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The Worcester Disaster

The Worcester Disaster image
Parent Issue
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OCR Text

The reservoir, which was the main sotirce of the water supply of the city of Worcester, Mass., burst on the afternoon of tho 30th of March, and an immense volume of water swept down thé side of Leicester hill, through New Worcester, South Worcester, and sigamond, and all outlying villages. Fortunately the course of the flood passed to one side of the thiekly-settled portion of the city, and as ampie warning had been given of the danger, ninch of the losa of life and property which would have attended a sudden irruption was avoided. The reservoir was about five miles f rom the City Hall, and was nearly 500 f eet above the level of Main Street. There had been for several years a small leak in the south side of the dam, the water working under an eight-feet stone archway which contains waste and supply pipes, breaking into the arch aboufc twenty feet from tho water. Attention had several times been called to the def ective condition of the dam, and a good deal of excitement was shown just after the Williamsburg dam break, and the calamity of the Mili river valley ; but the reservoir was neglected. The scène at the breaking of the dam waa . grand and terrible. The water gushed through the banks in a dozen places at once, and a general alarm started the busy workmen away from their position to the heights above, and out of danger. An immense torrent of dark water rushed down the hill, sweeping everything in its course. The dam was a substancial structure, rebuilt and j strengthened in 1873, and pronounced safe by the best engineers. The pond held 775,000,000 gallons of water. The i results of the break were disastrous all down the stream. One mile from the ! dam lies Cherry valley, in Leicester and ! Worcester, a narrow gorge dotted all j along with dams, reservoirs, and substantial milis, all of which were swept away or badly injured. When the dam gave way the torrent poured down the valley, swecping over the first dam below, twenty feet in height, taking off James A. Smith's mili bodily. A. E. Smith's mili, next on the stream, and several operatives' j ings went down the stream at Ashworth, I and Jones' mili and the boiler-house, i dye-house, stock-house and gas-house went off. A large boiler was floated off and danced on the top of the waves for quite a distance. At the next mili, Hunt's, the dye-house was taken off and the mili undermined. The flood iasted at these points but a few minutes, the fall being quite rapid and the extreme points only a mile apart. Ampie notice was given, and all movables, wool, stock, etc, were saved from the milis. Below thia point the stream makes a detour to the south through Janesville, which the water passed safely. Beturning toward the city, it swept away 500 feet of the track of the Boston and Albany road. . mm Jé W ■' aWt fiA WAftiVMi l


Old News
Michigan Argus