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THE JOHNSTOWN FLOODS

(Per 8.0 Msrlpooa, «t AaokUnd.) JSan .E'bancisoo, May 31. A report was rooeived m Greeusbarg, , Ponn,| on May Slat, that the greater part of J >hofltown had baoo flooded and haa* deeds of lives lost. la order to under' stand the nature of the calamity it la necessary to describe the location of the reservoir at Johnstown. The reserToir lies about two and a half miles to the north-east of Johnstown, and is the site of an old reservoir, which was one of the feeders of the Pennsylvania oanal. This sheet of (rater was formerly known as Oonemaugh Lake. Ik Is from 200 ft to 300 ft above the lovel of Johnstown, m the mountain aide, and is about three and a half miles long and fr^rn a mile to a mile and a quartet m width, and m come places 100 ft deep, and held more water than any othar reservoir, natural or artificial. In the United States. This lake had been quadrupled ia siza, and was held by a dam 700 to 1000 ft wide. Reoogufolog .the menace wbtob the Uke held to the region below, ihti South Fjrk Olab whloh owned the reservoir, had the dam inspected onoa a month by Pennsylvania engineers, who reported tha; nothing but some convulsion of nature would tear, the banlor away. A steady rain of forty-eight hoars inoreased the volame of water In the small mountain streams, and It Is evident that something m the nature of a aloud burst must have occurred, A suideo, freihet occurred m the north fork of the river, east of Johnstown, and the latter oity was flooded, while all the rivers m the neighborhood rose. The orowolog disaster, however, resulted at about five o'olook on th evening of May Slat, whea the reaervolr broke, and an Immense volume of water mailed down into the valley below, carrying with it death and destruction. Johnstown was submerged, and hundreds of lives were lost. Houses were swept away by scores, and carried along by the rush of water, with people clinging to the roofs. At Oamptowa a village of several hundred Inhabitants, houses were almost entirely covered. A great many buildings In Bialrsville ware submerged. It Is eald I chat four-fifths of the town of Southfork, above Johnstown, containing iOOO inhabitants, were swept away. The following to was also lay between the reservoir and Johnstown; — Mineral Poln', 800 Inhabitants; Oonemaugh, 2000; YVuodvllle, 2000. The first two were m the valley, and It seema Impossible to hope thtt any of the Inhabitants of Mineral Point have escaped. At Oonemaugh there was a topographical possibility of the spreading of the fl ;od, and the breaking of Its force, but It m supposed that tha town is devastated. The neigh* boring towns were fljoded through the rising of the dyers. All the telegraph wires In the locality are down, and information which had come to band when the mall steamer left San Frauoiaco was meagre. '

PiiTSßtjkg, May 31. The lobs of lives by tine catastrophe is inestimable. There ia no oorumunioatloo with Jobnstowo, bat the telegraph operator m the PeunsyiVaniun railroad tower says at leant fifty -six bodios have floated past Later information comes through the Pennsylvania railroad officials, who state that over 200 dead bodies have floated down the stream at Johnstown alone while a'ong toe line many additional lives have been lost. It m aoaorted there are only two houses m Johustown entirely above the water line. A special traiu bearing Pennsylvania railroad officials and Associated Press correspondents has left fortbonoene. , ;

Gbeensbobg, Pa., May 31. At a point near New Florence eightyfire persons h >ye been Been floating down the river on driftwood. The Cooktown land New Jflorence bridges -haye 1 been washed away, with alt the buildings between New Florence and Johnstown. Superintendent Pitoairn promptly took charge of the railroad, and began tue doable duty o£ clearing tha tracks and sending aid to those m danger, 'lhe d ffioulty of obtaining definite informa ion \ udded tremendously to the excitement and apprehension of people who had friends at the scene of the disaster, People axe eagerly waiting for news at telegraph office, and great uneaeineas prevails tioarcely a dwelling m the vicinity of Sank Hollow can be Been. ' The bridges at Bolivar and Nineveh; it is reported, have given way. Johns:own lay a mile below Woodyale, and was one of a cluster of towns, including Cambria Oitj,with a total population of 30,000. Stretching aloag the river's verge were the immensa ironworks of the (Jamoria Iron aud Steel Company, who had 5.0C0 OOOdole invested ia tuoir plant How badly these and other industrial establishments, on the bank of the river are damaged cannot be os itnated.

FmT.ADßj.pgiA, May 31; All the wlreß oi the tfennsylvania Kail* rohd west of Willmore station, on the Pittabarg division are down. Three Mto York trains are laid up at Latonia, unable to prooeed beoause of the floods. The bridge at ttouth Jfork is wathad away, and ihe telegraph tower and other buildings, with a portion of an east-bound freight train, were oarried away, and several railway employees have been drowned. Despatches reoeived np to midnight at the office of the Pennsylvania railroad Indicate the situation as houriy growing worse. Landslips are reported along tbe line between tiarriaburg and Altona. The N«w York Limited, eastern bound, had a narrow escape. Immedia* eely after the train passed over the South Fork bridge that struoture was swept away by water. The tracks of Johnstown ore. entirely destroyed m some plaqeg. The river for some distance is filled witn building and driftwood 30 tt high, *hich is on fire, and likeiy to damage the biidge. The fire is beyond control. Johnstown literally is wiped out of exiatenoa. Bbapdoqk, PA., M»y 31 A boy was te»cuea by men In • signal tower of tho Railway Company at Sunk Hollow. He said that with his father, mother, brother aud two slsiero at Bank Hollow ha was swept away. He was washed aw»y from a baildlog, and other members of the family were swept over the breast a'.oae wall on the road bridge at Johnstown, It capsized a few seconds later, and ail were drowned. Tbe railroad opertitors reported that they were able to count to 119 piraons ellngiug to buildings. The people of Johnstown had been warned of Impending fbods early tn the afternoon bnt no parson living near the reservoir knew the dam bad given way until the great fl,od Bwept the Um&es off their foundations, and esoape was impossible. As early »sone o'olook tbe railway cffiolaln weie notified that there was danger from the dam, and they m a very short tirpe began to oarry people to places of safety by tbe regular trains, and hastily Improvised rescuing trains. Beports from Piedmont, Huntlngton, Tyrone, Harrisburg, Alton*, and Williams port «tate tbat great damage was oiueed by the flood. The destruction at P.edmcnt was terrible, and it Is estimated tbe loss will reaoh 250,000d015, The oropß are ruined everywheje,hoaaef ? bttva, fences and lumber swept away, {n one oise Iqja of life Is reported, the yictim being a phild, Ibe tempest raged with terriQo vlolenoe throughout Indiana, Westmoreland! Blair, Hunting ton, Muffin, Junlnta and Perry counties, carrying aw»y telegraph wlrer, flooding and washing cut railways, aad oouvertlng mountain stteame Into iotront?, carrying death and devastation along Its path, I

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THE JOHNSTOWN FLOODS Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2156, 24 June 1889

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