‘One of the heaviest storms ever known in this latitude…’

Luray-Main St old

June 23, 1887 — One of the heaviest storms ever known in this latitude visited this place last Tuesday evening about 3 o’clock, lasting about 1-1/2 hours.

The clouds began to gather in the northwest soon after noon, and continued slowly to increase in volume and density till they burst with all their fury at the hour mentioned. The rain fell in torrents, the whole firmament at times seemed ablaze with electricity, thunder rolled with deafening claps, hail pelted the windows and roofs with incessant clatter, and the wind blew like a hurricane.

It grew as dark at one time that our compositors could not see how to work. The hour was really an alarming one as it suggested at least the terror of a western cyclone.

The wind in Luray unroofed a large portion of Mr. F.W. Berry’s hardware building, which let in the rain, flooding the building with water and damaging his stock considerably. In Luray, the wind did but little other damage except switching off window shutters, breaking and uprooting trees.

We never saw so much water fall in so short time. In a few minutes every gutter became a surging stream, every hollow and ravine a raging torrent, and the Hawksbill a rushing river. Between Luray and Zirkle’s addition a mighty stream gathered, carrying off on its current the wheat shocks and everything else that lay in its course. The surrounding corn fields were badly washed. 

~ From the public archives of the Page News and Courier

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