’Hurricane’ Hurls Roof 100 Feet,
Tribune photo published May 6, 1950
THE WEATHER BUREAU considers winds of more than 75 miles per hour as being of “hurricane strength” – and Ames and Story county residents would be quick to agree with the bureau after 100 miles per hour gusts swept this area Friday. Damages ranged from shingles peeled from roofs and branches torn from trees to knocked out power lines and roofs ripped from buildings. The most extensive damage here (see top picture) occurred when the roof of the cement storage building at the Schoeneman Brothers lumber yard was hurled about 100 feet through the air. Robert Warren, manager, estimated the damage at “approximately $3,000.” Sections of the roof smashed a car owned by James Casperson, Nevada, and bricks were thrown 200 feet across the street.
Flipped over the Howard Flying service's main hanger, a Piper Vagabond was one of the three planes damaged at the Municipal airport. Moored to the west of the hanger, the plane was picked up by the wind and carried over the hanger, ripping the hanger's chimney off.
The railroad signal gate has been stopping cars on the Duff street crossing, but shattered before the driving wind Friday.
Cleaning up and repairing operations were the order of the day throughout Ames and vicinity today after the most extended windstorm in history.
There was no clearing house for information relative to the total amount of damages, but authorities, lumber yard personnel and other sources agreed that it would be "many thousands of dollars."
The few gusts of wind that hit the 100 mile-per-hour mark about 1:40 p.m. Friday apparently were the strongest that struck anywhere in the state, and the averages of 70 to 92 miles per hour were equal to the worst elsewhere in Iowa.
Damage was well distributed throughout Ames and the surrounding countryside where many farms had buildings that were badly damaged or destroyed. In town the damage was confined mainly to the ripping off of shingles, the destruction of trees and the blowing in of windows.
It was a hurricane that struck Ames and vicinity, according to the weather bureau at Chicago, which considers winds of more than 75 miles per hour as being of hurricane strength. During the past three days winds of higher velocity have been clocked in Iowa, Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Wisconsin and Minnesota, the bureau reported today.
Virtually every farm in this area sustained some damage. ....
In the... picture, an uprooted tree is leaning against the roof of the R.C. Cue home, 701 Ridgewood.
The tree in the... picture crashed between the two houses at 1110 and 1112 Lincoln Way without damaging either building.
Razed by Winds southwest of Ames, the main barn on the Wendell Osting farm, one mile west of the WOI-TV tower near the Boone-Story county line, became well-ventilated after "Texas Panhandle winds" scattered most of its roof around the farm yard. The base of the farm building was also knocked around, making the building's shape more like a diamond than a rectangle.
Winds caused three deaths in Iowa yesterday, and uncounted thousands of dollars in property damage.
The storm victims were:
Harry Konchar, 33, Madrid, fatally injured when hit by a falling 80-foot steel tower an an athletic field. He was one of a group of business men who had helped erect the towers for light at the field.
Wallace Broswell, 55, Des Moines, killed by electric shock when he picked up an electric wire that had fallen near his home.
Tom Bayse, a fifth grade pupil at Dysart, who was hit and killed when the cupola fell from the consolidated school.
The industrial arts building at the Woodside school, north of Des Moines, was demolished. The wind ripped off the roof and then smashed the walls. Several students who were in the building escaped without injury.
Nine circular grain storage bins rolled and tumbled through the streets of Pella, smashing into.....
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