64 CRY OF DISTRESS IN GALVESTON.
Then it was too late, for the tide swirled in the streets and the
wind had begun rapidly to increase in violence. It howled and
screamed in great gusts, which increased in strength every minute,
and one by one the houses along the Gulf front and in the Denver
resurvey and about Fort Point began to go to pieces and pile one
against the other.
The waters were filled with debris and the debris with men,
women and children seeking to save their lives. Wading was impossible,
save in the centre of the city, and the unfortunates were
swept to and fro, dashed by the waves and bruised by the flying
fragments, until death resulted in one form or another. Many
were the deeds of heroisns but rescuers and all fell victims to the
storm, for human efforts were unavailing.
MORE HORRORS DETAILED.
J. C. Roberts, of the firm of Behring Brothers, Houston, was
sent to Galveston to learn of the family of his employers. His
journey was arduous, for he was one of the first. Arriving in the
city worn out, he entered a little drug store and asked for whisky.
He was refused. A doctor was present and gave him a prescription
for the stimulant. The druggist charged $2.50 for the whisky, and
the doctor $5 for his services. He landed at Galveston at Twentieth
street, and walked through dead bodies.
His description of the scenes is horrible in the extreme. The
dead were everywhere. They were scattered on every hand, and
nearly all in a complete state of nudity. He saw an Italian woman
standing in the street holding in her hand the foot and leg of an
infant severed from the little body. She was unclad, but alive and
insane, and refused to leave the pile of debris which contained the
remains of her little one.
Roberts witnessed one of the guards shoot five negro looters.
He observed one of the men robbing a dead body. The man refused
to desist and the guard shot him dead as he knelt on the
sands. Four companions of the ghoul started to assault the guard,
when he threw himself on his stomach, and, firing rapidly, killed
Lester, Paul. The great Galveston disaster, containing a full and thrilling account of the most appalling calamity of modern times including vivid descriptions of the hurricane. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth26719/. Accessed December 29, 2014.