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Flood of 1907: Front Page Intelligencer News from March 15

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▼ 1907 Flood News Articles

- from The Intelligencer, March 15, 1907, p. 1

47 or 48 Feet Here To-day


Early in the day the rise was unprecedented - great excitement prevailed throughout the city. Loss will be very heavy.

Hourly record

Hour Ft. In. Rate
6 A. M. 36 0 0:00
7 A. M. 37 0 1:00
8 A. M. 37 10 0:10
9 A. M. 38 8 0:10
10 A. M. 39 5 0: 9
11 A. M. 40 1 0: 8
NOON 40 9 0: 8
1 P. M. 41 2 0: 7
2 P. M. 41 8 0: 6
3 P. M. 42 1 0: 5
4 P. M. 42 6 0: 5
5 P. M. 43 0 0: 6
6 P. M. 43 5 0: 5
7 P. M. 43 9 0: 4
8 P. M. 44 1 0: 4
9 P. M. 44 5 0: 4
10 P. M. 44 9 0: 4
11 P. M. 45 1 0: 4
Midnight 45 4 0: 3
1 A. M. 45 7 0: 3
2 A. M. 45 10 0: 3
3 A. M. 46 0 0: 2


Pittsburg  34.8—Stationary
Wheeling  45.4—Raising 3 in.


Special Dispatch to the Intelligencer
PITTSBURG, Pa. March 14 — Conditions at 10:30 a. m. indicate a stage at Wheeling of forty-eight feet Friday afternoon.

Observer Pennywitt[ ... ]

The worst flood since the memorable 1884 flood now holds sway in the Ohio valley. A new high water record has been established in Pittsburg, and though the mark of '84 was not passed at Wheeling the second flood stage to that destructive water will be attained here this morning. A stage of over 46 feet will have been reached here by daylight this morning at Wheeling while the crest will not be attained till before the noon hour. Following closely upon the crest will come the ice that has formed the 30 mile gorge from Parker up the Monongahela river that has been holding for months. While it will be a bad addition to the high water, it will do no material damage as it is old and rotten as a result of the rains and will be well broken before it strikes the submerged section of greater Wheeling.

With the coming of daylight yesterday the Ohio continued the unprecedented rise of any save the '84 flood, till 9 o'clock when the slackening began. After that hour there was a gradual decline in the hourly rate of increase, till last night at midnight, when but a scant three inches was being made the hour.

As it is, however, the flood will bring greater loss and suffering in Wheeling than any flood that has visited the section in years.

Beaver Was Busy

The rapid rise early yesterday morning is traced to the activity of the Beaver river, and to this fact mainly is the margin upon which Wheeling may congratulate herself that the flood of 1884 was not passed as it was in Pittsburg. Had the Beaver come out coincidentally with the Monongahela and Allegheny the high water would have been hard to estimate.

The progress of the water, as it slowly covered the lowland Island and business district was watched with intent interest by thousands. Those who were vitally interest watched in protection of their own interests and hundreds of others watched from idle curiosity.

At first there was a big crowd on Water street. However as the water rose and Water street gradually disappeared the crowd drew back up the cross streets, but they remained hanging about till after midnight. Incidents were both humorous and pathetic. Many an adventurous youth on a raft took an impromptu bath and many a poor man lost his belongings, the accumulations of years. This latter was due to his not being aware in time of the danger of a flood or his proneness not to believe that a flood could sweep down the Ohio upon such short notice. In this very way hundred were caught napping. While piano movers were kept busy traveling, there were thousands who could not get their instruments before the water became too deep for the wagons, though thousands were placed in storage. Then too many in low houses could not get to the wagons to move them, for there was an unusual demand for wagons, a result of the business men being forced to move and a man with a wagon could almost name his own price with a certainty of getting it. Late last night hundreds of pianos were in storage while hundreds of families had moved their very belonging from the Island and low grounds of the South Side. Schools were filled with movings and even some persons were sheltered there, while the hospitals were crowded and ambulance and patrol wagons were kept constantly on the move answering calls of aid to the sick.

Old Theories Shattered.

Old theories that a big flood was not possible without a heavy rain on a snow were hopelessly shattered yesterday and a new flood standard was established. There was no snow for the present flood to feed upon and it is solely the product of the rains, which were unprecedented. The flood, too, has the record of being an unusually muddy one andas a result great difficulty may be expected in cleaning.

Both Rivers Came Out

Both rivers came out strong as a result of the rains and did not come to a stand till about midnight. Unusual damage was wrought at Pittsburg, but for all of that the flood has so far been noticeable by the very small amount of drift in the stream. It in this respect is in great contrast with the former flood that littered every portion of the city and submerged with tree trunks and other debris.Just how the Ohio will decline is not as yet known. It was stationary last night at all the upper river points, but it is probable that by nightfall the decline will have begun here and will no doubt be very slow as a result of the great volume of water below here as all the lower rivers have some come out with the enthusiasm that the rivers above the city performed.

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