Topper's Blog, Blizzard 1831, Washington Blizzard

12:07 AM, Jan 16, 2013   |    comments
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The Good Old Days...

On this date in 1831 a great snowstorm hit the east coast from Georgia to Maine. Thirty inches were common from Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York. The D.C. Metro Area received thirteen inches while Baltimore was buried under a foot and a half. Philadelphia recorded an amazing three feet !  The area around New York City received fifteen to twenty inches while southern New England twenty to thirty inches was commonplace. 

These kinds of snow totals would paralyze major metropolitan areas in modern times but they were just devastating before the days of central heat and electricity. Can you imagine trying to get to the general store by horseback ? Can you imagine just trying to keep warm and dry during severe winters in the early 1800s ? I think we take our modern day amenities and conveniences for granted. Yes, we lost power for a few days in the 2009 - 2010 winter but back then there was no power to loose !

On the opposite end of the spectrum; while uncommon, tornadoes can occur in January. The first recorded January tornado occurred on this date in 1990 in Florida.  The United States as a whole averages at least one tornado each month. Ironically on this same date in 1993 and 1997 tornadoes touched down again across the Sunshine state. December, January and February average the fewest tornadoes during the year. The lower forty eight averages seventeen tornadoes in December, twenty in January and just twenty one in February.

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