Record rain, shipwrecks, snowflakes and bitter cold 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 3.
1887 - The wood, passenger and package freighter California while carrying general merchandise, was overwhelmed by a gale and sank about 7 miles due west of the current Mackinac Bridge N anchorage one mile off St. Helena Island in the straits of Mackinac. Some of her lost crew are buried at Mackinac City. 9 members of the 25 member crew perished.
1890 - The wood, bulk freight "steam barge" Fred McBrier, while carrying iron ore, collided with the propeller Progress in a fog and sank in 7 minutes 7 miles east of Waugoschance Point, in the western Straits of Mackinac in Lake Michigan, having been struck squarely amidships. She had been downbound towing the barges A.Stewart and J.B. Lozen, and the two steamers had misunderstood signals while passing.
1898 - Lansing hits 90° for its highest October temperature.
1903 - The wood, coaster Erie L. Hackley, while carrying general freight, was overwhelmed by a gale and sank the bay of Green Bay, off Menominee, MI. 11 of the 19 on board perished.
1911 - The wood, bulk freight A.L. Hopkins began to sink off Ontonagon, MI in Lake Superior and was abandoned by her crew in a gale. Apparently buoyed by her lumber cargo, she drifted up and down the shipping lanes with her decks awash for at least two weeks. Her crew was picked up by the steamer Alva C. Dinkey after 15 hours adrift.
1935 - Snowflakes were falling across Southeast Michigan. Detroit reported a trace for the second earliest observed snow on record.
1954 - Heavy rains cause some minor flooding across southwest Lower Michigan. Grand Rapids and Muskegon both have their wettest October days on record. Grand Rapids observes 3.59” and Muskegon 3.21”. Lansing also sees a daily record rainfall with 2.08”. In Saginaw 4.58” of rainfall fell. This is the greatest amount of precipitation recorded for the month of October in Saginaw and is almost twice the amount of rainfall that normally falls during the entire month! Detroit and Houghton Lake also see their wettest October day with a record 3.29” in Detroit and 3.72” at Houghton Lake. Other daily records established on this day include Alpena 1.3”, and Flint 1.72”.
1974 - Temperatures plummet into the 20s as very cold weather continues. Record lows include 22° at Lansing, 23° at Grand Rapids, and 25° at Muskegon. Other records from across the state include Alpena 21°, Detroit 24°, Flint 25°, Houghton Lake 23°, and Sault Ste. Marie 23°.