Ambia, TX Area Tornado, Apr 1902

Was a Veritable Tornado.

One Life Was Lost in the Storm Which Struck in Lamar and Delta Counties.

Special To The News.

Paris, Tex., April 7.-Details of Saturday night’s storm were brought in today and the full extent of its ravages is beginning to be appreciated. Houses, trees, barns and fences were blown down or badly damaged and crops were seriously washed in some places, but only one life was lost, as far as reported.

At Ambia, south of Paris, on the Santa Fe, the wind amounted to a tornado. It came from a little west of north and was accompanied by tremendous rain and hail.

The Presbyterian Church building, a handsome edifice, was blown down and wrecked beyond repair. The blacksmith shop of J.D. BOYD was blown to pieces and nothing was left on the spot except an anvil. Mr. BOYD’S residence was blown fifteen feet and was lodged against a wire fence. Two seed houses belonging to the Paris Cotton Oil Company, and the smokestack of Dupree’s gin and all the flues were blown away. A.B. Park’s large barn was blown down and two wagons, two buggies and a number of cultivators and cotton planters were mashed to pieces. His loss was several hundred dollars. A barn on the farm of A.P. Park was blown down and A.A. Jackson’s house and a tenant house on R.B. Stalling’s place were blown from the blocks. Mrs. Atkinson’s residence was badly wrecked and Jap Anderson’s house was blown from the blocks. W.R. Dudley’s dwelling was damaged some. J.D. Boyd’s drug store was turned half way around and badly wrecked. A tenant house on Dave Arles’ place, a quarter of a mile north of Ambia, occupied by a negro family named Roberson, was blown to pieces. All of the members of the family escaped except an 8-year old boy. When he was missed the negroes screamed and yelled for him, fired pistols and instituted a search with lanterns. His dead body was found a hundred yards away in a field. He had been blown across a wire fence.

Two men living half a mile from Ambia started home just before the storm came up. Just as they passed through a fence they were blown flat and had to hold to the fence posts to keep from being blown away, while the hailstones bruised and skinned their hands terribly.

Telephone and telegraph poles and wires were prostrated and piled across the railroad track in a confused mass. A double header freight train came along just after the storm and was flagged down within a few feet of the obstruction on the track.

All of the gardens around Ambia in the path of the storm were ruined by hail and there will be no fruit. Corn was beaten down wherever it was up and oats driven in the ground.

The storm at Howland, Atlas and Old Pleasant Grove, southeast of Ambia, was the hardest known in years. Hail two feet deep lies piled up in the gullies still unmelted. Dead jaybirds and mockingbirds that had been killed by the hail on the roost were picked up under cedar trees. A tenant house on Tom Justiss’ place was blown from the blocks and the roof of Will Williams’ barn was blown off. The windows in Frank Mcglasson’s, Pleas Williams, Will Jones and numerous other dwellings were riddled. Crops were badly damaged. Fruit and shade trees were stripped of leaves and buds and many of them were blown flat and twisted to pieces. The creeks all ran full in an hour and most of them were out of banks in a little while.

On Emberson Prairie, ten miles northwest of Paris, fruit trees were literally denuded of blossoms and leaves and oats and corn were beaten into the ground. The wind was form the north and did the most damage from the Sumner west, several dwellings, barns and outhouses being blown down or damaged.

The residence of a family named Moss, a mile from Pacio, Delta County, was blown to pieces and none of the family escaped being injured.

Dallas Morning News, Dallas, TX 8 Apr 1902