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A tornado, heavy fog, strong wind and snow

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A tornado, heavy fog, strong wind and snow top the list of Michigan weather events on this day in history. From the National Weather Service archives here are the events that happened on May 16.

1905 - The composite, bulk freight Thomas W. Palmer, while carrying coal, was rammed amidships and almost cut in two by the steel steamer Harvard. Harvard stayed in the hole she had caused until Palmer's crew made it aboard, and then backed away, allowing Palmer to sink like a brick. The collision, which occurred in heavy fog, had jammed Palmer’s whistle, which blew until she settled off Stannard Rock in Lake Superior.

1917 - Marquette had its latest opening of navigation on Lake Superior in history. (Intellicast)

1962 – Alpena records their warmest May temperature as the city observes a record of 94°. Other daily records include Detroit with 92°, Flint 90°, Houghton Lake 87°, and Sault Ste. Marie 87°.

1974 - An F1 tornado hit Sanilac County at 11:30PM.

1977 - Three years later on May 16th in Detroit, the temperature rose 49 degrees from a morning low 40° to an afternoon high of 89°.

1997 – Behind a cold front as high pressure builds in, record low temperatures are set at Grand Rapids and Muskegon with both falling to 29°. This will go in the record books as the coldest May on record at Grand Rapids. 2.9 inches of snow fell in Marquette and 1.6 inches fell in Houghton, 3.2 inches of daily record snow fell at Weather Forecast Office in Marquette. From May 9-16th, it snowed 6 out of 8 days in western and central Upper Michigan.

2009 - Strong northwest winds were reported over Houghton and Marquette counties in the wake of cold front from the late morning into midafternoon. Winds frequently gusted at or near 50 knots for several hours. Localized strong wind downed a few large trees and caused power outages around the town of Negaunee.

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