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JIM: C-c-c-c-cold weather! It was brutally cold here in 1899

Even for Northwesterner replanted in Kentucky, Mr. Sam Lewis, in the winter of 1899, with -20 degree F. temperatures, there was a chill like he'd never experienced before


Mid-February 1899 brought brutal cold to Kentucky, with southcentral Kentucky temperatures dropping to minus 20 degrees (Fahrenheit) and lower. As a matter of fact, John Ed Murrell of the News noted it was the coldest weather experienced in Adair County since 1886.

Shortly after the thermometer had returned to more seasonal levels, a reporter called on Sam Lewis, then a resident of Glasgow who made frequent appearances in Columbia, and the following appeared in the February 22, 1900 News:

Mr.Sam Lewis, the gentleman who sailed the briny deep 25 years ago and who has felt the cold breath of many of the North Western states, says that he has never experienced such chilly feelings in any part of this new world as in the cold wave that has recently passed in this section.

In 1863 in Europe, Mr. Lewis says that the mercury went down the scale 45 degrees below zero and remained so for 15 days. At that time he was merely a school boy and the freeze of his boyhood days still lingers in his memory. He states that the streets were were almost covered with English Sparrows that succumbed to the cold breath of that freeze.

(In the winter of 1863-64, Mr. Lewis, a native of Prussia, Europe, was about seven years old. He immigrated to the United States about 1874 and became a naturalized citizen in 1885. In the late spring of 1900, he, his estimable wife Bertha, and their children Hattie, Edna, Leon, and Alvin removed from Glasgow to Columbia, where Sam reigned as the king of produce for more than a quarter-century.)

This story was posted on 2011-12-26 07:48:39
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