The Great Galveston Disaster, Containing a Full and Thrilling Account of the Most Appalling Calamity of Modern Times Page: 489
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SNATCHED FROM THE JAWS OF DEATH. 489
floor, and was rising gradually. The wind had hauled further to
the east and was blowing at a terrific rate. I moved my chair
near the window and watched the water as it flowed down avenue
P2 to the west at a terrific rate, carrying wretched shanties,
boxes, barrels, wooden cisterns and everything else that fell in
its power. The flow was almost exactly from east to west, just
as the streets run, for a box or barrel that passed my house, in
the middle of the street, kept the same position as far as I could
"Between 5 and 6 o'clock the wind became almost due east
and increased in violence. The debris fairly flew past, so rapid
had the tide become. At twenty minutes to 6 o'clock (I an exact
because I noticed my large clock had stopped, and wound it up
and set it by my watch) there was a marked increase in the violence
of the wind. I went to a west window to watch a fence I
had been using as a marker on the tide, and while I was looking,
I saw the tide suddenly rise fully four feet at one bound. In a
few minutes several houses on the south side of P 2, between
Twenty-fifth and Twenty-sixth, went to pieces and floated away,
and the debris from a number of large buildings began to float
past from the east.
THE ROAR WAS AWFUL.
"It was then getting dark very rapidly. I turned on my
lamps, but, as I had anticipated, there was no electricity. I had
found a candle and lit that, then I thought I had best save it, so
I blew it out, got a comfortable arm-chair and made myself as
comfortable as possible. Being entirely alone, with no responsibility
on me, I felt satisfied and very complacent, for I was fool
enough not to be the least afraid of wind or water.
" About 7.30 o'clock I heard heavy thumping against the
east side of my house, and concluded it was downstairs in one of
the lower bed rooms. I lit the candle and went to the stairs, and
found the water was very nearly up to the top of them. I put the
candle down, went to the front door and opened it. In a second I
was blown back into the hall. I eased myself along the east side,
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, book, 1900~; (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth26719/m1/547/: accessed March 22, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .