Baby Bed Frame

Remnant of 1927 Rocksprings tornado

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On April 12, 1927, one of the deadliest tornadoes in Texas history devastated Rocksprings, a small Hill Country town of about 800 people. It leveled most of the town in five minutes, killing 74 people, injuring more than 200, and causing an estimated $1.2 million in property damage. 

The category F5 tornado touched down three miles northwest of town that evening, growing to almost a mile wide with nearly 200 mile an hour winds by the time it crossed through Rocksprings. When the tornado was over, only eight of the small town’s roughly 250 buildings were left untouched. Debris littered the ground within city limits and for several miles outside of town. This twisted baby bed frame was found in a debris field two miles east of Rocksprings on the Sweeten Ranch.

In addition to tornado damage, torrential rain flooded rivers in the area and cut off Rocksprings. Soldiers on horseback from Fort Clark were the first to arrive that night with help. Residents from nearby Kerrville and Uvalde took all night to reach the town with aid, traversing washed out roads and pushing their cars through flood waters. Once medical personnel, like nurses from the Mexican Blue Cross charitable organization in San Antonio, accessed the town, a warehouse and The Balentine Hotel served as hospitals and the bank and courthouse were used as temporary morgues. Once roads were opened, the most seriously injured were taken to the railroad in Camp Wood and then by rail to San Antonio over 150 miles away.

Rather than abandon the destroyed town, Rocksprings’ residents stayed and rebuilt. Home and business owners invested more than $1 million in reconstructing their community. Ninety years later, hundreds of pieces of mangled debris can still be found on ranches east of town.

 

See this and other artifacts on the Interactive Texas Map

Baby Bed Frame Artifact from Rocksprings, TX
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