Reflections: The deepest snow since 1917


By Evelyn Long - Contributing Columnist



We have experienced many winters with heavy snow but the snow that hit Morrow County on Nov. 23, 1950, just 70 years ago, was the deepest snow since the winter of 1917.

Front page stories in the Morrow County Independent declared the Appalachian Blizzard of 1950 began Thanksgiving evening and continued all weekend with high winds for four days, a total of 15 inches fell but all roads in the state and county systems were plowed opened.

High winds caused the snow to drift again, re-closing the roads.

U.S. Route 42 was never closed to traffic in Morrow County but was closed in Delaware and Richland counties, stopping all but local traffic that weekend.

It reopened the following Tuesday and was heavy with traffic as Thanksgiving vacationers were able to return home.

Twenty two men were employed by the state highway department in battling the snow and 50 tons of salt and cinders were placed on roads in the county. Five snow plows plus trucks equipped with slush drags were in operation.

The 474 miles of roads in the county system had been reopened by Wednesday but heavy winds caused drifting again. Because the county roads kept drifting, they were unable to move equipment to the township roads.

The 38 miles of Cardington Township Roads had been plowed open by Elmer Harding, township road employee, and were being re-plowed Wednesday after some had drifted them shut again.

Streets in the Cardington business section of Cardington had been virtually cleared of all snow Wednesday noon, almost a week after it began. Work of removing the snow started Sunday and eight men and boys were employed since that time according to Pearl Sheese, street commissioner.

In addition to village equipment, trucks owned by C. E. Mateer, Zeb Russell, C. M. Poorman and several others were donated for hauling snow. The snow was trucked to the creek bank at the rear of the Gandee Bakery and dumped into the creek.

There was no school the remainder of that week — county basketball games were cancelled, as were many events.

The New York Central Railroad continued operating but was hours late. For a period of eight hours on Saturday, no trains passed through the village.

Ironically, that despite the heavy snowfall, not a single sleigh or bobsled was seen on the Cardington streets.

I remember this week vividly and it is noted in my diary that every day there was snow, snow, snow and everything was closed. We walked to our friends’ homes on our county road.

I hope that week will never be a reality again.

Looking back

80 years ago, 1940: Robert H. Miller and Vernon Ocker, of Cardington, were called for duty on federal juries in Columbus

70 years ago, 1950: The first sale in the new Cardington Post office was made to Morrow County School Superintendent T. A. Gantz who bought a book of stamps for 60 cents.

60 years ago, 1960: A total of 117 Cardington school students presented signed excuses to Principal W. A. McAlister in advance to going hunting on the first day of the season.

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By Evelyn Long

Contributing Columnist