On April 14, 1886 (4PM) the deadliest tornado in Minnesota history razed parts of St.Cloud and Sauk Rapids, leaving 72 dead and 213 injured. 11 members of a wedding party were killed including the bride and groom.
On that day, all the water leaped from the Mississippi near Sauk Rapids, sucked up by an 800-foot-wide tornado as it passed over.
- from Minnesota Weather Almanac, by Mark Seeley
May 9th, 1886
My dear Grand father and Maggie we received your kind letter and was glad to hear that you were all well as this leaves us the same we have just about done with the seeding we have 50 bushel of wheat in and 12 of barley and 25 of oats we have not started to put in our potatoes yet we have lots of work now we have 8 cows giving milk and 8 calvs to feed and we have one more to cave yet we have 6 big pigs and 7 small ones Pa was working in the round house part of the winter but he is out now he had to leave to put in the grain Alick went on the first of May to work at the fort he is going to run the steam pump that pumps the water out of red river into a tank and it is filtered to supply the barricks wher there is stationed about one hunedred soldiers we dont know whether he will stay any longer than a month we live about a mile and a half from the fort he came home to see us to day the man that was running the pump got a forlough for a month to go see his friends and he left Alick in his place he is getting 30 dollars a month and his board he likes to be there very well he has never been sick since last fall.
I suppose you saw in the paper about the cyclone that was in Minnesota it was about 300 miles from wher we live it caused great damage and lose of life the people are afraid here since that happened there never has been as bad a storm since we came as we seen in Beaverton the weather was very nice in Aprile but since May came in it has been very Cold buisness is rather dull here now the trace you sent was very nice Alick was sorry to hear about Mrs Hudsons truble but there are very few in this world that have not trouble of some kind
We be very lonesome without Alick he used to play on his fiddler he could play very nicely Willie play a little too
There was a big fire in Emerson the station was burnt down Alick was going to write a long time ago but he kept putting it off till he went and when he came home he told Ellen to write but she has a bad cold so I thought I would write
So I think I have told you all the news at present hoping to hear from yous oon as this leaves all well pleas excuse mistakes as I am in hurry
Write soon we all join ins ending our love to you and grand Pa hoping this will find you well