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Holyoke, MA Violent Storms Hit Valley, July 1911


Springfield, Mass., July 5 -- One of the most violent thunderstorms experienced for many years visited a portion of the Connecticut Valley late to-day. Lightning, rain, hail, and wind combined to effect great damage. Railroad lines, were tied up, telephone service paralyzed, roads rendered impassable, and houses unroofed.
Holyoke suffered the greatest damage. According to the Weather Bureau figures there was a rainfall of 5.65 inches in that city. A bad washout on the line of the Boston & Maine Railroad, just north of Holyoke, tied up traffic.
In Wilbraham the old Congregational Church was struck by lightning and destroyed by the fire that followed. The wind blew down innumerable trees there and elsewhere.
The Catholic Church of Our Lady of Hope in Springfield was struck by lightning, but was not badly damaged. In West Springfield the noted Old White Church, one of the landmarks of the Connecticut Valley, was also struck, but the firemen were able to confine the blaze to the steeple and the structure was saved.

The New York Times New York 1911-07-06

article | by Dr. Radut