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We've seen it all Old Man Winter, you can't scare us! A look back on some of the worst Winter storms in Chicagoland

January 9, 2015 09:00 AM
As it does every year, Old Man Winter has come and tightened his grip on the Chicagoland, and Arlington Heights, area. To celebrate, we thought this blog post should take a trip down memory lane and look at winter storms of the past. We say celebrate because after looking at the photographs below, we are celebrating that things could, and have been, worse for the residents of Arlington Heights. To find some good photos, we dug through the Museum’s collections for photographs of such storms and they are below.
This newspaper clipping is from 1936. There was no other information about the photograph, but just looking at this picture makes me shiver thinking about traveling snow covered roads without snowplows.
In 1965, these youngsters were able to make the best of ice covered sidewalks and a loss of electricity in the homes of many residents.
The blizzard of 1967 is one that many people still remember vividly, and for good reason. Chicago’s alltime record snowfall of 23.0 inches was established. The snow began on a Thursday morning and didn't let up until the next day. The city of Chicago, including OHare Airport, was shut down for several days. An estimated 20,000 cars and 500 buses were stranded on roads everywhere, hampering snow removal efforts.
The winters of 1976-1979 were three of the worst on record for Chicagoland, with 1979 culminating in 89.7 inches of snow that fell is the alltime season record. One of Chicago's worst blizzards occurred in January 1979. The storm total was 18.8 inches of snow. Roofs collapsed from the weight of the snow, people                 fought over parking spaces, snow was as high as street signs.
There have been plenty of storms since this one that probably also deserve mentioning, but we’ll save those stories for the next wave of snow.
Until then, check out the museum’s website & calendar for opportunities to stay warm with us, while you learn a little about Arlington Heights.
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