Wednesday, January 27, 2010

WSJ on the World's Largest Hand Dug Well

In each edition, the Wall Street Journal runs a "human interest" story on its front page below the fold. About once a year, usually in spring, the paper runs a story about an attraction in Kansas. It looks like today's story is going to be about the World's Largest Hand Dug Well in Greensburg.  The online link is here. (subscription may be required)  UPDATE:  Just went out to the driveway and picked up my WSJ and it is indeed today's human interest story.

The town is recovering from an F-5 tornado that destroyed 95% of the city on May 4, 2007. The story discusses a proposal to build an upgraded well museum.

I write about Greensburg in Warnings because of the 200+ lives saved by the meteorological profession that horrible May night. Plus, I've always liked Greensburg.

It seems that just about every Midwest kid visited the well at one time or another growing up. My family visited on the way to our first-ever vacation to Colorado.  And, here is a photo of my bride-to-be, age 7, at the well. There was always a quirky aspect to the well that I loved.

As the article points out, the museum was destroyed and the well itself was damaged. Only in Greensburg would you get a "decoration" like the one in front of what was left of the well a year after the storm. Photographer Katie Bay and I posed with the wire tornado.

This is what was left of the museum building (background) with the well structure in the foreground.

There was damage to the well itself because the extraordinary intensity of this tornado.

So, good luck Greensburg with the new museum fund raising effort! And, stop by the next time you are headed through town.

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