Grayson County TXGenWeb
Y.M.C.A. Explosion
Denison, Texas
Dallas Morning News
19 Dec 1926
page 1   

"3 Hurt When Boiler Bursts"
Explosion Rocks and Damages Denison Y. M. C. A. Building.
Denison, Texas , Dec. 18 (Special to the News)

James Morris Jr. was seriously scalded and otherwise injured, his father, J. E. Morris general secretary of the Y. M. C. A. and a negro porter were severely injured when a boiler in the Y. M. C. A. building here exploded Saturday evening. The large brick and steel (building) was rocked by the explosion that was heard for several blocks.
Partitions of tile and brick were blown from their places, pipes ripped from the structure, with broken glass and framework scattered and twisted in the boiler room over a section of the basement.
Boilermakers had been employed on boiler repair work Saturday afternoon. The boiler was reported ready for service and fired up. Attention was attracted to the boiler and J. E. Morris, secretary, with his son and a negro porter, went to the boiler room. They started to remove the fire from under the boiler when the explosion occurred. James Morris Jr, 19, was blown to the floor and boiling water spread over his body and debris completely covered him. His father was blown against a partition and stunned, being partly covered with wreckage when firemen arrived.
Firemen answering the alarm worked ten minutes before rescuing young Morris, and he was carried to the City Hospital, where attending physicians said he was seriously injured.
It is believed the safety valve on the boiler stuck, causing the trouble. The boiler was wrecked, as the water and gas pipes. Boys playing basketball on the court in the gymnasium were blown from their feet by the concussion. The building was not damaged greatly above the basement. The walls were not cracked. The greatest damage being confined to a section where the boilers were located and adjoining walls.

Dallas Morning News
21 Dec 1926
page 19

Victim of Denison Y.M.C.A. Blast Dies
Denison, Texas, Dec 20 (Special to the News) - James E. Morris Jr., 18, who was injured Saturday evening when a steam boiler in the local Y. M. C. A. exploded, died in the city hospital Monday evening. He was the son of Mr. and Mrs. J. E. Morris.
His father was secretary of the Y. M. C. A. where the accident occurred. Funeral services will be held at the Waples Memorial Methodist Church at 3 o'clock Wednesday afternoon.
The accident that resulted in the death of the young man did several thousand dollars damage to the Y. M.C. A. building and resulted from a cut-off valve from the boiler to the radiator system being closed. Young Morris was a student in Austin College, being a graduate of the Denison High School two years ago. He was a member of the Denison De Molay Chapter. Others injured when the accident occurred suffered only slight bruises.


Fire Disasters
Elaine Nall Bay