Cleveland, OH Flood and Lifesaving Crew Drowning, May 1893

Four of their fellow lifesavers were unable to reach the boat and were drowned.

The names of the heroes who lost their lives in attempting to save others were:


The lifesavers rescued were George Wilson, Lawrence Distell and George Loher.

The lifesavers who escaped were brought ashore by a tugboat. The lifeboat was found after the accident near the east end of the breakwater. Flannigan and Le Blonde were drowned almost before the lifeboat capsized.

The Olean Democrat, Olean, NY 19 May 1893



Cleveland and Northeastern Ohio Afloat.


Lost Lands Inundated---Lumber Section on the Way to Canada---Railways Under Water---Families Driven From Home.

CLEVELAND, May 17.---The storm of rain and wind which began at noon Monday and has continued almost without cessation until this evening has produced a flood unprecedented in the history of Northeastern Ohio and northwestern Pennsylvania. Thus far fourteen lives have been lost, great damage has been done to shipping and loss to other property will amount to hundreds of thousands of dollars. It rained Saturday, and Sunday there were light showers. Late Sunday night there was a heavy rainfall, accompanied by thunder and lightning. At noon Monday wind veered around into the northwest and a steady downpour began. The sky for fifty-six hours has been of a dull leaden color and low hanging and scurrying clouds which were hurled along by the northwest gale seemed to have every drop of water shaken out of them. Wind which at times reached a velocity of more than fifty miles and hour, drove the rain horizontally and in sheets, making it almost impossible for pedestrians to get along in the streets. Roofs that never leaked before, let water through like sieves and rain was driven between window sashes until people despaired of being able to keep it out. The storm was bad enough on Monday night and Tuesday forenoon, but by Tuesday evening there came warnings of troubles, and everybody began to wonder when it would stop. By Tuesday evening more than two and one half inches of water had fallen and it was still coming down in torrents. Then it was that fears of a flood began to be realized. In this city every sewer was


into the usually sluggish Cuyahoga, which came down from the hills of Summit county, swollen to more than twice its normal size. The river runs through the manufacturing and lumber district of the city by a tortuous channel about five miles in length. Along its banks are the Valley and Cleveland, Canton and Southern railways. This morning water was away over, the river banks. The torrent was seeking the nearest way to the lake and half a dozen lumber yards in its course could not bar the way. Whole piles of lumber were carried along and swept into the lake or lodged against the abutments of bridges further down.....

ALL SECTIONS OF NORTHEASTERN OHIO tell of swollen streams and overflowed farm lands, but it is impossible to make estimate of damage. Neither is it possible to tell what property loss in Cleveland will be. Damage to property along the flats will be very heavy and from all parts of the city come reports of washed out streets and broken sewers and it is possible that one or more of the costly swing away before morning, as it seems impossible that they can all withstand the terrible strain now being put upon them.

Grand Forks Daily Herald, Grand Forks, ND 18 May 1893