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Shipwrecks, power outages, a tornado, and record temperatures

Almanac 18 August 2014
Almanac 18 August 2014
Grand Rapids Weather Examiner

Shipwrecks, power outages, a tornado, and record temperatures 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 August 18.

1871 - The wood schooner Gen. Winfield Scott, while carrying lumber, was bound Menominee for Chicago when she sprang a leak in a gale and capsized off Spider Island, WI in Death's Door in Lake Michigan. Crew clung to her for 13 hours until rescued by the passing schooner Ethan Allen. Her wreckage eventually came ashore on Hog Island, just east of Washington Island.

1892 - An unnamed wood pile driver sprang a leak and foundered in a gale near Muskallonge Lake Lifesaving Station in Lake Superior. USLS saved her one crewman, as they had done on July 15 of the same year, when the same thing had happened.

1914 - 3.73 inches of rainfall fell in Saginaw. This is the record for greatest precipitation recorded in Saginaw in the month of August!

1943 - Autumn is in the air with record cool temperatures of 41° at Grand Rapids and 43° at Muskegon.

1947 - West Michigan is in the midst of another heat wave with Grand Rapids setting a record high of 97°, and Muskegon 91°, helping this to be the warmest August on record at these two cities. Lansing warms to a record 95° making this the second warmest August on record. Other daily records include Alpena 100°, Detroit 95°, Flint 99°, and Houghton Lake 97°.

1955 - West Michigan is in the midst of another heat wave with Grand Rapids setting a record high of 97 degrees, helping this become the second hottest August on record there.

1987 - An F0 tornado touched down in the mid-afternoon 8.8 miles south of Marquette or 5.8 miles SSW of Harvey. It caused $300 worth of property damage, was on the ground for 0.1 mile and was 20 yards wide.

2004 - Trees and power lines were knocked down by gusty west winds. A powerful cold front swept across Michigan's Upper Peninsula during the afternoon. Scattered showers and a few thunderstorms accompanied the frontal passage. One thunderstorm in Menominee County became severe and produced wind gusts in excess of 60 mph, which felled large trees near Stephenson. A gusty southwest wind turned sharply to the northwest soon after the frontal passage, and wind gusts approaching 60 mph blew down trees and caused power outages on the Keweenaw Peninsula.