Moorhead, MN Tornado Derails Train, May 1931
TWO KILLED BY TORNADO; SCORE INJURED.
CRACK LIMITED LIFTED FROM TRACK BY TWISTER.
BOY KILLED WHEN BASEMENT WALL CRUMBLES AFTER HOUSE IS TORN AWAY -- MOST OF SERIOUSLY INJURED TO RECOVER.
Moorhead, May 28. -- (AP) -- Whipping through two western Minnesota counties with a suddenness that defied efforts to gain cover a tornado took a toll of at least two lives Wednesday and injured many others and caused thousands of dollars damage a check up revealed today.
The Empire Builder, of the Great Northern railroad, east bound into Minnesota from Seattle, was wrecked as it swirled out of North Dakota, killing ANDREW ANDERSON of Montesano, Wash., and injuring more than a score.
Boy Killed In Basement.
MELVIN HATLEDAHL, 18, was killed as he crouched in the basement with other members of the family at his farm, 8 miles north of Watt's Siding. He was struck by a concrete block dislodged from the foundation of the house which was over the heads of the family.
According to a statement issued today by attendants at St. Ansgar Hospital, Moorhead, MRS. EMILY HANNAN of Seattle who it was believed Wednesday was near death, spent a fair night. Unless complications set in she will recover. It was not determined today to what extent she was injured but it is thought that her back is broken and she is suffering from possible internal injuries.
MRS. N. TROLL of Minot, N.D., who was reported in serious condition Wednesday spent a good night and is well on the road to recovery.
Bad cuts about the head made the condition of MRS. HILDA QUALLEY'S baby serious but hospital attendants said today the child was out of danger unless complications set in.
MRS. ALICE MOORE of Everetee, Wash., is suffering from lacerations about the head and two broken ribs. Her condition is not serious but she will be detained in the hospital for a few more days.
Railway officials after completing a check today said that of the 117 passengers on the train 45 received minor injuries while three were in a more serious condition. Nine employees were injured also.
Virtually all traces of the wreck were erased by crews today. Traffic through the area has been restored and the funnel-shaped cloud did such a clean job of tipping the coaches on the prairie while leaving the locomotive and tender on the tracks that the roadbed scarcely was damaged. All but a few cars had been taken away.
Read an account of the 1931 Tornado from the Clay County Historical Society from their Summer 1997 Newsletter