Weather history often shapes our lives in ways we can’t imagine. But for storms of 1746, the French, under leadership of Duc D’Anville, might well have bombarded New England into submission. Would our state names sound better in French? We’ll never know.
But weather history does offer us some more concrete examples of how storms put their imprint on life as we know it today. Severe and bizarre weather events inspire gripping tales of courage and tragedy, destruction and rebirth, the marvelous and the mundane. But when the storm or flood or drought is over, we hear little more about them. But that doesn’t mean they stop affecting us, they’ve just faded into the background.
But weather history has actually affected the course of New England history as much as any war or election. We just don’t often see it or realize it.
The Year Without a Summer, for example, inspired religious revivalism and westward migration.
Boston and New York might look different today were it not for the Great Snow Hurricane of 1888.
Vermont’s landscape was changed forever by the flood of 1927. New maps of New England had to be drawn after the hurricane of 1938. Both storms changed the political landscape as well.
A terrible drought in 1947 produced 200 wildfires in Maine in just 20 days, forcing reform and centralization of the state’s firefighting abilities.
Weather history forced a complete reorganization of the weather service following the sudden, deadly Worcester tornado of 1953.
Here, then, are six tales of severe events in New England weather history that changed the region. Download them here.
Included in this report you’ll find all out about:.
- 1816, The Year Without a Summer – and why your ancestors might have changed faith because of it.
- The Great White Hurricane of 1888 – and how it changed your commute to work.
- The Vermont Flood of 1927 – and how it created the modern leaf-peeping craze.
- Great New England Hurricane of 1938 – the event that touched every facet of life in New England.
- The Drought Year When Maine Burned – and how it created the modern firefighter.
- The Killer Worcester Tornado of 1953 – and how it gave birth to modern weather forecasting.
As you’ll discover, each of these events not only dramatically impacted New England when they happened, they still are shaping your world in ways you see today. They are six chapters in the weather history of New England that changed the world around us in amazing ways. Download the Weather History of New England today.
This report is for members of the New England Historical Society, so you’ll need to sign in to access it. If you’re not a member, isn’t it time you were? Why not register today? It’s free. Already a member? Download it now!
[…] Margaret Hamilton was born Aug. 17, 1936 in Paoli, Ind., to Kenneth and Ruth Heafield. She earned a B.A. in Mathematics from Earlham College, then married and taught high school math and French while her husband finished college. In 1958, she moved to Boston, intending to study abstract mathematics at Brandeis University. She got a job, though, at MIT, to develop software for predicting the weather. […]
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