By Jim Bradshaw
•(Feb. 18) Daniel Goos Jr., in the schooner Revenge, anchored at Calcasieu Pass, reported in his log, “Snowing in the morning – Very cold.”
•(Jan. 30) The Lafayette Advertiser reported: “On last Sunday we witnessed an event of rare occurrence in our section of the country: snow began falling at 7 p.m. and for several hours fell very thick; in the evening the snow fell again to the great amazement and merriment of the young urchins who plagued the elders with questions. Pa, one said, it’s very cold and look pa what’s that. – That’s snow my son – I never seen that before, pa. – No, sonny, snow does not generally fall in our country. It falls in the North. — North? That’s where the Yankees live ain’t it pa? — That’s so, my son. — Well, pa, I wonder if its them confounded fellows brought that snow don here and if they don’t intend to change our climate.”
•(Jan. 1) The Opelousas Courier of January 6 reported: “A heavy rain on Sunday last, December 31, was followed during the night by a considerable fall of snow, and on the morning of New Year’s Day the whole face of Nature was covered with a heavy carpet of white, affording lots of material for the manufacture of snowballs, which industry “the boys” engaged in with alacrity, and pelted each other with vim. Some of “the girls” engaged in the same business, too, we understand, and one young lady got a pretty black eye built in fine style around her pretty blue one. It was a lady not so young who neatly performed the job.
“It has been quite cold ever since the 1st and, although the days have been bright and sunny, some of the snow had not yet melted on Thursday evening.”
•(Feb. 24) Snow fell on Morgan City to a depth of six inches.
•(Dec. 24) According to the statewide weather summary for December of this year, “a few flakes of snow, the first in seven years” fell on Christmas Eve in Grand Coteau. Breaux Bridge reported light snow at 10:30 a.m., but it did not stay on the ground.
•(Feb. 11) Two inches fell on Jennings.
•(Feb. 7) This item from the St. Landry town of Sunset, dated February 7, appeared in the New Orleans Daily Picayune on February 8:
“At 7 o’clock last night a very heavy gale from the northwest struck this place and by 4 o’clock this morning a blizzard came upon us in full force and by 9 o’clock the thermometer registered 17 degrees. There has not been the least cessation in the occurrences of the wind and everything is frozen tight all day with prospects of a very severe night.”
•(Feb. 13) Fourteen inches of snow fell at Lafayette.
•(Feb. 13-15) Twenty-four inches fell at Rayne, still a state record for Louisiana.
The Lafayette weather form for February 1895 carries this note: “Snow began falling on the night of the 13th –stopped before daylight – began again about 6:30 a.m. on the 14th and kept up until about 10 a.m. on the 15th, about 14 inches of snow fall.”
Lake Charles resident F. V. Gallaugher recalled in a memoir: “The St. Valentine’s Day snow of 1895 lasted for three days and two nights. I was 15 and the snow was up to my knees.”
•(Jan. 26-30) I. A. Smith, weather reporter from Rayne, reported: “The last week of January was very cold, freezing; ice everywhere an inch thick. Everybody out sleighing. Nothing being done on farms. Roads almost impassable. At the close of the month, spots of ice still on the ground.” There was no specific mention of snow. Low temperatures that week ranged from 33 to 18, with four consecutive nights of low temperatures in the teens and five days when the highs did not get out of the 20s.
•(Feb. 11) Four inches of sleet fell at Jefferson Island.
•(Feb 13) The weather observer at Paincourtville (Assumption Parish) reported: “Huge chunks of ice floating on Bayou Lafourche impeding steamboat navigation. … The weather of the 12th-13th was the coldest within memory of living men in this section.”
•(Feb. 17) Large chunks of river ice reached New Orleans. Eight thousand people lined the levee to watch the spectacle as they floated by.
•(Feb. 18) The New Iberia Enterprise reported: “For the first time within the recollection of man, bayou Teche was frozen over its entire surface.”
•Feb. 19) H.H. Lawes reported from Port Eads at the mouth of the Mississippi River: “On Sunday, February 19, at 10 a.m., small blocks of ice began passing out to sea through South Pass. At 6 p.m. … it had increased to such an extent that at least one-third of the pass was covered and some of the blocks were 20 feet in diameter and from one to two feet thick.”
•(Feb. 24) The Abbeville Meridional reported: “Friday morning last, the warm, cloudy weather was dissipated by the approach of a blue norther from the Klondyke by way of Texas. All day the sky had the appearance of snow and the wind was sharp and cold. Saturday the mercury was down to 25 and the ground was frozen hard; the weather moderated very little while the wind blew a bitter blast. Sunday the mercury was 24, with a big frost and thick ice, which did not melt except in exposed places. Monday the wind shifted to the southwest and the blizzard was over. The gardens were badly injured and the orange trees will lose their foliage.”
•(Dec. 20-25) Killing frosts and heavy ice are reported in south Louisiana weather records for this week, but snow is not specifically mentioned. Low temperatures ranged from 34 to 26 degrees during the week.
•(Jan. 21) An inch of snow fell on Lafayette.
•(Jan. 23-24) A dusting of snow was reported in south Louisiana.
•(Jan. 21-22) Two inches of snow was reported on the ground in Lafayette.
•(Jan. 20) The Monthly Weather Review reported: “A fall of snow, lasting about half an hour, was noted off the southeastern coast of Louisiana, in a latitude where snow at sea is a very unusual occurrence. The vessel was the American steamship Webster Jennings, Charles Warner, master, bound from Key West to Galveston. The position and time of the snowfall were 28N, 91W, Jan. 20, 10 a.m.”
•(Jan. 23) The Lafayette Advertiser reported: “Except in the coastal regions Louisiana and Mississippi today are mantled in the heaviest snow in years, measuring from one to 13 inches. … Lafayette and vicinity peeped out through a blanket of sleet and snow today following a night which saw the weather man “shoot the works.” Beginning early Monday, snow began to fall, which turned into sleet, then into rain. Toward nightfall, sleet and snow mixed fell and continued until near the midnight hour. The temperature last night fell to 24 degrees, according to J.J. Davidson, official government weather man for the city. Mr. Davidson stated that at 9:30 a.m. today the temperature had risen to 31 degrees and toward noon was around 34. The lowest reached the night before was 28 and the highest attained Monday was 41. Mr. Davidson stated that he had no instrument to measure snowfall, but estimated it about two inches. Old residents of this section state that the weather in the past week has been the worst this section has experienced in 40 years.”
•(Jan. 27) More than two inches of snow fell in Lafayette.
•(Jan.) 30) More than three inches of snow fell at Lafayette and other south Louisiana communities reported varying amounts.
•March 5) A trace of snow was reported at Lafayette.
•(Jan. 24) A trace of snow was reported at Lafayette.
•(Feb. 12-13) Some 4.7 inches of snow fell at Lafayette.
•(March 17) A trace of snow was measured at the Lafayette airport.
•(Jan. 25) A trace of snow was reported at Lafayette.
•(Jan. 28) A trace of snow was reported at Lafayette.
•(Jan 9) A trace of snow was reported at Lafayette.
•(Jan. 14): A trace of snow was reported at Lafayette.
•(Dec. 23) A trace of snow was measured at the Lafayette airport.
•(Jan. 13) A trace of snow was reported at Lafayette.
•(Feb. 23) Four inches of snow whitened a broad band of central Louisiana, with traces seen as far south as Hackberry and Gueydan.
•(March 22) The Louisiana climatologist reported: Away from the coast, measurable snowfalls were reported over much of the state in extensive, unusually late and heavy snowstorm. Many stations had totals on March 21 and 22 which were larger than those of any previous March and, in some cases, of record. For a considerable region from central Louisiana southward, 1968 marked the first occurrence in many years of more than one snowfall in a single season.”
•(Jan. 11) Two inches of snow fell on Lafayette.
•(Dec. 20) A trace of snow was measured at the Lafayette airport.
•(Jan. 3) A trace of snow was reported in Lafayette.
•(Jan. 30) A trace of snow was reported in Lafayette.
•(Jan. 29) A trace of snow was reported in Lafayette.
•(Jan. 12) Snow and ice storms on the 12th and 13th snarled traffic across Louisiana.
•(Feb. 1) Snow, sleet, and freezing rain swept across much of the state during an extended storm that began on January 31 and ended on February 2.
•(Feb. 5) Snow fell on Lafayette.
•(Feb. 7) A second dusting of snow fell on Lafayette.
•(Feb. 8) Lafayette got 1½ inches of snow.
•Dec. 24) Snow fell mostly in southern Texas, but some snow, albeit less deep, fell across southwestern and southeastern Louisiana. The fact that the snow accumulated overnight on Christmas Eve led to a White Christmas the next morning, something completely foreign to the region. The city of Houston, Texas, recorded the first White Christmas in its history. Across all of southern Texas and in southwestern Louisiana, snow fell in places where it had not for anywhere from 15 to 120 years.
•(March 12) A trace of snow was measured at Lafayette and accumulations were recorded elsewhere in the state as far south as Slidell as Louisiana got a taste of a severe blizzard that battered the Eastern U.S.
•(Jan. 12) Frozen precipitation caused major ice accumulations over south Louisiana, producing substantial damage to trees and power lines. Some areas were without power for up to a week.
•(Dec. 14) A trace of snow was measured at the Lafayette airport.
•(Jan. 1) About an inch of snow accumulated in upper Acadiana parishes, with lesser amounts on the ground in Lafayette.
•(Dec. 11) The New Orleans Times-Picayune reported: “People across south Louisiana called their friends, grabbed their cameras and headed outside this morning to document a rare and wonderful sight: snow. … Much of southeast Louisiana was under a winter weather advisory until noon. Accumulating snow was reported in towns and cities all across south Louisiana, including Baton Rouge, Lafayette and Lake Charles. … The snow changed back to a mix of light rain and light sleet by noon, and precipitation ended as all light rain during the early afternoon hours as temperatures warmed back to the lower to middle 40s.”