Tornado, 1938, Ernest Deewall's place,Comanche County, Kansas Hosted by RootsWeb, the oldest & largest FREE genealogical site. Click here to visit RootsWeb.
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The Wilmore News, May 6, 1938.

Comanche Homes Wrecked by Twister

Ernest Deewall Home Damaged Beyond Hope of Repair

A small tornado, accompanying the rain and severe storm Sunday afternoon, took heavy toll from several farm homes on Highway No. 1, south of the intersection of highway 160 and No. 1.

The home which seems to have sustained the most serious damage was that of Ernest Deewall about three miles south of the corner. The P____ and Loesch homes in the same neighborhood were also badly stricken by the cyclone wind. Out buildings and farm machinery were also demolished.

The tornado moved straight up the highway sweeping away buildings, windmills and fences at Kansvatter, Hackney, ____, Fish, Atteberry, and ____ farms.

The Deewall home, a large two-story structure with a deep basement, was moved half way off its foundation and left, with windows broken and ___ almost completely gone. Stairways were left out of line and broken dishes lined the floor. Huge cracks in the walls and doors twisted completely out of shape were an indication of the intensity of the wind which caused the wreckage.

The farm buildings and machinery were a mass of tangled metal, wood and stone and the front yard was strewn with balusters from the railroad around the wide veranda which had surrounded two sides of the house. The garage, built of cement block had collapsed on the family car.

A tightly closed can of matches which had been carried to the basement was found on the roof after the wind subsided.

Some of the furniture was completely ruined, but much of it was saved and moved to other quarters for protection. Fortunately, the most of the rain preceded the wind, or the furniture would have suffered greater damage from water.

Mr. and Mrs. Deewall took refuge in the basement when they saw the huge funnel shaped cloud approaching and escaped serious injury. Mrs. Deewall suffered several small cuts which were treated at Coldwater. A pig in the pen in the farm yard was killed and a calf disappeared and hasn't been found.

Windmills, telephone and light wires and poles and barbed wire fences all were mowed down for several miles along the highway and extensive repairs were necessary.

Damage to other homes in the several mile stretch was not as extensive as at the Deewall home and in other cases the homes can probably be repaired. Mr. Deewall plans to tear down what remains of the 27 year old structure and build a one-story home from the salvaged materials.

(Note from Shirley Brier: "Do you know who the other farm house belonged to? I couldn't make out the name. Microfilms of the Wilmore paper are extremely hard to read, it must be due to poor ink, faded ink, spelling, etc.")

Thanks to Shirley Brier for finding, transcribing and contributing the above news article to this web site!

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