Avalanche!

Three persons were known to have been killed in an avalanche that buried 20 automobiles beneath tons of snow on Snoqualmie pass, 65 miles southeast of Seattle in the Cascade mountains. A rescue worker is shown searching a partially excavated machine for additional victims.

(Associated Press Photo)

Oshkosh Northwestern (Oshkosh, Wisconsin) Feb 25, 1936

Image from  Mining Artifacts & History – Colorado Mines [A wealth of great pictures and information]

Rescuers Free Miners Trapped By Snow Slide

Three Killed In Avalanche

OURAY, COLO. —  Twenty miners trapped in a tunnel of the famous Bird Camp gold mine by a snow avalanche were reached by a rescue party early todya. All were taken out safely.

The men had been imprisoned twelve hours while rescue workers form Ouray and the surrounding country dug through ten foot snow drifts. Three men were killed and one was injured critically when the avalanche roared down Devil’s Slide of Chicago Hill, smashing a bunk-house and closing the mouth of the tunnel.

All those killed were in the bunkhouse, crumpled beneath tons of snow. One body was recovered. The others probably will not be recovered until the spring thaws melt the snow.

The rescue workers found the twenty men in good condition, though suffering from cold, exposure, and hunger. Their rescuers had had to fight drifts blocking highways to reach the mine, before attacking the snow mountain blocking the tunnel.

While they dug, they heard the trapped men through the snow. Communication through the glazed, white walls had established that all were alive.

The dead were Mrs. Rose Israel, fifty, of Ridgway, Colo., the mine cook; Chappie Woods, mine foreman, and Ralph Clinger, blacksmith. Mrs. Israel’s crushed body was recovered.

James Dunn, mine superintendent, was injured critically. He lay for three hours under the debris of the bunk house before rescuers heard his calls for help and dug through the snow to free him. He was near a window of the wrecked and buried house. Otherwise, the rescuers might not have been able to reach him.

W.G. Funk, electrical engineer was standing beside Dunn just inside the door of the bunkhouse when the avalanche struck. He was buried in snow for more than an hour before he was rescued. He suffered no harm.

The Bird Camp Mine is one of the most famous diggings in the west. From it came the fortune of Tom Walsh, pioneer Colorado miner. Father of Mrs. Evalyn Walsh McLean, famous Washington publisher, and a United States Senator. At one time it yielded $5,000 a day in gold ore.

The mine had been worked for silver and copper before Walsh acquired it in 1896. He recognized its potential wealth in gold where other miners, accustomed to silver-lead carbonates of the Ouray country, would never have regarded the Camp Bird one as gold bearing. Walsh recognized gold in tellurium form in the dump piles of refuse from previous workings.

Times Herald (Olean, New York) Feb 25, 1936

 

Three Killed in Avalanche in New York

(Assoiciated Press)

West Point, N.Y., April 8. — Roaring down the face of Storm King mountain an avalanche of loosened rocks smashed three automobiles tonight, killing three persons and injuring three more.

A huge boulder struck the car driven by Otto Seilhelmer of East Patterson, N.Y., killing his wife and son, Otto, Jr., 8. Seilhelmer and his daughter, Geraldine, 18 months, suffered minor injuries.

From the wreckage of another car were dragged Mr. and Mrs. Lambert Sharknys of Brooklyn. Sharknly died of a fractured skull. His wife was less seriously hurt. Another boulder crashed into the rear seat of a third car, narrowly missing Dr. F.E. Lehman and Miss Agnes Wolz, both of Long Island.

Greeley Daily Tribune (Greeley, Colorado) Apr 9, 1934

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