March 12

This Day in History

General Interest

Mar 12, 1888:

The Blizzard of 1888

The most severe winter storm ever to hit the New York City region reaches blizzard proportions, costing hundreds of lives and millions of dollars in property damage. Although the storm also struck New England, New York was the hardest hit, with the 36-hour blizzard dumping some 40 inches of snow on the city. For several weeks, the city was virtually isolated from the rest of the country by the massive snowdrifts. Messages north to Boston had to be relayed via England. Even "Leather Man," a fixture of New York and Connecticut history who had walked a circuit of 365 miles every 34 days for three decades, was reportedly delayed four days by the Blizzard of 1888. Leather Man, who walked during the day and slept in caves at night, was known as such because his clothes were made out of large patches of thick leather.

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