American Disasters - Great Ohio Disasters

Reviewed Resources for Students and Teachers 


Great American Disasters State by State

Alabama  - Alaska  - Arizona  - Arkansas  - California  - Colorado  - Connecticut  - Delaware  - Florida  - Georgia  - Hawaii  - Idaho  - Illinois  - Indiana  - Iowa  - Kansas  - Kentucky  - Louisiana  - Maine  - Maryland  - Massachusetts  - Michigan  - Minnesota  - Mississippi  - Missouri  - Montana  - Nebraska  - Nevada  - New Hampshire  - New Jersey  - New Mexico  - New York  - North Carolina  - North Dakota  - Ohio  - Oklahoma  - Oregon  - Pennsylvania  - Rhode Island  - South Carolina  - South Dakota  - Tennessee  - Texas  - Utah  - Vermont  - Virginia  - Washington - West Virginia  - Wisconsin  - Wyoming 


These pages do not begin to cover all the disasters that have taken place in every state.  There is also controversy over what constitutes and defines a "great" disaster from any other kind.  All disasters are "great" to those directly involved in them.

So these pages are a mix of "great" and "not so great" disasters.  The major disasters are all covered in the larger sites I have linked to as resources and the rest are related items of interest.

For example, you might not find a particular major disaster on this list, but it may be included in a site such as, which is one of the resources found here.

This is an excellent place to begin your research.  The links found here lead to an ever widening amount of information.  Good luck in your efforts.

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Ashtabula, OH Train Wreck - Bridge Disaster __ "...It is estimated that there were one hundred and seventy-five passengers on the train, at least one third of whom were killed, burned to death or frozen. " A good overview. - From -

Cambridge, OH Shenandoah Dirigible Wreck, Sept 1925 __ " Giant Dirigible Struggles Vainly – Control Car Lost, Ship Soars Through Clouds, Splits, Falls" Original news articles and links to additional resources. - From J. R. MacSwords/ - 

Cleveland East Ohio Gas Explosion __ "Cleveland East Ohio Gas Explosion occurred on the afternoon of Friday, October 20, 1944. The resulting gas leak, explosion and fires killed 130 people and destroyed a one square mile area on Cleveland, Ohio's east side." an encyclopedic article. - From wikipedia -

Cleveland, OH Clinic Explosion and Fire, May 1929 __ "Poison gas and two explosions which followed burning of X-ray films in the Cleveland clinic today claimed nearly 100 lives. Tonight there were 98 known dead and hospital authorities worked desperately to administer artificial respiration to 43 others who were overcome." Original news articles and links to related material. - From Stu Beitler/ -,-oh-clinic-explosion-fire,-may-1929

Collinwood, OH Terrible School Fire, Mar 1908 __ "...In a fire that may have been incendiary between 160 and 170 children lost their lives this morning when Lake View School, in the suburb of Collinwood, burned." Original news articles and links to additional material. - From -,-oh-terrible-school-fire,-mar-1908

Collinwood School Fire __ "The Collinwood School Fire (also known as the Lake View School Fire) of Ash Wednesday, March 4, 1908 was one of the deadliest disasters of its type in the United States during its era." An encyclopedic article. - illustrated - from wikipedia -

Doodlebug Train Disaster __ "July 31, 1940 6:00PM at Front Street and Hudson Drive. Gasoline-Electrical shuttle train met head on with a freight train and in one instant 350 gallons of fuel exploded all over everything. 43 lives lost and many more were affected forever." Now you can read the 'long' description. - illustrated - From -

FEMA: Ohio State Disaster History __ Ohio Disaster History. Major Disaster Declarations. Click on the 'disaster #' on the right side of the list to access detailed information including images and more. - illustrated - From FEMA - 

Golden Age Nursing Home Fire __ "The Golden Age Nursing Home Fire took place in the pre-dawn hours of November 23, 1963 near Fitchville, Ohio, USA, killing 63 elderly people. The disaster has largely been forgotten since it came in the immediate aftermath of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy,..." An encyclopedic article. - From wikipedia -

Historic Disasters: Ohio Disasters __ You will find a list of Ohio disasters. Each list entry is a live link to additional information. - From - 

Lakeview Elementary School Fire __ "On March 4, 1908, A fire swept though the Lakeview Elementary School in Collinwood, Ohio. At 9:30 AM the 366 children were just settling in and in less than 30 minutes 172 students and 2 teachers would be dead." A brief overview and what the results were. - From -

Ohio Disasters Floods, Fires, Tornadoes, Mine Explosions and more __ Ohio Disasters. Events that touched our ancestor's lives: Ohio floods, fires, tornadoes, hurricanes, storms, mining accidents, explosions, more. Many click to read articles and resources. - illustrated - From -

Ohio Tornadoes __ "Ohio tornadoes from 1950 to 1995, listed by County." - From -

Millfield Mine Disaster __ "“They are all dead!” Thus did “Andy” Ginnan, mine rescue worker, call to Ohio Mine Inspector E. W. Smith and to the group of a dozen or more grim, grief-stricken Athens county miners who stood silently around the airshaft of Sunday Creek Coal Company Mine No.6 at Millfield." A full account of this tragedy. - From -  

Super Outbreak __ "The Super Outbreak is the largest tornado outbreak on record. From April 3 to April 4, 1974, there were 148 tornadoes confirmed in 13 US states and one Canadian province: Ontario, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia and New York." An encyclopedic article. - illustrated - From wikipedia -

TWA Flight 553 __ "TWA Flight 553, registration N1063T, was a Douglas DC-9-15 enroute from Pittsburgh to Dayton that collided in mid-air with a Beechcraft Baron over Urbana, Ohio on March 9, 1967. All 21 passengers, and four crew members, were killed, along with the pilot of the Beechcraft." an encyclopedic entry with links to related material. - From wikipedia -

Xenia Tornado __ A first hand account and photos of the Xenia, Ohio tornado of 1974. - illustrated - From - 



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