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THE JOHNSTOWN FLOOD. 399

one recognized that this was a note of warning. We fled as hard as we could run down the embankment, across a ditch, and for a distance equal to about two blocks up the hillside. Once I turned to look at the vast wall of water, but was hurried on by my friends. When I had gone about the distance of another block the head of the flood had passed far away, and with it went houses, cars, locomotives, everything that a few minutes before had made up a busy scene. The wall of water looked to be fifty feet high. It was a deep yellow color, but the crest was white with foam.
    “Three of us reached the house of Mrs. William Wright, who took us in and treated us most kindly. I did not take any account of time, but I imagine it was about an hour before the water ceased to rush past the house. The conductor of our train, Charles A. Wartham, behaved with the greatest bravery. He took a crippled passenger on his back in the rush up the hill. A floating house struck the cripple, carried him away and tore some of the clothes off Wartham's back, and he managed to struggle on and save himself. Our ride to Ebensburg, sixteen miles, in a lumber wagon without springs, was trying, but no one thought of complaining. Later in the day we were sent to Cresson and thence to Altoona.”


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Last Updated: 30 Mar 2008
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Lynne Canterbury and Diann Olsen