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WeatherTalk: Southern snowstorms are not without precedent

In February of 1895, one to two feet fell from Galveston to New Orleans along with blowing snow and temperatures in the teens.

Cartoon of John Wheeler with a speech bubble depicting weather events
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During nationwide cold air outbreaks, when the cold air penetrates deep into the southern United States, it is not unusual for snowstorms to happen in places not used to snow. Heavy snow is uncommon anywhere in the Deep South, but it is not unprecedented.

There is a record of heavy snow falling from Jacksonville, Florida, to Charleston, South Carolina, in January of 1800. Savannah, Georgia, reported 18 inches with three-foot drifts. In February of 1895, snow flurries fell on Tampico, Mexico, and one to two feet fell along the Gulf of Mexico from Galveston to New Orleans along with blowing snow and high temperatures in the teens. One to two feet fell in February of 1973 from Macon, Georgia, to Columbia, South Carolina. Birmingham, Alabama, got 13 inches in March of 1993. Such storms are rare, but they do happen.

Related Topics: WEATHER
John Wheeler is Chief Meteorologist for WDAY, a position he has had since May of 1985. Wheeler grew up in the South, in Louisiana and Alabama, and cites his family's move to the Midwest as important to developing his fascination with weather and climate. Wheeler lived in Wisconsin and Iowa as a teenager. He attended Iowa State University and achieved a B.S. degree in Meteorology in 1984. Wheeler worked about a year at WOI-TV in central Iowa before moving to Fargo and WDAY..
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