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SEVERAL business men, prominently connected with the relief movement in behalf of the cyclone sufferers, suggested that a book ought to be prepared giving a full history of the storm and its devastations, with a compilation of the many tragic and remarkable incidents connected therewith. Such a book, it was believed, would have a large circulation in all parts of the country, and supply a want that was manifest in the eager demand for -news about the great tornado. It was also proposed that a certain liberal percentage of the receipts from. the sales of the book should be donated to the relief fund, thus extending, material aid in that direction while satisfying the desire for an authentic and permanent record of the most destructive and frightful calamity of the century.

This volume is the result of the suggestion referred to. Ten per cent of the gross receipts will be assigned to the relief fund, to be used either for immediate necessities, or employed in assisting those who have lost their all in the destruction of their little homes, to re-establish themselves and make a new start in life, as the committees having these matters in charge may deem advisable.

The nom de plume of "Julian Curzon," as editor and compiler, will be recognized as that of one of the most brilliant and popular magazine writers of the, day, and his connection with the work is a sufficient guarantee of its accuracy and literary excellence. Mr. Curzon, however, claims no credit for the splendid descriptive matter that occurs in these pages; this in a very large degree is due to the brilliant staff writers of the

local press, whose articles have been collated and used as the basis of this work. But Mr. Curzon's active work in aid of the sufferers, his own personal experience and losses during the cyclone, and his connection with the various relief committees, made him acquainted with many singular and tragic incidents that have not been published elsewhere, and these are treated in his own brilliant and fascinating style.

The main description of the cyclone, its fury and its terrorinspiring horrors, is largely composed of that splendid and wonderfully brilliant report that appeared in "The Republic" the second day after the storm, which has attracted world-wide notice and comment as one of the finest examples of superb descriptive composition that has ever appeared in print.

The publishers of this work also desire to give due credit to the "Globe-Democrat," the "Post-Dispatch," the "Star," and the "Chronicle" for the use of material selected from their columns. In no other city could the press have displayed more energy, good taste, or literary ability in the handling of such an overwhelming calamity than was manifested by the great newspapers of St. Louis.

Our copyright is intended to protect the title and general form of the book, as well as a number of special photographic views that were taken for this work exclusively. The excellence of the views in general is due to the superiority of the workmanship and artistic conception of the local photographers, from whom they were purchased. They were all taken within one or two days after the storm, and represent the ruins as they then appeared.

St. Louis, June 10, 1896.




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