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Caleb Hutslar

My aunt, uncle and cousins were caught in the Xenia Tornado. My father drove me from our home in Worthington, Ohio to see the aftermath. I was only 4 at the time. I happen to own an MP3 file I made of a cassette tape recording which is 3:53 minutes long (1.55MB), of the '74 tornado

I originally was asked by the Greene Co. Historical society to make a cassette of it from a large reel-to-reel tape which they own, so that it could be played on a regular cassette deck. The reel-to-reel tape was made by someone who had access to a duplicate of the original tape, so my recording is definitely not the original, though I was careful to preserve the sound quality of the reel-to-reel. Anyway, I was helping my aunt, who was a volunteer, to set up a twentieth anniversary Xenia Tornado display at the society building in 1994, and that's when they asked me to transfer the tape to cassette. I made one copy for them and one for myself. Just recently it occurred to me that I could make an MP3 out of it so that it could be listened to on the web, thus my original letter to you.

The recording was originally done by Mr. Brokeshoulder near the corner of W. Church St and N. West St near the Xenia Foundry in an apartment building that no longer exists due to it's destruction by the tornado. It is a copy of a cassette recording made by Mr. Brokeshoulder, a Native American resident of Xenia. Halfway through the recording, he lays down the microphone and heads for the basement, but on the recording is heard birds, a train whistle, and the approaching tornado, with what sounds to be debris flying off the house towards the end, and finally the recording gets cut off when the tornado presumably damages the microphone or the recorder or both.

Actual tape recording of the Xenia Tornado

NOTE: To get the real effect of the audio - use a set of earphones and turn the sound up - it makes you feel like your are there. You hear the train and what it sounds like to me is that the nails are being pulled out of the wood.....Homer Ramby





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