Ruff Disaster of 1918

Ruff1The "Ruff Disaster" was one of the worst catastrophes in Sioux City history. Thirty-nine lives were lost and countless others were injured when the Hedges Block collapsed and fire started in the ruins. On June 29, 1918, the building that housed the Oscar Ruff Drug Company at Fourth and Douglas was being remodeled. The first floor was actually being lowered to the ground level, but the work was not considered dangerous. In fact, stores in the building were open for business.