OCR Interpretation

Pittsburg dispatch. (Pittsburg [Pa.]) 1880-1923, June 03, 1889, Image 1

Image and text provided by Penn State University Libraries; University Park, PA

Persistent link: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn84024546/1889-06-03/ed-1/seq-1/

What is OCR?

Thumbnail for

r "J.
" V.-vS J-fc-5-
The Dispatch trill continue to publish
nil the details of the Johnstown Disaster,
which is furnished by a large staff of com.
-potent correspondents located at the scene.
Needed at Once at the
Ruins of Johnstown,
in Addition to
As the WatersBecede From
What Was the Iron City
of the Mountains,
Becomes More Apparent, and
the First Reports Dwindle
Into Insignificance,
Thieies and Ghouls Follow
Flood and Flames, and
Make Necessary
Four of These Worse Than Devils Driven
Into Ihc Hirer nnd.Two Others Strung
Up by an Angry Mob Tho Armed Guard
Doubled nod a Beginning Made to
Evolve Order Ont of Chaos President
Sloxfaam Takes .the Reins of Government
and Committees on AH Necessary 'Points
Are Appointed The Work of Clearing
Away the Debris and Preventing the
Spread of Fire Some of the Sad Scenes
Graphically Described.
JOHJTSTOW2T, June 2. Some wise provision
in nature has so made it that man's feeling
and sympathy and comprehension of cer
tain events goes just so far, and beyond that
line lies madness.
ij For this reason the fall extent of the
ybhnstownl-olocaust will never "be realized
v .V this life. The calamity was so great, the
event so frightful, and the result so un
paralleled, that a cold feeling of numbness
results from a mere contemplation of such a
scene, ere a thousandth part of its full
magnitude is realized.
Human Weakness at Such Times.
My hand is as weak as a baby's, and my
pen as impotent as an infant's hand in stay
ing an ocean's madness, at the thought of
describing or trying to conTey to the
reader's mind ona iota of the horror, one
atom of the destruction, or one particle of
he fear and woe and anguish suffered byt
the thousands living and felt by the thou
sands dead. '
It is sot the tale that is told, that is so
eloquent then, but rather that which is leit
unsaid. It is not th'e exposed that is the
greatest and deepest, but the hidden that no
' man's eye can see, and no human tongue
can tell.
Swept Away in an Hour.
Johnstown is no more. That peaceful city
of 35,000 happy, prosperous people has been
swept away in an hour, and leaving, what?
The wildest flight of the imagination, the
boldest utterance, could not approach the
truth, or even attempt to depict the scene
that followed. Just imagine, nestling
snugly between the hills and hugging two
rivers in fancied peace and security in one
moment and the very next overwhelmed in
a roar of waters, with an advancing breast
full 40 feet high that hurled hnge blocks
and houses about as if they were toys, and
ground an entire city into a mere mass of
lumber and iron and stone and brick. Then
the people; alas, the poor people.
Anxiety to Hear Even tho Worst.
"Every train that hurried out of this city
- And toward the east carried hundreds of
tearful relatives who were anxious to hear
the worst, though as yet not one of them
realized what was coming. At Nineveh a
stop was made, and. the anxious question,
Why? ran around. The conductor hoarsely
announced that a hundred dead bodies
awaited identification, and that "perhaps
perhaps some of you know them."' Silently
we gazed at the first frightful evidence of
this epoch of accidents, this apex of horrors;
and it was pitiful how they lay, side by
side, tiny children first, then the youngers
and then'the elders, all with faces of such
deadly eloquence, that a portent, a dim
idea of what was to follow, hurried the
blanched crowd to the train, and on toward
the fountain head of mined, dismantled
The Scene at Sang Hollow.
At Sang Hollow, four miles from the
city and a place already historical, the
rails had been torn and twisted like threads
in the awful avalanche. Then the rushing,
swollen river to the" left bore on its sullen
bosom, and on either bank, some traces of
the fearful night's work, some idea of what
as yet to come. Clothing, torn to shreds,
swung from trees, broken bits of houses and
of iurniture swept unnoticed, or caught
and swirled in treacherous eddies, but all
.unnoticed. Ont Onf
.A thrill of horror jpmJ through all for a.
moment, then the crowd parted and passed
on, leaving behind an enormous bearded
man lying stark upon the bank, mudded
and bruised, just as he had been drawn
from the water, with
HI Powerful Arms Half Raised
over his head, as if to ward off, even in
death, the blow that had reddened his fore
iead and taken from his strong limbs their
cunning to do and to save. The hundreds
tiassed another bov almost indifferently by.
His was not the face nor his the form they
looked for and feared to see. They wished
first to greet the living, and then to weep
for the dead.
A general hospital, it seemed, had been
made of Morrellville, and it was there many
survivors waited for their friends. Weeping
women met strong men who told, with
averted eyes, of some dear one lost or miss
ing, or a thousand fearful glances cast to
ward the deadhouses or down the long line
of road in anticipation of another, and still
another train car of dead. Side by side
they lay, in silent, dreadful horror, and all
covered about the face and head, for always
was seen there
The Crnel Red Scar
while the unbound silken tresses of the
women, drenched witn water ana wmtenea
with sand, swept or were pitifully thrown
across their poor beaten faces to hide the
scars even more securely from the idle or
the curious. Then the meeting of survivors
and friends. Each had a tale to tell, so sad,
so eloquent, that a stranger could but turn
away and stop his ears to the broken excla
mations, "John, poor John, don't ask,"
"res, father and mother both gone," "Bob
is saved, but," "Drowned before my
eyes," "My God, don't," and so from bad
to worse and worse and worse, and it seemed
as if more were lost than found, and even
death could not give that woman her look
as sue moaned, "I don't know yet, I don't
kno"? yet"
In the Terrible Valley of Death.
The nearer we approached that horrible
valley of death the higher and higher rose
the figures of destruction, until it seemed as
if not the dead but the living should be
counted. A hundred"here. Three hundred
there. Two thousand swept from that one
street alone. When one speaks of the dead
in bundles like that, when one ignores a
score and speaks of bulk, mere bulk, in
human life, is it not a blessing that stupe
faction should ensue? Miles away from
the scene it seemed as if 600 deaths were
surely enough, 4mt as body after body is
drawn from the foul river bed, it is not
enough and figures gflLPP and up. A quav
ering workman points to a submerged field
and says it is literally strewn with dead.
We turn the bend and Cambria City is
not there. We go on farther and a white
faced woman points to a blaze that springs
in sight and says hundreds are burning
The Doomed City In Sight.
But a few step3 more, and the doomed
city is In sight. oVejtaxcd-Bjrves weaken
and hearts are broken at the very glance.
Five, ten, fifteen thousand people drowned,
if one; for the wonder is not that so many
were drowned, but that so many were
Thousands of poor men,, women and
children swept away in a moment, to die, if
luckily they could, by injury; or worse, to
fight and fight the fierce current, to struggle
and pray and weep, to have their tender
hands torn and limbs bruised by hurling
timbers, to sink and rise, and sink again in
A Mad Whirl of Angry Waters,
to battle bravely, despairingly, for a life
precious to the last, and then the bitter end,
where exhausted nature can do no more,
and the poor, tired arms are thrown up
plaintively to a high heaven that answers
not, to a God that gives no sign, and then
down down.
Just one name now that brings with it a
peculiar sadness, though perhaps because it
was so well known, and so dear to many
Nannie Elder. Young and strangely beau
tiful, and the most womanly woman of them
alL She was well known here and in Phila
delphia, but with a thousand friends at that"
awinl moment there was not one to save.
Her sister Jennie Bays she disappeared, with
her mother, from their sight, as quietly as if
in a dream. She made no sign, and gave
no cry, and reluctant indeed must have
been the torrent that dragged out her sweet
young life, sorrowing indeed the angel that
bore her pure soul to heaven. She was too
beautiful to perish thus.
Onlr One Case of Thousands.
Still, this is but one out of ten thousand,
alas, perhaps more, and of what use is it to
speak of one when so many, many have
gone. Let us speak of Johnstown, and a
scene that cannot be forgotten. Just as we
reach the place the distressing groups to the
right or left, huddled together in misery un
utterable, are found to be the poorer fami
lies who have lost all, and are camped under
a cold sky. And worse still, they are not
all there. Some one is missing, and per
haDS two or three, and. more. There are no
tears here,""and no repining. They are far
beyond that They sat silent and stolid,
not thinking, for their faculties were be
numbed; not speaking, for they had no
thoughts to utter. Most certainly hundreds
of survivors will die of the shock and ex
posure, and I need only to speak of line
woman in these groups, for they seemed to
be the most deeply stricken, and to speak of
one describes all.
Naught Left to Live For.
Each of us had carried a loaf of dry
bread (all we had) from the train and the
men had eagerly taken them and divided
them among their famishing companions.
A loaf was offered this poor-woman, sitting
silent and apart, but she never saw the
friendly hand, never noticed the round
wheateu loaf. ,
"Come, come, rouse up."
"Why," said she calmly. "Why, I have
no one. I have nothing left. I lost seven,
with my husband."
"But, my God woman, yon must "
"God," said she stonily. "Where is
God?" and we turned away heartbroken.
True, true, where was He when this awful
thing happened.
Now to this submerged city of the dead,
over which hangs like a pall, the blaefc
smoke from the funeral pyije of the bitting
tomb of many dead, crashed and iamtaed
together in acres of debris up against the
stone bridge. People stood with eh
w immn
turned to the blazing ruin, but the naked
eye was enough; too much; for it showed
One Toll Blackened Farm
sitting bolt upright just near the bridge,
and no one knows how many more were tan
gled in the enormous mass, and no one ever
will, for the fire could not be extinguished,
nor the bodies saved, though frequent cries
led to the release of a whole family, before
they were reached by the uglv flames.
At the southwestern edge of what was
Johnstown, I climbed a high hill, rising ab
ruptly from the river, and there also were
distressed searchers, looking and looking
for those who will never be found, and for
whom even hope was long since abandoned,
though they continued the dazed, search,
mechanically, with but one result, nothing,
absolutely nothing. Half way around the
hill, with Johnstown at my feet, for the
first time the terrible silence of the city
made its way to my almost benumbed senses.
It was virtually a city deserted by the living
and given up to the dead, and not one-half so
horrible for what was seen, as for what was
unseen beneath the turbid waters, still steal
ing in and out of the windows of the first
floors, as if in sneaking search of perhaps
some prey escaped.
A melancholy Sonnd.
Even while standing there almost breath
less before the awful stillness of that
great city, a melancholy peal comes
from a ruined church tower, a few subdued
bells toll, and then there comes stealing
over the water a solemn sound. It is only
the clock in the tower striking 13, but the
moment, the occasion, and above all, the
dreadiul scene was too much for the sufferers
and friends huddled about, and a thousand
bowed beads and a thousand clasped hands
showed the sound wa? in truth a funeral
knell, over many ruined houses and broken
hearts, and over many a friend -and brother
and sweetheart,- not found, and never
will be.
Can this -scene be conceived? Can one
straggling idea of it even be imagined? It
, "hi.n.
,.TVi ' r
ill i 'I
-.--I'l."-"-' " - " fV ' Hill Mill IIHHlllliHIUM I I HI I J
This map, furnished by George B. Williams, civil engineer, gives an accurate presentation of Johnstown and the adjacent
country that has suffered most by the greatjflood. The rush of water coming down the Conemaugh creek would submerge the woolen
mill, Gautier Steel Works and the district lying close to the creek, and then pass over to 'Johnstown proper, as there ia a steep cliff on
the opposite side.
cannot be described, for words, as Tally
rand says, were given to conceal, not to ex
press thoughts, and something must be left
to the reader let that something be his
human heart and his human sympathy.
The full pathos and horror of the scene can
not be appreciated, for the human breast,
thank God, is only capable of receiving
emotions up to a certain degree, and when
that tension has become too strong kind
nature says a numbness must ensue or mad
ness must result, and if there, is any one
word, op thought, or feeling wanting here it
is not in the heart, but in the capacity. For
these reasons those present knew the scene
was not one in a lifetime, bnt in a century.
One of the Engines of Death.
Awayacros3 the town is seen ,the fatal
black sluice through which this stream of
death was poured upon tne city. .Its flat
surface was packed with houses and people,
but to-day, not one brick is seen upon the
other, and all that is left is a gaunt, black
mill, a fitting tomb to the 6,000 people said
to have existed there. Then how that flood
of death and destruction has torn through
this city. It cut swaths to the right and
left, through business blocks and through
residences, through squares and squares of
houses upon houses, leaving nothing in its
track but one silent messenger death.
How useless is it to describe, how sense
less to depict, for both alike' are impossible.
There is only one book, only one page, that
can truthfully tell the story of the destruc
tion of Johnstown, and that book, that page,
is the unwritten annals of the human heart
Let us not open it, reader; let us not turn
the page with careless or curious hand, for
there are some events, some thoughts, and
some feelings, that are sacred to some alone.
Three Thousand Coffins Needed at Once In
Addition to tho Thousands Already Used
Systematic Attempts lo Evolve
Order Ont of Chaos Necessity
For Armed Guards.
Johnstown, June 2. There is a famine 1
among the dead. The 15,000 survivors of
the flood who are suffering for food and
clothing .find their troubles have a ghastly
counterpart There are no coffins here to
bury the dead. I saw the last coffin used
this afternoon. Three thousand more, at
least will be needed. Therefore, to the
publio appeal for assistance may be added
the words: "Send us coffins by thetrainload,
for we need them as bad as we do bread."
Slorgnes la Many Buildings.
Charnel houses have been established in
all sections of Johnstown. The principal
one is in the public school building on
Adams street Over 200 bodies have
been taken there for identification since the
flood occurred. Lower down in the ruins
40 more bodies lie awaiting claimants.
Over on the Southside a public hall is filled
with 60 or 70 corpses. In the Morrellville
district there are still 85 more corpses
grduped in one apartment
Only o Part.of the Dead.
the water and debris in Johnstown and
suburbs alone. Add to them the additional
200 or 300 corpses which floated from Johns
town down stream and are now lying at
Nineveh, Florence, Sang Hollow and Boli
var, and you can get something tangible to
base a guess at the total death Jist upon.
After this is wired perhaps later dispatches
will probably chronicle the recovery of
scores more corpses.
How All Hopo Has Fled.
And so hope has fled. Instead of search
ing ymong the rescued for their missing
relatives, people have consented to believe
them dead. That has but one result It
forces all to admit that there must have been
no less than 3,000 drowned, and that of the
10,000, which many people declare are still
missing, very few will turn up alive. In
view of these stubborn and appalling figures,
which few outside people have refused to
believe, no attempt has, or will be made io
keep a tabulated mortuary list.
Better work was accomplished to-day than
ever before in the removal of debris from
portions of some streets, and the consequent
discovery of bodies. The reason of this was-
The Entire Withdrawal of Water
from the heart of the city. That obstacle
gone, men can go to work, but' the worst
part of it is that no human being- with any
degree of feeling about him can stick -at
such labor longer than a few hours.
Almost every foot of progress a laborer
makes in the debris he comes across a dead
man, woman or child. This occurs again.
and again. It soon becomes sickening.
Now, if the reader will imagine fifth av
enue, between Liberty and Grant streets,
jammed full of debris up to the third-story
windows; all of Wood street in the same
condition, and the whole lenpth of Market
street equally as bad, with "Wylie avenue
and all its side streets complete wrecks:
imagine all this and then try and think
Corpses Lie So Close Together
under all that vast area of timber and drift-
' IX.
iwiiTIii iin -i iiiiVTMTlTii
wood as to form a cushion upon which it
may rest If you can conceive of such a
state of things, then you have before you a
true picture of what the site of Johnstown
is like, this evening.
How long do you suppose it will take the
disheartened, men of the .place to clear up
such a stupendous wreck? Each man lias
lost some dear relative, and there is little
incentive for him to wok. Perhaps they
may get through with their half-hearted
toil in three", nay four months. "Well, then
every day for three or four months addi
tional bodies will be recovered. It will be
an entire summer of horrors for Cambria
The Area Covered With Wreckage.
The only part of the town where bodies do
not lie hidden is that stretch of open country
shown in the center of The Dispatch to
day. An area of ground equal to that in
Pittsburg bounded by Smithfield and Wood
streets one way and Water street and Fifth
avenue the other way has been so completely
cleaned out that not a wall, not even a
fencepost is visible.
The ground is carpeted smooth with a
single layer of bricks. Looking either east
or west a person has an unobstructed vieir
through this wide part of the town. Two
days ago you could not see a yard's distance
in either direction, because all this gronud
was built up solidly with brick and frame
houses. There were some 400 of them. Not
a vestige of even one of them is left.
The Terrific Tidal Wave
from the mountain reservoir which took
all this down the river carried with it all
the bodies from that part of the city, dis
tributing them all along the Conemaugh
The local constabulary has been increased
to 200., A detachment armed with rifles and
bayonets accompanies each body, as it is
found, to one of the morgues. In this way
a path is opened up through the crowds for
the passage of the death guards.
The scenes in three morgues are beyond
the power of buman skill to describe. As
the catastrophe overshadows any other dis
aster in the history of the United States, so
do the scenes of woe and grief surpass all
efforts to write an account of it Words
seem to belittle it. No corps of journalists
can do justice to what has happened, but
here in the Adams street schoolhouse,
where 200 bodies have been laid out, the
pen dries in perfect helplessness.
A Corpse Laid on Each Desk.
As each corpse is brought in by the armed
constables it is laid upon the top of one of
the school desks. In one of the school
rooms which J. visited to-day there were 43
corpses laid in this style, across the desks.
Nearly all of the faces were covered. The
clothes were rank withjilth and the faces
and flesh were splotched with mud. The
corpses were those of men, women and
The coverlids over the faces were con
stantly remov.ed to allow weepnj; visitors
to examine and see if they identified there
any missing Child or other relatr ve. When
the identification was successful a shriek or
a moan was the sequel. Often, it was a serie
iS:.: " -.zssmemsMmmmtiLrrcT'".: rrJ "j -"it.r:"'T.r-ns"' v-r r rsruzsr -r-iiiMr
!.(. iiml ni nr -r.ii tiks . ' .xj- . -"-.j --w . i fk-rT. i-rxi m i-si h. Tii-H-Bda n tr nnp. - srn manv nwui uinniujr.i-i t ba ibiuup nr wmc -- .hhiiuuku tm. it tj ri rw its- . i j- s. sru-
"iwrBMnrn t HrirrrriTMMiBiy"1"1-! -a- -i-fflfiiiiffhi ii.-fur.mn-- .. ..:. - - .Pr-fetf-- ..zvg&gm;t,&- .;:. . . .- .,- . ssmsmzir -inwnr
Offin one corner of the room lay three
children on adjoining desks. "Smith" was
the name pinned to each of the little waists.
They were brothers, and the oldest was not
more than 7 years old. All their faces were
uncovered. Their skin was beautifully
transparent, and on the countenances of
each was
Depicted the Sweetest Smile.
It was a strange circumstance. In that
chamber of horrors, whenever a corpse is
identified, it is immediately removed to the
lavatrfrr, laid upon a table, the muddy
clothing all cut off 'and the body washed.
The men and women who have sacrificed
themselves for this revolting labor are
among the' noblest of Johnstown's heroes.
As proof positive that hundreds of
corpses are still beneath the ruins, the
owner of the John Thomas building, on
Main street, assured me that 53 persons lie
under the wreck of his property. Mr.
Stonebreaker, who is in charge of the.
schoolhouse morgue, says he has investi
gated, and finds that John Fritz and his
family of seven are still buried in his
house on Bailroad street This is true of
hundreds of houses in which the occupants
The Dead In the Debris.
A score of bodies will remain in the smol
dering ruins of debris of the fire at the rail
road bridge. Seven skeletons were taken
from it this afternoon, and one woman was
rescued alive, right near the last skeleton.
Through the windows of 'Squire Fishcher's
soap factory are seen the bodies of himself,
his wife and five children.
Efforts will he made to-morrow to recover
41 bodies known to be deposited under the
remifantsof the Hurlburt house. In the
cellar of the Coogan building a dozen hu
man forms can be seen in the water.
All last night Superintendent J. V. Pat
ton, of the Baltimore and Ohio at Pitts
burg, sat at a temporary telegraph instru
ment two miles south of Johnstown. After
arriving there on his special locomotive he
cut the telegraph wires and rigged up a
ticker on a dry goods box in a rough shanty.
That was the first communication estab
lished between the ruined city and the out
side world.
Difficulties of Sending News.
( All the matter written in Johnstown
yesterday by your staff correspondents had
to be carried by means of a locomotive to
Hooversville, a small settlement 18 miles
south of Johnstown, before a telegraph
office could be found, and this dispatch is
being sent from Somerset
After The Dispatch news had been
sent over the wires Saturday night from
Hooversville, Superintendent Patton, from
his temporary headquarters in the shanty,
sent out these words of warning to all opera
tors: Clear this single wire for my use.
Then he begad business in earnest He
had sent for the officers of the Citizens'
Committee, and at rheit request he operated
the key himself for hours, ordering provi
sions and food from Pittsburg and Balti
more merchants, and then personally ap
pealing to wealthy people at various towns
along the Baltimore and Ohio to stand in
readiness to contribute stores of food and
clothing to a relief train which would start
from Pittsburg Sabbath morning and stop
at all stations between there and Bock
wood, where the Johnstown branch com
mences. Practical Relief for the Suflerers.
Captain William Jones was among those
sotappealed to. News came that a relief
train from Baltimore may be expected in
the suburbs of Johnstown. Belief cannot
come very well by the Pennsylvania rail
road route. It would require difficult
teaming to get provisions from Pennsylvania
railroad trains on either side of the bridge.
There is no certainty here either when the
awful destruction of the Pennsylvania rail
road, for ten miles on both sides of Johns
town, will be repaired. In the meantime,
farmers are slaughtering their cows, the
grist mills at every cross-roads are dealing
out flour gratis to all who ,ask, and the
generous granger is sending wagonloads of
eggs, apples, butter arid salt meat to town
'President Moxham, of the Johnson
Switch Company, took the reins of govern
ment in his hands to-day, and is at the head
of everything. He is a young man, not
more than 35 years of ageslightly under
medium height, of a strong, compact figure,
though somewhat thin, with a dark, firm
countenance. He is ,
Business All the Way Through.
No words are wasted, and order is being
slowly evolved out of chaos.
In addition to the Finance Committee a
committee on dangerous buildings nas been
appointed, and a committee on outside
search, to go down the river and look for the
living and the dead. A similar committee
has been appointed for the city, and as late
as this afternoon persons were- extricated
from places in which they had been impris
oned since Friday afternoon.
Bev. P. L. Chapburn and Bev. Br. Beale
have been appointed a committee on bury
ing the dead. The need of this committee
who must he buried ere long, and the dead
who are in the debris must be recovered as
soon as possible or a tearful state of things
will result
A general foreman has been placed ia
charge of moving the debris, and there are
a large number of foremen at work through
the town, with gangs of men.
All the 9Ien Will be Paid
President Moxham will open the Savings
Bank to-morrow, and the- National Bank
later, and the financial work will be done
at these places, all money being received
and paid out at them. A committee on
general information is to be appointed.
A. N. Hart is in command of the police
on guard. Deputy Sheriff Young is at
work under President Moxham, and ad
ministers the oath to them. The
guards were stationed at various
points to-day and were being doubled to
ward night It is feared that some one may
inadvertently set fire to the debris, and a
man who goes out thereon with a lighted
pipe or cigar in his mouth is made to put it
I out right away. A man who snould light a
maica near wnere tne wreckage is pneu is
in danger of being instantly shot by some
guard, many of whom e very much
wrought up on that
-Tho Precautions Against Fire.
The fire department gathered itself to
gether late this afternoon, and reorganized.
Some of the fire plnga have been examined
and have been found all right, and a
quantity of hose has been recovered. One
hundred firemen, or more, were stationed
through the town as a guard. The local
mililia company is doing guard duty, 'and
othermilitia are expected. Governor Beaver
has been urged to order companies here, and
parts of the Sixteenth and Fourteenth Begi
ments would be very acceptable.
General Hastings arrived here this morn
ing and established headquarters at the
Hennessy Thania Depot He took an ac
tive part in the direction of affairs and says
that to-morrow every man in Johnstown
must go to work on tho debris and that
every man who enters the town will he put
to work.
What is left of the town is now virtually
under martial law, and the rules will be
come stricter rather than more lax. Presi
dent Moxham has been acting as dictator.
His headquarters are in a small room on
first floor of the Fourth "Ward Hotel and
there is
A Throng Continually Coming and Going.
His stenographer and typewriter is at his
side, and messages are being continually
dictated to him. The general staff are lo
cated in an addition to the same building,
in which the general public is received. A
long line of people is continually filing in
and out No one is allowed to go by the
guards without a pass, and everybody must
go to the headquarters for these.
Across tbe street is the place where pro
visions are given out. The arrivals from
Pittsburg to-day were most welcome. The
remaining grocery stores are bare of food,
and many have been going hungry to-day.
When wagonloads of provisions reached the
uncompleted building from which they
were given out it was at once
Surrounded by a Largo Crowd.
The news spread rapidly, and this after
noon the street in front of it was almost im
passable. Women with baskets on their
arms formed the bulk of the gathering
There were some children, and very few
men. Everybody looked happy at the pros
pect of being supplied with something to eat.
L. E. Stofieii.
Wretches Caught Plundering and Mutilat
ing the Dead Four of Them Are
Driven Into the Rlvernnd
Drown Two Are
Johnstown, June 2. The way of the
transgressor in the desolated valley of the
Conemaugh is hard, indeed. Each hour re
veals some new and horrible story of suffer
ing and outrage, and every succeeding hour
brings news of swift And merited, punish
ment meted out to the fiends who have dared
to desecrate the stiff and mangled corpses in
the city of the dead, and torture the already
half-crazed victims of the crnelest of modern
catastrophes. As the roads to the lands
round about are opened tales of almost in
describable horror come to light, and deeds
of the vilest nature perpetrated in the dark
ness of the night are reported.
Just as the shadows began to fall upon the
earth last evening a party of 13 Hungarians
was noticed, stealthily picking their way
along the banks of the Conemaugh toward
Sang Hollow. Suspicious of their purpose,
several farmers armed themselves and start
ed in pursuit.
Plundering the Dead.
Soon their most horrible fears were real
ized. The Hungarians were out for plun
der. Lying upon the shore they came upon
the dead and mangled body of a woman,
upon whose person there were a number of
trinkets of jewelry and two diamond rings.
Iu their efforts to secure the plunder, the
Hungarians got into a squabble, dnring
which one of their number severed the fin
ger upon which were the rings and started
on a run with his fearful prize.
The revolting nature of the deed so
wrought -upon the pursuing farmers, who
by this time were close at hand, that they
gave immediate chase. Some of the Hun
garians showed fight, but, being outnum
bered, were compelled to flee for their lives.
Nine of the brutes escaped but four were
literally driven into the surging river and
to their death. The inhuman monster
whose atrocious act has been described was
among the number of involuntary suicides.
Another Incident of even greater moment
has just been brought to my notice. At
8:30 o'clock this morning an old railroader,
who had walked from Sang Hollow, stepped
up to a number of men who were congre
gated on the platform of tbe station at Cnr
ranville and said:
Vengeance Is Swift.
"Gentlemen, had I a shot gun with me a
balf an hour ago, I would now be a mur
derer, yet with no fear of ever having to
suffer for my crime. Two miles below here
I watched three men going along the hanks
stealing jewels from the dead wives and
daughters of men who have been robbed of
all they hold dear on earth."
He had no sooner finished the lastsentence
than five burly men j with looks ot. terrible,
determination written on their faces, were
on their way to the scene of plunder, one
with a coil of rope over his shoulder and an
other with a revolver in his hand. In 20
minutes, so it is related, they had overtaken
two of their victims, who trere then in the
act of cutting pieces from the ears, and fin
gers from the hands of the bodies oNtwo
dead women. 'With revolver leveled at the
Tire a.
-t "'
"Throw up your hands or I'l
heads off."
Two Villains Lynched,
With blanched faces and
forms they obeyed the order and
mercy. They were searched,
their pockets were emptied of their plui
the indignation of the crowd intensil
and when the bloody finger of an inlanl
encircled with two tiny gold rings, was
t oundV in the leader's pockets, a cry went up
to lynch them.
Without a moment's delay ropes were
View o Driftwood on Track at Bang Holtow
"The Reason Why the Tram Didn't
Go Any Farther."
thrown around their necks and they were
dangling to the limbs of a tree, in the
branches of which, an hour before, was
entangled the bodies of a dead father and
son. After an expiration of half an hour
the ropes were cut and the bodies lowered
and carried to a pile of rocks in the forest
on the hill above. It is hinted that an
Allegheny county official was one of the
most prominent actors in this tragedy of
justifiable homicide. Fkakk.
Froeress of tho Baltimore and Ohio Belief
Train With tho Waihlnston Infantry on
Board Anxious Inquiries Alone
tho Rome Supervisor
Foley's Story.
McKeespobt, June 2.--The Baltimore
and Ohio is doing grandly for the sufferers.
Superintendent Patton was early on the
ground and soon had the washed out por
tions of the road repaired. The road into
the city has been opened since Saturday
afternoon. All the towns along the roads
are contributing provisions and engines are
taking the loads to the afflicted city. A car
of eatables was put on the stecial train at
McKeesport and West Newtonl Loads of pro
visions have been sent from Cumberland,
Meyersdaie and other towns. Another special
with eatables lef tPittsburg to-night.
There is a great demand for 0U. The people
are in darkness, and lika the afflicted virgins
are crying for oil. Th e Standard OH Company
has already shipped a carload andtnnyare
sending more. Snpervlsor Foley, of the Som
erset and Cambriabranch, was the first man to
enter Johnstown after the flood. Ha walked
over 18 miles to get there. He found heavy
freight trains on the B. fc O. carried off the
tracks and lodged in the cemetery a mile away.
In the flats at Conemangb 21 engines have been
counted burled under the sand and driftwpod,
lir. Foley estimates the loss of life at &00O.
Brnddock Adds Her Mite.
Braddock seat a car of coffin3 and two car
loads of provisions and contributed S5.000.
Baltsburg raised 5200 In money and shipped a
car of eatables. All the extra coaches of tha
Baltimore and Ohio are on the Somerset and
Cambria branch. Many of tha people living
Alnnfrthft mart in thia SMHmi h.m -fianrfc ln
T. 7. r- - " -" . ....cuiu At,
mo city ana tney are rrantlc to get there to.
look for and Identify tbem. Superintendent
Patton has put these extra cars and engines;
as men disposal, ana iney are carried oacK and,
forward free ot charge.
A Dispatch man went ont on the Baltimore
and Ohio special train this afternoon. The
Washington Infantry deserve much credit.
They volunteered to go to Johnstown and did
not wait for orders. All along tbe road people
grcetthe boys in blue with graceful courtesies.
Everybody is anxious for additional informa
tion. People in remote towns are just beajn
ning to learn of the fearful desolation. Even
now there are some people skeptical enough to
believe that the disaster is not balf so bad as it
is reported, but every newspaper man who has
seen the wreck feels that be is not adequate to
describe it. Tbe fact is that all tho truth has
not been told. Nothing at all haayet been re
ceived from tho country between Conemaugh
and South Fork. Israel.
Progress of the Train.
AtConnkllsville The excitement In the
little towns along the road Is great. The peo
ple know in advance that a special train is en
rontefrom Pittsburg, "and whenever the train
stops large crowds are collected. At West
Newton the citizens had been working all
morning gathering money and food. About
1,500 and a car of provisions have been col
lected so far.
The little town is full of fanners' wagons and
the people are highly excited. Instead of go
ing to church in the county the grangers turned
in and loaded down their wagons with flour,
vegetables and other food products. Just as
the train was leaving a farmer arrived with a
wagon load, bnt It will be put on the next one
The sight of the soldiers catches the people.
"It reminds me of the old war times," said a
lady at West Newton. "It seems as if those
disastrous days are being repeated." The in
quiries of anxious people for friends. In Johns
town, are numerous, and aU the information
possible is given. Foster Walter1, an engineer
on the Cambria and Somerset branch, had a
unique as well as tough experience. He was
In the American House when the flood came.
He succeeded in getting on to the roof of the
hotel, where be stayed ail night. A mule came
floating down and lodged on the roof of the
bouse. The animal stayed with him ail night
until they were rescued. Tho clerk of the
American House was saved and is now at Con
nellsville. Israel.
Nobody l'et Lynched, lint Will Be.
Ax Ohio Ptle At Connellsrille Sheriff
McCandless was seen returning frjom the scene
of the wreck. The sheriff said It was not true
that a man had beenhanged for robbing bodies.
Tho crowd rushed aronnd the fellow, who was
a Hungarian, and attacked him, bnt tbe better
class prevented any such procedure. Sheriff
McCandless said:
"The man was not hanged but somebody will
be before this affair is over if the robbing of
bodies is continued. The place is fnll of toughs
and thieves and the worst;class of men,stealing
whatever they can lay their hands on. The
wreck is horrible. What is needed at once is
the militia1 and police protection. Contractors
should be located there with gangs of 500 men
each under them to systematicly clear away
the debris and recover as many bodies as possi
ble. I am told they now have 311 corpses on the
Indiana side of tbe river at Nineveh. Bodies
are being taken out at al points and at every,
8. U. Trent. Esq., was also seen at Connells
ville for a few minutes, returning from Som
erset. "I was not at Johnstown," said he, "but
Isaw enough people at Somerset who bad
been in the flood. The disaster is too horrible
to talk about"
Jack CroSrotb,.tho postmaster at Somerset,
had a remarkable escape. He was on the street
in Johnstown when the rush .of waters occur
red. In some manner, he does not know how,
he was earned Into the Merchant Hotel, whero
he remained until the water subsided, and he
was rescued.
The Governor is Kept From Harrisbara; by
the Condition of tho Railroads Ad
jutant General Hastings Is at
Johnstown No Military
Yet Ordered Ont.
Haebisbubg, June 2. Governor Beaver
arrived at York this evening on bis way to
this city to contribute to the comfort of the
distressed people of Johnstown. Not being
able to obtain railroad transportation he
v tmm oki -a.
Of any Mnd can best b
satisfied by advertising ra
the columns of The Dispatch.
fKUnger, President
t ine uiuu, at aouin
Fork, Says So.
Of Horrors Worse Than Yet
Dreamed of, Told by
Sheriff McCandless.
P, R. R. People Admit One Car-
Lofld Perished, but None
Are at Ebensburg.
While the Eegular Eelief
Committee's Fund Grows
to Over $86,000.
The Military 00 for the Scene of Suffering;
A Mighty Busy Day at the Chamber ot
Commerce Old City Hall Also Full of
Bustle and Business Worthy of a Sab
bath Dny Chats and Scenes Such as
Even War Times Did Not Duplicate ia
Some Bespects.
Mr. Charles J. Clarke returned yesterday
from his trip to the Conemaugh valley with
out obtaining any information of hismissins
Mr. Clarke was seen by a Dispatch
reporter at his home last night, and said:
"I was unable to get any farther than
Sang Hollow and returned home, and to
day my older son, in company with a young
friend, started for the scene of the disaster
determined nottowp"Bnfil-tisy;knowfallN
that can be knowB$p'i"-- .t ty"
"1 received "definite word r to-day from
Colonel E. J. linger, president of the fish,.
ing club and now at South Fork, that the
dam had actually gone, though we had aU
supposed and hoped it couldn't be true,
I "t-r r
i ,. , , . .
H""? several rumors came to ms to-oay
tiat my boy was safe. One came in tha
shape of a dispatch;' purporting to be iroiq
my son at Ebensburg. This prove3 to be
At 10 o'clock last night Mr.jClarke kneVti
nothing definite of his son's"safety.
A Marvelous Official Report.
A carload of refugees from Johnstown
came into the Baltimore and Ohio depot at)
9:30 last night. There were nearly 75 off
them, men, women and children, and every '
one of them bore unmistakable marks o '
tha frightful ordeal they had passed, on..
their faces, and their tattered stained cloth,
ing. Among them was a party of Pitts
burgers who were returning from the horri
ble scene; which they had visited in the in-t
terest of humanity. The well-known facea
of such men as Sheriff Alexander McCand
less, Postmaster-to-be McKean, and Joe
Brown were hard to recognize. Not only .
were they covered with mud, and their cloth-,
ing disordered, but tneir laces naa a iooe ot
horror plainly stamped upon them.
"No man can possibly grasp the horror of
what we have seen," said Sheriff McCand
less to a Dispatch reporter, "and not one
half of the hideous enormity of the disaster
has been told yet.
Entirely Underestimated.
"The newspapers have underestimated tha
loss of life. Nearer 10,000 than 3,000 hava
lost their lives. "We were burying bodies
all this morning, and the supply of coffins
ran out. Bough boxes made on the groun tl
were used. Probably by this time the sup
ply of coffins from Pittsburg will have
reached Johnstown. But before If
say another word there are two things
that Pittsburg must understand at oncef
First, three or four regimeuts. of militia ara
needed at once. Without an hour's delay
they ought o be sent. Adjutant General
Hastings is in favor of calling the troops
out, but he has his hands so full of other
things the building of the pontoon brides
for the Pennsylvania Bailroad and tha
relief of the, living that he has not yet sent
for the troops he needs. Governor Beaver
must call out the troops at once. The Hun
garians are maiming the dead in their
shameful haste to profit by the misery
around them; cutting off fingers for tha
rings on them, and ears for the earrings.
Ob, it is
Too Horriblo to Talk Of.
"The only thing is to have armed soldiers
on the spot to guard the aeaa ana matce tna
Hungarians and other villains - disgorge
their plunder. The soldiers ffill lwtS
search the houses. , jpgp
"Secondly, at least four or five skiP
contractors should be sent to Johns
with 500 men apiece to clear away tt,v
and get the bodies out that a
there. Not only human v
ing in masses nnder
numberless horse'
also. Nothinjr
men under sk'
disaster. T
rierof fle
water, i

xml | txt