Thursday, August 11, 2011

1881 Flood 7th Edition

April 26 - - - East Nebraska City was deserted. Workmen tore down the railroad buildings and moved them to higher ground. . . Twenty families were in danger at Otoe bottom on the Iowa side eight miles below Nebraska City. . . Peter Freese came to Nebraska City from Hamburg to report a foot of water in front of the opera house hotel. Phelps addition was inundated and every available carpenter in town was busy building flatboats. One hundred fifty people found refuge in John Payne’s house. . . The ferry Lizzie Campbell, with Capt. Robert Payne in charge, Bill Canada as fireman, left for Otoe Bottoms, provisioned to be gone several days in an effort to rescue stranded persons. James McClurg, resident of Weeping Water valley told of building a flatboat and going as far as Bartlet, Iowa which was deserted. He had on board 21 head of stock and 13 persons. When he got home he found the water four inches deep in his home, 2000 bushels of corn gone, his stock and some outbuildings swept away. He rescued his family with some difficulty.

Late in the day this message was received from the J.F. Joy at Percival; We have about 75 persons on board that were picked up out of the bottom. At least 45 or 50 men, women and children must be provided for. Better have city hall open. Also send down four or five wagons to convey women and children up from boat. J.W. Patrick signed the message, which was brought to Nebraska City in a skiff.

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