WX History: May 15th

1896: An estimated F5 tornado struck Sherman, Texas, killing 73 people; 60 of them in downtown. Tornado victims were found as far as 400 yards away from their original location. A trunk lid was carried 35 miles by the twister.

May 15, 1896 Sherman, Texas Tornado Damage
The image above is Sherman, Texas following the tornado. The image is courtesy of the Herald Democrat.

Source(s): History.com and A History of the Great Sherman Tornado by H.L. Piner.

1957: An F4 tornado killed 20 people at Silverton, Texas. A 5,000-pound gasoline storage tank was reportedly carried 1.5 miles and dropped into a lake. Residents said the tornado “looked like red sand, boiling and rumbling.”

May 15 1957 Silverston, Texas Tornado Damage
The image above is Silverton, Texas following the tornado.

Source: GenDisasters.com

1968: An F5 tornado moved through Butler, Chickasaw, Floyd, Franklin, and Howard Counties in northeast Iowa. The tornado moved northeast from north of Hansell, passing east of Aredale and Marble Rock, before devastating Charles City. The tornado grew larger and more intense as it approached Charles City. The huge funnel passed directly through town, destroying 337 homes, and causing about $30 million in damage. The tornado continued to the northeast hitting Elma, and caused another $1.5 million in damages. From there the tornado turned to the north and dissipated south of Chester, 4 miles south of the Minnesota border. Nearly 2000 homes were damaged or destroyed. All 13 deaths occurred in Floyd County. 450 injuries were reported in Floyd County and 12 injuries in Howard County. Another F5 tornado moved north-northeast from southwest of Oelwein to Maynard and east of Randalia in Fayette County, IA. Homes were leveled and swept away in both Oelwein and Maynard. The warning sirens had sounded for only 15 seconds before the power failed in Oelwein. Nearly 1000 homes were damaged or destroyed along the path, and 34 people had to be hospitalized. Almost 1,000 families were affected. In addition to these F5 tornadoes, an F2 tornado touched down 6 miles south of Cresco, IA and two weak F1 tornadoes touched down in Dodge County, MN. Also, baseball size hail fell in Fayette County, IA.

May 15 Charles City Tornado
Floyd County, Iowa Sheriff L.L. Lane was standing near the county fairgrounds when he took this picture of the tornado.

Source: KWWL 40th Anniversary of Charles City Tornado.

1972: The worst ice jam flooding of memory for long-time residents took place along the Kuskokwim River and Yukon River in Alaska. It was the first time since 1890 that the two rivers “flowed as one.” The towns of Oscarville and Napaskiak have been entirely inundated.

2017

2017

 

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