Today Is The 74th Anniversary of The Great New England Hurricane of 1938

The category 3 storm, which caused havoc in Connecticut, is still the biggest natural disaster in New England's history.

Today, September 21st, is the anniversary of the Great New England Hurricane of 1938.

Moving at an amazing 50 mph, the storm surprised the region with its ferocity. Sustained winds were measured at 121 mph with gusts reaching 183 mph.

The storm forced Durham Fair officials and to cancel the event, marking the only time the fair has been canceled other than during World War II.

More than 250 New Englanders died as a result of the hurricane. Residents as far away from Long Island Sound as Burlington, VT, could taste the salt water of the ocean in their mouths from the storm.

The barometric pressure in Hartford, CT, reached an all-time low of 28.04 inches of mercury! An enormous fire engulfed the waterfront of New London, destroying four city blocks.

More than 2,000 people were injured. The cost of the storm was estimated to be in the $300 million dollar range (in 1938 dollars.) It was the biggest natural disaster ever for New England.

Julie Weisberg September 21, 2012 at 03:05 PM
Michele Vasso posted this comment via Facebook: "Wow! that video was amazing! I have gone to the Historical Society to get pictures of my house back then and they too have some amazing pictures from the hurricane of '38."
Julie Weisberg September 21, 2012 at 03:06 PM
Lynne Deleo also posted this comment via Facebook: "My mother in laws family was caretaker to hammonesett... Didn't finish story anyway she had to walk from the house which is near the museum to about us1 and she put a lampshade on her head to protect from the wind and rain!!"
melinda tillie September 21, 2012 at 08:40 PM
I think the video was really great. Ican remember my Mom telling ma Dad to come inside, the radio had just said "a storm" was coming. What a storm it was! The Momauguin area just got creamed., as the whole coast did. It was very good to finally get Radar.
ASmith September 22, 2012 at 09:16 PM
That was a one to remember. I was jes a youngin in diapers when it came to town. Luckily my ma and pa had decided to go back home to Mt Airy. Iffin they had stayed another month we would have been here for it. Our kin here fared ok. They was really hit with the one in the 50's though. Was a livin up in winchester way when that one came in. made em move back down to the shore after that. after my stint with uncle sam i settled here with em. like livin along the shore. hope them hurricanes stay off shore. we been mightly lucky until irene last year. hope she wasnt the tailsmen for whats to come.


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