story in November of 1950 was the Thanksgiving snow storm. Snow began to fall on
Thanksgiving Day (or evening, depending upon your location in the state), which
came on the 23rd of the month that year. The snow continued to fall on and off
through the 28th of the month and a few tenths were recorded in places on the
29th and 30th. Total snowfall for the entire storm including the few tenths of
the 29th and 30th was 21.9 inches at Akron-Canton (Summit County); 8.9 inches at
Cincinnati (Hamilton County); 22.2 inches at Cleveland (Cuyahoga County); 12.6
inches in Dayton (Montgomery County); 8.2 inches at Toledo (Wood County); 29.2
inches at Wooster (Wayne County) and 29.5 inches in Youngstown (Mahoning
County). The greatest reported snowfall total from this storm in Ohio was 44
inches at Steubenville (Jefferson County). Of this amount, 28.7 inches fell in
the two days of the 24th and 25th. The greatest 24 hour snowfall was 17 inches
at Youngstown on the 25th. Governor Frank Lausche declared a state of emergency
in Cleveland and Youngstown. Parts of Ohio wallowed in drifts from 25 to 30 feet
deep. Many roads were closed. Trains had to be canceled. In places, people cold
not leave their homes for days and milk and bread trucks could not get through.
This storm began as a low pressure area in the southeastern states. By 7:30 pm
on November 24th, the low was moving north-northeastward along a cold front
running from Florida to Virginia, where the front became stationary, into
Pennsylvania, where it became occluded, and then into Canada by way of New York.
A blocking area of high pressure was over Newfoundland. At 7:30 am of the 25th,
the cold front was well out to sea, but it curved back into Pennsylvania, where
it became occluded, and the strengthening low was over northern Virginia and
Maryland. The high was still over Newfoundland. Twelve hours later, at 7:30 pm
of the 25th, the low was located almost over Cleveland with its west-east cold
front running from about Buffalo, New York to just above New York City and then
out to sea. The blocking high was still over Newfoundland. By 7:30 am of the
26th, the low, now over central portions of Ohio, was beginning to dissipate.
The morning of the next day found the low over Lake Huron and continuing to
dissipate. TO BE CONTINUED...
November 7 of 1913 found a developing low pressure in the province of Saskatchewan, Canada. As the low continued to grow in strength, it moved southeastward and was located in Wisconsin by evening of the 8th. The now ferocious storm moved north of Lake Erie on the 9th with hurricane force winds and blinding snow. During the night of the 9th-10th, the low sped swiftly southeastward and was found along the Virginia coast on the 10th.
When the storm began on the 9th in Ohio, temperatures were in the 30's, and there were both snow and rain. However, temperatures fell steadily. There was freezing rain and then all snow as the wind whistled in ever more forcefully from the west and northwest. Precipitation fell for 50 hours in the state, but the heaviest precipitation fell as snow from the afternoon of the 9th into the afternoon of the 10th.
Winds at Cleveland hit 79 m.p.h. (74 m.p.h. is hurricane force) on the afternoon of the 9th and averaged 51 m.p.h. there from afternoon of the 9th into morning of the 10th. Nearby, at Buffalo, New York winds hit 80 m.p.h. on the 10th.
A true blizzard raged across most of the state, and utility lines and poles were downed in many areas. Eastern Ohio was virtually paralyzed through the 11th. The Cleveland Weather Bureau Office measured 17.4 inches of snow in 24 hours - a record which still stands. Storm total there was 22.2 inches, while some locations in eastern Ohio got two feet of snow. Western sections of the state generally had 6 inches or less.
Drifts in many locations of eastern Ohio were at least 6 to 8 feet deep. Shallow valleys were filled with snow. In some areas, cars were stalled for 15 hours or more, and even the mail service came to a halt.
Out on the Great Lakes, the powerful winds
piled up waves as high as 35 feet. Well over 200 sailors lost their lives,
with 6 of these on Lake Erie. Damage to ships alone (not counting cargo)
was put at $10,000,000.
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