The Great Cyclone of 1896


20 minutes of terror  |  255 Killed  |  Lafayette Park in ruins

 
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The powerful tornado made a direct hit on the Lafayette Square neighborhood. This photograph from the local photography studio of Julius Gross shows the total loss of trees in Lafayette Park. Damaged homes on Lafayette Square surrounding the park can be seen in the distance. The park itself did not recover for many decades.

The Compton Heights / Lafayette Square area took a direct hit from the powerful tornado, losing many of its structures. This view of Lafayette Avenue near Compton Avenue apparently includes the home of the notorious Arthur Duestrow, who had murdered his wife and son in it only two years earlier.

Just two blocks west of Lafayette Park, these homes at Lafayette and Ohio Avenues were in the area that was hardest hit by the tornado.

One man stands among the destroyed trees of Lafayette Park. The tornado did some of its worst damage in this neighborhood; the park did not recover for many decades. Damaged houses on Missouri Avenue and the Lafayette Park Presbyterian Church can be seen in the background in this west-looking view.

People come and go through the northeast entrance to Lafayette Park, taking in the destruction. The tornado did its worst damage in this area, destroying most of the trees and structures in the park. The ruins of the Lafayette Park Presbyterian Church can be seen in the distance on the right-hand side of the photograph.

The Lafayette Square neighborhood took a direct hit from the powerful tornado, losing most of its homes. This view of Mississippi Avenue, looking south from its intersection with Park Avenue, vividly shows the extent of the devastation.

This view of the eastern edge of the Lafayette Square neighborhood, looking west from Dolman Street, shows the ruins of the Herold Livery Company, at 1717 Park Avenue. The tall building in the left background is the destroyed People's Railway Company Power House and offices.

A few people walk among the ruins of Lafayette Park. The tornado did some of its worst damage in this neighborhood; the park did not recover for many decades. Damaged houses on the surrounding streets of Lafayette Square are seen in the distance.

This view of Allen Avenue, looking west from Jefferson Avenue, clearly shows the severe damage inflicted on the homes and other buildings along this street, just southwest of Lafayette Park.

This was a block of damaged apartments, located at Allen and Ohio Avenues, southeast of Lafayette Square.

The Lafayette Park bandstand was destroyed, with its heavy roof thrown to the ground.