STRUCK BY A TORNADO.
TERRIBLE DEVASTATION AT RACINE, WIS.
TWENTY-FIVE PERSONS KILLED AND ONE HUNDRED HOUSES DESTROYED — MANY NARROW ESCAPES — PARTIAL LIST OF THE DEAD.
Racine, Wis., May 18. — This evening about 7 o’clock Racine was struck by a tornado. The afternoon had been very warm and frequent heavy thunder-storms prevailed. Shortly after 6 o’clock black clouds gathered in the south-west and north-west, and bacame so threatening that general attention was attracted to them. The black masses gradually closed in, and for half an hour there was not a breath of air stirring and the atmosphere was hot and stifling. When the clouds came together they assumed a funnel shape, and immediately a hissing, rumbling noise was heard and the storm burst upon the city in great fury. It moved easterly from the south-west. The first building struck was HORLICK’S factory, half a mile west of the city limits. In a dwelling near by seven people were seriously injured. From the factory to the Chicago and Northwestern Railway track is about one fourth of a mile. The intervening space is thickly populated by working men, most of whom own their houses. Through this district the devastation is complete, scarcely a house being left standing in the wake of the storm.
It is within bounds to say that at least 100 buildings have been destroyed. From reports already received, it is probable that tomorrow will show a death roll of at least 25, with many more injured. From outlying districts reports come of the death and destruction. For blocks the streets are filled with the remnants of what were this morning neat collages, together with the household furniture, bedding, and wearing apparel. Darkness set in almost immediately after the tornado, and it is impossible to obtain anything like an accurate report of the number of lives lost and the injured. Following is a list of those known to be dead:
PAUL KUHL; ALBERT KUHL; JOHN KASTAWICK, aged 13; WILLIE KASTAWICK, aged 11; MRS. BARNEY McCARTY; an infant son of AUGUST KESNER; a daughter of BARNEY WILLING. A son of BARNEY WILLING is missing.
MRS. MONTONICK; S. GEESE; MAT LASTIN; children of FRED FALK; MRS. McCARTHY; MRS. KERTZ; infant child of MICHAEL JOCKENS; MRS. JOS. DECKER; MRS. WINOLT; W. A. SPRADEL, leg and two ribs broken; MRS. SPRADEL, hurt internally; MATE LUTZ, twenty-six years old, arm broken and head crushed; MRS. FREDERICK FALK and HERMAN KUHL were bruised about the head; MRS. ELLRUSE, hurt about the head; four children of MRS. BARSE; MRS. KISNER, chest bone broken and skull fractured; MRS. FLANIGAN and three children, injured; MRS. MARY MULLER, daughter and son, are badly injured; FRED. ESSMUSS, leg and face badly bruised; M. DORNEY, knee broken and one eye knocked out; child of MRS. WINDST, seriously injured; M. JACKHEIM, wife and four children, seriously injured; MR. KINDSON, arm broke; the family of WM. GAIN, all bruised and cut; WM. DEVISHING, head cut; JNO. LUKES, seriously cut in the side; M. LICHTFELDT, wife and boy, badly hurt.
MRS. HOWLAND was blown out of a buggy and badly hurt; WM. SPRADS has both legs broken, and is thought to be fatally injured internally; JNO. STRIPLE, thigh broken; MR. MILLER, had his arm twisted off; JNO. BREGEDMAN and five children were all seriously injured.
The little daughter of BARNEY WILLING was blown fully 50 rods from where the house stood against a wall, and instantly killed. At the house of KASTAWICK a sad spectacle was presented. The house, a two-story brick, was partly blown down, the walls being twisted. Here were found the two young brothers lying side by side dead. Near by was the mother fatally injured.
At the store of MR. PETURA, which was a large, two-story brick building, 14 persons were within the walls when the tornado burst. The building was completely leveled. There was not a hole among the ruins large enough for a man to get his foot in, yet when the dreadful storm had passed, slowly there emerged from the ruins here and there an individual, pulling, digging, and scraping dirt-begrimed and terror stricken. The entire 14 escaped comparatively unscathed. A few yards distant was the cigar factory of WILLIAM LUTZ, which held 12 persons when the tornado began. The building was completely wrecked, but all escaped uninjured. The entire medical force of the city is hard at work caring for the wounded. Later reports indicate that the tornado has wrought immense damage outside the city.
The New York Times New York 1883-05-19