Weather rambling — January 1909 storm

A January 1909 winter storm dumped up to about two feet of snow on northern Warren County communities the weekend of Jan. 16–17.

“About twenty-five inches of snow here during Saturday night and Sunday. This breaking the record since Feb. ‘02,” the Warrensburg correspondent reported in The Lake George Mirror on Jan. 22, 1909.

“The largest fall of snow this winter came Saturday night and Sunday, to the depth of about twenty inches,” the Riparius correspondent reported.

Thurman reported 18 inches, Riverbank 16 inches, Hague 18 inches, and Johnsburg 20 inches.

“The stage from Garnet could not get through because of the drifts,” the Johnsburg correspondent reported.

In the first week of January 1921 at Newcomb, it was 10 degrees below zero and more than a foot of snow had accumulated.

“Returning to the city after a brief visit to Lake Harris, Joseph H. Gregory tells tales of real winter weather,” The Post-Star reported on Jan. 10, 1921.

It was a week of real winter work, not a pleasure trip.

“While at Lake Harris, Mr. Gregory harvested 1,000 cakes of 14-inch ice for the Lake Harris House and completed arrangements for cutting of 125 cords of wood.”

The frigid weather hit Glens Falls and Hudson Falls about a week later.

“For the first time this winter the Hudson River above the dam at Mill №5 is frozen over solid and the ice has reached a depth of about four inches,” The Post-Star reported on Jan. 20, 1921. “Continued freezing weather for the next four days will mean that (ice harvesting) operations will be commenced by the Oak Street (Hudson Falls) dealer John H. Smith.”

A glut of available workers in the post World War I economy, with local soldiers home, reduced labor costs.

“The difficulty in the past four years in hiring labor to harvest the ice will be conspicuous by its absence this season. All of the ice dealers are daily besieged by laborers who are willing and anxious to dispose of their services.”

Some winters the Hudson River did not freeze over until February or later.

“It is stated that the winter one hundred years ago was very much like this and that the Hudson River did not close until Feb. 3,” The Glen’s Falls Messenger reported on Jan. 24, 1890.

The northern section of Lake Champlain was starting to freeze.

“Lake Champlain is frozen for about three miles from the shore in Cumberland Bay, off Plattsburgh, and at Rouses’s Point, twenty-four miles north of the lake, there is a good ice bridge across the lake.”

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Freelance history writer and documentary film producer from Ticonderoga, NY