This is the stuff of legends around the Carolinas. People who were around still talk about it and even if you weren’t around you have likely heard about it from your relatives or friends. I’m talking about that crazy March that it snowed the first 3 Wednesdays in 1960.
It wasn’t just in Charlotte either. Most of the state of North Carolina had one of the worst runs of winter storms for any month on record. Let alone the month of March. Check out the 4 storms that impacted the state in March 1960.
It snowed every Wednesday for 3 weeks!
The crazy part of March 1960 and what sticks in people’s minds was the 3 straight Wednesday’s of snow in Charlotte, Asheville, Greensboro and Raleigh. For Charlotte, the 1st 2 Wednesdays were huge events. In fact the storm on the 2nd through 5th of March. Was a Category 4 Winter Storm for the entire region. This was a huge storm from the Carolinas into the Northeast.
Charlotte saw a 2-day storm total of 9.5” of snow. Below is the entire month of March in 1960 for Charlotte notice the Wednesday’s highlighted in yellow. Then the 1st 3 Wednesdays have a red box around the snowfall for those dates.
March 1960 remains the snowiest month on record in Charlotte.
How crazy was that March? It was and still is the snowiest month on record in Charlotte with 19.5” of snow for the entire month. That’s snowier than any other month including December, January and February. Even more, 1960 is the snowiest year on record in Charlotte as well. With 22.9” of snowfall and 19.3” of that falling in March alone.
Month of March snowfall in Charlotte (1878-2014)
Yearly snowfall on record in Charlotte (1878-2014)
Snowiest year on record in Charlotte (1878-2014)
It was very cold as well!
It’s amazing to think that one month outside of Winter in one year can still be the record holder for snowfall in Charlotte. Not only was it snowy it was frigid. The March of 1960 was the coldest March on record by 3.4°, and it was an astounding 11.5° below average.
There is good reason that so many people who were here remember the March of 1960. It will remain one the coldest and snowiest periods in the history of the area. For more information on that crazy March here is a great write-up that the National Weather Service Office in Greer, SC did in 2010. That was the 50 year anniversary of the memorable March.
Please share your memories or stories you have heard in the comments. There are very few pictures of that event on the web.