UUSS Logo
         home






SEVERE EARTHQUAKE ROCKS BUTTE
MINOR DAMAGE WIDESPREAD IN MINING CITY


By John Calcaterra
A severe earthquake, determined by veteran Butte observers as the longest in Mining City history, shook thousands of residents awake at 12:28 a.m. Tuesday (11:38 p.m. Monday MST).
The quake lasted about 30 seconds. Its center will not be known until School of Mines seismograph records can be studied for it was felt in many sections of Montana.
School of Mines earthquake experts said small tremors probably would occur throughout the morning.
A large plate glass window at Buttrey's Store on Harrison avenue was shattered and dozens of Butte residents reported dishes shaken off shelves and pictures from walls.
In the 500 block of West Aluminum, a chimney was toppled; at Silver and Colorado, cornices fell off an apartment building. A 75-year-old pendulum clock in the city jail stopped at 12:42 a.m. Cracks appeared in the walls of many Butte homes.
Power lines were down on Harrison avenue in the vicinity of the White Swan.
No injuries were reported.
It was the first sustained earth tremor here since the summer of 1948. It was labeled worse in length than the great quake of Oct. 12-24, 1935, which put Helena in ruins and cracked some Butte homes.
Underground damage was being studied by officials at various operating mines of The Anaconda Co.
Anaconda escaped with only a few rattled dishes.
The quake was believed responsible for a big rock slide six miles west of Three Forks on Highway 10S and residents of the area were warned there may be more fallen rock.
The Milwaukee Railway immediately ordered that trains not move in the quake area until tracks have been checked.
The big shake was preceded and followed by lesser shocks. Residents of the Butte Country Club are said they felt two small tremors shortly after midnight. Others said two slight but distinct shocks followed the big one, but they apparently were not felt in all sections.
The Federal Aviation Authority at the Butte Airport said the quake was felt in Butte, Ennis, Helena, Great Falls, Billings, and Cut Bank, and as far south as Pocatello, Idaho.
When the tremor struck, most of Butte was sleeping. It started slowly, then rose to a crescendo that soon had residents wide awake. Within seconds, lights went on in homes all over town and many occupants ran to the streets in their night clothes. Butte firemen were out of bed in a hurry and dashed to the truck garage in anticipation of calls.
The Montana Standard was deluged with telephone calls, with most of the messages reporting odd occurrences. For instance, Sheriff W. L. Dalling, 1805 B St., said he was awakened by the ringing of his door chimes. Police and the sheriff's office also were flooded with inquiries by phoners.
Many people asked, "Will there be any more?"
Mrs. Joe Cappa, 615 S. Jackson, bordering on hysteria, reported that she was almost thrown from her feet by the tremor. She said a closet door was sprung and cannot be closed. She also reported that a number of drinking glasses and dishes were tumbled over in their cabinets and broken.
The Owen Williams family, 402 W. Daly, Walkerville were reported to have lost a number of dishes that were shaken from their shelves. The family fled to the street garbed only in their sleeping apparel.
Similar reports of persons fleeing their homes were received from all sections of the Summit Valley.
Mrs. R. M. Farrell, 932 W. Woolman, was reported to have been violently thrown from her bed, and it wasn't until seconds later that she realized the cause of her discomfort was the quake. A check of her home failed to disclose any immediate damage.
Mrs. Peter Oren, 1717 B Street, reported that a number of vases had been dumped over and were shattered, but a preliminary survey failed to disclose any other damage.
Olga Konarski, 832 Emma, said plates were shaken off shelves in her home; the Friendly Tavern, Walkerville, reported glasses were rattled; Nellie Rademacher, 40 Blue Wing, Walkerville, said pictures were shaken off a piano; Mrs. James Lowney, 40 Blue Wing, Walkerville, said dishes were bumped off shelves.
Mrs. Patricia Burns, 2018 California, a resident of the Mining City more than 50 years, said the shock was the worst in her memory.
Mrs. Leonard Shea, 31 Lexington, Walkerville, reported that she was awakened from a sound slumber by the first shock. She ran into her living room only to be showered by particles of glass and plaster from broken dishes and ceramics what-nots that adorned her walls.
Mrs. Shea said she felt two distinct after shocks a short time after the first major temblor. She also reported feeling other 'quivers' of the earth and at about 1:35 Tuesday morning said an after shock more severe than the rest made her fearful that another major tremor was on its way.
Walter Eslick, night police dispatcher, said some brick had come out of a chimney at St. James Hospital. Bricks also were found in the intersection of Montana and Mercury. The dispatcher said the police had received over 400 calls.
One person in the midst of the confusion asked "Is the strike settled?" Another old lady asked if the dispatcher "had time to talk to a scared lady?" Eslick replied, "Yes, we are all scared."
[Montana Standard; August 18, 1959]



MUCH OF MONTANA FEELS TREMOR
Many Cities Report Feeling Shock

HELENA (AP)--A low rolling earthquake that lasted up to 45 seconds awoke thousands of Montanans late Monday night to the tune of rattling windows and glassware.
Reports rolled in from dozens of cities in the state and all agree that the major portion of the earthquake lasted at least 30 seconds.
It was felt in Helena, Great Falls, Butte, Dillon, Shelby, Belgrade, Bozeman, Livingston, Glasgow, Kalispell, Missoula and Lewistown among other cities.
In Helena, where Montana's worst 'quake occurred in 1935, observers said this was the worst since then. Switchboards in all of the cities were jammed with calls from worried residents. Some radio and television stations remained on the air longer than usual to carry reports to the public.
The earthquake appeared to have a wavy action as contrasted with the steady vibration and sharp jolts of the more damaging type such as the one that rocked the Capital City 24 years ago.
In the Associated Press office, in Helena, the 'quake had barely stopped shaking desks and typewriters when the telephones began jangling. The reports rolled in from the western half of the state, north to Thompson Falls and south to Dillon, without letup.
The main tremor began at 11:39 p.m. and in Helena lasted 35 to 40 seconds. A second tremor came at 11:46 p.m. and continued for four or five seconds.
In all the reports, one thing stood out--there were no immediate reports of severe damage.
At Dillon, the tremor caused the courthouse clock to bong loudly in the night, adding to the confusion of startled residents there.
Each of the reporting cities said the earthquake was widespread in their areas. Lewistown, for example, said reports indicated it was felt throughout Central Montana.
In Thompson Falls, as elsewhere residents were aroused from their sleep. One said his sliding closet doors rolled back and forth on their tracks during the tremor.
In Hamilton, the most western point in Montana to report, patients at the Marcus Daly Hospital were awakened. Hospital attendants said they had quite a time quieting them down and returning them to their beds.
Utility servicemen were called out in numbers throughout the area but electric power was not reported to have been interrupted.
The earthquake appeared to have an east-west direction. Reports from Bozeman, Belgrade and Livingston said it lasted about half a minute in each of those cities.
It was Editor Robert Miller of the Livingston Enterprise, a veteran at reporting earthquakes, who first used the phrase, "low and rolling" to describe Monday night's action. "It was not very sharp," he said, in comparing it with the damaging 1935 earthquake in Helena where he was at the time.
In Billings, newsmen term the 'quake "sharp" but said no damage was reported. No damage reports were received from Billings, however, and lights remained on. Telephone switchboards there, as elsewhere, were deluged with calls.
Missoula reported a light earthquake was felt shortly after 11:30 p.m. There were no reports of damage from the tremor that was felt as far north as Ronan. Lights swayed on their cords in the offices of the Missoulian.
Bozeman, which felt the first shock at 11:40 p.m. Monday later had three followup tremors--at 12:06 a.m. Tuesday, at 12:30 and at 12:55.
Bricks were said to have been dislodged from Main Hall, constructed about 1906 as one of the original buildings on the Montana State College campus at Bozeman.
Several rock slides were reported in the Bozeman areas and motorists were advised to proceed with caution.
The 'quake was felt at West Yellowstone and in Yellowstone National Park.
[Montana Standard; August 18, 1959]


HEBGEN DAM OUT; ENNIS IS EVACUATED
Bulletin

Ennis, Three Forks and Trident were being evacuated early Tuesday as water gushed into the Madison River from Hebgen Dam.

ENNIS--Mammoth Hebgen Dam breached early Tuesday under the pressure of a violent earthquake and reports were that this Madison Valley community of 1,000 was ordered evacuated.
The dam holds 500,000 acre feet of water. The water would empty into the Madison River and it was feared this entire valley might be flooded.
The dam is 54 miles south of Ennis.
Telephone contact with Ennis became impossible at 4 a.m. (DST) when all circuits went out.
[Montana Standard; August 18, 1959]



THAT SILLY, HELPLESS FEELING COMES FROM BEING 'ALL SHOOK UP'

By Lewis T. Poole
Nothing makes you feel more silly and more helpless than a feeling that the floor is rolling around under your feet and the walls are swaying on all sides of you.
Some people spend a lot of money and time to get themselves into a condition where such things seem to be occurring, only to wake up the following morning to find that everything is just about where it was the night before.
Sailors at sea get so used to the rolling and pitching of their floating habitations that the earthquake feeling may seem normal to them.
But we who live on dry land feel that we have a right to expect that land to lie quietly under us, and when it doesn't do that we are likely to get just plain scared.
The land didn't lie quietly under Butte early this morning, and the Mining City had a lot of scared people in it for what seemed like quite a while.
The thing started with a slight shaking, which might have come from a blast, but it developed swiftly into a rolling and pitching that reminded me of negotiating a rough patch of water in a small boat.
I was up and around, not shaken out of my sleep as I am told so many people were--as, in fact, my wife was.
We live on the second floor of an apartment house downtown. The building kept rocking until I was beginning to wonder if this was indeed "it." It seemed that mere masonry and framework put together by mere man could not take much more of this--but there was no place to go.
That is when one begins to feel silly and helpless. The fright comes later, as reaction, when you begin to think about what MIGHT have happened.
Mrs. Poole is an old California hand, so to speak. She lived there many years, and everyone has heard about California and its earthquakes.
But when this one awakened her, it was I who had to tell her to head for a doorway and stand in it. I was already in a doorway.
"Not this one," I said. "That one over there."
It was in my mind that if one doorway went and the other didn't, at least one of us would still be around.
No doorways went or were to go. We all know that now. None of us knew it then.
Then came the voices from the hallways and other apartments. There were no screams, no sounds of alarm or panic--just people opening their doors and talking to one another.
The lights stayed on during the whole thing, so I knew that at least not all of the power was off in Butte, and perhaps none of it was. I lifted the telephone receiver and got a dial tone. That utility apparently was working normally.
I did NOT call the newspaper. I knew everyone in Butte would be doing that at about that time.
But I went over to the newspaper plant--and anyone who thinks it takes an earthquake to get every member of our staff on the job is absolutely right. Most of them were there. All of them were answering telephones.
Even Peggy Verstappen's society telephone was ringing now and then. Just what an earthquake has to do with society news is not quite clear to me, but some people apparently saw a connection.
It is somewhat flattering to work for a newspaper at such a time. Everyone thinks you know all about the situation before it is even over.
We were getting calls before the last tremors subsided, from people who wanted to know how much damage had been done or how many casualties had occurred.
We knew as much as they did.
More than one person who called had the same thought I and so many others had:
"This was bad, but maybe we're not in the center of it. Maybe some other city really got it and we just received the shocks along the edge."
We were happy to learn that the cities our telephones and wire services had contact with were apparently no more hurt than Butte was.
The quake was of what is called the rolling type--not the short, sharp, jolting type of shock that sends buildings tumbling and opens crevasses in the earth, like most of the world's disastrous earthquakes of record.
We are told now that it lasted, at its greatest intensity, for about 30 seconds.
That is long enough--plenty long.
The chandelier in my living room was still swinging to and fro, in a good one-foot arc, when I left to walk the short distance to the office.
I will always remember one of the telephone calls I answered about a half hour after the thing hit. A lady said:
"Will it be all right for me to go back to bed now?"
"We can't guarantee anything," I answered. "But you might as well go back to bed."
The lights were on in most of the residences and many of the business buildings of Butte for hours after the quake. People were talking it over.
They were still talking it over when the after-shocks started coming.
They were, as so many of them are saying this morning, "all shook up."
[Montana Standard; August 18, 1959]


EARTHQUAKE IS WIDELY FELT IN NORTHWEST

SEATTLE (UPI)--A far-reaching but apparently minor earthquake rocked the Pacific Northwest Monday night but no major damage or injuries were reported.
Temblors were reported in Idaho, Montana, Utah, British Columbia and Washington. None of the reports mentioned any serious damage although all reported the shocks rocked homes throughout the region.
At Boise, Idaho, the temblor lasted for about one minute and Idaho state police said it was felt as far east as Pocatello.
The earthquake shook the state capitol building in Boise so hard that filing cabinets still quivered five minutes later.
An operator at the Renton City Airport at Renton, Wash., said the earthquake shook the tower there and several areas of Seattle were shaken.
"We're 50 feet up on the tower here and it really rocked it," said the operator at the tower. "It lasted quite a time--about a minute or two I'd say."
The Washington state patrol at Olympia received word on state patrol radio that the quake was recorded on seismographs at Berkeley, Calif., and Tucson, Ariz., but there were still no reports of damage.
Seismologists at the University of Washington in Seattle and at the University of California at Berkeley began a check of their instruments to determine the scope of the earthquake.
In Seattle, the earthquake rattled homes in the West Seattle and Ballard areas but was not felt in some other sections of the city.
The Washington towns of Colfax, Pullman, Wenatchee, Colville, and Spokane reported feeling the earthquake.

BOISE (AP)--An earthquake tremor was felt throughout southern Idaho and northern Utah shortly before midnight Monday.
It rocked pictures hanging on the walls and rocked chandeliers. The time of the tremor in Boise was 11:30 p.m. (MST).
Reports from Pocatello, Twin Falls, Burley, Idaho Falls and Rexburg in southern Idaho, and Salt Lake City in northern Utah established the time within a few minutes of 11:30.
No damage was reported immediately.
In Pocatello, some persons telephoned news media to report two tremors two minutes apart.
[Montana Standard; August 18, 1959]



BUTTE SCARED BY TREMOR

Butte was frightened Tuesday morning. Frightened at it never has been.
An earthquake, Mother Nature's great show, is a seldom occurrence in this mining capital. Many did not know what the turbulence was; others, who knew, reacted in different ways.
God was remembered in those 30 critical seconds. Families gathered to pray for His help.
Many people remembered what they had been told, or had read, and sought safety in the doorways of their homes. Still others sought shelter beneath sturdy tables and the like.
Modesty went out the window as thousands dashed to the streets in their night clothes.
Lights flicked on all over town, and soon Butte was as wide awake as at noon on Saturday.
"Will there be more?"
School of Mines earthquake experts said yes, all through the morning.
"Where was the center?"
That won't be known until seismograph records can be studied.
"Was anyone hurt?"
At 3 a.m., there were no reports of injuries.
"How was the damage?"
Widespread, but apparently not too serious.
From Walkerville and the South Side; from Meaderville and the West Side; the length and breadth of this copper capital, people had different questions, different reports. But they all had one thing in common.
They were afraid.
[Montana Standard; August 18, 1959]


QUAKE DAMAGES OLD BUILDINGS IN VIRGINIA CITY

VIRGINIA CITY--Old buildings in this cradle of Montana history suffered damage in Montana's quake Tuesday.
A large piece of wall tumbled into the second floor courtroom of the courthouse built in 1876. Bricks fell out of a wall of the school house built in the same year. The Masonic temple, erected in 1864, suffered some damage when a sign fell from it and a large crack appeared down the front of the building.
No one was injured.
[Montana Standard; August 18, 1959]



THREE FORKS SHAKEN; ROCK SLIDE RESULTS

THREE FORKS--A rock slide six miles west of Three Forks on U.S. Highway 10S apparently resulted from an earthquake felt throughout the state late Monday.
"This entire community was aroused by a severe temblor about 11:40 Monday night but there was no apparent damage."
That was a report telephoned to the Montana Standard by Mrs. Max Makoff, operator of the Three Forks Hotel. Mrs. Makoff said her husband, a deputy sheriff for Gallatin County, was making a close check of the community to determine whether any severe damage had been inflicted.
[Montana Standard; August 18, 1959]


BUTTE'S SEISMOGRAPH NOT TO BE OPENED UNTIL 7 THIS MORNING

Butte's seismograph, located at Montana State School of Mines, will not be opened until 7 o'clock Tuesday morning, and it was not certain that the quake recording could or would be interpreted at that time.
Prof. John McCaslin, associated with Dr. Stephen S. Nile in checking the delicate instruments, said that the latter is at present on the "320 Ranch" in the Gallatin valley. Efforts were being made to contact him and learn whether Dr. Nile would come to Butte to make the readings.
The recording will be removed from the seismograph by Prof. McCaslin, and Ralph Byrne, a student, who was working at the time the quake aroused the community. If Dr. Nile cannot be contacted, it was indicated, the recording will be forwarded to a government agency for interpretation.
[Montana Standard; August 18, 1959]



AT LEAST 18 ARE DEAD IN TREMORS
RESCUE WORKERS SEEK VICTIMS OF SLIDE IN MADISON CANYON;
HEBGEN DAM EXPECTED TO HOLD


By Frank Quinn and John Calcaterra
ENNIS--A pall of gloom hung heavy over the stunned Madison Valley Tuesday night as rescue workers began counting the dead in one of the nation's worst earthquakes.
The death toll was figured at 18. It may never be known exactly how many perished for it is feared many bodies lay entombed forever beneath a mountainous landslide at the mouth of the Madison Canyon.
At least 42 were injured seriously enough to require medical treatment.
The danger of a flood in the Ennis area passed with word from Hebgen Dam that the dam is intact. A 20-foot wave sloshed over the crest of the dam and washed down the Madison River, leading to an original report that the dam had breached.
The people of Ennis were not allowed to return to their evacuated homes as a precautionary measure, however. Several pitched tents on a hill overlooking the city. Others sought shelter in Butte, Virginia City and nearby communities.
Hospitals at Ennis, Bozeman and West Yellowstone cared for most of the injured but Marine Reserves from Butte with the aid of Navy personnel established a medical equipment center at the Ennis High School. A nerve center to direct rescue operations was set up by the forest service at Ennis.
Smokejumpers Reach Area
The first rescue workers reaching the scene of the slide disaster were several smokejumpers dispatched from the regional forest office in Missoula. They were dropped about 11 a.m. into the canyon area between the slide and Hebgen dam. The jumpers, all first aid experts, gave emergency treatment to many campers and fishermen who had escaped from the wall of water that raced down the river bed and the crush of the landslide.
Plans were completed late Tuesday night at the slide scene for an intensive search to start at daybreak Wednesday along the river bed north of the slide. It was feared many persons were washed into the river when the surging waters devastated the Rock Creek campgrounds and were carried downstream before the mountain of rock, dirt and trees swept across the gorge.
Three members of the Deer Lodge County Rescue Unit from Anaconda arrived late Tuesday night to assist forest service men, members of the armed forces and other volunteers in the search for additional victims.
One hundred sixty-seven persons found stranded on a mountainside between the slide and Hebgen Lake were being brought out by trucks and cars after a bulldozer drove a rough road from the Bozeman side. Part of cars and other debris were found along the Hebgen Lake shore.
The first evacuees from Wade Lake were brought into Ennis at 9 p.m. About 35 were stranded there. Jim Johnson, Antelope Basin rancher, led the first group to safety while highway patrolmen directed the others.
The greatest number of evacuees came from just over the big slide and were brought out by helicopter. A large number of the rescued still wore sleeping attire.
Repairmen Reach Scene
Montana Power Co. crews and other repairmen made it to Hebgen Dam Tuesday and after a careful examination reported the dam would hold. J. E. Corette, company president, said the dam slipped on the east abutment and the action of the quake tipped the lake, sending a 20-foot tidal wave that caused some damage to the structure, powerhouse and equipment. Initial reports said the dam had breached.
Construction men, led by Naranche and Konda of Butte, went to the dam to make necessary repairs.
People Treated at Ennis
Among those treated at Ennis were Mrs. Irene Bennett, Coeur d'Alene, whose husband and three of her children were killed; her son, Phil 16; George Whitemore, son of missionaries now in East Pakistan; the Rev. and Mrs. Elmer Ost, Queens, N.Y.; Geraldine, 13, Larry, 18, and Shirley Ost, 16, their daughters; Melvin Frederich; his son Paul, 15; his daughter, Melva, 16, all of Elyria, Ohio; Martin 15, John, 13, and Morgan Stryker, 8, brothers from San Mateo whose father and stepmother were killed.
Carol and Danny DeHart, Colville, Wash.; Elsie Moore, Spokane; Mrs. Annie Smith, Greely, Colo.; Mrs. E. B. Bair, Stone Mountain, Ga.; Donna Ballart, Colville, Wash.
Doris M. Wood, Missoula, Red Cross field representative, set up headquarters in the disaster area. Search parties were organized late Tuesday to begin an extensive search for any person still stranded Wednesday.
It Never Will Be Same
Perhaps it was Mrs. R. E. Losee, wife of an Ennis doctor, who described the scene best. Mrs. Losee, a nurse, was flown into the Rock Creek Camp Ground and she said, "It looked like the mountain blew up.
"The Madison Valley doesn't look the same any more."
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]


BUTTE DANGER APPARENTLY PAST
ANOTHER BAD EARTHQUAKE NOW UNLIKELY


"The pattern which earthquakes usually take consists of the first heavy ones which gradually diminishes into lesser and lesser temblors and there is no need for Butte residents to fear another bad quake," Prof. John McCaslin of the Montana School of Mines reported Tuesday night.
Butte felt four minor temblors, slight, at 3 p.m., one at 10:04 p.m. and one at 11:49 p.m. Tuesday. They caused both the police and sheriff's offices to be deluged with calls asking if there could be a repeat of the quake disaster in Madison Canyon.
Although predictions are dangerous, Prof. McCaslin said, the chances are Butte has felt its worst quake shocks.
Big Punch First
The big punch in the series was dealt at the outset, at 12:38 a.m. (MDT), when thousands of Butte residents were shaken severely, most of them from their sleep. It lasted about 30 seconds.
Thereafter, at intervals ranging from a few seconds to many minutes, the landscape continued to buck and weave, but in comparatively minor and diminishing intensity.
Damages Caused
The first was the big one, a rolling, undulating sweep that damaged shelves of goods in grocery stores, collapsed large plate glass window, cracked walls and panes, and frightened hundreds out of their wits until the first shock passed.
Word was received Tuesday night that relatives of a Butte woman, Mrs. Ray Matthis, 1001 Missoula, had been rescued from Wade Lake where they had been camping. Mrs. Matthis said that she was leaving for Dillon to bring back her two sisters and their children. The group had been brought there for emergency treatment following rescue operations.
Those saved were Mrs. Jack Voucher of Ventura, Calif., who suffered an injured shoulder, her daughter, Joan, and Mrs. Ray Harrison of Manhattan, who received a leg injury, and her three children.
The whereabouts of the husbands of both women was not known. Mrs. Matthis said she talked on the phone to Mrs. Voucher but that the rescued woman was on the border of hysteria and did not give details of her experiences except to say that the trailer and boat with which the couples were camping had been demolished.
Schools Suffer
Generally, there was no building damage in Butte caused by the earthquake, although several schools were jarred. Worst hit was the Franklin where the chimney tumbled down and the walls were badly cracked. George Haney, superintendent of schools, said that repair costs would run between $5,000 and $10,000 and it was a question at the moment if the school would open in September.
A large block fell from the top of the entrance to the Emerson and the front steps were destroyed. Bricks in the chimney at the Harrison were cracked and the cement columns fell from under the windows of the Longfellow.
Charles Davis, principal of Butte Public High School, reported that the first floor on the south wing on Gold street was damaged slightly. "Cracks have appeared in the walls of the hall and the woodworking shop and the floor in the shop has separated," he said. Damage is in the old section of the building.
City hall and the county courthouse evidently escaped damage during the earthquake but the federal building on North Main was rattled beyond its endurance. Several walls were cracked including those in the Internal Revenue office and the Forest Service office on the third floor, Judge W. D. Murray's office on the second floor and in the post office on the first floor. Concrete crumbled from the ceiling in the workroom in the basement, plaster fell in many offices and damage to the floors was reported.
Stores Are Damaged
Safeway stores on Front street and Harrison avenue, the Food Bank on Harrison, Buttreys and other stores were damaged when goods tottered and crashed to the floor. A large plate glass window at Buttrey's, 2307 Harrison, was smashed.
The Montana Power Co. reported a small outage along a section of Harrison avenue, but the damage was considered light.
No injuries were reported in Butte.
An Anaconda Co. spokesman said Tuesday a number of men at work in the Mountain Con mine when the quakes struck were hoisted to the surface. Afterward they returned to their underground work. The men said the tremors were felt clearly.
Anaconda and Deer Lodge appeared to have escaped with little more than broken dishes, banging of cupboard doors, and toppling of a few chimneys on old buildings.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]


BUTTE IS READY TO HOUSE 750 ENNIS REFUGEES

The hearts of Butte's residents opened wide Tuesday to those who have been stranded following the evacuation of Ennis. The town, 54 miles north of Hebgen Dam, was threatened with inundation when the dam was cracked after being jarred by Tuesday earthquake.
The Butte Red Cross issued a plea for Butte people to give accommodations to those forced to leave their homes and within an hour and a half places to house 750 people had been offered.
The Butte Chamber of Commerce office which handled the calls also received many from out of-state people who have relatives living and vacationing in the disaster area.
Harold McGrath, secretary of the Butte Red Cross chapter said that at the moment there is no necessity to send first aid workers to the scene, but that they have been alerted and are ready, along with doctors and medical supplies, to be sent if requested.
The Anaconda Company Tuesday offered facilities of the Kenwood Realty Co., in Butte to refugees from the Madison Valley earthquake area.
The company informed Harold McGrath, secretary of the Butte Red Cross chapter, that it could open 100 unfurnished apartments and 15 furnished ones for refugees needing shelter.
Word that the apartments are available was relayed to Civil Defense headquarters and to the Red Cross field representative, Doris Wood of Missoula, who is aiding Red Cross relief and evacuation work in the Sheridan-Ennis area.
The apartments are located in various Butte housing projects, built and operated by Kenwood, an Anaconda subsidiary.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]



TERRIFYING EXPERIENCES ARE RELATED BY YOUTHFUL TOURISTS

By Frank Quinn
VIRGINIA CITY--Terrifying experiences when they were jolted from sleep by the nerve shattering roar of the great landslide that swept down on their camping sites along the Madison River were related Tuesday afternoon by two young tourists, who were hospitalized along with several other disaster victims in the Madison Valley Hospital in Ennis.
Cute, blonde Geraldine Ost, 13, of New York City, who with her sister Shirley, 6, and her mother, Mrs. Ruth Ost, was brought to Ennis by helicopter, said:
"We were wakened by a terrific roar. Some one cried 'Cyclone' and my father shouted 'Hang onto a tree.' I tried to reach a tree. There was water all around us. I grabbed for a tree and my hand was smashed with some awful force against the trunk of the tree. I grabbed and hung on.
"Finally, we got to high ground and kept a fire going all night. We saw and heard stones tumbling down until daybreak. Then, it stopped. We had plenty of food, and we had scrambled eggs and potatoes for breakfast."
Miss Ost's hand was badly lacerated and her sister suffered leg cuts. Her mother was immediately removed to the hospital at Sheridan for treatment of undetermined injuries.
Minister Aids Others
The girls' father, the Rev. Elmer Ost, a Bethany Congregational minister, stayed at the landslide scene to assist in the rescue of others.
Paul Frederick, 15, of Elyria, Ohio, who was camping with his family in the canyon, said:
"There was a terrifying earth shock, which jarred me awake in the tent. The next thing I was rolling over and over on the ground, which was shaking and trembling."
He suffered numerous cuts about his hand. His sister, Melva, 16, was treated for minor injuries, and their cousin, George Whittemore, 15, suffered a severe eye injury and was rushed to a hospital in Butte.
The Whittemore boy's parents are Mr. and Mrs. Willard Whittemore, who have served as missionaries in West Pakistan. They are now visiting somewhere in the eastern part of the United States. Mrs. Whittemore is Mrs. Frederick's sister.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]



CIVIL DEFENSE RESPONSE HERE IS GREAT

By Molly Cutts
Butte's answer to its first Civil Defense emergency call poured forth more people Tuesday than the organization knew what to do with and in the end, after volunteer nurses and doctors were alerted to mobilize, the word came that their help was not needed at the earthquake scene near Ennis. "However, it was good practice and will help us correct our mistakes," Dr. William Talbott, chief medical officer, reported.
Cole Sullivan, director of the Butte CD chapter, put out a call beginning at 3 p.m. asking for volunteer nurses and others to report at headquarters to be transported to Bozeman where most of the casualties are being taken. The call was retracted by 6:30 p.m.
Doctors Sent to Area
Two Butte doctors were sent to the disaster scene, Dr. Frank Peterson and Dr. L. G. Hammer, a former paratroop doctor. A private plane was also dispatched carrying 6,500 cc's of plasma, six oxygen tanks, 24 disposable oxygen masks, tubing and other equipment. Also a truckload of clothing was sent to the scene by the Salvation Army.
Big Group Was Ready
Before the call came to send no more help there were five doctors, 25 nurses and 25 first aiders ready to leave along with a complete supply of emergency hospital equipment. Many others had also volunteered their services including Army and Navy hospital corpsmen, 25 other people trained in first aid, pharmacists, volunteers to drive personnel and ambulances and high school girls volunteering to baby-sit to free others for emergency work.
In Butte, besides the hospitals, emergency stations were ready to be set up in all public and parochial schools and the ice skating rink in the Civic Center was melted to make more room.
The Petticoat Patrol also volunteered its services in case a mounted rescue group was needed.
Red Cross Staff on Job
Harold McGrath, secretary of the Butte Red Cross chapter, received a telephone call Tuesday night from Richard Garden, of San Francisco, director of disaster services for nine Western states, who reported four staff members were dispatched to assist local chapters.
The Madison County Chapter with headquarters at Sheridan is ready to care for any refugees who might need assistance as a result of the evacuation along the Madison River, McGrath said.
Doris Woods of Missoula and Robert Wiseman of Pocatello were sent into the area and Robert Bergen of the Red Cross aquatic school near Rollins was sent to Helena to coordinate Red Cross activities with the state Civil Defense. Ralph Carlson of Garden City, Utah, also was sent to Montana.
Response Overwhelming
A plea put out by the Red Cross chapter here Tuesday morning received an overwhelming response offering accommodations for 750 people from the evacuated area, McGrath said.
Naval and Marine Corps personnel, ready for any emergency, loaded radio gear, tents, sleeping bags and medicine into trucks and rushed to Ennis to set up communications and assist the injured and those who would leave their homes. In charge were Lt. Cmdr. Carroll Davis, USNR, commanding officer of the U.S. Naval and Marine Corps Reserve Training Center, and Maj. Robert Johnson, USMC, in charge of the Marine Corps Training Center.
Mayor Goes to Scene
Mayor Vern Griffith sped to the Ennis disaster scene in a police car, his radio tuned in on police and commercial circuits to stay abreast of the rapidly-changing situation. Frank Reardon, Butte radio station manager and civil defense officer for emergency feeding, alerted his personnel to stand by.
Evan Thibideau, Butte amateur radio operator, and his fellow "ham operators" manned a radio communication network at 6 o'clock in the morning and helped transmit messages.
Radio equipment on a Montana Power Company airplane was used to help in rushing personnel to repair the damaged Hebgen Dam.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]



TEMBLOR BRINGS WAKEFULNESS TO ANACONDA AREA

ANACONDA--Residents of Anaconda spent a pretty much sleepless night after being jarred into wakefulness by the earthquake that shattered the summer night calm of Southwestern Montana.
There were no reports of damage in the Smelter City or surrounding country.
In addition to the major tremor at 12:38 Tuesday morning, Anaconda residents reported feeling shocks at 2 and 3 o'clock and again at 9:25 o'clock Tuesday morning.
The initial quake brought thousands of Anacondans into the streets and lights went on throughout the city as residents gathered in little groups to talk over their feelings and reactions to the sudden upheaval.
City firemen were called out at 1:15 o'clock to investigate a smoke scare at the Montana Hotel. It was reported that dust from the basement of the big structure, apparently stirred up by the trembling of the building, appeared as smoke and caused the alarm.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]


SLIGHT DAMAGE DONE IN DILLON

DILLON--Most earthquake damage done in the Dillon area was to the sleep of residents Monday night. Some damage of a more literal sense was experienced, namely loosening of bricks on the chimney of the Library Building and a few falling bricks from the building housing the Stockman Bar. Repairs have been made to both buildings and no other damage was done in either case.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]


ONLY ONE MONTANA ROUTE OPEN TO YELLOWSTONE PARK

The only way to Yellowstone Park from Montana is through Gardiner.
A violent earth tremor caused land slides that blocked all roads between the junction of Highway 10S at Ennis and Highway 287 to West Yellowstone, and Highway 34 from Ennis to Virginia City.
Hebgen Dam, about 25 miles from West Yellowstone, is accessible only by boat, foot or horseback.
A number of bridges in the area collapsed under the rolling pressure of the quake.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]



TREMORS 'SLIGHT' AT WYOMING PARKS

JACKSON, Wyo. (AP)--Grand Teton National Park and the Jackson area just south of Yellowstone National Park received only a "slight tremor," Sheriff Warren Francis said Tuesday.
No damage has been reported in the county, Francis said.
He said there has been no noticeable influx of tourists in Jackson evacuating Yellowstone Park.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]


BIG MOUNTAIN WAS JUST CHOPPED AWAY

By Paul M. Quinn
(United Press International)
I saw where an 8,000-foot mountain was leveled. Its crashed to the ground. I flew at 8,000 feet and the mountain is gone.
To this reporter it appears that someone had taken a knife and neatly chopped part of the mountain away.
We flew over the lower Madison Valley at daybreak Tuesday. It's hard to believe that there had once been a river or a highway beneath it. Huge boulders have uprooted trees and ton after ton of rock and dirt has completely cut away any sight of the highway and river.
The dam at daybreak appeared intact. It was brimful. Some water appeared to be seeping around it.
A huge sign was painted on the top saying "SOS--OK." Signal fires and waiting motorists were seen around the area of the dam.
The slide took away half a mountain making it into a cliff. In that area, I counted three campsites higher up on the mountain, about five autos and a half dozen persons standing around.
If there are casualties, they may be in that area. It was a popular camping spot.
Water was backed up behind the slide over a 500-foot area. The road is all covered with dirt. Motorists may be trapped in that area. I counted three cars.
Meanwhile, the Madison River, famed fishing stream, is completely dry from the slide area on downstream.
There were signal fires in the hills above the valley and on the road below the slide and dam dozens of cars were seen streaming North toward safety.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]


HEBGEN LAKE IS 65 MILES AROUND

Hebgen Dam, an earth and rock filled structure with a concrete core, is on the north end of the reservoir on the Madison River, near West Yellowstone and was filled to its capacity of 325,000 acre feet when it weathered an earthquake Monday night.
Owned by the Montana Power Co., the dam stores water for use in generating plants downstream. The only power generated at the dam itself is used there.
Hebgen Lake, as the reservoir is known, is 65 miles around and has a surface of 13,415 acres. The dam is 718 feet long and 87 feet high. It was completed in 1915, five years after work was begun by the Montana Reservoir and Irrigating Co., a subsidiary of the Montana Power Co.
One acre foot of water will cover one acre of land with one foot of water.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]



QUAKE DID NOT DAMAGE PARK WONDERS, BUT TRAFFIC TIED UP

YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK, Wyo. (AP)--None of the natural wonders of Yellowstone Park were damaged by a series of earthquakes which jolted the Montana-Idaho Wyoming area Monday night and Tuesday, park rangers said.
"Old Faithful is still spouting with its same old regularity," park Ranger John Magnuson said, commenting upon the world famous geyser.
However, traffic is tied up because of rockslides in the western half of the park and efforts won't be started until Wednesday to clear the roads.
Park Roads Blocked
Rockslides along the Madison, Firehole and Gibbon Rivers have blocked roads between Old Faithful and Madison Junction and Norris Junction, Mammoth Hot Springs and Norris Junction and Norris Junction to Canyon.
Park rangers estimated it would take several days for crews to clear the roads. Work wasn't started because of a danger that other tremors would cause loose rock to tumble down onto the road again.
Old Faithful Inn Closed
Old Faithful Inn, one of the historic landmarks in the country's first national park, was closed temporarily pending a safety inspection by engineers. The east wing of the inn was shut down shortly after the first quake that broke a water main in the building. The rest of the building was closed later.
Even the Park Service's headquarters administration building was evacuated. Park rangers set up temporary headquarters in tents outside the main administration building at Mammoth, in the northern part of the park.
Tremors were felt throughout Tuesday in various sections of the park, Magnuson said. The last was reported at Fishing Bridge near the eastern border about 1:30 p.m.
Most Park Gates Open
All entrances to the park, except the West Yellowstone, Mont., gate were kept open. Park Supt. Lemuel A. Garrison estimated there were 22,000 to 25,000 tourists in the park when the first major earthquake struck shortly before midnight Monday.
By Tuesday afternoon many of the tourists had left the shaking park to the bears. However, Magnuson said many new tourists were flocking into the park despite the threat of after shocks from the earthquake.
Animals Not Worried
"The bears and other park animals have shown no signs of panic," Magnuson said. "The people are more nervous than they are."
Park Service headquarters reported there had been no deaths or injuries confirmed there. However, there were reports at some of the gates of minor injuries received by tourists.
No damage was reported at Grand Teton National Park, Yellowstone's sister attraction to the south. Teton County Sheriff Warren Francis said only a "slight tremor" was felt in the Jackson Hole area.
Cody, a northwest Wyoming resort town 53 miles east of Yellowstone, also reported no damage.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]



NEARLY 3,000 QUAKES RECORDED IN STATE

HELENA, Mont. (AP)--Montana is no stranger to earthquakes. But they seldom are of the intensity of the tremor which rocked southwestern Montana Monday night.
The Weather Bureau began recording earthquakes in Montana in 1935. Since that time 2,945 shakes have been noted.
Almost all of the earthquakes recorded occurred through 1947--2,883. Since then the number has tapered off considerably. Only 54 were reported in the past nine years.
The biggest tremor--up to Monday's--was in 1935, when property damage in Helena alone was estimated at over four million dollars and seven persons lost their lives.
At least 11 separate earthquakes were recorded by the Weather Bureau in a span of 10 hours this Monday and Tuesday. That brings the grand total of quakes in Montana since 1935 to 2956.
The reason for the large number of temblors is a fault, or crack in the earth's surface. Geologists say a fault just west of the Madison River apparently caused Monday night's quake.
The fault is in very old rocks and extends from the West Yellowstone area northward to the area around Ennis, Mont. The earth's crust shifts and great masses of rock suddenly slip past one another on opposite sides of the faults.
The Hebgen Dam, a structure of concrete and earth, was completed in 1915. It backs 325,000 acre feet of water in the Madison River, one of the most famous trout fishing streams in America. Theodore Roosevelt, among thousands of others, fished the river.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]


'25 QUAKE JUST MISSED TRAIN

Road signs warning of falling rock are an everyday sight to Montana motorists and earthquakes don't help matters any. However, the mountain which fell in front of Hebgen Dam and which blocked the road in two places probably saved millions of dollars in damage from the unregulated flow from the broken dam.
Once before Montana got a lucky break during an earthquake which tumbled tons of rock across the Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Paul railroad tunnel at Lombard on June 27, 1925. The slide occurred only 60 seconds after a transcontinental train passed the site. This slide also backed up water, but in this case it was a stream which formed a lake where one was not wanted. Trestles had to be built for the bypass until the slide could be removed.
Montana's most serious quake, the epicenter of which was near Helena, occurred beginning Oct. 12, 1935, and continued until Dec. 31 when a total of 1,300 shocks were recorded. The damage, estimated at $3 million, was almost entirely confined to the city of Helena. Forty houses were demolished, 200 damaged and 80 per cent of the buildings suffered some damage. The quakes were felt in Butte, but there was no damage here.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]



MANY OF STRANDED PERSONS AT DAM BADLY HURT

A doctor was brought from West Yellowstone to Hebgen Dam by boat Tuesday to care for a number of people badly hurt by slides caused by a violent earthquake.
Emergency equipment was on its way in an effort to save the earth-filled structure that was threatened by a wall of water that sent millions of gallons of water spilling down the Madison River. The equipment was from the Naranche-Konda Construction Co. of Butte. Reports said, however, that the dam is accessible only by boat, foot or horseback. Even amphibious planes were prevented from landing because of debris in Hebgen Lake.
Assistance Offers Made
Offers of assistance in the form of manpower, equipment and material came from the Washington Water and Power Co., Pacific Power and Light Co., Utah Power and Light Co., Pacific Gas and Electric Co. of San Francisco and the Vigilante REA Cooperative, Dillon. Howard Babcock of Vigilante offered crewmen and communications equipment. Some 40 people are stranded at Hebgen and a Montana Power Co. official said many of them were badly hurt.
Information Is Sketchy
J. E. Corette, Montana Power Co. president, said in Butte he had received only sketchy information by radio, via the weather bureau station at West Yellowstone and then through Pocatello, Idaho.
He said the equipment was being sent from the vicinity of Bozeman, both by the Highway Department, George Barrett and by the construction firm of Naranche and Konda.
Equipment Goes to Work
Highway department equipment which was located near West Yellowstone started working to save the dam at 4 a.m. and M. J. (Spike) Naranche of the construction firm started its heavy equipment from a road job to the dam. Rainbow Ranch on the West Gallatin about 5:45 a.m.
The latter equipment included four large rubber-tired vehicles and, from Bozeman, two transports which were hauling diesel tractors and earth-moving equipment from a road job to the dam. He estimated it would take about three hours for the equipment to make the trip of about 100 miles.
Repair work on the dam in being supervised by Cecil Kirk, Montana Power vice president in charge of electrical operations. He and Bob Rand, the superintendent of power, flew to West Yellowstone from Butte at dawn Tuesday.
Damage Is Inspected
Later the Montana Power twin-engine plane took another load of company personnel to inspect the damage. Included in this group were Chief Engineer Ray Ball, Construction Manager Glenn Jones, Consulting Engineer Harry H. Cochrane and Dick Engstrom.
Other engineers were slated to take off from Butte for the scene in later flights.
Corette said he was sure the dam's spillway had been opened to release water over the top, as well as the lower tunnel which is controlled by gates and is the ordinary method of handling the flow.
The dam is an earth-filled structure with a concrete core and was full at the time of the quake. It holds approximately 325,000 acre-feet of water.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]



CREWS CUT THROUGH TO PROBE DISASTER REGION

By Tom Maddox
WEST YELLOWSTONE, MONT. (AP)--Road crews working out of West Yellowstone, Mont., fought through pelting rain and lightning streaked black clouds Tuesday to open a path into Rock Creek Camp Ground, below earthquake-damaged Hebgen Dam in southwest Montana.
Reports filtering out of the area indicated that several people may be buried beneath the debris. Engineers say the toll never may be known.
One report was that an automobile pulling a trailer was trapped at the approaches to the campground and was hurtled into the Madison River. A motorist behind the trailer said he saw it knocked off the road. No one knew how many persons were in the car, but apparently no one was in the trailer.
Another report was that an elderly man and his wife climbed a tree and escaped the rocks.
Among the survivors was G. L. McFarland, editor of the Salem, Ore., News. He handed a helicopter pilot who came to pick up seriously injured persons a story written in long-hand for his paper.
About 50 to 75 people are in the area of the campground, waiting to be taken out as soon as road crews can reach them. About 15 injured were evacuated by helicopter. They were sent to Deaconess Hospital in Bozeman, Mont.
Two hurdles still remained for the road crews--breaks in U.S. Highway 287 described as 50 feet wide.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]


EVACUATION FORCED INTO HIGH SPEED

VIRGINIA CITY--Evacuation by water and air was forced into high speed in the earthquake disaster area Tuesday.
Early in the afternoon it was reported from the Virginia City sheriff's office that several persons in the Hebgen Lake area were being evacuated by boat to West Yellowstone.
Every possible means were being used to ease the distress of the persons trapped by the huge landslides.
A member of the Montana Highway Patrol was taking a doctor and nurse from Bozeman as close to the dam as possible.
In addition, two nurses from Ennis, Mrs. Ronald Losee, wife of the administrator of Madison Valley Hospital, and Mona Reid were flown into the canyon area on separate mercy missions.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]


PLANS ARE UNDER WAY TO DYNAMITE BARRIER

VIRGINIA CITY--Madison County authorities Tuesday afternoon reported that plans were under way to dynamite from the air the gigantic landslide straddling the Madison River canyon as soon as it could be determined that all persons were evacuated from the area.
The dynamiting would be done in an effort to lower the water level building up rapidly behind the barrier. If such action were successful, it would prevent a tremendous wall of water from engulfing the canyon region should the damned up water rise to the point where it could crash around the landslide.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]



FLYING RANCHER FROM DILLON TELLS OF FLIGHT
OVER HEBGEN DAM AREA, SIGNALS FROM PEOPLE


EDITORS Note: A flying rancher from Dillon, Mont. was pressed into service by authorities to bring back an aerial report on the effects of the earthquake to the Hebgen Dam area Tuesday. He is DeMar Taylor, who made a flight through the Madison Canyon with a brother, Garth Taylor, and Walter Swartz, also ranchers in Montana's Beaverhead Valley. Taylor telephoned the Associated Press, explaining, "I thought you might be interested."

By DeMar Taylor
As told to The Associated Press
DILLON, Mont. (AP)--"It's terrific. You'd never realize what's happened over there. The canyon below Hebgen Dam has given away and the whole mountainside has slid into the canyon. It has covered the highway at a terrific depth for possibly one mile. It has dried the river up below and is starting another lake above it.
"Campers all up and down the river above the slide to the Hebgen Dam are gathered in groups on high ground waving white flags to airplanes as they fly over.
"They have written SOS all up and down the undamaged parts of the highway, indicating they are in trouble.
"The dam itself is quite badly shattered but is not giving away yet with any terrific amount of water flow. There is muddy water running through the dam indicating it has several leaks in it and could give way anytime, jeopardizing the people trapped below.
'The highway along the east shore of Hebgen Lake for possibly five or six miles is broken and has slid into the lake at several different points.
There is a distinct crevice running the full length of the mountain east of Hebgen Lake.
"What has happened is that the whole mountain for several miles has shifted into the lake. The water all along the east side of the lake is up into the sage brush below the road.
"The dam seemed to be holding with a normal flow of water with exception of the seeps. We could see checks in the dam. We could see 30 or 40 people at the dam. They appeared to be standing there.
"They had written across the top of the dam these words 'SOS--OK.' I interpreted that to mean that on their personal examination of the dam that it looked like it was going to stand the pressure and hold at least temporarily.
"From the actions of some of the people waving white flags, I'm just afraid there are some injuries there.
"About half way up the mountain east of Hebgen Lake, where people camp.
"At Wade Lake, about 20 to 25 miles northwest of Hebgen Dam, we saw 15 or 20 cars which appeared to be marooned there. A mountain slide appeared to have taken the road with it into Wade Lake.
"At Cliff Lake, where two persons were reported dead, the water was full of trees and debris caused by intermittent minor slides the full length of the lake. This lake is about one-half a mile south of Wade Lake. We saw people there and a lot of rocks and trees in a camping area. I presume this is where the deaths occurred.
"We saw minor slides and evidence of land movement all up and down the Madison Valley, including many fractures in the highway."
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]



ONCE HAPPY, CAREFREE FACES OF VACATIONING AMERICANS
GRIM, SOME STAINED WITH BLOOD


By Robert Moore
WEST YELLOWSTONE, Mont. (AP)--These were the faces of vacationing Americans and Canadians . . .
A mere 15 hours ago they were gay, carefree faces. Now they were grim, almost expressionless. Some were stained with blood.
These were the first seven people to be brought out of the Ennis, Mont., area which Monday night and early Tuesday was jolted by an earthquake.
There were two married couples. Another was a 7-year-old child, Bonnie Schriber, of Billings, Mont. One was Bonnie's father, Jay Schriber, 43. The other was Verona Holmes, about 35, of Billings.
The married couples were Mr. and Mrs. Warren Steele of Billings, both 27, and Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Henderson Armstrong of Royal Oak, Victoria, British Columbia.
They were brought to a hangar at the West Yellowstone airstrip by U.S. Air Force helicopters.
Dr. R. D. Quinn of Hollister, Calif., said Mrs. Armstrong was the most seriously injured of the seven. He said she suffered a compound fracture of the leg. Mrs. Steele suffered chest, back and leg injuries.
Steele, a packing plant employee, said the quake came about midnight.
"My wife and I were sleeping in a tent," Steele mumbled from his makeshift bed on a bale of hay. "Suddenly, I was awakened and realized the ground was shaking. I rushed out of the tent and found rocks and dust flying off of the mountain.
"I returned to the tent, got my wife and went outside to face a wall of water backing up the creek toward us. The wall was about 12 feet high. It came in on us and knocked us winding.
"We stumbled around over the rock. The water had ripped the pajamas off us and we had no clothes. It was the worst experience I've ever encountered."
Miss Holmes said she was sleeping in a camp trailer "when I felt something jar me. I yelled, thinking it was a bear.
"Then rocks, brush, mud and debris caved in around the trailer," she recalled.
"I was swept under water for a long way. One leg became entangled between two logs and I ran and I fell into the river."
Mrs. Armstrong said the first sign of the earthquake sounded like a plane coming down from overhead.
"I saw a tremendous mass of dirt," Mrs. Armstrong said. "I guess I started to run, and suddenly I was knocked off my feet and rolled and rolled.
"A second later, I was swept into the water, and then I began to climb and climb over rocks. I thought I had lost my husband and two children, Patricia, 18, and Donald, 11.
"I began to scream my husband's name. Again and again I screamed, and I thought it was no use. Then all of a sudden I could hear my husband's voice calling my name. I yelled and asked him if he knew where the children were. And he said they were okay.
"When I got back to Patricia and Donald, they looked like drowned rats."
Mrs. Armstrong said they left Virginia City, Mont., earlier Monday night and drove to Rock Creek Camp Ground where they had spent a night four years ago. She added they were planning on going to the Grand Canyon on a vacation trip.
All of the seven injured were flown to a Bozeman, Mont., hospital.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]



VIRGINIA CITY OPENS ARMS TO REFUGEES

By Frank Quinn
VIRGINIA CITY--This one-time territorial capital of Montana hasn't seen so much fear-filled excitement since the Vigilantes, taking the frontier law in their own hands, strung up Clubfoot George Lane, Boone, Helm and their fellow-desperadoes.
Virginia City was a throng with its Madison County neighbors from the town of Ennis, and from ranches and camps--all people now suddenly having become refugees.
Ennis, some 25 miles south of here, was completely evacuated, Sheriff Lloyd Brook reported.
This entire area, aside from Virginia City itself, lay face to face with danger.
Establishments Kept Open
Virginia City was wide open to the people from Ennis and others. At Sheriff Brook's suggestion, all establishments--hotels, restaurants, taverns and the like--remained open all night to offer accommodations to persons coming here.
They came sometimes bumper-to-bumper along the highway to Virginia City in orderly fashion. Virginia City, normally a community of 200, was not hard pressed so far to take care of the 600 Ennis residents and the hundred or more others in the region.
Scores Sit in Cars
Tuesday morning some 200 persons sat in their cars and trucks atop a steep hill between here and Ennis, about five miles from Virginia City. There they waited for news.
Many of them told me and Ken Lewis, Post Standard photographer, that Ennis was "completely evacuated--no power, no lights and no telephone."
This colorful little town, largely restored to something of its pristine frontier-day appearance, is really putting out to help the neighbors. Townsfolk led by Mayor Allan Dudley are cooperating wholeheartedly in taking care of the evacuees.
Mr. and Mrs. Jack Northway and their children, Jackie Ann and Donnie, and Mr. and Mrs. Jess Armitage and their daughter Alice Sue, 14, Bryan, 11 and Christian, 3, were among the Ennis residents I talked with here. Northway is a grocer in Ennis and Armitage is a car salesman.
Many Returned to Bed
They said they were awakened in Ennis by the first quake shock, after which the families went back to bed.
About 3 a.m. they were awakened again, this time by the town siren which was sounding the evacuation alarm.
I saw a number of fishermen, some of them from Butte, including Winton Kane and his family and Pat Kenney and family. Kane is a driver for The Anaconda Co. They and others from the Mining City, as well as a large number of tourists, were getting out, heading for Butte.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]



PEOPLE IN ENNIS FEEL WORST YET TO COME--MOVING THE MOUNTAIN

By J. D. Coleman
News Director, KBTK Missoula
ENNIS, Mont. (AP)--It will be days--even months--before the final death toll can be determined in the tragic earthquake that shook this vacation land.
Hundreds of dazed, bedraggled people are wandering aimlessly about Ennis mingling with residents who have been ordered from their homes.
The 600 people of Ennis fear the massive landslide, which obliterated a mountain pass and a mile of the Madison River, might shift if earth tremors continue. There is also the stark fear that this could happen in conjunction with the collapse of the Hebgen Dam, thus destroying the town.
A man was sitting on the steps of the Ennis High School, converted into a first aid station and evacuation headquarters, with only a birdcage and two parakeets left from his possessions.
"They are the only things I have worth saving," he said.
He owned a novelty shop in downtown Ennis, directly in the path of a flood, and abandoned it to flee to higher ground.
"I could not carry much so there was no sense in taking anything but my birds."
In the overcrowded Ennis hospital, a structure under the shadow of death and tragedy, I talked to a woman who lost her husband and three of four boys. Miraculously she and one son escaped death.
The earthquake shattered the mountain and heaved it upon Mrs. Irene Bennett and her family, from Couer d'Alene, Idaho. Battered and bruised, she murmured between swollen lips that there was "this great sound" and then she found herself rolled along with trees, rocks and water.
"I don't know how I got out. They say my husband and my boys are dead. But I have not lost faith in God. I know they will be found."
A nurse gently explained in the hallway that the woman's husband and three boys were found dead this morning.
"The poor woman," the nurse said. "She just does not realize yet."
Down the hall, a group of youngsters were being patched up with only minor injuries. All five lost everything they owned including the clothes on their backs. But they escaped with their lives.
Perhaps the greatest tragedy I found was that no one really knows how many bodies will be found under that massive mountain. In the path of the avalanche was a popular overnight campground. No one has an idea of how many were in that camp when the tons of rock and earth began its slide. Some guess as high as 75. No one knows.
The slide--a half mile wide, a mile long and about 150 feet high--defies description. I flew over the area today.
And the people here in Ennis feel the worst is yet to come--the almost impossible task of moving that slipped mountain.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]



DEER LODGE MAN DIES AFTER QUAKE STRIKES

DEER LODGE--A Deer Lodge man who felt Tuesday's earthquake and thought he was having a heart attack died on the way to the hospital early Tuesday morning.
John Coates, 70, of 708 Second, was stricken at his home and died in the ambulance. He had had a previous heart condition but had worked Monday in the electrical shop which he owned and operated. He was a member of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]


BILLINGS COUPLE HURT WHEN BIG WAVE HITS

SAN FRANCISCO (AP)--An amateur radio report from the Wyoming earthquake scene said Mr. and Mrs. Warren Steele of Billings, Mont., were injured when a big wave struck their camp at Rock Creek Camp Grounds.
The report was relayed from Dwight Jones of The Associates Press at Salt Lake City, via Ted Travis of Tucson, Ariz.
Travis and his wife Madeline were vacationing in West Yellowstone when the quake occurred.
Travis had a mobile transmitter in his trailer.
"The quake nearly shook me out of the trailer," he said.
He relayed information from Jones which was picked up at Rio Linda, 10 miles north of Sacramento, by Charles Hardes, a government air conditioning engineer.
Hardes tried to connect Jones to the San Francisco bureau of The Associated Press, but was unable to do so because of static.
Hardes said Jones told him he did not know how seriously the Steeles were injured.
He said they were injured while camping a few miles below Hebgen Dam, and a mile above the big slide.
"A large wave swept into camp, and washed them out of the tent," Hardes quoted Jones.
Hardes told the AP here that a terrific thunder and lightning storm just broke over the area, and Jones had to hurry away to return to Salt Lake City.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]


BUTTE RECEIVES ITS FIRST QUAKE CASUALTY

The first casualty from the Ennis earthquake disaster area to arrive in Butte Tuesday night was George Whittemore, 15, of Elyria, Ohio.
Young Whittemore was evacuated in a helicopter and brought to St. James Hospital for surgery for an eye injury. His doctor reported his condition as "good" Tuesday night and said his eyesight will be saved.
The youth is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Willard Whittemore, who are Baptist missionaries in West Pakistan at present. He was camped with his aunt and uncle, Mr. and Mrs. Melvin Frederick, also of Elyria, and their two children, Melva and Paul, just below the Hebgen Dam when the quake-caused mountain slide occurred.
The family was en route to West Yellowstone on vacation.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]



THREE BROTHERS TELL OF THEIR PARENTS DEATH

VIRGINIA CITY--"They couldn't have known what hit them. I'm glad they never suffered."
Martin Stryker, 15, bravely fought back tears as he recounted how his father and stepmother were crushed to death in an avalanche Tuesday morning at Cliff Lake. Martin and his brothers, John, 13, and Morgan, 8, escaped unhurt, but were in shock.
They were brought to Virginia City by a Mr. Robinson.
Killed when they were buried beneath 10 tons of rock were Mr. and Mrs. E. H. Stryker, Modesto, Calif. The Strykers vacationed annually at Cliff Lake.
Martin said an earthquake that led to the avalanche shook his sleeping bag two feet across a tent and awoke him. He and his brothers occupied a tent about 20 feet from the one in which their parents slept.
"We could hear trees cracking," the boys related. "When we got out of the tent, two trees had fallen across our car and another crushed our boat."
A tremendous roar, that the youngest brother thought was thunder, had echoed down the mountain walls only seconds before and buried the parents' tent.
"They couldn't have known what hit them," Martin said. He said the air was filled with dust, making breathing difficult and vision blurred.
Mr. Robinson came by shortly and escorted the boys two miles up a bluff, drove them to Ennis and then to Virginia City. The boys are now awaiting the arrival of their mother from Berkeley, Calif., Mrs. Katherine Stryker.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]


PEOPLE FROM BUTTE ASSISTING VICTIMS

VIRGINIA CITY--Mrs. Pat Kenney, Butte nurse, hurried to the aid of earthquake disaster victims at the Madison Valley Hospital in Ennis.
Mrs. Kenney, with members of her family, was camping near Ennis, when the quake devastated the Madison Canyon area, and immediately volunteered her services at the hospital.
A contingent from the Butte Naval Reserve unit went into the disaster area early Tuesday afternoon. It included Lt. Comdr. Carl Davis, Radio man Wayne Jarrell, So. 2 Dale Smith and Medical Officer R. F. Langdon. The crew was outfitted with radio and power equipment to facilitate rescue and evacuation activities.
The Butte Army Recruiting station had personnel standing by ready with medical supplies and other relief material.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]



COOL EFFICIENCY MARKS HOSPITAL

ENNIS--In the midst of the midst of the stress and strain of the disaster and the flood threat that hung over Ennis, the Madison Valley Hospital was the scene of quick, calm efficiency.
Dr. Ronald Losee, who returned to Ennis just a short time ago after two years of advanced study in bone surgery in Montreal, directed the work of his staff, augmented by several nurses aides and volunteers, as the quake victims were brought into the hospital.
Working with Dr. Losee was Dr. David Rossiter of Sheridan.
Some were discharged after receiving treatment for minor injuries, while others were sent on to other hospitals after receiving emergency treatment.
In addition, during the afternoon, Dr. Losee supervised preparations for establishing an emergency receiving station in the high school gymnasium, after word was brought that some 21 injured persons were being brought into Ennis.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]


BOZEMAN RED CROSS CLEARS INFORMATION

WASHINGTON (AP)--The American Red Cross designated its Bozeman, Mont., chapter as information center for all inquiries about tourists and other individuals in the Western earthquake area.
A spokesman said any inquiries about individuals should be filed with local Red Cross chapters for relay to Bozeman.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]


EMERGENCY FOOD READY IF NEEDED

HELENA, Mont. (AP)--Federal agricultural officials Tuesday authorized the state to distribute emergency supplies of federal food to the scenic, quake-torn Madison Valley, if relief is asked.
State Controller, William F. Koch said no request had been made Tuesday evening, although there were reports that a food shortage exists for some of the widely dispersed refugees, some of whom have put up shelters on mountain tops.
Koch said the state has large supplies of flour, cornmeal, rice, dry milk, eggs, butter, and cheese.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]


ST. VINCENT DePAUL ASSISTS REFUGEES

The St. Vincent DePaul truck from Butte went to Ennis Tuesday morning laden with clothing and blankets for flood evacuees.
Taking the truck to the scene were Phil LaComba and Al Guay, Butte, volunteer workers.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]



BLOOD FLOWN TO STATE

CHEYENNE, WYO. (AP)--A Wyoming Air National Guard C45 took off late Tuesday to fly 30 units of blood to a Bozeman, Mont. hospital for victims of the severe earthquake which rocked the Yellowstone National Park area.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]


LT. GOV. CANNON IN HEBGEN AREA

DILLON (AP)--Lt. Gov. Paul Cannon, accompanied by his son, Ross, left for the earthquake disaster area at Madison Canyon Tuesday afternoon.
He told newsman he hoped to arrive at the leaking Hebgen Dam late Tuesday night after a round about trip into Idaho and to West Yellowstone.
Cannon said he plans to walk into the disaster area from the damsite. About a seven mile stretch of mountain lake front is reported devastated.
[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]


THE EARTHQUAKE

Most natural phenomena can be foreseen and, consequently, prepared for. It is not this way with an earthquake, however. Mother Nature remains completely inscrutable when it comes to wrinkling her face, or shrugging her shoulder. This is why the temblors which struck so suddenly and violently in and nearby Butte also struck terror in the hearts of so many people. It appears now that the damage caused by the quake, including killed and injured, will reach catastrophic proportions.
Still, this is the way Mother Nature rearranges things. In a billion years the area around Butte has changed so much that anyone here in one of the past periods would not have recognized it in the next period. When this area was an inland sea, there was an island reaching approximately between where Butte now stands and Lima.
Extreme violence in the form of volcanoes formed our mountains and also deposited the minerals which make Butte the richest hill on earth. Once the Missouri and the Yellowstone Rivers flowed into Hudson's Bay. The shifting of a few glaciers and water's propensity to seep and form escape hatches brought about the present channels of the two rivers.
Geologists say that one day our mountains will have been worn down so that the area around here is flat. That would be the day!
[Editorial]


[Montana Standard; August 19, 1959]



CURIOUS ADVISED TO AVOID MADISON RIVER AREA;
ROCK SLIDES CONTINUING


By Edward A. Coyle
Curiosity seekers are advised to stay away from the Madison River disaster area, as earth tremors continue to rumble through the canyon, causing minor rock slides, Lt. Cmdr. C. E. Davis, commanding officer of the Butte Naval Reserve Division, declared Wednesday night upon his return from the scene.
"Persons should stay away from the entire area unless they have urgent business there," Cmdr. Davis stated. "There is nothing to be seen, as a matter of fact, people can get a better idea of the immensity of the landslide and the damage caused in the canyon by the earthquakes by looking at the pictures carried in the local newspaper, than they can by trying to get a first-hand view."
Earth Continues to Tremble
The naval reserve leader said that all day Wednesday the ground trembled with one minor quake after another.
"We had quakes almost every 30 minutes and at short intervals dust pillars could be seen rising from the huge hole in the mountain on the west side of the canyon from where the big landslide broke loose, as more and more rock, dirt and trees tumble down," he reported.
Cmdr. Davis reported that big crevices have been spotted in the other side of the canyon, and dust clouds plainly indicated slide activity there, also.
New Springs Pose Hazards
In addition, the quake activity has opened new springs on both sides of the canyon and these pose further hazards, he said.
"The area is absolutely unsafe at the present time, and is certainly no place for sightseers," he commented.
Four scuba divers were sent Wednesday into the big lake that is forming behind the landslide barrier, Cmdr. Davis reported.
Working in teams, the divers used a 35-foot rope and in many places, they reported, they were unable to touch bottom.
The water was so murky that the divers were unable to determine if there were any bodies trapped in the depths of the pit. They reported they had contacted by touch some shapes that might have been overturned trailers or cars, but the silt and debris in the water hampered breathing to the extent that they were unable to prolong their search.
Divers From Anaconda
Two of the divers were Leo Staat and Noel Shuee of Anaconda, members of the Deer Lodge County Rescue Unit; the third was Don Blodgett, also of Anaconda, and the fourth an unidentified youth from Ennis.
"There is not one drop of water coming out the north end of the landslide across the canyon," Cmdr. Davis reported. He stated that the normal springs are feeding the river north of the slide, but that the upstream level of the Madison is dropping rapidly.
He said Army Engineers and Bureau of Reclamation officials made several flights over the area Wednesday, but there was no report as to their conclusions on what can be done with the slide and the enormous body of water building up behind it, he said.
Search Must Wait
Cmdr. Davis said that nothing much can be done in the area until the earthquake activity subsides and the danger of more slides is removed.
Cmdr. Davis led Navy and Marine reservists Wednesday on a search for possible victims along the river bed, working north from the slide for approximately one and a half miles. The searchers tore apart jams of logs and debris as they combed the river bed and banks.
"We worked under considerable difficulty," he said. "What water there is in the river bed is very cold, and the river is loaded with broken trees and other debris. The Navy men and Marines did a wonderful job, however, and clearly showed the value of the training they have received."
[Montana Standard; August 20, 1959]



ENNIS RESIDENTS ARE ALLOWED TO RESUME NORMAL ACTIVITIES

By John Calcaterra and Frank Quinn
ENNIS--"It is safe for Ennis residents to resume activities," Mayor Charles E. M. Bauer and the Ennis City Council said in a joint prepared statement Wednesday noon. It was the best news Ennis has had this week.
The danger of a flood in the Ennis area passed with word from Hebgen Dam that the "dam will hold." A 20-foot inland tidal wave had sloshed over the crest of the dam after the Monday night earthquake and washed down the Madison river. It was first reported that the dam had been breached.
Ennis residents were evacuated as a precautionary measure.
Siren Will Be Signal
When the evacuation order was rescinded Wednesday it was announced by the mayor and council that a warning signal, in event of renewed threat of a flood, would be one continuous blast of the Ennis fire siren.
Aircraft carrying Army engineers criss crossed the sky Wednesday high above the Madison Canyon as work of mapping began in the area.
While 42 or more persons were receiving medical attention at hospitals in Ennis, Bozeman, West Yellowstone and Butte for injuries suffered during the nightmarish experience, military and civilian engineers methodically took up the tangle of problems affecting Hebgen Dam and the Madison River.
Crews searching for additional survivors or injured were at work under direction of Frank Bailey, assistant supervisor of the Beaverhead National Forest which has headquarters in Dillon. They were working in the areas toward Ennis from where the gigantic landslide took place, and in the Wade and Cliff Lake areas. Navy and Marine Corp reservists were assisting in the search.
Survivors Interviewed
Foresters were also interviewing survivors of the slide trying to determine how many were in the death-ravaged area at the time of the avalanche. Donald W. Nelson, assistant forest supervisor said he would make no estimate until he had talked to more survivors.
The Corps of Engineers had men Wednesday morning at the site where part of a huge mountain, slashed and ripped by the quake, was flung into the gorge, where it plugged the famous stream five miles below the man-made dam. The barrier which nature fashioned out of a peak at the Rock Creek camp grounds is 200 feet high, a mile long and a half-mile wide.
The east fork of the Madison River vanished beneath the avalanche and a fissure 30 to 50 miles long was opened from Hebgen to West Yellowstone.
'Dam Will Hold'
Montana Power Co. engineers reported their inspection of the imperiled dam structure showed it definitely will continue to hold back the broad expanse of water impounded behind it.
Army engineers flew back and forth across the gashed and shaken area, making aerial surveys, recording elevations and taking photographs. It appeared that the main engineering problem immediately facing them was obtaining a means for relieving the tremendous pressure levied against the nature-made plug dam. Water between there and the dam was estimated at 2 miles in length and 50 feet deep at the slide location.
Campers Taken to Safety
All persons known to have survived the earthquake in the Rock Creek camp ground region had been removed to safety by 8 o'clock Tuesday night. Highway patrol and Army personnel helped round them up.
Naranche and Konda, Butte contracting firm engaged in a project in Gallatin County, reached the lake Tuesday night with heavy machinery. A temporary road was chewed out in the locality where the original road, a portion of Montana Highway No. 1, disappeared into the water near the slide. Authorities near here emphasized Wednesday, however, that only trucks and jeeps could travel the detour, and no automobiles were being permitted to use it.
[Montana Standard; August 20, 1959]



SAD, MAD, GLAD, GRATEFUL--THESE WERE THE PEOPLE IN THE QUAKE

By Ken Lewis
Big news stories usually consist of small happenings. Reporters call in the happenings and editors put them together to give you the full dramatic picture.
I spent nearly two days in the Ennis-Hebgen earthquake area and saw the small picture.
I climbed on the enormous landslide and hoped the rumble I heard was thunder. I saw the twisted pieces of metal that had been automobiles, saw the rents and tears in the blacktop highway and the collapsed mountains.
I saw the battered, dead bodies and the bruised, injured survivors--and the children who had lost their parents.
But most of all I saw people.
There was the Oregon tourist who thought the quake was a personal affront.
She and her husband were shaken out of bed and later evacuated from an area just below the landslide. Somehow or other she seemed to hold Montana (or Montanans) to blame for spoiling her vacation.
And then there was the 81-year-old refugee who appeared unconcerned (or unaware) with what was going on.
I talked with an elderly lady who had lived in the Madison Valley all her life and "noth'n like this ever happened before"--and a nurse who had flown in to help the injured who said, "It looked like the mountains have blown up."
--The boy with an injured hand eager to talk of his brush with death in the big slide area.
I saw indignant families who hadn't wanted to leave the Wade Lake area where they had their camping equipment and cars.
There were also grateful tourists, glad to be alive, who wondered if it was safe in Ennis, and "wouldn't it be safer in Bozeman where there aren't any mountains."
I heard a bartender complaining that the sheriff allowed him to stay open all the night of the quake. Refugees drank 10 gallons of coffee but didn't buy a drink.
I heard rumors.
--There are at least 150 people under the slide. The slide is 3 miles long and 500 feet high (actually it is not certain there are any people under the rocks and the slide is about 1 mile long and 100 feet high.)
I listened to officials--an informed sheriff, hard-working city policemen, highway patrolmen and tired forest service employees.
There were groups of newsmen. There was only one phone.
I was aware of unusual cooperation between the various official agencies working in the disaster region--and amazed at the lack of a central organization to direct the emergency work.
There was a group of boys from Dillon who did a man's job of patrolling the empty streets of Ennis and protecting the deserted houses.
And there were refugees from the evacuated town of Ennis. Worried refugees who wondered if they would ever feel safe in the valley again.
They wondered if the man-created dam could stand against the forces of nature when even mountains collapse.
[Montana Standard; August 20, 1959]



MAN WHO ESCAPED DEATH SAYS PRAYER SALVATION

By John Calcaterra
ENNIS--"Prayer was our salvation," Melvin Frederick of Elyria, Ohio, said Wednesday in telling how he and his family escaped death at the Rock Creek camp ground, which was ripped apart by the earthquake of Monday night and accompanying landslides that night and Tuesday morning. Frederick told how he saw a whole mountainside crash down on the camp area. His story follows:
"We arrived at the south end of the camp about 6 o'clock Monday night and set up a tent. The place was full. There were about 21 people in the immediate area. I know all of them didn't get out. I am afraid there may be as many as 50 persons buried in that locality.
Roar Was Tremendous
"I was sleeping with my son, Paul, 15, and George Whittemore, his cousin, 15, in the tent. My wife and daughter Melva, 16, were sleeping in the station wagon. It was about 11:38 when the quake struck. At first I thought it was a bear tearing through the nearby trees. Someone shouted, 'It's a tornado or an earthquake.' There was a tremendous roar. Outside the tent, and looking upward, I saw the whole side of a mountain collapse. It looked like a huge waterfall. There was a gush of air, followed by a wave of water from the Madison River.
"My son, Paul, was washed downstream about 50 yards. He was able to get back to the bank, but was pinned between two trees and a trailer. Water and mud engulfed him up to his mouth. We were unable to extricate him. I thought he was doomed to death. I prayed hard. There was a miracle, for as we gave one last all-out effort we pulled him loose.
Many Knelt To Pray
"I had heard my wife and daughter scream. They told me later they felt the car roll over, but that it came to rest on its wheels. One door was all that could be opened. The other was jammed. Someone helped them out of the car, just as it rolled over again. They eventually made their way to high ground where they and others knelt and prayed. Prayer was the salvation of many."
The Whittemore boy suffered a severe eye injury and was brought to Butte. Mrs. Frederick and Melva escaped injury. Paul Frederick suffered a severe hand injury which resulted from his being pinned between the tree and the trailer.
[Montana Standard; August 20, 1959]


ALDERMAN SKELLEY AND FAMILY SAFE

Third Ward Alderman Peter J. Skelley and his family, who were on a fishing trip in the Yellowstone area when Tuesday's earthquake hit, were not injured, he notified relatives here late Wednesday night.
Skelley telephoned his sister-in-law, Mrs. William Mullane, 725 W. Granite, that blocked roads and downed phone lines had prevented him from reporting earlier that he and his family and a neighbor boy with them are safe.
[Montana Standard; August 20, 1959]



MORE THAN ONE PERSON BLAMED PROWLING BEARS
WHEN TRAILERS BEGAN TO ROCK IN EARTHQUAKE

(Editor's note: Robert Barr, Seattle Times reporter, was vacationing in Montana when Monday's earthquake struck. Following are excerpts from his interviews with survivors.)

By Robert Barr
ENNIS, Mont. (AP)--More than one person blamed prowling bears when their trailer homes began to rock in Monday's earthquake.
Nature quickly set them right.
"The bed began to rock and shake," said Mrs. Eugene H. Bair of Stone Mountain, Ga. She was alone in her trailer--her husband had gone to Helena, the state capital, for medical treatment.
"Then I began to hear a roar. It got louder and louder. I thought it was a bear.

'You Do Crazy Things'
"Then water started coming in through the roof. The whole front of the trailer started caving in toward me. The windows broke. Everything inside was tumbling and breaking. You do crazy things at a time like that. I grabbed my car keys and billfold and crawled out the front window."
Mrs. Bair's trailer was at Rock Creek Campground on the Madison River, where tons of rock fell away from a mountainside. Several campers were killed; others may be buried beneath the slide.
Trees Fell All Around
"Trees were falling all around. Everywhere people were screaming and trying to wade out of the water," continued Mrs. Bair.
"I saw one mother who was lame. Her three children were floating down the river. She was shouting and her husband was shouting. They finally managed to reach the children and drag them to shore.
"Another man and his wife were chasing their children downstream. The children were floating on air mattresses, on which they had been sleeping. The parents finally got them out.
"I tried to get to some people who were camped nearby to see if they were all right. Their car was gone. So were they. I don't know their names. I never saw them again."
Wade Lake Story Told
About 40 refugees are being cared for in the Ennis elementary school. Among them is Frank Dodson of Roy, Utah, who was camped at Wade Lake in the mountains above the river. He, too, thought the first motion of his trailer was caused by a bear.
"Then the trailer started bouncing at least three feet off the ground," he said. "I knew then it wasn't a bear." The Dodson's two children slept peacefully through the quaking moments.
Dodson said he looked out at the lake, normally placid and calm. "Waves were bouncing straight up, 10 feet high," he recalled. "The lake bottom was being tossed up onto the banks. Mud, rusty tin cans, bottles and fish were heaved onto the shore."
At daylight Dodson walked to nearby Cliff Lake, where Mr. and Mrs. E. H. Stryker of San Mateo, Calif., had been killed. A rock large as a truck had rolled over their tent.
Their three sons were sleeping in a separate tent. They were untouched.
[Montana Standard; August 20, 1959]



WISE RIVER JOHNSONS, EGGED ON, DESCRIBE HOW QUAKE
PLAYED SHELL GAME TRICK ON THE HENS


Earthquakes, like tornadoes, play strange tricks, sometimes mixing the comic with the tragic.
Tornadoes have been known to tear the feathers off chickens, leaving the birds otherwise unharmed.
Earthquakes also have strange effects on chickens, according to a report from the ranch of Mr. and Mrs. Howard Johnson in the Wise River district southwest of Butte.
Mr. and Mrs. Johnson said that at about the time the first earth shock struck early Tuesday, they heard a tremendous commotion from their chicken coops, about 10 yards from the house.
Upon investigation, they said, they discovered that every chicken capable of doing so had laid an egg, and that each of the newly-laid eggs was without a shell.
Only an earthquake, the Johnsons are convinced, could cause hens to lay eggs without shells in the first wee hours of the morning.
As to what use, if any, exist for eggs without shells, the Johnsons had no immediate statement to make.
After all, they have until the next earthquake to figure that out.
[Montana Standard; August 20, 1959]


ROOM RESERVED

WEST YELLOWSTONE, Mont. (AP)--A sign on the office door of the Yellowstone Lodge & Trailer Court reads:
"Left for Ogden, Utah, at 2:15 a.m. Tuesday, 18th of August. Mae Hill.
"P. S. Will come back when quake stops."
[Montana Standard; August 20, 1959]


BUTTE CIVIL DEFENSE ALERT IS CANCELED

Mayor Vern Griffith and the Silver Bow County commissioners issued orders Wednesday afternoon to the Civil Defense organization here to cancel the CD alert, releasing all personnel from duty.
Cole Sullivan, director of the Butte group, said he wished to thank all who participated in Butte's attempt to aid the disaster victims.
[Montana Standard; August 20, 1959]



ENNIS PEOPLE JOLTED AS SIREN WAILS

By John Calcaterra
ENNIS--The people of Ennis, already made jittery by a two-day flood-imperiled evacuation, got another jolt Wednesday night after they were allowed to return to their homes.
They were told that the signal for evacuating again in the event Hebgen Dam broke would be a prolonged blast from the city fire siren.
At 8:17 p.m., the siren blew.
Many people rushed to the street, some of them exclaiming wildly, "The dam's broke!"
Then, power went out all over the city to add to the confusion.
Fortunately, it was still light and the people were informed quickly that the dam remained intact and there was no danger.
The cause for the alarm Beaverhead Forest officials explained, was a small grass fire started by three electric wires that were knocked down.
The breaking of the wires led to the blackout.
And the wires were broken by an airplane coming in for a landing at the Ennis airport. The plane came in safely and the pilot, identified as Bill Ladwig, Missoula, was unhurt.
Kerosene lamps and candles flickered as darkness arrived before power was returned 1 hour and 2 minutes after the whole thing had started.
[Montana Standard; August 20, 1959]


MONTANA PRISON CELLBLOCK DAMAGED SO BADLY
IT IS ORDERED TORN DOWN


DEER LODGE, Mont. (AP)--Earthquake damage to the 90-year-old original cellblock at the Montana Prison was so bad that it was ordered torn down by top state officials Wednesday.
Warden Floyd Powell, in making public the damage, said Monday's quake created "the most critical time in the history of the State Prison."
Seventy-eight convicts, including the prison's most dangerous, were evacuated from cellblock No. 2, where convicts last April obtained the rifle that killed the deputy warden and two inmates.
They have been crowded into cellblock No. 2, the one in which escape-bent convicts made their bloody stand.
Powell said this 200-cell building now holds 375 men. The other 186 inmates are on the nearby prison farm.
The earthquake left daylight showing between the roof and brick walls of Cell Block 2 and broke two dormer tops. A state building inspector said the building might collapse and recommended it be torn down.
Gov. J. Hugo Aronson and Secretary of State Frank Murray, upon receiving the report Wednesday, ordered the building razed. Powell said work would begin at once.
Plans are to remove the women inmates from their separate building at the prison as soon as new quarters can be found. The women's building then will be used as a temporary maximum security block for the more dangerous convicts.
Powell said it is hoped a way can be found to erect a temporary steel structure on the old cellhouse location.
[Montana Standard; August 20, 1959]



QUAKE CLAIMS ANOTHER VICTIM
Area Rocked By 5 New Earth Tremors


By Tom Maddox
WEST YELLOWSTONE PARK, Mont. (AP)--A woman injured in an earthquake-caused avalanche died Thursday. Her death brought the known dead in Monday night's southwestern Montana shocks to nine.
(United Press International Wednesday also listed the death toll at 10.)
Four others are believed dead. More victims may be hidden beneath landslides and in a lake and a river.
Mrs. Ray Painter, 42, Ogden, Utah, died in a hospital at Bozeman, Mont.
She was injured at Rock Creek campground when the side of a mountain toppled into the Madison River. She was brought out by helicopter and airplane.
Five more earth shocks shook the disaster area Thursday. There were no reports of damage. Frightened people in West Yellowstone ran into the street in midmorning.
Park Has 372 Aftershocks
The Yellowstone National Park area has been rattled by 372 aftershocks since the big quake, the U.S. Geodetic Survey said.
Skindivers searched the cold, muddy waters of Hebgen Lake, three miles north of Hebgen Dam Thursday. A section of highway fell into the lake there and is reported to have carried one or two cars with it.
After making several dives, the skindivers were ordered to quit because it was feared continuing quakes might cause an overhanging bluff to collapse.
Despite a driving rain, about 100 volunteers clambered over the landslides hunting for victims.
Officials decided against tackling a 50 million-ton landslide with bulldozers. A surface search failed to disclose any more victims.
The side which bore down on Rock Creek campground after Monday night's heaviest shock is almost all rock.
Engineer to Check Slide
The Army Engineers Corps said it will send crews in to check the landslide to determine what, if anything, can be done about burrowing into it.
One official said the landslide may hold forever the secret of whether campers are buried beneath it.
Eight bodies have been recovered, most of them between Hebgen Dam and the landslide. Reports of eyewitnesses indicate four other persons died.
Officials say they believe the landslide caught other persons as it split off a mountain and thundered across the Madison River.
Dentist Tells of Missing
A California dentist, who came out of the hard-hit Rock Creek camping area, supported this belief. Dr. Reed Quesnell of Arcadia said:
"We have vacationed there every summer for 10 years. And every year there have been two trailers in the same place. They were there again this year, so close to the river they could fish from their doors. And those two trailers did not come out of the canyon when we were evacuated.
"There undoubtedly are many others buried with them."
A woman believed drowned when her home at the edge of Hebgen Lake was swept away turned up alive. Mrs. Grace Miller, about 60, had walked 15 miles to a ranch.
Officers of the Idaho and Wyoming Highway Patrols who have been stationed in the disaster area were withdrawn Thursday. The Montana Patrol force was reduced.
Guard to Watch Property
Montana National Guardsmen will be moved into the area to prevent looting of evacuated campers' property.
The gigantic task of opening 75 miles of landslide-plugged roads in the western half of Yellowstone Park will begin next week.
"There are still some overhanging ledges above some of the rockslides and it's too risky to ask crews to start bulldozing out the slides now when there is a threat of more tremors" a park ranger said.
Although roads in the western half of the park are closed, all park gates except West Yellowstone are open to tourist travel.
Four structures, including the main administration building at park headquarters in Mammoth, near the park's north border, are closed pending inspection by a safety engineer.
Two seismographic crews have arrived at the park to study underground activities and the possibility of more aftershocks.
In the river below the mountain top slide, search parties joined hands to keep from slipping in the rock-filled river. The main Madison River channel flow was cut off by the huge slide. But springs and tributaries continue to feed water into the river bed below the slide.
About a one-mile stretch was covered Thursday.
[Montana Standard; August 21, 1959]


TEAM TO SURVEY QUAKE REGION

HELENA (AP)--A three-man team of federal civil defense and Red Cross officials conferred in Helena with State Highway Engineer Fred Quinnell Jr., before beginning a preliminary survey Thursday of the Madison Canyon quake area from Monday night's disastrous earthquake in the Madison River canyon.
Meeting with Quinnell and William Huffine, division engineer for the U.S. Bureau of Public Roads, were Harold Tepper of Everett, Wash., deputy director of the Office of Civil Defense Mobilization, Frank Chick, regional engineer for the OCDM and Clyde Baird of the Red Cross.
Major Gen. Barney, of the Corps of Engineers at Omaha, is scheduled to join the survey team for a tour of the damage area.
Quinnell said highway crews are working to improve the forest road from Hutchins bridge to connect with U.S. 191 and 20 over Reynolds and Targhee passes into West Yellowstone. Traffic over this route has been restricted to emergency travel.
[Montana Standard; August 21, 1959]


HEBGEN DAM IS UNDER STUDY, ENGINEER DESCRIBES DAMAGE

Water has been shut off from the damaged spillway at Hebgen Dam and is now flowing through the undamaged tunnel, Robert R. Rend, superintendent of power for The Montana Power Co., said here Thursday after spending two days inspecting the structure.
He said three cracks, the widest about two inches, have appeared in the concrete core that runs the length of the dam, which is 718 feet long. He said there is no water seeping through them.
The engineer, who flew to the dam Tuesday morning before dawn, said a complete survey of the dam will be made within the next few weeks to determine what should be done to repair it. He said the spillway, which is lined with four-inch-thick concrete, experienced considerable cracking. The spillway is at the northeast end of the dam, and the tunnel that flows through the bottom of the dam is at the other end of the dam.
Direct current electricity for the Hebgen camp is being produced by generators that are activated by water flowing through the tunnel. A 60 kilowatt portable generator was brought to the dam Wednesday.
Rend said he had been to the scene of the slide below the dam and believes it will be about 40 to 45 days before the flow of the Madison River out of Hebgen Dam will be sufficient to top the slide and pour down the old river channel. A lake is now being formed at the upstream edge of the slide.
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers personnel are now at the slide site, studying what should be done, Rend said.
Montana Power people who have been at the dam include Cecil H. Kirk, vice president of electric operations; R. M. Ball, chief engineer; H. H. Cochrane, consulting engineer; Glen Jones, construction manager, and Dick Engstrom, photographer.
[Montana Standard; August 21, 1959]


ANSWER TO BIG QUESTION VERY CONFUSING

Two Post-Standard reporters Frank Quinn and Ken Lewis, were the first newsmen on the Ennis Virginia City scene of the earthquake tragedy early Tuesday.
Their first question was the question on everybody's mind.
"Is the dam going to hold?"
Sheriff Lloyd Brook was the only man at that time in the morning in touch with the whole situation as it was then known.
This was his answer.
"A plane is flying over the dam now. The pilot says there are two messages painted on its face. One is, 'S.O.S.,' the other says, 'O.K.'
"Does that answer your question?"
[Montana Standard; August 21, 1959]


WHAT DID 'O.K., S.O.S.' MEAN?

What did "O.K., S.O.S." mean? That was the question worrying plane pilots who were checking on damage to Hebgen Dam early in the morning following the quake. An arrow pointing downstream, not shown in the picture, was seen by the pilots but not understood. The dam is still holding. Three small cracks have been found in the concrete core running its length. Earthfill is cracked, as shown in photo, but Montana Power engineers say it is not significant. The shadow, center, top, outlines core wall.
[Montana Standard; August 21, 1959]


SIZE OF LANDSLIDE IS MEASURED

ENNIS--Donald W. Nelson, assistant regional forester from Dillon, Wednesday night released the forest service's preliminary measurements of the mass that ripped from a mountain below Hebgen Dam and piled up at the mouth of the pass.
Length, one-half mile; width, one-third mile; height at lowest point, 150 feet; height at highest point, 300 feet.
[Montana Standard; August 21, 1959]


SCHOOL OF MINES SEISMOGRAPH 'BLEW ITS TOP'

One seismograph at the Montana School of Mines "blew its top" during the earthquake Tuesday, becoming useless as far as recording the intensity of the temblors was concerned. However, another recording device called an accelerograph, less sensitive and used to record only strong quakes, went into action for the first time since it was installed following the last strong quake in Helena in 1933.
Because the only man at the school who can read the delicate and complicated instruments is on vacation, the graphs were sent to Washington, D.C., for interpretation. Dr. Edwin G. Koch, president of the school, said Thursday night that recordings from two other seismographs many miles away must also be read before the center of intensity can be computed.
The "man who wasn't there," Dr. Stephen S. Nile, is now studying the effects of the quake at the scene. When the temblors occurred he was in the Gallatin Valley.
The big quake early Tuesday morning jolted the needle of the more sensitive seismograph right off the chart.
[Montana Standard; August 21, 1959]


QUAKE INQUIRIES FLOOD INTO RED CROSS OFFICE

BOZEMAN, Mont. (AP)--Inquires about persons feared to have been in the quake-torn Madison River Canyon area of southwestern Montana flooded into Red Cross headquarters in Bozeman for a third day Thursday.
More than 1,500 inquiries had been received by late afternoon.
Included in the total was one from Poland, from the father of an attache at the Polish Embassy in Washington, D.C. Before volunteers could determine his whereabouts, however, the attache, Jan Woloszyn, telephoned the embassy and said he and his wife were all right. He said they had left the quake area about three hours before the first big jolt.
Officials, attempting to cut down the calls, urged all persons who had been in the area to let their relatives know they are all right.
[Montana Standard; August 21, 1959]


POTTER IS DESIGNATED QUAKE COORDINATOR

HELENA (AP)--Gov. J. Hugo Aronson Thursday designated Civil Defense Director Hugh Potter to coordinate work of all governmental agencies in the earthquake affected areas of Madison and Gallatin Counties.
Aronson also said he will limit his trip to Lethbridge to see Canadian Prime Minister Diefenbaker to less than eight hours, leaving about 4 p.m. Friday and returning before midnight.
Montana's chief executive said additional communication facilities are being dispatched to the Hebgen Lake area immediately, "just to be on the safe side."
Aronson said those on the scene report there is presently no cause for worry that the dam will go out.
[Montana Standard; August 21, 1959]



POWER CO. ASKS CHIMNEY CHECK

Chimneys in an earthquake area take a terrific "beating" and can easily be damaged to the point where they constitute a safety hazard, Montana Power company officials warned Thursday.
Quakes loosen mortar and bricks from the inside of the chimneys which could not only weaken the structure but stop it off, preventing proper venting necessary for combustion.
Homeowners throughout the area were urged by the company to have their chimneys checked by heating contractors or tinners and have repairs made immediately.
Several instances of stopped-up chimneys where damage was not visible from the outside have already been reported.
[Montana Standard; August 21, 1959]


QUAKE-JARRED WALL FALLS ON BUTTE HOME

An earthquake-weakened brick wall of a vacant West Copper street house crumpled late Thursday afternoon, endangering a mother and baby in an adjacent home.
Mrs Mike Fior, 221 W. Cooper, was home alone caring for her sister's baby, Billy Stephenson, 3 months, when bricks started falling against the east side of her home about 6:40 p.m.
Firemen sped to the scene and braced the wall of the vacant two-story building at 219 W. Cooper. Later, Fire Chief John McCarthy and Asst. Chief Len Gerry used pike poles to pull down the rest of the brick veneer wall.
Mrs. Fior and the baby were unhurt. The Fior's white frame home received only scrape damage.
[Montana Standard; August 21, 1959]


GAS SHUT OFF IN BUILDING HERE

Earthquake damage to an apartment building at 421 S. Colorado has resulted in a shutoff by the Montana Power Co. of natural gas service to the three tenants occupying the structure, company officials said Thursday.
Tuesday morning, a few hours after the 'quakes shook Butte and other areas in western Montana, a resident of the 400 block on South Colorado reported to the power company that bricks on the south wall of the apartment building had cracked and pulled loose from the wall. Investigation by Montana Power personnel showed the bricks were being held up by the gas pipes, creating a strain on the pipes serving the first and second floors of the building.
Service was shut off because of the "unsafe condition of the brick wall," according to Al Ducich, Butte division gas superintendent for Montana Power. He explained that if the wall falls, it likely would rupture the gas pipes, which would create a hazard if gas was flowing at the time.
[Montana Standard; August 21, 1959]


STATE HAS NO FUNDS TO REPLACE ROADS RUINED BY TREMORS

HELENA (AP)--Montana lost 20 miles of highway in the earthquake which jolted the Madison Canyon.
This statement was made in a televised talk Thursday night by Chairman Harry L. Burns of the Highway Commission. He said seven mile of Montana Highway 1 which bordered the river between Hebgen Dam and the earthquake slide were obliterated by the Monday night quake.
Another 13 miles, he said, were so badly damaged that this portion, too, will have to be rebuilt.
Burns pointed out the state has no money for this 20 miles of construction. He mentioned that "an act of Congress" may be necessary to provide a loan for the reconstruction. He gave no figure.
[Montana Standard; August 21, 1959]


PAUL CANNON CAUTIONS QUAKE SIGHTSEERS

HELENA (AP)--Lt. Gov. Paul Cannon Thursday night cautioned people against embarking on a sight seeing tour of the earthquake-devastated Madison Canyon area.
Cannon, of Butte, made the comment after a two-day tour of the area. He said several sightseers were climbing the lower end of the largest slide when another severe earth tremor occurred at noon Thursday. This caused more rocks to slide down the canyon, but missed the sightseers.
"It's a very dangerous area," he said. "There were three shocks this morning of fairly severe intensity. And these shocks are recurring intermittently."
Cannon will become acting governor Friday afternoon while Gov. J. Hugo Aronson is in Canada for a visit with Prime Minister Diefenbaker in Lethbridge. Aronson plans to return late Friday night.
[Montana Standard; August 21, 1959]



VISITORS ARE BARRED FROM QUAKE REGION
Move Aimed At Vandals And Thieves


WEST YELLOWSTONE, Mont. (AP)--Visitors were barred Friday from the earthquake-torn area of southwest Montana in a move to prevent thefts and vandalism.
Sheriff Donald J. Skerritt said unauthorized persons found in the Hebgen Lake and the Madison Canyon where Monday night's quake tumbled down a mountaintop to dam the river will be arrested as looters.
Exceptions were made for rescue workers and persons who might have property there.
The sheriff made his announcement as emphasis shifted from searches in the area to checking whereabouts of persons who may have been near when the temblors struck.
The Red Cross at Bozeman Mont., reported it is working with local Red Cross chapters throughout the country to try to locate people who might have been in the area. It reported receiving 2,000 queries since the quake, but said the rate has dropped sharply. Many tourists at Yellowstone National Park nearby are known to have left without checking out.
Area Carefully Searched
The sheriff said the entire distance between Hebgen Dam and the big slide--seven miles downstream at Rock Creek Campground--has been searched thoroughly and that any bodies remaining are buried beneath the slide, estimated to contain 50 million tons of earth, rock and debris.
Water began rising slowly behind the new barrier. Robert R. Rend, an engineer for the Montana Power Co., which operates Hebgen Dam, estimated the water may fill the canyon within 40 to 45 days.
After that it will spill over into the river in a waterfall unless officials decide to try to remove the huge slide.
Six of the persons injured in the quake caused slides remained in hospitals where they were taken Tuesday.
Bennett Boy Still Critical
Only the condition of Phillip Bennett, 15, of Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, was listed as critical. His mother, Mrs. F. R. Bennett, is in the same hospital at Ennis but is reported improving. The four other members of the family were killed.
Still in Deaconess Hospital at Bozeman are Mr. and Mrs. Joseph H. Armstrong of Victoria, B.C., and Mr. and Mrs. Clarence Scott of Fresno, Calif. All were reported in fair or good condition.
The toll of known dead remains at nine. Mrs. Ray Painter, 42, of Ogden, Utah, died Thursday. No trace has been found of the body of another Utah woman, Mrs. Thomas Stowe of Sandy, who is missing.
Ten Montana highway patrolmen guarded entrances to the hardest-hit area to keep people out in accordance with Sheriff Skerritt's order.
No Guardsmen Called In
Some National Guardsmen first were reported called in, but Maj. Gen. S. H. Mitchell said no request has been made for Montana Guardsmen and none have been sent to the area.
Downstream along the Madison, around Ennis, conditions were reported as returning to normal rapidly.
Gov. Hugo Aronson of Montana cancelled trips to Lethbridge, Alberta, and Great Falls, Mont., to remain at his desk so he could give speedy handling to problems developing as a result of the quake.
A helicopter was pressed into service by telephone linemen seeking to restore more normal service to West Yellowstone.
Tourists already are streaming back to the park, even though some rockslide-closed roads in the western section won't be open for several weeks.
Chief Ranger Frank Sylvester said 12,000 arrived Thursday--only 4,000 fewer than on a normal day. Most of them, he said, were more interested in seeing the park's scenic wonders than in viewing quake damage.
[Montana Standard; August 22, 1959]



NO MORE QUAKE BODIES EXPECTED

WEST YELLOWSTONE, Mont. (AP)--The man in charge of the grim mopup in southwestern Montana Valley said Friday "it is extremely doubtful that any more bodies will be found."
Hugh K. Potter of Helena, Montana's civil defense director, said the big mountain slide area seven miles below Hebgen Dam has been thoroughly searched.
The slide dammed the Madison River so tightly that a new and probably permanent lake is slowly forming.
A campground at Rock Creek, a favorite spot for touring fishermen, now is under millions of tons of rock and water.
In Potter's opinion, anyone there when the quake struck Monday night undoubtedly was covered by the slide. But, he said, there is absolutely no way to tell who, if anyone, was there that tragic night.
The camp was located between U.S. Highway 287, also known as Montana 1, and the world famous trout waters of the Madison River.
As Potter put it from his temporary headquarters at West Yellowstone:
"I don't think there could have been an eyewitness. Anyone close enough to the slide to see anything could not have got out. You can't imagine the enormity of this thing until you see it."
He said search and rescue parties have been called off as there seems to be nothing left for them to find.
"We do not want any volunteers and we do not want any sightseers, either by car or plane," he added.
The stricken area has been sealed off to all but authorized persons. This includes both sides of Hebgen Lake, the new lake, and the Madison River virtually from West Yellowstone to Ennis, a distance of 63 miles.
To point up the futility of rescue operations in the area between Hebgen Dam and the slide, Potter mentioned a new Chevrolet that "sits on a sidehill.
"There is no possible road or trail to it. Water rising in the new lake will gradually submerge the car.
"We have no idea whose car it is."
[Montana Standard; August 22, 1959]



SCHOOL OF MINES SEISMOGRAPH CALLED INVALUABLE
IN STUDY OF EARTHQUAKE


WASHINGTON (AP)--The U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey said Friday there is a possibility that a few more "relatively strong" aftershocks may occur in the Yellowstone Park, Wyoming, area which was the center of Monday's earthquake. But the agency said there is unlikely to be any additional damage.
Seismologist Leonard Murphy told a reporter it is characteristic of earthquake phenomena that after shocks may occur for weeks and even months after a main tremblor, with some relatively strong ones among them. But neither the relatively strong ones nor possibly hundreds of smaller ones approach the intensity of the original quake, he said.
370 Shocks
Murphy said that as of 9 a.m. MST, Friday, approximately 370 after-shocks had followed Monday's major quake.
He added:
"The after-shocks are now decreasing in energy content. But there is a possibility that a few more relatively strong after-shocks will occur. These would definitely not reach the strength of the major original shock but may occur in the next few days or the next few weeks."
Epicenter in Madison Canyon
A Coast and Geodetic Survey spokesman said the epicenter apparently was at about 44 degrees north latitude and 111 degrees west longitude, with the real center probably some 20 to 25 miles below the earth's surface.
(This would place the epicenter directly in the Madison Canyon area.)
This location was established on the basis of readings reported from some 50 earthquake recording stations in all parts of the world.
The quake was figured to have started at 11:37.13 a.m., MST, on Aug. 18.
Butte Seismograph Invaluable
A spokesman said that the seismograph record at the Montana School of Mines had been invaluable in helping fix the location of the quake. He said the recording showed the quake onset was 2:38.44, which was of assistance in figuring the location when compared with other recorded times.
However, he said, the force of the earthquake was so great that the Montana recording instrument swung so severely during the next seven hours that it was impossible to separate the record of one wave from another.
From a reading supplied by the California Institute of Technology, the survey fixes the magnitude of the quake at 7.1.
[Montana Standard; August 22, 1959]



STATE NEWSMEN ARE WELCOMED TO YELLOWSTONE;
SUPERINTENDENT SAYS CONDITIONS ARE SAFE


YELLOWSTONE PARK, Wyo. (AP)-- Conventioning Montana newspapermen were welcomed to Yellowstone National Park Friday by Supt. Lemuel Garrison, who said their presence helps counteract tourist fear of more earthquake activity.
Delegates to the Montana State Press Association's annual meeting heard park conditions described as normally safe.
Garrison said U.S. Geodetic Survey officials in Washington, D.C. advised him the intensity and frequency of the aftershocks to Monday's night quake are diminishing.
The park will remain open until its normal closing early in September although service will be on a limited basis because many of the 4,000 college student employees have left.
Parents of some of the summer workers wired money and ordered their sons and daughters home in the wake of the quake and later tremors.
The tourist total slipped from a normal 17,000 a day to 10,000 Thursday.
Some park roads have been closed, particularly in the Old Faithful and West Yellowstone areas. Garrison said these roads will remain closed until workmen can safely work on them. Loosened rock is causing additional slides.
Garrison told the editors that on the night of the big earthquake, when park officials were without communication or fact, panic could easily have resulted.
But rangers hurried throughout the park advising as many of the estimated 18,000 visitors as could be contacted that they were as safe in the park as anywhere in the immediate vicinity.
He said the only injury reported was to a woman who leaped out of bed and sprained an ankle.
The superintendent said it seemed as though all of the coyote in the park howled during the earthquake Monday.
[Montana Standard; August 22, 1959]


OLD FAITHFUL INN CLOSED FOR NOW

YELLOWSTONE PARK, Wyo. (AP)--The more than half a century old Old Faithful Inn has been closed for the season.
It was closed for the first time this season the day after Monday night's earthquake damaged the rustic, frame building which can handle 750 to 800 persons. Then it was reopened and Friday it was shut down, at least until next year.
The Yellowstone Park Co. decided to close the inn because the summer employees, mostly college students, "were getting to the point where they were ready to leave the building every time there was a tremor."
Then, too, many of the employees were called home by anxious parents.
Across the road, the geyser, Old Faithful, so often pictured as the symbol of the national park system, has continued its periodic performances with its old regularity.
However, Park Supt. Lemuel A. Garrison said, "there's been some change in activity of some other geysers. You would expect some. After all, we lived through a geological incident in a few minutes." He referred to the great quake Monday night.
The Old Faithful cabins and lodges will be kept open until Nov. 15, or one month longer than normal.
Old Faithful Inn suffered a broken water pipe which damaged the east wing.
Plaster and rock and mortar from a chimney plunged through the roof into the dining room Monday night, damaging the floor. This occurred at a time when the room was vacant and closed.
[Montana Standard; August 22, 1959]



WEST YELLOWSTONE IS STRANGE MIXTURE OF QUIETNESS, ACTION

By Colin Raff
WEST YELLOWSTONE--This usually bustling tourist center is a strange mixture of eerie quiet and high-tension activity.
The sun shines brightly and squirrels chatter incessantly in the tall pine trees. One might think it's just another pleasant day.
But West Yellowstone is just recovering from a nightmare, and the signs are all around.
Overhead, planes and helicopters drone continuously in the air. The West Yellowstone airport is seeing more activity than it ever anticipated, and the field is literally filled with aircraft, ranging from a giant Air Force Grumman Albatross to helicopters of varying sizes to Piper Cubs.
Planes and copters take off and land with almost as much regularity as one would expect at New York's busiest terminals.
The Air Force is a center of activity, with crewmen servicing planes and helicopters. The Montana Highway Patrol and Civil Defense Director Hugh Potter are busy at the airport.
Town Is Disquieting
Downtown, West Yellowstone presents a disquieting sight. Some commercial establishments are operating, others are boarded up.
Alternating signs along the main street say "Open," "Open for Business" and "Closed." One store has a sale, with all articles 20 per cent off.
"We don't know yet what's going to happen," says a restaurant owner. "The park gate is closed and it looks like the tourist season is finished."
A motel operator is more optimistic.
"We're going to keep going unless the quake gets worse" she says. "We think there'll be a lot of curiosity seekers. We've already got a number of reservations for this weekend."
Others in town haven't waited to find out. They've closed their stores for the season and boarded up the windows and doors.
A man walks down the street and a friend invites him in for a cup of coffee. "Nope," says the man. "I'm still a little jumpy. I think I'll just keep walking.
One of the merchants in town is happy about the whole thing. He's a youngster who sells an outside daily paper. "Used to sell 20 papers a day, but since this happened, I've been selling 150 to 200 a day," he says.
The highway to Hebgen Lake is not crowded but has a steady flow of traffic. Some are officials inspecting the area, others are geologists and engineers interested in the effects of the earthquake, and some are cabin owners who want to see what's left of their property.
Highway patrolmen have barricades along the way. The idea is to keep out curiosity seekers and allow in only those who have business in the area.
Underneath, everyone seems to be concerned about the future. They wonder if there will be another temblor as bad as the first one.
One of the men who lived through the nightmare puts it this way: "I wouldn't take a million dollars to have missed it, and I wouldn't take two million to go through it again."
[Montana Standard; August 22, 1959]



FORCED DECISION SAVED FAMILY

DEER LODGE--A forced decision made Monday near Hebgen Lake by Mr. and Mrs. Ted Lynch of San Mateo, Calif., may have saved their lives and the lives of their four children. Certainly it saved them from the frightening experience of being in that area when the earthquake struck.
The Lynch family were in Yellowstone National Park Monday. That day they tried to find accommodations at Old Faithful Inn, but were turned away when they did not have reservations.
They moved on into Montana by way of West Yellowstone and to the Hebgen Lake area Monday afternoon. They wanted to stop there for some fishing and an overnight camp.
But all camping areas were full, they said, so they continued to Deer Lodge, where today they are happily visiting relatives.
[Montana Standard; August 22, 1959]


DEER LODGE MAN SINGS TO EASE QUAKE FEARS

DEER LODGE--A fine Welsh tenor, facility with the guitar and some knowledge of old time songs were among weapons employed by William Hoskins against the fears and uncertainties of those hours when the earth trembled at West Yellowstone.
He and his family, with other relatives, are safely out of the stricken region now, and Mr. Hoskins is trying to settle back into the routine of his insurance business here after an experience which he sums up thus:
"I never experienced anything like it or ever hope to again."
The Hoskins party included his daughter, Mrs. Robert Fletcher and three children of Seattle, and his daughter-in-law, Mrs. William Hoskins Jr., and children of Billings.
They toured Yellowstone National Park and came out by way of the western gateway into the town of West Yellowstone Monday evening.
The children were stowed away in motel beds and in sleeping bags in the two automobiles. The adults of the party chose to walk about town, stopping at shops and enjoying the company of other vacationers. They stopped between midnight and 1 a.m. (MSDT) in a restaurant for what proved to be the roughest lunch any of them had ever attempted to enjoy.
Hoskins and his daughter were thrown under a table by the impact of the quake. All the lights went out, he says, and everyone ran into the street.
He adds that there was no panic, and as other shocks came people seemed to take them as a matter of course.
Hoskins and the two women returned to their motel, where they found the children unharmed.
Later they returned to Deer Lodge by way of Idaho Falls.
But at three o'clock on the morning of the quake, Hoskins says, he was sitting outside the motel, "playing my guitar and singing my old time songs. It seemed to help folks take their minds off the trembling old earth."
[Montana Standard; August 22, 1959]



SURVIVORS OF QUAKE OVERJOYED BY BUTTE'S FRIENDLINESS

By June Dieckmann
It takes faith and friendly people to bolster laughs from a family who just a short 111 hours before were perilously close to being buried alive.
But that's what the Melvin Frederick family of Elyira, Ohio found in Ennis and Butte after they were rescued--injured but alive--from the earthquake caused mountain slide in Madison Canyon.
The horror was over. And with the hospitality and help of everyone, Frederick and his wife and their children, Paul, 15, and Melva, 16, could laugh again Saturday afternoon as they talked with new-met friends in the Finlen Hotel.
"We've never met more friendly people than here," Frederick said gratefully.
"That's sure right," young Paul agreed while trying to pick up his favorite sandwich, hamburger and raw onion, with his injured right hand in splints.
The Fredericks were filled with thanks for their rescuers; the Ennis people who took them in; the Red Cross workers who are taking care of their needs, and the Butte residents and visitors who warmly are making them feel at home.
A spontaneous collection started among employees and patrons at the Finlen when word spread through the lobby that the Fredericks were in the hotel. More than $50 was presented to the family.
"This all seems like a nightmare that turned into a nice dream," Mrs. Frederick said with happy tears in her eyes.
To make the "dream" even nicer, Mr. and Mrs. Frederick learned Saturday afternoon that their nephew, George Whittemore, 15, who was camping with them below Hebgen dam when the landslide struck, will not lose his eyesight as a result of the injuries he suffered.
Young Whittemore is scheduled to be released Sunday from St. James Hospital here and the family will leave Monday afternoon for their northern Ohio home via plane as arranged by the Red Cross. Frederick is a cookie firm salesman in Cleveland.
Their 1958 Plymouth station wagon was demolished by the landslide, and all of their belongings, except the pajamas they wore, were lost. "But now we're beginning to feel like we're living again with everything that's been given us," Mrs. Frederick said.
After they were rescued from the canyon by helicopter, the Fredericks were housed in the emergency quarters set up at the high school gymnasium and at the Morgan Motel in Ennis. The Red Cross and Ennis residents gave them each two complete outfits of clothing.
So that they could be near the hospitalized nephew, the Red Cross flew them to Butte and arranged rooms and meals for them at the Finlen.
"They put a TV set in our room, which certainly wasn't necessary, but that just shows how far everybody has gone to make us feel safe and at home after that horrible night," Mrs. Frederick said.
Paul and Melva even got the French fried potatoes they said they wished they could have for breakfast Saturday. And Nephew George was promised he could have the same when he gets out of the hospital.
Aaron Ralph, a Finlen bellhop, gave them a tour in his car around the city, up to the "M" on Big Butte, and out Harding Way to where they could see the sparkling lights of the city below.
"It really glistened, but the real jewels of this city are the people," Mrs. Frederick said.
[Montana Standard; August 23, 1959]



TOURIST TRAVEL REDUCED BY QUAKE,
BUT BUTTE FIGURES GOOD FOR YEAR


Tourist travel through Butte was temporarily reduced by the Tuesday earthquake here, and by the disaster in Madison Canyon from where scores of tourists usually come to Butte. However the overall travel through the Mining City is good this year.
In the later days of June the Chamber of Commerce notes the start of tourist travel. From that time to Saturday tourists registered at the Chamber headquarters in the Finlen Hotel lobby have numbered 3,370. "This figure compares most favorably with that of last year," Harold McGrath, secretary of the Chamber said.
McGrath, Glyen Chaffin, Mrs. Sidney Duffy and Mrs. Mary Slater of the Chamber staff, reported that the registrations normally run from 70 to 90 a day during the peak of the tourist season, which is usually in August. Since the quake, however, the figure dropped to 40 to 50, but it is expected to pick up again as travel from the Yellowstone Park area resumes.
[Montana Standard; August 23, 1959]


DEMOLITION WORK CONFUSING TO BUTTE TOURISTS

Dan J. O'Connell, head steward at the Finlen Hotel, had a difficult time Saturday convincing a tourist party from Ohio that Butte was not hard hit by the Tuesday morning earthquake.
"You must have been," one of the tourist party said, we've traveled west from Billings and haven't seen such damage anywhere else, although we know of the disaster in the Madison Canyon."
O'Connell finally found out where the tourists got their idea Butte was whacked hard. As the tourists rounded the corner of Wyoming and Broadway, heading for the hotel, they saw the result of demolition work which has started on buildings just east of the hotel. The buildings are being razed to provide for construction of a motor motel to be operated in conjunction with the hotel.
[Montana Standard; August 23, 1959]



WEST YELLOWSTONE MAN TELLS HOW HE SOUNDED ALERT AFTER QUAKE

Harold Young, West Yellowstone motel operator, who also runs the West Yellowstone Weather Bureau, and is a ham radio operator, is the man who gave out the first word on the earthquake in the West Yellowstone area, and told of a report he received that Hebgen Dam had gone out.
"The earthquake shook me awake shortly after 11:30 at night," Young said. "I figured we were in trouble so I got on my radio right away.
"I finally contacted a ham operator in Utah and told him to get the airport at Pocatello, Idaho, so I could talk to them."
Young said he made contact and relayed the information that an earthquake had struck.
As he was operating his radio, he said, a friend who owned property on Hebgen Lake came to his place. Young said the man told him his boat and docks were "high and dry" and said he believed Hebgen Dam had gone out and that the lake was being drained.
"I made contact with the Madison County Deputy Sheriff and told him I had reported that Hebgen Dam had gone out and that he should notify the people of Ennis that the water was on its way," Young said. "He said, 'Are you sure?' and I told him that the man who reported the water gone from the lake was right beside me."
"We found out later that the Dam had held, but with all those people downstream in Ennis, I just couldn't take a chance," Young said. "I figured the only thing I could do was alert them to the possible danger."
[Montana Standard; August 23, 1959]


VIRGINIA CITY PLAYERS ENTERTAIN EVACUEES FROM MADISON VALLEY

VIRGINIA CITY--"The show must go on" has always been the creed of show business. Tuesday night the Virginia City Players performed as usual on an improvised stage before an audience of evacuees from the Madison Valley and local townspeople. Admission was free.
The Virginia City Players, their switchboard and Cremona organ knocked askew by Monday night's earthquake, moved their show to a recently restored livery barn in Nevada City, one mile down the road. Nevada City is being restored to its 1864 appearance by Charlie and Sue Bovey, restorers of Virginia City.
When it was discovered Tuesday morning that the only damage to the Opera House had been to the organ and switchboard, Larry Barsness, director of the Players, decided to move the show to Nevada City while repairs were being made. During the day, a stage was built in the Nevada City barn, electricity was brought to the building from the neighboring house, scenic drops were rigged and house lights installed. Wooden benches were set up on the rough earth floor and signs were hung in front to announce the barn's transformation. By 8 o'clock all was ready for the special show to entertain evacuees from the neighboring town of Ennis.
The show went off without a hitch, the large crowd calling for "more," as they laughed their cares away. Especially enjoyed were the Barbershop Quartette and the comedy song "Blood on the Saddle" as rendered by Judy, recently returned to the Players after a two year absence.
The show has moved back to the Opera House and performances are running as scheduled.
[Montana Standard; August 23, 1959]



NEIGHBORLINESS WAS NEVER MORE EVIDENT

By Frank Quinn
Hebgen dam may go out. Ennis is evacuated.
Those reports received here early Tuesday morning, a few hours after Butte and other communities were whacked by an earthquake, shifted the center of news coverage to the Madison Valley in southwestern Montana.
It was apparent that the atomic-like power of nature's upheaval had centered in that area. But, at the time, and for several hours after, the fact that lives had been lost, that autos, trailers, men, women and children had been tossed around like toothpicks as the result of the mountain avalanches, was not known.
It wasn't until battered and blood-stained survivors of the landslides in the Madison Canyon were brought into Ennis, or to West Yellowstone, that the outside world (the canyon area was behind an Iron Curtain of rock and debris) got any idea of the tragedy in the canyon.
Hi Neighbor
Hi! neighbor is a common greeting heard in Montana. But the word "neighbor" covers a lot of territory. That is a heritage of Montana's pioneer days when neighbors lived anywhere from five to 50 or even a 100 miles apart.
Montana neighborliness was never more evident than it was when the threat of tragedy hovered over Ennis and other communities in the valley area, and in Ennis itself when the full impact of the tragedy was known.
Residents of Virginia City were first to offer "open house" to their neighbors "over the hill." It wasn't long before Butte, Anaconda, Bozeman, Twin Bridges, Sheridan and other communities were in the act. The Salvation Army and St. Vincent DePaul Society of Butte sent clothing and blankets into the area.
Butte's Civil Defense Chapter put out a call through Cole Sullivan, director, and it poured forth more people Tuesday than the organization knew what to do with. Volunteer nurses and doctors were alerted, but later word came that their help was not needed.
The Civil Air Patrol of Dillon moved into Ennis late Tuesday and did a good job Tuesday night of patrolling the evacuated city, and at times in getting stragglers out of town.
Open Arms
It was in Virginia City that many early Tuesday morning evacuees from Ennis were received. That historic, one-time territorial capital of Montana, had open arms for people from Ennis and others, who later came out of the stricken area.
Mayor Allan Dudley and Sheriff Lloyd Brook led in arrangements to take care of evacuees. They opened the town to refugees and kept the switch open on the radio to gather and interpret the trickles of information and to coordinate official activity.
It was 3 a.m. when the wailing of a siren gave the first warning to the nearly 600 residents of the Ennis area that there was a threat to the town. Many of the families of the colorful town were in bed. Many others were up, still frightened by the earlier events in which their homes were rocked by the quake.
First Ennis Warning
Ed Taylor, peace officer in Ennis, gave the first warning to the town by prolonged sounding of the siren. Then the word to evacuate was passed by word of mouth.
Reluctant to leave entirely the area and their possessions, many of the community's citizens camped out on a hillside near the town from 3 a.m. Tuesday morning until they were permitted to return home Wednesday. One well-known Ennis man said, "I've been five years paying for my home. I just made the last payment yesterday." His feelings were easily understood.
Montana Highway Patrolmen were in the area early. They manned road blocks, and later acted as radio relay stations between the canyon slide area and Ennis.
Around 5 a.m. in Virginia City, word was received that two persons had been killed in the Wade Lake area. At that it was not definitely known that the deaths were related to the earthquake. Then reports began filtering in of a terrific avalanche in the canyon--an avalanche which neatly sliced away a part of a mountain. Huge boulders uprooted trees and ton after ton of rock and dirt cut away sight of the highway and river. The 90-million ton landslide below Hebgen Dam formed a dam in the Madison River.
Two of the three sons of Mr. and Mrs. E. H. Stryker, residents of San Mateo, Calif., who were slide victims at Wade Lake, brought the first news of the canyon catastrophe to Ennis. They were John 13, and Morgan, 8, who with Martin, 15, narrowly escaped death. Ten ton of rock buried their parents. The boys were sleeping in a tent not far away. After the slide, Martin stayed in the canyon to help in work of recovering his parents' bodies. John and Morgan were brought to Ennis, then taken to the home of Marshall Gilbert J. Evans where they were given comfort and aid.
The first outsider into the area between the enormous landslide and the threatened dam was Neil Howarth, supervisor of the Madison Forest. It was not too long after that Forest Service smokejumpers risked their lives jumping into the area in high winds and turbulent air. Forest Service Engineers studied the dam. Forestry foremen directed search parties for the dead. Their planes, and planes of the Highway Department and other services kept over the air constantly.
There is a part of Ennis which is higher than the townsite proper. In this area is located the Madison Valley Hospital and the high school. When news of the plight of hundreds of vacationers in the canyon became known, Mayor C. E. M. Bauer and councilmen of Ennis, working with forestry officials including Ernest Grambo of the regional office in Missoula, and Dr. Roland Losee of the Madison Valley Hospital, set up plans for care of the injured.
Dr. Losee and his wife, a registered nurse, and Mona Reid, another R.N., were flown into the canyon to render aid. It was not long after their return that the first patients began arriving. They were flown in by helicopter. From that time on the hospital was the scene of quiet, efficient care of the injured. The high school was set up as an emergency receiving station, but fortunately the emergency was not needed.
Then the bodies of the victims of the slide began arriving. It was then that the full impact of the tragedy of Madison Canyon was realized.
[Montana Standard; August 23, 1959]


RED CROSS THERE

The Red Cross went into action fast. Field workers were in Ennis Tuesday and were also at West Yellowstone where clothing was provided for refugees from the disaster area. The Red Cross cooperated to the fullest extent possible in answering a multitude of calls and telegrams from worried relatives of persons believed in the area. These communications came from all parts of the nation.
[Montana Standard; August 23, 1959]


T & T DID GOOD JOB

Praise from officials, newsmen, tourists and all others having need of telephone service from Ennis, Virginia City and West Yellowstone was given the Mountain States Telephone and Telegraph Co. The service was excellent. Operators in Butte, Helena and Bozeman were most efficient and courteous despite the pressure.
[Montana Standard; August 23, 1959]



AMAZING COOPERATION IN TRAGEDY SIGNIFICANT

By Ken Lewis
What happens after disaster strikes?
An earthquake hits: mountains crumble, hundreds of people trapped, many killed, more injured, a dam might burst and wipe out a city.
What's the next step? Who takes charge--makes the decisions?
The answer in the Montana disaster probably was no one. Or could it have been everyone.
No one asked, "should I do this?" There were many jobs to be done and the people did them.
And there were few conflicts, little confusion.
A radio operator in Ennis was told two relay stations had been set up to give word if the dam broke. Some time later the operator said:
"I've been thinking. What do I do if a radio message says high water is coming?--yell out the window, or turn off the radio and run for high ground?" A system of warning signals was then worked out.
But confusions were minor.
The significance was the amazing cooperation between the many local organizations; the heroic work of hundreds of volunteers, and the lack of a central agency.
Was it because the disaster workers were Montanans, accustomed to acting on their own?
[Montana Standard; August 23, 1959]


MADISON SLIDE WOULD OVERFLOW BERKELEY PIT

Ninety million tons of rock is a lot of rock. But just how can it be visualized?
Well, it would fill a huge open pit--the Berkeley in Butte--and there would be several million tons left over.
Earth moved from the Berkeley is estimated at 85 million tons while engineers believe at least 90 million have crumbled off the mountain in the Madison Canyon below Hebgen Lake.
The rocks in the slide range from the size of a man's head to the size of a house. Engineers believe it is unlikely the slide will ever be removed. They believe the road will be constructed over its top and the river will be allowed to make its own channel.
The newly created lake will probably be permanent and its newly created name, "Lord's Lake," will probably stick.
[Montana Standard; August 23, 1959]



DAM EMPLOYEE EXPLAINS 'O.K.--S.O.S.'

George Hungerford, Montana Power Co. employee at Hebgen dam, has come up with the answer to the question, "What did 'O.K.--S.O.S.' mean?"
That was the question worrying plane pilots who were checking damage to Hebgen dam early Tuesday morning, following the earthquake. A picture of the two messages was carried in The Montana Standard Friday morning. Hungerford received a copy of the paper. He tells this story:
"About daybreak a plane flew over. The pilot dropped a message asking if the dam was O.K. I used lime to spell out the letters 'O.K.' Later in the morning, when the injured from the landslide started coming into the dam and I realized the need for immediate aid, I used lime to spell out the letters 'S.O.S.' Under the stress of the emergency I forgot to erase the 'O.K.'
"Guess a fellow can't think of everything under circumstances such as we were experiencing. Anyhow, that's the answer to what 'O.K.--S.O.S.' meant."
[Montana Standard; August 24, 1959]


JUST DROPPED IN

WEST YELLOWSTONE (UPI)--Smokejumper Bob Nicols, who parachuted into the earthquake area to aid victims, was showing his elaborate jumping gear at a meeting of state and federal officials.
He was asked: What was the first thing said to you by the survivors when you jumped?
"Well," he replied, "a guy comes up to me and says, 'Are you all right?'"
[Montana Standard; August 24, 1959]


QUAKE 'FEAR' LIST CUT TO ABOUT 39

WEST YELLOWSTONE, Mont. (AP)--A list of persons about whom relatives have expressed concern since the earthquake in southwest Montana last week was made public by the Red Cross Monday--and almost immediately many of the people were located alive and well.
There was no such information, however, about some of those unreported.
The list contained 88 names when it was issued, but within a few hours it was trimmed to about 39.
Typical were these cases:
Milford Kellogg, an employee of the Atomic Energy Commission living at Damascus, Md., checked into a convention at Boulder, Colo., where he was a delegate.
Friends in Pendleton, Ore., heard from the Oliver Calhoun family, named on the list, saying they never did go to the quake area. Similar word was received from the Rev. Alfred D. Enns, his wife and two sons, of Portland, Ore.
Fellow employees of Lloyd Webster at Santa Rosa, Calif., got a postcard from him saying, "It sure was some quake." The card was mailed last Tuesday, the day after the quake.
[Montana Standard; August 25, 1959]


MADISON TOWNS SEEK TRAVELERS

ENNIS--Businessmen of Ennis and Virginia City, hit hard by the lack of customers during the height of the tourist season because of last week's earthquake, met Monday to organize plans for informing the public that the area is safe and a desirable vacation spot.
"The fishing is the best I've ever seen and I've been here 47 years," J. Hal Pasley, Ennis auto dealer and civic leader, said.
"With all the rumors spreading that Madison River is dry and the roads are closed, people are canceling their plans to come here.
"The truth of the situation is that the rivers and roads and everything are normal except the lack of tourists," Pasley said.
He reported Highway 287 and other roads connecting Ennis and Virginia City with Yellowstone National Park are open and in excellent condition. Only one 17-mile strip on the Reynolds road about 40 miles from Ennis is a gravel-topped detour around the mountain slide area, but it has been graded and is in good condition, Pasley said.
"And that drive will be of interest to vacationers because from it they can view the disaster and slide area without danger and without entering safety restricted areas," he said.
"The water is low in Madison River, but it is clear and the fish are abundant," Pasley reported.
[Montana Standard; August 25, 1959]


DOG, HAPPY TO SEE SOMEONE, FOUND IN QUAKE REGION

WEST YELLOWSTONE, Mont. (AP)--A small, brown dog, described by rangers as "very hungry and very happy to see someone," was found in the southwestern Montana earthquake area.
The dog, who appears to be mostly cocker spaniel, looks like a child's pet.
Rangers feel the animal, about 18 inches high, belonged to someone in the quake area.
He is being cared for at a Forest Service ranger station.
[Montana Standard; August 25, 1959]



METCALF ASKS SBA FOR WORKER IN EARTHQUAKE AREA

HELENA (AP)--Rep. Lee Metcalf (D Mont.) Monday asked the Small Business Administration to send a representative into the area.
Metcalf said he hopes the SBA will be able to authorize long-term loans to restore business establishments and aid in reconstruction there.
"The 90 or more motels and dude ranches in the West Yellowstone area represent a multimillion dollar industry which must be restored to productivity or the Montana economy will be disastrously hurt," Metcalf said.
[Montana Standard; August 25, 1959]


ENGINEERS STUDY QUAKE LAKE FOR FLOOD THREAT

WEST YELLOWSTONE, Mont. (AP)--Army Engineers attacked a fallen mountainside Monday in a race to prevent a possible new disaster stemming from the southwest Montana earthquake of one week ago.
The key to the danger is Quake Lake, a swelling reservoir formed when the side of an 8,000 foot mountain was sheared off and sent crashing through a campground into the Madison River below. The 50 million tons of rock and earth blocked the river seven miles below Hebgen Dam.
The question is whether the natural dam will hold back waters which are feeding into the newly formed lake at the rate of 2,000 to 3,000 acre-feet a day.
Wendell E. Johnson, chief of the Missouri River Division's engineering section at Omaha, estimated the water will crest at the natural dam in from 20 to 30 days.
He estimated the dam plugging the valley ranges from 150 to 400 feet in depth and is a mile long. Water behind it already is about 80 feet deep.
The engineers were sent here to assess the situation and determine a solution if possible to end the potential flood threat. They worked in shifts around the clock.
Two more popular suggestions are to make a permanent dam of the slide, with gates to permit regulated runoff, or to cut a channel through the slide.
Johnson estimated the capacity of Quake Lake at 40,000 to 50,000 acre-feet.
Hebgen Dam, itself damaged by the earth shocks last week, holds back more than 300,000 acre feet. Engineers are watching it closely for further damage.
The nearest town is Ennis, Mont., whose 600 residents were evacuated briefly after the original quakes. Ennis is 45 miles downstream from the slide area.
[Montana Standard; August 25, 1959]


EARTHQUAKE LAKE TO BE MAJOR ATTRACTION
Biggest Landslide In The World


Curiosity seekers are barred from the Madison valley quake area for the time being. But we freely predict that it will become one of the nation's foremost tourist attractions once order is restored.
On display will be a dam of major proportions which was built in the flutter of an eyelid.
It will be the strangest of all dams. Most likely it is the last resting place of unnumbered persons.
A lake which will be about one-third the size of Hebgen dam, just above it, is being formed. It is estimated that the new lake will hold about 100,000 acre feet of water. Its greatest depth will be about 150 feet. It will be about seven miles long.
The dam itself is of enormous proportions.
It stretches 4,400 feet along the bed of the Madison river. It is almost exactly a mile wide in the other direction.
It is estimated that about 90 million tons of material including earth, rocks, and trees swept down into the Madison valley when an earthquake rocked the area a week ago. In its path was a popular camping area, and in the camp was an unknown number of people. Perhaps the exact number will forever remain a mystery.
A major road repair job will have to be done in the area.
The roads for miles around will have to be entirely rebuilt. They may also have to be entirely re-routed.
Perhaps the work will have to wait until it is established that this series of quakes have subsided. When a repair job was started inside Yellowstone Park a group of workmen narrowly missed being caught in another landslide set in motion by a temblor.
This was one major disaster which did not immediately attract the curious. Instead it repelled them.
Yellowstone Park visitors immediately slumped from an average of 18,000 a day to between ten and eleven thousand.
The Park was well on its way to a new record when the earthquake struck. If attendance had kept up, Superintendent Lemuel Garrison had predicted that 1,600,000 people would have passed through the Park by closing time.
There will be a new attraction next year, a great lake caused by a landslide.
And it may turn out to have been the largest landslide of modern times, or, in other words, the largest landslide in the world.
Nobody will have any sort of a claim to fame without having seen this eighth wonder of the world.
[Montana Standard; August 25, 1959]


Return to Montana Standard Newspaper Articles Summary.

Return 1959 Hebgen Lake, MT Earthquake Summary.







University of Utah Seismograph Stations  «»   115 South 1460 East, Room 211 FASB
Salt Lake City, Utah 84112-0111  «»   Phone 801-581-6274  «»  Fax 801-585-5585
E-mail UUSS!