Mantorville and Owatonna, MN Tornado, Jul 1883

A Mantorville, Dodge County, special says:

"This county was struck by an awful cyclone today about noon, which for wide-spread destruction rivals anything of the kind ever before known in this region or in this State, Mr. Duntly's house and barn, three miles north of Mantorville, were demolished, Mr. Duntly instantly killed, and Mrs. Duntly fatally injured. The residence of E. Little, occupied by H. Harden's family, was demolished, killing Miss Fay Smith, and severely injuring two of Mr. Harden's children. The mill and residence of Mr. Middleton, one mile north of Byron, were blown to pieces, and Mr. Middleton instantly killed. Three horses and one mule were also killed. The residence of William Crosby, one and a half miles from town, a new structure, was blown to pieces, and his four children severely injured, one boy having his leg broken. The residence of Mr. Pratt was blown over and several inmates hurt. Teller's barn and granery were blown down. James A. Crandall's granery was blown down. Eugene Irish's large barn was blown to pieces; Harry Grinnell's house was blown down; C. Thompson's barn and granary and an addition to the house were demolished; S. D. Ingersolls' house was blown to pieces, as was J. B. Copper's barn. H. McFarland's house, granary, and barn and granary were blown to pieces; valued at $2,000. C. Davis's barn was blown down; Peter Fredericks's house and H. Deeds was carried several rods in the air. A school-house in District No. 51 was carried to parts unknown. Mr. Brooks's granery was blown down. B. Cheeney's barn was demolished. E. L. Glasby's barn was blown down, and also N. B. Gallup's barn. The Congregational Church, on Cleremont-street; a cheese factory, and J. Crouch's barn were also blown down. Mr. H. Hubbard's house was carried several rods by the wind. O. F. Way's house and L. Vanandon's fine house and barn were blown down and a man badly hurt. A drug store, hotel, barn, store building and Post Office building in Wasioga were blown down. The total damage in Dodge County is estimated at $130,000.

The New York Times, New York, NY 23 Jul 1883





ST. PAUL, Minn., July 22.---Later advices from yesterday's storm indicate that it extended from a point near the bend of the Minnesota River east to the Mississippi, and that its track was from one to two miles wide. It crossed Blue Earth, Waseca, Steele, Dodge, Olmstead, and Wabasha Counties. The most serious damage so far reported is at Kasto, Blue Earth County, near Watonia, Steele County, near Mantonville [sic], Dodge County, and at Elgin, in Wabasha County.

The fury of the storm seems to have been exhausted before it crossed the Mississippi. A Kasota special reports two storms from the south-east and north-west, which appear to have met about one and a half miles directly west of that place, where devastation was the result. William Crosby was building a new residence, and this, with his old home, seems to have been struck from the south-west, and not a vestige of either remains except debres[sic]. One of Mr. Crosby's boys had his lets badly fractured. Mrs. Crosby was bruised, and the rest tumbled violently about. The house and buildings of Mrs. James Little were entirely demolished, and thrown about, but none of the six people in the house were seriously injured. Mrs. Little's house and the buildings were carried to the north. The school-house, a few rods west, was entirely destroyed and carried south. The storm next struck Owatonna. a special says the storm only lasted from 20 to 30 minutes, but it did thousands of dollars of damage in this county alone. The passenger train on the Winona and North Peter Railroad was blown completely off the track about a mile west of here and about 25 persons more or less injured, some probably fatally. They were brought to this city in freight cars and everything possible is being done. All the buildings of the fair ground, which were being refitted for the approaching State fair, were blown down and completely destroyed. A number of persons were in the main building at the time and some very seriously injured. Mr. W. H. Crandall, Postmaster of this city, was hurt across the chest and lungs very badly by falling timbers which he could not escape, and fears of his death are entertained. A number of other buildings were blown down or injured. Reports coming in from the country show that many of the largest and best barns in the county were unroofed on the train.

The following is a list of he injured on the train, so far as it has been possible to ascertain them A. H. Williams, of Rochester, injured through back and chest; Frederick Morgan, conductor, broken arm and other injuries; W. H. Morgan, brakeman, scalp wound and concussion of brain. W. Rogers, circus man, badly wounded in the leg; D. Brookelman, fractured skull---very bad; Frederick Brookelman, injured about the face. Twenty others were more or less bruised. At Meriden the flour mill was unroofed and the barns of Messrs. Sillerby and Schuldt and Mr. Engle's black-smith's shop blown down. Mr. Evans's house was blown down, with three children in it, but none of them were injured. One was found in a wheat-field some rods distant from the house and wondering how it came there. The catalogue of marvelous escapes could be drawn out to almost any length, and the fact that so few casualties occurred amazes everybody.

The New York Times, New York, NY 23 Jul 1883


NOAA information

Dodge Center 4SE to Douglas
21 Jul 1883 1130 CST
4 deaths, 30 injuries

It moved east northeast from 4 miles southeast of Dodge Center to just south of Kasson and passing 1 mile north of Byron. The tornado turned to the north and dissipated after passing southeast of Douglas. About 20 homes, 30 barns, and three schools were damaged or destroyed. Three people were killed as two of "the finest homes in the county" were leveled in Dodge County. A half dozen farms "not a wall left standing." The damage may have been from two parallel tracks. This event was either a family of tornadoes on parallel tracks eight miles apart.

Dodge County (MN) Tornadoes, NOAA National Weather Service