Centralia, IL Flood, Apr 1893

Cloudburst In Illinois.

Centralia, Ill., April 12. - A cloudburst in this city Tuesday caused the entire city to be submerged, doing thousands of dollars of damage. A little river winds through the thickly settled part of the city, along which are a number of cottages with basements, all of which were flooded and the contents totally ruined.

The electric-light company is the heaviest loser. The water stood 38 inches deep in the powerhouse.

A large quantity of flour and wheat was ruined in Kaiser Brothers’ mills. Benson’s machine shop was flooded so as to cover all the lathes and machinery. The lime house belonging to the Johnson Company was set on fire by the slaking of several hundred barrels of lime, and was destroyed.

The Illinois Central yards were 9 feet deep in rushing water, carrying away lumber and anything that would float. The extraordinary downpour was more than the little stream could carry off, and backed the water up into a lake 15 feet deep in places.

The New York Times, New York, NY 13 Apr 1893