November 11, 1911: U.S. Midwest Experiences Record Highs and Lows on the Same Day!

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A Brief History

On November 11, 1911, the Midwest region of the United States experienced one of the weirdest weather days in American history when it was hit by the cold wave “The Great Blue Norther.”

Digging Deeper

Many cities went through the process of recording their record high temperature for the date only to record their record low for the date later that same day!  Some of those cities and towns even suffered tornadoes and blizzards.

Examples of this bizarre temperature fluctuations include: Kansas City, Missouri which had its record high of 76° Fahrenheit (F) in the late morning and a low of 11° F before midnight; Springfield, Missouri which went from its record high 80° F to its record low of 13° F; and Oklahoma City, Oklahoma which went from its record high of 83° F to its record low of 17° F.  For the Celsius (C) people out there, we are talking about average high temperatures of approximately 27° C followed by average low temperatures of approximately -10° C on the same day!

The next time one of your friends or family members tells you that the “weather is crazy nowadays,” you can remind them that on November 11, 1911, it was even crazier!  And the date is easy to remember, 11-11-11. 

Question for students (and subscribers): Have you ever experienced any record-breaking weather?  Please let us know in the comments section below this article.

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Historical Evidence

For more information, please see…

Burt, Christopher C.  Extreme Weather: A Guide and Record Book (Revised and Updated).  W. W. Norton & Company, 2007.


About Author

Major Dan is a retired veteran of the United States Marine Corps. He served during the Cold War and has traveled to many countries around the world. Prior to his military service, he graduated from Cleveland State University, having majored in sociology. Following his military service, he worked as a police officer eventually earning the rank of captain prior to his retirement.