Large hail, record snow and wrecked schooners 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 October 19.
1885 - The wood schooner, 2-mast Japan, while carrying wood, was driven on the beach and wrecked near Hedgehog Harbor, WI in Garret Bay in the bay of Green Bay just after taking on a cargo of wood during a gale.
1888 - The wood schooner Reed Case was bound from Duluth, when she dragged anchor and went on a reef in Lake Superior 4 miles from the Portage Ship Canal entrance in a southwest gale and was pounded heavily. The captain drowned when coming ashore in her yawl and it capsized. Tug A.C. Adams got her off the reef and almost pulled the disabled schooner to the canal entrance before she foundered.
1901 - The wood schooner-barge, bulk freight Montgomery, while carrying lumber and lath, was in tow of the steamer Leland, she began to leak in a gale and became waterlogged. She was cut loose from Leland after her crew was taken off. It was expected that she would founder, but she went onto a bar near lifesaving station number 10 [Crisp Point] in Lake Superior and broke up in another storm two weeks later.
1905 - The wood schooner-barge bulk freight 2-mast Alta, while carrying lumber, was in tow of tug F.A. Meyers and broke away in a gale, and was stranded in the rocky shallows on the east side of Grand Island near Munising, then was broken up by big waves. Her crew was rescued by local fishermen after clinging to the wreck for over a day.
1905 - The wood scow-schooner, 2-mast Elizabeth, collided with the pier at Menominee, MI in the bay of Green Bay in a gale and became a total loss. She had been stranded in a storm near Peshtigo less than a month earlier. Another ship, the wood schooner-barge, 3-mast Iver Lawson, while carrying lumber, was driven ashore at Horseshoe Bay in the bay of Green Bay in a huge storm which wrecked many other vessels, being driven so far on the beach that visitors could walk completely around her. By the 23rd, she had gone to pieces. Despite several years of salvage attempts, she ended up being dismantled on the beach in 1908. Also on this day the wood schooner-barge bulk freight 2-mast Alta, while carrying lumber, was in tow of tug F.A. Meyers and broke away in a gale and was stranded in the rocky shallows on the east side of Grand Island near Munising, then was broken up by big waves. Her crew was rescued by local fishermen after clinging to the wreck for over a day.
1908 - The wood schooner-barge, bulk freight, 2-mast Lizzie A. Law, while carrying coal, was in tow of steamer Edward Hines, broke her towline and drove ashore at Traverse Island on the east side of the Keweenaw Peninsula in Lake Superior where she quickly went to pieces during a gale. She was bound for Duluth and her crew took to lifeboat and survived.
1920 - A steamy fall day across West Michigan with a record warm overnight lows and afternoon highs. Grand Rapids starts with a record setting warm temperature of 61° and goes on set a record high of 80°. Lansing starts the day one degree shy of a record with 56° and warms to a new record high of 82°. Sault Ste. Marie starts the day with a record warm 55°.
1921 - The wood lighter-barge Advance, while carrying coal and lightering gear including two derricks, was in the process of lightering the stranded steamer Frank Billings when she was caught by a storm. Abandoned by her tug, she was allowed to drift toward shore. Her crew was rescued by the Coast Guard just before she struck at Sand Bay, Wisconsin in the bay of Green Bay. Her bottom was heavily damaged on the rocks and it was decided the 50-year-old vessel could not be repaired. She was officially abandoned in 1922.
1925 - Telephone and telegraph wires fell down and cut off communications in a snowstorm that started on this day south and west of Marquette. Heavy, wet snow and sleet fell with 6-8 inches of snow in Ishpeming and Negaunee with more than a foot reported west of Ishpeming. Two feet of wet, heavy snow fell in Rumely in Alger County.
1930 – This is a cold day with afternoon highs only in the 30s across the Lower Peninsula. Many records are set with the frigid air. Grand Rapids only climbs to 33°, Muskegon 39°, Lansing 31°, Alpena 32°, Detroit 35°, Flint 33°, and Houghton Lake 31°. The record for Muskegon would be broken in 1974 and 1989 with a reading of 35°. For Houghton Lake this is the coolest high temperature ever recorded for the month of October.
1989 - Four to five inches of snow falls across Lower Michigan as a record early season snowfall causes power outages and travel delays. In Grand Rapids 4.5” falls, Muskegon observes 4.1”, Lansing 3.9”, Flint 3.5” and in Detroit 2.7” of snow and some sleet fell. In Flint this is the record for the most snow to ever fall in one day for the month of October.
1995 - A mobile home 3 miles southwest of Mcmillan had minor hail damage from 1 inch hail (quarter sized) in the early afternoon. $2000 in damage was caused by the severe thunderstorm. Quarter sized hail (1 inch) fell in Germfask at 1200 EDT.