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The Library Springfield-Greene County Library District Springfield, Missouri
Local History

Drought 1934 and 1936

From the Springfield Daily News, 12 August 1936, page 1.

Drought broken just 2 years ago

"Today marks the anniversary of the breaking of the 1934 drought over the Ozarks.

"It was on August 12, 1934, that the temperatures reached the 100-degree mark for the last time during the famous summer of that year. The afternoon of August 12, 1934, a substantial thunderstorm lowered the mercury and started a showery period which continued through the remainder of the month, ending with an all-night downpour the night of August 31.

"This year, the outlook is anything but hopeful for a break, Weatherman C. C. Williford said last night. Clouds and a northerly breeze kept the mercury to a mild 96 degrees in Springfield yesterday, while to the southwest every reporting weather station had readings well above the century mark, with intense heat persisting over Oklahoma, southeastern Kansas, Texas and Louisiana.

"Clearer skies today will allow the mercury to again mount to 100 degrees or more, Mr.. Williford said.

"There are still no indications of any material rain in this section and the .01 of an inch fall yesterday morning only served to raise the humidity and make the day more stifling. Humidity of 35 percent at 7 o’clock last night – as compared with a lower than 20 percent the past few days – made yesterday’s weather more oppressive than the temperature would indicate.

"On August 12, 1934, the rainfall shortage here for the year was slightly over 12.50 inches. This year the shortage to date is 16.50 inches, or 4 inches greater than during 1934.

"The greatest concern of the Ozarks farmers right now is whether or not rain will come this year in time for planting and harvesting of any sort of a fall forage crop."

 For more about the dust bowl see Kansas in the Great Depression: work relief, the Dole and rehabilitation by Peter Fearon.

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