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'A queer local storm' turned out to be the biggest snow St. Louis has ever seen

'A queer local storm' turned out to be the biggest snow St. Louis has ever seen

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Nowadays it would be treated as snowmageddon. But the heaviest snowstorm St. Louis has ever recorded did not even make front-page news on March 31, 1890. The storm brought 20.6 inches of snow over a two day period -  a record that still stands. Here is the coverage from Page 2 of that day's Post-Dispatch.

'A queer local storm'

The records of the Signal Service do not mention a snowstorm equal in violence or as peculiar as the one which has now continued for two days. The fall was the heaviest ever known here and the total precipitation up to the time of this morning's observation was two inches of melted snow, which means twenty inches unmelted.

The peculiar feature of it was that it was almost entirely local, there being an equally heavy fall only at near points in Illinois. Last night there were few places in the country which reported any thing more than a light fall of snow or a sprinkle of rain, while St. Louis was baying the hardest snowstorm it ever knew.

See the original clipping from the Post-Dispatch

A little snow fell at Cairo, at Springfield and at Kansas City, but not much, and today It rained at Springfield. There was quite a fall of snow at Cairo this morning, and the last report was that they had five or six Inches of it there.

Away off in the Northwest there were some storms, but nothing equal to the fall in St. Louis. Louisville reports seven inches this morning, but Memphis and Little Rock have had only rain.

The course of the storm was a conflict between low and a high barometer area in the West, and the low has split, a part coming this way while the other half lingered in the West. This second half is now on its way here, and it will probably arrive with more snow about tomorrow.

There is no prospect of clear weather before thlrty-slx hours have passed.

Why St. Louis and the surrounding territory alone received such a heavy snow is a riddle, and it will be classed in the records as a meteorological phenomenon. The snow was wet and "nasty" and clung to the tracks In such a way that it delayed trains, and they were all from one to three hours late.

Twenty Inches at Mascoutah.

Twenty Inches of snow has fallen here since yesterday morning. It Is the heaviest snow that has fallen in this section for years. All trains were late this morning, it being necessary to send light engines over the road to plow the snow from the track. At noon today it has stopped snowing, and is melting rapidly.

Bottom farmers are considerably alarmed over the prospect of another flood. If rain should set in, and there is some prospect of it now, the damage to bottom farmers would be great.

All roads blockaded in Nashville, Ill.

The biggest fall of snow slnce 1866 fell here yesterday and last night. It commenced snowing at 9 a. m. yesterday and continued seventeen hours. The snow lies twenty-one inches deep, actual measurement on the dead level, roads are all blockaded, trains are late everywhere and several sheds and porches this city have been crushed by the tremendous weight resting on them.

Heavy at Mt. Vernon

The heaviest snow of the season fell in this section yesterday and last night. It commenced snowing in the morning and snowed most of last night. Many farmers have sown oats, but it is not thought any damage will result from the snow, of which fully twenty-three Inches have fallen.

Blinded in Marissa

A blinding snow storm began here yesterday at 10:30 a.m. and continued till this morning, measuring twenty-one inches deep at 6 o'clock. Sheds, awnings and roofs are breaking under the heavy weight, and old settlers claim It the deepest ever seen here. 

The nearly 14 inches of snow that fell the night of January 30, 1982, was the third-heaviest snowfall ever recorded in St. Louis, beaten only …

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