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 Post subject: Winter 1899 in Texas
PostPosted: Fri Jan 16, 2009 1:33 am 
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I was looking for information about the winter of 1899 in Texas. I have read that Galvestion record several inches of snow. I am not sure if it is True. Please help!
Here are some records in Texas history.

THE YEARS 1899 AND 1933 WERE NOT THE ONLY YEARS FOR RECORD COLD
ACROSS THE STATE OF TEXAS. THE FOLLOWING IS A LIST OF CITIES WITH
CORRESPONDING RECORD LOW TEMPERATURES AND DATES OF OCCURRENCE.

ABILENE..................9 BELOW ZERO.....SET IN 1947
AMARILLO................16 BELOW ZERO.....SET IN 1899
AUSTIN...................2 BELOW ZERO.....SET IN 1949
BEAUMONT/PORT ARTHUR....11 DEGREES........SET IN 1930
BROWNSVILLE.............12 DEGREES........SET IN 1899
CORPUS CHRISTI..........11 DEGREES........SET IN 1899
DALLAS/FORT WORTH........8 BELOW ZERO.....SET IN 1899
DEL RIO.................10 DEGREES........SET IN 1989
EL PASO..................8 BELOW ZERO.....SET IN 1962
GALVESTON................8 DEGREES........SET IN 1899
HOUSTON..................5 DEGREES........SET IN 1930 AND 1940
LUBBOCK.................17 BELOW ZERO.....SET IN 1933
MIDLAND/ODESSA..........11 BELOW ZERO.....SET IN 1985
SAN ANGELO...............4 BELOW ZERO.....SET IN 1989
SAN ANTONIO..............0 DEGREES........SET IN 1949
WACO.....................5 BELOW ZERO.....SET IN 1949 AND 1899
WICHITA FALLS...........12 BELOW ZERO.....SET IN 1947


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 16, 2009 3:01 am 
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Here's something I posted on here several years ago, an article from the Beaumont Enterprise. It talks about the incredible snowfalls and/or record cold in SE TX in 1864, 1867, 1895, 1899, and 1935.

I'm not sure if this will be helpful, but it's certainly interesting. Gives me a little hope as well. :lol:

http://www.storm2k.org/phpbb2/viewtopic.php?f=22&t=19890

Also, welcome to Storm2k!


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 Post subject: Re: Winter 1899 in Texas
PostPosted: Fri Jan 16, 2009 11:19 am 
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Perhaps this link will be of some help?

http://www.met.tamu.edu/osc/TXOKgh.htm

Welcome to Storm2K!


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 Post subject: Re: Winter 1899 in Texas
PostPosted: Fri Jan 16, 2009 1:16 pm 
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I had some notes from the newspapers back in 1899 scribbled around here somewhere, if I can find them I'll post them sometime.

Basically I don't recall any mention of snow in Galveston, it was however incredibly cold, the temperature that morning started out at around 10F and continued to drop to about 7.5F around 11am and then moderate back up to 10 again after noon. What's so amazing is that was with cloud cover and the wind blowing, it was not a radiation event.

Dallas was also brutal; around 7pm the previous night the temperature, which was already cold at about 20F, dropped to below 0 after the front passed and they had "blizzard" conditions. The low reported the next morning was -10F. Single digits were reported the next morning in places that have never seen single digits before or since (Alice, Laredo, Rio Grande City).

Looking back at the climatic history of the US and TX that event was so extreme it must have been at least a 300-500 year event if not rarer, we will almost certainly not be alive for anything comparable. Heck, a lot of people who are not that old may not even see a 1989 repeat either. That was the hardest freeze to hit the Texas Gulf Coast region since 1899 and 2nd coldest for much of deep South Texas and the coast in 150+ years of record keeping. So the next time someone mentions "1989" I'd take it with a huge grain of salt. Now something like a Jan 1982 or Feb 1985 event is definitely overdue for the state, we historically get them once or twice a decade.


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 Post subject: Re: Winter 1899 in Texas
PostPosted: Fri Jan 16, 2009 1:33 pm 
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richtrav wrote:
Heck, a lot of people who are not that old may not even see a 1989 repeat either. That was the hardest freeze to hit the Texas Gulf Coast region since 1899 and 2nd coldest for much of deep South Texas and the coast in 150+ years of record keeping. So the next time someone mentions "1989" I'd take it with a huge grain of salt.


Amen to that brother! Seems like I have to say that every winter at least once :wink:

As for the Galveston numbers, I would think for it to get that cold and stay that cold, it would almost have to be an advective freeze and not a radiational freeze on Galveston since it is surrounded by relatively warm water. Just my thoughts on that, I could be wrong, but I just don't see how Galveston will ever get below 10F purely with radiational cooling & calm winds.

BTW - good to see you around Rich, haven't seen you in awhile.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 16, 2009 1:35 pm 
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Also, the big Galveston snowstorm was in 1895, not in the winter of 1899. Here are some links:

http://www.wtblock.com/wtblockjr/ice.htm

http://www.srh.noaa.gov/hgx/climate/hol ... ntines.htm


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 Post subject: Re: Winter 1899 in Texas
PostPosted: Fri Jan 16, 2009 1:43 pm 
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We have to go back over 100 years to find the most memorable cold snap on record in Texas and Oklahoma: Feb. 12, 1899. On that day, all of Oklahoma got below -10F, and over half of Texas was below 0F. Ice reportedly covered most of Galveston Bay.
-----

:froze: Wow - ice covering most of Galveston Bay, that must have been a sight to see!

You know, I see people all the time mentioning the 1989 freeze. That was certainly a bad cold snap here in the Red River Valley of North Texas - it dropped below zero in portions of Grayson County.

But the big kahuna in my lifetime was definitely Dec. 1983. We were around 300 consecutive hours below freezing here in Denison, water mains broke all over town, and much of Lake Texoma froze over.

I know that freeze was also bad along the Gulf Coast.

Shannon Thompkins (outdoor writer for the Houston Chronicle) did a piece back in 2003 remembering the 20 year anniversary of that freeze along the Gulf Coast. If memory serves correct, it (83 freeze) was far more devastating on the inshore fisheries and marine organisms than the 1989 freeze was - virtually wiped out the redfish population along the Tx coast.

Somebody official estimated that upwards of a billion fish and organisms perished in that 83 freeze. Biologists with Texas Parks and Wildlife Department battled ice along the shoreline (saltwater shoreline!) down to the Laguna Madre to get out and assess the biological damage after that freeze.

Tx Snowman


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 Post subject: Re: Winter 1899 in Texas
PostPosted: Fri Jan 16, 2009 1:57 pm 
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Quote:
Also, the big Galveston snowstorm was in 1895, not in the winter of 1899.


I pulled my USA Weather Almanac off the shelf and it also list Galveston as recieving 15.4 inches of snow and Houston 20 inches of snow in Feb 1895. 5.0 inces even fell in Brownsville. Since the Galveston record snowfall occured in less than 24 hours, Galveston has a greater all time record 24 hour snowfall than places like Chicago (15.0 inches)!

The 1895 storm also broke other records in the south including 11.6 inches in Atlanta GA, 12.5 inches at Baton Rouge LA, 25.7 inches in Knoxville TN, 6.0 inches in Mobile AL and 8.2 inches in New Orleans LA.

As far as Feb 1899 goes, Feb 13 was the only day in recorded history where every state reported below zero temperatures (Hawaii was not a state then) and the Feb 1899 cold snap broke many records from the Rocky Mountains to the East Coast to the Southern United States and many areas between.


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 Post subject: Re: Winter 1899 in Texas
PostPosted: Fri Jan 16, 2009 3:53 pm 
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I've always wondered what the setup was for the 1895 Blizzard. It was quite a blizzard for Houston, where 20 inches of snow fell. Think about that happening today? :eek: The 1895 Blizzard breaks records in other places where snow is more likely to fall.


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 Post subject: Re: Winter 1899 in Texas
PostPosted: Fri Jan 16, 2009 6:48 pm 
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Don't know, but I'll bet the setup was similar to the setup that produced the Christmas Eve 2004 snowstorm along the Texas Gulf Coast. 18" in Victoria as I recall? 13" in Corpus Christi?

If the cold air profile is ever correct there on the Texas coast, the moisture is very easy to tap into! :D


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 Post subject: Re: Winter 1899 in Texas
PostPosted: Tue Jan 20, 2009 6:30 pm 
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Yes the big freeze on Galveston Island in 1899 was definitely an advective event. The comparison of 1983 and 1989 is interesting, it's basically duration vs intensity (1899 of course had both). For North Texas the longest periods of intense cold I've ever found in the records were the 1st half of Feb 1899, the middle part of Jan 1930 and the 2nd half of Dec 1983.

Along the western Gulf, damage to the flora and fauna along the coast was present in both freezes but along the deep South Texas and Tamaulipan coasts the '89 freeze caused more damage than '83. The temperature records from Brownsville confirm this. You can STILL see evidence of the '89 freeze on Ficus and other tropical trees around Soto la Marina, it froze pretty hard (mid-20s at least) until you got south of the Sierra de Tamaulipas around the Aldama area. Citrus was severely damaged north of the 24th parallel, where it probably reached the low 20s. Now farther west in Nuevo Leon and Coahuila the '83 freeze may have been a little harder. Economically the '83 freeze was worse mostly because it came first.

Also interesting is the fact that Dec 1983 and 1989 were the only two freezes of the 20th century to severely affect the citrus regions of both Florida and South Texas simultaneously. You have to go back to 1899 to find a similar event.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jan 21, 2009 10:16 am 
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Wow, you learn something new every day. I had no idea that there was a hard freeze deep into Mexico down to Soto la Marina. I always thought of the RGV valley as the 'cutoff point' but geographically, it makes sense for the cold air to filter further south in extreme events. I'm still just - well, shocked - as I had never thought of a freeze penetrating that deep into Mexico. Thanks for the info.


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 Post subject: Re: Winter 1899 in Texas
PostPosted: Wed Jan 21, 2009 12:47 pm 
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Trip on this.........

Snow in Florida is a rare occurrence. During the Great Blizzard of 1899, Florida experienced blizzard conditions; the Tampa Bay area had "gulf-effect" snow, similar to lake-effect snow in the Great Lakes region.[27] During the 1899 blizzard was the only time the temperature in Florida is known to have fallen below 0 degrees Fahrenheit

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Florida


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jan 21, 2009 1:07 pm 
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Hey Katdaddy,

I have seen that before on Wikipedia but that's the only place on the web I can find any reference to that event.

Someday, I might have to buy that book, especially if/when I ever move back to Florida.

I saw "blizzard conditions" one time in Savannah, GA back in the 1980's - at least that's what Pat Prokop called it. It was snowing so hard you could hardly see in front of you.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 21, 2009 1:10 pm 
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Its amazing stuff indeed. I remember reading about the Florida Blizzard but it was a long time ago. I cant remember the name of it.


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 Post subject: Re: Winter 1899 in Texas
PostPosted: Wed Jan 21, 2009 1:49 pm 
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Jason

Oh yeah, the cold definitely does not stop at the border, in fact you'd be hard pressed to tell a difference most years between Brownsville and San Fernando, which is 90 miles south. Even in Dec 2004 there was a light freeze in many areas just south of the Tropic of Cancer.


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 Post subject: Re: Winter 1899 in Texas
PostPosted: Mon Jan 26, 2009 9:30 pm 
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Thanks for the information that is posted.


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 Post subject: Re: Winter 1899 in Texas
PostPosted: Tue Jan 27, 2009 3:36 am 
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Well I finally found some of my notes from the newspapers and records of the 1899 freeze.

From Dallas/Ft Worth: From the Feb 12th paper: at 4pm (Feb 11) the temperature registered 20f. In the 2.5 hours afterward it fell 18 degrees...by 7pm it was -1.5f. Dallas reported -2f at 11pm with 1" of snow. Readings according to the paper of the morning of the 12th in Dallas were as follows: 2:30 am -5; 3 am -6.5; 7 am -10 in many places; 11 am -5; 8 pm +10, 12 am (Feb 13) 0

Also reported from the Dallas morning news: Mr J. B. Harris of Terrell - my father came to Texas in 1832, and in his lifetime he never saw the mercury dip below 5f

From Waco: Fifty years ago cattle crossed the ice a few miles above Waco and the same thing happened today for the first time in 48 years (presumably the 1852 freeze)

From Houston: (the paper presumably from the 13th, describing the day of the 12th) temp from 4 to 22; former mayor Wilson said it was the coldest ever he had experienced. He had lived there since 1835

From San Antonio: min 4.5, max 25; First time SA (presumably the river) had completely frozen, hundreds of boys skated

From Beaumont: 4f, fell to 8f and stayed there until 12 o'clock. Orange: 8f, 1.5" of snow. Previous records noted were 12f Jan 3, 1863 and 16f Jan 8, 1886. (surely it was colder in 1895? data missing from NWS records though)

From Galveston: good readings were available at both 8am and 8pm:
Feb 11 8am 43f wind NE 15 rain ; 8 pm 28f wind N 24 sleet
Feb 12 8am 11f wind NW 26 cloudy ; 8 pm 17f wind NW 20 clear
Feb 13 8am 11f wind NE 8 clear ; 8 pm 32f wind SE 8 cloudy

also from the Galveston paper was a more detailed account of the morning of Feb 12 temperatures: 7am 12f, 8am 10f, 9am 9f, 11am 8f, 1pm 11f, 3pm 15f, 5pm 17f, lowest temp recorded 7.5f

from the Feb 14th paper: weather was still cold yesterday morning, with the temperature 10 degrees above zero at the office of the weather base at 8am. The records show the following temps (presumably prior to 1899): Galveston 12, Corpus 18, SA 6. There were rumors of the gulf freezing in 1801. At points in the western point of the bay near the railroad bridges the large body of water was frozen from shore to shore. At all points along the bay front the ice extended away out into the channel


For the junkies who follow the official readings reported from Dallas, the temps given for Feb 4th-16th were as follows:
41/23 ; 25/20 ; 26/18 ; 30/16 ; 31/12 ; 47/18 ; 26/18 ; 29/15 ; 19/-10 ; 13/-10 ; 34/0 ; 45/20 ; 51/32

something I hadn't realized before was how cold Feb 1895 was in Dallas also, I thought it was just 2 quick shots of arctic air but it is right up there in duration with 1899, 1930 and 1983. These are the reported temps from Feb 1-18 (sorry no snow totals):
44/22 ; 33/10 ; 37/25 ; 41/27 ; 39/32 ; 40/27 ; 27/0 ; 27/2 ; 34/14 ; 32/25 ; 31/13 ; 30/13 ; 30/12 ; 33/15 ; 30/22 ; 37/17 ; 47/15 ; 64/24

and for those who are curious, the temps for Jan 7-24 1930, the last extended cold snap in Dallas until Dec 1983:

60/28 ; 29/22 ; 27/18 ; 22/14 ; 33/22 ; 41/33 ; 50/38 ; 40/26 ; 30/16 ; 28/11 ; 23/-1 ; 26/-3 ; 30/14 ; 32/29 ; 31/9 ; 24/4 ; 44/18 ; 47/27


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