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Web Site of the Week: Cumberland’s Worst Flood on Whilbr

From Whilbr: Western Maryland’s Historical Library

The 1936 Flood in Cumberland, Hancock, and Williamsport


There had been general rainfall throughout the Potomac River Basin during the first two weeks of March 1936. Snow had also covered much of the watershed in early March. By mid-March, much of this rainfall and thawing snow had begun to find its ways into the region’s streams and creeks. But even with a saturated watershed and relatively high run-off, things were still relatively normal. On March 15th, a major storm which had originated in Texas began to move in a northeasterly direction, resulting in heavy downpours throughout the Middle Atlantic States and the Upper Ohio River Valley. Although the heaviest rainfall occurred on March 17th, the rainfall continued until March 19th with a total rainfall depth during this period of five inches in the Wills Creek and North Branch of the Potomac River areas. (The great Cumberland floods, Feldstein, 2009)

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