – The flood waters from Mud creek, swollen by a twelve-hour rain, swept through this city last night doing damage estimated at $100,000. Chapman, Solomon, Talmage, near-by towns, fared equally as bad as Abilene, and the loss to the county is tremendous.

Abilene has no water, lights, post office service or newspapers. The damage here is estimated at about $100,000.

The water in the principal streets of Abilene was four feet deep. A three-story brick building containing the stores of Minick & Taylor, Lloyd and Mrs. Clarks, the Allen commercial college and several offices, collapsed in a heap. The walls had been weakened by the high water, and several other buildings are in a dangerous condition. The press rooms of the three newspapers and the basement of the Cases’ department store are under water.

The Union Pacific, Santa Fe and Rock Island tracks entering the city have been washed away and 200 houses are submerged, the families having fled to higher ground.

Rice, Johnston & Nicolay’s lumber yard caught fire from slacking lime and was destroyed, loss $12,000.

On the Smoky Hill bottoms 10,000 acres are under water and persons are being rescued in boats.

Sherwood Murphy, a farmer, was drowned in the Smoky Hill river tonight.

Morning World-Herald, Omaha, NE 30 May 1903