Reprints: 1925 – Lafayette hit by big hail storm; much damage results to buildings

What has been declared by old-timers as the worst hail storm which has ever visited the district struck Lafayette last Monday night at 6:30 o’clock and for about 20 minutes it literally poured sheets of ice.

Many hailstones as large as baseballs were picked up and at times the hail was so thick that one could scarcely see across the street.

Lafayette seemed the be the center of the storm. The south limit was just outside town. At Louisville, three miles west, some hail fell but not in quantities as it did here. The Columbine mine, three miles east, had a visitation but not very severe. Erie, six miles east, had none to speak of. The storm took in territory reaching only a mile north.

Scarcely a house in Lafayette but what was damaged. Hundreds of window lights on the west side of houses were broken out, and at the home Mrs. Anna Phillips fifteen panes were broken. The greatest damage suffered by any one individual was sustained to Pete Georgoff. His greenhouse was completely destroyed and all the flowers and plants in the house were beaten to pieces. The loss is partially covered by insurance.

Shingle roofs were badly damaged all over town and many houses will require re-roofing. Flat-roofed buildings were an easy prey to the storm. The roof on the big Union Hall (at Gough and Simpson) was perforated and the interior was flooded. The big Bermont store building roof (at Iowa and Simpson) is badly damaged and much water ran into the store. The Monarch laundry roof was almost completely wiped out and will require replacing. The new Ford garage of Hein & Sons (on south Public Road) will need a new roof and the roof over the Carnahan pharmacy and the Public Service company’s office is badly damaged and much water ran into the store and offices.

Some idea of the fierceness of the storm may be known by the fact that in several instances in town, hailstones went through the roof then through the plastering on the ceilings and dropped on the floors. Scores of automobiles caught out in the storm had their tops cut to ribbons and great holes torn in them. Gardens and flower beds were completely destroyed and in places not a leaf or a stem remains of what were fairly good garden plots and flower beds.

(Reprinted from the June 19, 1925 Lafayette Leader, B.J. Radford, editor.)