Gainesville, TX Flood, Jul 1903

The portion of this city which is in most danger is in East Gainesville, along the banks of the Pecan Creek. Most of the aiding party are in West Gainesville and can not reach the water-bound people on account of the high water along the Santa Fe tracks.

The northbound Santa Fe, due here at 10:50 p.m. has not arrived, and it is though it will not attempt the flood at all. The tracks are not sufficiently clear of water to allow a train to pass over them. About a thousand telephone poles which were stacked above the tracks have washed down and obstructed both the Santa Fe and Kay tracks and two streets of the city.

Men unable to reach their families in East Gainesville are anxiously watching the rising water. A report has just been received that the people in the northeast portion of the city are surrounded by water and are not able to get away it is feared that loss of life will follow. A party of men is not being formed to try to get them into a safer part of the city. By the timely efforts of the aiding party the flood might pass with but little damage, but the general opinion is that the damage will be great.

It is just learned that the water is now ten inches deep in the post office.

At this hour (1 a.m.) the second distress signal is blowing, as the water in the eastern part of town is rising again at a rapid rate, and the last report is that men, women and children are trying to save their lives in the raging water of Pecan Creek, which is rising rapidly.

Phone calls from the towns of Lindsay and Munster are that they have suffered a regular cloudburst. No loss of life is reported.

The fire bell here is now ringing, calling for all possible assistance, and all who call have rendered all service possible. The town is in a gloom and amid the greatest excitement ever known. The clouds continue to pour a heavy downpour of rain. Unless the rain lets up this will be one of the greatest floods on record in the history of Gainesville. The very strongest of men are now making an effort to save those who are so unfortunate as to be on the banks of Pecan Creek.

Dallas Morning News, Dallas, TX 3 Jul 1903


Things Heard In Hotel Lobbies

George Richter of Gainesville yesterday in the city had much to say of the recent flood in that locality. “There was never danger to the people of the town, as the sensational newspaper reports indicated. Some of the streets were running water, and it was the greatest flood the town has ever known, but it soon passed off, as Gainesville has an excellent drainage system. It is believed the first report was sent out by someone who believed it was a joke to say that nine feet of water covered the public square. The crops in the county are in fine condition, the damage reported being only in places, and not at all widespread. Gainesville anticipates the biggest trade ever known in that section. This result, following three years of crop failures, is gratifying to those who are in business in Cooke County.

Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Fort Worth, TX 6 Jul 1903