An Interesting Coincidence?

Russ Steele

While we are watching the damage in New York City,  one has to wonder if it has happened before?  Before there was global climate change, which some of our local lefties want to blame on climate change. They are having a hard time distinguishing between climate change and weather.

That said, there was a 13.88 storm tide in the current storm. In the Great Hurricane of 1821 it was a 11.2 foot wall of water.  The difference this time is that the surge came at high tide with a full moon while in 1821, amazingly the surge came at low tide.

The 1821 Hurricane was one of four recorded tropical cyclones that have made landfall in New York City. One was the 1893 hurricane, another Irene 2011 and then Sandy in 2012. Technically these storms touched land first elsewhere before battering New York, but the Big Apple was swamped by the storm surge.

Ironically the 1821 hurricane was the last of 4 such recorded storms to target NYC from 1815 to 1821 during the Dalton solar minimum, a period not unlike the current period when Irene and Sandy hit in successive years.

We live in a chaotic world driven by chaotic cycles. Sometimes we have an opportunity to observe one of these cycles and wonder, are they related.


About Russ Steele
Freelance writer and climate change blogger. Russ spent twenty years in the Air Force as a navigator specializing in electronics warfare and digital systems. After his service he was employed for sixteen years as concept developer for TRW, an aerospace and automotive company, and then was CEO of a non-profit Internet provider for 18 months. Russ's articles have appeared in Comstock's Business, Capitol Journal, Trailer Life, Monitoring Times, and Idaho Magazine.

4 Responses to An Interesting Coincidence?

    A native of Connecticut, William C. Redfield grew up with a strong interest in science, and educated himself by borrowing books on scientific subjects. He was also known to be a prodigious walker, at times taking long treks from New England to visit relatives who had settled in Ohio. Following the great storm of 1821, Redfield walked through a large area of Connecticut which had been devastated by the high winds. He was intrigued to notice that in some areas the trees had been knocked down with their tops pointing to the northwest. In other areas, trees were arranged in the opposite direction, with their tops pointing to the southeast. The patterns of the battered trees convinced Redfield that hurricanes were complex circular storms, and he eventually published a paper on the topic in the American Journal of Science in 1832. Redfield’s theory was that a hurricane was a great traveling whirlwind. Today we take that idea for granted, but at the time it was a new way of thinking about hurricanes. Prior to Redfield, the accepted belief was that the winds of hurricanes blew steadily from one direction.

    • Dena says:

      I can’t see it on your graph, but the storm of 1812 changed the history of the United States. The British invaded Washington D.C. and were in the process of burning the city down and doing what invader do when the storm hit. Some say it was just a bad thunder storm and other say it was a hurricane, In any case, the storm defended the country while we were still gathering our forces and did so much damage to the British that they had to withdraw and take the battle elsewhere. I suspect it was hurricane because of the amount of damage it caused and it’s very likely as they didn’t know what a hurricane was at the time.

      • sean2829 says:

        I have heard it was a tornado that struck while the British were sacking D.C,

      • Dena says:

        That would fit with the Thunder Storm theory as tornados are associated with Thunder Storms.

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