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What Happened In Oklahoma In 1947 Is Terrifying And Tragic

On April 9, 1947, the worst natural disaster to ever strike within the borders of the state of Oklahoma happened near Woodward. It came without warning, killing 185 (116 in Oklahoma) and injuring over 1,000. The twister that wreaked havoc on Woodward first touched down near Canadian, Texas. Its base measured 2 miles across, and it maintained that killer size for six hours as it traveled from Texas to Oklahoma to Kansas. The tornado leveled 100 city blocks with wind speeds ranging from 225 to 440 mph. Scenes of death from the F5 tornado were everywhere and Woodward was left in ruins with over 1,000 homes and businesses destroyed. Here is the destruction it left in its path:

It makes us grateful for the advancements in tornado warnings and sirens. The first official tornado forecast – and tornado warning – was made by United States Air Force Capt. (later Col.) Robert C. Miller and Major Ernest Fawbush, on March 25, 1948.

Ashley
Ashley has lived in Oklahoma for 25 years and is the Oklahoma staff writer for onlyinyourstate.com