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Lauderdale County History

 

The Great Meridian Cyclone of 1906

A Lauderdale County Web Exclusive
by Bill White

Cyclone!
 

The Great Cyclone of 1906
References and Research Materials

Author's note:  Family stories are often valuable assets in studying the past.  For the tornado of 1906, I had an inside source.  William Samuel Harrison White (AKA Cap'n Billy) was this writer's Great Grandfather.  My Grandfather was Thomas M. White.  Both were firemen in turn-of-the-century Meridian.  Although they both passed away before my time, their stories, especially the tornado story, lived on in the person of my Grandmother, Annie.  She told and retold the story which I was always eager to hear.  I have shared this family lore with you.

 

Census Information

U.S. Census Bureau. (1900). Statistical abstract of the United States. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office.
U.S. Census Bureau. (1910). Statistical abstract of the United States. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office.

 

City Directories

Maloney, T. J.,  Meridian, Mississippi, Metropolis of the Southwest, A Descriptive, Historical and Statistical Review.   1888.
Chittenden's 1899 Meridian City Directory, V1.  Chittenden Directory Company, St. Louis:  June,  1899.
Chittenden's 1901-1902 Meridian, Mississippi City Directory, V2.  Chittenden Directory Company,  St. Louis:  September, 1901.

 

Books

Baumgartner, Richard A., ed.  William Pitt Chambers Blood and Sacrifice:  The Civil War Journal of a Confederate Soldier.  Huntington:  Blue Acorn Press.

Clarke, Hewitt.  Thunder At Meridian  Spring, Texas:  Lone Star Press, 1995.

Denson, Lee A.  The Tornado At Meridian, Miss., March 2, 1906, Monthly Weather Review  Government Printing Office:  March 1906.

Rowland, Dunbar.  Encyclopedia of Mississippi History, V2.  Madison:  Selwyn Bryant, 1907.

Roster of the Organized Militia of the United States  Washington: Government Printing Office. 1907.

Shank, Jack.  "Disasters 1864-1950"  Meridian the Queen with a Past V2  Meridian: Southeastern Printing Company: 1986

Shank, Jack.  "The Meridian Fire Department "1882-1986"  Meridian the Queen with a Past V2  Meridian: Southeastern Printing Company: 1986

 

Newspaper Articles
Listed by Date, newspaper and article title.

Note:  The Meridian Public Library has The Meridian Evening Star archives on microfilm.  However, the pages were sadly already much deteriorated before being preserved.  This limited the amount of first hand reporting that remains available today.

"Meridian Swept by Tornado; One Hundred and Thirty Killed."  The Atlanta Constitution  3 March 1906.

"Tornado Brings Death."  Daily Nevada State Journal  3 March 1906: 1.

"Fire and Ruin Follow Storm -- Many Dead."  The Fort Wayne  Sentinel  3 March 1906: 1.

"Tornado's Work Deadly."  The Kansas City Star  3 March 1906.

"Meridian Cyclone."  The Laurel Ledger  3 March 1906: 1.

"Deaths in Big Storm."  Marion Daily Star [Ohio]  3 March 1906: 1.

"Many People Killed." Oakland Tribune [California]  3 March 1906: 1.

"20 Dead in South."  The Racine Daily Journal [Wisconsin]  3 March 1906: 1

"Death in Storm."  Stevens Point Daily Journal [Wisconsin]  3 March 1906.

"Death List Revised."  Stevens Point Daily Journal [Wisconsin]  3 March 1906.

"Ruin by Cyclone in Southern Town."  Stevens Point Daily Journal [Wisconsin]  3 March 1906: 1.

"Great Loss of Life in Meridian Cyclone."  Trenton Times [New Jersey]  3 March 1906: 1.

"Death in Storm."  The Washington Post  3 March 1906.

"19 Corpses Left in Wake of Tornado at Meridian."  The Atlanta Constitution  4 March 1906: 1.

"Done by the tornado with Dread Rapidity."  The Atlanta Constitution  4 March 1906: P1.

"Few Victims of Tornado had Cyclone Insurance"  The Atlanta Constitution  4 March 1906: C3.

"List of Dead and Injured in Tornado at Meridian."  The Atlanta Constitution  4 March 1906: C3.

"Nineteen are Dead."  Colorado Springs Gazette  4 March 1906: 1.

"Cyclone's Victims Number Twenty-Four." The Des Moines Daily News  4 March 1906: 1.

"Cut a Clean Swath."  Eau Claire Sunday Leader [Wisconsin]  4 March 1906: 1.

"City Wrecked by the Storm."  The Janesville Daily Gazette. [Wisconsin]  4 March 1906: 1.

"Citizens Rally to Aid of the Suffering." The Meridian Evening Star  4 March 1906.

"Tornado at Meridian, 33 Reported Killed"  The New York Times  4 March 1906.

"Lawmakers and Felons Save Tornado Victims"  The New York Times  4 March 1906.

"Nineteen are Dead."  The Washington Post  4 March 1906: 1.

"Game Meridian Takes up Work of Rebuilding."  The Atlanta Constitution  5 March 1906: 1.

"Clearing up Wreckage in the Stricken City."  The Evening News [Ada, Indian Territory]
5 March1906: 1.

"Death List Twenty-Four."  The Titusville Morning Herald [Pennsylvania]  5 March 1906: 1.

"Sunday Day of Funerals."  The Washington Post  5 March 1906: 1.

"More Suffering than Expected."  The Atlanta Constitution  6 March 1906.

"Negroes Raise Large Amount."  The Atlanta Constitution  6 March 1906: 8.

"Debris is Fast Disappearing."  The Meridian Evening Star  6 March 1906: 1.

"An Incident of the Cyclone."  The Meridian Evening Star  6 March 1906: 1.

"Relief Cost Increases Hourly."  The Meridian Evening Star  6 March 1906.

"Meridian Accepts Aid."  The Washington Post  6 March 1906.

"Cut a Clean Swath."  Emmetsburg Democrat [Minnesota]  7 March 1906: 2.

"Twenty-Six Dead; Forty-Six Hurt."  The Fort Wayne Weekly Sentinel  7 March 1906: 10.

"Military Companies Relieved from Duty."  The Meridian Evening Star  8 March 1906: 1.

"The Relief Fund Amounts to $21,000."  The Meridian Evening Star  8 March 1906: 1.

"Salvation Army Officer Tells of Meridian Storm"  The Atlanta Constitution  10 March 1906.

"Rapid Recovery."  The Laurel Ledger  10 March 1906: 1.

"Tornado's Path."  The Fitchburg Daily Sentinel [New Jersey]  14 April 1906: 10.

"Slow Rain Retards Work in Cyclone District."  The Meridian Evening Star  7 March 1906: 1.

"Col. Street Issues A Card; How Funds will be Spent."  The Meridian Evening Star  7 March 1906: 1.

"Meridian Raising Funds."  The San Antonio Sunday Light  22 April 1906.

"People Continue to Raise Funds."  The Atlanta Constitution  24 April 1906.

"Living in 'Tornado Alley'"  The Meridian Star  24 July 2006.

 

Websites

"US F4, F5 Tornadoes Since 1900."  CastorWeather.Com  11 February 2009.

"Mississippi Disasters"  GenDisasters.Com  11 February 2009.  http://www.gendisasters.com/ms/

 

A Final Note

As always the readers who have additional information regarding the content of this article are invited to forward any further information, family stories, documentation, photographs, etc., to the webmaster.  They will be examined and, if possible, included in the article.  I studied the Great Cyclone of 1906 from a distance of 103 years; any further clarifying information that a reader may like to forward to me is most gratefully welcome.  It will be examined and returned to the reader unharmed if requested.  You may send your comments to the webmaster at the address supplied below or on our "Contacts" page.

Continue to the Companion Story:  A Haunting Tale -- The Ghosts of Peavey's

Return to Part 5:  The Long Morning After

Return to Part 1:  Meridian As It Was

Review Businesses Damaged List

Review Deceased and Injured List

 

Page Last Updated:   Friday, 28 July 2017

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