The great Galveston disaster, containing a full and thrilling account of the most appalling calamity of modern times including vivid descriptions of the hurricane Page: 393
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THE STO)RM'S MURDEROUS FURY. 393
It will be remembered that the storm began to become serious
early in the afternoon, and hence no one had undressed for bed
when the climax came. The female survivors, or at least those
who were upon the waters, came out naked. I asked a lady whether
it was the waves or the flying timbers that did it. She said it was
the wind. " Why, on the raft with me and my baby was a colored
woman. The raft seemed to me to be the ceiling of a house because
it was white. We had to lie as flat on it as we could without
placing our faces in the water. The colored woman became tired
and raised in a half-sitting posture. The moment she did it the
wind stripped her of every stich of clothing."
CLOTHES TORN TO SHREDS.
The men, too, were deprived in a great measure of their
clothes, but not to the extent of the women. Their clothes were
torn from them now and then by the wreckage, but nearly all the
corpses had on some garment. The reason of this was probably
that the women's apparel was of weaker texture. People ask why
the people did not move when the storm came from unsafe houses
to safe houses. The answer is twofold. In the first place, death
was on them before they realized their danger. The Galveston
mind had for years been firmly convinced that Galveston Island
and Galveston houses could weather any storm.
An illustration of this confidence is in order. A woman who
lived at one of the numerous corner groceries said the water was
almost to her neck before she left her place. She waded to the
house of a near neighbor, where many of the people in the locality
had assembled, because all thought it a perfectly safe house, as it
proved itself to be. Here, she said, they chatted and even joked as
the building rocked in the hands of the storm. When the people
saw that their lives were in danger, it was then too late to try for
other houses. They remained where they were till the buildings
either fell and parts were being torn away and they were assured
that they would soon fall.
The air was filled with every conceivable missile. Great
beams and sleepers of houses went through the air like arrows.
Here’s what’s next.
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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, book, 1900~; (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth26719/m1/451/: accessed June 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .