From Ohio History Central
This photograph shows an aerial view of residences in Xenia, Ohio, on April 4, 1974, the day after a tornado swept through the city. Visible are shattered houses, scattered debris, streets, and a few vehicles. The tornado super-outbreak of April 3-4, 1974, resulted in 148 tornadoes in 13 states. The Xenia tornado caused the most deaths of any tornado in the outbreak. The tornado touched down at 4:30 p.m. nine miles southwest of Xenia and entered the city about ten minutes later. It continued northeastward on a path of 32 miles through Xenia and Wilberforce into Clark County. The tornado killed 32 people from Xenia to Wilberforce. About half of the buildings in the city of 27,000 were damaged, and 300 homes destroyed. Nine Xenia churches were destroyed, as were seven of the twelve schools in the city. Fortunately, the tornado occurred an hour after classes had been dismissed. The roof and windows were blown from the Greene County Courthouse. A train passing through Xenia was struck by the tornado and 7 of the 47 cars were blown over, resulting in the blockage of Main Street. More than 1,300 people were treated for injuries at Green Memorial Hospital. Restaurants that were not destroyed handed out thousands of free meals to residents and rescue workers in Xenia. Convoys of generators, floodlights, bulldozers, and dump trucks arrived overnight from nearby Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. The tornado also struck Wilberforce University and Central State University, destroying many buildings and injuring several people on each campus.
Ohio Historical Society SC 73. Collection: Xenia, Ohio, Tornado, 1974
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