Piqua in Miami County, Ohio — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
The 1913 Flood
Sign of the Past
On Tuesday, March 25, 1913, the river once again broke free of its banks and swept through Piqua, Rossville and Shawnee. The flood waters crested at over one hundred eighty inches and unlike earlier floods took its toll in human lives as well as property. Within three days, fourteen men, women and children had been taken to a temporary morgue established in the print shop of W. F. Steiner at 424 North Main Street. The Great Flood resulted in a total of forty-four deaths. Isaac Kerns was the oldest fatality at age eighty and Charles Kenneth Croner was the youngest at only thirteen months. Family tragedies were common. Jacob and Grace Millhouse lost all three of their children, ages eight, six and three.
Stories of heroism and horror were recorded in the local press. The Piqua Leader Dispatch told the story of the Spencer family.
According to eye-witness accounts, Mrs. Spencer, her son Leon, and his wife had been trapped by the flood
The flood resulted in the destruction or serious damages to literally hundreds of homes, businesses and industries. Flood protection levees and dams were constructed by the Miami Conservancy District beginning in 1917. The Piqua levees were completed in 1922 using dirt dredged from the Great Miami River channel.
Erected 2008 by Flesh Public Library and French Oil Mill Machinery Company.
Location. 40° 8.81′ N, 84° 14.308′ W. Marker is in Piqua, Ohio, in Miami County. Marker can be reached from Water Street (U.S. 36), on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is in Lock Nine Riverfront Park,
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Lock Nine (within shouting distance of this marker); Lock Nine Riverfront Park (within shouting distance of this marker); Main Street (within shouting distance of this marker); Public Square (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Shawnee Bridge (about 500 feet away); Vice Admiral Stephen Clegg Rowan (about 700 feet away); The Village of Huntersville (about 700 feet away); Capt. Don Gentile (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Piqua.
More about this marker. Photos of the flooding appear on the left side of the marker. On the right is a time line showing some of the other major flood events.
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. The Flood of 1913.
Also see . . . The Flood of 1913. A collection of stories and photos from the flooding. (Submitted on March 28, 2009, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.)
Categories. • 20th Century • Disasters • Waterways & Vessels •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on March 23, 2009, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 2,242 times since then and 66 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on March 23, 2009, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. 3. submitted on January 23, 2011, by Dale K. Benington of Toledo, Ohio. 4. submitted on March 23, 2009, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.