Tornadoes, wrecked schooners and a record cool day 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 September 17.
1859 - The wood schooner Island Queen, while carrying wheat, struck Skillagalee reef in heavy seas and was run to the beach at Waugoschance Pt., western Straits of Mackinac in Lake Michigan at this point to save her. Apparently she later pounded to pieces.
1881 - The wood schooner, 2-mast Jennibel, while carrying hemlock bark and green wood, was outbound from Egg Harbor, WI when she was struck by a southerly squall and capsized near Plum Island, Death’s Door, WI in Lake Michigan. The tug Gregory rescued her crew shortly before the vessel went down, her cargo being unable to sustain buoyancy.
1972 - A severe thunderstorm produces two tornadoes. The first damages a car six miles northeast of Kalamazoo. The second damages a house three miles south of Middleville.
1973 - It was a record cool day as clouds and rain held high temperatures in the 40s across western Michigan. The high of 47° this afternoon at Grand Rapids would be followed by a record low of 35° the next morning. Other records for chilly high temperatures include Muskegon 46°, Lansing 49°, Alpena 47°, Flint 53°, and Houghton Lake 46°.
1974 - An F2 tornado hit Genesee County at 11:05pm. This tornado cost $25,000 in damages.
1977 - Two tornadoes struck Lower Michigan. One person was injured in the town of Flushing in Genesee County. Thirty homes and a library sustained heavy damage there. Another tornado hit near Westphalia in Clinton County, damaging a house and a garage.