20 thoughts on “Rare Historic Letter About the Aftermath of the 1928 Hurricane, SLR/IRL

  1. Very sad to read the letter. I had heard about the hurricane carnage, but never knew it was that bad.

  2. I just found my Grandmothers diary from the 1928 storm a couple days ago. She lived in WPB at the time, which only had the wind to deal with during that storm. It’s interesting and very sad to say the least to read about what they all went through.

  3. What good are historically meaningful letters, diaries, photographs and personal accounts if they are not shared? You are doing a wonderful service with your blog that reaches so many caring and sensitive people.

  4. Thanks so much, I have a City of Stuart event that night.  Eula R Clarke, Esq.  Law Offices of Eula R. Clarke, P.A.  615 SW St. Lucie Crescent Suite 105  Stuart, Florida 34994  Phone: (772)220-3324 Fax: (772)220-1805  Email: eulaclarkelaw@yahoo.com  Statement of Confidentiality: The contents of this e-mail message and any attachments are confidential and are intended solely for addressee. The information may also be legally privileged. This transmission is sent in trust, for the sole purpose of delivery to the intended recipient. If you have received this transmission in error, any use, reproduction or dissemination of this transmission is strictly prohibited. If you are not the intended recipient, please immediately notify the sender by reply e-mail or phone and delete this message and its attachments, if any.

    From: Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch To: eulaclarkelaw@yahoo.com Sent: Tuesday, May 16, 2017 10:15 AM Subject: [New post] Rare Historic Letter About the Aftermath of the 1928 Hurricane, SLR/IRL #yiv2558471498 a:hover {color:red;}#yiv2558471498 a {text-decoration:none;color:#0088cc;}#yiv2558471498 a.yiv2558471498primaryactionlink:link, #yiv2558471498 a.yiv2558471498primaryactionlink:visited {background-color:#2585B2;color:#fff;}#yiv2558471498 a.yiv2558471498primaryactionlink:hover, #yiv2558471498 a.yiv2558471498primaryactionlink:active {background-color:#11729E;color:#fff;}#yiv2558471498 WordPress.com | Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch posted: ” Today I am sharing a very moving and disturbing historic letter written in the days following the hurricane that killed thousands of migrant workers and pioneer farmers south of Lake Okeechobee on September 16th, 1928. It is not an easy lett” | |

  5. Life can be terrible. I have no idea how anyone survives catastrophic events like these and others like war; many do not. Unless it’s something you’ve lived through yourself, I don’t believe we can even imagine the sheer force of will and spirit it takes to exist at times like this. Perhaps we survive because there is no other good choice but to try, I don’t know? I think about things like the Holocaust and family members who were there. How?

    1. It is such a question Erza. The Holocaust …the great hurricanes….and so many other horrors people have endured. I think the resiliency of the human spirit may be our best offering. So good to hear from you Erza. All the best.

  6. Wow, Jacqui. What a precious piece of history to have. I’ve read Killer ‘Cane by Robert Mykle which gave a gripping account of the 1928 storm, but your letter has a much more personal feeling. Having lost our home in Homestead during Hurricane Andrew, I’m fascinated reading about other storms and how people survived. Category 5: The 1935 Labor Day Hurricane by Thomas Knowles is a powerful account of the families in the Florida Keys. It really focused on the personal lives of those impacted by that storm. I’m forever in awe of the strength and resilience of the early pioneers of our state.

    1. Tara thanks so much for you words. Awful that you lost your home in Homestead during Hurricane Andrew… I have met some others now here in Stuart after that destructive hurricane. I have read Mykle’s book, very gripping, but I have not read Thomas Knowles account of the 1935 Storm. I will order it. So good to hear from you my friend. 🙂 Jacqui

  7. Sad but interesting letter. The writer must have been soldier, brought in from outside the area. He mentions standing guard duty. The storm came through on Friday. His letter is dated Tuesday night. The next morning made it four days after the the storm passed.
    A couple of months ago, my wife and I visited the Museum in Belle Glade. We were shown around the exhibits by, I assume, the same young college student from West Palm that worked with you.

    1. Dear Nick, great insights. Thank you so much for commenting. Yes, I anyway know nothing about the writer. The note accompanying the letter shared with my mother from Mrs Wall also did not mention any details about the writer of the letter. Just that it was from a person who wrote after the 1928 Hurricane. The initials may eventually yield some clues and of course we can see he signed the letter, “Dick.” Glad you were able to visit the museum and meet Kassa. Museum of the Glades is fascinating.

  8. Do you know if the residents knew the breach was a possibility? Were they led to believe they were safe or was the dike untested? It’s so tragic. What are the possibilities of a breach happening again.

    1. The “dike” at that time was a simple earthen wall.The lake would expand and contract with the rainy season as it had for thousands of years. The people were aware of this but from what I have read they did not understand what could happen really. Most were from other parts of the US. There was no hurricane warning system. They were working so hard —this was the focus. Communications were minimal and slow. I do think to it was worst as far as #s of dead for the migrant worker families that were separated due to segregation and lived further away from the “center of town.” I have read they had NO warning. In Their Eyes Were Watching God, by Zora Neale Hurston this story is told. I recall reading when teaching middle school. Brutal. I believe about 2/3 of the dead were black migrant workers. A tragedy for all.

  9. Facebook Comments:

    Colleen Castille
    7 hrs ·
    Well, it is certainly timely as we get close to Hurricane Season, Thanks Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch for sharing.

    Tara Powers:
    Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch generously shared this letter written in the aftermath of the 1928 Hurricane that slammed into the communities surrounding the southern shore of Lake Okeechobee. How lucky we are today to have days of warning to prepare or evacuate. These poor souls were helpless against the wall of water that blew out of the lake.

    Michael Conner Living on the shoreline of that Lake is still a risk. Talked to a good friend in town who claims that despite hurricane evacuation orders for the Southwest Florida coast as Wilma approached as a Cat 3, not one person was ordered to evacuate from the Glades counties as Wilma passed directly over the area. Why not? Because it was “only” a Cat 2 by that point? And remember that Lloyds of London assesses the dike as a high risk to human life at present. And frankly, many engineers feel that even a “fixed dike” will still be only a 2 on a 5 scale (with 5 being the safest) barrier.

    Add to that the Ranking of most dangerous places for a hurricane strike in the United States, by the international hurricane research center, at FIU.

    New Orleans remains number 1, with Lake O number 2! Followed by the Florida Keys, coastal Miss, Miami and so on.

    Running discussion:
    74 Andy Fairbanks, Stephen G. Leighton and 72 others
    Paula Raubfogel Follweiler
    Paula Raubfogel Follweiler Wow. Heartbreaker of a letter.
    Like · Reply · 1 · 19 hrs
    Guy Calvert
    Guy Calvert Powerful historic artifact
    Like · Reply · 2 · 19 hrs
    Stephanie Holder
    Stephanie Holder Thank you for keeping such wonderful historic artifacts. May our future generations do the same
    Like · Reply · 3 · 19 hrs
    Sarah Gerring Feeney
    Sarah Gerring Feeney Thanks for sharing. I am a lover of history.
    Like · Reply · 1 · 19 hrs · Edited
    Shirley Parker
    Shirley Parker Just amazing and how awful it must have been with no warning, can’t imagine what they went through. Thank you so much for sharing.
    Like · Reply · 1 · 17 hrs
    Linda Schilling Mitchell
    Linda Schilling Mitchell A tragedy beyond imagination.
    That letter is a treasure
    Like · Reply · 1 · 17 hrs
    Rebecca Fatzinger
    Rebecca Fatzinger wow…
    Like · Reply · 1 · 17 hrs
    Michael Ramer
    Michael Ramer Amazing Jacqui!!! Thanks for sharing that with us✌
    Like · Reply · 1 · 16 hrs
    Irene Nethery Gomes
    Irene Nethery Gomes Thank you for sharing a piece of history not to be forgotten. 🙁
    Like · Reply · 1 · 16 hrs
    Tara Powers
    Tara Powers Thanks for sharing, Jacqui!
    Like · Reply · 1 · 16 hrs
    Colleen Kane-Vukovich
    Colleen Kane-Vukovich How horrific that must have been. Thank you for sharing Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch! Sure makes our problems today seem small in comparison.
    Like · Reply · 1 · 16 hrs
    Jennifer Esler
    Jennifer Esler Wow, thanks for sharing.
    Like · Reply · 1 · 16 hrs
    Kristine Smith White
    Kristine Smith White Thank you for sharing, very sad.
    Like · Reply · 1 · 16 hrs
    Nicole Lebel
    Nicole Lebel Wow. Very interesting.
    Like · Reply · 1 · 16 hrs
    Lori Ann Kaleda Largent
    Lori Ann Kaleda Largent Wow, what a fantastic find. Awesome Reading
    Like · Reply · 2 · 15 hrs
    Michelle Conner
    Michelle Conner Wow, I can not even begin to imagine the horror. Thanks Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch
    Like · Reply · 1 · 15 hrs
    Cindy L. Satur
    Cindy L. Satur · Friends with Mike Crary and 23 others
    Wow, thanks for sharing. Very cool find.
    Like · Reply · 1 · 14 hrs
    Margie Murphy Glass
    Margie Murphy Glass Amazing story😯😯😞😞Thank you Jacqui!❤
    Like · Reply · 1 · 13 hrs
    Arlene Bristow Brown
    Arlene Bristow Brown Thanks for sharing Jacqui… goodread
    Like · Reply · 1 · 13 hrs
    Lois Genuario
    Lois Genuario · 8 mutual friends
    Wow how tragic. What a great find this letter is, thank you
    Like · Reply · 1 · 11 hrs
    Linda Aileen Miller
    Linda Aileen Miller Jacqui my mom was 5 yrs old at the time of the ’28 Hurricane. She lived in West Palm Beach. Whenever any hurricane subject would come up she would get this distant, detached look on her face and then she would literally ‘shiver’ as she said ‘I remember the ’28 Hurricane’. Then she would look really sad. During the past four years, as you & I fought as River Warriors to Save Our Rivers & convince our government to go forward with the EAA project Mom & I would often watch a Rally or peaceful protest on the news. She would turn to me, looking concerned and say “They can’t let that dam break again…they cant!”
    She and many others have carried that fear for a long time.
    Like · Reply · 1 · 11 hrs
    Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch
    Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch Linda wow, I appreciate your sharing that personal story. These are the ones that we never forget.
    Like · Reply · 10 hrs
    Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch
    Write a reply…

    Fred Mars
    Fred Mars I honestly have to say that you are the only Republican that I have ANY respect for.
    Like · Reply · 2 · 11 hrs
    Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch
    Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch Ha!
    Like · Reply · 1 · 10 hrs
    Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch

    Write a reply…

    Louise Kowitch
    Louise Kowitch Great historical sleuthing.
    Like · Reply · 2 · 10 hrs
    Diane Balogh Kimes
    Diane Balogh Kimes If you haven’t already read it, put Eliot Kleinberg’s Black Cloud on your list of summer reading about the account of the Hurricane of 1928 and its effects on families of WPB and the Lake. It’s riveting and reads like fiction! Kleinberg, a writer of the PB Post wrote it in 2003.
    Like · Reply · 1 · 9 hrs

    Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch replied · 1 Reply
    George Brock Scott
    George Brock Scott Honored to see your folks at my dad’s service on Saturday. I hope he is better now. With Amy ScottNancy MillarPortia ScottLoring Jean Scott Freeman
    Like · Reply · 1 · 8 hrs

    Chris Shultz replied · 3 Replies · 7 hrs
    Karlette Peck
    Karlette Peck Jacqui-this is amazing history. Thanks to you am your Mom for sharing this! Is Miss Wall still with us?
    Like · Reply · 1 · 7 hrs
    Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch
    Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch Thank you Karlette Peck!
    Like · Reply · Just now
    Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch

    Write a reply…

  10. I would have found this letter very interesting as I was doing research on my book “Killer ‘cane: The deadly Hurricane of 1928.” 1928 hurricane I interviewed some 40 survivors of the 1928 hurricane and Killer ‘cane is their story. Killer ‘cane was the first book, except for Lawrence Wills, written in 74 years. It’s called it the forgotten hurricane and survivors still call it the ’28 Storm.

    1. Of course sir, I thought of your work! I did make the time to find the info. to share with you. I do apologize. So much to do. Thank you for seeing and maybe if you write another book it can be included. Respectfully, Jacqui TL

Leave a Reply