1889 Flood
1942 Flood
1946 Flood
1959 Flood
72 FLOOD of Eldred
June 22 - 27, 1972

Prior to the third week in June, 1972, as far as the people of Eldred were concerned, the name Agnes was immediately associated with a lady who worked at our local bank. But, in days that followed, the news media informed the country that a tropical storm spawned in the Mid-Atlantic was headed for the east coast of Florida.
The storm grew more intense and was designated as a hurricane and named Agnes. Unlike our kind hearted and esteemed bank teller, Hurricane Agnes was a destructive storm, bringing with it torrential rains.
Nestled securely between our beautiful hills, our people felt safe and sound from any harm. Life went on as usual; Sunday, June 18 dawned with a promise of a lovely day. Church bells sumoned the faithful for services in our many churches. The clergy preached sermons on various topics, but all of them were reassuring man that he was subject to God.
Monday, June 19, was cloudy and warm with the threat of rain in the air. Merchant's opened their places of business; people went to their various jobs; housewives tidied up their homes; and children went to play. It was just another normal day.
Tuesday, June 20, was a day just like any other day. At about 6:00 p.m. it started to rain.

On Wednesday morning at approximately 5:30 a.m., the people of the community were awakened by the roar of the rushing water and the heavy rains. At 6:30 a.m., James Leffler, the Borough Council President, was called, asking that he not to work because it was felt that there might be another flood comparable to that of July 1942. Most of the morning was spent in trying to assess the damage by Hurricane Agnes and what should be done to restore sewers and streets to normal. At about 11:00 a.m., the rain reduced to a mere sprinkle and the water in Barden Brook creek subsided with necessary arrangements having been made and threat of a major flood passed.
The lull in the storm was very brief, however, by 2:00 p.m., the rains began once more and continued for four days as though determined to create a flood like we never experienced before. By noon on Thursday, June 22, residents of Railroad Avenue and many of South Main Street had already evacuated their homes. The evacuation was to continue for the next three days as mmore homes were surrounded by water. Many who had only moved contents from cellars to the first floor now had to re-enter their homes and move belongings to the second floor or to higher ground.
Saturday, June 24, at 11:00 p.m., the water had already surpased the July 1942 flood levels and it continued to rise seventeen inches more until Sunday when it crested at 28 feet above normal. Pennsylvania's Governor activated the National Guard and about 50 soldiers of Bradford's Company A, First Battalion, 112th Infantry were in Eldred working with civil authorities maintaining law and order to prevent looting. Eldred had become virtually isolated by the flood waters and Army helicopters brought in food and aid for many days.
The cleanup was unbelievable! Almost everyone was a willing worker and by 10:00 p.m., on Sunday, June 25, cleanup was completed in the Frisbee Insurance Building. Preparations had already begun for a temporary Post Office to open on Monday morning. For the next two weeks cleanup continued with the help of manpower and equipment from the surrounding communities and the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation. In these two weeks time, the major parts of the cleanup were completed.
Shortly thereafter, the Ferris Annex building, Eldred Eagle Newspaper office and the old Marsh Furniture building were razed, all being a result of flood damages. Other buildings took on a new look both interior and exterior. Financial help was available from the Small Business Administration. A temporary office was set up in the Borough Council rooms to receive applications for disaster loans until October 30, 1972.

Statistical Data

Amount of Rainfall
Flood Stage
Flood Crest
Properties Affected
Businesses Affected
People Affected
Business Property Loss
Residential Property Loss
Potential Business Revenue Loss
Potential Residential Revenue Loss
Churches Affected
Schools Affected
School Property Damages
Borough Properties Affected


12.5 in
13 ft
28 ft


Main Street

Main Street

National Guard helicopter landing at Frame's

King Street looking at Main Street

Behind Todd Motor Sales and Bank

Platt / Edson Street looking towards Main Street

Edson Street looking towards Slavin's Cafe

Behind Shield's Lumber looking south along tracks

Friday, Noon, June 23, 1972

Thursday, 1:00 p.m., June 22, 1972

Friday, 1:00 p.m., June 23, 1972

Friday, 1:00 p.m., June 23, 1972

Railroad Street, Thursday, June 22, 1972

Friday, June 23, 1972

Friday, June 23, 1972

Friday, June 23, 1972

The Aftermath