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REIGN OF HORROR.
Jud&re W I). Jones Writes a Graphic
Account of his Harrowing Experience
in the Flood at Dayton.
Judge Jones in Piqua Daily Call.
Out of the jaws of Death! Out
of the mouth of Hell!
In the last few days many people
here have faced, and some have met
death in a cruel form. In a neighboring
city the writer was at the same
time in a company whose actual physical
suffering was all, I should be
ashamed to mention it. But to have
stood helpless for two whole days in
the menace of a dreadful death in not
less than four different forms, is a
story perhaps worth telling.
It nears 8 o'clock in the morning on
the busy streets of Dayton, and the
movement of the people is increasing.
They are going their ways, gayly or
quietly. There is no thought of danger,
all is serene and secure.
Ten minutes! A fragment of time.
Ten minutes later and the careless
stream of people has changed to a
white face; freightened, bewildered,
+ lirnn cr frilntioa 11V
from an awful fate that has stolen on
I reached Dayton Monday night on
my way home, to find traffic suspended
on the cars ''till morning" it was
said. Remaining at the Beckel Hotel
over night I went over to the D. T.
^office about 7.30. I waited a little
while. "Nothing doing yet," said some
one pleasantly. I thought I would
go back to the hotel lobby. It must
iiave been nearly 8 o'clock.
As I stepped on the sidewalk a rush
of water came down the center of
Jefferson street. At the first sight it
looked as though a fire hydrant might
have been opened.
For the moment I was more curious
than alarmed. I walked on to the
hotel, and the water covered the street
KAOror? f A lorv AVdT fKa /?1irK An
aiiu tv ictij v ? v j wu^/ v/w* w vi*
to the sidewalk. I went in, and tolcl
the clerk I would retain my room a
while longer. The elevater was not
Tunning and I hurried up the stairs
intending to leave my satchel and coat
in the room, and return to see the
strange sight. I began to think there
"might be some serious inconvenience
I entered the room, dropped my coat
^and bag, and looked out of the window.
It had been as in Jean Ingelow's
'"The heaVt had hardly time to beat
'Before a shallow, seeting wave,
Sobbed on the ground, beneath our I
The feet had hardly time to flee,
Before it broke against the knse
And all the world was in the sea."
A seething, foaming torrent was j
rolling down Jefferson street.
Before the mind ^ould grasp what
"had happened, a horrible crash sound
ru apparently ueiieaiu me uie nuur
-vibrated beneath my feet, and plastering
commenced to drop from the ceil- j
ing. Women's screams sounded from
the next room. I sprang to my door.
, It would not open. But I heard men's
Toic?s outside and I shouted to them
to throw their weight upon the door,
and they did so promptly and by do- j
ing so saved me the horror of being!
entrapped on the fourth floor of a;
sinking building. The occupants of;
several adjoining rooms were re-j
leased in the same, manner. Walls |
Avere'cracking and trembling, and!
plastering falling. Some one shouted, j
"Fire" but was sternly silenced. We j
fled down the stairs, joined on* every!
floor by ashen faced men and women. I
It was the only time there was sem-J
Glance of a pai:c, and that was jver
in a /noment. r .hink *11 must have
realized as I did that something awful
but unexplained tad hap^ntvl, and
our liVes might 011 keeping,
cool and quiet.
When we reached the second floor,
the office that I had just quired was
filling with a mass of muldy bbci:,
water that roared as it poured in and
rapidly mounted the stains. It wa'i
evident that the only exit from the I
ll n 11 O A TT.rt r? rV? WiMt /vl, iV* /V ? i
tnjuoc v?co buiuugu. uic sctunu swi.?
Something awful had happened and
something worse might follow it <*3 j
suddenly. And ten minutes oefore we |
had all been so secure, and we ha^ !
never thought that 111 the mid ;t ^f i
2ife Tie are ;n v.eith.
-At xhis time my heast lightened at
tda-sight of tae r'^ f t friend. Mr.
"William T. Marshall, of Piqua, ei
ro\rte home frjn Florida wag at the
traction office wher the iiood comrnenced
and had barely time to take
refuge in the Beckel. We shared each
^other's fortunes for five eventful days,
and to an '>1(1 friend?.?*3 adu d ties
that will last for life. Mr. Marshall
-was throughout what followed coura'g?ous,
calm and helpful. I trust that
1", uiy&elf at least, acted like a man,
and indeed in all the horror that came
Ihere was no exhibition of cowardice.
.Before noon on Tuesday Jefferson
and Third streets w re raging, roaring
torrents of a depth of 12 to 14 feet,
it seems to me that the main current
of the Miami must have been diverted
through the principal streets of Dayi
ton. The store rooms opposite us filled
to the ceilings. Down both streets
poured a mass of drift now a lot of
chairs and tables from some home,
now counters, shelving, barrels, boxes,
crates of fruit from some grocery,
several pianos, piles of lumber, and
worst of all, every few minutes some
struggling, drowning horse. Some of
the wreckage drifted clear, some
struck poles of street lights and broke
into fragments, some was hurled
igainst and shattered the plate glass
windows 01 siores. 11 was a eicKening
sight of ruin and destruction.
In the rear of the hotel was a small
court where a score or more of horses,
released from a neighboring stable
were struggling frantically and from
time to time succumbing and dying.
The rooms on the second floor directly
under the one I had occupied, had
fallen clear through to the basement
j leaving a horrible gap. A jewelry
salesman said his trunks with $30,000
worth of goods in them, went down
with the lower room. It is not certain
yet whether this accident was due to
the water undermining the walls or
to the explosion of a small boiler in
All day long we sat on the second
floor and watched the horrible muddy
flood, and the dreadful drift. The first
rush of the waters came half-way up
the store fronts before any one could
j realize it, then came the slower but
steady mounting, and there was a
dreadful fascination in watching the
creeping upward inch by inch, select
mg some mark ana watcning it until
There was fortunately considerable
food on the second floor, though but
little drinking water. The managers
of the Reckel thought there would be
provision enough with economy to
I carry us through, and humanely they
shared this with all in the house without
distinction between guests and refugees.
We made and enforced a peremptory
order that not a single match should
be struck in the house. From the very
first the dread of fire was on the heart
of every one. One fellow tried however
to lighi 'pe, but was properly
taken care of. We had, as far as I
know, no other such creatures among
As night drew on, and the water
still slowly rose, the horror of darkness
was upon us?ominous cracking
sounded from the broken east wall,
any many clambered while there was
light to the buildings on the west for
greater security, I secured a chair in
an insurance office. There were six
people there who had been caught
n?V?il a r? f Tirrtt?lr r I1 V* rtt' TfTAitA tt r\r?vt lriw/1
nunc at vyuik. i irvjr rvcic vcij ivinu
to me, as I shall never forget.
The night was an absolutely sleepless
one, and in one or two directions
fires could be seen at a distance. We
had hoped that by Wednesday the
flood would be subsiding a-3 rapidly as
it came, but with the seemingly intermisable
night was ended, we were
strickenly disappointed to find that
though, there was a decline, it was
small indeed, it is sa>d the waters rose
till 3 a. m.
We all filed into the dining room in
the morning, and thankfully received
a portion of cold meat and fried potatoes,
and what was most grateful, a
glass of water and a cup of coffee.
There was a doleful view of such
stores as Kirby's, Hunter & Hardie the
<2nrnri?o in fnof ^vprvtViino- nr> 'Phirri
street with the black water washing
to the ceilings. At almost every window
in the buildings in view we could
see anxious, drawn faces of people
marooned like ourselves. There were1
no shouts or calls for help for. every]
one kn-ew that no help could come. In
the Beckel, people talked but little,
and in low voices. Some one went
around and secured a list of all our i
names. There were about 100 guests.
"May be useful when it comes to
identify remains" said one man grim- i
ly, and actually there was a general j
hoarse laugh, though no one took it asj
a jok?. Then all was silent but the!
awful roar of the wat-er.
' 'Will try to give lunch at 4 o'clock" j
was the announcement, "and that will
be all we can give today." It was never j
Another loud crash brought, every
one to his feet. A drug store half a
square away collapsed. We saw some
of it float away, but did not dream
then of what this accident meant to
Still another crash, and a man on
the opposite roof called over that three
buildings on Main street, just south
of the Phillips hotel had gone down.
We had almost ceased to note time
but I think it was 1.30 Wednesday
afternoon, a man near me said in a
low voice, wnat it a nr-e DreaKs our,
"Oh, merciful God, there it is," came
A column of flame shot into the air
like a towering beacon of d-ath, not
over 300 feet from us. A blaz'f from j
the ruins of the drug store had enter-'
ed th^ next build ill ?.
~ w I
In this block immediately east of J
us were many highly Inflammable
stocks of goods, including ttfee wholesale
liquor stores, whose contents,
when ignited would be liquid fire.
Not a hand would be lifted to fight
the flames, which must spread, unchecked
by human means. This meant
that when the corner was reached., the
leaping of the street by the flames and
the destruction of the Beckel house,
f a J 4- +V? A TIfVl A KIaaI/"
lunuvi eu uy luai, UJ. IUC rviivic
was apparently inevitable.
There was a hurried whispered consultation,
but only for a moment We j
must get as far away as possible from j
the fire, if only to prolong lif-e.
Then began a remarkable march of >
retreat. Some two or three hundred j
people clambered, climbed and crawl- j
ed from one end of the square on Third i
street from Jefferson to Main. Just
how it was done in every particular
nr\ nnA /ion over toll Wq crnt rtnf nn i
the roof of the Beckel annex. We went
up and down fire escapes. We cautiously
crossed frail looking sky
lights. We scaled fire walls. We took
ladders along, and from slippery roofs
got to open windows passed through
buildings, and from win lows to roofs
again. We reached a ten foot alley.
A ladder was pushed across to the
next building and we crawled over, j
one at a time. This was done by men, |
women and by one or two children.
It was a journey for life, but it was
not a mad flight. It was done quickly
but quietly, and each helped the other.
Among those taken safely was a woman
with a broken arm, and Mr. Bennett,
the proprietor of the hotel, carried
from his dying bed.
All made the perilous journey safely.
That the most of us could even
attempt it, is simply because it was
a dash for life.
At the Main street end of the square
we could go no further, and we dispersed
into different parts of the Callahan
building and that just adjoining.
Our situation was this, there was
the possibility at any moment of the
building as we had see others; do. collapse
and entomb us. A few hundred
feet -behind us, and moving steadily
in our direction, was a roaring, leaping
pillar of flame devouring everything
before it. In front of us was i
the black hideous, drift filled current, j
in which it seemed hopeless for a
stout swimmer to venture. If one
could pass through the icy waters and
escape with life for the moment, there
would be o heat, no dry clothing,
no succor, and it would seem that the
exposure would be hardly less swiftly
fatal than by fire or by drowning.
Death threatening in -every one of
four forms, and no one failed to realize
What little might be done was done.
Two men managed to cut a cable in
the elevator shaft. We were in the
; second story of the Callahan building,
j opposite the old court house, where j
j was some open ground around it,!
| where one might be comparatively
l safe. One end of the wire rope was
, made fast to our building, and on a
! rude kind of scow, it was managed to j
float the other across the street
I where it was caught and secured. The
jscow upset and that was the last I
saw of it. One man came up in a
boat and helped a little with the rope,
but could nqt or would not stay, and
Ijis craft whirled away on the current.
^That was the only boat we saw during
| the flood.
| The life line was stretched and three
I or four of the strongest, managed to
j work their way hand on hand on it, j
j across to the court house. They were j
almost torn from it, and each instance
i were up to their necks in water,
drenched and icy cold, and dropping
with exhaustion when they had cross- j
ed. it was evident that this way of
escape would avail very few while the I
V?i rrVi Mrof Ar r* v*A 111 currant r>nr? ? '
-?> o-u^x aiau Uiux x?.v,v, ,
There was nothing left to do but
wait and pray.
Th-ere were 25 or 30 people in the
two rooms we occupied, and also one;
horse, that in some way had gotten
in. Of our party about ten were wo- i
men and one mother sat quietly with \
a fi.ved drawn face and clasped firmly
in her arms a little boy of seven or
eight years. The child clung to his!
mother, and tried to be and was:
brave. Once in a while a tear trickled i
down bis lace, but the mother uever j
We were in the cruel position that j
while we could see the reflection of
the lire, and watch the horrible drifting
smoke and sparkle, it was behind
us, and we could not see just what it
was doing, but had to depend on what
was shouted to us from those on oth-er
As night approached, most of the
men drew together, and a whisperedj
AAnfri-on/io iitoo ViorJ nnp hp-i
nao uuu. ^ ~ ? ? j
lieved that the fire would sooner or
later reach the Beckel, and when that .
w .is don'; it was only a question of
a few hours or even less when it
would be upon us. Nearly every one
who expressed himeslf thought it almost
certain that we had but a few
hours to live, unless some miracle delivered
us. This was my opinion and
that of Mr. Marshall.
Tt a'oe that -arVion tho firP
reached the next building to us that
we should divide into parties of three,
two men to each woman; try to hold
on to our frail line, and commit our
bodies to the rushing water and our
souls to God.
There was no question but that that
woman with the child must have the
first chance, but the trouble was to
see any chance for any one.
Darkness came again, that is darkness
within, but without lurid, flaring
awful light. We could not see each
others faces within, it was very cold, J
and outside snow and rain was falling,
but little was thought of cold, hunger
or thirst. We were waiting, waiting,
waiting to know whether it was to
be life or death.
I thought of what might be going
on at home?of what the- destruction
miict Ko thoro* nf mv ir.vpc rrnpe anH
where they were, and I wondered
whether if I was rescued there would
be anything left to live for.
On the roof of the Phillips hotel
were men with megaphones. They
could see the fire, and they shouted
news of its progress. We had no megaphone
and it was difficult to cull to
them. It was found that my voice
and that of another man seemed to
"carry" best to them, and I spent most
of Wednesday night standing on the
window sill receiving and repeating
They came like this, hoarsely
through the air:
"Oh Callahan people, the fire has
worked one door nearer. What do
you say? No, the hank is not burning
yet. The Beckel does not seem to
havo nanvht vat "
"Oh, Callahan. Another store has
caugM but the bank is safe yet. The
wind seems to be rising and blowing
This bank was the Fourth National,
corner of Jefferson and Third streets.
It was said to be fireproof. Our lives
depended on whether its east wall
could resist the fire.
At 1 o'clock, "Oh Callahan: Fire
seems to be going down. Think the
bank will stand. We believe your danger
is almost over."
"There were long breaths and murmurs
of "Thank God." We had suffered
for nearly twelve hours. Was
it possible the worst was over.
No. A dreadful explosion seemed to
renc earth and sky. Sheets of blood
red and ghastly green fire illuminated
everything, showers of burning embers
and sparks rained down, and hot
smoke drifted past I could only
think of the day ot the last judgment.
The fire had leaped across Third
street and entered Lowe Bros.' paint
works, and apparently the whole con*
? Vi#*j Or nnoo
LCIl L?> UOU C Auivu^u UV vuvv.
It seemed that absolutely all hope
was gone. Great masses of burning
wreckage drifted down the current,
threatening to fire buildings in every
direction. Some of our people lost
not their courage but their judgment,
and wanted me to start for the water.
I believe I may have indirectly been
the means of saving a number of lives,
by earnestly insisting that we should
stay till the last moment before jump- j
ing into the water. By professing!
much more hope and confidence than
I really felt, and aided by some others,
we kept a number of people from
abandoning a faint hope to go to cer
And yet the fire wall held, the wind
shifted, and as day broke on Thursday
morning the fire was going away
from us and we were practically saved,
after being for at least eighteen j
hours in the immediate show of death.
By 4 o'clock on Thursday afternoon
we were able to leave the buildings
where we had been imprisoned for
Our first news from home was "Piqua
practically wiped out. Remnant
burning, 800 dead. Dr. Will J. Prince
drowned in post omce ioddv. we aiso
heard of the death of the hero,
Clark B. Jamison. We could hear no
word of oui own families, nor could
we hear just what th-e flood limit of
Piqua was. All was anxiety and
frantic attempts to communicate with
friends, or to get home. Some queer
things happened. For instance I got
acquainted with Mr. Al Harnish, of
Syracuse, X. Y., and found he and I
had been talking to each other all that
night of terror across the black space
between the Phillips and Callahan
And finally, that all humanity is a
debtor to the man who saw wnat 10
do and did more than any one.
Dr. R. A. Kimbrought, for the past
two years president of Union university.
Jackson, Tenn., has tendered his
resignation and will re-enter the ministry,
which he left to take up his work
at the college.
1. ^ VJU PAl^klUU. h^t
Pay Prdght,"i"s"the bargain crcr <
water incubator. Order right now or at
cular, because yon ought to know all abot
Finest Catalogue ever printed, FREE.
came about," ma>ied tree, it wiu miercs
the oldest maker of Incubators.
PETALUMA INCUBATOR C
HBox Indianapolis, Ind. Box
TT flYivn T?/^r?r} Vi
LXV1U J X Vi V4. J.J
Who ever livec
how. That's th?
build "The Un
a wonderfully to
get yours nowFord
Our great factory hi
a quarter of a millioi
Runabout, $525; 1
Town Car, $800?f.
ail equipment. F
mobile magazine- I
Phone, write or cs
Iji - ;A
Long Poll and a Strong
In anything. Now, I have been
i Which I consider the best in thi
jceeded in obtaining the agency
. ^if you are in the market for an\
n*,be to your interest to let me see
? Saw Mills, Corn Mills, I
Pea Threshers or Sep
Feed Cutters, Wood ?a^
| arators, Silos, Gasoline
from 1 1-2 to 100 horse
II We handle only the best, so if
HI write me. If you are not interi
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m headache, biliousness, in- 1
| m digestion, rheumatism, 1
! B pimples, blotches, yellow
complexion, etc^ are all m
m signs of poisons in your
? t f ti ? :
foiooa. inesc puisuns m
should be driven out, or 9
serious illness may result H,
To get rid of them, use I
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vegetable, liver medicine. A
Mrs. J. H. Easier, o! w
Spartanburg, S. C., says:
" I had sick headache, for n
years. I felt bad most of B
the time, I tried Thed- S
ford's Black-Draught, and H
now I feel better than n
when I was 16 years old." |
ft Your druggist sells it, in W
9 25 cent packages. J|
I Insist on Thcdford's 1
President Pearce, of Brenau college,
Gainesville, Ga., has purchased a motion
picture outfit to be used in his
institution. Twice a week' educational
films will be presented for the students.
He contemplates purchasing a
motion picture camera in oroer iu j
make films for use in the college work i
T ORS AMD
used more extensively tnrougrt-. Jn|
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chirsg Hen, Duck. Turkey, G< >se, ifl
trich. Alligator, and all other k.nds
LIFCRNIA REDWOOD, the best ioM
ubators, is used. We are close to tnM
at Redwood Forests and get the bestS
i want the most reliable incubators anfl
oders. Then learn about the Petalunfl
'ersons ordering "Day old Chicks" frofl
hatcheries are specifying "these chicfl
st be hatched in Petaluma IncubatorsH
at tells its own story.
G CITY INCUBATORS it* the bM
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>ffered in a small hot _ fl
least send for a cir->ff\j^^ fl|
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i Model T's. Prices:
Louring Lar, $000;
o. b. Detroit with J
or particulars get v.
i Garage. . ^
iMSSWi 1 '" liHHiB
t Pull Brings Success! |
trying for 4 months, to get the .. ?
)DUCTS ONE B
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r improved machinery it will I
you before you buy. We have J
reed Mills, Grain and
>arators, Ensilage and
ws, Pumps, Cream Sep- ^
and Kerosene Engines,
you are interested, see or B
ssted, see me anyway and get
I Main St, Newberry, S. C. B
. _ r
B ^ I j j gxi j | :
m i I- i | I I Jl I J I HHI 1-1 Hi'
Ul rJJ i
S BED CATTLE LICE J
m HORSE LICE,HOC UClH
SHEEP UCE fr TICKS,?
[GILDER & WEEKS J
An examination of applicants for
teachers' certificates will be held on
Friday, May 2, at the court house. The
examination will begin at 9 a. m. A;>
plicaats will fuxhigh stationery.
E. H. Aull,
Couaty Supt. oi' Education