Emory, TX Tornado, Mar 1894



Part of the Town of Emory Destroyed - The Cloud Came From the Southwest, and Resembled an Hour-Glass - Great Hailstones Weighing Eighteen Ounces.

At 7:30 o'clock a. m. a tornado passed over Emory, the county seat of Rains County, thirty miles south of Greenville, Texas, destroying the western part of the town, killing seven persons and injuring about fifty others. The news reached Greenville about 8 o'clock p. m., and an urgent request was sent by wire that all the physicians that could do so would hasten there.

A special train bearing physicians and reporters left Greenville at 9 o'clock and arrived at Emory at 10:30 o'clock. The train was met by a panic-stricken body of citizens. The reporters and physicians hurried to the post office, where a dozen persons lay on stretchers.

The dead are:
MISS ESTHER ALEXANDER; BRAS HENRY; GEORGE WALKER; the four-year-old son of HENRY MURRAY, colored, and three unidentified bodies. The cloud came from the southwest, and resembled an hour-glass. The bottom was forked, and it continually blazed with electricity. It had the rotary motion, and seemed about thirty or forty feet wide. It struck the ground north of the Missouri, Kansas and Texas station, and its track extends about four or five miles north, and is about 100 yards wide. The wounded number about fifty, and some of them are seriously hurt. Everything in the track of the storm was completely wrecked.

A tornado passed over Longview, Texas, doing much damage. At Lansing Switch six persons were killed. Great hailstones fell, many of them weighing from fourteen to eighteen ounces. Others, which must have been very much larger, were found next morning, after a heavy warm rain, with the mercury at seventy degrees.

They sank from two to five inches in the ground near Longview. Many chickens, turkeys and cattle were killed.

At Lansing Switch, six miles east, the tornado struck the graveyard, tearing up large forest trees by the roots. It struck the staunch old house of JOHN CAINS, occupied by a family of colored people. The house stood in a grove of old oaks, every one of which was uprooted.

Persons who knew the house often spoke of the impossibility of wrecking it by storm, but it is now entirely demolished. There are six persons dead, three mortally wounded, and five seriously and painfully hurt.

Old man ALEX LESTER was found fifty yards from the house dead. ALEX LESTER, JR., eighteen years old, was dead, mixed up with torn bedding.

The mother, SARAH LESTER, was found against a tree several yards away, dead. ROBERT LESTER was under a tree dead, and JASPER COLLINS was found dead under a two-foot tree trunk.

His wife, MOLLIE COLLINS, has many bruises, but will recover. "SISSY" LESTER, aged two years, was found several yards away in a tree top, dead.

The storm swept on toward Marshall. Fruit trees and fences were demolished for many miles around. A Texas and Pacific passenger train was passing at the time and just escaped the funnel-shaped cloud.

The Cranbury Press New Jersey 1894-03-23