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National Hurricane Center

Devastating Winds Raked State During Historic Hurricanes

Devastating Winds Raked State During Historic Hurricanes

In August 1635, Connecticut consisted of a tiny settlement in Wethersfield and a crude fort in Old Saybrook. This was probably a good thing. It limited the devastation when the Great Colonial Hurricane arrived. The ocean surge from this welcome-to-the-new-world storm caused the tide to rise to an unprecedented height in Boston, and forced the Narragansett Indians to climb to the tops of trees to escape the water. The winds leveled forests and destroyed ships anchored along the Massachusetts coast, and there was a significant loss of life. Renowned weather historian David Ludlum wrote that this hurricane "Was the greatest meteorological event of the colonial period in New...