The Flood of '74

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Abandoned
The town of Danberry is in trouble as the waters begin to rise and the only road into town is washed out.

Submitted: January 09, 2019

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Submitted: January 09, 2019



It was a dark and stormy night made even more so by the loss of power to the small Illinois town of Danberry.  Sheriff Crawford and the rest of the police force was down at the river with many of the townspeople.  A call had been made to the state police and national guard for assistance when the river had begun to overflow its banks, but a sudden mudslide had cut the small town off from all help.

Crawford dropped another sandbag on the wall they all were trying to build to hold the flood waters back.  He moved back to grab another and considered maybe the town was truly cursed and it was finally going to be swept off the map.  Since taking office he had to deal with all kind of crazy and weird stuff that everybody knew about and nobody talked about.  It had always been this way, things that shouldn’t exist did in Danberry.

He grabbed a sandbag and hoisted it up as all Rufus appeared at his shoulder.  The old black man looked to be a hundred, but nobody could rightly say how old he truly was.  He was the local gravedigger and Crawford’s unofficial deputy when dealing with the strangeness of Danberry.

“There is a problem up at the boneyard Sheriff.”

“What kind of trouble?”

“The dead ain’t resting easy tonight Sheriff.”  The dead of Danberry sometimes came back, but it wasn’t like in the movies where they tried the eat the living.  Most didn’t remember they were dead and tried to return to their old lives.  A few knew the truth and just wanted to stretch their legs.

“Speak plain Rufus,” Crawford said through gritted teeth as he lifted the heavy bag and dropped it on the wall.

“They are about twenty minutes behind me Sheriff.  I think you should be warning these good people that help is coming from the other side.”

Crawford stopped in his tracks and looked at the old black man.  “Are you saying the dead are coming to help us?”

“Well they are part of this town also and most still have family here so yeah they be on their way right now.”

Crawford stumbled and went down ending up sitting in a muddy puddle.  “God damn man, this could be bad.”

Rufus reached down and dragged the Sheriff up.  “That is why you need to let them know.  If they panic, then we are lost.”

Crawford nodded as he headed for the flatbed.  He had no clue what he was about to say, but he knew that tonight was his last night wearing this badge that was for sure.


Officially the flood of ’74 was diverted by the hard work of the townspeople.  A true accounting of what happened is locked away in a cabinet in the basement of the town hall.  It like so many other records would never be seen by any.

© Copyright 2019 Ian D. Mooby. All rights reserved.

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