St. Ansgar, IA Air Compressor Explosion, Sept 1929

THREE DEAD, ONE HURT IN ST. ANSGAR EXPLOSION.

MANAGER OF FILLING STATION, CUSTOMER AND GIRL KILLED BY BLAST OF AIR COMPRESSOR.

TANK, BURIED BENEATH STATION, LETS GO WHILE MAN WAS BUYING OIL.

BUILDING DEMOLISHED; GIRL'S BODY IN WRECK.

WINDOWS BROKEN BY FORCE OF EXPLOSION; PATRON'S WIFE BADLY BURNED.

St. Ansgar, Ia., Sept. 21. -- (AP) -- Three persons were killed and one was injured when the air compression plant under a gasoline filling station here exploded this morning.
The dead are:
C. O. PARKER, manager of the station.
HENRY SIMMERING, a customer.
MISS DORIS CONKLIN, Mitchell.
MRS. HENRY SIMMERING was burned about the face and arms, but will recover.
MISS CONKLIN was blown thru the roof of the station. A. B. LARSEN, a truck driver, narrowly escaped being caught in the station driveway when the blast occurred. He had filled the gas tank on his truck and had just reached the street.
Firemen this afternoon were guarding the gasoline storage tanks lest fire should break out anew and cause another explosion.
The air compression tank buried under the filling station exploded at 10:40 a.m. while PARKER was selling gasoline to SIMMERING. The latter had stepped out of his automobile in which his wife was seated.
MISS CONKLIN, the girl who was killed, was in the station restroom.
The building was demolished, and the girl's body was not found till more than a half hour later. PARKER lived an hour, but SIMMERING is believed to have died immediately.
Fire started in various parts of the debris but the two gasoline tanks were not affected.
The explosion broke windows in surrounding buildings and was heard, thruout this Mitchell County town. Investigators this noon had not determined how pressure in the buried air tank could become so great.

St. Ansgar, Ia., Sept. 21. -- The explosion of C. C. PARKER'S gasoline station here in which the owner and two customers died caused extensive property damage in the area in which the wrecked building was situated. The public library, nearest the station, received the first brunt of the blast and will require much repairing.
Windows in business buildings for several blocks were blown out and the damage of this type also extended into the residential section.
MISS DORIS CONKLIN, one of the two customers killed outright, had driven from her home in Mitchell to visit friends here and, trouble developing in her car, stopped at the station. She was 17 years old. PARKER was 56.
SIMMERING had left his wife in their automobile for which he was buying oil and gasoline and was standing beside PARKER when the blast came. MRS. SIMMERING is seriously burned and injured by missiles from the wrecked station. She has chance for recovery, attendants say.
The gasoline storage tanks were intact and their contents unharmed when the fire in the station was brought under control. Work of clearing the site sufficiently to disclose there were no other victims was completed at noon.
An inquest will be held.

Waterloo Evening Courier Iowa 1929-09-21