Seventy-threeyears ago on September 21
four high school students fromMarlborough along with the rest of the town, in fact along with all of New England,experienced something that had not happened in over a century in the northeast. One of the high schoolersencountered it while commuting in a Model A Ford; another wascaught unaware on his cot in the kitchen; one teen had a hilarious run in with a self-appointed crossing guard; and the last student saw an unforgettable sight out her bathroom window. This was the great Hurricane of 1938!The storm formed near Africa in the Azores on the tenth of September. Itcontinued to head straight to Florida,however the wind from the west and asoutherly wind pushed the storm uptowards Long Island and New Englandrather than curving away as was expected.The category four hurricane¶s eye was40mileswide, with a 200 mile diameter of swirling winds.Charles F. Brooks, founder of the American Meteorological Society, and former Director of the Blue Hill Observatory, was quoted in Minsinger¶s book,
The 1938 Hurricane,
³This vortex rushed northward to Long Island and New England with thespeed of an express train, augmenting wind velocity to extremes of about 120 mph on theeast of the path of the center.´
What made this hurricane in particular so unusual was that
Minsinger, William Elliott, M.D.
The 1938 Hurricane.
Randolph Center, Vermont,Greenhills Books, 1988: 10.
Fig. 1. Goddard, Steven. Chart of path of Hurricane of 1938.http://stevengoddard.files.wordpress.com/2010/09/800px-1938_new_england_hurricane_track.png?w=640&h=396