Higgins, TX Tornado, Apr 1947

Higgins Railroad Depot 1906 - It was destroyed in the tornado Higgins School Building. The building survived the tornado and was used as a makeshift hospital

1,305 Persons Injured in Panhandle Tornado

.....Bearing the brunt of the storm in Texas were Higgins, Lipscomb Co., with 34 killed and 232 injured and Glazier, Hemphill Co., 13 dead and 40 injured.....

The Texas communities of Glazier and Higgins were literally blown off the map.

An airplane pilot, Roy L. Thrush, who flew over the area before dawn Thursday, picked out signs of the mass destruction by dim moonlight.

One House Left Habitable.
"A few miles farther at Higgins, all I could see was a schoolhouse and two or three other buildings. Smoke was over the town, and there were fires in several locations. It looked as if it had been almost wiped out."

Glazier had a population of 150, Higgins, 750.... Higgins was leveled except for three brick buildings, and fire destroyed two blocks of the business district. Dead and injured were moved to hospitals and morgues at Canadian, Pampa and other near-by cities.

Four Die in Fire
"Glazier, with its frame buildings, succumbed without a fight to the turbulent winds," Swindle wrote. "Higgins, with it's brick and concrete walls, gave more resistance. But whole sections of brick and mortar were heaved into the street and on sidewalks. Several boxcars lay on their sides. The depot was ruined."

"The rescue work at Higgins will be much more difficult and the death list may be appreciably augmented when the silt is scooped up and the timbers hauled away."

"There was fire at Higgins, while there was none at Glazier. At least four persons are known to have died in a building, believed ignited by a heating stove, started a fire that lasted for hours."

"All the sough part of the city, below the Santa Fe tracks and mostly of wood, is flattened. That part of the business section just just north of the tracks crumbled like sandbanks, reminiscent of a London blitz."

Dallas Morning News, Dallas, TX 11 Apr 1947


The estimate of dead at Higgins, Tex., (population 750) varied between 24 and 30. The Red Cross today estimated 24 for the Texas Panhandle town but Howard Boxwell, a mortician, said the toll might each 30. It was leveled except for the telephone exchanged, the bank and school building, all built of brick. The business district was destroyed by fire brought under control today.

Register-Republic, Rockford, IL 10 Apr 1947