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Texas Blast Kills Estimated 1200 As Nitrate Ship Explodes in Fire; No Phone Strike Compromise Seen

Disaster in Texas

TEXAS CITY, TEX., April 16--A terrific chain of ship and waterfront explosions blasted hundreds of persons to death today and injured more than 1,000.

A report to the Houston Post said that residents were evacuating the city of 15,000 tonight because of a feared new explosion of a nitro-glycerine-loaded ship at the Texas City Docks.

William C. Barnard, Associated Press staff writer, described how scores of bodies are stacked on benches and tables in a mid-town garage and in a nearby high school gymnasium.

Dozens of embalmers are at work in the garage as people gather outside in silent expressionless groups.

Barnard said that a mile away black smoke from six roaring fires billows 5,000 feet into the air, drifting southward out over the gulf.

Mayor J. C. Trahan, who wears a purple heart for buzz bomb wounds received in Belgium, said "no buzz bomb could ever compare with what happened here today. It is such a terrific tragedy that the people have not been able to realize what happened."