In this Book

summary
The Tornado gives account of one of the world’s most terrifying natural disasters. Twisters have left their wake of freakish consequences throughout the United States and the world, and The Tornado vividly describes some of the most bizarre from around the country—houseboats sailing through the air; cars flown to a landing half a cornfield away; an entire house lifted and demolished, leaving only a divan holding the uninjured family.

The most detailed description of a tornado and the violence it can bring comes from the author’s focus on the tragedy of one American town in 1953. John Edward Weems was an eyewitness reporter of a funnel that hit Waco, Texas, on May 11 of that year. In gripping narrative, he portrays the events of that day: a man clinging to a guard rail while a mailbox, plate glass, bricks, and assorted debris whizzed past his head; automobiles rolling end on end down the street; buildings falling like blocks knocked down by an angry child; a movie theater crumbling on the terrified patrons. When the storm had passed, 114 people were dead and hundreds injured; property damage ran in the tens of millions of dollars.

Research in news reports, government weather documents, and books flesh out this account, which Pulitzer-prize winner Annie Dillard called “wonderfully exciting. It is full of people, and the thousands of details that make up their lives—and deaths. [It is] a story of enormous power.” John Banta, writing in the Waco Tribune-Herald, described it as “a gripping story of human drama and tragedy.” Kirkus Reviews said, “. . . the events still chill face to face with a power that defies reason.”

Royalties from the sale of The Tornado will benefit the book fund of the Waco-McLennan County Public Library.
 

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. restricted access Download |
  1. Title Page, Series Page, Copyright, Dedication
  2. pp. i-vi
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Contents
  2. pp. vii-x
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Preface to New Edition
  2. pp. xi-xiv
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 1. The Cloud
  2. pp. 1-16
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 2. Coming Closer
  2. pp. 17-30
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 3. Rain
  2. pp. 31-41
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 4. Hail and High Winds
  2. pp. 42-58
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 5. Scattered Wreckage
  2. pp. 59-72
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 6. A Legend of Safety
  2. pp. 73-88
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 7. Hovering Overhead
  2. pp. 89-102
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 8. Approach on Downtown
  2. pp. 103-109
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 9. “Here It Comes”
  2. pp. 110-117
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 10. Scant Security
  2. pp. 118-123
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 11. “Tornado!”
  2. pp. 124-137
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 12. “Help Me”
  2. pp. 138-156
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 13. Later
  2. pp. 157-163
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Acknowledgements and Bibliography
  2. pp. 164-175
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Index
  2. pp. 176-181
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Image Plates
  2. restricted access Download |

Additional Information

ISBN
9781623496159
Related ISBN
9780890964606
MARC Record
OCLC
1017611765
Pages
202
Launched on MUSE
2018-01-03
Language
English
Open Access
No
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.