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Bozita Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-01-11 12:43 PM
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Detroit's worst snowstorms
A lot of terrific stuff like the linked article is available in this little known section of the Detroit News' website.

Detroit's worst snowstorms
By Vivian M. Baulch / The Detroit News
January 31, 2002

"You people don't know what snow is," grandpa used to say. "When I was a boy we had REAL snowstorms and we had to walk . . . yakkity yakkity yak. . . "
Well, chalk up one for grandpa. It seems he was right.

The worst snowstorm in Detroit history came in early April, 1886, and dumped 24.5 inches of the white stuff on the city. Accompanying winds caused drifts up to 12 feet high in some places. The second worst storm in 1974 brought us a mere 19.2 inches.

The Detroit News editions of April 6, 1886, reported that "Snow began at 12:30 a.m. and fell light until about 4 a.m., when it began to fall heavy . . . a tremendous fall of snow continued all day, ending at 9 p.m.

"The fall at 7 a.m. was 4.6 inches and at 3 p.m. was 17.1 inches and at 11 p.m. 24 inches, making a total of 24.5 inches fall of unmelted snow.

"The rain gauge was soon snowed full and was practically useless.

"The drifts in some places were 12 feet high and the snow in the streets was from 10 to 40 inches deep.

"A heavy north gale set in at 1:45 a.m. and raged in fury all day, reaching 40 miles north at 2:15 p.m. and continuing all the remainder of the day. Its force with the snow was appalling. It blew the snow in fine particles against the face, cutting like a knife.

"The streetcar company attempted to run cars in the morning with six and eight horses until 10 a.m. when every line in the city was abandoned, streetcars laying in all positions on the street.

photos and more ...

From The Detroit News:
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MichiganVote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-01-11 07:39 PM
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1. Real Big Snow--all the time back when

The photo to the right depicts Negaunees Iron Street on March 13, 1899. These men have partially completed a Herculean shoveling task. You can see the J. Trathen Saloon in the background, so perhaps that was their eventual stop.
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maddogesq Donating Member (915 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-01-11 08:43 PM
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2. I am surprised 1967 wasn't in the rankings.
What stands out about '67 was seeing my dad and neighbors pull sleds out to 11 mile road to pick up groceries from cars because the sub was not passable. The funny part was that a couple sisters and mom required feminine hygiene products, so my dad took a lot of ribbing from neighbors due to those large boxes with the flowers on them sitting on the sled with bags of groceries. .

The '74 storm stands out because of the mega-ton Buick wagon that my brother got stuck in the ditch at the end of our driveway. The wrecker couldn't get it out, IIRC.

Maybe '67 was snowfall over a period of days. If anyone has a better memory of it, please fill me in.
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1gobluedem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-03-11 01:16 PM
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3. All I remember about the '67 storm was being out of school for over a week
On about the fourth day, someone got through and opened the library and gym so kids who lived near could walk there and find something to do. The parents must have been going crazy.
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