A Social and Cultural History of the Great Pueblo Flood of 1921, Its Aftermath, and Its Legacy
Cohen, Jonathan A.
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CitationCohen, Jonathan A. 2020. A Social and Cultural History of the Great Pueblo Flood of 1921, Its Aftermath, and Its Legacy. Master's thesis, Harvard Extension School.
AbstractIn June of 1921, a devastating flood hit the city of Pueblo, Colorado. Though the flood’s physical devastation and story have been well documented, historians have never been able to accurately count the number of people who perished during the event, with low-end estimates of just under a hundred individuals while the highest estimates claim up to 1,500 deaths. This paper, while originally intending to indicate a more precise range of casualties, has concluded three important new findings regarding this event. First, archives of those who were reported missing in the local newspaper have been consolidated into a spreadsheet to form a list of over 600 individuals who were likely victims of the flood. To the author’s knowledge, no such list has previously been compiled. Second, many of those listed as missing had their physical addresses included, and these have been cross-referenced with Google Maps™ mapping service to paint a larger path of devastation than has been previously reported. Third, two of the communities that were reported to have widespread devastation from the flood make up very few of those reported as missing, leading to an assertion that the numbers of victims are very likely under-reported. While the reasons for this remain unclear, it does indicate a high likelihood that the Great Flood of 1921 in Pueblo was the most deadly in Colorado’s history, and perhaps one of the most deadly in United States’ history.
Citable link to this pagehttps://nrs.harvard.edu/URN-3:HUL.INSTREPOS:37364891