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: 397
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THE STORM'S MURDEROUS FURY. 397
A shudder will go through the world when some one properly
tells of how the beloved ones found their last resting-place. For it
is horrible to think of disposing of human corpses in this way.
But what could be done? What else? Nothing-absolutely
nothing, except what was done. The dead threatened the living.
Even if the living had desired to flee from the dead, which they
did not, they could not have done so-but on an island were the
living and the dead. There were no vessels to run from the island
to the mainland. There were no railroads or bridges. The hot
sun beat down and quickly decomposed the bodies. The bruised
and maimed could not work. What could be done? Nothing but
what was done. 'Twas a sad and horrible thing, but it was charity
for the dead to do it, and preservation to the living to do it.
It is utterly unreasonable for one to think that the people of
Galveston and the workers in the cause of cleaning can proceed
rapidly. Not only is it a task, but it is a task which has conditions
existing which are new to the people engaged in the work,
and they cannot work with the energy which is their wont.
FULL LIST CANNOT BE KNOWN.
As to the dead, as stated before, how the full list will be ever
known is hard to say. There are places in the city where for
bLcks and blocks not a house remains, and no one can give an
instance of having seen a resident of the locality since the fury
of the storm was spent. Whole families were swept out to sea, and
the survivors of the calamity are too busy with their own and the
wark which must be done to remember whom they knew when the
Island City was in its prime.
Another point in the matter of the dead is that there were
many visitors in the city at the time whose names have never been
reported either in the list of the living or of the dead. Possibly
few people knew they were here, and in the confusion incident to
the days following the storm those who were cognizant of the
presence of these visiters have been too busy to think of the
stranger in the land.
It is true that a clew to missing people is gained by the in-
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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/m1/455/: accessed July 21, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .