Mahanoy City, PA Dam Break and Flood, Jun 1892


People of Mahonoy [sic] City, Pa., Flee From a Flood.

MAHONOY [sic] CITY, Pa., June 20.-- At about 10 o'clock p. m. the whistles around town started the alarm used in case of fire. In a short time the streets were filled with people rushing wildly to find the cause. They were attracted up main street and before proceeding far a carriage dashed toward them. The occupant was driving for his life and crying, “The dam is broken, fly for your lives!”

The crowd turned and fled, and in the distance could be heard the rushing of the mighty torrent. “Fly to the hills, fly for your lives,” was repeated from mouth to mouth.

By the time the water reached the corner of Main and Center streets the crowd had fled to the hills. The people living in the northern end of the town had not time to reach the mountains, after the alarm was given and had to seek shelter in their houses. In a few minutes the debris had blocked the streets. There were huge trees, telegraph poles, logs, stumps of trees, wagons, carts, parts of houses, brought by the roaring current. Cellars and stores were flooded and the streets were made impassable.

After reaching this place the water took a westerly course and the eastern end of the town was not damaged.

Traffic on the Lehigh route between here and Park Place is blocked, the tracks being washed out, and huge logs and trees are lying across the tracks, piled ten and fifteen feet high.

The telegraph wires on the Lehigh Valley road are down, and it is reported that a number of houses in Robinson's, a small mining village about two miles from here and right in the path of the flood, was carried away.

Rumors are flying in all directions as to the number of lives lost. Two people are reported missing, and how many more cannot be estimated now. The lower business portion of the town was flooded and nearly all had portions of their stock ruined.

Waterloo Daily Courier Iowa 1892-06-20