Above is a picture of the academy students recuing some of the residents of Logansport. Motor boats along with scores of Cadets arrive on nearly every
train from Culver and rescue thousands from flood zone. 1,100 people were rescued Wednesday (the 26th) from west side homes by boats and Cadets Many were
on roof tops when the Cadets arrived. Some had to cut holes into roofs to get to people in their attics. Victims shot revolvers into the air to get
In 1913 the Cadets of Culver Military went to the aided and rescue of the residents of Logansport, Cass, Indiana when the Eel River and the Wabash River
flooded the town. Bob Hartman provides the date:
On the night of March 25, 1913, the mayor of Logansport requested assistance in dealing with the huge flood that was ravaging his town....
and a description of the destruction was found also - On “Good Friday”, which fell on March 21st in 1913, the entire state experienced a continuous
windstorm. This was followed on Easter Sunday, the 23rd with a heavy rain that continued for three days, which caused the Wabash River to suddenly
rise. By Tuesday morning, March 25th the river was overflowing its banks. The water continued to rise for two more days until the entire business district
was inundated as far east as Pearl Street on E. Market. The Panhandle RR from its bridge at the mouth of the Eel to and including the round house and
shops, also the Wabash RR from its crossing on Berkeley Street east to Seventeenth Street and all the territory south to the Wabash River looked like one
The south side and the west side neighborhoods of Logansport was an inland sea. The water ran across 3rd and 4th Streets and down E. Market and E. Broadway
with a rapid current as the buildings obstructed the water so it co uldn’t spread out. At first wagons and drays were used to ha ul goods and people from the
flooded stores and houses, but soon the water rose to such a depth that only boats co uld navigate the streets, and the current was so rapid that it was
dangerous even for boats as they were hurled against light and telephone poles, buildings and trees.
In his book Arms and the Boy, Gignilliat described the incident:
The call for help came about midnight. The cutters, which are twenty-eight feet long, eight feet in beam and weigh three thousand pounds, were stored for
winter in the boathouses. Working by lantern light, cadets loaded these boats on flat cars, finishing the arduous task at 3 a.m.
Rations for the day were issued and the cadets who were to man the boats clambered into the caboose and the train p ulled into the darkness, feeling its
way over weakened bridges and Culver ts. It finally reached Logansport just as day was breaking.
The cadets skidded their boats off the cars and slid them down the streetcar tracks for a couple of blocks until they floated. They then manned their oars
and p ulled toward the sections in greatest distress near the banks of the river. The current grew more swift and, finally, in a great rushing swirl at a
street crossing, the first boat was dashed against a telegraph pole, smashing two of its heavy fourteen foot oars. Fortunately, extra oars had been
supplied. From then on ensued a hard all-day battle with swift currents and foaming eddies, dangerously complicated with wires and treetops. During the
afternoon they kept steadily on, although half blinded by a driving snowstorm and with hands so cold that they co uld with diffic ulty retain their grasp on
the oars. Women and children were tenderly helped down from their roofs and windows; the sick, the hungry and the cold, the aged and infirm, were put
into boats and taken to places of safety without one slip or mishap. By the end of the second evening fourteen hundred people had been taken from the
(flooded) district by these boys in their four cutters.
Then, securing the boats because the waters had receded too far to make it possible for them to get them back to the railroad, they marched by a long
detour back to the depot. By all the laws of nature, they sho uld have been exhausted, but they went their way with a swinging step, singing and
occasionally giving a school yell. Gignilliat credited the cadets’ success to their Culver military training and sense of social responsibility
The account of the "big wind" or storm of 1913 is as follows:
EASTER SUNDAY OF 1913 TRAGIC DAY IN HISTORY OF CALAMITIES; TORNADO STARTS IN MEXICO; ENDS IN
RECORD BREAKING FLOODS IN MIDDLE STATES; NATION GREAT IN POWER TO HELP; MILITARY AND NAVAL FORCES AS LIFE SAVERS.
Spring came to the earth in 1913 and the northern half of the United States was in the grip of a snow storm.
In some portions a blizzard wailed through the towns and cities and the hope of an early spring was blasted.
But nature had still greater surprises for the people of the United States and a few days after spring officially
was present the greatest tornado and rain and the greatest inland flood in the history of the country fell upon the people.
.....On Easter of 1913 the rains fell and weather wise persons looked at the skies.
All day the elements acted strangely. Late in the afternoon the tornado which gathered in the southwest,
probably starting in Mexico, raced north and east. It struck smaller villages and towns in Colorado and Nebraska.
It now is known that the wind played a queer trick. It appeared to hit the earth at one spot, bound into the clouds
and pass over miles of territory, leaving buildings and crops and people unharmed.
What forces decided that the tornado sho uld hit the earth at Omaha, one of the proudest cities of the nation, cannot be
known by men, but just at the city’s borders the winds came down and ripped a path through the thickly inhabited
portion, taking rich and poor before its relentless fury.
In the states farther east the storm manifested itself in rain. Never was the earth so drenched. The ground was frozen
and the waters rushed into the streams.
Telegraph lines were broken, railway trains stopped, bridges washed out and millions of people unaccustomed to seas or
lakes found their homes in the midst of raging waters.
...Later, Peru, Ind. was reported under water and currents relentless in their force swept through the streets. Columbus, Ohio, Logansport, Ind., Terre
Haute, Ind., which also was hit by the tornado, West Indianapolis, Marion, Ind., and a score of other communities were reported wholly or partly submerged.
All the customary activities of the people of Indiana and Ohio were abandoned. Railway service was abolished and trains with relief parties wandered about
from one division to another seeking an approach to the stricken cities.
Now and then the train wo uld reach the limit and then the rescuers wo uld unload the cars and take to wagons and automobiles, to rafts or boats. These
attempts to push on to the thousands marooned on roof tops and in trees were sometimes successf ul but more often a failure.
Not until Wednesday was the relief begun in a way that promised success. Life saving crews from the Ohio and Great Lakes were dispatched to the scene,
their boats, cutters and power vessels of light craft being hastily loaded upon flat cars. The naval reserves of lake and river towns were ordered into
the field and found service in the prairies and hill country far from the seas. The Culver Military Academy on Lake Maxinkuckee, Ind., where sons of
wealthy men are educated and taught military and naval practices, turned out its sturdy young men.
Boats housed for the winter were ha uled to the railways and the boys with their military instructors left their studies to engage in the battle with the
flood. In the swift currents and dangers of floating debris the training of the lads was shown to be of great service. They handled their cutters on the
Wabash river and the Eel river in such a way that hundreds of men, women and children were soon taken from the tops of their houses, from top floors of
office buildings and cared for in camps and other refuges. The Great Lakes Naval training station maintained at Lake Bluff, Ill., near Chicago by the
federal government was directed to send a crew and cutters to the flood district and the boys and their experienced officers were taken in all haste by
railway trains to the dreadf ul scene.
Nature on the night of Sunday, March 23, 1913 and the week following proved to modern men that they still are pigmies. Thousands of lives were taken and
millions of property destroyed in a few short hours and for days, homes were beneath the muddy waters from deforested hills.
Never before was the United States so smitten by a calamity, nor one so wide spread as that which began on Monday of the fatal
week. Omaha was the first large city to suffer. A tornado swept through the great metropolis wiping huts and mansions, factory
buildings and other business structures from the face of the earth, leaving only a mass of debris and thousands of homeless
people wandering about the hills, half clothed and suffering in the pitiless weather of that fatal night.
A the f ull accounting the Storm of 1913 with many pictures can be found here: TRAGIC STORY OF
DISASTER [pictures are before and after the text] By MARSHALL EVERETT ILLUSTRATED THROUGHOUT WITH PHOTOGRAPHS,
MAPS, DIAGRAMS AND DRAWlNGS (J. S. ZIEGLER COMPANY CHICAGO, ILLLNOIS, THIS BOOK IS COPYRIGHTED 1913
BY HENRY NEIL ALL RIGHTS RESERVED) and found here is the account of the
Military Boys part in the great storm of 1913.
An another account is found as: Story of the Great
Flood and Cyclone DISASTERS
America's Greatest Calamity EDITED by THOMAS H. RUSSELL, A. M., LL. D.
Author and Journalist Special Message of Spiritual Consolation Illustrated Throughout with Striking
Photographs Showing Rescuers at Work and Many Pathetic Scenes COPYRIGHT, 1913 by Thomas H. Morrison
The Flood of Logansport is mentioned as such:
Two-thirds of the city of Logansport was under water, some places to a depth of fifteen feet. There was only tne
death reported, but the property loss was great.
Business was at a standstill and the attention of the people was turned to the work of relief and rescue. Four
government life-saving boats, each manned by ten cadets from the Culver Military Academy, were sent to Logansport
by special train to aid in the rescue work. Naval boats from the United States training station at Chicago also
assisted in the work.
Three thousand people were rendered homeless by the flood, which followed a rapid rise in the St. Joseph River on
the night of March 25.
1913 - Saturday April 5, 1913 Vol. XVII Number 20:
The five hundred dollars appropriated by the Logansport council for the erection of a bronze memorial gate at Culver Military Academy in commemoration of
the valiant services of Culver officers and cadets in saving the lives of Logansport people during the great flood of last March, will, by the board of
public works, be sent to the officers of Culver academy, who will see that the work is done.
The plans for the memorial gate have been drawn and approved both by the board and the officers of the military academy.
Word comes from Culver that it is proposed, when the time of dedicating the memorial arrives, to have "Logansport Day," when the people of Logansport and
Culver will unite in a celebration that will bind the people of the two cities into perpetual friendship. The possibilities of such a memorial day are
wonderf ul and if carried out as suggested will be an event unique in the history of this part of Indiana.
Rochester Sentinel, Friday, September 19, 1913
October 13, 1913 Vol. XVIII No. 2 Vedette - Logansport Pay Tribute - Several wagons loads of brick were depostited at the west entrance to the academy
grounds last week, causing much spec ulation among the new men who had visions of a much talked of guardhouse. Investigation destroyed these fancies, and
he brick turned out to be the first installment of material for the new gate which the city of Logansport is to present to the academy in recognition of
the services of the cadets at the flood last year. The structure will be in the form of an arch of handsome design. Mayor fickle of Logansport called at
the academy not long ago to disuss plans for its construction with the superintendent.
November 1, 1913 Vol. XVIII No. 5 Vedette - Work on the New Gate - Work on the new gate being built by Logansport has been begun in earnest. the bricks
arrived some time ago. But the stone work only came in the last few days. On Tuesday workmen began removing sidewalks at the west end of the street, to
build the foundations. By the neat appearance of the cut stone the new gate will probably be a fine ornament to the academy grounds. It is hoped it will
be completed before the cold weather sets in.
1914 - As a thank-you and remembrance to the cadets services - Logansport donated the "Logansport Gates" to the academy and they were
dedicated., and here on this page too can be found an account to the "big wind" or storm of 1913.
1914 May 2 Vedette - Gate to be dedicated - The Logansprt gate will be formally dediated and presented to the academy and the inscription tablet will be
unveiled on may 20 acording to the plans now under way. Longansport will send probably 2000 persons to spend the day at the lake and to fraternice with
their former rescuers. Governor Ralston has been invited to be presnt, but is not able to make a definite acceptance. Further details for the day will
appear in the Vedette
1914 May 9 Vedette - Logansport Day - May 20 is the date fixed for the pilgrimage of 4,000 inhabitants of Logansport to Culver to take part in the ceremony
of dedicating the gate given by the people of logansport to commenmorate the valiant services rendered by the cadets at the time of the Logansport flood.
Two trains will furnish transportation and will arrive at the Bogardus switch about a.m. After leaving the train the people will proceed tot he gate where
a few short speeches will be made before the unveiling of the tablet. In the afternoon the reg ular military commencement sched ule will be followed. It has
been intimated that a surprise is in store for the survivors of the logansport expeditin, but nothing has been div ulged as to the nature of the surprise.
The five hundred dollars appropriated by the Logansport council for the erection of a
bronze memorial gate at Culver Military Academy in commemoration of the valiant services
of Culver officers and cadets in saving the lives of Logansport people during the great
flood of last March, will, by the board of public works, be sent to the officers of
Culver academy, who will see that the work is done.
The plans for the memorial gate have been drawn and approved both by the board and the
officers of the military academy.
Word comes from Culver that it is proposed, when the time of dedicating the
arrives, to have "Logansport Day," when the people of Logansport and Culver will unite
in a celebration that will bind the people of the two cities into perpetual friendship.
The possibilities of such a memorial day are wonderf ul and if carried out as suggested
will be an event unique in the history of this part of Indiana. - -
Rochester Sentinel, Friday, September 19, 1913
From the time of installation just a simple chain just hung between the pillars to keep the "gate" closed. In the early
2000's one of the classes presented reall iron gates for the Logansport Gates.
DISCLAIMER -- "Links to web sites that are not part of this website are provided for your convenience and do'
not imply any endorsement of the web sites or their contents."