Conway Co, AR Rain Storm & Drowning, Jun 1889


An Arkansas Farmer's Futile Efforts to Save His Family.

During a heavy rain storm an old man named EMMERSON, living in Conway County, Ark., had the misfortune to lose his wife and seven children in a flood. There had been a tremendous rain on the upper Red River. EMMERSON, who is an old settler, was with his family in his house at night when the storm was raging. After an hour's rain the water gradually flooded his house and, fearing danger, he gathered two of his children in his arms and made for the door to escape. As the door opened a huge log dashed in the entrance and knocked the little ones from his arms. They fell at his feet into the swift current and were lost.

He then took up two more, one in each arm, and succeeded in getting out with them safely, telling his wife to follow with the others, but in attempting to escape in the same manner, the mother, with two children in her arms and three clinging to her dress, was carried down with the flood and drowned. The father and two children, the only ones left in a family of eleven, escaped with their lives.

The night was dark, and the father, with the only two survivors of his large family stood in water above the waist, clinging to a tree for several hours, and when the waters subsided in the morning a search was made, and the dead bodies of the mother and seven children were discovered scattered here and there for a considerable distance around the place, the clothing having caught in underbrush and the bodies held fast in that way. Two of the bodies were found in the garden lot, a short distance from the house, where they had been carried by the force of the water, and others as far as fifty yards from the house.

The Cranbury Press New Jersey 1889-06-28