july 7, 1915 tornado

Excepting only the 1937 flood, there has never been a natural disaster
affecting Northern Kentuckians like the tornados of July 7, 1915.

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In Bellevue . . .

Tornado of July 7, 1915

The tornado drops the third floor of
one building onto the plumbing business
next door. I believe the plumber to have
been George F. Kessler at 603 Fairfield

Tornado of July 7, 1915

Tornado hits the
Lutheran Church

 

Belleviue, ky

Fairfield at Foote

 

Tornado of July 7, 1915

Lewis' Notions
and Dry Goods
411 Fairfield

 

Tornado of July 7, 1915

Queen City Beach
at the foot of Ward

Tornado of July 7, 1915

John Kaltenbach,
First Class Shoe Repairing
502 Fairfield

The steamer Princess intentionally grounded itself on the Dayton bar to save itself from the winds.
The news account notes “There was some excitement on board.” Right. Story here.

More on the Bellevue damage is here.

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In Newport . . .

Tornado of July 7, 1915 Tornado of July 7, 1915 Tornado of July 7, 1915 Tornado of July 7, 1915
Grace Methodist,
East Sixth Street,
lost it's steeple
Clifton Heights Public School Clifton Scenes from the 1915 Tornado

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“Four persons, two men and two women, were victims of the storm’s most humorous mood at
Heidelberg Garden on Alexandria-pk., Campbell-co. Two couples were seated at a table enjoying
refreshments when wind lifted the roof off a summer house and set it down, imprisoning them beneath.
 After storm abated, and inspection party lifted the roof to find the quartet seated at the table unharmed.”
 from the Kentucky Post, July 8, 1915

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Tornado of July 7, 1915

Damage in Newport from the 1915 Tornado, Images include:
  1. Wiedemann's Baseball Field,  2. Grace Methodist Church (the before and after are on our Newport Churches page)
3. Clifton School ( larger image here),  4. Clifton ( a.k.a. Spaghetti Hill) 5. The L&N Bridge (notice things floating)

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Newport's mayor notes that much of the storm damage could have been avoided if the electric
company had just obeyed a Newport city ordinance, on the books, that all power lines
must be underground. That story's here.

 

Tornado of July 7, 1915

Southgate, Tornado of 1915

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You can read the Kentucky Post's story about the tornado from the first day
after the disaster here, and here, and their follow-up, from the second day after the tornado, here.

There are additional stories from Pendleton County, where heavy rains were also a problem:  here, here, and here.

And from Carroll County here and just across the river in Vevay, here.

The New York Times covered the tornado here and here.

The Cincinnati Enquirer's July 8 story is here.

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In Covington . . .

July 7, 1915 Tornado July 7, 1915 Tornado July 7, 1915 Tornado
Pleasant & Greenup Tornado damage at the
Turners, July 7, 1915
“This house was taken off
of its foundation from Lewis
& Baker Streets to Covington
Ball Park during a tornado”

 

Read the details about the Covington Damage here.

July 7, 1915 Tornado           July 7, 1915 Tornado

The C & O Offices, on Madison
between 13th and 14th.

 

  clockwise from the top center:
The C & O Railroad Station,
a house  with a plank from the station,
Southgate Kentucky, and
the Whitaker Residence.

 

July 7, 1915 Tornado           July 7, 1915 Tornado
clockwise from the top center:
unknown residence,
12th & Greenup, 
St. Joseph's, and
Pleasant and Greenup
  left, The White House
(Bavarian Brewery),
 center, Perry Residence,
 right, The Colored Church

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“Covington Police Chief Schuler estimated Thursday that loss by property damage during cyclones of
Wednesday night at not less than $2,000,000.  It is thought 1,000 homes were more or less crippled.”
  from the Kentucky Post, July 8, 1915.  The dollar estimate would later be lowered.

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July 7,1915 Tornado July 7,1915 Tornado July 7,1915 Tornado
Convoy Before
 the Tornado
Convoy After the Tornado The Steamer Dick Fulton
The Steamer Convoy Goes down in the tornado, story here. Story of it's sinking here.

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from Erlanger and Elsmere . . .

Tornado, July 7, 1915 Tornado, July 7, 1915 Tornado, July 7, 1915
North on Dixie, from the
Seven Mile House

Ruth Home

Davis Home

Tornado, July 7, 1915 Tornado, July 7, 1915 Tornado, July 7, 1915
Gale Home

Hazenbeller Home

Jones Home

Tornado, July 7, 1915 Tornado, July 7, 1915 Tornado, July 7, 1915
Stephenson Home

Stephenson Home

Westerman Home

Tornado, July 7, 1915 Tornado, July 7, 1915 Tornado, July 7, 1915
Koettenbrink Home (sp?)

Dauwe Home

Dauwe Home

The above twelve images are all courtesy of the Boone County Historical Society and the efforts of Mr. Steve Conrad. Thanks folks.

July 7, 1915 Tornado July 7, 1915 Tornado
The Dauwe Home on Garvey in Elsmere, years before, and after the tornado of July 7, 1915, at 9:15 p.m. Scuttlebutt has it that the bathtub ended up a half mile away on Dixie Highway.

 

July 7, 1915 Tornado July 7, 1915 Tornado
Elsmere Scene after the
July 7, 1915 Tornado
Erlanger Scenes after a
Tornado, July 7, 1915

The Kentucky Post's story about the disaster in Erlanger and Elsmere is here.

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. . . and in Ludlow . . .

Tornado, July 7, 1915 Tornado, July 7, 1915 Tornado, July 7, 1915 July 7, 1915 Tornado

Ludlow's St. Boniface after Tornado of July 7, 1915

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In addition to St. Boniface, Ludlow's Lagoon was severely damaged. Those pictures are here.

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Elm Street Elm Street
Definitely Ludlow or Bromley, thought to be July 7, 1915
from Facebook posts by Tom Dryer

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As bad as the tornado was in Northern Kentucky, it was worse in Cincinnati. Whole
blocks of the old west end were flattened, and at least 8 people died. One news account noted
“More bodies [of babies] in [the Cincinnati] morgue than on any one day in its history.” The total
Tri-State body account was over 30, and 20 others were declared missing.

There's an overview of the Tri-State damage here.

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